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Thread: USS Bougainville (LHA-8) News

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    Military Professional dundonrl's Avatar
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    USS Bougainville (LHA-8) News

    http://news.usni.org/2015/02/23/navy...-to-hii-nassco

    LHA-8 will be based on the America-class amphib (LHA-6), which was designed and built without a welldeck, which allows amphibious ships to deploy landing craft. The Department of the Navy decided to include the feature in the yet unnamed LHA-8 following a weight gain of Marine Corps ground vehicles that would make them too heavy to be transported by helicopter. The change will require an extensive redesign of the ship from the original aviation intensive America hull.

    hmmm, since the America class was a re-design of the USS Makin Island LHD-8, and they are going back to a well deck, they already have the drawings, just remove the "D" in LHD-8 and replace it with an "A" for LHA-8.. problem solved, build and repeat..

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    Senior Contributor SteveDaPirate's Avatar
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    I can never get a good grasp of why LHAs and LHDs are considered separate types of ships rather than just different classes. (easier to ask congress for 6 of a type rather than 12 perhaps?) They are both Amphibious Assault ships with well decks and helos that land and support MEUs.

    If anything, LHAs and LHDs seem like they should be combined into a common type, and the America Class should be relabeled as an LPH.

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    As I understand it, back when the Wasp was coming out, it was to separate it from the Tarawa's that had a huge partition built into their welldeck, which is why they could only fit 1 LCAC, but 4 LCU's. The change from A to D was supposed to signify a regular well deck instead of the partitioned deck.

    The Americas were in working papers designated LHA(R) which stood for LHA Replacement, but kept the LHA designator, probably because they didn't have a well deck at all.

    With LHA-8, it makes a lot less sense to use LHA, except for the fact that she will still have an expanded fixed wing capability compared to the regular Wasp class, maybe implying that fact now.

    Just my thoughts...

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    Has anyone seen the new Island design? It reportedly will be smaller, so more room will be available on the flight deck, to work on the V-22's (some sort of rig will be required for nacelle removal). This work can be done inside the hanger aboard LHA-6&7, but not the follow on ships with well decks (due to limited overhead clearance).
    Last edited by surfgun; 14 Sep 15, at 03:04.

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    Quote Originally Posted by surfgun View Post
    Has anyone seen the new Island design? It reportedly will be smaller, so more room will be available on the flight deck, to work on the V-22's (some sort of rig will be required for nacelle removal). This work can be done inside the hanger aboard LHA-6&7, but not the follow on ships with well decks (due to limited overhead clearance).
    One of the arguments for using the V-22 and the H-53, and against using an H-47 (either a navalized variant with autofolding rotor blades and refueling probe, or an Army variant lacking those) was that the H-47 is too tall for existing shipboard hangar spaces. If V-22 is also too tall for the hangar space on one of the key platforms that would embark and operate V-22, it would seem that portion of the argument against using H-47 becomes moot.
    .
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    I would like to straighten a few facts here about the differences between LHA's and LHD's since I was the design structural project leader on both classes when they came into LBNSY for desperately needed repairs and modifications even when they were brand new.

    The Tarawa class (LHA-1) ships only had five built. Three of them were assigned to Long Beach: Tarawa, Belleau Wood & Peleliu. The other two were assigned to the East Coast. Though 6 ships were planned, only 5 were built with the USS Peleliu (LHA-5) being put together with parts left over from the first four. She must have been put together very fast as I found several butts and seams of bulkheads AND shell plating where the welding was not completed.

    The so-called computer controlled automated propusion system on the Tarawa caused the biggest problems. One time the officers were trying to do a mock light off and nothing worked. So they went back up to check the manuals again. A 2nd class was put in charge just to sit in the chair by the control console which is the normal duty.

    Suddenly, a timer of some sort in the computer said that the officers were doing things wrong. So this is how it should be done.

    The panels lit up, switches were closed, boiler was lit off ----- well, you can well imagine a panic striken 2nd class screaming into the intercom that "HAL" (remember the computer "Space Odessy"?) was alive and ready to engage the propulsion plant.

    Then there was another time (same ship) where she is out between Santa Catalina and San Clemente Islands where the entire computer system decided to shut down. I mean SHUT DOWN EVERYTHING including communications. The bridge officers had to use a PRC to hail another ship for a tow back to Long Beach.

