Final Price $300,000.00
Time Left Closed
High Bidder
# of Bids
First Offer $300,000.00
Auction Started Nov 6, 2012 2:02:13 PM MST
Auction Ended Nov 20, 2012 2:30:00 PM MST
Seller State of Washington Surplus Operations
Pick-up Location
WSF Eagle Harbor Maintenance Facility    [Map It]
497 Harborview Drive
Bainbridge Island, WA  98010
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Payment Cashiers Check, Cash, ACH/EFT 
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Auto/Passenger Ferry
NOTE: The State of Washington Surplus Operations now requires a $50.00 Bid Deposit on each auction over $500.00 in order to ensure fairness to all bidders. The deposit will be reversed if the bidder does not win the auction or no default occurs. The deposit will be retained if the winning bidder defaults. A 6% Buyer's Premium will be charged to the Winning Bidder on each auction at the time of payment. Credit Cards will not be accepted for the purchase of this vessel.

Sales/Use Tax: Buyer will be responsible for the payment of any sales/use tax resulting from buyer's purchase of this vessel.

M.V. RHODODENDRON operating as Washington State Ferries

You are bidding on the M.V. RHODODENDRON, owned by the Washington State Department of Transportation Ferries Division, operating as Washington State Ferries (WSF).

The M.V. Rhododendron was built in 1947 in Baltimore, Maryland as the Governor Herbert R. O'Conor and operated on Chesapeake Bay until the opening of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge in 1952. WSF purchased the vessel in 1953, re-named it the M.V. Rhododendron and commenced route service with the vessel in 1954. In 1990, WSF rebuilt the vessel with new machinery and an entirely new superstructure; and in 2008, WSF refit portions of the hull with new steel. The vessel most recently operated on the Point Defiance / Tahlequah ferry route between north Tacoma and south Vashon Island, Washington. WSF retired the Rhododendron on January 23, 2012 when the vessel was replaced by a newly built larger ferry, the M.V. Chetzemoka.

The Rhododendron is currently at WSF's Eagle Harbor Maintenance Facility on Bainbridge Island, Washington, a thirty minute ferry ride from downtown Seattle. Personal inspection of the vessel is highly recommended. Also, an independent Condition and Valuation Survey Report, dated September 10, 2012, is available upon request. Substantive excerpts are provided below along with spare parts information and vessel photos.

Inspection: On September 10, 2012, the vessel surveyor determined: "The vessel appeared to be in generally very good condition compared to like vessels of a similar age. It shows signs of very good maintenance." See the General Notes section of the vessel description for more details. Please contact Tim McGuigan to schedule a time to inspect the vessel (see above).

Vessel Removal: After payment is received, Department of Transportation will negotiate a vessel removal time with the high bidder.


Current Owner: Washington State Department of Transportation Ferries Division
Description: 227'6" doubled-ended auto / passenger ferry
Official No.: 251646
Year Built: 1947
Year Rebuilt: 1990
Hull Refit: 2008
Hull Design: Double-ended ferry; steel
Builder: Maryland Drydock Corp., Baltimore, Maryland
Tonage: 937 Gross Tons; 435 Net Tons
Speed: 11 knots
LOA: 227'6"
LWL: 217'11"
Height: 68'0"
Beam: 62'
Draft: 10'0"
Auto Capacity: 65
Pass. Capacity: 546
Crew: 8
Fuel Oil: 2 main fuel tanks; combined total of 11,397 gallons
Potable Water: 3,046 gallons
Material: Steel hull and superstructure
USCG COI: Current through January 24, 2013


This is an all steel car and passenger ferry that went through a major refit in 2008. The main deck serves as the car deck and allows two lanes of vehicles on both sides of a center island. The exterior sides of the main deck are enclosed with raised bulwarks that also support the upper deck that is also the passenger deck. Two partially covered, wide side decks are outboard of a fully enclosed passenger cabin and raised pilothouses are at each end of the vessel. The superstructure is painted all white with green trim.


Upper Deck - The pilothouse at the #1 end contains a centerline helm station, two movable helm chairs and doors to both side decks. There is also a door that leads aft and down to the passenger deck level. The pilothouse at the #2 end is identical. Aft and down from the #1 end is the captain's cabin to the right and the staff chief on the other side. Each stateroom has two berths, desks, storage and a vanity with sink. This is followed by a head with toilet and shower, a chief mate's cabin and a officer's lounge with galley and "L"-shaped settee. Aft of this is the passenger compartment.

