Destroyer Tenders

    As there was a modernization program for the Navy's destroyers in 1960, there accordingly had to be one for the auxiliary support ships that serviced and supplied those destroyers; those being the Destroyer Tenders.

    The modernization program level under the FRAM program for these floating workshops called "Tenders" was that of the MK II variation in which like destroyers, the Tenders lost its after gun battery with the installation of additional deckhouses and provisions for additional facilities for the new Destroyer and Frigate-based weapon systems called DASH and ASROC. For DASH, this meant additional space required by the after deckhouse for the DASH assembly workshop where the helicopter transmissions could be disassembled for repair as well as avionics check out. When repairs were completed, space was available for up to eight completed aircraft to be stored in the DASH hangar until needed by a Destroyer-at-sea. Aft of the DASH Hangar was the DASH flight deck where aircraft could be run-up, tested and then flown to verify system performance. 

    Just as DASH required additional facilities on the Tender, so did ASROC which required assembly and stowage facilities on-ship. Accordingly, as both ASROC and DASH used the MK-44 Mod 0 torpedo, the tenders needed to have their entire cargo ammunition stowage areas revised extensively to provide for the increased quantities of the need for this weapon as well as the rocket motor for the ASROC itself.

    Other improvements to the tenders consisted of extensively modifying the cranes so that heavier lifts could be provided as well as longer outreach which was required to handle the new radar antennas. The machinery and electrical power generating capabilities of the Tenders was also enhanced under FRAM with the Ship's turbine as well as the generator ends of the ship service generators being rebuilt so that an increase in power-output produced resulted in a 1,000 kilowatt level per each of the two generators. In order to provide for safer handling of along-side connections when numerous destroyers and/or submarines might be tied up to the Tender, a better distribution system was installed. There were 4 classes of Tenders that received a FRAM update or modernization; The DIXIE, CASCADE, ARCADIA and SAMUEL GOMPERS. Here follows a brief history of each.

     The very first destroyer tender to be modernized was the Dixie class, USS YOSEMITE (AD-19), which was accomplished at the Boston Naval Shipyard. The total cost per ship was $ 3.4 million and required a 4-month availability. Eventually the USS DIXIE (AD-14) would be modernized at Mare Island Naval Shipyard, the USS PRAIRIE (AD-15) at San Francisco Naval Shipyard, the USS SIERRA (AD-18) at Norfolk Naval Shipyard and the last of this class the USS PIEDMONT (AD-17) would receive its' FRAM modernization at the San Francisco Naval yard beginning in September 1962. Here follows the listing and specifications of the DIXIE class Tenders that received FRAM and/or modernized to service Gyrodyne's DASH Drones:

 

 

DIXIE CLASS DESTROYER TENDERS (AD)

Name of Ship

Hull No.

Builder

Launched

Stricken Date

DIXIE
14
New York Ship Building; Camden New Jersey
27 May 1939
15 June 1982
PRAIRIE
15
New York Ship Building; Camden New Jersey
09 Dec. 1939
26 March 1993
PIEDMONT
17
Tampa Shipbuilding Co, Tampa Florida
07 Dec. 1942
06 Aug. 1987
SIERRA
18
Tampa Shipbuilding Co, Tampa Florida
23 Feb. 1943
15 Oct. 1993
YOSEMITE
19
Tampa Shipbuilding Co, Tampa Florida
16 May 1943
27 Jan. 1994

DIXIE CLASS DESTROYER TENDERS POST-FRAM SPECIFICATIONS

Displacement:
11,343 tons standard (17,693 tons full load)
Dimensions:
530' 6" x 73' 4" beam x 25' 6" maximum draft 
Guns:
2 qty, TWIN 5 inch/38 caliber MK 12 mod 1 guns installed on MK 38 gun mount and 4 qty, 40 mm gun mounts. 
NOTE: During FRAM, 2 AFT TWIN 5 inch/38 caliber MK 12 mod 1 guns REMOVED as well as eight quantity, 40 mm guns resulting in above remaining equipment.
Machinery:
2 Babcock turbines coupled to Parsons locked-train double reduction gears. 2 shafts, SHP: 11,000 = 19.6 knots
Boilers:
FOUR Babcock & Wilcox; working pressure 565 PSI at 850 degrees F
Complement:
Allowance: 983 enlisted and 49 officers (Sierra was 886 and 37, Yosemite was 994  and 55, respectfully). The other tenders varied in their complement but was close to these ratios. Total accommodations averaged 1,698.