    So Bremerton was given the task to build a full size mock up of the main machinery spaces and fit in a more dependable computer system. This required cutting a lot of holes in decks and bulkheads to take the old system out and put the new one in ---- ON ALL 5 SHIPS (though the Belleau Wood was in the best shape of them all).

    Welding. Oh yeah. 1990, the year of the "Perfect Storms" in both the Atlantic and the Pacific. The USS Saipan (LHA-2) had her starboard bow caved in by a freak wave in the Atlantic, that broke loose the welds of the main framing. About the same time the USS Belleau Wood (LHA-3) had her port bow caved in by a freak wave in the Pacific. It was then found out that the so called welders at the building yard used "Short Arc" welding. In other words straight polarity with most of the heat in the welding rod instead of the standard reverse polarity with most of the heat in the base metal thus fusng the base metal together with the rod merely filling in a crown on the joint.

    But this had been discovered earlier and "panic" messages were sent out from NAVSEA to all Naval Shipyards as not to use short arc welding. They were especially concerned about the Battleships. When one of the NAVSEA Captains came out to Long Beach, I assured him that we are a NAVY yard and even when I was a second year apprentice shipfitter learned the difference between straight and reverse polarities in welding school (which would have been 1955).

    Eventually, over several years of 3 shipyard availabilities for EACH ship the short arc welds were washed out with Number 5 Scarfing tips and the structural frames re-welded the RIGHT WAY.

    The LHD class ships were very similar to the LHA class except the LHD's had more ammo and cargo elevators on them for rapid supply of amphibious or helicopter combat operations. Six elevators in all about 7 feet wide and 10 or 12 feet long. Most elevators are guided by only two rails because in most cases the doors in their trunks only open either on the inboard side or outboard side or both. Not in this case. Depending upon what stowage compartment each elevator is serving, there would be loading doors in the ends as well as the sides. So they had 4 guide rails. LBNSY drew the short straw to get the elevators working properly on the USS Essex (LHD-2). Looking down the length of the rails from the top reminded me of a Sidewinder I pinned down with a knife at the El Toro Marine rifle range. (That was a good day, besides placing Sharpshooter with the M-1 Carbine and the .45 Pistol my C.O. said if there was a medal for high expert in knife throwing I would get it).

    Anyway, we finally got the rails straightened out then had to turn our attention to the truck ramp on the starboard side where vehicles could go up from the hangar deck to the flight deck. The ramp is basically identical to the same ramp on the Tarawa class. The ramp was fine. But a portion of the island above protruded down through the flight deck about 3 or 4 feet. Just low enough to clip off the upper part of the cab of a deuce-and-a-half. Well, cutting out that forward corner and replacing it with a slanted overhead solved the problem. But it still left one to wonder why the interference wasn't noted during the design stage or at least in the building stage.

    Oh, by the way. BOTH classes of ships have well decks and stern gates for Amphib operations. And the lower hinged stern gates worked pretty well, it was just the upper sliding part that sometimes decided to drop on its own.

    However, I was so confident we did so well on the repairs of the Tarawa, I drove my Buick down to San Diego with my wife, my daughter, a good friend of ours and two of his sons. I drove aboard the ship through the side doors, up the ramp to the upper vehicle deck and we all enjoyed a nice peaceful ride back up to Long Beach.

    My thoughts as to why they had so many structural problems? I think they were built too much like a box without enough stiffening to reduce expansion and shrinkage during temperature changes. You can check that on page 140 of my book in the chapter about Ghosts and Sea Monsters.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RustyBattleship View Post
    I would like to straighten a few facts here about the differences between LHA's and LHD's since I was the design structural project leader on both classes when they came into LBNSY for desperately needed repairs and modifications even when they were brand new.

    The Tarawa class (LHA-1) ships only had five built. Three of them were assigned to Long Beach: Tarawa, Belleau Wood & Peleliu. The other two were assigned to the East Coast. Though 6 ships were planned, only 5 were built with the USS Peleliu (LHA-5) being put together with parts left over from the first four. She must have been put together very fast as I found several butts and seams of bulkheads AND shell plating where the welding was not completed.

