3,897 COMMENTS :

  1. By Matt on

    Something just occurred to me. I know the task force is in a hurry, but did anyone take the time to locate one of the crashed Macchi-Schmitts at Zanzibar? If they have DB601s then those things are worth their weight in gold. They are easily the most advanced engines in the world. Just the fuel injection system and the supercharger alone are huge tech boons for the Union. The V1710 is great but the DB601 is an even better engine. Obviously they can’t take advantage of that right now but just one or two of those engines would pay big dividends in the long run.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Full quote: They’d stay only long enough to complete necessary repairs and salvage what they could before destroying what remained and steaming back to Mahe. As Perry Brister said, they “wouldn’t leave anything there they ever needed to come back for.”

      So if there’s an intact Daimler-Benz lying around, they’d better find it before they leave, otherwise it’s staying there for good.

      Reply
      1. By Matt on

        Definitely. Luckily the planes were all observed crashing so hopefully Ben grabbed some troops and went to one of the sites after the fighting died down. They should also see about purchasing the Beaufort from the Shee Ree. They would probably accept for guns and a few radios. The more and more varied examples of modern engines they have the more it will benefit the ICE House and their development work. Each of those will be a wealth of information and teach them various approaches to solving designs. Right now the only examples to learn from are the Gypsy which came from a book, the V1710 which they can’t hope to replicate and the P&W Twin Wasps from the PBY which have paid the biggest dividends so far.

        Reply
  2. By Justin on

    Jumping ahead to when the Union eventually puts together a 1000+ hp engine… would they be best off starting with fighter-bombers (Thunderbolt), torp bombers (Avenger), dive bombers (Stuka), attack aircraft (Sturmovik) or multiroles (Mosquito)?

    Reply
    1. By Generalstarwars333 on

      My personal opinion is carrier based multiroles of some sort. If they have the engines kind of close set, they should be able to fit onto their current carriers, although the newer, smaller flat tops might not hold too well. Still, a fast aircraft that can carry a respectable bomb-load and can still tangle with fighters in boom-and-zoom engagements would be pretty great. If they can’t get a multirole, then I say go for a fighter-bomber with a large enough bombload to replace both the nancies and the fleashooters. If they have to choose between fighting and bombing though, they should go for fighting and avoid another skua.

      Reply
      1. By Generalstarwars333 on

        If they can get a multirole, put a type 96 in it. Maybe have it in a mount where you can take it off for more bomb-payload, and have a few .30s or .50s as secondary armament, but put at least one 25mm in it for tank-busting and ripping apart anything that flies.

        Reply
    2. By Matt White on

      My vote would be for dive bombers. Fighter bombers are great but the P-47 was closer to 2000hp than 1000hp. Dive bombers make fantastic precision attack platforms and are straight forward designs. The SBD was the most effective attack aircraft the US had at midway and really demonstrated how much superior dive bombers are to TBs. TBs sound good on paper but have a vary dangerous attack envelope and torpedoes can be dodged. At the end of the day they get pilots killed.

      The other nice things about dive bombers is you can take a fighter and give it dive brakes and now it’s a dive bomber. They did this with the mustang and called it the A-36. After it dropped its load it could get dirty with the hostile Cap. There’s also more than one case of a dauntless shooting down zeros. The tough little birds could and did fight back.

      And IL-2 would be effective but all of that armor makes it poorly suited to carrier ops. It’s probably too heavy to have the short take off performance needed, while still having a usable bomb load.

      The stuka is also a dive bomber but was obsolete when the war started. It did so well at first because the 109s swatted everything out of the sky. It has essentially no survivability in contested air space.

      What I’m imagining is a single seat dauntless type. The observer/gunner position doesn’t really add much in a dedicated attack platform. Just slows you down more. Give it a robust radial and some armor protection around the pilot and engine, two nose mounted 30 cals. Provision for one 500lb bomb on the center or many smaller anti personnel bombs like the Nancy’s have. Keep the wing loading unburdened low to retain maneuverability so I’m thinking a slightly oversized wingspan. Dive brakes of course, and nothing in the wings, no fuel tanks weapons etc. Range won’t be an issue because dive bombers don’t loiter. They show up, bomb their target and RTB. Having nothing in the wings will keep the roll rate up.

      You can see where I’m going with this, basically a light weight and fairly maneuverable dive bomber. It’s performance is its protection not unlike modern multirole jets.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        //TBs sound good on paper but have a vary dangerous attack envelope and torpedoes can be dodged. At the end of the day they get pilots killed.//

        Keep in mind that the League has BBs and no CVs. Current ordnance does nothing against big-gun capital ships (as demonstrated with the Clippers against Savoie), but even Yamato and Musashi can be felled by torpedoes.

        The main problem at Midway was that the Dauntlesses and Hellcats got lost, leaving the Devastators vulnerable to the Zekes. Tikker and co. should work on not doing that.

        //You can see where I’m going with this, basically a light weight and fairly maneuverable dive bomber. It’s performance is its protection not unlike modern multirole jets.//

        Sure, and it can more or less replace the Buzzard. Retiring those increases the CVs’ force projection and gives Letts a few dozen more engines for the Tank Corps.

        Still, the Union’s also missing a tactical/strategic bomber, interceptor and a naval strike aircraft; right after the SB starts production, they should get started on a twin/triple-engined Clipper replacement.

        Reply
        1. By Matt White on

          //Keep in mind that the League has BBs and no CVs. Current ordnance does nothing against big-gun capital ships (as demonstrated with the Clippers against Savoie), but even Yamato and Musashi can be felled by torpedoes.

          Even with poor AA training a lot of kurokawas TBs were shot down by AA fire. Having to move on a slow, low and predictable course is bad if you don’t want to get shot. Making AP bombs also isn’t hard. The union is making bombs based on the 4″/50 shells already. Making bigger ones based on Amagi’s or Savoie’s APHE shells will work fine with the proper fuse. Remember dive bombers attack the deck armor at a near to 45 degree angle. We are talking a few inches of armor at the most. The Japanese did the same thing for Pearl Harbor and it worked well.

          //The main problem at Midway was that the Dauntlesses and Hellcats got lost, leaving the Devastators vulnerable to the Zekes. Tikker and co. should work on not doing that.

          Long range navigation over sea is going to be very important regardless of what type of aircraft they deploy. I think they have that worked out well though in principle. Long range ferry flights with buzzards have been going on for sometime. All that needs to happen is make sure that training reaches the carrier wings.

          //Sure, and it can more or less replace the Buzzard. Retiring those increases the CVs’ force projection and gives Letts a few dozen more engines for the Tank Corps.

          No reason to completely throw away a successful design. They can be repulsed as maritime patrol aircraft. Something that seems to be more and more important as we get closer to League territory. By the time the union is building not-dauntlesses a much more modern tank with a more appropriate engine will be developed anyway.

          //Still, the Union’s also missing a tactical/strategic bomber, interceptor and a naval strike aircraft; right after the SB starts production, they should get started on a twin/triple-engined Clipper replacement.

          A better fighter is needed but also straightforward. Ben knows what he needs there. Primarily better engines and a stronger airframe. They will come in time. A strategic bomber won’t be carrier based, even what passes for a WW2 medium bomber isn’t carrier material unless you want to go full Doolittle.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            //The Japanese did the same thing for Pearl Harbor and it worked well.//

            Note how it took 1800-ib shells to sink Arizona; that’s a modified 16″, whereas a 500-lb AP would be roughly 9-10″. I’d have to look at the penetration table again, but I’m guessing the hypothetical “Dante” won’t have enough punch for more than carriers and cruisers.

            //A strategic bomber won’t be carrier based, even what passes for a WW2 medium bomber isn’t carrier material unless you want to go full Doolittle.//

            Right. Multiroles are land-based, being WAY too big for carrier ops.

            That only makes them shorter-ranged, though – a squadron capable of crippling capital ships, tanks, bombers and bases alike would completely dominate its combat zone.

          2. By Matt on

            //Note how it took 1800-ib shells to sink Arizona; that’s a modified 16″, whereas a 500-lb AP would be roughly 9-10″. I’d have to look at the penetration table again, but I’m guessing the hypothetical “Dante” won’t have enough punch for more than carriers and cruisers.

            Well I think the 1800lb shell was overkill, you don’t need as much to penetrate 5 inches of armor. However the “Dante” (like the name btw) if it has similar carry capacity as the real McCoy should be able to carry more than a 500lb bomb. The 340mm mle1912 guns on Savoie would have a 1268lb APC shells. That’s not nearly as far off the 1,800lb target and should do the job.

            //Right. Multiroles are land-based, being WAY too big for carrier ops.

            //That only makes them shorter-ranged, though – a squadron capable of crippling capital ships, tanks, bombers and bases alike would completely dominate its combat zone.

            Which is why I think the Buzzards and Clippers should be re-purposed as maritime patrol aircraft. They have the range to cover vast sections of ocean and if they ever get around to figuring it out, the payload to carry a RADAR.

            Africa and the Med is a big place so I reckon in any possible war with the league ground based aircraft will have their hands full fighting the land war. Capability overlap is nice, adds redundancy but the Carrier’s main job is mobile power projection of air assets, they should be hunting and neutralizing the opposing surface fleet. In the same vein land based aircraft are tasked with supporting the army. That means tactical support on the battlefield but also strategic support in crippling the other guy’s air power and industrial capacity.

            So the way I envision Union airpower in say 1950 is some form of fighter/interceptor that can match or exceed E model BF109s both land and carrier based versions. A multi engined strategic bomber with a payload of a few tons, attack/dive bomber aircraft our “Dante”, and a maritime patrol aircraft. Obviously there will be more but those are the main combat types.

          3. By Justin on

            Thanks. Seemed appropriate, seeing as the plane’s “descending into hell” and all that.

            //The 340mm mle1912 guns on Savoie would have a 1268lb APC shells. That’s not nearly as far off the 1,800lb target and should do the job.//

            Assuming the Dante can lift Savoie‘s shells, that might be enough to do some serious damage. Fairey Barracuda strikes (with 1600-lbers) against Tirpitz did considerable damage, knocking out two turrets and penetrating the armoured decks.
            I’d still push for torp bombers working in conjuction, though; a DB and TB squadron can conduct a pincer attack (which AFAIK is how most BBs were sunk), but it’s relatively harder to sink an evading ship with just bombs. Mission kills usually aren’t optimal, since you still have to worry about a ship even if she’s in port or drydock.

            //Which is why I think the Buzzards and Clippers should be re-purposed as maritime patrol aircraft. They have the range to cover vast sections of ocean and if they ever get around to figuring it out, the payload to carry a RADAR.//

            Sure, but the Buzzard can’t carry more than 1-2 depth charges, and neither has very good offensive capability. A Ju-88 or Mozzie flight, for example, wouldn’t need to wait/run and hope the QRF gets there in time – they might be able to handle it themselves.

            //In the same vein land based aircraft are tasked with supporting the army. That means tactical support on the battlefield but also strategic support in crippling the other guy’s air power and industrial capacity.//

            Remember that military targets fall under tactical bombing; strategic bombing is industry and civilians. So it depends on how the war goes.
            If the Union breaks into the Med early on, they can get at the League’s cities and factories right away. If not, it’ll be a long, hard slog up the continent (Red Sea, Ivory Coast, Congo, whatever), meaning the targets are going to be mostly bases, outposts and troop concentrations. Dantes might not be enough for the latter.

            Either way, it seems like a logical first step to start with mediums before working their way up to heavies.

          4. By Matt on

            //Assuming the Dante can lift Savoie‘s shells, that might be enough to do some serious damage.

            Since we are dealing with engines of the same power class, if the Dauntless can lift it then so can the Dante. The SBD had a payload of 2,250lbs. I think that often at max load they would carry a 1,000lb on the centerline and a single 500lb under each wing. Usually I see them depicted with a single 1,000lb bomb though.

            //I’d still push for torp bombers working in conjuction

            The thought just occurred to me. Is there any real technical reason why they have to be two separate airframes? I don’t think the Dauntless ever carried torpedoes but it weighs the same as a devastator and has the payload to carry the same torpedo. It also produces 300 more horsepower and has a higher max takeoff weight.

            “Dumb” torpedoes don’t require any special launching equipment aside from the appropriate mounting hardware. It’s still aimed by eye. In fact I think the inclusion of a third crew member just to drop the torpedo, which is aimed by the pilot is a little silly and pointless. If a pilot can aim and drop a bomb he can aim and drop a torp. Then its just a question of which loadout the flight wants for that particular sortie.

            //Sure, but the Buzzard can’t carry more than 1-2 depth charges, and neither has very good offensive capability. A Ju-88 or Mozzie flight, for example, wouldn’t need to wait/run and hope the QRF gets there in time – they might be able to handle it themselves.

            Let’s not get our timelines mixed up here. By the time 1,000hp engines are available all existing planes will be obsolete for combat. I’m proposing using the buzzards and clippers as maritime patrol aircraft “today”. They don’t need offensive weapons really. Just being eyes with radio is already a big improvement. They can vector in attackers from the carrier groups or land based as needed. It’s far more economical than using a whole bunch of outdated picket ships. Those crews should be back at Balkpan retraining for the new steel navy. Not sitting idly waiting to call out anything on the radio.

            //Remember that military targets fall under tactical bombing; strategic bombing is industry and civilians.

            Not strictly true. Say I have planned an air campaign to specifically attack and disable enemy airbases and cripple my opponent’s airpower. Would that not be strategic. Tactical is about winning the battle we are in, strategic is about winning the war. Anything can be either really. It depends on the context. It’s better to think of the terms as a size hierarchy not unlike military units. A company operates tactically. An Army operates strategically.

            //Either way, it seems like a logical first step to start with mediums before working their way up to heavies.

            Agreed although if we stick hard to WW2 definitions then early medium bombers are going to look weird. Definitions of what is medium or heavy changes with the time and it would take the Union as they are now to make a large 4 engined bomber to equal the load of say a B-25, if they could even do that. The result would probably resemble an interwar bomber like one of the various British biplane heavies of the 20’s-30’s. Maybe something like a B-10, which by the way carries the same load as a Dauntless.

          5. By Lou Schirmer on

            //The thought just occurred to me. Is there any real technical reason why they have to be two separate airframes?//

            Not really. If the airframe is designed with that in mind, it could do either role. While a 2,000 lb. bomb probably weighs about the same as their current torpedo, it’s also a lot longer. The airframe & under carriage have to have the clearance for a torpedo. The shackles & their attachment points are farther apart also. It’s one of the reasons my Strakka design is slightly swayback looking. A Dauntless would have been dragging the torpedo across the deck…most embarrassing.

          6. By Justin on

            //The thought just occurred to me. Is there any real technical reason why they have to be two separate airframes?//

            Lou got the gist of it. Torpedoes are big, so their plane has to be big too; that’s the other reason why they’re bigger and clumsier than DBs. You’d likely have more luck merging a fork with a knife.

            //Not strictly true. Say I have planned an air campaign to specifically attack and disable enemy airbases and cripple my opponent’s airpower. Would that not be strategic.//

            Had to look it up a while ago. Counterintuitive as it sounds, hitting air bases falls under tactical bombing: targeting the enemy’s planes, hangars, runways, supplies, equipment. Strategic bombing involves targeting the manpower, strategic resources and/or factories needed to build and supply said air bases.

            Apparently, in order to confuse the enemy, the Air Force first needs to confuse itself.

            //The result would probably resemble an interwar bomber like one of the various British biplane heavies of the 20’s-30’s. Maybe something like a B-10, which by the way carries the same load as a Dauntless.//

            I was thinking of a Pe-2, or the Beaufort in Madagascar. Slightly more speed and range than a Dauntless, but also able to recon – and intercept or torpedo, respectively – if the situation demands. A dedicated “slow” bomber can only bomb, after all.

          7. By Matt on

            //Not really. If the airframe is designed with that in mind, it could do either role. While a 2,000 lb. bomb probably weighs about the same as their current torpedo, it’s also a lot longer. The airframe & under carriage have to have the clearance for a torpedo. The shackles & their attachment points are farther apart also. It’s one of the reasons my Strakka design is slightly swayback looking. A Dauntless would have been dragging the torpedo across the deck…most embarrassing.

            What are the specs on the Union torpedo? I know the range and speed but were the dimensions ever published? I was under the impression it was shorter than the MKXIV. Air dropped torpedoes also seem to be smaller than ship and sub launched versions. The MK14 is 246 inches long. The air dropped Mk13 is 161 inches and the post war air dropped Mk43 is only 91.5 inches. It was small enough that Skyraiders could fit them under the wings.

            I would assume that Union air dropped torpedoes would not stick to the dimensional requirements of the ship based ones since they aren’t fire from tubes. We can make them as short as we want, especially since range isn’t nearly as much of a concern.

            //I was thinking of a Pe-2, or the Beaufort in Madagascar. Slightly more speed and range than a Dauntless, but also able to recon – and intercept or torpedo, respectively – if the situation demands. A dedicated “slow” bomber can only bomb, after all.

            Sounds good to me. The PB-5D already actually has the capacity we need although it lacks an internal bomb bay and has all that drag from its float plane design. That’s probably part of the reason why it is so slow even with around 1,400hp on tap. It actually has a better power to weight ratio than the Beaufort. 0.18 hp/lb versus 0.106 hp/lb.

            A solid medium bomber design will be very useful for many reasons in the long run. You could also, as generalstarwars suggests, cover over the nose and stick some Type 96 cannons in there to make a ground attack variant as well. Maybe they could think up something similar to the replaceable nose system the USAAC had for some of its medium bombers to switch between level bombing and ground attack?

          8. By Justin on

            //Air dropped torpedoes also seem to be smaller than ship and sub launched versions. The MK14 is 246 inches long. The air dropped Mk13 is 161 inches and the post war air dropped Mk43 is only 91.5 inches.//

            Well, the Mk 43 was an anti-submarine torpedo; compare and contrast its 54-lb warhead with the Mk 14’s 643-lber. Not sure what the length-to-ordnance ratio is, but I’m pretty sure that if BB-killers could be mounted on a dive bomber, torp bombers wouldn’t need to exist.

            //Maybe they could think up something similar to the replaceable nose system the USAAC had for some of its medium bombers to switch between level bombing and ground attack?//

            Good idea – one day she’s a bomber, next day she’s an attack aircraft.

            Depending on her speed and handling, a pair of 25s could even let her go toe to toe with enemy planes! Peshkas have confirmed kills against 109s, and whatever the Union designs will likely outclass many of the League’s bombers (Bloch MBs, etc).

          9. By Lou Schirmer on

            //Air dropped torpedoes also seem to be smaller than ship and sub launched versions. The MK14 is 246 inches long. The air dropped Mk13 is 161 inches and the post war air dropped Mk43 is only 91.5 inches.//

            While they maybe shorter, that’s still over 13′ long. Aerial torpedoes can be shorter because they’re usually dropped/launched a lot closer to their targets & so don’t need as much fuel & they’re still heavy. The Mk 13 was over 2,200 lbs..

            The reasons behind separate types of aircraft for the dive & torpedo bombers were the torpedo bombers had to have the clearance under the plane for the torpedo & there were a lot of companies making planes back then. They could spread the wealth more than today & aviation technology was advancing so fast, many planes were obsolete by the time they became operational. It didn’t make sense to pin everything on one design. Some TBs would have made decent DBs with the addition of dive breaks & some DBs could be TBs with modifications to the belly & landing gear. It’s more a question of will the DDmen think about it & if so, are they willing to go there? The Lemurians might be more likely to come up with the idea than the DDmen with their preconceived notions.

    3. By donald j johnson on

      As soon as they have the ability to make good crankshafts the Thousand horse engine is a definite possibility. It is my feeling that they are very close with a triple Bank radio that they presently have especially if they get super chargers

      Reply
  3. By Paul Smith on

    I have not read DD yet, so I’m not sure this hasn’t been answered.I’m not sure if this is a technical or a character question, but with new Walker class & other ships with near/ better performance coming into service, are they setting up a college for training the new captains in tactics/strategy similar to the ATC? If not, that’s one more thing for Captain Ready to worry about. Kurokawa & LOT come from backgrounds that have similar tactics. He needs to start figuring ways to get his knowledge & experience broadcast to other captains.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      No spoilers, but the Union’s soon going to need around two hundred officers to crew their existing hulls; that leaves barely enough personnel for on-the-job command experience, much less for setting up and running “New Annapolis.”

      Maybe once they have enough spare officers lying around (or swap some Baalkpan shipbuilders for Republic Naval Academy teachers).

      Reply
      1. By donald j johnson on

        Not sure how he’s going to do it but in combat there are a lot of people learning a lot of stuff fast and they don’t forget it because they don’t have time to forget it they keep doing it. The best of these will become officers selected by their officers and sent to a finishing school for further training. Funny if that isn’t the same way the US did it in World War II and in wwI

        Reply
  4. By Paul Smith on

    What metallurgy would they have access to? Steel & iron from india, bauxite from Australia, I believe. would they have known about molybdenum in Colorado? Tungsten in Canada, England, China & Myanmar. And other rare earth elements for alloying?

    Reply
    1. By Charles Simpson on

      The Great Southern Isle (Australia in our world) has both coal and iron to make iron. The books mention Nickel steel, as seen in the WIKIPEDIA article Australia is one of the world’s largest producers of Nickel: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nickel

      Reply
      1. By Matthieu on

        If you want Nickel you only have to go to New Caledonia. Bauxite is not usable without electricity and we’re far from there.

        Reply
        1. By Matt White on

          We can make electricity. That’s not the problem. The problem is they need cryolite which is only found in large quantities in Greenland. There are other ways to make aluminum but the older method gets you a very impure product and the current methods weren’t invented until post war. Aluminum is going to be very hard to develop.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            Exactly the reason why un until the end of World War II a lot of countries still seek the “mobilization”, non-metal planes…

    2. By Justin on

      Chromium in India and South Africa, cobalt in Idaho and the Congo, manganese in China, India and South Africa, and magnesium and molybdenum can be found virtually anywhere.

      Reply
  5. By Jeff on

    Bored today and here are a few random thoughts that I swept into a pile and thought I’d make a post with.

    I have an m1873 Springfield rifle vintage 1876 and an m1879 saddle ring carbine that I shoot sparingly. I use strictly commercial ‘cowboy’ ammo for these as I would never forgive myself for messing one up due to my own loads. I have thought that a pointy reptilian claw might actually be useful – Custer’s men would understand this. Even with high quality modern ammo and proper maintenance under ideal conditions I still get stuck brass occasionally and can be a real pain to get out. No doubt an esoteric point but realistically there should have been a number of People ‘what got et’ because their Allin-Silva rifles did the same thing.

    As for powder, I have a Pietta 1858 New Model Army I refer to as ‘the butter pistol’ because of the way the chamber grease melted all over my hands one really hot day. Got a .45 Colt conversion cylinder for it and it gave me pause. Never loaded much .45 Colt and never for something like that and I wanted to be careful. Unlike the Baalkpan Arsenal I don’t have the option to test to destruction. So I worked up some very mild smokeless loads in a Smith 629 using Magnum brass and translated them to .45 Colt – similar enough case and bullet weight for my purposes. Carefully monitored for overpressure. All went well and I was happy. Having read these books I thought ‘what if I had no more smokeless powder?’ So I worked up some FFFg black powder loads in the 629 and translated them to .45 the same way. That also went well. Mild but excellent accuracy and no pressure problems whatsoever. Probably at least equivalent or slightly superior to the original cap & ball – can’t say as I never chonographed those. As our heroes found out, that old-timey stuff gums up the works real fast. They feel different too. Just a slight shove and a dull flat BOOM very different than smokeless. I only got about 4-5 cylinders before either revolver began to bind terribly. I can’t imagine a 1911 liking that much at all but suppose that slavering hordes probably force you to take a different view of these things.

    I would like to throw in a disclaimer that I have been handloading a long time so if you’re new to this please don’t get any silly ideas from me and go blow your fingers off or torch your loading bench. Also, I wasn’t doing this because I read these books. This is me commenting on a separate hobby in the context of the series. So no, I didn’t get any questionable ideas here. Just fiddling with what I have at hand and am not in any particular hurry to stuff black powder into any other modern weapons.

    I have also noted in the series several cavalry models of various models deployed. Cool. The old trapdoor saddle ring is a hoot to shoot. If I had to ride a meenak around I’d appreciate something handy like that. Also, I realize the Czech Legion isn’t using 91/30s but I am occasionally and I believe it’s the same 7.62x54R. As compared to an m1903 I find the ergonomics of the Nagant to be slightly painful. Recently I took out an M44 carbine and ran maybe 20 rounds of milsurp ammo through it. I am not a small guy – 6’3” and about 210lbs – and that thing kicks like a mule and absolutely rang my bell. I feeli like I can clap with my shoulderblades now. Not quite a Doom Stomper but plenty enough to make me relegate it to display purposes only. Ouch! Just thinking that not every cavalry model is a winner – to me anyway – and I realize a 7.62x54R carbine wasn’t suggested in the series. Regardless, Col.Svec is a tough customer and would probably take one gladly and call me a sissy for making this observation. I admit to it and he can have mine….

    Finally, apropos of nothing really I bet Silva would LOVE a Coonan m1911. Nobody in that series cares about .357 but the thing is a handful and makes such a hellish blast I’m sure he could not fail to appreciate it. I’ve worked up a few ‘fist of God’ loads that I could probably go get a few rhino-pig steaks with.

    Reply
    1. By William Curry on

      The turn bolt action won out in the contest for military repeaters in part because of its powerful primary extraction. The camming action at the start of the opening cycle makes extractions of sticky cases easier. Extraction was always an issue with the Allin action. I would probably stick with Black Powder in an original Springfield 1873. In your revolver use lubricated felt wads or compressed vegetable fiber wads. When percussion revolvers were the latest thing wads were used between the powder and the bullet. You can buy felt at a fabric store and soak it in paraffin or melted black powder lube and cut the wads out with a hole punch. Vegetable fiber is used as gasket material and can be treated with melted lube as well. The common trade name of this type of material is Vellumoid. Or you can buy felt of VF wads commercially. I used felt wads in my percussion revolvers when I carried them to hunt with. Works great.

      Reply
      1. By Jeff on

        Thanks. I use Wonder Wads now – but it’ll always be the ‘butter pistol’ to me :)

        As for the .45-70 I have what is probably a lifetime’s supply of Ultramax and I have saved every bit of brass if I ever choose to reload. I was just noting that the lack of the extraction difficulties with the Allin-Silva’s. I remember reading somewhere that with Custer’s men the big problem was the metallurgy of the cartridge cases in addition to the issues with the inherent design.

        Reply
        1. By Matt White on

          Hindsight being 20/20 it’s possible and likely that they designed an improved extractor and ejector for the Allin-Silvas. The extraction issues are well known and documented and working in something like the improved extractor from the later rolling blocks wouldn’t be out of the question.

          Reply
        2. By William Curry on

          The cartridges cases in use by the US Army in 1876 were copper. Changing to a drawn brass case greatly reduced the extraction problems in the trapdoors.

          Reply
          1. By Matt on

            Right but as Jeff noted, he still has extraction issues with even modern brass. Compared to any rotating bolt, self loading, repeating or otherwise, the trapdoor lacks primary extraction. And I’ve even had crappy brass defeat the glorious Mauser claw extractor, probably the best rifle extractor design.

          2. By Jeff on

            True enough – reduced but not eliminated. In this world I think a Grik claw extractor might fit the bill, at least for our friend Lawrence.

          3. By Jeff on

            Sorry, Tagranesi claw.

            As for the muzzleloaders they also seem to have obviated the problem of having at least two opposing teeth to tear open paper cartridges.

