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Topic review - What-if these battleships were built?
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  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
USN_Matt wrote:
That would have been one heck of a battle! If the Bismark did all that damage, just imagine what just ONE of the H class ships would have done... poor england...
Not really - aside from 1 lucky shot (which many accounts credit to Prinz Eugen) "he" didn't do much of anything but get trashed.

USN_Matt wrote:
But yeah i didn't know Germany started to build them. But still, it would have had the same fate as the Bismark and Tirpitz did. England and the allies would have made that the first priority to sink over the Bismark annd Schornhorst class.

The reports I read indicate that The "H" class was laid down but the real problem was England (or the RAF) who made it a priority target to keep those keels from launching. If completed the only RN ships to challenge them would have been the Nelsons, all the old ships would have both a speed and range deficit so would have been targets and the BCs and KGVs would have range issues. still they would have a speed advantage and could close. I think the remaining KGVs would have been canceled and the hulls completed as Lions. of-course, once the US entered, the "H"s would be in trouble as NC & SDs are sent to England to deal with them. They really would need the GZ for air cover (the listed air complement was ridicules though, she needed way more fighters, especially in light of the fact that she would be swarmed by RAF aircraft on attempting breakout and would be vastly outnumbered by RN carriers).
Post Posted: Mon Aug 18, 2014 11:21 am
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
Goodwood wrote:
...when it comes to pilots/aircrew...It takes more effort to train someone to drop bombs accurately from the air than it does to train that same person to flick a switch, press a button, or even to work as a team to coordinate a gunshot or missile launch from a surface ship...
not really - it's the learning to fly & get on & off of a carrier that takes the bulk of training - in WWII bombs were dropped over an "Iron site" - basically just a cross hair - even modern a aircraft is more just flipping a few switches (in most cases by the RIO) - firing a missile or gun from a moving warship, bobbing up & down in the water while zigging around shell splashes & torpedoes is FAR more than just pushing a button (if you want to get the shot anywhere within a mile of the enemy) - you have to track the target, track your own movement, predict where the target "will be" when your round gets to it, calculate range and wind-age, firing a Naval gun is a whole triganomic operation, then if you add modern FC well that's electronic & computer operations.
Goodwood wrote:
...how they planned their war fleet as well as how they intended to surround the Home Islands with buffer zones of other island chains to one side and conquered nations on the other. For the first point, they had a good mix of aircraft carriers delivering effective striking power, but backed up with and supplemented by effective close-in (cruisers, destroyers) and stand-off (battleships and heavy cruisers) surface units. This translates into having the means to project power as well as to hold what they had at the same time. The fact that they lost the war due to boatloads of reasons does not necessarily negate the basic principle of their fleet planning...every island and city that the Japanese held was a planet, with island chains and nations constituting star systems. Now imagine that Japan itself is a star system at the center of this territory that the ships of their space navy allow them to deliver armies to conquer these other planets and systems. To go back to the Star Wars paradigm, picture the Japanese main fleet units as Star Destroyers projecting power to those other systems, with their smaller warships as analogous to the corvettes and frigates that the Rebels had. This offers a well-balanced navy that, in theory, should be able to hold a sphere of influence while at the same time rushing a reserve force to any trouble spots...
as far as the Island/Planet goes - that's just basic defense-in-depth & it would depend on what type of FTL was available (if they can never devise such a thing then their will likely never be interstellar wars as any attack will be a generational undertaking & by the time the fleet arrives they will be so far out of date that their only option would be to surrender) if FTL turns out like StarTrek (with ships having to travel like normal - just faster) then a defense-in-depth would be a viable option (with the enemy having to attack in succession to provide a supply line) if its more Robotech (with hyperfolds allowing instant transit anywhere) then that wouldn't work (the enemy would just jump past your outer defense to attack your capitol). as for fleet composition - that would depend on specific technology. I think a more general combat ship (hybrid Battle-Carrier) would be used (these were not useful in WWII due to the fact that everything that makes a good conventional carrier detracts from a good Battleship while all the aspects that make a good battleship make for a poor conventional carrier - with modern VTOL this is no longer true) a Battleship/Star with its own contingent of aircraft/starfighters would be more versatile - not requiring other ships to provide it with the other aspect (BB needing a CV to provide fighter cover or CV needing a BB for surface combat) but again that depends on specific technology - for instance if some sort of shield/armor were made available which could protect a ship from all but the largest weapons then fighters would be rendered useless & carriers (or fighters on a Battleship/star) would be useless. where if powerful weapons available for fighters became available that could kill any size ship then giant warships (of any kind) would be a waste of resources (as with the Israeli Navy who did away with even destroyers as they could be sunk by a single missile). & these extremes could (& probably would) fluxuate.
Post Posted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 5:52 pm
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
Not to be a snob when it comes to pilots/aircrew versus your basic squid, but let's be honest with ourselves. It takes more effort to train someone to drop bombs accurately from the air than it does to train that same person to flick a switch, press a button, or even to work as a team to coordinate a gunshot or missile launch from a surface ship. That may change in future, but for now and in the last eighty years of history, this has been the case.

