Aircraft Carriers

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by freebird, Dec 2, 2007.

  1. freebird

    freebird Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    Messages:
    2,658
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    British Columbia
    Does anyone know if the capacity of the Lexington was about 90 aircraft? Did the US Navy commonly keep some aircraft "deck parked'? If so would the they be included in the capacity or is that only hanger space? Thanks for the help
     
  2. Thorlifter

    Thorlifter Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2004
    Messages:
    7,905
    Likes Received:
    189
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Occupation:
    IT Nerd
    Location:
    Dallas, Tx Jubail, Saudi Arabia
    Wikipedia has it listed at 91 aircraft. I can't comment on if any of them were permanently parked on deck.
     
  3. machine shop tom

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2007
    Messages:
    417
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    The first fleet carriers Lexington (CV-2)and Saratoga (CV-3) carried a complement of 63-72 aircraft, depending on what source you read. I suppose the actual number would depend on what type of aircraft were embarked.

    The Essex-class Lexington (CV-16) had a larger capacity for aircraft.

    From this site:

    USS Lexington -- Aviation: From Sand Dunes to Sonic Booms: A National Register of Historic Places Travel Itinerary

    "USS Lexington (CV-16) was launched in 1942 as a welded, steel hull, Essex-class aircraft carrier with an overall length of 872 feet and a length along the waterline of 820 feet. Lexington had hangar deck capacity for 103 aircraft. Lexington's first air group (AG-16), consisted of 89 aircraft that included 32 F6f-3 Hellcat fighters, 35 SBD-5 Dauntless dive-bombers and 18 TBF-1 Avenger torpedo bombers. On November 26, 1991 Lexington was decommissioned. After making the successful bid to preserve, display and interpret Lexington, the city of Corpus Christi, Texas prepared a new life for the carrier as a museum ship."

    As far as permanent deck storage of planes, that would probably depend on the mission.

    tom
     
  4. freebird

    freebird Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    Messages:
    2,658
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    British Columbia
    I was actually thinking of the earlier one Lexington CV-2. I just wondered if the US navy would park aircraft on the deck and perhaps the British didn't. The reason I ask is that I was checking HMS Victorious, normally operated 36 - 40 aircraft, but in 1943 was loaned to the USA in the Pacific as "USS Robin". At this time it lists her as operating 60 wildcats as air cover. I wonder how they could fit the extra 20+ aircraft?

    Fleet Air Arm Archive | HMS Victorious
     
  5. maxs75

    maxs75 Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2005
    Messages:
    244
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    US Navy doctrine was to have some permanent deck parking early in the war, while IJN and RN ones were to store all the planes in the hangar.
    Take in account two things: USN carriers were able to hoist someplanes in the hangar roof, so that the number of planes stored there was bigger than the actual space. RN went with deck parking late in the war, and in 1945 Illustrious class usually embarked 54 planes (about 36 corsairs, 18 avengers).
    In the RN deck park was used to embark 5-10 Seafire that could not fit in the lifts, so they could not go in the hangar.
    RN carriers were refitted, because they were built with rounded flight deck ends, and no planes could be parked there.

    Wildcats were considerably smaller than Avengers, so about 24 could be stored instead of 16 Avengers.
    Victorious was not renamed Robin in 1943.
    36 planes refers to a mix of Swordfish/Skua, 33 planes to Fulmars/Albacores, all stored in the hangar.

    Max
     
  6. freebird

    freebird Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    Messages:
    2,658
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    British Columbia
    Thanks for the info. Would the listing for CV-2 (3) of 90 planes in 1941 -1942 include the deck parked ones or is 90 the capacity of the hanger? Is the space for a Wildcat about the same as a SeaHurri?

    I've seen some sources that say Victorious was "renamed" Robin others say "operated by US navy as" USS Robin. Some sources claim that the name was re-painted to fool the Japanese into thinking there was a new US carrier.
     
  7. maxs75

    maxs75 Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2005
    Messages:
    244
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    USS Robin was a Lapwing class minesweeper, used as as salvage tug. A bit confusing having two ships with the same name, isn't it?

    Actually Lexington carried only 69 planes during the battle of Coral sea (only 12 TBD had folding wings).
    She had 60 of her air group + 18 Marines SB2U for Midway (only 32 with folding wings) in dec. 1941.
    The later F4F-4 Wildcat with folding wings allowed more fighters.
    I believe that 90 comprises deck park, but it depends on the type of planes. Bigger and not folding takes more space.

    The space needed for a Sea Hurricane is much larger than the space needed for a F4F with folding wings. Also consider that Sea Hurricane could not fit in the lifts/hangars of the Illustrious class carriers.

    Max
     
  8. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Messages:
    12,669
    Likes Received:
    96
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Occupation:
    R E T I R E D !!
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, Va.
    When I was on the USS Essex (CV/CVS-9) we had aircraft and helos both
    on the flight deck and on the hanger deck. You have to remember the
    hanger deck was used for repair/painting as well as storage. Most Navy
    aircraft have wings that fold so storage is easier. Also, if you're carrying
    a flag officer, his staff vehicle will also be on the hanger deck. The way
    the aircraft are carried is up the the hanger deck officer, who has a
    deck model and small plastic models so he can move them around on his
    plot, before actually moving aircraft. On a carrier with a canted deck it's
    much easier than the old straight deck carriers.

    Charles
     
  9. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2005
    Messages:
    12,631
    Likes Received:
    309
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Orange County, CA

    Leave it to the navy to carry a staff car at sea.

