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What's up with Carnival?Aanother ship can't meet max speed.


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For marine equipment at this level are there various maintenance schedules depending on use/load?

 

I'd imagine the engines are pretty much designer for low RPM continuous load application; is there a basic maintenance and / or secondary more than called for maintenance schedule?

 

I'm not one to say anything is "cutting maintenance", but perhaps there is a threshold Carnival holds maintenance to that is perfectly acceptable and accounts in for downtime. Have you worked with or for any companies that did "above and beyond" type maintenance and did the costs associated with that play out in increased or continued revenue?

 

 

Even with the best of maintenance plans not every part on every component is checked or maintained, but those parts can still fail, causing the component to fail. Obtaining those parts isn't always as easy as driving to the closest Mopar store and picking them up, they have to be ordered and in some cases there is a long lead time between when they are ordered and when they are available.

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Thank you for taking the time to explain this to us all.

 

It would appear to me that the average age of Carnival ships is getting up there and as a result more things go wrong now and in the future.

 

I do believe that in the past ships the age of the Fantasy class would have been retired from the Carnival fleet.

 

 

I don't believe that there is any precedent for this. While they have moved off ships as they age in the past' date=' none of these was a complete fleet (I guess you could say the Holiday class is a class...but that pales in comparison to the size of the Fantasy class). They clearly feel that their unique situation as compared to other cruise lines play a factor.

 

It is of note that there are Fantasy class ships that do week long cruises and newer more balcony driven ships that do shorter cruises. Also, they have placed the Fascination in a slot that compares against newer competition. Don't necessarily have answers just stating some relevant thoughts.

 

 

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I think that most marine industry safety specialists, including the USCG, and all of the classification societies that provide insurance underwriting for the ships, would disagree with your interpretation of "playing craps" with guest's safety. 90% of the time, itineraries are designed so the ship does not need full speed, both to save fuel costs and also to provide a cushion in case there is maintenance or a failure that could result in less than full power.

 

It might not even be a propulsion problem at all, but a generator capacity problem. Paradise has six diesel generators, and she needs all six of them to make full speed. There may be a failure of a component in one of the engines or generators that requires a couple of months lead time to deliver. As with my comment above about designing itineraries where full power is not required is the fact that these engines need overhaul at regular intervals. This is typically about every 2 years, so 3 engines would be scheduled for complete overhaul every year. This is a full tear down and part renewal, just as if you had a new engine put in your car every two years, and takes about 2-3 weeks to complete. So, in any given year, the ship is sailing around for 6-9 weeks of the year (11-17% of the time) with one engine out of service for an extended period of time, and no one is any wiser. I suppose you would recommend that the ship be taken out of service to do engine overhauls as well, since this affects the top speed of the ship?

 

I will again point out that 95% of the world's shipping goes out to sea every day with only one propulsion system (propeller) connected to one diesel engine, and given the industry's safety standards, this is considered to be completely sea-worthy, so the multiple redundancies of a modern cruise ship makes them the safest ships afloat.

 

I don't make comments on customer service issues, so I won't address the effect an itinerary change has on a vacation, or what should or should not be done in compensation.

 

Could they take a ship out of service whenever there is required maintenance or repairs to be made? Sure. How high do you want your cruise fares to go, because they are not going to just swallow the cost of docking, and loss of revenue, without making it up throughout the fleet.

 

And hating to get into the jimbo/thorncroft funfest, jimbo's point is that the "engines", which could mean either the azipods (made by ABB) or the diesels (made by MAN), are not made by either Carnival (sorry thorncroft) or Fincantieri (to dispel the "shady" construction comment).

 

As for the persistent "cutting maintenance" comments, this would require a wide conspiracy including not only Carnival, but also the classification societies, who stake their reputation and their financial bond on guaranteeing the sea-worthiness of the ships, but also the maritime safety agencies like the USCG that inspect maintenance records and programs as part of their PSC duties. Do some ships miss some scheduled maintenance, no doubt. Is is a company wide corporate strategy to save cost, I doubt it.

I enjoy reading a well crafted and logical posting. Thank you

 

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I think that most marine industry safety specialists, including the USCG, and all of the classification societies that provide insurance underwriting for the ships, would disagree with your interpretation of "playing craps" with guest's safety. 90% of the time, itineraries are designed so the ship does not need full speed, both to save fuel costs and also to provide a cushion in case there is maintenance or a failure that could result in less than full power.

