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PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 10:46 pm 
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Snowman,

Although all of the Clevelands were generally the same, there are several significant variants.

Cleveland CL-55 and Columbia CL-56 had more variations from the following ships. They had boat cranes and a boat farm midships. All of the Clevelands had a rounded armored pilot house up to USS Mobile CL-63. The boat cranes and boat farms were removed from later ships.

USS Vincennes CL-64 had a trapezoidal pilot house and bridge, and narrower bridge wings - the heavy armored pilot house was omitted from CL-64 and all subsequent Cleveland class ships. All of these ships had 5"/38 gun mounts 4 and 5 moved aft 16 feet, and the positions of the Mk34 main battery director and the Mk37 secondary battery director positions were reversed.

There were other significant differences, including visible variations between ships constructed in different shipyards. Later ships had the rangefinders removed from 6"/47 turret #1, and some had one catapult removed. As the war progressed many changes were made to the basic design, and in some cases these changes were retrofitted to earlier ships. Later ships had dual 40mm gun tubs on the stern, and a few earlier ships were retrofitted with these guns.

I think it is safe to say that no two Clevelands were exactly alike, and figuring out the differences can be frustrating. So you need to decide which ship(s) to model, and when in the service history.

Phil

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Last edited by DrPR on Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 2:52 am 
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Email received, thanks a lot.
DavidP wrote:
CL-89 – USS Miami Booklet of General Plans, 1946 Booklet of General Plans, 1946 http://www.hnsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/cl89.pdf email sent with frame lines drawing.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:01 am 
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no problem.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2018 1:51 pm 
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Late to the party gentlemen. I maintain the USS Astoria CL-90 site and am eye-deep in a book about her crew's war experience.

Couple of quick thoughts:
I went back through this entire thread (whew! 11 years) and didn't see any discussion of the aircraft recovery crane as an identifying feature. The Fore River ships used a plate construction that is very distinctive from the tubular construction of the other yards. Vincennes, Pasadena, Springfield and Topeka all have this distinctive feature.

Some interesting tidbits on design evolution. When the rounded bridge was replaced by the open bridge to reduce topside weight, the result was severe concussion blast when the secondary battery was fired in antiaircraft capacity. Astoria's CAPT George Dyer wrote to BuShips that he was getting "knocked on his fanny" and equipment was breaking loose. Some skippers elected to abandon the open bridge in action.
During her shakedown cruise, Astoria damaged the single 20mm Oerlikon mounts surrounding her aft main battery turrets during gunnery exercises. This may have played a role in their removal and replacement by twin Bofors fore and aft post-shakedown, as it certainly added topside weight.

And because she was outfitted with Kingfishers rendering the hangar inaccessible by aircraft, Astoria's crew turned it into a basketball court.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2018 11:20 pm 
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Brent,

Welcome!

I can verify the unpleasant effects of the 5"/38 gunfire on the bridge. During Naval Gunfire Support operations in Vietnam we sometimes engaged targets abaft abeam - "shooting over the shoulder." From my watch station on the bridge I could look into the open ends of the gun barrels only about 15 feet away. When the guns fired it was deafening* - and the OK City had an enclosed bridge outside the pilot house.

We had only the one dual 5"/38 mount, and NGFS wasn't as rapid fire as antiaircraft fire in WWII. The open bridge on the Clevelands wouldn't be habitable with six guns firing rapidly.

****

If you haven't seen Brent's USS Astoria CL-90 "Mighty 90" web page, be sure to visit it. His collection of ship's photos from WWII is exceptional!

http://www.mighty90.com/

Phil

* Quite literally. I lost all hearing above about 1 KHz, a high pitched male voice, and I have constant ringing in my ears. Before Vietnam I had hearing up to 18 KHz.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2018 9:49 pm 
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Hearing loss from exposure to the 5/38 gun was common. Lots of WWII veterans, including my father, lost their hearing due to the same exposure you encountered. My father told me the sharp crack of the gun was painful to endure.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2018 10:55 pm 
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The replacement of the main deck 20-mm guns with twin 40-mm guns had less to do with the blast damage to the 20-mm guns, and more to do with the cry for more 40-mm guns on the CLEVELAND's. Those locations were authorized (in mid-1944) as the best available that had not already been populated with 40-mm guns. The addition of the four twin 40-mm mounts (two forward and two aft) by the superimposed 6-in turrets brought the armament from 20 to 28 40-mm guns.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2019 12:20 pm 
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I'm building a 1/96 scale USS Manchester CL-83 (square bridge Cleveland) in honor of my father who served aboard her after wwii.

