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Thread: ghost fleet

  1. #121
    Defense Professional Dreadnought's Avatar
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    The grapevine has it that Philadelphia may be expecting two more CV's very soon for storage. KittyHawk and Saratoga. Not sure if accurate but not surprising either.
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  2. #122
    Senior Contributor surfgun's Avatar
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    Just google Saipan and Brownsville (photo of Saipan entering the Brownsville shipping channel). The Saipan is at the breakers in Tx. Left Philadelphia before the big Nor' Easter.

  3. #123
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    Nice pics Dread - why are the Sara and Kitty Hawk coming to town? The Sara is currently up in RI with the Forrestal, is the USN shutting down operations up there for good? And I thought the Kitty was in Bummertown where she'll stay for the forseeable future. Odd rumors indeed. Not too long ago the Forrestal was slated to be sunk as a deepwater reef...I wonder if that has changed.

    Some pics of the soon to be gone Saipan
    Photo by: Brad Doherty/The Brownsville Herald: USS Saipan Photo : Brownsville Herald
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  4. #124
    Defense Professional RustyBattleship's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by connaye View Post
    Did the conveyor get painted astern of the New Jersey?

    It appears to be a different shade if color.
    In the northern latitudes during late fall through winter, the sunlight (lower over the horizon than in summer) on the ships reflect back a tan color. It only looks haze gray when you get up very close to it or on board.
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  5. #125
    Resident Curmudgeon Military Professional Gun Grape's Avatar
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    I did a week on the Saipan back in 99. She was doing MV-22 trials/test. We used her for a TCAT. (Type Commanders Amphibious Training).

    She was pretty beat up back then. Ooh well another of the ships I played on going to the breakers.
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  6. #126
    Defense Professional RustyBattleship's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Grape View Post
    I did a week on the Saipan back in 99. She was doing MV-22 trials/test. We used her for a TCAT. (Type Commanders Amphibious Training).

    She was pretty beat up back then. Ooh well another of the ships I played on going to the breakers.
    She almost went to the breakers back in the 80's. It was in the era of "The Perfect Storm" (Al Gore; please take note) and had the entire starboard side of her bow caved in.

    Within the same year, but in the Pacific instead of the Atlantic, her sister ship Belleau Wood had the port side of her bow caved in. Belleau Wood was sunk last year as a reef.

    Inspection of the welds of the framing to the hull plating was very poorly done with the "Short Arc" method which uses direct polarity instead of reverse polarity. Direct polarity, with the welding rod on the positive end of the arc, puts all the heat into the welding rod and it only puddles onto the base metal. Reverse polarity (standard for ALL structural welding) puts the base metal as the positive end of the arc and allows it to fuse together while the welding rod merely fills in the joint.

    It took the Navy yards several years to cut out all the bad welding fillets with chipping guns or a No. 5 scarfing tip on a torch so it could be re-welded correctly with reverse polarity.

    I don't know if Ingalls, who built the ships, were charged for the re-welding or if the "warranty" had run out and the taxpayers had to pick up the tab. But as the structural project leader for that class of ships (Long Beach was the planning yard) they gave me nightmares even before the caved in bows.

    I was in the Battleship Configeration Managers office when the welding of the LHA's was fully inspected and we got a "panic" order from NAVSEA to make sure we do not use "short arc" welding on the Battleships. But we were a NAVY yard, not a private contractor and knew better anyway.
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  7. #127
    Senior Contributor surfgun's Avatar
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    Rusty have you got any photo's of the LHA's with caved in bows? BTW as I know you know the Belleau Wood was sunk in Sinkex 2006 out of Pearl. There is a 2006 post from you stating that you thought it was waste (you wanted a drive on drive off conversion).

  8. #128
    Defense Professional RustyBattleship's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by surfgun View Post
    Rusty have you got any photo's of the LHA's with caved in bows? BTW as I know you know the Belleau Wood was sunk in Sinkex 2006 out of Pearl. There is a 2006 post from you stating that you thought it was waste (you wanted a drive on drive off conversion).
    The Belleau Wood, in my personal opinion, was the best of all five LHA's. But she was the middle one built and lessons learned from the first two were corrected (such as the thickness of the bottom plate of the aft docking skeg). However, Ingalls still didn't use the right kind of paint for the fuel tanks and we had to sandblast every one and repaint them.

    As for drive on - drive off, I did that on the Tarawa. We got selected to go on a family day cruise from San Diego to Long Beach. Besides myself was my wife, our daughter, a friend of ours (who is now our daughter's father-in-law) and two of his sons (one is now my son-in-law). We drove down to San Diego in the Chrysler LeBaron we owned then, drove up the ramp from the pier to the lower vehicle deck and then up the ramp to the upper vehicle deck scraping the bottom of the car at the upper edge of the ramp.

    It was a nice cruise back to Long Beach and our future son-in-law and his brother had fun challenging other ships with Tarawa's Radar and getting their ranges.

    I also wanted to show them what parts of the ship broke apart during its Grade A shock test (I was assigned to inspect them and recommend repairs) but they really didn't want to know that. As we were going up the aft Aircraft elevator to the flight deck, I happened to mention, "Oh, this is the elevator that fell and took a fork lift down with it".

    They thought I was joking.

