PT Boat Forum


Moderated by: Dick, Jeff D

The PT Boat Forum ª PT Boats of WWII ª  PT Boats - General

Prev Page | Next Page | Page: 4 of 8

Back to Topic Index Page 133 | Replies: 70 | Pages: 1 2 3 [4] 5 6 7 8

 Author  Topic: PT-109 information
John V

Full Member
  

    
Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of John V  Posted on: Sep 6, 2011 - 3:01am
Thanks Dick. All kidding aside this is one of the most informative boards I have ever seen. Already I have enough information needed to finish my OOB project and plans for a more complex build. Not only is the information here great but your LINKS to other helpful sights amazes me. Thanks again and sorry if I in any way opened up any "old wounds".---John


Total Posts: 45 | Joined: Sep 4, 2011 - 7:19am | IP Logged

TED WALTHER

TOP BOSS
  

    
Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of TED WALTHER   Send Email To TED WALTHER Posted on: Sep 6, 2011 - 8:27am
David;
Yes Mr. Iles is still with us, I am working on sending him a list of his crew on PT 48, which I think went with him to PT 125 after RON 6 "loaned" the 125 to RON 3, to replace 48 which was damaged and sent back to Tulagi.
Take care,
TED


Total Posts: 2932 | Joined: Oct 16, 2006 - 7:42am | IP Logged

Allan

MASTER
  

    
Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Allan   Send Email To Allan Posted on: Sep 6, 2011 - 4:42pm
All Hands:

I found T Garth's reference to the boats moving under cover of darkness in the war zone and while using their navigational lights to be a bit confounding and then found Frank's response to be reasonable, but....... then I remembered a document that I discovered while doing my research for my book on Div 17 and T.G. 50.1. I have located it and I think it "enlightening", to say the least.

T. Garth: HEADS UP !!

In an Operational Order issued to Rons 32 and 37 by Lt. C.W. Faulkner (Ron 37) on 19 Dec 1944 he states that, while underway and relocating from Tulagi to Treasury:

"4. Use navigation and stern lights when underway until daylight."

Later in that document he orders that all guns "should be manned and ready". It seems to me that at least the sixteen boats moving within this group were using their lights (okay, not their mast lights) while in enemy waters. A "thinking man" would find this odd, perhaps nonsensical. But there it is- an order from a well respected and seasoned Ron commander.

I just wanted to put this out there because I have seen much supposition and I have come to have a great appreciation and an unshakable preference for factual and verifiable information. That is what is going to make my book interesting- and that is what is taking me so d----d long to get her done. Four hundred pages of facts, and counting!

Please, please accept this in the spirit in which it is intended. It's all good!

Allan


Total Posts: 161 | Joined: Sep 18, 2007 - 7:07pm | IP Logged

David Waples

TOP BOSS
  

    
Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of David Waples  Posted on: Sep 6, 2011 - 7:30pm
Hi Ted,
That is great news. I hope he's doing well.

Alan, that is excellent information. Just goes to show that you can never assume anything. Red on port, green on starboard, and white on the flagstaff (at least for earlier Elco's). It makes sense, otherwise on very dark nights these boats could be banging into each other.

Dave

David Waples

Total Posts: 1637 | Joined: Jan 2, 2007 - 9:55pm | IP Logged

29navy

TOP BOSS
  

    
Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of 29navy  Posted on: Sep 7, 2011 - 4:50am
But maybe the key here is the phrase: "while underway and relocating from Tulagi to Treasury:"

If they were relocating and not "on patrol", not expecting enemy action, but still having the guns manned in case something pops up, that would make some sense.

Actually on patrol looking for the enemy and action, then, no, they wouldn't use lights since stealth was the only thing they had going for them.




Charlie

Total Posts: 535 | Joined: Dec 28, 2006 - 3:02pm | IP Logged

Jeff D

Moderator
  

    
Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Jeff D   Send Email To Jeff D Posted on: Sep 7, 2011 - 10:08am
Allan, thanks for sharing your research. Those three lights would make the boat visibly lit all the way around. One interesting bit is that the navigation light switch on the bridge control panel was a dimmer switch.

The mast light was also known as the anchor light which seems to provide a clue into how it was used. It would be a good overall light while anchored / docked in a secure area. It doesn't make sense to use it during any night operation since it probably killed night vision beyond its limited lighting range. The same maybe with the bow light. All this is guesswork of course, I hope you dig up more reports that explain official light doctrine Allan.

