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AVP-10 Barnegat class 


Barnegat class AVP

(United States)

Notes: These seaplane tenders were designed in the pre-WWII era, when it was envisioned that a future naval war would be fought by battleships supported by seaplanes dispersed at forward bases. The dawn of the aircraft carrier made this tactic irrelevant; however these vessels later served a myriad of roles (as evidenced by the array of hull numbers they carried) including survey ship, PT boat tender, and patrol cutter. It was originally planned to convert most of the class into command ships for “Operation Olympic” (the planned invasion of Japan) but only a few were converted before the war’s end. Many were later transferred abroad. They had a shallow draught enabling use of undeveloped anchorages and were excellent sea keepers in bad weather.

(the ships carried a special stern rig to secure and refuel seaplanes, such as this Martin PBM)

There was a huge variety of light armament configurations throughout the ship’s career; so no weaponry fit is listed below. The main gun was a Mk38 5”, different numbers of 20mm and 40mm were carried, many later removed. Likewise, the sensor fit varied greatly throughout their careers.

Displacement: 1766t standard, 2750t full Dimensions: 311’8”x41’1”x13’6” Machinery: 4 Fairbanks-Morse 38D8 diesels, 2 shafts Max speed: 18.6kts Range: 15,000NM @ 12kts Complement: 215 (360 during WWII)

UNITED STATES

Name

No.

Launch

Comm.

Decom.

Fate

USS Barnegat

AVP-10

23 May 1941

3 July 1941

17 May 1946

Scrapped 1986

USCGC Dexter (ex-USS Biscayne)

WHEC-385 (ex-AGC-18, ex-AVP-11)

23 May 1941

3 July 1941

5 May 1968

SINKEX target 1968

USS Casco

AVP-12

15 Nov 1941

27 Dec 1941

1 May 1969

SINKEX target 1969

USCGC Mackinac

WHEC-371 (ex-AVP-13)

15 Nov 1941

24 Jan 1942

28 Dec 1967

SINKEX target 1968

USCGC Humboldt

WHEC-372 (ex-AVP-21)

17 Mar 1941

7 Oct 1941

30 Sep 1969

Scrapped 1971

USCGC Abescon

WHEC-374 (ex-AVP-23)

8 Mar 1942

28 Jan 1943

15 June 1972

FMS

USCGC Chicoteague

WHEC-375 (ex-AVP-24)

15 Apr 1942

12 Apr 1943

21 June 1972

FMS

USCGC Coos Bay

WHEC-376 (ex-AVP-25)

15 May 1942

16 May 1943

1 Sep 1966

SINKEX target 1968

USCGC Half Moon

WHEC-378 (ex-AVP-26)

12 June 1942

16 June 1943

4 May 1956

Scrapped 1970

C&GSS Pioneer (ex-USS Mobjack)

OSS-31 (ex-AGP-7, ex-AVP-27)

2 Aug 1942

17 Oct 1943

4 May 1966

Scrapped 1967

USS Oyster Bay

AGP-6 (ex-AVP-28)

23 May 1942

17 Nov 1943

26 Mar 1946

FMS

USCGC Rockaway

WOLE-377 (ex-WHEC-377, ex-WAGO-377, ex-AVP-29)

14 Feb 1942

6 Jan 1943

29 Jan 1972

Scrapped 1974

USS San Pablo

AGS-30 (ex-AVP-30)

31 Mar 1942

15 Mar 1943

29 May 1969

Scrapped 1972

USCGC Unimak

WHEC-379 (ex-WTR-379, ex-AVP-31)

27 May 1942

31 Dec 1943

29 Apr 1988

SINKEX target 1989

USCGC Yakutat

WHEC-380 (ex-AVP-32)

2 July 1942

31 Mar 1944

31 Dec 1970

FMS

USCGC Barataria

WHEC-381 (ex-AVP-33)

2 Oct 1943

13 Aug 1944

8 Aug 1969

Scrapped 1971

USCGC Bering Strait

WHEC-382 (ex-AVP-34)

15 Jan 1944

19 July 1944

24 Feb 1970

FMS

USCGC Castle Rock

WHEC-383 (ex-AVP-35)

11 Mar 1944

6 Aug 1944

21 Dec 1971

FMS

USCGC Cook Inlet

WHEC-384 (ex-AVP-35)

13 May 1944

6 Aug 1944

27 Dec 1971

FMS

USS Corson

AVP-37

16 July 1944

3 Dec 1944

9 Mar 1956

SINKEX target 1968

USS Duxbury Bay

AVP-38

2 Oct 1944

31 Dec 1944

30 Apr 1966

Scrapped 1968

USS Gardiners Bay

AVP-39

2 Dec 1944

11 Feb 1945

1 Feb 1958

FMS

USS Floyds Bay

AVP-40

28 Jan 1945

26 Mar 1945

26 Feb 1960

Scrapped 1961

USS Greenwich Bay

AVP-41

18 Mar 1945

26 Mar 1945

26 Feb 1960

Scrapped 1967

USS Hatteras

AVP-42

-

-

-

Cancelled

USS Hempstead

AVP-43

-

-

-

Cancelled

USS Kamishak

AVP-44

-

-

-

Cancelled

USS Magothy

AVP-45

-

-

-

Cancelled

USS Martanzas

AVP-46

-

-

-

Cancelled

USS Metomkin

AVP-47

-

-

-

Cancelled

USS Onslow

AVP-48

20 Sep 1942

22 Dec 1943

22 Apr 1960

Sold to civilian service 1960

USS Orca

AVP-49

4 Oct 1942

23 Jan 1944

1 Mar 1960

FMS

USS Rehoboth

AGS-50 (ex-AVP-50)