    The so-called computer controlled automated propusion system on the Tarawa caused the biggest problems. One time the officers were trying to do a mock light off and nothing worked. So they went back up to check the manuals again. A 2nd class was put in charge just to sit in the chair by the control console which is the normal duty.

    Suddenly, a timer of some sort in the computer said that the officers were doing things wrong. So this is how it should be done.

    The panels lit up, switches were closed, boiler was lit off ----- well, you can well imagine a panic striken 2nd class screaming into the intercom that "HAL" (remember the computer "Space Odessy"?) was alive and ready to engage the propulsion plant.

    Then there was another time (same ship) where she is out between Santa Catalina and San Clemente Islands where the entire computer system decided to shut down. I mean SHUT DOWN EVERYTHING including communications. The bridge officers had to use a PRC to hail another ship for a tow back to Long Beach.


    So Bremerton was given the task to build a full size mock up of the main machinery spaces and fit in a more dependable computer system. This required cutting a lot of holes in decks and bulkheads to take the old system out and put the new one in ---- ON ALL 5 SHIPS (though the Belleau Wood was in the best shape of them all).

    Welding. Oh yeah. 1990, the year of the "Perfect Storms" in both the Atlantic and the Pacific. The USS Saipan (LHA-2) had her starboard bow caved in by a freak wave in the Atlantic, that broke loose the welds of the main framing. About the same time the USS Belleau Wood (LHA-3) had her port bow caved in by a freak wave in the Pacific. It was then found out that the so called welders at the building yard used "Short Arc" welding. In other words straight polarity with most of the heat in the welding rod instead of the standard reverse polarity with most of the heat in the base metal thus fusng the base metal together with the rod merely filling in a crown on the joint.

    But this had been discovered earlier and "panic" messages were sent out from NAVSEA to all Naval Shipyards as not to use short arc welding. They were especially concerned about the Battleships. When one of the NAVSEA Captains came out to Long Beach, I assured him that we are a NAVY yard and even when I was a second year apprentice shipfitter learned the difference between straight and reverse polarities in welding school (which would have been 1955).

    Eventually, over several years of 3 shipyard availabilities for EACH ship the short arc welds were washed out with Number 5 Scarfing tips and the structural frames re-welded the RIGHT WAY.

    The LHD class ships were very similar to the LHA class except the LHD's had more ammo and cargo elevators on them for rapid supply of amphibious or helicopter combat operations. Six elevators in all about 7 feet wide and 10 or 12 feet long. Most elevators are guided by only two rails because in most cases the doors in their trunks only open either on the inboard side or outboard side or both. Not in this case. Depending upon what stowage compartment each elevator is serving, there would be loading doors in the ends as well as the sides. So they had 4 guide rails. LBNSY drew the short straw to get the elevators working properly on the USS Essex (LHD-2). Looking down the length of the rails from the top reminded me of a Sidewinder I pinned down with a knife at the El Toro Marine rifle range. (That was a good day, besides placing Sharpshooter with the M-1 Carbine and the .45 Pistol my C.O. said if there was a medal for high expert in knife throwing I would get it).

    Anyway, we finally got the rails straightened out then had to turn our attention to the truck ramp on the starboard side where vehicles could go up from the hangar deck to the flight deck. The ramp is basically identical to the same ramp on the Tarawa class. The ramp was fine. But a portion of the island above protruded down through the flight deck about 3 or 4 feet. Just low enough to clip off the upper part of the cab of a deuce-and-a-half. Well, cutting out that forward corner and replacing it with a slanted overhead solved the problem. But it still left one to wonder why the interference wasn't noted during the design stage or at least in the building stage.

    Oh, by the way. BOTH classes of ships have well decks and stern gates for Amphib operations. And the lower hinged stern gates worked pretty well, it was just the upper sliding part that sometimes decided to drop on its own.

    However, I was so confident we did so well on the repairs of the Tarawa, I drove my Buick down to San Diego with my wife, my daughter, a good friend of ours and two of his sons. I drove aboard the ship through the side doors, up the ramp to the upper vehicle deck and we all enjoyed a nice peaceful ride back up to Long Beach.

