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Topic review - Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans
Author Message
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
Excellent - thanks Rick.
Post Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 2:59 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
Well, at least some were NOT plated over. The exact number and locations can be disputed.

Here are a couple of the last images of USS LAFFEY (DD-459) in September 1942, some portholes appear to be open and others could be simply closed with the cover in place or plated over.

In this 4 September 1942 image of USS LAFFEY, I have adjusted the contrast, etc to try and pull out the portholes;

Image

This image was taken on 16 September 1942.

Image

And here is an image of her near identical sister, USS WOODWORTH (DD-460) on 13 August 1942. She still has all of her above the main deck portholes in place.

Image
Post Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 1:09 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
I am pretty sure the answer is "yes", but want to confirm... Were Laffey's portholes all plated over by November, 1942?
Post Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 11:37 am
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
many thanks Rick! Always precious and precise :cool_1:
Post Posted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 2:20 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
The image of USS LIVERMORE (DD-429) shows her in her post Anti-Kamikaze Mod in the summer of 1945, likely dating in June 1945. You can see the two quad 40-mm mounts aft and the two twin 40-mm mounts amidships that replaced ALL of her torpedo tubes. Also, she has the Mk 28 radar on her Mk 37 director. I wish I knew where this image came from, because I have not located it at NARA or elsewhere. Which is weird because she was modified at NYNY at the same time as her sister in May-June 1945 and post-refit photos of her are available.

USS LIVERMORE would have been painted the same as her sister, USS EBERLE (DD-430), Ms 21 because they were both assigned to the odd numbered DesRon 11. Whether she was painted with older 5-N purple-blue or newer #7 5-N Neutral Gray paint can be debated. This photo of USS LIVERMORE seems to either have been taken backlit to the sun or is a multiple copy from the original photo when compared to the USS EBERLE image below. I would guess the odds are greater that LIVERMORE and EBERLE are painted in Neutral Gray #7.

USS LIVERMORE and her sister were ordered to the Pacific, but didn't reach the war zone until the war was over.

DANFS entry; Though she departed New York 22 June, V-J Day found her still training at Pearl Harbor. She reached Japan 27 September escorting transports carrying soldiers of the Army's 98th Division for occupation duty.


Image
Post Posted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 12:28 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
According to shipcamouflage.com she was never in 11. In 42 she was in 12 mod. So I think either their website is incorrect or the photo is mislabeled on navsource.
Post Posted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 7:44 am
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
Hi all, I just found this undated picture on Navsource: http://www.navsource.org/archives/05/pix1/0542907.jpg
of USS Livermore. I think it is just prior 1942, probably summer 1941, but I can't identify with enough confidence that camouflage measure. She seems to wear a very dark livery...could be ms-4? Or is a normal ms-11 or 21...?
Thank you!
Post Posted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 2:26 am
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
USS BUCHANAN had a single quad 1.1-in mount installed on the starboard side. These photos aren't very good for details, they are significant more for the historical nature of the event. Other photos existing showing the quad mounted in place ... and NO Mk 51 directors or any other directors at this time.
Post Posted: Sun Apr 08, 2018 11:09 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
Rick E Davis wrote:
On a recent trip to NARA I went into one of the USN photo collections, 80-CF, that I had not been in before. There were not many ship photos and the subjects varied quite a bit. But, there were a series of small size photos taken during the initial landings on Guadalcanal in August 1942 by a photographer onboard one of the transports who also went ashore. Although these two images are not of very good quality (I'm guessing he used a 35-mm camera with high-speed film), they are historically significant in showing USS BUCHANAN (DD-484) off Guadalcanal and only described as being taken "after the initial landings".

Image

Image


Is that a quad 1.1" in he aft, starboard tub? It is difficult to tell what AA weapons are mounted back there.

MB
Post Posted: Sun Apr 08, 2018 10:09 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
Sorry it has taken me a while to say thanks for the help. Have actually been spending a lot of time on the model and have not been on line much. Was not satisfied with some of the work I did so I took it apart and stripped it and started over. Thanks for the tip on the Wadsworth, a great help!
Post Posted: Sun Apr 08, 2018 8:14 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
I don't know of any USS LAFFEY (DD-459) specific drawings available that would be guaranteed to be accurate.

Even photos of USS LAFFEY are pretty few in number.

