Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Arthur Whelan

My great-grand father on my father's side was in the Royal Navy for over 12 years and only recentley I have got hold of his service record for his service in the Navy, Arthur Whelan was 29 when he set foot on HMS Hood 13th August 1922 at Devonport, what follows is the timeline for 1922 and his time on board.
On the left is Arthur on HMS Hood, the full picture is below, also shown is his service record showing the dates for HMS Hood.

August 1922

14–17 August: En-route to Gibraltar.
14th - 0930 slipped, H.M.S. took station 3.5 cables astern,Position at noon: 50° 3.5'N, 4° 195'W. 
Distance steamed to noon: 234 miles
15th - Read warrant 288, Position at noon: 44° 25'N, 8° 36'W. Distance steamed to noon: 368 miles
16th - Position at noon: 38° 31'N, 9° 31'W. Distance steamed to noon: 376 miles

17–20 August: At Gibraltar.
17th - 0930 Secured, Position at noon: 53° 225'N, 2° 42'W. Distance steamed to noon: 289.5 miles
18th - H.M.S. Centruion and H.M.S. Vindictive arrived, Landed shooting and athletic parties
19th - Provisioned ship (8623lbs meat, 10,300lbs vegetables)

20 August–02 November: Brazilian and West Indies Cruise.

20–24 August: En-route with H.M.S. Repulse to São Vicente (St Vincent).
20th - Position at noon: 35° 56'N, 5° 55'W. Distance steamed to noon: 37 miles
21st - Position at noon: 31° 135'N, 12° 03'W. Distance steamed to noon: 4142 miles
22nd - 1000 inclination exercise, Position at noon: 27° 31'N, 16° 37'W. 
Distance steamed to noon: 336 miles
2100 Carried out search for boy Field ex sea boat crew, reported missing. Field, Alfred George Male 17 years, 11 months. Boy 1 class, English. Presumed fallen overboard and drowned.
23rd - 0900 opened for 5.5" throw off firing, 1000 Commenced exercise, 1031 ceased fire, 
H.M.S. Repulse fired, 1056 Practice complete, Position at noon: 22° 26.5'N, 20° 33'W. 
Distance steamed to noon: 360 miles. Conducted 5.5" throw off firing and a WT exercise with Repulse. 
1600 carried out WT exercise with H.M.S. Repulse, 1625 Exercise complete, 
H.M.S. Repulse too station astern.

24–26 August: At São Vicente.
24th - Position at noon: 17° 04'N, 24° 27'W. Distance steamed to noon: 367.8 miles
1607 came to, Fired 21 gun salute, 1615 fired 15 gun salute, Hoisted out boats
25th - 0930 held Court of Enquiry on boy Field, Distance steamed to noon: 59.4 miles, 
1300 to 1600 oiler alongside, held Court of Enquiry on Alfred Field.

26 August–03 September: Travelling from São Vicente to Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. 
While en-route,Hood and Repulse conducted 5.5" throw off firing, High Angle exercises, torpedo 
exercises and 15" throw off firing.
26th - 1118 weighed anchor, H.M.S. Repluse too station 3.5 cables astern, 
Distance steamed to noon: 7 miles
27th - Position at noon: 11° 24'N, 27° 00'W. Distance steamed to noon: 348 miles
28th - 1000 practice 5.5" throw off firing with H.M.S. Repulse, Captain Mackworth "corrected Lieutenant 
Francis Babington Proudfoot RN for not putting under arrest a stoker who was under the influence of drink
on his return from leave on 25 August 1922 during his (Lieutenant Proudfoot's) watch. Read warrant 292
Distance steamed to noon: 349 miles
29th - Captain Mackworth "interviewed Executive Officers and pointed out the necessity for more careful attention to their duties during general exercises etc." 0945 HA exercises, Captain Mackworth "corrected Sub Lieutenant Alan Irvine Harris for not personally mustering his Division on 22 August 1922 and for failing to ensure that his duty Petty Officer, Rupert Gregory ONJ 2249, made him a correct and definite report on this matter" At divisions, Captain Mackworth "pointed out to all Executive Officers and all Petty Officers the necessity for more care in seeing that men who returned from leave drunk or under the influence of drink 
were put under the sentry's charge"  He also "cautioned the Ship's company generally on the dangers of drinking to excess in hot weather"
Position at noon: 0° 45'N, 30° 05'W. Distance steamed to noon: 347.4 miles
2100 stopped briefly at the Equator for "crossing the line" ceremony.
Photo of ceremonial dunking pool used in crossing the line ceremonies. This photo was taken onboard HMS Hood on the 30 August 1922. The "bears" are clearly visible awaiting the next initiate who is perching on the stool at the edge of the tarpaulin.