 

It might not even be a propulsion problem at all, but a generator capacity problem. Paradise has six diesel generators, and she needs all six of them to make full speed. There may be a failure of a component in one of the engines or generators that requires a couple of months lead time to deliver. As with my comment above about designing itineraries where full power is not required is the fact that these engines need overhaul at regular intervals. This is typically about every 2 years, so 3 engines would be scheduled for complete overhaul every year. This is a full tear down and part renewal, just as if you had a new engine put in your car every two years, and takes about 2-3 weeks to complete. So, in any given year, the ship is sailing around for 6-9 weeks of the year (11-17% of the time) with one engine out of service for an extended period of time, and no one is any wiser. I suppose you would recommend that the ship be taken out of service to do engine overhauls as well, since this affects the top speed of the ship?

 

I will again point out that 95% of the world's shipping goes out to sea every day with only one propulsion system (propeller) connected to one diesel engine, and given the industry's safety standards, this is considered to be completely sea-worthy, so the multiple redundancies of a modern cruise ship makes them the safest ships afloat.

 

I don't make comments on customer service issues, so I won't address the effect an itinerary change has on a vacation, or what should or should not be done in compensation.

 

Could they take a ship out of service whenever there is required maintenance or repairs to be made? Sure. How high do you want your cruise fares to go, because they are not going to just swallow the cost of docking, and loss of revenue, without making it up throughout the fleet.

 

And hating to get into the jimbo/thorncroft funfest, jimbo's point is that the "engines", which could mean either the azipods (made by ABB) or the diesels (made by MAN), are not made by either Carnival (sorry thorncroft) or Fincantieri (to dispel the "shady" construction comment).

 

As for the persistent "cutting maintenance" comments, this would require a wide conspiracy including not only Carnival, but also the classification societies, who stake their reputation and their financial bond on guaranteeing the sea-worthiness of the ships, but also the maritime safety agencies like the USCG that inspect maintenance records and programs as part of their PSC duties. Do some ships miss some scheduled maintenance, no doubt. Is is a company wide corporate strategy to save cost, I doubt it.

Knowledge as deep as the ocean. :) Thanks for explanation.

 

ciao

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I was able to go on the behind the scenes tour on the Splendor in January. She uses two electric drive motors. 18 foot screws and entire ship is powered by 6 generators. It was interesting to note the engineers noted that the only run 4 generators at a time if needed , one is backup(standbye) and the sixth is being maintained. (They mentioned parts are slow to arrive as these are dated and unique systems) . The other interesting point was they can run full speed with 4 generators at 75% load.

 

The drive motors are turning at only 123 RPM for max speed.

Not sure why she is running slow, but they did mention that the sixth generator is offline until those parts are made-then arrive.

 

I would really advise this tour as the engineers show you the control area and will answer almost any question you have.

 

Splendor is extremely clean and they take pride in their operation, they must have some other challenges. This present themselves as first class.

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I just got off the Splendor.

 

At least there was alcohol.

 

 

Comp? On one of my previous Carnival cruises, tendering was delayed by a few hours due to sea condition. Captain threw open the bar for 3 hours that evening and drinks were on the house. It was one happy ship from bow to stern.

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For marine equipment at this level are there various maintenance schedules depending on use/load? Not really. The equipment rating, and maintenance schedule is based on 100% operation at 100% rating, so if you run less load, the parts will not be as worn when replaced.

 

I'd imagine the engines are pretty much designer for low RPM continuous load application; is there a basic maintenance and / or secondary more than called for maintenance schedule? Which do you mean as "engines", the diesels or the propulsion motors? The diesels run at constant speed in order to generate a constant 60Hz power (400-800 rpm, depending on the attached generator), and are most efficient when operating at about 75-80%. The engines are classified (like you see in Wiki listed as "installed power" as the continuous rating, so they can operate at 100% full time. The maintenance schedule is produced by the engine manufacturer as being what they have determined will keep the engine running at full load until the next overhaul interval. For propulsion motors, just like most electric motors, they are also rated to run at full power for indefinite periods, and the maintenance schedule is also designed by the manufacturer to "guarantee" full operation, based on their historical data.

