Home » Budget Industry » Littoral Combat Ship USS Little Rock Leaves Montreal After Three Months Trapped in Ice


Littoral Combat Ship USS Little Rock Leaves Montreal After Three Months Trapped in Ice

USS Little Rock transiting the St. Lawrence Seaway on March 31, 2018. René Beauchamp‎ Photo via Twitter

The Navy warship that was stuck on the St. Lawrence River for three months is now underway to its homeport at Naval Station Mayport, Fla., a Navy official told USNI News on Monday.

Littoral Combat Ship USS Little Rock (LCS-9) left on Saturday bound for the Atlantic Ocean after weathering the winter pier-side in Montreal, Lt. Cmdr. Courtney Hillson told USNI News.

“The ship was moored at the Port of Montreal until weather conditions improved and the St. Lawrence Seaway melted enough for the safe passage of the ship,” Hillson said.
“Keeping the ship in Montreal until weather conditions improved ensured the safety of the ship and crew.”

USS Little Rock (LCS-9) approaches Montreal on Dec. 24, 2017, for a port visit. The ship is currently stuck in Montreal due to icy conditions in the St. Lawrence River and a shortage of icebreaking tugs. Photo courtesy USS Little Rock Blue Crew – Warhawgs Facebook page.

Canadian ship spotters posted photos of the icebreaker CCGS Des Groseilliers escorting Little Rock down the St. Lawerence on Saturday.

“We greatly appreciate the support and hospitality of the city of Montreal, the Montreal Port Authority and the Canadian Coast Guard,” Little Rock commanding officer Cmdr. Todd Peters said in a statement.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to further enhance our strong partnerships.”

The Littoral Combat Ship was stranded on the river in January. It was returning from its December commissioning ceremony in Buffalo, N.Y., where it entered the fleet next to its namesake, the decommissioned guided-missile cruiser USS Little Rock (CG-4).

Little Rock was late leaving Buffalo due to weather and had stopped in Montreal for a port visit and minor repairs.

“The ship was ready to depart Montreal, but the extreme cold, subsequent condition of the St. Lawrence Seaway and availability of icebreakers and support ships caused the delay,” Hillson told USNI News in January.

#CCGShip DES GROSEILLIERS escorting the “USS Little Rock” this morning, 31-Mar-18, passing off the anchorage to Sorel-Tracy, QC. @CoastGuardCAN #CCGProud Photo by: René Beauchamp. Via: Shipspotting C.C.G. https://t.co/VNlvVw2uDH and https://t.co/3urzFGe8Xh pic.twitter.com/tyhhOGmd3W

As the ship traveled down the St. Lawrence in January, the Navy determined it was safer to wait out the winter until the ice melted. Icebreakers patrol the Seaway, but they give preference to commercial traffic.

While sidelined, two dozen of the crew participated in at least one community service outing to help stock the Welcome Hall Mission in Saint-Henri near where the ship was moored, according to a report in the CBC.

According to local press reports, the crew’s stay in Montreal was largely uneventful, aside from noise complaints from nearby condo-dwellers who took issue with the noise the ship’s shore-side power generators made.

“It’s like the motor of a large truck that’s driving at a high speed,” Montreal resident Alain Stanke told The Canadian Press in March.
“Those two generators are detestable.”

Now that Little Rock is underway, it’s set to arrive in Mayport, Fla., by the end of the month after making several port calls along the way.

  • DaSaint

    Could never understand the siting of the diesel generator exhausts on this version of the LCS.
    Makes for ugly camouflage.

    • El Kabong

      Ripe IR target, you’d think.

      • DaSaint

        I think the Independence class hide some IR from the diesel exhausts between the hulls.

        • El Kabong

          That would make sense.

      • Zorcon, Fidei Defensor

        One should think they cool it first?

        • El Kabong

          You’d hope.
          But then it’s added weight and complication, also.

          • Zorcon, Fidei Defensor

            Beats a thermal imaging weapon right up the exhaust pipe amidships? What do I know? Strange place for a exhaust unless it is only used when the ship is stuck in ice?

          • El Kabong

            I’d be interested to see it’s IR signature.

          • Zorcon, Fidei Defensor

            I have no doubts the Russians and Chinese have well defined models of it already?

          • El Kabong

            I doubt it.

            Their technology is generations behind the West.

          • Zorcon, Fidei Defensor

            IR cameras are not that expensive, relatively speaking.

          • El Kabong

            A simple IR camera does not make a seeker.

