Author Topic: Batfish Updates  (Read 6694 times)

Offline Shipwreck

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Batfish Updates
« on: October 21, 2008, 01:28:01 AM »
Whew - what a weekend!

I've been trying to get a moment in between my busy schedules to get to the boards to give you an update.

First, I can't express enough how GRATEFUL and DELIGHTED I am to those who participated this past weekend.  There are so many names!!

Tim Katzung
Sam Trisler
Dennis
Rick
Lt. Cmdr. Dona Snodgrass
Lt. Snodgrass
Kat
Eddie
Brad
Monte

All the Cadets!

Man - I can't remember all of the names right now (or probably the correct spelling) BUT a hoarde of folks were present and contributed to the B-Fish!  THANK YOU!!!!

So, what was accomplished?

First, let me tell you that Tim Katzung absolutely blew me away.  He not only took on the Crews Quarters, but went at it with both a personal and financial gusto.  The crew quarters on our boat had in the end been converted into a classroom during her days as an auxillary vessel.  As a result all the original bunks, stanchions, and more were torn out.  All that remained were the original lockers, bulkheads, etc.  Tim re-created from photos and clues left behind new bunk stanchions.  He fabricated these amazing replicas from scratch!  The stanchions being used were made from wood and other assorted materials (some supported by plumbers tape).  The new ones are steel!  Then he installed and painted them.  The racks we had (if I am to understand correctly) came from a liberty ship or some other such surface vessel.  Tim removed these racks, sandblasted, repainted, and re-instaled them on the B-Fish (I'm still sore as hell from finageling them from the truck, down the forward hatchway, through the maze of FTR, OC, Control, Galley, & Crews Mess - keeping from scratching them).  He replaced the old bunk support chain with over 100 feet of new.  Needless to say, it was a very large task for one man.  BUT it gets better!!!  When he was removing one of the few racks left to repiar, repaint, etc, he dropped a braket between the bulkheads.  So reaching between them, he found to everyone's astonishment a letter, still in its envelope, from one of the former crewmen serving aboard the B-Fish during her auxillary days.  We are guessing at this last, as the letter itself is very faded and we cam across the word T.V..  So this has to be after the 40's.  The letter is from the City of Florida, so either was sent to the Batfish while she was in Florida or afterwards in New Orleans (I'm thinking the latter).  We took some high res photos of the letter and are trying to manipulate them in photoshop by creating a negative image so that perhaps we can make out the whole letter.  It has a 6 cent Air Mail stamp and is from a wife named either Judy or Jody and there are two children mentioned in the letter too.  Hopefully, we can discover who the letter belongs to.  Right now it rests safely between two panes of glass in the back rooms of the Museum.  I'll keep you updated as we go.

We also had a tremendous amount of work done on the upper decks.  We removed a large portion, later priming the exposed support beams.  The most difficulty came in removing the wooden plugs that filled the bolt holes - then of course the bolts.  Dennis (original crewman) really helped out in this latter task.  He really put a lot of us to shame, by the way.  We are saving the deck removed, as some of it is from the original decking made from Teak.  The rest is Pine.  We are trying to establish a Plank Ownersip sponsor program and will make undetermined lengths of decking available to contributors.  Right now we are looking at a minimum sponsorship of $250 per plank.  I have found that this type of program has been a great success on other museum ships.

Sam Trisler did a great job of replacing some of the Stainless Steel in Officer Country, along with newly polished mirros from the Officer quarters.  I never thought those mirrors would reflect again but our commanding officer, Correy Twilley is to thank for that.  WOW!  What a difference!  I can only imagine what it would be like if we could get the large amount of stainless stell in the Crews mess and galley looking remotely like the stainless steel in the OC corridor!  Sam also removed some fans from the Reefer so that they might be rebuilt.  There is a large effort by many to get the galley and mess operational again.  Sam and I also explored som enew areas that were former dry and cold storage spaces.

Mark Sarsfield cam ein the next day (sorry I missed you) and installed the newly acquired Navy tablecloth and linens in the Ward Room.  These vintage pieces were an incredibly lucky find and they look amazing.  Perhaps Mark can post some images of the decorative detail they each came with.  Mark also reported that he replaced a ton of light bulbs and now we can see our way around better.  Of course he also tinkered on the many other electrical and mechanical nightmares that are an ever going project.  Mark is another contributor that has gone way above and beyond.

We had a agreat lunch from Charlies Chicken (loved the rolls and gravy especially) and some cool drinks provided by Loves Botteling.  A lot of visitors too - each excited to see the work being done and wishing us well.

Tim's wife, Kat also spent time inputing the HUGE volume of data regarding donated and museum owned materials.  When I last checked in she was up to the 1980's!  But I think her eyes were bleeding by then...  :buck2:

Then our new potographer and upcoming newest member of the BLHA crew, Monte took a hoarde more photos.  The total images are now nearing one thousand.  Some of the views he had were from below the decking looking upward at the ongoing work and crews.  Some really great stuff.  We may not recognize the boat when we see them!

OK - this post has gone on WAY TO LONG, but as you can see, a lot occurred and is still coming up.  I am really excited about our new February BLHA gathering and can't wait to spend another weekend on the boat.  Thanks for reading all of this!

B
Sincerely,

Bradley Wynn
PO Box 711
Oklahoma City, OK 73101-0711
OFC/FAX:  (405) 601-1950
CELL:  (405) 833-1727
bradley@scriptfolio.net
www.ussbatfish.com

Mission Statement:   “The USS Batfish War Memorial remembers those who have served, preserves the legacy they leave behind, and educates those who come after, of lives touched by war in the fight and hope for peace.”

