The dry-docking timeline, from start to finish

Sasan Mameghani
Co-founder & CEO
Dry-docking processes are both lengthy and complex. Here is a step-by-step overview from start to finish, including some helpful tips along the way.
Establish dry-docking objectives with input from client
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Write the dry-docking specification
  1. Standard work orders (reuse past projects)
  2. Defect list (open work orders)
  3. Inspections
  4. LC plan

NB: Spareparts
- Let the vessel order the spares needed and coordinate with the purchaser for delivery. It must also be clear what stores & spares you need BEFORE the docking and what can be delivered DURING the docking.
- Give agents details to the various subcontractors and try to estimate WHEN they should attend. You don't want all of them onboard during the first day in dock.
- Let the Master/CE handle all vessels normal stores and chandler activities. You will NOT have time to chase printer cartridges and other routine items.

As much detail as possible is needed
- Details of the equipment
- Details on what needs to be done
- Details of consumables and services needed

A visit onboard the vessel 4-6 months before the docking can help very much. Many questions can be cleared, docking jobs examined, services/surveys confirmed and spare parts orders can be discussed
It is also a good opportunity to discuss what the crew can prepare before the docking to save costs and most of all time.

Use Maindeck mobile inspection app, which includes offline functionality, to add work orders. This is a great tool for the crew to effortlessly help on the specification.

Also consider:
- Condition assessment
- New regulations
- Previous docking specs and reports
- Sister vessels

Finalise the specification
The specification :
- MUST tell the shipyard exactly what needs to be done step by step else yards will add extras in later stage of docking
- Is NOT a defect list, though defect lists should provide inputs for specification

A good specification can ensure that the invoiced cost for a job is close to the quotation

A complete specification consists of:
- Owner, manager details
- Tentative docking period
- Vessel dimension and main machinery details
- A COMPLETE list of jobs / repair items with detailed descriptions
- Suggested terms, conditions & guarantees
- Tendering instructions

Maindeck gives you all the tools you need to prepare and plan your upcoming dry-docking project and to avoid all those costly surprises on site.

Utilise our pre-saved text snippets for all the required nitty gritty text, standard work orders to kickstart the specification and our cost section to ensure you're within the budget limits.
Identify shipyard and request for quotation
The experience gained during years of conducting dry-docking projects is crucial when identifying good candidates. By taking internal notes on shipyards, the good and the bad, your organisation can more easily share this knowledge in the future.

If you need inspiration, please see our shipyard database to identify yards.

When you have identified a list of shipyards, it's time to send them your project specification for quotation. Try to include different formats, both for easy
Comparison and negotiation
There are several things to consider when choosing a shipyard.
  1. Sailing area (deviation cost)
  2. Cost (both quoted and estimated)
  3. Time (both quoted and estimated)
  4. Safety record
  5. Technical ability
  6. Experience
  7. Financial situation
  8. Weather prognosis

Use our price comparison matrix to compare several shipyards in one overview. It's important that all changes are store and easily accessible later. Achieve this is easy when using a modern dry-docking software that helps you keep track of every detail over time.

Comparison of prices helps in negotiations with shipyards

Informed decisions is the most effective way to maximize owner's investment in docking

Select shipyard

Make sure that the project management phase has all the necessary information from the negotiation phase. Use a software to automatically transfer the quotation provided by the selected shipyard.

Docking supervision and reporting on
Gain full control of your project's progress, cost, incoming and outgoing reports throughout the dry-docking process.

With tools including a fully flexible Gantt chart, cost overviews and general project management functionality, you have all you need to successfully manage your project.

Make sure you keep track of:
  • Financial
  • Time
  • Scope
  • Technical updates

All changes (including deleted or added work) must be registered as variation orders. A change is anything that is outside of the scope agreed upon.

- Daily report
- Time management reports
- Cost management reports

Invoice settlement
This is when you will truly see the importance of all prior steps. The additional cost of any slack along the way will become visible at this stage.
Docking analysis

- Deviation in time from expected delivery date
- Minimal / reduced extra jobs in USD compared to budget
- Percentage cancelled budgeted jobs in USD
- Percentage of accurately estimated jobs

Final report

Final docking reports
Yard evaluation reports

  1. Update standard work orders when necessary
  2. Archive project (make sure it's easily available later)
  3. Open next specification