          • Zorcon, Fidei Defensor

            A mid wave lab quality instrument is about 200k. Hardly a lot to a nation/state?

          • Dan Delgado

            El Kabong: “Their technology is generations behind the West.”

            Yes, because they don’t build ships that can’t get from where they were built to their home port, without breaking down.

            And since the U.S. buys their rocket engines from Russia, what does that say for the U.S., if Russia is “generations behind the West”?

      • Mc Govern

        That’s not how Ir works these days. It works on Temperature differential, with computational analysis.IE the difference in temperature of the metal… to the stuff around it. Not Hot exhausts – it hasn’t been that way for 20+ years now.

        • El Kabong

          “It works on Temperature differential…”????

          Temperature differential.

          AKA: One surface is cooler or warmer than other…

          “Not Hot exhausts – it hasn’t been that way for 20+ years now.”????

          What are exhaust pipes/stacks/ducting made of?

          Metal.

          Been that way for 100+ years now….

          • Duane

            The entire visible surface of every ship in the world, above the waterline, is different than the water temp.

            I’m sure you’ve seen video from thermal imagers, be it drone cams, attack aircraft cams, or “night vision goggles”. Any ship on the sea gets painted in vivid detail by any thermal imager, regardless of whether it features a hot exhaust pipe or not.

          • El Kabong

            Well done, Capt. Obvious.

            ANY dissimilar surfaces have different IR signatures.

            Were you even remotely close to making a point?

        • Zorcon, Fidei Defensor

          Only if the surrounding air is the same temp as the exhaust. Doubtful.

        • Duane

          Yup, McG … today’s thermal imagers paint a rather detailed picture of a ship regardless of diesel exhausts or any other point source of warm or hot gas.

    • NavySubNuke

      Looks a bit like she caught on fire already!

      • Kenneth Millstein

        Worry not, she will look ship shape once it gets to where its going.

      • PolicyWonk

        No worries – the scrap yard won’t mind 😀

        Given the ever-so-slow rate the mission packages are coming out, we might be better off mothballing both LCS fleets so they might still have some life in them by the time they’re delivered.

        • NavySubNuke

          You are more optomistic than me if you ever expect the MCM module to be delivered.
          The jury also remains out about a functional and useful ASW module – but at least that has a chance.

          • PolicyWonk

            Granted this is the price you pay if you stupidly leave sufficient room for growth out of the design.

            But this is why I recommended mothballing the whole fleet: eventually, they might figure out how to make the MCM and ASW packages work. OTOH, by the time they do, these pier queens will already be scheduled for their turn at the scrapyard (assuming we don’t mothball them).

            We’re also wasting valuable resources by having crews manning ships that can’t defend themselves, take a punch, or reach out and touch someone, when the rest of the fleet has crewing problems.

            What we’re stuck with is a fleet of liabilities, as opposed to assets.

          • ElmCityAle

            “…if you stupidly leave sufficient room for growth out of the design…” – is this claim, which you’ve repeated in several comments, based upon clear public information? As I’ve responded previously, it’s difficult to believe both ships were designed with massive, empty spaces for mission modules/equipment but cannot actually carry that expected (considerable) weight.

          • PolicyWonk

            Sadly, both classes of these “littoral combat ships” do have large empty spaces allocated for mission modules. Unfortunately, while the USN hasn’t had the courage to admit how badly they blew it w/r/t LCS acquisition, there are many articles available that clearly state this is in fact the case.

            For example: there is an interview with former CNO Adm. Jonathan Greenert on Breaking Defense, where he declares that neither class of “littoral combat ship” was ever “intended to venture into the littorals to engage in combat”.

            Even setting aside this astonishing declaration – a ship that was never intended to carry weapons of significance isn’t going to have the displacement to support them.

            When the discussion came up shortly thereafter and the LCS PEO was trying to float the idea of using LCS as the basis for a frigate design, Breaking Defense did an analysis on what armaments and/or additional protection could be added to LCS. The experts they had review the options concluded that because of weight restrictions that would otherwise impede LCS performance – the only improvements that could be made to either class of would merely be marginal.

            However, if you follow the history of the MCM and ASW mission packages – part of the reason why they aren’t ready is due to the fact they couldn’t stay within weight restrictions (let alone the horrible reliability issues, etc.).

            The information is out there.

          • Lazarus

            USN never “blew” anything with LCS. The reserved, modular space has proved useful in allowing a back fit of ASCM’s to LCS.

