Right, with the hub and blades removed and secure on the aft deck, we now need to remove the blades, this is a tense time for Tom the engineer, if these barges are out of position by 50cm the blades may not fit into there purpose built holders on the main deck, and we cannot move the barges now.
First the nose cone has to be removed and stored on deck.
Once removed the guys get inside and undo all the bolts from the first blade to be disconnected and the two cranes are attached.
This again is a very tricky lift, both cranes and a banksman are in total communication with each other throughout the whole lift.
From a different angle under the watchful eye of Tom, seen on the top level.
Here you can see the purpose built racks which hold the blades in place while work is carried out on the hub replacing the bearings. Also the nose cone and to the right the stand that holds the hub in place. To give you an idea of size, the barge is 32m wide and the blades are 50.5m long, so they stick out over the edge a bit.
Once all three blades are removed the hub is made ready for its lift.
And it’s lifted over my office, when I say office I mean the place I have my positioning equipment set up.
Secure on the main deck the guys get to work, these guys work so well together, every one know exactly what they are to do and just gets on with it, what i found amazing was the way they all adapt to the work place, for instance, one guys will be welding one minute, the next he will be working the mini crane to help someone else and later he will be sweeping up when that part of the job is complete, its clockwork at it best.
Old bearing being removed.