3,151 COMMENTS :

  1. By Logan Meyers on

    Hey so I was wondering about the feasibility of building a ship chain across some of the allied ports. It wouldn’t defend against ships of metal but against wooden ships if they had something large enough a harbor chain might help inconvenience an invasion allowing them yo be more easily fired upon. This could be employed more against the dominion but I’m not sure how it would fare against a steam powered ship versus sail powered. Until the next book comes out in low on good ideas XD so I’m scraping up the obscure at this point.

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    1. By donald johnson on

      Actually a ship chain is valid and works against any type ship especially if mines are attached as they should be.

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      1. By Generalstarwars333 on

        I’d imagine that once you’re getting into heavy cruisers and BB’s the ship’s mass and momentum would overcome the strength of the chain, but for smaller things it’d still be effective. I think.

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      2. By Steve Moore on

        Big ships aren’t going to come into the harbor. They’ll just shell the crap out of you from offshore. And after what happened to Amagi, don’t think KK will fall for that again… The Grik might try it on the Zambezi, though, where a channel narrows.

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        1. By Logan Meyers on

          Well it sounds like its not the word idea at less aside from the effort and resources needed for the chain itself and the protected housing for the mechanism to pull it taunt. But it could help keep some areas from being directly attacked at the hearts of port cities allowing more defensive measures to be employed in the beaches where they would be diverted to.

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  2. By Lou Schirmer on

    Anyone noticing some posts disappearing the day after they go up?

    Steve Moore asked a question yesterday in Tech Discussions & I replied, both gone. I added one to the rocket proximity fuse thread yesterday, gone. I’ve noticed a few from others also. Am I hallucinating…again?

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    1. By Justin on

      I figure it’s just a hiccup. If it happens again, THEN get concerned.

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      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        Okay

        Steve, in regards your question about radials having too large a frontal area for a ducted fan.
        If you distance the fan & duct from the engine with an extension a bit, it could work. The reason for this is, if the fan is behind the engine, the airflow needs to be shaped to reduce turbulence into the fan. You could vent the air cooled engine heat & exhaust into the duct also.

        Here’s an interesting variant on the subject first thought up by Rene Lorin in 1908 & tried out in 1910 by Henri Coanda, called a “motorjet”. Think of it as a piston engine driven fan or compressor section of a jet engine. The piston engine does the work of the turbine section of the engine, which is under a great deal of physical & thermal stress.

        http://www.angelfire.com/art/jetengine/

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        1. By Steve Moore on

          One of the reasons I was thinking ducted-fan was the air resistance posed by a big radial on the front. Mounting it midships, in a wider cross-section of the fuselage, might make a more pointy nose possible. Unless you can put together an in-line aircooled engine that adds its heat to the air being compressed, like some of the cold jet designs.

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          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            You’d almost have to make a piston engine design either with the engine buried in the body (you can still cool a radial there) or a streamlined pod attached to the wing.

          2. By Lou Schirmer on

            Or you could go with a pusher propeller with the engine in back. Get some frontal streamlining that way, fully cowl the rear engine mount & add a spinner to the prop to smooth things out in back.

          3. By donald johnson on

            the big disadvantage in mounting a ducted fan amidships is the required increased mass due to the longer required prop blades. The need for a pointed nose for streamlining is not necessary as the ducted fan is on the nose and the entire air stream goes through it.
            the big thing that makes the ducted fan nice is that it is much smaller than a regular prop and it has increased thrust due to changing the thrust vector from the air at the tip of the prop.

        2. By donald johnson on

          this is actually the best review of this type engine I have ever seen. I suspect that if the carb of the piston engine were fed from the pressurized chamber the altitude could go higher than 90 kfeet

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          1. By Steve Moore on

            Most pushers have tricycle landing gear, would that be a problem?

          2. By Lou Schirmer on

            Not sure what you mean exactly. Are you asking if a tail wheel pusher is a problem? No, as long as your prop has ground clearance. Usually, that means mounting your engine higher on the fuselage and/or jacking up your tail wheel, or mounting it on a tail that extends down a bit.

          3. By donald johnson on

            a tricycle landing gear is not necessary in any kind of jet or ducked fan aircraft as the fan (propeller) is protected by the duct.

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            Forgot we were on ducted fans, was thinking props. Sorry.

          5. By Justin on

            Shouldn’t be a problem regardless – on a pusher, the tricycle configuration seems to be a single wheel forward and the twin wheels (and wings) further back.

          6. By Steve Moore on

            sorry, that’s what I meant, I was thinking of planes like the Dornier ‘pushmi-pullyu’ or whatever it was.. Pfeil?

        3. By Steve Moore on

          Lou: what do you think of a twin-boomed plane, sort of like the P38, but with the pusher/fan behind the pilot? Having twin booms would reduce the distance a wing spar would have to extend unsupported. Similar to the early drone models.

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          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Steve, you’re reading my mind & a small, twisted one it is.
            Give me a couple of days to finalize my new design study for a next gen fighter.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            Well, Lou, you’re the architect. I’m just a doodler. Caught hell from my 4th grade teacher for drawing exploding German tanks on my school papers.

            Think the Dutch had a twin-engine Fokker (G.11?), Nazis captured and reused as multi-engine trainers. But I was thinking one double row radial behind the pilot, with fixed gear faired into the booms and nose. (4) wing mounted 30 cal, 2 in each inner wing section, and hard points for bombs (or rocket pods) under those wing sections. Removeable outer wing sections for shipboard use, as well as fitting longer wings for long-range recon.

            Reluctantly relinquished the library copy of BITW, just waiting for DD, and the mystery squall-crossers.

          3. By Justin on

            Sounds like a SAAB-21 – really looking forward to the final product.

            Just keep in mind that modular wings are a bit of a stretch at this point… and that in a pusher (and without ejector seats), there’s a good chance of being shredded by the prop as you bail out.

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            I was usually drawing ships (poorly) shooting at each other.

            Your design may be the more practical one, since I tend to get greedy.

          5. By Lou Schirmer on

            I was usually drawing ships (poorly) shooting at each other.

            Your design may be the more practical one, since I tend to get greedy.

            As far as bailing out of pushers go, if you have time, shut down & feather the engine prior to departure. If I was over water in that world the only reason I’d bail out would be if the plane was on fire, what with the Flashies & Grikkaa around. In our world pilots were often hit by the vertical stabilizer when abandoning ship & many were taught to push the stick forward with one foot when climbing out of the cockpit. I’ve seen gun camera footage that seems to support that & might be a good way to clear a pusher prop.

    2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

      I think that’s my fault . . . . I went turkey hunting last weekend (got several) but left the power supply for my dying laptop in camp…. I’m on it now, on battery power, but I tried to check posts with my desktop. Had to sign in to read them instead of the easy way I’ve got this rigged. Anyway, I think I . . . sort of killed the posts when I read them. Realizing this was possible, I quit fooling with it. Sorry guys . . . .

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      1. By donald johnson on

        could always blame the turkey that did it :-)

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    1. By William Curry on

      Proximity fuses may be a problem as they used miniaturized “acorn” vacuum tubes, as well as miniature batteries that were “bleeding edge” technology at the time. Acorn tubes were supposed to be the next great thing in miniaturizing electronics after WW2, but they were quickly rendered obsolete when transistors were invented in 1948.

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      1. By donald johnson on

        my feeling is that the destroyer-men can quickly develop transistors of they discover biasing of crystal detectors. This was discovered in 1915 in our timeline but not followed up. Someone was playing with biasing a double contact galina detector and discovered that he had a very sensitive detector when it worked but could not get it to work every time. I built one a few years ago and found that when they do work they are actually point contact transistors with a current gain of from 6 to 15 on the ones I built.

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      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        Second try on this.

        Here’s a crazy idea for the tech savvy gurus to shoot down. Could you modify a Mark-6 magnetic exploder from a torpedo to work in a large shell or rocket as a crude proximity fuse? You could use a small fan to power a small motor for power. They might be able to get one down to say a 6-7″ rocket warhead.

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        1. By Steve Moore on

          Without in-flight guidance correction, a rocket is an unguided bullet, and with planes moving in three dimensions, shooting many smaller shells rather than one big shell would make more sense to me. A prop on nose might also be easy to damage.

          They have electric motors, gun barrels, and a good production run of both .30 and .50 cal; why not a motor-driven Gatling gun. or a multiple mount like the 25mm?

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          1. By Justin on

            Quadmounts would be problematic: not enough Allied industry/tech base to manufacture and supply them in large enough numbers.

            Rotary cannons, maybe. We discussed this a lot back on the old board, and they’d good for short-range AA.
            The problem there is that the effective range of a .50 BMG is about 2k. The Union still needs a medium and long-range AA system, which is where the (hypothetical) MLRS battery comes in; for example, the planned Taifun rocket had a range of 15k and a 12k altitude.

          2. By Generalstarwars333 on

            What they need to do is get around to making more of the 25mm’s they got from amagi. Then they’d have something a bit better suited to medium range. For long range, they’ve already got DP 4″50’s.

          3. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Also I don’t think they’re making more .50 cals yet. More ammo for them? Yes. More actual guns? I don’t think so. Then again, it has been a few months since I read the series…

          4. By Justin on

            On the old board, we also reached consensus that the autocannons were a no-go; something about an inability to make the fuses. Hence discussion of rotary cannons and unguided MLRS batteries.

          5. By Lou Schirmer on

            //What they need to do is get around to making more of the 25mm’s they got from amagi. Then they’d have something a bit better suited to medium range.//

            While the effective range of the .50 cal is 2k, that’s against a stationary target. In reality against an aircraft, the practical range drops to under one kilometer. The same with the 25mm. At anything over 1k the hit probabilities went way down, due to vibration of the mount, poor range estimation & movement of the target between the time of firing & projectile arrival. This is why the Japanese limited the 25mm engagement range to 800 meters later in the war, where the hit probabilities went up. The same is basically true for the .50 cal, except you need more hits from it to down a plane. They still need some version of both calibers to be able to produce a weapon quickly. To get a true medium range weapon though, they’d probably have to step up to a 40mm type weapon or larger with some sort of rapid fuse setting capability, which is far down the road.

          6. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Do quadmounts increase the range any? I’d think that the higher amount of lead they’d put in the air would mean higher hit probabilities at longer ranges. Or is the difference too small to really matter?

          7. By Lou Schirmer on

            It would probably increase the effective AA range by 200-300 yards. A quad mount would be by design & necessity more stable than a single pintle mount also. So the quad mount .50 cal might be good out to maybe 1,400 yards.

            Any multiple mount has to be stable (low vibration) to be a decent AA weapon. The Japanese had vibration problems with the 25mm & we had vibration issues with the 1.1″ quad mounts also. The vibrations led to guns jamming, poor accuracy & other issues.

        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          Might use the larger magnetic warhead as a ground proximity fuse for a surface artillery MLRS? Would the magnetic detector be sensitive enough to detect the difference between the air it’s in & the approaching ground? Would it be fast enough todo an air burst? If it was feasible, they wouldn’t have to develop long range land based artillery for possible use against the League.

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          1. By Steve Moore on

            Believe some versions of the WW2 German Nebelwerfer had rocket motor in front, warhead in back so it burst aboveground. Don’t think the magnetic exploder would work on land, and an airburst above an armored naval hull wouldn’t do much good.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nebelwerfer

        3. By donald johnson on

          the mark 6 in a torpedo will never handle the stress of being shot from a gun. Is might be able to handle a rocket however and possibly also an anti-ship bomb fuse. Why even think about it with the present wooden aircraft which are nonmagnetic except for the engine.

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    2. By Steve Moore on

      You really need in-flight guidance for AA missiles. If they’re going to build rockets, use the leftover Grik rockets for unguided artillery and to stoke the learning curve. Grow from there into infantry weapons (RPG, etc), artillery & shore bombardment rockets (LCVP(R) or Katuysha), or wing-launched aerial rockets including JATO.

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        1. By Steve Moore on

          Z batteries against zeps, yes; against single plane attacks, think you’re going to use a lot of rockets. And shipboard, you’re going to need fire control

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      1. By Matt on

        MLRS would work pretty easily. Making basic time fuzes should be easy and the Grick already figured it out. Making something like a bazooka or rpg could be useful against fortifications. Nobody has tanks but we are talking basic HE or fragmentation warheads anyways I don’t think anyone has an idea how HEAT works or what it is. It was a very new thing when they crossed over and was something only ground pounders would know about anyways. As for guidanfe, nobody has given any indication they know about radar or how it works and infrared guidance is something the allies only really started on after getting their hands on German research.

        MCLOS weapons using radio control could be doable but that would require more work into electric motors and vacuum tubes. That’s going to require more development but could be possible. It will also require the idea of manually controlling a rocket or more likely a glider bomb to do. I’m not sure what real benefit they would give right now. Smart weapons are useful when you are trying to prevent collateral damage or when AA cover is too thick to get conventional bombs in. I don’t think either of these really apply right now.

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  3. By Lou Schirmer on

    Been doing some research while putting together a next gen fighter design study for the Union & I’ve come to the conclusion that the P-1C top speed is a bit optimistic. Looking at the P-26 it’s modeled after, the P-26 has at least a 200 hp engine advantage (almost 300 hp in late models) & is 20 mph slower than the P-1C. Granted the P-26 is heavier, being made of aluminum, & wire braced, but with almost double the horse power it balances out. Maybe I’m missing something?

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    1. By Justin on

      Remember that the “Fleashooter” is modeled after the P-29, not the 26. It’s only nicknamed after the Peashooter because of Silva.

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      1. By Generalstarwars333 on

        The P-29 was never ordered by the military, and only four were built, so it’s highly unlikely they’d know anything about them. The P-26, yes. Not the P-29.

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      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        P-26 or P-29, both are 20 mph slower than the P-1C & both have at least 200 hp more. Although the P-1C looks more like the P-26 than the P-29. I’d say the weigh is offset by the power increase, but that still leaves us 20 mph short.

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    2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

      The P-26 is a LOT heavier–and bigger. The P-1C performance and weight is essentially the same as an RV-8. And the P-1 was built along the lines of the P-26, not P-29–from memory, so it isn’t exactly just a scaled-down version.

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      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        Comparing the two, an RV-8 weighs empty @ 1,100 lbs. against the P-26 @ 2,200 lbs. empty. Then you have to add the weight difference between a 4-cyl (RV-8) & a 10-cyl two row radial (P-1C) plus a pair of .30 cal BMGs. Say, conservatively, 60 lbs. for the guns & 300 for the engine, so we’re up to 1,460 or so against 2,200 or a 740 lb. difference. The engine difference is 325 hp for the P-1C against 550 hp for the P-26, or almost double for a 35% weight increase. The RV-8 speed of 220ish mph on 200 hp was with a constant speed propeller, with a fixed pitch, it would be about 10-15 mph slower. Both the P-1C & P-26 ran with fixed pitch propellers. I still think the P-1C speed is a bit high. The only thing I can think of that would put it up in the 255 mph speed range is if they were running a speed or deep pitch propeller. That would adversely affect the takeoff & climb performance though.

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        1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          We can get pretty deep in the weeds with this thread, but being intimately familiar with RV-8s, (and Pitts Specials) the resulting P-1 is kind of a hybrid of the two in a sense. It has the lighter weight (even stronger) construction of the Pitts–actually probably lighter–and I don’t believe the engine would weight 300 lbs more. We’re not adding a full-blown V-8 Chevy engine to the weight. The original 5 cylinder motor was quite light and we’ve only stacked it. One of these days when I don’t have a deadline looming over me, I’ll lay out all the specs and cast them in stone. Feel free to contribute suggestions for HOW it can do what it does.

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          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Already did, they’re running a deep pitch speed prop. That’s about the only way to do it.

          2. By Lou Schirmer on

            Weight wise I was going with the W/G engine as a guideline (285 lbs.) doubling that weight adds close to 300 lbs. & is still 2 cylinders short.

            Sorry to be a pain by the way.

          3. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Not being a pain, but remember, the WG engine is liquid cooled

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            True, the air cooled original Gypsy was what I got the weight estimate from. I’d forgotten the one’s Mallory made were liquid cooled & you’re right, a liquid cooled engine is heavier. For instance the small block Chevy V8 weighs in at 575 lbs.. It’s amazing what the differences can be. A Chevy Corvair flat 6 air cooled weighs about the same as a liquid cooled Chevy 2 liter 4 cylinder does (300 lbs.).

  4. By Steve Moore on

    Just wondering if something like a J-3, or better, a Storch (maybe our new pal Walbert might have some ideas) would be useful in army cooperation duties. I suppose you could take an older Fleashooter, leaving the Blitzer Bugs in and add a cockpit for another Cat. Upgrade to the double-row engine. But it’d be nice to have a high wing for observation and landing on bush strips or gravel roads.

    Or, maybe Mallory can build an autogyro. Rotors might be a problem, unless they can find a dependable way to prevent delamination.

    Has anyone established if the RRP’s ‘steam wagons’ are trains or not? It wouldn’t surprise me if the NUS has steam locomotives, but I think any transcontinental railroad project is going to need aerial surveying. I still like the idea of Hij Geerki developing the remaining Grik City Griks into a railroad gang. Grik City’s a good lab for it, they could start by building rail lines for the cargo areas, use the WG or zep engines for donkey engines or prime movers.

    Will the combat engineers get a couple of tanks with grader blades and rollers for airstrip building?

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    1. By Justin on

      Probably a two-seat Fleashooter; even if somebody thinks of a rotor aircraft, all the Americans were in the Asiatic Fleet when Sikorsky invented the tail rotor, and it won’t be reliable without one.

      I suspect that we’ll have to wait until June. My money’s still on both trains and literal steam-powered cars.

      Not enough engines to go around, I’m afraid; Ijoorka’s strapped for tanks as it is. Remember that the Wehrmacht was reliant on horse-drawn carriages for most of the war, even with their trucks and Panzer divisions.

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      1. By Steve Moore on

        Autogyros don’t have a tail rotor, just the standard aircraft engine with shaft in line with the fuselage. Invented in Spain, it’s a fairly simple low-speed plane. Would make a good slow-speed recon plane, and could probably be built out of spare parts by anyone; the Grik could probably fly them easily. Build them as pushers, and you could carry a Blitzer Bug with a sack of magazines. Some of the first WW1 recon planes were pushers. Think the Germans went straight to military helicopters in the late 30’s with Focke-Wulf and Flettner (who did make autogyros).

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autogyro

        Salvaged zep engines, especially if they run on ethanol or methanol, would probably be useful for a developing economy on Madagascar. Or for Jeep-like cars for transport in the RRP. Learning to run them (and fix them) would help develop the technical abilities of the Maroons, Sher-ee and the other new friends. Not really worth taking them anywhere else except as a prototype for improvement.

        Don’t think they’d have enough power for even a J-3 Cub, though.

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        1. By William Curry on

          Autogyros are STOL aircraft. They require a short take off and landing run. They are not capable of VTOL. If I remember correctly the forward motion of the aircraft causes the rotors to rotate generating lift. They were not capable of hover.

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      2. By Steve White on

        Steam powered haulers make a lot of sense for the port cities. Baalkpan, Madras and Manila can all use these right now. Steam powered cranes would be among the first things Spanky and his people would have built after the Battle of Baalkpan; it would have given him the practical experience needed in building working small steam engines and would have solved a substantial need. Haulers are the next iteration of that need.

        Narrow-gauge trains into the interior of Borneo would be extremely useful for the mining and timbering. They need to get the ores down to the smelting furnaces and the timber to the mills.

        Gasoline or diesel powered engines would indeed be in short supply; but these would be scaled up from the small boat engines that they had on Walker and Mahan. A Jeep-like vehicle would be a great thing to have at/near the front — it would tow artillery, bring back wounded, haul supplies, and so on.

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        1. By William Curry on

          Before internal combustion engines became common, there were very large numbers of small hp steam engines in use for things that now use IC engines or electric motors for. I would think that developing a series of small stationary engines and small boilers for powering industry and other machinery would be high on the list of things for the Baalkpan Boiler and Machinery Works to develop and put into production. Entire factories were powered off a single steam engine via overhead jack shafts and flat belts.

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  5. By Joe Thorsky on

    On Radar
    Taylor’s perceptive observations on Radar needs some further historical contextual
    clarification and amplification. I need only emphasize and point out to you guys and add that the Japanese Navy after Midway and throughout the Solomon (Watchtower-Guadacanal) Campaign that followed out generaled the admirals of the American Navy largely without any benefit of employing or having RADAR.
    Tactical deficiencies in training and equipment were plainly demonstrated
    at Savo, Cape Esperance, Tassafaronga and Rennell (night naval combat operations and actions all).
    Another historical example that also best captures many of these essential principles and qualities can be found in the examination of the Civil War Naval exploits of William B. Cushing (And the multiple reiterations of US Destroyers that bear and carry his name). His distinguished war record and successes are exemplary fine examples and representations of an innovative and creative
    approach to the use, application and execution of Black Bag missions and operations.

    Supplemental Notes about Black Bag Jobs/Missions & Fire Ships:
    Relevent Excerpts from Recognition-Pictoral Manual of Naval Vessels
    War Department FM-30-50/Navy Department NAVAER 00-80V-57
    Dated September 15,1943.

    “A ship, to classed as a fighting ship, must be capable of inflicting damage
    and of sustaining or avoiding damage. She must posess sufficient speed and
    maneuverability to execute her mission and the capability to proceed independently
    to a scene of action. The type of a warship is determined by the degree to which each of these qualities has been stressed in her design.”…
    “Damage control systems consisting of provisions for counterflooding, fire fighting, etc., are developed in varying degree in all types. Speed and maneuverability in themselves constitute factors of protection in smaller
    types in which armament and protection have been sacrificed for these qualities,”…

    Sea Keeping
    “Without the capacity to reach a scene of operations, execute a mission, and
    return to base, even the most powerful fighting ship would be of little value”

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  6. By Generalstarwars333 on

    Hey, I was wondering, how is the alliance doing on making more of those 4.7″‘s or 5.5″‘s? If they can make more, those 5.5’s would be a good armament for the CL.

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    1. By Duke Saxon on

      I reckon a large destroyer could mount them as well, seeing how the Tenryu and Kuma class light cruisers carried em, and they were essentially destroyer leaders. French and Italian designs often carried 138-139mm guns, so it’s not entirely out of the question. Just a matter of weight per mount and ammunition storage.

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  7. By donald johnson on

    Radar was first used simply to determine how far away a target was, and to determine an object is in that direction. if they need it as a range detector then they need less electronics than if they want range and bearing. if they want a simple distance and bearing detector they can use 2 distance reading sets on separate ships that are coordinated and use trig to determine bearing ad each ship will know its position relative to each other.
    first ship sends a ping then sees how far known ship is and also sees target distance. Second ship pings and sees how far known ship is and how far unknown target is.
    simple triangulation after that. 3 sides of a triangle and as both ships can see each others pings they really do not need other coordination as each has 2 sides of the triangle. besides voice or cw contact will warn target that they have been detested and ranged

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    1. By Justin on

      Walker always ends up going off on her own, so she’ll probably need to triangulate by herself. Would it be possible to have two rangefinding sets on each ship, or is the angle/distance too small?

      Regardless, I suspect that bearing won’t be needed for a while – simply knowing “hey, there’s a target several klicks thataway” will give the entire Alliance an enormous advantage over the League and their Mark I Eyeballs. The Regia Marina seems to have seen radar the same way the British Postal Service saw the telephone (“Bah, we have more than enough messenger boys!”).

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      1. By donald johnson on

        base of the triangle will most likely be to small except for ships to the side and that will still be to short. My gut feeling is a 1 kilometer baseline minimum with present destroyer-man tech. with our 2017 tech it would not be a problem at all.
        I do not think that the destroyer-man tech can generate a pulse less than .5 microseconds that is 2 walkers in distance. This is where the problem lies at 12.3 microseconds per mile SOL travel speed.

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  8. By Steve Moore on

    Radar is going to be a pretty big jump, even if a more modern vessel(1944) cones through. Hopefully it would be an Allied vessel, but without the right industrial base, it’s going to be a one-shot deal like the P-40’s. Even a couple of LST’s would be nice.

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    1. By Steve Moore on

      thanks for link on radar, matthieu. Radar isn’t going to be much help on stick-and-canvas planes, although those Grik battlewagons are sure going to stick out! Same problem with wooden ships unless Union ships fly a sheet-metal reflector.

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      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        Actually radar can pick up wood & cloth airplanes, mostly from the iron in the engines & wiring & other metallic parts, but the wood itself can generate a return, just a much weaker one. If it’s got moisture in it (unseasoned wood) the return is stronger. With the older radar sets, they could only generate longer radio waves & that made the resolution lower & the wooden planes harder to detect. They might get a “intermittent” return. Modern, high frequency radar picks up wood just fine.

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    2. By Steve White on

      I did a story about that over in the Facebook D-man Fan Fiction page. Dave Ford did several very nice drawings. Basically an LST coming through in October, 1944, at Leyte Gulf.

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      1. By donald johnson on

        It was a very good story and even in Taylor’s style. Too bad Taylor can’t read and steal it for ideas

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  9. By Joe Thorsky on

    Justin:
    I stand corrected on the vocabulary, but the convoyed meaning still
    applies as long as there is no garbling of communication.
    One fine point of contradiction in your argument:
    Fire ships in a black bag/operation as proposed is meant/supposed
    to be a disposable sacrifice and asset. Subterfuge, camouflage and
    concealment instead of a running gunfight between mismatched ships
    is the better preferred course of action to follow.
    Sparring torpedoes anyone

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    1. By Justin on

      Why not just regular torpedoes? No need to close in and lob depth charges (90-100m) when you’re already in torp range.

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      1. By Steve Moore on

        German coastal targets were usually small freighters, using a DC pretty much ensured no misses, and target usually only had a couple of MGs, as opposed to E-boats or flak ships. Coastal Forces MTB’s only had two torps, and were usually shadowed by larger MGB’s. Douglas Reeman has a series of novels about WW2 RN, a few about Coastal Forces.

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  10. By Lou Schirmer on

    Just in, the latest on the CL naming contest:

    So we have:
    Justin with USS Baalkpan
    Steve White with USS Alliance
    Lou Schirmer with USS Union
    Joe Thorsky with USS Sentient Assemblage

    Any more votes/WAGs?

    Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      Gotcha!

      So now we have:
      Justin with – Baalkpan
      Steve White – USS Alliance
      Lou Schirmer – USS Union
      Joe Thorsky – USS Sentient Assemblage
      Steve Moore – USS Liberty

      Any more votes/WAGs? The polls are open until Devil’s Due comes out.

      Reply
        1. By matthieu on

          No “USS”… This is probably not a USS ship…

          Reply
          1. By Generalstarwars333 on

            …You DO realize that every. single. union. ship. has been called “USS” because every one has belonged to the US Navy Clan, right?

          2. By donald johnson on

            That is also what I was thinking.

      1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

        Not all Union ships are USS. Salissa and others are USNRS (originally United States Naval Reserve Ship) and are not members of the American Navy Clan. They are subject to the Clan leader’s (Matt) orders as long as they want to be in the reserves–and keep access to public support and repair. Since the Navy Clan has no real territory to represent (not counting Tarakan Island and San Diego) all ships built specifically for combat belong to the Navy Clan. It protects all clans and must be supported by all. (Yeah, room for abuse here and changes may have to be made, if wartime expedients expire). Auxiliaries are often reserve ships and belong to their various Homes. Like many industrial endeavors, it is understood that a reasonable number of military auxiliaries might be retained for a Home merchant marine, but most will be sold for private operation after the war.

        Reply
      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        So now we’re up to:

        Justin with – USS Baalkpan
        Steve White – USS Alliance
        Lou Schirmer – USS Union
        Joe Thorsky – USS Sentient Assemblage
        Steve Moore – USS Liberty
        Generalstarwars333 – USS Houston

        Any more votes/WAGs? The polls are open until Devil’s Due comes out.

        I’m figuring since all the new warship & auxiliaries construction has been navy clan with a USS prefix, it will continue with this one. Could be wrong, we’ll see when DD comes out.

        Reply
  11. By Joe Thorsky on

    Don’t Put Dirt on My Grave Just Yet mp3-Nashville Cast
    I Don’t want to ever “Let Any Seeping Kats get Bligh!”

    Again, there’s always
    Taylor’s Rock mp3-Sonny Landreith
    Devil Get’s His Due mp3-Loretta Lynn
    Last Class Seaman mp3-The Limeliters
    Don’t Put Dirt on My Grave Just Yet mp3-Nashville Cast
    Tax Payin’ Blues mp3-J B Lenoir

    Lou, another suggested Ships Christening Name entry submitted
    for consideration is “Sentient Assemblage.” The newest
    Darwin class of Amphibious “Home” multiple purpose
    and mission configurable Tenders.
    Darwin’s Assemblege, Darwin’s Accomodation,
    Darwin’s Encounter, and Darwin’s Regret might be other
    applicable names for this class.

    Reply
  12. By Lou Schirmer on

    A while back some were discussing salvaging the S-19 to reverse engineer her systems to make subs. While I agree she should be salvaged (& probably has been), subs are a ways down the road. Someone said why, when we have torpedo boats? They meant the MTBs of course, but that flipped a switch in my diseased brain. What would a semi-modern (WW2 era) torpedo boat (not MTB) look like? Would it be worth it? Anyone notice we have no women in these forums? All interesting questions, but I digress.

    Here she is, the Flashie class TB, in all her glory. I tried to get the maximum number of torpedo tubes on the smallest hull which would still fit a single Walker turbine & two boilers. I wanted to add six submarine type fixed tubes forward, for real overkill, but there was just no space for them. Everything on her is in current production, except the 25mm & .50 caliber BMGs. Hopefully, we find out when DD comes out next month what the status is on those. Range won’t be much, probably in the 4-5,000 mile area at 14 knots, but that will get her across the Indian Ocean to play with Kurokawa & the Griks.

    http://loupy59.deviantart.com/art/New-Union-TB-Design-Study-678579271?ga_submit_new=10%3A1493843588

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      Great design, Lou. To attack coastal traffic, it’s nice to have more than a couple of torpedoes and a .30 BMG or two if you’re looking for a night of entertainment. It’s the kind of design that could be adapted to the needs of the theater or ally building them, and serve a lot more functions than just a ‘shoot n scoot’ sub of greater complexity.

      Just curious, how do you load torpedo mount while underway? Or don’t you? Your comment about having tubes integral with the hull made me think of the German S- and E-boast that had the tubes built into the hull just under deck level. If you could figure out a way to keep reloads in the aft deckhouse, then you could replace the third tube mount with more 25mm.

      Finally, torpedoes. As I recall from the descriptions of “Torpedo Day”, the flasks were compressed air. Would there be a way to reduce the size by using a higher O2 content, or does that make a greater fire hazard from a ‘hot run’? If they could make the propulsion unit smaller, they could either increase warhead size, torpedo range or make a shorter unit. Some PT’s in 1944 or 1945 were using smaller aerial torpedoes they were launching from roll-off chocks at the gunwales.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        One other question for the ordnance staff? Can a torpedo be converted into a shallow-water acoustic mine to plug up the Zambezi River? They have the torpedo casings, they have rudimentary sonar. Add a couple of timers, one to activate the sonar after settling to the bottom, and another to randomly detonate it after a month or so (so Union forces don’t have to sweep prior to an up-river excursion).

        Just to get rockets into this, add a couple of rockets pointing forward so it drops further behind the low-flying plane just in case of detonation.

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          Using small drogue parachutes would be easier & safer.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            yeah, but I like rockets, Lou. :-) Cheap, light, and low-tech. Heck, even the Grik version of ACME Industries can make them, so they could be a great cottage industry at Grik City.

        2. By donald johnson on

          just adding a compass activated switch and a timer to the mine/torpedo and you have a steel/iron ship killer

          Reply
      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        I specked it for no reloads, so you wouldn’t reload under way. Usually US DDs, DEs & PTs were reloaded from tenders or at the dock. However your aft deck house idea could easily work for the #1 & #3 mounts. The #2 mount would be a bit harder, but each mount usually had a collapsible torpedo crane associated with it, so once you got the torpedo out of the deck house, hoist it up to the #2 mount & load.

        Been thinking about adding the forward tubes again. I dither back & forth on that subject.

        You’re right, she could be Taylored :) to meet mission needs & with her fairly shallow draft she can get into places the bigger ships can’t. You could unship the #2 mount & put another 4″ there or stagger a couple of 25mm twin mounts. As a bonus, she’d take a lot less resources & time to build & man/cat, so you could build a lot of them. A couple of flotillas of these could put a hurting on even BBs. Come in behind a smoke screen &swarm the enemy at high speed, like well, Flashies. Speaking of smoke screens, check this out, pretty impressive.

        http://i.imgur.com/BmAk5Fu.jpg

        Reply
        1. By Joe Thorsky on

          Well! If That Don’t Beat All.
          You guys seem to be playing a bit of catch up in your speculations of late.
          “The needs of the ALLIANCE will always outway the needs of any commune.”
          (My own suggested Ships Name entry) The necessity for easily outfitted and configurable sea going weapons platforms has already been previously
          discussed.
          Thus, the suggested additional Readings, Excerpts and Citations of
          How They Won the War in the Pacific: Nimitz and His Admirals
          Edwin P. Hoyt
          Maverick Navy by Alexander W Moffat
          The Eagle and The Rising Sun by Alan Schom
          might help jog dormant memories.