However, there are quite a few nice images of her almost twin sister USS WOODWORTH (DD-460). Many of which I have posted here.
Post Posted: Thu Mar 22, 2018 12:11 am
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
Am new to the site and have returned to ship building after wandering off into other areas. Have noted some plan drawings of Benson/Gleaves class ships. Noted drawings of USS McCalla. Am looking for drawings of Laffey if there is anything out there.
Thanks for any help. Have enjoyed this thread and learned quite a bit too You guys are some serious researchers!
Post Posted: Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:54 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
Wow - that's neat. That will certainly be a unique model when finished.
Post Posted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 1:27 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
In March and April of 1944 the USN authorized the augmenting of the AA armament for sixteen units of the original BENSON-GLEAVES group of destroyers operating in the Mediterranean during the Italy campaign as a counter to increased German Air attacks on Allied shipping. The result was an unique configuration that lasted for less than a year and is seldom seen in photos. The most noticeable feature was a platform for four 20-mm guns installed in place of the aft torpedo tubes. Less noticeable was the installation of two single Mk III 40-mm guns.

I suggested to Steve to make a 3-D printed version of this platform with four 20-mm ready service ammo lockers for use on BENSON-GLEAVES class units and ordered one for a project I have to model one of the GLEAVES class units that had this platform installed by altering one of the DML BENSON-GLEAVES class 1/350 scale kits. Below are two images showing where this platform goes.

Image

Image

I'm very pleased with the item and recommend it for anyone interested in modeling this unique configuration. Depending on which DML BENSON-GLEAVES class kit you use, some fitting will be required. The platform was simply installed over the foundation of the removed aft Torpedo Tube mount. In the photos it isn't clear exactly the interface connection that the platform had with the ship. It looks to me the the platform "deck" was more or less even with the midships deckhouse once installed. I decided to install the platform as seen above. Support stanchions, two per side, were installed along the deck edge to support the platform. See attached images below.

As for some background as to which BENSON-GLEAVES units had this unique armament configuration.

After the Anzio Landings the German attacks of Allied ships started to be more effective with new weapons and tactics being used. One of the countermeasures implemented by the USN was to augment temporarily the anti-aircraft armament of destroyers and destroyer escorts assigned to duty in the Med with more 20-mm and single hand-operated 40-mm guns.

For sixteen units of the original group of BENSON-GLEAVES class units (DD-421 through 443) assigned to four Destroyer Divisions, DesDiv 13, 14, 21, and 25), four extra 20-mm and two US Army type single 40-mm guns (Mk III) were authorized for installation in March and April 1944. The Repeat BENSON-GLEAVES classes had seven 20-mm guns already, compared to the four 20-mm guns of the original BENSON-GLEAVES units, and were considered to not need additional weapons.

The four extra 20-mm guns were installed on a temporary platform that replaced the aft torpedo tubes. Whereas the two single 40-mm guns were installed on the main deck amidships between the twin 40-mm mounts and the 20-mm platform, one per side. A very poor location with limited firing arc. But, did provide additional 40-mm fire at low-altitude targets like German torpedo bombers.

Of the sixteen units, at least seven and maybe as many as eight units had the additional 20-mm and 40-mm guns installed in theater at Oran by USS VULCAN (AR-5). The remaining units had the additional armament installed at New York Navy Yard.

The units involved with this program were:

DesDiv 13
DD-421 BENSON … additional guns installed at NYNY March 1944
DD-422 MAYO … in addition to Battle Damage repairs, the additional guns installed NYNY August 1944
DD-423 GLEAVES … additional guns installed at NYNY April 1944
DD-424 NIBLACK … additional guns installed at NYNY April 1944
DD-431 PLUNKETT … in addition to Battle Damage repairs, the additional guns installed NYNY April 1944

DesDiv 14
DD-425 MADISON … additional guns installed by USS VULCAN by 11 April 1944
DD-426 LANSDALE … additional guns installed by USS VULCAN by 6 April 1944
DD-427 HILLARY P. JONES … additional guns installed by USS VULCAN by 6 April 1944
DD-428 CHARLES F. HUGHES … additional guns installed by USS VULCAN by 29 March 1944

DesDiv 21
DD-429 LIVERMORE … additional guns installed by USS VULCAN by 22 April 1944
DD-430 EBERLE … unknown if additional guns installed by USS VULCAN in May 1944, but likely were
DD-432 KEARNY … additional guns installed by USS VULCAN by 25 April 1944
DD-440 ERICSSON … additional guns installed by USS VULCAN by 25 April 1944

