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Retired twice: Navy and as a govt contractor
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I later did logistic support for various Naval aircraft including all MH-53 series Sikorsky Helos. I belived the Sea Dragon towed that sled.
 

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Visionary
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Small world for sure! That sounds right, I remember H-53.

We made and refurbed a number of those sleds, on those I was building the turbine power packs and the tow cables for the most part.

The tow cable sounds simple but it was actually quite a complex assembly, a coaxial electrical bundle/ tow cable taking the tension load, INSIDE a compressed lengthwise fuel transfer hose. My shop built those completely, starting with hose and cable and parts from the machine shops in the plant and took them right through pressure, electrical, and pull testing. Lot's of time and hours in one of those, but it was life critical, if it failed in use there was a great chance it would go up through the rotor of the helo with dire results, the small 'ball' end of one of those cables weighed about 10 pounds and the lower junction/ bridle end was about 20 pounds of solid stainless steel.

Less well known was that here was also a larger sled that was designed to be towed by a bigger helicopter, I don't think it ever got beyond one or two test units, but it was a heck of a unit, the turbine generator for that thing was huge, I remember putting one together.

I later did logistic support for various Naval aircraft including all MH-53 series Sikorsky Helos. I belived the Sea Dragon towed that sled.
 

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Quite a difference between actually knowing about something and experiencing it, and just watching something about it in a movie. What a very different perspective knowledge and experience gives a person, no? :71baldboy:

I'm with Wade in the "clueless" category when it comes to real life ASW stuff. I figured there was something a lot more then WWII styled pings, and that it would be much more advanced then I could imagine, but the descriptions you guys posted above were very interesting. I'm guessing that today it's even way more advanced.
 

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That tow cable does sound very complex given what it has to do. I never thought about it before. Cool! :thumbsup:
 

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Retired twice: Navy and as a govt contractor
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My experience is about 30 years old now and you are correct Eye it had come a long way even then. Some of the mines I found interesting back in the day where the modern version of the WWII cabled mine. Minesweepers tow cables with explosive cutters on then to pop these mines to the surface to destroy then with machine gun fire. The chains holding these mines in place had pass links on them that allowed the tow cable to pass through the chain. I watched a demo in a tank in Denmark and still haven't figured out how it works.

Another is a smart mine that listens for the search sonar we used. Once we identified a possible target we would mark it in the grid we were searching and then came back and switch the sonar frequency to our identify setting. These mines would follow the search frequency and then engage their motors and move to an area we had already searched. Settle back down on the bottom and wait.

Neither of the two I mentioned were ours by the way.
 

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Amazing. Absolutely amazing.

And compare that to the First World War. I read an account of a British submarine that got tangled up in some torpedo nets in the Mediterranean off the coast of Turkey, I think. A German officer was staring out to see when he noticed the buoy's moving about suspiciously as the sub tried to wriggle free so him and a cook commandeered a rowboat and rowed out to the nets. They lowered grenades down on ropes and forced the sub to the surface to surrender.
 

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Retired twice: Navy and as a govt contractor
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We did an exercise off of Kings Bay Georgia. When we were done we all anchored in a mile wide circle in 100' of water. The EOD team planted a half mine (500 versus 1000 lbs of explosives) in the middle of our group. The detonation rocked us and broke light bulbs all over the ship. And it looks just like in the movies, you get a boil of water and then the reflected shock wave sends a plume of water sky high. It is the second shock that breaks the keel of a ship.
 

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Shaper Of All Things Metal
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We did an exercise off of Kings Bay Georgia. When we were done we all anchored in a mile wide circle in 100' of water. The EOD team planted a half mine (500 versus 1000 lbs of explosives) in the middle of our group. The detonation rocked us and broke light bulbs all over the ship. And it looks just like in the movies, you get a boil of water and then the reflected shock wave sends a plume of water sky high. It is the second shock that breaks the keel of a ship.
I've seen what dynamiting for fish does... what did that exercise do to the sea life? :eek:
 

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We did an exercise off of Kings Bay Georgia. When we were done we all anchored in a mile wide circle in 100' of water. The EOD team planted a half mine (500 versus 1000 lbs of explosives) in the middle of our group. The detonation rocked us and broke light bulbs all over the ship. And it looks just like in the movies, you get a boil of water and then the reflected shock wave sends a plume of water sky high. It is the second shock that breaks the keel of a ship.
I watched a video once of an exercise where they sunk a ship for practice. Rimpac it was called, or something like that? Joint training exercise of some sort. Anyway...

They hit it with gunfire, and targeted it with some ship-to-ship rockets, and finally hit it with a torpedo. That was impressive.

When it detonated you could see the entire ship lift up a bit as the ocean was pushed away from below it in a large bowl shape. Then you could clearly see the ship "crack" as the keel was broken. When the ship settled down, just mlili-seconds later, it was clearly broken and doomed.

I remember thinking that a lot of US and other Allied sailors in WWII must have drowned with broken legs after their ships were torpedoed.
 

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Retired twice: Navy and as a govt contractor
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I don't know doc, probably not as much as when we pulsed. The cutters were diamond tipped knives activated by a 20mm cartridge. When we pulsed we had a mile long 3" cable that we put different 1" thick tails on. We had 3 2000 HP twin turbo diesels at 2000 rpm. When we sent the electric pulse through the cables the load on the engines would drop them to between 600-900 rpm in about 7 seconds, 53 seconds later the engines were back up to speed and we would do it again but as an opposite pulse. This was designed to influence and detonate magnetic mines.

We were told each pulse generated enough electricity to support NYC for an hour. I never saw a floating fish in any of the exercises.
 

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It takes a lot of power, I don't recall at all the kilowatts we put out with that minesweeper sled but I do remember very well that the test load I used for testing those turbine generators was a resistive load submerged in tank of water the size of an average home swimming pool for cooling, we could easily heat that up to a nice steaming simmer, so it was putting out plenty of wattage.
I can only imagine where sonar has gone by today, there have been so many huge improvements in electronics since my days building the stuff I wouldn't even know where to start. We were using stone knives and bearskins compared to the technology that's available today.
 

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So when are we going to have electrical power in our homes without wires? Wasn't that where Tesla was headed?
 
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