McBoatface deal buoys Sheffield's oldest gear firm

Remember Boaty McBoatface?

Thursday, 17th November 2016, 3:37 pm
Updated Friday, 18th November 2016, 11:22 am
Pentag managing director Andrew Larkin with the final gear for the RRS David Attenborough

Who could forget the furore around the silly name for a serious ship?

The power of social media ruled the waves for a while in spring. But ultimately reason prevailed and the £200m polar research vessel was named the RSS David Attenborough - although the joke name lives on, in its remote control sub.

The £200m polar research vessel, RRS David Attenborough

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

But once the fuss had died down, a Sheffield company stepped up to play a vital role in helping to build it.

Pentag Gears and Oilfield Equipment, of John Street, won a £65,000 order to make eight gears for the thrusters, which will enable the ship to manoeuvre accurately in heavy ice water conditions.

The 10-strong firm claims to be Sheffield’s oldest gear manufacturer.

Sales manager Mark Crossley said: “Despite our senior years we are bang in the frontline of technology. Cammell Laird is building the vessel at their shipyard on Merseyside and Pentag was selected to manufacture the gears given our experience and reliability.

Boaty McBoatface lives on in the name of the remote controlled sub

“The order has taken four months to complete including verification by third party inspectors.

“Our commitment to technical compliance at all stages of the process was key to us winning the business.

“Boaty McBoatface is a fabulous name and it has lived on as the ROV submarine has assumed the name. I think RRS David Attenborough is a fitting tribute to a legendary naturalist. Such serious and important work would, in my opinion be undermined by a silly name.”

It launches in 2019.

The £200m polar research vessel, RRS David Attenborough
Boaty McBoatface lives on in the name of the remote controlled sub