       The Cascade Class of Destroyer Tender consisted on a single vessel; the USS CASCADE (AD-16). Built by Western Pipe and Steel Company of San Francisco and launched on 6 June 1942, the CASCADE was commissioned on 12 March 1943. After being decommissioned after World War II on 12 February 1951, CASCADE was recommissioned 5 April 1951 and served as a DASH maintenance and overhaul ship upon its FRAM in 1963 which installed the DASH shop, hangar and aft flight deck. CASCADE served until being decommissioned on 22 November 1974 and struck from the Naval register the following day. CASCADE was sold for scrapping on 1 October 1975. 

 

CASCADE CLASS DESTROYER TENDER POST-FRAM SPECIFICATIONS

Displacement:
9,800 tons standard (16,600 tons full load)
Dimensions:
492' x 69' 6" beam x 27' 3" maximum draft 
Guns:
2 qty, TWIN 5 inch/38 caliber MK 12 mod 1 guns installed on MK 38 gun mount and 6 qty, 40 mm anti-aircraft gun mounts. 
NOTE: During FRAM, 1 AFT TWIN 5 inch/38 caliber MK 12 mod 1 guns REMOVED resulting in above remaining equipment.
Machinery:
Babcock turbine coupled to Parsons locked-train double reduction gears. 1 shaft, SHP: 8,500 = 18.4 knots
Boilers:
Two Babcock & Wilcox; working pressure 565 PSI at 850 degrees F
Complement:
Allowance: 857 Total Accommodation

 

    With the reclassification of the Tender KLONDIKE as a Repair Ship on 20 February 1960 resulting in the hull number AR-22, the lowest hulled Tender of this class was ARCADIA (AD-23) and thus the ARCADIA Class of Destroyer Tenders. USS SHENANDOAH is seen at left.

    The ARCADIA class of Destroyer Tenders consisted of nine vessels. Originally 7 were planned but with the conclusion of World War II, three vessels were cancelled (they were named the ARROWHEAD, CANOPUS and NEW ENGLAND) and one was sold (GREAT LAKES).


 

 

ARCADIA CLASS DESTROYER TENDERS (AD)

Name of Ship

Hull No.

Builder

Launched

Stricken Date

ARCADIA
23
Todd-Pacific Shipyards Inc, of San Pedro, CA
19 Nov. 1944
01 July 1973
EVERGLADES
24
Los Angeles Ship Building and Dry Dock Co., L.A., CA
28 Jan. 1945
24 May 1989
FRONTIER
25
Los Angeles Ship Building and Dry Dock Co., L.A., CA
25 Mar. 1945
01 Dec. 1972

 


ARCADIA CLASS DESTROYER TENDER POST-FRAM SPECIFICATIONS

Displacement:
8,165 tons standard (16,635 to 16,900 tons full load)
Dimensions:
465' x 69' 6" beam x 27' 2" maximum draft 
Guns:
1 qty, SINGLE 5 inch/38 caliber MK 12 mod 1 guns, 4 qty, 40 mm anti-aircraft gun mounts and 4 qty, 3 inch/50 caliber semiautomatic gun on a MK 34 gun mount. 
NOTE: During FRAM, 1 AFT SINGLE 5 inch/38 caliber MK 12 mod 1 gun, 4 of the 40mm and all 12 of the 20 mm guns were REMOVED resulting in above remaining equipment. Please note: All ships differed in their final weapons arrangement as FRAM overhaul was not the same for all ships.
Machinery:
Babcock / Westinghouse turbine coupled to Parsons / De Laval  locked-train double reduction gears. 1 shaft, SHP: 8,500 = 18.4 knots
Boilers:
Two Foster-Wheeler OR Babcock & Wilcox; working pressure 565 PSI at 850 degrees F
Complement:
Allowance: 778 to 918 Total Accommodation

 

Beginning with the laying down of AD-26 at the Todd-Pacific Shipyards of Tacoma Washington, a new tender class that was 27 feet longer and 30% heavier in tonnage than the ARCADIA class of Tender became the SHENANDOAH class. The Shenandoah herself is seen at left.

