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"The Short Life of the New USS Little Rock" Topic

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Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian10 Feb 2023 7:07 a.m. PST

…Not even six years later, the USS Little Rock will be decommissioned on March 31 at Mayport Naval Station in Florida, where it is stationed…

Military: link

Personal logo Murphy Sponsoring Member of TMP10 Feb 2023 7:37 a.m. PST

They were a bad design and poorly planned to start with. The ideas were great, but the designs and implementation were atrocious. Keeping 1-2 of them as training ships might be a good idea, but if not, I would say "scrap them, lesson learned, do it RIGHT next time. Oh and for whatever congress critters pushed this thing through, they need to reimburse the money wasted…."

SBminisguy10 Feb 2023 8:14 a.m. PST

It was a great design for the military contractors and suppliers, though!

Inch High Guy10 Feb 2023 9:35 a.m. PST

Maybe it's time to stop building new ones!

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP10 Feb 2023 9:59 a.m. PST

The Navy tried to ditch at least four of them, but has been forced to keep them by members of Congress who would see related jobs lost in their district. Worse the same contractor will be building the replacements. All political, shameless waste.

They were defective from the start, gear and propulsion issues, among other things. Some had to be towed into port after gear failures at sea They were fast, but loud, compromising some of their intended uses. Sailors nicknamed the LCS group "little crappy ships".

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP10 Feb 2023 10:05 a.m. PST


Here's some more details about the issues and the politics – quite a story. A cautionary tale.

microgeorge Supporting Member of TMP10 Feb 2023 11:55 a.m. PST

I wonder if any of the sons or daughters of the members of Congress that forced these ships thru serve on any of these ships.

microgeorge Supporting Member of TMP10 Feb 2023 12:37 p.m. PST

Dare we extend this discussion to the Admiral Zumwalt fiasco?

Red Jacket Supporting Member of TMP10 Feb 2023 1:16 p.m. PST

There is some interest in bringing the decommissioned vessel to become part of the fleet at the Buffalo Naval Park, given that we have the WWII Little Rock. I am against the idea unless it is part of a display about the excesses of the military industry complex.

Egoodlander10 Feb 2023 2:14 p.m. PST

Red Jacket, do we really want it here? The ships we have are a great representation of the navy….this one? lol…lets hold out for a carrier!

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP10 Feb 2023 8:25 p.m. PST

The ship broke down on its first deployment with multiple system failures, then more than a year of complex repairs, then broke down more or less for good on its second and final deployment. Too many things wrong to list…. It was the Congressman from Jacksonville Fla where the work was done who kept it on the books.

It does not sound like a good attraction, but it is kind of unique in its awfulness.

Zephyr110 Feb 2023 9:30 p.m. PST

"It does not sound like a good attraction"

It would be for divers if it was sunk as part of an artificial reef…

Raynman Supporting Member of TMP11 Feb 2023 6:45 a.m. PST

The government should get it's money back! Should have a lemon law clause in all contracts.

carne6811 Feb 2023 10:14 a.m. PST

I've been against the way the Navy ran this program from the beginning.
1. They sacrificed EVERYTHING to achieve the 40 Kt top speed, but cannot maintain that speed for long due to fuel constraints.
2. Too small crew to perform maintenance or damage control.
3. Built to a mercantile, not naval standard and not shock tested.
4. Tried to reinvent mission modules rather than adopt Danish Navy STANFLEX modules, already in service.
5. Ships are too large to operate in littorials.
6. Too lightly armed to operate in a high threat environment.
7. The Navy was supposed to select either the Freedom *OR* the Independence design and build ONE class of warships.
8. Catastrophic issues with combining gear and corrosion.
9. Fincantieri Marinette Marine, who screwed up the Freedom Class has been selected to build the new Constellation Class frigates, proving that the Navy has learned nothing.
10. There needs to be accountability. Asses should sting. Careers should be ended. Instead, the brass that signed off on this ongoing cluster Bleeped text for two decades will keep their rank, privileges and pensions and ride off to jobs with the very contractors they allowed to deliver these gold-plated abortions to the Navy.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP11 Feb 2023 10:25 a.m. PST

I agree carne68, great point by point list.. But you have to look at the role of lobbyists and certain members of Congress here too. They have made it impossible to get out of this mess. The Navy gets the blame for the particulars of the concept here, The crews were way too small and had no training to address some of the issues. But when the engine noise is too loud to listen for submarines, we have crossed a line. And when we have to keep towing the vessels in for repairs, we need a new supplier. But this is a sleazy looking deal that keeps on going thanks to the way we let Congress and contractors get away with things.

