Changes in the Fleet

Defense Industry Daily has an update on the status of the National Security Cutter (NSC) program. The seventh (Kimball) has been ordered and they report how the previously ordered cutters are progressing.

HII receives a $497 million fixed-price, incentive-fee contract from the U.S. Coast Guard to build WMSL 756, the 7th Legend Class National Security Cutter. Construction is expected to begin in January 2015, and delivery is scheduled for some time in 2018.

Ingalls has delivered the first 3 NSCs. WMSL 753 Hamilton is 81% complete and will deliver in Q3 2014; WMSL 754 James is 52% complete and will launch in April 2014; and WMSL 755 is scheduled for launch in the Q4 2015.  Sources: HII, “Ingalls Shipbuilding Awarded $497 Million Contract for Seventh U.S. Coast Guard National Security Cutter”.

Hamilton will be the first of two NSCs expected to be based in Charleston. Note the contract prices quoted are not the full cost of the ships.

Gallatin is being transferred to the Nigerian Navy, making this the second 378 transferred there. This leaves the Coast Guard with ten “high endurance cutters”, seven 378s and three NSCs, all on the West Coast.

The eighth Fast Response Cutter (FRC) has been commissioned and the ninth has been delivered.

 

7 thoughts on “Changes in the Fleet

  1. An interesting article here: http://www.usni.org/magazines/proceedings/2014-04/its-time-sea-control-frigate

    Lt. (j.g.) Howitt makes many excellent points, but perhaps one minor one he missed is that in case of a needed surge due to a blue-water fight, CG cuttermen (perhaps reservists, if greater diversification occurs there) could transition to these sea-control FFs based on the NSC. Except for certain systems it would be a direct transition.

    Another thought is the Navy and CG could cooperate better, with the Navy buying 3-4 extra of these Sea Control FFs, and let the CG man them. They’d be Cutters but occasionally operate with the Navy as 378s and 270s have. If needed, rather than sending commercial-standards built Cutters into a military scenario, the CG would at least have a few survivable cutters to deploy.

    • I doubt the Coast Guard would paint them gray. As seen in the Persian Gulf, the Coast Guard wants to present a less threatening appearance. Well Bucko, guess what? It works. The Coast Guard is not seen as a naval threat to anyone.

      • “The Coast Guard is not seen as a naval threat to anyone.”

        Very true. And the Coast Guard not actually being a threat to any other naval force is exactly the way the powers that be have wanted it since 1990. The civil service culture of the LSS and Lighthouse Service won in the end.

      • Very good article. I was amazed at just how many weapons systems could be integrated into the current 418 hull (VLS, SVTT, 30mm etc. and even a 5″!) Compare all of those to the current systems..huh.. lemme see.. a 57mm main battery and CIWS. Oh, sorry forgot the 50’s. And then there is this “survivability issue” with 418’s in combat, well if we do get into a major conflict we must fight with what we have and in the case of the 418’s that ain’t much. Of course I won’t even mention the article’s high praise for the LCS (sarc.) which is more heavily armed than the 418’s. Having been on a 378 when they had sonar, SVTT’s , 20’s, 50’s and 5/38 at least we had somewhat of a fighting chance, well sort of. I wonder, maybe the CG ought to stop worrying about the “habitability” of the 418s and concentrate on their “survivability”. But I guess that is crazy talk because we all know for a fact that the 418’s will never ever encounter a combatant with a 4″ gun or missiles..right? I didn’t think so..case closed……these aren’t the droids we are looking for..move along….

        My apologies to Chuck for my snarky diatribe. In all seriousness though, I think Chuck has done an excellent job on this site and I look at it frequently. Frankly, I don’t know where you find the time – keep up the great work!

  2. Why does the general CG community still refer to the WMSLs as NSCs? I thought NSC was the fired contractor’s name.

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