King Neptune Royal Procession onboard HMS Hood. The crossing of the equator is celebrated by all first time sailors and ships. This crossing took place on 30th August 1922.

Titles read: 'The Equator - Crossing The Line - King Neptune and his Consort hold their Court on HMS Hood and carry out traditional ceremony. Altogether 1,200 Officers and Men were initiated.' 
Bizarre initiation ceremony officers and men crossing the equator for the first time. Procession on deck of King Neptune & his Consort. King has crown; sceptre w/ Neptune symbol. The Consort is a real woman; weighing c. 250 lbs; a few sailors in drag make up the court. They walk past a line of men in strange ragged furry native costumes & blackface; other weird costumes. Royal Marines in their normal uniforms stand in BG. 

Rear Admiral Sir W Cowan; having previously crossed the Line; is invested with Order of the old Sea Dog. Cowan steps up; kneels. King N. & touches him w/ sceptre; Consort places ribbon round his neck. MS Cowan w/ fat lady. 

Now for the initiation rituals. Doctor w/ long white beard listens to sailor's chest w/ giant primitive stethoscope; bangs on the guy's chest w/ mallet; sticks something in his mouth; & someone else reaches in & pours a glass of water down his throat. Next a funny barber sequence: same guy sits while 2 men pretend to cut his hair w/ giant scissors; slap stuff on his face & shave him w/ giant razor. At this point he looks a total mess. 

Now he's pushed backward down a slide into a part of the deck they have flooded; surrounded by some waterproof fabric. Initiates are passed between lines of savages; dunked several times. then when they climb out they run another gauntlet of guys who whack their behinds. 

This is duplicate of G 916 - Crossing the Line.
H.M.S. Hood's Athletic Party, Rio De Janeiro, September 3rd, 1922
They are sitting to port near the end of Hood's Shelter Deck (Boat Deck). Sitting with them ( front row, immediately to the right of the trophy) is RADM Walter Cowan.

03–14 September: At Rio de Janeiro. Purpose of visit was to represent Great Britain during Brazilian Independence celebration. Members of crew participated in a "mini Olympics" against members of other navies (which included Argentina, Brazil, Mexico and the United States).

07 September: Hood's naval battalion marches through city; illuminates ship.
09 September: Hood triumphs in International Regatta. Ship visited by President of Brazil.
10 September: Hood Wins Midshipmen's cutter race but comes in second in Seamen's cutter race.
11 September: Hood wins eight out of 15 athletic events, including tug-of-war.
13 September: Hood hosts illuminated water pageant in Botofoga Bay.


14–15 September: En-route to Santos.
15–20 September: At Santos.
20–30 September: En-route to Trinidad. While en-route, Hood and Repulse conducted concentration exercises, searchlight exercise, inclination exercises, night (and day) gunnery practice (15" and 5.5"), High Angle practice and torpedo exercises.
30 September–10 October: At Trinidad. Saluted dignitaries. Cleaned ship and conducted sea boat, fire control and anchor handling exercises.
10–11 October: En-route to Barbados. Conducted torpedo exercise en-route
11–16 October: At Barbados. Conducted general drills. Saluted dignitaries.
16–17 October: En-route to St Lucia.
17–20 October: At St. Lucia. Saluted dignitaries. Carried-out gunnery programme. Departed for Las Palmas 20 October. Conducted night time torpedo exercise en-route
20–30 October: En-route from St Lucia to Las Palmas. Stopped at Dominica on 21 October. Conducted sub calibre, High Angle and 15" firing exercises with Repulse.
On 29 October, stopped briefly to conduct a memorial service for Boy 1st Class Alfred Field.
30 October–02 November: At Las Palmas. Departed for Gibraltar on 02 November.
02–04 November: En-route to Gibraltar. Conducted full power and 20 knot trials. Conducted gunnery and inclination exercises.

04–30 November: At Gibraltar. Saluted and conducted tours for dignitaries (Governor and Vice Admiral of Gibraltar). General cleaning and maintenance (painting of ship's boats). Exercised main derrick. Conducted General Drill.
15 -17 November: Participated in Battle Cruiser Squadron Regatta.
30 November–03 December: En-route from Gibraltar to Devonport.
03–31 December: At Devonport. Exercised fire stations, cleaned/provisioned ship and gave leave to both watches.