8 Nov 1942

23 Feb 1944

15 Apr 1970

Scrapped 1971

USNS Josiah Willard Gibbs (ex-USS San Carlos)

T-AGOR-1 (ex-AVP-51)

20 Dec 1942

21 Mar 1944

7 Dec 1971

FMS

USS Shelikof

AVP-52

31 Jan 1943

7 Apr 1944

9 Dec 1954

Scrapped 1981

USS Suisun

AVP-53

14 Mar 1943

14 Sep 1944

5 Aug 1955

SINKEX target 1966

USS Timbalier

AVP-54

18 Aug 1943

24 May 1946

18 Aug 1954

Scrapped 1989

USS Valcour

AGF-1 (ex-AVP-55)

5 June 1943

5 July 1946

17 June 1973

Scrapped 1977

USCGC McCulloch (ex-USS Wachapreague)

WHEC-386 (ex-AGP-8)

10 July 1943

17 May 1944

21 June 1972

FMS

USCGC Gresham (ex-USS Willoughby)

WAGW-387 (ex-WHEC-387, ex-AGP-9)

21 Aug 1943

18 June 1944

21 May 1973

Scrapped 1975

Notes: The ships commissioned out-of-order vs. their pennant numbers due to the plethora of different yards awarded the construction contracts; a block of ships was also cancelled to free up yard space for more urgently needed vessels during WWII. Many were transferred as high-endurance cutters to the Coast Guard postwar (some changing names); while one went to Military Sealift Command and another to the Department of Commerce’s Coast & Geodetic Survey. Some of the USCG ships carried a Hedgehog ASW weapon for some time. The final two ships never carried a seaplane tender number, they occupy AVP-56 and -57 in naval records but this is moot as the USN built no more seaplane tenders and has since retired the designation.

There were many variations from ship to ship; for example some had the seaplane crane removed.

ETHIOPIA

Name

No.

Comm.

Xfer

Decom.

Fate

Ethiopia (ex-USS Orca)

A-01 (ex-AVP-49)

1944

1 Jan 1962

1993

Scrapped 1995

Notes: Transferred as a “training ship” under the Foreign Military Sales programme. Ethiopia had the AN/SPS-12 radar on her foremast and Mk26 and Mk52 fire-control radars; the 5” gun and WWII 40mm guns were retained but the 20mm deleted prior to transfer. When Eritrean rebels overran the last Ethiopian port in May 1991, Ethiopia fled to Aden, Yemen. In 1993 the Yemeni government asked the homeless Ethiopian navy to leave, however the decrepit Ethiopia was unable to make steam and abandoned. Janes Fighting Ships stopped listing her in 1994 and the hulk was likely scrapped that year or in 1995.

GREECE

Name

No.

Comm.

Xfer

Decom.

Fate

Hephaestus (ex-USNS Josiah Willard Gibbs, ex-USS San Carlos)

A-413 (ex-T-AGOR-1, ex-AVP-51)

1942

15 Dec 1971

1983

Scrapped 1985

Notes: This ship was completely unarmed and used for survey work.

ITALY

Name

No.

Comm.

Xfer

Decom.

Fate

Pietro Cavezale (ex-USS Oyster Bay)

A-5301 (ex-AGP-6, ex-AVP-28)

1943

23 Oct 1957

31 Mar 1994

Scrapped 1996

Notes: Although configured as a survey ship at time of transfer, the Italian navy used Pietro Cavezale as a tender to amphibious craft and patrol boats. Armament was a single open 3” gun and a twin Mk2 40mm in front of the bridge. Sensors were AN/SPS-6 air search radar and an Italian SPN-748 I-band navigation set. Crew was 7 officers and 107 enlisted. The ship was slated to be deleted in 1991 but retained an extra three years due to budget shortfalls for a replacement.

NORWAY

Name

No.

Comm.

Xfer

Decom.

Fate

Haaken VII (ex-USS Gardiners Bay)

A-537 (ex-AVP-39)

1945

17 May 1958

1974

Scrapped 1975

Notes: Transferred as a general-purpose auxiliary.

PHILIPPINES

Name

No.

Comm.

Xfer

Decom.

