The brothers Andreas and Anders Brunvoll founded Brødr. Brunvoll Motorfabrikk in 1912. The company manufactured low-pressure diesel engines and controllable pitch propellers for fishing vessels. In 1918 the company moved to Molde and the third brother, Arthur Brunvoll, joined as an equal partner in the company.

Our heritage: Innovations since 1912

The diesel engine period

The company manufactured low-pressure diesel engines and controllable pitch propellers for fishing vessels. In this demanding market, Brunvoll developed a reputation for robust construction and reliability as well as innovation: Brunvoll was one of the first engine manufacturers to use roller bearings for the crankshaft.

In the early 1900s there was a paradigm shift from rowing and sailing to motor operation, making it possible to move faster to the fishing grounds. The diesel engine market was endless. The local fishing fleet was abundant as most farms had an "Åttring" (4 pairs of oars, about 35 feet), with mast and sail. Young people were invited to learn and then go home and start their own engine business. At most there were about 50 engine factories in Møre and Romsdal, Norway. Brunvoll was established at Harøya in 1912 and Volda Mekaniske Verksted was established in 1913.

There were limited opportunities to create further growth and progress for the company at Nordheim, Harøya. In 1918, the Brunvoll brothers received the go-ahead to buy Jens Engstrup's engine factory at the mouth of the Moldeelva in Molde and moved the business into the city.

The collaboration between the engine competitors was good. Most of them came from the same starting point; Finnøya. Brunvoll and Volda Mek. Verksted were among the largest players in the market.

The thruster engine period

In 1964 the local fishermen, the Gjendemsjø brothers, came up with the idea to install tunnel thrusters in their new fishing vessel under construction at a local shipyard. The Gjendemsjøs were well aware of the abilities and will for innovation at Brunvoll after being a long term customer and user of the Brunvoll semi-diesel engines. So they approached Brunvoll with their thruster idea and asked them to design such units—and Brunvoll embraced this brilliant idea.

Brunvoll acquires Scana Propulsion

In March 2017, Brunvoll AS signed an agreement with Incus Investor ASA to acquire all the shares in Scana Propulsion AS, including subsidiaries Scana Volda AS and Scana Mar-El AS in Norway and three sales companies located in the United States, Singapore and China. The acquisition was a strategic move from Brunvoll’s side, where the aim was to create a win – win situation for both companies with the possibility to offer our customers even better and comprehensive solutions for both propulsion and operation of advanced vessels.

The history at a glance

  • The history of Brunvoll dates back to early 1900 when some young men followed their passion for new technology, and went to one of the pioneers in diesel engine manufacturing in Norway to learn how to build semi diesel engines.
  • In 1912 and 1913 these guys went back to their homeplaces and took part in establishment of two mechanical workshops; Brødr. Brunvoll Motorfabrikk and Volda Mek.Verksted.
  • Brunvoll and Volda became two of the top brands of diesel engines in Norway in the decades to come until mid 1960’s, when they both developed to new businesses; Brunvoll specialised in tunnel thrusters, and Volda started licence production of gearboxes. Volda developed a wide range of gearboxes and extended the scope of supply with CP-Propellers and control systems. Brunvoll extended the wide range of thrusters for propulsion and manoeuvring.
  • In 1974 two men with good relations and deep interest for electronic systems saw the potential in the market and established Mar-El AS for development and manufacturing of control systems. Mar-El became a manufacturer of high competence serving the market advanced ship propulsion control systems. Mar-El has developed a wide range of controls for propulsion, manoeuvring and steering gears.
  • In 2017 the three companies were all included in the Brunvoll Group, where they continue to exploit their high competence and experience under the Brunvoll brand – Trusted World Wide.

Throughout more than 100 years in business, Brunvoll has collected and preserved relevant material from both development, production and sales. Some of this historical material is now collected at Bud Kystmuseum, a coastal cultur museum in Bud outside Molde.

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