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Happy New Year 2020

To all our customers, colleagues, partners, friends and families, everyone of us at MAX wishes all a year of happiness, prosperity and good health ahead.

Happy New Year 2020!! 


And for those celebrating, Chinese New Year is around the corner too! Let’s have an even better Year of the Rat! Gong Xi Fa Cai in advance!

Our factories and offices will be closed during 23/1/2020 until 12/2/2020, with some of our colleagues taking more leave, so we hope you bear with us if we are a little slow in replying.

Thank you very much for your kind understanding!

We pray for a blessed year for all!


The History of Yokohama Fenders / Pneumatic Fenders

These type of fenders are the #1 option for STS operations, world-wide.

Tankers’ Ship-to-ship (STS) operations mostly uses this type of self-floating, long useful life fender. Industry-wide known as pneumatic fenders, but why are they also called Yokohama fenders by many?

This type of marine fender works fundamentally different than the solid rubber type fenders. These use pressurised air to absorb collision energy – based on principles of pneumatics.

They are (relatively) light and easy-to-deploy. Good quality ones can be used for a very long time. These floating fenders have many other types and advantages.

In this article however, is to discuss a lesser-known aspect of this popular equipment in maritime.


Where did the idea come from? And when?

Short answers: Japan. After World-War II.

So, Why are they commonly referred to as ‘Yokohama Fenders’?

Yokohama was the first company approached to design such a fender. Hence, the name.

The traditional way was to find and use dead whales as large fenders for bigger ships. After the World-War, many turned to find a better, more constant man-made equipment as the usage of dead whales has many downsides to it.

Rubber was thought to be a great material. So being the most trusted rubber tyre manufacture in Japan at the time, the ‘Yokohama’ company was approached to design up a suitable solution.

The first big issue was that making a fender straight-up using rubber would be too costly. Let’s take for example, a size of a pretty standard diameter 3.3m x 6.5m size fender today. Theoretically that would need >70m3 of rubber material. The projected costs made it unfeasible.

The company managed to eventually come up with the idea of using the principles of pneumatic. Pressurised air absorbs energy well enough with a reasonable reaction force.

Today, commonly used working pressures of pneumatic fenders are 50 kPa and 80kPa.

Historically, yokohama fenders was not the only man-made solution

For decades, these floating fenders were not the only ones used during mooring.

They were used in conjunction with some wheel-shape fenders and many smaller-sized secondary fenders. Those small secondary fenders were said to be used to protect the stern and the bow from unexpected contact. Wheel type fenders were used at further outs while the yokohamas were used in inner areas along the midbody.

Fenders were usually secured to the ship that’s manoeuvring.

Yokohama type fenders today

The story of the origin of these fenders is indeed a very interesting development of the industry.

Today, these awesome low-cost, low-maintenance fenders are governed by ISO Standard ISO17357:2014.

ISO 17357-2:2014 specifies the material, performance, and dimensions of floating pneumatic rubber fenders

Throughout the years, there are many manufacturers that strive to develop the technologies and manufacturing capabilities. In this era, other manufacturers seem to be catching up in delivering high grade, long useful life “yokohama-type” fenders as well.



Top 6 SHOCKING news of INNOVATION in 2018 that will shape the future of maritime in 2019 & beyond

2019 is here, and maritime executives world-wide seem to wonder the same thing every year:

“What is the next big thing? Where does the industry go from here? What are the best inventions that will drive company profits and improve operations efficiency in 2019?”

To answer these questions, it is important to keep a close eye on great inventions or innovations in the past year. Carefully plan for these next-generation technologies, and their impact on the industry as a whole.

Businesses in today’s era face great change and disruption all the time, so it is important to stay on top of your game – to learn, adapt and grow quickly. As the saying goes,

“The greatest danger in times of turbulence is not the turbulence – it is to act with yesterday’s logic.”.

top 6 marine innovation news in 2018

2018 was a year of amazing inventions & innovations, especially in port tech, shipbuilding, shipping

2018 has seen no shortage of massive and amazing (in some cases, shocking) news in the maritime industry (ports, shipping, shipbuilding etc).

From futuristic zero-emission water taxi developments; new maritime strategic plans by nations; to the introduction of new cyber security technologies, there are some amazing headlines in 2018 that might shape the future of our industry.

In this article, we take a look back at a roundup of some of the most notable ones, so industry leaders like you get a quick recap at the biggest innovation news this past year:

top news about maritime shipbuilding port shipping innovation


Photo credits MPA Singapore

1. Singapore launches new plan ITM to strengthen nation as Global Maritime Hub

The year 2018 started off with a significant announcement by one of the world’s top maritime nation.

Singapore introduced a new plan called the Sea Transport Industry Transformation Map (ITM) in January 2018.

