Cummins Hotips#821      September 2017

Ready to fish.

Bui Van Cong earned significant success as a commercial fisherman in Australia and later more success as a boat builder in Darwin. After ten years in Darwin, he returned to his native Vietnam where he has now spent over 20 years building boats. (web:

Bui Van Cong, Director with one of his custom molds.

In that time, he has built an international business with a reputation for diversity and quality. Primarily building in composite (fiberglass) he also maintains a steady production of aluminum vessels. “I have 24 aluminum welders and 270 fiberglass workers among a total staff of over 370 people,” he explains.

A bow stem for the boat’s spirit can be added to the hull.

Fiberglass products range from rigid hulled inflatables for Holland, 9-meter Gondola, of which he delivers about 30 per year to Venice, Catamaran and mono-hull ferries for Vietnam and various countries, patrol vessels for a range of countries as well as pleasure boats with both sail and engine power. His order book reads like a world atlas.

Bui Van Cong, Director with hat and Bui Trong Dien, Cummins sales with blue shirt.

Several years ago, when the Vietnamese government announced a project to encourage the expansion of the nation’s fishing fleet, he put his experience as a fisherman to work to assist with the design of a practical series of vessels. Since that time, his 24 and 27-meter fiberglass fishing boats have earned a faithful and growing following.

27-meter fishing boat at the fitting out dock.

Applying modern methods of composite building, he has constructed two split hull type molds that allow easy access for workers in laying up the hulls before they are mated. Continuing with an assembly line process he often has six vessels in process on land. The superstructure is lifted on as the final step before launching and fitting out the boat alongside.

One more Cummins engine ready for installation.

While layouts can be modified for different fisheries, a typical 27 by 6.8-meter gillnet boat has storage for the 40-tons of nets right forward. Aft of that are four insulated fish holds for 16-tons of iced fish. Some vessels have chiller boxes on deck to cool the warm-water catch before icing. These are located on deck at the front of the house.

The engine room is located aft, under the main deck house. Power for this size boat is typically a single Cummins KTA38-M diesel rated for 850 HP at 1800 RPM. The engine turns a four-meter shaft with a 1.8-meter diameter prop through a gearbox with 5.5:1 reduction.

A fishing trip for these boats is about 23 days between two full moons. A gillnet boat will have ten crew while a purse seine will have 12 to 14 crew. The boats have capacities for six tons of fuel, ten tons of water and 20 tons of block ice.

The boats are built with a full chine to allow them to dry up on the beach at low tide. The composite is about one-inch thick at the chine. The shipyard is also producing a 24 by 6.5-meter model that is powered by an 800 HP Cummins QSK19-M. In anticipation of future demand, Bui Van Cong has a mold for a smaller fishing hull under development.


Photos: Haig-Brown/Cummins

For further information:

Bui Van Cong


Tan Vien Dong Trading Co., Ltd.

35-37 Street No 24, Pinh Phu,

Ward 11, District 6, Ho Chi Minh City



Phone: +84 8.3876 9086 – 3876 6455

Mobile: +84 903 808 850


Christy Lee

Assistant to the Director:



Bui Trong Dien

Engineer, Technical Sales

Cummins DKSH (Vietnam) L.L.C.

1st Floor,, 2 Building, 364 Cong Hoa Street,

Ward 13, Tan Binh District, HCM City, Vietnam

Phone: +84 8 3813 4124, Ext 730

Mobile +84 982 000 831




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