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lowing list of inventions submitted during a period of eight months. The most careful consideration and study is given to all of these ideas: Torpedoes, and protection against.
156 Mines, and protection against..
91 Projectiles, bombs, etc..
139 Guns, and improvements to...
18 Explosives, fuses, and miscellaneous.
86. Material additions have been made during the past year to the advance-base outfit, as found necessary from experience to complete the equipment. However, the bureau has been unable to meet all of the needs of this department of the service owing to lack of funds.
NAVAL GUN FACTORY.
87. The following is a statement of the most important work performed at the gun factory during the year: Guns, all cailbers: Completed.
205 Overhauled and put in serviceable condition...
162 Overhauled and modified.
Guns received from places other than the gun factory, star-gauged, examined, and placed in serviceable condition...
104 Firing mechanisms manufactured, modified, overhauled, and placed in serviceable condition......
233 Drill guns completed...
39 Sights completed and partially completed....
872 Sights overhauled and repaired, and important parts of sights man
447 Gun mounts modified, overhauled, and important parts completed.. Torpedo tubes completed...
257 Powder tanks and powder-packing boxes.. Cartridge cases.. Primers....
72, 150 Castings produced in foundry.
-pounds.. 3,868,982 Forgings...
.do... 1,340, 947 Number of shipments made. Total weight of shipments...
-pounds.. 23, 277, 957. 88. The work in the foundry shows a slight increase over that done during the previous year. Some 2,000,000 pounds of steel castings have been produced, and nearly 1,000,000 pounds of iron castings. A notable improvement in the quality of steel castings has been obtained through careful experimentation and analysis in the metallurgical laboratory. Notwithstanding the fact that the weight of castings produced has not materially increased, the cost has been decreased. The use of scrap metal has been extended, and it is esti
43, 455 44, 605
mated that a saving of over $61,000 over the cost of new metal has been achieved. The forge shop also exhibits a slight increase in output.
89. The most notable improvement in the output of the gun factory has been obtained in the cartridge-case department. New methods have been instituted by which the percentage of successful cartridge cases produced from the cast metal has been increased by about 60 per cent. The saving in cost and time of production has been most valuable.
90. Four large lathes have been added to the facilities of the gun shop. The facilities in the east gun-carriage shop, erecting shop, and the west gun-carriage shop have been substantially increased. The secondary-mount shop has been organized for the production of torpedoes, the work on secondary mounts having decreased in recent years enough to permit us to use the facilities in this shop for our growing torpedo requirements.
91. The demand for submerged torpedo tubes has increased so much of recent years as to require additional testing plant. The old test house has been removed to what was formerly the fuse and primer shop, and for this purpose the building has been repaired and parts rebuilt.
92. It has been found necessary to expand the equipment in the optical shop. Great numbers of optical instruments are now being sent to the gun factory for overhauling and repairs. This work otherwise would be done by private contract at greater cost and delay.
93. Estimates have been submitted for increasing the general facilities of the gun factory for the manufacture of heavy guns, and especially for relining.
94. The bureau renews its recommendation of last year that a law be passed by which it will be possible to reward any civil employee who may devise any economy in manufacture or improvement in design.
NAVAL PROVING GROUND.
95. The work at the proving ground has been continued under the increasingly difficult conditions that have obtained there for years. The geography of this place is totally unsuited to modern conditions. It was selected nearly 25 years ago, when the velocity and range of high-caliber guns were greatly less than they are to-day. We are principally hampered in length of range, the inability to recover projectiles fired to a distance, and the great difficulty and danger accompanying the tests of high-explosive shell. The establishment of the marine target range at Stump Neck also hampers the work, and its existence in the line of fire for long-range work is bound sooner or later to result in an accident.
96. This bureau has proposed to the department to establish at a more suitable place a proving ground for long-range firing and fuse work. The necessity for this is paramount, and the establishment of such a range should no longer be delayed. It is not proposed to do away with the existing proving ground. Armor plate and shell tests may still be conducted there and the product of the powder works proved and charges established as heretofore.
4 19 95 102 153 134
97. The following is a summary of the proof work performed at the proving ground during the fiscal year. It will be seen that the year's work shows a decrease in the proof of guns, mounts, cartridges, and projectiles and an increase in the proof of powder, tests of new types of ordnance, experimental projectiles, armor plate, and general experimental work.
Cartridge cases. 98. A marked increase in the amount of experimental work is noted for the year. The experiments embrace tests of high explosives, inventions, methods of protection, high-angle fire, and, in all, some 40 original investigations not connected with the general work of the proving ground.
99. Many improvements in the facilities of the proving ground have been instituted. A sawmill has been installed at small cost. This has been utilized for cutting fallen trees into lumber, with the result that the needs for rough boards and scantling can be quickly and cheaply met by utilizing the large amount of such timber that would otherwise be useful only for firewood.
100. A new chronoscope has been acquired which will measure time to the one-millionth of a second. Experiments will be conducted with this instrument tending to the elucidation of problems in interior ballistics.
101. A new coal-hoisting apparatus has been installed, which reduces the cost of handling coal by one-third and results in a saving of over $2,000 per annum for this item alone.