The plan is developed by the MPA (Maritime & Port Authority of Singapore), with the ultimate aim to by 2025, grow the sector’s value-add by SGD 4.5 Billion and create more than 5,000 jobs.

Many industry partners, unions and other government agencies are included as partners in the plan to implement specific initiatives to:-

  • catalyse and drive innovation
  • increase productivity/ improvements
  • enhance skill level of the Singaporean maritime workforce

Notable announcements include stating their intent to work with industry to develop port eco-system in adjacent sectors like logistics and e-commerce.

Singapore will also invest in new port capabilities that will capitalise on emerging technologies, for example in Tuas Port. The statement claims that Tuas Port will be a smart port, or in their own words, an ‘efficient and intelligent port’, fully harnessing data, and maximising the use of analytics in order to optimise operations like just-in-time vessel arrivals, and the ‘Maritime Single Window’ for quicker port clearance.

The official media release of the plan can be found HERE. Feel free to read more.



Photo credits Seabubbles

2. Electric Taxi “Seabubbles” Demo in Lake Geneva

In the development of new forms of transportation, Seabubbles’s partnership with ABB attempt to provide more options for marine transport, protecting the environment and urban infrastructure.

This electric hydrofoil water taxi design has a grand aim: to make urban marine transport 100% emission free.

In April 2018, this innovative ‘water-taxi’ was making waves in Switzerland during tests on Lake Geneva as the company prepare to launch a taxi service in the region.

This is seen as a huge milestone for many, making news not just in Switzerland, but all around the world. 2019 is here, and it remains to be seen how smoothly their plan is progressing.

While you’re at it, just check out this video to show you how cool it looks:


Photo credits DNV GL

3. DNV GL Releases First Cyber Security Class Notations

In Posidonia trade fair in June 2018, a first class notations to help protect marine assets from cyber security incidents was introduced by classification society DNV GL.

The new class notations “Cyber secure” is said to be able to help shipowners and operators protect vital systems from cyber security threats.

Cyber resilience is vital in today’s maritime world because of the inter connectivity of various machinery and systems on a vessel.

Full press report available at Marine Link. Official article from DNV GL is available here.


Photo credits BitcoinExchangeGuide

4. UK’s ABP officially exploring blockchain use case

The talk of blockchain and its potential impact on maritime & global trade has long generated buzz in the industry since the rise of Bitcoin.

In September 2018, however, UK’s port operator the Associated British Ports (ABP) who operates 21 ports across the UK, signed an MOU (memorandum of understanding) with digital logistics enabler Marine Transport International (MTI) on officially exploring the implementation of blockchain tech to improve port operations.

If you are unfamiliar with blockchain tech, some of the potential benefits of blockchain tech include more clarity, transparency, safety, and more.

But it remains to be seen whether there will be any concrete implementation coming up in the near future, or will adoption take much longer than expected.

If all goes smoothly, this might have a huge positive impact on global trade and shipping operations in 2019 and beyond.

Regardless, blockchain technology is slowly trending in the right direction, in spite of the bear market in the crypto asset space in general.

ABP’s statement available at ABP website here.


Photo credits [email protected]

5. More Hybrid-powered ships are getting launched.

There is no denying that hybrid-powered ships are the (immediate) future.

For years, shipyards have put a great deal of emphasis in designing ultra-efficient hull shapes, use hybrid-powering technologies and reduce carbon emission in many innovative ways.

While it is still unrealistic to expect full-electric powered large ships to conquer the oceans, hybrid-powered ships are already massively lowering fuel consumption needs and minimising carbon footprint to a very respectable level. It is an immediate (and effective) solution to our shipping environmental concerns.

If you’re interested to learn more, here’s an extensive article about green ships and technologies like solar-sail system, improved hull design & paint, green propulsion tech, advanced rudder and propeller design, optimised cooling system and ultra-efficient electrical system on board etc.

Some of the notable launches of these hybrids are:-


The MS Roald Amundsen for Hurtigruten

In February 2018, built for Hurtigruten (Norwegian cruise line), the MS Roald Amundsen was launched at Kleven Yards on the 17th February 2018. MS Roald Amundsen is:

  • 140m in length
  • 23.6m in width
  • able to accommodate 530 passengers
  • able to lower fuel consumption & Carbon dioxide emissions by more than 20%, made possible using hybrid tech combined with advanced hull design and efficient electricity consumption.



The Largest U.S.-Built Containership – Daniel K.Inouye in Hawaii

Meet ‘Daniel K. Inouye’, the largest containership ever built in the United States of America. This vessel was built at Philly Shipyard for U.S. carrier Matson, named in honor of Hawaii’s late senior U.S. Senator. News reports in July 2018.