          And then there’s always
          Rebel Soul mp3-Kid Rock
          3Catt Boogie mp3-Kid Rock
          “It Came Out of the Sky” mp3- Creedence Clearwater Revival
          to consider.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Sorry Joe, Steve White already has dibs on USS Alliance for the naming contest.

            //So we have:
            Justin with USS Baalkpan
            Steve White with USS Alliance
            Lou Schirmer with USS Union

            Any more votes/WAGs?//

        2. By donald johnson on

          //You’re right, she could be Taylored :) to meet mission needs //
          ohhh what a BAD pun but prtfect

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            Speaking of being ‘Taylored’.. Lou, is the new CL hull too narrow to mount a carrier deck? With a 31 knot hull, that would make launching larger/heavier planes into to wind easier, right? A fast carrier force might be a more flexible tool than a couple of CL’s. JMHO.

          2. By Lou Schirmer on

            Technically possible, but it would be a damned cramped hull. Especially since none of the current planes have folding wings or are capable of carrying a heavy bomb load.

            It might be feasible as a strictly air cover platform carrying P1-Cs defending a strike or landing force. P1-Cs are small enough to be able to fit maybe a 16 ship squadron on a hull that size. It would be about the same length as a WW2 escort carrier (CVE “Combustible, Vulnerable & Expendable”), but with about 10′ less beam which cuts down on flight & hanger deck space & the amount of planes it can carry. Hangar space would be at a premium. To have a usable flight deck, you’d have to sponson everything outboard, such as AAA & a rudimentary bridge. With four stacks canted outboard, she’d look a bit like the USS Independence CVL-22, but about 3,000 tons smaller. smaller. I’d go with deck edge lifts also. Maybe ones that when lowered can be folded up against the side when in strakka’s or under attack.

          3. By Justin on

            Can you even build a flying boat with folding wings? Hmm…

            Regardless, Lou’s right. The problem is that you can’t get a very big air wing with an Omaha-sized hull – and that’s by cramming everything out to the side and sacrificing secondary guns. At 31 knots, she’s more or less Leopardo bait, even with escorts.

            Right now, the Union needs ship killers: keep the CL, develop a Cleveland-sized ship class or larger, mount a CV deck on top on that. You can even add a 9-inch turret fore or aft to repel raiders.

          4. By donald johnson on

            Yes there is no reason that you cannot build a folding wing seaplane. However the height of the overhead now will need to be raised. If you folded the wings downward instead of upwards this might actually help as the wings are already 15 or more feet off the decks. that way you could reduce 30 feet of wing span when below decks. A double fold might on each wing add even more wing so longer cruise range could be obtained.
            My feeling is that a downward fold would actually be stronger and less likely to fold in flight so would also be safer than the upward fold used by low wing fighters as the latch could actually fail and the wing would stay in place since it only folds down and not upward. also the hinge arrangement would be easier as not on a curved edge.

          5. By donald johnson on

            I am assuming a metal hulled craft and not a wooden craft or at least the folding part of the wings are metal.

          6. By Justin on

            Sorry, that’s exactly why I’m asking – the PBs are indeed made of wood. Folding-wing wood aircraft seem to be a no-go.

          7. By donald johnson on

            If they have more than 2 feet of metal in the hinge area it is probable that they could build them

          8. By Lou Schirmer on

            Speaking of folding wings, they don’t have to fold up. Grumman came up with a wing that folds back against the sides, so you don’t need the high overhead for wings that fold up. First used on the F4F-4 Wildcat in 1941, so Mallory or some of the others may know how it works. They call it a Sto-wing & it’s still used on carrier aircraft today.

            http://heroicrelics.org/info/grumman-paperclip/paperclip.html

      3. By Lou Schirmer on

        In regards the torpedoes, they could go straight O2 getting it from electrolysis. Don’t know how that would affect the motor, but it should increase the range.
        The WW2 aerial torpedoes were smaller due to the weight restrictions of the air craft carrying them. The smaller size resulted in shorter range, but since they were being dropped close to the target anyway who cared.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Lou, the oxygen torpedoes are great pain in ass. I’llbetter try sodium superoxede, which could produce oxygen when heated but much safer to store.

          Reply
        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          The IJN used O2 in their Type 93 “Long Lance” torpedo & were quite successful. O2 is dangerous to store, but they seemed to handle it well, though they lost a couple ships when the torpedoes exploded when the ships were hit with gun fire.

          I don’t know if the Union knows how to make sodium superoxide. They could do hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), but that’s also dangerous if mishandled. Maybe H2O2 in a “Wet Heater” type system with the O2 released burning kerosene & the steam from the peroxide breaking down injected to add to the engines efficiency? Or a small double expansion engine. Since catalyzed peroxide breakdown yields steam at about 600 degrees use that to feed an initial stage & inject the residual steam/O2 & fuel mix into a second stage “Wet Heater” combustion section. Can’t remember what powers the torpedoes currently & can’t find the book with “Torpedo Day” in it.

          Reply
      4. By Joe Thorsky on

        Lou-Donald-Michael-Justin-Alexey-(Everyone)

        Hate to be the Skunk that Works the garden party; but you guys have
        forgotten and need to be reminded to compensate/adjust for the nature
        and the evolutionary/revolutionary composition of the prehistoric atmosphere
        and oceans that Taylor’s Destroyermen must contend with and now live under.
        Still, a great job on the designs for the next generation of Alliance warships/aircraft.
        There’s a lot of innovation, imagination and display of all your combined talents found in them.

        Presently, the current stalemated naval balance of power that now exists
        between the Alliance and the Grik, Kurokawa and their League of Tripoli
        partners does seem to cry out and call for a Black Bag Operation/Solution.
        Isn’t there a great need then, for the construction and outfitting of a class of FIRE ships by the Alliance that could readily exploit the known weaknesses that were already built into almost all pre Coral Sea-Midway heavily armed and armored Capital Warships like that of the Savoie? The Savoie’s very lack of an effective fire/damage control system and the potential inadequacies of any available or existing modern repair facilities surely can be exploited to the Alliance’s best ultimate advantage.
        By possibly arming and equipping what could pass as the personal Celestial Mothers/Chooser’s Royal Transport could very well be exploited and be a
        very useful way of sending boarding parties to wrest control and seize
        command of it as a Prize of War.
        If the need arises however, sinking and heavily damaging warships just like the Savoie can be also be done via employing concealed multiple Y-Gun Depth Charge Mounts and Mortars to hurl 55-Gallon drums of gasoline, magnesium, HP rounds as well as modified Depth Charges over and onto it’s armored and exposed decks.
        Trying only to outduel and outgun ships like them in a death match is just not feasible, doable or practical/possible at this juncture of Taylor’s story.
        How’s that for an exploitable “Griks “Kat”astrophe!” or Darwin’s Interruption

        As to a list readings to consider before Devils Due comes out, one cannot ever go wrong not reading any of Herman Melville’s books or of:

        Guns of the South by Harry Turtledove
        The Shores of Tripoli by James L Haley

        The Berserker War series of novels by Fred Saberhagen
        The Civil and World War series of novels of both Jeff and Michael Shaara
        aka The Killer Angels
        Anything written by Michael DiMercurio
        aka Barracuda Final Bearing
        The Bolo anthology series of books by Keith Laurmer et al
        All are great enjoyable reads when not transported to and fullyimmersed into Taylor’s Destroyersmen’s Pre World’s order.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          // The Savoie’s very lack of an effective fire/damage control system and the potential inadequacies of any available or existing modern repair facilities surely can be exploited to the Alliance’s best ultimate advantage.//

          Er, why you assumed that “Savoie” lacked effective damage control?

          Reply
          1. By Joe Thorsky on

            Alexey
            Ship was likely built pre World War 2 and does not have any intelligence about its own vulnerabilities as demonstrated by
            sinkings of HMS King George V And Repulse as well as lessons
            learned from Coral Sea-MidwaY.
            Let’s Hope that they’re not monitoring this communication.?

          2. By Steve Moore on

            All of the League’s ships are pre-WW2 (if they were even having WW2 in their world) and Savoie is pre-WW1, right?

          3. By Justin on

            Joe, “fire control” refers to aiming and firing the guns, and “damage control” refers to means of controlling damage – safety, prevention, torpedo/fire protection, repair crews. Knowing about Prince of Wales and Repulse or Coral Sea or Midway falls under “intel.”

            As for closing in and throwing depth charges at Savoie… it’s creative, but a waste of a good ship and depth charges. She’s a fire ship, so ram her like Mahan did Amagi.

          4. By Steve Moore on

            British MTB’s used the tactic of zooming alongside German ships and lobbing depth charges, looking for same type effect as exploding torpedo warheads under the keel. Don’t know how well it would work on armored hulls, though….

          5. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Also, you’re forgetting things like Jutland where 2 british ships exploded in the first half hour from poor magazine safety.

        2. By donald johnson on

          To kill the Savoie while at dock would be nice but if we did then there exists the possibility that certain captives would be on board when she was hit/destroyed.

          Reply
        3. By Steve Moore on

          What are Kurokawa’s weak links? One, he’s a nut that few of the Japanese trust. Two, his crew are the key of Grik industry and Kurokawa’s Navy. Three, they have no women.

          Why not a commando-style raid, inserted by Indiamen (or Clippers) with Japanese, and Japanese-speaking Lemurians? The Japanese would be familiar to their shipmates, and if you could get a group of 150 or more to steal a ship (the Savoie?) and leave, that cripples Kurokawa. And since he regards them all as traitors for losing Amagi, he’ll either punish them all or let the Griks eat them.

          As for the women issue, get a few Asian women from the RRP as part of the raiding force to get Kurokawa’s men thinking with the southern hemispheres of their brains…

          Remove his crew, and Kurokawa loses most of his power. The League loses their key advantage, and their only other (known) source of allies are the Doms or the NUS. That in itself is a problem for them, since allying with one casts the other against the League.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            Add Larry as well, for one specific reason. He takes out one or two Japanese with his claws & teeth, and leaves their mutilated corpses, for the others to find. If the local Grik decide to chew on them, so much the better. Sort of like the Gurhka’s habits of slitting German throats. Terrorize the remaining Japanese, and they might be willing to take a powder.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            Better still, Rizzo or the Spaniard.

          3. By donald johnson on

            What about a raid of just females of both lemoran and human females to get the japanese sailors feeling down when they are at the bottom already. The psychological hit might be the one link necessary to cause them to decide to leave. after all “if they have females enough to spare to allow them to fight then maybe we can join them and get some of our own.”
            Another thing that strikes me is how many females does the league have control of. It is possible that the men in the league may be starting to stress if there are very few percentage wise. Those that have them will not be willing to share voluntarily. and this will just add to the stress.
            all in all the league will have to get them from somewhere and I suspect that it won’t be south Africa or the NUS and no one else is close enough except the Doms and they may need them for allies so won’t want to raid them. Does anyone have ideas where they might go for them without trading away needed firepower.

    2. By Justin on

      Looks good too! Still, I’d use them for green water ambushes and patrol. These girls won’t last long in a conventional fleet action, especially against escorts – remember that “destroyer” is shorthand for “torpedo boat destroyer.”

      Not sure about the mount on the aft house. They look a bit top heavy… and unable to clear the deck upon launch. Perhaps relocate them to fixed forward tubes like Steve suggested?

      // Anyone notice we have no women in these forums?//

      IIRC, there were some on the old board at the start. Overall though, WWII, tech talk and militainment seem to be “guy things.”

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        True on the destroyers, but if they build a lot of them, some will get through. Plus they’ll probably have some DDs with them when they go in.

        A lot of the USN DDs & DEs have tubes on deck houses, but with the ship’s small size you may be right. I could maybe lower it a bit if they’re going to be using it for reloads only.

        Still want all the mounts AND the forward tubes. I’m greedy that way. The only other issue besides finding room, will be when they go to launch the forward torpedoes. If I remember right the current Union torpedoes only do 30 knots or so, so the ship is considerably faster than they are. On a straight in attack, they’d have to slow down below 30 knots, fire them & make sure they’re clear of the ship before going back to full power & turning to present the deck mount tubes.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Ouch. Yeah, I forgot about that – outrunning your torps is an unenviable scenario. Then again, they might have faster ones by the time the Flasher-class is ready for production.

          Maybe merge this design with your Porter-class: 250-275 feet, two guns, two aft torp mounts.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Could do that simply by replacing the #2 torpedo mount with a 4″/50.

        2. By Steve Moore on

          Hmm, which would be better? Launching a spread of 12 torps (sounds like a pretty wide spread) or accompanying your torps (4 port, 4 starboard) with a hail of 25mm fire that arrives before the torpedoes to keep secondary fire down, ensuring that the TB lives to fight another day. Hoping that your ship isn’t the one that doesn’t come back seems rather depressing. Even the TB’s are made of scarce materials, and most commanders would rather make sure it’s the OTHER guy who dies for their country.

          Reply
      2. By Steve Moore on

        With deep water transits to some theaters, yeah, I didn’t think about CG as another reason, thanks for pointing that out, Justin.

        A quick flotilla of these located in the Republic, along with a few squadrons of planes could make that a difficult choke point to force, especially as Gravois noticed, the League has no carrier force. With the shallow draft, also a good choice for support operations along the East African coast and into the Red Sea/Persian Gulf.

        By the time these start getting built, the Empire will probably have sorted out the bad apples from the HNBC sailors and have a growing pool of experienced sea(persons) and officers, so I would assume there would be not much of a problem crewing. If there’s a wooden SC class as an in-between between PT’s and TB’s or DE’s, maybe that would work as another inshore option, especially if the SC class is powered by gas engines with slower speeds.

        Reply
        1. By Steve White on

          Steve, completely agree, but others here believe that planes can’t sink League ships. :-)

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            The current generation of planes would probably not be able to sink the larger League ships because they simply can’t carry heavy enough ordnance. They could probably take out the DDs, oilers & replenishment ships though & make life difficult for them. Also scout for any force trying to intercept them.

          2. By Justin on

            Thanks, Lou. Steve, we believe that Buzzards and Clippers can’t sink League ships.

            It’s not the plane that sinks the ship – that’s called a kamikaze. It’s the torpedo or 3000-lb bomb it carries that sinks the ship. Again, show me one example of a capital ship crippled by 500-lb bombs (the Union’s heaviest ordnance), and I, for one, can cede the point.

            Once the Union has purpose-built torpedo and dive bombers, the “Victory Through Air Power” argument holds some weight; until then, it does not.

          3. By Steve Moore on

            Have we identified what the League ships consist of? I’m assuming mostly French and Italian ships, with a sprinkling of Spanish. Most of the capital ships would probably be Italian or French. No carrier forces except maybe a seaplane tender or two.

            I know I’m beating a dead horse, but look at the logistics. Unless they have colonies along the West Coast of Africa to pump and refine oil, they’ve got to bring their own (from Libya?) in their own tankers, and the farther they go, either they stage more tankers, or ships requiring less fuel. If I’m Gravois, I’m going to recommend just DD’s and maybe a CL for a command ship; nothing heavier is needed. Savoie was a throwaway, I think; it looks like they’re leaving the U-boat since no mention of it leaving was made, ditto the Spanish oiler. Look at how German merchant raiders operated; the League could probably take down the New Americans with one or two. Throw in another couple of subs, and you can pretty much bring the Union to a standstill. Eliminate Kurakawa (they seem to be big on spies) and they could probably walk in and take over Zanzibar.

            But the League doesn’t really WANT to be in the Indian Ocean. I think they’ve got their eyes on North America, and have contacts there already as confirmed by Captain Willis. The West Coast of Africa offers access to a hoard of mineral and petroleum resources they need for an industrial base and for a trade economy with the New World.

            As for the League’s capital ships? Keep in mind the knight from Monty Python… hack off his arms and legs, and he’s not going anywhere.

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            Now THERE’s a thought. Converting a few of their merchant ships to auxiliary cruiser’s would wreak havoc with the allies shipping & do it on the cheap. Here’s hoping they don’t remember the WW1 commerce raiders!

          5. By Justin on

            Go back a few pages and you’ll find that discussion. I’m guessing about a dozen battleships and cruisers and fifty destroyers; basically the Operation Husky fleet, but yes, mostly French and Italian.

            Good point on the fuel problem, but remember that the League’s been here since ’39, twice as long as the Americans. That’s plenty of time to set up fueling bases along west Africa.
            They’d need to have some too: Savoie, Leopardo and the others wouldn’t have have made it all the way to Christmas Island otherwise, even with their sole tanker.

            As for hacking the limbs, remember that the Union doesn’t have anything to do the hacking with. The League’s going to have their convoys and outposts guarded; Walker’s been deadly against sailing ships, but she goes back to being an oversized tugboat against a couple of DDs like Leopardo. That’s where the hypothetical BC or CA comes in.

          6. By Justin on

            //Now THERE’s a thought. Converting a few of their merchant ships to auxiliary cruiser’s would wreak havoc with the allies shipping & do it on the cheap.//

            On the bright side, Santa Catalina would be relevant again…

          7. By Steve White on

            Steve Moore emphasizes the logistics point we’ve discussed a few times. The League does not have a friendly port south of Lagos, and may not have one south of Casablanca. That’s a long, long way for them to come. Now Taylor makes clear they’ve done it before (and I won’t argue with Taylor of course :-) ) but trying to force the passage past Cape Town when it’s contested by aircraft, and perhaps torpedo boats, when you’re at the limits of your own range is another matter.

            Aircraft-carried bombs will ship smaller ships. The Buzzard may well be capable of carrying a 1000 lb bomb or torpedo — after all, it can carry six passengers in its cargo version.

            Further, it’s not a ‘Midway’ scenario — you’re not flying out to the limit of your range, fighting through a screen of first-class fighter aircraft, and then attacking a multitude of fast carriers.

            You are instead well within your range of home (Cape Town) and are attacking a force that has NO air cover. Take your time, drop the bombs and torpedoes, go home and reload. Or as they say, “lather, rinse, repeat.”

            Further, I don’t necessarily have to sink a hardened battleship. I can instead kill the tanker sailing in the same task force, or the one behind. No tanker = no oil = a battleship dead in the water. Even a Nancy can do that.

            Foolproof? No. But it’s like having a THAAD system in southern Korea — it’s doesn’t have to be 100%, it just has to raise substantially the uncertainty factor for the other side.

          8. By Justin on

            Well, the cargo version is the cargo version because it’s been stripped of all weapons and mounts. I’ll concede a 700-900 lb bomb, but definitely no torpedoes – a Mark 14 weighs about 3000 lbs.

            Okay, now we just need to sink the tanker… using outdated fighters to fly through a WWII AA screen (and scout planes like Amagi’s, don’t forget Crusade) to bomb a ship moving at 15 knots.
            Remember that the US Navy tried the same thing on USS Iowa (BB-4) and scored no hits. So long as the League fleet and planes aren’t full of Imperial Stormtroopers, those Buzzards are flying kindling.

            Is it possible? Yes. Is it practical? Not really, the League pricks are arrogant enough to try it anyway.
            Luckily, nobody seems to want a war yet. So okay, send a squadron or two to make the Kaiser happy, but they’re just a stopgap until the Union manages a squadron of Beauforts; don’t expect them to do any real damage if the League calls their bluff and invades early.

            And yet even with the Beauforts, all the League needs to do is avoid the coast, then cross the Cape during a Strakka when all the planes are grounded. Air power isn’t truly supreme until the jet age; you can’t launch a WWII plane in rough weather, but you can still fire a 12-inch gun. Hence the need for Allied capital ships.

          9. By donald johnson on

            The League either needs to do any invasion very soon or wait at least 5 years. My reasoning is this. they cannot yet have the ability to make heavy plate therefore they cannot yet build or even repair what they have. I seriously doubt that the league found any relevant tool building capability or kurakawa would have already heard of it.
            The league needs plate and lots of it to even repair any damage at the present much less build new.

          10. By donald johnson on

            If the majority of the ships are WWI or prior then the present ships can be sunk if the pilots are well trained but it will be expensive in manpower and would have to be a night/dusk attack right out of the sun as this will make it harder to see them. remember that the league has no radar for earlier detection.

          11. By Justin on

            Very true, the French and Italians’ decision to skip “that silly radar fad” is going to bite them in the arse in every single timeline. It’s even worse than their current lack of carriers.

            Problem is, the Allies are short on radar too: they’ve got one system each on Walker and Mahan – possibly on the new DDs and CL as well – but their carriers and planes are blind. For now, night raids are probably limited to one or two DDs plus TB escorts.

          12. By donald johnson on

            I certainly hope that the allies will be able to soon make more radar. yes it is not really necessary to use phosphor screens but they do make it easier to use and duplicate

          13. By Lou Schirmer on

            Are you guys sure Walker has radar? A 4-piper on Asia station would have been the very last ship to receive radar. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t recall any mention of it. If they did, it would probably replace the crow’s nest on the foremast & the lookouts would be on the flying bridge. They’re probably working on it though.

          14. By donald johnson on

            I would have to think you are correct. Walker most likely did not have radar. the mahan being newer may have had it but not many of the 4 stackers got it before being scrapped and none would have had it before 1940 or so as newer ships got the upgrade.

          15. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            None of the Union ships have radar. Boise was the only ship in the Asiatic Fleet that had radar, and she was forced to retire with grounding damage before the final fights when she might have made a real contribution. The good thing is, chances are, the League doesn’t have it either. The difference is, Matt and his men have been at the mercy of overwhelming enemy air superiority before and REALLY didn’t like it. Also, Alan Letts and Steve Riggs know about radar and want it bad. The question is, does the league appreciate its capabilities and want it equally bad? Can anyone even DO it? Radar could be a game changer, and those who appreciate it know that. Boise’s radar was very primitive and even better sets such as those the US first deployed ca. Guadalcanal were poorly understood and even more poorly used–at first–but the potential of radar was seen (by some) and much coveted.

          16. By donald johnson on

            Yes there is a form of indicator that does not require phosphors and it is possible that they might figure it out. it basicly is only a manually pointed indicator with a mirror attached to an assembly so a spot is illuminated om the edge at correct range. this is how the first were done before phosphor tubes. think of the very old spinning disk television. It would require a neon bulb as indicator for speed and a pause period so it will go out.

          17. By matthieu on

            “The question is, does the league appreciate its capabilities and want it equally bad? Can anyone even DO it?”

            This is an excellent question as the answer is… no. No way. It’s not that it’s “that” difficult… now, once we know what to do and how. Right now destroyer
            – don’t have the knowledge
            – don’t have raw materials
            – don’t have the industry
            – don’t have the know how.
            You need to give them 15+ years.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_radar

          18. By Lou Schirmer on

            Well, yes & no. I’d say yes, they can build radar systems of the early, low power, low frequency, low accuracy type suitable for early warning, but not fire control. Some fairly simple systems were part of the early development process & their radio guy should be able to cobble something together. A large land based system at least, maybe something for the large homes & carriers & they could warn the rest of the fleet.

            No, they won’t be producing higher power, higher frequency systems suitable for fire control because you’re right. They don’t have the equipment or knowhow, unless some Wile E. Coyote type knows how to build a good magnetron, klystron or high frequency tubes.

          19. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Very true, Matthieu. People these days take radar so much for granted, but not only was it developed in “baby steps” it took a while for people to figure out what all it could do–and how to maximize its efficiency in those regards. That said, there are other possibilities . . . and different ways to use them. :) Honestly though, I would expect attempts to observe enemy movements the “old fashioned way” and all the attendant tactical and strategic issues that involves.

          20. By matthieu on

            Agree. Right now the most important weapon is the radio. You just need some spotters and coast watchers. We should also expect something completely forgotten: the sound locator. It was quite efficient.

          21. By Justin on

            Interesting… sonar, but through air instead of water? Sounds like the fluidic calculators in Ring of Fire: a lot less effective, but worth a shot.

          22. By matthieu on

            Non, it’s completely different, you just listen.

            Sonar assumes that you listen to an echo. You mix sonar and hydrophones :)

          23. By donald johnson on

            // :) Honestly though, I would expect attempts to observe enemy movements the “old fashioned way” //
            Actually Taylor is correct in the the “Old fashioned way” works nicely. also there is no reason that one could not use sonar to range surface ships as well as submerged ships. distance and bearing can be measured the same way as radar it is just a bit slower. and if you are not transmitting a ranging ping then they might not hear you unless you are traveling fast or have noisy engines. They already use sonar to drive off the mountain fish so why not add the necessary detection gear and use sonar instead of radar. bearing is easy with sonar with present tech.

          24. By Lou Schirmer on

            Submarines use sonar to find surface ships, I don’t see why a surface ship can’t do the same thing. If you kept your speed under 16-18 knots It might be just the thing at night or in a fog. They could develop Matthieu’s sound locator for accuracy on the surface once they had gotten a sound bearing through the sea. Don’t know if it would be as accurate as radar for directing guns.

          25. By donald johnson on

            as long as sea conditions are good sonar is just as accurate as radar though slower at about 1500 meters per second. Range and bearing would be affected by thermoclines and other objects as well as being reflected off the bottom. an object 20 miles would have a round trip time of about 40+ seconds so it would not be as convenient as radar for a fast update

          26. By Justin on

            The speed of sound is four times slower in air than water, to be precise.

            But even with that, and even if our protagonists can’t sync it to a gun director, it’s still an advantage. The League – unless they have a sub with them – will still be near-blind in poor visiblity conditions… while the Union will know exactly where they are and where they’re going. Perfect for an ambush or a getaway.

        2. By Justin on

          Absolutely. Choke the Cape and the coast with corvettes and Beaufort bombers (not Buzzards, that’s suicide), and the League will have a harder time forcing the Indian Ocean.

          Just keep in mind that it’s not a perfect solution. TBs aren’t exactly durable, nor very seaworthy; all the League would have to do is avoid the west coast, then cross the Cape in a Strakka with all the TBs and planes grounded. The Alliance (either Republic or Union, doesn’t matter) still needs a couple of capital ships to block that.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            Buzzards could use more power, true, but I think they’re better off replaced by something like Lou’s twin-engine attack plane. Use the remaining Buzzards outside of the combat zone. Give the Republic a few for spotting & patrol, they could land on inland lakes as well as harbors.

          2. By donald johnson on

            Crossing the cape in a straka would put all ships involved in greater danger than crossing in good weather. They most likely would be detected long before they reached the cape anyway so what would be the point. with long range detection on the coast via long range seaplanes they would be easy targets. they might just as well go around south america and go the long way if they simply want to play it safe. remember that all we need to do is sink the auxiliary ships and the capitol ships are dead in the water without fuel

          3. By Steve Moore on

            Going around South America is an even longer trip.

            They need to develop an industrial base; the Med is a perfect haven with only one major entrance. Scrap a couple of older ships (the Savoie would have been useful), convert the boilers and turbines to a shore-based generating plant, and start looking for resources in West Africa. There’s oil in the Black Sea (if the Bosporus is passable) and a decent climate for farming. We don’t know what the geography is yet, and after 5 years they’ve probably found some women. Makes sense for them to stay put until they can build their power.

          4. By Justin on

            Auxiliary ships, as in plural. Any invasion fleet would’ve crossed over with a lot of them; assuming the League brass knows their stuff, they’ll bring more than the needed amount on a Cape crossing.

            So the Union can waste all the TBs and Buzzards and ordnance they want against the League’s AA screen. Even if they somehow sink a tanker or ammo ship, the League will continue on, because they expected that and brought extras.

            At the risk of sounding like a broken record, the Allies need capital ships and bombers to make the League at least moderately worried about attacking them. Luckily, it doesn’t seem to be on the table, so both sides have time to scale up their war machines.

            //They most likely would be detected long before they reached the cape anyway so what would be the point.//

            They’re not sneaking past, they’re just bypassing the air attack – the threat is negligible to begin with, but if they can save the ammo, why not?

          5. By donald johnson on

            The auxiliary ships DO NOT have the AA that the other ships will have. Even as slow as the present aircraft are they can take 250-500 lb bombs. Simultaneous attacks will easily saturate a non capitol ships defense. A tanker has absolutely no chance against a 250 lb bomb hit or even a near miss will probably disable it requiring a tow. Kill the Tankers and the Capitol ships will need a tow :-)

          6. By Justin on

            The tankers may not have AA, but the fleet escorting them does. They also have scout planes like Amagi did – remember how those did a number on the Catalina?
            Union PBs already got chewed up by one lone Japanese DD… against an entire fleet and seaplane fighters, they’re just “taa-gits.”

            Assuming a miracle where one plane gets through, great – the Allies have just lost their entire Cape air force to get one tanker. The League, not being dummies, guessed they’d lose a tanker or two and brought a few more tankers for redundancy, so they continue on to their objective.

            I imagine that the Allies are a lot less willing to throw away lives like that.

            Once the Union develops their own Beauforts, they have a decent chance at getting the tankers, and possibly the light ships too. Without them though, it’s just a waste of good Buzzards (that really should be sent to the Dom Front, or just retired).

          7. By donald johnson on

            agreed that the escorts have good AA but just how close are they going to be to the tankers. I am still of the opinion that a saturation raid with 20 or more will do the job needed and leave the tankers killed or unable to do their job. The raids would be from high altitude runs and not on the surface as tankers are not as maneuverable as the escorts. I am also assuming that the long range aircraft are patrol craft similar to those that are replacing the catalina.

          8. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Hey, what’s stopping the allies from making something like a vickers vespa to use until they can get beauforts? vespas could carry torpedoes….

          9. By Justin on

            Point is, they’re not exactly going to be unguarded; maybe not the whole fleet, but most likely a few DDs and a CA or CL, like Atlantic convoys.
            That’s still at least one scout fighter and a nasty wall of AA… and then after the first run, they’ll be sailing closer to the main fleet.

            That means they need to do the most damage in that first run. Twenty Beauforts could do an effective carpet bomb, or make a torpedo run.

            Twenty Clippers? They’re carrying a Dauntless’s payload with a Swordfish’s engine; that’s not exactly “high-altitude.” They could go lighter (1-2 bombs each?) but that reduces the chance of a hit to near zero.

            Twenty Buzzards? Don’t bother.

          10. By Justin on

            //Hey, what’s stopping the allies from making something like a vickers vespa to use until they can get beauforts? vespas could carry torpedoes…//

            Probably because Mallory’s never seen a Vespa, General. He’s an American fighter jock, so he can put together a P-29 with firsthand knowledge and a couple of manuals, but a British torpedo bomber is probably off the table.

          11. By Lou Schirmer on

            They’ll almost have to come past the Republic. Looking at a map, Cape Horn in S. America is about 25 degrees farther south than the Cape of Good Hope & less than 500 miles from land on Antarctica. As bad as the strakka’s are off Cape of Good Hope, it would be living nightmare trying to round Cape Horn. Thinking about it, as close as it is to Antarctica & the way this world is in an ice age, the passage may only be open in the summer, if at all.

          12. By Justin on

            Yup. From what I’ve read, even the OTL explorers (Cook, etc) agreed that Cape Horn was more dangerous than Good Hope.

    3. By Lou Schirmer on

      Bowing to popular demand & my own greed, I went & added the forward tubes for total overkill.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        New tube setup looks nice, faired in like that. How about a diagonal spray strake down the bow to divert water away from directly hitting the tubes, sending it out instead of along the hull.

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          She’s almost fast enough to do a planning hull design, but we’d have to reduce the superstructure for that. It’d be a bit top heavy to be stable planning.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            Alexander Graham Bell was working on hydrofoils…. or how about assault airboats up the Zambezi.

      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        This is Torpedo Boat Design Study #2. Last call on this design. TB Study #2 addresses some of the concerns on topside weight, by eliminating the aft deck house & staggering the torpedo mounts. Also dropped the semaphore lamp to the bridge deck & the forward spot light to the flying bridge deck. As before the ship is mildly modular as you can replace a torpedo mount or two with different weapons (1 x 4″ or 2 x 25mm mounts per replacement).

        http://loupy59.deviantart.com/art/New-Union-TB-Design-Study-2-Reduced-Topside-678775398

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Nice! Having a flush deck from midships aft gives the builders a lot of options. I’m thinking maybe a fast assault transport for the Raiders?

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            That’s an idea. An open deck could easily house a dozen or so commando rafts. Not sure about the mileage, though…

    4. By Steve White on

      Is that an MTB or a gunboat? 220 feet is pretty big. Almost the length, but 1/3 of the tonnage, of USS Asheville.

      Nice design though I wonder if she’s heavy enough to carry all the torpedoes.

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        She’s an updated Torpedo Boat design.

        It’ll be tight with that many torpedo tubes, but that’s what a design study is for. The German E-boats could carry 6 (2 in tubes & 4 reloads) at a higher speed & 1/6 the tonnage. She’s carrying 18 & 18 reloads, which works out about the same ratio wise, at a slower speed & increased gun suite.