The passenger compartment has seating for 68 passengers on one side and 54 passengers on the other. The side for 68 has single seats, double seats and dinettes for four with a table. The side for 54 has single seats in groups of four around a table and dinettes for four with table.

There are double wide stairwells at each end of the passenger compartment and doors to the exterior side decks on both sides. Near the #2 end there are two drinking fountains, a men's restroom with two stalls, two sinks and a trough urinal. There is also a women's restroom with four stalls and three sinks as well as a men's/women's restroom with one toilet and one sink. There is additional seating on the partially covered side decks with wood benches set against the cabin sides facing outboard.

Car Deck - On centerline on the car deck is the island. At each end of the island are double wide stair wells that lead up to the passenger deck. Inboard of these are various storage lockers including a space for controlling the fire pumps and fire valves, a squad locker, a paint locker, two fueling stations (one on each side), the engineer's head as well as access to the lower deck spaces.

Lower Deck - Forepeak areas are in each end with steering gear installed. Moving towards the center of the vessel are spaces where the controllable pitch propeller machinery is installed and then propeller shafting leading towards the engine room. In the #1 end there are crew quarters. There are staterooms for the chief engineer and oiler to left and right followed by other staterooms, a toilet compartment and shower compartment as well as a galley/lounge area. At the #2 end there is a large storage area as well as the elevator machinery room which also houses the CO2 bottles for the engine room. Additional storage and sewage tanks are also in this end and there is cribbing outboard for an unknown amount of lead ballast.

The engine room is in the center of the vessel. In addition to the main engines and auxiliary equipment there is the engineer's office and the engineer's operating station (EOS). The office contains a desk, storage for manuals and records as well as a small kitchenette with reefer, hot plates & sink. The EOS has controls and gauges for all the ship's systems as well as the main electrical panel.


The hull is of welded and riveted steel construction believed to be of 38" and 12" plate over various custom made frames. See General Notes. The superstructure is also steel plate over various types of steel framing.


The main engines are Wartsila model 624TS developing 800 horsepower each installed in 1991. The #1 engine is serial # 3708 and the #2 is 3709. They are cooled by a keel cooler system and have dry exhaust going up through a stack on top of the passenger cabin. A pressurized air system supports the starting and control of the engines. Fuel is supplied via a Racor fuel filtering system. Block heating is accomplished using a hot start water jacket system. The #1 engine has a total of 114,118 hours of which 25,628 are since the last major overhaul. The #2 engine has a total of 114,284 hours of which 25,803 are since the overhaul.

The engines are directly coupled to Masson model RCD 1250 reduction gears. The #1 unit is serial # 18647 while the #2 is # 18646. The reduction gears also have shift capability into forward, neutral and reverse. These in turn drive 7" diameter shafts through three Cooper pillow block bearings to the Hundested model VP11-FRH controllable pitch propeller systems. #1 has a serial #5404 while #2 is #5405. These units rely on Reliance 7.5 horsepower motors driving Hagglunds model TGC0101R0031 oil pumps for cooling and control purposes. These systems also serve as thrust bearings. The propellers are Hundested, four blade, 6' 4" in diameter.


There are two separate systems for steering. Two 10 horsepower Reliance model L215T motors drive Vickers dual vane model V2010-1F7S-4S-1 steering pumps rated at 21.5 GPM with Vickers control valves. The pumps actuate two steering rams at each rudder to effect the steering. Steering control is through a Mathers system in each pilothouse with follow-up and non follow-up indicators. Steering transfer switches are also located in each pilothouse.


There are two air compressors by Quincy, model QR-25 #370, serial # 331213 for the #1 system and serial # 386576 for the #2 system. Both units are rated at 56CFM @ 250 PSI. There are two 165 PSI air tanks for the engine control system and two 250 PSI air tanks for the main engine starting system. There is also a 150 PSI air tank for the whistle system. Piping is steel throughout.


There is a Capac, fully automatic, impressed current system for the vessel with four reference anodes installed on the hull underbody.