    2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

      Good mews. I’ve been shooting trapdoors all my life. 1868s (in .50-70) and 1873s (in .4570) in good condition will easily handle the hottest black powder loads (and I mean Swiss 3f) and perform wonderfully. (I shot 2 deer this week with a .50-70). The trick is finding the right bullet alloy and bullet design. BIG grease grooves that carry lube all the way to the muzzle are critical. Also, quality non-balloon head brass pretty much eliminates extraction issues. And interestingly, the Allin conversions that Silva used for inspiration actually have TWO extractors.
      Of interest to your “Butter Pistol–) I recently had a conical, 195grn heel base bullet made with its own grease groove for cap and ball pistols. Size-lube bullets to .454. You can keep ’em in an Altoids can and load them in the field without slathering lube all over the top. They shoot good in 1858 Remingtons, 1860 Colts, even Walkers, and you can shoot ’em ALL DAY! I ran a Remington through 10 cylinders with no issues. Base pin got a little gummy and hard to pull, but there were no rotation issues.
      Agree about Nagants, and I’d add Enfields. You and I are about the same size. (Full grown humans) :) And length of pull aside, I find most European weapons uncomfortable to shoot. Full grown or not, 19th Century Americans must have agreed as well, since most American military weapons going back to the 1795 and 1816 Springfield have more drop or a narrower comb to keep from slapping the shooter in the cheek. The 1817 Rifle’s lines can still be seen in the 1873 Springfield and 1903 as well.

      Reply
      1. By Matt White on

        I managed to get an 8 point white tail buck today with a BYF 44 K98. Old girl still has some fight in her.

        I know we talked about trapdoor awhile back but what is your opinion on running smokeless through them? Is commercial safe? Do you have to handload or is it unsafe in general. I’ve been wanting to pick one up but I don’t have the time to handload and I haven’t found a solid answer yet. I like collecting old milsurp but I shoot my guns. No wall hangers in my safe.

        Reply
        1. By William Curry on

          A current copy of a trapdoor like the ones being made by Pedersoli are perfectly fine to shoot with smokeless as they have smokeless CIP proof and are made of modern steel with modern quality control.
          An original 19th century weapon made before smokeless, I wouldn’t use smokeless in it. The problem with smokeless isn’t the peak pressure, it’s the pressure dwell which is usually longer than black. You run the risk of stretching the receiver over time.

          Reply
          1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Agree, Bill. And then there’s chrystalization . . . Always feed weapons designed for black powder with black powder. Not only is it safer and gentler on the weapon, you’ll generally get better performance. It’s hard to match full-house BP loads with smokeless without generating uncomfortable pressures (and the dwell time you mentioned)! And unless you use fillers, which can be somewhat unpredictable, you wind up with loose powder that might be positionally sensitive and result in variable pressures as well.

          2. By Matt White on

            Thanks for the input guys. That’s the kind of advice I needed. I’ll be back on the lookout for a trapdoor. The originals seem more appealing to me and are actually cheaper than modern reproductions. Any recommendations on commercial black powder loads?

            I think my next big project will be a muzzle loader. I want to assemble it myself, there is something satisfying about using something you made yourself. I’ve done some looking and it seems they fall into two camps. There’s the traditions kits which seem to be fairly a-historical and not made to any specific pattern and then there are high end shops like the rifle shoppe who make all the parts for various historical weapons. I want to build to a pattern like the M1841 but I think the rifle shoppe parts are a bit above my skill level. From what I’ve read they require you to do some fitting and filing of the parts. Seems like a great way for me to ruin expensive hand made components.

          3. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Hey Matt. I can’t really recommend any of the “commercial” black powder loads. Some may be OK but the only ones I’ve tried were awful. And I’ve been loading my own for accuracy and performance all my life. If you want to load your own, I’ll be happy to share my loads with you. And I know Bill Curry has some too.
            If you want to build an authentically styled muzzleloader from a kit, and wind up with a quality, accurate rifle, I highly recommend the Lyman Great Plains rifle. It is fully fitted and you could pretty much just screw it together and shoot it. but the wood is proud enough to do a lot of shaping and customizing. The sights are pretty crude, but easy to replace and the locks and triggers are good quality. It is the best, easiest to put together, most accurate and authentically styled rifle of its type on the market, especially for the price. I had one in .54 for many years, as my “horse gun.” And my daughter assembled one when she was 12, so like I said, not hard.
            A M1841 is a laudable choice, but stuff from TRS is hard to get and requires a LOT of finishing. The Pedersoli 1841 looks good and can be re-shaped to look right pretty easily. Trouble is, production rifle-musket barrels have gone to seed. I guess they’re only good for NSSA shooting, with thin skirts and half loads. If you want good accuracy with proper loads, you really need a good after market bbl.

          4. By Matt White on

            Sounds like I need to invest in dies and a press then. It’s something I’ve been putting off for awhile anyways. Just got to figure out where to put the thing….

            That Lyman rifle looks pretty nice. I wonder if they offer the kits in left handed or just the completed rifles. With percussion it’s not a problem but I’ve burned my wrist more than once firing flintlock left handed. It’s not pleasant at all let tell you.

          5. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            I don’t know if the left hander is available in a kit or not. One cool thing though, L & R makes an outstanding aftermarket lock for Lyman GPRs. They’re fast as hell and have a roller frizzen. Polish all the friction out of it and it’s as fast as a caplock. The Lyman flintlock is OK, very much like the TC lock, but the geometry is a little off for my taste.

          6. By William Curry on

            Where a lot of people go wrong with smokeless in a big case like a 45/70 is bullet pull. If you have air space you almost always need a good firm crimp. The rate of deflagration (burn rate) in smokeless is dependent on pressure. As the pressure goes up smokeless burns faster. This means that a certain amount of pressure is necessary to get the smokeless to ignite. This means bullet pull from either inertia or a crimp. Propellant has to melt and then vaporize before it will burn. The primer often generates enough gas to push the bullet into the rifling before the propellant begins to burn good causing a pressure sag. The bullet in the rifling acts as a bore obstruction once the propellant begins to burn good resulting in a pressure excursion which can seriously damage the firearm. Black powder is not as sensitive to this as it burns slower not faster as the pressure goes up. A fast smokeless propellant in a big straight case with lots of air space usually requires a very firm crimp to get uniform ignition. Some slower propellants especially those that are heavily deterred with a coating also require a firm crimp to get good ignition even in bottle neck cases. Check out Lee factory crimp dies.

        2. By Jeff on

          We’re on the same page there. Machines – firearms or otherwise – are meant to be used. Gently in some cases though due to condition.

          I load strictly for handguns because I have far greater access to my local pistol club than rifle ranges in this area and I don’t hunt. For convenience I have been running Ultramax CB45701 405gr RNFP low velocity cowboy ammo through my trapdoors, and not a whole lot of it at that. Paper punching only. No pressure problems, accurate, clean. As I said, occasional extraction issues but I doubt it’s the ammo. I think the pressure generated by other types of modern smokeless commercial ammo would probably not be the best idea in those weapons. Personally, were I to hand load for .45-70 I’d stick to black powder for originality’s sake and take a page out of Taylor’s book (pardon the expression).

          Glad to hear your Byf 44 is still in use. I have a vet bring back Byf 42 with a mismatched bolt and duffel cut. It was literally disintegrating having been in baked in an attic for decades. I repaired the wood but the barrel’s a tad frosty. Another paper puncher. The previous owner’s son very seriously told me how his dad vaporized a woodchuck with it and ate its liver. Uh huh. I put that one in my WTF file.

          Regardless of what they are being used for they are still being used and have outlived generations of owners. As I line up the sights I can’t help but wonder where it’s been, who had it and what stories could it tell if it could talk. Ideally, none of them should involve gophers 

          Reply
          1. By Matt White on

            She’s in good shape but it’s a century import so mismatched everything. New barrel though which means I get respectable accuracy, good enough for hunting with Hornady soft points. I also have a numbers matching Argentinean 1909 but 7.65 is harder to find and it’s a G98 pattern, not fun to lug around in the field. She still gets shot though. I need a gunsmith to look at the barrel, I don’t think Juan the conscript took good care of her, she keyholes at short range with PPU and is only accurate to about 100 yards with Hornady.

          2. By William Curry on

            Slug the bore in the 7.65. It sounds like the bore may be oversized. A cast lead bullet .002 or larger than the groove diameter may fix your key holing.

      2. By Jeff on

        Thanks Taylor – very interesting. I’m not quite the DIY you are so for cap & ball I had been using the typical round lead ball and Goex FFFg. The Pietta 1858 is extremely accurate at 25 yards. Finding percussion caps became a problem around here for quite a while. Welcome to NY. Shipping restrictions, supply, hoarding etc. The cartridge conversion cylinder was my answer to all that but I had to register it – cap & ball doesn’t require that. Been using the same black powder and also some smokeless ‘PB’ powder (just because it was available). Standard pistol primers.

        Years back we were fortunate enough to have a small shop in the area that made hard cast bullets that were first-rate and were much better than the obligatory wheel weights that always seem to be around somewhere. Shot up a lot of plates & pins with them. Unfortunately the man managed to seriously poison himself and his family in the process. They got past it but the business is out and I doubt anyone can x-ray the man to this day. ‘The trick is finding the right bullet alloy and bullet design’ Indeed. Recently I have had excellent results with ‘Chey Cast Bullets’ 250 gr RNFP sized .452 with a ‘black powder lube’ in that 1858. USPS ‘if it fits it ships’ boxes gave made mail ordering them practical and as of late no shipping restrictions on lead. I have also used their products for other modern smokeless handgun cartridges and find them extremely consistent with virtually no leading even when jacked up to Silva-level velocities. They offer a variety of designs, sizes etc. And no, I have no affiliation with them other than being a satisfied customer. Best ones I’ve found since old Fred got toxified…..

        Regarding Enfields – a good friend has a funny story. As a kid the family had one that had been made into a lamp and had been around the house forever. Then one day his pop yanked the socket & wires out of it and handed to him along with a truly wicked bayonet. Turned out to be a numbers matching vintage 1915 and a great shooter! He’s used in in a few milsurp matches. Agreed – just doesn’t fit me but its slick and has a good story to go with it.

        Reply
        1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          Huh. Haven’t heard of Chey Cast Bullets. Maybe I’ll give them a try. Been using Missouri Bullet Co. for some high volume stuff like .45acp that I shoot thousands of a year. I have to cast everything else, even .44-40, since nobody makes what I want, but I always do it with good ventilation!

          Reply
          1. By William Curry on

            The local cowboy action types use Chey and seem happy with them. Missouri makes great bullets. I’ve used a lot of them. Check out Badman Bullets in Ore. as well. SPG bullet lube makes a good primer book on how to load black powder cartridges.

  6. By Justin on

    Did the Allies ever try fitting out the M3 Greaser with a drum mag? Increasing Blitzer Bug capacity seems like a good way to boost firepower until/after Baalkpan figures out bolt-actions and squad automatics.

    Reply
    1. By Charles Simpson on

      Pistol ammunition submachineguns like the M3 grease gun kept the 20 round magazine, the Russians had higher capacity magazines for their submachine guns. The union used the higher capacity magazine for the wheel pants mounted Blitzers of the first P-1s. The current version uses the Browning .30 Machine gun as pistol Ammo cartridges are not long ranged.

      Reply
    2. By Matt White on

      Drum mags seem good on paper but in practice are inferior to box mags for several reasons. They are far more finicky and prone to feeding issues. They also don’t stack and transport well. Inrange TV, a YouTube channel that has some excellent content actually covered this in on of their Q and As. They did a good job of explaining the practical issues with drum mags that are not obvious but are really annoying when you use them. There’s a reason drum mags are rarely used in militaries today. Even the Russians moved away from them.

      Reply
  7. By Alexey Shiro on

    Lou, I’m sorry if I was too harsh with my words. :( Please don’t take personal offence. But this design really would not work at all.

    Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      I’m not saying it’s a great design, because it’s not. I think it IS a viable attempt to get something to sea FAST. This is a ship where they will learn what works & what doesn’t. A quick & expedient way to gain blue water naval experience. As Taylor hinted months ago, she may be ill-fated anyway.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Sure, but here we’re assuming that the Republic’s got Liberty ships – at last check, Alex-aandra’s monitors were the pinnacle of their naval technology.

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          Naval yes, but with all those ports they have to have some sort of merchant traffic. I didn’t use the Liberty ship as a model, but they’re remarkably alike in design & the Liberty ship is actually based on a WW1 era design.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            IIRC, the Imperators are supposed to be ironclads. Perhaps they’ll razee a clipper or windjammer and rebuild her as a turret ship.

      2. By Alexey Shiro on

        It would be “fast”, but only in therms of drowning, unfortunately. Immediately after launch, to be precise. Weight of turrets would break her back rather quickly…

        Reply
  8. By Lou Schirmer on

    I put up a possible version of the Republic’s “type of protected cruiser” they have building. The design sticks to Taylor’s initial restrictions (3 turrets, 8″-12″ guns, straining to get 21 knots). It’s also a way for them to get a ship with decent firepower to sea in under a year. I also gave it an updated battle flag modeled after the one Charles put on his monitor design. Don’t know if I should put it on the Wiki, since it’s not an actuality yet.

    https://loupy59.deviantart.com/art/Quick-Build-Protected-Cruiser-712179769

    Reply
    1. By Charles Simpson on

      I had a talk with Taylor day before yesterday we discussed movies and how if you read the book prior to seeing the movie you dislike the movie since it does not match your imagined view. One of the reasons Taylor is less than exacting on his descriptions is to allow his readers to imagine. But he does like seeing things like our discussion of the League’s flag. So fellow fans of the Destroyermen Series what’s your concept of the Flag of the Republic of Real People?

      Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Great minds think alike! We both have the Imperial German eagles on our flags. :)

          2. By Justin on

            Makes sense – take the existing Roman banner, convert it to a flag, stick a German symbol on top. “Roman eagle, Prussian eagle, same thing really.”

            Assuming they went with some kind of weird Union Jack flag like the League’s though, they’d need to add other elements like a Ming Dynasty pennant. For example: https://imgur.com/a/IJw9R

          3. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            All I’m gonna say is that, at a glance, it reminded viewers a little of the Imperial German flag–but the eagle, and maybe some colors, were probably the main similarities. PROBABLY wasn’t the GERMAN eagle, either…. The Republic was a going concern long before Amerika showed up. And Justin’s suggestion of MD influence has obvious merit.

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            Wow! I LIKE Justin’s. Mine was just an adaptation of Charles’.

          5. By Justin on

            Okay, so it’s a tricolour (or an off-centre cross) with a Roman eagle and possible Egyptian/African/Chinese/German influence. Interesting.

          6. By Charles Simpson on

            Might as well put in my design based on the Roman Flag adding a lizard bird (cantet) notice fin on bill SPQR (Senate and people of Rome) As cantets are black called crows by Doocy Meek according to his son Jack the gold could be black.

          7. By Matthieu on

            The German eagle was also an accident: it could have been an Austrian eagle or anything like that. The design was not that old and don’t forget that in our world Prussian dominated but Bavaria was better placed to become the local leader…

    2. By Steve Moore on

      Elegant design, Lou, especially as a first step. When they go to a more advanced design, they’ve got all the bugs worked out for a fast trooper or underway replenishment ship capable of crossing the Indian (or Atlantic) Ocean.

      What do you think of Alliance-standard calibers, especially at sea? If this class used the same 4″/50 for both the casemate and DP guns, your magazine supply is more flexible. Meanwhile, the Baalkpaan yards get the 8″ for the follow-on CA class

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        Elegant? Horrible would be more likely. How, for Pete’s sake you would balance those turrets on MERCNAHNT hull? The sloped protection deck is all wrong – absolutely.

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          Cargo ships are built to carry heavy loads. The 8″ turrets & barbettes are located in separate holds designed to carry heavy cargo & are essentially the same turret weapons mounted on the much smaller monitors. The hull & surrounding decks would be braced to accommodate their weight & recoil. Quick firing guns were often mounted in casemates. The sloped deck is just an outline showing its location but I bow to your knowledge of their design & layout.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            I figure each hold of a cargo ship that size is capable of supporting about a thousand tons of cargo. With a reinforced base on the keel & decking built into the spaces surrounding the barbettes it should add up to around that weight. The twin 8″ turrets on USN cruisers & Lexington & Saratoga weighed 190 tons. Adding the barbettes, bracing & decking would bring it up to the thousand ton mark per hold.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Lou, you need to strenghten not only the “surrounding decks”, you need to basically replace the keel and upper deck & all between them. Otherwise the ship would have great longitudal strain. It would be cheaper and sipmler to just build a new ship as warship.

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            Also, you need a cofferdam above the slopes, otherwise the deck is kinda useless. Without some sort of flooding control, any hit would cause a flooding above the deck, and… the high probability that ship would go overkeel.

            And, all this weight top – guns, turrets, casemates, for Pete’s sake! – would made ship unreasonably top-heavy. Basically not seaworthy at all.

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            I haven’t been able to find anything on “cofferdams” with respect to protected cruisers. I’ve seen bulkheads dividing coal bunkers between inner & outer sections, is that what you mean, or is it a deck between the start of the slope & the outer hull? Could you give me a reference to look at?

            As far as top heavy goes, the superstructure has been essentially cut down with only the conning tower, bridge & spotting tower above the main deck. The fore & stern castles have also been cut down & the cargo cranes are also removed. This cuts the top weight down significantly & the added weight at main deck level should be about the same. The turrets are probably 200 tons each & the casemate battery is only armored enough to hold out smoothbore cannon fire(say 2″ plate). With the hull loaded with machinery, armor ammo & stores, she should be riding at her “loaded” line & not top heavy at all.

          5. By Alexey Shiro on

            //I haven’t been able to find anything on “cofferdams” with respect to protected cruisers.//

            Seriously?

            https://i.imgur.com/Y3m7r2b.png

            Please look at those cross-section of French protected cruiser “Guichen”, especially the parts between the outer skin and armored deck slopes, near the waterline. I believe, you would find “Cofferdam” quite easily.

            // Could you give me a reference to look at?//

            This is a section of hull divided to many small water-tight subsections, to limit the flooding when the shell hit cruiser near the waterline. Since protected cruisers have no armored belt, they were forced to rely on such design feature to stay afloat if hit.

            Without them, the cruiser would be sunk by a few hits even if his deck was never penetrated. Simply because through the holes, water would flood the space ABOVE deck, and top-heavy ship would make overkeel.

            //As far as top heavy goes, the superstructure has been essentially cut down with only the conning tower, bridge & spotting tower above the main deck. //

            Seriously, do you think that this would save enough weight for casemates? Obviously no, unless they are protected only by anti-splinter armor. More or less protected casemates are heavy, that’s why most cruisers have them on upper & middle deck, not superstructure.

            // The turrets are probably 200 tons each & the casemate battery is only armored enough to hold out smoothbore cannon fire(say 2″ plate).//

            For what possible reason Republik might want such impotent ship, I wonder? What are the reason to put armored deck and armored turrets on essentially the cargo ship hull, which is NOT designed for strain of the battle and would simply break apart under any significant damage?

            Seriously, you wouldn’t save any building time. The Republik never build ocean-going cargo ships, so they would be as much troubled by building this… contraption as by just building a decidated warship.

          6. By Lou Schirmer on

            //The Republik never build ocean-going cargo ships, so they would be as much troubled by building this… contraption as by just building a decidated warship.//

            We don’t know they don’t build larger ships than the monitors. They have all the ports on the maps, they must have SOME sort of merchant shipping, tramp steamers, bulk cargo etc..

            I know this is not a great warship. What it is, is an interim ship for their navy & industry to gain experience with while they design & build something better which will take longer. There will be mistakes & miscalculations in it’s construction & they will be factored into the first REAL keel up warship design. This is not designed to fight the LOT, only to handle the Grik. If Taylor decides they have no medium sized merchant shipping, then this is a ship that will never be anyway.

          7. By Lou Schirmer on

            Thanks for the info on cofferdams by the way. Now I know what & where they are, it’s easier to find them. It wouldn’t be hard to incorporate them into this design, just hard to show in a side view. Here’s a good reference also.

            https://books.google.com/books?id=SOchAQAAMAAJ&pg=PA50-IA2&lpg=PA50-IA2&dq=protected+cruiser+cofferdam&source=bl&ots=2KaJIWx94M&sig=3HSVxGy4Yv0wJ3zX3Vjmtq8qrgQ&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjQndWS-5nXAhUGx2MKHarjBc4Q6AEIXTAL#v=onepage&q&f=true

      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        Turns out the point is moot. Charles pointed out to me that previous books described Republic merchant ships as fore & aft rigged schooners. So much for the cargo cruiser…sigh.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Lou, your arts are great. I absolutely sincerely admit that. This particular idea wasn’t good, but this is only a single case. All other your naval & aerial arts are really beautiful, greatly designed and drawn.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Thanks Alexey. I do value your thoughts although you can wax vehement at times. As neither of us are marine engineers, who knows whether this hair brained idea would have worked or not. I wonder what Taylor’s going to come up with. Most protected cruisers weren’t big. Although since he’s talking up to 3 turrets, 8″-12″ guns & maybe 21 knots, they’ll have to be good sized ships.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Frankly, something like that hardly would have only a sloped deck armor. Protected cruisers were obsolete even before World War I, so, I believe the “protected” part in specifications was accidental.

          3. By Lou Schirmer on

            He did say “a type of protected cruiser”. It may have the sloped deck with a bit of side armor. Sort of an amalgam.

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            The protected cruiser, by definition, did not have armored belt, so frankly, I’m a bit puzzled too. I really doubt that any sailor of German Imperial Navy or Royal Navy by 1914 – and, after all, they were a founders of Republik Navy! – have any doubts about the total obsolescence of protected cruiser desings.

            Moreover, protected cruisers aren’t essentially good against Grik, too. They could work, of course, with superior speed and artillery, but armored ship with side armor would just do the same better. After all, protected cruisers were basically the products of quite specific technological era – when guns were still relatively slow-firing, and HE shells weren’t invented yet, and armor technology wasn’t developed enough, so the belt armor needed to be VERY heavy to be effective.

            //Wouldn’t be a proper armoured cruiser without an upper deck belt, so they’d call her “protected” instead.//

            Er… this is a fairly typical sloped armored deck behind the vertical armored belt. Quite typical arrangement before and during World War I, but after this, retained only by German and French navies. Slopes actually aren’t great against long-range gunnery.

          5. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Nope. You’re right, Alexey, slopes can actually increase the risk of a square hit at long range. Only thing is, “long range” in 1914 wasn’t what it would be, even in 1918–and certainly not by 1925-45. And this had less to do with the guns than it did with optics, rangefinding tech (and techniques), and most specifically, integrated fire control capacity. You may remember that TEXAS was able to smite panzers marshalling past her “known” range by counter flooding to increase the elevation of her 14″ guns. Not ideal, obviously, but this was because her skipper knew his guns would shoot much farther than the gunhouses–designed for more intimate encounters :)–would allow them to. My point is, though, that the PINNACLE of possible Repub capital ship tech had been ca. 1914. Allow for some local talent and ingenuity, but it is doubtful they will achieve that pinnacle on their very first try, particularly since they wouldn’t have known what to strive for. They’re getting more tech assistance from the Allies now, (likely including a better description of what they need to strive FOR now, if not exactly how to go about accomplishing it. Remember that few of the D-men will be up to speed on capital ship construction theory either. Spanky might be, as would some of the Academy educated officers (like Matt) but there weren’t many of them to begin with and few remain. Fewer still who would be able to translate what they learned and probably forgot a lot of into construction drawings. By the same token don’t obsess too much over a passing reference to “protected cruisers.” Such could’ve been as vague as a mistranslation, or as “vaguely specific” as another aspect of some “protected cruisers:” added plate–or WOOD!–belting, backing, even layering. Or it could’ve been as simple as a statement like “Nah, nah, we’re building a cruiser too, but better protected than the wimpy one in the drawings YOU sent us…”
            Final point: Imperators won’t be what you expect, unless this spurs speculation in the right direction. If so, cool. If not . . . . cool. My final hint is that you should expect the best they can do, with what they know and can be taught, as quickly as they can. And though it was revealed in DD that they’ve already been working on them almost since Donaghey was there, they might apply upgrades to just about anything but the basic hull form and machinery during construction.

          6. By Justin on

            Remember that Amerika’s Germans are Merchant Marine rather than Navy – not to mention 30 years out of practice.

            \These Imperators seem to be a quick-and-dirty fleet: figure out what works and what doesn’t (like the Zumwalts) and quickly train more officers that can handle blue water hulls. The Republic’ll likely iron out all the bugs for the 2nd gen cruisers.

            //Er… this is a fairly typical sloped armored deck behind the vertical armored belt. Quite typical arrangement before and during World War I, but after this, retained only by German and French navies. Slopes actually aren’t great against long-range gunnery.//

            Consider that Amerika left in the middle of WWI – and the Baalkpan guys haven’t been brought in to update them. When all you’ve got is a hammer…

            At any rate, I highly doubt they’ll be content with just 5000 tons and a sloped deck. If there’s a (limited) side belt and a sloped deck, BUT no upper deck, then she qualifies as “protected” yet not “armoured.” Probably sacrificing defence for firepower, or construction speed, or something like that.

          7. By Justin on

            Ninja-ed, and corrected. Always nice to have the “Word of God” (copyright to TV Tropes) for settling things.

          8. By Lou Schirmer on

            // Imperators won’t be what you expect, unless this spurs speculation in the right direction. If so, cool. If not . . . . cool. My final hint is that you should expect the best they can do, with what they know and can be taught, as quickly as they can.//

            Boy, that’s a whole new ball game. Maybe an improved Scharnhorst type?

          9. By Charles Simpson on

            Oddly the German Q-ship SMS Seeadler was a sailing ship, and a successful Q-ship in WW 1, one of if not the last sailing warships.   See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMS_Seeadler_(1888)

          10. By Alexey Shiro on

            // You may remember that TEXAS was able to smite panzers marshalling past her “known” range by counter flooding to increase the elevation of her 14″ guns. //

            Actually, the first to try this was “Slava”, Borodino-class pre-dreadnought, while fighting the German dreadnoughts in Riga Gulf in 1915. But I see your point here.

          11. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Yeah, Slava had a hellova time and put up a hellova fight. It’s amazing she lasted as long as she did.
            But TEXAS smote TANKS! I still haven’t played either yet, but imagine a crossover between World of Warships and World of Tanks. 14″ vs 75 & 88mm . . . Hmm . . . TEXAS never got to slug it out in a surface action. The closest she came was in N. Africa with Torch, but she was in a different element than Massachusetts. (Her class really WERE “pocket BBs” of a sort, treaty BBs with 16″ guns.) Anyway, TEXAS not only served in both World Wars, had so many “firsts” regarding upgrades that she remained relevant enough to engage in most significant Atlantic theater landings, and then went to the Pacific and fought there too. She was fat and slow, no doubt, but still mighty and her “second rate” status might be why she got to participate in more actions than much newer, more capable BBs. Racked up a lot of miles. Took some hits at Cherbourg, getting in close enough for her secondaries, but definitely gave better than she got.
            I can’t help it, I’m a TEXAS junkie. I bet I’ve wandered her compartments and creeped around her gunhouses twenty times. I wish you all could visit her, the last of her amazing kind.

          12. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Wrong link, Charles. Von Lukner’s Seeadler–a SQUARE-RIGGED ship with nothing but an auxiliary diesel engine, captured 16 ships during WW1. I have a first edition of Von Lukner’s tale, which I read many years ago. Have to find it now and re-read it. It was a surprisingly rousing account, if I recall.

          13. By Justin on

            Some kind of “Super Scharnhorst” cruiser would indeed be a good design goal. Two or three of those ladies could readily beat anything short of a conventional BB or airstrike.

