Reactivation after cold stacking

With the market improving rigs and boats that have been cold stacked, sometimes for several years, are being reactivated. That is not an easy task, nor is it cheap.
Here is a story about reactivating the MODU Stena Don:,how-stena-reactivated-an-18-year-old-semisubmersible_56713.htm

I wonder what kind of work they had to do when reactivating the SSDC after ten years of cold lay-up and what kind of work would have be done now, after 13 years or so:

I always remember our sparkys saying if this rig gets stacked they will not come back to reactivate.
99% of all the modern electronics were never designed to stack, there is no data on storage of all the high voltage vfr drives etc
Scary stuff to turn on after a few years considering all the maintenance they require while working


Another problem is that a lot of those sparkys got stacked too after their rigs did. Starting up and trying to troubleshoot some of that older tech is going to be a headache with the knowledge loss that went with the original crew. I’d be pretty concerned powering up some of that gear stacked down in places like Aruba and Trinidad with the years of humidity, even if it was shrink-wrapped and stuffed with desiccant. I’d like to see some reporting after a few more companies unstack some bigger rigs to compare projected vs actual reactivation costs.

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If you ignore older tech, wouldn’t be more productive in the long run to have a part time skeleton crew keeping things running? I’ve sailed past the MARAD fleet both in Suisun Bay and Beaumont Texas and wondered about how much work would be involved in getting some of the older ships back up to speed. I know it’s been done with some Vietnam era ships in the early 2000’s but I can’t see anything older worth the expense.

The other issue I’m sure everyone has is the group of technicians on board were old guys and very young ones, the gap reflecting the previous downturn.
Hence the old guys will retire in this downturn and the young guys will be the only ones to come back, I hope they had enough training and experience?

In an ideal world just something as simple as rafting up quay-side with a shore-power source to keep heaters on transformers, switchboards, and large motors would go a long way. Old or new, corrosion is the killer. But if you are having to stay warm by burning your own diesel, then those costs will certainly add up in the long term.

I stacked a couple drillships but I never thought much about the mothball skeleton fleet, does anyone know how those things were preserved/laid up?

The shallow-draft icebreakers we designed in the 1970s and 1980s were designed to over-winter in the Siberian rivers where the ambient air temperature dropped to -50°C and ports were frozen almost to the bottom. Not sure how often it happened, but I’ve seen pics of a bunch of Russians sitting around a ship’s propeller in a hole dug into crystal-clear ice…

AFAIK the Canadian Beaufort Sea offshore icebreakers were designed with similar winter lay-up option in mind.

One guy I had worked with in Houston got a job in Beaumont going to the fleet in a launch and recording the condition of the ships and moorings. I spent several days surveying around the ships for the COE but I never saw or heard any machinery running. Most of the ships looked like they were way past the point where they could be brought back to life. I heard later that many were scheduled for break up. This was about ten years ago. Maybe another forum member has more recent information.

IMHO, the issue is when was the equipment designed and built?
Technology from WWII is well known and well tested, lasted for years was still installed on rigs out there today.
Stuff invented in the 90’s has none of that history nore was it thought in the designers mind