Visiting the “American Lady”
Our owner, Doug Shupe, had the privilege recently of visiting and riding on an old acquaintance this past week named the American Lady. This Subchapter T, 135 passengers, 80ft. dinner-excursion boat was built by Skipperliner Industries in La Crosse, Wisconsin in 1995.
It is now owned and operated by a prominent local restaurateur in Dubuque, Iowa on the Mississippi River. This cruise was the last one of the season and was filled to capacity with jovial passengers despite the 40* temperatures and windy conditions. This ship was one of many that he was personally responsible for building and procurement of all parts and components in its entirety. This boat endured the first seven years of its life in the highly competitive Florida excursion market on a leased basis. It has gone through two refurbishments and several paint jobs including some steel patching and repair, but the original, mechanically controlled Caterpillar 6-cylinder engines and Cummins generator sets are still going strong. The owner has no plans to repower in the near future so as to delay the emissions upgrading that will have to be done in the future.
A complete repaint and bottom job are in the plans for this winter at a local shipyard, but overall this ship is in good condition considering its 24-year hard life and some saltwater exposure. The freshwater of the Mississippi River is much more friendly to steel-hulled boats and it is not unusual to see local riveted barges that are 80-90 years old!
‘The Tracker’ at My Marine Tracker has been totally immersed in vessel new construction, repair, refurbishment and repowering since 1990. Why not let him go to work for you on your next project? Give us a call at 608-783-2766 or send us an e-mail today. And for all those attending the International WorkBoat Show next month in New Orleans, have a great time. We wish we could be there.