          14. By Alexey Shiro on

            Yeah, there is something… classic in ol'”Texas”. :) Her slow, concentrated feeling of power. She was not designed to run fast & do complex tactical schemes; she was designed with one pure purpose – stand her “ground”, take pounding and fight back. Later fast battleship lost something of this pure sence of purpose…

            Sigh, hope I would be able to visit her actually someday…

            P.S. If I’m not mistaken, in 1941, when “Bismark” made a run into Atlantic, both “Texas” and “New York” were in sea, protecting the mid-Atlantic convoy. There are rumors, that both ships have secret instructions – in case of meeting the German battleship, attack and stop her. It may be… quite interesting engagement between one of the most modern battleships of this era (albeit not very good) and two old, but tough superdreadnoughts…

          15. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Some kind of “Super Scharnhorst” cruiser would indeed be a good design goal. Two or three of those ladies could readily beat anything short of a conventional BB or airstrike.//

            You mean armored cruiser “Sharnhorst”, build in 1900s?

          16. By Justin on

            Considering that Bismarck had 15″ inch guns (as opposed to the New Yorks’ 14″s) and a ten-knot speed advantage, the Americans would have to pray for some infamous Atlantic fog so they could close in.

            //You mean armored cruiser “Sharnhorst”, build in 1900s?//

            Yup, replying to Lou’s comment. Her, Gneisenau and Blucher were the most modern cruisers of 1914 Germany, so that’s what the Republic’ll likely aim for.

          17. By Alexey Shiro on

            One problem – the “Bismark” protection on long ranges was actually… weak. She have only 50 mm upper deck and 80 mm lower deck armor (95 mm atop magazines) – i.e. roughly equivalent of 100 mm solid protection.

            In compairson, “Texas” have 38 mm upper deck and 114 mm lower deck (132 mm atop magazines) after her mid-1930s refit. She was actually much more prepared to take long-distance hit than “Bismark”. And, her 14-inch guns were quite good. Her 680 kh AP shells could penetrate “Bismark” decks from 22+ km. German 15-inch/52 gun have heavier shell, but due to greater initial velocity, the trajectory was relatively flat, and she could not penetrate “Texas” decks from less than 27+ km.

            I.e. the long-range gunnery duel would be beneficial for “New York” and “Texas”. They would be in a trouble if “Bismark” decide to close with them – still, they are two against one.

          18. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Yup, replying to Lou’s comment. Her, Gneisenau and Blucher were the most modern cruisers of 1914 Germany, so that’s what the Republic’ll likely aim for.//

            Well, the Blucher was sort of mistake… She was battlecruiser-sized, but carried only 8-inch guns. German mistakenly assumed that British “Invincible”-class battlecruisers would carry 9-inch guns, like the last RN armored cruisers, and they build “Blucher” to counter them. When the truth about 12-inch armament of RN battlecruisers became known, “Blucher” was already too close to completion for any significant alterations, and was considered “an ugly duckling” of German Navy. A pity, actually; she was fine warship, well-balanced, reasonably fast… just build under outdated doctrine.

          19. By Justin on

            True. In hindsight, building a BB for WW2 based on a design from WW1 wasn’t a very good idea.

          20. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            I don’t know about any “secret orders,” though I’ve seen it rumored–and it makes sense. Bismarck WOULD have closed a large, valuable convoy, and Texas and New York would’ve had to engage her as soon as they saw her, period. And if Bismarck chose to stick around, I don’t think the slug-fest would’ve been nearly as one sided as most might expect. Comparatively speaking, Texas was acknowledged as a sniper. Even if Bismarck’s integrated fire control might’ve been a little newer, (I’m not that familiar with it, and don’t know if it was better), Texas had enjoyed her excellent system for a long time and her generally longer serving people were very experienced with it. And that’s another factor: Experience counts, particularly in the heat of battle. Though no more experienced in combat than Bismarck’s crew–never forget they were just as green as anyone–long familiarity with one’s equipment and weapons, regardless how old, combined with frequent drills, is always a subtle force multiplier over a shorter acquaintance no matter how intensive the drill. I’ve always said that “muscle memory isn’t much good if it’s only skin deep” :) And another advantage Texas had was a pretty reliable target/search radar, which her people would’ve been pretty proficient with as well since she was one of the test beds. The next, even better set that gave the Japanese such a nasty surprise, wasn’t installed until Oct ’41–after Bismarck was gone–but you can’t ignore the possible aid the set she had might’ve provided.
            In any event, particularly if Texas and New York were in company, accurate salvoes of TWENTY (combined) 14″ shells would probably outvote eight 15″s, and Bismarck would’ve been smart to scram.

          21. By Alexey Shiro on

            Agreed completely with your analysis, Taylor. Basically, the situation for “Bismark” was quite bad – she was designed as “close-combat battleship”, to fight on relatively small ranges (German admirals STILL considered the visibility conditions of North Atlantic unfavourable for long-range gunnery). But close combat is not the strategy, that isolated raider – even very big raider – could afford, especially against TWO battleships.

            The long-range combat would be clearly favourable for “Texas” and “New York”. As you stated, their gunnery was very good, their fire control was at the very leas comparable with opponents, and they have radar. And, their horizontal protection was, actually, much better than “Bismark’s” (again, Germans believed that probability of hits on 20+ km range is very low…).

    3. By Alexey Shiro on

      Lou, you couldn’t just took the hull of cargo ship and adapt it into a warship!

      This… contraption literally make no sense!

      Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Santa Catalina is an auxilary cruiser without any turrets and with only one more or less heavy gun in deck barbette mount.

          Reply
      1. By William Cress on

        During World War 1 they took the yacht Celt a sailing and steam riveted vessel and turned her into Thomas Edison’s plaything the USS Sachem. In World War 2 they took Sachem and turned her into a shipyard for six months, took her apart, installed a new diesel, four fifty caliber machine guns, a dual 3” gun, two Y guns, installed an armor belt, added depth charges and sonar and radar. Also installed an armor belt and raised her sides. Renamed USS Phenakite.Not a good platform due to tendency to roll in heavy seas, but you would be amazed what what they can do to ship.By some irony she is hiding in Taylor’s Creek today. They also carried rifles, grenades and a Thompson in case of borders. These so called armed yachts were basically corvettes, and even the US Navy doesn’t know where all of them went.

        Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      Something like a variant of the FFVS J-22 model 2 with 4 .50 cals would probably be the best bet, since they have the most experience with radials. They may be working on a copy of the Catalina’s engines which would give good performance at low to medium altitudes. If they figured out a low tech, low temp turbo supercharger they could get some high altitude power also.

      Reply
    2. By Justin on

      Don’t forget the MB.700, C.714, VG-30 or S.A.I/201. Lack of aluminum shouldn’t be a problem… in fact, given the League’s industrial shortcomings, it might be an asset.

      Reply
    3. By Matt White on

      I was thinking something along the lines of an I-16 could be ideal. A very simple plane with a lot of the features of modern WW2 fighters like an enclosed cockpit and retractable landing gear. It’s very short on amenities but was very advanced for its time and pulled off a lot of things without the use of complicated engineering. For example it’s landing gear was crank operated. Yeah that kind of stinks for the pilot but it’s simple, keeps the weight down and works even with full power loss. In the Spanish Civil War they held their own against early 109s so they shouldn’t be nearly as helpless as the fleashooters are. Their compact size also makes them very maneuverable and should help with cramming them on a carrier.

      Make a new engine based on the PBY’s twin Wasp with a low pressure turbo and we are probably in the same ballpark as the real plane’s Shvestov. Keep the armament light 2-4 30 cals, lots of guns are nice but we don’t have the luxury of big power plants so the Soviet notion of light guns and stressing pilot marksmanship is going to be important.

      It’s only real weakness would be lack of range. Not a lot of places to put fuel in a little plane but it would make an excellent dog fighter and with a wooden and steel airframe be within the Union’s grasp.

      Reply
      1. By Generalstarwars333 on

        ‘scuse me, but if I recall correctly, in 1941 german BF109s wiped the floor with I-16s and most russian fighters until the Yaks and maybe MiGs started appearing in greater numbers. Now, in spain, the I-16s and 15s absolutely wiped the floor with He-51s, but when 109s started appearing they lost their dominance. Would something like an I-16 be better than what the union has at the moment? Probably. Would it be able to go toe to toe with a Machi-109? Probably not.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Yup, boom-and-zoom beats turn-and-burn almost every time; the Germans quickly learned that they had a big advantage in speed and altitude, and therefore the initiative.

          The problem is that the Allies don’t have the horsepower or the aluminum for high-energy piston fighters like Yakovlevs or Lavochkins… which means they’re stuck with wooden/steel fighters and roughly the same performance as an “Ishak.” For the near future, their best shot will be trying to sucker the inexperienced M&M pilots into a turning fight.

          Reply
        2. By Alexey Shiro on

          //‘scuse me, but if I recall correctly, in 1941 german BF109s wiped the floor with I-16s and most russian fighters until the Yaks and maybe MiGs started appearing in greater numbers. //

          Actually no. While I-16 was clearly inferior to much modern Bf-109, the experienced pilot could use I-16 greater maneuvrability to make chances even. I-16 was aerodynamically unstable, which made flying him relatively complicated, but allowed the fighter to be more maneuvrable than average late-1930s fighters.

          But as Justin mentioned –

          //The problem is that the Allies don’t have the horsepower or the aluminum for high-energy piston fighters like Yakovlevs or Lavochkins… //

          And that’s right. I-16 required a 1000-hp engine to fly. Not something that could achieve the Union industry in short time…

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            He did raise a valid concern though: the League’ll be able to dictate the terms of engagement with their superior speed and flight ceiling. Manoeuvrability isn’t much use without a decent engine.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Basically yes, but currently Alliance could not design or build powerful engine. Even if they have examples, the 1000+hp engines are too high-tech and complicated to copy without a large number of trained engineers and scientists.

            So, for foreseeable future, the Alliance would be forced to rely on maneuvrability and numerical superiority in any engagement with League aerial forces. (One of the reason why I promote Alliance battleships – they COULD survive inevitable hits from League aviation and remain combat-capable)

            P.S. As I mentioned above, there IS one possibility… If Alliance somehow obtained pulsejet systems, they COULD be reproduced. And while pulsejet is generally considered as inefficient, it could provide the fighter power and speed up to 800 kph for a fraction of piston engine cost.

          3. By Justin on

            Well, a BB isn’t going to take on the entire League air force on her own… and certainly won’t be able to provide support on land. Probably going to need another transfer to solve this one.

            Why not ramjets? Simpler and less volatile (at least on paper).

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            Because ramjets aren’t well-suited for subsonic speed. There were several subsonic ramjet-powered crafts, that used diffusers and other means to accelerate the airflow, but generally ramjets are unsuitable for less than Mach 1.

            Pulsejets are perfectly suitable for subsonic aircrafts, though.

          5. By Lou Schirmer on

            Another problem with ramjets is you need something to get the planes speed up enough for the ramjet to produce more thrust than drag. Usually this is around 350+ mph.

            //Pulsejets are perfectly suitable for subsonic aircrafts, though.//

            Pulsejets also have problems. With the tech our heroes have, they could build a V-1 type, but that was a one shot weapon & like a ramjet would need a boost to get it to flight speed. That speed would be less than the ramjet though. The main problems would come when trying to build a multi-flight/repeat use jet. They’d need high temp steels for the jet. Then there are the valves, which due to the rapid cycle rate tend to fatigue & fail with extended use. Not good in a fight. Then there is the noise & vibration the pilot has to contend with. The pilot would be essentially deaf after the first flight & would need medical attention from the vibration. Those are the reasons the various militaries never made manned or repeat use pulsejet systems. They were used in mini versions for helicopter rotors, but they had issues also & never took off…if you’ll excuse the pun.

          6. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Pulsejets also have problems. With the tech our heroes have, they could build a V-1 type, but that was a one shot weapon & like a ramjet would need a boost to get it to flight speed.//

            Of course, and the resource of engine would be pretty low. Still, it is cheap enough so they could afford to just replace enigne after several flights & they already used catapults on carriers. After all, the low-resource engine that you could actually build and mass-produce is much better than high-resource engine, that you could hardly even design, much less produce in any numbers?…

          7. By Lou Schirmer on

            The key would be making the valves robust enough to last several flights. They could make the valve housing a quick R&R design & if I was them I’d do it every flight until extensive tests tell them otherwise. The combustor & thrust tube will need to be easily R&R’d also, but may last 4-5 flights between swap-outs. They would inspect the engine(s) & airframe thoroughly after each flight. A twin engine design might be better than one large one. That way, if one failed in-flight (a distinct possibility), the concerned pilot would be able to get it home on the other engine. The airframe would have to be pretty strong also or the engine would vibrate it to pieces in-flight. Maybe some sort of isolator (rubber or leather etc.) between the engine & the rest of the airframe (& pilot). Also lots of sound damping material in the cockpit so the pilots don’t go deaf & so they can hear the radio. You’d want a fairly heavy armament because this is going to use fast, slashing attacks through an enemy formation. This won’t be a maneuverability based fighter, but a speed based one. Pulse jets don’t deliver the on-demand excess thrust a turning dog fighter needs. I’d try & put four or more .50 cals on it. If they get a 25mm cannon going, that would be ideal, similar to the Me-262’s 4x30mm cannon. It’ll be fairly short range also, since these engines guzzle fuel, although, they could add drop tanks to extend the range a bit.

          8. By Justin on

            ^ Sounds good, but it seems more like a multirole aircraft than a dedicated fighter.

            Might actually work better that way: build a light/medium bomber-sized airframe with 2-3 jets and adequate internal fuel, then send them on strike runs or bomber intercept, like superfast Ju-88s. Since the League can’t catch ’em, they don’t even need a fighter escort!

          9. By Lou Schirmer on

            While it’s doable, I don’t think any of them know much about how pulsejets work. While very simple in concept, there’s a fair bit of engineering work to get the things to work right. Even Courtney & Mallory probably only have a vague idea of how they might work, maybe from a Popular Science article or something similar. Most work done on pulsejets at the time was in Europe & Russia. Although Robert Goddard patented one he put on a bicycle in the 1930s, the USA & allies didn’t develop them like the Germans did.
            I’m not saying it’s not doable, but they’d have to play with them quite a bit to get a design reliable enough for a fighter. It’d be fun to design one though.

          10. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, there was quite a lot pulsejets in Pacific in 1945… The Japanese tested kamikadze plane with them, and USA mass-produced several pulsejet missiles…

          11. By Lou Schirmer on

            True, but our guys are limited to their early 1942 information & expertise. Probably not too many of them have jet engine knowledge.

          12. By Alexey Shiro on

            So they need an example. Probably transferred by Squall.

          13. By Justin on

            Hate to be “that dude,” but the Germans were the only ones to ever get pulsejets past the R&D stage. How the hell is a V-1 going to transfer from the Channel to the Pacific and land in one piece?

          14. By Alexey Shiro on

            First of all, Germany sold the pulsejets to Japan. Japanese actually developed the derivative of Okha kamikadze plane with pulsejet, but weren’t able to put her into production…

            Secondly, the USAAF reverse-engineered the V-1 missile as JB-3 Loon, and produced several hundreds to use against Japan (several thousands were ordered, but the war ended). Also, pulsejet powered the Gorgon-C missile, also mass-produced in 1945.

          15. By Justin on

            Right. The kamikaze never left the prototype stage, and the US missiles never were used in combat – only the V-1s. “R&D” may have been a poor choice of words.

            At any rate, even if Downfall goes ahead and one of these manages to crash land somewhere among the Home Islands, it’s not going to be in good enough condition to reverse-engineer.
            The only way they’d get a pulsejet is if a CVE crosses over carrying JB-2s (American V-1 copies)… and if that’s the case, they’ll have plenty of modern fighters, so the point is moot.

          16. By donald johnson on

            the biggest problem with pulse jets is the heat involved. the valve problem is solved by using a valveless pulsejet and they do exist. the heat problem makes the quality of the steel required to be most likely beyond the destroyermen.

          17. By Alexey Shiro on

            //At any rate, even if Downfall goes ahead and one of these manages to crash land somewhere among the Home Islands, it’s not going to be in good enough condition to reverse-engineer.//

            This depend of the condition of crash, actually. If she hit the jungle canopy without detonating, the engine may be left intact.

          18. By Matt White on

            I don’t think pulse jets are worthwhile as the the moment. They could potentially provide a huge perforce benefit but does anyone know what their flame out characteristics are? I know about them being used on cruise missiles like the V1 which doesn’t exactly maneuver hard or change its throttle. The heat is also a valid concern, basically any rocket or jet that isn’t single use will need high temp alloys like Inconel which we just don’t have. The designers also lack data and an understanding of the nature of transonic flight. Conventional designs are very dangerous at those speeds. It’s probably best not to try and jump ahead. It will get pilots killed.

        3. By Matt White on

          In 1941 with 109Fs yes the Germans had a big advantage. But the league doesn’t have 109Fs. They have 1939 models, we are looking at early E variants at best and the older Jumo powered ones are probably more plentiful. That of course depends on when in 1939 they crossed over and how much of the invasion force was equipped with the best that they had to offer.

          Point is the I-16 fairs better against the early 109s. The E is a better plane but that fight can still come down to pilot skill and the pre-DB powered models are inferior to the I-16. Also keep in mind these Macchi-Messers are going to be in a similar boat to the P-40s. Irreplaceable high tech aircraft. Without a good supply of aluminum nobody has a hope of making anything like a 109 or P-40s so losses will be felt much harder with those. The Union can afford a less than favorable kdr right now when the League can’t.

          A common mistake in warfare is to assume you need the best when often good enough will do. It’s an 80% rule. Getting the first 80% is easy. Getting the last 20% is much harder and more expensive. It’s better to have 1000 OK fighters with good pilots than 100 excellent fighters with just as good pilots. And I bet the league’s pilots are more out of practice than the battle hardened pilots the union has in the west. Give them a plane almost as good as the 109 and they will win through skill and numbers.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Point is the I-16 fairs better against the early 109s. //

            True. In Spain, they worked pretty good. But – even the I-16 required something that Alliance didn’t have and could not have for at least a while – a 1000+ hp aircraft engine.

          2. By Justin on

            Right on – at the moment, even an I-16 could make mincemeat of whatever the Allies come up with. The ongoing arguments within this page seem to revolve around how to get them up to “good enough” status and let attrition take over.

          3. By Matt White on

            The late model I-16s were 1000+ horsepower and yeah that is going to be hard but the type 1 had a power plant comparable to what the late P-1s use. Of course they won’t be as high performance as the late model but that’s good enough to make a flying prototype. The I-16 was also designed with an over sized engine mount not unlike the Gee Bee racers although not to the same extent. So let’s up the displacement. I don’t see displacement quoted in the tech glossary in the book, just that the P-1C uses a 10 cylinder naturally aspirated radial engine. My assumption is that it is less than the 29 liter Wright cyclone derived shvestov in the I-16. You don’t need to up compression ratio or revs when you up displacement. Just make everything a bit bigger. A low pressure compressor is also badly needed and I think not unobtainable. I did the math a few months back on this board and even just a humble 6psi of boost from a roots type supercharger would boost altitude performance quite a bit. Fuel quality is now getting to the point where the much higher strung Allisons in the P-40s aren’t detonating so adding a low pressure compressor should be practical for main line fighters now. A respectable 750hp should be achievable with a displacement bump and a compressor.

            You are right Alexi, if we want 1000hp the steel will need to improve. QC seems to be a big problem for the Union and the higher the performance we get the stricter the QC has to be. The level of QC I’ve seen in aerospace would probably make most people freak.

  9. By Generalstarwars333 on

    I noticed that the republic doesn’t have shrapnel shells for the derby gun. Since the guys from the Amerkia were familiar enough with the 75mm M1897 to make a quite similar gun to it, why didn’t they make shrapnel rounds? Those were the main intended killer for the 75, and are much better against massed infantry in the open than a high explosive shell is, so wouldn’t they have made those?

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Probably because it isn’t better than HE against massed infantry. It’s called “high-explosive” for a reason: bigger blast, and it shoots the shards in all directions rather than just a conical spread forward.

      In addition, rather than projectiles inside the shell, HE uses the shell itself as the projectiles (like a grenade), and can use a percussion fuse instead of a timed fuse – WAY easier/cheaper to manufacture.

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        Actually, the shrapnel is better than HE afainst massed infantry. The spread of bullets is much more, because of the airburst, than fragments of HE shells, and you coukd safely advance directly behind shrapnel bursts. The shrapnel is less effective (much less) against entrenched enemy, and also relatively more costly to produce.

        Reply
        1. By Generalstarwars333 on

          I’d thought of something like that, but since they don’t really use shrapnel shells anymore, and now use the killer junior technique, I figured justin was probably right.

          Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      This might be a bit closer to an actual Doom Stomper than an anti-tank cannon. It’s the .950 JDJ (24.1x70mm), a large caliber rifle cartridge developed by J. D. Jones of SSK Industries. With black powder loads, you might be able to get the weapon down into the 30-40 lb. weight range & be manageable.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WiLqPB4lU0

      Reply
    2. By Lou Schirmer on

      Could we get a decent sized pic of the Doom Stomper Taylor made? There’s one on the Wiki, but it’s so small you can’t see any detail.

      Reply
      1. By Donald JOHNSON on

        The doomstomper is a piece of art with one hell of a kick. Only silva likes it. Even taylor gave up on it after 6 shots or so.

        Reply
        1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          Noooo! I never gave up on it. I just said shooting it more than 5 or 6 times gets progressively less fun. Doesn’t keep me from doing it periodically. And like I said, I’m experimenting with a 1000 grn “gallery” (that’s irony) bullet, which is probably most rational for any practical use I can put it to. (Like bad feral hogs). The original bigger bullet was inspired solely by a chorus of “nobody could shoot that!” I had to prove my reply of “BS.” I built the DW as close to the specs I described in the book as I could, and it’s effect–on both ends–WAS very much like I predicted. I have not been able to shoot a super lizard with it yet, nor have I made any bullets with bronze penetrators–what’s the point unless I DO get to chase a super lizard? Maybe to test light AP properties? OK, now I have to make a few and shoot ’em through stuff. I have the old engine out of my ’69 Chevy . . .

          Anyway, the DW IS a practical weapon for the D-Men universe–for a Silva. It doesn’t weigh much more than a fully loaded Thompson, it’s accurate, (surprisingly flat-shooting with 250 grns of powder. Despite the drag, the weight of the projectile allows it to retain velocity surprising well), and the recoil is . . . manageable. The initial disorienting jolt (as described in the books) is a lot like a 600 Nitro, but the free recoil (the backward shove, not painful like the initial jolt) is more prolonged.
          Not having made a DS–and probably never will, since being a centerfire ctg weapon over .50 cal, it might be viewed darkly by authorities as a “destructive device” despite no ammunition being “readily available”–I can only speculate on its recoil, but I have a lot of scale analogs to compare it to.
          A .50-70 Allin conversion of an 1863 Springfield kicks a little more than an 1863 Springfield with the same (70 grn) powder charge. This even with a slightly heavier barrel, due to it having been lined for a smaller caliber, and a slightly lighter bullet (450 as opposed to 515 grns). The difference must be a feature of the greater efficiency of the gas seal afforded by the cartridge and the fact the bullet starts its journey down the bore already sealing the grooves of the rifling and there is no gas blow by. Therefore, the DS, already built along slimmer lines than the DW (which was a one-off, handmade gun) would kick a little more, even with a slightly lighter bullet and powder charge,
          Sorry to go on about it, but realistically, unless there are certain light AP properties, there’s not much reason for anyone other than Silva to wag a DS around. The .50-80 is remarkably accurate and lethal, and though you’ll still wind up with a sore shoulder, you can carry a lot more ammo and shoot it all day. Sure, the DS is the king against super lizards, and I have yet to determine for sure how many “big sumbitches lined up and little sumbitches bunched up” it would slaughter, but on a battlefield, it would be less effective as a sniper weapon at very long range as an ’03 Springfield or a Krag, and with the exception of a certain Grik airship that got badly ventilated–it would be most useful as a morale booster for Silva’s admirers, or buster for his enemy.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            On a different subject…
            I noticed the MTBs aren’t listed in the Specs pages at the end of DD. Were they left out for a reason or do they need to be added into the paperback?

    3. By Matt on

      heh I watched that very video earlier tonight. I’ve thought of the Doomstomper as more of a late blackpowder elephant gun than an antitank rifle.

      Reply
  10. By Alexey Shiro on

    So, with all that talks about “Savoie” I decided to make a short list of her good and bad sides.

    Her good parts:

    * She is very well protected against small & medium calibre weapon. Her main belt is basically the same lenght as her whole hull, and her upper belt & large secondary casemates protected almost all her upper hull. The space between belts & casemates is separated by several thin armored decks. So, basically, she is almost invunerable to any “non-battleship” size cannons; any League heavy cruiser who would try to hit her would just waste its ammunition.

    * Her main guns are pretty good, even for World War II era. They are capable of firing 575-kg (1268 lb) AP shells with initial velocity of 2,559 fps (780 mps), and with dispercion of no more than 100 meters at 15000 meters. And her AP shells are pretty powerfull – they have the same ammount of filler as much heavier 15-inch British shells. With her guns, she could hurt even a modern battleship pretty hard.

    * Her secondaries are very good. She actually have the most powerful anti-torpedo gun battery among the World War I dreadnoughts. Her very-long-barrel 138-mm secondaries (55 calibres!) were designed not only to took out torpedo boats, but also slug the unarmored parts of enemy battleships in close combat, so they have high initial velocity and heavy shell. In short, she could took out destroyers very fast & could smash the cruiser with her secondaries alone in mere minutes.

    Her neutral parts:

    * She was basically designed to fight without centralized fire control, so her current state… is not much worse than she have when she was just build. Her upper turrets are designed to serve as control stations for her lower turrets and her turret rangefinders were her main methods of fire control anyway. Up until 1920s she never ever have director control.

    * Her anti-aircraft artillery are… moderate. Assuming that she have the same upgrade as “Lorraine”, she could carry either eight single 3-inch AA guns, or four twin 4-inch AA guns, several 37-mm semi-automatic and several heavy machineguns. Not bad for the refitted 1910s battleship, but not particulary great also. Especially considering very weak short-range AA defense.

    * Assuming that she recieved a “Lorraine”-type refit, she is already well-suited for the floatplane use. She have a mount for central catapult, hangar for 3-4 planes, elevators and cranes. She also probably have flagship facilities onboard.

    Her bad parts:

    * “Savoie” is slow. She could do 21,5 knots at most, and there is no way to actually change that. She is short, plump, with less than excellent hydrodynamig and have too heavy bow (due to her bow turrets been so close to her bow end). Even with significant improvements to her powerplant, she could hardly reach more than 22 knots.

    * Her deck protection is weak. She was designed in era, when French Navy considered 8000-10000 meters as the most effective distance of naval combat, and plunging hits through the decks were considered uncommon. So, she have a lot of weak, thin decks, made from several layers of thin plates bolted together. She is NOT well-suited to took heavy AP shells from long-distance fire. Moreover, her heavy secondary casemated could NOT be removed, because they served as the additional protection for relatively thin barbettes.

    * Her anti-torpedo protection are old and outdated. It might be remedied through the addition of bulges, but her speed would inevitably drop. On the other hands, considering that she never were too fast… and that the bulges could serve as additional fuel storage, thus increasing her range… It may worh a knot or two of speed loss.

    So, there is she; “Savoie”, presumably USS, “Bretagne”-class superdreadnought (“Lorraine”-type refit).

    Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      I don’t know if they’d want to, but they could do a refit like the IJN did to the Kongo class ships in the 1930s. In this case, instead of lengthening the stern, they could lengthen the bow, giving her finer lines & more buoyancy forward, or lengthen both ends. Might pick up another knot or so.

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        //I don’t know if they’d want to, but they could do a refit like the IJN did to the Kongo class ships in the 1930s. In this case, instead of lengthening the stern, they could lengthen the bow, giving her finer lines & more buoyancy forward, or lengthen both ends. Might pick up another knot or so.//

        I’m afraid it would be too much work for pretty small results. The Japanese battleships were given a speed upgrade relatively easily because, basically, all Japanese old battleships were made on the hulls of battlecruisers. They were long and sleek; battleships just have more turrets instead of boiler rooms, and with the progress in powerplants, it was easy to achieve 25+ knots for “Fuso” and “Ise” classes.

