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Eithne v Bear Class cutter

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  • Eithne v Bear Class cutter

    The Eithne was the design basis for the USCG Bear class cutter. Apparently the Bear class is exceptionally unpopular as being cramped and having poor sea handling. How does Eithne fair?

  • #2

    It is widely held that once Eithne was built,and a decision was made for no further vessel in that class to be provided for the Irish Naval service,the designs and copyrights were sold to the USCG who Incorporated the design into the Bear,albeit with typical US functionality and lack of style.
    The Hull design is similar,the main differences being the location of the Ribs on the fantail,rather than on eithne(as mentioned elsewhere) high up on the top deck and the relocation of the main armament from the 02 to the 01 position. Bear seems to have an extremly short foredeck,which on eithne is one of the most complicated parts of her design, And could explain Bear's poor seakeeping,in addition to the short bilge keel and stubby,non retractable stabilizers.
    With the date of the first ship of types entry into service being 1983,I assume this is based on the Original,cheaper design of the P30 class,not the cost inflated over engineered vessel that Eithne Became.
    However I would be more inclined to think that it was the other way around,with Eithne Being an improved version of Bear.

    That said however,I doubt the resident expert here could claim that Eithne is cramped.(HPT Murphy)I used to have her plans lying around here(dont ask) but I not having them to hand,I think the max occupation in any cabin is 4,with the majority being either 2 or 1 berth.
    This is not in line with US thinking,who maximise operational spaces at the expense of crew accomodation.Bear,while physically similar to Eithne,does have one deck less in her superstructure.
    The US Maximised the Helideck space by incorporating,like other USCG cutters, a telescopic hangar,while Eithnes hangar,in common with UK practice,is equipped to maintain the aircraft,as well as store it,though I doubt this feature was ever in use.
    Ironically,Bear also mounts her ribs on deck the wrong way around.

    USCG Bear (WMEC901)

    Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.


    • #3
      the accomadation on the Eithne was really all that bad.Four Junior ratings per cabin ...two Senior rates . cabin each for officers and a sizeable flat for the O

      In comparrison the PVs were a bit cramped...jump out of your bunk into your locker.
      The RN have actually taken a lesson from the INS in that the new River class OPVs will be cabin equiped rather than messdecks.

      The peacocks are messdeck and the qiup on their arrival was taken from a department of agriculture document.The space available to those living on the junior rates messdeck was less than that permitted for keeping pigs......for a while they were known as pig boats.

      Then there was the mine sweepers.........
      Covid 19 is not over's still very real..Hand Hygiene, Social Distancing and Masks.. keep safe