            You do not seem to know much about the LCS program beyond defense press articles.

          • PolicyWonk

            Riiiiiiiiight. That’s why the so-called “littoral combat ship” was “never intended to venture into the littorals to engage in combat”, according to former CNO Adm. Jonathan Greenert?

            LCS hasn’t met any of the many promises made – and you know it.

            The easy switching in/out of the mission packages is a monstrous FAIL.
            The crew size of 40 was a FAIL.
            A ship called “littoral combat” that isn’t suited for combat in the littorals is a FAIL.
            A ship that cannot protect itself, take a punch, or reach out and touch someone is useless as a combatant – FAIL.

            At this point – we consider ourselves fortunate if they make it from one port to another without breaking down. Just being a basic ship is hard enough for LCS – let alone expecting a monstrously expensive, commercial-grade utility boat to function as an SSC, the purpose of which it was neither designed or built for.

            A simple comparison of any other navy’s SSC’s of equal or even half the tonnage quickly reveals what every sailor in the LCS fleet knows: if they end up in a real fight with another navy’s ship – they’re probably gonna die.

            I guess the cavernous, reserved, modular space comes in handy for missile launchers that had to be bolted to the deck?

            So while its possible you’re right – I might not know much. But then I happen to agree with the findings of the USN’s IG, the OMB, and DOT&E, as opposed to the failures that operate the LCS PEO, that the USN itself has declared is “the program that broke USN acquisition”.

            I do however have to give the LCS PEO credit where credit is due: they ran a highly successful corporate welfare program that delivers maximum dollars to Lockmart and Austal for the worst possible ROI.

          • Duane

            You’ve repeated that same lie dozens of times at USNI, and I’ve called you on it dozens of times.

            That is NOT what the admiral said. Please stop lying.

            The Admiral said that (back in 2012, before current upgrades to LCS such as SeaRam, COMBATTS-21, and OTH missiles were installed on LCS) that LCS, because they are designed to operate independently in the littorals and not as part of aggregated squadrons such as CSGs, LCS would be vulnerable to air attack in A2/AD environments.

            The Admiral then added (this was given in sworn testimony at a Congressional hearing in 2012) that an AEGIS equipped Arleigh Burke DDG would ALSO be at risk in the same A2/AD environment if operating independently, away from a CSG, because an AB is not designed to operate independently, but as part of a multi-ship air defense umbrella for a CSG along with other ABs and Ticos.

            You always leave all that other stuff out when you spin your lies about LCS, PW.

            btw – I am being factual and truthful when I characterize what you say as “lies”, because they are lies.

            Just google the full statement to Congress by Admiral Greenert. It’s all there in the public record. Read it.

          • NavySubNuke

            LOL. It really is funny when a proven liar such as yourself actually accuses other people of lying.
            Oh check out the pictures above by they – besides the obvious soot you’ll notice that Little Rock hasn’t had her after-market ASCM launcher slap-haphazardly welded on yet. I’m sure the Navy will get around to it eventually but lets not forget that the Navy only gets “extras” like that – the only real firepower on this failed class – for extra cost over and above the $600M+ (not including mission modules) the Navy is already wasting buying these overpriced death traps.

          • NavySubNuke

            Let’s not forget the original cost THRESHOLD was $150M per copy —- not even the objective!!
            It really is amazing to see the original lofty goals of LCS compared side by side with the useless pile of sh*t the navy actually received for 4x the threshold cost and something like 6-7x the objective cost.

          • Lazarus

            really? The first FFG 7 had a threshold cost of $50m and later rose to $127m; even when adjusted for inflation.

          • NavySubNuke

            So because the FFG arrived at 2.54X the initial cost threshold (at least per your claims) we shouldn’t question the fact that LCS cost >4X the initial cost threshold?
            It would be interesting to see what the later FFG’s cost considering bare bones LCS with no mission modules are still >4X threshold cost (though inflation certainly plays a role in that). Once we add in the billions spent on mission modules things start looking even worse.

          • Lazarus

            Why do you constantly repeat the same, tired arguments? Please show where the USN IG has commented on the LCS program or where someone in the Navy said LCS “broke” Navy acquisition; a system that has arguably been damaged since the days of McNamara.

          • the_artist_formerly_known_as_m

            Laz. See Sean Stackley (then ASN(RDA)) during testimony to SASC back in 2015. He was the guy in charge of Navy acqusition.