DesDiv 25
DD-419 WAINWRIGHT (SIMS class unit authorized three single 40-mm guns in place of her aft torpedo tubes, no extra 20-mm guns)
DD-437 WOOLSEY … additional guns installed at NYNY April 1944
DD-438 LUDLOW … additional guns installed at NYNY April 1944
DD-439 EDISON … additional guns installed at NYNY April 1944

While in this configuration, USS LANSDALE was attacked by German aircraft less than two weeks after USS VULCAN installed the added armament at Oran. During the attack on her, LANSDALE shot-down two attacking German aircraft. The platform and single 40-mm guns were removed and the aft torpedo tubes reinstalled in late 1944 and early 1945 from the remaining units as they returned for yard periods and as the German aircraft threat diminished in the Med following the Southern France invasion and allied advance in Italy

Below are a couple of the few available overhead images that show this augmented armament. Earlier in this thread, I posted other images of USS NIBLACK in this configuration. I came across additional dead overhead images of both USS NIBLACK and USS MAYO last year at NARA.

On USS NIBLACK (DD-424), on 9 April 1944, the single 40-mm guns can just be made out on the main deck between the platform and the twin 40-mm mounts.

Image

On USS MAYO (DD-422), on 15 August 1944 after her Battle Bamage from February 1944 has been repaired, the single 40-mm guns have not yet been installed, but the K-Guns formerly in these locations have been relocated further aft, just forward of the twin 40-mm mount platforms.

Image

In this close-crop view of USS GLEAVES at NYNY, the support stanchions, relocated K-Gun, and single 40-mm locations can be seen.

Image
Post Posted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 11:47 am
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
On a recent trip to NARA I went into one of the USN photo collections, 80-CF, that I had not been in before. There were not many ship photos and the subjects varied quite a bit. But, there were a series of small size photos taken during the initial landings on Guadalcanal in August 1942 by a photographer onboard one of the transports who also went ashore. Although these two images are not of very good quality (I'm guessing he used a 35-mm camera with high-speed film), they are historically significant in showing USS BUCHANAN (DD-484) off Guadalcanal and only described as being taken "after the initial landings".

Image

Image
Post Posted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 1:45 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
In the case of BUCHANAN (and any ship during WWII) when you are trying to model the ship will influence the paint used/required.

Ms 12R(mod) more or less disappeared in the Pacific in late 1942 and early 1943 as ships were repainted into Ms 21. Ships were constantly being touched up, sometimes with different paint in areas than what was originally applied.

Close-up photos of the Pacific Ms 12R(mod) painted ships are fairly rare compared to 1943 onwards.
Post Posted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 7:56 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
Thanks for the reply, Rick. I have had a heck of a time finding any definitive pictures. I have looked at three builds of the Buchanan on this site and even they did not finish the model the same way. I also understand that the ship's "finish" could change while out to sea. It could look one way when it left a port and could be different when it arrived at another.

Thanks again. I'm sure I will be asking more questions in the future.
Post Posted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 7:42 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
In general everything that gets painted on the ship follows the camo rules for that scheme. But, painting was done by individuals and some variations occurred. For some areas of ships, like sloped surfaces and gun barrels, it was difficult to determine where one paint "should" end and another begin. Small items in general would be painted one color, but could be painted in two different colors. The best bet is to try and get as many reference photos of your subject ship and use best judgment.
Post Posted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 5:26 am
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
Hi guys, I'm a complete newbie to ship modelling and am a little overwhelmed at the moment. I have a question that very well may rank up there as one of the dumbest questions ever asked. I'm just trying to learn my way around this corner of the hobby and find that when I think I have something figured out, I have 10 more questions...lol.

Here goes. I am building the Buchanan with the Measure 12 modified scheme. I understand the general concept of painting the vertical and horizontal surfaces in their appropriate color. My question is on the very small parts, do you paint them likewise? For example, bitts and chocks. Should I paint the tops of the bitts and chocks deck blue and the vertical surface the measure 12 colors? I have tried searching for the answer but have had no luck. Thanks for any help!
Post Posted: Wed Oct 25, 2017 11:02 pm
  Post subject:  Re: Calling all USS Benson/Gleaves class (DD) fans  Reply with quote
I was making that post more to clarify the differences between the two types of radar, since apparently it wasn't well understood. I did not state anywhere that any BENSON-GLEAVES units received the Mark 12 radar equipment.

Interesting to note about the "GFE" concept. I had never heard of that. It actually clarifies things for me as now I know there's a mark and mod for every type of antenna and mount somewhere out there.
Post Posted: Mon Jun 05, 2017 10:42 pm

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