OXE Diesel Outboards Work the Atchafalaya River

From Left: Wade Crappell, Douglas Natoce, David LeBlanc and the Miss Ida. (Doug Stewart Photo)

When David LeBlanc, the regional sales director of Diesel Outboards, offered an invite to experience the performance of twin OXE 200HP outboards firsthand, the executive editor of marine industry magazine WorkBoats grabbed his pad and pen and jumped on board. 

In late April, WorkBoats executive editor Ken Hocke joined LeBlanc, Wade Crappell, vice president, TK Towing Inc./TK Contractors, LLC; Douglas Natoce, president, Diesel Outboards; Bob Callahan, Diversified/WorkBoat group vice president; Lauren St. Clair, director of marketing; and Doug Stewart, WorkBoat’s art director for a ride along aboard a working boat with OXE outboards on the Atchafalaya River in Louisiana. 

The 16,000 dwt Miss Ida is part of the TK Boat Rentals fleet of vessels and is an everyday workhorse on the river. With 4,000 lbs. of deck cargo capacity, the Miss Ida can ferry workers to shallow-water oil rigs as well as carry chemicals and groceries to TK’s customers. TK Towing/TK Contractors VP Wade Crappell says they’re seeing upside in the OXE powerplants: they’ve cut fuel consumption by more than half on some jobs, and the innovative cooling system that runs seawater through a heat exchanger instead of the engine block cuts down on corrosion in the engine. 

TK Boat Rentals, along with other Diesel Outboard customers, are waiting on OXE 300 diesel outboards. They offer the same enhanced safety and fuel economy of the 200, but with more torque to tackle bigger jobs on bigger workboats. Currently, demand is outstripping supply, but that will change as 300 manufacturing moves to a new Albany, GA manufacturing facility later this year.

Diesel Outboards’ LeBlanc says diesel outboards are on their way to being a fixture in the working boat industry. “It’s a slow process, but it’s building,” he said. “Ten years from now diesel outboards will be a very common sight on the rivers.”

To find out more about the twin OXE diesel outboards powering the Miss Ida, read about diesel outboards on the Atchafalaya River at WorkBoat.