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Norwegian <I>Ellida</I> (ARB 13) converted but still wearing her LST hull number.

Norwegian Ellida (ARB 13) converted but still wearing her LST hull number.
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Class: Norwegian ELLIDA (ARB 13, ex LST)
Design: Navy LST 1
Displacement (tons): 3,500 full
Dimensions (feet): 323' oa x 50' x 12'
Armament: 12-40mm (two quads and two twins), 12-20mm (six twins)
Accommodations: 375
Speed (kts.): 11
Propulsion (HP): 1,800
Machinery: Geared diesel, 2 screws

Construction:
ARBNameReclasBuilderKeelLaunchCompl
13Norwegian ELLIDA(1951)Dravo, Pittsburgh20 Aug 194316 Oct 194330 Oct 1952

Disposition:
ARBNameTUS DecommUS StrikeUS DisposalUS FateMA Sale
13Norwegian ELLIDA--8 Sep 195214 Nov 1952Trf--

Class Notes:
In 1951 Norway was promised a new battle damage repair ship (ARB) under the new Mutual Defense Assistance Program (MDAP). Design work was contracted out to H. Newton Whittelsey, Inc. of New York as design agent, and on 15 May 1951 they produced a schedule for the production of plans for the new ARB. However since many LST's were available, all existing ARB's were former LST's, and a new design would involve considerable time and money, it was soon decided to convert an LST for Norway instead of building a new ship. LST 50 was made available. She was of the early LST 1-490 class from which the first wartime ARB's, ARB 1-4, had been converted, but the ARB 1 conversion dated back to 1943-44 and the design and plans for it were no longer applicable due to new materials and standards and subsequent alterations. It was therefore decided to make new plans for the conversion, and it was then decided to re-arrange some features to correct known defects. The result was a design called within BUSHIPS "vastly different" from existing ARB's.

On 31 May 1951 Whittelsey met with BUSHIPS to discuss the proposed reassignment of spaces in the conversion. One of the changes called for the bow doors and bow ramp to be removed and the bow converted to conventional framing and plating, although it was soon decided to use framing more or less similar to that used in the construction of the bow doors. On 6 Jun 1951 LST 50 was formally directed to be converted to a battle damage repair ship for Norway and CNO authorized the conversion on 12 June 1951. Whittelsey promulgated on 13 June 1951 a schedule for delivering the plans for the conversion. The last plans were due on 6 July 1951 and the circular of requirements for the conversion was to be issued on 15 July 1951. On 2 July 1951 CNO wrote that "It is not desired to change the classification of the LST 50 as it will be transferred to Norway upon the completion of its conversion," leaving the ship to be called "LST 50 (ARB)." However the designation ARB 13 was already in use within BUSHIPS and it was often used, although not in the Naval Vessel Register (NVR). A contract for the conversion of ARB 13 was concluded on 21 Feb 1952 with Puget Sound Bridge and Dredging Co., and the conversion began on 25 Feb 1952.

The ship was ready for transfer on 10 Sep 1952 and was completed on 30 October 1952 for delivery to Commander, 13th Naval District. She was stricken by the USN before being transferred. She was used by the Norwegians to support their submarines and later by the Greeks to support their fleet and supplement the repair capacity of their naval yards.

Ship Notes:
ARBNameMANotes
13Norwegian ELLIDAEx-LST 50 (comm 27 Nov 1943, decomm 6 Feb 1946). Transferred to Norway 14 Nov 1952 at Seattle as ELLIDA. Returned 1 Jul 1960, transferred 16 Sep 1960 at Bergen to Greece as the "fleet tender" SAKIPIS. Decomm. 20 May 1977.

Page Notes:
Compiled: 31 Jul 2021
© Stephen S. Roberts, 2021
Special sources: NARA: RG 19 Entry UD 1024-A Box 1.