 

I'm not one to say anything is "cutting maintenance", but perhaps there is a threshold Carnival holds maintenance to that is perfectly acceptable and accounts in for downtime. Have you worked with or for any companies that did "above and beyond" type maintenance and did the costs associated with that play out in increased or continued revenue?

 

I've always held the belief that the "art" of marine engineering is finding the balance between reliability and operating cost. You can guarantee 100% reliability (within reason) if given an unlimited maintenance budget. You can get 95% reliability for probably 50-60% of that budget. Let's face it, companies are in business to make money, so the higher the maintenance costs, the higher the price of the product (cruise fare) will be. The ISM generally requires that the planned maintenance program follows the manufacturers' recommendations. Generally, I've found that cruise lines tend to better this maintenance. Where cargo ships will find that with 3 sea water pumps available when one is needed, and one can break down for extended time to get parts, the cruise lines will always want "zero downtime" on all equipment, whether it is redundant or not.

 

Companies, including cruise lines, may spend to provide a more reliable, or better, service to the customer, but this generally means the customer is willing to pay a premium for this better reputation. So, like I say, increased cost may command a higher price, but it will result in a higher price anyway, as the cost must be passed on.

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Thank you for taking the time to explain this to us all.

 

It would appear to me that the average age of Carnival ships is getting up there and as a result more things go wrong now and in the future.

 

I do believe that in the past ships the age of the Fantasy class would have been retired from the Carnival fleet.

 

Even with the best of maintenance plans not every part on every component is checked or maintained' date=' but those parts can still fail, causing the component to fail. Obtaining those parts isn't always as easy as driving to the closest Mopar store and picking them up, they have to be ordered and in some cases there is a long lead time between when they are ordered and when they are available.[/quote']

 

The major reason a ship is retired, particularly in a cruise line, is the age of the hull, not the equipment. Virtually every piece of machinery onboard is overhauled to like new condition every 5 years at the outside. What begins to cost, and why ships above 15 years of age are no longer allowed to drydock once every 5 years, and use an underwater diver survey in between, is the possible deterioration of the hull and structure. So, older ships are pulled out of the water more frequently (twice in 5 years) to allow for thickness testing of hull and framing steel, and to inspect welds (x-ray). This usually starts to require steel renewals at this time, and the cost means the ship can no longer be considered economical in the current company's business model. They are sold to other operators whose business model can sustain the added costs (smaller profit margins).

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And hating to get into the jimbo/thorncroft funfest, jimbo's point is that the "engines", which could mean either the azipods (made by ABB) or the diesels (made by MAN), are not made by either Carnival (sorry thorncroft) or Fincantieri (to dispel the "shady" construction comment).

 

 

 

LOL. I do spend a lot of time here playing Words With Jimbo. :') and I'm aware that Carnival and Fincantieri don't build engines. :D

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I was able to go on the behind the scenes tour on the Splendor in January. She uses two electric drive motors. 18 foot screws and entire ship is powered by 6 generators. It was interesting to note the engineers noted that the only run 4 generators at a time if needed , one is backup(standbye) and the sixth is being maintained. (They mentioned parts are slow to arrive as these are dated and unique systems) . The other interesting point was they can run full speed with 4 generators at 75% load.

 

The drive motors are turning at only 123 RPM for max speed.

Not sure why she is running slow, but they did mention that the sixth generator is offline until those parts are made-then arrive.

 

I would really advise this tour as the engineers show you the control area and will answer almost any question you have.

 

Splendor is extremely clean and they take pride in their operation, they must have some other challenges. This present themselves as first class.

 

Based on data I've seen, in order to get full power out of the azipods, you need better than 80% of 4 diesels, without any hotel load. So, 5 generators for full speed is what I've seen for typical plant configurations, and one can be down for overhaul. I would disagree with the engines being "dated and unique", as these are common Wartsila engines that may no longer be made new, but Wartsila definitely still makes parts for them. Whether the propulsion motors or their control systems/power converters need parts, these could be items that might or might not be "dated" but that might be parts that are not kept in stock by the manufacturer, similar to the Norwegian Star's recent azipod problem where the failed part had to be manufactured before it could be sent to the ship.