102. The output of powder has been stated elsewhere in this report. The manufacture of mixed acid and sulphuric acid has been so successful as to warrant the extension of the plant for the production of these essentials. The raw material (sulphur and nitrate of soda) can be so readily and cheaply stored that the bureau has requested in its estimates funds for the purchase of a large supply of these materials. The transportation of tank cars between Washington and Indianhead on barges down the Potomac has become a serious and costly burden. In severe winter weather such transportation may be interrupted by ice in the river. In this event it may be necessary to shut down the powder factory, with the resulting loss of hundreds of dollars per day. We should by all means manufacture our own acid at the powder works and have ample stores of the raw material always on hand.
103. Forty-seven accidents were reported at the proving ground and powder factory for the year. One of these accidents, a fuse explosion, caused the death of a valued employee. The other accidents were not of a serious nature.
TORPEDO STATION, NEWPORT, R. I.
104. The principal work performed at the torpedo station has consisted of the manufacture of new torpedoes and the repair and overhauling of torpedoes sent in from the fleet. The work of new manufacture is being pushed, and the completion of 75 Mark V torpedoes, and the 95 per cent completion of 90 Mark VII have been reported.' On the 1st of July, 12 per cent of the work on 200 Mark IX torpedoes had been accomplished. Over 20 per cent increase in the number of torpedoes delivered by contractors has been made. The torpedoes received from the service for overhaul have increased from 99 to 251. Seven new torpedo outfits were issued, involving 52 torpedoes; and 19 outfits were replaced, involving 168 torpedoes. This is a total of 220 torpedoes, as against 163 issued last year. The number of torpedoes lost is 48, and 20 were condemned. The loss of torpedoes is a drain that must be counted upon as a necessary accompaniment of active work in the fleet with this weapon.
105. Additional facilities are constantly being made for the manufacture and repair of torpedoes. The completion of the new machine shop is promised by the end of the calendar year. To make ful use of the additional floor space in the production of new torpedoes, considerable machinery will have to be purchased, and estimates have been submitted by the bureau for this purpose.
106. A large amount of experimental work with torpedoes and torpedo nets and new devices has been carried on during the year, besides which the proof of new and repaired torpedoes has been conducted. Two hundred thousand primers of all kinds have been manufactured. Extensive manufacture of superheater fuses, floating and dummy mines, and general accessories for torpedoes is embraced in the work of the station.
107. The total cost in labor and material of manufactured articles for the year amounts to $1,712,718.48. This item was $994,442.06 for the fiscal year 1914, and these figures furnish the best gauge of the increased work being done at the Torpedo Station.
REPORT OF THE CHIEF OF THE BUREAU OF CONSTRUC
TION AND REPAIR.
Washington, D. C., October 16, 1915.
fiscal year ended June 30, 1915.
SHIPBUILDING AT NAVY YARDS.
7. The amount of shipbuilding work at navy yards during the past year has increased, and there is at the present time a greater value of new shipbuilding work in progress and authorized at navy yards than ever before in the history of the Navy. During the past year
progress was continued satisfactorily on the Arizona, at the New York yard; supply ship No. 1, at the Boston Navy Yard; transport No. 1, at the Philadelphia Navy Yard; submarine L-8, at the Portsmouth (N. H.) Navy Yard; and fuel ship Maumee, at the Mare Island Navy Yard. The fuel ship Kanawha was finished and placed in commission at the Mare Island Navy Yard.
In addition to the above, the following new construction was begun:
The battleship California, authorized by the naval appropriation act approved June 30, 1914, was commenced at the New York Navy Yard.
The building of the fuel ship Cuyama and torpedo-boat destroyer No. 68 was authorized at the Mare Island Navy Yard. The building of this destroyer at a navy yard instituted a departure, for no vessel of this type had been laid down before at a navy yard.
The construction of two tugs, the Wando and Pocohontas, was authorized at the Charleston and Norfolk Navy Yards, respectively; and various small crafts are being built at the different navy yards, including a ferryboat for the Newport Torpedo Station and a floating derrick for the aeronautic station, both at the Charleston (S. C.) Navy Yard.
On June 19, 1915, the battleship Arizona was successfully launched at the New York Navy Yard.
CONSTRUCTION AND DESIGN.
8. Submarines.- In the past, the designs of submarines have not been prepared in the department. The general requirements and specifications of the department have been issued to prospective bidders, who have prepared and submitted their own designs. Hereafter, complete designs for new submarines will be prepared as for other vessels, and bidders will be allowed to bid upon the designs of the department or upon their own designs based upon those of the department. During the year there was begun a complete design for the fleet submarines authorized by the last Congress. Although each builder of submarines has many patents, these patents will not constitute a bar to the preparation of designs by the department. It is true that the designing and building of submarines is a specialty that requires experience, but we now have in the Navy adequate experience in this connection.
The recently inaugurated change in the administration of the submarines of the fleet is working very well. This bureau no longer receives general allegations of worthlessness with no helpful suggestions, but is furnished a definite statement as to what troubles have occurred and valuable suggestions for improvement. Progress under such conditions is certain and rapid.
9. Battleship design. The bureau has, during the past year, given very careful consideration and study in battleship design to the question of protection against submarine and air attacks, as well as against direct gunfire, and conditions in these respects in the specifications for the ships next to be purchased have been materially improved
In the designs of the battleships of the California class, after careful investigation and ballistic tests the bureau was able to authorize the