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.)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Submarine Action Picture

Good "action" shots of submarines are fairly rare; usually, the best you'll see is a submarine pulling into port -- like this photo of PCU New Hampshire (SSN 778) pulling into PNSY ahead of her commissioning this weekend.

That's why I like this shot of USS Hampton (SSN 767), taken last week as she submerged following her departure on WestPac:

Looks like a good dive; the front two sets of MBT vents are already underwater. Do any of you have any stories about diving evolutions that didn't work out so well?


Blogger a_former_elt_2jv said...

Fire in the Trim Pump comes to mind. Hehehehe

10/22/2008 2:34 PM

Anonymous Tom said...

Can you imagine the Navy left us ashore AGAIN!

Soup bones.


10/22/2008 3:04 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

CO training the scope aft during an unusually large down angle and counting 1, 2, 3, 4, .... they're all there dive, you can take us down now.

10/22/2008 3:48 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Leaving Groton after a drydock availability and not being able to stay down with anything less than 5 knots. Less than 5 knots and we'd pop up like a cork even with all the trim tanks flooded.

We were going into a refit period and the yard had just done the precision draft measurements and we did the long form comp after. Cycled vents, rechecked the comp and generally felt stupid until the Chop said "I offloaded a bunch of stuff, do you need to know how much it weighed?"

10/22/2008 4:03 PM

Blogger Oz said...

On more than one surfacing attempt my aux aft didn't line up properly, causing the blower to trip off on backpressure. Oops!

10/22/2008 6:03 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had noted on the checklist that the vents in AMSUL were locked. Next thing I hear is "dive dive". It was years ago but I recall that it was the 7mc mike that I grabbed to report the problem to conn.

Needless to say there was a quick "secure from dive" issued and a sheepish looking officer showed up with the keys.


10/22/2008 6:06 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hearing "Secure snorkeling" as we pass 300 feet in an uncontrolled descent.

10/22/2008 6:26 PM

Blogger -Chris- said...

The diesel should have already secured itself by that point, or else you'd have a serious headache.

We never had any really bad ones, but I do remember one time as scope operator on a dive seeing the screw. Then hearing the guy at the Perivis terminal fooling around... A few minutes later the CO's like "hey, RCA, delete that picture!"

10/22/2008 7:38 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

637 boat after more than 30 days in home port. Ship's Diving Officer wanted to make the first dive. With OOD permission he relieved my friend Mark the DOOW. I was COW/BCP. We submerged the ship, and went down, and down, and down, and pumped from DC and AUX, many thousands. I stopped reporting hundreds out and went to reporting thousands out. After a while I heard Marks saying "I relieve you, sir." in his ever pleasant voice. He obtained ship control and ordered a 2/3 bell. Right quick we leveled out at XX90 feet.

So much for commissioned Diving Officers of the Watch.

YNC(SS), Retired

10/22/2008 8:22 PM

Blogger Chap said...

First underway on a 594 tough boat--first boat in which I qualified anything. During a transit to dive the crew noted a rather non-small amount of leakage from an MBT blow valve while on the surface. CO wisely decided that checking leak rate on that at test depth might not be a good thing. I was but a mid--another mid from some other place got a leetle apprehensive after that...

Yeah, happened before I got to the boat. Not my story, but heard it enough times--event was in the recent memory of the senior JOs. Something along the lines of 'COW opened the forward vents while surface transiting at speed'. I hear they got to about 120' before returning to the surface.

The OOD got out of the Nav, funnily enough.

Had a couple of odd dives on the next boat. We were pretty hearty, though, with dives who relished impromptu zero speed trim checks and living through fall Kuroshio current changes at PD, where ballast changes by enormous amounts in very small distances.

The 688 dudes with the hover box have to have some stories, though. Not much to play with there in terms of keeping ship safe when all about you is losing it.