    :lol:
     
  10. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2005
    Messages:
    6,160
    Likes Received:
    128
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Consellor
    Location:
    Lincolnshire
    Some good info Max but I am sure the Seafire III could fit into the hangers I admit to not being so sure about the Sea Hurricane.
     
  11. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Messages:
    12,669
    Likes Received:
    96
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Occupation:
    R E T I R E D !!
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, Va.
    The last cruise I made on the USS Essex, we stopped in Hamburg, Germany.
    Our CO bought two Porsches and brought them back. Plus a good portion
    of the crew bought Vespa scooters in Italy. All these were stowed on the
    hanger deck until the morning we entered Quonset Point, RI. Then they
    were proudly displayed on the forward part of the flight deck.

    Charles
     
  12. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2004
    Messages:
    600
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Virginia
    "Robin" was HMS Victorious' radio call sign in the May - July 1943 period operating with USS Saratoga. This led to the insider joke "USS Robin", but as has been pointed out there already was a USS Robin which was regularly operating not so far to the south.

    Most navies, USN included, are loath to have two vessels with the same name, it really screws up the mail. The insider joke was evidently overheard by someone with a little imagination or who simply never asked for details and another WWII urban myth was born.

    My father was flying out of Cactus I during this period and making runs up to Munda and sometimes had to coordinate with flights from the Victorious/Saratoga group. Made it very clear in no uncertain terms that the Robin story was just someone's corruption of the actual events.

    Kind of like the time the blackshoe Captain James S ("Jimmy") Thach was sent orders to command a carrier and his younger brother, the brownshoe Captain John S ("Jimmy") Thach was sent orders to command a battleship. Similar names really mess things up.

    Rich
     
  13. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2005
    Messages:
    6,160
    Likes Received:
    128
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Consellor
    Location:
    Lincolnshire
    I was reading a link posted on one of these threads and it mentioned that the Victorious carried 60 Wildcats when she operated with the Saratogo in 1943.
    Thought it might be of interest
     
  14. DOUGRD

    DOUGRD Member

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2007
    Messages:
    804
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Occupation:
    Aircraft Mechanic working in general aviation.
    Location:
    Alexandria, MN. USA
    Actually it's the AirBoss and the Flight Deck Officer who determine the parking. Flightdeck Control, which sits on the flightdeck level of the "Island" at the forward end, has the scale flight deck AND hangar deck model and each A/C "model" also displays that A/C's status as far as "up" or "down". A/C which are due for lengthy inspections (2 or more days) are sent to the hgr deck. A/C that are "down" for maintenance but expected to be "up" soon are push into out of the way spots on the flightdeck such as the "junk yard" or the "turkey triangle" and left there. I say out of the way because after each launch and recovery cycle the deck goes through a "respot". For the launch sequence most A/C are spotted aft. and for the recovery sequence all A/C are spotted forward and out of the landing area which is marked with paint on the deck. In my opinion the hardest working guys on a carrier are the flightdeck YELLOW Shirts and the BLUE Shirts. They work flight quarters to flight quarters which means from the first respot for launch to the last park job at the end of the day which might be 16 hours later. (hope this fills in some blanks) :)
     
  15. maxs75

    maxs75 Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2005
    Messages:
    244
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Yes, Victorious for some time had aboard Martlets of FAA squadrons 882, 896 and 898, and most of the Wildcats of VF-6 USN squadron.
    Saratoga instead carried about 60 or more Dauntless and Avengers of VB-3, VT-3 and No.832 FAA squadrons, along with the remaining Wildcats of VF-6.

    Max
     
  16. freebird

    freebird Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    Messages:
    2,658
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    British Columbia
    Do you mean they need to re-spot ALL the deck aircraft when they switch from launch to recovery? How long was the recovery area in 1942 carriers for fighters?
     
  17. DOUGRD

    DOUGRD Member

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2007
    Messages:
    804
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Occupation:
    Aircraft Mechanic working in general aviation.
    Location:
    Alexandria, MN. USA
    To be quite honest I'm not sure but it would depend on the size of the flightdeck. Remember the whole aft end (aft of the island) was used as a landing zone so I would imagine everything got shifted back and forth because prior to the U.S.Navy "stealing" the Brits marvelous invention, the catapult, it was all deck launches and those pilots wanted as much deck as they could get.
     
  18. renrich

    renrich Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2007
    Messages:
    4,542
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    real estate
    Location:
    Montrose, Colorado
    It would depend on how many elevators the carrier had and where they were located. I don't believe the US "stole" the catapult idea from the Brits at the stage of history you are talking about. They did copy the Brits after WW2 with regard to the steam catapult as well as the angled flight deck and the mirror landing system.
     
  19. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2004
    Messages:
    600
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Virginia
    The USN had the first hydraulic catapults and the first shell fired catapults. The Royal Navy had the first steam catapults, but long, long after the former two had seen many, many shots.
     
  20. DOUGRD

    DOUGRD Member

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2007
    Messages:
    804
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Occupation:
    Aircraft Mechanic working in general aviation.
    Location:
    Alexandria, MN. USA
    The "steal" was meant as a joke. You have to admit it though, the steam cat is the best of the three systems. Must be, it's still being used today on the "Nimitz" class carriers. Here's an interesting side note for anyone who's interested. Did you know that a steam cat deck track can catch on fire? ( By the "deck track" I mean the slot in the deck that the shuttle travels back and forth in.)
     
Loading...

Share This Page