(2) 4-cylinder Perkins marine diesel engines. Originally Disney used Detroit Diesel engines, in the first 2 Cruisers and the 6 Launches, until 1982.
Right: The Bon Voyage during the morning, docked next to the orange Friendship II water-taxi. Photo: Greg Chin - Aug. 1982.
Above: The "Bon Voyage" Motor Cruiser, Watercraft pilot Cindy Stringer waves from the starboard-side windows. She is deckhanding on this trip, while another pilot, believed to be Linda Albertalli, is up in the pilothouse steering. All the pilots usually take turns steering, after making one round trip.
These photos: Docking a cruiser - As the cruiser gets close to the dock, the deckhand, steps off onto the dock, and quickly gets a wrap of the heavy metal cleat, and secures the "half-hitch" knot. If necessary, the boat is backed-up and the knot is re-adjusted. Then the engines are engaged in 1/3 speed forward to keep the boat against the dock. The rudders are turned to the "outboard" position. Then the guests can finally disembark.
Length: 66'-1" long
Beam: 12'-0" wide
Draft: 3'-6" deep at keel
Displacement: 23 tons
Props: (2) props and (2) rudders
Built at: The WDW Central Shops
Designed by: Ben Ostlund
Piloting the Motor Cruisers:
The "Bon Voyage" or "Bonnie", as she is referred to by the Watercraft pilots, was the second motor cruiser built at Disney World. She is virtually identical in every way, to her sister ship, the "Castaways". Except for the reciprocal color scheme, and the gray rub-rail belt around her main deck line is parted at the bow gunnels. The gray rub-rail on the Castaways is one continuous belt around her deck line. The cruisers initially had Detroit diesel engines during their first 5 to 8 years of operation. Later, in the early 1980's Disney World bought and installed British-made Perkins marine diesel engines in all the motor cruisers and the motor launches.
Cruiser duty is always a welcome one. The ship is a pleasure to steer, with its dual throttle and dual engine design. With its 2 rudders, the cruiser is extremely maneuverable, and because it is enclosed, it's warm during the Wintertime. Of course, this means it can also get quite warm, up in the pilothouse, during the hottest part of the Summer. The pilot can also lean back against the insulated metal casing around the smoke stack, in the rear of the pilothouse. None of the other boats afford that luxury to the pilots. Of course, this is only done when it's deemed safe to do so. The visibility is very good from the upper pilothouse windows. The steering wheel is made of stainless steel tubing, about 24" in diameter. Many of the guests on board enjoy chatting with the pilot who is currently deckhanding on the trip. The cruisers can also accommodate wheelchairs and scooters with room to spare. People are always fascinated with the workings of our vessels.
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