Regarding my comment about space warfare following the Japanese model, I'm referring to how they planned their war fleet as well as how they intended to surround the Home Islands with buffer zones of other island chains to one side and conquered nations on the other. For the first point, they had a good mix of aircraft carriers delivering effective striking power, but backed up with and supplemented by effective close-in (cruisers, destroyers) and stand-off (battleships and heavy cruisers) surface units. This translates into having the means to project power as well as to hold what they had at the same time. The fact that they lost the war due to boatloads of reasons does not necessarily negate the basic principle of their fleet planning.

For the second point, just imagine if you will that every island and city that the Japanese held was a planet, with island chains and nations constituting star systems. Now imagine that Japan itself is a star system at the center of this territory that the ships of their space navy allow them to deliver armies to conquer these other planets and systems. To go back to the Star Wars paradigm, picture the Japanese main fleet units as Star Destroyers projecting power to those other systems, with their smaller warships as analogous to the corvettes and frigates that the Rebels had. This offers a well-balanced navy that, in theory, should be able to hold a sphere of influence while at the same time rushing a reserve force to any trouble spots.

There are two main reasons why the Japanese model failed when it was put up against the United States Navy that I can think of, which aren't simply based on luck, happenstance, or the fallibility of leadership on both sides, etc. (basically, this is pure theory with the human element expunged for sake of argument). First: the vast disparity of industrial capacity between Japan and the US; even if we'd lost at Midway and hadn't destroyed any of their carriers or, worse, had lost all of ours, we still would have won the war of attrition. Even as the battle was over, we had Essex-class flattops on the ways, and better aircraft in development as well as some of the best training of any navy. A year after Midway, we already had more carriers either completed or in production than any other nation on the globe; the retention of four of their ships would not have made that huge of a difference in the grand scheme of things.

Second: the Japanese model also failed to embrace shifting doctrine and the emergence of new technologies. You are quite right to suggest that the 25mm AAA was crap, but it's more than that. The IJN was late to adopt radar, and even when they did they still used their tried-and-true night-fighting tactics as often as they thought they could get away with it. Advances in gunnery and fire-control were also either ignored or missed out on, and as a result their ability to hit back became increasingly ineffectual. In addition, while they started the war with the world's best crop of naval aviators, they had no system set up to handle attrition. I contend often that the US had the best pilot training in the world during the war because we insisted on sending veteran pilots back to the States to teach new recruits, as well as the fact that the program itself was quite long compared to other nations. The Japanese, by contrast, graduated only about 100 pilots a year, and their standards were exceedingly high, to the point that they began grooming potential pilots as they entered what we consider high school. This system, naturally, went to hell in a handcart once the shooting started. As if that wasn't enough, their reluctance to develop and use new and better aircraft types was also quite a handicap; the Luftwaffe also suffered from this almost institutional setback.

