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 Author  Topic: Higgins cut-away drawing update
Dick

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Dick   Send Email To Dick Posted on: Aug 26, 2008 - 1:39pm
I though I'd share my progress on the Higgins cut-a-way project.

I started with the Higgins 1942 Series PT 71-94 mainly due to the available drawings that I could purchase through HQ. This series had more detailed drawings available, albeit meager at that, then the other Higgins series. However as I dove into the 18 or so purchased Higgins blueprints, I noticed descrepcies. Some of those descrpencies were noted in an earlier post. Drawings werent matching or corresponding with each other, even though they were all labeled PT 71-94 and dated July and August 1942.

I went to The LOUISiana Digital Library on the internet as suggested by Jerry Gilmartin and researched for a couple of days the hundreds of Higgins drawings with no conclusions to the issue. They unfortunately didnt have the drawings that I needed to perform a comparison. Most all of the drawings are very specific details of individual components for a myriad of boats and/or series. This information is essential for those who are trying to restore or repair an actual PT and need detailed information on a wiring harness, as a typical example. I was really hoping they would have had bulkheads, arrangements, frames, profiles, etc. for all the various series. However, some of this information was available for PTs 5, 6 and 564 although very interesting.

My next cause of action was to proceed with a Google & Yahoo Image search and again spent countless hours sorting through photos that had results from all searches with one form or another of the words and/or phrases using basic keywords such as Higgins, PT, Boat, so on, so on for searching input. Im sure most of you have done similar search only to find a lot Dodge PT cruisers, some ones initials PT, Point Grove, pt. Hume, or even a porn queen called Higgins and all sorts of birthdays, dogs, cats and the whole menagerie that comes from a typical search. However, I did hit on some images from Gene Kirklands PT-King website on Yahoo/Geocities. His site shows several Higgins factor photos of PT boats in various forms of construction (Thanks Gene for these Archive images you discovered). Low and behold there are several shots showing boats PT-71 through PT-86 and none of those boats reflect the configuration shown on the Higgins blueprints. However they do represent some of the descrepencies Ive been running into. The main difference center around the super structure of the boats. These boats (71-86) are very similar o the early experimental boats PT5 and PT6. The super structure is much longer then the standard or even later model Higgins we all know. The structure is more like the early 5 & 6 boats with the long cabin side. But unlike those early boats where the gun turrets were mid structure these (71-86) the gun tubs at the very aft of the structure. There is even a separate bridge area with a high rear wall with a rear oval access doorway for access to the aft deck of the boat.

Its very interesting and hopefully Gene will let me post a couple of the images from his site.

Below is a current image of my Higgins cut-a-way drawing progress. With the finding of the actual configuration issue this boat will be illustrated as a boat in the range of PT-87 through PT-91. Later a version for other later war configurations will be done s well as the interesting 71-86 boats. Maybe even the Hellcat PT-564 a suggestion from Victor Chun. To create the drawings as shown below, there are some basic drawings required. Typically three dimensional drawings need a Top View, Side View and Front View to accurately illustrate an item. With the boats I typically require Deck and Side views, Internal Longitudal Cross Sections of inboard and out board profiles, Arrangement Plan Views, Cross Sections of typical Frames and also the very important Cross Sections of both side of each water tight bulkheads. These drawing usually give me enough information as to make a very fair representation of the boat.

Richard J. Washichek . . . . .








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Will Day

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Will Day   Send Email To Will Day Posted on: Aug 27, 2008 - 8:29am
GREAT so far, Dick! I can't wait....

Will

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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: Aug 27, 2008 - 8:49am
As always Dick, you have done an outstanding Job..............


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PeterTareBuilder

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of PeterTareBuilder  Posted on: Aug 27, 2008 - 11:09am
Hi there Dick.

Fantastic drawings. However I think I spotted an error. Shouldn't the bulkhead hide part of the 5th and 6th frames? As drawn it looks like those two frames start behind that bulkhead and then go in front of it.

I'll be wanting to get one of those calendars when it comes out.

BTW, did you ever do a calendar prior to the 80' Elco one?

Cheers from PeterTareBuilder

"Give me a faster PT boat for I'd like to get out of harm's way!"

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Dick

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Dick   Send Email To Dick Posted on: Aug 27, 2008 - 11:20pm
Thanks Peter, will write more tomorrow. Just now online and its pretty darn late.

Dick Washichek . . .

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Dick

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Dick   Send Email To Dick Posted on: Aug 29, 2008 - 12:59pm

I forgot to thank Jerry Gilmartin for the " PT631 Higgins Builders Photos " he had uploaded to our photo site PhotoBucket. The details in the photographs have played a great deal informing me of items that are not typically shown on drawings or items that were not clear. Also the photos posted on 658 site from him and his 658 buddies. And of course there are always those moments when you wish the camera was turn a little more that way or this way, or why there arent more photos.

