American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

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Re: American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

Post by Terry Duncan » 29 Oct 2019 11:39

paulrward wrote:
29 Oct 2019 00:33
Hello All :

Since you are just face hardening the steel, you can always take a sheet of 6" thick STS steel, face harden it, and then secure it to an 18" thick sheet of HTS steel by dovetailing the backside of the face hardened sheet and the frontside of the HTS sheet and then slotting them together, to form a single sheet of armour. This is referred to as 'compound armour, and is much used today on a variety of armoured vehicles.

In fact, you could dovetail both sides of four sheets of 2" STS, and four sheets of 4" HTS, face harden the STS, and then assemble them into a sandwich of 24 inches of alternating face hardened and High Tensile Steel to give you a similar effect to what is known as ' Chobham Armour ' .

Mr. Duncan, in my experience as an Engineer, I have learned that there are over 40 ways to skin a cat, and only 13 of them require the use of a knife....


Respectfully :

Paul R. Ward
Yes, you could do all of these ideas above, and achieve a less resistant belt than the 24" the OP suggested. It certainly would not have the benefits of Chobham, which were mostly concerned with reducing the effectiveness of HEAT rounds, and where weight was somewhat less of a problem than in a ship as even a tank like the Chieftan with all its mobility issues tends not to turn over or sink. Of course, if the OP is happy with an effective thickness of 18" or 20" then multiple plates or even a belt of standard steel are possible.

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Re: American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

Post by Takao » 29 Oct 2019 12:11

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
29 Oct 2019 05:23
T.A. Gardner wrote:The P-51 was rejected because it was found:

To have a poor view of the deck on approach.
A very narrow speed window for landing that would make it a difficult plane to land for average pilots.
The landing gear rebounded too much.
Arghhhh... It doesn't need to be the P-51 specifically, though each of these demerits would be diminished in the presence of a landing deck 3x longer and wider.

The point isn't about the P-51 or B-25 or He-177 or Lancaster specifically!
It's that a much-larger deck would enable operation of larger, more capable planes.
Does anyone disagree with that?

I believe I said "for example" the P51/A26 or "something like" it.

It's a bit frustrating when folks refuse to see a forest because they're arguing about what kinds of trees are there.
As has been said, larger does not necessarily mean more capable. You could say that the smaller Skyraider was more capable than the larger Mitchell. O

Also, the size of the air group could be too large to be efficiently used, as was such on the newly commissioned USS Midway.

Its going to require a lot of elevators to make the design efficient, which will mean a lot of holes in your strength deck. They will also need to move a lot more weight, while maintaining a fast cycle time. Further, while you have more space, you also have larger aircraft to move, so it's not as if you can add more elevators.

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Re: American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

Post by T. A. Gardner » 30 Oct 2019 00:19

Look, on the armor issue we could go round and round on that for weeks. My personal rule of thumb is that when the armor gets over about 3" thick, what sort of heat treatment or face hardening it has really doesn't mean much. What counts is the exact alloying of it for toughness and ability to undergo deformation. Today, that would normally be the ASM 86XX series steels, among others. These are also often called "Triple alloy" steels.
The other critical factor is controlling grain size during cooling. Smaller and more uniform grains in the steel (the crystallization pattern) makes for a much tougher plate.
In the 1930's and 40's this was harder to achieve on a mass production basis than it is today.

As for aircraft: Two big factors on a carrier, of any size, are going to be the space the plane takes up on deck or on an elevator. A B-25 can't be struck down to the hanger of an Essex class carrier. The elevators are too small and the weight of the plane exceeds the limit of the elevator.
Thus, for any carrier you have to consider the weight and size of the plane when it's in its non-flight / stored condition.
Also, many aircraft not designed for carrier use are not really suitable for carrier use. Like the P-51, if the plane has characteristics that make it a poor carrier plane (like the Seafire / Spitfire) then yes, you might use it aboard carriers in a pinch but expect higher non-combat losses, more maintenance on it, and generally it being less desirable for use.

Also, there's take off's. The length of the take off run, loaded has to be considered. How much deck space does that take? If you use catapults, then you need to modify the plane so it can use them, and have a catapult that can handle the weight of the plane and get the necessary acceleration to get it airborne. In the late 1930's for the USN that would be using a hydraulic catapult. Steam cats like in use today, didn't exist yet.

As I said earlier, and Takao reiterated, just because you have the space doesn't make it efficient or desirable.

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Re: American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 30 Oct 2019 03:25

T.A. Gardner wrote:As I said earlier, and Takao reiterated, just because you have the space doesn't make it efficient or desirable.
I know it might feel good and wise to utter proverbs like this but stop for a moment and think about the argument it formally addresses.
As a matter of syllogistic logic, you're responding to a contention "anything for which one has space is efficient and desirable."