        Reply
        1. By Steve White on

          Interesting.

          Let me suggest a variant: 4 or 6 torpedo tubes only, and instead more guns. This could be a gunboat (always useful) and it could also be an AAA ship with lots of 3 and 4 inch guns and machine guns, to provide anti-air protection to a task force or to a convoy.

          I could see building both variants, and one could borrow a modern idea and make this more modular.

          Reply
  13. By Lou Schirmer on

    Been thinking again. A terrible thing I know.
    The cats are going to need to develop some sort of high altitude breathing capability for their air crews on bombing missions. This will let them either get up out of range of the missile barrages or be at a high enough altitude that the spread of the barrage makes hits unlikely. Plus this would, usually, serve to increase the planes range and/or air speed.
    Something as simple as the gas masks talked about in posts last year coupled with engine driven air pumps to pressurize the air. Add in some sort of regulator & the crews can get up to the air craft’s service ceiling without loosing consciousness. It would help on the eastern front also getting over or through the Andes passes.

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      I thought masks were a problem because of the fur (do Griks have the same high O2 demands, they have a fast metabolism too, right?). How about something like a athletic mouthpiece with a tube running into it, gripped INSIDE the Cat’s mouth? With air pumped in per Lou’s comment? Sounds like a CPAP machine.

      The other solution is an air flask, similar to the torpedoes but smaller. But how can you increase the O2 content per cubic liter, my chemistry is a bit old

      Reply
      1. By Generalstarwars333 on

        The thing with the tube idea is that it sounds unpleasant to use and also not easy to get out in a hurry if they need to bail out.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Just spit it out, I’m not putting the tube down their throats.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            At the age of 10, the neighbor’s kid got into my aboveground pool with his dad’s electric air compressor hose, a five-gallon bucket and played all afternoon pretending he was a diver. So I guess anything can work.

            Wonder if Laney got his start that way.

          2. By William Curry on

            The early experiments for oxygen for aircrews used a tube held in the mouth. Face masks came later. In the great War they had gas masks for Dogs and horses, so a face mask or hood for cats is entirely possible.

          3. By donald johnson on

            Should a sealed mask become necessary then the crewcats will shave a ring where necessary and use it as a badge of distinction showing that they are fighter/bomber crewcats

          4. By donald johnson on

            it looks like hell but it draws babes like blood draws a flashy

          5. By Steve White on

            The mask need not be tight: the flow simply needs to be high enough that the air crew-cat can inhale sufficient oxygen.

            The tighter it is, the less leak and thus waste. But if you don’t mind pumping oxygen, you can do with a looser mask.

            Another way to do it is to pressurize the entire compartment, as was done for the B-29. But I don’t think the Alliance has the ability to do that right now.

      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        Probably doesn’t need to be as air tight as a true gas mask. As long as positive pressure is maintained, a little air bleeding out through the fur shouldn’t be a problem.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Right, not as critical as gas masks. Air is exhausted, after all.

          Reply
      3. By Justin on

        A scuba regulator? That could work.

        Of course, the problem now is building a powerful enough bomber – and in large enough quantities – that said masks would be needed. Even the Clippers are going to have a relatively low flight ceiling.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          If they’re going to fly to the Gulf of Mexico, they’ll need to have something like this. Take Cabo San Lucas, establish a patrol base there, and a garrison of a few regiments supplied from the new base at San Diego.

          The other solution is importing Geerki’s tame Griks to build a transcontinental railroad, since they like the heat. Assuming the New Brits and New Americans can be pals. Silva can be the Wild Bill Hickock of this new world!

          Reply
          1. By Steve White on

            Why Cabo? Just across from it on the eastern side of the Gulf of California is Mazatián. That would save 250 miles right there. Due east on the edge of the Gulf of Mexico is Ciudad Madero. If the Dominion isn’t that far north, it’s the shortest distance. Or angle some northeast and get to Corpus Christi.

          2. By Steve White on

            Of course, Cabo San Lucas would be a good forward naval/air station for patrolling the area south of San Diego.

    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      If I’m remembering right, they’re running on straight hydrogen. There are lots of ways to produce H2 these days, but I don’t know what methods were known back then, beside electrolysis. Most of it these days is produced from steam reforming of fossil fuels, including coal. If this was known back then, that’s probably how they’re doing it, since making large amounts of H2 with electrolysis take a lot of power.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrogen_production

      Kind of surprised they haven’t come up with a “gunship” version of the airships. A reduced bomb load, but carrying a butt load of weapons say in the nose, tail, top, sides etc.. Sort of an airship version of the B-17. It would give the P1-Cs some problems.

      Reply
      1. By David DuBois on

        Making hydrogen with DC current is incredibly easy. One electrode for positive, one for negative, placed in either fresh or salt water. You will get bubbles from each electrode, the positive electrode generates oxygen bubbles, the negative makes hydrogen. By placing a container over each electrode, the gases may be captured and piped away for storage. The higher the current, the more gas is produced.

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          Easy in concept & small volume production, but airships take a LOT of H2, & the way they’re getting shot down & still putting up more says they’re making serious quantities of it. To make it with electricity in volume take some good sized generators. Thinking about Grik safety measures makes me shiver, large quantities of highly flammable gas in close proximity with crude generators throwing sparks off the brushes. Don’t know if the Grik are up for that yet, Kurokawa maybe.

          No one is using helium. The main known reserve at that time was in the US, Texas & Oklahoma area I think. It’s distilled from natural gas wells that are rich, comparatively (6-7%), in helium & many wells don’t have a significant amount in the oil or gas being pumped up.

          Reply
          1. By donald johnson on

            And the big problem with making hydrogen with electricity is that any impurity’s in the water gets potential other impurities in the gas. remember the chlorine gas problem when you use salt water. however other than that making it with electricity is actually fast and efficient when you use large electrodes.

          2. By David DuBois on

            The chlorine gas was a result of mixing salt water with the battery acid, not from impurities in the water when making hydrogen. While there may have been some other gases mixed with the hydrogen, 99%+ of the gas generated by the negative electrode would be hydrogen, clean enough for the purposes of getting a zeppelin to fly.

          3. By Lou Schirmer on

            General. I knew they had armed them, but didn’t realize they’d built a gunship version. My bad.

          4. By Generalstarwars333 on

            S’okay. Also, if thinking about their safety measures is scary, then think about them using what are I think flintlocks, maybe matchlocks on their airship defenses. Airships that are also full of firebombs. They’re held aloft by flammable stuff, they hold incendiary ordnance, and their defensive armaments either produce a large amount of sparks or require a constantly burning slow match. What could possibly go wrong?

          5. By donald johnson on

            General, nothing will go wrong, go wrong, go wrong, . . .

          6. By Lou Schirmer on

            If the Union ever decides to try airships, they may want to consider a hybrid type. Something with most of the lift, say 75-80%, provided by H2, but with an outer envelope of hot air bags initially inflated with burners on the ground, but maintained with hot air from the engine exhausts with some H2 burning to boost it if necessary. Might be a bit safer. Another hair brained idea from yours truly.

          7. By Steve Moore on

            Small volume production might be enough for O2 tanks for high-altitude flight. This might also improve the ‘hot’ torpedoes as well, which may explain why Krazykowa’s torpedoes worked so well.

          8. By Steve Moore on

            Plus, they have to transport it. Even if they build and fill up far inland, they’d need a topping-off supply close to the coast since flight speed & time is so slow. Yeah, yeah, I know, logistics again…

      2. By Steve White on

        As I recall, combining sulfuric acid with iron filings will librate the hydrogen from the acid.

        Reply
    2. By William Curry on

      We’re talking industrial quantities of H2, not lab bench quantities. To render ineffective the Grik airship fleet locate and destroy the H2 production facilities. It will be a large industrial facility. As for using acid and iron filings, you need industrial quantities of sulfuric acid.

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        Exactly, large generator farms w/ attendant coal power plants for electrolysis, or some thing similar for a chemical process such as coal gasification (what I think they’re doing). There will be large storage tanks also. Very tasty target.

        Reply
  14. By Lou schirmer on

    Just posted my final version of the new CL.

    http://loupy59.deviantart.com/art/New-Alliance-CL-Version-3-677583826?ga_submit_new=10%3A1493403822

    I wanted to get it in before Devil’s Due comes out, in case it’s in it, to see how close, or far, I am from what actually comes off the ways.
    Some assumptions:
    1. It’ll be a 4-piper, in line with the books & Reddy’s familiarity with the Omaha class CLs.
    2. It will use most, if not all, of Amagi’s remaining 5.5″ & 25mm artillery. With the 4 DDs as well as this being built, they should be out of 25mm AAA until they start producing some version of one, either a copy or a simpler design such as a Hotchkiss type.
    For rapid construction, I went with the materials they already have, so they don’t have to develop anything new. So no turrets, just tub & shield mounts, existing engines, boilers, secondaries, the new quad torpedo tubes etc..
    I’m using two of Amagi’s secondary directors as the main battery director’s on this ship.
    I’m also saving space & weight by limiting the depth charges to two K-guns on pivots to deal with mountain fish. Her escorts should deal with any ASW actions.
    I named it USS Union, since the DDs & DEs are being named after dead heroes & the large vessels seem to be named for battles, I figured they’d come up with something for the new class. Since they have just birthed a nation, I dropped back to some of the names of the old original USN frigates (President, United States, Congress, Constitution etc..), and with a nod to the new union went with that.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Looking good! Very creative gun placement.

      //since the DDs & DEs are being named after dead heroes & the large vessels seem to be named for battles, I figured they’d come up with something for the new class.//

      Yeah, it looks like the Union’s following WWII naming conventions. So she’d probably be named after a city – Baalkpan, Aryaal, etc, like the OTL cruisers. I’d save Union, Congress and the others for the hypothetical BC class.

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        Thanks for the kind words.

        I thought a lot of the city names were already in use as battle sites.

        For the future (maybe) BCs, I was thinking names like Warspite, Retribution & Revenge etc., more in line with their attack role.

        Maybe we ought to have an unofficial naming contest for the new CL.
        One name per person & whoever wins when DD comes out gets bragging rights. My entry is already there, USS Union.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          USS Baalkpan? Pretty sure they’re going with cities.

          IMO, Union or Alliance would have to be some one-of-a-kind ship that the whole Union or Grand Alliance had to share, like a fast battleship or royal yacht.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            We shall see. I think this is probably going to be a one off test design to see what the problems will be building larger all steel & turbine ships, using the materials they have on hand.

            So we have:
            Justin with USS Baalkpan
            Steve with USS Alliance
            Lou with USS Union

            Any more votes/WAGs?

    2. By David DuBois on

      I’m going to go with a near duplicate of the Omaha class light cruiser. Spanky would have been intimately familiar with USS Marblehead. Two turrets would not have been difficult to make, possibly even using the turrets off of the Hidoiame, with additional secondary guns from Amagi placed in sponsons. An engineering plant the same as the Marblehead, would give the new cruiser a top speed of 35 knots.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Sure, but depending on the damage, the Union might not have Hidoiame’s turrets, and they definitely don’t have Marblehead’s power plant… not to mention Spanky probably forgot a few things over the years. Let’s assume that the Union’s starting from scratch here.

        Reply
        1. By David DuBois on

          Spanky would have seen the Marblehead right up until Feb 1942, just before the Battle of Makassar Strait. He spent a great deal of time on Marblehead, he wouldn’t forget the major parts, enough to replicate her. I’m not suggesting that they could duplicate a heavy cruiser like USS Houston or Pensacola, but the Marblehead is within their skill set There’s no reason they couldn’t duplicate that power plant, the Marblehead was the same vintage as Mahan and Walker, just more boilers and engines.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            How so? The Union’s using Walker’s machinery, not Marblehead’s; they’d need seven engines and fourteen boilers to produce enough HP to power an Omaha-class.

            And before anybody says “just scale up all the parts,” I’m very sure that’s not how it works.

          2. By David DuBois on

            The boilers in the Marblehead were very simple boilers, very similar to the boilers installed on Walker and Mahan, there were 12 of them instead of just 4. The boilers of Walker and Mahan were rated at 300psi, very low for naval propulsion purposes, especially compared to their WW2 counterparts. Those boilers and propulsion plants were all made about the same time, all being the current technology of the time, using non-superheated steam at low pressure. Fletcher class WW2 destroyers, on the other hand, used superheated steam at 600psi. 12 Yarrow type boilers such as those on Walker would be enough power to move an Omaha class Cl at 35 knots.

          3. By David DuBois on

            Marblehead had 12 boilers and four shafts to reach 35 knots. These would be nearly identical to Walker’s power plant, just more boilers and 2 additional engines.

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            So twelve boilers & six shafts & propellers? With the “improved” boilers & turbines, that would put you in the 80,000 SHP range. Assuming a lighter hull(not smaller due to the increased # of boilers & turbines), since we’d only be mounting 3-4 twin 5.5″ turrets plus secondaries, theoretically it could do in the neighborhood of 34 knots. The problem would be fitting all those shafts & props under a cruiser (pointy) stern, plus arranging the turbines internally. Check out the Marblehead’s stern in dry dock.

            https://www.reddit.com/r/WarshipPorn/comments/2f2cfw/uss_marblehead_cl12_in_dry_dock_2_boston_navy/

            As far as duplicating the Marblehead’s power plant, while they could do it, we have to remember the time constraints they’re working under. To produce a larger turbine type would take time. This ship has been under construction for a while now, even in our world a CL took about 2-3 years to build with massive infrastructure, experience & resources & existing designs to work from. They’re going to have to go with what they have already for this ship. New engines & weapons will be for later classes a couple of years down the road.

          5. By Justin on

            Nearly identical to Walker’s power plant. Lou already explained most of it, but here’s the math to go along:

            Walker makes 24,600 shaft horsepower with her two engines and four boilers; her sister ships James Ellis and Geran-Eras are slightly more powerful, so let’s assume 27,000 shp.

            That’s 13,500 shp engines and 6,750 shp boilers for the Walker-class. By contrast, Marblehead makes 90,000 shp with her twelve boilers and four engines; you’d need seven and fourteen of Walker’s to match that.

          6. By William Curry on

            If I recall correctly the Yarrows in the Walker operated at around 200 psig. The Yarrows were also obsolescent at the time they were installed. The WW2 destroyers operated at higher pressures and superheat. I’m not sure about the Flecthers, but the Summer and Gearing classes had separately fired superheaters.

      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        Justin’s right, remember, they’ve taken a pre-industrial iron age culture from sail power & no cannon to steam turbines, aircraft & rifled breach loaders in about 2 & a half years.

        They may be able to do a near copy of an Omaha class, but it would be with a Walker derivative power plant since they apparently started it over a year ago. That would drop it to the 28-30 knot range depending on tonnage. Turrets are possible however, the Omaha class had basically deck mounts with a turret set on it if you look at some of the better pictures. The turrets were basically a frame set on a beefed up pivot mount with plates riveted to the frame. The total number of 5.5″ available is limited though, since many have been mounted elsewhere & some were probably damaged or destroyed in the various fights & Amagi’s sinking. They started with 16 on Amagi, I figure 3-5 were probably too damaged to salvage & 5 or 6 have been mounted in other ships, so they may have only 5-7 5.5″ available for the CL. I mounted mine to give a maximum broadside capability with single mounts (think Fletcher class DD w/1 extra). Twin mount turrets would save space & allow for a shorter hull.

        Reply
        1. By Generalstarwars333 on

          Cool. This is just my two cents, but I think one way would be to put a large number of 4″50’s on the CL if they don’t have enough 5.5″s or 4.7″s left. Also, the CL should probably have at least some torpedoes, since the amount of damage a 5.5″ gun can do to a BB or even probably the newer versions of the Arata Amagi’s is somewhat limited, whereas a torpedo can put a huge warhead right below the waterline, even if it has to be from close range.
          Going back to the 4″50 spam idea, it would give the new CL a great AAA armament since they’d probably all be on DP mounts, and with probably 8-12 of them, that’d be a hell of a lot of lead/steal/explosives they could throw at anything in the sky.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Given what they know now about Kurokawa’s air threat, any new CL’s will probably have an ass load of 4″/50 DP guns. Might even make a small (5-6,000 ton) fast AAA cruiser with torpedoes for heavy hitting.
            I did put a few TT on mine also.

          2. By Steve White on

            An antiaircraft style CL, such as USS Juneau, with a dozen 4″ 50 cal in DP mounts, would be splendid. Even with no larger guns such a ship would be useful; the AA role is now vital, and a dozen 4″ guns would be very helpful to soften up a landing or to challenge any part of the Grik fleet that lacks the newest, largest ships Kurokawa has.

          3. By Justin on

            Hold your horses, people! Remember, the Union’s still at the four-stacker phase; save the Atlantas for ’45 and ’46.

          4. By Generalstarwars333 on

            We’re not talking about something as advanced as the Atlanta . We’re talking about a four stacker CL that just has a bunch of 4″50’s. Since the 4″50’s being made are on DP mountings, you’d have a great AA armament. The only real similarity to the Atlanta would be that both are good against aircraft.

          5. By Steve Moore on

            Torpedoes bring your expensive CL within 1000 to 1500 yards of some big broadsides. Build some mini-Mahans for that, or inshore, assign PTs’ to this. I’d rather have a couple of quad-.30 mounts or some extra 4″50 DP’s for AAA or close-in work (think Grik suicide boats).

          6. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Or better yet quad .50’s if they are making them. Hmm…. quad blitzers with longer barrels….so many bullets….. but too short a range.

          7. By Generalstarwars333 on

            But yeah, that is a good point about the torpedoes. Has any thought been given to perhaps a shaped charge projectile for the 4″50? If they’re gonna be using that as their main naval weapon for a while, they’ll want a shell that can punch through heavier armor.

          8. By Lou Schirmer on

            Maybe a high velocity 2″ sabot round for the 4″ 50s?

          9. By Lou Schirmer on

            I think it really depends on what you hit with them. Both will go through armor. I think the sabot would likely go strait through a thin skinned target, just punch a 2″ hole in both sides. Whereas the shaped charge would deliver it’s energy into the target since it explodes on impact… depending on the fuse. The sabot would do better against a more robust target or thicker armor. The larger target would absorb the sub munition, letting it do more damage & possibly penetrate deeper. The experts would be able to say for sure whether I’m full of it or not. :)

          10. By Generalstarwars333 on

            I think that the way the shaped charge works is instead of shooting a metal dart into the target like an APDS round does, it shoots a stream of molten metal into the target. Also the shaped charge round would be more effective at longer range since it doesn’t depend on muzzle velocity, whereas a sabot round does. So I think that the shaped charge can do more damage, but the sabot can have more penetration at shorter range.

          11. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            A sabot round would work pretty good up close but it might run out of gas at distance if it’s lighter. If it’s just as heavy, only smaller diameter, it could penetrate heavier armor even at a distance–but if it just poked a little hole it might not be too effective. Bursting charge explosives, particularly in AP rounds, were the subject of considerable experimentation and results were based on power and stability.
            Interesting exercise: Coming up with a rifling twist that would stabilize the heavier projectile–and the lighter resulting projectile that leaves the sabot. I kind of doubt they will be using smoothbores and fin stabilizers. Also need a powerful bursting charge for a narrow tube projectile . . . And a new delayed contact fuse tailored to the new projectile’s penetration characteristics. Fun! Ironically, I have been turning wood sabots for my 6pdr this week. I’m experimenting with cedar for better compressibility. Hopefully it will result in a better gas check and shot-centering obturation.

          12. By Lou Schirmer on

            Taylor, How are you keeping the sabot pieces attached? Glue? Light test fishing line? A tight fit tongue & groove? Just curious.

          13. By Lou Schirmer on

            One thought on sabot & shaped charge warheads. While the shaped charge will penetrate at any range it can hit at, it’s penetrating jet is expended in the compartment it gets into. One reason it works so well against armored vehicles, the crew & ready ammo were often in the (small)compartment hit & the plasma bloom burned the crew & set fire to the ammo, end of tank. Don’t know of any shaped charge naval ammo.
            The sabot round on the other hand, as noted looses energy at longer ranges, but within it’s effective range can usually do more damage. It penetrates, & in doing so usually generates spalling fragments from the inside layer of armor. Plus if the projectile is still semi intact, it will either ricochet around the penetrated compartment or can punch through into unarmored compartments creating more damage & if large enough to be equipped with a delayed bursting charge it just adds insult to injury.
            If it were me, I’d leave the shaped charges to land armored warfare & test the sabot rounds for both land & naval use.

          14. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Actually, since I turn the sabots to fit tighter than originals (for accuracy) and the shot isn’t bouncing around in a limber behind a six up team (requiring the tinned straps to hold them together) I just use thin masking tape. :) Sabots are still a pain to turn. First, I spin a 4×4 down to diameter then cut them to length. Once the pieces are trued up front and back, I turn the concavity for the shot to rest in. Still WAY easier than making projectiles for the rifle.

          15. By Generalstarwars333 on

            That’s a good point about the shaped charges lou. However, the penetrator from a sabot round wouldn’t always ricochet, and still might not do damage from that. I think with either one they’d have to aim for vulnerable parts like magazines. I think with the shaped charge though the molten metal would probably touch off ammo or maybe some fuel.

        2. By donald johnson on

          if a sabot dosent ricochet then it just stops and energy turns into heat and round melts and hot drops splat all over inside and flesh just does not stand a chance

          Reply
    3. By Steve Moore on

      Nice job on the cruiser, Lou (although I’m smitten with the USS Porter DE design as well). Figuring that this will probably be a small class, before they get to an uprated version; why not name them after famous Homes? They’re probably going to be built in Lemurian yards.

      Once yards in the Republic and the Empire start building smaller steel ships (maybe Porters and fast oilers), they’d quickly improve their capability to build larger and more advanced CL’s. The Republic is going to have to export some of their cannon makers to the Lemurians and New Britain in exchange for some Lemurian shipwrights. And there needs to be a capable shipyard in Ceylon/India.

      I’m not entirely convinced that there needs to be any rush to get to battle cruisers. Ships are still slow to build, and it just seems to me that more smaller, less complex ships are the way to go. The League seems to have given up (at least for now), and as we saw with the new Walkers, 50% attrition in their first battle. Imagine losing your only CL, which still has only the firepower of a Walker. Don’t really see much role for a cruiser unless she’s got 6″ guns, even just one forward.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Remember that the Union can multitask; Baalkpan was cranking out the two Walker-class DDs – with two more on the way as soon as the first pair launched – at the same time as their four-stack cruiser. Fast forward a year or two, and Baalkpan’s dockyards (possibly more in India and the Filpins) should be scaled up enough to run DDs, CLs and a BC all at the same time.

        You’re right, capital ships aren’t high on the list – not while the Grik are active and the League dormant. But they SHOULD be on the list.
        Again, the League just gave away Savoie like she was nothing… what else do they have hiding in the Mediterranean???

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Ditch the battleships and build improved carriers & planes (which can be quickly updated). Same lesson the US Navy (and every navy) has learned. The Brits made that point to the Argentines as late as the Falklands War. And learned the same painful lesson from the Armada simultaneously.

          What would really help to drive that point home is some new arrivals with news of the 1944 Pacific campaigns, even if it’s just a crappy little cargo ship like the one in ‘Mister Roberts’.

          Just had an absolutely crazy thought. German prisoners of war, treated well by the Old Americans, get put on a ship in 1946 to be shipped home from New Orleans. They get sucked into the squall, and pop up on the shores of Texas again. Do they ally with the New Americans? Are they enslaved by the Doms (or the League)? Food for thought.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            That “new arrival” will surely know what almost happened to Taffy 3 at Samar.

            BBs and CVs need each other until somebody invents the cruise missile. The CVs screen the BBs from getting torped, and the BBs screen the CVs from getting outrun and pounded.

            Or a Japanese POW ship from Australia. Either way, the Alliance in general could use more skilled personnel.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Justin, exactly. The battleship&carrier order are much more capable than just carrier. Less affected by weather, capable of fighting at night, capable of standing much more pounding (it’s VERY hard to took down battleship that have some fighter escort)

          3. By Steve Moore on

            Taffy 3 was faced by a naval force 20+ years in the making. Without the Savoie, there are no modern enemy heavy fleet units in the Pacific or Indian oceans, and building a modern Union fleet will take years, if not a decade, given the area to cover.

            Kurakowa is the key. Kill him, as the Allies did Yamamoto, and the threat almost certainly dies. I could see Niwa as a thoughtful replacement for him, amenable to the Griks. Without Kurakowa, the Savoie is much less of a threat. Remember, there are only 367 Japanese in his cadre. Put them all on the ship, and industrial production could drop to a standstill.

          4. By Justin on

            – There aren’t any more modern capital ships that we know of.

            – With the Dominion Navy gone from the Pacific, it’s more or less a giant Allied lake at this point. The Union really only needs to plug the Cape of Good Hope and the Pass of Fire while the Republic and Empire scale up.

            – If the plot can somehow get the entire Japanese contigent on Savoie, then somehow have 4-5 DDs and a CL sneak all the way through the Grik fleet to sink her, by all means.

            – Yet Kurokawa’s only one threat – right after that, the Union’s going to be at war with the League, if they aren’t already. The League most definitely has a modern fleet.

            When the Allies or Grik have a setback, it’s because they got complacent, forgot that the enemy keeps adapting, and then got caught with their pants down when the new adaptation came out.

            I’d rather the Union have a capital ship and not need it than vice versa. Even if the Union plans just one 10-incher CA and puts it off until ’46 or ’47, it’s still something.

          5. By Steve White on

            // What would really help to drive that point home is some new arrivals with news of the 1944 Pacific campaigns, even if it’s just a crappy little cargo ship like the one in ‘Mister Roberts’. //

            I think someone wrote a story about that… 😉

        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          I figure the CL to be a one of a kind test bed ship using what they have on hand. We’re probably not going to see another one, if any, for at least another year. The next ones will probably be smaller AAA CLs to help against Kurokawa’s air threat. While they can build bigger ships, they don’t yet have the heavy caliber guns to put in them, so they’re more years down the road for the Union. Different story for the Republic.

          As far as Kurokawa goes, even if they take out or badly damage the Savoie, he’s liable to survive. I think there’s some cockroach in his DNA somewhere.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            Also the fact that they’ve got 5.5″ guns right now, but they’d have to build 6″ from scratch. Makes sense.

            Nah, Kurokawa’d make it through the winter just fine. Rat DNA, perhaps?

      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        Thanks for the kind word on the CL design Steve.

        In regards the 6″ guns, I think if the cats do continue with CL designs, they may stay with the 5.5″ gun for the same reasons the IJN & others went for it, a lighter shell for smaller statured people to handle & very little reduction in hitting power. A 5.5″ is probably the largest fully manual loading gun they can handle & keep up a good rate of fire. For larger weapons, of course, they’ll go with powered hoists & hydraulic loading & ramming.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Rate of fire and some smokin’ hot HEAT rounds works for me. Plus you could use the same gun and logistics train for coastal defense artillery.

          Reply
  15. By donald johnson on

    ok David has some splainin to do. How did he get the link on his name to take me off taylors site and into his timber ridge site by clicking on his name

    Reply
      1. By David DuBois on

        When you post a comment, there is a place for a website. If there is a URL there, it makes your name a hyperlink and takes you to that page

        Reply
      2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

        You “figure” a great deal, General. At least when it comes to MY computer literacy! Speaking of which, this one is giving up the ghost. My mouse is haunted and does what it wants and I’ve rubbed the letters off all the keys. Laptops are really only good for about one book each…..

        Reply
        1. By William Curry on

          Well, there are always typewriter, if any of the younger set know what they are. I would have given almost anything to have had a PC with Word when I was in college.

          Reply
          1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            No kidding. I wrote my Master’s Thesis on a mechanical typewriter made in the ’40s. (Still have it). My first word processer was a Panasonic 1500 with a built-in printer. Sadly, a lot of stuff I wrote with it is inaccessible from the discs since it was never compatible with anything else.

          2. By donald johnson on

            My first word processor was A commodore Pet computer with 32 K ram and 8 K rom, 2 160k floppy’s in an external 4040 disk drive. It had a built in cassette recorder but I never used it after first try as it was too slow. I later got an 8050 with 1/2 meg drives then I got an sfd floppy with a meg drive in it. The funny thing about the sfd was that you had to use low density floppy’s in it as high density floppy’s would not work. Then The next level was a C=64 computer with color and an external 512k 2040 disk drive.
            The old days were fun! and I bet the generals mother was not born yet when I started.
            Hey general do you think you could survive without a computer till you were 30?

          3. By donald johnson on

            taylor, get a computer running under ubunto that has the proper disk drive in it and you may be surprised what you can read. i just found recently that it reads 8 inch disks. also if you know any younger still learning hackers, get one of them to write a disk nibler and pull the sectors off the disk individually and link back together on other media.

          4. By Steve White on

            Taylor, if you still have the Panasonic just print everything and then scan with optical recognition. You’d get back 99% of what you wrote, and correcting the other 1% would take the other 99% of your time 😉

          5. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Donald, when did you start? My parents were born in the 60’s. And as to whether I could survive until I was 30 without a computer: Give me enough books and legos, then probably, but I wouldn’t want to.

          6. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            I haven’t had that Panasonic for over 25 years… As for surviving without a computer, all I use it for is writing and talking to you guys. :) The writing takes a LOT of time, so I’m on it a lot, but I spend the rest of my time in my workshop or the outdoors.

          7. By donald johnson on

            i started in 1975 with a mitts 680b computer. it had 256 bytes ram 2 k rom amd a tarbell cassette interface. I then went up to a kim 1 with 1 k of ram and got an expansion board with 8 k. I then got a 32k pet computer that had wordpro on a floppy in 1978.

  16. By Lou Schirmer on

    Flashie fishing anyone?
    Charles Simpson actually came up with the thought of using Flashie scale as a base for a glue or laminate for the next gen plywood aircraft. The problem would be getting enough Flashies without getting yourself killed, or having the remaining Flashies eat your catch before you got it aboard.

    Grenades have been tried & work locally, but the remaining Flashies eat the catch. The solution? Largish fishing boats with a depth charge thrower. Have four or more of these working together to kill/stun a large area & then haul in your nets & dump them in the hold. Wash, rinse, repeat until loaded. Two bonuses, a new food source, & fewer Flashies. You could do this in the harbors to discourage Flashies locally & increase safety margins for getting anyone stupid enough to fall in, out.

    Just a thought.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Is fish scale glue strong enough for industrial use? If yes, then go for it – then all the Union needs is some better engines.

      Reply
      1. By donald johnson on

        Make a flashy trap. Basically a wire mesh tube with bait in it and flashy can go in and not back out. very common type of fish trap but just bigger than normal. and you would not be using up much needed explosives.It would hold the flashy until it was safely aboard then fisherman would kill in most expediant way for him.

        Reply
    2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

      They’ve been trawling for flashies from the start, beating them to death in the nets. Scale glue, huh? Interesting. Hide glue is incredibly strong but susceptible to moisture. The flashie scales might make a good shellac. Of course there are plenty of bugs to make shellac from.

      Reply
    3. By Steve White on

      Why doesn’t the standard trawler-pulled large net not work? The flashies can chew on each other but it’s not like they’ll actually consume each other (down to 1 big flashie!) in that time.

      Reply
      1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

        It does work. As I said, described all the way back to Into the Storm, and referenced often since.

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          I thought they’d chew through the nets by the time they were hauled in & you’d have some pretty moth eaten nets after the first couple hauls.
          My Bad.
          Still like the DC option though, saves beating them all to death.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Fishing for the lazy. Some enterprising soul is bound to be tired of constantly beating on Flashies & maybe “borrow” a DC or two to try things out.
            Battle cry of the South, “Hey, ya’ll watch THIS shite!”

        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          It seemed more of a cottage industry in the earlier books, with a lot of manual labor & net repair. To make it feasible as a source of scales & food, you’d need to get organized & get production up & costs/labor down. Hence the boats operating together & using a DC or so per haul.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            Collective cooperatives, no? 😉

          2. By Steve Moore on

            Here in the Northeast, Indians and settlers used fish weirs to trap fish in shallow waters. Why not combine a fish weir with a conveyor belt to pull the trapped fish out of the water, suffocating them on the way to the mechanized descaler and then into the shredder to make Flif Bars for the carnivorous members of the Alliance, Meanie Treats or Chumming Kibbles. All automated, no handling of nasty fishies.

          3. By Steve Moore on

            Better still; let Geerki’s Griks do it!

  17. By Geoffrey Cline on

    Now that you are using HF morse code, with one time cipher……p[perhaps we can insert in your emerging cryptography/code section incorporation of early HFDF that would have been possible in this era. Also, the exploitation of Japanese Purple code was occurring about this time and perhaps this is an additional possibility?

    Reply
  18. By Justin on

    The Union should probably also start working on bazookas or recoilless rifles. The League’s hypothetical armoured units notwithstanding, they might need that portable firepower against enemy strongpoints.

    Reply
    1. By Alexey Shiro on

      Er, what does they knew about recoiless weaponry? The US Navy of 1941 have virtually no experience; the only recoiless system they tested to this time was the old Davis gun in 1910s. I really doubt that anyone onboard the “Walker” knew anything more than “such thing existed”.