            ****

            “The experience of LCS, it broke the Navy,” said Sean Stackley, assistant secretary of the Navy for research, development and acquisition, according to Military (dot) com.

            “We have our program managers pretty much under a microscope right now, and we’ve taken things like cost and we’ve put cost into our requirements so that you don’t get to ignore costs while you’re chasing requirement,” he added.

          • Duane

            His knowledge is non-existent. His presumed excess of expertise is limitless.

          • the_artist_formerly_known_as_m

            The modular space to my knowledge isn’t being used to mount ASCMs. They are fixed to the deck. Care to ellaborate?

    • muzzleloader

      Looks like RPG hits.

    • Rocco

      Call it modern measure 33.1

    • David Oldham

      Looks like the ship was in a battle but we all know how that would end….

  • NavySubNuke

    Not a bad liberty port visit – hopefully those with families were given the opportunity to bring them up at least for a portion of the visit.

  • Chesapeakeguy

    Do they have enough crewmen to put together a paint detail in Mayport?

    • Rocco

      Lol!!😉……Hey I’ll take the job the weather is nice this time of year!!

    • NavySubNuke

      You would think all those months tied to the pier in Canada would have left plenty of time for painting.
      Unless of course the soot we see is all a result from starting up and getting underway….

      • Chesapeakeguy

        Well, if it was too cold to be able to get under way, I reckon it was too cold to paint. I wonder if the soot can be scrubbed off as opposed to having to be painted? Either way, warmer climates appear to be a big part of the ‘cure’. LOL..

        • sid

          The Little Rock spent several days moored at Montreal as shipping continued down the Seaway…Albeit with some difficulty.

          It was the Navy which made the decision to keep her there.

          When it comes to the LCS is there any honesty to ever be had???

          • Chesapeakeguy

            Ummmm, OK. The NAVY made the decision. Who has disputed that? Perhaps the more relevant question is WHY did the Navy make that decision? I don’t fault the crew of the Little Rock in any way. Never have. Perhaps your ire is better directed elsewhere?.

          • sid

            Point is the Navy’s -Navy Leadership (such as it is) and not the crew’s- narrative is that it was the icing conditions which idled the ship for months, when in fact, it was the vulnerability of the waterjets to fouling.

          • Chesapeakeguy

            Yes. WE all know that. Who has said otherwise?

      • Duane

        The soot was the result of running the ship’s aux diesel dockside 24/7 for three months because, apparently, the dock they were at lacked shore power. That’s why the neighbors complained of the noise from the DG.

        • NavySubNuke

          Thank you for once again demonstrating your complete and utter lack of personal integrity.
          I realize that as an LCS fan-boy you will lie whenever given the chance to try to improve the image of this failed program but you should realize how transparent your lies are to people who actually know how things like this work.
          Anyone with any working knowledge of this subject knows that there is no way the ship ran it’s aux diesel 24/7 this entire time just because there was a lack of shore power. In fact the linked article discussing the issue, which anyone of measurable intelligence would of course read, makes it clear they were talking about the generators on the pier. Generators the Navy always brings in any time shore side generator power is required for an extended period of time.
          Nice try though troll.

      • Lazarus

        Not in cold conditions.

        • NavySubNuke

          Define “cold” — looking at the weather in Montreal over the month of march there were plenty of days when the temp was above 40 and the crew could have been painting.

  • Ed L

    Now when it gets to Mayport, paint it white with a Red stripe on it. Give it and the others to the Coast Guard. If it can’t stay at sea for prolong periods of time then it does need to be in the Navy.

    • cutterman75

      Why do you hate the U.S. Coast Guard? “Now hear this Navy” you bought it, you can keep it!
      The last thing the Coast Guard needs, is your mistake.

      • Ed L

        Okay use them for target practice

    • tiger

      Why would they want it? It does not break ice nor does it looks useful for search & rescue.

      • Ed L

        They can keep it south of the Carolinas

    • DaSaint

      The OPC will outperform it for it’s specific intended missions. No need for 40+kts speed and short legs. The USCG needs platforms, but much more cost-effective than the LCS. In fact, the OPC could come in at 1/2 to 2/3 the cost of an LCS.

  • tiger

    The Little Rock sounds like the Gunboat in the, “Sand Pebbles.” Trapped in port waiting for the river to rise. At least this has a Happy ending.

    • Rocco

      Great movie though!!

    • PolicyWonk

      That gun boat was better armed…

      • Duane

        By the standards of the 1920s, it was better armed than a Tico or Arleigh Burke, with 2 5-in guns and 8 40mm AA guns.

