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FF 1052 KNOX class

The Knox-class frigates, all of which have been retired, fulfilled a Protection of Shipping (POS) mission as Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) combatants for amphibious expeditionary forces, underway replenishment groups and merchant convoys.

The Knox-class frigates were designed as convoy escorts and were to replace the hundreds of destroyer escorts built during World War II which were being disposed of in the 1960s. They were built in favor of the Garcia (DE-1040) class program of FY1961-63. Initially ten ships were authorized in FY1964 (1052-1061), followed by 16 ships in FY1965 (1062-1077), ten in FY1966 (1078-1087), ten in FY1967 (1088-1097), and the last ten (1098-1107) in FY1968. DE 1102-1107 (six ships) were cancelled in 1968 in favor of proposed destroyer construction, and three more were cancelled (DE 1098-1100) on 24 February 1969 due to cost overruns in the SSN programs of FY1968. DE-1101 was cancelled on 9 April 1969. The program cost as reported in 1974 was $1.425 billion or an average of almost $31 million per unit. They were part of the low end mix of naval building strategy.

This class of shop has a total enlisted crew allowance of 210 men The authorized enlisted nucleus crew for this class of ship consists of about 50 men asslgned 4 months prior to commissioning, or a total of 200 man-months PCOS of two ships GAO reviewed in 1971 believed that there could be a net reduction in the total man-month authorizatlon. The method by which each PC0 arrived at a reduced man-month requirement, however, was drfferent. One increased the number of personnel to be assigned to the nucleus crew and decreased the net period of assignments and the second decreased the number of personnel to be assrgned and increased the net perlod of assignments. Both PCOs believed that the authorized composition of the nucleus crew should be revised. For instance, they both believed that the number of ratings and rates 1n the engrneerlng departments should be increased and that the number of ratings and rates in the weapons departments should be decreased.

The 46 Knox class frigates, redesignated FF (frigate) on 30 June 1975 were phased out from 1991-94. In the early to mid 1990s they formed the backbone of ICRTP (Innovative Concept Reserve Training Program) -- the eight ships remaining in service were relegated to reserve training duties while 32 ships were deactivated and maintained in inactive reserve under elevated maintenance status with capability to be completely reactivated in six months. The active reserve ships had their own reserve crew and were assigned four "nucleus crews" which would be assigned to the inactive ships in time of war. As of 2001, twenty have been transferred to foreign navies and the remainder are laid up in reserve. The FFG-7 class ships have replaced them entirely, including their place in the reserve training program.

The Knox-class frigates initially formed the backbone of the Innovative Concept Reserve Training Program. Under this program, the last eight ships remaining in service were designated Type II Reserve Training Frigates [FFT], while 32 other frigates were deactivated and designated Type III ships. The Type III ships can be completely reactivated in 180 days. Each of the eight Reserve Training Frigates ship had its own reserve crew, and was also assigned four "nucleus crews" which would man the 32 Type III ships. For instance, FF-1091 Miller transferred to the Naval Reserve Force in January 1982, and thereafter was employed in the western Atlantic and Caribbean areas. She decommissioned in October 1991 and was stricken from the Naval Vessel Register in 1995.

The Reserve Training Frigates ships were to be homeported in New York, Mobile and Ingleside Texas. The Reserve Training Frigates were all inactivated in 1994, and some of them have been disposed of through the Security Assistance Program (SAP) foreign military sale program.

Replacing the Knox-class frigates in this role were seven of the FFG-7 Oliver Hazard Perry frigates in the Naval Reserve Fleet. These ships fulfilled an important role in reducing the Active force's operational and personnel tempo by responding to contingencies such as the Haitian embargo, counter-narcotics operations, and overseas deployments, such as Carat 96 in the Western Pacific.

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