      Of course, they might just re-invent the principle themselves… but without proper engineering cadres, they woudn’t be able to create anything workable in reasonable time. The recoiless guns & bazookas aren’t simple. They are pretty complicated weaponry, that required a high-quality engineers to design.

      Reply
      1. By Generalstarwars333 on

        Or they could make a rifle chambered for the .50 BMG round and use it as an AT rifle to play hell with tracks, periscopes, open hatches, etc on the bigger tanks and pepper the smaller ones with holes. Alternatively…hmmmm…. maybe have a really low angle mortar firing like a shaped charge round or something. Maybe not a drop’and’pop style mortar, but one where you drop the round in, and then you can pull a trigger or a lanyard or something. Just a though.

        Reply
        1. By Steve White on

          AT rifles were well known and used commonly in the 1920s on. Armies only stopped using them when the armor on tanks became stout enough to render the AT rifle useless.

          The ‘Doom-Whomper’ is essentially this: 20mm rifle carried by a stout man.

          Reply
          1. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Yeah, but the doom whomper is made using precious 25mm barrels they can’t make more of. The union is already making .50 cal rifle barrels for the allin silva’s, so they should be able to make some barrels for a .50 bmg rifle.

      2. By Generalstarwars333 on

        Also, yeah the USN may not have known, but the technology definitely wasn’t unheard of. There was a form of recoiless rifle for aircraft just after WWI, and the soviets had a fighter, the I-Z, which aside from a single MG also had a 3 inch recoiless rifle under each wing. They weren’t that successful, mostly because you only had once chance to get it right and then you were seriously outgunned, but it was still done. *gets idea* ooh! they’d be nice tank busters! unless they miss.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Well, the USSR invested a lot into recoiless rifles of Kurchevsky design (including the enormous naval 12-inch recoiless, which was mounted for testing onboard destroyer :) ), but eventually they proved to be a costly faliure. And this was USSR, with a lot of bright scientists and capable engineers; with all respect, but the Union tech level is vastly below the Soviet…

          Reply
      3. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

        Interestingly, I might add something here. Having actually shot solid bolts at tanks with a 3″ Ordnance Rifle–basically an underpowered muzzleloading French 75 that jumps back about 8′ when you fire it and you have to roll it up and aim it again–I can say you’d have a decent chance of knocking out light tanks to 1000 yds. We blew holes through the top of the turret of an M-60 at that range. Granted, the armor IS very thin there, but probably no thinner than the front armor on a lot of LTs. I used to know all that stuff but am rusty now. Anyway, even at the time, we were pretty surprised. We thought that 8pd bolt would just skate off. Nope. The joke was of course, armed as we were against armor, we could shoot at the tank, hope to knock off a track, and then run like hell before it shot back. Arranging a top of the turret shot would be a bit awkward in real life and we were practically using plunging fire. Pretty hard to do with an open sight gun. But we put 3 in a row down the commander’s hatch! Fun stuff. I’m glad I live in a place that lets you shoot cannons at its old tanks. Hmm… another example. Heavy but un-armored tracked ammo hauler: Bolt went in by the left headlight (which we were aiming at) blew the top of the motor off, blasted through the firewall, seat, and back of the cab. The projectile then launched a bunch of railroad ties stacked in the back like tinkertoys before exiting the bed of the vehicle. M-113s? Gammagoats? They punch right through. Just a little fun perspective…. NOT saying even a 3″ rifle with our projectiles would penetrate heavy armor at all, but it (or a French 75) could punch through something pretty respectable with a little thought given to the projectile. The question is, HAVE they given any such thing a passing thought? Why would they–unless they’ve considered a similar gun for naval use?

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Huh, so a Civil War cannon can wreck a Patton at the right angle. Go figure.

          Perhaps what’s needed is a combination of platoon-level Boys rifles for the light tanks, and converted 4″/50s (3.5″?) at company level – similar to the German 88mms – for the heavies.
          A Flak 36 type field gun would also be useful if they ever need to build their own heavies. Allied proto-Tigers, anybody?

          Reply
          1. By Generalstarwars333 on

            I think I suggested at one point using 4″/50’s in tanks or tank destroyers. Also, for the republic, they could make 4″/50’s or they could maybe put barrel extensions on the 1897s or just make them with longer barrels to make AT guns.

          2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            I was just as surprised as you. And this was all kinetic energy with no “armor piercing” capability. Our projectiles are built more for accuracy and stability than for any AP purpose and are not even as good in that respect as original projectiles. I’ll explain: The body of our projectile is 2 3/4″ (OD), .25″ thick steel pipe. Nose and skirt is lead, cast in molds we made, all held together by 7/16″ all-thread. Fine Portland cement fills the body, with the excess squeezed out through relief holes as the nose and skirt are cinched down on the body with nuts on the all-thread. (This results in VERY consistent weights). Three nails are inserted through relief holes in the skirt to prevent torqueing. When the cement cures, all is amazingly rigid and stable–even after impact. Lead skirt and nose are a true 3″ and take up the 16th” windage and serve as soft bearing bands to prevent the steel body from eroding the steel rifling. (We did this so we wouldn’t wear out a very expensive barrel)! Originals were good for only 300-600 accurate shots. We’ve fired probably @ 1,000 rounds with no noticeable degradation. Recovered projectiles actually look like soft point bullets recovered from game with the .25″ steel “jacket” peeled back. They’d be GREAT hunting bullets for T-Rex’s! Anyway the point is, with a “soft” nose, they are absolutely not AP shells–yet they shot big holes in “soft” target vehicles and BROKE big holes in the thin turret-top armor of the M-60. We were amazed and like I said, it was all kinetic energy. A 20pdr parrot shot at the same ammo hauler with exploding shells and did more surface damage but did NOT penetrate even to the engine. It dissipated all it’s kinetic energy on impact. Therefore, theoretically, the much more powerful gun with better anti-personnel munitions would not have disabled even a very lightly armored target. I expect the same would be true with a French 75 firing shrapnel, even set for no burst, simply because the shell WOULD “burst” or shatter on impact because it was designed to come apart. Just about anything not designed to fragment, even just a solid bolt, would pass through thin armor. This could damage the drive train or kill or wound the crew with armor fragments. Not ideal, but possible, and better than nothing. The question then becomes whether it can do so farther away than whatever weapon the armored vehicle carries can destroy those shooting at it.

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            // I expect the same would be true with a French 75 firing shrapnel, even set for no burst, simply because the shell WOULD “burst” or shatter on impact because it was designed to come apart. Just about anything not designed to fragment, even just a solid bolt, would pass through thin armor.//

            Absolutely. This was tested during the war by RKKA, because initially the common 76-mm gun weren’t supplied with enough AP shells (it was thought that the 76-mm gun is too heavy to be effectively used as anti-tank). So, the shrapnel set “na udar” (rus. for “on strike”) were used against enemy tanks in 1941-1942 pretty often. It was claimed that from 500 meters the shrapnel hit from F-22 could penetrate 30 mm armor.

            BUT!

            It was F-22 semi-universal, long-barreled gun. Her initial velocity was about 650 m/s. Nearly 150 m/s more than French Canon de 75 mle 1897.

            And the most common french pre-war tanks – Hotchkiss H35 and Renault R35 – have 35-40 mm armor.

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Huh, so a Civil War cannon can wreck a Patton at the right angle. Go figure.//

            Well, it was commonly known that Renault FT17 could easily destroy the M1 “Abrams” (or any other MBT)… if she fell on “Abrams” from sufficient height. :)

          5. By Justin on

            //Well, it was commonly known that Renault FT17 could easily destroy the M1 “Abrams” (or any other MBT)… if she fell on “Abrams” from sufficient height.//

            Yup. Now we just need to build a lot of them and convince the League to stay very, very still…

            //I think I suggested at one point using 4″/50’s in tanks or tank destroyers.//

            General, naval guns and shells are big and heavy. It’s alright when you’ve got a whole destroyer to mount them on, but a tank? Gotta make it smaller (89mm or 3.5″/50, for example) if you don’t want to tow it with a truck or a halftrack.

            //Also, for the republic, they could make 4″/50’s or they could maybe put barrel extensions on the 1897s or just make them with longer barrels to make AT guns.//

            See above. And lengthening the barrel sometimes increases muzzle velocity, but not always. Might as well build a more modern gun.

          6. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Yeah, I know the 4″/50 is huge. I think I had in mind something akin to a jagtiger or elefant in size. Maybe a hummel. And I do know that changes in length don’t always affect muzzle velocity. The impression I got was that they have to be bigger changes in length for a change in muzzle velocity. I had in mind something like a 50% increase in barrel length to try and squeeze as much power as possible out of it without developing a more powerful cartridge.

          7. By William Curry on

            The mild steel pipe is acting like a armor piercing cap and the concrete slug is the AP shot. In effect your using APC (armor piercing capped) against various targets, no wonder it does so well. Concrete when it cures is very hard and the soft steel nose is spreading the impact which helps keep the concrete slug from breaking up. Just like APC. Try putting a windscreen or ballistic cap on it and see what it does at longer range.

          8. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Hey Bill. Actually, I made the mold for the nose with the same shape as the Apollo command module. Pretty decent.

          9. By Justin on

            //I think I had in mind something akin to a jagtiger or elefant in size. Maybe a hummel.//

            Certainly ambitious, but a bit too ambitious for the Union.

            Unnecessary too, since the worst the League would have is Char B1s and/or Panzer IIIs. I’m guessing that KVs combined with StuGs would get the job done just fine.

          10. By donald johnson on

            With the Germans in the league not having Hitler to push for the panzers I suspect they will not have any tanks. The treaty at end of WW1 was very strict as to what they could have and tanks were not one of them and from sounds of things the french in the league timeline kept a good watch on them and prevented any buildup. The french on the other hand may have built up better tanks than the panzer but i suspect that they may not have all the knowledge necessary to build good steel which would prevent them from making new ones quickly when they wear out or loose whatever they have presently on hand.

          11. By Justin on

            Yes and no. The CES may or may not have kept Germany under their thumb, but Lutz and Guderian were developing tank breakout theory WAY before Hitler came to power.

            Versailles allowed the Reichswehr a few vehicles for scout duty.
            OTL, the Germans already bluffed the Deutschland-class cruisers past the Treaty; all they have to do is pretend their tanks are “armoured reconnaissance vehicles” or something. What are the French going to do once they find out, bomb their ally?

        2. By Alexey Shiro on

          Well, as far as I knew, the were some cases in 1941, when the RKKA troops used old, museum muzzle-loaders against German armor, in defends of some small towns – just because those guns were here) Of course, they were used only in situations when the enemy tank was very limited in maneuvering – like, in street warfare.

          Reply
          1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Unfortunately, a “standard” 4″-50 is a pretty big gun and would require a really big tank to wag it around. I can see modifying the gun and sticking it in a tank destroyer . . . But even that will take a lot of effort and time, I imagine. But armor “baby steps” have been taken, so who knows?

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, the France put the naval 90-mm gun onboard their ARL 44 heavy tank post-war…

          3. By Justin on

            Yeah, definitely need to build a smaller gun, somewhere between 70-90mm. Does Walker still have her 3″/50 lying around somewhere?

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            With all respect, but I really doubt that Alliance would be able to build tank, capable of fighting the French tanks on even therms in any foreseable future.

          5. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Well, maybe. Their progress is kind of glacial at the moment because the government has seen that their current enemies have all been defeated on land with their current resources relatively easily and wants more of the magical walkers. Once they come up against League armor, they’ll most likely pour resources into getting their own tanks. If they still have that 3″/23 AA gun, it could probably be used as a tank gun as I believe Justin suggested quite a while ago. Maybe take a design similar to their current ones, and put the 3″/23 into the hull like a stug or hetzer.

        3. By Generalstarwars333 on

          Yeah, probably. Hmm…. a 4″/50 could be good siege artillery… maybe. Then again, the republic probably has some siege guns of their own.

          Reply
          1. By David DuBois on

            The Finnish Army used a 20mm anti-tank rifle to good effect in the 1939-1940 war against the Soviet Army. As tank armor got heavier, they switched the Lahti L-39 rifle to a long range sniper rifle, but it did a lot of damage to earlier Soviet tanks. I’m sure that given a chance, Silva would go nuts with a semi-automatic Doom Whopper against an enemy tank.

          2. By David DuBois on

            As to the shield, I left the URL off for that last post, and still got the shield. I guess I’m just special lol.

            Seems like I remember doing it when I first logged onto Taylor’s website, but that was a long time ago and a lot has happened in the last 7 or 8 years.

    2. By Steve Moore on

      Rockets! THe Grik have them, both contact and ‘time-fused’. Tube-launched folding fin, or rail-launched fixed fin are lightweight and multi-use (air-launched, bombardment from Katuysha mounts on wheels or barges, or assault bazooka). Don’t forget shaped-charge or squash warheads.

      Speaking of bombardment, waiting for some bright soul to come up with the Union version of Rockeyes using bundled mortar bombs in a casing that opens after release, for close air support against the Doms.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        Actually, rockets may be a solution for Halik, who is artillery-poor. Taking an example from the Viet Minh, develop a simple artillery rocket and have every Grik sling one over their shoulder on the march. The manufacturing process could be broken down and carried with them as well, and operated by the Hij with direct input from the ‘enlightened’ soldiers.

        Reply
        1. By donald johnson on

          actually the Hig are usually much more knowledgeable than the enlightened soldiers that only has knowledge about how to fight.

          Reply
  19. By Logan Meyers on

    Okay so since were all talking about hypothetical crossovers lately I was wondering about peoples thoughts on what other scattered peoples might inhabit the world, not on levels of the league or dominion or impies mind you but more like the Czechs. We’ve discussed crossovers from the Russo-Japanese war, peoples around the artic, I brought up possibly native and Americans in the pacific northwest, and German armor in Africa. What do you guys think? What little pockets of civilization could be hidden in the far corners and have survived since their crossing but not thrived in the ways others have.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Depending on the current glacier cover, there might be a Norse/Acadian/Royal Navy faction in the Maritimes or Swedes/Danes in the Baltic. Perhaps Cahokians… Maybe a trade ship from New Amsterdam…

      Reply
      1. By Logan Meyers on

        They’d probably be either neutral with the league or a protectorate /vassal/puppet

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Assuming any of these exist:
          – The Baltic doesn’t offer much for the League, especially given the time and effort needed to get there.
          – Cahokia is right next to OTL St Louis, same answer.
          – Nova Scotia/Newfoundland is accessible, but then there’s probably a British destroyer or cruiser that would give the League a headache if they tried anything.
          – Dutch New England… yeah, they’re probably goners.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            // that would give the League a headache if they tried anything.//

            “I have a headache!!!” (c, Rita Repulsa from ol’ “Power Rangers”) :)

            I doubt that Baltic would be navigable in Destroyermen’s World… Moreover, the North Sea as we knew it might also not exist; there was a Doggerland between British Isles and European continent during the last glacier age.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            (Thoughtfully): Hm, what about a possible Neanderthalean civilization in Europe?

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            Sorry, just couldn’t resist a joke))) Please forgive me)))

          4. By donald johnson on

            The Baltic would be navigable but would need ice breakers most of the year.

          5. By Justin on

            As Alexey pointed out, Doggerland might completely landlock the North Sea, or there might just be a large Dogger Island or two east of Britain. Probably depends on how far into the Ice Age the D-verse is.

            Now, assuming they exist, would we be looking at a Norse, Vasa Dynasty or Great War type of Scandinavia?

          6. By donald johnson on

            there is no more than a 25 foot sea level change if that at the point of the novel. use google and see just how shallow the straits of Malacca are and you will see.

          7. By Justin on

            Absolutely.

            Now check the World Map (Rising Tides, I believe) and see that Papua New Guinea is connected to Australia, and that Fiji/Samoa/Tonga Ridge is one big unnamed island. Both those seas are at least 150 feet deep, so it’s entirely possible that the Dogger Bank got butterflied into a land mass too.

          8. By donald johnson on

            looking at New Guinea there is a path between north Australia and New Guinea that is only about 40 feet the whole way. But there are other places that are very different also. so we really can not try and second guess the writer after all he is “God” in his universe

          9. By Justin on

            That’s MY point! The Baltic might be open, or it might be closed, so let’s see how accessible it is when we get rather than saying “it’s definitely open.”

    2. By Steve Moore on

      Doesn’t Taylor have enough to write about now? Any more additions and either the books are going to become Clancy-sized or he’ll be writing until 2034.

      Reply
      1. By Logan Meyers on

        Heh as terrible as it is to say I wouldn’t be unhappy to see my favorite series continue that long. I need something to look forward to each year after all.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Well, that’s up to him. I just hope, Taylor, that you don’t get into the ‘author franchise’ game. Fan fiction is one thing (Fifty $hade$ of Grey) but watered-down writing just doesn’t cut the mustard I think.

          Reply
  20. By Justin on

    Alright, since we apparently can’t go three days without saying anything…

    The (hypothetical) transfer on the cover implies an arrival on the Grik front. Is there any reason that anybody would be interested in Madagascar by the Forties?

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      ’44, to be precise. I doubt we’re getting anything from Operation Ironclad.

      Reply
    2. By Steve Moore on

      Madagascar was occupied by Vichy French during WW2, at least until Brits landed?

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Hence “nothing from Operation Ironclad,” which was over by late 1942.
        After 1942, nobody cares about Madagascar, so a transfer in 1944 would have to be from an alternate universe. Something like a German sub base or a Japanese occupation… perhaps a cruiser evacuating ground forces like Haguro was doing in Malacca.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Guys, “nothing happens on Madagascar since 1942” in OUR world. And we already knew that transfer could be from worlds with different timelines!

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            Correct… but in which alternate universe is Madagascar a high value target by 1944?

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            For example – where Japanese regained momentum in 1942 and managed to take control over Idian Ocean.

          3. By Justin on

            Not much point. Madagascar’s too far and too resource-poor to divert the IJN’s already tiny resource train away from the Pacific – assuming they wanted to take and hold it, they’d have withdrawn by late ’44.

          4. By Steve Moore on

            If you look at South Africa as a ‘choke’ point for one side of a war, the opposition occupying Madagascar makes sense, especially if all shipping has to go around the Cape as opposed to going through Suez. Just an observation. Forting-up on an island gives you better defense.

      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        The only thing I can think of from worlds similar to ours would be convoys or other shipping going from the Cape to India or Australia. Going to India, they might take the route between Madagascar & the mainland, going elsewhere they would not be in the vicinity to transfer during a possible engagement near Madagascar or Zanzibar.

        Reply
    3. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

      Not griping, Justin–just making sure there wasn’t something wrong with my site.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Just replying to a half-joking statement with another joke. Sorry, I keep forgetting sarcasm doesn’t translate over text.

        Reply
        1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          Nah, don’t worry about it. I actually figured that. Just explaining. After all the trouble I had with my site about a year ago, you can understand my concern.

          Reply
          1. By donald johnson on

            well i was starting to think something was wrong as there were no posts for about 30 hours. glad to see all is OK

  21. By Joe Thorsky on

    Steve-Donald-Logan-Justin

    Guys,speculation on the likely introduction of Japanese Warships from the
    Russo-Japanese War of 1903 and on the likely cultural conflicts that might
    arise if Kurokawa were to encounter one of his living relatives/ancestors
    survivors from that conflict and the veritable beneficial or adverse consequences
    that might potentially result.
    I do heartedly salute all your enthusiasm and bold thinking
    even if you’re all johnnys com lately’s to this intriguing previously
    posted topic from way back when.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Likely? Any Japanese pre-dread has had forty years to make her presence known; if we haven’t seen one yet, we won’t ever.

      Reply
      1. By donald johnson on

        Any ships from WWI that arrived would have either run out of coal long ago or been captured by the Grik. Had that happened the Grik would have been much more advanced when Ready ran into them. If the Brits had found them then they would have been more advanced and if the Doms and found them then they would have been more advanced.
        Since no one is more advanced except the republic and the new Americans we should be able to assume that no one else has come across and been detected other than the league. Yes there is that ship that was found in the last book but it was previously undetected by anyone capable of using the tech. It was older than the league and newer than WWI from its decription.

        Reply
    2. By Logan Meyers on

      Well its not likely but if a Japanese force did get transported through the ship would have more than likely ended up atop the ice since that area is cold enough in our world and would be in the grip of the ice age on this one. If that had happened the smart thing would be to move it back to the ground and secure the ship as more of a fortress, I suppose like a shore battery only without really any need to defend from the sea. But with the multitude of smaller guns on it as well as the larger cannons it would be a very defendable center to any settlement and would allow much needed protection from the elements for those who came across. But knowing the war there would be many Russians who would have come across as well. The war was fought in close proximity with trenches and if the storm came close enough it would have swept both sides across. Luckily though they would have had winter gear due to the freezing temperatures found in Korea and those I have seen them wearing in my photos from the russo-Japanese war (I have quite a few color stereographs from that war. With the location I suppose they would need a more hunter gathering lifestyle possibly taking herds of whatever large animals reside there like how the Finnish do with reindeer. They would have also come across with German shepherds that the Japanese favored highly at the time and used both as guard dogs and for carrying messages like a pigeon would. These dogs could be repurposed as both hunting dogs and as the name implies sheparding dogs. Though the political nature of having both Russians and the Japanese living together would be…interesting to say the least. I would also guess the population would be small for the time it would take to move the ship as well as the limited resources would cause great death in the early days. I would guess those who survived would be a mix of officers, enlisted men with needed skills, and those who served with distinction, as well as a mix of those who didn’t outright perish from starvation, cold, or bodies giving out from the labor of setting everything up. But one thing I also would point out is the lack of women unless any civilians or those of tribes from further north/mongolia somehow made their way to them. On both the basis of sexual “needs” and procreation this would change things. Without any females of course the population would dwindle. If there was a select number they may be more inclined to be pared with the leadership or in a less tasteful possibility be used solely for increasing the population through births. As for needs there was less of a cultural stigma against homosexuality for the Japanese as it has never been openly accepted or shunned in their history on a wide enough range to make a real effect outside of what might have been brought with Christian missionaries. But as to the Russian side of things I cannot hope to give you a good enough explanation as i just don’t know much about the culture and tensions around that time other than a great weariness from the war and a growing dislike for the Czar.

      This is all just speculation on the matter though and is the most in depth look I can give you for if this did occur what in my opinion would be the most feasible for survival in general. But they may have just all died if they did cross so I cant tell you. 😛 Though the jokes and racism of the Japanese towards those from Hokkaido would probably vanish as they are much more usted to the cold. Also just remember that these Japanese would be nothing like those who crossed in WW2 seeing as that kind of attitude didn’t rise until Tojo and his cronies murdered many moderates, as well Japan still had its alliance with the UK at that time, and were staunch friends with the US (the Washington naval treaty that really hurt relations wasn’t even a twinkle in lawmakers eyes at that point). But woo rambling! Hope this was a fun look at what could be and if you cant tell most of my historical knowledge tends to follow the Japanese from the Russo-Japanese war to the end of ww2.

      Reply
      1. By Joe Thorsky on

        Guys:

        Isn’t speculation a real hoot and an absolute fun thing to do!?
        Who really knows what’s happened happening.
        Only history and time will tell all?…maybe….

        “The history of failure in war can be summed up in two words:
        “TOO LATE.” Too late in comprehending the deadly purpose of a potential
        enemy; too late in realizing the mortal danger; too late in preparedness;
        too late in uniting all possible forces for resistance;
        too late in standing with one’s friends.”
        General Douglas MacArthur, 1964
        Sourced: The Eagle and the Rising Sun
        by Alan Schom
        WW Norton & Company

        A Great post WW II read and analysis.

        General MacArthur’s quote best describes the present and current
        situation and dilemna that has consistantly plagued Taylor’s Destroyermen
        since the inception of their transport. It seems that Total Victory is an elusive unattainable unmet fife and drumbeat fantasy/dream.

        Reply
      2. By Alexey Shiro on

        // But as to the Russian side of things I cannot hope to give you a good enough explanation as i just don’t know much about the culture and tensions around that time other than a great weariness from the war and a growing dislike for the Czar.//

        This was generally the tendencies in European part of Russia. The Far East was more like frontier, and here the Japanese were considered as much more “actual enemy” than over Ural.

        //Also just remember that these Japanese would be nothing like those who crossed in WW2 seeing as that kind of attitude didn’t rise until Tojo and his cronies murdered many moderates, as well Japan still had its alliance with the UK at that time, and were staunch friends with the US //

        Basically yes, during Russo-Japanese war the Japanese behaved pretty civilized and treated the POW’s very well (still, there were several nasty incidents on Sakhalin…) Generally it was because at this time the Japan was still controlled by the civilian government, not by just military.

        Reply
        1. By Logan Meyers on

          Heh im actually pretty proud of my random little theory.

          Reply
          1. By Joe Thorsky on

            Logan-Alexey

            Apart from trying to find answers to a null hypothesis world that is essentially governed by fuzzy math and tweaked history.It’s certainly a very curios filled world for sure.
            There’s also the making of a 400-500 page side story novel somewhere out there.

          2. By Justin on

            Hey, if Mr. Anderson ever wants to write about a Livingstone-esque expedition (and their descendants) dwelling in Central Africa and hunting/riding spinosaurs, by all means. With Jenks about to get the red shirt any day now, we need another smarmy Victorian aristocrat to complete the cast.

    3. By Alexey Shiro on

      //Guys,speculation on the likely introduction of Japanese Warships from the
      Russo-Japanese War of 1903 //

      Er, the Russo-Japanese war started in 1904.

      And, frankly, I really doubt that – unless the Squall would catapult the ships into 1945, forty years forward – they would be able to remain undetected for so long. Either Lemurians, or Griks or Empire would found them long before.

      Reply
      1. By Generalstarwars333 on

        Yeah… the Walker came into contact with Lemurians in what was it… a week at most? If they weren’t found by SOMEONE in the past 40 years, then they’re either dead or not likely to be found anytime soon. Or both.

        Reply
      2. By Clifton Sutherland on

        well, what if there was not a lot of contact between northern lemurians/whatever race is up near Manchuria and Korea, so they crossed over and made contact, but were still isolated from the Greater Malay/East Indies theater that most of the action takes place in? It’s not like Bronze Age Lemurians would automatically know about the happenings of cousins thousands of miles away, especially if those northern seas are more hostile and cold than they are used to

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Unfortunately, 40 years is a too long time period. If some ship was transferred from Russo-Japanese War back there, during this period her crew must either contact Lemurians or Imperials, or other peoples at least – or die out without help.

          It is theoretically possible, that there are some civilization on Far East and Kamchatka, which remain undetected by Imperials, thought. So if some ship was transferred here, she may contact them.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            Plenty of SMS Amerika’s original crew and POW’s around.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Because they stumbled upon the Republik, and basically found a safe and quite prestigious place as technical advisers and engineers. If they were forced to fight for survival on some deserted island, they hardly would be able to still be here in 1940s.

        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          About the only way to get an older ship (WW! era or older) into the 1945 timeframe would be a crossover of a survivor of that era, like the Savoie. Many older capital ships were sold off to nations that could not build them themselves, but wanted ships of significant firepower. One interesting example is the Moltke class SMS Goeben which was sold to the Ottoman Empire navy in WW1 & survived until scrapped in 1971. Not saying she’d transfer due to the no existing ships clause in Taylor’s universe, but something similar, say a cancelled ship sold off to a South American or other navy during the drawdown after WW1 might be interesting to see.
          Some nice Goeben pics:
          http://shipcomrade.com/news/224/battlecruiser-wednesdays-tcg-yavuz-sultan-selim-tur.html

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            Seeing as the war is due to shift to the Atlantic any day now, a Brazilian/Argentine or a South African dreadnought is possible too… otherwise, it’s a bit too late for a BB transfer, since they’re all busy shelling Europe and the Philippines.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            As far as I could recall, the Peru considered purchasing a pair of french-build dreadnoughts in 1910s, but eventually decided that they are way too costly, and brought a pair of submarines instead.

            //Seeing as the war is due to shift to the Atlantic any day now, a Brazilian/Argentine or a South African dreadnought is possible too… otherwise, it’s a bit too late for a BB transfer, since they’re all busy shelling Europe and the Philippines.//

            Justin, thi is only assuming that ships would be transferred from the world, where World War 2 is similar to our world. :) But it wasn’t universal rule. :) We could, for example, transfer a battleship from joint USA-IJN task force, heading to liberate Singapour from Nazi-affilated British Empire)

          3. By Steve Moore on

            Just for an intriguing plot twist, why not a cargo/passenger ship from a neutral nation (in the previous world)? Would probably show up in the Atlantic, and if they weren’t seized by the League, might end up in North America. If they encountered the New Americans, might be a counterbalance to Fred & Kari’s efforts to sway them to the Union side.

          4. By donald johnson on

            Well we could always get a transfer of the titanic from a world where she missed the iceberg

          5. By Justin on

            //We could, for example, transfer a battleship from joint USA-IJN task force, heading to liberate Singapour from Nazi-affilated British Empire)//

            And yet the arrival of Mizuki Maru implies that we’re going to see at least one more transfer to let the Union know how the war ended.

          6. By Lou Schirmer on

            With all the speculation about the lightning flash on the cover of The Devil’s Due heralding the dramatic arrival of a new crossover in the middle of a battle, it would be funny if it was merely the artist getting all dramatic with a spectacular stroke of lightning over the battle & there being no crossover at all. Heh, heh

            Of course some poor fools showing up all bewildered in the midst of a wild multi-species naval engagement would be too cool.

          7. By Lou Schirmer on

            Or here’s a few points to ponder. They’re fighting a battle & a squall appears & engulfs & transfers a good chunk of the combatants out while dropping some new victi..er adventurers off. Or appears in front of the Walker. Could it be a way home? Can squalls be two way streets? If so, what world would you wind up in? Care to roll the dice?

            Reddy probably has too much invested in the current world to want to go back. Plus he has only about a quarter of his people on the Walker, the rest are scattered all over the place. Then he still has Sandra to rescue also.

          8. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            This is a test. Things got so quiet, I’m checking to see if my site is broken!

          9. By William Curry on

            We’re letting people mistake silence for wisdom.

          10. By Lou Schirmer on

            Whew! Was beginning to think I’d pist someone off…again!

  22. By Joe Thorsky on

    “O wha is this has don this deid,
    This ill deid don to me,
    To send me out this time o’ the yeir,
    To sail upon the se!
    “Mak haste, mak haste, my mirry men all,
    Our guid schip sails the morne”;
    “O say na sae, my master deir,
    For I feir a deadlie storme.”
    Scottish ballad- Sir Patrick Spens

    Clifton-Justin-Alexey
    The communication/fog of war battlefield phenomenon
    that you guys are generally describing has already been somewhat
    referenced, documented and investigated.
    A scientific examination/explanation was provided in the paper
    “Acoustic Shadows in the Civil War”
    Charles D. Ross -Longwood College
    Farmville, VA 23909
    Excerpted citations:

    Acoustic Shadow- Definition-Description
    “The term acoustic shadow describes an event in which a person who would ordinarily hear a sound does not. As mentioned below, these events also sometimes mean that those who should not hear the sound do hear it. The three most important causes of these abnormal situations are sound absorption, wind shear and temperature gradients. Sound absorption, as the name implies, occurs when material between the source and receiver of the sound waves absorbs all or part of the energy of the waves. Wind shear, in the context of this paper, describes a situation in which the winds aloft are considerably faster than the winds near the ground. The presence of wind shear can bend (or refract) sound waves downwards or upwards, depending on whether the wave is traveling upwind or downwind. Temperature gradients in the atmosphere can cause all sorts of refraction of sound waves. Especially interesting are those cases in which a temperature inversion exists: the temperature is greater at higher altitude than at lower altitudes. In this case waves are bent back down towards the ground.”
    “When sound waves that would normally refract up in to the atmosphere are refracted back down towards the ground (either by wind shear or by a temperature inversion), they may reflect off the ground back into the air and be refracted again and again. This can create concentric zones of audibility and silence around an explosive sound. Aka Sounds from the Battle of Gettysburg that could not be heard 10 miles away were heard clearly in Pittsburgh, 150 miles away.”

    “By examining war records, diaries and regimental histories, the causes of the various Civil War acoustic shadows can be examined. The battles noted for these abnormalities include Gettysburg, Seven Pines, Iuka, Fort Donelson, Five Forks, Perryville and Chancellorsville.
    The effects of these unusual acoustical events on the course of the war cannot be underestimated.
    Near dusk on May 31, 1862, General Johnston was severely wounded while reconnoitering near the front lines at Seven Pines. Johnston’s mishap happened on land that would have been firmly in Confederate territory if Whiting’s forces had been ordered to make their advance on time. By early the next afternoon, Confederate president Jefferson Davis had given control of the Army of Northern Virginia to the man who would lead it for the next three years – General Robert E. Lee”
    Although only a few official reports mention this phenomenon, it was a common
    occurrence. Theories of the time suggested that unknown forces sometimes caused very loud sounds, such as the firing of Artillery, to be stifled in some, but not all, nearby areas. High-ranking officers experienced what they and newspaper correspondents called “Silent battles” at several sites.
    This phenomenon was reported from Port Royal,Hampton Roads during the Monitor-Virgina fight,Perryville,and at Fair Oaks.
    At Chancellorsville, Thomas J “Stonewall Jackson’s smashing attack on the right of the Federal Line was not heard at the Union command Post.
    At Gettysburg, Confederate General Richard Ewell was accused of dawdling, but he claimed that he did not hear General James Longstreet’s opening bombardment, and so he did not know when to move his men.
    Acoustic shadows were probably produced by chance? combinations of terrain, barometric pressure, fog and smoke. There is, however, no clear and consistent explanation for all of the reported Incidents.
    The fog of war and misunderstood communications presents a dearth of problems
    for any commander trying to make best use of his combat forces on unfamiliar
    battlefield/terrains. It can be the difference between winning and losing a battle.
    Luck and a 4-leaf clover still is deemed to have a role to play in War.