Image

I have researching pictures of the forward (and aft) outdoor conning station to no avail (at least that's what I think it is). Does anyone have a picture of one that they can share with me? Here is a picture of one from the Navy's 1/48 scale model of the USS Manchester (that is painted up as the USS Birmingham). The angled stand in the middle of the deck is what I am calling an "outdoor conning station" - I may be incorrect...

Image

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Neil


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2019 2:04 pm 
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Neil,

I have some questions about your build. What timeframe did your father serve onboard USS MANCHESTER (CL-83)? USS MANCHESTER was in service from 29 October 1946 to 27 June 1956. She had two major configurations and several sensor upgrades and modifications (like removal of catapults/seaplanes and addition of helicopters, one catapult was removed in late 1946) during the first one and a few sensor upgrades during the final configuration. The major change for USS MANCHESTER was in late 1952 when she was upgraded from 40-mm guns to 3-in RFG gun mounts.

For the period from 1946 to 1952, USS MANCHESTER was equipped to carry four quad 40-mm mounts and six twin 40-mm mounts. During the "peacetime" period she likely had the two twin 40-mm mounts forward on either side of the 51 mount landed, but the "tubs" remained, to save maintenance and manning. Once the Korean War started, those two mounts were returned to the ship. Your model shows no twin 40-mm mounts or the tubs in that location.

So for what period are you modeling your Father's ship?

As for your question on the area of the ship you are asking about specifically, what you are looking at is the "Aft Air Defence Station". There was a similar "Air Defence Station" on the forward superstructure aft of the bridge area. The Aft Emergency Con station was located further forward just ahead of the Mk 37 director. See the attached images for drawings of sister CL-64. The only "good" overhead view of USS MANCHESTER that I have showing this area in an detail, dates from after she had been upgraded with twin 3-in RFG mounts in 1953. A cropped overhead view of USS MANCHESTER in 1953 is attached, with what little detail can be made out from it. Many changes had occurred from when she had 40-mm guns as you have modeled. So I have no idea of what changed in this area from her 1946-52 appearance have occurred. Also, depending on when a CLEVELAND class cruiser was built/modified and by which yard, there are variations. (Both USS VINCENNES (CL-64) and USS MANCHESTER (CL-83) were built by Bethlehem-Quincy.)

In your image, I see some of the "Sky Lookout" seats. The rest of the equipment, like the bulwark with controls in the middle of that deck, are likely for communications with fire control and the bridge.


Image

Image

Image


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2019 8:12 pm 
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Hi Rick,

Thanks for information! Great picture and drawing.

To answer your question, my father was a Marine on the USS Manchester CL-83 from first commissioning (1946) to early 1948 - thus, that's the time period that I built to depict. I have actual USS Manchester CL-83 (and CL-82) overhead main deck and communication drawings (blue prints), but all my other drawings are the USS Miami CL-89 (profiles, overhead, detail, etc.). I also have all the pictures of the USS Manchester that I could find on navsource (primarily), but only a couple in the 1946-48 time period and pictures of the Navy 1/48 scale model of the USS Manchester.

I built my model superstructure so that I can almost fully disassemble it - in case I need to change something. I am extremely interested in any other USS Manchester drawings or pictures (1946-48) that you might have.

Do you happen to have any pictures of an "Emergency Con Station" and/or "Fire Control to Bridge communication equipment" that might be similar to the equipment on the board of the Navy model (I realize it is a very basic representation).

Thank you again so much for the help!


Neil


Last edited by 20Driver on Wed Jan 02, 2019 10:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:23 pm 
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Rick, Here are some pictures and drawing info that I have. You can't see much from the Manchester photo. The Birmingham and Mobile photos show some Emergency Con Station equipment, but I'm not sure what it is. Neil

USS Miami Cl-89 Aft Air Defense Level
Image

USS Manchester CL-83 9 Mar 1948
Image

USS Birmingham 22 Jan 1945
Image

USS Mobile Fwd Air Defense Level
Image


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2019 10:06 pm 
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Rick, Here's a picture of what I believe may be some of the equipment - on the right side, up against the director base. Do you know what those gauges / controls are? Communications for fire control to bridge or Emergency Con Station?... Neil

Image


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 1:26 am 
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Neil,

OK, the date of service onboard narrows down the period and it looks like your fire control suite is proper.

