Case Studies

Inspection Time of Large Parts Reduced for Marine/Offshore Manufacturer

Inspection Time of Large Parts Reduced for Marine/Offshore Manufacturer

Located in Houma, Louisiana, Oil States Skagit SMATCO, a subsidiary of Oil States Industries, Inc. designs, manufactures, refurbishes, and custom fabricates a complete line of products for the marine and offshore industries which include three distinct product lines, Skagit Mooring winches, SMATCO Anchor Handling and Towing Winches, and Nautilus Marine Cranes. Oil States Industries is ISO 9001:2008 and API 2C 6th Edition certified.

Skagit Products has been building heavy-duty machinery for a variety of industries since the early 1900s. They are the leader in designing and manufacturing deep-water mooring systems for offshore drilling vessels, as well as pipelay winches for derrick barges and floating production systems. Since 1967, SMATCO has been providing a line of AHTS winches for the offshore industry with models that range in size from 50 MT – 500 MT of line pull.

Oil States Nautilus Marine Cranes have been successfully installed and utilized around the world since 1985. These cranes incorporate the latest hydraulic technology to deliver the highest quality slewing-bearing pedestal-mounted cranes available.

The Oil States Skagit SMATCO manufacturing facility lies on approximately 43 acres of land and has more than 185,000 square feet under one roof. The shop contains some of the largest machine tools and overhead cranes on the Gulf Coast, affording Oil States the capability to handle even the most difficult tasks. Their equipment is fabricated, painted and assembled under one roof, and can be loaded out by water or land, depending on equipment size and weight. This allows them to provide their customers with flexibility, minimal turnaround time, and lower transportation and handling costs.


Working in the marine and offshore industry, it’s no surprise that Oil States produces very large pieces of equipment. Two items in particular that they need to inspect are a 400 ton anchor handling winch, which is capable of storing 16,000 feet of 3-inch diameter cable, as well as offshore pedestal cranes capable of more than 500 tons of lift. Conventional metrology instruments such as micrometers and calipers were typically used to perform these inspections, but they did not provide the 3D results that Oil States was looking for.


Efforts to provide larger, more advanced products and services that would meet or exceed customer expectations directed Oil States to a portable 3D measurement solution. After researching various options, the FARO Laser Tracker was chosen for its stability and durability. It also utilizes the same familiar software as the FaroArm, which Oil States has owned and operated for several years.

The FARO Laser Tracker allows Oil States to mobilize inspection of large components. They can take this portable CMM wherever it is needed to measure items within its 230 foot diameter range. It is operated almost daily for receiving, in-process, and final inspection. On average, the tool can be used from 50 to 100 percent of any day. Previously difficult or improbable inspection processes have now become workable.

“The portable CMM system allows us to take the inspection operation to the job site,” stated James Duncan, Senior Mechanical Inspector at Oil States Industries. “The FARO equipment and service has improved Oil States’ Quality program, and helps to expedite the delivery of most projects.”

Return on Investment

The FARO Laser Tracker has reduced Oil States’ inspection time by 50 to 75 percent. The large volume 3D application requires no additional instruments or setups to complete the inspection process, making it fast and easy. This led Oil States to receive an early return on their investment.

“The FARO Laser Tracker and the FaroArm have significantly increased our efficiency and accuracy to better compete in a global market,” commented Duncan. “Additionally, the customer support is exceptional.”

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