        The “Savoie”, on the other hands, never have anything in common with a battlecruisers. She was build to be a powerfull short-to-medium range slugger, capable of steaming in battleline and punching all those pathetic Italian and German dreadnoughts into wrecks. She is short and beam; it would took a lot of efforts to make her even marginally faster.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Stupid question: could they gut her bow/stern down to the keel, lengthen that, then refit from there? If yes, it seems easier than building a brand new BB.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            No. It would be more problematic than for, say, Italian (who actually did exactly that), because french dreadnoughts didn’t have armored traverse bulkhead. Their armor belt came to the forward end of the ship. To lenghten the bow significantly, you would also need to rework all the bow armor scheme, dismount a lot of armor plates…

            Almost the same with stern. The belt came almost till the very end of the ship.

    2. By Clifton Sutherland on

      not to mention the difficulty of using her in current condition. Multiple torpedo hits, grounding, significant damage to weapon systems. Plus, how many hands are available who have big BB experience? I bet they captured a few French advisers, but thats a long shot. Right now, as has been said elsewhere on the page, she will likely end up as a “Harbor Queen”, until we have the luxury of using her fully functional- or until the situation is so desperate that she is all we have!

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Torpedo hits can be repaired, independent fire control still works, and there’s only one gun out of commission. The Union’s already planning to tow her up to Mahe and repair her.

        Crewing her, on the other hand, will definitely be a problem. On second thought, bringing her to Alex-aandra (and all her “modern” naval personnel and instructors) might be a better idea.

        Reply
      2. By Alexey Shiro on

        //Multiple torpedo hits, grounding, significant damage to weapon systems. //

        Again; her condition is “moderately damaged”. She was hit by a bunch of weak torpedoes, grounded and one of her guns is damaged. She was designed to survive more. She is not disabled; she could be restored to full combat status after a few months in equipped harbor.

        Reply
    3. By Justin on

      If the Union really wants to use her on the offensive, they could bring her east.

      Her low speed and fuel tanks mean she’s not going into the Atlantic anytime soon, but give her a DD or two and she’s perfect for bottlenecking the Pass of Fire. They could even go “island hopping” into the Caribbean (short trips) to either sink Dommie raiders or provide shore bombardment against their holdings along the northern coast.

      Of course, this assumes that the League doesn’t have bombers or a task group hidden away in Puerto Rico…

      Reply
      1. By Clifton Sutherland on

        I dont recall- Savoie is oil-driven, or coal burning? If coal they could even have her do some sloow speed commerce raiding, using shore parties to raid Dom coal depots. But yes, that would be a role where moderate refits would definitely be adequate, and still let her lay some hate on the enemy. Especially with the mauling Eastern fleet took in the last couple of months.

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          If she received the same refits as the others of her class, she’s burning oil & went from 29K SHP to 43K & picked up about 1.5 knots. So in good repair, she could do 21.5 knots. I’m thinking her machinery may be in pretty bad shape though, since she hasn’t seen a modern dockyard for maintenance in over five years & just completed a voyage of several thousand miles. Once they get the torpedo damage repaired, if they don’t totally overhaul her engines, she’ll be lucky to scrape up 18 knots.

          Reply
      2. By Alexey Shiro on

        //Her low speed and fuel tanks mean she’s not going into the Atlantic anytime soon//

        Considering that the Union carriers are even slower, and Union destroyers & cruiser(s) are of outdated design, I doubt that “Savoie” would make things much worse in therms of mobility… :)

        //Of course, this assumes that the League doesn’t have bombers or a task group hidden away in Puerto Rico…//

        Well, the “Savoie” currently is the only Union ship that could survive such a battle. Her anti-aircraft weaponry allowed her to fight off a small bomber squadrons & she could carry floatplane fighters to chase off enemy patrol aircrafts (French navy actually have floatplane fighters on catapult-equipped battleships for exactly the same reason).

        And… considering how well the Pass of Fire is protected by fortresses, the “Savoie” is a perfect key. Her 13,4-inch guns could demolish all Dominion coastal defenses in a few hours of slow, leisure firing.

        Reply
        1. By Generalstarwars333 on

          Heck, you don’t even really need savoie to do that. Just have a carrier sit outside of the range of the dom muzzleloaders and and shell them with 4″50’s and hit’em with nancies.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            The carriers, simply speaking, are bad against coastal defenses. Especially considering that the Alliance carrier planes could not even carry heavy bombs. And, 4-inch gun is next thing to useless against heavy fortifications; too small bursting charge.

            Don’t underestimate even the outdated fortress; if you could not exactly turn them to rubble (i.e. pound them with heavy bombs or heavy guns), they could be a problem as long as their garrison is willing to stand and fight.

          2. By Generalstarwars333 on

            I’m not sure you’d need the heavy bombs. Think. The fortress is filled with… gunpowder. Which, considering they’d be under attack, would be near the guns in large quantities. And the nancies can carry…napalm bombs. Granted, the grikbirds could be a problem.

          3. By Justin on

            Not even the Dommies are THAT stupid. With Early Modern forts, powder is kept in underground magazines and brought up piecemeal. Unless the Union can make napalm that flows downwards, the fort needs either a bunker-buster or very big guns.

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            Er, those fortresses were designed to resist at least 12-inch mortar fire (Dominion stated to have such weapon). So, they clearly have magazines with overhead protection, and powder magazines were, byy definition, build fireproof. Considering that Dom’s already knew about Union aircrafts, they probably take anti-fire measures also.

        2. By Justin on

          //Considering that the Union carriers are even slower, and Union destroyers & cruiser(s) are of outdated design, I doubt that “Savoie” would make things much worse in therms of mobility…//

          At least the DDs and CL are capable of a (relatively) quick getaway. Like Exeter, Savoie has to sit there and take it until she’s sunk… or worse, recaptured.

          Let’s not even talk about deploying the CVs, not until the Allies get a decent fighter and bomber.

          //Well, the “Savoie” currently is the only Union ship that could survive such a battle. Her anti-aircraft weaponry allowed her to fight off a small bomber squadrons & she could carry floatplane fighters to chase off enemy patrol aircrafts (French navy actually have floatplane fighters on catapult-equipped battleships for exactly the same reason).//

          If the main fire control’s been spiked, the secondaries probably were too. Union’s going to have to work on that, because without effective fire control, a lot of guns just means a lot of misses.

          As for the catapult fighter – if the League didn’t leave it at home, it got crushed when the aft funnel fell on it. The best the Union’s got is either a Buzzard or a Fleashooter with floats.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            Problem is, that League DD’s and CL’s are probably faster. They are mainly French/Italian, and they give a lot of emphasis for speed.

            So… no difference. “Savoie” at least could fight back.

            //If the main fire control’s been spiked, the secondaries probably were too. Union’s going to have to work on that, because without effective fire control, a lot of guns just means a lot of misses.//

            Well, they could still fight under local control. She was designed for that…

            //As for the catapult fighter – if the League didn’t leave it at home, it got crushed when the aft funnel fell on it. The best the Union’s got is either a Buzzard or a Fleashooter with floats.//

            Better than nothing.

          2. By Justin on

            Forgive my incredulity, but fire control on these?
            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canon_de_75_mm_mod%C3%A8le_1924
            If you meant the secondary directors, then I’m saying yes, those were likely spiked too.

            And the P-1C only has a pair of .30 cals; the PB-2 doesn’t even have a forward-facing MG. Better than nothing, yes, but not by much.

            What I’m trying to say is that nobody’s going to be picking a fight with the League anytime soon – not until the Allies can get something fast and/or tough enough.

          3. By Justin on

            AA directors, fine. At last check, the 75s don’t have individual analogs – without centralized control, they’ll have to aim manually.

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            That’s like almost every other prewar ship afloat. I doubt the LOT has anything better until they get into the 4.7″s. Most light AA at the time relied on the Mark I eyeball, with maybe a PO standing behind, saying “Shoot THAT one!” as fire control.

          5. By Justin on

            Right, which is why prewar AA was so ineffective. Just look at the Japanese approach: a forest of AA guns on every other ship, with no added benefit.

            Ditto Savoie. Without a proximity fuse – or at least a director – all those guns might as well be Imperial Stormtroopers against League planes.

          6. By Lou Schirmer on

            Another reason is there was far to little of it. Prewar Gold Platers had four 5′ & a couple of .50 cals. The cruisers weren’t much better. The 1.1″ AA, when available, wasn’t reliable or accurate. Four years into the war & DDs & cruisers are getting top heavy there is so much AAA mounted. They thought one US BB was on fire because of all the smoke from her AAA. Directors & especially proximity fuses increased the effectiveness of the massive AAA batteries.

          7. By Generalstarwars333 on

            ‘scuse me, but unless I’m mistaken, the allies don’t have AA fire directors of any sort, other than “Shoot that one!”, do they? That’d mean that yeah, it’s a shame savoie doesn’t have an AA director, but it’s still better for AA than anything else they have by virtue of the sheer number of dedicated AA guns present on her.

    4. By Alexey Shiro on

      My IMHO – as soon as Union could free “Savoie” for six month from combat duty, they should put her in drydock and made a moderate refit:

      1) Re-install director control. They have Japanese-type directos and optic, which, as far as I knew, was considered quite good.

      2) Install anti-torpedo bulges. Granted, this would drop speed, but on the other hand it would made her much more durable (to torpedoes and shells both – for example, USSR refitted battleships have a thick bulges skin as forvard layer of protection, to remove the AP cap from incoming shell before it hit the belt), and solve the range problem – they could put a lot more fuel in her bulges.

      3) Repair her machinery and boilers. Also, took a good look at them. Her turbines and boilers were replaced in 1930s and are quite modern.

      4) Improve horizontal armor protection. Bulges add a lot of stability, so they could just up-armor the upper deck to gave her better chances against long-range fire.

      5) Put a bunch of 23-mm autocannons for a close anti-air defense.

      After said refit, she would be much better; capable of standing against most battleships that League could have.

      Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      Charles suggested a temptation to replace the Derby guns with torpedo tubes on DA. They could replace the Derby guns forward of the stack with a pair of quad tubes & with a 40′ beam shouldn’t even need to stagger them. That would still leave a pair of rapid fire guns aft of the stack.

      Reply
      1. By Matt White on

        I have to strongly come out against torpedoes. They sound cool at first but don’t make a lot of sense. To start the torpedoes we have right now are pretty crappy, slow, small warheads, short range etc. They are also almost as dangerous to the guys shooting then as they are the enemy.

        Even with all of that they are still large and heavy and take up a lot of space. We know and the destroyer men should also know that torpedo tubes on slow ships doesn’t really work. There’s a reason they were removed from all of those WW1 battleships. To be effective you either have to be fast or stealthy. Even really good torpedoes are slow enough that they can be dodged when fired st anything but close range. The Scott class is neither fast nor stealthy. The PT boats worked very well at Zanzibar. For any future raids they should work well again. Torpedoes work OK on Walker but she really needs faster fish. I don’t see anyone making a submarine so I think the PTs and Walkers are the only ships that would benefit.

        The 4″/50s far out range the union torpedoes and against muzzle loaders a ship with those guns can literally fire with impunity. Why would we destroy that massive advantage just so we can “sail closer I want to hit them with my sword”? With 4″/50s the Scott’s don’t have to be really fast, just a little bit faster than the Doms and Grik to keep them from closing. With torpedoes you would have to make a wooden sailing ship hit 30 Knots unless you want to kill a lot of good sailors.

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          Yeah, I wasn’t going to put any on. It would be a bitch to squeeze them in with the rigging in the way also.

          As far as torpedo tubes on the old BBs & BCs, I never could understand it. Each main battery barrel is essentially shooting a torpedo warhead 2-4 times the range of the torpedoes. Putting tubes on a BB or BC was a waste of time, money, resources, space & manpower/crew. They also added holes below the waterline, which a ship needs like I need a case of flaming gonorrhea.

          Reply
          1. By William Curry on

            Where does the range finder for the 4″/50’s go? Are the 4″/50’s set up for salvo fire or are they capable only of local control?

          2. By Lou Schirmer on

            That’s the problem with a full rigged ship. There’s no real place to put a range finder that won’t get interference from, the masts rigging , sails & stack. Right now she’s just setup for local control. I might be able to put one in just forward of the bridge, but it would be primarily for beam engagements with limited bow capability & no stern arc at all. Think it would be worth it?

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            The idea behind battleship tubes was, that they could be useful if the combat would be on close ranges. Their torpedoes were relatively heavier than of cotemporary destroyers, and have more range. Also, it was supposed that battleship own torpedo battery could be used to protect her from enemy destroyer attack by deterrence.

    2. By Steve Moore on

      Nice, Lou Like the bulged sides for traverse. And the nice thing about it, you can swap out the gun package for different models, depending on the user (I’m assuming these may go to Empire, RRP and possibly the NUS?)

      I’ve rethought my position on torpedoes; better to put development into a 4″/50 shell with more punch to go through armor plate, or start thinking about a 6″ gun; going to need it sometime in any case.

      Reply
      1. By Generalstarwars333 on

        They’re already making 5.5″ guns, which are close enough to six inchers that they might as well skip 6″ guns and make the jump to 8 inchers or larger.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Assuming the Republic hasn’t been working on modern 8″ guns, the Union’s already got the 10″/45s from Amagi. Something like an Exeter 2.0 may be on the table in about a year or so.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            Er, it took three years for Britain to build “Exeter”.

          2. By Justin on

            Plans for something like an Exeter. Obviously we’re not going to see the Union churn one out by next book.

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            Ah, understood.

            But problem is, for what reason they may need “Exeter” or any kind of “Treaty” cruiser? They are almost as costly and hard to build as full-scale battlecruiser. And battlecruisers are MUCH more capable.

          4. By Justin on

            (Incoming rant, brace for impact)

            1) Probably not Exeter per se, but similar; the humans do have experience with cruisers like her/Houston/Perth.
            2) A BC and CA may be equally complex, but tonnage-wise, the Union could crank out 2+ CAs for every BC. Quantity is as important as quality right now.
            3) Even assuming the Allies stick to the 10KT limit for some reason, “modern” knowledge means any CA should pack a lot more punch-per-ton than ships designed in the early interwar period.
            4) Said early interwar ships, of course, are the CA’s enemies. Not expected her to match a Zara, of course, but outrunning a Conte AND outslugging a Duquesne or Trento should be doable… and for a lot less effort than a BC of the same capability.

            Cost doesn’t seem to be a problem so far – I forget, do the Lemurians even have coinage, or did they have a barter economy until the DDs came along?
            Regardless, it seems that everybody’s decided on “don’t-get-eaten first, send out the bills later.”

          5. By Matt White on

            IMO a heavy/battle cruiser built around guns patterned after Amagi’s 10 inchers would be good. No treaty means no stupid limits that would compromise a design like Amagi was. We can have good speed, decent armor and firepower. The only issue is getting carried away with no limits. Savoie and Amagi are good learning aids for designing big ships. Hopefully they studied Amagi’s hull when they chopped her up. Gray is in effect an upscale Walker but that can only go so far.

          6. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, they have excellent French 34-cm/45 guns… they are among the best of their size. Much more suitable for battlecruiser than pathetic “Amagi”‘s 10-inch/50.

          7. By donald j johnson on

            Having the guns and being able to copy them are two different things. Yes 16 and a half inch guns would be nice but steel required to make them it’s probably beyond the capability of the destroyermen at this time maybe not in 5 years but remember they’re just learning to make steel and having gun Quality Steel that large is probably more than they can handle a 10 inch gun doesn’t require as high quality of Steel as they 16 and a half

          8. By Justin on

            Agreed with Donald, starting from scratch doesn’t sound like a good idea; probably best to buy whatever calibre the Republic’s using for the Imperators.

            Thing is, if we only want this ship as a cruiser-killer, we only need around 4″-8″ of armour and 8″-10″ guns. And it’s a whole lot easier to propel a CA at 31-33 knots than a BC.

  11. By Justin on

    Does USS Gray come with a flag deck? Given the current rate of construction & refit, the Union Navy’s probably going to reach a point where they’re using three or more DDs and a CL in a single action; Reddy needs to realize that he can’t command a modern fleet AND Walker at the same time.

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      This would sort of fit in with the previous suggestion of classifying USS Gray as a “destroyer leader” rather than a light cruiser, especially if you’re setting up a ‘fast’ task force rather than a heavier group including (slower) carriers. That is, until Taylor comes up with a ‘fast carrier’ concepts that allows for heavier loads to be launched.

      Reply
    2. By Lou Schirmer on

      I don’t think it does. The book says the pilot house looked “similar” to Walkers, but one deck higher to accommodate the #2 5.5 mount forward. When I drew her, I made it “similar” but larger, to fit more equipment & personnel. She probably has more & more capable radio equipment with direction finding capability, & a larger chart room & captain’s day cabin. In Walker’s day, that’s all she would need as a DD Leader. Often the flotilla commander was the senior ship’s captain of the flotilla & not a separate officer, like a Commodore. Even the “commodore” might just be a senior Captain, since the DD’s were likely commanded by Commanders or even Lt. Commanders.

      As far as the various fleets go, they are already commanded by Admirals with appropriate staffs aboard the carriers or other large ships. But you’re right, Reddy can’t exercise active command of a fleet from Walker, she just doesn’t have the facilities. Holding planning meetings on larger ships only goes so far. We’ll have to see what Taylor comes up with.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Even worse for Reddy: de facto Admiral status may mean he needs to give up the captaincy to somebody else. An entire campaign spent standing in a map room and giving orders while somebody else sails your ship…

        Ditto Mallory, and possibly Alden. Neither Goering nor Eisenhower spent much time on the front lines, after all.

        Reply
      2. By Steve Moore on

        Agree. Gray doesn’t really have the space unless some conversions are made. But the Union faces limits on logistics the USN and Royal Navy didn’t have, in that they can’t build too many ships for specialized purposes. Right now, they’re basically fighting a WW1 war at sea against the Grik (early WW2 in the air) and 4″ and 5″ guns will do. Both the USN and RN did well with destroyer groups from Norway to the Pacific, and the USN actually had wolfpacks with the commander stuck in the skipper’s cabin. You just never know

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          Now as Alexey might say, “A battlecruiser would have the facilities for a fleet CO!” Hint, hint

          Reply
          1. By Generalstarwars333 on

            It’s true, one would have the facilities, but so do the current carriers in use. And where, pray tell, would they send this “third fleet”? From what I can see, it seems like the Savoie is gonna end up as the big stick of the alliance, their superweapon they can pull out to counter the ships of the League, at least to some degree.

          2. By Lou Schirmer on

            Quite right…for now. A BC is probably about 3-5 years away technically. They might be able to do a CVL fairly quickly, but the BC needs reliable heavy guns to do it’s job. They have examples now, but it will take a while to reproduce them.

            As far as where to send them, they’ll probably stay in the Pacific theater building up their power & experience for now. The Grik & Dom conflicts should be finished before they’re even launched. Ships like fast BCs & CVLs would be developed for a possible future war with the LOT.

          3. By Justin on

            ^ Pretty much. Yet the Allies may or may not have 3-5 years; for now, it might be best to settle for larger, stronger CLs (Brooklyn, Atlanta, etc). The base hull can always be adapted to CVLs later on.

            And General, as powerful as she is, Savoie is hardly a superweapon – remember, the League threw her away!
            WAY too valuable to risk on an offensive strike. One dedicated “Sink the Bismarck Savoie!” campaign later, and the new big stick is on the bottom and the Allies are back to being up sh*t creek.

          4. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Justin, I know that the League has more and better ships than the Savoie, but I Savoie is closer to being able to counter those ships than, say, a Scott class frigate.

          5. By Justin on

            Absolutely. But she IS just one ship; against the League, Savoie‘s likely stuck as a “harbour queen” until the Allies can build or steal more big guns for the fleet.

          6. By donald johnson on

            Have any of you considered that the Savoi might just be the runt of the litter and they may have more and better stuff that was not dreamed up in Taylor’s timeline because they may not have the pertinent treaties limiting construction of larger craft that limited them!

          7. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Well, considering the fact that they gave savoie away, and that we’ve mentioned that savoie isn’t really the equal of most of the League’s stuff, I’d say yes, donald, we have considered that.

          8. By Alexey Shiro on

            She is still the most capable unit of the whole Union fleet; and it is always better to have battleship than not to have.

            Her main problems – I suppose, is her low speed and generally outdated armor scheme. French Navy of World War I did not use armored “citadels” (with traverse bulkheads at the ends) as most of other navies. Instead, French dreadnoughts have very long armor belts from bow to stern, protecting the waterline completely. They also have very thick upper belts, and above them – massive casemates for secondary artillery, which also protected the lower parts of barbettes.

            The main problem is armored decks. The “Savoie” have three of them (four, it you count the armored forecastle deck), but they aren’t actually armored; they are made from several bolted plates of construction steel each. Unless the League greatly redesigned the horiziontal protection, such armor scheme was not well suited for long-range combat.

            On the other hands, the “Savoie” is pretty resistant to short-to-medium range combat. Her high belts and numerous armored decks are very good in limiting and absorbing damage. Basically, if she wasn’t infiltrated already by the time of her last battle, she would be several times more dangerous enemy for “Walker” than “Amagi”; the “Savoie” basically have no parts which could be damaged by destroyer (or even cruiser) artillery, and her secondaries were the most deadly battery of any World War I dreadnought.

            So, if you need someone to tear apart hundred or two of Grik ships without being scratched – call the “Savioe”. She was basically designed for such job.

          9. By Steve Moore on

            Well, judging by what Garrett has learned of Dom-LOT contact, I’d be worried there. More of a straight shot for LOT forces (they’re already snooping arouund), weak opponents in the NUS and expendable allies in the Doms; I’d think they want to establish some air bases in the islands and start getting into the Venezuela/Aruba area. I think the LOT would rather deal with human allies rather than Griks, and they already seem ruthless enough to deal with lessers. Going the long way around Africa, unless they’re going to stop and colonize so as to improve their industrial base, doesn’t make as much sense until you’ve gotten rid of the Grik. Logistics.

            What does this have to do with Savoie? Well, we know she was the throwaway (they kept a destroyer and an oiler instead) due to age and my belief, logistiical oddity. She’s going to require a lot of dockyard time, yet they’re destroying Zanzibar. I just don’t think Savoie is the best operational choice now, other than point defense in Alexaandra.

          10. By Alexey Shiro on

            // I just don’t think Savoie is the best operational choice now, other than point defense in Alexaandra.//

            She is battleship. Best operational choice or not, but she is the only ship in the whole Union navy that could really stand against the League units, and she is quite durable and have excellent guns. It is absolutely pointless to put her into Alexaandra, where she could do nothing to actually protect the city, while she is desperatedly needed to support Union destroyer&carrier battlegroups.

          11. By Steve Moore on

            She is wreck, on the beach, similar to the Nevada at Pearl Harbor. Alexandraa is also the closest dockyard, which is where she’ll be for at least six months after they get her off the beach, which is AFTER they deal with the Grik galleys (wonder if they have galleys on the galleys, or do they just much on the sick list Griks?), and AFTER they convert over to making ammo for this one-off relic from the naval Goodwill box.

          12. By Alexey Shiro on

            Er… she is moderatedly damaged. Basically none of her damage is anything like critical, and could be repaired in a few weeks at most.

            And, her guns are better than anything Union currently have in their inventory. French 340-mm gun was considered one of the best weapons of her time; her dispercion pattern was less than 100 meters even on max distances. And french 138-mm secondaries are far superior to Union current 102-mm guns.

          13. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Also plenty of examples of like, 75mm cannons for airdefense if I recall correctly. Which, actually, could probably be put in the current tanks to make something like a Stug.

          14. By Alexey Shiro on

            Not sure… The real “Lorraine” (which refit “Savoie” emulated), recieved four dual 100-mm anti-aircraft guns in late 1930s, but when the war started, they were taken off and installed on new fast battleship “Richelieu”. Instead of them, “Lorraine” recieved her old eight single 75-mm anti-aircraft guns.

            So, the “Savoie” could have either 100-mm dual or 75-mm singles as heavy AA armament. Both guns were quite good for their role, the 100-mm was semi-automatic with spring-powered rammers.

          15. By Justin on

            The Grik are practically on the ropes at this point. Savoie could easily tear what’s left apart, but then against the League 1-2 books later… forget enemy BBs, even a lucky U-Boat would mean the Allies are back to square one.

            Savoie‘s a bit like Tirpitz, in that she’s too valuable to actually use.
            Also like Tirpitz, the threat of using her seems better than actually using her. If Steve’s right about the “straight shot,” it seems better to base her in the Pass of Fire with a a Walker or two and use them as a fleet-in-being.

          16. By Matt on

            I disagree Justin and have to side with Alexey here. Savoie is only moderately damaged. I would mostly be worried about her propulsion systems but even at partial power she should be able to keep up with the carriers which are very slow. Patching the torpedo damage isn’t anything the SPD can’t handle. Those guns and that armor would make her all but immune to any weapons the Grik have. Her AA would also provide some much needed heavy cover to supplement to Walker’s. She can also presumably stand off from the shore and bring effective bombardment to aide landing ops. I wouldn’t use her to stop up the Zambezi like Santy Cat, but that muscle would be sorely needed in the upcoming invasion. We also don’t need to fully recreate her fire control for this to be effective. She would act as a floating artillery battery and the extra capability of the directors and mechanical computer to compensate for a maneuvering ship aren’t needed.

            After the Grik are knocked out I think she would best serve the Union as a research piece. They will want to reverse engineer a lot of the tech on her. Their growing steel ship industry will want to learn from her hull design, DD’s aren’t built the same as BB’s and wooden ships aren’t built at all like steel ships. They will also want to study her guns. Those 340’s are going to be invaluable in learning how to make heavy guns. They could learn to make more, liners will be needed for sure, and also compare notes between that and the 4″/50’s to make an 8″ cruiser gun as well. Her boilers are a different design to the Yarrows Walker has and that could be helpful. I don’t know how the Niclausse design compares but its never a bad idea to learn about different ways to do something.

            I could see the Union using her as a learning aide to build their own capital ships, loosely based on her design with added American influence like “all or nothing” armor and heavier AA. We could also see a class of steel flattops down the road based on her hull.

            But for right now she is very valuable as fire support and air defense for the upcoming invasion of Africa.

          17. By Justin on

            Might want to re-read, Matt – I don’t think I ever said she was badly damaged. And we all agree that she’d be useful in the Zambezi. AFAIK:

            Steve M – “Savoie’s a write-off and incompatible with the Allied fleet. Put her in Alex-aandra as a floating battery.”

            Alexey – “She’s not a write-off. Repair her and put her to a battlegroup.”

            Justin – “She’s not a write-off, but she’s not exactly suitable for Walker‘s future hijinks. Repair her, then put her in Alex-aandra or the Pass of Fire as a fleet-in-being and/or response force.”

            Obviously Savoie‘d be better for Union/Republic R&D if moored in Alex-aandra, BUT she could also be used to plug the Pass and slow League expansion into the Caribbean.

          18. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Also she’s probably/possibly got a number of 75’s that could make good starter tank-guns for the allies, especially since I don’t think any of us can say for sure what the heck happened to the 3″/23 gun off the walker. They could probably take their existing tank design and put the cannon in the hull like on a Stug, and have a very nasty surprise for the League’s probable italian and french tank designs such as the M13/40 and the Chars D2 and B1.

          19. By donald johnson on

            //The Grik are practically on the ropes at this point.//
            I think that if you really look at what has/is happening you will have to admit that the Grik are far from being “on the ropes”. their land based forces are still very strong. Yes they did not have a lot on Zanzibar but since they control all of africa from about -20° to +20° and we cannot reach them there yet they have the ability to regenerate on land extreemly quickly. if they keep training their new fighters and saving them while using the old fighters against us then we will have a major problem on land in about 1-2 years when they deploy their new army.