HMS Hood Leaving Gibraltar in 1922 (picture was taken from HMS Repulse)

To be completed

X and Y Turrets

January 9th 1920
This close up view showing X and Y Turrets emphasises the size of the bolt-heads on the turret roof, figures can be seen for scale.

Hood - Design & Construction

I received my winning ebay book today, well more of I made an offer and he accepted, Hood - Design and Construction by Maurice Northcott, the original publication from 1975 costing (then £2.70) I paid £20.

I'm really happy with this as there is quite a lot of information that is not in the other books.

Saturday, 9 July 2011

Hood in pictures

Some rare pictures that I've found, all taken in 1940, I wonder if the crew here where on the ship still in 1941? You can really get an idea of the size of the ship, the last photo is amazing.

Imre Somogyi (Simi) 1:350

Only found this page some weeks ago and it has blown me away, the scale is only 1:350, the Trumpeters kit.
Along with some truly amazing details he shows some of the techniques he uses, just take some time over these.  http://www.freeweb.hu/olli/hd.html

Thanks to Simi for his permission to use these pictures.

Fine Art Models - 1:192

With so many amazing models already made it's hard to pick just a few, what I want to is to link and show a few in various scale that for me are an inspiration. Just like Longridge is for the HMS Victory model at the Science Museum in London, these models will travel with me on the 3 years it will take to build my HMS Hood.

Fine Art Models - www.fineartmodels.com
Fine Art Models builds museum-quality limited-edition scale models that many feel are the finest in the world today.  The most talented craftsmen, meticulous attention to detail, and use of the most cutting edge technology has allowed us to elevate this art form to a level never before seen.

Only recently I've purchased a scale model plan of the Hood at 1:192, the ship is depicted as I think the late 20's early 30's and is just massive, I was original going to scale this plan down to 1:200 but decided to use another plan instead (more of that later), so searching the net for any models of that scale came up with this.

The size of this model comes in at 54" long, 8" wide and 12" high, that's 2" bigger than 1:200 scale.
The price tag is $12,500, not cheap but amazing.

Fine Art Models has built this limited edition, HMS Hood ship model in a scale of 1:192 with exacting detail, with the Sopwith reconnaissance plane on the rear deck, the most detailed miniature airplane ever built.  
Each Hood model is built by a team of eight (8) of the most skilled craftsmen in the world with more than 500 man hours just to assemble.  Computers were used to generate exact scale drawings from the original plans. 

To read more visit the site for more pictures and other wonderful models.

Compare the Hood

I was/still am debating whether to build the model in the style of the 1920's, 30's or 40's, the images below show some of the differences, as my great-grandfather (Arthur Whelan, more on him later) was on board during 1922/23 it makes sence to go for that era.BUT the amount of changes are/will cause me some difficulty from the word go. Partworks tend to not give you an idea of advance build information, so structural changes would be difficult, unless of course I collect all issues before building...and I dont wanna do that.

HMS Hood from the 1920's

HMS Hood from 1931

 HMS Hood from the 1941

With these images you can see quite a difference between years, these pictures are taken from the articles that appeared in a a model magazine back in November/December 1981 by M.W Williams on converting a 1:600 Airfix kit. The last picture is taken from January 1982.

Hachette or DeAgostini

Since at least February 2011 these 2 company's have put out tester issues of a large scale model (1:200), not in London but up north somewhere, some of the feedback has been mixed and both have stopped on or around issue 4.
Here is the DeAgostini site - http://www.buildhmshood.com/
and this is the Hachette version - http://www.buildabattleship.co.uk/index.html

After searching the net is seems Hachette have sent out letter's with the last issue saying they are starting the series on August 24th 2011.
This will run at 140 issues at a cost of nearly £840, big money but for some the only way they can afford such a model, thats a total run time of 2 years 7 months.
Ive seen many of the Bismarck build's (another Hatchette series) and if the level of detail is anything to go by then this will be a great model straight from the magazine, BUT, if like me you own many of the book on the HMS Hood then some scratch building and adding more detail to the ship, it will no doubt become a great model.
So the size? 1:200 that measures in at -
Length 1314mm or 52", Width 150mm or 6" and Height 275mm or 11", that's nearly 4 foot 4"
A large model, do we have the space??? I'll make space.

New 1:200 scale model to be released

Coming this August is the HMS Hood, a large (52") model based on the 1941 ship. Spread over 140 issues this is going to be a long haul but I'm determined to achieve what I consider THE classic British warship. Stayed tuned for my preparations for the next 7 weeks.