    Reply
    1. By William Curry on

      Sound ranging and location was used in the first World War and to some extent the second WW to locate enemy artillery for counter battery fire. Flash ranging was also used at night to locate artillery. This lead to the development of flash suppressants for smokeless propellants. It was also used to detect aircraft. It is apparently making a comeback to allow detection of stealth aircraft and drones in the 21st century

      Reply
      1. By donald johnson on

        The Russians have been using audio detection of aircraft along with radar through the entire 20th century to the present they never gave up on audio detection like the US did

        Reply
  23. By Clifton Sutherland on

    Is there any reason for moving having Union soldiers with breechloaders continue moving and fighting in linear formation? I would imagine that the firepower advantage means they might be able to afford spreading out in something more akin to a skirmish line. But, I suppose with the prevalence of melee combat at the moment, that would be a good way for men to be killed up close. Thoughts?

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      //But, I suppose with the prevalence of melee combat at the moment, that would be a good way for men to be killed up close.//

      That’s exactly it. A skirmish line is just as effective in terms of volley fire, but you need the solid human wall of a formation in order to withstand cavalry and charging infantry.

      Reply
      1. By Clifton Sutherland on

        I think there is an element of command and control, as well. Before radios and easy communication, its a helluva lot easier to have officers direct the movement of five hundred men, rather than have those five hundred scattered across the landscape.

        Reply
      2. By Alexey Shiro on

        //That’s exactly it. A skirmish line is just as effective in terms of volley fire, but you need the solid human wall of a formation in order to withstand cavalry and charging infantry.//

        Or you could have machineguns and/or field guns firing shrapnel to smash any such charge on the tracks. The Alliance already have machine guns and modern field artillery isn’t far behind. With that, the human/lemurian walls became completely outdated.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Technically, the Union’s still on muskets and cannons; machine guns and bolt-action rifles aren’t mainstream yet. Even then, remember the IJN’s Banzai attacks, or the PLA at the Chosin, or the NVA at Ia Drang. So human/Grik wave attacks will still be a potential threat.

          That said, the Lemurians aren’t stupid, and neither are their commanders. Against the League (or any enemy with equal firepower), they should learn how to duck just fine.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            // So human/Grik wave attacks will still be a potential threat.//

            Well, they could just use shrapnel shells. It’s terrifyingly effective against human/grik wave attacks. Shrapnel is even more effective than HE in therms of hitting the tigh mass of enemy forces.

          2. By Clifton Sutherland on

            That would be canister, general. Shrapnel was basically solid shot that exploded over the heads of infantry from far away- not a wall of leaden balls, but very much localized death wherever they went off!

          3. By William Curry on

            Shrapnel can be used as canister as the fuse could be set to explode the shrapnel round just after it exited the muzzle.

          4. By Generalstarwars333 on

            No, so the modele 1897 had a shrapnel round that exploded in the air, sending hundreds of lead balls in an expanding cone that covered a 300 yard long oval.

          5. By Alexey Shiro on

            Clifton, General is absolutely right. The shrapnel round burst in air, showering the ground with cone of bullets.

            If the delay is set to zero, shrapnel would work exactly as cannister.

          6. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Shell or case shot fused at 0 to burst near the muzzle will simulate canister. It’s not quite as good–the pattern density is lower, with lots of holes in it, but it is way better than nothing in a pinch. Three things–and reasons why smoothbore Napoleons were retained on the battlefield so long despite the inarguably better accuracy of rifles: Rifles SUCK with canister, blowing the pattern all over the place. And they don’t do it in a predictable, correctable fashion so all you can do is aim at the middle and do it again. Spinning, exploding elongated shells do the same thing, so shrapnel patterns were somewhat disappointing as well. Spherical case shot, tumbling or not, throws a better pattern. Finally, when elongated shells impact before detonating, whether time or contact fused, the earth absorbs a greater percentage of the explosive force, throwing what remains–basically–in a relatively harmless cone upwards. Spherical case tends to bound, and still explode in the air on the “bounce” or on the surface of the ground.

          7. By William Curry on

            By the Great War most HE (Common Shell) could be equipped with an impact, delay or superquick fuse. The superquick fuse was developed so the shell would explode on contact with soft earth before it had a chance to penetrate. In US service there was also a special concrete penetrating fuse. As far as using shrapnel at zero delay as canister, this is specifically mentioned in the artillery ammunition manuals, but they also state that it not as good as using regular canister.

          8. By Clifton Sutherland on

            All,

            Huh, I never thought about that. The more you learn! So the reason that rifled guns were less effective than smoothbore at close range was because they would just spew shot willy-nilly?

          9. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Yes Clifton. Canister out of a smoothbore has a nice, even pattern–just like bird shot out of a shotgun. Canister out of a rifle is . . . frustrating. Generally lots of big holes in the pattern. But hey, in OTL, if the enemy is close enough to use canister, he’s close enough to pick you out, specifically, and kill you (with a rifle musket) and it’s time for your artillery to be MOVING. That’s why there were few canister rounds ready in the limber chest. If you needed more, you sent back to the caisson for it–while you were getting ready to MOVE.

          10. By William Curry on

            The same principle applies to HEAT round. A spin stabilized HEAT round does not concentrate the jet the way a non-spinning (fin stabilized) round does. The rotation of the projectile around it axis causes it to disperse its payload at a tangent to the line of flight. Anti-tank rounds that primarily use HEAT rounds are often smoothbore and the projectile fin stabilized. A bullet breaking up in the body also disperses its fragments at a tangent to the line of penetration.

        2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          Dern. You guys are going to flipping LOVE DD.

          Reply
          1. By donald johnson on

            Let’s suspiciously sounds like a spoiler alert

          2. By Steve Moore on

            Yeah… wondering what surprises 1945 will bring from the ‘WW2’ world. But you’re already working on the NEXT one, which will be 1946, which will be ‘peacetime’, so who knows what will come through…

          3. By Justin on

            Not necessarily, Steve. 1944’s taken four books to get through so far; ’45 should take at least three.

          4. By donald johnson on

            hmmm I wonder what surprises will come from Japan in Aug 1945. They had 2 big Booms then that might trigger events

          5. By Logan Meyers on

            I’m just hoping that we can see another bit of the Japanese come through before the end of the war. After all almost all of their military will be destroyed by the end of the war and anything left over will be dismantled. It would be nice to see just one of those beautify pagoda superstructures survive on in the new world rather thank blink out of existence.

          6. By Justin on

            Depends on the pagoda – Fuso, for example, looked like one stiff wind would tip her over.

            If another Japanese BB crosses over, it’ll probably be Mutsu or Tosa… but then she’ll be on sentry duty at the Cape until the Allies can build their own ‘wagons. I’d put money on Niyodo or Ibuki.

          7. By Logan Meyers on

            Plus who knows how Japanese sailors will act after having dealt with being where Walker was a few years earlier what with being hunted and the constant fear of bouncing bombs and submarines. Though they look very precarious I dont know of the pagoda setup ever actually toppling over a ship. But honestly it would be cool to see the allies get a single ship that can at least slightly deter more large ship incursions into the Allies in the Indian ocean. But tensions would be explosive with the Japanese being around in power and being able to visit Baalkpan or other places with bad memories of them. But if they decide to join those in Japan who have set up shop it could finally give them a presence in the war since the hell ship sank.

          8. By Logan Meyers on

            Plus I bet they will hate Kurokawa for being a spoiled little brat who has clearly abandoned the emperor and came over when they were still winning. He never had to deal with the horror of the entire fleet being destroyed bit by bit and watching as other captains and friends in the navy vanished with their ships. This could be one of the more obsolete (by this point in the war) ships that was dismantled by the Washington naval treaty since no real ships can be used.

          9. By Justin on

            Like I said, maybe Mutsu (Nagato‘s sister) or Tosa. Or even a Kii-class if the Union’s really lucky.

            The only problem is that the last IJN sortie was Leyte Gulf – right around the start of Devil’s Due. After that, a lack of fuel means that any remaining BBs are stuck as USAF target practice at Kure, followed by a one-way trip to Bikini Atoll.
            A destroyer or cruiser (Ibuki, etc) would still be in action, and more likely to be picked up by the Squall intact.

          10. By Logan Meyers on

            Well there’s always alternate worlds and a final death charge is something Th Japanese are known for. I mean Yamato was sent out with only enough fuel to reach the American forces and wreak havoc. If there was enough fuel I could see them rallying any surviving battleships and really any ship to charge the American lines to inflict enough damage to prolong the war. These ships that come through could have been prepped for a suicide attack but find themselves in a world where that no longer is feasible. With a disillusioned crew and command and a failing amount of fuel they may go to the union without any real plan in mind. Of course they could pull the same move the hell ship group did but their attitude I expect would be a little different to the benefit of our friends. But jeez if things were bad with feelings towards the Japanese we already had come over earlier a force that wanted to preserve the Imperial Japanese name would be a lot worse. I’ve always wanted to see an axis power come to the union and want to retain their country’s identity while joining and see the fighting that is caused by that group joining.

          11. By Justin on

            Definitely a concept worth exploring – personally, I’ve got my fingers crossed for a Kriegsmarine cruiser, or at least a U-Boat.

          12. By Logan Meyers on

            I was thinking some German armor would be cool to see show up. I’ve never thought German ships stood out as much as other nations did, but a U-boat would actually be pretty cool to see.

    1. By Duke Saxon on

      If I recall correctly the huot had a number of issues, and they already are working on a Browning 1917 copy in the books anyway.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        AFAIK, all the bugs were ironed out with simple fixes – it’s only because of the end of the Great War that it was never produced.

        The M1917 .30 cal is a good start, but it’s not exactly portable; three-man crew, heavy, belt-fed, etc.
        A Huot would fill in for the BAR at the squad level. Much easier to design and manufacture too, since it’s a conversion of existing rifles.

        Reply
        1. By William Curry on

          Are you looking for a Light Machine gun or an Automatic rifle? They are not quite the same thing. It sounds like your looking for an automatic rifle to serve as the squad base of fire. What sort of squad size and organization do you have in mind? The WWII Germans organized their squad around a MG34 or MG42 and the riflemen provided rear and flank security to the MG. The WWII USMC divided their squads into 3 fire teams, each with a BAR, Thompson and two M1’s. The normal WWII US crew (called a squad) for a MG is 5 men; squad leader, gunner, assistant gunner and two ammo carriers who provided flank and rear security to the gun. The British Lewis gun in WWI was organized into a section with around 14 men, most of whom carried loaded magazines in front and back vests, as well as provided security for the gun (and replacements if the gunners were rendered ineffective). The original WWI set up for an auto-rifle (Chauchat or BAR) was a three man crew; gunner, loader and scout (who carried extra magazines and provided security for the gun). In the WWII US Army squad, there was one BAR as the squad base of fire, The squad leader had a Thompson and the others M1’s. The BAR was used to suppress the enemy while the rifleman maneuvered to close with the enemy. It sound more like your looking for that sort of squad organization.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            Yeah, I meant “SAW” in the first post. My bad.

  24. By Joe Thorsky on

    Taylor/Everyone

    Tanks but no Tanks!
    The cost benefit analysis isn’t there and just doesn’t properly work for the Alliance at this critical juncture of the War against the Grik, Kurokawa and
    the whole Dom Bloody LOT of them right now. Allocating scarce and limited resources towards the development of an armored warfare capability is a Tankless task for sure. It’s neither prudent nor justified right now.
    The first preference for me will always be a Tankard of “OLd Style”
    with a “Subchaser” of Jack!

    An introduction of a Subchaser class of Warship into the Alliance fleet by either
    construction and shipbuilding or by accidental discovery of a mothball fleet of such ships or of even aircraft lying at anchor in some historically long forgotten harbor, port or graveyard could well markedly and radically change both the dynamics and the war fighting capabilities of the Alliance in very short order. It’s obviously the next necessary evolutionary step in technology that does piggyback off of the successful development and deployment of the MTB boats and their Home Tenders in Taylor’s current and future? storyline. This is by far the more preferable way to proceed.

    For further clarification and enlightenment I would direct you guys to the following sources that are most supportive of this position:

    Welcome to Splinter Fleet, a web site devoted exclusively to the wooden SC Subchaser, the smallest commissioned warship of the U. S. Navy during
    World Wars I and II.
    http://www.splinterfleet.org/sfhome.php

    The Subchaser Archives is a naval history collection devoted to the 110′
    submarine chasers of the Great War and the men who served on them, primarily covering 1917 to 1919.
    http://www.subchaser.org/home

    Excerpted from Splinter Fleet http://www.splinterfleet.org
    Subchaser Facts and Specifications
    WWI SC-1 Class
    Length Overall/ 110′ 0″
    Extreme Beam/14′ 8.75″
    Displacement (Tons)/85
    Engines/3 standard 220 hp Gasoline, 3 screws
    Speed/18 Knots
    Maximum Draft, full load/5′ 8″
    Armament
    1 3″/23 cannon
    2 30 cal. Machine guns
    1 DCP “Y” gun and depth charges
    Complement/2 officers, 25 enlisted
    Endurance/1,000 nautical miles @ 12 knots

    WWII SC-497 Class
    Length Overall/111′ 6-¾”
    Extreme Beam/17′ 11.5″
    Displacement (Tons)/98
    Engines
    Two GM straight 8 Diesel (8-268-A) 1440 hp
    or
    Two GM 16 cyl. 184-A “pancake” engines
    Speed/15.6 knots or 21 knots
    Maximum Draft, full load/6′ 6″
    Armament

    1 Single 40 mm Bofors or 1 3″/50 cannon (forward)
    3 Single 20 mm Oerlikon (midships)
    1 Twin 50 cal. machine gun (optional) (aft)
    2 K-guns
    14 depth charges 300 lb each with 6 single release chocks
    2 sets Mark 20 mousetrap rails, each mounted with 4 7.2″ projectiles
    Complement 2 officers, 25 enlisted
    Endurance/1,500 nautical miles @ 12 knots

    Facts:
    A total of 440 subchasers were built for World War I.
    A total of 438 subchasers were built for World War II.
    Prior to the Pearl Harbor attack 84 SC hulls had already been laid down.
    No SCs were numbered from 800 to 899.
    Twenty WWII subchasers (SC-449 class) built by Luders Marine Construction Co.
    of Stamford, CT were 110′ 10″ long rather than 111′ 6-¾”.
    Elizabeth City Shipyards, Elizabeth City, NC built more SCs than any other
    boatyard, a total of 28. The same builder set a record for the fastest time
    from keel-laying to launching when it built SC 740 in 30 days.
    Seventy SCs were converted to SC-C (Landing control vessels) but not one of
    the 19 SCs used at the Normandy landing was an SC-C.

    Hope this is helpful information and worthy of further consideration and
    discussion/debate.

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      All three major groups in the Alliance (the Republic, Empire and United Homes) understand wooden boatbuilding, so maybe this isn’t a bad approach. A good sized vessel for working the Central/South American coastal waters, with armament that’s common to the United Homes). The only real problem I’d see would be the supply of fuel oil, unless they can find a source on the West Coast. Engines can be shipped from Manilaa or Balkpaan, as well as the armament, but plenty of wood for hulls in the Empire’s American colonies.

      Too small for the Republic’s seagoing needs, but it would be a good shallow-draft choice as they expand up the eastern coast to link up with the United Homes on Madagascar.

      And now my crazy idea. The Lemurians know pumps, and now they have more powerful gas engines; why not jet boats for small shallow-draft vessels? First developed by an Italian in the mid-30’s.

      Reply
      1. By Joe Thorsky on

        Steve-Justin

        A Subchaser class of warship could easily be powered by
        gasoline or diesel fuel refined from California’s La Brea Tar Pits.
        The Refining knowledge, technology and capability already is being
        utilized by the Alliance at this time…
        In addition,Taylor has already introduced workable gasoline powered
        engines for tanks and aircraft. So why not for Subchasers?
        Modernizing Armament on a Subchaser could still provide this class of
        warship a very competitive technological advantage in almost any likely
        sea battle to come.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Both the Wright-Gypsy and rotary engines are air-cooled, right? Don’t know how well that would work inside a hull. And the Nelsco diesels went down with the S-19.

          Reply
          1. By William Curry on

            Did you mean radial or rotary? Rotary aircraft engines have a fixed crankshaft and the cylinders revolve around it. A radial engine has fixed cylinders and a rotating crankshaft. There were also water cooled radial engines. Nordberg industrial diesel and natural gas engines come to mind. These would make dandy marine power plants. Potentially a rotary engine could be designed in such a way as to serve as its own cooling fan. Same goes for a radial air cooled with a ducted fan on the crankshaft. Interesting design problem. Also potentially the exhaust from the engine could be used to drive a cooling fan via an exhaust turbine, similar to a turbo-compound radial aircraft engine. An awful lot of complication for an engine in a ship/boat sitting in the best heat sink in the world, an ocean.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            Radial, that’ll teach me not to comment at 12:30 am. Sorry, folks. Don’t think there’s a Wankel in this world.

          3. By donald johnson on

            The S19 went down in relatively shallow water. If Taylor needs it then it can be recovered.

          4. By donald johnson on

            //Don’t think there’s a Wankel in this world.//
            I wouldn’t put it past the league to have some.

          5. By William Cury on

            Technically a Wankel is a rotary piston engine as the piston rotates rather than reciprocates. In a REAL rotary engine the cylinders rotate. (I know I’m pedantic). :<)

          6. By Lou Schirmer on

            One problem pulling up the S-19 is while they know where the bow went down, it didn’t have the diesels in it. They only have a vague idea where the stern is, so someone (volunteers for flashie duty anyone?) will have to find it first.

            While Alexey is correct it probably is a total loss, examining the engines would give them somewhere to start with in the design process for a new engine. A low rpm large displacement straight 6-cylinder would probably be the way to go. The straight 6 is a naturally balanced engine (assuming the reciprocating parts weigh the same) & low rpm would keep the stresses down on a new engine design. With 600 cubic inch displacement, it would be reasonable for it to put out 200-250 hp, but the real story with diesels is the torque. It could generate as much as 600-800 ft./lbs. of torque at very low rpms. Three engines like this could push a decent sized sub chaser up to 18-20 knots or so. They might test them initially in the MTBs. Two of these in an MTB would be a significant power & speed increase, although they may be a bit too big.

    2. By Justin on

      Sounds good. The destroyers can’t be everywhere at once, but several dozen corvettes could pick up the slack in quieter sectors – we really don’t know how many subs the League has.

      Reply
  25. By Logan Meyers on

    Hey, so a long while ago I brought up using the frog people from the wreck site of the Santa Catalina in a strategic light if they could be coerced. I was wondering if anyone had any ideas about how they could be practically transported or employed. I mean on Respite isle and other places that lack flashies they can be very useful in underwater repair of vessels. They could also be trained in use as frogmen in enemy held waters to sabotage and scout along rivers or coastlines. But does anyone have any other ideas? I’m just curious since the forum seems more active and may have new ideas to something that seemed neat a while ago.

    Reply
    1. By donald johnson on

      Yes but how well would they do going against the flashees? they appear to be a coastal shallow water or possibly a fresh water dweller.

      Reply
    2. By Steve Moore on

      They might not want to leave Mama Frog. But they might appreciate having a Grik Indiaman hulk or two for warrens, just to keep them on the contented side.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        Just looking out the window at my boat, turned over for the winter… and thought, working underwater as they do, the froggriks would be great at scraping weed and barnacles. No need for drydock or even careening the hull; just show them how to do it once and I’d bet they’d learn. Especially if the ship’s master showed up with a trawl full of fish. Yet another part of the Union Economic Community. Provide an occasional cargo of scrapers and fish giggers, and eventually, they might be able to build some kind of ship basin.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          This means, of course, that Dean Laney will need to join the Diplomatic Corps….

          Reply
  26. By Duke Saxon on

    Taylor, you mentioned the current Republic service revolver was 11mm. Is it more similar to the Gasser 1870 or the Reichsrevolver 1883?

    (I’m aware the Reichsrevolver was 10.6mm)

    Reply
    1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

      Interesting you should ask. My mental image is more the 1879 Reichsrevolver with simpler internals, single action. 11 mm would not originally have been even to standardize bullets, brass or anything like that, except in regard to a few manufacturing processes such as sizing and lubing bullets, boring barrels (even though rate of rifling twist would be different). Little things that add up. Who knows, maybe I “thought about this too much” again, but even if I never completely describe my reasoning in the narrative, dopey stuff like this goes through my head every time I come up with things.

      Reply
      1. By Duke Saxon on

        Each book in the series I read, I honestly look rather closely at the equipment and production, as well as governments and unit organization, and then I try to figure out what I would do if I had a similar situation (in terms of being sent over in the storm, and having to start my own industry, production, and a country really). I’d always thought a revolver along the lines of either the Gasser or the Reichsrevolver would be a pretty good option. Simple, reliable, and powerful. Also, the 11mm rounds used in the Gasser were originally made for a carbine, so one could standardize on a single round for cavalry units.

        Reply
  27. By Justin on

    I think we can all agree that the Union needs a new generation of warplanes.

    So, assuming they started the design process tomorrow, given their current tech level:
    – How much HP could they coax out of a new engine?
    – What kind of possible airframe/s could they build with said new engines?
    – What role would they be used in? What should be a priority?

    Reply
    1. By Steve White on

      Well we’ve talked about this some. The HP is the critical factor for much of what the Union needs to do. If you can build an engine with 500 – 600 HP, you can build a P-26. That P-26 design is also at the limit of what the Union can do manufacturing-wise in 1944: an externally braced, fixed-gear, open cockpit plane with a radial engine.

      A P-26 wouldn’t stand up against later 1930s aircraft — if you grant the Tripoli League as having even early model Me-109s or early Dewotine 520s, a P-26 is going to have considerable trouble.

      If you can get an engine that puts out 700 HP, and if you could persuade the Baalkpan and Manila works to provide an all metal aircraft, you could do a P-35 or P-36, or equivalent (e.g, Hawker Hurricane). Speed would be ~ 280 to 300 mph, and a P-36 was in many ways a sweet-flying aircraft.

      At the other end, if all you can get from an engine is about 300 HP, you could have a Navy FB (Boeing model 15), a decent biplane at about 140 mph, fixed gear, wood and canvas construction. That’s perhaps a little better than a Nancy.

      One overlooked issue: fuel. You need high-octane aircraft gasoline in these better engines.

      Ben Mallory is a smart guy, and he has some advantages: he has the remaining P-40 aircraft as models, the old PBY engine, and some increasing production experience. The cats are smart and they’ll learn to build just about anything. So it’s a question of engines and manufacturing.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        One small addition – keep in mind that the P-1B can make 220 mph and compares to the P-29; the Union’s more or less skipped the P-26 and biplanes.

        The Fleashooter’s engine rates 254 hp; the Buzzard, 150 hp.

        So I guess my real question is what the Union’s engineering ceiling is at their current tech level. Otherwise, I’m assuming they can squeeze out another 100 hp with each new engine until they get to wood-skinned P-36s (as Mr. Anderson suggested a while ago) and Beaufort bombers.

        Reply
        1. By Clifton Sutherland on

          Yeah, could someone perhaps explain, in Layman’s terms, how you do increase horsepower in an engine system? Is it by increasing complexity of internal components? More cylinders? Better sacrifices to the tech Gods?

          My engineering skill is about as developed as the Grik’s Diplomatic Corps- kinda janky, and likely to eat you alive instead of being useful….

          (Sidenote, I really appreciate the amount of technical knowledge that is thrown around here. Really learning a lot!)

          Reply
          1. By Generalstarwars333 on

            I like the sacrifices to the omnissiah method, and my knowledge of a lot of what’s discussed is little better. My expertise is bagpipes and some space stuff, with everything else being mediocre by the standards of this forum.

          2. By William Curry on

            For a piston spark-ignition engine: Increase the swept volume or displacement by increasing either the bore or the stroke of the piston. Increase the compression ratio, this often requires higher octane gasoline. Install a supercharger which crams in more fuel/air mixture per stroke. Rally high performance piston aircraft engines has two superchargers, one gear driven and one turbo-supercharger in series. Increase the number of cylinders. In the 1950’s they had turbo-compound engines which were piston engines with an exhaust turbine that extracted energy from the engine exhaust and applied it to the output shaft. These had a reputation for poor reliability. Increase the number of carbs on a naturally aspirated engine. Install fuel injection. Use a special fuel like Nitromethane. Increase the rpm that the engine operates at. As you drag more power from a given displacement the maintenance requirements tend to increase and the reliability decreases. It also tends to need better cooling. Piston engines usually had a METO (maximum except take off) hp rating, a take-off hp rating and a war emergency rating. The last if used for more than 15 minutes or so would result in engine failure and if the engine didn’t fail on the way back it often required an overhaul before it was safe to use again. War emergency often kicked in extremely high boost from the supercharger and would result in head or piston failures often from overheating. Multiple row radials often suffered from poor cooling in the back rows and this often resulted in fires. The B-29 was notorious for this, suffering engine fires on take off.

          3. By donald johnson on

            The B-17 also had problems in their multiple row radial engines. If you didn’t over stress them on take off, they wouldn’t take off. If you stress them too long during takeoff they would catch fire the trick was having them not quite at full stretch during the initial rollout and only when you’re leaving the ground hit the full power. My uncle flew them in World War II and showed me how to safely take off with a simulator that I was trying to fly and could never get off the ground. He flew it the very first time pointing out exactly what he was doing when he did it. It was a blast on my Commodore 64. He went out and bought a Commodore 64 just for the simulator.

          4. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Bagpipes? Really? Must be the Scot in me, but I do love the sound of the pipes. Get me stirred up and make me want to go out and swing a big sword around,(which is what they were meant to do!)

          5. By William Curry on

            You can also increase the lift and duration on the popet intake and exhaust valves. This allows more fuel air mixture into the cylinder per stroke. You can also use hollow exhaust valves filled with sodium to prevent overheating and burning of the exhaust valves.

      2. By William Curry on

        To get 100 octane or higher fuel is very difficult without using tetra-ethyl-lead (TEL). I can see the Baalkpan refinery trying to produce 130/145. Two superchargers in series anyone. I suspect that the aircraft are mostly using float carbs, pressure injection carbs would be a nice addition for fighter aircraft.

        Reply
  28. By Duke Saxon on

    Well, after rereading Blood in the Water, I’ve found that the SMS Amerika did indeed have 57mm Maxim-Nordenfelt guns for secondaries. So it is possible that the Republic has some replicas or spares of these guns.

    In general, with bolt action rifles being the norm for the Republic, even if single shot, they might be better equipped against the League in terms of land conflict than the rest of the Alliance, or at least on par.

    Reply
      1. By Duke Saxon on

        Well these are the naval guns. Not the gun from the A7V. Its a bit longer, and has a higher muzzle velocity.

        Reply
          1. By Duke Saxon on

            Actually, those were generally 6 pounder Hotchkiss in the British tanks.

          2. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Yes, but they were still 57mm cannons. They took the naval guns off ships and then they shortened them after a while.

        1. By Generalstarwars333 on

          Ooh. That’d be sweet. Give’em a nice punch for when they’re out of fish. Plus you could have them come in close for bombardment when there aren’t ships around.

          Reply
        2. By Justin on

          So long as they’re only used against fortifications and Grik/Dommie sail frigates; 2.2-inchers would just bounce off Leopardo or anything heavier.

          Reply
          1. By Duke Saxon on

            Not the best gun for fortification work due to lack of explosive power. The gun is simple too light to engage fortifications. It would however have enough penetration with AP shells to damage most destroyers and other light vessels.

    1. By Justin on

      The Republic’s built their own Modèle 1897s as well.

      Either way, the Union needs to start a trade route yesterday – they’re still using Napoleons and muskets.

      Reply
      1. By Duke Saxon on

        True, or at least acquire production details for the guns from the Republic.

        Those single shot mausers are miles ahead of the rifled muskets, even the breech loaders.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Why not jump ahead to the M1903 Springfield? It’s based on a Mauser design, has a 5 round magazine, plus common ammo with the BAR and the .30 cal machine gun.

          Reply
          1. By Steve White on

            Perry Brister and Dennis Silva had that conversation. The M1903 required better metal and more machining than they could do, particularly the springs.

            The model 1897 would be a big advance; just re-chamber to fit the ammo the Alliance is using.

        2. By Generalstarwars333 on

          I mean, I guess there’d be advantages with using the smokeless powder, but otherwise they seem relatively equal. The maybe greater accuracy and range of the republik guns is balanced by the greater killing power of the allin-silva.

          Reply
          1. By Duke Saxon on

            The Allin-Silva has a much lower muzzle velocity, being both a black powder and a low pressure round. This makes it unsuitable for longer range engagements, less accurate, and also has a lower penetrating power due to the shape of the round used.

          2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Tech Data suitable for Wiki:
            As of Devil’s Due, the “standard” infantry rifle of the United Homes and increasingly, the Grand Alliance (with the exception of the Republic of Real People) is the Allin-Silva “trapdoor” conversion. It has a 36″ barrel with a bore diameter of .50, land to land, and .514 groove to groove. Rate of twist is 1-48″. It fires a .50-80 caliber straight(very slightly tapered)cartridge, loaded with a 450grn medium-soft alloy lead bullet with large grease grooves filled with a high temperature natural wax cut with grikakka oil. The bullet alloys vary, but achieve a Brinell hardness @ 10. Powder charge is 80grns of medium fine (roughly 3FFFG equivalent) charcoal, potassium nitrate, and sulfur gunpowder. Muzzle velocity averages 1,500 FPS (checked on my new LabRadar Doppler radar chronograph).
            The Republic is currently wedded to a single-shot bolt action 11mm (.43 Mauser) based on the M-71, without a magazine. (This may well change, now that the necessity is apparent, but the original reasoning was to quickly produce a strong, simple breechloader they could easily feed). The Republic’s service revolver is also 11mm.

            Off Wiki reply to Duke: Regarding the relative effectiveness of the .50-80 compared to more modern cartridges at open sight, common combat ranges, the limfac for accuracy is the dramatically more arched trajectory, not consistency, and with sights set at 100yds, point blank, the trajectory only becomes problematic for a competent marksman (or ‘Cat) beyond 200yds. A skilled marksman will have little combat degradation to 500yds. There is the smoke to consider, a lesson the 71st New York learned at the Santiago Heights, but unless the ‘Cats are facing generally more skilled marksmen, return fire beyond 500yds will remain more an area-fire, fire-suppression menace.
            As for penetration in thin or thick-skinned, light or heavy-boned, dense or “loose” flesh, (and this is something I have a great deal of experience with), never forget that velocity is rarely the friend of penetration, as it tends to cause bullets to over-perform on impact. Small, high velocity FMJ bullets, protected to a degree against deformation (5.56 at @ 3,000 FPS for example) STILL tend to over-perform and under-penetrate on thick-skinned targets, or even thin-skinned targets at close range. Larger, medium-high velocity FMJ have the potential for deeper penetration if they have the mass, and they can also cause traumatic tumbling wounds if diverted by bone or dense flesh, but when it comes to blowing big holes (that come in pairs) in large animals, pulverizing bone into salt, and causing catastrophic loss of blood pressure, mass–at TRANS or SUBsonic velocities–is king.
            Direct example–(gentler readers, avert your eyes). We have something of a feral hog problem in Texas. They are incredibly dangerous and destructive and have become a hazard to property, pets, wildlife and motorists. They also get VERY large. I often shoot them with 7.62×51 (.308), very roughly comparable to some of what even the League may possess, using an M-1A or AR-10. Military ball, FMJ, usually shuts them off but it often takes a while and bullets rarely exit large specimens. My favorites, .50-70, .45-75, .50-95 (or even .44-40, loaded properly) shuts them off immediately and always exit. FAR more lethal against dangerous critters in D-men described encounter distances and even the relatively close ranges that battles have been fought. Does that mean they don’t need to “upgrade?” No. Particularly if they ever engage a more modernly equipped opponent. But they are fairly well-armed against Grik, and particularly against dangerous Grik-sized predators.

