Monday, October 15, 2007

Back @ Norfolk Naval Base

The USNS Kanawha is now back at Norfolk Naval Base.

We've been busy lately going through "ATT", or "Afloat Team Training". Any time there is a major change in crew (such as post-shipyard, or pre-deployment), we get these people from "the base" that apparently have to train us on how to properly respond to Fire, Emergencies, and Abandon Ship (because apparently none of us know anything). It's funny, we get these people who haven't sailed in years (sometimes over a decade), and they're telling us how to respond to fires on board our ship. One more instance of people trying to justify their paycheck I guess.

What's really amusing about it, is they have no power to beach the ship, and we're currently going through the basic annual "COI" with the Coast Guard (continuing tomorrow). We just did a Fire drill (fire in demac shop!), and an abandon ship drill. The ATT idiots wanted us to do a Collision drill, but so far we've been too busy as it is taking care of the COI. Sorry Federal Government Cheese workers, but Coasties come first. Once we get certified to sail, THEN you can continue your useless training.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

More Shipyard pics!
Shot of me at bottom of drydock with propellors (before removal and cleaning)
Inside Port Main Engine crankcase, I was down inside when pistons/connecting rods were lowered to put up the ConRod bearing caps, new bearing inserts, and bolts w/ nuts
A buddy took these shots of me
Before I go in (are you sure you know how to work my camera?)
Dry as ever, stern shot of ship in drydock
Sea growth inside removable section of pipe
Port Engine put back together, heads down, and plastic covering valves and what not (before valve covers and rocker arms were put in place)
Ah, on the day of leaving the drydock, they started before bulk of ship's force arrived (Captain and Chief were onboard, of course)
People waiting to climb onboard the drydock via ladder (right in picture)

Visit to historical stuff in Hampton Roads

Last commissioned battleship, USS Wisconsin (BB-64) is currently tied up in Norfolk, VA, and is being used by the "Nauticus", a Naval Museum in downtown Norfolk.

Here are a few shots of and around the currently commissioned, but inactive, battleship (and around the museum):
Tied up next to her, a tall ship (too lazy to go look @ it)
Memorial for the State of Virginia, of those loved and lost (idea of letters home scattered in the wind)
Battleship (of course), view from the parking garage across the street.
Bearing down on us!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Main Engine Work
Pulling cylinder liners (replaceable liner that the rings seal against, and cooling water runs over). It is showing lots of rust or corrosion...(all the orangeish reddish color), apparently cooling water treatment wasn't doing its job.
Rocker arm assemblies from the cylinders we pulled
Cylinder head resting on deck, note the valve stems sticking up.
Inside port main engine reduction gear (single reduction, single helical).
After pulling cylinder head, jacking engine over to pull this piston (note all the carbon @ top of piston!)
Port Main Engine turbocharger (Left Bank)
Just after a head was pulled, a shot showing some indications of "blow by" past the piston rings.
Flying pistons! Piston has been pulled and is being moved by the overhead crane into our piston stand so we can remove the wrist pin, separating the piston and the connecting rod.
Ride em cow-engineer ;)

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Right vs Left according to the Bible

"The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of the fool to the left." --Ecclesiastes 10:2 NIV

Saw this on a facebook group I'm a member of....I laughed my ass off.

Friday, August 03, 2007

For my little sister

MM2 Scharf, stationed on the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76)

I'm proud of you.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Marine Engineering Blog?

After having merited a "link" from Fred Fry International's Maritime Monday for the second time, I've come to realize I am in a unique position, especially among the rest of the Bear Flag League (California bloggers of whom I am a member, due to my current permanent residence in Kern County), in that I can put forth maritime concerns (especially those featuring engineering as they can have implications ashore as well).

I'm not sure if I can scour the internet and bring forth many concerns that he does, but I can discuss happenings within Military Sealift Command, as many of you all out there are U.S. Taxpayers, and your money pays for a lot of the competence and INcompetence that goes on in any federal bureaucracy.

In this coming September, I'll have been sailing for Military Sealift Fleet Support Command for 2 years, and done at least a 4 month tour on 4 different vessels, all different classes of ship as well.

Ship 1:
USNS Mount Baker (T-AE 34)

Ship 2:
USNS Saturn (T-AFS 10)

Ship 3:
USNS Zeus (T-ARC 7)

Ship 4:
USNS Kanawha (T-AO 196)

I just barely reported to the Kanawha, and we're tied up in Norfolk,VA, almost ready to head into the shipyard for our stanrd overhaul and work. As I've previously mentioned I hope I'll be able to post tons of pictures, maybe with me in a few shots.