  • Built with LNG-compatible engines. Proudly dubbed the next generation of vessel and sets a new standard for cargo transportation in Hawaii.
  • The vessel weighs over 51,400 metric tons, is about 260m long and has a capacity of about 3,600 TEUs.
  • Top speed of nearly 24 knots.
  • Various innovative systems are built into the vessel to be more fuel efficient.


Photo credits SRTI

6. Ship Recycling Transparency Initiative (SRTI) platform launched

On Dec 10th 2018, Industry leaders and non-profit the Sustainable Shipping Initiative announced the launch of the Ship Recycling Transparency Initiative’s (SRTI) online platform – a tool for sharing information on ship recycling to drive responsible practice.

Founding signatories include:

  • The China Navigation Company
  • Hapag-Lloyd AG,
  • A.P. Moeller-Maersk,
  • Stolt Tankers
  • Wallenius Wilhelmsen
  • GES
  • Nykredit
  • Standard Chartered Bank
  • Lloyd’s Register
  • Non-profit Forum for the Future.

This online platform is for shipping industry companies to disclose and share relevant information on responsible ship recycling matters at https://www.shiprecyclingtransparency.org/


That sums up six of the largest headlines in innovation in the industry that we notice happened in 2018. Of course, there might have been some that we missed, so do let us know if you have any to share!

We are all excited for 2019, and the innovation it brings!

Feel free to share & like this article if you like it. Here’s a video about it!


Greener Future of Maritime & Shipping Industry: Green Ship

Green Ship

International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has been intensifying their efforts in environmental rule-making in recent years. This no doubt drives the entire industry in an inevitable direction – to greener, cleaner solutions. As a result, ships and ports are demanded to be more ‘green’ these days.


Green ships consist of elements from cleaner fuels to various green ship technologies to minimise energy wastage, carbon output and seek to decrease negative impact on marine biology.


Green ship is about marine biology, cleaner fuels, and energy wastage minimisation. Tweet this!

MAX rubber fender image

Cleaner fuels

Ships used to run on unrefined crude full with sulphur and environmentally-harmful impurities. This is because this type of fuel is the leftover of the oil refining process and extremely cheap when compared to other options. In 2005, the IMO started to control the sulphur content of maritime fuel especially in Western countries like the U.S. and Europe. This results in ships needing to burn higher quality (hence, more expensive) fuel with components similar to diesel.


Technologies of greener ships are in demand right now due to more and more regulations and public awareness of the environment.

Some of the most talked about green ship technology is the No Ballast System that aims to minimise ship ballast’s negative environmental impact on aqua organisms.

No Ballast System decreases negative impact on aqua biology.

More efficient systems like higher propulsion efficiency and better cooling water systems that drastically decreases environmental effects are also in the making. Solar cell integration is also one big area that shipbuilders are focusing on.

Efficient solar cell integration in greener ships can save fuel up to 20%.

An infographic that shows some of the popular application of green technologies in ship building as below:

green ship Tech MAX-Infographic from MarineInsight.com

Some stats you should tweet:

  • An optimised cooling system can save up to 25 percent of electricity and 1.5 percent fuel. Tweet this!
  • Greener engines are able to minimise NOx output up to 35 percent and achieve zero SOx output. Tweet this!
  • Solar-Sail hybrid system can minimise to 20 percent fuel consumption. Tweet this!
  • Kite-Sail System can reduce fuel consumption by 20 to 40 percent annually. Tweet this!
  • Rig-Sail System is a hybrid system that can help ships save fuel up to 30 percent. Tweet this!
  • Implementation of exhaust scrubber can reduce SOx emissions up to 98 percent! Tweet this!
  • Latest advanced propellers can save 4 percent fuel compared to old designs. Tweet this!
  • Speed nozzle that increases efficiency at high speeds help save up to 5 percent fuel. Tweet this!
  • New hull paints are improved to reduce friction and reduce fuel consumption up to 8 percent. Tweet this!


green port

Green Port

Besides green ships, port development projects are also more eco-friendly these days. Ports are focusing on reducing carbon footprints, minimising pollution, conserving natural resources and strive for zero energy wastage. Some even placed great emphasis in decreasing noise pollution!

Green Port tech focus on reducing carbon footprint, increasing energy efficiency and waste management. Tweet this!

Waste management

Most ports go green by first identifying recycling possibilities (or re-use even) and put a solid waste segregation plan in action.

Carbon zero

The ‘green’ vision of ports has prompted the implementation of carbon reduction programs that includes monitoring of gas, electricity and water usage in ports. Energy saving systems like smart lighting systems are also practised in certain port projects.

Long-term Future of Green Ports & Green Ships

Going ‘green’ is not exactly achievable overnight. It takes lots of effort from all authorities and parties involved. Until now, implementation of more environmental friendly and ‘green’ systems are hindered by the costs involved. However, the energy consumption in the long-term may be a great investment. ‘Green’ is not going anywhere soon, so it is highly advisable that even the smallest companies in this industry will be prepared for the ‘Green Era’. No matter how small the contribution is, steps taken to reduce carbon footprints and implementation of more eco-friendly programs will help build a more sustainable future for the industry.