Have I said anything like that? No, of course not.

Rather, I've listed several discrete benefits of operating larger aircraft from carriers.

If it turned out that NONE of the larger existing planes could operate from carriers then fine, probably don't convert one of the MegaBB's to a MegaCV.

But one can't reasonably deny that operation of longer-range and more capable aircraft is a reason (not necessarily a decisive one) to consider a MegaCV.

As so often on this forum, folks get tied up in knots on particulars and are blind to the broader strategic issue.
T.A. Gardner wrote:Also, there's take off's. The length of the take off run, loaded has to be considered. How much deck space does that take?
Of course it has to be considered! That's the entire reason that a MegaCV might offer worthwhile benefits! It has a longer runway for larger planes [and hangar space for them]!
Re the exact takeoff run required for a loaded A-26 or whatever - I don't know. Anyone have those figures?
Last edited by TheMarcksPlan on 30 Oct 2019 03:38, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

Post by paulrward » 30 Oct 2019 03:30

Hello All :

In # 194, Mr. TheMarcksPlan posted :
There are many members - some in this thread - who claim to despise alternate history,
yet whose most active forum is always "What If."
and
Our friendly pal....... is always posting about "what was" in "what if." Best not to engage
in these contretemps,
Here is something for all posters in the What If Forum to consider:


Some men see the World the way it is, and ask " Why ? "

Other men see the World the way it could be, and ask, " Why NOT ? "

This thread is for those who can look at the World the way it WAS, and ask, " WHAT IF ? "


I have been an engineer for most of my career. My job, my profession, is to find creative solutions to real world problems. Like the Mission Control personnel in the film Apollo 13, " Failure is NOT an option ! " I have developed
new or improved production and quality control techniques, streamlined manufacturing processes, and improved profitability at EVERY firm I have ever worked for. That was MY JOB !

If you were in any engineering department in the Silicon Valley, where I spent my career, and, when you were presented with a problem, your response was to say, " It can't be fixed....It can't be done.... Nobody has ever done that before.... It isn't the way things were done in the past..... ", you would very shortly be looking for a new place of employment.


Award winning author and Futurist Arthur C. Clarke had three Laws which apply to this forum:

1. When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong.

2. The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible.

3. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.


What we have to be careful of is what was postulated as a potential fourth law by J. Porter Clark:

4. Any sufficiently advanced cluelessness is indistinguishable from malice.


However, if you can master the process of seeing the world the way it used to be, and asking " What If ', and come up with valid ideas, then it is only one short step from seeing the world the way you want it to be, and saying, " This is how we go about making it happen ! "


As one of the Twentieth Century's greatest innovators once said to a very wealthy business executive, " Look, you have a choice: You can stay here and sell colored sugar water to children for the rest of your life, or you can come out to California with me and Change the World ! "

Respectfully :

Paul R. Ward

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Re: American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 30 Oct 2019 03:33

Terry Duncan wrote:Of course, if the OP is happy with an effective thickness of 18" or 20" then multiple plates or even a belt of standard steel are possible.
Are you saying that you couldn't fashion a 24in Class B plate? Okhun's material on Navweaps doesn't specify an upper bound for thickness; I haven't seen one elsewhere either.

I'd want to armor this ship against penetration full stop - I wouldn't be worried about breaking up oblique shells with Class A armor.

My target for deck armor protection would immunity at any range from ~21in "super heavy" shells. Per the USN penetration formula, Iowa's shells could penetrate 14in at max range. Assuming roughly quadratic relationship between shell caliber and penetration, 24in deck armor gives immunity to 21in shells at max range.

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Re: American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 30 Oct 2019 03:37

paulrward wrote:What we have to be careful of is what was postulated as a potential fourth law by J. Porter Clark:

4. Any sufficiently advanced cluelessness is indistinguishable from malice.
Now that is a great quote!

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Re: American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

Post by Terry Duncan » 30 Oct 2019 03:54

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
30 Oct 2019 03:33
Terry Duncan wrote:Of course, if the OP is happy with an effective thickness of 18" or 20" then multiple plates or even a belt of standard steel are possible.
Are you saying that you couldn't fashion a 24in Class B plate? Okhun's material on Navweaps doesn't specify an upper bound for thickness; I haven't seen one elsewhere either.

I'd want to armor this ship against penetration full stop - I wouldn't be worried about breaking up oblique shells with Class A armor.

