POINT FRANCIS, 1967 (WPB 82356)

March 16, 2021


WPB 82356

Builder:  J.M. Martinac Shipbuilding Corp., Tacoma, WA 

Commissioned:  3 February 1967 

Decommissioned:  5 March 1999 

Disposition:  Transferred to Panama, 21 April 1999 

Length:  82’10” oa, 78’ bp 

Navigation Draft:  5’11” max (1960) 

Beam:  17’7” max 

Displacement:  69 fl; 60 light (1960) 

Main Engines:  2 Cummins diesel (see class history) 

BHP:  1,600 

Performance, Maximum Sustained:  18.0 kts, 542-mi radius (1,600 hp, 1963)
Performance, Economic:  9.4 kts, 1,500-mi radius (1,600 hp, 1963)

Maximum Speed:  22.9 kts (1963) 

Fuel Capacity:  1,840 gal 

Complement:  8 men (1960), 2 officers, 8 men (1965) 


Radar:  SPN-11, CR-103 (1960), or SPS-64 

Armament: 1 x 20mm (1960), 5 x .50 cal mg, 1 x 81 mm mortar (Vietnam service)

Class history—The 82-foot patrol boats have mild steel hulls and aluminum superstructures. Longitudinally framed construction was used to save weight.

These boats were completed with a variety of power plants. 82301 through 82313, 82315 through 82317, and 82319 through 82331 were powered by two Cummins 600-hp diesels. Boats 82318 and 82332 through 82379 received two Cummins 800-hp diesels. The 82314 was fitted with two 1,000-hp gas turbines and controllable-pitch propellers. The purpose of this installation was to permit the service to evaluate the propulsion equipment. All units were eventually fitted with the 800-hp diesels. Units remaining in 1990 were re-equipped with Caterpillar diesels.

WPB 82301 through 82344 were commissioned without names; at that time the Coast Guard did not name patrol craft shorter than 100 feet. In January 1964 they were assigned names.

Ship's history:

The Point Francis was stationed at Fort Hancock, NY, from 1967 to 1976. She was used for law enforcement and search and rescue operations. On 4 May 1968, she assisted following a collision between the dredges Essayons and Tsui Yung off New York. 

She was stationed at Highlands, NJ, from 1976 on. In March 1978, she seized a Liberian ship carrying 40,000 lbs of hashish off Sandy Hook, NJ. In May 1979, she seized M/V Olang off New Jersey with more than 41,000 lbs of hashish on board. On 10 October 1980, she fired 55 rounds of .50 cal mg into the U.S. lobster boat Thomas E 150 miles east of Key West, FL, after she doused her lights, refused to heave-to, and ran for Bahamian waters. The Thomas E had approximately 13 tons of marijuana on board.


Cutter History File.  USCG Historian's Office, USCG HQ, Washington, D.C.

"The 82-Foot Class Patrol Boat." U.S. Coast Guard Engineer's Digest No. 133 (Mar-Apr 1962), pp. 2-5.

Robert Scheina.  U.S. Coast Guard Cutters & Craft, 1946-1990.  Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1990.