No announcement yet.

Bridge description for early US nuclear submarines

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Bridge description for early US nuclear submarines

    Click image for larger version

Name:	bridge diagram for subcommittee.jpg
Views:	109
Size:	370.0 KB
ID:	149378

    There are few photographs of the bridge atop the sail on nuclear submarines because there is basically nothing there. The intercommunications and necessary indications are contained in a 'bridge suitcase' which is taken to the bridge when the boat is surfaced underway and taken down to control room when the boat is going to submerge. The suitcase is plugged into a water/pressure tight receptacle on the bridge.

    The bridge opening is small and has only a deck far enough down that a person standing has the bridge edge about 'armpit' high. There are closure plates hinged to open to port and starboard with the split down the middle. The plates are generically called the 'clamshell'. When open they latch to a stiffener that is part of the sail structure. When open they latch to each other and to a longitudinal stiffener. Thus when submerge the bridge opening is faired to the top of the sail.

    The Bridge Suitcase, at least 40 years ago, was about 2 feet square and 6 inches thick. It weighed a considerable amount and was difficult to carry up the ladders to the bridge and back down. It was painted light machinery gray with the indicators being black. I will refrain from using the descriptors that submarine sailors used when handling the suitcase up and down.

    I have no drawings of the bridge or it's structure and drawings if they exist would not be available to the general public.
    I'll try to find a photo of the suitcase.

    The best description of the bridge view of a nuclear submarine of the early era is a facebook entry by the Nautilus Submarine Museum. Link is below:

  • #2
    Click image for larger version

Name:	Jack - Bridge Eq.jpg
Views:	35
Size:	75.9 KB
ID:	149975

    USS Jack Bridge layout with one version of the Portable Bridge Console.


    • #3
      Experience aboard USS Trepang shows that when dropped out of the bridge cockpit a suitcase will launch off the outboard edge of the shell coaming and ricochet off the end of the sail plane into the harbor below. An impressive splash upon entry!!! The CO and I observed this action while discussing pre-underway checklist progress at State Pier in NLON. He was not happy, but was quite understanding when the duty IC Man came to him and reported the casualty/loss. Hard to fault a kid when he's pooping razorblades!!!!!


      • #4
        Good input on the suitcase and bridge arrangement. Thanks.