My target for deck armor protection would immunity at any range from ~21in "super heavy" shells. Per the USN penetration formula, Iowa's shells could penetrate 14in at max range. Assuming roughly quadratic relationship between shell caliber and penetration, 24in deck armor gives immunity to 21in shells at max range.
You could use Class B armour, it is just not as effective. Typically the belt would be made of such armour because of the threat posed by shells that penetrated intact and then exploded. As I said, you can use a lot of options, but I cannot second guess them.

You want protections vs 21" shells at any range? OK. What weight for the shell? I wouldnt worry about 'super heavy shells' as they had a tendency to deform on impact if the angle was too oblique, the British rejected them for this reason as too high a percentage would deform and fail entirely. I think you may be suprised at the thickness of armour needed at under 5k yards to resists such a large shell.

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Re: American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 30 Oct 2019 03:57

Terry Duncan wrote:The program will break down weights, but it is also dependent on what details are put in. For example, what depth is your 24" belt? Given the variable draught hull idea, it is going to have to cover at least the waterline at deep load, but will it still cover it at light load? There is a lot of difference in a belt 12' deep to one 40' deep. The hull still has to cope with the belt weight for stability purposes at both load conditions.
Forgot to answer this. For the 2400x360ft MegaBB, the belt is 50ft deep. That covers our 40ft of freeboard and 10ft below the waterline.

To continue our discussion of class A/B armor, I'm not that concerned about the belt armor with this ship. A few points:

1. The armored belt would be behind ~20ft of void that would be water-filled in battle conditions. Therefore any shell is significantly slowed or exploded before it strikes.

2. Battle tactics for this ship would be to maintain at least 25,000 yards range. It's hard to punch a hole in armor belt at those ranges even absent 20ft of water. With this ship being faster than any BB and as fast as all but the fastest DD's, it can dictate tactical range. With 90% of its armor behind the superstructure, it can fire over the shoulder or on the run while maintaining range separation. Plus the MegaBB's Mega-ConningTower (~300ft above waterline) means a ~70mile horizon for radar and good-day visual. Keeping range at ~30k yards means no hits from secondary/cruiser armament, while the MegaBB can sink 100 BB's with 1% accuracy before running out of ammo.

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Re: American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 30 Oct 2019 04:03

Terry Duncan wrote:You could use Class B armour, it is just not as effective. Typically the belt would be made of such armour because of the threat posed by shells that penetrated intact and then exploded. As I said, you can use a lot of options, but I cannot second guess them.

You want protections vs 21" shells at any range? OK. What weight for the shell? I wouldnt worry about 'super heavy shells' as they had a tendency to deform on impact if the angle was too oblique, the British rejected them for this reason as too high a percentage would deform and fail entirely. I think you may be suprised at the thickness of armour needed at under 5k yards to resists such a large shell.
Our last posts crossed each other in the night like Scheer over Jellicoe's wake...

I want ONLY THE DECK protected at every range.

The 21in Super Heavy would weigh 6,100lbs by cubic escalation from 16in shells.

Like I said in my last post, I'm not that worried about close-range shots. If an enemy somehow survives to get within range to penetrate 24in of Class B armor it'd be either a miracle or a ship at least as big as the MegaBB - which means Japan/Germany has built nothing else.

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Re: American militarism pre-WW2 and the Ultimate Battleship

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 30 Oct 2019 04:25

TheMarcksPlan wrote:I want ONLY THE DECK protected at every range.
This points up a drawback to the MegaBB design: With such a giant hull you have a huge target for long-range plunging shells. You'd never want to risk losing the whole ship to a penetrating plunging shell that hits a magazine, so over the magazines the deck must be impervious to any gun at any range.

If someone puts 22in guns on a BB, the Mega would need to reinforce its deck. With maximum structural weight exceeding its empty weight by over a million tons, however, this is easy in one sense. It would, however, require dredging an East Coast harbor past 40ft, sending the ship to the West Coast for overhauls, putting a floating drydock in Provincetown Harbor, or removing some guns to maintain empty draft. None of these are prohibitive. You could also trade some guns for more deck armor in the original design, requiring, say, a 24in gun to threaten the MegaBB. It probably doesn't need 300x the Iowa's firepower to achieve its primary mission, after all.

And of course if Japan is forced to build 22in gun BB's then the Mega has forced them to waste precious resources. Unless they build a ship on Mega scale, those 22in BB's can be sunk by carriers - Carriers that would face far fewer Japanese carriers, while the U.S. carriers would be behind an impenetrable Flak wall put up by the MegaBB's. So maybe you leave the MegaBB's as they are and tie them to the carriers until the 22in BB's are sunk.

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