    This new class of tender offered greater room for the larger weapons being employed at the time and greater machinery capabilities as well with larger stores for greater deployment capabilities. The SHENANDOAH class FRAM program rebuilt the Tenders to handle the demands of ASROC and DASH weapon systems as well as having a helicopter platform part of its re- construction. FRAM allowed these vessels to reach a service life of over 35 years!

 

SHENANDOAH CLASS DESTROYER TENDERS (AD)

Name of Ship

Hull No.

Builder

Launched

Stricken Date

SHENANDOAH
26
Todd-Pacific Shipyards Inc, of Tacoma, WA
29 Mar. 1945
01 Apr. 1980
YELLOWSTONE
27
Todd-Pacific Shipyards Inc, of Tacoma, WA
12 Apr. 1945
12 Sept. 1974
GRAND CANYON
28
Todd-Pacific Shipyards Inc, of Tacoma, WA
27 Apr. 1945
01 Sep. 1978
ISLE ROYALE
29
Todd-Pacific Shipyards Inc, of Seattle, WA
19 Sep. 1945
15 Sep. 1976
TIDEWATER
31
Charleston Navy Yard, Charleston, SC
30 June 1945
15 June 1978
BRYCE CANYON
36
Charleston Navy Yard, Charleston, SC
07 Mar. 1946
30 June 1981

SHENANDOAH CLASS DESTROYER TENDER POST-FRAM SPECIFICATIONS

Displacement:
11,755 tons standard (16,880 tons full load)
Dimensions:
492' x 69' 6" beam x 28' maximum draft 
Guns:
2 qty, SINGLE 5 inch/38 caliber MK 12 mod 1 guns, 8 qty, 40 mm anti-aircraft gun mounts and 22 qty, 20mm guns. 
NOTE: During FRAM, 1 AFT SINGLE 5 inch/38 caliber MK 12 mod 1 gun, 4 of the 40mm and ALL of the 20 mm guns were REMOVED  with the addition of four, 3"/50 caliber guns resulting in:
1 qty, SINGLE 5 inch/38 caliber MK 12 mod 1 gun, 4 qty, 3"/50 cal and 4 qty, 40mm guns for anti-aircraft.
Please note: All ships differed in their final weapons arrangement as FRAM overhaul was not the same for all ships.
Machinery:
Babcock / Westinghouse turbine coupled to Parsons / De Laval  locked-train double reduction gears. 1 shaft, SHP: 8,500 = 18.4 knots
Boilers:
Two Foster-Wheeler OR Babcock & Wilcox; working pressure 565 PSI at 850 degrees F
Complement:
Allowance: 778 to 918 Total Accommodation


 

  Authorized in FY 1965 at a cost of $ 37 million each, the SAMUEL GOMPERS class of two destroyer tenders were the first built from a post World War II design. Designed with the FRAM improvements installed on the previous 3 classes of ADs to have repair, supply and support facilities on-board for not only the currently in-use ASROC and DASH systems, but also the improved missile systems soon to be deployed, we mentioned these two Destroyer Tenders as they were DASH support ships while not part of FRAM.

    Both SAMUEL GOMPERS (AD-37) and sister ship PUGET SOUND (AD-38) were in fact much larger than any destroyer tender before them- 151 feet longer, 15 feet wider and displacing 4700 additional tons over the ARCADIA class. With approximately 60 work shops on-board, carrying an estimated 60,000 different types of repair parts, the GOMPERS class were able to support 6 cruisers/destroyers with "in port" services, along side, simultaneously. Not only having shops to repair electronics, ASW weapons, and advanced communications, this class also had the capability to repair nuclear propulsion plants and had the equipment to allow for such work, including two 30-ton kingpost cranes along with two 6-ton traveling cranes. Each was equipped with DASH Hangar, drone storage and flight decks. Each tender of this class operated in its own theatre; SAMUEL GOMPERS in WestPac (Western Pacific), with her home port at San Diego and PUGET SOUND in LANTFLT (Atlantic Fleet) with her home port at Newport, R.I.