          20. By Justin on

            The Grik don’t have 1-2 years. They’re committing everything to one last decisive battle which – for the sake of pacing, at the least – they will most likely lose.

            They’ve lost the whole empire save Sofesshk, lost control of the sea, lost control of the air, and now with Kurokawa gone (and the factories with him), the Allies are free to bomb anything they build. For the first time in the series, defeating the Grik isn’t a matter of “when,” but “how soon.”

      3. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

        Good points, and speculation by everybody. Since Gray has already been “exposed,” I have no problem establishing what she does and does not have. There is no “flag bridge,” certainly not a “flag deck,” but there is a “commodore’s cabin.” For any external artist’s rendering, its location would be immaterial since it’s not very big, but it would probably be about where it was in the DDs. Believe it or not, even 4-stackers were built with a commodore’s cabin in the bridge structure right under the pilot house, usually on the starboard side opposite the comm shack. Needless to say, this space was probably almost never used for such a thing, and was dedicated to other stuff, (like the guts of upgraded electronic capabilities, storage, etc.), since, as has been stated, “commodores” of Des-Rons, forces, groups, flotillas, whatever, were usually just the senior captain.

        Reply
  12. By Alexey Shiro on

    By the way, exactly sixty years ago radio owners all around the world first heard the “beep-beep-beep” of small shining sphere (with some pointy antennaes behind) which travelled around the globe each hour and a half.

    Sixty years since Sputnik-One showed all humanity, that if we stay aimed and work hard, we could turn any fiction dream into reality.

    A really good day!

    Reply
    1. By William Curry on

      Amen. I remember going out in the backyard to watch it pass overhead.

      Reply
    2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

      Indeed, and it started a “space race” that, though somewhat contentious between our two countries, also brought out the very best in both in terms of relatively peaceful ingenuity and imagination. Granted, many of the advances had military applications, (they always do) but they also generally accelerated every aspect of peaceful tech development to such an extent that I think it’s safe to say that the decade of the 60s might have seen a 3 or 4 decade compression of such advancement. All because of Sputnik. (Competition isn’t always a bad thing). And the breakthroughs made back then are still being built upon, continuing the compression of advancement. Being something of a luddite in terms of computers and cell phones, :), I may gripe about all this a lot, but I remain excited by the future. If we could ever get beyond all the Earth “domestic” squabbles, cooperate better, and look outward once again instead of covetously and antagonistically at one another, we could FINALLY resume our (in my view essential) exploration of what lies beyond. Civilization requires the pop-off valve of a frontier, it always has, and we can SEE the next one, right above us.
      Caveat:
      By “cooperating better” I DON’T mean through a world government or under the direction of the UN. Bigger government = bigger bureaucracy = stifled ingenuity and imagination. The result is that, more often than not, nothing gets done. I look to history instead, which proves that most great nations, even traditional rivals, often have a lot in common whether they recognize it or not. (The US and Russia were once strong friends and could be again, I’ve always believed.) If Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin–with such wildly different philosophies–could cooperate, even for a brief, specific reason, anybody can. All that is needed is a common interest and a unifying goal. And with a few glaring exceptions that should be sufficient to unify ALL other nations against them, most countries don’t have such profound philosophical differences as existed during the 1930s.

      It could be argued that most of the antagonists during WW1 weren’t much different at all, yet look what they did to each other. A prime example of how competition can be BAD. But they had no common GOAL. All were motivated solely by self-interest–as we so often are today. If nothing is done, the next Great War will be sparked by that same steel. But self-interest can remain the driving force toward cooperation instead of conflict when we all recognize the worldwide advancement and prosperity that can be gained when we work together–to gain the STARS! Sure, there’d be colonies again, and frictions might eventually return as a result, but we’d be kicking the can CENTURIES down the road–and all humanity’s eggs wouldn’t be in the same basket when those same old self-interest sparks finally flare once more. That’s a goal worth working toward together.
      Just my two cents on the significance–and potential–represented by Sputnik. Sounds like Alexey and I are thinking along the same lines.

      Reply
      1. By Clifton Sutherland on

        Hopefully, the future will show humanity has far more common causes- space exploration, preserving the environment for future generations, and protecting our common heritage and ensuring development, rather than conflicts. If the next 50 years edge towards more international cooperation, instead of outright competition, then I think this vision can be realized. And, as Taylor states, it doesnt need, nor should it have, a universal government. If the major nations have goals greater than their own survival, I bet theres nothing we couldnt achomplish!

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Partially agreed. Every team needs a team leader, otherwise confusion, lack of direction and/or conflicting interests will wreck it.

          Hence the need for some kind of authority above the federal level – if the alpha apes commonly known as “world leaders” can’t get along down here on Earth, what makes anybody think they’ll get along in space?

          Reply
          1. By Clifton Sutherland on

            hypothetically, a multipolar world could have the regional hegemons working together with each other to improve everyone’s position. Thats what China likes to say their goal is, at least haha. Either that, or they just establish domination in their own corner of the world, and refuse to cooperate outside the benefit of the hegemon’s position.

          2. By Justin on

            “Domination in (your) own corner of the world” is called isolationism. And “regional hegemons working together…” is a bit of an oxymoron; sooner or later, one hegemon is going to do something that another hegemon won’t like. Either way, world peace usually requires a neutral power with a very big stick.

            This isn’t some kind of NWO thing, it’s Teamwork 101. As seen in practically every story (or in real life), “working together” involves everybody having to stop doing their own thing, give up a little authority, and get with the program… it just so happens that they usually need somebody to figure out what the program is.

          3. By Justin on

            As for China, they seem to want a “Greater Co-Prosperity Sphere” too – they’re just being very, very subtle about it.

          4. By Clifton Sutherland on

            well, a multipolar system is results when nations that are powerful have a logical limit to their influence, and there is not a clear world wide superiority. Think America influencing Europe and South America, Russia Eastern Europe/Central Asia and Middle East, and China Eastern Asia and Pacific. The local hegemon has a sphere of influence, but is not so insanely powerful that they can threaten other hegemons. Ironically, this is more unstable and war prone.

            And I absolutely agree, China is doing the sneaky version of what Japan tried during ww2. But they are relying on soft power, utilizing the international system to their benefit, and smoke and mirrors, instead of outright aggression.

            We all better learn chinese.

          5. By Justin on

            //The local hegemon has a sphere of influence, but is not so insanely powerful that they can threaten other hegemons. Ironically, this is more unstable and war prone. //

            Well, that’s the problem. Usually, international cooperation usually turns into a “too many cooks spoil the broth” situation. Just look at the EU, the MH370 search, or even the Allied Expeditionary Force.

            Hindi and Bengali, more like. India’s got homebuilt CVs, and just put a probe over Mars on the first try (which not even NASA managed)… whereas China’s CVs are Russian surplus and their one Moon rover broke down.

          6. By Alexey Shiro on

            //China’s CVs are Russian surplus //

            Only their first; the second (currently near comissioning) is their own design, albeit based on the “Varyag” general conception.

            And, their new Type 055 DDG’s… they zare really tough. They are bigger than “Arleigh Burke”‘s, have more missile capabilities, their hulls are more stealthy, and – they implemented phased array radar imlluminators for missile guidance. The Aegis ships still use old-fashioned AN/SPG-62 radar dishes to illuminate targets for SAM terminal approach. Basically, Type 055 are better than anyone else have in therms of large destroyers/missile cruisers.

            So… I wouldn’t underestimate Chinese naval ambitions. Must admit, the scale of their naval program is… frightening. :(

        2. By Paul Smith on

          “An optimist learns English, a pessimist learns Arabic and a realist learns Chinese!

          Reply
      2. By Paul Smith on

        I always thought, the USA/ USSR rivalry showed each side was like a dark mirror for the other. If you were a US citizen, the USSR was a version of the US where the govt.went to extremes in power. The US appeared, to the soviet eyes, where the power of the free market was held by a few powerful men, with no oversight. Each side was right, by their point of view. If we can learn not to growl & spit at each others differences, we can get off this rock & out to the stars.

        Reply
  13. By Matt on

    OK guys so I took some of the feedback everyone had and I’ve thrown together a “MK2” of sorts for our ongoing “upgraded frigate” experiment.

    This is what I have: https://i.imgur.com/UlbV8a6.png

    The idea of a centrally located gunnery platform was a good one so I placed the artillery there. Taylor wants 4″/50s and while I don’t have graphics for those, the skipper gets what he wants so we’re gonna call them 4inch/50s.

    I’ve also placed ready ammunition boxes near them and have moved the Brownings out to the extreme ends. My reasoning is twofold.

    1: It gives the MG’s better arcs of fire in both dimensions so they can provide better point defense.

    2: The muzzle blast of a 4″/50 can’t be pleasant. I don’t want to make the machine gunners go deaf.

    I’ve also cut down the masts and rigging to only serve as a backup in case the engine fails.

    Unseen changes, armor has been added below decks to protect the engineering spaces and magazine. Not a lot, just enough to defeat the round shot the Doms and Grick use. So no lucky shots will cause her to do an impression of the Hood.

    That should make them a lot tougher if a Dom battlewagon could even get close, although with four 4″/50’s I don’t think any wooden ship stands a chance.

    The armor also helps offset the change in CG we would otherwise have and keep the ship’s handling more or less the same.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Farewall mainmast, and we thank you <o.

      The Warrior-type citadel sounds good, but all that additional tonnage is bound to take a knot or two off the top speed. Might not be a good idea for the Dowden or Haakar-Fassk FFs.

      Reply
      1. By Matt White on

        I’m not so sure. The Scott class mounts 20 50 pounders. I’m not sure how much they weigh but a 36 pounder weighs over 7,000 pounds. They are much heavier than a 4″/50 + mount. If we go from 20 guns that weigh more to only 4 that weigh 2/3rd’s as much then we are saving a lot of weight. The weight of a battery of 4 Mark 9 4″/50’s works out to be 23,600 lbs. 20 50 pounders would be in excess of 150,000 pounds. That’s a weight savings of 59 short tons.

        Of course I’m suggesting we make all that up by adding armor below decks so we will probably still be around 1,800 tons after the refit. The other nice thing is that all of these upgrades could probably be handled at the Enchanted Isles naval base with minimal turn around time. No need to bring the fleet back to Mani’la or Balkpan.

        You can tell it’s a pretty slow day in the office haha.

        Reply
        1. By donald j johnson on

          My feeling is that we need to get rid of any non-rifled guns and go to 5 inch rifled guns with breach blocks. This allows us to carry our powder inside a brass or steel case and be less prone to accidents. It also gives us greater range and much higher accuracy. The fusing in a rifled slug is also easier to set when needed. as it also weighs less is a plus allowing more ammunition per gun with same total weight of gun mount + loads.

          Reply
          1. By Matt White on

            Why reinvent the wheel? The 4″/50 we have will easily outperform any crude breech loading rifle they design from scratch. Might as well leapfrog to the state of the art since we already can. IMO making any kind of artillery that isn’t a modern QF type at this point is a waste of resources.

          2. By donald j johnson on

            4 inch 50 or 5 inch 38 are both verry equivalent in Technology. a 5-inch can carry a larger boom than a 4 inch. I am not certain that a 5-inch cartdrige can be carried by one man but the reason the Japanese went to the 4-inch fifties was because the four inch 50 could be so that may be a better caliber for the present. Just so we don’t have to require a large loading platform to be built into a gun mount that can jam preventing the gun from being used.

          3. By Lou Schirmer on

            The 5’/38 had semi-fixed ammo. The projectile was separate from the powder cartridge, I think mostly so the shell could be automatically fused in the hoist. The earlier 5″/25s were a one piece cartridge weighing in at around 80 lbs. or so, depending on ammo type.

          4. By Justin on

            Remember that the Union already has a 4″/50, but a 5″/38 would have to be built and designed from scratch.

            So AFAIK, either they spend months on trial-and-error guns until they get something that isn’t worse than the 4″, or get the Republic to do it for more money and almost as much time… just for a shell that jams less?

    2. By Steve Moore on

      The other salient point, is that without as much rigging, less top hamper in strong winds, and therefore a more stable (and maneuverable) gun platform. And the extra range gives them a standoff capability against Grik cruisers. Hope they have a good supply of AP shells.

      Still, given that the 4″ battery would be tied into fire control, and therefore a little more limited in their rate of fire, it’d be nice to have maybe one twin 25mm gallery to put heavier rapid fire out there, either at sea level or as AA. The Griks came up with suicide bombs; who’s to say they can’t come up with suicide boats (zep engines) for coastal waters and the Zambezi? After all, Esshk has defenders as well (that he needs to kill off).

      I’ll give up on the torpedoes for now, and hope they start thinking about some of Lou’s DE’s or TB-2’s with more speed.

      Reply
      1. By Matt White on

        A 25mm Tub would be cool. No idea where we could put it though and have a good gun depression to combat TB’s and such. Sailing ships have remarkably high freeboard for their size and weren’t designed with deck mounted weapons in mind really.

        Any idea where one could be installed to good effect? The ports on the gundeck could be increased in size to give some room to train them but I don’t like opening big holes in the side of a ship.

        Maybe we could mount some 30cals on the rails and do that. It’s not ideal but its better than nothing and a copy of the Walker’s mounts would give them the depression to pretty much hit anything up to the waterline.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          is the gunwhale any higher than the tub? Why not a semi circular tub on the stern, like carriers have on the sides? Maybe a couple of BAR clones in the maintop?

          Reply
          1. By Generalstarwars333 on

            My question is, are .30-06 rounds really enough to stop a torpedo boat? I mean, if you get enough of them on target, maybe, but I’d imagine “enough” would mean quite a lot, and you might not have the time to get enough of them on target.

          2. By Matt White on

            Well TBs normally don’t have armor so a 30-06 should have no problem however I did have M2s in mind. 50bmg is being produced and presumably they’ve also started making new M2’s to arm the Walker clones and the cruiser as well.

          3. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Yeah. The range and power of the M2 would, in my opinion, be far better suited for ripping apart a torpedo boat before it can get close enough than a .30-06 would be.

        2. By Steve Moore on

          Speaking of tubs, would tubs for the 4″/50’s work to provide a little protection against shrapnel and small arms fire from Grik galleys?

          Secondly, maybe I’m missing something, but where does skipper command from? Not much of a quarterdeck.

          Reply
          1. By Matt White on

            //Speaking of tubs, would tubs for the 4″/50’s work to provide a little protection against shrapnel and small arms fire from Grik galleys?//

            I can’t imagine they would ever get that close unless the captain intentionally wanted a knife fight. The 4″/50s allow for engagement outside the range of any muzzle loader. The MGs are for point defense AA and against TBs.

            //Secondly, maybe I’m missing something, but where does skipper command from? Not much of a quarterdeck.//

            Doh! Remember when I said I’m not a ship designer? I kind of assumed that the union sailing ships had a design similar to old Ironside with a pretty flat top deck. I guess you could put the helm anywhere but traditionally it’s at the back somewhere so before the tail MGs?

          2. By Justin on

            Might have to build another platform for the quarterdeck so that the helmsman and captain can see all the way to the bow (past the new midcastle).

          3. By Steve Moore on

            Maybe an iron cupola just forward of the stack, because you’d need fire control as well.

            The nice thing about this concept is that the guns can be removed, and the ship re-rigged, when they become obsolete in a few years. 20 years and these will all be hulks, replaced by iron ships. Schooners carried lumber, stone and other bulky materials up and down the New England coast well into the 20th century, some even during WW2.

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            //I can’t imagine they would ever get that close unless the captain intentionally wanted a knife fight.//

            Walker’s been in several situations where tubs & shields would have saved lives, so they may not be a bad idea.

            //Secondly, maybe I’m missing something, but where does skipper command from? Not much of a quarterdeck.//

            On the old US spare decked frigates, the rear of the deck was called the quarter deck & was commanded & helmed from there. It started somewhere between the main & mizzen masts & went aft. With a central citadel blocking vision though, Steve’s idea of a platform on the citadel is good. That’s what they did back then also. It was a central platform with walkways out to each side of the ship “bridging” the ship from side to side. Kind of like pedestrian bridges over busy streets. The captain could move where he needed to be to see the action & not interfere with the gun crews.

          5. By Lou Schirmer on

            The “bridge” was actually started with paddle wheel steamers, but was kept when the screw took over propulsion duties & larger & central battery ships cinched the deal.

            Also it’s “spar” deck, not “spare” deck. Not like they had an extra deck lying around. My bad.

          6. By Matt on

            Lou, can you point me in the direction of any good drawing or photographs online that show that bridge design? I can try to rework the plan to include it if I knew what it looked like.

          7. By Lou Schirmer on

            What Justin IDs is basically exactly how the bridge originated.
            For your central battery ship, it might be a raised platform behind the forward 4″/50, with wings to each side. They might shift the engine telegraphs, voice tubes & possibly the wheel there as well. It wouldn’t be an enclosed bridge yet though, just an open platform.

          8. By Justin on

            //For your central battery ship, it might be a raised platform behind the forward 4″/50, with wings to each side. They might shift the engine telegraphs, voice tubes & possibly the wheel there as well. It wouldn’t be an enclosed bridge yet though, just an open platform.//

            Hold on – for that kind of bridge, this might be a more useful image: http://www.gjenvick.com/DigitalAssets/SteamshipArticles/1901-04-WorldsWork/Photo-09-OnTheBridgeAfterTheStorm-500.jpg

            //Here’s a different angle on a Scott class DD refit. I kept most of the sails to give her more flexibility & range.//

            Another fine job.

            Question: why the Derbys? Even the Walkers seem to be fine with just a three-gun broadside; might be better using that weight for more/thicker armour.

          9. By Lou Schirmer on

            Thanks!

            //Question: why the Derbys?//

            The Derby guns are for providing a high volume of fire if/when they get into a close range fight. They use exploding shells & from the videos, have a ridiculous rate of fire. Might come in handy in a riverine environment, say against a swarm of galleys, or if they get into another close range fleet engagement with the Doms or trapped somehow.

            Eight Derby guns @ 1,500 lbs. each is about six tons of armor, about twelve .75″ 4’x8′ plates or eighteen .5″ plates. Personally, I’d go with more fire power, but it would increase the protection.

          10. By Matt White on

            Nice work Lou, you’re a better artist than I am. That’s a lot of fire power though. Can a Scott class hold enough ammo for all of those guns and fuel as well? Where are the crew going to keep all of those shells?

          11. By Lou Schirmer on

            Thanks! Fuel, ammo & other store are always fighting for space on ships. The Derby guns would probably only be fired for salutes or close range emergencies, so they wouldn’t need a huge supply, maybe 50-80 rounds each. The 4″ DP ammo would take up more space & might need two magazines, one forward & one aft, with maybe 100 mixed rounds per gun. The forward one could double as the 3″ magazine as well. They’d have to make some space, as I think sailing vessels usually had only one magazine (powder room). The new artillery needs a lot fewer men to man than the older cannon, so that may free up space. Some magazine space is there, they have the shot lockers & powder rooms from the 50lb. cannon to work with. You can stack cartridge ammo vertically, like wine bottles to save space, or keep half in stacked crates. As far as fuel goes, they’d probably leave the fuel bunkers as they are.

          12. By Lou Schirmer on

            One thing I’ve been meaning to mention. If anyone wants to play with/modify one of my scribblings, by all means, be my guest. You all have great ideas & it’s easier to change an existing drawing than doing one from butt scratch.

          13. By William Curry on

            With the breech loading guns and mounts on the steam and stern, I would worry about hogging of the hull. Reinforcement to prevent that would probably be need on these proposed Scott class conversions/modernization’s.

          14. By Lou Schirmer on

            Perhaps at the stern, but the single mount is replacing two of the heavy cannon, although sitting farther back. At the bow, the stresses should actually be about the same as before. Two guns of weight similar to the 50 lb. cannon are replacing them one for one. Even the recoil should be about the same with a lighter shell at higher velocity replacing a heavy low velocity one. With the diagonal rib construction, these should be sturdier ships than their counterparts in our world & depending on location, the new plates may provide most of any needed reinforcement. They’d have to be tested to make sure though, good call.

          15. By Justin on

            Maybe add a couple of light bulkheads, just to make sure? They’d also be good for flood control.

          16. By Lou Schirmer on

            Sounds good Justin.
            Something’s been bothering me since William’s comment & it hit me at oh-dark-30 this morning. My guns are too big for the hull length. The Scott class waterline is 210′ & a 4″/50 barrel is 200″ plus breech, so about twelve gun lengths should fit the waterline. Less than ten fit, so I’ve got to redo things. That might be why it looked to need strengthening. I think Matt’s drawing is in the same shape, looking more like 10″ guns, scale wise.

          17. By Matt White on

            The Hull and guns are both drawn to scale however the hull I used is borrowed and not necessarily the right size. Those are 4″/50s in era appropriate single use mounts. I will have to go back and check the size and readjust as needed. I also thought there was a surprising lack of space.

  14. By Justin on

    Would it be possible to rework the Springfield to use a ten-round internal box mag, like with the SMLE or SKS? I can see some enterprising Cat at the Baalkpan Arsenal wondering “Why do stripper clips stop at five rounds…?”

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      I can’t see the ’03 as the standard infantry rifle; they’ve got experience with selective-fire actions now, just go straight to something like the Blitzer Bug, but with a carbine length barrel, and just copy ’03’s for scout snipers (or for the Imperials, since they’ll be fighting (I’m guessing) on the West Coast sooner or later, and need a longer-range rifle for their territorials).

      For that case, now that Silva has some spare time, maybe he can whip up a lever action Winchester clone in .45 ACP caliber for some cowboy action shooting.

      Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          I’m waiting for Silva and Pam to get hitched, although I don’t think it’ll happen until she’s in the family way. Will Risa be the maid of honor?

          Although, you know, we haven’t had a major female character get the chop.. yet. Becky’s mother notwithstanding. My guess is that it’ll be Pam or Blossom.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            We lost Geran-Eras too, though she wasn’t really “major” past Crusade. The general rule seems to be that you lose your immunity along with your plot relevance – Laumer after S-19 sank, Lange after Amerika sank, Adar after the Alliance became the Union. So Pam, Blossom and our three young monarchs seem safe.

          2. By Clifton Sutherland on

            I’m still waiting for the guy who was killed in the crow’s nest during the first chapter of book 1 to come back from the dead leading an army of mermaids or something

      1. By Justin on

        (armchair mode activated)

        Much as as we’d like to see a cavalrycat do a Terminator rifle flip, there’s three main problems with that .45 Winchester:

        1) Remember that Lemurian munitions manufacturing isn’t exactly at Arsenal of Democracy levels yet.
        A squad of muzzle-loaders is relatively easy to keep pace with. Bolt-actions and a pair of Blitzers and LMGs, harder, but somewhat manageable. Semi-autos for everybody means they’ll likely be outshooting the supply trains AND the factories.

        2) .45 ACP’s a handgun cartridge: low accuracy, limited penetration. As an SMG or sidearm round it’s fine, but as a carbine round it’s not good for shooting people at long range or dinosaurs at any range.

        3) According to Mr. Anderson back a page or two (look for the revolver-rifle discussion), a lever-action is actually harder to build than a bolt-action.

        Reply
        1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          .45ACP is very accurate–potentially. My semi auto Thompson can hit a gong the size of a hub cap at 250 yds, every shot–with the rear sight halfway up. The thing is, you can fire, and drink half a cup of coffee before you hear the “tink” of the bullet hit. And it wouldn’t be reliably lethal at that range. It might provide suppression against rational forces capable of being suppressed, however. Anyway, Justin’s right. It’s a good cartridge for a Thompson, Blitzer, or any close range carbine, but not a battle rifle. And like Matt says, .45 ACP is getting close to the limit of blowback designs light enough for practical use as a small arm. The bolt/springs/ slide, whatever is used, have to be heavy enough to hold the cartridge in the chamber until the pressure drops, but light enough to react to the recoil impulse to cycle the weapon. Higher pressure gas operated weapons stay locked until gas hits the gas port in the barrel and only then, when the pressure has dropped significantly, is the bolt unlocked and cycled.
          Lever actions are generally far more complicated that bolt actions, though the machining and assembly, while more time consuming and requiring more set ups (in a world where CNC is a LONG way away) might actually be less difficult than most bolt actions in various ways. An 1895 Winchester might be simplest of all, with an integral box magazine capable of being adapted to stripper clips (some variations were provided with a guide) and also capable of handling pointed bullets–as well as some very large ones, like .405. I can imagine them even being made to load .50-80, which might be popular post-war surplus sporting/hunting cartridges–if there ever is a “post war.” The question is, WAS there a ’95 among the assorted small arms found in Santa Catalina? Might one appear elsewhere? Despite its relative simplicity–or because of it–I find it hard to believe anyone BUT John Browning could just conjure one up in his head. Like many of Browning’s numerous, wild designs, the ’95 is a freaking masterpiece of elegant function, with equally elegant form thrown in.

          Reply
          1. By Matt White on

            Imma take a guess and say no. From what I remember Santy Cat had Thompsons in crates as well as some personal owned Mausers and the SAA. I think there may have been some assorted revolvers and pistols but most things that weren’t the Thompsons and colt were badly corroded right?

            The good news is that they have an example of gas operation in the BAR however it’s lockup is kind of a dead end. The holy grail here is gas operated rotating bolt, the system most modern rifles use. Kind of like how every modern pistol is based on the 1911, it just seems like the beet way to do things. Maybe Silva or someone else one of these days can look at the rotating bolt of the 1903 and the gas piston of the BAR and out two and two together. That’s still a long ways off and quite a bit more advanced than what the crew is familiar with. Saying self loading rifle development was troublesome is an understatement.

          2. By Justin on

            If the NUS acquired Christopher Spencer or his AU counterpart in their Transition, they may have Civil War-era repeaters. That’s a pretty big “if” and “may,” though.

          3. By Matt White on

            Well we know they have revolvers so that means they either crossed over with some Colt Walkers or someone knew about them and was able to reinvent the revolver.

          4. By Justin on

            If you’re willing to go back through one or two pages to December 2016, Lou brought up the idea of a revolver rifle. Take a Colt New Model, rebuild it for .30 or .50, add a swing-out cylinder and a gas deflector shield (so your arm doesn’t get roasted). Presto, Rossi Circuit Judge.

          5. By donald j johnson on

            The .45 acp when used in an accurized pistol is very good indeed. I personally have used an accurized 1911 and have held it to about 6 inch grouping at 50 yards. When used in a single shot 4 inch barrel i have held to <5 inch group. Never shot one at much longer range except one time we were trying to see how far the derringer would shoot and found that we could make it stay in a 5 foot area at 450 yards with a flight time that seemed to be about a week as taylor says :-)

          6. By Lou Schirmer on

            Could even do a lever action revolver with a cam acting on the cylinder. As the lever opens, the cam pulls the cylinder back about 3/8″ & half rotates the cylinder to the next chamber, taking the hammer to half cock. As the lever closes, it completes the rotation & pushes the cylinder back into battery & the hammer comes to full cock. The front of the cylinders would be cone shaped & push into a matching recess in the barrel. The action behind the cylinder would have a 3/8″ raised ramp to support the cylinder & cartridge when in battery with maybe a 3/4 moon clip with a light spring to ensure the other cartridges stay in the cylinder. This would cut down on the revolver blow by problem. A lever action is faster than a bolt action & a revolving lever gun might be less complicated to manufacture than the traditional tube magazine & feed action.

          7. By Lou Schirmer on

            Kind of. A break action might be easier to do than a swing out cylinder & if that tube under the barrel is a shotgun tube, make it easier to load also. A shotgun under barrel would be nice. The action is a bit long for a revolver though, since the lever is just there to rapidly cycle the cylinder & hammer & not a bolt going back & forth. Looks like he modified an AK action for the drawing.