            Sorry for going on, but this is a version of my usual response to the “Fast and flat is where it’s at” argument. There are exception to every rule and modern sporting bullet designs change the equation dramatically, but all things being equal, comparing the LETHALITY of 19th century, black powder military cartridges (which is essentially what the Allin-Silva shoots) to 20th century military cartridges . . . well, there IS no comparison, shot for shot. Ha! Don’t take it from me. Elmer Keith was “market hunting” in the ’20s and had a 1895 Winchester which he was loading with surplus .30-06. He was having no success on elk. He went to a trapdoor Springfield and surplus Rock Island (if memory serves) .45-70-500 and wrote “Business picked up immediately.”
            “Big and slow
            is the way to go
            if you’d blow
            a great big hole!”

          3. By donald johnson on

            Considering the game in Africa presently consists of grik and larger lizards I am going to have to go along with Taylor. I would rather have a big slow round that will stop them in their tracks than a fast round that might bounce like leaving a large angry animal chasing my butt.

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            If they’re looking for a cheap way to increase range (moderately), they could make a jacketed conical bullet for the .50-80. Something similar to what many black powder shooters use these days. It would be about the same bullet weight & the conical shape would give it better down range ballistics. They could produce these for their sharpshooters & expert rifle cats. Might not go to full bulk production though, if they’re going to shift production to a “modern” rifle like the ’03 Springfield in .30-06.

          5. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Hi Lou. Conical, yes, for–as you say–moderately flatter trajectory, but jacketed, no. Not with black powder. Need that lube, not only to reduce friction, but keep the fouling soft enough for the next shot to scrape. Works good and you can shoot all day and still have only the fouling from the last shot. The conical, let’s be more specific and call it a spire point, will shoot flatter, but won’t hit as hard. A big meplat delivers almost as much energy as a hollow point but won’t shed weight. On the other hand, big meplat sheds supersonic velocity crazy fast until it goes subsonic, then velocity loss is much more linear. Pretty cool stuff. The sound barrier is a wicked wall. I like your idea of spire point “sniper” rounds, though. Who cares if a few ‘Cats in each platoon shoot slightly smaller holes in things up close–if they can reach out a little farther.

          6. By Justin on

            //I like your idea of spire point “sniper” rounds, though. Who cares if a few ‘Cats in each platoon shoot slightly smaller holes in things up close–if they can reach out a little farther.//

            That moment when Baalkpan starts training scout snipers and realizes they just sent their best one to the Republic…

          7. By Lou Schirmer on

            Hey Taylor. Most of the bullets I’ve seen don’t have much of a “spire” tip so much as a pointed nose on a slightly longer bullet, so to keep the meplat or flat nose effect, they might build it as a jacketed flat nose bullet with a copper ballistic tip insert on it to achieve a similar effect. Or they could go for a full spire tip boat tailed long range round for the snipers until they get the next generation rifles into production.

            Many companies these days have jacketed loads for the .45-70 (Corbon, Buffalo Bore etc.), can they do this without having the lubrication issues you mention due to modern powders? What’s the reason you can’t put a lube ring like you describe on a jacketed bullet?

            //with large grease grooves filled with a high temperature natural wax cut with grikakka oil//

            I’m knowledgeable enough to be dangerous, but not an expert, so don’t know myself, but have seen cannelures on jacketed bullets that, if deepened might work. Just curious.

          8. By Lou Schirmer on

            Sorry if I’m sounding a bit weird lately, been dealing with kidney stones. Just got my insides reamed out today & have shipped out on the USS Percocet. A good ship, though lacking in discipline. Perhaps a few good floggings will help morale.

          9. By William Curry on

            A spire point only has a low drag coefficient only when the bullet is well above the speed of sound. At sub-sonic velocities a round nose of some sort usually has a better drag coefficient. Witness all the subsonic air liners with their rounded noses and supersonic fighters with needle noses. A boat tail is more effective at sub-sonic velocities than at supersonic velocities. The ideal long range bullet for the .50-80 would have a long tapering round nose with a boat tail. At long range with a low velocity rifle; ladder an tangent sights come in to play to allow enough elevation to get the bullet out there. They can be equipped with simple Galilean sight magnifiers to help ID targets at longer ranges. The British still use such magnifiers for their “Match Rifle” competition which is shot out to 1200 yards. They can also produce “Musketry Rules” to help with range finding. There is also a technique for indirect fire with infantry rifles where a squad or platoon fires on an area they can’t clearly see under direction of a spotter who knows where the target is. This is effective to out past 2000 yards. These techniques were covered in the musketry manuals up through WW2 so the soldiers and marines from the various countries should be aware of them. Lubing jacketed bullets has been done and the heat of the smokeless powder usually carbonizes the lube leaving gunk in the barrel.

          10. By Lou Schirmer on

            So my jacketed spire tip idea is out the nearest porthole, but William’s round nose boat tail design sounds good. As an added bonus, it would be easier to produce, not being jacketed. Could still give that ammo to the snipers, although the ballistics would be different & they’d have to be familiarized w/the new round & trained on long range shooting techniques.

          11. By donald johnson on

            What is wrong with using a large caliber round and very long barrel for the sniper type rifle. A telescopic sight on a 20mm should be able to hit anything and stop it well beyond 2000 yards away.

          12. By Justin on

            Donald, keep in mind that the bigger the rifle, the heavier the recoil. The largest rifle round in the US military is the M82 .50 cal (12.7mm), and that’s used in the M82 Barrett in order to bring down helicopters.

            And that’s an anti-material rifle, meant for shooting prone, supported by a bipod. This is what a battle rifle would look like with a similar round:

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wrImp-ek3bI

            That’s the .577 Tyrannosaur. By comparison, the proposed 20mm rifle is about 0.78 inches, and Silva’s Doom muskets are 25mm, or .98 inches. He can take it – because he’s part cave troll – but a Cat half his size?
            No, for skirmishers in a line company, or even scout snipers, you’d need a regular rifle, but with high velocity.

          13. By matthieu on

            You kill feral hogs (by the way, what’s exactly a feral hog? a domestic pig that escaped, a wild boar or a mix?)? At least do you eat them? I have some pretty good recipes for wild boars at home that I can share with you.

            Here is also a small list of wines especially designed for hogs and boars: http://www.platsnetvins.com/accords-plats-mets-vins.php?plat=Sanglier

            Talking about weapons: don’t you all think that quality control will be an issue? Bullets mean powder and cartridges. I’m jusy wondering what’s quality control in all armies (alliance, griks, doms, texs and league). They are all going to suffer heavily from humidity and local conditions. As a consequence it should lead to many misfires and accidents.

          14. By William Curry on

            The US Navy experimented in 1884 with a .45 caliber bottle necked round for a Sharpshooters Musket which contained 200 grains of Black powder and produced a MV of 2030 fps with a 400 grain bullet. See “History of Modern US Military Small Arms Ammunition” page 287. The bullet was supposed to steel with a copper rotating band. The existing sample cartridges have a 500 lead bullet in them.

          15. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Per round nose, very true, Bill. Interestingly, with the new LabRadar, we discovered that a .58 cal round ball with a muzzle velocity of 1530fps dumps 500fps–a THIRD of its velocity–by the time it reaches 100 yds. On the other hand, it is still in the 900s at 200 yds. Like I said, fascinating stuff.

          16. By Duke Saxon on

            I recognize that the velocity is not the primary factor in penetration. I mainly intended to comment on the shape of the bullet used, though now that I think of it, the 11mm round is probably not a Spitzer type and therefore the difference may not be as significant as I previously assumed.

          17. By William Curry on

            Most round balls have a G1 BC of less than .1

          18. By William Curry on

            With round nose bullets and round balls as the velocity falls off, the drag usually decreases as well. Plotted on a graph you get a curve with decreasing drag as the velocity decreases.

          19. By donald johnson on

            I was assuming a bipod and or a field mount of some kind to save the shoulder. me being a little guy. I think at 5’3″ and 135 i am smaller than the average cat and would not shoot any other way. I left a hell of a bruise on my shoulder the only time i shot a .410 shotgun. you can forget anything larger.

        3. By Justin on

          Or just cut out the design process and buy Karabiner 98s. Remember that the Germans crossed over from WWI, and the Republic is probably at a high-enough tech level to manufacture them.

          Reply
          1. By Duke Saxon on

            I think G98s were the primary rifle brought with the SMS Amerika. The sights are better on G98 anyway.

  29. By Joe Thorsky on

    Guys

    I did not mean to try to imply that employment-deployment of Tanks
    was to ever be an either-or, take it or leave it, zero-sum game
    proposition. That other methods and alternatives might be just as
    effective and/or useful under certain combat environments is always a
    given possibility.
    Just trying to think outside the box after discarding conventional
    practices and wisdom.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Sure. Just keep in mind that in some cases, the box is there for a reason :).

      Reply
      1. By Joe Thorsky on

        Justin

        True Enough, but in the end you equip for the mission and not the other way around.

        Reply
  30. By Joe Thorsky on

    Re-The Tank Warfare Conversation-Debate

    The beginning introduction of “Tanks” and their tactical and strategic advantages and potential future uses in Taylor’s Destroyermen Universe is certainly a most intriguing and tantalizing turn of events. However, instead of just employing and deploying “Tanks” even with their limited geographic and terrain capabilities, elongated logistics trail, and their uniquely addictive dependency on a scarce refined fossil fuels supply might also require a more useful better? substitute/alternative way to proceed along parallel lines of procurement and development. Finding and domesticating pack [“Mule”asaurs] that could quite easily do the same job-mission of “Tanks” could be a more viable and effective method to employ given both the nature and the composition/capabilities of the contending combatants.

    Reply
    1. By Generalstarwars333 on

      So you mean they should find a large beast of burden, put a howdah on it, put a gun on the howdah, and use those instead of tanks?

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        Simply speaking, the main advantage of tanks is their armour. They could not be stopped be anti-infantry weapons. They could go through rugged terrain, carrying well-protected firepower toward the enemy lines, covering the infantry advance.

        How could any animals do the same? We saw, how “well” Dom’s “Great Dragons” was!

        Reply
        1. By Generalstarwars333 on

          Yeah. Also, tank’s don’t get tired or scared or sick. They also have a reliable top speed and other statistics, whereas some animals are faster or tougher than others in the same species. Oh yes, and tanks don’t run amok, unlike the bronto Reddy rode during the battle of aryaal.

          Reply
          1. By donald johnson on

            Elephants wear the tank in their day however by the time the Romans came they had the ability to take them out so after that they were not much used in combat

          2. By Generalstarwars333 on

            I mean, I can see how the Romans would’ve easily dealt with elephants(something like 80 scorpions per a legion, if I remember correctly), wouldn’t they have come back into wider use after Rome fell and the large scale use of field artillery with it?

          3. By Steve Moore on

            Tanks don’t swim or cross deep ravines; there are probably no bridges. Tanks would take up more cargo capacity/weight, and the Union really has no way to load/unload them unless they’re the size of Bren carriers or Lloyd tankettes. And tanks do break down, especially when they’re forced to provide their own long-range mobility.

            Design a light common chassis that could be built as a wheeled or tracked vehicle, power it with an air-cooled radial. Something about the scale of a 3/4 ton truck, so you can build differing bodies with common components. Particularly the fuel bowsers your mechanized regiment is going to need, but also armored cars, troop transports, prime movers for your 4″50cal artillery, and of course quad M2 AAA.

          4. By Clifton Sutherland on

            General, I think elephants fell because A) They were always expensive, and even when in their hey day not deployed in large numbers B) not that cost effective. Sure, they can terrorize and trample men who are unaccustomed to their presence, but they have a very limited tactical niche, one that can easily be offset by missile fire. C) They actually ran out of elephants, at least in the West. North African elephants, which is what Carthage used in their armies, actually went extinct by c. 100.

            Now, in the east, especially India and the Indochina, elephants WERE still used, up until the 19th century. They adapted fairly well, even with the introduction of gunpowder (read: they put cannons on elephants) but eventually they just were too tempting of targets, and their main contribution, bowling over infantry lines, was no longer relevant, due to a combination of changes in fighting tactics, and improved weaponry.

          5. By Justin on

            Steve, Bren/Kangaroo carriers aren’t going to fare much better crossing deep rivers – and to get either, you need a tank chassis to start with.

            Again, land vehicle production is on the backburner. Not enough engines to mechanize the logistics train… unless, of course, the Union gets actual trains.

            Pack animals are decent enough transports so far. More important is having AFVs or any kind of bulletproof big gun capable of taking trenches and fortifications and stopping charges.

          6. By donald johnson on

            the scorpion never really fell out of favor until the cannon came in. at the same time they had very long pole arms that could take out elephants and horses before and during the middle ages.

  31. By Clifton Sutherland on

    Say, how will the Union combat League ground forces in any immediate engagements?

    With their modern bolt action rifles, widespread machine guns, etc, and artillery, its pretty obvious that the Fascists would win any open field engagement, perhaps as nearly one-sided as some of the victories over the Grik were. Now, if they lack sufficient industry to supply their weapons, that might force the League to alter its doctrine, to conserve ammunition and men. Perhaps they will try to levy a splinter group of the disintegrating Grik Empire, and use those Uul as a meaty anvil to their modern hammer?

    As for the Union, I suppose they could be somewhat equally matched in terms of airpower, just by virtue of experience and numbers. Any attempt to utilize Cats in standard linear formations would likely….be messy. Have any besides Chack’s commandos received training in more dispersed and fluid combat? hmmmm.
    It doesn’t look good for our guys, at least in the initial engagements. What do y’all think?

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Immediate? Inferior firepower, no modern artillery, no air superiority… unless the League is dangerously low on ammo, the only option for the Union is a death-or-glory charge.

      The existing linear formations mostly exist to block wave attacks; it’s hard to repel a mob of oncoming Uul while lying on your stomach. We’ve already seen Bekiaa operating as a scout sniper, so it shouldn’t be too hard for the rest of the Cats to unlearn massed volley tactics – heck, after Grik City, they already have trench-taking and urban assault skills.

      Fortunately, the League are cowards – they’re stalling until they’re sure they have the industry for a war. That should give the Allies time to modernize.

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        //The existing linear formations mostly exist to block wave attacks; it’s hard to repel a mob of oncoming Uul while lying on your stomach. We’ve already seen Bekiaa operating as a scout sniper, so it shouldn’t be too hard for the rest of the Cats to unlearn massed volley tactics – heck, after Grik City, they already have trench-taking and urban assault skills.//

        Exactly. The anti-Grik formation against League is clear deathtrap. It would took little efforts to tear its apart…

        Reply
        1. By donald johnson on

          Is it that they are set up or about 30 days of combat they wouldn’t have been sent over and less they were. That would mean they probably have 1000 rounds per Soldier minimum I would suspect that they have a maximum of thirty to fifty thousand soldiers and possibly less but definitely no more.
          That depends upon how many troop ships have they brought with them and how many troops that each one carries and of course Taylor’s not going to tell us. To get a good idea of the number of troops involved one must look at Italy’s Liberian invasion and see how many were in the Invasion. If we look at the stats for the Italian invasion we can have a good idea of how many ships and troops we are going to be fighting.
          It looks like we have some homework to do

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            Remember that it’s not just Fascists Italy, but also France, Spain AND Germany. The League’s numbers probably resemble the AEF just before D-Day.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            All comes down to logistics. Assuming the League units transferred were the assault force staged out of Italian Libya, combat loading would dictate that the force would favor combat units over transport & supply, so unless they brought supplies for a year, we’d have to assume they found allies (or conquests) with at least a rudimentary industrial capacity. North Africa wouldn’t be able to support another 50,000 hungry mouths. Plus, aren’t they involved with pacification on the European mainland?

            Not to mention commonality of arms. We’re not talking NATO here; every country would have different ammunition for rifle, MG and artillery; what about different wheel and tire sizes for transport. Then there’s the clash of cultures; just judging from what we’ve seen of the League’s delegation, it would be difficult to accept common battlefield theories. French generals agreeing with German, Spanish and Italians?

            The Italian campaign against Ethiopia and the Spanish Civil War might be an indication of what to expect; air bombardment with both conventional and WMD.

          3. By donald johnson on

            The Italian invasion of Libya took place in 1911 so the invasion fleet in the late 30’s was something entirely new. it must have been involved in the attack of Egypt as Libya was fully conquered and integrated by then.
            It did consist of 34000 troops at the time. possibly the event that transferred the league took place in Tripoli and transferred the ships that were in the harbor at the time.
            Not able to find anything even proposed regarding an invasion fleet in 1939/40 do that is definitely something completely new in the league timeline

      2. By Steve White on

        There’s the small problem, for the League, of distance.

        Looking at the globe is instructive. As far as we know there is no Suez. If the League wishes to come at the Union from that direction, they have to portage across the Sinai, or come up the Nile (assuming it’s as navigable as it is in our world) to a convenient crossing point to the Red Sea. I recall that the Pharaohs of our time occasionally considered a canal to connect the Nile and Red Sea. If the League wanted to do that, and if the Grik weren’t too numerous, they might try. It would take a lot of construction work and time.

        But they aren’t bringing any big ships that way. Some troops perhaps, some air units, and maybe small boats. But nothing corvette sized or larger unless they get busy digging.

        That leaves the long way around Africa. That’s a LONG ways. They’d need oilers — how many of those do they have? What can they spare? They’d have to transport their army on merchant-class ships; I don’t think they have LSTs or anything similar. How far down the west coast of Africa can they go to establish forward bases before they run into the Grik?

        And everything they move eventually has to come around the Cape. We’ve had discussions of that before on this forum; my strategy for stopping them remains the same.

        Supplying even a modest sized force — say a regiment of motorized infantry with a few of the small tanks they might have had (Pz I, Pz II or the equivalent) is going to take large quantities of supplies, ammo and fuel.

        The League might be able to do it. But they’d really have to WANT to do it.

        Reply
        1. By donald johnson on

          With the lower sea levels and the partial ice age. The Sini is possibly green as it was in the last ice age in our timeline. this would make it harder to dig a canal. but easier to raise food crops in the area. unless they brought lots of shovel’s they are going to have to make them or similar to dig any canal. They could transform some tanks into bulldozers reasonably easy and this might speed things up.
          any one else have any ideas?
          by the way, north Africa was very green during the last ice age also up to the roman times. Egypt used to sell wheat to the Romans. the area only became dry since then.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            Right. The Sahara, of all places, used to be green too. Then the poles shifted and precipitation declined, but the Nubians and Egyptians kept farming as usual because “hey, the rain will come back any day now.” Boom, Bronze Age Dust Bowl.

            Even with savannah instead of desert though, there’s still 5000 km and several Grik satrapies between Egypt and Sofesshk. Border skirmishes with the League won’t be a problem for a very long while.

          2. By donald johnson on

            The pole did not shift but the weather patterns did. The weather patterns during the Ice Age made me the 30 degrees above and below the equator very green and most of the moisture feel there however enough moisture fill in the cold areas to allow the glaciers to continue to build for a long period of time. After the Ice Ages were over and up to about 3,000 years ago is there it was Green due to the weather patterns however the weather patterns of again shifted into a dryer climate for the North Africa and other areas

    2. By Alexey Shiro on

      //Say, how will the Union combat League ground forces in any immediate engagements?//

      Generally by screaming and running away, I’m afraid… The Union weaponry and tactics are lightyear behind the League’s. They probably could do some damage in irregular warfare, but in open combat… they would simply be destroyed.

      Reply
    3. By Steve Moore on

      Regarding League/Grik/Union contacts; since there’s been no mention of Grik knowledge of the League except third-party through Kurakowa, I’m assuming there have been no direct League/Grik contacts (where the Grik survived).
      Seems to me that the quickest way for the League to get into the Indian Ocean in force, would be down the Red Sea. If they are already in Egypt, there would be some knowledge of French and Italian Somaliland and the harbor at Djibouti. Put a roadway or rail link through to the Gulf of Suez from Giza, and transport any E-boats or MAS boats that came along with the transfer. Wipe out any Grik forces, or conscript them as slaves and control the choke point at the bottom of the Red Sea. Make Djibouti their forward base, which protects their supply line down from Giza. There were some indications of Lemurian populations on the map captured in 1942, but we have no clues as to how old or outdated that information may be. Putting forces ashore on the Aden side gives them the ability to control the bottom of the Arabian Peninsula, flanked by the Empty Quarter, and probably extend their control to the Straits of Hormuz and Persian Gulf eventually. This may have been the intended destination of the Savoie, which would reduce fueling needs and eventually shorten all lines of supply. This gives them a much more defensible position than the Republic has at the Cape. Air patrols from the Arabian Peninsula would cover most of the approaches out of the Arabian Sea.
      This is the same way Halik has to go to get home, so my guess is that’s where we may see the first League/Grik contacts, which begs the question; does Niwa suggest an alliance? I don’t see Halik allying with the Czechs, and the League will need additional forces to garrison southern Arabia. Halik has the most combat-effective Grik forces outside of the ‘Japanese’ Grik, and Kurakowa would probably push for such an alliance since that would create a combined land/air/sea combination easily able to push back the Union forces.

      Reply
      1. By Clifton Sutherland on

        Steve Moore

        Oh no, that is something I hadn’t even thought of… I can very much see the Leauge trying to negotiate with Niwa to have Halik’s army work for/with them… and it makes sense from a story standpoint as well. Combining the most effective Grik formations with the political manipulations of the League? RIP Union! Any land battle could have a core of Halik’s boys as the hammer, while limited League modern weapons acting as force multipliers, much as destroyermen BAR’s and Thompsons did at Arrayal and Baalkpaan. Preventing the Union from exploiting any gaps in the line, and ensuring that Grik attacks are mores successful.

        Then again, Halik seems to have held the Truce with Alden pretty well.. and he may realize allying with the League means becoming their pawn.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          The League being the primary colonial powers in Africa prior to the transfer, they’re well aware of Africa’s resource potential and would want to grab it all for themselves. With Griks as a possible labor source, capable of rapid reproduction, they’d have an inexhaustible supply of miners and foot soldiers. I think the first thing they’d do would be to replace Grik pilots with humans, denying Griks technical progress. Standard colonial practice, keep the Fuzzy-Wuzzies in their proper place and safeguard sources of ores, oil and precious metals.

          Halik has the advantage of Niwa’s counsel, but the closest Allied forces want him and his Griks six feet under, for the most part. Plus, the League is miles ahead of the Union technically. The Truce is just that; a truce, not a treaty, and I can see Halik taking a defensive position to guard the League flank, as Franco did during WW2. He knows the Allies don’t have the ability to assault his defensive positions, and if he gets to control the Persian Gulf, he can become the power in the Grik Empire. Plus, he’s probably got a ‘dame shortage’ of his own, and needs a few shiploads of Grik females he can only get through Kurokawa’s help unless he takes over any Grik settlements in Arabia.

          Meanwhile, with bases up and down the eastern African shore, the League can throttle Madagascar, with the intent of forcing the Allies to retreat and isolating the Republic. This would eventually force them into some sort of armistice, I’d guess, giving the League access to the Republic’s resources, through trade in not outright conquest. They then have their “Greater East Africa Co-Prosperity Sphere” protected by 5000 miles of ocean.

          Reply
          1. By Clifton Sutherland on

            an interesting outcome. I do like the idea of the introduction of a force that our heroes just can’t beat through ingenuity and courage- at least for the time being. I’d imagine that you are correct, especially with how the League will attempt to establish its own empire in Africa. Hmmm, they are also experiencing a dame famine as well, perhaps they will be trying to get some treaties with the Holy Dominion for “comfort women”?

          2. By donald johnson on

            the grik “Dame shortage” is not the same as with humans. A single female can most likely lay 1 egg a day. this means that only 100 females will give them 3600 eggs a year. if it takes 3 years to sexually mature and if they only have 20 % females then in 5 years they will be getting a million eggs a year. My guess is that the ratio is actually at least 50% female hatch-lings and at no point (That I remember anyways) has Taylor said that the Grik fighters are all male so the possibility is that they may have a 50-50 mix male to female.

          3. By Justin on

            Donald, that’s… really not how egg laying works.

            Reptile/avian eggs are usually laid in clutches, 1 egg every 2-4 days, and the ladies are only fertile for several months a year. In the case of dinosaurs, the estimate is 200 eggs (or less) every year.

            But yes, a “dame famine” shouldn’t be a problem for the Grik.

          4. By Justin on

            Whoops, wrong set of numbers.

            See, for sauropods, it was four hundred eggs per year, but theropods would have clutches of 3-5, like modern birds, so more like four per year.

      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        The Grik have been using the land route for their major territory expansions up until recently & have never commented on meeting humans to the north. With them using Egypt, Arabia & Persia as highways & having well established satrapies in those regions, it would seem the League has not ventured there yet. They will have to build up some sort of infrastructure to supply any effort in that direction. Granted, they can kill the hell out of any Grik they run into, but there are a lot of Grik & would use up large quantities of ammo & fuel, with lots of wear & tear on equipment. I don’t see them coming that way for a while, if ever. Digging a canal would be even more difficult with the ice age in progress lowering sea levels. They’d have to dig a much longer canal than the original Suez & we don’t know if the strait off Djibouti at the bottom of the Red Sea is even there or navigable by large ships if it is.

        Haalik just took over as Regent of Persia, & will be consolidating his position, so I doubt he’s going that way any time soon either. If he’s smart, he’ll stay as far away from any involvement with Esshk & Kurokawa as possible for the immediate future. As far as a Grik “dame famine” for Haalik’s troops, he just took over all Persia’s female Grik population, so he has that at least under some control.

        Reply
    4. By donald johnson on

      being intelligent I would suspect that they would very quickly realize that their present form of combat would need to be changed. remember that they learned in new Ireland and in south america that they could not bunch up when cannons are being used by the other side.

      Reply
    5. By Ryan on

      The Republic would be god-mode at Trench Warfare, they probably know how to build Maxims mainly because the SMS Amerika had them. Plus unless the League brings in tanks, the Republic can show the League just why trench warfare is so incredibly nasty.

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        One problem. League already have the tanks. Including french tanks, with their heavy armor. If the Republik army try the trench warfare scenario… in a few weeks the Republik would sign their capitulation.

        Reply
      2. By Justin on

        Welcome aboard, Ryan.

        Keep in mind that Amerika‘s crew were Merchant Marine – reservist sailors, not infantry. They’d have known little to nothing about what was going on in France.

        Also, what we’ve seen and heard of the Kaiser’s military implies an Indian War-type frontier garrison, not a modern army… whereas the League’s armies are WWII-era professionals, with MGs, armour and air support. The Republic’s more likely to be on the receiving end of any nasty surprises.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Exactly. Currently, even the Grik airships are matter of concerns for Republik, because they lacked air forces or anti-air defended of their own. If the League moves in with modern bombers, they could really shatter all the Republik will to fight in short order.

          Reply
          1. By Ryan on

            True, very true. But, those 75mm Field Guns, can be used to take out tanks, the Germans during WWI, well our WWI used 77mm Field Guns as Anti-tank guns, they developed AP shells for those things and gave their crews training and they became very effective tank killers.

            Plus those French 75s were developed into a bunch of different variants from AT guns to AA guns, but that would take time and the AT variant while it could probably knock out anything Italian or most of the likely suspects for Germans, it’s the French vehicles I am most concerned about.

            We also don’t know what type of terrain they will be fighting on if the Republic fights the League. If it’s on plains my money will be on the League, but if it’s Mountains, Forests, or Jungles then my money is on the Republic.

            But yeah, bombers? I agree there. Then again, we don’t know if the Republic has aircraft, but I am betting that no they don’t.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Hm, as far as I could recall, in “Straits of Hell” it was stated that the Republik have some development program (unclear, airplanes or airships – I think airships, because their German advisors were from 1914 German Navy, and in 1914 German Navy considered airplanes as almost useless), but no serviceable aircrafts.

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            The 75-mm could be used as AA and AT gun, yes, but this required experience. Which, frankly, neither the Republik nor the Union actually have. And League’s french tank have really heavy armor; they hardly could be destroyed by the shrapnel shell set on “no burst” (common improvised AT round for field artillery)

          4. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Ryan, keep in mind those 77’s were effective against slow Mark IV’s and other variants armored against MG’s, and when used against more modern tanks the 75’s weren’t as effective against the faster and more heavily armored designs. There’s a reason the purpose built AT guns started as being 25mm and 37mm high velocity weapons.

        2. By donald johnson on

          I suspect that if the league does have tanks that the french 75 would be able to destroy then with a change to a solid round. And one must remember that almost any hit on the tracks can stop a tank of any kind. the league will have plenty of 75’s to use.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            Please! Yes, in theory you could easily stop the tank by hitting the tracks. But in reality, the tracks are so small in compairson to the tank itself, that it is next thing to impossible to specifically target them from anything except very close range.

          2. By Justin on

            Yeah, trying to disable the tracks usually requires a sticky bomb. The World of Tanks approach only works because you’ve got a target reticule.

            Why not just use the 1897s in their usual role? Artillery strikes’ll disable slow-moving French heavies and Spanish/Italian lights just the same as AT guns.

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            Because the probability of hitting the moving tank by indirect fire is very low. I really doubt that the Republik have enough guns to put a large-scale barrage, and I doubt that they even have HE; they probably stuck with shrapnel.

          4. By Steve Moore on

            How do the League tanks get to the theater in question, be it South Africa or the Horn of Africa?

          5. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Now, what about a longer barrel for the 1897? More muzzle velocity=more penetration, flatter trajectory, and higher accuracy. And longer range, but we’re mostly concerned with taking out tanks first and being able to hit them from far away second. Kind of. Also, if the League tanks have rivets, then HE would be great against them. Rivets have a tendency to become deadly projectiles when a tank gets hit, which is why most tanks by the end of WWII had no riveting. Heck, even without rivets, HE can cause spalling that is deadly to the crew and could probably tear up the non-human parts of the tank as well. So even if it doesn’t penetrate the armor, a big enough HE shell should still do a number on a interwar tank.
            Also, while we’re on the topic of fighting tanks, the Alliance might want to make some sort of rifle chambered for the .50 BMG round to use as an anti-tank rifle. It might not frontally pen the tanks, or pen some of the bigger ones, but it’ll still be able to play hell with tracks and periscopes and all that, and can probably riddle some of the smaller ones with holes. Plus it’d be a good sniper rifle.

  32. By Clifton Sutherland on

    Gunsmiths of the Destroyermen, I have a question:

    If you were to go back in time somewhere between 1250 and 1350, with a civil-war era rifled musket and ammunition, and gave it to the local gunsmith or just a weaponsmith in general, would they be able to make some sort of crude replica? What would be the problems in creating such a weapon? metallurgy, machining, or something else?

    Reply
    1. By donald johnson on

      They could probably make everything but the barrel. Drilling of the barrel is probably beyond their capability and to be honest making the steel is also beyond their capability. If they had the steel they could not drill it because their steel drill bits are softer than the barrel.
      They would also have trouble with the springs

      Reply
    2. By William Curry on

      They would have trouble fabricating the percussion caps as well. The black powder of the day was made by just mixing the components together rather than incorporated in a stamp or wheel mill and was thus very weak. At at time barrels were usually made by wrapping a heated strip of iron around a mandrel and butt welding the assembly in furnace. Plus no-one would know how to make a rifling machine. One problem would be getting everybody to agree on a unit of measurement and everybody to agree to the same design dimensions. A lot of Kentucky rifles were built with furnace butt welded barrels which required only reaming and not boring, but each one was an individual.

      Reply
  33. By Logan Meyers on

    I was just wondering if the squall can also cross over coastal areas or people on land or is it only at sea? Could there even be huge dust storm squalls in certain areas? After all we know you don’t need to be in a metallic object like a ship/plane/sub or anything at all to cross over since Niwa and the other Japanese sailors in the water proved.

    Reply
    1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

      There is evidence that “squall events” are not exclusive to waterways. The Czech Legion is one example. They are a little out of place, however, so either they travelled some distance over the years after their transportation–or their event DID take place at sea, on their voyage home. There are tidbits to base supposition on, but nothing definitive has been established.

      Reply
      1. By Logan Meyers on

        Oh! Thank you Taylor I completely forgot about that even though I’ve been rereading their meetings with Halik. But if that is the case then its possible vehicles could be brought through, personally id find it really humorous for a section of railway to be brought through with a useless train stuck on the limited track. This would be something that would likely occur in China though seeing as they did not have many roads at all but instead had an impressive railway system. I could talk about it and its uses more in depth but i fear its a fairly dry subject. Heh.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          The question about land transfers is, how much of land is transferred? Is is kind of “Assiti Shards” kind of event, when the sphere of certain diameter is ripped from one world and transferred to another with anything in her? What happened to “Walker” seems to confirm that; the ship was transferred with quite a lot of water – both rainwater and seawater.

          Reply
      2. By donald johnson on

        And of course the Roman transfer to the South Africa area was most likely a ship but could have been a land transfer but then there would have been a long march afterwards thru Grik territory. I suspect that a Roman legion properly equipped could have survived against this standard grik attacks and held together during the Long March. But a ship transfer would be much more practical and fewer would have been required to be transferred although it could have been several ships together instead of just one. As it took place around 1000 AD our time scale. And if the Romans were an expansionist Nation at the time it could have been a colonization wait headed for South Africa already but that information has not been given to us yet.