Member Batfish Living History Association: www.ss310.com

Offline Lance Dean

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2008, 08:18:21 AM »
Man, I'm jealous.  This is what every boat needs!  You guys really have it together.

Offline MWALLEN

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2008, 01:47:24 PM »
Quote
I can't remember all of the names right now

I can help you with the RELIEF CREW that were there:

Ed Williams, Brandt Hopper, Brad Baker, Leilani Allen, and myself.

Also, Muskogee S.W.A.T.  helped me prep all deck supports that are now ready to accept new decking.

Thanks to Matt Albright and the Batfish Foundation for providing lunch.
"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing" - Edmund Burke

Offline Ctwilley

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2008, 10:44:15 PM »
In regards to the stainless, I think that I've worked out a deal with work that will enable us to polish anything that can be taken off the boat and loaded into my car. I got the largest panel polished today. That's the last of the first half of the officer's hallway. The second half will be disassembled the next time I'm up. I leave for Detroit Thursday morning and will return either late Friday evening or early Saturday morning so it won't be this weekend.

That's really cool about the letter. The first thing that I can suggest is that you don't touch it with your bare hands. Make sure you keep cotton gloves on while handling it so the oils from your skin don't cause it to deteriorate. The BLHA can probably lend a hand with getting it looked at. Remember that several of our guys work with the Oklahoma History Center and other OHS museums as well as several museums out of state. We might have some good processes at our disposal...for free none the less.

Here's what I would suggest. We get the letter professionally looked at, documented, and copied. For their efforts, we will let the Oklahoma History Center in OKC have a copy of the letter. Rick, with your permission, I would like to take what we learn and use some of our resources to track down the family of the letter's owner and return it to his family. It's the right thing to do. If the family decides that they want to donate the original, we can keep it but if they want it, we can display the copy.

It's just my two cents.

Offline Mark Sarsfield

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2008, 04:19:00 PM »
I tried to get the designs of the tablecloth to show up on film, but I could never find the right angle to get a good contrast.  The item is best viewed in person at this point, unless someone has better luck than me with a camera.  Still, it looks 100% better than the blue felt that we had in there before.

The cadets did an outstanding job removing bolts and the remaining pieces of wood.  I hope that they can come up a few times each year to continue helping out.  We need to get the B.A. Sea Cadets involved, too.  Maybe get some friendly competiton going.

Regards,
Mark Sarsfield
USS Batfish reenactor



"If you have one bucket that can hold 5 gallons and one bucket that can hold 2 gallons, how many buckets do you have?" - IQ test from Idiocracy

Offline Rick

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #5 on: October 28, 2008, 09:05:01 AM »
Work onr them.   These kids can be hard workers....

Rick

Offline Paul Farace

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #6 on: October 28, 2008, 12:22:01 PM »
Well done BATFISH!

I am especially glad to hear the news about  the crew's berthing space. This is the big hurdle for all fleetboats... getting 36 bunks into the "CLASSROOM" is the major step in the transformation from a "subvet relic, clubhouse, etc" to becoming a serious warship restoration. The bunks are not what PNSY or EB would have built as original, but when the boats went into the yard and below decks were torn up for battery replacement, they always lost orginal bunks and they replaced them in many cases with the pipe racks we all have in our AB spaces... so give an appropriate hand gesture to anyone who faults you on this point!  :knuppel2:


So where are the PICTURES?
Now let's talk about flashcovers...



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Offline JohnG

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #7 on: October 28, 2008, 01:56:26 PM »
Im going to have to come out and see the new bunks. I just seen what they looked like. Thats awesome to hear that they are all back it. Kudos to Tim Katzung .
"If crime fighters fight crime and fire fighters fight fire, what do freedom fighters fight?" ~George Carlin

Offline Mark Sarsfield

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2008, 08:37:44 AM »
Rick might have pictures to post of the restored bunks/poles.

Regards,
Mark Sarsfield
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"If you have one bucket that can hold 5 gallons and one bucket that can hold 2 gallons, how many buckets do you have?" - IQ test from Idiocracy

Offline JohnG

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #9 on: October 29, 2008, 12:43:13 PM »
Don't post that! It's my excuse to get out too!  ;D Hope the wife doesn't see that.
"If crime fighters fight crime and fire fighters fight fire, what do freedom fighters fight?" ~George Carlin

Offline Ctwilley

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #10 on: January 22, 2009, 11:12:39 AM »
Well,

I found out that I'm leaving on the 18th of February for another year in the sandbox. :-[ I guess my projects will have to be put on hold for the time being. See you all in 12 months.

Correy

Offline JTheotonio

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2009, 11:17:34 AM »
Good luck and keep your powder dry!   8)
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Offline Darrin

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #12 on: January 22, 2009, 12:27:41 PM »
Good luck Correy,

Keep them birds flying, and when you here the "low rotor RPM" oh shit, please ask the pilot to put the bird down safely ;)   
If'n ya need anything you got my contact numbers, will be more then happy to send you what you need within reason

Offline Rick

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #13 on: January 22, 2009, 03:20:38 PM »
I found out that I'm leaving on the 18th of February for another year in the sandbox

Meow.   Watchout for the cats....... :angel:

Keep in touch. 

Offline Lance Dean

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Re: Batfish Updates
« Reply #14 on: January 22, 2009, 03:22:26 PM »
Well,

I found out that I'm leaving on the 18th of February for another year in the sandbox. :-[ I guess my projects will have to be put on hold for the time being. See you all in 12 months.

Correy

Dang man.  Thanks for what you and so many others do for our country!