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Refit Photo Gallery 1:- by Colin Sheehan
This section came about when the opportunity to go aboard HMAS Kanimbla in mid refit came my way in January 2000. The day started early with the arrival of both myself and my son, Tony (ex-chef onboard) at the Forgacs Dockyard in Newcastle, NSW. After a friendly round of introductions to the Commanding Officer and some of his staff and crew, we were assigned a guide in the person of ABSCO Stacy Date and we climbed up the gangway to see what differences there were so far.

The modifications being undertaken were to make this class of ship more suitable for it's intended purpose as a Helicopter Support and Training ship in today's RAN with a strong capability in both logistics (troops and equipment) as well as retaining some amphibious support with it's own LCM 8 class landing craft, full stern door ramp and the large tank deck midships.

There are quite a few photo's to be seen here, so please be patient while they load and click on the thumbnails to see larger versions of each image. Enjoy.

HMAS Kanimbla Seen from the other side of Newcastle Harbour in NSW, HMAS Kanimbla shows off her new profile on a grey day in summer. Most noticeable are the new hanger aft of the bridge and the raked stern, plus the lack of the for'ard derrick.
Forgacs Dockyard in Newcastle is a very industrious place just full of the sort of interesting things that keep a maritime enthusiast's head swinging. The floating dock in the background is where the hull work was undertaken. Forgacs Dockyard
A nice new face This shows the new bow shape as well as the extended forward decks to accommodate the two LCM8 landing craft and forward flight deck. Yet to be added is the huge derrick just for'ard of the bridge to launch & retrieve the LCM8s
Dockside during refit is an organised confusion of the various resources and machinery needed. The addition of the large hanger on the left of the photo' adds a rather slab sided look to the old girl in this view. Dockside
Gangway Boarding Kanimbla was a bit of a steep climb due to the lack of weight of the equipment still to come.
Once onboard, our first stop was the bridge, which looked a lot different than when I saw it last. New equipment was being installed and those already in place were protected with covers. The Bridge
Liferaft racks aft of the bridge The racks aft of the bridge on both port and starboard will hold the ship's liferafts. Safety is a prime consideration in the design of the refit.
Out on the port side from the bridge and slightly aft is the boatdeck where the RHIB's (Rigid Hulled Inflatable Boats) will be stored alongside the hanger. From here we moved onto the top of the hanger. Boatdeck Port Side
Top of the hanger The top of the helo hanger is an excellent place to install radio antennae among other things and will, no doubt be a popular place when the ship is not radiating due to its elevation and relatively clear deck.
Inter-service co-operation at work here as ABET Rebecca Brock (Navy) and Cpl David Jordan (Army) check connections with one of the antennae. The Army has a permanent and active interest in HMAS Kanimbla as a very valuable resource. Fitting aerials
05 Deck 05 Deck. Top of the heap and a great place to enjoy the view on a nice day at sea.
From here the ship can be controlled, signals sent, ship defended and sun enjoyed.
All in all, a very versatile place. The size of the Newport class (USN designation) ship allows for quite a comfortable amount of working room.
Continued on Page Two

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My HMAS Kanimbla Home Page
Photo Gallery
Day 1
Photo Gallery
Day 2
Photo Gallery
Day 2 Pt.II
Photo Gallery
Day 3
Photo Gallery
Day 3 Pt.II
 Photo Gallery
Day 4
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All photographs are copyright 2000 Colin Sheehan and may not be used for any purpose without permission.