The bilge pump is a Marlow model 3PL 3EL rated at 240 GPM with a serial # 823547. It is driven by a Reliance model L184T 5 horsepower motor. It can be augmented by the #2 fire/sprinkler pump which is considered the emergency bilge pump. This is an Aurora model 411 AB rated at 330 GPM driven by a Reliance model 324TS 40 horsepower motor. These pumps are connected to a steel piping and two manifolds with five pick-ups in each end of the vessel. Four bilge alarm senders are installed.


There are numerous toilets located throughout the vessel. They all discharge by gravity to a sump. From the sump the sewage can be transferred to the holding tank by one of two sewage transfer pumps. These pumps are Hydromatic model 30MPVP (serial numbers 8214 & 8216). The pumps are driven by Reliance model FC56H, 1.5 horsepower electric motors. From the holding tank the sewage can be discharged to deck fittings via the sewage discharge pumps, Hydromatic models 30MPVD (serial numbers 11081 & 11085) driven by Reliance model L213T, 7.5 horsepower electric motors.


Two main fuel tanks have a total capacity of 11,397 gallons.
Two engine room day tanks hold a total of 862 gallons.
One fuel drain tank holds 58 gallons.
An emergency auxiliary generator fuel tank holds 105 gallons.
Three water tanks are installed with a total capacity of 3,046 gallons.
Two main engine lube oil tanks of steel construction hold a total of 480 gallons.
Two auxiliary generator lube oil tanks hold a total of 120 gallons.
An oily bilge water tank (formerly a waste oil tank) holds 244 gallons.
A dirty oil tank (formerly a waste oil tank) holds 80 gallons.
A sewage sump tank of unknown capacity.
A sewage holding tank holds 2,600 gallons.


There are two potable water pumps that provide water to the numerous faucets and other freshwater needs of the vessel. The pumps are Jacuzzi model FWPS2550 rated at 25 GPM. They are driven by Reliance model L182JM 3 horsepower electric motors. There is a 240 VAC water heater of unknown capacity.


Heat is provided by a diesel fired Weil McLain model H-888-WS furnace using a Gordon Platt Energy model R8.4-0-20 burner. This heats a boiler for a 15 PSI steam system with radiators located throughout the vessel. This system is rated at 1,904,000 BTU and was reported rebuilt in 2008. There is also a "hotwell" or condensate accumulator tank in the system.

Portable 115 VAC heaters are also used in several spaces in the vessel.

There is a small Fedders air conditioning unit mounted on top of the passenger cabin near the #2 end that provides cooling for the security room.

Powered ventilation is supplied to the following spaces:
  1. Two units for the EOS space

  2. Four units for the engine room

  3. Two for the lower deck crew spaces

  4. Four for the CO2 & elevator machinery room

  5. Four for the passenger cabin and officer's quarters

  6. Two for reduction gear cooling

  7. Two for controllable pitch propeller cooling


Electrical power is provide by two Cummins model 6CTA8.3-G, six cylinder diesel engines driving Stamford model UCM 274 F13 model generators. The engines develop 277 BHP each while the generators are rated at 125 kW each. The #1 generator engine has serial # 44671111 and the #1 generator has serial # C1596213. The #2 generator engine has serial # 44671096 while the #2 generator has serial # C1596212. Both generator sets are located in the engine room, have keel cooling systems and dry exhaust. The #1 auxiliary generator is started by an air system while the #2 auxiliary generator is started by battery power. There are 41,672 total hours on the #1 auxiliary generator and 14,246 hours since the last major overhaul. There are 38,924 total hours on the #2 auxiliary generator and 14,894 hours since the last major overhaul.

Shore power is received through an on deck fitting for three phase, 150 amp, 440 volts. Three 25 kva isolation transformers are installed for the shorepower. The generators can reportedly back feed into a shore power system.

There is an emergency generator set located on the upper deck accessed through a door on the exterior of the passenger cabin just aft of the #2 pilothouse on the left side. This generator consists of a Cummins 6BT5.9 diesel engine (serial #44355396) driving a 95 kW Stamford generator with (serial #313883) sitting on a skid with self contained freshwater cooling using a truck type radiator and fan. There is a separate fuel tank in the space for the generator. Total hours on this system are recorded at 604. This system is reported as operating automatically in case of a main power failure coming on line in approximately 14 seconds.

