Optical Shop, Repair Dept.

OM's were usually assigned to R5 division. We were responsible for the maintenance of the various types of periscopes used on the Boats. We were also responsible for the maintenance of handheld optical equipment, which would be binoculars (special type Mk45 for sub use), sextants, stadimeters, and the Target Bearing binoculars used on the old fleet boats and still used up till the 70's on some of the early Nuc's. Also in R5 division would be the Instrumentman (IM) ratings. These guys, and later gals, worked on gauges, typewrites, adding machines, and later on the Boomer Tenders, inthe MIRCS lab. The MIRCS lab was where calibration of mechanical instruments and specialized mechanical equipment was accomplished. MIRCS labs also had the responsibility to calibrate Oxygen equipment, and the huge Torque wrenches used for securing the missiles into the mounting rings on the Boomers.

Additional rates found in R5 would be the Photographer mates (PH), Printers which became Lithographers mates (LI), Draftsman (DM) and depending on the ship, the mast gang.

Later on, on some ships the OM's and IM's and some of the other ratingswere moved into R4 division. There was a big reorganization on tendersin the late 70's.

Optical Write-up by Gerry C. Haight, who was an Opticalman (OM) first class for 20+years in the Navy. He served on two sub tenders, Simon Lake and Dixon, and at the Subase Pearl (two tours). He also served in various AD's and AR's in the course of the 20+ years he was in the Navy. Various NEC's held included Submarine periscope repair and Precision instrument repair I was also surface warfare qualified.

He is currently living in South Korea, working for Raytheon Systems, Training Operations as an Optical Engineer. His specialty has been working on F-18 flight simulators since he retired in 1985.

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