10/22/2008 9:22 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Our Trident SSBN had just completed a port visit to Apra Harbor in the late 1980s. The Bangor, Washington based sub had been sent to Guam to be ‘seen’ someplace other than normal. The sub tender USS Proteus home-ported there had to move out into the middle of the harbor and anchor, since a Trident’s draft was too deep to be tied up at or near the pier. We stayed tied up next to the tender for several days riding the swells in the harbor and in general enjoying our visit to a location a Trident normally wouldn’t go. When we finally departed Guam we headed east on the surface. We then stopped and had another non-normal evolution for a Trident - a swim call over the Marianas Trench with Guam still in view on the horizon. Finally we got underway again and prepared to dive. Our new Engineer had to conduct a re-qual dive as OOD. The order was given to submerge the ship and instead of getting a down angle we immediately developed a rapidly steepening up angle. Something wasn’t right and the dive was secured and the ballast tanks were blown. Back in a neutral condition on the surface we determined that the forward vents had not operated properly. I can’t remember if the lock had not been removed or if hydraulics or power had been shut or turned off. But in any case it was a disturbing evolution that turned out to not cause any damage, except to our nerves. – SCPO(SS) Ret.

10/22/2008 9:54 PM

Blogger montigrande said...

As a Nuke I never had the pleasure to be in the control room for many dives, however; I did get to observe the polar opposite on a 688 boat. I was in Control reviewing the CO’s night orders prior to relieving as the evening EWS. We were spying on the “oranges” at PD (the port everglades approach) for TRE workup. The contact coordinator and OOD were recording ship data for “the package” and an unqualified JO (my RCA) was on the other scope. I heard him give the contact master number and the name “S. MO. King” with the bearing and scope setting. The contact coordinator on the other scope made a derisive comment and whipped the scope around. His report was something like “that’s NO SMOKING, it’s a tanker and he’s CLOSE, OOD recommend emergency deep!!” There’s nothing like a little ahead full to shake up the mealtime and wake up the throttleman.

10/22/2008 10:33 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

After surfacing and before manning the bridge on a 688i - CO decided to see what would happen if he rang up all back full. What happened was that ship control was totally lost. We made it bassackwards down to 150' with an up angle before regaining control.

Dependent's Cruise, 688 - MBT Vent valves for one of the fwd MBTs stuck shut and we began to dive with an up angle. Made it to about 8 up before the AOW managed to get them open. My wife never went near the boat again.

10/23/2008 5:00 AM

Blogger Rubber Ducky said...

1961, Groton, USS CAVALLA (SS-244). Long stay in port and lots of ice in the superstructure. Underway to NARRABAY inner op areas. On trim dive, could not get the boat under. Flooded lots into AUX tanks, but no-go. Finally resurfaced to sort it out. Figured either ice buoyancy was keeping us up or ice was interfering with operation of main vent(s). After half hour, tried again. No hindrance from ice this time. Heavy as hell. Shallow op area. Did not bounce, but sure came close.

10/23/2008 7:43 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Transiting out of Pearl after picking up the TRE team, we do our initial dive. I'm the EWS, walking around the engineroom looking for the usual dive "anomolies" when I get aft of maneuvering and see a TRE team LT writing furiously in his wheelbook and the Bull in his red hat staring up at the ER LET lower hatch and the lower hatch pull cable wedged decisively between the hatch and the seating surface. The LET was rigged by...wait for it...THE SHIP'S DIVING OFFICER!!

10/23/2008 9:08 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

On Seawolf's (21) first trip to the arctic before PSA in '99 we were doing a fire drill (simulated under the ice) so we did a vertical surface. The drill was over and we were going to dive when the MBT vents would not open and we couldn't submerge. The vents couldn't be fixed so we spent a week or so transitting on the surface in the North Atlantic back to Groton. We should have got our Surface Warfare pin after that trip back home.

10/23/2008 11:01 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

USS Houston, doing a quick cruise for some VIPs...they let one of the VIPs submerge the ship as COW. He went to open the MBT vents, and instead of operating them, he swung at them. In his words, "Well, those switches aren't too stout".
I am back in the engineroom, as ERS, explaining how we go check the after vents on the "Dive, Dive", but it really isn't a big deal, since they rarely fail. After using the 4MC to tell the ship the after group hadn't opened, I tried very hard to pull my foot out of my mouth....

10/23/2008 6:25 PM

Blogger Pastor Ian said...

On the Alabama back in 1988 or so. The cover for MBT #6 was left on following maintenance. When we dove, it indicated open but we were hanging at about a 15 degree down angle. The conclusion was made that something was wrong. You think?

MMCM(SS) (Retired)

10/24/2008 10:50 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Post overhaul on a now decommissioned 688 -- had the conn, and was settling into the dive...stern first, and about a 10-15 degree up-bubble.