      2. By Matt White on

        IIRC the Blitzer Bug is a blowback tube gun not unlike a stem or M3. That kind of action is not suited to higher powered cartridges. Actually around that 9mm/45cal area is where you start to see the cutoff of blowbacks, roller delayed notwithstanding. Any proper self loading infantry rifle is going to be either gas or recoil operated, gas is probably better for something that size, recoil tends to shine in larger weapons although the 1911 is technically recoil operated as well.

        Reply
    2. By Matt White on

      No reason why you can’t increase the capacity although if we are doing that I would dump stripper clips altogether and switch to detachable box mags. The SMLE was designed that way to begin with although old habits in the British army meant they were never employed that way. You can actually still find some with little chains permanently attaching the mag to the gun.

      My experience with stripper clips in the Enfield, Mauser and Mosin is that they are finicky things. Easily bent and damaged and a gun that isn’t well oiled can be a pain to charge, especially the Mosin which doesn’t have the best tolerances in the world.

      Clips really became popular because of cost. I think it’s ironic that in an Era of a huge arms race with massive budgets the generals decided to save a few dollars/pounds/marks there. Especially considering how the prewar rifles wee really wellade. I have a 1909 dated Mauser and if Winchester tried to make a gun just like it today it would easily be a $2k rifle.

      Magazines are objectively better. They allow you to reload faster, do a better job of protecting the ammo, are reusable and use much coarser movements which makes them easier to use under stress.

      There’s no reason the 1903 can’t be modified to use a detachable mag like the Enfield or BAR. I just wonder if it’s really worth it. If we are going to increase capacity sure but I think for right now 5 rounds is plenty. And given earlier discussion I don’t think Taylor is going to introduce a standard replacement for the trapdoor anyways.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Makes sense. What about an en bloc clip like the Garand – any advantage over a mag, or just the same drawbacks?

        Reply
  15. By Lou Schirmer on

    Found another one. The Haakar-Faask class DD is apparently VERY well armed with 200 x 32 pounder cannon. pg.473

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Damn, talk about value for money. Queen Safir’s foster father would be proud.

      Reply
    2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

      Thanks. Keep your eyes peeled for these. I don’t know why they always feel compelled to screw with even the specifications pages but they do. Even when I fix stuff, I miss things. Watch out for the next one. The CE took it upon theirself to redo EVERYTHING in the specs–and I had to rebuild it… Anyway, I always appreciate your catches so I can fix things before the PB comes out.

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        Might be time for a Come To Jesus meeting with your editor & publisher. If their incompetence & meddling with a best selling author’s work is causing embarrassment & more work for you to correct THEIR mistakes, it might be time to tell them to get their shite together or you’ll start looking for a different publisher. The higher ups may not know what the troops screw-ups are doing. If you don’t notify them, this will continue to be an issue & may get worse.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Just curious, wouldn’t it be neat to have a World of Destroyermen series? I mean, there seems to be one of these massive multiplayer games for everything else…

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Now THERE’s an idea for Taylor to pitch to the publishers! Then we could build our fantasy fleets to our greedy little hearts content. Or play for the Griks & plow everyone else under.

          2. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Or someone could make a destroyermen mod for a Total War game, since that would allow you to capture the land combat in relatively fine detail and still have cool naval combat.

          3. By Steve Moore on

            Plenty of good barbecue in Eastern Texas for hungry Grik, although I haven’t been west of San Antonio. Just Dallas, Houston, and about 10 zillion miles of I-10

          4. By Justin on

            A Hearts of Iron mod would work too, with all the logistics and technology tiers.

          5. By Generalstarwars333 on

            The problem with hearts of iron and destroyermen is that destroyermen tends to focus more on the actions of individuals and smaller units, along with naval stuff, whereas hearts of iron is basically division scale at the smallest, and naval combat takes a huge backseat. The logistics could be interesting, yes, but I’d rather sea a total war mod first.

          6. By Clifton Sutherland on

            I’ve been thinking how a destroyermen game would work for some time. I always thought a combination of a paradox game, like Hearts of Iron/EU4, combined with realtime battles a la total war. each faction would play very differently, obviously- destroyermen start with very limited resources, personal, but have the capacity to leech onto another faction, improving their relations, tech, economy, and manpower in doing so. Japanese may be a slightly buffed varient, but with less powerful tech and worse relations.

            Grik could have an infighting mechanic between regencies, and have to strike a balance betweeen constantly conquering and not modernizing too quickly.

            Doms could have some zany blood crusades and sacrifice captured prisoners and what not, while also fighting lots of rebels and a really crappy c&c format.

            Impies have all sorts of intrigue going on.

            The battle systems could work- total war recently did a fantasy, warhammer game, which was successful in making asymmetrical units work.

            Now, the real challenge is finding a publisher who likes the series as much as we do….

  16. By Lou Schirmer on

    Now THIS would have been an interesting sub. Too bad it was never built.

    https://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/OnlineLibrary/photos/images/s-file/s584166.jpg

    On a different subject, I believe I owe Alexey an apology in regards to a previous argument about armored cruisers & their descendants. I thought heavy cruisers were the direct descendants of armored cruisers, but he was right, they’re not…quite. Heavy & light cruisers are descended from light armored cruisers (the 4-6″ gun ships of WW1). Battle cruisers are the direct descendants of armored cruisers. I apologize for my ignorance Alexey. :(

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      The original argument still stands though: the WNT basically cut off heavy cruisers at 10k tons and 8-inchers before anybody could start the inevitable scope creep. Without the Treaty, they would’ve likely evolved to 15k-20k (like in OTL) with 9″ or 10″ guns.

      Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            Looks like something out of Popular Mechanics…. at least the artwork. But y’know, might be just the thing for building support structures in Anarctica…

          2. By Lou Schirmer on

            Actually, I think I did see this in either Popular Mechanics or Popular Science back in the 80s. Pretty cool concept. 😉

        1. By Steve Moore on

          Damn, don’t think I would want to be in a 20mm position on the bow, when planes are launching RIGHT overhead. It’d be like sunning on the beach in St Maartens.. OK, where the beach USED to be. Flew in there once and you could see the cleavage…

          Reply
    2. By Alexey Shiro on

      Please, nothing to apologise about, Lou! This was just a discussion, and the goal of the discussion is to excange knowlege, after all! :)

      Reply
  17. By Matt on

    So all the talk of retrofitting some kind of modern QF guns to the existing wooden steamers inspired me to try and visualize it.

    https://i.imgur.com/orkjUOk.png

    This is what I think something like an upgraded steamer DD would look like. Sail is only kept for emergency purposes. Primary propulsion is through the steam engine. Armament is 4 3″/50’s and 4 water cooled .30 cal Brownings.

    The 3 inchers are located in pairs abeam fore and aft while the MGs are located amidships. Ditching the obsolete cannons will free up space and displacement for carrying ammo and may provide for retrofitting some basic armor to the magazines although the users who know about ship building will have to weigh in there. I’m we can do something with the extra space.

    I’m not artistically inclined but I can make a hash of MS Paint, so shout out to the dedicated guys at shipbucket.com for making the actual graphics I butchered.

    Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      Nice! Maybe they could go to a straight fore & aft rig instead of a square rig. It would be lighter, take less crew to handle & wouldn’t be in the way too much.

      Reply
      1. By Matt White on

        I did some looking at ironclads with auxiliary sails and it seemed like most of them used lateens with maybe one square mainsail at the bottom. I’m not skilled enough to draw that so I went with a model that had bare rigging to try and give the impression of auxiliary sails.

        Reply
    2. By Justin on

      No sweat – it works, doesn’t it?

      Perhaps they could try “midcastles” built around the mainmast/funnel; a platform raised just above and extending abeam from the top deck might be wide and sturdy enough for four guns.

      Reply
    3. By Steve Moore on

      Interesting, leaves a lot of space on the lower gun decks, as well as raising the CG? Maybe balance them off by putting some torpedoes on the lower deck, maybe 2 tubes a side? And have spares on the same level, just like in a sub, slide the reloads forward into the tubes when they’re lined up fore and aft. And maybe a couple extra pairs of BMGs for bow or stern chasers, or for demounting into ships boats for jaunts ashore>

      Reply
      1. By Matt White on

        I was actually thinking the new CG would be offset by adding some armor protection to the engineering spaces as well as making an armored magazine. With the current state of Union fish and how sailing hull designs are not at all suited to it I don’t think torpedo tubes would be such a great idea. You can either out them topside which makes the CG issue worse as well as them being in the way 99% of the time. Or you could out them lower down. Gun ports wouldn’t be sufficient unless you use fixed tubes which are all but useless so you would have to cut into the hull to allow the tubes to traverse. I’m no naval engineer but my bet is that’s easier said than done with thick wood and would likely introduce some other issues.

        Reply
  18. By Steve Moore on

    Got another question for the technical wizards here. Would it be possible to develop a version of the Derby gun on a naval carriage, that could be retrofitted to sail/steam DD’s, DE’s and AVD’s? Donaghey’s already got some Maxims, which would make one hell of an stand-off addition to the sail/steam ships going after Grik galleys. So would M2’s and M1919’s, but having something with more of a punch, more rapidly reloaded in local control, would make sense for the larger Grik ships.

    How about incendiary rounds to set those Grik ships alight? Getting them to turn ‘prey’ on board would put a big crimp in any damage control process.

    Speaking of galleys, if they’re being moved by hand, I don’t see there being much of a chance for armament (also since they’re a historical design (preguns). Might make them pretty much of a sitting duck.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Late-medieval and early-modern galleys/galleasses were equipped with cannon – and pre-war Grik already knew napalm and catapults. Somehow, I highly doubt that Esshk is going to allow his invasion fleet to just sail out and get shot without a chance to fire back.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        True, but Kurokawa introduced guns to the Griks, and even if the galleys were armed, it’d probably only be one cannon in front, needing to point the bow at the target; I don’t see how they’d manage sweeps and cannons in the same space. he may plan on using the cover of darkness

        Reply
        1. By donald j johnson on

          What would be a very interesting story is how the grik were able to capture the English ships that they copied without capturing the guns and gunpowder. Had it been me on those ships knowing that those ships were being captured by enemies that as deadly as the grik I would have blown my ship up along with myself to prevent the guns from being captured. Someday Taylor or someone will need to write that story to give us an idea of what they must have gone through since at the time All Ships had guns for protection against Pirates Etc

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            I forget which book it was in, but it told the story of the East Indiamen convoy & how the three galleons that tried to go back & were captured by the Grik, had their cannons removed before turning back as a precaution. I think it was one of the first books dealing with meeting the Empire.

          2. By donald j johnson on

            And no muskets or pistols either. Not much chance of fighting when all you have is storage so they’re essentially condemned because they wanted to go back

          3. By Steve Moore on

            They tried three times against Amagi, probably got hosed the first two times but came back for more. And don’t forget how they helped repair Amagi by jumping in the water with materials to make a cofferdam.

        2. By Alexey Shiro on

          Well, the large galleys usually carry a few guns in forecastle and aftercastle structures… and galeases have a gun deck above/below sweeps.

          Reply
    2. By Lou Schirmer on

      I’m sure you could adapt the Derby gun to shipboard use fairly easily. Put it on a pivot mount & it would make a nice piece for any ship. It’s rapid fire capability would do well against, say a bunch of galleys. It might do well with a DP mount also.

      Reply
          1. By Matt on

            The hybrid ships should be moving away from full rig anyways as they did in our timeline. The reciprocating steam engines seem to have pretty good reliability so far so switching too a purely auxiliary rig should work. Doing away with the Full mast and rig as well as all of the large heavy smooth bores and replacing them with a few breach loaders and MG’s topside should save displacement and lower the center of gravity while increasing firepower quite a bit.

            I wouldn’t bother with the Derby’s, the Union already has Walker’s old 3incher as a base and it is a real DP gun. It already has a naval DP mount and any other associated equipment and is known to be a solid and reliable weapon. That would be my choice for a light naval gun.

    3. By Matt on

      I proposed a little while back producing Walker’s 3inch/23 as a cheap and lightweight upgrade for the older ships. Four of them topside would provide far more range and firepower than the smoothbore broadsides they did have as well as provide credible AA capability.

      Spec-wise the 3″/23 has a ran of 10100 yards for surface action and 18,000 feet for AA defense. That handily outranges anything the Grik and Doms have as well being useful against Grikbirds.

      Toss a few MGs on as well and the older ships would make excellent AA pickets and be able to smash anything wooden on the sea. I go into a bit more detail in another reply.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Most likely two on each broadside in staggered barbettes – like the French L’Oceans, but en echelon.

        Reply
      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        If they do go with the 3″, I’d advise lengthening the barrel to 35-50 caliber. Using the same load that would increase it’s range & penetration. In it’s 23 caliber form the muzzle velocity is very low, about the same as the French 75. They’d have to recalculate the ballistics tables, but that would be easy enough.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3%22/50_caliber_gun

        Reply
        1. By Matt White on

          The 3″/23 and 3″/50 aren’t related guns but I can’t think of a reason you couldn’t redesign one to have a longer barrel. If the new upgraded 3″/50 performed anything like the real 3″/50 then you are looking at about 4,000 yards more range and up to 30,000 feet for AA purposes. A really nice upgrade. I assume the 3″/50 uses a longer cartridge than the /23. I assume the redesigned gun would need a new recoil system to go with it. The original one probably wont be up to the task and you don’t want the guns beating themselves up.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            No they’re not related, but just adding barrel length to the existing 3″/23 will increase the muzzle velocity & range, without developing a new cartridge or weapon system. It’s like taking a pistol cartridge & firing it in a rifle barrel. Same cartridge, much better ballistics due to the longer barrel. Shouldn’t even need to make a new recoil system, as the added mass of the longer barrel should offset the slight recoil increase. To keep it handy enough to be able to traverse & elevate quickly, they would probably go with something in the 40 caliber range.

          2. By Matt on

            Sorry didn’t mean to imply any of that was necessary, just that since we are lengthening the barrel, might as well get all we can out of it.

          3. By Steve Moore on

            didn’t Western gunmen use the same .44 in both pistols and lever action winchesters?

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            No problemo Matt. :) If I were them though, I stick to the production 4″ DP. If the decks are strong enough to hold up under the weight & recoil of 20 or so heavy cannon, they should be able to handle a few 4″ mounts with some reinforcement. I also like your idea of reducing the top hamper. They might even be able to rebuild at least the Scott class into a sort of light armored cruiser. With the masts reduced, they might save enough weight to bolt some plate steel to the sides & mount up to six 4″ DPs, some .50 BMGs & maybe even a quad torpedo mount.

            Yes Steve many in the old west did & lots of folks still do. There are lots of lever guns out there now in .357 & .44 magnum & other pistol cartridges.

          5. By Generalstarwars333 on

            I believe the rationale for using the same cartridge in both rifles and pistols was convenience. It was easier to just buy one type of bullet to use in both your pistol and your rifle. They weren’t necessarily optimal rifle rounds, as was pointed out to me when I submitted my “Blitzer Bug but Longer” idea some time ago. Longer barrels don’t solve everything. Russia used I’m pretty sure the same 76mm round in the KT-28, L-10, L-11, F-32, and F-34. Even though the F-34 had a substantially longer barrel than the L-11, penetration didn’t go up too much because it was the same 76mm round from WWI. The similarly long german 75mm L43 cannon on the other hand, was significantly more powerful due to it having a much more powerful round despite being about the same length as the F-34.

          6. By Lou Schirmer on

            Too true General. Even with a longer barrel, the 3″ cartridge is a low pressure round, so the velocity improvements may be not enough to warrant a longer barrel. Even so, it’s probably light enough & low power enough that the older ships & auxiliaries may do well with them as an upgrade. I’d still lean towards the 4″ DPs though, if I had my druthers.

          7. By Matt on

            The 4″/50 would definitely be preferable, I just don’t know if the wooden deck would support them. The Mark 9 which is what Walker has weighs 5,900 lbs without the mount. The 3″/23 weighs less than 1,000. It’s a much lighter gun. Considering the relatively small footprint of the mounts for the weight of the guns I don’t think a wooden deck could reliably support much more over such a small surface area. Smoothbores can easily weigh that much but they have larger footprints being on carriages instead of mounts.

          8. By Lou Schirmer on

            A broad based platform with bracing should be able to spread the weight out & handle the recoil. The smaller ships may have issue finding space for more than 2 mounts, maybe two centerline mounts one each fore & aft supplemented with a reduced broadside fit. The larger Scott class shouldn’t have any problems at all with four mounts.

          9. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            The original rifle-pistol combo:
            .44WCF (.44-40) was one of the first centerfire rifle cartridges, and it and the 1873 Winchester were specifically designed for each other. It was a wonderful match and very popular. Proper, original black powder loaded .44-40s are excellent for medium-sized game like deer, feral hogs, and black bear, and can even ethically kill elk if you’re close and place the bullet properly. No less an authority than Frank Barnes once said that .44-40 had probably “killed more game, large and small, and more men, good and bad, than any other civilian cartridge.” Not an exact quote, I’m afraid, but close enough.
            It is one of my very favorite rifle-pistol cartridges, and with a 240grn bullet (heavier than originals) and 40 grns of 3F Swiss black powder (maybe a little more potent even than the good ol Dupont), ballistics are as close as makes no difference to a .44 mag. Interestingly, though considered a “pistol” cartridge now, it started out in a rifle, as stated, and ’73s were made for over 40 years, with reproductions made now. Colt thought it would be cool to chamber its 1873 SAA for .44-40 after a few years and it WAS handy having a pistol and rifle that shot the same cartridge–but the full house rifle load is a beast in the pistol. We generally load the original weight bullets, (204-212grn) in our pistols since they aren’t twisted fast enough to stabilize the heavier slugs, but rifle loads–while accurate–will shake all the screws loose after a couple cylinders. Reduced power “pistol loads,” roughly equivalent to what is commercially available today, were produced fairly early. These would also shoot out of the rifle, but were woefully inadequate for deer-sized game. This is what has given .44-40 a bad name. I’m here to tell you that the real deal is a dandy, and my 1875 Remington will stabilize the heavier bullets. That’s the pistol I usually carry in bear country.
            1873 Winchesters were chambered for other calibers, like .38-40 and .32-20, which also became successful pistol cartridges. (There was even a ’73 chambered for .22, though NEVER in .45 long Colt). This because it wasn’t a rifle cartridge and it had a straight case instead of the tapered, slight bottleneck, making for difficult cycling and extraction, particularly combined with thin-rimmed balloon head cartridges. ANYWAY . . . .38-40 is kind of pointless, if you ask me, though one of my buddies loves it, but properly loaded .32-20s are like high performance .30 carbine, great for small game in a rifle and pretty wicked in a pistol too. Colt New Army .32-20 revolvers were popular with aviators because they were light, accurate, comfortable in an armpit holster, and you could carry a lot of shells in your pockets. (I have one that must’ve been carried by an aviator since it’s US Property marked and in near perfect condition except for sweat pitting on the backstrap.
            Probably the first rifle cartridge to have pistols chambered for it was the .44 Henry rimfire, but I can’t think of any of those early dedicated pistol cartridges to have a production rifle chambered for it except for target or gallery purposes. Of course, reproduction ’73s and ’66s, among others, have been chambered for .357 and .38 Special, but .38 in a rifle is pretty much useful only for plinking and “cowboy action shooting” matches.

            Also interesting, this all segues into the barrel length discussion. Obviously, pistols shooting the same cartridge as a rifle will almost always have considerably lower velocity, largely because of gas leakage (in a revolver) and a shorter barrel to burn the powder. After the experiments of Alfred Mordechai, among others, however, it was recognized how important barrel length was to the optimum performance of any projectile diameter and powder charge. By chance, .44-40 serves as an excellent example. The “standard” rifle barrel length was 24″ and the load I described above gets @ 1450fps with almost zero deviation. I had a 30″ barrel ’73 which got @ 1500fps, but the variations could be extreme, impacting long range accuracy. I cut that barrel down to 26″ (don’t panic, it was a reproduction) and velocities are 1480, with no deviation, so that seems to be the most efficient length for THAT load. On the other extreme, a 20″ carbine loses 100fps compared to the 24″ rifle! Anyway, I guess my point is that the 3″-23 probably had about the perfect length barrel for the cartridge. Simply lengthening the barrel would only increase velocity variations, affecting accuracy. Juicing up the charge would make a longer barrel useful, but would require a beefed up weapon to control pressure and recoil . . . so—-I’m with you guys. 4″-50 makes the most sense.

    4. By Steve Moore on

      One of the reasons I thought of the Derby gun first, was because of existing production lines. The portion of the design is already done; just the carriage would need to be developed. If you could fit just a few into the existing gunports, that would give an intermediate range out beyond 1000 yards; I wasn’t thinking of near-horizon shooting at 8-10K yard. Plus, they would be demountable and able to go ashore as need be. If I were to have a fixed mount on deck, I’d rather have 25mm and M2’s that deliver a larger number of shells on unarmored target. Time is running short, and while it would be nice to have a better 3″ gun, gotta work with what you have.

      BTW, what about a dual mount for torpedoes?

      Reply
  19. By Lou Schirmer on

    Going back to the discussion of the new Republic protected cruiser, there is a way for them to get one to sea in considerably less than a year, maybe even in time for the next book coming up.
    The Republic probably has small to medium sized (4-7,000 tons) bulk freighters going between their various ports. They could take an existing hull & remove the superstructure & cut the hull down a deck. Then mount two or three of the monitors twin 8″ turrets & barbettes in the hold spaces. Build a minimal superstructure for rapid fire casemate secondaries & a bridge. The hull may not be able to support a large amount of armor, so they may have HAD to make it a protected cruiser, with a sloped armor deck over the machinery & magazines. While they have the hull opened up, they could upgrade the engines, so she might be able to squeeze out 20 knots. It would be able to match anything the Grik have, as long as they keep the range open & it would give them something to gain blue water experience with, until the next class of purpose designed ships come out.

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      Build them one or two Walker clones, number them both 163, and start screwing with the Grik’s heads. Or invite them to send a party to the Fitzhugh Gray. They have some big ship experience to offer, this gets them some blue water experience in trade. I’ll bet they have some engineers to spare.

      Reply
  20. By Lou Schirmer on

    I’m wondering if the Grik are going to surprise either the Union attacking up the Zambesi or the Republic coming up from the south with some of Kurokawa’s 7.7mm Type 89 MGs? Some of the escaping Jap planes had them mounted & while it will take the Grik quite some time to reproduce, they would be quite a shock in a choke point or open killing ground. Ammo is limited, so it would be a one time thing, but could be at a pivotal moment in a battle. The aircraft will also be pressed into service to help defend their territory. The Republic armies are not used to being bombed from the air & the Cantets are no match for Muriname’s aircraft. Both the MGs & aircraft could turn the tide for the Grik at a critical time.

    Reply
    1. By donald johnson on

      The amount of ammo they are likely to have would not help them much. most likely less than 2-4 thousand rounds. remember that most fighters were limited to the number of rounds they had room for typically less than 100 rounds per gun especially on the large caliber guns.
      The LOT would most likely not have sent a lot :-) of ammo as they would have needed it themselves.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        Wasn’t it the Japanese planes that fled? Did all the Mochamessies burn up, or were some saved? Stay tuned for 2018. Also remember that Esshk wants to get rid of all the ‘new’ Grik when the battles over, so he may want to limit technology and instead rely on close-quarters fighting

        Reply
    2. By Steve Moore on

      All the more reason to put the Cantets in a museum and go directly to P-1Cs and Nancys, not to mention uprated Buzzards or a two engine land bomber/transport. Not Invented Here is a dumb way to fight.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        A mutual Lend-Lease seems to be in order – two 75s for every Fleashooter?

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Agree. Reddy & Co. need to explain the Prince of Wales/Repulse to the RRP (not to mention Taranto, Pearl Harbor, their own experiences off Java) in pushing for modern air forces.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            More so the virtues of proper air superiority, tactical bombing and AA – Allied air power isn’t exactly ready for Yamato-hunting yet.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            I was actually thinking the reverse; after what happened off Mahe, the RRP really needs to think about the two big baskets of eggs they are building to hold back the LOT.

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Agree. Reddy & Co. need to explain the Prince of Wales/Repulse to the RRP (not to mention Taranto, Pearl Harbor, their own experiences off Java) in pushing for modern air forces.//

            One problem; not the same tech level. 1920s planes could not do that.

            Again; you could not bring down battleships with air power alone. Especially if the opposing side have naval air power too.

          4. By Justin on

            And before anybody says “Bismarck,” her AA was calibrated for faster, more agile planes – unlike the X-Wings against the Death Star, the Swordfish got through by flying too slow for the guns to track!

          5. By Alexey Shiro on

            And she was unescorted and not covered by carrier fighters.

      2. By Charles Simpson on

        Lets not forget the Japanese/Grik fleeing Zanzibar have only their load out an once gone will have trouble resupplying bullets, torpedos and good bombs. Thus each of those aircraft will have one attack in them. So essentially the Grand Alliance owns the sky, and even Cantets are useful in the current campaign.

        My reading of the Skugget inards is that the next few battles will be a come as you are party.

        Reply
        1. By donald j johnson on

          Of course you are assuming that they had a load out and that they did not flee empty because they didn’t have time to load out just time to fuel up

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            My thoughts are that Muriname had this pretty well planned out, maybe with Rizzo, once he realized the manure was going to hit the fan. We don’t know if he managed to take any of the MM’s with him, with or without the cooperation of the LOT. But my guess is that he’s probably got some tooling, critical spares, as much ammo as possible, and maybe an armorer or two from the factories, as a way to pave his welcome at Grik HQ.

            The Cantets are living on borrowed time, I think. One good air raid on the RRP forces would devastate their military, and political, leadership and put a BIG crimp in things. The Griks have already shown themselves to commit to spoiler attacks; by using the Japanese planes, they’re hitting a two-fold goal; crush the Allied attack, and keep their Griks separate from any more new technology.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            The RRP has NO AAA capability; knock out their artillery and their MG’s, and they’re wide open for a swarm attack. Muriname’s smart enough to point out the RRP weaknesses and soft points; crush this attack and he proves to the Grik the Alliance can be defeated, and better, the more reluctant members’ will dissipated.

          3. By Justin on

            Keep in mind that the first surface-to-air kill was with a captured Turkish howitzer. It’s difficult, but possible.

          4. By donald j johnson on

            The escapees from Zanzibar in some cases may have had a full load out but the odds are they only had time to get a refuel before they had to escape. I don’t know what type of ships Etc they had loaded with equipment that was ready to go before the invasion. Most of the ships that were in the harbor we invaded were either sunk or captured which doesn’t leave much for the Grits to take with him unless they left before we invaded wish it would have been a real no no if kurokawa had caught them. I honestly don’t think that the Greeks got away with much at all. And we didn’t leave much that they could use when we left if we have left yet. I suspect that we clean to the island as thoroughly as possible destroying what we could not take.

          5. By Steve Moore on

            According to DD, Muriname and Rizzo had separate plans to beat feet, Muriname with ‘as many of his people as possible’ when the mining was being done. My guess is that the loads were ready to go, if not already on the planes. He knew that HK would be fixated on Reddy or bugging out himself.

          6. By Justin on

            We’re assuming, of course, that Muriname decides to attack the still-distant Republic invasion instead of the immediate Union invasion. He’s only got so much gas, after all.

          7. By Steve Moore on

            Attack the weakest force, which is the RRP. Stopping that push, at least in his mind, might stop the Alliance thrust up the Zambezi.

          8. By Justin on

            The Union’s probably going to try and force the Zambezi with or without the Republic. So the Jap-Grik need to chose between one big trip south to the Ungee, hoping to cripple the RRP hard enough to split the pincer… or several short trips to sink Catalina, hoping to let the Horde out into the Strait and stop the pincer before it forms.

            Of course, we’re thinking in terms of direct application; there’s always the possibility of Esshk killing Muriname and taking the planes, or of the Jap-Grik sabotaging the “true” Grik to help out the Allies. For all we know, Muriname flew even further west to a League base in central Africa.