carne6812 Feb 2023 9:36 a.m. PST

11. No integral ASW capability (hull mounted sonar, towed array, mk32 torpedo tubes) or HF minehunting sonar.
12. ASW mission module never materialized, but the Navy got rid of the Perry class FFG.
13. Minehunting mission module never materialized, but the Navy got rid of the Osprey class MSH.
14. Mission modules were supposed to be swappable at pierside, in theater. In reality they require shipyard.
15. Many skills, especially minehunting, are extremely specialized. Asking a crew to shift from anti-surface to minehunting is stupid, bordering on moronic. Doing so in a ship that hasn't been shock tested is off the charts retarded.

The Freedom class should be scrapped in its entirety IMMEDIATELY.
The remnants of the Independence class that can pass INSURV, should be based in Mayport or somewhere on the Gulf Coast with mixed USN/USCG crews so that other useful vessels do not get tasked with Counter-Narco missions or "booze cruises" like UNITAS.
All further contracts should be cancelled.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP12 Feb 2023 10:20 a.m. PST

+ many 1s…. We have met the enemy and he is us.

ASW was said to have been compromised by the noise level on board. Maybe the result of the speed requirement. The crews were too small and not qualified to handle the breakdowns or the anticipated multi-function capability.

In any case,I hope some sort of outrage is building somewhere. The Congressmen from northern FLA and Wisconsin have a lot of explaining to do about continuing down this road with the same players. The repair company to be hired for the existing ships to be retained will cost us 4 billion, and it was their lobbyists who swung their deal. The tail wags the dog.

Thresher0112 Feb 2023 3:17 p.m. PST

An extreme waste of hard-earned, US taxpayer money at a time when we can ill-afford that.

Treasonous, and appalling.

People should be fired, lose pensions, or be imprisoned over this, if not worse.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP14 Feb 2023 2:34 p.m. PST

Misappropriation of funds for personal benefit by members of Congress. Crime or not, its a dirty deal. And these ships can put our people in harms way. They are lemons, defective. We should be able to toss them without being prevented by one or two members of Congress and their lobbying teams.

dapeters15 Feb 2023 1:02 p.m. PST

It's not the Congress or Lobbying teams but who hires them.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP15 Feb 2023 3:31 p.m. PST

Right, but we should be able to expect a member of Congress to act in the nation's best interest first.

dapeters16 Feb 2023 12:59 p.m. PST

Shouldn't we all be that way?

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP16 Feb 2023 1:48 p.m. PST

Of course! But everyday people dont get many real choices about who to represent them regarding this kind of conduct.

dapeters17 Feb 2023 12:34 p.m. PST

And the lobbyist?

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP17 Feb 2023 1:46 p.m. PST

Money talks. It's just a job to them as middlemen.

dapeters20 Feb 2023 2:12 p.m. PST

So money trumps national interest, when we say then do something about the money, the answer is that's un-American. (and Thought and prays.)

Robert Johnson21 Feb 2023 3:18 a.m. PST

Basically it's an overweight missile corvette with none of the advantages and all of the disadvantages of the type.

Why has it got three propulsion systems?
Why has it got extended range and endurance when it's not a high seas vessel?
Why didn't the USN buy Sa'ar 6 instead?

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP21 Feb 2023 6:30 a.m. PST

Too many roles to play. That was the Navy's fault, I presume. And not enough crew to run everything – or fix it.

The Sa'ar 6 corvettes were built in Germany for Israel. They are solid, medium speed and versatile, meant to protect against Hezbollah trouble makers. German built means no American jobs or contractors, so no pork, no benefits for a member of Congress to chase.

Heedless Horseman Supporting Member of TMP21 Feb 2023 10:19 a.m. PST

Wasn't part of the concept small crews rotating? HOW that was supposed to work, when you NEED specialists for various capabilities… plus 'general duties', well!

Blutarski21 Feb 2023 10:39 a.m. PST

If you go back into the archive of the USNI Proceedings from the mid-80s (IIRC), you will find the original essay arguing for the introduction of the LCS ("Littoral Combat Ship"). The authors made the point that the USN required a number of economical combat vessels which it could afford to commit to combat operations in enemy littoral waters (one of the reasons the USN had so many DDs in WW2). The design requirements foreseen were -


Fast forward about forty years and see what the Navy ended up with.


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