    My thoughts as to why they had so many structural problems? I think they were built too much like a box without enough stiffening to reduce expansion and shrinkage during temperature changes. You can check that on page 140 of my book in the chapter about Ghosts and Sea Monsters.
    I suppose one could call what replaced the electronic system in Tarawa a "computer" if one is willing to call ALL of the ACC systems that were in place in high pressure steam plants going back to the 50s "computers" After all, all an ACC system does, to those of us who graduated from the school know, is "measure-compare-compute-correct." Works fine and lasts a long time, and one need not be a techno-geek to operate or repair them. It's just signals relayed by LP air, instead of electrons. I inspected all three of the PACFLT LHAs between 1990 a nd 1992, and they all had the standard ACC system one would find in a steam propelled ship of that era.
    Last edited by desertswo; 21 Sep 15, at 16:24.

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    Quote Originally Posted by desertswo View Post
    I suppose one could call what replaced the electronic system in Tarawa a "computer" if one is willing to call ALL of the ACC systems that were in place in high pressure steam plants going back to the 50s "computers" After all, all an ACC system does, to those of us who graduated from the school know, is "measure-compare-compute-correct." Works fine and lasts a long time, and one need not be a techno-geek to operate or repair them. It's just signals relayed by LP air, instead of electrons. I inspected all three of the PACFLT LHAs between 1990 a nd 1992, and they all had the standard ACC system one would find in a steam propelled ship of that era.
    Yes. By that time we had replaced all of the original systems with the systems Bremerton came up with. And that replacement was not easy. I had to cut through main damage control bulkheads for the equipment change outs. So that meant it could only be done in Dry Dock. What a headache.

    Oh yeah, the first Dry Dockings of the first 3 ships required sand blasting all the paint inside the fuel tanks. Turned out the building yard used the wrong MIL-SPEC paint. That also meant we had to cut access holes through several floors and longs to get the sand blasters in and out as well as our painters.

    Hmmm. Might have opened up a quiz thingy mentioning floors in a fuel tank.
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    So why wasn't the America typed as a LPH? Since she had no welldeck wouldn't she be the follow on to the Iwo class?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Grape View Post
    So why wasn't the America typed as a LPH? Since she had no welldeck wouldn't she be the follow on to the Iwo class?
    Because the ding-a-lings back in NAVSEA nowadays don't read Naval History or even the evolution of ship designs.

    For example, during the 1980's a lot of Naval Captains were being promoted to Rear Admiral, especially those who commanded Battleships. Somebody in the Navy thought that by jumping them up to two stars was a bit too much and wanted to have a one star rank. Fine, but what kind of Admiral would you call him?

    Are you ready for this? They named it REAR ADMIRAL LOWER END.

    GASP! COUGH! LAUGH! GROAN!. Where's the head? I need to vommit.

    Again a case where history (fairly recent history at that) was lost. We DID have a one star rank. It was called a COMMADORE.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RustyBattleship View Post
    Because the ding-a-lings back in NAVSEA nowadays don't read Naval History or even the evolution of ship designs.

    For example, during the 1980's a lot of Naval Captains were being promoted to Rear Admiral, especially those who commanded Battleships. Somebody in the Navy thought that by jumping them up to two stars was a bit too much and wanted to have a one star rank. Fine, but what kind of Admiral would you call him?

    Are you ready for this? They named it REAR ADMIRAL LOWER END.

    GASP! COUGH! LAUGH! GROAN!. Where's the head? I need to vommit.

    Again a case where history (fairly recent history at that) was lost. We DID have a one star rank. It was called a COMMADORE.
    Yes, but the rank was confused with the "command ride" of Captains who commanded DESRONs and SUBRONS, etc., and were referred to as "commodore." It never confused me, but what do I know.

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    Perhaps, LHA-8 should be 55,000-60,000 ton ship?

    MARINE CORPS BASE QUANTICO — The U.S. Marine Corps is in the midst of several acquisition programs that will extend the reach of the force and keep Marines safer while on the ground however the Corps is struggling how to fit the new kit on the Navy’s existing amphibious ships.

    The Navy’s fleet of amphibious warships were designed decades ahead of the hard lessons of improvised explosive devices (IED) that wreaked havoc on U.S. ground forces in Iraq and Afghanistan and the rapid growth in the weight of new and better protected vehicles are pushing the margins of what the current crop of amphibs can transport.

