Saga Ruby

Saga Ruby

MS "Saga Ruby" is a cruise ship owned and operated by Saga Cruises. She was built as the combined ocean liner/cruise ship MS "Vistafjord" in 1973 by Swan Hunter Shipbuilders in the United Kingdom for the Norwegian America Line. In 1983 she was sold to Cunard Line, retaining her original name until 1999 when she was renamed MS "Caronia". In 2004 she was sold to her current owners.

Concept and construction

The "Vistafjord" was ordered by Norwegian America Line (NAL) from Swan Hunter Shipbuilders, Newcastle, United Kindgom. She was based on the company's 1966-built MS|Sagafjord, but with an enlarged hull, additional superstructure deck and improved interior layout. Like the "Sagafjord", the "Vistafjord" was built with the hull strenght and baggage-handling facilities required for ocean liner service across the North Atlantic.cite book |title=The Liner: Retrospective and Renaissance |last=Dawson |first=Philip |year=2005 |publisher=Conway |location= |isbn=978-1-84486-049-4 |pages=pp. 215-217 ] She was launched on date|1972-05-15 and delivered to the Norwegian America Line exactly a year later on date|1973-05-15.

ervice history

On date|1973-05-22 the "Vistafjord" set on her maiden voyage, a transatlantic crossing from Oslo to New York. After this initial crossing she was used exclusively in cruise service from New York to the Bahamas. At the time the Norwegian-flagged "Vistafjord" was considered to be amongst the most luxurious cruise ships in the world, sharing the top 5 in Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruising with the "Sagafjord" and Royal Viking Line's "Royal Viking Star", "Royal Viking Sky" and "Royal Viking Sea" for several years. [cite book |title=Monarchs of the Sea - the Great Ocean Liners |last=Ulrich |first=Kurt |year= |publisher=Tauris Parke |location= |isbn=1 86064 3736 |pages=p. 210 ]

Although their ships were high-rated, Norwegian America Line had trouble making profit. [Ulrich. p. 221] In 1983 Trafalgar House, the owners of Cunard Line, purchased NAL [Ward (2008). p. 43] and in October 1983 the "Vistafjord" joined the Cunard fleet. She retained her original name and the grey NAL hull colour, but recieved Cunard Line funnel colours and was re-registred to the Bahamas. Despite the flag change she retained Norwegian command staff.Ulrich. pp. 188-189]

In 1999 the decision was made to rename the "Vistafjord" with a more traditional Cunard Line name. On date|1999-12-10 she was renamed MS "Caronia" and re-registered in the United Kingdom. She continued service with Cunard until November 2004, when she was sold to Saga Cruises. Following a £17 million refit [cite web |url= |title="Saga Ruby" |accessdate=2008-10-11 |last= |first= |date= |format= |work= |publisher=Saga Holidays |language= ] at Valletta, Malta the "Caronia" reappeared as MS "Saga Ruby" in March 2005. In the Saga Cruises fleet she joined her former Norwegian America Line fleetmate "Sagafjord" (now named "Saga Rose"). [cite web |url= |title="Vistafjord" |accessdate=2008-10-10 |last=Boyle |first=Ian |date= |format= |work=Simplon Postcards |publisher= |language= ]


Exterior design

The "Vistafjord" was built with a very traditional ocean liner profile, with the funnel placed amidship and a notable sheer on her hull. The superstructure is terraced both at the fore and aft of the ship. In two refits during her Cunard Line career additional structures were added to the rear and top of the superstructure.

In Norwegian America Line service the "Vistafjord" carried the traditional NAL livery, with a grey hull, white superstructure, yellow mast and a yellow funnel with red, white and blue (colours of the flag of Norway) stripes. Following sale to Cunard she retained the grey hull colour, but her funnel was painted in the red/black Cunard colours and her mast white. A red "Cunard" text was later added to her superstructure. Coinciding with her renaming into "Caronia" in 1999 the ship's hull was repainted black. As "Saga Ruby" her hull was repainted dark blue and her funnel yellow, with a dark blue top and a narrow white stripe separing the two colours.

Technical details

Main engines

*Sulzer 9RD68 made by George Clarke & N.E.M. Ltd.
*Port Main Engine turns anti-clockwise engine number #1696 cylinders are numbered from 82561 through to 69.
*Starboard Main Engine turns clockwise engine number #1697 cylinders numbered from 82570 through to 78.
*Maximum economic loading is 5MW per engine at 135rpm, this produces a speed of 20 knots. At this speed the engines consume approximately 48 tonne/day of IFQ 180 fuel oil which relates to 41.72 litres, 10.97 US or 9.27 UK gallons per nautical mile (knot).

