Here's your chance to own Navy stealth ship
The Navy test craft Sea Shadow performs in the Sea and Air Parade in San Diego in 2005.
May 3rd, 2012
10:48 AM ET

Here's your chance to own Navy stealth ship

You've got about 24 hours to get your bids in on a piece of super-cool Cold War hardware - a stealth warship the government no longer wants.

The General Services Administration is taking bids on the U.S. Navy's Sea Shadow, built by Lockheed Martin in 1983 for the Navy to test radar-evading capabilities and other weapons systems. The ship has outlived its usefulness, and the Navy is trying to unload it to avoid maintenance costs, the Los Angeles Times reports.

"It is not cost-effective for the Navy to maintain the ship in an inactive condition any longer, and the ship no longer serves any operational or research purpose," Navy spokesman Christopher Johnson told the Times. "Our only disposition option is dismantling and recycling."

Which means if you submit the highest bid, you won't be taking the 118-foot-long, 499-ton Sea Shadow for a three-hour tour with Gilligan and the Skipper.

"The ex-Sea Shadow shall be disposed of by completely dismantling and scrapping within the U.S.A. Dismantling is defined as reducing the property such as it has no value except for its basic material content," read the conditions on the GSA auction site.

That seems to have dampened the interest of evil madmen bent on world domination. (The Sea Shadow is said to be the inspiration for the villain's vessel in the 1997 James Bond film "Tomorrow Never Dies.")

The GSA website reports only 10 bidders so far, with the top bid at $139,100. Bidding started at $10,000.

The winning bidder will have to pick up the prize from the Maritime Administration National Defense Reserve Fleet at Suisun Bay, California.

The Sea Shadow comes complete with a covered barge/floating dry dock, so once you bust it up you will have a keepsake to remind you of what could have been.

Bids are due by 6 p.m. ET Friday. Good luck.

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Filed under: California • Military • U.S. Navy
soundoff (259 Responses)
  1. DAS

    And this hunk of scrap cost how much?

    May 3, 2012 at 12:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Alan S

      To DAS: I don't know how much, but that isn't one of the important questions. They are: (1) whether the cost of building and operating the ship was spent with American companies and American workers, and (2) whether the Navy learned anything that will enable future warships to survive, to protect their sailors, and complete their missions.

      If we spent a billion dollars on the thing, if that money went to American shipyards, and if the technology developed will save a couple hundred American lives from some future sea-skimming missile, I'd say that was money well spent.

      May 3, 2012 at 12:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Grant

      I think I had a heart attack, an intelligent reply on an CNN article. Its not how much it cost to build, its how much was learned based on building it. The space shuttles were also incredibly expensive but the information we learned from them and by using them has paid for itself many times over

      May 3, 2012 at 12:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • bfpiercelk

      Who cares how much it cost to build, that's jobs created, careers made, research done to further technological growth, and they get to sell the scrap to somebody else who will use it for raw material.

      They should start calling the Tea Party the Stupid Party.

      May 3, 2012 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • sipsen1

      To Alan S: Thinking like that has got us into the debt crisis that we are currently in. That billion dollars that went to shipyards didn't just come out of thin air. We have to either take the money from taxpayers or else borrow it from future generations.

      May 3, 2012 at 1:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • CallingBS

      A lot of this lessons learned went into the new Aegis class of war ships...those are the stelthiest, most powerful boats on the water...I think they done good. I only hope that when they demil this floating lab, nothing will be left that can come back to haunt us.

      May 3, 2012 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Phil

    I'm sure the bidders are drug lords, what a great way to smuggle drugs! Stealth ship, sweet.

    May 3, 2012 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Grant

      Yeah, I would guess the government doesn't do background checks on people buying used military equipment. Oh wait nevermind they do.

      May 3, 2012 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • franklovesfl

      Read the article. It MUST be dismantled for scrap. You can't just tow it away and park it at your dock.

      May 3, 2012 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Wow

      They are taking it apart. Please read before commenting.

      May 3, 2012 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  3. rad666

    Looks like something from the Civil War.