    “There’s a lot of great equipment out there but if the amphibious fleet, the seabase has to carry by weight by cargo foot some of the assets that we see available or in the future, will the seabase have that type of room?,” asked Maj. Gen. Michael Regner to a panel at the Modern Day Marine exposition on Wednesday.

    Before Sept. 11, 2001, an amphibious ship averaged about a 70 percent utilization rate for stowage in its hold with a sizable margin for growth, Marine Corps Seabasing Integration Division director Jim Strock said at a panel at the Modern Day Marine exposition on Wednesday.

    “Today — and we’ve analyzed new load outs since 2009 — that growth and stow [margin] is down to .62-.63 [percent],” Strock said.
    “We’ve had a ten percent loss in in utilization rate on existing amphibious ships and deck space because our equipment is bigger. Its heavier and most importantly, it’s higher.”

    Inside an amphibious warship there are internal ramps in which crew use to maneuver vehicles and some more recent vehicles — like Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) trucks — have had problems moving through out the ship.

    “When we first put MRAPs on some of our amphibious ships you had to deflate the tires, couldn’t make some of the turns had to be in the upper [vehicle stowage hold] not the lower [vehicle stowage hold],” Regner said.

    Keeping heavier vehicles higher in the ship can lead to a host of problems in safely operating a ship.

    “If you have a vehicle that’s too high because it needs ground clearance means you have to stow it higher in the ship you begin to impact the meta center of the ship and you run into trim and stability issues you run into center of gravity locations you run into displacement issues.” Strock said.
    “I’m a ship handler, I got qualified years ago, and it gets a little dicey when you’re driving top heavy in the water.”

    The problem is not only ground vehicles but also new and heavier aircraft to be fielded by the Navy’s Wasp-class amphibious ships (LHD-1).

    “The LHDs were designed for the CH-46 on the flight deck, [now] they’re carrying the V-22. They’re designed for Harriers, they’re going to carry the [Joint Strike Fighter], huge differences in weight in the top of the ship,” he said.

    The next looming challenge for Marines and the Navy is incorporating the pending fleet of 5,500 Joint Tactical Light Vehicle (JLTV) on the amphibious fleet.

    The Oshkosh JLTV — selected by the Army and Marine Corps in late August — has almost three times the curb weight of the 5,500 pound HUMVEE that were used in the baseline designs for the San Antonio-class amphib (LPD-17).

    “The JLTV — factory curb weight of 16,000 pounds, fully dressed out 21,000 pounds,” Strock said.
    “The first thing we do is take the ‘L’ out of JLTV, because it’s not [light].”

    Strock did recognize the need for the JLTV capability but “the challenge to industry is how to mitigate [weight issues]. The enemy now has a vote, we get that,” he said.
    “It’s not who came first, the ship or the equipment, the issue is making sure those capabilities into the future are mutually supporting warfighting from the sea.”
    http://news.usni.org/2015/09/24/mari...legacy-amphibs

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Grape View Post
    So why wasn't the America typed as a LPH? Since she had no welldeck wouldn't she be the follow on to the Iwo class?
    I'm guessing because she is able to operate a sizable complement of fixed-wing aircraft rather than just helicopters.

    Still a really wonky design/designation though.
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    LHA-8 has been named 'Bougainville.'

    https://news.usni.org/2016/11/09/mab...olomon-islands

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    Quote Originally Posted by RustyBattleship View Post
    I would like to straighten a few facts here about the differences between LHA's and LHD's since I was the design structural project leader on both classes when they came into LBNSY for desperately needed repairs and modifications even when they were brand new.

    The Tarawa class (LHA-1) ships only had five built. Three of them were assigned to Long Beach: Tarawa, Belleau Wood & Peleliu. The other two were assigned to the East Coast. Though 6 ships were planned, only 5 were built with the USS Peleliu (LHA-5) being put together with parts left over from the first four. She must have been put together very fast as I found several butts and seams of bulkheads AND shell plating where the welding was not completed.

    The so-called computer controlled automated propusion system on the Tarawa caused the biggest problems. One time the officers were trying to do a mock light off and nothing worked. So they went back up to check the manuals again. A 2nd class was put in charge just to sit in the chair by the control console which is the normal duty.

    Suddenly, a timer of some sort in the computer said that the officers were doing things wrong. So this is how it should be done.

