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 Author  Topic: HIGGINS HELL CAT
Frank J Andruss Sr

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Frank J Andruss Sr   Send Email To Frank J Andruss Sr Posted on: May 15, 2012 - 9:03am
I was lucky to have donated another Pocket Notebook from CMDR. Allan Montgomery. Stationed for a while at the Shakedown Base in Florida, in going through the book, he did time trials using several boats, the Hellcat included. Not sure what everything means but here is one section, which by the way is written in his own hand.............

RPM 600 Dist. 0 Time 0
RPM 1450 Time 10
RPM 1800 Time 16
RPM 2250 Time 22
RPM 2550 Time 26
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
AVERAGE SPEED 48.25 KNOTS
180 degree turn at full speed 12 seconds
time to reverse course and accelerate R 34 seconds
to 2000 RPM from idling L 37 seconds
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Time to reverse course at full R- 25 seconds
speed to get back up to 2000 rpm L- 26 seconds

There are many more entries from the notebook comparing Higgins and Elco boats as well.

Time to accelerate from idling to 2000 rpm 19 seconds


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  Jerry Gilmartin

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Jerry Gilmartin   Send Email To Jerry Gilmartin Posted on: May 15, 2012 - 9:48am
Hi Frank,
Yes I think the Hellcat was awesome. It was fast and small and more maneuverable. I think it was too bad the USN decided not to use it. I think I remember reading somewhere that LT Bob Searles was involved in the project as well, and he really thought highly of the boats performance down in Miami. I think there is more info about it in the "Admin History of PT Boats" book that Dick collated electronically last year wasn't there? Jerry

Jerry Gilmartin

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Frank J Andruss Sr

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Frank J Andruss Sr   Send Email To Frank J Andruss Sr Posted on: May 15, 2012 - 12:35pm
Jerry

Nice boat but a bit too light for the role in which the boats had become adjusted to. I just think the notebook is so awesome to have, knowing that they wrote down these things as they happened. I could just see Montgomery writing this down as he rode the boats during these time trials. You gotta love it.........


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Randy Finfrock

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Randy Finfrock   Send Email To Randy Finfrock Posted on: May 16, 2012 - 5:30pm
Hi Frank, that is a great piece of PT history. Don't know if this is similar to what they did in Miami Shakedown, but here is some info I had found out about Higgins/NOLA. My father-in-law was on the Pre-Commissioning Detail there (Jun 1943-Nov 1943) after returning from Tulagi. Source: www.ClarionHerald.org

"Nautical Reminder of the Past". New Orleans PT Boats Production & Testing at Lake Pontchartrain. By BUDDY STALL

To the east and west of the old Pontchartrain Beach area on Lakeshore Boulevard, you will find two 30-foot tall, faded red and white steel poles. One pole stands approximately 150 feet in front of the other. One pole has a square on top, and the other one has a circle.
These poles were bright red and white in color when installed in the early 1940s. They were erected for the purpose of clocking the speed of PT-boats built in New Orleans by Higgins Ship Building and Higgins Marine.

Once construction of the PT-boats was completed, the vessels were loaded onto trailer truck and taken to the Industrial Canal plant where they were outfitted for the Navy. After they were filled with fuel and readied for testing in Lake Pontchartrain, the tests were conducted by timing the vessel between the two pairs of poles, which were set one nautical mile apart.

After 50 years, the poles, although dull in color and rusty, are still there in case those pleasure boats who want to test their speeds can do so between the one-mile nautical markings left from WWII.


Randy Finfrock

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Frank J Andruss Sr

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Frank J Andruss Sr   Send Email To Frank J Andruss Sr Posted on: May 16, 2012 - 6:07pm
Randy

I really enjoy this type of History, so thanks for sharing it with us on the message board. I wonder if we could get someone to take a photograph or two of these poles. There is much more trials and documentation in the notebook I have, I just have not had the time to write it down here. I might when I get some free time.


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  Jerry Gilmartin

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Jerry Gilmartin   Send Email To Jerry Gilmartin Posted on: May 16, 2012 - 8:47pm
This is a good picture of the Higgins Hellcat really moving. Did you say 48 knots? Thats a pretty good clip! Jerry



Jerry Gilmartin

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Frank J Andruss Sr

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Frank J Andruss Sr   Send Email To Frank J Andruss Sr Posted on: May 17, 2012 - 1:31am
Your not kidding Jerry, that's something like 56 MPH, which is really moving across the water. When you consider this is 1940's technology those engineers really knew what they were doing, Guys like Irwin Chase, and Glenville Tremaine, were really ahead of their time.


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TED WALTHER

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of TED WALTHER   Send Email To TED WALTHER Posted on: May 17, 2012 - 10:04am
Guys;
There was a guy, who made a model of one a few years ago and posted photos last year. It looks pretty good, and its in a nice camoflage scheme.
Website: http://craigsmodelboats.wordpress.com/2011/05/20/higgins-hellcat-pt-boat-part-1/

Take care,
TED


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alross2

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of alross2   Send Email To alross2 Posted on: May 17, 2012 - 11:04am
It's not even close....

Al


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Bob

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Bob  Posted on: May 17, 2012 - 12:31pm
Here is the plaque that was on the boat.

Pretty cool!!!

Bob

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