          9. By donald johnson on

            I do not think that the union will try and force the Zambezi until they are ready. The object at this time as I see it is to get the Griks to redeploy south to save their southern front thereby causing there to be fewer forces on the Zambezi then attack with lesser opposition facing them. if you study the books where they do plan an attack they have always done this when possible. The first attack on Madras as an example.

          10. By Alexey Shiro on

            If only they could un-jam the “Savoie” rudder quickly… with her armor and weaponry, even with untrained crew she could easily became the center of Alliance defenses with literally zero chances for Grik to penetrate.

          11. By Charles Simpson on

            Alexy against swarm attacks ammunition runs, out and they are successful. Many Sherman tanks to knock out one tiger tank. “Quantity has a quality all it’s own,” comrade Stalin

          12. By Steve Moore on

            If they’re going to jam up the Zambezi with anything, used the captured Grik cruisers. They’re crewed and ready to go. Drive em up river with no ammo and scuttle them. Them use the crewes (who were ready to come over) as porters.

          13. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Alexy against swarm attacks ammunition runs, out and they are successful. Many Sherman tanks to knock out one tiger tank. “Quantity has a quality all it’s own,” comrade Stalin//

            Only on the same tech level. And the tech level aren’t the same.

          14. By donald j johnson on

            Against swarm attacks quantity gives you lots of targets and depending upon the type of weapon you use it can give you an advantage individually. Sooner or later however you going to lose out and get overrun, but not until you run out of ammunition. Which is why when you’re fighting griks you save the last bullet for yourself because you definitely do not want to be caught alive

        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          As far as load outs go, the MG ammo will probably only last one mission, either to shoot down Cantets or as a one time surprise ground attack breaker. The torpedoes (if they brought any) are one shots also. Bombs however, are easy enough to make. The Griks are already making them for the Zeppelins. Air attack against the Republic army would be devastating moral, material & personnel wise, depending on the bomb types. The Grik seem to like incendiaries & that would be bad news for the Republic. An air attack, just before the armies engage would probably end in a defeat for the Republic.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            The initial Allied plan was for a two prong attack from the south & up the Zambesi. If the Grik, with Muriname’s help, break the southern attack & force the Republic to retreat under air & ground attack, Alden will probably have to come to their aid. Instead of landing somewhere on the Zambesi, he may divert the landing & pull an Inchon, landing behind the Grik southern forces, maybe up the Ungee & take Soala to cut the Grik supply lines & chop up some of Muriname’s few & precious aircraft. Meanwhile the navy & half the air force try & plug the Zambesi to keep the Grik from invading Madagascar.

            If the Grik do force the Republic to retreat, they may be able to capture a Derby gun battery or two. Which would be a bad thing.

            Meanwhile, what does Esshk have the western regencies doing? The ones on the Congo & Niger rivers may be building a new fleet, using new designs & with no air attack to slow them, to head south & give the Republic conniptions. They could also be producing newer & better small arms, artillery & maybe even aircraft for the Grik in secrecy.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            Can Grik ships get through the Dark, let alone endure the cold? Agree with you on the bombs, Lou, this would be your basic terror attack. Hope Muriname doesn’t think of Stuka sirens.

            Having to stage even farther south exposes more of their supply line as well… plus Grik ships could do the same thing, go up the Ungee, fight, and then survivors top off the galleys and back downriver they go to Madagascar.

          3. By Lou Schirmer on

            The Grik probably would try to push into the Republic at least a bit, but may just settle for reclaiming their territory while they deal with the Madagascar campaign. I don’t think they could push into the Republic much at all. The cold would render them sluggish during the day & the Republic troops could attack at night & basically walk in & slaughter them while they’re comatose.

          4. By donald j johnson on

            the Grik will probably prepare before any attack by making their equivalent of the overcoat or parka. The more that Taylor lets us know about them the more I realize that they are NOT stupid. I am guessing that when they grow up and mature by the age of 15 or so they are going to be be much like any young adult human in intelligence. When they go to school or get trained As we train our young, then their abilities will mature along with them and then they will be really dangerous.
            We need to study them more to determine what their capability’s are and how fast they learn. Only in this way will we assure ourselves that they will stay controlled if and when they surrender.

  21. By Justin on

    As discussed earlier, the Allies likely won’t issue an M1917 or 19 MG for every squad. How about a pair of magazine-fed Type 11s instead, chambered for .30-06?

    Reply
    1. By Matt White on

      Well the type 11 is a flawed design. It’s one big advantage, being able to use the stripper clips from an infantry rifle is also lost on the Union since they still primarily use single shot rifles.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Hence magazine-fed… assuming it’s possibly to rebuild a Type 11 to accept a detachable 30-round box, otherwise the Allies are stuck with Springfield clips until they can manage a Type 96 or another Bren-like LMG.

        Reply
  22. By Steve Moore on

    On a completely different subject, since the CES/LOT world seems awfully close to the Walker home world, I’m sure hoping that it didn’t include the German 88mm flak cannon. That would be a nasty (sorry for the pun) surprise, especially if they could navalise it. Not to mention the Bofors and Oerlikon autos.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oerlikon_20_mm_cannon

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Depends on how big the German contigent was. Let’s hope they left most of the 88s at home, otherwise any Allied offensive is dead on arrival – Flak 36s could nail any tank of the era at 2km out!

      Reply
    2. By Lou Schirmer on

      The LOT probably won’t have too many if any Bofors, unless they were heavily pushed in that timeline, since it was still getting the bugs worked out in the late 1930s. The main issue with the Bofors initially, was that it was essentially a hand built weapon. The parts on the production line had to be hand filed to fit together, which slowed production tremendously & required lots of highly trained workers. It only really came into high production rates when Chrysler was tasked to build them for the US & refined the machining process to cut the labor intensive work & simplify the production line.
      The German 37mm Flak guns on the other hand were being built in some numbers by the time the LOT fleet came over & were comparable in effectiveness. They even put them on tank destroyer Stukas.
      The French may or may not be using their Canon de 37 mm Modèle 1925. It was not all that great compared to the German gun. The Italians had the Cannone-Mitragliera da 37/54, which had accuracy & vibration issues. Both the French & Italian navies & armies may be using license built German 37mm Flack 36s.

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        Another thing to consider is that at the time aircraft were not yet recognized as a true game changer in warfare yet, & unless the CES/LOT timeline has been at war since the early 1930s, AAA equipment on ships & with armies was sporadic & piecemeal & being cautiously tested in limited numbers. Massive AAA batteries on ships & deployed with armies was a result of things like Taranto, Pearl Harbor & the loss of Repulse & Prince of Wales.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Ah, but the League’s already fought Russia (and possibly Republican Spain) – if they don’t know about the potential of tactical bombing, they’ll definitely know the potential of heavy AT guns. Expect a boatload of licensed Flak 36s for each member.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            I expect them, maybe just one boatload though, total. :)

          2. By Generalstarwars333 on

            As for the 88mm guns, the power of germany may not matter. The 88 was based on a 75mm swedish gun, so if sweden has made that then the LOT may well have a gun that is quite similar to the 88.

  23. By Steve Moore on

    Picked up another good read, “Neptune’s Inferno” by James Hornfischer (also wrote ‘Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors). Lot of description of Japanese torpedo attacks. FYI, Taylor, he lives in Austin and graduated from UT in Austin.

    Reply
  24. By Paul Smith on

    O.K., this is another stupid/ignorant question. When machining the breach on an interrupted thread breach, is the breach & plug threaded first and then the interrupts, or the other way around?

    Reply
    1. By William Curry on

      I would would do the threads first and then the interrupts. But having never done it, I can’t swear that’s the ways it’s done. It would be easier to machine an interrupt across the thread than to machine the thread across the interrupt. The interrupt is a straight cut and the thread is an angled cut.

      Reply
      1. By donald j johnson on

        Cutting a thread across an interrupt will cut or break your tool almost every time so I would have to say that doing the thread first and then cutting the interrupt would be the only way to do it

        Reply
        1. By Paul Smith on

          Of course, I looked up the subject after I posted the question! Now the Welin breach had to be machined after the interrupts, or the the stepped threaded areas. look it up on wikipedia.

          Reply
  25. By Charles Simpson on

    So USS Walker is back in the shop with “Chewed up studs” you can hardly get a nail in. So when are they going to do, retire the old girl and turn her into a war monument? When the Grik are defeated will the Lemurians support the War in the East? What will happen with General Halick? Will the League of Tripoli become more active in the war as a belligerent? Will Sovoie be repaired in time for this war? What will happen in India, will the Czechs form their own government, or join the Union? Will the Swamp Lizards in Chill-chaap remain strangers? These are some of the questions left for the next book(s) to answer.

    Reply
  26. By Generalstarwars333 on

    Well, I’m back, and hot dang the allies have a battleship now. Of course, it’s a heavily damaged one that is also beached, but they’ve still got it and can at least salvage it for the steel and guns. The new cruiser sounds great too. Anyway, I liked the introduction of the tanks. So here’s my opinion: The Republic seems a bit better suited to making them than the allies, since the allies are focusing most of their steel on ships. So send the Republic the plans and some engineers and crewmen to give them assistance and get their tank production up and running.

    Reply
    1. By donald j johnson on

      Well now the worst is over. Taylor got som noce thongs in the next books. And we are gonna try and turn the general into silva’s gunsmith!

      Reply
      1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

        I don’t THINK there are ‘thongs’ in the next book, Don. Sorry to disappoint you! 😉 And it’s good to have you back, General! Alexey’s right. SDs were pretty tough. The only thing we have left to compare a Bretagne to is USS Texas, and don’t forget they nuked her sister New York TWICE and couldn’t sink her. Had to tow her off and pound her down the old fashioned way. (True, the nukes were disappointing against ships, but they did do for the Nagato.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Ah yes, Operation Crossroads – one of the biggest, most futile dick-waving contests in military history. Lost a lot of good museum ships that day…

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            I disagree. It was very important excercise, to actually estimate the influence of nuclear weapon on naval warfare, and how to protect ships from its effects. Both USSR and UK have similar tests too, albeit not on such scale.

          2. By Lou Schirmer on

            Plus all of those “museum” ships were headed for the scrap yard anyway. For example, USS Enterprise, arguably one of the most famous & veteran of most of the pacific war battles (I think she had the most battle stars of any US warship before or since), one of only two prewar carriers to survive (USS Saratoga kept stumbling across torpedoes & mines most of the war & sitting in repair yards), was scrapped. If she wasn’t preserved, none of the rest had a chance.

          3. By Justin on

            The problem with Big E was that none of the fundraising groups collected enough to buy her off the Navy – whereas both New York and Pennsylvania had their home states offering their treasuries, but got shot down by JTF-1 anyway. And I can’t think of a reason to bomb Nagato or Eugen other than pure spite.

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            //And I can’t think of a reason to bomb Nagato or Eugen other than pure spite.//

            Er… they were the closest thing to fast modern warships that Navy could spare. “Nagato” was an example of large, fast battleship – the only one, that Navy could spare. The “Eugen” was an example of large modern heavy cruiser. They were – along with “Saratoga” – arguably the most valuable ships during tests.

            And frankly, what else could Navy do with them? Scrap them? “Nagato” was old, worn-out, her machinery and systems degraded due to the lack of maintenance in 1945-1946. “Eugen” was inferior to USN’s heavy cruisers in almost every aspect. They were non-standard ships and required spare parts which USN could not obtain at all (because they weren’t produced anymore). There were no particular reason to hold them in the reserve.

          5. By Matt White on

            //And frankly, what else could Navy do with them? Scrap them? //

            Exactly. This isn’t the age of sail when you could capture a sailing ship, replace its cannons and hoist a new flag. Steel warships are really complicated and specialized. There’s no way they had any future. In both world wars the only fate that prize ships had were to be studied and then scrapped or sunk as targets. Eugen actually got off easy since she capsized herself on a shallow reef while being towed and now makes a cool dive spot.

          6. By Paul Smith on

            My uncle served on the Saratoga, We had a few relics from her. Isn’t she listed as one of the most dangerous dives?

        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          //Well now the worst is over. Taylor got som noce thongs in the next books. //
          Apparently the worst isn’t over quite yet. :)
          We could have the guys (& gals) in Dixie cups & thongs, swabbing the decks, singing obscene shanties for the cover of the next book. It’d be kind of a Village People theme! I’m so excited, I can’t wait to see it! Where’s Nestor? He needs to get drawing.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            I like nice thongs…preferably on young ladies….or off young ladies.

            I think Matthieu needs to show me where that door is now.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            What we need is some Frank Frasetta-style renderings, maybe a 2018 calendar? Cover art like that would probably get the book picked up.

          3. By Steve Moore on

            damn keyboard, can’t type with band-aids on my fingers. Frazetta, not Frasetta or Farsetta…

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            // like nice thongs…preferably on young ladies….or off young ladies.//

            Believe me, on/off young, lean dudes they look good, too)))

          5. By Charles Simpson on

            However, Alexey, thongs on the elderly obese Don’t look good at all.

    2. By Alexey Shiro on

      She is not heavily damaged. For Bretange-class, her damage is pretty moderate, those gals were designedd to survive more.

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        I agree, the damage above the waterline is superficial except for the messed up barrel on “A” turret. The main damage will be from the two torpedoes aft, with damage to the rudder & port shafts & screws at least & with light armor in that area, flooding & possible engine damage.

        Reply
        1. By Generalstarwars333 on

          So, basically, the Allies can repair the damage relatively easily(or at least get it to the point of the ship not actively sinking or something from it) and use the ship themselves?

          Reply
          1. By Charles Simpson on

            I doubt they have thee machinery built to repair a Battleship. Remember back in Crusade Sandra Tucker discussing that INJ Amagi was more difficult to repair due to size.

            PS Send Taylor a message with your first name, he wanted to add you in the introduction of the next book of people on this site helping out with our discussions, but is afraid ‘starwars’ is under Copyright and can’t be used in the Book.

          2. By Justin on

            That’s likely because Amagi only had the Grik to work with; the Republic and Union would naturally have the skilled labour and modern facilities needed to tune up Savoie.

          3. By Lou Schirmer on

            Also Amagi was actually sunk, with major damage from the mine & torpedoes, whereas Savoie’s rudder was jammed, so she went aground. Depending on how bad the damage was, she might be able to make Baalkpan under her own power, if they could straighten the rudder. The end of DD however said they were going to get Salissa to tow her. She may be able to help the tow with one or two of her screws though. We’ll have to see.

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            Charles, they routinely repaired Home-class carriers, which are bigger than “Savoie”, and now Alliance have concrete drydocks, capable of lifting such ship.

      2. By Paul Smith on

        this maybe a stupid question, I’ve no military service at all, but are instruction manuals kept on ships like the savoie? I could understand for training purposes for different systems such as sonar/radar, weapons systems. The biggest problem would be translation of 100,000 documents/warning labels/gauges, and so on.

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          Probably, modern ships & militaries certainly do. They’d have operations manuals & repair manuals for just about everything, not just the major systems. On the other claw, the LOT may have removed or destroyed them all at the same time they removed the fire control systems.
          When the Union is repairing Savoie, they may have to go with a copy of Amagi’s main battery directors & fire control computer.

          Reply
          1. By donald j johnson on

            There are no such things as stupid questions. Sometimes you get stupid answers because someone feels sarcastic about your question but the questions are always good considering what your individual knowledge is. Insufficient knowledge leads to questions. Excessive knowledge leads to come sarcasm simply because the idiot what’s to be an idiot when he answers your question so we learn to ignore those kinds of answers if we recognize them as sarcastic.

        2. By Steve Moore on

          Unless you already know the answer and are just asking to be a wiseass, all questions are uninformed, for you are seeking information. Even if it could be worked out to a logical conclusion, logical conclusions are not always correct. This forum is for asking away.

          Now the Nimitz and Burkes are another story. All the manuals would probably be electronic, and they’d run out of paper before they could print them all.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            However, some questions, like about rockets, do annoy people 😉

    3. By Steve Moore on

      First have them some airboats for the Zambezi! Single row radials or W/G, twin .30 cal up front (and maybe a mortar, or a single M2).

      Reply
  27. By Paul Smith on

    Did they
    9any of the destroyermen) know about the bauxite deposits in Australia? they could start development of those resources. Maybe Courtney would have some knowledge of this.

    Reply
    1. By Paul Smith on

      Sorry, I’m a one handed typist, now. On a laptop to boot!

      Reply
    2. By Justin on

      Don’t sweat it – you’re legible, after all!

      The problem isn’t really getting at the bauxite, it’s converting it. First they have to purify it with sodium lye to get aluminum oxide – easy enough – but refining that into actual aluminum requires cryolite… and the only known deposit’s in Greenland.
      Whether or not they can figure out synthetic cryolite (or are better off going with steel-plated aircraft) is an ongoing point of contention.

      Reply
      1. By William Curry on

        Making Aluminum requires prodigious amounts of electricity. Australia has a lot of coal, not much hydroelectric capacity, so large coal fired steam stations.

        Reply
        1. By Matt White on

          Cryolite is going to be a bigger problem than getting the electricity. Steam Engines and power plants are no problem. Cryolite on the other hand is.

          Reply
      2. By Paul Smith on

        It makes me wonder, how would a modern ship (Arleigh Burke or Nimitz class) do in such a situation? Would they have as broad a knowledge base as Walker, for older, easier(relatively) to make technology.

        Reply
        1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          Good multi-layered question, but the answers are a little different for both classes and roles described. I would think that a Nimitz would immediately win any battle or war it came to in “my” world, though it couldn’t conquer any territory, of course. And I would hope that its much larger crew might still have as broad a knowledge base as Walker’s, plus a lot more modern, nasty tech. Even without battle damage, maintaining the ship and supplying its armaments/electronics/equipment would be infinitely more difficult and time consuming however, but I think it COULD be kept operational to some degree, at least, for some time. I expect the planes would have a much shorter shelf life, and maintenance issues for them would grow insurmountable much quicker.
          Re the Arleigh Burke, I’m afraid the PRACTICAL knowledge base would be much narrower, the same maintenance issues would apply, as well as an instantaneous and possibly insurmountable (within a reasonable, practical timeframe) fuel crisis might render her useless. Her gas turbines can burn a lot of different things, but I don’t honestly know if that included Borneo oil, regardless how light or sweet. I’d think it would have to be much cleaner than what Walker thrives on since the exhaust goes through the turbines. In any event, again, if she showed up for a battle, even a fleet action, she’d win it, but once her ordnance was exhausted, it simply couldn’t be replaced. And if she WAS damaged . . . It would be infinitely more difficult/time consuming (even impossible, depending on what was damaged) to put her back in service. The best analog the Allies have is their rapidly dwindling P-40Es. They’ve been hanger queens to a large extent, though game changers at times. And they’ve been able to keep some in the air because they cannibalized others. No such option exists for the AB.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            They both (Burke & Nimitz) may remain mostly combat effective for longer than most may think, especially the carrier. Her machine shops are very comprehensive, & my experience with navy enlisted is they can be quite creative when dealing with unusual problems. The carriers main issue would be the aircraft, as you say, but they could extend their availability several ways, by restricting flights to essential combat missions only, hacking the Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC) engine systems to reduce operating stress (derating the engine & reducing allowable turbine temps). There are also spares aboard, but the priority would be fuel & establishing machine shops at a land base to try & build replacement turbine parts & bearings.
            Yes, I realize they can’t replace the high tech materials & the Bladed Rings (BLINGS) the current generation of high performance engine use would be impossible. But, they could try for a lower tech steel ring & blade setup, similar to the early 50s engines. To use those, they would have to derate the engines further, so may wind up with only 50-60% power, but they would still have afterburners to boost power. Iran kept the Shah’s F-14s flying & fighting for 20 years after we cutoff maintenance & spares support, & they’re not noted for their high tech savvy.
            As far as fuel goes, jet fuel is kerosene, so if they can get a well sunk somewhere like our heroes, they can get jet fuel. Kerosene is actually easier to make than avgas. The P-40s were having problems with low octane gas in their high performance engines, but kerosene comes out the tap usable. You need to filter it of course. Kerosene & gas are distillates of crude oil & fractional distillation is what our heroes are using to get gas. They’re probably burning off or disposing a lot of other usable stuff as well. The Burke class & aircraft both burn kerosene, so that solves the fuel issue, if they can get it done in time. Rationing & drastic fuel conservation would be mandatory.
            As far as ammo goes, once the missiles are expended, they may as well remove those systems from the ships, since there’s no way in hell they can reproduce those. The carrier may be able to cobble something up in 10-15 years or so though. Gun systems are different. Just as the DDmen saved the 4″ & MG brass for reloading, so to can the DD & CVN. They’d have to start with black powder, but the DDs 5″ gun would probably work. The ballistics would be completely different, to they would have to reprogram the fire control to account for it. The 20mm & 30mm ammo would be harder, but they fire electrically, so the Gatling’s would cycle, but jams from residue buildup would be more frequent. They’d have to be carefully cleaned every time they fire. Given time, they could get smokeless propellants into production, or given the resources of the CVN, they might skip black powder altogether.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, the level of 1940s USA in theory is enough, to replace the “Standard” missiles with heavily downgraded analogues, capable to crudely interract with AN/SPG-62 radars. After all, the “Bumblebee” program (which gave us RIM-2 “Talos”) was started in 1946.

            So, in the scenario “modern destroyer came to World War II”, it would be at least possible in a few years to restore – partially – her missile capabilities. Of course, such ramjet-prowered liquid-fueled missiles would be pretty far from “Standard” analogues, but guided by Aegis, they still would do a pretty good job.

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            // Iran kept the Shah’s F-14s flying & fighting for 20 years after we cutoff maintenance & spares support, & they’re not noted for their high tech savvy.//

            Actually, the Iranians are pretty good in high-tech. Their aircraft and missile programs are quite advanced for small isolated nation (MUCH better than North Korean, I may say)

          4. By Justin on

            Iran’s got a friggin’ robotics program right now. If I had to guess which Middle Eastern country’ll reach the Moon first, I’d bet on the Persians.

          5. By Lou Schirmer on

            True now, but at the time, they had a very steep learning curve inre. maintenance & tech to over come. You have to give them credit where credit is due, they are now one of the few middle east nations that are technologically capable. Most of them rely heavily on foreign techs for maintenance & technology.

          6. By William Curry on

            They burn Naval Special Distillate. Which essentially #2 fuel oil, not Kerosine (the official API spelling). It’s used in boiler burners, diesels and gas turbines, stationary, marine and aircraft. The older ships burned Bunker C, also called #6 fuel oil or Naval Special Fuel oil. It’s a residual fuel, the stuff that is left after all the distillates are removed in the distillation tower. The only thing left after #6 is asphalt. If you let #6 cool, it turns to something resembling asphalt. #6 has to be heated to pump it and burn it. (240 F)

          7. By Lou Schirmer on

            Thanks for the info, I thought all gas turbines burned kerosene or a kerosene, naphtha blend (Jet-A or Jet-B) like most aircraft turbines do. I knew they could burn diesel & gas, but didn’t realize naval & marine versions ran oil. Is #2 fuel oil a light fuel oil, like motor oil?

          8. By William Curry on

            #2 has a higher API gravity than kerosine and a good bit less than #6. It’s thinner than most motor oil. It’s sometimes referred to as “off road diesel” We used to run the same stuff in our stationary diesels that we ran in the boilers. Most of the fossil fueled ships in the navy that burned NSFO were converted at some point to burn NSD. Converting a heavy oil boiler to burn light oil is very easy. Kerosine has a higher vapor pressure than #2, that why it’s used in vaporizing pot burners in oil circulators and portable home heating units. #2 has to be atomized to burn either with pressure, compressed air or steam. Kerosine will usually vaporize on it’s own unless it very cold. Kerosine is usually considered more of a fire hazard than #2 for this reason. Some industrial and marine engines use to burn #4 which has to be heated to burn. The reason so many engines and boilers used to use heavy oil is because it was cheaper than distillate.

          9. By Paul Smith on

            I had a co-worker at my last job, ex-submariner los angeles class, who stated the navy had plans and reactors for nuking the Iowa’s in an emergency. Imagine the increased magazine capacity for primary & secondary weapons with the reduced bunkerage. Now he may have been pulling my leg, or spreading gossip, believe what you want. I wonder how much room the two reactors and related shielding take up & how much they weigh compared to the eight boilers & turbines the bb’s have.

          10. By Alexey Shiro on

            // I had a co-worker at my last job, ex-submariner los angeles class, who stated the navy had plans and reactors for nuking the Iowa’s in an emergency. Imagine the increased magazine capacity for primary & secondary weapons with the reduced bunkerage. Now he may have been pulling my leg, or spreading gossip, believe what you want. I wonder how much room the two reactors and related shielding take up & how much they weigh compared to the eight boilers & turbines the bb’s have.
            //

            The main question, why, for Pete’s sake, USN may want to do that? It would took years to rip the old powerplant off “Iowa”‘s and put reactors inside. And it wouldn’t gave such significant weight reductions, because “Iowa”‘s main tanks are in her anti-torpedo belt.

            Not to mention, that it would require pulling the highly valuable reactor specialists from more important units, like reserve nuclear submarines.

            Frankly, it would make much more sence to put reactors on a few “Arleigh Burke”‘s or “Ticonderoga”‘s, so they could keep up with nuclear carriers in case of Really Fast Transoceanic Run.

          11. By Lou Schirmer on

            If I was going to swap out the engines, I’d go with a mix of diesel & gas turbines. The diesels for cruise, harbor entry/exit etc., & the gas turbines adding power when you really need to get moving. They could both run on the same fuel. Plus the gas turbines could provide lots of electrical power, if they wanted to add directed energy weapons to her.

          12. By Paul Smith on

            I seem to remember a tv movie, where there were two helo’s chasing each other. One helo was running low on fuel & landed by a gas station where the pilot had a mix of gas & diesel added to the fuel tank, in a field expedient fuel. Anyone know if this was accurate?

          13. By donald j johnson on

            //Frankly, it would make much more sence to put reactors on a few “Arleigh Burke”‘s or “Ticonderoga”‘s, so they could keep up with nuclear carriers in case of Really Fast Transoceanic Run.//

            they already made a nuclear cruiser, the Baindridge, and it was a failure. I do not know why because I never checked into it. I do know that when it and the Big E came back from Viet Nam in summer of 1966 the big E waited for it about 6 hours to catch up to go under the golden gate bridge. It just wasn’t fast enough was what I always thought. But then the Big E did go faster than 50 Knots. I remember one time when she had 30 knots of wind across the deck front to back as required for flight opps and she was going with a 20 knot wind headed back to the Philippians after a 30 day tour. I think the captain had his wife waiting off Haiphong.

          14. By Matt White on

            //But then the Big E did go faster than 50 Knots.//

            What? That’s amazing. To get that much steel to move that fast. Wow. I guess the overkill reactors was good for something.

  28. By Lou Schirmer on

    Speaking of DDs, I wonder what’s going on with the current US Pacific fleet? Four mishaps this year, two fatal ones in the last month? How does a fast, maneuverable Burke class DD get rammed by a container ship or an oil tanker? It’s not like they can’t see them coming. Yes it was in the dark, but these are Aegis DDs, they have a sensor suite that can detect a gnat farting at 20 miles. Hopefully the courts martials for the accidents with fatalities are for negligent homicide for the senior bridge officer on duty at the time.

    Reply
    1. By Matt White on

      Discussion I’ve seen elsewhere from people who know the trade like subsim say it’s neglegence and poor seamanship. There have been some paranoid types who claim the systems were hacked but even if that were the case you should always have lookouts.a big merchant ship is hard to miss and wthin visual range they would have had plenty of time to yeild.The bridge crew weren’t doing their job.

      Reply
    2. By donald johnson on

      Even if the systems were hacked the visual lookouts would see anything that was around in plenty of time unless they were not doing their job. The only thing preventing the visual lookouts would be fog which was not occurring at the time.
      The visual lookouts obviously were NOT doing their jobs or were not assigned to do their jobs on either ship. both ships are at fault and both captains and ood should be held to blame, Not the admiral as has been done. The sailors will do their jobs if assigned to do so. Yes the radar should be able to warn but ultimatly it is captain, OOD, NCOIC man on watch.