PM me with your E-Mail address, and I will send the USS MANCHESTER images I have while she had 40-mm guns onboard and the drawings I have had scanned at NARA. I don't have many images of her in 1946-48, but I can send the ones I have. I have very few "dead overhead" images of late war CLEVELAND Sq-Bridge class units where you can make out the details in the aft Air Defence Area.

I really don't have any idea of what all the boxes are for in the photos you have posted. They could be anything from power controls to communications controls. Ships are complex machines and there are a lot of such boxes all over the ship.

DrPhil needs to chime in, he has studied the CLEVELAND class in far more detail than I have.

Rick E Davis


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 2:35 am 
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I looked through my collection of Cleveland class photos and it seems the Secondary Conn station was one of the least photographed parts of these ships! I had not researched this part of the ships yet.

It looks like the early round bridge Clevelands had two flag bags, port and starboard, and two peloruses, port and starboard. They had pipe railings around the station.

Later in the war it looks like there was only one flag bag, on the centerline just aft of the smoke pipe. Not much else shows in the pictures.

Then very late in production it looks like the pipe railings were replaced by a solid splinter shield around the station.

****

The five sided equipment on the panel in Neil's picture looks like a bunch of repeaters. The rudder angle indicator, course indicator and engine order repeaters were all small 5"-6" dial faces like you see in the photo around the larger round center gadget. One may be a clock.

The large circular instrument really looks like an engine order telegraph repeater (Ahead Standard, Back Full, Stop, etc.) but I am not sure.

I can see the same piece of equipment in one of Brent Jones' Astoria photos.

The megaphone is the only thing I can identify positively! It looks like it might be resting on a pelorus (gyro compass repeater).

The dark box at the upper right of the panel with the four lighter circles is probably an annunciator panel that had lighted indicators for something. They could also be four push buttons.

You can see the centerline flag bag with a canvas cover, and it looks like the station is surrounded by bulwarks/splinter shields.

There wasn't much in Secondary Conn. No steering wheel (steering was by voice communication with after steering where the rudder engines were). Maybe a flat place for a chart. Some ships had a binnacle with a magnetic compass - I haven't seen one in the Cleveland photos. There were sound powered phone boxes connecting to the ships internal communications circuits. Maybe even a powered talk box. But Secondary Conn was used only if the bridge had been blown away and the ship was in pretty desperate condition.

Phil

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 10:29 am 
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Rick, Phil,

Your comments and information are very helpful. Thank you very much.

I am leaning toward your obserrvations that it is probably a very basic Secondary/Emergency Con with a 5 sided repeater (rudder, course angle, engine order) and communications equipment I have a very nice digitally printed 5 sided repeater and can scratch build the rest of the boxes and supporting structure once I get a better idea of they are. What's interesting is that the Navy model has two of these stations: one on the forward Air Def Lv(original photo above) and one on the aft (see below). So I guess they must a have felt that it was important enough to model/build both. I will continue researching it - I will ask a couple of veteran navy CPO's. If I found out anything more definitive, I will let you know.

By the way, is that supposed to be a stool seat on a box? Seems odd that anyone would need to sit when the ship is heavily damaged / sinking... I've never seen an "outdoor bar stool" on a ship...

Rick, I will send you an email. Thank you again for your help!

Neil

Image


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2019 1:59 am 
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Neil,

I doubt that it is a stool. Might have been an early radar repeater. Who knows?

Any idea what year the Navy model was built? If it is a model of the Manchester it would have been made late in the war - the ship was started in September 1944 and the model would have been built by then. Ships did have radars at that time, but I have no idea if they had radar repeaters in the conning stations back then.

Also, note in the profile drawing of CL-64 that rick posted there is an "Auxiliary Battery Signal Station" in the Secondary Conning Station area. I suppose the five-sided thing could be part of that.