        Maybe, just maybe, there is a reason we don’t build such gunboats 100 years later

        • Chesapeakeguy

          What? Say WHAT? Did you ever see the movie being discussed? It had ONE small cannon forward, and a handful of machine guns that could be mounted at various points. The crew had access to weapons like BARs. Why do you do this to yourself?

          • PolicyWonk

            HA!

            He obviously didn’t see the movie and was trying to BRAVO SIERRA this forum (again).

            FAIL.

          • Chesapeakeguy

            His inability to follow a discussion is legendary. But I admit it is fun to watch him dig a deeper hole for himself when he gets caught in these kinds of foul ups. LOL..

          • tiger

            The dvd is close by, but they had like a 3″ shielded mount forward and two Lewis guns on the bridge deck.

          • Chesapeakeguy

            Yes!

          • Duane

            The actual vessel used in the movie was The San Pablo, which was typical of US Navy river and coastal gun boats. The armaments were as I stated.

          • You correctly stated the armament for the real world USS San Pablo. Unfortunately, that ship was a seaplane tender and not a river gunboat. While I have never seen the movie, the real US Yangtze gunboats of that time period carried an armament of 2x 3″ gun and 8-10x .30 machineguns – an armament that LCS beats quite handily even without counting helicopters and missiles.

          • tiger

            Never seen the movie? Give it a try this weekend.

          • Chesapeakeguy

            No, it was not. The vessel used in the movie was BUILT for the movie. You’ve been caught again. The ship built was based on the USS Villalobos (PG-42), which had originally been built for Spain. Its armament listed in Wikipedia is 4 three pounders, and 2 one pounders. But seeing how we are talking about the MOVIE itself, the FICTIONAL USS San Pablo had a small cannon forward and a couple of machine guns mounted top side. That was it. Do endeavor to actually know some facts before partaking on here Duane. Trust me, you’ll be the better for it…

          • sid

            “The actual vessel used in the movie was The San Pablo, which was typical
            of US Navy river and coastal gun boats. The armaments were as I
            stated.”

            It was a movie prop Duane. They built it in Taiwan. Nothing at all real about it.

        • Murray

          Just checked my copy of “Yangtze River Gunboats 1900-49” and no USN gunboats were armed with 5-inch or 40 mm guns. Main armament was varied and included 4-inch, 3-inch and 6-pounders depending on the class. Secondary armament was usually 8-10 machine guns.

      • Lazarus

        No.

      • tiger

        Bet there is no Steve Mcqueen in the engineroom of a LCS.

        • PolicyWonk

          If there was, that LCS would actually provide some value to the taxpayers.

          Otherwise, its just another liability.

  • PolicyWonk

    Well, the Little Rock could’ve been a pier queen in Montreal OR in Florida: either way – that boat is delivering the same value to the taxpayers ;-P

    • NavySubNuke

      No kidding – especially since she hasn’t had her after market ACM launcher welded on yet so she has no real combat capability and is nothing but an over priced death trap.
      Luckily the exhaust from her engines comes out almost directly amidship right at the water line — exactly the place any competent ship designer would make the most attractive target to any IR seeking missile 😉

  • Ed L

    I was wondering with the snow and ice on the deck. then I remember the LCS doesn’t have a boiler for steam. it most likey have a water jacket on the gas turbine that collects the heat for hot water but the temperture of the water is less than 200 degrees F.

  • Dan O’Brian

    This whole “iced-in for the winter” cover has worked out beautifully for the “Largely no-Combat Ship”

    • Duane

      Yeah, it worked out just great for the LCS haters, giving them fertile ground for expressing their otherwise idle and silly ship hate. What’s not to like about snarking over the fact that a warship isn’t a competent icebreaker, given that every other warship in the US Navy moonlights as an icebreaker in the St. Lawrence Seaway when it is officially closed to navigation every winter from late December to late March.

      • Matthew Schilling

        Stop posting your replies twice.
        Stop posting your replies twice.

    • Duane

      Yeah, it worked out just great for the LCS haters, giving them fertile ground for expressing their otherwise idle and silly ship hate. What’s not to like about snarking over the fact that a warship isn’t a competent icebreaker, given that every other warship in the US Navy moonlights as an icebreaker in the St. Lawrence Seaway when it is officially closed to navigation every winter from late December to late March.