That is why MAX Groups Marine focuses a lot on reducing our carbon footprint from our sales office to manufacturing plants. Because we care. For us, going green is a priority.

View all our other products at our main products page HERE.

Read about “5 Ways a Fender System can Fail You. No.4 is the Most Overlooked Mistake.” HERE.

*UPDATE SEPTEMBER 2014: This article has been featured on Australian Shipowners Association‘s Anchor Industry Magazine.

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Maritime Stats: Cargo Theft & Piracy is More Real Than You Think

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Here’s All You Need to Know About Shell Prelude FLNG Facility

Prelude FLNG MAX blog

Royal Dutch Shell’s Prelude FLNG is the world’s 1st floating liquefied natural gas platform & largest offshore facility…[Read More]

prelude shell LNG

Here’s All You Need to Know about Shell Prelude FLNG

Royal Dutch Shell’s Prelude FLNG is the first floating liquefied natural gas platform in the world. Besides, it is well known for being the largest offshore facility ever built up to date and is a marine engineering masterpiece. Construction of the Prelude is performed by Samsung Heavy Industries South Korea.

Shell Prelude FLNG is the first floating liquefied natural gas platform & largest offshore facility in the world. Tweet this!

Prelude FLNG

Here are some facts that you really should know about this stunning architecture.

Dimensions wise, this facility is so massive that it is almost 88 metres longer than the world’s biggest ship – Maersk Mc-Kinny Moller. Its width of 74m is even bigger than a Boeing 747’s wingspan whereas its height (its relatively less impressive metric) is still taller than the iconic Big Ben in London and the Statue of Liberty in U.S.

Shell Prelude FLNG is 488m long, and its deck is longer than 4 football fields laid end to end. Tweet this!

More than 6700 Horsepower thrusters are used to position the facility. An impressive amount of 50 million litres of water is used every hour for cooling the LNG. Its Liquefied Natural Gas production capacity is expected to be at 3.6 million metric tons per annum.

The Prelude FLNG has a storage that equals 175 Olympic sized swimming pools. Tweet this!

BBC News reported that analysts told Reuters that the cost of building the Prelude FLNG is estimated to be between $10.8 billion and $12.6 billion.

Shell Prelude FLNG is estimated to cost around $10.8bn to $12.6bn, according to analysts. Tweet this!

Natural gas will be extracted from wells and liquified by cooling it down to about -162 degrees celsius. The entire industry is excited of its innovation that removes the need for pipelining systems to land-based processing plants to produce LNG. The ability to produce liquified natural gas in sea is an incredible innovation. Liquified Natural Gas will then be offloaded to LNG Carriers. This has never been done before due to the sophistication and complexion of processing equipments, and fitting all of them into a single facility seemed impossible for many years. Shell claimed that research has been carried out for more than 10 years to make this project a reality.


After about 14 months of construction, the 200,000 tonne facility floats out to the sea for second phase of construction in December 2013. Check this video out to see the launching of this incredible project:

Drilling is expected to begin in 2017 where this floating facility will be deployed at 200km off the coasts of Australia in the Prelude and Concerto gas fields. It is said that it has a planned life expectancy of 25 years.

We are awaiting its completion where history will be made again.

Infographic credits to Shell & MaritimeInsight.com. Special thanks to GasTechNews.com for extensive features to help us understand the prelude project.

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Ship Repair, Launching & Marine Salvage using MAX Airbags

The Ultimate Guide to Ship Launch, Ship Repair & Marine Salvage using MAX Air Bags

MAX Marine Airbag technology is an extremely flexible technology where it can handle heavy structure launchings (ships, boats, floating jetties, caissons), ship repair haul-ins and marine salvaging cases.

While we cannot disclose the details of calculation due to professional competitive advantage, this guide aims to give an overall view of how MAX advises our clients.

Ship launching using such marine rubber inflatables is superior to many other conventional methods.

Airbag ship repair and launching offer shipyards a cheaper, safer and eco-friendlier option than traditional methods. Tweet this!


Jump directly to:-

Ship Launch Section

Ship Repair Section

Marine Salvage Section


Ship Launch Section

MAX Rubber Airbags are really cost-effective in launching a vessel.

They are very suitable even for smaller-sized barges to tug boats up to bigger-sized chemical tankers and containerships.

However, it is very important to understand that rubber airbag launching is not a ‘one-size-fits-all’ method.

Marine rubber air bag launching is not a ‘one-size-fits-call’ method. Tweet this!

In fact, MAX team would need to understand all the necessary technical specifications of the vessel (or structure, as this launching method can also be used to launch caissons & floating jetties etc) and many external factors.

