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Old 08-10-2011, 12:54 PM   #1
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A Fixer for Marin

I've been interested in WWII boats for some time.* One in particular is*the "Crash Boat".* Crash Boats were high-speed craft used for rescue and recovery similar to the PT boats of the era but lacked the offensive capability.* A few are still around.*I have been motoring past one in Mare Island Strait for some time when I finally recognized it....complete with motor home
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Old 08-10-2011, 01:09 PM   #2
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RE: A Fixer for Marin

This is exactly what I had in mind for my next boat but maybe a few feet shorter. Painting it with a broom would improve its looks so I would avoid the snide remarks.
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Old 08-10-2011, 01:20 PM   #3
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IIRC the so-called crash-boats of WWII were shorter than the PTs and I think had only two engines.*

Most of the PTs still in service in the Pacific at the end of the war were stripped of anything useful and then burned en mass in the water.* Boats in the US sometimes suffered a similar fate but most of them were sent to other countries who wanted fast patrol boats.* Some went to Russia, for example.*

But a few ended up being surplussed into private hands and were converted into cruising boats.* The three Packards were replaced with two smaller gas or diesel engines. There may be a few* of these converted PTs still around today but most of them eventually fell apart, rotted out, and disappeared.

Today there are just a tiny handful of genuine Elco and Higgins PTs left, most of them resurrected from Navy bases where they sat forgotten in the mud for decades.* They are in the hands of museums or restoration organizations.*

There is at least one operating PT that purports to be a PT but sort of isn't.* While it's gussied up to look like an American PT it's actually a Vosper, the British equivelant of the American PT, some of which were built under license in this country.* The boat used in "McHale's Navy" was a post-war Vosper.

The Higgins PT that's been restored to operating condition down near Portland, on the other hand, is a genuine PT and not only that, but it's powered with three Packard 4M-2500 engines which are the original PT engines..* My wife and I were invited to ride on it a number of years ago shortly after it had been put into operating condition.* It's the wrong* PT for my project--- the boat in my story is an Elco--- but the engines are the same and I really wanted to hear, smell, and feel them running.* It was really something to hear these things at full power.* Anoher unique thing about this particular project is that many of the guys who have been doing the restoration, including overhauling the engines, are PT vets from WWII.

One of the pre-war experimental PTs built by the Navy out of aluminum still survives in private hands and I believe has been restored.* The boat is of interest for historical reasons but as a PT boat it was a real piece of crap.* Some things don't change, and the government trying to design and build something themselves and failing miserably at it is one of them :-)


Shot of the fate of most of the WWII PTs.* Hundreds of them were burned together after stripping in the Phillippines.




-- Edited by Marin on Wednesday 10th of August 2011 01:36:08 PM
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Old 08-10-2011, 01:54 PM   #4
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RE: A Fixer for Marin

Not to hijack the thread, but one of my favorite childhood books was Nicholas Monsarrat's book "The Ship That Died of Shame" about a WWII British MGB. There was also a so-so movie based on the book starring Richard Attenborough.
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Old 08-10-2011, 03:56 PM   #5
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RE: A Fixer for Marin

Thanks for your input, Marin.* The photo with the motor home is an AVR-63, I think.* I'm fairly certain she is sitting on the mud in Mare Island Strait.* FYI, the following is an informative website:* www.avrsociety.homestead.com
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Old 08-10-2011, 07:02 PM   #6
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RE: A Fixer for Marin

Here is a WWII fixer-upper:

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Old 08-10-2011, 07:13 PM   #7
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RE: A Fixer for Marin

ther used to be 8 of pts right buy great bridge on the ICW at mile marker 12, they were ther for about 20 yrs out of the water,but they disapperd about 9 yrs ago?
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Old 08-10-2011, 07:48 PM   #8
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I have seen references to these boats and if they are the same ones I read about they actually were not WWII PTs. I don't recall exactly what they were, but they were later boats of some sort-- patrol or whatever.

There have been "sightings" of WWII PTs, by which I mean Elco or Higgins boats, off and on for many years, both in the US and in other countries like Russia. In all cases so far, where some sort of boat actually did exist, it turned out to be something else. Similar looking, perhaps, but not the real deal.

Given that the PTs were all wood--- conventionally framed, double-diagonal planked hulls, parallel-planked decks and superstructures that were a combination of planking and plywood--- and they were inexpensively made with relatively cheap materials, an abandonned PT soon reverted to rot and rubbish. The Portand Higgins boat, for example, is actually the combination of two derelict boats that had sat for years in a Navy yard. One had a hull beyond salvage but had engines that could be overhauled to run. The other had a hull that, while rough, could be rebuilt, but its engines were beyond restoration. The consensus at PT Boats, Inc, the "official" PT boat veterans and enthusiasts organization, is that all the existing Elco and Higgins PTs have long been accounted for.


-- Edited by Marin on Wednesday 10th of August 2011 07:49:43 PM
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Old 08-11-2011, 05:08 PM   #9
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RE: A Fixer for Marin

Hi,

Take a look at wortoncreek.com and look at the projects page.* The owner of the yard, John Patnovic, acquired one of the Nasty class PTF's that were alongside the ICW in Norfolk.* These boats were built of wood by the John Trumpy yard in Annapolis in the '60's, and used in Vietnam.* John was attempting to put together an organization to restore the boat, but his energies have been diverted by the restoration of his burned out 90' Burger.* If you are in the Chesapeake, stop in Worton Creek and have a look at his progress.

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Old 08-12-2011, 02:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
charles wrote:

There was one other boat built to this design but it was of wood construction. It did not survive.

It was PT-7 and was equally as worthless as a PT boat design as the aluminum PT-8.* An interesting albeit impractical feature of PTs 7 and 8 was that their four, 1,000 hp Allison V-12 gas engines (each pair arranged as an X-24 engine) were drag started at a boat speed of 15 knots, which was achieved with a single 550 hp Hall-Scott gas engine which was also used for backing.


-- Edited by Marin on Friday 12th of August 2011 02:37:07 PM
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Old 08-12-2011, 03:48 PM   #11
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RE: A Fixer for Marin

Here's another one.* She was built in Brooklyn, NY in 1943 as a Coast Guard Cutter.* She's*83' and was used/converted to a *mine sweeper.* She was 1 of 60 sent over for*D day and rescued 1500 service men off beach.* There are only 9 left out of 300 built.* Currently she is being cruised full time by John Derrick and his wife with the occasional help from their friend Sam.* Sea Quest is spending the summer in El Salvador.* John's got all the history,*original pictures and is great on giving tours.
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