Fate

Andres Boniface (ex-Ly Thung Kiet, ex-USS Chicoteague)

PS-7 (ex-HQ-05, ex-WHEC-375, ex-AVP-24)

1943

5 Apr 1976

9 June 1985

Scrapped 1991

Gregorio de Pilar (ex-Tran Quoc Toan, ex-USCGC McCulloch)

PS-8 (ex-HQ-06, ex-AVP-56)

1944

5 Apr 1976

9 June 1985

Scrapped 1991

Diego Silang (ex-Tran Quang Khai, ex-USS Bering Strait)

PS-9 (ex-HQ-15, ex-AVP-34)

1944

5 Apr 1976

9 June 1985

Scrapped 1991

Francisco Dagahoy (ex-Tran Vinh Trong, ex-USS Castle Rock)

PS-10 (ex-HQ-17, ex-AVP-34)

1944

5 Apr 1976

9 June 1985

Scrapped 1993

(ex-Tran Quoc Toan, ex-USS Cook Inlet)

(ex-HQ-02, ex-AVP-36)

1944

5 Apr 1976

-

Parts hulk

(ex-Trat Nhat Duat, ex-USS Yakutat)

(ex-HQ-03, ex-AVP-32)

1944

5 Apr 1976

-

Parts hulk

Notes: These six ships limped into Subic Bay in April/May 1975 after the fall of Saigon. They presented a slight legal dilemma to the USN as in theory they should have reverted to the new “provisional government” in the former South Vietnam. Eventually it was decided that since the United States did not recognize that government, they were nobody’s property, and were sold to the Philippine navy in 1976 (primarily to spare the US taxpayer the expense of having to move them out of Subic Bay for disposal). All were in poor condition, the last pair so much that they were beyond economic restoration. In 1979, the entire aft deck on the remaining four was replaced by a helipad for one Bo-105 helicopter, and a 3’3” tub for a displaced aft 40mm mount was added. Final radar fit was AN/SPS-53, AN/SPS-29, and Mk26.

Astonishingly, the final Marcos-era naval budget included plans to add new radars and BGM-84 Harpoon missiles to these slow elderly vessels (the same fanciful budget also included plans for a Filipino submarine force); this came to nothing after Marcos was deposed and the ships were discarded as part of a general drawdown.

VIETNAM, SOUTH

Name

No.

Comm.

Xfer

Decom.

Fate

Tran Quoc Toan (ex-USS Cook Inlet)

HQ-02 (ex-AVP-36)

1944

27 Dec 1971

n/a

Fled

Trat Nhat Duat (ex-USS Yakutat)

HQ-03 (ex-AVP-32)

1944

10 Jan 1971

n/a

Fled

Ly Thung Kiet (ex-USS Chicoteague)

HQ-05 (ex-WHEC-375, ex-AVP-24)

1943

15 June 1972

n/a

Fled

Tran Quoc Toan (ex-USCGC McCulloch)

HQ-06 (ex-WHEC-386, ex-AVP-56)

1944

21 June 1972

n/a

Fled

Tran Quang Khai (ex-USS Bering Strait)

HQ-15 (ex-AVP-34)

1944

24 Feb 1970

n/a

Fled

Tham Ngu Lao (ex-USCGC Absecon)

HQ-16 (ex-WHEC-374, ex-AVP-23)

1943

15 June 1972

5 Apr 1975

War loss 4/5/75

Tran Vinh Trong (ex-USS Castle Rock)

HQ-17 (ex-AVP-34)

1944

21 Dec 1971

n/a

Fled

Notes: These ships were designed to complement the two frigates transferred to the South Vietnamese navy as general patrol ships. Some had two 81mm shore bombardment mortars added. On 29 April 1975, with the South Vietnamese government collapsing and North Vietnamese troops entering Saigon; five of the six ships set sail and later made a rendezvous at Son Island, the last remaining morsel of free South Vietnam. They remained at anchor until 2 May, when they set sail for Subic Bay, still flying the South Vietnamese flag. Once they arrived in the Philippines, they were “repossessed” by the US Navy, which later donated them to the Filipino navy.

Tham Ngu Lao was in refit when Saigon fell and captured intact by the North Vietnamese.

VIETNAM

Name

No.

Comm.

Xfer

Decom.

Fate

Pham Ngu Lau (ex-Tham Ngu Lao, ex-USCGC Absecon)

HQ-01 (ex-HQ-16, ex-WHEC-374, ex-AVP-23)

1943

5 Apr 1975

-

In Service

Notes: When North Vietnamese troops overran the Saigon Dockyard company’s drydocks, they captured this ship intact. It was subsequently written off by the US Navy as “Permanently transferred to Vietnam”. In 1984, two SS-N-2 “Styx” launchers (of the type seen on “Komar” class patrol boats) were installed aft on the main deck, in addition to two twin Type 70K 37mm AA guns and two 2M3 25mm twin mounts. Reportedly a locker was also installed for crew-fired SA-7 “Grail” MANPADS. Pham Ngu Lau was making regular patrols as late as 1993, however in the mid-1990s the missiles were deleted and the ship was converted into a training vessel. Since 2006 the ship has not been seen at sea and is likely a pierside training hulk.

 

Entry created by: Jason W. Henson
Contributors:

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