Sunday, November 6, 2011

USS Razorback…

This morning we headed out to do a bunch of shopping to bring in food and all that good stuff.  Found a nice Wal-Mart Supercentre, so that took care of that!

This afternoon we headed just up past the entrance to the RV Park, and found the USS Razorback.

This Sub was built in 1943, for fighting in the second World War.  It holds the record for being the longest active Sub in the World!  53 total years of service.  Now it is a museum in North Little Rock.


This is one of two propellers sitting on the shore at Little Rock… this boat is going nowhere!


This is what it looked like during the 2nd. World War… it was later refitted with the new tower… and they got rid  of the deck guns.


This is the new tower below, with the American and Turkish Flags flying… why Turkey??? Glad you asked… in 1970 the U.S. sold the sub to Turkey for $300,000.00.   The Turks used it longer than the Americans did!  they kept it running till 2001.  In 2004 North Little Rock bought it from the Turks for $37,500.00 and towed it home!  It cost $500,000.00 to tow it home!  All donated funds.


This is the ramp they used below, to load the 30 foot, 3,000 lb. torpedoes… It held 24 of them!


These are the rear torpedo tubes, 4 of them… lots of controls to fire them off, that is for sure… 70 men on average lived on the Sub… it would be crowded, that is for sure… only one shower, and you might get one every 2 weeks if you were lucky, so it probably smelled real nice on board… the record the sub was submerged we 88 days in a row, with a Soviet Destroyer sitting right overhead preventing them form coming to the surface!  Imagine that!


So it is kind of hard to  “hold it”… for 88 days, and eventually you have to go somewhere… no door, but lots of valves!  Only 2 of these on board for enlisted men.


These controls below controlled power to the electric motors while underwater, something like a “gas pedal”…


There was dials and controls everywhere!


Below is the ship’s “Flag”… the round dots stand for merchant ships sunk during the War, and at the bottom, the 6 big red dots are for battleships and destroyers sunk!  It was very active.  The 5 Stars at the bottom you see, stand for 5 U.S. Airmen, rescued at sea by the Sub, after they were shot down! 


Below is where some of the men slept… if you had too many on board, you would share this bunk with another man who would take over from you and keep it warm for you.


This is the mess for the enlisted men… only 4 tables, but the food was apparently great!


This gentlemen below, name unknown to us, attested to the food, as he served on one of these Subs!  He had great stories he gave us 1st hand as we made it along our tour, including prime rib for dinner at times!  We had a tour guide that was very informed, but it is also nice to hear it first hand, and the guide let this gentleman give his story!  It was great! He is standing beside one of 3 diesel generators that were used to recharge the 280 onboard batteries that ran the sub, plus provided power.


Two cooks made dinner for all!



The gentleman that served aboard, indicated the cooks could make powdered milk taste great! They had a big fridge just below deck that held a lot of food! 


You never knew when you had to send a message to the President, and you would do it from here… what is with the reel to reel tape???


This is the main control room below… lots of dials, with the coning tower located right above.  We could not get up to the coning tower as it is not ready for tours yet… too bad.  this ship is 95% operational still.  They had all the systems running!  The Turks left it in good shape, but all the controls have Turkish Tags on them now!


Every ship has a steering wheel!  


Lots of controls… I just love touring stuff like this, and I am very lucky to have Judy that is always willing to come with me!   You had to crawl through some small hatches, and climb some steep ladders to do this tour… yes, I love the RVing lifestyle!


They have one of these to keep the Sub level… I have  two to keep the RV level!


And you never know when you might need some rifles or the odd handgun!


The Ship Officers got a little nicer accommodation…


Now the Captain even got his own little Office… and private bunk!  It pays to be at the top!


Our tour started at the back of the Sub, and ended up in the front, with the forward torpedo tubes, 6 of them!  What a great tour!


They also had a nice little museum attached to the Sub tour that we took.  Check out this issue below on Dec. 8, 1941 and the headlines of the San Francisco Chronicle!  Of course, it is the day after Pearl Harbour!  This is an original copy!  Subscription cost $3.00 for a year!


Whew… what a tour we had today.  It was nice to tour the Sub today, as the weather is still overcast, but warm… mid 60’s I guess. 

We found out today we have some technical problems, that will actually hold us here another day in Little Rock.  If you are still reading this too long blog at this point, you will know I found a crack in the metal of our “Mototote”, the device we use to carry the Burgman.  It is attached to the Jeep’s trailer hitch.  The crack is only minor, and effects the piece that secures the motorcycle to the carrier.  We have decided to try to get it fixed here to be on the safe side.  We need a welder to fix it, so now you know my job for tomorrow…

Till tomorrow…


  1. that was quite the tour of the Submarine!..all that time underwater I can only imagine what it must have been like for those 'boys'!!

  2. I can't imagine 88 days under water without going bonkers. Even with good food. Great tour. And good luck finding a welder tomorrow.

  3. Nice tour and photos of the Sub. That's the kind of tour that interests me as well. Love that kind of stuff. Ships and Aircraft work for me everytime. Good job:))

  4. Enjoyed the tour of the USS Razorback and shared with a friend of mine who served in the US Navy Submarine Force during the Cold War.

  5. Have enjoyed all your Little Rock posts and pictures. Never imagined that there was so much to see. Hope you find a welder easily. Looking for the Leafs do good with Florida tomorrow. Canucks were hot last night with the 6-2 win over the hawks.

  6. Thanks for the tour of the sub. Very interesting. Hope you find your welder quickly.

  7. Nice tour of the sub and Little Rock, the past couple of blogs.

    Trust you will hve little difficulty finding a competent welder for the fix up to the Mototote.

  8. Great tour and picks of the Razorback. Sure must have been an interesting tour of the sub.

    $500,000 for a tow? Didn't those guys have Good Sam Emergency Road Service?