POINT SPENCER, 1966
Builder: J.M. Martinac Shipbuilding Corp., Tacoma, WA
Commissioned: 20 October 1966
Decommissioned: 12 December 2000
Disposition: Transferred to Dominican Republic, 12 December 2000
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)
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.
The Point Spencer was stationed at New Orleans, LA, from 1967 to May 1985. She was used for law enforcement and search and rescue operations. On 25 December 1967, she assisted fighting fire on M/V Gulf Supreme at Ostrica, LA. On 2 January 1968, she helped salvage a Beechcraft aircraft from Lake Pontchartrain. On 14 January 1968, she towed the disabled tug La Crevette 7 to Gulfport, MS. On 31 March 1968, she assisted the Dutch M/V Wolterson 160 miles southwest of New Orleans following a fire. On 4 December 1968, she towed the disabled cutter Loganberry to New Orleans. On 7 and 8 December 1968, she searched for survivors from cutter White Alder. On 31 January 1969, she assisted a disabled barge 5 miles south of St. Marks, FL. From February to April 1970, she assisted following a fire at oil wells off the entrance to the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet Channel. On 20 November 1980, she fired 40 rounds of .50 cal mg into the fleeing U.S. M/V Polaris off Grand Isle. Approximately 75 tons of marijuana were later found on board of the Polaris. On 11 December 1980, she seized a grounded 110-foot M/V on a sandbar in the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet Channel east of New Orleans with 80 tons of marijuana on board.
From May 1985, she was stationed at Galveston, TX. On 29 January 1987, she fought fire on board F/V T-Kip III 80 miles southeast of Galveston.
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