    May 3, 2012 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Jon

    Huh. I'm a little surprised that the Navy isn't offering it as a museum ship. We're talking about a unique piece of Cold War history here.

    May 3, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • CallingBS

      It's probably cost prohibitive. It costs a lot to keep those exhibits worthy for people, and there may be things on her that the public in general shouldn't see. It would be nice to see the superstructure on the water up close though...

      May 3, 2012 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  5. James

    I remember this thing. This was a big experimental ship for the Navy and they decided to contract Microsoft to run the computer system in it that was to reduced the number of men required to operate it. The thing literally kept on blue-screening and they never could get the systems to work right. I wish I was joking – but I'm not.

    May 3, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Vin

      Perhaps they should contracted Apple when Steve Jobs was alive. If it was today, I would not put too much in Apple computing.

      May 3, 2012 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse |
  6. ajk68

    How about just taking it somewhere and using it for target practice? That's what they use to do.

    May 3, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  7. CenTexan©

    Hmmm..not enough usable deck space for me.

    May 3, 2012 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
  8. John in WNY

    Maybe the GSA could use it as a their own personal yacht?

    May 3, 2012 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • CenTexan©

      @ John LMFAO !!! If they hadn't been busted already, that may have been very possible. What a bunch of crooks.

      May 3, 2012 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Spidey-Man

    I'd take it if they weren't dismantling it... Would be perfect for the upcoming Zombie Apocalypse.

    May 3, 2012 at 1:09 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Spidey-Man

    but seriously though... Why not make it a museum piece? I'd definitely pay for a tour.

    May 3, 2012 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Vin

    Are the figures right? $139,100 for a warship?

    May 3, 2012 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Wow

      $139K for a dismantled warship = scrap metal. Please read before commenting.

      May 3, 2012 at 1:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • CallingBS

      "The ex-Sea Shadow shall be disposed of by completely dismantling and scrapping within the U.S.A. Dismantling is defined as reducing the property such as it has no value except for its basic material content," read the conditions on the GSA auction site.

      More like a pile of rubble and a covered floating barge...you did "READ" the article...right?

      May 3, 2012 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Scuba Steve

    Pretty sure that's the same ship from Tomorrow Never Dies (James Bond movie – The one after golden eye)

    May 3, 2012 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • larlame

      "(The Sea Shadow is said to be the inspiration for the villain's vessel in the 1997 James Bond film "Tomorrow Never Dies.")"

      Ya think?

      May 4, 2012 at 10:25 am | Report abuse |
  13. Stupid question

    Why doesn't the Navy recycle the material itself and pocket the money instead of giving it away at pennies on the dollar?

    May 3, 2012 at 1:17 pm | Report abuse |
  14. sluggohead

    Hardly a "warship". It was an experiment in stealth only. Not much to see inside. Recycle it.

    May 3, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • CallingBS

      You didn't read the article...let me help you ..."built by Lockheed Martin in 1983 for the Navy to test radar-evading capabilities and other weapons systems."

      May 3, 2012 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Captain Obvious

    Wouldn't it have been stealthier if they had painted it blue?

    May 3, 2012 at 1:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Wow

      No. Thank god you are not in charge of our military.

      May 3, 2012 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Emigdio Alvarez

      it's for evading radar signals.

      May 3, 2012 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • TAK

      Not at night.

      May 3, 2012 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • TJ

      LOL, only if Disney were buying it! Visual stealth is achieved by painting ships "haze gray", but this gizmo was built to test electronic stealth (shore radars, aircraft radars, missiles and the like). 🙂

      May 3, 2012 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Al

      Not sure if this is a joke or you just do not know what stealth technology is.

      It's not supposed to be invisible in broad daylight under the horizon.

      Read the article:

      built by Lockheed Martin in 1983 for the Navy to test radar-evading capabilities and other weapons systems

      May 3, 2012 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dennis

      It is like Chuck Norris, once you can see it you are already dead but don't know it yet.

      May 3, 2012 at 1:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • raul

      blue reflects / black absorbs

      May 3, 2012 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nate

      HA!

      May 3, 2012 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jack

      Nope, radar stealth is based on redirecting radar waves with angled materials.

      May 3, 2012 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
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