  • Corporatski Kittenbot 2.0

    Were local kids holding a magnifying glass next to it?

    Ship looks in in a state

    • Kenneth Millstein

      Did you ever try painting in 10 below with gale force winds hitting you in the face. I am quite sure it will look ship shape just a few days after it gets to where it is going.

      • Corporatski Kittenbot 2.0

        All I do is paint ships in freezing weather.

        I live for it.

        • Kenneth Millstein

          Really!

  • the_artist_formerly_known_as_m

    Wow. She looks in absolutely terrible shape for a ship that was commissioned a mere four months ago.

    I don’t imagine our allies or competitors will be too impressed when they see a beat-up LCS come into port.

    • Duane

      Yup … because we all know that LCS routinely spend 3 months tied up to docks without shorepower during winter ice up on the St. Lawrence .

      • the_artist_formerly_known_as_m

        There are plenty of other photos of newly commissioned LCSs looking pretty darn shabby.

  • Western

    I’m uncomfortable with the apparent acceptance of this dereliction of duty. No radios or meteorologists available? As significant as a grounding or collision in a seaway, the ship was rendered inoperable due to command decisions. That’s OK in the new Navy? And then, no deck party, no scrub brushes or paint? No fire tug with a hose? Embarassing.

    • jerseydave

      Not only that, scheduling the ship to transit the St. Lawrence Seaway in December should have been rethought months before. That seaway freezing over in winter isn’t a tough possibility to imagine. At least the Sailors got to visit Montreal.

    • tiger

      You really want to spend 3 months in a fun town playing Mr. Clean?

  • John McHugh

    In the spirit of international cooperation and détente, I propose Lend / Lease this entire class to the PRC – PLAN to demonstrate our ongoing trust and faith in their good intent in regards to the SCS. These would make excellent targets, I mean patrol craft for them.

  • Ctrot

    Did she catch on fire sometime during the winter?

  • scottled

    Holy Sheiss! THIS is the most recent and almost brand-new Littoral Cruise Ship Little Rock?! What an absolute POS! What did the CO and crew do while drawing per diem all that time – sure didn’t waste any effort on pesky hull maintenance. Must not have wanted to get those nice new green “Navy” camo uniforms stained with Haze Grey paint. Even just hire Bob’s Pressure Washing Service, wouldn’t hurt to TRY to pretend to care. This thing looks like someone stole it, and we see now why the Canadian Coast Guard escorted this junkpile OUT of Canadian waters, just to make sure it left. Are we seriously considering “this” to represent an FOC military-capable combat warship in the 21st Century for our Navy? Return it to the builder, cancel the contract NOW, sue for reimbursement and put some of those corporate execs and Flag officers on trial. Also, it is interesting that the pier’s neighbors complained about the noise from shore power generators, so the ship was not even providing its own hotel services and look how smoked up it is. IR seeker anti-ship cruise missile anyone? That anchor well will provide several nice 90 degree steel trihedrals, perfect for terminal guidance seeker activation and lock-on. Did anyone even check to see what sort of threats are anticipated? What a disgrace!

    • Kenneth Millstein

      Did you ever try painting steel or even aluminum in 10 below with gale force winds blowing?

      • scottled

        The G.D. thing is FOUR months old! Did you ever try holding incompetence accountable before the law and the American public? I have deployed to the Med and IO with twice the duration of this POS stint in Canada, while were conducting flight ops 24-7 in some cases, and the ship NEVER looked this neglected. Make some more excuses, while the rest of the U.S. and current/retired Naval officers look on this as shameful and pathetic.

        • Kenneth Millstein

          Wow! You don’t mince words do you. I guess having been on Aircraft Carrier makes you an expert in painting a ship. I painted my Destroyer the USS Mullinnix DD944 while hanging over the side on a wooden stage 50′ feet above the drink. i know a thing or two about painting a Navy ship and I would never recommend doing it in the conditions the Little Rock was in.

          • sid

            She had running rust and dirt trails under her nets at her commissioning! She looked bad leaving Marinette.

            And nobody said to paint her in Montreal!!! The big soot stain could have been cleaned up. Heck, ships’ crew doesn’t take care of LCS’s anyway, contractors could have don it with little trouble. Nobody over the side or on punts, or any of the other silly excuses getting floated in this thread.

            The larger issue is that the USN no longer cares about the appearance of its ships.

            Spent 8 years on sea duty…4 of those aboard a sister of the Mullinix….And when my father was XO of a CVA, I learned about the term, “Paint the side the Admiral sees!’