 

The drive motors, and hence the propellers only turn at 123 rpm in order to lessen cavitation, and are designed to produce full power at this rpm. In fact, most ship's propellers turn much slower, in the 75-95 rpm range.

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I am certiainly not the expert, but the chief engineer was describing the parts on the splendor as dated and some component have to be "made" as they are no longer available. I was standing at the console and 4 generators at 75% showing speed of 21 knots at 123 rpm. Generator 6 was down waiting for parts and generator 5 was on standby. Again, I am not the expert on marine propulsion just sharing that amazing tour. I am very proficient in automobiles and was amazed at the specific differences.

The also describe the difference in fuel and noted they have to run diesel once they are 12 miles off the coast for emission purposes, They described diesel as more expensive and less desire able then the fuel the ship was designed for.

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I am certiainly not the expert, but the chief engineer was describing the parts on the splendor as dated and some component have to be "made" as they are no longer available. I was standing at the console and 4 generators at 75% showing speed of 21 knots at 123 rpm. Generator 6 was down waiting for parts and generator 5 was on standby. Again, I am not the expert on marine propulsion just sharing that amazing tour. I am very proficient in automobiles and was amazed at the specific differences.

The also describe the difference in fuel and noted they have to run diesel once they are 12 miles off the coast for emission purposes, They described diesel as more expensive and less desire able then the fuel the ship was designed for.

 

Actually, it is within 200 miles from shore of the North American continent that the ship has to burn diesel fuel, unless they have scrubbers. If the ship has scrubbers, but they are only the "open" type, where the scrubbing water is discharged to sea, then those scrubbers would not be allowed to operate within 12 miles, and the ship would then change to diesel fuel. Marine Gas Oil (the name for diesel fuel in the marine industry, or #2 diesel in the US) costs about twice what IFO380 (the residual fuel most commonly used in marine engines) costs, and can in some cases cause more severe wear of components than the more viscous residual fuel.

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When I called today they said you can cancel for a full refund if done tonight by 11pm,

 

 

That is what happened to us when our ship was delayed a day coming into port. We were already there and ready to cruise so we went anyway.

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Disappointed as this affects my cruise. There is absolutely nothing to do in costa maya [emoji36]

 

 

 

Agree! Not an on par substitute. Have you checked out the lack of excursion choices as well as the prices? Outrageous! Half the excursions are eat and drink all day on the beach options. I can do that on the ship (minus the beach).

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Paradise cruisers need to e-mail and call and request to have their dissatisfaction noted in terms of the compensation they are providing and request something on par with what Splendor travelers are receiving. We had to insist that they do this because the agents did not want to deal with us. They even told us to refer to our letter when we asked what times the ship would be in port with the new itinerary. They did not even want to look it up for us!

 

Those who were traveling on the Splendor were provided fair compensation but even those on the next sailing were given the same offer, as noted in a Cruise Critic article. Why can't those on the Paradise get a similar offer for similar circumstances? A $25 credit and substitute mediocre port is an insult. I understand ships have issues and that they need to alter ports but you book a cruise based on where it is going and we certainly aren't getting what we paid for so please put a better offer on the table. We selected these dates due to our children's spring break and it would be very difficult to rebook. We did check other itineraries for that week from Tampa and Port Canaveral but with only 8 days notification and peak time with students on break, there were no comparable cruises available.

 

Splendor offer: http://www.cruisecritic.com/news/news.cfm?ID=7592

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I am disappointed too. I got the email last night saying that it was changed from Mahogany Bay to Costa Maya on the Paradise. Was really looking forward to Mahogany Bay and this is my wedding cruise :( This is actually the second time that they've changed it. When we first booked it went to Cozumel and Grand Cayman. Then they changed to Mahogany Bay and Cozumel. Now it's Cozumel and Costa Maya.

I know that all ports can be dangerous but recently, my brother and his wife went to Mahogany Bay and said they would NEVER get off the ship there again. They felt like it was exceptionally dangerous there. Like I said, all ports have sketchy areas but they did do a Carnival excursion.

