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Old 07-11-2012, 10:56 PM
tmark tmark is offline
 
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Default Mighty Mo 16 Inch Gun at Henlopen State Park

I attended a presentation at local library on the history of Fort Miles, now Henlopen State Park and the acquisition of Mighty Mo's 16 inch gun, the middle one from turret one numbered 371 in its position while on the Mighty Mo at the Sept. 2, 1948 surrender.

This gun and seven others plus more were slated to be cut into 8 foot sections and sold as scrap to the Chinese for building cars and bridge structures according to the speaker, Dr. Gary Wray, President of the Fort Miles Historic Association. He wrote a book on Fort Miles.

I have an interest because I am just down the road from Fort Miles near Bethany Beach.

The 120 ton, 66 foot barrel took several days to travel from Norfolk, Va to Henlopen State Park in Delaware and cost over $100,000 to get it to Delaware.

The navy gave the state for free the 16 inch gun capable of hurling a 2250 pound projectile over 23 miles in 50 seconds with pinpoint accuracy because the gun was paid for with taxpayer money.

The fort use to have 16 inch guns like it so the Historic Society asked for it for our museum.

When the guns first proof-fired for testing purposes, the concussion broke windows, blew away the air conditioning units above the bunker, and caused the noses and ears of occupants in the bunker to bleed.

INTERESTING TRIVIA: The 16 inch guns including #371 saw action at Guadacanal and Iwo Jima. The Mo's guns got replaced sometime after 1950 especially after the Korean War because 300 projectiles through one barrel is the life span. Mo was at Desert Storm, too!



Dr. Wray, a WWII historian, compared this to similar German artillery whereby the Germans numbered their projectiles, each one a little larger in diameter than the former. What ever the highest number shell is, I don't know, reached, the barrel is considered worn out and replaced.

The good doctor said the Missouri's barrels (and other Iowa class battleship 16 inch guns) are "re-sleeved" after 300 shells.

One 93 year old local veteran had the distinction of being the navigator in the lead B-29 that lead 400 bombers that flew over Tokyo Bay during the surrender ceremony.

Another Korean War vet who served on the Mo 1950 to 1951witnessed Mo's 24 hour constant bombardment of the Korean coast.

Our little state of Delaware 80 miles long and 25 miles wide has a big piece of history.
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Old 07-11-2012, 11:13 PM
aka108 aka108 is offline
 
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If anyone goes to the island of Oahu in Hawaii and does not go to Pearl Harbor and tour the USS MISSOURI they wasted their trip Islands. So much to see there that is truly a part of recent American history.

Last edited by aka108; 07-12-2012 at 09:19 AM.
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Old 07-12-2012, 07:49 AM
DetroitMan DetroitMan is offline
 
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Actually, gun 371 could not have seen action at Guadalcanal. That campaign was fought between 1942 and 1943. USS Missouri was comissioned in 1944.

Other 16 inch guns did see service there, noteably when battleships USS Washington and USS South Dakota defeated IJN battleships Hiei and Kirishima. However, those ships were armed with the older Mark 6 16 inch / 45 caliber guns. Missouri and her sisters carried the Mark 7 16 inch / 50 caliber gun.
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Old 07-12-2012, 08:59 AM
CTM VT 2K CTM VT 2K is offline
 
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I thought the Iowas also used the 2700lb super-heavy shell, not the 2250lb (either way I wouldn't want to be on the receiving end).

Japanese Surrender was Sept. 2 1945, on the starboard quarterdeck.



I built (and battle) a 1/144th model of the Mighty Mo (armed with 1/4" ball-bearing cannons).
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Old 07-12-2012, 01:59 PM
jerryjeff jerryjeff is offline
 
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I built (and battle) a 1/144th model of the Mighty Mo (armed with 1/4" ball-bearing cannons). -

We do need to see a picture of that.
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Old 07-12-2012, 05:11 PM
CTM VT 2K CTM VT 2K is offline
 
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The last real battle pics were on the "old" site. I have them somewhere, but don't have them on-line anywhere. These photos are mostly of the repair of battle damage, refit and prep for the next battling season (was supposed to be this season, but I've not really been able to participate in any of the meets this year).

http://mabg.org/image/tid/47
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Old 07-13-2012, 12:04 AM
cfullgraf cfullgraf is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmark View Post

The Mo's guns got replaced sometime after 1950 especially after the Korean War because 300 projectiles through one barrel is the life span.
I believe the life of one of these navel rifles depended on the projectiles fired. The barrels could handle fewer of the heavy armor piercing projectiles than practice projectiles.

The British mounted the same guns on many of their battleships so that they could swap out the barrels for rebuilding during the life of the ship. Various barrels may serve on several battleships over their life.

The WWI German Paris guns had projectiles that were different in diameter, getting larger over the life of the barrel.
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Old 07-13-2012, 12:26 AM
Rondog Rondog is offline
 
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In honor of the ships and all who served.....this is cool!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-5ATY...eature=related
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  #9  
Old 07-13-2012, 01:08 AM
drywash drywash is offline
 
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At least the "historical" gun did not wind up as scrap to china.
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  #10  
Old 07-13-2012, 09:08 AM
8milimeter 8milimeter is offline
 
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http://www.navweaps.com/Weapons/WNUS_16-50_mk7_pics.htm

I love the picture where you can see the projectile streaking away from the fireball.

I never new they had Nuke projectiles (Mark 23 Nuclear Projectile) Whoa that is a serious cannonball.

Last edited by 8milimeter; 07-13-2012 at 09:19 AM. Reason: addition
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