Re: Atlas Trainman hopper
Schuyler Larrabee wrote:
"Uh, Ben? I think that's quite a ways down the list of important
things for Atlas to fix."
On the contrary, it's much more important than you think. If you're
going to go through the trouble to correct tooling, you've got to go
back and make sure all of your supporting drawings and documentation
match the new tooling. Otherwise, old drawings have a bad habit of
coming back to bite you in the ass.
Case in point: the helicopter hangar door onboard my first ship, a
Knox-class frigate, needed replacement after being broken by a
disgruntled sailor. It was a roll-type door, and the sailor had
kept cranking after the door was fully open, breaking some of the
slats on the door. The ships were originally built with a small
hangar to accomodate DASH (Drone Anti-Submarine Helicopter), a small
Built with late 1950s-early 1960s technology, these had the bad
habit of crashing or flying over the horizon and not coming back, so
the ships received manned UH-2/SH-2 LAMPS I helicopters. These
required a larger hangar, and the ships were refitted with a larger
No new doors were in stock, so it had to be custom made. The Ensign
in charge of the division, fresh out of Annapolis and eager to do
the right thing, went down to the Tech Library and pulled a set of
drawings for the door. Her Master Chief told her the story of the
old DASH hangar and suggested that she might want to check the
drawings against the hangar opening, but she wouldn't have any of
this. The drawings went off to the door manufacturer (who charged
us $5,000 back in 1993), and when the door came back, it didn't
fit! It was finally donated to one of the preserved FRAM destroyers
were also fitted to fly DASH.
Configuration control can be a real pain sometimes...