Best Battleship

Discussions on the equipment used by the Axis forces, apart from the things covered in the other sections. Hosted by Juha Tompuri
Karl da Kraut
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Post by Karl da Kraut » 23 Sep 2002 23:13

The Italians often completly failed to coordinate aircrafts and warships. Which is essential in modern naval warfare. If Italian aircraft did actionally attack Allied surface units it wre level-bombers most of the time that were much less effective in the ASuW-role than dive- or torpedo-bombers.

Ovidius
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Post by Ovidius » 23 Sep 2002 23:25

Takao wrote:The Italian Littorios' were good battleships. Their main guns were excellent


...but had a short barrel life..

Takao wrote: and their protection was above average.


...but still vulnerable, and could not be repaired outside harbor, unlike the German Bismarck.

Takao wrote:What was lacking on these ships, for that matter all Axis warships, was a good radar.


Other "Axis warships"(German large surface units etc) had decent radars, but badly protected :)

~Ovidius

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Tim Smith
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Post by Tim Smith » 30 Sep 2002 15:10

I still find it hard to believe that the German navy allowed themselves to be limited by the Anglo-German Naval Treaty of 1935 into equipping Scharnhorst and Gneisenau with 9x11" guns instead of 6x15" guns.

They created a class of capital ship that was incapable of successfully sinking most opposing capital ships. The 11" shell simply wasn't powerful enough to penetrate most battleship class armour plate.

The RN's Renown and Repulse class battlecruisers already had 6x15" guns in 1935 - why couldn't Scharnhorst and Gneisenau have had the same?

The German battlecruisers could only defeat unmodernised WWI dreadnoughts like the British Revenge class, which they could fire at while staying out of range of the dreadnought guns. (The dreadnoughts couldn't elevate their guns high enough to engage at long range.)

Scharnhorst and Gneisenau would have been on even terms with the French Dunkerque and Strasbourg battlecruisers - the French had heavier guns (8x13") while the Germans had thicker armour.

But against modernised WWI dreadnaughts like Warspite which had the range problem corrected for their 8x15" guns, or the British battlecruisers, or any of the modern French or British battleships, Scharnhorst and Gneisenau always had to retreat because they were badly outgunned.

This undergunning was a waste of two potentially excellent ships in my view. All they were good for is commerce raiding, like the Deutchland class 'pocket battleships' but faster.

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Sam H.
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Post by Sam H. » 30 Sep 2002 18:03

I believe part of the decision to equip the German BC with 11" guns was Germany's inexperience at designing modern gun turrents that could accomodate the larger guns.

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Romulus
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Post by Romulus » 30 Sep 2002 19:49

Image

Wow. 8O

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Sam H.
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Post by Sam H. » 30 Sep 2002 19:59

The wave formation from the broadside is awsome, thanks for that!

Mark V
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Post by Mark V » 30 Sep 2002 20:22

Marvellous pic that Romulus posted was from http://www.history.navy.mil site.

I strongly advice all members that are interested on naval issues to study that site very carefully.

It is real treasure box. :D

Karl da Kraut
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Post by Karl da Kraut » 01 Oct 2002 00:46

Initially Scharnhorst and Gneisenau were to be armed with 6x15" guns. But this plan was postponed because:

1) it would have delayed their completion. The design for modern 15" guns hadn't yet been finished, but excellent 11" guns were available (Deutschland class "pocket-battelships).
2) in the mid-30ies Hitler still tried to avoid to embarass the British - for example by building new ships with 15" gun armament.

Scharnhorst and Gneisenau were due to be refitted with 15" guns but war caused these plans to be canceled.

German major warships were quite restricted in their operations in WWII, [In the case of Scharnorst/Gneisenau, their skippers didn't believe their ships were inferior to the ageing R- and Queen-Elizabeth class battelships]
due to Raeder's "No-Risk-order". The German navy was very small in numbers and Raeder desired to preserve his major warships by "handcuffing" them.

Xanthro
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Post by Xanthro » 01 Oct 2002 23:06

One can say that the Bismarck sank after only a few torpedo hits(one from the swordfish & a few more from the HMS Dorsetshire). The Musashi abosorbed a similar amount of punishment inflicted by roughly the same amount of aircraft.


The Bismark wasn't sunk by torepedos or shell fire of any amount, she was scuttled by her crew to avoid capture.

The British ships ran out of rounds without sinking her.

The Bismarks biggest flaw was hydraulic protection. The continued pounding eventually cut her hydraulics which silence her guns. The ship itself was never in any danger of sinking from the attacks, but the ship was helpless offensively at the end.

Xanthro

Ovidius
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Post by Ovidius » 02 Oct 2002 00:02

What is even more interesting about Bismarck and shows how flawed the judgments about here were, is the way she was sunk - she took over 700 shell hits of various calibers out of about 2000 fired at her, plus some torpedoes, plus the scuttling charges.

While Yamato, rated as the best protected battleship, went down after just 19 bombs and 17 torpedoes, and Prince of Wales after 20 torpedoes and some bombs.

And some guys dare to say Bismark's hull was inferior!!! :x

~Ovidius

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johnny_bi
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Post by johnny_bi » 02 Oct 2002 13:28

A battleship worths nothing without aer support and protection ... WWII proved that ...

BI

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Andy H
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Post by Andy H » 02 Oct 2002 18:21

Hi Ovi

Where did you get the 700 figure from and how many torpedo's did she actually take before sinking, as the amounts recieved by both Yamamoto and POW are high and would the Bismarck have survived so many torpedo's?

:D Andy from the Shire

Logan Hartke
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Post by Logan Hartke » 02 Oct 2002 18:53

It must be remembered that Japanese damage control teams were, to my knowledge, poorer than their German counterparts - especially by that stage of the war. If the Yamato had equivelant damage control, it would likely have survived longer. Also, both battleships were built to withstand serious punishment from gunfire and torpedoes without sinking, not aircraft bombs. This is largely what sent the Yamato down, while the Bismark didn't face the VERY lethal American dive bombers (in my opinion, the second most effective instrument of war in the Pacific).

Logan Hartke

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Sam H.
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Post by Sam H. » 06 Oct 2002 23:11

ok ... the Iowa and the Yamato are 28,000 yards apart, course and speed for both (at the start) are the same, say due north at 24 knots ... clear skies, winds also out of the North at 10 knots

no air support and no other ships within striking distance

oh yeah, its January 1945 ... take into account training and experience

Which ship wins?

Ovidius
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Post by Ovidius » 06 Oct 2002 23:24

Sam H. wrote:ok ... the Iowa and the Yamato are 28,000 yards apart, course and speed for both (at the start) are the same, say due north at 24 knots ... clear skies, winds also out of the North at 10 knots

no air support and no other ships within striking distance

oh yeah, its January 1945 ... take into account training and experience

Which ship wins?


Iowa :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

~Ovidius

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