    PUGET SOUND also served as the Sixth Fleet flagship from July 1980 to April 10, 1985. To act in that capacity PUGET SOUND did receive an extra mast to support a special SATCOM antenna while GOMPERS had the standard WSC-3 SATCOM installation with OE-82 type drum-shaped antennas. 

    It should be noted, that of the over 160 DASH equipped ships the U.S. Navy had in 1965, flying the only deployed VTOL Unmanned Aerial Vehicle in the world (QH-50 DASH), the USS PUGET SOUND is the LAST DASH ship the U.S. Navy had remaining as of October 2003; being listed as "inactive reserve".

SAMUEL GOMPERS CLASS DESTROYER TENDERS (AD)

Name of Ship

Hull No.

Builder

Launched

Stricken Date

SAMUEL GOMPERS
37
Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Bremerton, WA
14 May 1966
07 Apr. 1999
PUGET SOUND
38
Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Bremerton, WA
16 Sept. 1966
Laid up-Cat B at Philadelphia Naval Shipyard

SAMUEL GOMPERS CLASS DESTROYER TENDERS (AD) 
CURRENT DISPOSITION

Name of Ship

Hull No.

Status

Berth

SAMUEL GOMPERS
37
Stricken; sunk on July 22, 2003  (SINKEX)
Sunk off the Atlantic Coast by the USS COLE (DDG-67)
PUGET SOUND
38
Inactive, Out of Commission, in reserve
NAVSEA Inactive Ships On-site Maintenance Office, Philadelphia, PA

 

The DASH Deck looking aft to the Hangar Door. PUGET SOUND was completely painted in 2002 and is in excellent condition.

 

SAMUEL GOMPERS CLASS DESTROYER TENDER SPECIFICATIONS (AD)

Displacement:
14,156 tons light (20,830 tons full load)
Dimensions:
645' x 85' beam x 30' maximum draft 
Radar
Raytheon SPS-64(V)9 for navigation; 1 Raytheon SPS-10 surface search    TACAN: AD-38 only- Model URN-25
Guns:
1 qty, SINGLE 5 inch/38 caliber MK 12 mod 1 guns. The 5" gun on AD-38 was eventually replaced with a 127 mm dual purpose gun. In 1979, that gun installation was then removed.  Plans to install SEA SPARROW missile system forward of the bridge was abandoned.
Machinery:
2 sets of DeLaval  locked-train double reduction gears. 1 shaft, SHP: 20,000 = 18 knots
Boilers:
Two Babcock & Wilcox; working pressure 620 PSI at 865 degrees F
Complement:
Allowance- AD 37: 136 Officers   1671 Enlisted
Allowance- AD 38: 106 Officers   1314 Enlisted   


 

Up Fletcher Class Sumner Class Gearing Class Frank Knox Class Carpenter Class Basilone Class Dealey Class DE Bronstein Class Mitscher Class Destroyer Tenders JMSDF Destroyers

 

 


Helicopter Historical Foundation
P.O. Box 3838, Reno, Nevada USA 89505

Because of SPAM, we ask that you copy the below address into your mail program and send us your comments!

Email us at: Gyrodyne_History@Yahoo.com

The name "Gyrodyne" in its stylized form above, is the Trademark of and owned by the Gyrodyne Helicopter Historical Foundation; unauthorized use is PROHIBITED by Federal Law.

All Photographs, technical specifications, and content are herein copyrighted and owned exclusively by Gyrodyne Helicopter Historical Foundation, unless otherwise stated.  All Rights Reserved 2013.

The Gyrodyne Helicopter Historical Foundation (GHHF) is a private foundation incorporated in the State of Nevada as a Non-profit organization. 

GHHF is dedicated to the advancement of the education and preservation of the history of the Ships, the Men and the Company that built, operated and flew the U.S. Navy's QH-50 Drone Anti-Submarine Helicopter (DASH) System and to the preservation of the history of the U.S. Army's past use of DASH.
Your support will allow for that work to continue.