            You aren’t telling me anything I don’t already know.

          • Kenneth Millstein

            I have a very simple reply, relax!

        • Duane

          What you call incompetence is physics. Didn’t you ever read the application instructions on a paint can? Where it says “Do not apply below __ degrees F or C? That number is usually above 50 degrees F. Which does not happen in Montreal whenever the St. Lawrence is frozen such that only icebreakers can navigate on their own.

          Sheesh!

          • sid

            The 118 year old fireboat Edward Cottter, which led the Little Rock into Buffalo harbor back in December was much more ship shape.

            There was NO excuse for the rust and running dirt trails she sported for her commisionning day. And the half secured fender on her starboard side was a nice little added touch as well.

            Perhaps the SWO community will regain its core skills as competent mariners…

            One day.

          • wilkinak

            There are several reasons. First the weather, paint doesn’t like temps below 50 degrees. The weather in Wisconsin, Michigan or Ontario is not often that time of year.

            Second, environmentally friendly paint stinks. It washes off with water. On a ship in the water, it doesn’t stay long. The ships are fighting a losing battle, given the tools they are provided.

            It’s not a matter of pride, it’s a matter of weather & poor materials.

          • sid

            First off, the Little Rock’s superstructure isn’t painted.

            That makes your second point moot.

        • tiger

          At least they have not run into a tanker.

      • sid

        Nobody was talking about painting…How about just cleaning.

        Heck, she looked terrible in Buffalo for her commissioning!

        • Kenneth Millstein

          OK, you win!

        • wilkinak

          Do you scrub the outside of your house in 10 below weather?

          • sid

            It wasn’t 10 below that first week of March in Montreal.

    • PolicyWonk

      “we see now why the Canadian Coast Guard escorted this junkpile OUT of Canadian waters, just to make sure it left…”
      ================================
      Ouch….

  • Tom65

    I guess the Canadians aren’t buying.

  • RobM1981

    Our ships seem unable to avoid collisions, even with the most modern electronics aboard.

    Our ships seem unable to remain ship-shape, even when brand new, and tied to a pier for over three months.

    There is no connection between these things. Pride and tradition are alive and well in the US Navy, right?

    Competent officers are leading disciplined crews, obviously…

  • Kenneth Millstein

    I can think of a lot of places a lot worse that Montreal to be stuck in. For instance, I was stuck in Panama City, Panama for 35 days in the Navy back in September,1967. The daytime temps. were in the low 100s and I had to sleep on the steel deck of my destroyer the USS Gyatt DD712. As you might expect since it was a WWII era destroyer it didn’t have any AC except for the officers. In all fairness it did have retrofitted AC for the crews quarters that never worked at all. As a civilian I have spent many a day or three or four in Montreal and I would re-up even at my advanced age of 71 to spend the winter in Montreal. I lived in NYC and there is a direct train from NYC to Montreal. RT fare was just $95.00 just a few years ago.

  • Duane

    It’s just flat out amazing how a small handful guys looking at long distance low resolution photos on their little hand held smart phones can conduct white glove inspections and declare a ship to be a scow. I’ll bet there is a job waiting for each of you at NAVSEA as the US Navy’s crack team of long range remotely sensed ship inspectors.

    I mean, you’re obviously all paint and coatings experts, given that you’ve all decreed that applying marine coatings to exterior hull and superstructure surfaces in near zero degree air temps is actually a snap, meaning you all must be familiar with the Navy’s latest secret formula cold weather coatings specs.

    sarc/off

  • Duane

    It’s just flat out amazing how a small handful guys looking at long distance low resolution photos on their little hand held smart phones can conduct white glove inspections and declare a ship to be a scow. I’ll bet there is a job waiting for each of you at NAVSEA as the US Navy’s crack team of long range remote sensing ship inspectors.

    I mean, you’re obviously all paint and coatings experts, given that you’ve all decreed that applying marine coatings to exterior hull and superstructure surfaces in near zero degree air temps is actually a snap, meaning you all must be familiar with the Navy’s latest secret formula cold weather coatings specs.

    sarc/off

  • Grimwald

    Always questioned the idea of naval ship building on the Great Lakes. It’s Ryan’s home district so…

  • D. Jones

    The threat of another LCS unleashed drove Kim Jong Un to acquiesce and denuclearize the Korean peninsula.

  • David Oldham

    So no LCS’s in the colder areas of the world, warm weather only I guess.

