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11
A Walk Around The Big J

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Recently Timothy Parker to a short excursion to visit the “Big J”. The USS New Jersey was the second commissioned Iowa-Class Battleship and was launched in 1942. The New Jersey would go on to be the most decorated battleship of the Second World War. She would go on to serve in the Korean War, Vietnam War and Lebanese Civil War. She was officially decommissioned in 1991 and regulated into the mothball fleet until being handed over to a non-profit organization. The USS New Jersey rests comfortably in Camden, New Jersey and lives on as a floating museum and memorial as part of the National Register of Historic Places.

Tim has been so kind as to add some text referring to the pictures he took from his visit aboard the “Big J”. These are number in order according to the accompanying text. Please Enjoy!

1 - looking forward towards the forecastle, with the anchor chains on the deck. No one was permitted forward from where I stood to take this picture.

2 - A view of the aerial that is built across the forecastle. The ship’s bell is located on the forward side of the structure, which is off-limits.

3 - zoomed-in view of the anchor cable, centered on one of the Pelican hooks. It seemed rather odd, but each cable had 2 Pelican hooks - I don't recall seeing that on either the Wisconsin or the Missouri.

4 - The imprint on the anchor cable windlass

5 - I was trying to capture the steepness of the ladder. On the tour, this particular ladder is the "way out", taking you back topside.

6 - An explanation of the anchor windlass room - very informative! I hope it's readable for everyone.

7 - The port windlass. The piping in the right background that has the foil-looking stuff wrapped around is part of the cross-connecting of the hydraulic fluid, so that the port windlass could control the starboard capstan, and vice versa. The brass horizontal wheel, partially seen at the right frame of the image, is one of the handbrakes.

8 - Here we have a better shot of the handbrake. The sign that had information about the windlass room (picture DSC00013) made mention that there were similar handbrake wheels topside, and the brakes could be applied from either there or in the windlass room, but the brakes could not be operated simultaneously. You can also see the piping for the cross-connection of the hydraulic fluid for the system, and I'm guessing those are the actual capstans (or some part of them) in the background. Note the timbers in the center of the image - I'm guessing those were used for damage control. (And apologies if I'm incorrectly using "windlass" and "capstan" here).

9 - A better view of the description of the anchor windlass gear (it's a better picture than DSC00013).

10 - A view below decks. The black wiring hanging on the brackets on the left-hand side of the picture were apparently used as "jumpers" - I gathered that in case of emergency, these cables could be used to "jump over" damaged power cables. It was interesting to note, that of all the different data plates I could read, it seems that most of the ship was wired to run on 440 volts - but maybe that was just for supply, and there were transformers to step it down to 120V.

11 - One of the nice things about doing these "walk around" shoots, is you get to see details that you wouldn't otherwise get to see. Here, I was taken with how big the hinge on this hatch was. I didn't think to take a picture of how thick the actual hatch was, but I found another hatch elsewhere, and I'd say the hatch is about 3 inches thick. Of steel. So I got to wondering, how did they lift a hatch like this up? I didn't see any hydraulic cylinders or other lifting device. Later on during my tour, I saw how the hatches were raised: They were attached to a wire cable, roved around two steel pulleys, and then the cable went into some cylinder. I don't know if the cylinder held a counterweight, or if it was designed to take pressurized steam or hydraulic fluid to help lift the hatch (the other side of the cylinder, which was flush to a bulkhead, was off-limits). So in this picture, you can see the deck itself is about an inch thick (the edge of which is painted black), and you can also see the coaming around the hatch (it's about 3 or 4 inches tall, and painted gray, and is in the left of the picture).

12 - Under the gun!
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About the Author

About Timothy E. Parker (pzkw)
FROM: , UNITED STATES


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