Two 8D for propulsion control & alarm system.
Two 8D for #2 generator starting system.
Two 8D for emergency generator starting.
Four 8D for gyrocompass power.
Two group 24 for radios.
Two group 27 for general alarm.
Battery Charging:
Two LaMarche 24V/20A
Two McCarron 12v/10A
Two McCarron 24V/60A


Two fire pumps (#1 and #2) serve the fire main system including the sprinkler system on the main deck. The sprinkler system is divided into four zones with a manifold and other controls located inside the island on the main deck. The pumps are Aurora model 411B powered by Reliance 324TS electric motors developing 40 horsepower each. The #2 fire pump also serves as an emergency bilge pump.

There are twelve fire stations located throughout the vessel. Each is equipped with a fire hose and nozzle fed from the fire main.

Thirty three 50 pound cylinders provide CO2 for a fire suppression system for the engine room. Two additional 50 pound cylinders provide CO2 for a hose mounted on a reel in the engine room. A separate CO2 system serves the emergency generator room.

Forty hand held type fire extinguishers are mounted on bulkheads throughout the vessel and are currently in date. Smoke detectors are located in all staterooms.

There are three "Squad Lockers" that normally contain firefighting equipment such as SCBAs, gloves, boots, pants, suspenders, coats & helmets. They are currently mostly empty of this equipment. There are six or more fire axes located throughout the vessel.


There are two large life jacket lockers at each end of the island on the main deck but raised well above the main deck. Each one of these lockers holds 50 adult life jackets and 5 child life jackets. In addition there are life jackets stowed underneath most of the seating in the passenger cabin.

There are four 100 person Zodiac "C PAK" life rafts located on the main deck near the ends. These are each fitted with barometric releases. Both the rafts and the releases are in date.

There is one cage type stretcher located on the passenger deck. There are four life rings, one with an overboard light, located throughout the vessel.


Security consists of lockable doors on all "crew" only" areas. In addition there are security codes required for access to some areas and some areas are also under surveillance using video cameras and a video recording system.


Compasses:Two Anschutz gyro type.
One Furuno satellite type.
One 3" Ritchie magnetic type.
Depth Sounder:Two Furuno RD-30 digital indicators
Radios:Four SEA 157 VHFs, two Johnson UHF types.
Radar:Two Furuno MU-170C.
AIS:Two Furuno FA-100.
Other:Two remote controlled searchlights.
Two Mathers engine order telegraphs.
Two Mathers air engine controls.
Two Mathers rudder angle indicators.
Two automatic draught indicator systems.
Two Maxum wind speed & direction indicators.
Internal Comm.:4JV - 8 station sound powered phone system.
1JV - 17 station sound powered phone system.
General announcement system.


There is a single Baldt type anchor at the #1 end. It is equipped with 600' of 58" wire rope and 15' of 34" chain. An unknown type of windlass has a reel for the wire rope and chain and will allow deployment of the anchor but it is not powered and cannot retrieve the anchor or anchor rode.


- Two 12 ton cranes in the engine room, each is equipped with a single electric winch and a single manual winch.
- Kenmore clothes washer in the engine room.
- Hotpoint & GE reefers in the engine room.
- Eltec Industries elevator model 2000, serial # 9023 installed near the #2 end.
- One oily bilge diaphragm pump with hose on a reel connected to the oily bilge tank.
- King gauge panel and sounding tubes for tank monitoring.
- Argus diesel alarm panels.
- Two WelinLambie davits rated at 2,420 lb.


Vessel's Estimated Fair Market Value: $ 750,000.00

The Fair Market Value is the amount in US dollars a willing, well informed buyer would pay a willing, well informed seller in an open market, neither being compelled to buy or sell, given a reasonable amount of time to sell. It is the value of this vessel as is, where is. Values are based upon the following: actual selling prices of similar vessels from the RM&A database, various pricing guides, comparables research and the opinions of other marine industry professionals.

  1. This vessel appeared to be in generally very good condition compared to like vessels of a similar age. It shows signs of very good maintenance.

  2. Main propulsion machinery appeared to be in good order and all equipment is reported as operational. Auxiliary machinery appeared to be in good order and all equipment is reported as operational.

