I AM OSCENELY DANGEROULSY JELOUS!!!!!!!!!!
What I would give for a tour of a US carrier,you dont wanna know. ;)
I went aboard the old HMAS Melbourne:
Modified Majestic Class Light Fleet Aircraft Carrier
Builder Vickers Armstrong Ltd, Barrow-in-Furness, England
Laid Down 15 April 1943 as HMS Majestic
Launched 28 February 1945, by Lady Anderson, wife of the Chancellor of the Exchequer
Commissioned 28 October 1955
Displacement 15 740 tons (standard) 20 000 (full load)
Length 701 feet 5 inches (overall),
Flight Deck 690 feet 8 inches
Beam 80 feet 2 inches
Width 112 feet 6 inches (overall)
Draught 25 feet 5 inches
Machinery Parsons single reduction geared turbines, 2 shafts
Speed 24 knots
Range, miles 12 000 at 14 knots, 6 200 at 23 knots
Radars Air Surveillance LW-02 (Type 944/954 IFF Mk 10
Surface Search: Type 293
Carrier-controlled approach: SPN-35
Navigation: Type 978
Armament 25 x 40mm Bofors anti-aircraft guns
Aircraft Originally 8 Sea Venom fighters, 16 Gannet anti-submarine aircraft and up to 2 Bristol Sycamore helicopters.
Later 8 A4G Skyhawk fighter bombers, 6 Grumman S2E/G Trackers, Westland Wessex anti-submarine helicopters and Sea King anti-submarine helicopters.
Complement 1 355 (includes 347 Carrier Air Group personnel
1070 (75 officers and 995 sailors) as Flagship
Pennant Number R21
Call Sign VKLP
Imagine having only that many fighters on a carrier!! In those days they relied on other vessels for defense, not like to day where a carrier will destroy anything within a thousand miles if it wants to!Scrapped in the 80s for razor blades. A sad day for the Australian Navy. We have no cariers now.
HMAS Melbourne was a jinx ship. It collided with HMAS Voyager in 1964 with the loss of 84 lives and in 1969 tragedy again struck when she sliced USS Frank. E. Evans in two, with the loss of 74 US sailors.
I was just a boy. It led me to try to join the navy as a Submarine cadet, but they checked my dodgy forged parents signature and that was the end of that.
US carriers dont visit my state, as the bay isnt big enough for them. However the visit just about everywhere else in Australia. The US has become a lot more secretive about Carrier movements in recent times, so you dont get a lot of notice.
I plan to fly down to Hobart which is only 45 min away and about $150.00 return, next time one is in port on R&R.
I have been aboard USS Antietam, which is my pet US Ship. I was given full access to the ship, I couldnt believe it at the time and still cant. It was an amazing experience and one I will never forget.
I have been drinking out of my Antietam coffee mug at work for about 10 years i think.
This is a great site for those nautically inclined http://www.navy.gov.au/spc/history/shiphistorymain.html