I agree Charlie. Any lights on at night would be highly visible and make this unlikely:
http://www.hnsa.org/doc/pt/doctrine/part1.htm#pg11

CHAPTER 4. ATTACK DOCTRINE

Night and Low Visibility Torpedo Attacks

1401. The effectiveness of an attack under these conditions depends primarily on approaching the enemy to close ranges undetected, where a reasonably accurate estimate may be made of his rate and direction of movement.

I hope some veterans can (cough)shed some light(cough) on us regarding use of the various lights. It's one thing to know official doctrine, and another to know if experience taught you guys another way.



Total Posts: 2044 | Joined: Dec 21, 2006 - 1:30am | IP Logged

CJ Willis

TOP BOSS
  

    
Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of CJ Willis  Posted on: Sep 7, 2011 - 4:31pm
The date of the operational order by Mr. Faulkner was dated Dec. 19, 1944. I can tell you that things were pretty secure from Tulagi to Treasury at that time. There had not been any enemy activity in that area of the Solomons for probably 6 months or more. If they had been running up around Rabaul (New Britain and New Ireland) at that time they sure would not have been running with any lights .Enemy float planes were still operating out of Rabaul.

C. J. Willis

Total Posts: 464 | Joined: Nov 5, 2006 - 5:02pm | IP Logged

Allan

MASTER
  

    
Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Allan   Send Email To Allan Posted on: Sep 7, 2011 - 7:24pm
All good points. But lets review: the light at the top of the mast was an anchor light. Anchor lights are standard around the world- a 360 degree light, clear in color, and used to denote that the vessel is at anchor. This is a part of small boat handling doctrine. And when a small boat is at anchor, the anchor light is the only light to be shown.

Now, I think a certain point has been missed here. In my opinion, the mere fact that Mr. Faulkner had to tell the CO's to use the navigational lights indicates that it was an unusual move to take. For sure, he weighed the safety of moving the boats with and without lighting them during the relocation against what appears to have been a limited chance of encountering enemy activity during that move (taking CJ's comments into account here).

I think the original discussing surrounded potential use of navigational lights under some, perhaps unusual, circumstances while operating in the combat area. In light of Mr. Faulkner's order, to say that it was never done would not be accurate, in my view, as evidenced by Mr. Faulkner's order. It really is just that simple.

It pleases me to be able to produce a document that changes a mere supposition to a fact.

Allan


Total Posts: 161 | Joined: Sep 18, 2007 - 7:07pm | IP Logged

  Jerry Gilmartin

TOP BOSS
  

    
Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Jerry Gilmartin   Send Email To Jerry Gilmartin Posted on: Sep 7, 2011 - 11:00pm
Hey Allen,
Good points to be sure, However, it appears that your decision hinges on your defintion of "Combat Areas" From Tulagi to Treasury at the time of Faulkners order in December 1944 was pretty much a backwater, very far removed from actual "Combat Areas".Just as CJ said. Remember, we invaded the Phillipines in Fall of 1944? I think there was about as much enemy activity between Tulagi and Treasury as there was in the Hawaiian Sea Frontier at that time in the war. This would be far different from the waters off Guadalcanal and Rendova in April 1943 when JFK reported aboard PT109. So having an Anchor Light on in a true Combat Area in my opinion was indeed "Never done". Faulkners order is not about a Combat Area, and therefore does not apply to this situation. I love the discussions we have on this board! And Garth is not crazy. Enjoy! Jerry

Jerry Gilmartin

Total Posts: 1290 | Joined: Oct 8, 2006 - 11:16pm | IP Logged

Will Day

TOP BOSS
  

    
Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Will Day   Send Email To Will Day Posted on: Sep 7, 2011 - 11:46pm
Right on, Jerry. I know I wouldn't have had running lights on if I had been patroling the Slot in '43!

Will

Total Posts: 1954 | Joined: Oct 8, 2006 - 4:19pm | IP Logged

Prev Page | Next Page

Pages: 1 2 3 [4] 5 6 7 8


Lock Topic

 

Forum Legend

New Member

Reply to topic

More than 25 posts | Full Member

Reply to topic with quoted message

More than 50 posts | Advanced Member

Edit Message

More than 150 posts | MASTER

View profile

More than 300 posts | TOP BOSS

Email member