    The panels lit up, switches were closed, boiler was lit off ----- well, you can well imagine a panic striken 2nd class screaming into the intercom that "HAL" (remember the computer "Space Odessy"?) was alive and ready to engage the propulsion plant.

    Then there was another time (same ship) where she is out between Santa Catalina and San Clemente Islands where the entire computer system decided to shut down. I mean SHUT DOWN EVERYTHING including communications. The bridge officers had to use a PRC to hail another ship for a tow back to Long Beach.

    So Bremerton was given the task to build a full size mock up of the main machinery spaces and fit in a more dependable computer system. This required cutting a lot of holes in decks and bulkheads to take the old system out and put the new one in ---- ON ALL 5 SHIPS (though the Belleau Wood was in the best shape of them all).

    Welding. Oh yeah. 1990, the year of the "Perfect Storms" in both the Atlantic and the Pacific. The USS Saipan (LHA-2) had her starboard bow caved in by a freak wave in the Atlantic, that broke loose the welds of the main framing. About the same time the USS Belleau Wood (LHA-3) had her port bow caved in by a freak wave in the Pacific. It was then found out that the so called welders at the building yard used "Short Arc" welding. In other words straight polarity with most of the heat in the welding rod instead of the standard reverse polarity with most of the heat in the base metal thus fusng the base metal together with the rod merely filling in a crown on the joint.

    But this had been discovered earlier and "panic" messages were sent out from NAVSEA to all Naval Shipyards as not to use short arc welding. They were especially concerned about the Battleships. When one of the NAVSEA Captains came out to Long Beach, I assured him that we are a NAVY yard and even when I was a second year apprentice shipfitter learned the difference between straight and reverse polarities in welding school (which would have been 1955).

    Eventually, over several years of 3 shipyard availabilities for EACH ship the short arc welds were washed out with Number 5 Scarfing tips and the structural frames re-welded the RIGHT WAY.

    The LHD class ships were very similar to the LHA class except the LHD's had more ammo and cargo elevators on them for rapid supply of amphibious or helicopter combat operations. Six elevators in all about 7 feet wide and 10 or 12 feet long. Most elevators are guided by only two rails because in most cases the doors in their trunks only open either on the inboard side or outboard side or both. Not in this case. Depending upon what stowage compartment each elevator is serving, there would be loading doors in the ends as well as the sides. So they had 4 guide rails. LBNSY drew the short straw to get the elevators working properly on the USS Essex (LHD-2). Looking down the length of the rails from the top reminded me of a Sidewinder I pinned down with a knife at the El Toro Marine rifle range. (That was a good day, besides placing Sharpshooter with the M-1 Carbine and the .45 Pistol my C.O. said if there was a medal for high expert in knife throwing I would get it).

    Anyway, we finally got the rails straightened out then had to turn our attention to the truck ramp on the starboard side where vehicles could go up from the hangar deck to the flight deck. The ramp is basically identical to the same ramp on the Tarawa class. The ramp was fine. But a portion of the island above protruded down through the flight deck about 3 or 4 feet. Just low enough to clip off the upper part of the cab of a deuce-and-a-half. Well, cutting out that forward corner and replacing it with a slanted overhead solved the problem. But it still left one to wonder why the interference wasn't noted during the design stage or at least in the building stage.

    Oh, by the way. BOTH classes of ships have well decks and stern gates for Amphib operations. And the lower hinged stern gates worked pretty well, it was just the upper sliding part that sometimes decided to drop on its own.

    However, I was so confident we did so well on the repairs of the Tarawa, I drove my Buick down to San Diego with my wife, my daughter, a good friend of ours and two of his sons. I drove aboard the ship through the side doors, up the ramp to the upper vehicle deck and we all enjoyed a nice peaceful ride back up to Long Beach.

    My thoughts as to why they had so many structural problems? I think they were built too much like a box without enough stiffening to reduce expansion and shrinkage during temperature changes. You can check that on page 140 of my book in the chapter about Ghosts and Sea Monsters.
    I remember standing 24 hour watch while you all cut out a portion of DPC (Data Processing Center) where I worked as a Data Systems Technician on the Essex and installed the slanted portion to give the ramp from the hanger to the flight deck the clearance it needed.

    I haven't though about that for decades, but can remember it like yesterday..

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