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Glossary of Terms

Many of the terms noted in the Deck Logs and Final Action Report are unique to the Navy and/or the era. This short glossary is intended to make reading these documents, and others within this website, a bit easier. The glossary is not all inclusive, as it only contains terms this non-Navy author could find (or make an educated guess about).

Special thanks to Tin Can Sailors for helping find a definition (or at least a good educated guess) for the terms Tare, Charlie and Uncle Runs referenced in the Weapons section of this glossary.

Japanese Planes
Betty: Twin engine Mitsubishi torpedo-bomber
Hamp: Mitsubishi A6M Reisen with clipped wing tips - A variant on the 'Zero' fighter
Irving: Nakajima J1N fighter
Jill: Single engine Nakajima torpedo-bomber
Judy: Single engine Yokosuka dive-bomber
Kate: Nakajima torpedo-bomber
Lily: Kawasaki built Ki-48-II bomber
Nell: Mitsubishi twin engine bomber
Oscar: Single engine Nakajima fighter-bomber
Sally: Twin Engine Mitsubishi Ki-21 Bomber
Val: Aichi dive-bomber, with fixed landing gear
Zeke: Single engine Mitsubishi 'Zero' fighter-interceptor

DM: Destroyer-Minelayer
AK: Cargo ship
LCT: Landing Craft Tank
LCI: Landing Craft Infantry
MTB: Motor Torpedo Boat
PCER: A type of escort patrol craft
Y or YO: A ship that carries fuel oil
IX: Tanker, for transporting gasoline
BB: Battleship
CV: Aircraft carrier
LCS: Landing Craft (Support)
LCT: Landing Craft (Tank)
LSM: Landing Ships (Medium)
APD: Destoyer or destroyer escort converted to fast transport, to carry and land troops
LST: Landing Ship Tank
LCV(P): Landing Craft Vehicle and Personnel
Liberty Ship: These ships, designated with "SS" instead of "USS", often carried ammunition supplies to forward areas.
MWB: Motor Whale Boat, the BUSH had two, one on each side of the ship, just forward of the #1 stack.
Sugar Charlie: Sub Chaser
Sugar Fox: Fast patrol boat
HMAS: His or Her Magesty's Australain Ship

Command Titles
Cincpac: Commander In Chief Pacific
ComDesDiv: Commander Destroyer Division - A division includes 4 destroyers
ComDesRon: Commander Destroyer Squadron - A squadron includes 2 divisions (8 destroyers)
CTF Commander Task Force - A task force (TF) consists of various task groups (TG's), which are composed of various task units (TU's). Each TF, TG, and TU will have a designated officer in charge.
CTG: Commander Task Group
CTU: Commander Task Unit
OTC: Officer in Tactical Command
CNB: unknown
SOPA: Senior Officer Present Afloat

5"/38: Five-inch 38 caliber projectiles fired from the largest guns of a Fletcher class destroyer. On a Fletcher there were five such guns numbered 1 thru 5. Guns 1 and 2 were forward on the ship. Guns 3, 4 and 5 were aft. These guns had the longest effective firing range.
40MM: Twin Bofor 40 milimeter guns. There were five such guns, numbered 41 thru 45. 41 and 42 were just forward of the bridge. 43 and 44 were amidships, next to the second smoke stack. 45 was situated between five inch guns 3 and 4.
20MM: 20 milimeter guns. There were seven such guns when the BUSH was commissioned. Three were on the fantail (rear of the ship) and two on each side of the ship just aft of the 43 and 44 guns.
Depth Charges & K-guns: Two racks of 600 pound depth charges were located on the fantail. Each rack contained eight depth charges. These weapons were rolled off the back of ship and into the water. The ship had to be moving above a certain speed to avoid damage from explosion. The K-guns would launch a 300 pound depth charge through the air, away from the ship, before dropping into the water. There were three K-guns on each side of the ship, near five inch gun #4 and 40MM gun #45. Each K-gun had one charge in launch position with four refills nearby.
Torpedos: Two torpedo mounts, each with five 21-inch diameter torpedos. Each torpedo carried 600 pounds of explosives. The forward mount was situated between the two smoke stacks. The rear mount was between the rear stack and forward on gun #3.
Tare Run: Anti-aircraft practice in which a plane tows a target sleeve toward the firing ship from directly abeam, simulating a torpedo attack. Because these were simulated torpedo attacks, and the term "torpedo" starts with the letter "T", the old US Navy phonetic alphabet terms resulted in these simulated attacks being referred to as "Tare" runs.
Charlie Run: Anti-aircraft practice, in which simulated attack runs were down the side of the firing ship. Because these attack patterns were considered a "crossing" pattern, the US Navy alpha code "Charlie" run was derived as "crossing" was abbreviated to "C".
Uncle Run: Anti-aircraft practice, for which the best guess is that simluated attack was down one side of the ship, around the stern and up the other side, more or less in the shape of the letter "U". From the letter "U" the US Navy phonetic alpha code "Uncle" run was derived.