    I wasn't.
    Last edited by RustyBattleship; 31 Dec 09, at 06:22.
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  9. #129
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    New JRRF Fleet Listing

    Today I got the revised list of ships available in the James River fleet for non-profit and ship restoration groups. Pretty much the same as last September, the only ship not present is the former USS Kittiwake who was just removed for preparation to become an artificial reef in the Caymans.

    JRRF2010.pdf
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  10. #130
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    Ships to be removed from California ghost fleet

    By Jason Dearen - The Associated Press
    Posted : Thursday Apr 1, 2010 10:58:59 EDT

    BENICIA, Calif. — After years of dispute and delay, the federal government on Wednesday said it would remove a decaying armada from the San Francisco Bay estuary that has shed toxic substances into the water for decades.

    The U.S. Maritime Administration, or MARAD, settled a lawsuit and agreed to remove most of the Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet, known as the “ghost fleet,” a decrepit collection of mostly obsolete military vessels dating back to World War II.

    The gray and rust-red ships, some with their hulls flaked with peeling paint, are anchored in rows in Suisun Bay, a shallow estuary between San Francisco Bay and the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

    Studies by the administration have suggested the old warships have dumped more than 20 tons of copper, lead, zinc and other metals into the estuary, a critical habitat for a number of endangered species.

    “We are moving expeditiously to remove the worst polluting ships first and diligently moving to clean the rest,” said David Matsuda, acting administrator of MARAD.

    The settlement involving MARAD, environmental groups and state water quality regulators will see half of the ships deemed obsolete — the 25 worst polluters — removed by September 2012, with the rest gone by September 2017. In all, 52 ships eventually will be recycled at various MARAD yards.

    The federal agency plans to keep more than a dozen of the ships anchored in the bay — including the iconic battleship USS Iowa — that are in better shape or still considered useful.

    Some of the removals have already begun, with four taken out since November 2009.

    On Wednesday, tugboats dragged the gray, rusty USS Mission Santa Ynez toward San Francisco Bay. The ship, once a U.S. Navy oil and fuel tanker used from World War II through the late 1960s, was on its way to a dry dock in San Francisco, where it would be cleaned and prepared for the longer journey through the Panama Canal to a recycling yard in Texas.

    The U.S. Department of Transportation said it could not estimate how much the removal of 52 ships would cost, but so far, taking out the Santa Ynez and four other ships has cost almost $1.7 million, including costs of dry-docking, towing and dismantling.

    Under terms of the settlement, which still needs final approval from a judge, MARAD also agreed to clean up within 120 days piles of hazardous paint chips from the rotting old decks. Each ship will be inspected every 90 days, Matsuda said, and paint chips removed from the deck before being blown into the water.

    “The San Francisco Bay should never have been a dumping ground for toxic waste. Getting these ships cleaned up and removed is a huge victory for our environment and the people of California,” said Michael Wall, lead attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council, one of the environmental groups who sued to get the site cleaned up.

    Congress had previously ordered MARAD to dismantle the ships classified as no longer useful by 2006, but that never happened. Maritime officials blamed funding and a shortage of facilities for the failure to act on the Congressional mandate.

    Still, cleaning up the damage that has already been done is impossible, as Suisun Bay is a tidal environment, so the paint that has peeled off the ships is now mixed in with sediments throughout the bay.

    However, environmental groups said removing the ships would keep an estimated 50 tons of pollutants from entering the bay. Current cleanup efforts had already removed 120 tons of debris from the old warships, Matsuda said.

    Suisun Bay was chosen by the military as one of several sites for ships withdrawn from active military service. MARAD continues to manage two other ghost fleets in U.S. waters in James River, Va. and Beaumont, Texas.

    Over the years, the ships became unusable and too expensive to repair, so they were allowed to rot and pollute nearby waters and wildlife while officials debated what to do about the vessels.

    Deb Self, executive director of San Francisco Bay Keeper, one of the environmental organizations that joined the lawsuit, said the ship removal is a key step toward cleaning up the polluted waters of the bay and delta. She said the waterways are key habitat for struggling chinook salmon and the tiny, endangered delta smelt.

    “This area is a nursery for fisheries in San Francisco Bay and the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta,” she said. “Keeping these toxins out of the water gives these young fish a fighting chance.
    Ships to be removed from Calif. ghost fleet - Navy News - Navy Times

  11. #131
    Defense Professional RustyBattleship's Avatar
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    That was also in this morning's Long Beach Press-Telegram.
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  12. #132
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    The Iowa looks out of place in the picture. All freshly painted, clean and taken care of compared to the other ships. She is getting some TLC.

  13. #133
    Senior Contributor Stitch's Avatar
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    This has been in the works for years; the problem was jumping through all of the EPA hoops and finding a place to (eventually) dispose of the cracasses. One by one, they'll head across the Bay to San Francisco to be cleaned up, then off to Texas to be broken up.

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  14. #134
    Defense Professional RustyBattleship's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stitch View Post
    This has been in the works for years; the problem was jumping through all of the EPA hoops and finding a place to (eventually) dispose of the cracasses. One by one, they'll head across the Bay to San Francisco to be cleaned up, then off to Texas to be broken up.
    Maybe not that far. The company that took over the old Mare Island Naval Shipyard is leasing out two dry docks and a few hundred feet of wharf space to a ship scrapping company. If the ships can fit into the dry docks to be cut up, not only will the EPA be happy the work can go faster.
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  15. #135
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    The former USS Mission Santa Ynez was slated for removal to TX on 3/31, she's the last unaltered/jumbo-ized T2 I'm aware of.

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