Kanawha's powered by twin Colt-Pielsticks, twin shafts with Controllable Pitch Propellors.

Monday, July 23, 2007

USNS Kanawha

Yippe ki yay (however you spell that).

Another long time no posting time....?

Onboard the USNS Kanawha as a 3rd A/E. This ship has an unmanned engine room so it's a little different. I don't stand watches but every third day I stand the "duty", and I still work normally during the normal working hours. We're set to go into the shipyard soon and we're tearing apart the main engines. Awesome, I hope to have lots of pictures.

If you ran across this webpage and wish to say hello, post a comment in the most recent post, please (or email me!)

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Brief Synopsis

Well Folks, my time on the Zeus is almost up. She's going into the shipyard soon, and my plan might be a little different from what I expect. I do wish to drive across country back home to California (with plenty of pictures along the way, hopefully fun, too), hopefully with my father. Even if I don't I may end up doing it on my own (I've flown across country enough times). I'll continue to update this as my plans change.

Monday, March 05, 2007

American Airlines Terrorist Dry Run?

h/t: Little Green Footballs
American Airlines Flight 62: A Terrorist Probe?

This is not meant to scare, but it probably will. Consider yourself informed and warned that the threat is real. This crew reported that they were not prepared that something of this nature could be happening to them.

Flt 62, Paris to MIA [Miami], a few weeks ago. 2 maybe 4 mid-eastern types causing minor disturbance from the get-go. Nothing that the FAs [flight attendants] couldn’t deal with, but, in hindsight, they seemed to be pushing the envelope. Cross-cabin activity, hanging out in the forward galley, complaining about everything, etc. Mid-Atlantic, the FO [First Officer, or Co-Pilot] called to return to the cockpit after his crew-rest break. One of the perps [perpetrators] was in the forward galley, was instructed by a FA to go aft, but didn’t. As the cockpit door opened, another perp suddenly appeared from around the galley, dropped his shoulder into FO while the first one got in the way of the FO’s attempt to block the I’m not for the movie.

FO (one of our first FFDO’s [Federal Flight Deck Officers*]) was about to pull his flashlight to use as a weapon in a counter attack, but thought better of it not knowing how many more perps he might have to fight, called “lockdown” to the FB [secondary “B” First Officer], inside the cockpit, who slammed the door. As soon as the perps heard the word lockdown, they retreated to their seats.

I’m not doing justice to the story, but, if not an attempt on the cockpit, this was a serious probe.

Crew considered divert, but since the threat diminished and seemed to be contained, they pressed on towards MIA. Flight was met in MIA by FBI, FAMS [Federal Air Marshal Service] (none aboard, by the way), AA [American Airlines] Security suits, etc. During the de-brief, which lasted several hours, the FAMs told the pilots that they would have “dropped” both of the perps with the first shove near the cockpit door. Perps claimed to not understand English, were detained for 4 days and deported, back to Paris, when they are free to attend Sunday school, tell their buddies of their Adventure and plan their next move.

Enjoying the story so far? It’s good we can’t carry guns on Int’l [International] trips, eh?

Upsetting is that we all have to learn of this, by happenstance. Why didn’t you and your last crew know of this? We took a delay yesterday while this FB detailed the entire event to my crew. Believe me, there were no disbelievers that the terrorist threat is real in my crew by the time we boarded.

I’m more than upset that this is still a secret! The FB is a man I’ve flown with often, trust completely and attended FFDO (Federal Flight Deck Officer) training with a year ago January. I hope I’ve presented his story accurately, but am certain that the basic details are very close.

Hm, why weren't the passangers asked for help? I know you're absolved by law if you're asked for help in subduing another belligerent passenger, and I'm sure there were at least a FEW people on board who were pissed off enough to knock the ever loving crap out of those asses. There still is a threat. As long as Islamic countries live in the third world, and continue to allow their extremist factions to literally interpret the koran, so as to cry jihad on the western world, there will always be a terrorist threat.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

USNS Zeus (T-ARC 7)

I have now reported to the USNS Zeus (T-ARC 7), currently in Guam. Here's some publicly available information on the ship (following my own precedent).

USNS Zeus is MSC's only Cable Repair Ship and is part of the 23 ships in Military Sealift Command's Special Mission Ships Program.
• Length:
513 feet
• Beam:
73 feet
• Draft:
26 feet
• Displacement:
14,934 long tons
• Speed:
15.0 knots
• Organization:
Military Sealift Fleet Support Command
• Civilian:
54 crew
• Military:
27 military/sponsor personnel
• Owner/Operator:
Government-owned, Government-operated