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Heng Yang-class [Fletcher] Destroyer

The Fletcher-class destroyers were the mainstay of the American fleet during the Second World War, and were extensively modified after the war under FRAM II (Fleet Rehabilitation and Modernization), with extensive changes in armament and other systems. Several of these ships were later transferred to Taiwan, where they were extensively modernized with new fire control systems, two 4-legged lattice masts, and greatly enlarge forward superstructure. Several remained active until retired in 1998.

During World War II the anti-aircraft armament of the class varied widely, and it usually increased any time a ship visited a Navy Yard. Most of the class ended the war with the following armament: 40mm Bofors guns disposed with twin 40's each side forward of the bridge on superstructure deck, Twin 40's each side amidships on superstructure deck, one twin 40 elevated between 5" gun mounts 3 and 4. There were some in the class equipped with quad 40's at the amidships locations in lieu of the twins. 20mm single Oerlikons Mk 4 were located with 4 amidships, 2 each side, three were located on the fantail. The location and numbers of 20's varied widely in members of the class. There were a few of the "high bridge" ones that had 20's in the bridge area, one on top of the pilot house and two forward and below, but these usually fell victim to later modifications. Some of the class were fitted with twin 20's near the end of the war.

Two Mark 3 depth charge racks were located on the fantail and six "K gun" depth charge projectors were located abaft gun mount 4 on the main deck, three on each side.

Early in the war the Fletchers were the first destroyer class to be equipped with CIC's, they were located just below the bridge at main deck level and varied in size and equipment layout. The ships complement for the class was originally 273 officers and men in 1942. The addition of more AA armament and other requirements gradually increased this and it varied from ship to ship. Two-12' dia. three bladed propellers driven by geared turbines. Four Babcock & Wilcox, 565 PSI boilers with superheaters. The class had one rudder which was too small with earlier ships, but was modified larger to improve turning radius.




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Page last modified: 09-07-2011 13:30:18 ZULU