View Full Version : Buckshot/cumudgeon..this Look Familar?
05-24-2005, 07:55 PM
Does this look familar?
05-25-2005, 02:57 PM
Joe, Could it be a portable firefighting/bilge pump, popularly known as a "handy billly?" As a true deckape I never had much to do with anything more complex than a paint scraper.
05-25-2005, 09:38 PM
.............I believe that's either a P250 or a P500. The theory behind them is that the gasoline engine is supposed to run a pump to fight fires or de-water compartments. I've never seen one run. I've seen many lengthly attempts to get one fired up, though.
05-26-2005, 07:02 AM
Looks like P500 ours always started on the second or third pull. USS Long Beach CG(N)-9
05-26-2005, 07:44 AM
Well fellows, it's a P-250, gasoline two stroke fire fighting and damage control pump. I went to bootcamp at Great Lake and firefighting training was intensive. We trained with the P-250 so I actually got to use it. Buckshot where did you do your boot, San Diego?
05-26-2005, 01:30 PM
...........I went to boot camp in sunny San Diego. We had shipboard firefighting school but no instruction on these portable pumps. We HEARD about them and saw pictues, but that was it.
Ed, "..........Looks like P500 ours always started on the second or third pull. USS Long Beach CG(N)-9"
HA! Ed, that was a showboat that the Navy was justifiably proud of. Prolly spent some money on it too.
05-26-2005, 01:49 PM
Yeah we had intensive fire fighting training at Great Lakes. In fact after getting through that I felt that a few Navy trained fire fighters could top any civil outfit. Later on in life while working at a chemical plant, my best friend there was and still is a volunteer fireman. He was amazed at my fire fighting knowledge and aske where I had learned it from. I told him the Navy. The Navy told us that 80 % of their ships lost in WWII were in result of fires that couldn't be put out. We learned just about all aspects of fire fighting too. That is from solid material fires such as wood, to liquids such as fuel oil and gasoline, to electrical, and then specialized like magnesium, sodium, etc.. Magnesium was encountered mainly in aircraft which of course would be aboard aircraft carriers. It, at that time, could not be put out as it will burn under water, etc. They told us to push the plane over the side. If that wasn't possible try to cover it with sand. Where in the hell do you get sand on a carrier? You remember those OBA's? Oxygen Breathing Apparutus? Surely you trained with those and had to go through a pitch dark room with upper and lower levet filled thick with smoke. For those of you not familar with these, they were an early breathing device that created oxygen to breathe. Yes created. They had a canister on the front of them that made oxygen. One thing about them Rick, they told us when you used one up to poke it full of holes and throw it overboard. Reason: if it filled with oil and water it became a very very dangerous explosive device. A used up canister was equivalent to a hand grenade and in the close confines of a ship, that's bad.
05-26-2005, 10:04 PM
That P250 pump looks bigger than what I remember from the early 60s. Two of us were assigned to carry it to where it was needed and set it up. Our always started up pretty easy. Whenever we had a drill we always to get it running. Our biggest problem was not crossthreading the hose when we put it on.
I went through the firefighting school at Great Lakes. It was pretty intense, as it should be. When a ship catches fire there is no place to run. I saw a passenger ship on fire in the Persian Gulf in 1962. Some parts of the hull were red hot. Our ship and 2 British Navy ships played our fire hoses on it. It was like spitting on a hot stove for all the good it did.
05-28-2005, 05:20 AM
............Our damage control excersizes were pretty much a joke from that I saw. For awile I was stuck in a damage control party that was in the mid ships passageway just aft of the hatch to the serving line. But with condition Zebra set you couldn't get through the darn thing for a cup of coffee. The DC locker was a wreak. It looked like they'd just open the door and throw all the gear in.
Then once in awile they'd have a NBC (nuclear, biological, chemical) attack senario and run the topside sprinklers so we looked like a big ball of water spray. All that salt water left the ship all sparkly like it was covered in diamond dust from the salt crystals. Naturally they'd then have to have a fresh water washdown so that meant no fresh water showers for a couple days. That was unless you worked in the fireroom where you had all the bootleg fresh water you wanted.
One thing I recall is that they said if you had to abandon ship to grab a can of chemical foam if you could. It was supposed to be made out of sheep's blood and soybean extract, and was edible (they said). Gag. Think I'd probably eat my shorts first.
We did have a couple casualties underweigh. We'd come through a heavy storm in the Indian Ocean so they'd flooded a couple fuel tanks with sea water. Not too far off the mouth of the Persian Gulf the 2 boilers online sucked a big slug of sea water and the fires went out. We wuz adrift :-) All the lights went off and only one of the 3 emergancy battle lanterns in the shop worked.
The forward emergancy diesel was right across the passageway from the shop and when they fired THAT up it was hell. The 2 diesels made enough juice to power CIC and mount 51. BTW, the after diesel was in a compartment RIGHT OFF our berthing compartment! How's that for luck? One across from where you work and the other by where you sleep. They called away the ships landing force because they were afraid we might run aground on one of those little trucial state counties. Then there was some scare about a French Frigate. Why that would be a problem I don't know as I didn't think we were at war with France at the time. Maybe just a natural unease or mistrust around the French? Maybe we were afraid of getting rammed:p
We shared our shop with the firecontrolmen and their big old electromechanical fire control computer. A couple of these guys were on the ship's landing force. Since it was getting as hot as a skillet in the shop and unbearably noisy with that diesel running next door, I decided it was a good excuse to go topside and wonder around. The landing party was up on the Dash helicopter pad where they'd be good targets (I suppose). It's not like lifelines would provide much cover if they should need any.
You know, when you see Jarheads or Soldiers in battledress they look like they mean it. But sailors just look like sailors. Not very scarey. They did have their dungaree pant legs tucked into their socks and those that had long sleeve shirts had them rolled all the way down, and they did have steel pots and M-14's, but they still looked like sailors. It was a wonderfull clear night. It was odd with the ship broadside to the swells and just wallowing all around like it was.
I think some of the guys on the landing party were a bit spooked. It's not like there was a bunch of information being passed around or anything so naturally rumers get started.
It was several hours but the firemen finally got the pipes clear of seawater or whatever they had to do and got lit off again, so the air conditioning in the shop came back on and those darn diesels shut down. I thought it was a pretty fine break in the monotony and was something to talk about, anyway :-). Steve Paschal was the Electrician's Mate on the forward diesel and I think it was several days before he could hear normal conversation, or his eyeballs quit vibrating in their sockets. Hey, you try spending a few hours in a 10x10 steel box with a blown 6 cylinder diesel running wide open turning a genset!
When we got back home (to the states) we only had 2 of the 4 boilers that could steam. One had all the firebrick or whatever it is inside fall down and the other had superheater leaks. Joe would probably know about that.
05-28-2005, 08:28 AM
The M type boiler firebox was a steel box inside another steel box. Ths space inbetween the two was called the air casing and that is where the forced air come to feed the burners. The firebox insides was first lined with a sheet insulator. Then this was covered with a very light porous insulating brick (this brick by the ways would float). Then the last layer was the heavy insulating firebrick. All seams and other areas that couldn't be bricked in were isulated with Eagle ****, this was like a plaster type material put on wet then it dried like cement. All these material I speak of by the way had abestos in them. It's a wonder I don't have that lung cancer caused from it. One of the guys on my ship died from it not to long ago.
Buckshot, they told us in firefighting school that the foam was made from fish blood and from the feel and smell of it I think it was.
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