To sum it all up, the Japanese model of zone defense using strategic points of contention and mobile striking forces remains sound, it's just the execution—and their lack of depth—that left them with the short end of the stick. But this is all just the opinion of a sci-fi nut and amateur historian. :)
Post Posted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 3:45 pm
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
Goodwood wrote:
...BBG-63...
or BG-63?
Goodwood wrote:
...Convert them from steam to nuclear power and you've got a pretty hot number even if the retrofit would be bloody expensive if it was even possible...
of course it is - USS Texas (& the others of her time) were originally coal powered. they were converted to oil - that was a much more extensive reconstruction than replacing oil boilers with a couple of surplus sub nukes.
Goodwood wrote:
...just about anyone can be trained to fire the guns and launch the missiles...
Gee thanks. :roll:
Goodwood wrote:
...but an aircraft carrier's striking power is embodied entirely in its air wing...
Right - a carrier is just a glorified freighter for aircraft (not a real "combat" ship) if it's fighting then somebody screwed up!
Goodwood wrote:
...Combat attrition to a battleship means a few holes patched up and some crew replaced...
If that - when the Mo's XO was asked "what would you do if the ship were hit by an Exocet missile" he replied "call sweepers".
Goodwood wrote:
...for a carrier usually means a new, bloody expensive airplane and highly-trained pilot and maybe a WSO/RIO.
Not to mention MIAs, prisoners being forced to make propaganda videos or being murdered by cowards on video, etc...
Goodwood wrote:
... and if by some reason we are forced to engage in spaceborne combat
Human nature being what it is...it's going to happen (even if we don't find "E.T.") once we get off this mudball.
Goodwood wrote:
...develops a viable starfighter, I don't see it being able to blow up capital ships...
depends - Armor & weapons have had an ongoing (somewhat symbiotic) relationship - as one advances the other fallows with some points the armor available overcomes available weapons (Monitor Vs CSS Virginia for example) while other times its the other way around (& we've been on a 1/2 century lag on capitol ship armor) but even at the best times a giant capitol ship can only protect so much (see VV Class Roma - sunk by a German missile when she tried to join the Allies). so it is possible to have a war at a point where capitol ship protection was lagging Vs weapons development. also small star fighters would be able to get in close & target specific weak points (weapons turrets, hangers, engines etc...) which is what you see more in Star Wars rather than 1 fighter blowing up an entire ship (like in Gundam) though a wing of fighters could carry an overwhelming volley of missiles (torpedoes, etc...) for a killer salvo.
Goodwood wrote:
..., need I remind you that Japan had the worst naval AA in the world...
I don't know about the "whole world" but the major naval combatants I would agree - they relied heavily on the 25mm Hochkiss which was a total piece of $#!* even at the expense of 5" guns on some ships.
Goodwood wrote:
...Actually, it might be more like how the combat in Battlestar Galactica worked, with rail guns and nukes instead of turbolasers and photon torpedoes...
depends on available technology - but that's how David Weber's Honor Harrington works, Nuks are the primary weapon due to their longer range (Railguns & Lasers are limited to speed of light which limits their effective range were missiles can be given AI for mid & terminal course corrections) where Grazers (Gravity powered rail-guns) are used for close range action.

Goodwood wrote:
...It is perhaps ironic that, in theoretical interstellar space warfare, the Japanese strategic and tactical models would probably be the most likely to succeed...
don't see it ??? - bad defence is bad defence regardless are arena.
Post Posted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 11:18 am
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
Here's an interesting take on the battleship fantasy, in two parts.

Pert 1:

Someone previously in this thread maintained that with the proper demonstration of abilities (i.e., more battleship vs. battleship fleet actions), then the big guns would have continued to see acknowledgment as viable naval weapons, with such vessels being upgraded with guided missiles as the technology became available (BBG-63 USS Missuri, anyone?). Personally, I agree with this assessment, particularly given the fact that Mo was able to provide quite adequate gun support in Gulf War I in addition to her compliment of Tomahawk cruise missiles. Convert them from steam to nuclear power and you've got a pretty hot number even if the retrofit would be bloody expensive if it was even possible.