    • Duane

      No CVNs, Ticos, or Arleigh Burkes either. Not a one of our warships are capable ice breakers. Never needed to be, either.

      By crackee, maybe thats why ice breakers are needed?

      • tiger

        That ice is not even 6 inches thick.

  • Lazarus

    The USN spends about 99% of its time operating in warm climates. Little Rock’s delay is probably another good, post Cold War wake up call that ships will operate in a variety of environments.

    • PolicyWonk

      Brilliant observation after wasting $36B taxpayer dollars on a fleet of liabilities.

      • Duane

        By all means, lets waste 10 trillion equipping a surface fleet for icebreaking service none of them will ever actually perform, or ever need to perform.

        You’re getting more brilliant by the moment, PW!

        I’m sure that you must be Vlad Putin’s favored candidate for US Navy CNO …. as his gesture to make the US Navy just as wasteful and decrepit as his Russian Navy.

        • sid

          The Little Rock was stopped at Montreal when propellor equipped ships continued to make their way out the St. Lawrence.

          What sidelined her was the fragility of the exposed components on her waterjets, and …NOT…the ice conditions on the Seaway.

          • Duane

            As the Great Lakes/St. Lawrence Seaway organization – the operators of the seaway – state, the Seaway is closed to navigation from late December to late March every year. The only ships moving through the Seaway during that time are led by icebreakers operated by the Seaway, which is a very slow and very expensive operation.

          • sid

            The Seaway closure was pushed back because several “salties”…and the Little Rock…still had to transit outbound. The Seaway was open and the remaining freighters were moving (although the Federal Biscay got stuck in the Snell Lock) when the decision for the Little Rock to stay at Montreal was made. She could have transited out with them.

            The Seaway closure was extended to January 11th and closed as the last ship cleared. The Little Rock arrived in Montreal to fix her “minor repair” on January 4th. It has been reported that it only took hours to fix.

            Bottom line: The Seaway was passable and ships were transiting. Ice was a problem at the Snell Lock, but resources were there to assist. The Little Rock got stuck because of the fragility of her waterjets and the Navy didn’t want to risk them fouling again.

      • Lazarus

        What is your fleet experience or analysis to suggest such; other than quoting defense news reporting.

    • NavySubNuke

      99% Laz? I realize this is almost certainly just hyperbole and in no way based on fact — much like all the claims about what LCS would actually do before it was build — but do you have actual data on that?
      What exactly do you consider the break point between a “cold” climate and a “warm” climate for you? Is there an exact degree when it becomes a “cold” climate or do you use a sliding scale?

      • Lazarus

        Would you care to provide data contrary to this? Yes, the submarine force operates in cold weather locations, but the surface fleet does not.

        • NavySubNuke

          I’d like to hear your definition of “cold weather” locations first – it isn’t exactly a quantitative term — to someone from Florida anything <65F degrees is a cold weather climate while someone from Alaska would say that it is only a "cold climate" when the temperature is <-10F.

        • the_artist_formerly_known_as_m

          It’s hard to refute a statement that isn’t supported by any data!

    • the_artist_formerly_known_as_m

      Laz, that’s the most ridiculous statement I’ve heard this year. Granted – it’s only April and you have eight more months to blog!

      Look at the Navy’s ship tracker. Plenty of ships spending time in the North Atlantic, North Pacific and East Asia.

    • sid

      Did you see Capt Hendrix’s article in the national Review about forward basing the Freedoms in the Baltic?

      As the Little Rock demonstrated that LCS’s water jets cannot tolerate even the least bit of ice, think we can count of the Russians to not start any conflicts from December to May Laz?

  • El Kabong

    Yup….you didn’t learn your lesson from the last time you were banned for trolling.

  • Alex Andrite

    And their ‘campaign’ ribbon for that ‘deployment’ looks like …. what ?

    • tiger

      A Expos jersey…

      • Alex Andrite

        oh crum … you are right on. Good one.

  • the_artist_formerly_known_as_m

    The one thing I thought LCS might be good for is low-end naval presence. If one intends to “show the flag”, the visual appearance of the ship to which that flag is attached is actually kind of important. The ship is essentially an extension of the national image.

    Unfortunately, after a scant four months after commissioning, LCS-8 looks like a 60- year old Malaysian garbage scow. What sort of message does a ship that looks like that to allies (and potential enemies) when it pulls into port?

  • old guy

    Hey there, I heard there was NO sea ice this year. It must be their imagination.