Communications and Radar
TBS: Talk Between Ships
TBL: Transmitter, capable of sending morse code or voice
RBH: Ship to shore radio
FD and FDO: Fighter director and fighter director operator
PPI Scope: Plan Position Indicator (radar scope)
SC Radar: Air search radar
SG Radar: Surface search radar

Binnacle List: List of sick or injured sailors
BuPers: Bureau of Naval Personnel
CAP: Combat Air Patrol
CIC: Combat Information Center - A location in the ship receiving all radio traffic between ships, aircraft, and radar information on tactical disposition of ships and aircraft. Based on this data, decisions were made and orders given.
Condition 1E: Short for One Easy - battlestations are manned in the event of enemy attack.
DELEGATE At Okinawa, the call name of the chief fighter director who assigned CAP to the various Radar Pickets and oversaw the vectoring of fighter planes and the positioning of the Pickets. He was stationed on the command ship in the Hagashi anchorage and was in constant voice communication with the fighter director teams on the various Radar Picket ships. All ships on the Picket Station could hear him on a 24/7 basis. It was how they knew what was going on and what to expect.
Fantail: Back of the ship on the main deck. Smoke screen generators, 600 pound depth charges, and three 20MM guns are located on the BUSH fantail.
GQ: General quarters
IFF: Recognition signal - Identify, Friend or Foe
Mae Wests: Nickname given some life preservers. Some sailors had life vests and others had belts. Some of these flotation devices were to be inflated by a CO2 cartridge. If healthy and a good swimmer, it was an advantage not to have prematurely inflated your life vest or belt on the day the BUSH was lost. If not inflated, the sailor could dive under water as enemy planes strafed the sea.
NAD: Navy Ammunition Depot
PSC: Indicates a magnetic compass reading. Often deck logs show true and magnetic compass readings.
Pt. BOLO At Okinawa, this represented the code name of the point of reference used by DELEGATE in giving instructions and making assessments. Geographically, it corresponded to the point of land demarking the northern end of the Hagushi anchorage, known to the Japanese as Zampa Mizaki.
Radar Pickets (RP): Ships equipped with radar and stationed a number of miles away from the main fleet and/or allied invasion forces. These ships would provide advance warning of any attacking enemy aircraft or ships. Each picket ship was assigned a designated station, usually 20 or so miles apart from each other. By positioning the pickets at unique stations, the pickets could monitor a large area of ocean and sky. Destroyers such as BUSH performed this duty. Sometimes, as at Okinawa, smaller ships such as an LCS would work in concert with the assigned radar picket ship.
Screw: Refers to the propeller of a ship.
Sea Painter: A line over the side of the ship to secure a small boat or punt for examining or painting the side of the ship.
Shrapnel: Metal fragments from shell/bomb explosion
Sonar: Detection equipment used to detect and track submarines. A distinct pinging sound was emitted from a transmitter/receiver attached to the hull. Sonarmen were sometimes referred to as "ping-jockeys".
T: Short for "true". Used when noting direction ("bearing") of an object (such as the ship's course, another ship, or enemy plane) in degrees
Window: Substance (such as foil) dropped by enemy planes to hinder the effectiveness of the ship's radar to track planes and direct anti-aircraft fire.
Torpedo Juice: Slang for grade A (drinking) alcohol. The Navy manual required that the gyros (guidance system) on the torpedos be cleaned with Grade A alcohol. This made the torpedo gang very popular with other members of the crew.
Tin Can: Another term for a Navy destroyer.

Standing Watch
Mid: The Mid Watch (or Middle Watch) ran from Midnight to 4AM (0000 to 0400 on the deck logs)
Morning: 4AM to 8AM (0400 to 0800 on the deck logs)
Forenoon: 8AM to Noon (0800 to 1200 on the deck logs)
Afternoon: Noon to 4PM (1200 to 1600 on the deck logs)
1st Dog: 4PM to 6PM (1600 to 1800 on the deck logs)
2nd Dog: 6PM to 8PM (1800 to 2000 on the deck logs)
1st Night: 8PM to Midnight (2000 to 0000 on the deck logs, though the watch itself is labeled 20 to 24 on the deck logs)

Enlisted Ratings
Click here: To enlisted personnel rating's definitions

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