Denman & Davis, the Northeast's largest general-line independent steel service center, has been commissioned by Blount Boats (Warren, R.I.) to provide steel plate and value-added metalworking services for its current ferry projects. Blount Boats is using Denman & Davis steel to construct the hulls of two ferries, as well as other ship components requiring steel plate.

The first vessel, a 162-foot ferry for the Puerto Rico Transit Authority, required 260 tons of steel plate. Once built, the ferry will hold up to 300 people in a two-deck passenger area. It will carry up to 300 tons of cargo, including up to 22 cars in an 86-foot by 40-foot holding area. The ferry is slated for completion in June 2008 and will shuttle passengers between the Puerto Rican cities of Culebra, Fajardo and Vieques.

A 100-foot, double-ended ferry destined for Shelter Island, N.Y. will use approximately 142 short tons of steel plate. It will hold up to 18 vehicles in its deck area that will measure 37 feet by 100 feet, with a capacity of about 20 passengers in its small cabin. Blount Boats estimates the ferry will be fully constructed by August 2008. Once in service, it will carry passengers from Shelter Island to North Haven, N.Y.

Denman & Davis also provided all cutting, etching and flanging for steel plate used in the ferries' construction.

"We've been doing steady business with Denman & Davis since 2000, and they get a large portion of our steel bids because of their metalworking services," said Luther Blount, project engineer at Blount Boats. "We look forward to future partnerships with Denman & Davis as we construct new steel vessels."

Founded in 1949, Blount Boats is among the country's leading boat builders. Its best known project is the 100-foot, 600-passenger Miss Liberty, built in 1952. Since it began operating as part of the Circle Line fleet, Miss Liberty has carried more than 60 million passengers from Manhattan to the Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor, more than any other passenger ship in the world.