"We saw more than $20,000 in fuel savings in the first year."
When Mathew Stage talks about getting a head of steam, he means it literally. He’s captain and owner of the Chautauqua Belle, one of four authentic steam-powered sternwheeler paddle boats in North America.
Mathew and his team restored the steamboat from a state of disrepair. “The major project was replacing the entire boiler system, which consists of 128 tubes that run the length of the boiler,” says Captain Stage. “I spent three days of my life inside that boiler – wire wheeling and grinding off a decade of calcium buildup.”
Now the steamboat is in heavy operation and is a serious business for Captain Stage. “For 10 weeks every year we run 7 days a week with 5 trips a day. In the season she’s running about 16 to 18 hours a day,” says Captain Stage.
After six seasons of that kind of performance, the boiler was showing real signs of wear. “We re-tubed the boiler in 2007 and our fuel economy was great. We were about 88% efficient that first year, but our fuel bills kept getting higher and higher,” explains Captain Stage. “We tried grinders and physically trying to clean the tubes, but the performance increase wasn’t even noticeable.”
That’s when Mathew called Goodway Technologies who recommended ScaleBreak liquid descaler with Goodway’s GDS-C40 Scale Removal System. “We initially ran the system for about a day and a half,” says Captain Stage. “Before ScaleBreak we never saw any boiler efficiency improvement. Now the boiler is running like new,” he says.
“We saw more than $20,000 in fuel savings the first year,” says Mathew. “We’ve since re-plumbed the boilers so that we can hook up the circulator without it being a burden. Now I can run it every spring.”