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Thread: Just visited the USS Wisconsin

  1. #1
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    Just visited the USS Wisconsin

    Been in the US for just over a month now. Got a glimpse of the USS Iowa in Suisan Bay but only from the road bridge. Couldn't really make much out as she seemed to be covered in tents or something.

    But today visited the USS Wisconsin. Being from Australia the biggest ship I have seen is a container ship. This was something different. Seeing one in person has just reinforced my belief that the battleship is the most fearsome looking weapon man has ever devised.

    We came in through Newport News and had a look at the Northdrop Grumman ship yards and got a small look at the the USS Carl Vinson and the USS George Bush. They are big ships, could see some RAM missile tubes but that was about it. Funny to be so close to a couple of buzzing Nuclear Reactors.

    The Wisconsin was something else. Like a massive dog baring its teeth. Looks like it could put a Nimitz class under the water in seconds. I noticed that she still seemed to have dehumidifiers running. One of the guides told me she is still technically a Navy ship and is yet to be released as a Museum ship unlike Missouri and New Jersey. These were the only questions I could get in with the guide as he was being mobbed by children (Probably would have talked his ears off anyway).

    One thing I noticed was the small dents all over the turrets. Are these shell and shrapnel marks or just casting inperfections?

    Would love to have seen the Yamato in real life just cos she was best the bad guys had but it was fantastic to see one of the Iowas. The only thing that could top it would be to see her underway at 33knots.

    It would be a sad day if the Iowa gets scrapped or sunk as a target. San Francisco should really look at where they got there freedoms they enjoy today from and give the Iowa a home. Just my opinion of course.

    -Jared

  2. #2
    Defense Professional RustyBattleship's Avatar
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    The "dents" you saw in the sides and rear of the turrets is casting imperfections. After heat treating the outer face it was just too hard to machine down to a smooth surface (which was not needed anyway).

    Wisconsin was never hit by enemy gunfire. However, she did cut one of her escort ships in two and had to have the lower half of her bow replaced by the unfinished Kentucky.

    The New Jersey took a hit from a shore battery on the side of a turret killing one man on deck and wounding two others. This was during the Korean War. However, in WW II a Japanese plane did clip its wing on the ship's topmast. Just had to repaint that part of the mast.

    The Iowa was hit twice by Japanese shells. Once along the port shell plating near the main deck and once on the side of Turret II leaving just a small crater in the face hardened armor.

    The Missouri was struck by a Kamikaze that literally bounced off the ship. The pilot was out of control and his left wing tip put a small dent in the shell plating and as his plane spun around the nose spinner put a slightly larger dent in the plating. Then it exploded throwing the upper half of the pilot's body up onto the deck.

    For a joke, one of our planners sent me a work request to come up with a plan of how to remove those dents. You can guess my response to that.

    You can see a photo I took of those dents in Paul Stillwell's book on the Missouri.

    The Missouri's Class A armor looks much rougher than the other 3 ships and has a lot of "worm track" cracks in it. That's because the steel company that cast the armor used a different heat treating method than the other ships whose armor was cast by other companies.
    Able to leap tall tales in a single groan.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for posting that gunboat.

    I hope to head over to the U.S on a roaming holiday sometime when the finances are looking better, on the to do list are vistis to the various relics (the problem with the U.S is that there is so damn much to look at in the way of hardwear as opposed to here).

    It's a damn pity getting on an active ship for a tour is so damned hard now. I remember crawling around on the nets of one of the First DD51's when it came out here. Otherwise a trip to San Diego and Newport News would be an absolute must.

    There's just so much damned 'I was there' sites. Last time I was over that way I was shackled, had a whole month and didn't get to do squat!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by RustyBattleship View Post
    The New Jersey took a hit from a shore battery on the side of a turret killing one man on deck and wounding two others. This was during the Korean War. However, in WW II a Japanese plane did clip its wing on the ship's topmast. Just had to repaint that part of the mast.
    When I took the tour of the NJ a few years ago, the guide pointed out where the round (5" if i remember correctly) hit the turret on her. It was a pretty unimpressive scratch, maybe half an inch deep. Pretty impressive how she could just shrug off 5" rounds like nothing.

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    Defense Professional Dreadnought's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eocoolj View Post
    When I took the tour of the NJ a few years ago, the guide pointed out where the round (5" if i remember correctly) hit the turret on her. It was a pretty unimpressive scratch, maybe half an inch deep. Pretty impressive how she could just shrug off 5" rounds like nothing.
    *Unfortunately the hit to turret 1 did cost 1 life via schrapnel deflection. This was during the Korean War.
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  6. #6
    In Memoriam/Battleship Enthusiast Defense Professional USSWisconsin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RustyBattleship View Post

    Wisconsin was never hit by enemy gunfire.
    Actually Wisconsin BB64 was hit by a North Korean shore battery in 1952

    "Wisconsin arrived off Songjin, Korea, on 15 March 1952 and concentrated her gunfire on enemy railway transport. Early that morning, she destroyed a communist troop train trapped outside of a destroyed tunnel. That afternoon, she received the first direct hit in her history, when one of four shells from a communist 155-millimeter gun battery struck the shield of a starboard 40-millimeter mount. Although little material damage resulted, three men were injured. Almost as if the victim of a personal affront, Wisconsin subsequently blasted that battery to oblivion with a 16-inch salvo before continuing her mission. After lending a hand to support once more the 1st Marine Division with her heavy rifles, the battleship returned to Japan on 19 March. "

    they were actually Soviet built 152mm guns, I have seen pictures of the hole.
    http://www.hazegray.org/danfs/battlesh/bb64.htm

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