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Info on USS Bennington in typhoon june 1945?

Discussion in 'Naval Warfare in the Pacific' started by ickysdad, May 3, 2016.

  1. ickysdad

    ickysdad Member

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    Does anybody know where I can get a copy of "USS Bennigton,Action Report,Operations in Support of Okinawa Including Strike Against Kanoya Airfield , Kyushu May 28 to June 10,1945"?

    The reason I ask is I have seen this used as a reference (on wikpedia though) that an Essex class Carrier could only stow 51 aircraft in their hanger even in a typhoon. I have part of it before but it seems to me to be somewhat of a poorly written document furthermore only page 18 is cited which makes me wonder just what the rest of the document states. Anyways it seems awful convienient that the document states it best to park all 51(there were only 51) non-Grumman aircraft (F4U & SB2C) in the hanger while putting all 52 Grumman on the deck park on the flight deck again there were only 52). I have John Robert's "USS Intrepid :Anatomy of a Warship" which I used the page with hangar displyed and using cutouts of an F6F (to proper scale )was able to get about 70-72 in the hanger ,I know that TBM and SB2C are bigger then a F6F. I also imagine different ships with differet crews could get more or less in a hanger. I also wonder if maybe the report is some form of covering one's rear because they didn't proper preparations done before the typhoon hit. JMHO though...comments please!!!!


    1. The following comments relative to security of aircraft and the ship
    are submitted, based upon experience in the typhoon of 5 June. [1945-AH]


    (a) Distribution of weight: It is highly desirable from a stability'
    standpoint to have the maximum number of planes on the hangar deck. This was
    done, but it was found too late that F4Uand SB2C type wings secured with jury
    struts on the flight deck will not ride out a storm. No method of wing securing
    is possible. For example, out of 8 SB2C's secured topside, at least one wing on
    each of 6 of these planes carried away, damaging the aircraft beyond repair-only
    two could be salvaged and flown operationally again. In addition, out of 25 F4U's
    the wings of 16 were ruined, the jury struts punching through the wings allowing
    breaking of the wing actuating cylinders as well as the actuating rod tracks, only
    9 out of the 25 being flyable after the atom. .


    . In contrast to this, on all Grumman type wings no damage was done.
    Therefore, it is wise to bring to the flight deck all TFM's and F6F's, securing
    all SB2C's and all F4U's on the hangar deck if time permits, giving a total of 51
    airplanes on the hangar deck and 52 on the flight deck. If F4U's cannot be .
    struck below, It is advisable to spread the wings, use spoiler boards, and secure
    the wings at the hold-down fittings with wire.


    Further, the flight deck spot should be as close to the island "
    possible for a windbreak. The practice of securing 2 VF to each elevator for
    stability reasons when lowered to hangar deck level. is unwise, since the isolated
    airplanes on the elevators are greatly exposed and subject to too much damage.
    If the stability is so critical that 4 planes must be shifted to the hangar deck
    level, thereby risking planes secured on the hangar deck level as well as damage
    due to pressure changes on hangar deck curtains, jettisoning is preferable.



    USS Bennington Action Report for June 1945
     
  2. Carronade

    Carronade Ace Patron  

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    Interesting topic! It's not just the size of the aircraft but the mode of wing folding. It would be best to look at plans or photos of the various planes. The reason they distinguish Grumman aircraft is that their wings folded very closely to the fuselage; this made them more compact - why they could put more Grummans in the hangar - and also made the wings a bit less exposed to wind damage - why they preferred to store the Grummans on deck.
     
  3. mcoffee

    mcoffee Son-of-a-Gun(ner)

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    Slipdigit likes this.
  4. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    This photo from the Bennington pretty much says it all. Look at the Helldivers in the back...Wings are not meant to fold that way.
    [​IMG]
    From http://www.uss-bennington.org
     
  5. ickysdad

    ickysdad Member

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    I don't know how many are forward of these but looks awfully hard for it to be 52 on the deck...



    Now look at this deck park on the Essex......

    http://www.navsource.org/archives/02/020914.jpg

    http://www.navsource.org/archives/02/020913.jpg

    http://www.navsource.org/archives/02/020943.jpg

    and said report says absolutely nothing of any aircraft being washed overboard....
     
  6. ickysdad

    ickysdad Member

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  7. ResearcherAtLarge

    ResearcherAtLarge Member

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    NARA II might be your best bet. I could think of several record groups and accessions that might contain a copy, but sorting through all of that could be time consuming. CNO, CINCPAC, various task forces, Bureaus of Ships and aeronautics, etc.. I tried looking through their online catalog, but it really doesn't have a lot of stuff listed in fine detail and it's not surprising that I didn't get any hits
     
  8. Carronade

    Carronade Ace Patron  

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    Intersting photos of Essex. The first one, dated May 1943, shows her carrying SBDs with non-folding wings, which she and several of her sisters did in the early carrier operations. The last b&w photo shows SB2Cs which she was carrying by the battle of the Philippine Sea in June 1944. At that point only Lexington and Enterprise still had SBDs.

    The 1943 shot shows a quad 40mm on the stern, but not on the centerline. This allowed her to have a second quad installed later, but if that was the reason for the offset, one has to wonder why they didn't just put the second mount on to start.

    The two pairs of 20mms at the end of the flight deck restrict the arc of fire of the 40mms a bit; they appear to have been removed later as they are not in most photos I have seen of WWII Essexes.
     

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