  3. Interior paint coatings and soft goods appeared to be in very good condition.

  4. Exterior paint coatings appeared to be in good condition, normal wear and tear excepted.

  5. All on board equipment was visually inspected only. No operational checks were made.

  6. Fuel consumption is reported as 480 gallons per normal 17 hour operating day. When the heating system is energized and additional 50 gallons per 24 hour day has been noted.

  7. The vessel was reportedly painted in 2006.

  8. Underbody rivets were reportedly ground flush and ring welded during the 2008 yard period.

  9. The vessel as operated does not utilize the forward, neutral and reverse capabilities of the reduction gears.

  10. Numerous spares and some off-loaded equipment are reported as associated with this vessel. Those items have not been included for inventory or valuation purposes in this report.

  11. A copy of the US Coast Guard's current Certificate of Inspection (COI) for the vessel is available upon request to WSF. Special note should be made of the significant restrictions imposed by the one compartment subdivision limiting the ferry routes to 0.8 nautical miles from shore and that do not cross major shipping lanes in accordance with USCG Marine Safety Center letter H2-00556 dated 24May90.

  12. A copy of the one page hull survey Diver's Report, dated September 6, 2012, is available upon request to WSF. A copy of the diver's video is available upon request.

  1. There is some corrosion (slight pink) coloring evident on both propeller blades.
    Recommendation: Monitor for any increase in severity.

  2. There is corrosion showing through the rudder at the #2 end.
    Recommendation: Drain, re-preserve and weld tight at the next scheduled haul-out.

  3. There are no apparent CO monitors in any of the accommodation spaces.
    Recommendation: Provide CO monitors.

  4. Some emergency equipment is missing.
    Recommendation: Provide a full complement of emergency equipment prior to placing in service.

  5. There is some leaking at the #2 fire pump.
    Recommendation: Repair as required to stop the leak.


The current Certificate of Inspection (COI) was issued by the United States Coast Guard on January 24, 2012, expiring on January 24, 2013. The COI requires a crew of eight and allows for 541 passengers, five others in crew for a maximum total of 554. Routes are limited to "Lakes, Bays and Sounds in the Puget Sound and the connecting and tributary waters thereto." The vessel is limited by one compartment subdivision to ferry routes that do not exceed 0.8 nautical miles from shore and that do not cross major shipping lanes in accordance with USCG Marine Safety Center letter H2-00556 dated 24May90.


The bid and sale price for the vessel does not include spare parts. However, WSF has an extensive list of spare parts and is willing to negotiate a sale of the spare parts (or portion thereof) to the purchaser of the vessel. For any such spare parts sale, the parties must negotiate a mutually acceptable price and other terms after the sale of the vessel. WSF's acquisition cost for the spare parts located in WSF's warehouse is $546,153.00 total, as itemized on the spare parts list.


The M.V. Rhododendron has minimal hazardous material onboard. The vessel was re-built in 1990 with an entirely new superstructure and propulsion machinery. The following summarizes known hazardous materials that remain onboard:

Asbestos: Limited to individual components within the engine (i.e. engine gaskets) and its associated spare parts, as well as other minor individual components (such as window caulking, etc.).

PCBs: Nearly all fluorescent lighting fixtures have been updated but there is possibility of a few fixtures with PCB lighting ballasts. The fluorescent light fixtures remain onboard.

Batteries: Starting, propulsion, alarm, and emergency lighting system batteries remain onboard.

Other: Unknown at this time.

NOTE: WSF will contract with an independent firm to conduct a survey of any hazardous materials aboard the M.V. Rhododendron. However, the survey report may not be available until late November or early December, 2012. Therefore, all interested parties are advised that the vessel will be sold "as-is, where-is" and the buyer will be solely responsible for any required remediation of hazardous materials after purchase of the vessel.

Disclaimer: All available information has been reported in this listing. There may be deficiencies present that Washington State Surplus Programs is unaware of. You are bidding on these item(s) "as is, where is." All sales are final. Personal inspection is strongly advised. Failure to inspect property shall not be grounds for a refund claim or property abandonment.
Note: Click on pictures below to view larger image
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
  • #817309 - Ferry Boat: Auto / Passenger, 227'6" (at agency location)
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