Hadn't seen this one before, so was a bit confused. My buddy the Weps (now a RADM) was kind enough to stop by and point out that the forward MBT vents were clearly stuck shut.

Cycled 'em a few times and got out of that one alright...just a bit red faced that I didn't pick up on the problem first.

10/24/2008 11:06 AM

Blogger domernuc said...

We were in the VLCC channel just outside the Straits of Malacca setting up for an anti-sub exercise with the Singapore Navy. The Singapore Corvettes had come to about 1 kyd on either side in a pre-ex "familiarization" prior to our dive. The OOD went through the checklist and gave the order to dive the ship. We heard "venting aft" and then "venting forward" from the OOD as the evolution proceded from flawless to an excessive down angle. The CO and I immediately suspected the stern planes putting on down angle prematurely, but it wasn't a watchstander. As the OOD started counting screw blades, we discovered the aft group had only partially opened creating the anticipated expulsion of air. It took about 7 minutes hanging out with our uncovered butt in the air 1000 yds from the Singapore Navy to blow the forward group and recover. About 20 minutes later we repeated the dive using a manual operator to "mechanically agitate" the vents past the rough spot. Those vents got worked multiple times over the rest of my tour, but as of the day I left they still had to be helped.

10/24/2008 2:46 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Was on the usta fish out of san diego in the early 90's and served with a couple of guys that were on the Houston when she went deep with VH-1 open and had to EMBT blow just to stop a rapid descent and then barely had enough head way to get to the surface... Surprised not to see any of those stories yet...

10/24/2008 10:33 PM

Anonymous MM1/SS (of the aft persuasion) said...

for the comment above me. The best chief I ever had came off the Houston after she did that. He used to tell us stories about seawater pouring from the Ventiation piping in the Engineroom. Scary stuff.

During my last Patrol aboard USS Kentucky (SSBN 737), our CO decided to run an improptu drill while diving.

The FWD Drill Coordinator felt an aft group Drill Monitor wasn't needed even though the Drill fault was a failed Aft Vent.

We attempted to dive. And at the 25 degree point we finally got the aft group open.

The 2 escort ships could clearly see the Engineroom LET and some say they saw the Missle Compartment LET as well.

I spent 6 yrs on that boat...and that was the 2nd time I thought I was going to die.

10/25/2008 1:44 AM

Blogger Submaster said...

ANON on the Houston,
Who are you? I was on there at the time. We were wrapping up the filming for the Hunt for Red October and were suppose to get some Hollywood VIP's, but only got some scrubs. The VIP at the BCP was the Mayor of Boise, ID. Those switches are required to be pulled out and then operated, he did not pull out (stop laughing), he just jammed them up. Forward group opened aft group did not. I was the planesman at the time.

10/27/2008 9:45 AM

Blogger Chief Torpedoman said...

...The VIP at the BCP was the Mayor of Boise, ID. Those switches are required to be pulled out and then operated, he did not pull out (stop laughing), he just jammed them up.

Seems a bit familiar. Wasn't using non qaulified guests to operate equipment a bit of what got the Greenville in trouble?

10/27/2008 11:21 AM

Anonymous Ross Kline said...


I was there that evening...when we flooded through the induction mast. as I recall, it occurred after a field day (about 1900 that evening)....

I remember laying in my rack in the 21 man, looking at a deck under 3 or 4 inches of water, hearing the electrical outlet under my rack pop and sizzle.

10/27/2008 1:29 PM

Blogger Submaster said...

This is Neil Nix...I was on watch when we had our flooding...I thought we might make it 3 section that day. Fortunately there was enough air left for the SECOND EMBT...that FTC who was standing watch should have been hung.

10/28/2008 5:36 AM

Anonymous geezernuke said...

Most of us who have experienced a 25 degree down angle have a habit of never filling our coffee cups over 2/3 full.

10/28/2008 12:36 PM

Anonymous Ross Kline said...

Hi, Neil.

I was in the bunky...I had the 12-18 that day.

Quote of the day...from Gary Azevedo -

"Another Field day shot to hell!"

10/30/2008 4:52 AM

Anonymous Olive said...

For my part one and all have to go through this.

9/24/2012 12:27 PM


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