The first step is to identify the vessel size & dimensions.


Identify Main Dimensions & Types of Vessel

At MAX, we believe in listening before we jump to conclusions and putting our clients priorities first.

Before proceeding in advising, MAX staff would normally request our prospects to fill in a technical specifications form.

Factors like:

  • Length overall (L.O.A.),
  • Beam,
  • Draft,
  • Launching weight (light weight) of the vessel
  • Working height (distance between ground and the hull of the vessel), are just a few crucial things we need to know.

This enables our team to understand the weight dynamics of the structure during launching.

Equally as important, we also ask for a GA plan as the main ship design different designs of the structure plays a role in choosing an efficient air bag solution.


Selection of MAX Marine Airbag

After understanding the type of vessel and its principal dimensions, MAX staff is then able to recommend the:

  • Types
  • Sizes
  • Numbers of airbags.

A weight allowance of a certain percentage of the vessel weight is taken into consideration.

This helps MAX to ensure a safe launching process by not overexerting the rubber airbags and also have a safety margin, should there be any additional weight carried by the vessel during launching.

It is important to take into consideration a safety factor of weight allowance during selection of marine air bags. Tweet this!

Based on the dimensions and structural design, the team can recommend the dimensions of the airbag in terms of length, diameter and type.

Then, based on calculations and careful projections, MAX staff is able to determine the guaranteed bearing capacity per airbag.

At this point, extra airbags for launchway mobilisation will be included in our recommendations.

The selection process of MAX airbags is also checked by our MAX Smart Ship launching software.

launching calculator

Due to professional competitive advantage, this is a screenshot of just a part of the software.

This software is developed by MAX software engineering team and acs as a double-checking process to enable a safe recommendation of the optimum number and types of airbags for use.


General Ground Structure Preparation

MAX airbag launching process requires a hard ground so that the whole structure will not sink during launching.

If the ground consists of sand or is soft, there are many options that our staff will recommend.

Sandbags are a very commonly used solution.

MAX also helped many of our clients prepare concrete ground as launching slipway for airbag use.

This would require a very delicate study of the nature of the ground and in-depth analysis on a case-to-case basis. Thus, it is crucial that this aspect should not be overlooked.

For MAX, we have helped our clients solve these issues in many years of our experience in ship launching.

Contact us if you have such tricky issues with the launching slipway and need professional assistance.

Power and miscellaneous issues:

Other pre-launch conditions like power generation issues including the design & supply of diesel generator systems will also be discussed with our client.


Selection of Slipway Winch

We do not recommend other general-usage winches. Our slipway winch is designed specifically for this use – launch or haul-out ships.

  • Winch speed within the industry standard of ship launching with airbags
  • Emergency reverse-braking mechanism
  • Various built-in safety mechanisms for common issues when handling ships.
  • Control panel tailored to conditions in shipyards / marine-use
  • And more.

Safety should be the No.1 consideration here. Our winch is built for the job.

Determining winch capacity:

The force needed to support the vessel will be determined by taking into account the slope angle.

The engineering team will have to calculate and find out the type & strength of slipway winch required to hold the structure in place.

Determining electric or hydraulic powered?

The decision of whether to use an electric or hydraulic winch is also very important.

A hydraulic winch may be more expensive but might be more durable and more suitable in certain cases. Though it depends on the user and conditions.

Pulley blocks, shackles, suitable wire rope types and necessary equipments will also be recommended if needed.

Pulling force plays an especially huge role for certain launching projects that require a slow and steady launch approach, needing the winch to be able to operate long periods of time.


Placing of Rubber Airbags

MAX team uses 3D projections to determine the placement of rubber airbags at ready-launch position.


This helped give a 3D view on how to evenly distribute the weight of the vessel/structure for maximum safety.

MAX takes into careful consideration the distance between components and how to coordinate the metal strut/stand locations.

3D-printing is used for some of MAX’s vessel launch projects, too.


The Actual Process of Launching the Vessel

First time users usually require MAX consultation crew to be on ground to help clients launch their vessel.

We are able to facilitate the whole preparation together with supervision of the launching process at a small consultation fee for our clients.

Equipped with decades of experience in launching and careful projections, our team ensures the project success and the safety of the crew.

With its advantages, launching of structures up to 10,000 Tonnes using this method is pretty common these days.

It is widely acknowledged that our quality launching bags are able to be used up to more than 5 years and is very cost efficient compared to most traditional launching methods.

MAX Airbag launching process

This is a simple breakdown of the common air bag launching process.

  1. It started with a winch holding the vessel in place.
  2. Airbags are placed underneath the ship’s hull.
  3. Air bags are then inflated.
  4. The transfer of weight from support blocks to having the airbags actually lifting the vessel itself.
  5. Remove the support blocks.
  6. Then the winch’s pulling force is slowly decreased to enable mobilisation of vessel towards the sea line.
  7. At a certain point, the connection between winch and vessel will be released using MAX quick release shackle.
  8. The vessel, assisted by gravity and launching bags, will be launched safely into the sea with minimal risk.


