Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Brit Subs Sharing Parts

Disturbing report from the Sunday Mirror in London today. It seems that the Royal Navy has run low on spare parts for their nuclear subs, and the subsequent need to resort to cannibalization has turned about half their boats into "parts shops" for the other half.

"Cash-strapped Royal Navy bosses cannot afford to replace parts, so submarine captains at HM Naval Base Clyde are having to "borrow" vital equipment from other vessels before going to sea. "This means that only two of Faslane's four nuclear subs are operational at one time - with the others stuck in dry dock.
"It affects our fleet of four Vanguard submarines - HMS Victorious, Vigilant, Vengeance and Vanguard - the "cornerstone" of Britain's nuclear deterrent. The subs, which carry Trident II D5 missiles, also share sonar, air purification and escape equipment.
"Ministry of Defence bosses last night said cannibalisation of subs - called Storob - was a cost-effective way of running the fleet after cutbacks meant pounds 310million was slashed off the Navy's maintenance budget."

The problem with cannibalization is that sensitive equipment, like perscopes, run the risk of breaking each time they're removed or re-installed. That's why the U.S. fleet tries to avoid the practice as much as possible; sometimes you have to do it, but each request has to get pretty high up the chain of command to get approved. Hopefully the Brits will be able to spring some money loose for their subs.

(Intel Source: The Sub Report)


Anonymous rgardner said...

At the risk of the pot calling the kettle black, the USA saw the exact same thing in the late 80s-early 90s with the (San Diego based) 594s and the (all bases) 637s. If you went into upkeep, you were a target for having half your working parts removed.

8/29/2005 1:53 AM

Anonymous rebootinit said...

Naw, it hasn't changed now either. Can'abs are a regular thing now to put a boat to see....none of that has changed...

8/29/2005 7:03 AM

Blogger Bubblehead said...

I was on both the providing and receiving ends on the Connecticut; I remember having us canab parts from the Carter, and laughing. Imagine my surprise when I then got the orders to the Carter myself.

8/29/2005 7:19 AM

Anonymous Bernie said...

The Brits are "Yesterdays Empire" still trying to act like they are a major player. As the land war in mespotamia drags on, there will be less money for Naval forces. The U.S. Navy is scrapping its DD-963's up to 15 years early due to lack of operating funds. many of the 688's are being scrapped up to 15 years early too. Until the need for a naval war arises, the land forces will be getting the lions share of funding.

8/29/2005 7:02 PM

Blogger PigBoatSailor said...


You are a one note song, man, and you keep playing it even when it doesn't fit.

688's being scrapped 15 years early? Is that why we are refueling so many, even though the cores were supposed to last the whole operating lifetime of the boat? Is that why we are fixing and refitting the San Fran, even though she hit a mountain? Oh, no wait, we are keeping them around longer than we expected, no shorter...

I can not fathom why you are so unreasoningly negative about anythin Navy-related. Did your Chief make you into his underway girlfirend?

8/30/2005 5:37 AM

Anonymous Bernie said...

Re fueling so many?
Better look at the roster!
As far as the San Fran is concerned, there has yet to be a determination as to what its fate is. Having been on 5 boats in 13 years, I am convinced that the only mission of SSN's is to field day and drill. So they are a waste of money.

8/30/2005 9:59 PM

Anonymous Bernie said...

P.S. I don't see the scrapping of boats that are nothing more than ORSE Inspection platforms as a bad thing. I see it as good news.

9/01/2005 6:20 PM

Blogger ayura said...

I think that the worst part of such a plan would be that, since they're not going to sea, the forward guys could field day the whole time. Cash Online Get Easy cash at your door step

8/17/2009 12:37 AM


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