With all this taken into the picture, I would add the ever-increasing expense of a carrier's air wing. And not just the aircraft themselves, though that's a huge part of it. Maintenance of aircraft; fuel, munitions, and spare parts; the training of pilots, aircrew, and mechanics/technicians as well as keeping them fed and watered aboard ship; all of these add up to a massive expense. I would even go so far as to postulate that in the not-so-distant future, with naval aviation becoming more and more advanced, the cost of a carrier air wing and all that it entails will exceed the cost of the ship itself. With battleships, just about anyone can be trained to fire the guns and launch the missiles, but an aircraft carrier's striking power is embodied entirely in its air wing, which requires highly-trained crew with already exceptional physical characteristics. Combat attrition to a battleship means a few holes patched up and some crew replaced, while the same for a carrier usually means a new, bloody expensive airplane and highly-trained pilot and maybe a WSO/RIO.

Part 2: SPACE!

If you'll pardon the minor fantastical indulgence, if we as a species ever expand to the stars, and if by some reason we are forced to engage in spaceborne combat either against ourselves or some E.T.'s big, mean and uglier cousin out there, it's going to be with giant spaceborne battleships. It won't be like Star Blazers, at least not in that specific show's rendition, but even if homo sapians develops a viable starfighter, I don't see it being able to blow up capital ships like you see in Star Wars. Because in Episode VI, we do in fact see big ships slugging it out while the fighters engage in dogfights. Sure, they'll be able to inflict damage to the heavies, but it won't be in the same way the U.S. Navy was able to decimate the Japanese fleets in battle after battle (need I remind you that Japan had the worst naval AA in the world).

Actually, it might be more like how the combat in Battlestar Galactica worked, with rail guns and nukes instead of turbolasers and photon torpedoes. It is perhaps ironic that, in theoretical interstellar space warfare, the Japanese strategic and tactical models would probably be the most likely to succeed. Yes, that's a lot of what-ifs in two paragraphs, but half the reason we're in this forum is the fantasy, right?

Okay, I'm done...
...for now. :cool_1:
Post Posted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 12:15 am
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
Channell wrote:
I think 90% of a battleship's job was to show off prestige, power and the whole "mine's bigger than yours" thing for a country... so if a Montana class was actually finished, I doubt it would have been scrapped for that reason alone. After all "boys will be boys"... even if they happen to be boys running a country.

That's the nice thing about about museum ships like the Iowas which can still be put back into service if the GOV asks; we still have our "big sticks" on display to the world but don't have to pay for their upkeep. I'm 100% sure a Montana would have ended up in the same situation.

Agreed.
Post Posted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 8:45 am
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
I think 90% of a battleship's job was to show off prestige, power and the whole "mine's bigger than yours" thing for a country... so if a Montana class was actually finished, I doubt it would have been scrapped for that reason alone. After all "boys will be boys"... even if they happen to be boys running a country.

That's the nice thing about about museum ships like the Iowas which can still be put back into service if the GOV asks; we still have our "big sticks" on display to the world but don't have to pay for their upkeep. I'm 100% sure a Montana would have ended up in the same situation.
Post Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 8:05 pm
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
Seasick wrote:
...the Iowas would be less expensive to operate than the larger Montanas.

True - but not that much more for mothballing & it would depend on who was incharge of the cash as to weather any were kept.
Post Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 4:23 pm
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
I mentioned that the Montanas would be scrapped after the Korean war. One reason I didn't touch on is that the Iowas would be less expensive to operate than the larger Montanas.
Post Posted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 11:31 pm
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
biercemountain wrote:
The achilles heel of the Montana's was their width. The fact that they couldn't pass through the Panama Canal would have been a major drawback when compared to the Missouri's. I personally believe they would have been scrapped.