Maybe it's a blessing. Either way, any day at sea is better than a day at work. Enjoy your cruise and may you have many years of happiness and bliss! Congrats on the wedding!! *cheers*

SaveSave

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I agree that we really should have been compensated a bit better than $25 OBC pp. I also had ZERO notification from Carnival about changing my itinerary by a certain time on a certain date - and I certainly receive calls from them all the time asking if I'd like to book a cruise...gee...just can't imagine why I didn't get the call asking if I wanted to change my trip. We're committed to going on this vacation as there's really not another window for us to take this trip and we've gotten the time off, etc -- but I'm seriously unhappy about missing Roatan. It is definitely NOT dangerous if you arrange a transfer over to West Bay Beach and enjoy some of the BEST snorkeling ANYWHERE in the Caribbean. I'm tempted to call and ask for a better compensation here....I'm happy we were able to get into Maya Chan at Costa Maya since it's so well reviewed....but I bought my brand new tribord snorkel mask JUST for West Bay Beach :(

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I agree that we really should have been compensated a bit better than $25 OBC pp. I also had ZERO notification from Carnival about changing my itinerary by a certain time on a certain date - and I certainly receive calls from them all the time asking if I'd like to book a cruise...gee...just can't imagine why I didn't get the call asking if I wanted to change my trip. We're committed to going on this vacation as there's really not another window for us to take this trip and we've gotten the time off, etc -- but I'm seriously unhappy about missing Roatan. It is definitely NOT dangerous if you arrange a transfer over to West Bay Beach and enjoy some of the BEST snorkeling ANYWHERE in the Caribbean. I'm tempted to call and ask for a better compensation here....I'm happy we were able to get into Maya Chan at Costa Maya since it's so well reviewed....but I bought my brand new tribord snorkel mask JUST for West Bay Beach :(

 

I didn't receive any notification about changing my cruise either and neither did any of the people, all 27 of them, that were booked with us. I've been to Roatan before and didn't feel it was dangerous at all. It had some of the best snorkeling I've ever seen, and we too, bought snorkel gear for this port. Since I'll be getting married on this ship there was no way that I would be able to change my cruise so we are making the best out of it. We booked a spot in Maya Chan too. It will be a great cruise no matter what!!

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I know that all ports can be dangerous but recently, my brother and his wife went to Mahogany Bay and said they would NEVER get off the ship there again. They felt like it was exceptionally dangerous there. Like I said, all ports have sketchy areas but they did do a Carnival excursion.

 

 

Mahogany Bay at Roatan is a Carnival-owned cruise terminal, with exceptionally clean shops, restaurants, and a lovely beach. It's very much an extension of the cruise ship itself.

 

Now, if your family members did an excursion to some other part of Roatan, I don't know anything about that. But Mahogany Bay is perfectly safe and not "sketchy" in any way. In fact, it's a little "phony" in that it's a sterilized island experience (not that there's anything wrong with that, sometimes it's exactly what I'm looking for!).

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I know that all ports can be dangerous but recently, my brother and his wife went to Mahogany Bay and said they would NEVER get off the ship there again. They felt like it was exceptionally dangerous there. Like I said, all ports have sketchy areas but they did do a Carnival excursion.

SaveSave

 

 

I think you may be confused on this port. Montego Bay in Jamaica possibly?? Mahogany Bay is completely safe.

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I have read these FIVE pages of comments on the propulsion issue and think back and went check and the threads on propulsion issues with Carnival have not changed in frequency a whole lot but the number of comments and views on each of these threads are getting longer and longer each time. Also googled this subject and seldom found an actual news media article on a propulsion issue on a ship 5 years ago. The latest ones the past two years each had multiple articles written. So maybe this is another of those perception issues caused by the ever increasing amount of information we get on each day of our lives. Just look at the number of people on Cruise Critic now and 5 years ago and the number of threads created.

The one example I always use is 9/11. On September 10th 2001 we all viewed air travel as pretty safe and certainly not a likely target of terrorism. The next day our perception completely changed.

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So does anyone here with expertise on the Paradise's engineering who has been speculating about what is going on with the ship have any idea if it is a possibility the ship can be fixed while still in service, so that the cruises after June 10th can go to their ports as scheduled? Or do you think they will have to wait for drydock in 2018, and that Carnival is just waiting to tell those of us booked after June 10th that we are not going to our scheduled ports, so that they don't have too many cruisers switching their reservations to different ships or cancelling altogether?

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