Baylander (IX-514)

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Baylander
US Navy 060825-N-0856O-527 The Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola-based Navy Helicopter Landing Trainer (HLT) IX-514 transports a TH-57 helicopter from NAS Whiting Field.jpg
Baylander while it was stationed at NAS Whiting Field, Florida
History
United States
Name: YFU-79
Owner: United States Navy
Awarded: 1 June 1967
Builder: Pacific Coast Engineering Co, Alameda, California
Yard number: 238
Laid down: 28 December 1967
Launched: 29 May 1968
Acquired: 5 July 1968
United States
Name: Skilak
Namesake: Skilak Lake
Owner: United States Army
Acquired: May-June 1970
Out of service: mid-1980s
United States
Name: Baylander (IX-514)
Owner: United States Navy
Acquired: mid-1980s
In service: 31 March 1986
Struck: 15 December 2011
Status: Privately owned; science outreach for Billion Oyster Project at West Harlem Piers Park, New York
General characteristics
Tonnage: 160 DWT
Displacement:
Length: 125 ft (38 m)
Beam: 36 ft (11 m)
Draft: 8 ft (2.4 m)
Installed power: 2 × 450 hp (340 kW) Detroit Diesel 12V-71
Propulsion: 2 × propellers
Speed: 9 knots (10 mph; 17 km/h)
Complement: 2 officer, 10 enlisted
Aviation facilities: Helo deck (no hangar)

Baylander (IX-514), ex-Skilak and ex-YFU-79, was a United States Navy Helicopter Landing Trainer (HLT), billed as the world's smallest aircraft carrier. It served as a practice landing site for helicopter pilots in the United States Navy, Army, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, and National Guard.

History[edit]

The ship entered operations with the United States Navy in 1968 as harbor utility craft YFU-79 and served in the Vietnam War; from mid-1970 it served with the United States Army as Skilak.[1] At the end of the war Skilak was withdrawn to Guam.[1] In the mid-1980s it was returned to the Navy and converted to a Helicopter Landing Trainer by Bender Shipbuilding in Mobile, Alabama, entering service on 31 March 1986 at Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida.[1][2] By August 2006, she had achieved 100,000 accident-free helicopter landings,[3] and by the time of her retirement had surpassed 120,000 landings.[4] After being taken out of service and struck from the Naval Register in 2011,[5] Baylander was sold into private hands instead of being scrapped. In 2014, it was moved to the Brooklyn Bridge Park Marina in New York City and opened as a museum ship.[6] By mid-2016, the vessel had been relocated to the West Harlem Piers on the Hudson River.[7]

Specifications[edit]

Baylander was built as Yard No. 238 by Pacific Coast Engineering Company (PACECO) of Alameda, California.[8] It is 125 feet (38 m) long, has a beam of 36 feet (11 m), and displaces 380 long tons (386 t) at full load.[5] Its helicopter deck was the same size as that of a Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Helicopter Landing Trainer [HLT]-(IX-514)". NavSource. 20 November 2015. Retrieved 22 November 2016.
  2. ^ a b "Unique Ships of the U.S. Navy". United States Naval Institute. 30 January 2015. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
  3. ^ Kohr, Megan (29 August 2006). "100,000 Accident-Free Landings on Navy's Smallest 'Aircraft Carrier'". United States Navy. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
  4. ^ "Historic U.S. Navy Vessel Open to Public for First Time at Future Site of BBP Marina" (Press release). Brooklyn Bridge Park. 17 July 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
  5. ^ a b "IX-514". Naval Vessel Register. 22 October 2012. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
  6. ^ Backwell, George (17 July 2014). "Historic Navy Ship Baylander Shortly Open to New Yorkers". MarineLink. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
  7. ^ Clark, Dartunorro (21 September 2016). "Vietnam-Era Navy Ship Finds New Berth at West Harlem Piers". DNAinfo.com. Archived from the original on 22 September 2016. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
  8. ^ Colton, Tim (7 March 2016). "Pacific Coast Engineering (PACECO), Oakland and Alameda CA". Shipbuilding History. Retrieved 22 November 2016.

External links[edit]

Media related to HLT Baylander (IX-514) at Wikimedia Commons