        Reply
      3. By matthieu on

        The single significant fact is that there were much more metal (steel, bronze…) where they were than at any other place in the area.

        Reply
        1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          That would certainly be consistent with one of Courtney’s electromagnetism theories. Hmm. Maybe there’s a chunk of the Trans-Siberian railroad missing from another timeline. Probably not the earth around it. And to Alexey’s point, Walker was specifically suspended momentarily out of the water so, no seawater transfer. If you’re concerned about her “dropping” catastrophically upon the lower sea level, be assured there are other extenuating phenomena.

          Reply
          1. By donald johnson on

            Just a big wave during the storm is the way it would have felt if it was only a 30-foot fall whatever the draft of the Walker is.

          2. By matthieu on

            We can also notice that the relative frequency of events is changing. They are much more common. Why?
            – biased sample: many groups were lost and nobody noticed
            – the relative quantity of metal is increasing so they become more common.

            It looks a little but like “sliders” (the TV show) where you have difference earths but at the same time.

          3. By donald johnson on

            are we sure that the frequency of events is increasing and that it isn’t that we are just noticing them more

          4. By donald johnson on

            I sure hope there are no squalls in or about NYC :-) though that might solve some of the female problem

          5. By Steve Moore on

            Riding on the City of Vladivostok; Ruble a point, ain’t no one keeping score… pass the paper bag that holds the slivo…

          6. By Alexey Shiro on

            Er… Taylor, but natural phenomenon could not be so selective. So, it was space aliens (ok, parallel world superadvanced civilizations) all along?

          7. By Alexey Shiro on

            Frankly, I always assumed that Transfer was non-selective and spherical. And the seawater under “Walker” disappeared simply because of the lack of gravity in the bubble; the water just dissipated to drops because of thermal movement and remaining velocity.

        2. By Justin on

          Right, but that theory got sunk; the Americans pointed out that Grikbirds and such may have been transported back to their world, and they don’t have that much metal content.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            Plus the Earth has a magnetic field, there are places in the crust with magnetic anomalies, as well as large metallic ore deposits. Not to mention sunspot activity. Lots of opportunities for random transfers.

            I do like the idea of a locomotive and a section of track sitting in the middle of the desert somewhere. Maybe we need some comic relief.

          2. By donald johnson on

            Is any part of the trans Siberian railroad in a desert? I was under the impression that the check legion was fighting with the white army during the very early 20’s before the white army was defeated, and of course this may not have been the world that Taylor came from so war may have lasted longer. There were US military units involved also.

          3. By Steve Moore on

            The WWI Allies sent troops to both Archangel and Vladivostok,; Alexi, any additional information you can contribute? I know of American, British, Canadian and I believe French troops.

          4. By Justin on

            Part of the Trans-Siberian goes over the Gobi. Unless the Allies need Prehistoric Mongolia’s strategic egg reserves though, it’s probably going to remain unnoticed.

          5. By donald johnson on

            The Gobi desert is in Southern Mongolia and the trans Siberian Railroad does not go through Mongolia at all

          6. By Logan Meyers on

            The trans-Siberian goes to Vladivostok but Russia owns a major amount of railroads that went through Mongolia and northern China. The rights of which were taken by the Japanese after the Russo-Japanese war.

          7. By Justin on

            The question was “Is any part of the trans Siberian railroad in a desert?” And technically, there was one.

            If you want a train just sitting abandoned in a desert, try the colonial rail lines in Egypt, Uganda or Kenya.

          8. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Some of the Czech Legion was finally evacuated via the trans. That whole thing was the most screwed-up mess there ever was. The US was ostensibly at Vladivostok to aid the Czechs/Slovaks–but also to keep the Japanese from taking over the TSRR. US Troops THERE actually TRIED to stay neutral in the civil war. How’d that work out? About as well as usual.
            The muddy mess at Murmansk/Archangel was criminal on Lloyd George’s part–and criminal negligence on Wilson’s. The separate peace at Brest/Litovsk kicked the coals, but the Red Menace is what really freaked LG out. US troops there weren’t supposed to be in combat, especially after a crazy stunt by some sailors off the old USS Olympia, believe it or not. I wonder if it was Silva’s idea . . . ? Flynn was at M/A. Anyway, when US troops did engage in combat, it was a nightmare. Put in Brit uniforms under Brit command and poorly armed, many accounts indicate the only other troops they trusted were Canadian artillery. And Wilson either didn’t know, pretended not to, or (my suspicion) didn’t want to know.

            Justin, like many other things, the possible presence of Grikbirds in OTL past was a whimsical attempt to explain ancient accounts of dragons. No foundation in fact.

            Good point Donald. There is no proof that the frequency of events has increased. Much of what the D-Men have taken advantage of is the result of just a few events. Santy Cat, PBY, S-19, Walker, Mahan, and Amagi–possibly even the Betty–are all the result of a single storm. Mizuki Maru and Hidoiame was another. The Malay Khonashi were the result of a third. Who knows how frequent they are? How many have perished in small boats or immediately been eaten ashore? Yet there is a world war underway with lots of tough, seaworthy ships with sufficient numbers aboard to survive–and evidence of occurrences is still rare . . .

            And Steve, maybe it’s not in a desert? Just playing along.

          9. By donald johnson on

            thunder storms in the Gobi would be very seldom seen as it only rains there heavily about every 2 – 3 years. yes they have small storms more often but not one large enough to initiate a squall transfer would be my guess.

          10. By donald johnson on

            I have thought that the Sandy Cat was earlier

          11. By Generalstarwars333 on

            I think it’d be cool if an american armored unit got transported back to somewhere inside the union. Think about it. There’d be plenty of steel in the tanks to get the attention of the squall, so to speak, and that kind of force would be greatly appreciated, since a sherman, even one with the crappy 75mm cannon, would outclass pretty much anything similar currently in the world. And, since there’d be a limited number of them, it wouldn’t be too overpowered. It’s 1944-1945, so american units would be advancing through what are now union lands, sooo…

          12. By Logan Meyers on

            We’ve been kicking around the idea of armor coming over but so far a lot of us have been discussing the idea of German armor coming through. One of the things Taylor says about bringing things over is that it cant just be easily given to the good guys. Theres a lot of Americans that have joined but the political turmoil of an Axis power joining was a pretty long thread a while back. But id love to see some tanks too, it would be an amazing surprise for the league, Grik, Kurokawa, and Doms.

          13. By Generalstarwars333 on

            yeah. I saw the whole axis armor thing after I typed that. And yeah, it would be a huge surprise. The league has like 1930’s level technology, and the only people really building good tanks were the russians and japanese if I remember correctly. A lot of the european tanks at the time would be murderized by a sherman, or even a crusader with a 6 pdr. Also, for tanks and other AFVs, since they’re already making 4″ 50’s, you could put one on a republic truck and have one hell of a tank destroyer.

          14. By Clifton Sutherland on

            General “Japanese building good tanks” hehehe, I don’t Think I’ve ever heard that adjective attached to Japanese tanks before. Japanese tanks were notoriously undergunned and underarmored. They were still basically used as mobile machinegun nests for advancing infantry, al la ww1. To be fair, the wars they were fighting did not necessitate the design of anything heavier, as infantry could get the job done, and were more economical. And once ww2 began, focus shifted to naval and aircraft production.

          15. By Justin on

            Nobody was producing proper medium tanks in the mid-Thirties.

            Germans – Panzer IIs
            Russians – T-28s
            Americans – M2 Lights
            British – Vickers 6-tonners
            Italians – L3 tankettes
            Japanese – Type-95 Ha-Gos

            At best, the League’ll have Panzer IIIs, Italian L3s and M11s, French R35s/B1s/D2s and Spanish Verdejas. Even if the Allies don’t get a transfer, their existing armour should evolve fast enough to surpass the League’s.

          16. By matthieu on

            Well hat do you call a good tank?

            If you want a reliable one, go for American
            If you want a tactically sound one, go for German
            If you want a strange thing with many version, go for brits
            If you want something easy to maintain, low cost but strong go for russian and so on… but not at the same time.

            In the 20-30s French tanks such as the Somua were the best. In 37-41 the Pz III / IV were much better. In 41 the T34 was much better (well, if properly built and leaded) and so on.

          17. By Justin on

            “Proper medium tank” meaning:
            – Sufficient speed (15 kph or faster)
            – Armour that can withstand small arms fire
            – A proper main gun
            – A 4-5 man crew to adequately operate it.

            Even by the Thirties, the majority of tanks were landcruisers armed with MGs in multiple turrets, since tank doctrine was still evolving. Even a Cruiser MK I would be a nasty surprise for the League.

          18. By Logan Meyers on

            Alllllllllriiiigggght, this is going to be a bit long but bare with me on this because I’m going to talk about Japanese tanks and why not to immediately discount them. So yo start with the beginning the Japanese of course weren’t in Europe during WW1 and the creation of the first tanks but observers were and they were taking notes right off the bat. Less than a month after the war they bought a British tank and began serious study. They immediately saw the potential new doctrine it would create. By 1921 more open minded military leaders were holding lectures on armored warfare though it didn’t receive as much priority as other technologies. But in 1925 that changed and Minister of War Kazushige Ugaki began to reform the military in favor of quality over quantity and modernization and began a professional tank corps. It started with European tanks not suitable for combat but rather training and was met with skepticism by traditionalist leaders. But its first tank commanders and engineers were undaunted and began work on building up a real tank force knowing that war with China and possibly the USSR was coming and they needed such a force. A 30 year old artillery engineer Captain Tomio Hara began the first designs in 1925 facing much skepticism from the rest of the military. But he proved them wrong first creating the Type 87 Chi-I medium tank which wasn’t the best but fully passed trials allowing him in 1929 to build the type 89 I-Go medium tank (the worlds first mass produced diesel tank) which served until 1942.

            The Japanese tank corps although lacking experience from ww1 gained it in China where their start was anticlimactic as they followed behind the infantry units (heh though in that position they were kind of stuck). They also felt problems in Shanghai where Chinese infantry could outmaneuver them in the buildings and tight streets. But as all you can tell these aren’t technological failures but poor usage of them in combat as they tried to decide which tactic to use. The two schools of thought were French and British where the British wanted to employ them as their own arm with small infantry units attached to supplement the tanks and the French wanted to disperse them among a mainly infantry heavy force to use for support. The British strategy would be proven superior in 1940 when German tanks using that method would overrun French forces but in 1933 as Japan was capturing land north of Beijing they had a Chinese warlord on the run but Lieutenant General Yoshikazu Nishi realized traditional infantry would never be able to catch up to the Chinese before they could set up a new line of defense. But he had the now experienced 1st tank company with 11 type 89 tanks and two type 92 heavy armored cars along with 100 trucks at his disposal. He deployed an ad-hoc formation of the 1st tank company, a mountain arty company, an engineer company, a radio comms squad, and two infantry battalions to disrupt the Chinese defenses before they were prepared. They advanced catching the retreating forces off guard and collapsing the defenses. They covered a stunning 200 miles in three days taking the city of Chengdu within four days. This was all done much before the Germans ever employed such a tactic. (to be continued)

          19. By Alexey Shiro on

            I still vote for T-34-85. They are capable, durable and easy to mantain even in most primitive conditions. And their diesels actually could eat ANYTHING.

          20. By Logan Meyers on

            Dang I actually studied pretty hard for that post

          21. By Justin on

            Nobody’s debating the flaws or non-flaws of IJA armoured doctrine – only that their tanks were designed in between the wars and were horribly outdated by WWII.
            Not entirely Japan’s fault, because they need the steel for more warships, but the Lees and Shermans ran roughshod over their opponents as a result.

            //I still vote for T-34-85. They are capable, durable and easy to mantain even in most primitive conditions. And their diesels actually could eat ANYTHING.//

            And rivalled the Panther, yes. But the Eastern Front is entirely covered by glaciers at this point – Russian armour would have to come from Manchuria, Korea or the Middle East several years from the next book.

          22. By Generalstarwars333 on

            I mean, yeah, the japanese tanks sucked by WWII, but that’s because they weren’t always used right(especially with their amphibious tanks when the allies were island hopping) and also because they were a decade old. When their tanks were new, they were pretty good considering that at the time america was like “Oh, we can just put a heavy machine gun on a tank and it’ll be fine.”, whereas the japanese and russians were clashing at khalkin go in large tank battles. Meanwhile, germany is arming their tanks with MG’s or autocannons, france is still using some WWI tanks(although they did make some excellent designs, they weren’t in high enough numbers to save them), the british were basically using their 2 pounders for everything, never mind the lack of an HE round, IDK as much about the italian tanks of the time, and the americans were just sort of watching everyone else. It was pretty much russia and japan getting the tank experience from fighting each other. And yes, I do know the spanish civil war was a thing, but the impression I’ve gotten of it was that germany mainly learned that dive bombers are awesome(although they took this a bit far when they tried to make their heavy bomber design do it), close air support is awesome, and that 88mm AA guns will murderize tanks as well as planes.

          23. By Generalstarwars333 on

            And clifton, if you think japanese tanks were right out of WWI, then take a look at this: https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwj7ssuLhcDSAhVHfiYKHQi3BQ4QjBwIBA&url=https%3A%2F%2Fstatic.warthunder.com%2Fupload%2Fimage%2F!%25202016%2520NEWS%2FNovember%2FType%252089b%2520I-Go%2520Otsu%2Ftype_89b_i_go_otsu_03_1280x720_c34dbd3053c3667b97c31dec325d4861.jpg&psig=AFQjCNGo3yuY3WRNC8zbOQyZMvkd9-v_1A&ust=1488826505142785

    2. By Steve Moore on

      Atmospheric events generate huge amounts of static electricity, discharged as lightning, so that might be a power source for the actual transfer elements of the ‘squall’.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        Sorry, was referring to ‘transfers’ on land discussion. Needed more coffee.

        Reply
        1. By donald johnson on

          And of course the Roman transfer to the South Africa area was most likely a ship but could have been a land transfer but then there would have been a long march afterwards thru Grik territory. I suspect that a Roman legion properly equipped could have survived against this standard grik attacks and held together during the Long March. But a ship transfer would be much more practical and fewer would have been required to be transferred although it could have been several ships together instead of just one. As it took place around 1000 AD our time scale. And if the Romans were an expansionist Nation at the time it could have been a colonization wait headed for South Africa already but that information has not been given to us yet.

          Reply
          1. By donald johnson on

            How did this one post twice I didn’t do anything that I know of different

          2. By Logan Meyers on

            I would be interested to see a column of German armor get transferred through. Stripping viechles that break down for parts. The rationing of oil and gas, they may even convert some to wood burners, I have read about and seen a car powered through burning of wood. This would be a concept that would be prevalent in Germany due to the depression. It might even be possible they could enslave routed grik like Rasik had. Though their only safe haven might be finding Halik in Saudi Arabia or the Republic if they didn’t go to the league.

          3. By Justin on

            If there’s a timeline where the Germans are still in North Africa by 1945 – and the column can somehow make it all the way to the Grik front – then by all means. Even a squad of halftracks would make a world of difference.

            That said, Walker can barely burn coal – trying to make a Kampfwagen run on wood gas is probably going to require a complete rebuild.

          4. By Logan Meyers on

            Its actually not that hard http://strangevehicles.greyfalcon.us/HOLZBRENNER%20VOLKSWAGENS.htm

            As this article states there were conversion kits and people did it themselves. But unlike walker they use the gas given off from the burning of wood as the combustible in the engine. Even Patton converted his Sherman tanks to use the gas from German wood burners while on the move.

          5. By Logan Meyers on

            I was speaking more in the way of cars and trucks, I suspect all tanks would be given precious fuel but on the red of the convoy wood burning would be more economical since they wont be in combat roles. I mean will a fuel truck or troop transport truck need extra armor? Especially if they are coming across old Grik then it is even less vital to defend those things seeing as you wouldn’t want them close enough anyway. I brought it up as a method a German force could use to save fuel for a long trek allowing an armor column to actually get to somewhere the allies do exist while stuck with limited resources.

          6. By William Curry on

            The Walker can’t burn coal unless you replace the boilers. The Yarrow 3 drum boilers can not handle ash from solid fuel. The boilers would have to be replaced and they would be larger for the same capacity as the ash handling equipment and stokers would eat up space they don’t have in the fire rooms. The WWII Heer moved more with horse transport than with vehicles. The mechanized units were the exception rather than the rule.

          7. By Steve Moore on

            Gathering enough wood to keep the vehicles rolling would take a lot of time; one of the reasons I gave up cutting my own firewood. Plus the BTU content, especially of wet wood, would be considerably less. It’d be easier to have draft animals that can eat the local vegetation (or natives).

            Then, of course, there’s the route of march; they’d have to carry their wood over desert areas, leaving less room for men and supplies, and ford or bridge the occasional river or gorge.

            If I’m the LOT, I’d be more concerned about keeping my perimeter smaller, my resources conserved, and concentrate on securing northern and central Africa. They know the Alliance won’t come after them, and they’ve got an open door to push east into the Black Sea. If they could convince Halik and the Arabian Grik to join up with them, that secures their eastern flank

          8. By Logan Meyers on

            Well I was thinking the employment of more Grik Askari to help with the extra burden, they can carry spare supplies and search for wood. But in Africa I highly doubt the wetness of wood would be as much a problem as it would in other regions. Not to mention the gas can be stored in tanks and wouldn’t need a constant fire but multiple every so often for refueling. But like in other regions where it is used for defense the wood doesn’t need to be inside vehicles. It can be strapped to the sides of tanks or half tracks or put on the roof. Which is an added boon because in extremely sandy areas it can be placed down to give the vehicles purchase. Some of the men may need to take turns walking with the Askari but keeping their vehicles is their one great advantage from the old world. Possibly pack animals could be harnessed to the smaller cars and trucks but those larger that cant be given the precious gasoline would be good subjects for the wood burners so they can move. I highly doubt they would abandon their Walkers if there is any way to keep them moving. This whole subject is about the technological way to fuel the vehicles that cant be pulled and would be known to Germans in the 1940’s. At less until they can meet the allies or Halik and have the safety and resources to begin producing their own gasoline, its all stopgap measures to save as much as possible.

          9. By Justin on

            Say, why is the Korps doing a Shackleton through central Africa anyway?

            They’re starting out in Libya/Egypt (circa 1945), and probably already caught up in a fight with the League. Bunch of French and Italians? Shoot first, question them later.

            If they don’t know about the Allies, they’d try to either win where they are or fight their way back to Germany.
            If they do know about the Allies – and want to join – all the Korps has to do is sit tight and wait for them to link up. The Union and Republic’ll probably be in the Sahara by then.

          10. By Justin on

            //If they could convince Halik and the Arabian Grik to join up with them, that secures their eastern flank//

            Probably OOC for Halik. He’s an upright dino, he wants to keep his new empire out of the fight, and he at least respects his Union opponents and.
            If some dickish League captain flies/sails in with his Blatant Lies and passive-aggressive threats (and probably an assassin or two), Halik’s likely to kill the prick and throw in with the Allies.

          11. By Logan Meyers on

            Well if the League is blocking their escape to Europe and due to a lack of ships to get them across the Mediterranean they would run to the next place they may have allies. The Germans had formed relations with the middle east due to promises to help kick the British out. If their timeline was different they could expect if not friends at least someone neutral who could help them contact Germany or any allies really. With the league blocking them its their only hope within any reasonable range to save their vehicles.

          12. By Logan Meyers on

            But I believe it might not be too far out of his practical character to meet with the rogue Germans. If they have Grik askari who are employed not only as pack mules and ground forces but as NCO’s (Hidj) to help keep them placid which is an employed tactic they successfully employed in East Africa during WW1. Many of those would know the German hero Paul Emil von Lettow-Vorbeck who wrote about his methods especially since they were going to deploy to Africa. If they met Halik and Niwa they could get context on the world and have a safe haven for the first time. For Halik this is a force of extremely well armed men who have weapons even Reddy doesn’t have, plus the humans are experienced in modern war and have technical knowledge that he can use to modernize. They would likely demand officer and Staff NCO positions in his force for their help but it wouldn’t be the worst outcome. Plus he would be the first force with any knowledge of the League territory.

  34. By Alexey Shiro on

    Whew! Just finished a cycle of articles (on Russian, sorry :( ) about the radio-controlled target ships of 1920s. Like CB-4 “Iowa”, “Utah”, HMS “Agamemnon”, IJN “Settsu”, and, of course, our favourite four-stakers of “Wickes” class.

    http://fonzeppelin.livejournal.com/14984.html

    In short – they are awesome. Such excellent level of nautical electronics on such primitive technological base. There were no micro chips, no fansy programs & flash drives. Even the vacuum tubes were used only for signal amplification, not for processing.

    They were all about crystal radio gears, magnetic relays, mechanical rotary selectors & differentials. And they were awesome. The ol’ good “Agamemnon” was capable of about 99 different commands, including different speed, different headings, different angles of turn. The german “Zaringen” ex-battleship was even capable of imitating the counter-fire. Different solutions were used, but all demonstrated the awesome ingenuito of 1920-1930s peoples.

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      These were coal-fired ships? Or oil? If coal, wonder how they kept steam up.

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        Oil-fired, to simplify the unmanned runs. Some of them – like “Agamemnon” – could even control the oil flow in burners via radio commands.

        Reply
    2. By donald johnson on

      How to get to automatically translate to English on a cell phone on my computer is easy but I can’t find out how to do it on my cell phone

      Reply
    3. By William Curry on

      A lot of that technology was still in use in industrial controls up until the 1980’s. When I started in the 1970’s electro-mechanical and pneumatic was state of the art. Electronic controls started to be introduced in the 1960’s but were not liked because they didn’t work very well until PLC’s and 8086 and 8088 processors started showing up in the 1980’s.

      Reply
    1. By donald johnson on

      The only thing I see wrong with it is the propeller directly behind the co-pilot head if it were me I would push the propeller back another foot or two with a shaft extension. Moving the entire engine back would change the center of balance too far to the rear. I also did not see any pontoons or other wingtip stabilizers.

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        The pontoons are retracted into the wing tip, like the Catalina’s. The observer is the poor biatch having to crank them up & down for take offs & landings.

        Reply
    2. By Steve Moore on

      Yikes! How’s the observer going to shoot at Grikbirds or fighters without getting a haircut or their arms chopped off? Could the prop be mounted forward with a ducted fan approach (blowing over the wing, giving more lift), or have the observer’s station in a wider central strut?

      Maybe it’s time to re-imagine the PB-2, maybe a setup similar to your scout bomber, which is really impressive. Still thinking of a twin-engine scout/recon version with longer wings, narrower land-plane fuselage and more fuel.

      Reply
    3. By Lou Schirmer on

      What I’d like to do is move the observer up either behind the pilot or next to him, but they don’t have a cartridge or inertial starter for the W/G engine yet.
      It already has a bit of a prop extension, I could make it longer though. Either way the observer has a prop in right front or behind him/her. If I were the observer on this variant, I’d sit facing the rear, like most of the single engine PB’s from that era. Either way it’s a noisy place & tight for shooting.

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        If the observer needs a clearer field of fire, I could do a gear or chain drive in the prop extension housing to lift the prop shaft about a foot & extend it farther.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          With Grikbirds in the East and Kurokawa’s new fighters, maybe it’s time to build the faster STD scout bomber and relegate the Nancy’s to scouting & close air support. They’re just too slow for opposed combat. Putting a P-1 on a float would make it too unwieldy, but a two engine plane gives good fields of fire in both directions, as well as increased speed.

          Or, build an updated Stringbag with the 10-cylinder radial.

          Crazy idea (yeah, I’m full of them) but you know how the Dauntless (and Stuka, I believe) had trapeze bomb releases to clear the prop while dive bombing? Why not a similar rig on your STD, but for a 10″ or 12″ rocket? 200-knot airspeed when launched would give good directional stability, the ignition would be away from the plane and it’d be a hell of a lot faster to target than a torpedo. In a dive bomb attack, the increased speed would lead to greater penetration on a target like Savoie.

          And low tech, in keeping with some dose of reality.

          Keep the projectile weight at around 500 lbs and more planes could carry them, like P-40’s flying out of the Republic or Madagascar.

          Reply
        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          I suspect Taylor is well ahead of us on most of this. The limiting factor is his publisher only lets him do one book per year & since each book seems to cover 2-3 months, progress seems slow ,but we have to keep remembering these 12 books so far have only covered about 2 1/2 years their time.
          To have ANY aircraft flying is a minor miracle, much less the air force they have now & ditto for steel DDs & turbine engines.

          That said, they do need a heavier attack platform. The Nancy was designed as a recon plane & pressed into the attack & fighter roles. Definitely not suited to the fighter role & limited to light attack at best. If they developed a cartridge or inertial starter for it, I’d say move the observer into a tandem arrangement behind the pilot. The balance would be better & it would make an excellent initial training aircraft.

          The 10-cylinder radial is not powerful enough in it’s current model to get a torpedo & crew of two plus machine guns off the ground without a very long runway & the rate of climb would be pathetic, if it could even make it out of ground effect. The Swordfish had a bit over 600 horsepower, & the current radial has 325. A twin engine setup of some sort is the way to go for now.

          Your trapeze missile launcher is an interesting idea. It would keep the missile from setting a fabric aircraft on fire or scorching a plywood design when launched, but it would have to be dropped fairly close for it to be accurate enough. I’d think you’d have to be inside 1,000 yards to get the hit probability up enough. Good for dive bombing, but the accuracy gets worse as the angle drops from the vertical. So not a torpedo replacement until they get a guidance system going (maybe wire guiding?). I might go with a spring loaded shackle arrangement to push it away from the aircraft when dropped, or even just a strip of thin gauge sheet steel on the underbelly (think thick foil) & use standard drop hardware. That would probably be easiest.

          In the dive bombing role though a 10-12″ armor piercing warhead would do good damage against even a modern warship. It would be about the same as a 1,000lb AP bomb plus rocket propelled, so maybe 1,500-2,000lbs on the aircraft.

          Reply
          1. By donald johnson on

            // So not a torpedo replacement until they get a guidance system going (maybe wire guiding?)//
            and how do you propose doing a wire guided torpedo system from an aircraft and who is the person to guide it?

          2. By donald johnson on

            A dive bomber is not practical with a fabric skinned aircraft as the speed would rip the skin off the wings however a plywood craft is quite practical. If you used large enough dive brakes to keep the speed down possibly fabric covered aircraft will work except the slow speed would give the ship an easy target. The rocket assist would definitely give it better penetration even from slow fabric aircraft and the rocket fuel exploding on contact increases the burning of target.

        3. By Justin on

          It might also be a good idea to consider a quad-engine bomber (1300 hp?). Something like a discount Mosquito could work as a scout, bomber, heavy fighter AND strike fighter… with the drawback of requiring an airstrip, of course.

          Reply
          1. By donald johnson on

            they had very good results during the second war using Catalina’s against submarines and I suspect a similar arrangement would work just fine against other craft as long as they stayed out of gun range. They could also use them as high altitude bombers with lesser accuracy in saturation mode with a strike force of 10 or more aircraft each dropping 3 or more bombs. Remember that a close miss with a 250-500 lb bomb can cause even a battleship to spring leaks that would slow their progress as they slowed to repair the leaks. and a lucky strike down the smokestack will sink even the biggest ship around.

          2. By Justin on

            Sorry, but I don’t remember.

            A) A close miss would likely have to be 1,000 lbs or heavier; a destroyer would be in trouble from a rinky-dink 500-pounder, but battleship armour is pretty thick.

            B) The smokestack is a trunked exhaust pipe for the boilers – the worst that happens is a crippled engine and the ship slowing down.
            If you’re thinking of Arizona, that was a magazine penetration from an 1,800-pounder. And if you’re also thinking of Michael Bay’s Pearl Harbor, don’t – it’s like the 300 of World War II movies.

          3. By donald johnson on

            The bottom of a battleship is not usually armored or at most thinly armored. When a bomb misses it usually is about 40 to 70 feet under water when it explodes because they are not contact fused but contact + time so they will have penetrated before the explosion. This can badly damage the bottom seams even the largest ships.

          4. By Justin on

            Fair enough, but again, note that said near-misses were conducted by 2,000-3,000 lb bombs. Not sure how much damage the Union’s 600-lbers would do here, if any.

      2. By Steve Moore on

        How are torpedoes fired, with a cartridge?

        But if you move the observer forward, then there’s no aft protection.

        Could you put two radials on a PB-2 for more speed and range? Have a few on each carrier?

        Reply
        1. By donald johnson on

          This would save heads as well. And also why stay with a pusher configuration. why not a push pull configuration as this could use smaller props though it would require 2 props per engine.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            Don’t two props on each end of one shaft cause a torque problem? They’d have to be as close as possible, but maybe 2 smaller back to back props within a duct or cowl would increase thrust over the wing. He 177 used two engines and a gearbox, but Nancy doesn’t have the room.

            Need some engineering done here..

  35. By Justin on

    Another thing we haven’t discussed much: how can the Union evolve their tanks into proper AFVs?

    I’d say their best bet (in the near future) is an assault gun. Take an existing landcruiser, add a hull casemate, mount a Republic 75, maybe add a .30 cal in a shielded cupola – presto, StuG I.

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      Where would you use such a vehicle? You’d need some kind of road grid, fairly open territory, and transport to the battle area. Think they’d be better off with something like a Jeep, lightweight for transport but able to tow trailers full of ammo or supplies, light wheeled artillery; or maybe 3/4 ton trucks. Speed of movements and flexibility of use would be of greater value, but that’s just my two cents worth. Seems to me that southern Africaa would be the best place for any mechanized force.

      When it comes to assault formations, the Alliance is still a WW1 style army that moves on its feet. Seems to me that more effort should be put into hand-portable weapons. Handcarts for .50 cal machine guns, bazookas or recoilless rifles for assault artillery, and perhaps mechanization for heavier artillery support. I’d like to see the Republic start making 03 Springfields, since the .30-06 cartridge is now mass produced for .30 Brownings, BAR’s, and others. Ditto for Blitzer Bugs. Why? If they’re captured by the Griks, they couldn’t be used against the Allies since Griks would be physiologically limited to operate them.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Southern Africa, yes, but also Zanzibar and Ecuador. The Union’s going to need mobile firepower to clear Grik/Dommie trenches and fortifications. A proto-StuG might also be useful against the usual Blood Drinker & Superlizard charges.

        At the moment, the Union’s only got 4 engines, maybe 20-30 by the end of the Grik War. Not enough for sufficient Jeeps/trucks for an entire army, but enough for one tank unit.
        The enemy does mostly lack roads, but tracked vehicles can often just ignore bad terrain or vegetation. Wheeled vehicles would be in serious trouble.

        //When it comes to assault formations, the Alliance is still a WW1 style army that moves on its feet. Seems to me that more effort should be put into hand-portable weapons.//

        Those would be good too. But the Union already has tanks (kind of), so it’d be good to improve those as well.

        //and perhaps mechanization for heavier artillery support.//

        Hence the assault guns. Or assault howitzers, I’m not picky.

        //If they’re captured by the Griks, they couldn’t be used against the Allies since Griks would be physiologically limited to operate them.//

        Lawrence can operate a rifle just fine (with trimmed claws). Here’s hoping Esshk doesn’t figure that out anytime soon.

        Reply
        1. By Steve White on

          The Union has plenty of engines; it’s only dedicated four of them to tanks. You have the Wright-Gypsy engines dedicated to aircraft; these are also (apparently) used in small boats, etc.

          It’s interesting that the U.S. used aircraft radial engines in its tanks. It would be real easy for the Union to use the WG engine. While I’m not sure, I think the limiting factor in building tanks isn’t the engines but the rest of the metal required, and (I suspect) the transmission.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            A direct drive fan to keep the engine cool & some sort of dual chain drive for the drive wheels with hand clutches for differential track steering. Presto! A tank! Just add cannon! New from Ronco!

          2. By Justin on

            //The Union has plenty of engines; it’s only dedicated four of them to tanks. You have the Wright-Gypsy engines dedicated to aircraft; these are also (apparently) used in small boats, etc. //

            Yes, and no. The problem is that aircraft still take priority over tanks – the Khonashi’ll be lucky to have two or three dozen by the fall of Sofesshk.

            //It’s interesting that the U.S. used aircraft radial engines in its tanks.//

            They still do – the Abrams uses a JET turbine!

  36. By Joe Thorsky on

    Guys

    I do believe that I was stating what seems to be quite obvious and
    prudent. Given the limited air and naval resources available,
    any form of retaliatory action with any chance of success against the LOT would still best be directed/conducted against whatever land locked harbor based oil refineries that are being put to use. Starving the oil tankers of the Oil/AV Gas they feed to operate warships and aircraft remains the best strategy to follow.

    I say again “Hopefully best use and practices would not try to dupe or imitate the Ploiești, Romania Raids of Operation Tidal Wave.”

    Reply
    1. By matthieu on

      You are completely right on some points: right now any hit on their industrial capability would hinder their efforts. Allies really need to fous on one part of the industry. If possible something that the enemy really needs.