Please note that however, there are many different scenarios to cater to different situations and different vessels, so this is just an overall idea of it.

For your projects, drop us an email so MAX team can assist.

You can visit MAX Marine Airbags page for more info on the product.

View a Youtube video of the launching of Sealink Asia 101 by MAX below:


Ship Repair Section

Like the ship launching method, the main concept and preparation process are both very similar, just reverse the process. Please go through ship launching section first before reading this section to better grasp the idea.

Most calculations are inverted and the core concept of having strong enough pulling force (in this case, hauling winch) is key to maintaining a steady hauling process for ship repair.

Understanding Principal Dimensions & Weight of Vessel

Similarly to the vessel launching process, the hauling in of vessel for repair projects require MAX to analyse its dimensions in detail.

Weight, overall ship length and width are some of the aspects MAX engineering team would take under consideration.

The design of hull and ship has to be considered as well for hauling process as structural differences can affect the types of airbags used.

Choosing Suitable MAX Airbags

Main dimensions and structural design of the vessel helps MAX team to recommend the dimensions, thickness, specsnumber of air bags needed.

When choosing the most suitable bags for hauling use, safety is our number one priority.

Marine bags should not be overexerted.

That is why MAX’s experienced technicians will add a percentage of weight contingency in calculations.

This will add a ‘safety cushion‘ also to accommodate any excess weight that the vessel may have added.

Next, detailed projections and careful calculations enable MAX to identify the bearing capacity per airbag.

This figure is subsequently used to deduce the total number of bags needed, including extra bags for launchway mobilisation.

MAX team will then use our in-house developed MAX Smart Ship Launching software to double-check the calculations.

Pulling Winch / Hauling Winch with Enough Pulling Force

Depending on the angle of the slope, the dimensions & size of vessel, a winch and the entire pulley system will be recommended to provide sufficient pulling force.

Ship Repair using Launching Airbags

Most of the process is similar to the airbag ship launching process.

You can read more about it here, but reverse the process.

Instead of launching the vessel into the water, rubber airbags help lift the vessel out of the water, supporting its movement towards land using the winch’s pulling force.

This innovative product helps boost a yard’s ship repair capacity without needing to invest in building another dry dock.

A hard ground is sufficient to enable vessel hauling using airbags, and repair works can be performed at the same location.

The entire hauling process is a delicate case-to-case situation.

MAX’s experience and detailed projections will ensure you a safe ship haul-out process.

These launching bags are also used by our team to solve launch way limitation problems, maximising the return on investment of our clients.



Marine Salvage Section

Marine Salvage is the process/project of recovering a vessel (ship), its cargo, or items after a ship wreck.

This includes towing of a vessel, patching of a ship or re-floating a sunken/grounded ship.

MAX Airbags is a popular product for re-floating a sunken/grounded ship.

Marine salvage using rubber bags are mainly case-to-case studies where MAX technical team will advise only based on known data.

Here is just a general idea of how MAX would assist in vessel salvaging projects:

Buoyancy Needed to Re-float Vessel

The in-depth study & calculations of buoyancy needed will be carried out by MAX.

With this, MAX is able to advise on the size and type of MAX salvaging bags (There are custom made and very different when compared to launching bags with more emphasis on floating ability etc).

Depth or Water Pressure

MAX needs to understand the scale of the project and the magnitude of it to determine the strength & type of mobilisation/re-floating airbags.


We have worked closely with marine salvaging teams in many parts of the world since Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Our experience in these projects would ensure the success of your marine salvage projects.

So if you’re a marine salvaging team, contact us for high quality and reasonably-priced MAX rubber airbags.

View MAX Rubber Airbag product if you’ll like to learn more.


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Airbags, the Best Ship Launch Method?

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Case Study: Sideways Mobilisation using MAX Rubber Inflatables

barge 3 in place

This newly established ship repair yard has limited launch way/slipway. Supposedly, only 1 barge can be hauled in for repairs at a time…[Read More]


Top 20 Maritime Quotes

Being in the shipbuilding & marine equipment industry, MAX staff are always highly passionate of our job. Sometimes, it may be hard for people out of the industry to understand the pride we have in our work. We truly believe that people working in marine related industries are some of the most extraordinary people. They are all courageous explorers, dreamers, and pioneers.

Some quotes of the sea and marine-related sayings really inspire us to do more. Here are some of our favourite maritime quotes that we find interesting & inspiring:

  1. “A smooth sea never made a skilful sailor.” Tweet this!sailing maritime quote
  2. “At sea, I learned how little a person needs, not how much.” -Robin Lee Graham Tweet this!


