USS New York Faces Urgent Blade Repair

The Dive Locker at Southeast Regional Maintenance Center in Mayport accomplished a first-ever waterborne repair on one of USS New York’s (LPD 21) propeller blades, enabling the ship to deploy on time with the Iwo Jima Amphibious Ready Group Dec. 11.

During a routine underwater hull cleaning in mid-November, one blade attachment bolt was found to be backed out. The bolt is one of 80 bolts that attaches controllable-pitch propeller blades to the main propeller hub. The 10-inch, 30-pound bolt was dangerously close to falling off.

Chief Warrant Officer 2 Sean Bryans, diving officer at SERMC, said maintenance teams from SERMC and Naval Sea Systems Command rushed to develop procedures to replace the bolt without pulling the ship out of the water.

Propeller blades are routinely removed from the hub while the ship is in the water for other ship classes, but never before on a San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship.

In addition to replacing the loose bolt, all eight bolts that hold that blade to the propeller hub were removed and replaced to conform to strict engineering specifications and to ensure the ship would be ready for the high tempo of a full deployment. In fact, all 80 bolts on both propellers were inspected to ensure proper condition and torque. Any bolts not meeting standards were replaced.

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Image: US Navy