Subase Pearl Harbor Det 716 

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Trim Party


By STS2(SS) Tim Kehoe USS Sculpin (SSN-590)
Published with full permission of author

Anyone remember the trim parties?  For those who don’t know, imagine a newbie on a BCP trying to learn a new trick.  He is doing his best to keep the boat level as it transverses through varying degrees of water temp and salinity; dealing with currents, under currents, over currents, add in wave action and he can be busy. He is following the commands from the diving officer to transfer water from the various trim tanks so that the helm and plane operators can stay on course and depth.  Let’s say for argument sake that as each bubble goes runs about 200 lbs each.  BACK TO OUR STORY.  One board guy picks up on the fact that there is an opportunity at hand.  He grabs two buddies and heads aft (+/- 600 lbs.)  As they pass through the mess decks giggling, two cribbage players pick up on what is going on and abandon their game (an additional +/- 400 lbs, 1,000 lbs total for those who are counting).  Another guy cranking drops his apron and leaves the bowl and rag on the mess deck table.  The ward room steward follows as well.  As they pass maneuvering, a trainee says “I’ll be back” and joins up.  So as the crew heads toward the shaft alley, they come across a qualified guy going over system details with a newbie trying to fill out a qual card.  The qualified guy grabs the newbie’s arm (who has no idea what’s up) and drags him along.  PAUSE Writers note: Have to stop here to wipe tears from my eyes from laughter as I relive these moments in my mind.  BACK TO OUR STORY…So now we have 10 guys at 200 lbs each (that’s about 2,000 lbs total give or take) as far aft as they can be, all piled together giggling themselves silly.  They stay that way for about 10 minutes.  MEANWHILE BACK IN THE CONTROL ROOM:  Remember our trainee on the BCP?  Right now the diving officer is out of his chair with his mouth about an inch from his ear yelling at him “get the weight out of our ass!!!”  Frantically, his fingers dance across the BCP to line up to pump forward.  Finally, he gets 2,000 lbs pumped forward to offset the 2,000 lbs at the screw.  Remember those guys?  Well they are on their way back forward.  Oh sure, they’ll lose a few guys along the way (the guy trying to get his qual card filled out and the guy helping him, the trainee in maneuvering, the guy cranking and the ward room steward) but that’s okay because there are a lot of ‘husky’ TM’s in the torpedo room, their next destination.

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