3. “Life’s roughest storms prove the strength of our anchors.” Tweet this!


4. “I must be a mermaid, Rango. I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living.” ― Anais Nin Tweet this!


5. “Sail away from the safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” Tweet this!


6. “A ship in port is safe. But that’s what not ships are built for.” Tweet this!ship in port quote

7. “We cannot control the wind, but we can direct the sail.” Tweet this!


8. “You can’t cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water.” Tweet this!


9. “Work like a captain, play like a pirate.” Tweet this!


10. “You can never cross the ocean unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.” Tweet this!


11. “Home is where the anchor drops.” Tweet this!quote of marine anchor

12. “The voice of the sea speaks to the soul.” Tweet this!


13. “Keep calm and sail away.” Tweet this!


14. “A sailor is an artist whose medium is the wind.” Tweet this!


15. “Life is like the ocean. Waves will try to knock you down and push you back to where you started but once you fight through them, the entire ocean is yours.” Tweet this! life ocean inspiring quote

16. “A lot of people attack the sea, I make love to it.” – Jacques Yves Cousteau Tweet this!


17. “The sea does not reward those who are too anxious, too greedy or too impatient. One should lie empty, open, choiceless as a beach – waiting for a gift from the sea.” – Anne Morrow Lindbergh Tweet this!


18. “We must free ourselves of the hope that the sea will ever rest. We must learn to sail in high winds.” – Aristotle Onassis Tweet this!


19. “If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery Tweet this!


20. “Anyone can hold the helm when the sea is calm.” Tweet this! calm seas motivational quote

These are some of our favourite quotes of the sea/maritime-related. So, which one’s your favourite?

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Ship Launching Airbags, the best ship launching method?

Launching a ship is the most important process in ship construction. It not done right, it erases all the hard work building the ship itself. Sometimes, people take ship launching for granted and it came as no surprise that many ship launching projects fail due to negligence.

MAX Turkey 2007 ShiplaunchPenang shiplaunch max airbags

A table for some of the most popular ship launching method comparisons:





Oiled Slideway Launching

(Longitudinal & Side)

Low costs.

Dangerous as front part of the ship undergoes huge pressure. The immediate drop into water also might cause collision with the bottom of the river/sea. Many accidents happen for especially side ship launching.

Oil used will pollute the water.

Roller Slideway Launching

Initial installation costs are high.



MAX Ship Launching Airbags

Very cost-effective. Ship launching airbags can be re-used many times & usually has a lifespan of 5-8 years.

Safe. MAX Ship launching airbags provide support to the hull of the ship and aids its launching motion into the water.


Dry Dock Floating-Out Launching

Initial investment is extremely high.



Mechanical Type Launching

(With mechanical features)

The construction and maintenance for mechanical features are extremely high.

Risky, and only for smaller vessels. You can see many accidents happen for this type of ship launching.



If you are still using oiled slideway ship launching, it may be time to consider a more eco-friendly and safe ship launching method.

If you are launching your ship with dry dock float-out method, consider whether it is necessary for such a huge initial investment for your vessel. The float-out method is great for massive ships (more than 15,000DWT ships) but for ships with a DWT of less than 10,000 tonnes, ship launching airbags can help launch the vessel with relative ease. For those more than 10,000 tonne DWT ship launches, careful projection and a professional team’s assistance may be required. Still, it is usually much more cost-effective than dry dock ship launching. Rubber air bag vessel launching is a much preferred option especially popular in South East Asia, though it is already picking up momentum in many other regions like Europe and North America.

Airbag Ship Launching. Cheaper than dry dock launching, more eco-friendly than oiled slipway launching. Tweet this!

pneumatic rubber roller launch

You can read our extensive guide to learn more about the methodology of advising usage of pneumatic rollers (a.k.a. rubber marine airbags) for ship launching, repair and salvage operations.

Do you experience a short lifespan for your marine products like ship launching airbags? Deal with a supplier who is slow in responding and service? Or did you pay extremely high prices for an average quality product that often fails you? 83% of our global clients claim that these are the problems that made them search for a better alternative and subsequently worked with us since.


MAX is known for our products’ great quality-to-price ratio and responsive customer serviceMoreover, from our global sales office to manufacturing plants, we are committed to ‘Go Green‘ for the environment. Drop us an email and we will assist!

Here’s what makes our airbags special:

MAX Groups Marine has launched various types of vessels in 6 continents using marine airbag technology. For more info of our projects, visit <http://max-groups.com/projects/>

View all our products at our Product Page HERE.

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8 Tips to Make Sure Mooring Winch & Anchor Windlass Works Perfectly

Mooring Winch / Anchor Winch / Anchor Windlass


1. Make sure the foundation of mooring winch is in good stable condition. Tweet this!

An overall check for issues should be performed, especially the overall stability of the marine equipment itself. Most people tend to neglect the winch foundations. To ensure a safe operations environment, these details of the mooring winch should not be omitted.