I've included a drawing below of the Officers Head, which is squeezed between two huge 800 gallon fuel tanks. Coming later today or tonight will be the Engine Room.

All the best,
Dick . . .







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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: Aug 29, 2008 - 2:46pm
Dick

No wonder they hardley used the head inside the boat. One well placed shell and BAM!!! You and your throne would be dancing off the clouds.


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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: Aug 29, 2008 - 7:47pm
Hey Dick,
I had a chance to go inside our fuel tanks and the bottom is not flat, like one may infer from your drawing of it above. This may be a little too much detail to include in your drawing, but just in case here it goes....the fuel tank bottom is shaped like a tray, with the center well about 1 foot square and slanting sides on all four sides. They slant down at about a 20 degree angle. On our boat it is constructed of multiple layers of self-sealing heavy duty rubber suspended/stretched over from a framework of aluminum ribs. (Otherwise the rubber would just be a bladder!) On earlier Higgins boats, these tanks were made just of aluminum, but I think the shape of the bottom was the same. I know that Higgins had blueprints showing how to backfit and remove the aluminum tanks and install the rubber ones during the war. Anyway, on both types of tanks, there is an 18"x24" inspection manway cover on the inboard side of each tank (in the officers head) behind a wooden access cover. The manway cover is a rubber covered rectangular aluminum plate with numerous bolts holding it closed and then they are safety wired after screwing them in. The top of the fuel tank has an opening for the suction pipe, a fill pipe, and a vent and overflow pipe. The fill pipe has a pipe cap over it and it is hidden below a flush-deck screw bronze access plate just below the 50 cal gun tubs. The overflow pipe overflows out of the side of the boat through a hull fitting.

By the way, Dick, I think your drawing shows the mirror on the wrong bulkhead!

If it were placed where you have it in your picture, it would block the access to the manhole/inspection cover to the fuel tank! I think it should be placed on the aft bulkhead that it shares with the engineroom instead. (This location is shown in those PT631 photos also, by the way.) Additionally, the mirror would be more useful when shaving if it was placed directly over the sink and not off to the side.

OK so there you are, I hope this info may be of some use. Take care, Dick and I definitely want to get some of these fantastic drawings/ calendars when they are availble from you! Please let me know when they are available! Jerry

Jerry Gilmartin

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Dick

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Dick   Send Email To Dick Posted on: Sep 1, 2008 - 12:58am
Hi Jerry . . .

Its taken much of Saturday and Sunday researching Higgins engineering drawings only to conclude the illustrations are correct for the series of Higgins boats Im currently drawing (PTs class 71, class 197 & class 265). According to the drawings self-sealing fuel tanks werent installed into Higgins boats until nearly the end of PT class 450 with PT 483 receiving the first in August of 1944 and these first self-sealing tanks were retrofit kits. The retrofit tank kits along with installation install drawings and modification instructions were also made available for all earlier class boats in August 1944. Prior to the self sealing tanks, armor plates were made as an exterior bolt-on item starting with PT 308-313 & 456-461. The kit consisted of four sets of plates, two sets on each side and bolted onto the exterior of the hull with 3 carriage bolts at Frames 22 thru 34 (Officers Qrt., Fuel Tank Area, & partial Engine Room) and Frames 42 thru 55 (Partial Engine Room, Aft Fuel Tank Area & Partial Storage Area (or Aft Crews Qrt)). I cant imagine bolting on plates to the exterior hull. There was one install note that read: All bolts thru sides of hull to be wound with a short piece of lamp wick or cotton soaked in caulkine compound, I guess this keeps the 738 carriage bolts from leaking water thru the hulls side walls. The plates were mounted between the Guard Rail and Spray Rail/Chine and just above the muffler.

Starting with Higgins PT Class 625, Self Sealing Fuel Tanks became common and designed into the boats construction (including Access panels in the two Heads). Fuel Tanks prior to Class 450 were solid welded structures made of ALCLAD 72S (aluminum bonded steel).

The Medicine cabinet position seems to change from the port to starboard walls depending on the class of Higgins boats, with the later Class 625 position changing to the Engine Room Bulkhead walls.

Thanks for the info it caused me to dig a little deeper and of course develop a better understanding of the Higgins boats and also for the LDL site, it was invaluable for this research.

I did make a few changes to the drawing based on the info I dug-up and attached the revised image to this reply.

Ill keep you posted when ( ???? ) they are hot-off-the-press!

Richard J. Washichek . . . .









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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 1, 2008 - 7:37am
Wow!
That is cool Dick! You rock! Jerry

Jerry Gilmartin

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