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 Author  Topic: PT Boat MYSTERY! Need help identifying possible PT boat parts
  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: Sep 17, 2018 - 9:18pm
Photos posted below

Hello Forum Members,
We at PT658 got an email from a gentleman in Australia Greg Young who has come across some parts that he suspects were from a PT Boat. Read this email and see what I mean.


To: 'Ron Taylor'

Sent: Sunday, September 16, 2018 8:52 PM

Subject: RE: PT241 Fuel Tank and wheel


Hi Ron, (PT658 President)

Thanks for your follow-up I sent a few photos of the tank plus one of the wheel. The tank has "3513" and "PT" chisel stamped onto the tank and then below that the characters "Set 241" engraved in block lettering. The 241 markings are also painted on with old white paint. The wheel has no markings but may be able to be identified by shape etc.

The (steel) wheel may have numbers or markings under the surface marine growth it was recovered from a shallow wreck about 10 years ago in Roviana Lagoon (New Georgia) from what was known to be a PT boat workshop of some kind so it had been under water for 60+ years.

The fuel tank when I first saw it about 10 years ago was in service as a mobile water delivery tank in the town of Gizo (Western Province) so I dont know when or where it was first recovered but it does have fairly clear ID numbers especially the 241 at the very bottom of the close-up photo. The photos are not so clear but I can re-do them if necessary as I still travel to & from the Solomons fairly frequently the tank is now serving as a stationary water tank at my mother-in-laws house in Marovo Lagoon thats a pretty flash water tank if I say so myself looks like it will never wear out.

Thanks again for your offer of assistance & I look forward to whatever information you can send.

Regards,

Greg

So in response to Greg, here is what I (Jerry) think.
There has been some discussion as to how could a Higgins Boat, PT241, have a Elco Wing Tank in it? Also the wheel is definitely not an Elco wheel, it may belong to an LCVP maybe? The Close up photo of the stamps on the Gas Tank show the word "Set" before 241. I was thinking the tanks were made in matched sets (eg.. Set 239, set 240 set 241...) and were all sitting in some warehouse for use in replacing damaged tanks from the boats. I hope that maybe Charlie, David Frank, or Ted or one of you Elco wonks can answer this question!?!?? Didn't the Elco tanks get subcontracted out to some other company and there are records from that company? Maybe, when they closed the PT Repair Base in the Solomons they left behind some tanks? Does anybody have any ideas about this? And is that tank definitely an Elco Wing Tank? That has not been established either. Please view the photos and let me know what you think!

Thanks for your help.

jWyRk.jpg

jW5wA.jpg

jWNKo.jpg


Jerry


Jerry Gilmartin
PT658 Crewman
Portland OR

Total Posts: 1475 | Joined: Oct 8, 2006 - 11:16pm | IP Logged

  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: Sep 18, 2018 - 8:50am
Jerry;
Yes that is an ELCO wing tank. You may have something with the 241 being a set number, it makes sense. If the 3513 means anything it is the ELCO Hull Number for PT 382 "Bayonne Bitch" RON 28 was in this area prior to being transferred to the Southwest Pacific(Mios Woendi), then Philippines in October 1944. The ELCO part number for this class PT (still falls under 103 for this part) is: A 17307 This number might be a smaller stamping if it is on the tank.
jWfjn.jpg

Your thoughts on the wheel being from a LCVP is spot on, it is the correct shape and due to the area it was found, Roviana Lagoon ,New Georgia just adds more to this identification.

Take care,
TED


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Jeff D

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Jeff D   Send Email To Jeff D Posted on: Sep 18, 2018 - 1:21pm
Elco marked certain parts with either a hull number or PT number, at least on their 80' boats. You can see P(T) 621 on the turret .50 mount and torpedo rack in this image:

jWHda.jpg

This image shows the houses marked with the hull number for PT 339 with the 335 in the background:

jWK8f.jpg

An Elco gasket drawing shows the round top opening bolt spacing to be 5 1/4 between opposite bolts so that's something Greg can check. Dick's Elco 80 parts catalog shows the brackets at the top seem to match the ones seen in Greg's image. I think it's an aluminum wing tank from PT 382, aluminum would be correct according to the application list:

jWuNZ.jpg

Navsource says this about PT 382:

Transferred to the State Department, Foreign Liquidation Commission in May 1946 and sold
Fate unknown.




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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: Sep 18, 2018 - 3:13pm
Thanks you guys! Do you think it was likely the original Aluminum tank set was removed and replaced with the self sealing rubber tank set? If so, that would explain how it was just sitting around available for disposal.

One more thing, is there any evidence of my SET number theory? Were the aluminum tanks indeed built by a subcontractor, and delivered to the factory, where they were probably stored for use in a nearby storage room? If so, when Joe the factory worker went to get some gas tanks to install into PT -nnn then he would make sure they all were from the same SET number? I am just guessing here so please help me out if you know any details about this.
Jerry

Jerry Gilmartin
PT658 Crewman
Portland OR

Total Posts: 1475 | Joined: Oct 8, 2006 - 11:16pm | IP Logged

Will Day

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message   Posted on: Sep 18, 2018 - 3:36pm
Great stuff, guys!

Will

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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: Sep 18, 2018 - 5:03pm
Jerry;
I seem to remember that Frank posted about 2 months ago a post war letter from Irwin Chase, I am not sure but it might have mentioned a subcontractor. I know it mentioned a guy in Connecticut that bought several surplus, as a possible source for fuel tanks for unfinished auctioned PT Hulls. ELCO had already liquidated their supply. I think its Andy's PT 761 class Facebook page.

As for replacing the 3513 wing tank this is why it is where it is. The rubberized tank replacement(Part # A 19899) is a possibility, but Dicks parts book suggests it would be standard install on PT 731 class(1944), so they might have received a shipment and replaced the whole squadrons tanks. If so, that could mean there are still 35 aluminum tanks buried or thrown in the bush somewhere. A simpler explanation maybe the needed to clean it out, and the proper equipment wasn't at hand and due to op tempo, it was removed and replaced with a spare. Later when they moved back down to Espiritu Santo for shipment to Okinawa, the tank was just discarded. Like everything else was.
Either way, that is one awesome fresh water tank!
Take care,
TED


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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: Sep 18, 2018 - 7:32pm
Good points Ted, I also remember seeing a bunch of plans for the replacement of Gas tanks with Rubber Ones for Squadron 22 I think. Higgins Boats in the Med. I think the Louisiana Digital Library has some blueprints that discuss back fitting the newer tanks to replace the aluminum tanks, but those were Higgins boats in the Med and this was an Elco boat in the Pacific so I do not know if it was done for the Elco's as well? I have a suspicion that it was a program that applied to all of the boats on an availability basis.
Jerry

Jerry Gilmartin
PT658 Crewman
Portland OR

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Jeff D

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Jeff D   Send Email To Jeff D Posted on: Sep 18, 2018 - 11:12pm
There's several Elco drawings with titles Field installation of self-sealing fuel tanks (PT 103 Class) and Field installation of fuel tanks with fill & suction tubes. Instructions indicate that the tanks are a different design and they detail changes needed to be made to the boat.



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