Main Engine2 X Sulzer 9RD68 – 24.000 BHPAuxiliary Engine6 X Bergen LDG6 - 670 KW1 X Wartsila CW170L8 1040 KWBoiler2 X Spanner MK III Marine Boilers at 10 Bar.2 X Exhaust Gas Boilers at 10 Bar.Gas Oil (GO) Capacity - Normal Cruising (m. ton)440 m. tonnesMarine Diesel Oil (MDO) Capacity - Normal Cruising (m. ton) N/AHeavy Fuel Oil (HFO) capacity - Normal Cruising (m. ton) 1900 m. tonnesHFO Specification, Grade (IFO 380, IFO 180, >IFO 180 etc.) IFO 180HFO Storage Tanks (Type & Location) Deep TanksLubricating Oil (LO) Capacity - Normal Cruising (m. ton) 100 m. tonnesLO Storage Tanks (Type & Location) Double BottomsFuel Consumption per 24 hours - Normal Cruising (m. ton) 50.0 m. tonnes IFO 180 + 12 m. tonnes MGOFuel Consumption per 24 hours - Max (m. ton) 60 m. tonnesFuel Consumption per 24 hours - Penetrating Ice (m. ton) 65 m. tonnes


*Saga Ruby has 1 Emergency and 7 Main Electrical Generators.
*The Emergency Generator is a Caterpillar SR4 producing 275KW at 440V.
*The Main Generators consist of 6 Bergen RSGB-8 producing a maximum 690KW each and 1 Cummins KTA 3067-G producing a maximum 750KW. The maximum safe working loads are 550KW for the Bergens, and 400KW for the Cummins, at this loading the total power is 3700KW. During our cruises in Northern waters, the average daily loading is 2,975KW. The Tropical water loading of the Generators will result in an average fuel consumption of 15.5 tonne/day of Marine Gas Oil.
*The Bergens are numbered :
#Starboard Outer is #1, Engine serial number #1986.
#Starboard Center is #2, Engine serial number #1987.
#Starboard Inner is #3, Engine serial number #1988.
#Port Inner is #4, Engine serial number #1989.
#Port Centre is #5, Engine serial number #1990.
#Port Outer is #6, Engine serial number #1991.
*The Cummins engine has a serial number of #33105825.
*The power is supplied from the main switchboard to 21 transformers that take the voltage down from 440V to 120V for the cabin and Public Areas.

Air conditioning

*We have 3 Carrier 19XL5353306CR (R134a) marine air conditioning units which supplies treated chilled fresh water to 42 air handling units (AHU). The Carrier units each consume 400KW (at 100%) of electricity for the motors, which results in 1734 Cooling KW from the plant. The AHU’s provide 417,706 cuM/Hr. of conditioned air. This relates to 8 air changes/Hr in Cabins, 15 changes/hr in the Public Rooms, and 60 changes/hr in the Galley.
*The Engine Room inlet fans produce 306,000 cuM/Hr and the Exhaust Fans remove 50,000 cuM/Hr. The Main Engines, Generators, and Boilers use approximately 230,000 cuM/Hr. of fresh air at full load.


*22 Pumps, 11 Sea Water and 11 Fresh Water accomplish the cooling for the above units.
*The 11 Sea Water consist of 3 for the Main Engine Cooling System, 3 for the Diesel Generators, 4 for the Air Conditioning Units, and 1 for the Cummins.
*The 11 Fresh Water consists of 3 for the Main Engine Jacket Water, 3 for the Diesel Generators, 3 for the Main Engine Piston Cooling, and 2 for Main Engine Nozzle Cooling.


*Steam is supplied at 9 bar (wet) with a total boiler out put of 19,300Kg/Hr.
*This is supplied by :
#2 Spanner Oil Fired Swirlyflow Boilers type j.5655/6 producing 11,000 Kg/Hr using an average o of 3 tonne/day of fuel.
#2 Main Engine Spanner Swirlyflow Exhaust Gas Boilers type J.5657/58 producing 6,200 Kr/Hr.
*The steam is used to heat the fuel to a suitable injection temperature, for air conditioning re-heat, and for domestic hot water. The 2 domestic water heaters are retrofit and are Alpha Laval Plate Heaters type M10-BFG.


*The Provision Plant is a retrofit with the new R404a gas. It has two sides – a high temperature (plus boxes) and a low temperature (minus boxes) system. The Plus System has a 35 Cooling KW capacity, and a Minus System with a 41 Cooling KW capacity.
*There are 20 ice-producing machines on board, which are capable of producing 9,450lbs per day. There are also 471 cabin sized 2.8 or 4cu.ft refrigerators on board, 347 in passenger cabins.


*These are Denny Brown AEG units which have a designation “Swan Hunter Ship 39 Contract”. They take a full load current of 26KW per main motor, and have a fin length of 15 feet, and are 7 feet wide.

Water production plant

There are 3 Water Production Plant on board capable of producing 627 tonne/day. They are the following:
#An Atlas-Danmark Distiller AFGU 2SN091 which is a 200 tonne/day unit.
#A Matrix Reverse Osmosis 66K SWRO Silver-D which is a 250 tonne/day unit.
#A Matrix Reverse Osmosis 44K SWRO Silver D produces 120 tonne/day.

teering gear

#The Steering Gear was manufactured by AEG is a vane type RDC 630/100 with a Standard Vickers VSG Mark III Pump. It also has an unusual emergency steering pump, which is driven by a pneumatic motor.


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