2. Brake linings, hinge pins and drums have to be checked thoroughly. Tweet this!

Older winches in ships/boats may have to be checked for possible faulty brake gear and the condition of brake drums below the lining have to be assessed to be safe.  Establish a policy to test winch brakes should do the job. 60% of the mooring line’s minimum breaking load should be held by the primary brake. Be careful that the brake adjustment screw may have been tightened to its limit after years of excessive wear on brake linings. If that is the case, more maintenance and renewal may be required.

3. Insulation tests are extremely important for safety. (for electric mooring winches located in gas hazardous areas) Tweet this!

An “Ex” rating is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED if the marine winch is in such areas as the rating certifies that the internal explosion can be withstood without igniting the external atmosphere. Insulation tests should provide higher than 1 Megaohm resistance to make sure the electric-powered winch is safe.

Anchor Windlass

4. Checks should be performed regularly on mooring wires and ropes. Tweet this!

IMPORTANT NOTE: should there be more than 3 broken wires in any strand, the damaged part definitely needs to be removed and respliced. Lubrication using preservatives should not be overlooked too as it protects the wires and strands. Regular maintenance of mooring wires and ropes is vital to keep the winch working effectively and efficiently.

5. Rollers should be able to turn freely and be well greased at all times. Tweet this!

This is to prevent materials or trash getting stuck in between and damage the mooring winch during operations.

6. Checks on the anchors, locking bars and cables of the anchor winch/ anchor windlass should be performed. Tweet this!

This is to ensure the anchors, cables and locking bars are in safe working conditions. Locking bars have to be able to lock and secure the chain when vessel is at anchor so that the brakes do not have to take the full load of the cable. Cables should also be made sure it is strong for action.

7. Mooring lines should be correctly reeled on drums. Tweet this!

Band brakes are designed to work in a single direction. Thus, the mooring lines have to be reeled in the correct arrangement depending on manufacturer’s guidance.

8. Never leave a winch in gear with the winch band brake on. Tweet this!

Powered mooring lines secured on brakes should witness the winches out of gear. Should the brake render, the electric or hydraulic drive may be badly damaged.

mooring winch

mooring winch & anchor windlass tips

View our Winch product page.

View all our products at our product page.

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Choosing the Right Anchor Chain for you Sailing Needs

MAX marine anchor chain 2MAX marine anchor chainmax marine anchor chain 3

You do not have to be a sailor or a sailing enthusiast to know that every boat/ship needs an anchor and reliable anchoring equipment. You are most likely to imagine a huge hook-like tool that is linked to the boat by a chain. What you might be tempted to think is that all anchor chains are the same. The truth of the matter is that an anchor chain can come in various grades and types. It is vital for any sailor to choose the right anchor chain.

Without an anchor chain, you expose yourself and your ship/boat to great danger. If you are in the middle of the sea and you find yourself in a situation where you need to dock because your ship/boat cannot move ahead, you will need an anchor chain that is reliable and long enough to get your boat anchored in the deep waters. Without one, your vessel will drift off with the water current.

max anchor chain

Types of anchor chains

An anchor chain has its specifications and features that enhance effectiveness. Some of the most popular are galvanized-steel windlass chains, anchor chains made of low-carbon steel and heat-treated high-test chains made from high carbon-manganese alloy. High Test chains are popular because of their high load limit and strength. They are thus great for really heavy anchors used on big ships.

How long should an anchor chain be?

To determine whether you have the right length, you need to put a couple of things into consideration. For one, you need to keep in mind the distance from the bow of your ship/boat to the surface of the water. It is easy not to remember this, but it is actually very important. You also need to consider the depth of the water on which you will sail. Use a navigation chart to know the maximum depth. There are ships that have the technology to indicate this information, thus making it easy for the crew to know whether there is enough chain to get the anchor to the sea bed.

You further need to consider the maximum height of tides. The seas and oceans do not have the same depth all the time. In fact water levels change at different times of the day. You thus need to know the highest tide heights of different seasons and days. Once you know the height, you add it to the total length of the line reel. With the depth of the water in hand, you can go ahead and get a chain with a 7:1 scope in mind. This means the chain should be seven times longer than the water depth. This is one of the estimation ways to get the optimum length.

Once you have the chain you need, you need to constantly inspect and maintain it. Keeping it in condition will prevent you from losing your anchor at sea. All the links should evenly fit in the wildcat’s recess. Be sure that the end if the chain is attached to your vessel or boat. This is usually done using a spliced-on section of a line that can reach the deck. If you do it all right, you can set sail and not worry about drifting away in the roaming waters.

More info about Why Choose a Hydraulic Winch over an Electrical One Here.

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