Case Study: Shipyard Propeller Shaft Repair

Project Location: Local Shipyard and Machine Shop, WA

The customer wanted a quick check for the circularity of the blade tips to the centerline of the propeller shaft, along with point clouds measured on the face and the back of the blade.

The laser tracker was set up on a tripod and the shaft was measured to set the coordinate system. As both sides of the blade needed to be inspected, control points were bonded to the concrete floor to enable the laser tracker to be moved to the second measuring position.

The necessary points were measured on the back of the blades. We then performed the device move (leapfrog) to the front face of the blades. By constructing the coordinate system so that a radial reading could be viewed on the computer digital readout, the top dead center of the blade tip could be found. We measured a surface point, and this was repeated on all the blade tips. The engineers were then able to check that the blades were concentric to the shaft centerline and that the face and back of the blade were in tolerance.

By performing this quick check, we were able to save the customer time and money. Being able to measure the propeller blades at the machine shop gave the customer the ability to ship the prop to the shipyard with confidence that it was indeed “in tolerance.”

Morley Machine Tool Alignment specializes in this type of work. We are conveniently located in Milton, Washington, between Seattle and Tacoma. Contact us for a quote today!