The locks were (& have been since) widened - Modern Carriers and Super-Tankers are far wider than they would have been - anyway we send Carriers around Chile all the time - they likely would have served in the Pacific, been mothballed in Seattle, then any re-service would be in San Diego or San Francisco for Korea/VN, at least till the canal was widened. (assuming carrier huggers didn't take over first - as they did!... :mad_1: )
Post Posted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:33 am
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
The achilles heel of the Montana's was their width. The fact that they couldn't pass through the Panama Canal would have been a major drawback when compared to the Missouri's. I personally believe they would have been scrapped.
Post Posted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 10:14 am
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
Seasick wrote:
How about a reverse Nelson with three aft turrets and a bridge at the bow.


How about a double Nelson (sounds like a wrestling move :heh:) with six turrets? I always thought the Nelson/Rodney looked like half a ship; what a monster battle ship you'd have if the two were one?
Post Posted: Fri May 24, 2013 8:31 pm
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
well whats the dimensions of your ship ? ? To make it odd wouldnt be a problem but to make it practical is another story
Post Posted: Fri May 24, 2013 5:57 pm
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
I came up with the reverse Nelson as a way of designing the oddest looking warship possible.
Post Posted: Sun May 19, 2013 1:50 am
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
The Reichmarine light cruisers Leipzig and Nuremberg both had a conventional gun layout with the 15cm on the center line. The K class that came before them had the oddly staggered 15cm on the stern. The idea was that the stern turrets would have a large firing arc that would reach very far forward. It didn't work well in practice and Leipzig reverted to the the conventional layout.
Post Posted: Sun May 19, 2013 1:49 am
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
Guest wrote:
all turrets aft sounds like they plan on running from every fight



I don't think so. How often have you known battelships to engage a target dead ahead?

I think the main reason why all turret aft arrangement is silly is it would force the machinery space farther forward, unnecessarily increaseing the shaft length, and compromising the defence of the magazines due to the need to route shafts under or around the magazines.
Post Posted: Fri May 17, 2013 12:33 pm
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
Diederick44 wrote:
to have guns on only one side leaves major gaps in defence , if the enemy came from the front and all your guns are at the rear you are in major trouble same vice versa you would be shelled like crazy and all the enemy must do is to stay out of your guns position


That's where Maneuvering comes in, at Tsusima the Japs stayed ahead of the Russians main battleships. the Russians had all-round fire but with only 2 guns (half) forward. if the Russian BBs had had all of their guns forward they would have been able to fire back better. the main problem is the fleet maneuver, with individual ships (like most WWII engagements) the ship in question can turn faster than the enemy can run around (unless their in a narrows), it's when the fleet has to turn in a tight fleet formation that you can't make sharp turns without running into each other.
Post Posted: Thu May 16, 2013 9:30 am
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
axis ships were lethal at long range and scored hits where most ships couldnt , now a microwave fuse sounds interesting but germany was busy with theyre projects like a nuclear round , the project was disbanned after a while but if they got it right no ship would have been safe within striking distance of such ammo types , as it seems to me WW2 was a sci fi type of warfare as both allies and axis were developing new types of tech far beyond the imaganation of what was thought possible
Post Posted: Tue May 14, 2013 8:40 pm
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
to have guns on only one side leaves major gaps in defence , if the enemy came from the front and all your guns are at the rear you are in major trouble same vice versa you would be shelled like crazy and all the enemy must do is to stay out of your guns position
Post Posted: Tue May 14, 2013 8:31 pm
  Post subject:  Re: What-if these battleships were built?  Reply with quote
Guest wrote:
all turrets aft sounds like they plan on running from every fight


Yea, That's why the British G3 & N3 (what the Nelsons were based on) had no aft turrets, It was believed they should rarely have the enemy in their rear arc (though the Lion had the enemy in its rear arc when it was limping from Dogger Bank!). Still any BC (designed to run from anything bigger than it) might have to.
Post Posted: Tue May 14, 2013 3:46 pm

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