      It’s hard for me to believe that griks have been able to develop a complete oil industry but if we assume that it’s the case, then they should have a limited number of refineries. Probably a single one. Something highly sensitive to fire. Any attack from a PT boat with a mortar would lead to some creative and noticeable fireworks.

      Right now the alliance should see its own battles as fast hit-and run raids to prevent a much larger enemy from being able to advance. It would win them time.

      Reply
      1. By Joe Thorsky on

        Matthieu

        Isn’t crude oil just another form of rotting decayed dinosaur
        aka Le bray Tar pits? Maybe another method has been discovered
        and is being used.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          That’s it… some industrious Hij found a tar pit and invented roof sealing. Probably why Grik habitations all have flat roofs. Sorry, couldn’t resist.

          Reply
        2. By Steve White on

          There are some who think that oil can be created by an abiotic process, since (according to their reckoning) there weren’t ever enough dead dinosaurs to generate all the oil we have and have consumed in the world.

          Reply
          1. By Joe Thorsky on

            Steves-Donald, Guys

            For you to wildcat about now that Valentine’s Day is over
            and discussion is drilling into the very nature and essence
            of the crude oil supply and demand.
            Just how many gusher barrels of crude oil could be derived or
            taken/produced from an average size “Binyip”?

        3. By Steve Moore on

          Coal, which the Grik also have, can be gasified but it takes high pressure and high temps, Griks probably not that advanced and I don’t think Kurakowa could have given them that. Maybe the LOT Germans had it, they were doing it before WW2 I believe.

          Reply
        4. By donald johnson on

          Actually no, oil is methane that’s been sitting for a few hundred million years in the Rocks. as the microbes eat the rocks they break up into hydrocarbons in the rocks which turns into make methane which pools up under pressure and turns into crude oil it only takes a hundred million years or so. LNG is a middle of the road transient form between the rocks and oil it just hasn’t been down there long enough.

          Reply
      2. By Steve White on

        Figuring what part of the industry to hit is always the issue. Took the Allied Air Force in Europe quite a while to focus on oil and transportation, and even then it was late 1944 before that really began to cripple the Nazis.

        Plus to have to be able to get to your target. The Med is a long, long ways away. The League oil fields are where? I’m not sure where Italy and France were drilling in Africa to get oil in the 1930s. We know today that Libya has lots of oil, but what was known back then?

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Well, there’s a few in northern Italy. And we know that the Great Powers knew about oil in Egypt and the Caucasus – that’s why the Axis invaded both in OTL.

          The League should also know about the Middle East… but Halik’s currently sitting on most of it, so they probably won’t bother.

          The only other land deposits within League cruising range are in the Caribbean and the African west coast – if there’s refineries there, the Union should definitely start thinking about getting themselves some medium bombers.

          Reply
          1. By matthieu on

            No real need: to ground Griks planes you just need to destroy the reffinery. There should be a single one and it probably producses barely usable gas.

      3. By William Curry on

        LNG is natural gas that was a vapor, but has been compressed and cooled until it condenses into a liquid. To remain a liquid it has to keep kept under pressure in a suitable pressure vessel. A better tactic would be to find where the Griks are getting their hydrogen or Helium to fill their large fleet of airships and destroy that source. Remember that large quantities of either are produced from natural gas.

        Reply
        1. By William Curry on

          PS while oil may contain some methane, it’s not primarily that. It’s a complex soup of hydrocarbons. Each oil field usually produces a somewhat different mix of soup. The level of contamination in the form of water, sulfur, helium etc. varies by field as does the percentage of different hydrocarbons. Crude has different bases which make it more suitable for refining into certain types of product rather than others. Modern refining techniques make it possible to turn almost any crude into any kind of product, but the technology in the late 1930’s and early 40’s wasn’t quite that good. An oil refinery will use a LOT of steam, as most refining processes involve a lot of heat. So look for a large steam plant. A lot of petroleum congeals at room temperature so the pipes in a refinery are heat traced and the storage tanks are heated. Most product is divided into distillate (gasoline, #2 fuel oil) or residual product (#6 fuel oil or Bunker C and asphalt). The fractional distillation process uses a lot of high pressure steam.

          Reply
          1. By donald johnson on

            After a few hundred million years the methane is badly trashed by the additions of the impuritys in the rock. as you mentioned sulphor and other chemicals and the high heat and high-pressures from the depth that it is located in all leave their marks in the final product. However it does all begin as methane which came from the microbes eating the rocks hundreds of million to several billion years ago.
            A referance below
            https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC440986/pdf/bactrev00191-0022.pdf

  37. By Joe Thorsky on

    Guys Alexey-Donald-Justin-Lou

    Good points all! But in planning against the LOT with a very limited inventory of recon-bombers-fighters of very limited range and capability. The most cost effective way to employ and make best use of these resources at this junction is to severely cripple or eliminate the LOT”s ability to refine the oil that they are using to operate/run their ships and aircraft. Against the critical/vital strategic-tactical targets of LOT’s oil refineries could/would severely limit their naval and air capabilities and war fighting strategies.
    Hopefully best use and practices would not try to dupe or imitate the Ploiești, Romania Raids of Operation Tidal Wave.

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      Not knowing what ‘beings’ inhabit the Med and southern Europe, seems to me that the Alliance should take the example of the Grik to hand and not attack nations’ homes. Cut the LOT off at the neck, maybe, when they extend the nearly 6000 miles closer to the Republic, but leave the Med alone for now. They have Halik as a possible non-human counterweight to the LOT and the nature of Fascism is to dominate (which suggests that the LOT might not be as welcome a guest as the Destroyermen have become). The Alliance needs to keep their hands in tight, by comparison, to fend off any long-distance punches. JMHO.

      Reply
    2. By Lou Schirmer on

      Joe, if you think about the planning & logistics involved with something like that, it would take years to pull off. Even if they weren’t already fully committed against the Grik, Kurokawa & the Doms. The recon alone would probably take over a year.
      Plus attackers would get ripped to shreds & any damage would be quickly repaired. At Ploiesti production went UP after the raid. A raid like that may provoke them into sending heavier forces to the Indian Ocean or Pass of Fire theaters & the allies don’t need any more modern BBs & escorts showing up.

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        Moreover, such raid would – in current situation – be a clear declaration of war against League by the Union. I really doubt that Union wanted to do that. Quite a lot of actual & potential allies could back off, unwilling to participate in formal agression. NUS clearly wouldn’t side with Alliance in that: they understood perfectly that any retaliation would be against them.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Agree. Don’t need the ‘run away, run away’ faction coming back, or a THREE-ocean war.

          Reply
        2. By Justin on

          Right. After the Grik are finished, we’re probably going to see a brief cold war as all the various Allies upgrade their tech against the League and the League builds a passable industrial base. THEN the raids can begin.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            Well, hope Halik and his Grik survive. Sort of like Hitler’s Germany transitioning into West Germany, think that will be very interesting, especially how they react with any non-human beings. Except, Taylor, please don’t transport in any extraterrestrials….

          2. By donald johnson on

            Taylor already told us that ET’s were not involved

  38. By Steve Moore on

    Made the mistake of getting BITW from the library while waiting on the paperback… should have made notes, but that was before I realized I’d find this site. Don’t even have the maps from BITW (hint), so if I miss what seems to be an obvious point from the book here or there, I’m going on only one reading.

    Reply
  39. By Steve Moore on

    Is it just me, or is the DD’s #3 gun firing remotely on the BITW cover? Seems to be a common theme in a lot of the covers.

    And no, I am not in Justin’s Canadian whiskey.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      We drink Molson, actually – Bud Lite, but somehow even worse.

      Yeah, we talked about it a while ago. I’ll say it again – rendering people (let alone Lemurian people) is hard.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        Well then, just focus on perspective and content. However, I doubt we’ll see a cover of Tabby’s engine room, since this is a PG-13 series…

        Reply
      1. By donald johnson on

        Taylor or maybe it’s the artist for the book company doesn’t like people on the ships. he has mentioned this before

        Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            At least the ships are looking more realistic even if the artist mixes a few theaters together. My apologies to the artist, but the “Straits of Hell” cover made the Walker look like Tugboat Annie.

  40. By Justin on

    Come to think of it, this entire clustershag with Savoie could’ve easily been avoided if the Republic had just mined the harbour.

    French sail in expecting a cakewalk, kaboom. Problem solved.

    Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      They didn’t know she was coming. Why mine your own harbor?

      After the fact, was I them, I might mount some torpedo tubes at the ends of a couple of piers in a covered boat house looking things. Some one comes in throwing their weight around, drop the side walls (like a Q-ship), & shove a couple spreads of torpedoes up their stern to calm them down.

      With torpedoes, you don’t have to worry about them breaking loose or ships accidentally running into them, & as an added bonus, they’re out of the water for easy maintenance.

      Might be an idea for cheap & easy harbor defense in Madagascar & elsewhere.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        Plus, you get the technology and the scrap steel, as soon as you take care of 800 PO’d French gunners…

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Although, in somebody else’s harbor… PT’s dropped offshore, Buzzards to drop flares, and PT’s zoom in to fire a spread. No need to sink Savoie, just immobilize her like Tirpitz, which puts a big dent in Kurakowa’s reputation. Would have been a great mission for S-19.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            Again: the Japanese are BETTER in that. They are masters of pre-radar night warfare. Generally any nighttime engagement would gave Kurokawa an advantage – he just knew much better what to do.

          2. By matthieu on

            Not any more: their watchers were excellent, they had a specific training and so on. Right now he’s lacking people. He’s just uning griks.

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            They may have training; they lacked tactics. The Japanese spend a lot more efforts for nighttime combat than US Navy, and Kurokawa was the BATTLECRUISER captain. The battlecruisers were the pinnacle of Japanese nighttime naval tactics; they were supposed to break through the US cruiser screens, thus allowing the destroyers and heavy cruisers to reach the USN battleships.

            So, basically, Kurokawa is clearly an expert in nighttime combat. I see no reason to assume that Grik crew under his command are less competent in that matter.

          4. By matthieu on

            I see reason to think that they would be competent: so you really think that he’s using his time to train people in a specific school? They needed literally dozens of year to train a captain. Years to train a recruit. His staff would have been able to provide some training but this training was assuming that some weapons were available: specific illuminating shells, specific projectors and so on. Here they don’t have anything.

      2. By Joe Thorsky on

        Guys:

        Since discussion has gotten at least half a pint ahead of me,
        might I make a suggestion that is more or less in keeping
        within the parameters of Taylor’s initial proposal.
        Since the RR People already have two turret Monitors and the capability to retrofit them and modify and reconfigure them. Why not take out the cannons in one turret and install torpedoe mounts instead. You’ll end up with Camouflage and ship-killing firepower at very little cost.
        Very doable.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          True. Speaking of Canada, they’re sending me MORE snow.

          At this stage, the RRP haven’t even seen torpedoes yet, and the Union torpedoes are of limited range. Taylor’s hint was that they were going to start without Union advice. So maybe the thing to do is start with what they know of seagoing steam; the Amerika’s hull form, and artillery. That combination leads to armed merchant cruisers that would be enough to savage Grik Indiamen in the Indian Ocean, and push further north along the Atlantic coast.

          The Union could bring them a few steam DD’s which they could re-arm with 75mm or 105mm guns, a stopgap, but going back to what they know and already have; experienced sailors and state of the art guns. I’m surprised they didn’t offer Garrett a 75 in exchange for the Nancy and Bekiaa.

          Speaking of merchant ships, what kind of invasion force could have made up the transported League? You’d have a screening force of cruisers and DD’s, probably as well as a couple of BB’ or BC’s for fire support, but mostly troopships and a few auxiliaries; the main support force would be a day or so behind, I’d think. The fly in the ointment, however, is what ‘beings’ they met.

          Reply
        2. By Alexey Shiro on

          //. Why not take out the cannons in one turret and install torpedoe mounts instead. You’ll end up with Camouflage and ship-killing firepower at very little cost.//

          Because this would be essentially useless. Monitors are slow and have only a limited seaworthiness. Even if they have torpedoes (for that reason you don’t need to srtip one turret; you could just install underwater tubes), what good it would be for them? Against Grik battleships their 8-inch rifles are better. Against League’s… the monitors simply have zero chances to get into torpedo range. Even “Savoie” coould easily outrun the monitor – and she was considered slow even in 1920s.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            The Union could send the Republic Hardee and his PT’s and torpedoes to both use for near-harbor defense, and to copy. That gives them a quick means of upping their capabilities, and excellent barter material for a battery or two of 75’s and 105’s.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            Looking at the map of Africa, the Republic border seems to be the 20th parallel. Walvis Bay is in Republic hands.

            So where does Savoie replenish? Any enclave on the eastern Africaan shore would have undoubtedly been found by the Griks, including anything near the oil fields of Arabia. She’s got to have supply ships from somewhere, and coming down the West Africaan coast from any European colonies is still a long, long ways. Alexy, what can you tell us about her bunkerage?

          3. By Joe Thorsky on

            Alexey

            I think you’ve overlooked an as yet not clarified important point about the LOT and the “Savoie”.
            Would you waste your already difficult to manufacture
            and uncertain inventory of main battery ammunition against an enemy city or on coastal patrol vessels that can be easily replaced/duplicated. There’s no
            lasting benefit to be gotten for the expenditure of costs. It’s the reason for using diplomatic/intimidation tactics instead.

            Now I know its time I need to have a caffeine laden Irish coffee break!

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            I think he meant the monitors to remain as harbor defense with a torpedo armament. I still think putting a few quad mounts on piers or near the harbor entrance in boat houses as camouflage would be easier, cheaper & more lethal than the monitors.

          5. By Steve Moore on

            Continuing with Savoie logistics; neither Italian nor French navies were particularly ‘blue water navies’ like the US or Japan. The Germans to some degree had coaling stations overseas during WW1 but focused more on the Baltic and the North Sea, with the exception of U-boats. One or two Italian subs may have crossed over with the invasion screening force, but they’re probably more littoral in range. Consequently, I don’t see much possibility for any kind of underway replenishment contained in an invasion force contained in the Med for League vessels, and out on the ‘pointy’ end, they’re going to have a real problem with supply. My guess that they would also push up into the Black Sea to access the Caucasus oil fields as a second source of supply; given the number of large land animals, moving by sea or air is safer. Having oil on either end of the Med also reduces the need for supply ships. They’ve had two years of monitoring Union communications, so even if they started immediately building blue-water support vessels, they can’t have much.

            According to the Grik map in Into The Storm, they’re far up the Red Sea, with indications of ships and battles, another reason I think the Suez is closed (the map shows land). There may be other ‘beings’ up there, due to the amount of shipping & maintenance machinery there pre-‘transport’ as well as battle markings on the maps, but any League presence is probably aerial or along the Nile. My best guess is that Savoie and Surcouf were the sole League ships able to make the trip, and it wouldn’t surprise me to think that the League considered Savoie as expendable, either for alliance making rewards or a fixed battery for some final harbor.

            This is what Reddy and Letts have to realize and communicate to the Republic, and to the Union. Not to mention getting whatever they can from League personnel.

          6. By Lou Schirmer on

            Steve, Savoie & the Surcouf type weren’t the only ones making the trip. They brought an oiler & a DD. I seem to remember somewhere a German U-boat also, but would have to reread several books to make sure. They are removing the Savoie’s crew with the DD & oiler. They had to have the oiler, since neither of the other two vessels would have had the range to operate in theater or return home.

            The Suez is closed, since there was no one with the ability to dig a canal, & the Grik used the area for a land route to Indiaa. With the Grik using the place as a freeway, I doubt the LOT is operating there, logistics if nothing else, & going up the Nile would be a death sentence.

          7. By matthieu on

            >neither Italian nor French navies were particularly ‘blue water navies’ like the US or Japan.

            Yes and no: the French navy was a mix of blue water navy, colonial navy and coastal navy. Some colonial cruisers were excellent but small ranged (they were supposed to remain on station). Some cruisers were really fast (for corsair use) and so on.

    2. By Alexey Shiro on

      Justin,the “Savoie” main guns could reach 26 km range. She does not need to go into harbour to shell the city. Don’t forget, the city is stationary target, and large area target. The battleships could hit such target even from their max range.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        But that would defeat the entire purpose of Savoie‘s trip – the League was supposed to passive-aggressively force the Republic into inaction, which required Savoie to physically park herself in Alex-aandra Harbour. One stray mine (“it was just a precaution, honest!”) would’ve made all the difference.

        Reply
  41. By Steve Moore on

    OK, I’ve got to get my brain under control and stop drinking before 5. The dirt bikes and Sparrowhawks were nutty enough, but…

    Madagascar based Clippers bombing the mainland by night with incendiaries, much as the British were doing to Germany? Even if just nuisance raids, they’d do some damage and keep the Griks off-base.

    A little saner than the other idea… replace torpedoes with V1 style pulse-jet missiles programmed to fly in a straight line at sea level. Maybe even some crude radio control? OK, I’ll quit. :-)

    Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      They don’t have enough Clippers yet to cover their transport needs, so they definitely don’t have extras for bombing missions, yet.

      V-1 Exocets? Possibly. Crude radio controls have been discussed here for ships, I don’t know if they’d be able to scale the concept down small enough to fit into a missile. It would almost have to be radio controlled, since any autopilot control would probably not be good enough to hit a maneuvering target, & with any deviations in maintaining altitude would either crash it into the sea or fly too high to hit the target.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        Aim the same way as torpedoes, maybe an internal gyro, and simple elevator control. Maybe enough rudder to veer 10 degrees right or left, but flight time would be short since control is VFR. Would be cheaper than torpedoes, so misses would cost less. Just thinking. Alexy’s note about the 1940 French glide bomb would still need to be able to delivered by air, P40 would be only thing fast & powerful enough. Or maybe a Tiny Tim under each wing.

        Reply
        1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          The Germans used a pretty effective radio guided flying bomb in the Med until the US (quickly) figured out how to crash them. Clobbered a US Cruiser during the Sicily campaign (I think). All this is pretty dusty in my head. The point is, yeah, they’d be relatively simple and they’d work–at least once.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            Yup, USS Savannah. Fritz X bombs crippled the Uganda and Warspite and sunk the Roma too, I believe.

            The problem, of course, would be that such bombs weigh 1300 kg (3000 lbs). Even if the Union could build some, they’d have no means of delivering them.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, they were Germans – they never were particulary good in electronic warfare, and their guided weaponry was crude even by WW2 standards.

            The USAAF have radio-guided bombs AZON and RAZON at the end of war, and USN have radar-seeker glide bomb “Bat”, the first launch-and-forget weapon.

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            //The problem, of course, would be that such bombs weigh 1300 kg (3000 lbs). Even if the Union could build some, they’d have no means of delivering them.//

            Well, they could try this:

            http://www.earlytelevision.org/images/sec_IV-4-p.jpg

            GLOMB towed bomb glider. Designed by USN in 1942, to be towed behind the deck plane and dropped onto the enemy warship. She was controlled by the miniature TV set in her nose, but, I think, Union could use simpler solution, just visual guidance (like on German Hs 293)

          4. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Savannah. Right. But that was an example of a “Holy Crap! What are we gonna do about that??!!” weapon that was countered fairly quickly and easily.

          5. By Alexey Shiro on

            Yes, Hs-293 have – as well as the most German guided weaponry – pretty poor resistance to jamming. The Kehl-Straßburg RC system worked on fixed frequences, there were no ability to switch the control channel fast. Germans tried to develops jamming-resistant wire link, but by the time it was ready, the Allied air superiority made such primitive weaponry almost unusable.

            P.S. Still, it took nearly half of a year to make the jammers more or less effective – even with Allied superior electronic warfare tech. I think, we could safely assume that it would took much longer fore the League to do anything more than primitive manually-controlled jammers – which weren’t particulary effective.

          6. By Justin on

            Sure, but that assumes that the Union is any better than the League at electronics – at last check, they don’t have the means or knowledge for more than protable transcievers.

          7. By Justin on

            *Portable transceivers. It appears that I need to go to bed.

          8. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, the portable transceivers are enough for RC systems, generally.

          9. By William Curry on

            I had an Uncle who was a co-pilot on B17’s during WW2 and flew TV guided glide bomb attacks on some German bridge. He said the glide bombs went everywhere but where they were supposed to. Evidently in 1945 the technology was not all it was cracked up to be.

          10. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            I honor your uncle, Bill. I saw a reel of recordings from those and it was pretty awful. They might’ve worked better, but it was clear the “pilots” tended to over-control the closer they got to the target. One chokepoint for stuff like that, as well as radar for that matter, is the cathode ray tube–and giving it a useful shape. They are making tubes and light bulbs, but their shape, while getting smaller and more uniform through practice, are still more a matter of art vs precision. With just a few score of experienced workers, they could make hundreds, maybe a thousand a day. The bases could be stamped or molded pretty easily for interchangeability, but nothing past the base of the bulb/tube would be exactly the same. And with the process working, I doubt they would devote more resources toward refining it through a more automated process at the present time, with so many other things requiring more shape precision just to work. Finally, chances are that nobody, even Riggs, has a clue about cathode ray tubes. Tuning eyes, maybe. :) I’d have to ask my dad to confirm that. Anybody out there have an opinion?

          11. By Alexey Shiro on

            //I had an Uncle who was a co-pilot on B17’s during WW2 and flew TV guided glide bomb attacks on some German bridge. He said the glide bombs went everywhere but where they were supposed to. Evidently in 1945 the technology was not all it was cracked up to be.//

            Hm.

            It was probably GB-4 “Aeronca” glide bomb, based on GB-1 (interially-guided) glide bomb, with added TV guidance.

            And yes, they tended to deviate from target point a lot… their TV cameras were too primitive, and the image wasn’t good enough.

          12. By donald johnson on

            Cathode ray tubes were invented in the 1890s. Phosphers for cathode ray tube to make them practical were not invented until about 1920. The World’s Fair in 1939 in San Francisco had a working CRT for a television yes it was only four inches. My mother so it at the fair. My feeling is that our Universal Scientist should have at least read something about CRTs but probably does not know how The phosphers. As they can change prosperous and fosters is also very useful in the steel industry I suspect they will shortly have workable CRTs but it might be a few years. The CRT’S at the beginning of World War II were mostly static deflection and not magnetic deflection like the present television CRT’s. Ready being a captain of the ship probably saw a working radar the last time he was on the West Coast so he knows about CRTs or at least should know something about their possibilities but probably no technical information on building them.

        2. By Steve Moore on

          I was thinking of a single airplane nightly, sort of like Louie the Louse, since Grik have no effective high level AAA. Grik have been doing this with their zeps.

          Reply
    2. By Justin on

      Or, you could keep drinking until the ideas are so dumb that they come around full circle and actually work!

      What the Union needs to do is drag the Beaufort out of the jungle and reverse engineer the crap out of it. Several dozen medium bombers would be much more effective than Clippers.

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        They couldn’t do this. No materials or engineers. The best they could is to incorporate some elements in their future planes.

        Reply
    3. By Alexey Shiro on

      //A little saner than the other idea… replace torpedoes with V1 style pulse-jet missiles programmed to fly in a straight line at sea level. Maybe even some crude radio control? OK, I’ll quit. :-)//

      Unfortunately, not gonna work. You see, the problem is exactly the level flight. The missile need to mantain the constant altitude of just a few meters above sea level – and this is NOT easy. The barometric altimeters could not do that, because the difference in atmospheric pressure is not big enough. And compact radar altimeters… well, they are clearly outside the Union capabilities.

      Germans tried different approach with Bv 143 –

      http://alternathistory.com/files/users/user675/BV143-A-02.JPG

      – this missile used long probe, that contacted the water and supplied altitude readings for autopilot. This scheme never worked particulary good, and eventually Bv 143 weren’t adopted.

      Even after radar altimeters appeared, up until 1970s, the anti-ship missiles preferred to fly at relative high altitude (several dozens of meters, usually) and then dive on target.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        Well, we’re back to square one. The key to the technological development of the Grik is Kurokawa. If Union can find a way to negate him personally, Grik technical progress comes to a grinding halt. Social progress is still going to be a struggle between Esshsk and Halik. Ditto for Savoie. If she has no base to go to, eventually she comes to a stop. Find her base.

        But industry takes time. And time is one resource the Union doesn’t have a whole lot of. Kurokawa has a similar problem in that like the Germans, he has some technical superiority but a limited amount of workers to accomplish it. Sort of like the Japanese in early 1942.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Actually, the Kurokawa’s main problem is lack of brains, not workers. In therms of workers he – due to Uul – clearly superior to Alliance, because Uul, well, they are VERY GOOD in simple manual processes. You give Uul a showel and order to dig – he would rather die diggig, than stop.

          His main problem is, that he lacked designers and engineers. Uuls are simply unable to think creatively, and even for Hij the “out-of-the-box” thinking is not a process for which they accustomed well. He could rely only on a small number of Japanese to do basically all designing and inventing – well, he probably have some more or less creative Hij by now, but their numbers are VERY small.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            You hit exactly what I’m getting at. Kurakowa, and the Japanese are the key. The Japanese will follow the Japanese leader, whoever he is. The Japanese Navy was not as insanely militaristic as the Army, and what we’ve seen of the subordinates, they seem to have some independent thought, and capable of a possible coup.

            That’s one of the reasons I suggested the Trans-Africaa rail line… a perfect project for Uul and Hij. Not only to threaten the Republic, but to expand North into more temperate climes.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            Reddy and Letts need to think somewhat like Churchill (ok, a LITTLE more logically). With scarce resources, identify key points to throw a little sand in the gears of the Kurakowa/Grik machine.

          3. By matthieu on

            Exactly, this is his main weakness. The second one is that his men keep the real knowledge: they say what to do but there is no time to create schools of engineers. Without that knowledge the whole machine will collapse.

  42. By Steve Moore on

    Part 1
    Again, not sure if I have the right page here, but having just reread the whole series over the last few weeks (I live in a cabin in Northwestern Maine, so right now have some indoor time on my hands), had some questions. Reading the discussions as fast as I can, but a lot of threads to follow.

    I thought I’d look at some unchangeable issues, like how geography plays a role in technical discussions. Both the Republic and the Doms seem to have grasped the theory of choke points, although the Doms seem to take a more active role in the administration of the Paso del Fuego. I’m assuming there is no Suez Canal here since water levels are lower and there is no real geological activity in the area. The League’s pre-transit goal was Egypt, but their present aim seems to be Europe. Griks (and Lemurians) don’t seem to like the cold, and with the Northwest Passage closed, there’s no other way to pass quickly between oceans.

    Both the Cape and the shores of Paso del Fuego are ‘unsinkable aircraft carriers’; this is probably why Don Hernan wanted aircraft, and why he’ll probably keep pursuing them. However, like Malta in WW2 controlling the mid-Med, the Republic has the capability of denying the League access to the Pacific via the Cape. With concentrated all-weather artillery batteries at the Cape, as well as shorter-range naval vessels and airfields along the Atlantic coast, they’d be well situated to make forcing a passage very dangerous. Aerial torpedoes, on both aircraft and vessels, would add to this, in the probable limitation of League aerial assets to vessel-launched scout planes.

    Why would the League come that way? Western Africa has petroleum assets, and as colonial powers, France, Italy and Germany would all have knowledge of both West and East Africa and their resources. Nigeria would be a source of bunker fuel, and if they could set up refineries, more complex products. They’ve got the technology since they have access to Libya and have been around for 5 years. Having a coastal supply route would make things easier for support auxiliaries, than crossing the Atlantic to an unknown Caribbean only France would have knowledge of; I doubt the Italian and German partners would want to see the French gain any more control. Plus, staging an expeditionary force that far, when they are having problems controlling Southern Europe (even with their other ‘beings’?) would stretch the assets they brought into the world.

    The Paso del Fuego is a different cup of tea. With a subservient population appearing to be accepting to insurrection, and a passage restricted to steam-powered vessels at a minimum, it appears to be a more difficult defensive position for an empire limited to projecting only shorter-range naval power (coal-fired steamships) and trained Grikbirds. Remove the Grikbirds (perhaps Fleashooters and Nancys equipped with smoke generators or some other irritant such as CS/pepper grenade launchers) and the Union could seize control of the air.

    Control of the air affords New Britain and the Allies the possibility to fly Clippers from San Diego to NUS territory in Texas if contact could be established and an alliance established. Maybe it would be a one-way flight, but it would be enough to bring an assortment of plans and working models of some of the established products (Allen-Silva breech-loaders and shotguns, 1911 pistols, Fort Worth spudders, and refineries).

    The Grik are constrained by the Cape as well, but they have a couple of advantages that the League and Kurakowa could exploit. First, their sheer numbers and rapid replacement of losses. Second, their rapidly evolving industrial level. Judging by what’s in the books, they would appear to have the ‘manpower’ and technical capability to build a Trans-Africaa railroad above the Republic border, allowing them to make contact with the League as well as mounting a larger front against the Republic, necessitating more of a Republic commitment to defense rather than support of the Union. Trains would seem to make sense due to their capacity to move large loads and the lack of any other alternative (Griks don’t seem to make use of livestock other than to eat). Trains might make sense for both the Republic and New Britain’s West Coast colonies, but the Union might really find a use only in Indiaa (through the Rocky Gap, and down to Madras from inland resource areas).

    Speaking of Grik, Halik has become a moving choke point, that could benefit the Allies to some degree. By harassing or preventing movement of League forces through East Africa, he could gain some non-military support from Alden by his posting the League as a threat to Grik evolution. And if Svec were sent north to check out the League’s eastern limits, that might make Halik and Niwa a little more accepting. I’d like to think of Niwa as a possible successor to Kurokawa if insurrection on Zanzibar could be encouraged; that would put Halik in an enormously advantageous position to guide the development of the Grik race, including turning inland in Africaa. Sort of like the dissolution of the USSR.
    Part 2
    With those geological limitations, I thought that Republic industry could be more profitably guided (with the assistance of the Union) towards shorter-range defense vessels (DD’s, E- and S-boats), artillery and aircraft. The Japanese didn’t need any ships to sink the Prince of Wales and Repulse, something no lost on the Destroyermen. This would also give them the opportunity to explore (and project naval power) further north on both sides. Move the 3rd Pursuit, with their P40’s to the Republic where their capabilities can be fully used, and equip them with rockets (and torpedoes) for anti-shipping use; maybe even a 25mm slung under each wing like Stukas. The Republic might also be able to solve the problems of producing larger engines and airframes; the Soviets did a lot of good work with steel and wood in their planes. And all they’d need would be plans and blueprints for 4” and 4.7” DP, and 5.5” secondaries, perhaps even improving them. But one thing they don’t have is time; my guess is the League will move within a year, perhaps as early as summer 1945 since winter would limit passage of the Cape.

    On the other side of the Pacific, in a campaign similar to island-hopping, New Britain and the Allies can keep moving up and down the coast, establishing airfields every 100 miles or so to put more pressure on the Paso del Fuego, preparatory to sending an expeditionary force through to the New Americans (OK, sorry for the Texamerican name, but thought it might be apt), perhaps coordinating with Lemurian Raiders working with the Jaguaristas. That establishes control over both entry points to the Pacific; I’m assuming Cape Horn is impassible due to weather and the extreme range for the League or Grik. Gradually, New Britain can take over Eastern Pacific defense while working with the NUS defending the Carribean. As to carving up the Western US, well… another day.

    Reply
    1. By Alexey Shiro on

      // With concentrated all-weather artillery batteries at the Cape, //

      Er… And what if League warships simply go a bit more to south and avoid the Cape?

      It isn’t Gibraltar, after all! There isn’t any narrow straits here. There are at least a hundred miles of water between the Cape and Antarctic.

      While I agree that the Cape is natural defense position for Alliance, this is position for fleet & aviation actions, not the mines&artillery position.

      //he Soviets did a lot of good work with steel and wood in their planes. //

      Yes, but we heave real engineers and scientist working on them. You see, the problem is not so much “how to build”, but generally “how to design”. The aircrafts of 1930s are MUCH more complicated than the machines of 1910s and 1920s. They aren’t designed by “single bright inventors” anymore; they are products of the major efforts of the large-scale industry. And neither the Alliance nor the Republic have anything like that.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Yeah, something like a P-51 requires an entire company to design and build it – not to mention a lot of materials that the Union lacks at the moment.

        Mr. Anderson’s mentioned a possible laminated-wooden P-36, but that’s in the distant future.

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    2. By Justin on

      VERY nice speed reading, Steve.

      Right, Good Hope is a natural barrier between the Republic and the League’s potential African holdings… just keep in mind that light ships and World War-era aircraft are grounded by heavy weather, so don’t rely on them to deter a passage.

      Yup, I’m seeing Halik as the Allies’ Tito, denying the Middle East and Egypt to both sides – and if the League keep sending assassins, he will send some fast-working ones to Tripoli.

      The Union’s got plenty of light vessels. S-boots would work as a picket around Madagascar and the Cape, but what they and the Republic really need is some staying power.
      They’ve come close to breaking several times now, and they need some kind of capital ship which allows them to hold their ground (water?) against big threats instead of just retreating. Keep in mind what almost happened to Taffy 3 against Centre Force – it’s still the early 20th, and air power only gets you so far.

      Sounds good. Personally, I use “Dixies” or “the Deep North” for the NUS.