Phil

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2019 1:29 pm 
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The Air Defence Level was primarily for just that purpose. Both the forward and aft ADL locations were colocated with the primary fire control systems (between the 6-in and 5-in gun directors) on this class of cruiser. The Emergency Con was located aft of the aft stack and forward of the Mk 37 director tower in a small deckhouse with a platform above (Aft Bridge) for external observation as needed. Look on the two drawings that I posted earlier and again below. Redundancy is good for damage control, but having two Emergency Cons this close wouldn't be smart. :smallsmile:

My best guess is that the "square-shaped" thing in the middle of this ADL level, is a "Chart TAS" (best guess on TAS means "Tactical Air Situation"), which as Phil has said before would be a repeater of radar and other sensor data for the lookout "Captain" to look at to direct his lookouts where to look.

Image

Image

This less than perfect image is of this area on USS ASTORIA (CL-90) on 21 October 1944, which has a different bulwark (ASTORIA doesn't have a catwalk around the Main Fire Control director at the AD level like MANCHESTER does) and equipment layout than USS MANCHESTER (the sky lookout chairs on ASTORIA are staggered rather than MANCHESTER's being across from each other), shows some additional details. This layout would predate USS MANCHESTER's completion by two years and the layout likely is different. The "plastic" cover, I think is only a temporary cover while work is being done in that area. I also suspect that installation work in this area isn't complete. But, seeing some of the typical equipment and controls mounted on the bulwark seen, gives an idea of how many controls and power boxes there were.

Image

The Aft Emergency Con station and Aft Bridge can be seen at the edge of this print of ASTORIA. The Aft Bridge is flanked by two Mk 51 directors. On MANCHESTER's drawing, this Aft Bridge platform is wider, allowing for better fore-aft views.

Image


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2019 1:31 pm 
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PS. I would think that Builder's Models would be "Notional" in nature when compared to the final "BUILT" cruiser.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2019 8:42 pm 
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Rick, Phil,

What you are saying makes a lot of sense. You have helped me a lot. I really appreciate all of your explanations, pictures, drawings, expertise and "detective work".

I asked my friend Moe,, who was a radioman aboard the USS Manchester in 1950 (I met him this year when I displayed my model at the commissioning of the new USS Manchester LCS-14), he said, "I have no idea son, I just don't remember. I was either in the radio room, mess hall or in my rack for those 2 years..." lol. I met two other Manchester veterans, but they didn't remember outside deck/superstructure details... ...but they all loved the model!

I know a couple CPO old timers - I will share this with them too. Thanks again guys. It was fun.

If you are ever in San Diego, let me know.

Speaking of San Diego, the (final) Taffy 3 Survivors Reunion will be held on October 25, 2019 in San Diego. I am coordinating a group of 1/96 scale r/c modelers (across the country) that are building all 13 Taffy 3 ships that participated in the "Battle Off Samar" during wwii. In an effort to honor the crews, survivors and their families, we are going to be displaying and running our Taffy 3 model fleet in at the reunion. The reunion will mark the 75th anniversary of the battle and will probably the last reunion ever for Taffy 3 survivors (not many left). Furthermore, it will the first time all 13 Taffy 3 ships held a combined reunion. If you are interested, let me know. Here is a link to our webpage for further information.

https://taffy3modelships.weebly.com/

Neil
USS Manchester CL-83


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 12:19 am 
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If you look closely at both pictures Rick just posted you can see that the plastic cover thingy appears to be full of battle helmets - probably stuffed there to get them out of the way during yard work.

But look behind the plastic thingy and you will see another of those five-sided repeater panels! This one in the After Air Defense station.

Also, Secondary Conn is at the same level as After Air Defense- it had a door into the director barbette. What we have been calling Secondary Conn is actually one level above Secondary Conn, labeled After Bridge, and it does have an Auxiliary Battery Signal Station. This makes me think the five-sided thing has something to do with gunfire control.

Neil, can you send me the photo you posted in your 2 January post - the largest (most pixels) you have? I want to play with it in Photoshop. I looked through my limited collection of Navy gunnery manuals and found a picture of something that looks like the circular part with a couple of knobs on it in the center of the five sided thing. It was a piece for gun fire control equipment. But I don't think it was the exact same thing.

Phil

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