      Reply
  29. By donald j johnson on

    While I was at Taylor we had a good long discussion about the books. He did not tell me anything that has not told us directly but he did infer on several occasions in such a manner about possibilities that I would feel bad were I to release of what he said because it might ruin the book for some of us. He did offer to tell me the name of the next book but I refused because I want the surprise as much as you guys do. We had a long discussion about Halik and Don Fernando and their potential possibilities. It was a really fun discussion.

    Reply
  30. By Justin on

    Going on the throwaway reference to “Gold Platers” back in Deadly Shores, you think we’ll see them laid down right after the two Walker-class DDs, or are there another two in the queue (four in total) before we get there?

    And if/when that happens, are they going to go with Farraguts, or try a Porter? Hoping for the latter, if only because the Farras weren’t exactly stable.

    Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      I think they said there were two more improved Walker types under construction, so four total, at least.

      If it was me. I’d go for a Farragut class DD, but with better stability, or a Mahan class. Only about 200 tons larger, but with a rounded stern for better turn radius & less tendency to dig in when going to full power. With the raised forecastle, they’re better sea boats (when stable). They may even be confident enough to try low pressure (400psi) superheated steam & economizers to increase power & range. A Porter class isn’t really necessary since the CL can take it’s role.

      Reply
      1. By Matt White on

        Why not go further and make a Benson or Sims class? They would have known about them, the only really difficult part would be getting enough horsepower to match the speed of the real deal and of course no RADAR.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Could be, depending on how little of a departure from the Farraguts (which the two ex-Gold crewmen served on) they are. The crew so far seems to be going with “stuff we’re already familiar with, but slightly better.”

          Reply
          1. By Matt White on

            I’m just saying that for most of the day classes the Navy built leading up to the war they were incremental improvements rather than major innovations. So the difference between one 1930’s class and another isn’t that big really. The next big jump came with the Fletcher’s and a lot of that was all of the pieces coming together to make a truly excellent class.

        2. By Alexey Shiro on

          Er… Forget the radar – the main thing abous “Sims”-class is Mark 37 Fire Control System. Which was state of art, cutting edge in electromechanic of 1930s. With all respect, but such system is FAR beyond the Alliance current capabilities.

          Reply
          1. By Paul Smith on

            Was the Hidoiame’s fire control enough better than Walker’s to warrant adapting it to other classes of navy clan ships? I would think They would look for any edge that would be effective. I admit to having zero knowledge of technical problems with converting mechanical/electro-mechanical fire control systems to different calibers.

      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        They may not go with ANY Gold Plater class. They may go with large improvements of the current four pipers. Bigger, to increase range, load carrying capacity & create more topside space for a better weapon arrangement. Go to a full broadside main battery. Enclose the bridge. Experiment with low pressure super heated steam to increase power without a large increase in turbine/boiler size. They can do all this relatively easier than creating an all new design from scratch & it will also keep the 4-piper brand recognition.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Just curious; would an increase in the beam improve seakeeping behavior, or just lower the hull speed? Seems to me that might add a little more room below deck for additional gun crew, both 25mm AA and 4″50.

          I still like some of Lou’s smaller designs, the DE and TB-2. Quantity would add a lot of shipbuilding experience by expanding the number of shipyards building, if they’re going to be looking at smaller qualitative changes. Especially if they’re going to have to control choke points at the Cape and in Costa Rica. Controlling any expansion into the Suez would need to rely more on land-based air, whether the LOT dug a canal or built a railway to transport MAS boats.

          Reply
        2. By Alexey Shiro on

          Well, there was those 1918s destroyer leader design…

          Reply
        3. By Justin on

          Assuming she’s large enough for a Gold Plater-type layout AND four funnels, she’s probably not going to have a flush deck. The four stackers were known to be wet in OTL’s high seas as it is – in a Strakka? Nope, the Americans’ll want a forecastle.

          Reply
          1. By Matt White on

            I’m sorry what is a Gold Plater class? Is this slang for something? I tried google-fu but all it got me were gaudy modified Mercedes.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, since they were able to examine two Japanese warships, we might expect Japan-style curved deck…

          3. By Justin on

            Try “goldplater,” one word. The Farraguts were larger and roomier than the Clemsons, which led old-timers to mock them for their “over-lavish facilities” – hence goldplater. The nickname more or less covers all the pre-Fletcher classes.

            It got mentioned literally one time back in Deadly Shores, but it’s been causing speculation ever since.

          4. By Matt White on

            //Try “goldplater,” one word. The Farraguts were larger and roomier than the Clemsons, which led old-timers to mock them for their “over-lavish facilities” – hence goldplater. The nickname more or less covers all the pre-Fletcher classes.//

            Copy that. I wasn’t familiar with the slang term. I remember a Farragut being mentioned in the book way back.

            //Er… Forget the radar – the main thing abous “Sims”-class is Mark 37 Fire Control System. Which was state of art, cutting edge in electromechanic of 1930s. With all respect, but such system is FAR beyond the Alliance current capabilities.//

            Point taken but lacking the FC does not preclude making a facsimile of the class anyways. Walker’s FC seems totally acceptable for the time being and likely will be for anything smaller than a heavy cruiser. Hidioame also had modern FC at least for a non-RADAR assisted model, and that would be helpful for development as well but I don’t see why a copy of Walker’s recalibrated for 5inchers wouldn’t work especially when that’s exactly what they are doing for the Cruiser.

          5. By Lou Schirmer on

            The CLs directors are copies of Amagis 5.5″ directors, so the fire control maybe be also.

          6. By Justin on

            Well, they don’t have 5″ guns – closest they’ve got is 4.7″ and 5.5″. The Union might design a completely new 5″/50, but I’d put ten bucks on them going with 4″ or 4.7″.

            //Walker’s FC seems totally acceptable for the time being and likely will be for anything smaller than a heavy cruiser. //

            Say, what would Baalkpan do for a CA’s fire control anyhow?

          7. By Lou Schirmer on

            Probably use the 5.5″ directors & fire control, but calibrated for the ballistics of whatever the main armament turns out to be. An 8″ guns range is greater than a 5.5″ or 6″, but they should be able to recalibrate the FC to handle it. If the theoretical CA turns out to be a BC however, I’d say they’d go with a copy of Amagi’s main battery directors & fire control, since the range gets considerably longer with the heavier guns.

  31. By Matt White on

    A while back I proposed using Walker’s old 3inch gun as the basis for new modern field piece as well as using it to upgrade the steam ships we have to give them a longer ranged and more effective AA option as well.

    It probably isn’t practical to do it now but I think Letts needs to take a hard look at standardizing the Union’s arsenal. Currently for small arms we have 30-06, 30 army, 45 acp, 50bmg, the 50-80 I think for the Silva’s and various mine’s, balls and buck cartridges for the Union, Imperial and Dominion muzzle loaders in service. That doesn’t include various oddities floating around like the 45lc SAA, the handful of Japanese weapons likely around and the Czech’s Mosins.

    Don’t get me started on naval and field artillery. It’s a mess of various muzzle loading cannons, the 4 inchers on the wickes boats, the 25mm AA gun, 3inch DP gun, the Japanese 4.7inch gun, Amagi’s 10 inch rifle on Big Sal, the (I think) 5 inch guns on Santy Cat and the huge wrench that is Savoie with it’s random weird French calibers.

    This is a logistical nightmare. Not only is vital production capacity wasted on obsolete munitions but prescious transport space is taken up by an inefficient mix match of ammunition. I’m surprised ammo shortages aren’t a bigger problem. That likely has more to do with the fact that the skipper has kept most recent engagements to short and brutal affairs than drawn out slogs. This will be a problem for soffeshk though. Once the balloon goes up they are going to have a hard time keeping the guns fed after the first day or so.

    Things went well against Halik but the army had a far more homogeneous setup then. The trapdoors only came into play at the end and aside from a few special cases everyone else had muzzle loaders. Now that isn’t the case.

    I’m not saying we need to rush out half baked m1903s from Balkpan right now but maybe a 30-06 version of the trapdoors should be made. It would need a new receiver and barrel so it won’t be a conversion like the allin-silvas were but that can allow us to push some of those down to the units still with muzzle loaders and completely remove the muzzle loader from the logistics train in the west.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      //A while back I proposed using Walker’s old 3inch gun as the basis for new modern field piece as well as using it to upgrade the steam ships we have to give them a longer ranged and more effective AA option as well. //

      Sounds good – if they can get its muzzle velocity high enough, they could use the 3″ as an AT piece as well!

      //It probably isn’t practical to do it now but I think Letts needs to take a hard look at standardizing the Union’s arsenal. Currently for small arms we have 30-06, 30 army, 45 acp, 50bmg, the 50-80 I think for the Silva’s and various mine’s, balls and buck cartridges for the Union, Imperial and Dominion muzzle loaders in service. That doesn’t include various oddities floating around like the 45lc SAA, the handful of Japanese weapons likely around and the Czech’s Mosins.//

      I believe that’s part of the reason why the M14 was created – too many different small arms (M1 Garand, M1 Carbine, BAR, Thmpson, Grease Gun) which needed to be replaced with one standard rifle. Definitely a priority long-term project with all the Schizo Tech piling up.

      Reply
    2. By William Curry on

      A Trapdoor will probably not take the pressure of a 30-06 cartridge.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Don’t suppose they could rechamber the single-shot Mausers for 7.62?

        Reply
        1. By Matt White on

          Unlikely. If they are based on the Mauser 1871, which it seems they are, they won’t have a strong enough action. The 1871 was a rear locking design that also used the bolt handle as a safety lug. Better than the Dreseye it replaced but not in a large way in terms of pressure. I’m honestly surprised the republic hasn’t copied the M98, the crew of the Amerika would have had them onboard and if they can make Maxim’s they can make Mauser 98s. It’s also far superior to the 1871 and arguably the best bolt action design. Remember, the M1903 is a rip-off of the M98. Really the only people who didn’t use the M98 were the British, Russians, Austro-Hungarians and Italians. And both the Austrians and Hungarians ended up using Mauser type rifles eventually.

          I got on a tangent again. Anyways rear locking designs are generally not good for high pressure cartridges like 30-06 and 8mm, there are some exceptions. The Lee Enfield does fine in 303 although my friend Othais describes it as “the most un 30 caliber, 30 caliber ever made.” So it’s a bit lower on power and pressure than what we are talking about. To reliably handle high powered cartridges you want front locking lugs. They have several advantages, in this case it’s that they put less stress on the bolt when firing and add greater overall strength because they engage where the receiver is thickest, at the throat. The Austrians learned this the hard way in WW1 when they started issuing older straight pull mannlichers to the front line. The older desgns used a simple wedge lock mechanism on the bottom of the bolt towards the rear and was designed for a lower power, earlier version of their cartridge. Soldiers found that after firng the modern ammunition which was loaded hotter the bolt and receiver would start to warp. Not in a dangerous way but enough to make working the action more and more difficult. They resorted to kicking the bolt open which exacerbated the issue. Soon enough the rifles were unusable.

          Converting the trapdoor allin-silva design to 30-06 shouldn’t be too hard. Modern tradoor reproductions have no problem firing modern high pressure loads. The design is sound. It would still need to be a new build receiver though because dimensionally the 50-80 ones in service are just too different.

          The Union shouldnt have any problem making M1903s now. They can make 1911s, aircraft engines, M2 and M1919 Browning’s already. It won’t happen overnight though. In William Hallahan’s book Mifire (I highly recommend it btw) he goes into detail about the issues that Springfield had with getting good production numbers with the 1903. Even with the technical data package fleshed out it took a lot of work to make the assembly line efficient. The Union doesn’t have the data package. What they do have is a decent number of examples and a growing base of trained and experienced gunsmiths. It’s one thing to build a working prototype. It’s another to build something production ready and have the assembly pipeline good to go. I’d say it’s one of the major reasons we haven’t seen domestic 1903s yet. Still I think having them and having them as soon as possible is going to ease a lot of logistical pains on the army. The 50-80s can be sent east where they are still relevant and we can move to having one caliber for an infantry rifle for each theater. 30-06 for west and 50-80 for east. If all exsting 50-80 production went east the only way they would ever have ammunition supply issues is if they got too far ahead or cut off from the supply train.

          Reply
          1. By William Curry on

            Nobody making Trapdoors today recommends for pressures exceeding the 28,000 psi SAAMI/CIP pressure spec. Using Ruger #1 pressure in a modern trapdoor will probably wreck the action. Rolling Blocks of any vintage is not recommended for pressures higher than the low 40,000 psi range. Rolling Block also have problems handing long cartridges. A 45-70 with a 500 grain bullet is about as long a cartridge they will handle without difficulty. The advantage of turn bolt rifles over straight pull and most single shot rifles is the powerful camming action during the initial extraction, which is helpful with sticky or dirty cases. The Lee-Enfield action tends to get springy with pressures exceeding around 45,000 psi or so. The overly long chambers don’t help. But then the British weren’t worried about reloading the cases. The #4 is stronger than the #1. It will take 7.62×51 pressures. There was one version of the 31 made in India that used alloy steel for the receiver and bolt that was safely chambered for the 7.62×51 ctg.

      2. By Matt White on

        I think it could if done right. Modern 45-70 rifles can take chamber pressures in the same realm as 30-06. There would probably need to be some redesign work but since these are new build actions that isn’t as big of a deal. If we wanted the ultimate single shot we would use the rolling block as a base. Those things can figuratively take a nuke going off in the chamber. Honestly I’m surprised that the Union has stuck with the trapdoor for so long. It makes sense as an easy way to upgrade muzzle loaders but requires extra work to be ready for smokeless. The rolling block was strong enough to take smokeless with little to no modification. The smart move in hindsight would be to make conversion kits in the short term as trapdoors but new production as rolling blocks since those would be born smokeless ready. Then you could more easily transition the infantry to smokeless as the machiengun production came online and wouldn’t have to waste time producing both black powder and smokeless cartridges.

        Reply
        1. By donald j johnson on

          If you’re going to make a modification you want the final to be the same as your production so making a rolling Block as a kit to fix something and then making the actual production something else is going to put a crimp in any manufacturing business because now you have to make two different parts and that at their stage is too dangerous you want the same Parts in both places

          Reply
        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          //Honestly I’m surprised that the Union has stuck with the trapdoor for so long.//

          It’s only been in use for about a year maybe a year & a half, so not that long. Think about the timeline so far, for the first year they were using spears & shields, then the next year the muzzle loaders came into production, a year after that they had the Allen-Silva’s, then came the MG copies as support weapons. What they’ve needed was rapid production of tested existing weapons to be able to contain the Grik hordes. Springfield reproductions are probably in the works, but for now against the Grik, the standard 50-80’s in large numbers are what they need. Coupled with artillery & their machine guns, they’ll do until the new stuff is tested, reliable & in production in numbers. Even if they already have them in production, it’s going to be a while before they have enough to issue to the troops in large quantities. The first ones will probably go to the raider units.

          Reply
        3. By Charles Simpson on

          There are three reasons for keeping the Allen/Silva.

          1) it is less complex to machine, and thus more can be produced with the same time. This allows a larger percentage of the troops being armed.

          2) the supply of modern smokeless powder is low compared to black powder.

          3) the large .50 and slow bullet of the Allen/Silva is more effective than the .30 06 on the Mega fauna of the destroyermen’s world.

          As to the single shot bolt action Republic rifle the same arguments can be made, but more important they may have started their production twenty to forty years prior to the arrival of the SMS Amerika. Remember some Bores came to settle over the years.

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            They have a limited number of ’03s and Krags now. They have the Empire’s acknowledged expertise in optics. Why not create a basic scope for them, that would allow marksbeings the ability to reach out and touch Grik and Dom officers, before the abilities of awareness and initiative reach down to the NCO ranks? Agreed, a new infantry weapon would be nice, but maybe focus on more ammo standardization first. They’ve got at least five different bolt-actions to study.

            Failing that, make some one-offs of the Doom Stomper in .50 BMG. That would provide a sniper weapon more Cats (and humans) can handle, and some experience in making breeches for more powerful cartridges.

            OK, this is going to sound even sillier, but what about leveraction carbines? Just gave away my 30-30 Marlin, and thinking about how light it was.

            JMHO

          2. By Matt White on

            Good scopes are hard to come by, especially with their level of tech. Making a telescope for spotting or field glasses is one thing but making an accurate and consistent rifle scope is another. Most WW1 and WW2 era scopes are pretty trash. That’s just the sad truth. They didn’t hold zero well and had problems with fogging up. They were also generally pretty fragile. Not at all like the modern glass we are spoiled with. To my knowledge nitrogen purging wasn’t developed until post war by Leupold and during the war external adjustments were common. They made good target rifles and we’re certainly used in combat but I think most people would be surprised by their shortcomings. In my opinion the most combat capable scope of the war was the the Soviet PU used on the mosin. It wasn’t the highest power scope or the nicest to use but in classic Russian engineering it took a lot of abuse for it’s time. The German scopes were nice but generally not all that rugged and the scopes the US mounted on the M1C were junk and probably made the rifle worse, not to mention right handed only. The biggest problem scopes will face by far is fogging up in the humid tropical world the crew are in. Without a sealed nitrogen filled tube they will fog over as soon as the sun comes up.

            I can see a few being made and fielded in special situations. It would be nice to give them to Larry and Silva and let them sneak behind lines and pick off Esshk and the Chooser Carlos Hathcock style. They wouldn’t be ready for serial production though and frankly at the ranges of engagement we are seeing they aren’t necessarily needed. A good 1903 with good aperture irons and a good shooter can take out a man sized Target at several hundred yards already. Hell Silva took out that Dom priest with a headshot in what almost amounted to indirect fire. He may not even need a scoped Springfield to do the job.

            As for regular sharpshooters just having a Krag or 03 is going to be all the edge they need for the Grik or Dom’s.

        4. By donald j johnson on

          One thing to remember. The Metallurgy of the Destroyer men is not ” up to par ” at least if you compare it with u.s. medals at the same. Remember they are still learning their metals and how to work them. They only ran the steel two years ago remember

          Reply
          1. By donald j johnson on

            Come to think of it I suspect that Taylor is actually already running their progress at faster than would be normal because of all the technology that his people already know because the others don’t have that information except maybe the South Africans. The knowledge of how to make the medals and how it reacts is more important than the knowledge of the various types of breech blocks because without the right metal the right breech-block isn’t going to work anyway.

          2. By Paul Smith on

            Didn’t “wootz” steel come from India?

        5. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          I hate to tell you this, but I cracked a rolling block to the first pin back in the 80s with a (light) book load of 2400. They ain’t ALL that strong. The later variants could definitely handle smokeless. I had a 7X57 for a while. But High walls probably have the potential to be the strongest, with proper steel. And the ’86 is the god of lever guns when it comes to indestructability. Huh. Notice the Browning trend here? Curiously though, and while on lever guns, despite the bad rap toggle links get (’73 and ’76 Winchesters), you ought to read some of the torture tests they endured. Pretty surprising, and I dearly love them too. I have 3 ’76s, (.45-75, .50-95, and as discussed here before, maybe the only .50-70 ’76 in the world :)) I can’t remember right now how many ’73s I have… Yeah, I like ’em.

          Reply
    3. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

      Good points all, but I fear you have contradicted yourself a little. The The Allin/Silva is a virtual copy of one of the first variants of the “trapdoor” Springfield, more specifically the 2nd Model Allin, which didn’t even have a proper receiver. As described in the books, the receiver was just the back of the barrel and the breechblock was held in place by a hinge that was screwed and soldered onto the barrel. It locked by cammining into a hemispherical mortise milled into the breechplug. The 1868, 1870, and ultimately the 1873 models were better and better, with actual receivers, but I’ve seen a number of those cracked at the hinge on the block. This usually resulted from them being used with modern smokeless loads. Anyway, though some of the last ’84/’88 variants were chambered in .30 US (.30-40 Krag) for experimental purposes, I’ve never imagined trying one in .30-06. It is the ultimate in weak, rear-locking bolts/blocks. Don’t get me wrong, I freaking love them. I have one (or more than one) of each variant and they’ll handle black powder pressures just fine. I HAVE seen one of the reproductions without the proper hammer shape–that ensures the breechblock is locked before the hammer can contact the firing pin–fire–and eject the spent cartridge right over the head of the shooter when the unlocked breech flipped up on its own! Scary.
      Sorry. Now I’m veering off the subject. The Republic went with, basically (as you say) the ’71, without a magazine, because it was easy to make in large numbers using casehardened iron and somewhat indeterminate steel. Perfectly suitable for large caliber black powder cartridges–which could be fed with propellants already available in the Republic, and were great for large boogers. This philosophy wasn’t much different from the Allies. They “settled” for a good enough breechloader (given their capabilities and the threat they understood at the time) while also passing up the Gatling–which they could’ve made much earlier–so they could make the jump in metallurgy and machining capacity necessary to copy the much simpler and much better 1919 Browning. The Repubs, armed with single-shot ’71s even longer but being more defensive minded, focused on the tech required to produce their Derby Guns–and other things. The technology probably now exists in the Union and Republic to make the wonderful ’98 or ’03–but what about the manufacturing capacity redundancy? Either (the Union, for example) has the capacity to make BOTH Allin/Silvas at the same time while the transition is underway, or they have to stop making one to make the other. And, of course, they’d have to do the same with everything else associated with them. The good thing is, they’re already making lots of .30-06 so they could spin that up fairly quickly, but the logistical nightmare of supplying multiple types of small arms ammunition is dwarfed by the problems associated with fielding an entirely new type of rifle while feverishly trying to equip new troops, combat operations are ongoing, and they’d STILL having to supply multiple types of ammo during the transition. And all this during a highly critical phase of the war. Not saying it won’t or can’t happen. Won’t even say it isn’t happening already. Good discussion subject. Would the benefit outweigh the monumental pain in the ass factor? What does everyone else think?

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Well the longer they wait, the bigger the problem will get – more new troops means more trapdoor rifles that’ll need to get replaced anyway.

        I’d say knock out the Grik, then rip the band-aid off immediately after that.

        Reply
        1. By Matt White on

          My thoughts exactly. After soffeshk the army in the west should have a minute to catch their breath and consolidate. The fighting won’t end outright but it will be a transition from a major war zone to smaller skirmishes as the republic and Union work their way closer to the interior. Not all troops can go in at once for logistical reasons as well as strategic ones. Someone will have to hold the city and keep the ports open and you can’t dump a massive army in a thick jungle and keep things running well. That seems like a good time to me to start shipping in new rifles, training the units up on them and sending the old breach loaders east with any excess ammunition they have. You can do it company by company as they rotate in from the front back into soffeshk or maybe even batallion by batallion depending on how fast production ramps up. I would be surprised if the designers at Balkpan haven’t already been working on the 1903. With the 1911, Blitzer and MGs already in production they don’t have anything else to do other than work on new projects. Given the inventiveness of the Lemurians I’d bet some have started experimenting with autoloading rifles although that will prove to be just as hard a nut to crack for them as it was in real life if not moreso. They don’t have a John Browning sitting around and so far everything has either been a reverse engineered copy or based on very well understood princples. Reliable autoloaders like superchargers are probably going to require better steel than is currently available.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            //Reliable autoloaders like superchargers are probably going to require better steel than is currently available.//

            Battle rifles (like the Garand), or auto rifles? For the sake of not shooting faster than the factories can supply, I’d suggest that a typical squad carry 2-3 automatics and everybody else a bolt-action.

            Question: would they go for a direct BAR copy, or try and save steel with an automatic Springfield (like the Huot)?

          2. By Matt White on

            Self loading semi auto rifles. People look at the BAR and ask why that doesn’t work but they don’t realize it’s overbuilt, very big and very heavy. Not at all like a Garand.

          3. By Justin on

            Sure, but the Garand had America’s entire industrial powerhouse to manufacture its 30-06; can’t say the same for whatever Baalkpan comes up with. The advantage of automatic rifles (doesn’t have to be a BAR, a Huot or FG42 would work as well) is that only a couple of guys per squad are blowing through all the ammo.

            Works better as a base of fire too, unless each squad gets a .30 cal.

          4. By William Curry on

            The BAR was mostly indestructible. The M1 was not. It was prone to overheating in rapid fire and and a history of destroying op rods. It was also sensitive to port pressure to ensure correct functioning. The BAR was heavy to allow it to be controllable in rapid and automatic fire. The M1 was supposed to fire the M1 Ball round, but it proved to powerful for the weapon and was replaced by the less powerful M2 Ball round to keep from tearing up the rifle. During WW2 most units found the penetrative power for tactical use of the M2 Ball to be marginal at best and began using AP ammo which was designed for MG use. Ordnance complained bitterly about how the AP, which was hotter than the M2 ball wore out the rifle prematurely. When the M14 was adopted it used the white gas system, which had a gas cut off like a steam engine to help with port pressure issued as well as limit bending of op rods from high pressure ammo. The original Garand was designed around the .276 Pedersen cartridge which was less powerful than the 30-06. I personally don’t like the enbloc clip of the M1. It would have been much better if it had been designed with a 15 or 20 detachable box magazine.

          5. By Matt White on

            @William Curry. The BAR also had its fair share of reliability issues, but my point wasn’t about the reliability of the BAR or M1. It’s that the BAR is not a battle rifle. It’s too big and heavy. It’s a light machinegun. The M1 was hardly a perfect design either. Why didn’t it use detachable magazines?

            What I was getting at is that there are likely some designers at Balkpan working on preliminary ideas for semi auto battle rifles. The BAR proves it can work but everyone knows its poorly suited to the task. What is needed is something lighter and handier that is simpler to build and maintain while still being reliable.

            They wont see something like that for years but I think its worth stating that even at this stage people are likely already thinking about it.

          6. By Justin on

            The BAR’s not a battle rifle OR an light machine gun, it’s an automatic rifle – in modern terms, a Squad Automatic Weapon (SAW).

            The point is to have something lighter and more widespread than a .30 cal BUT heavier than a rifle, in order to enable proper fire and manoeuvre; the Browning was outshot by squad-level MG42s in Europe, but more than proved itself in the Pacific against Arisakas.

            And doesn’t have to be a BAR – the (never adopted) Huot Automatic Rifle was created by fitting a surplus Ross Mk. III with a gas piston. Shouldn’t be that much harder to do the same with an M1903.

          7. By William Curry on

            The BAR is an automatic-rifle rather than a light machine gun. It has s small box magazine rather than a belt or large drum and lacks either a cooling mechanism (like the Lewis gun), a water jacket or quick change barrels. It was originally operated by a three man team to provide fire support to the section just like a Chauchat. By the mid 1920’s it was placed into the infantry squad as the squad base of fire. It was intended to pin the enemy so that the riflemen can maneuver to assault the objective. Or it was used to provide fire against an attacking enemy. In the Great war automatic rifle teams were used in conjunction with rifle grenades to suppress enemy machine guns during an assault. In WW2 the USMC put a BAR into each of the 3 fire teams in their squad. The US Army generally had one with the squad leader carrying a Thompson SMG for additional close fire power. The Germans in WW2 had their entire infantry squad based around either a MG34 or MG42. The MG42 used a belt but tactically was used like an automatic rifle with short bursts. It was capable of more sustained fire with a tripod and changing the barrel every 200 rounds. The Bren gun was a good auto rifle that in a pinch copuld fake being an LMG very well with a tripod and changing the barrel every 200 rds. I like the way a BREN ejects its cases from the bottom. You can also squeeze off single shots with the trigger just like the BAR (M1918A2) on low cyclic.

          8. By Matt on

            That may be technically what its called but doctrinally it was deployed as an LMG in the second world war. I really wouldn’t call it a SAW either. That’s a more modern concept in part derived from lessons learned from the BAR. I think in a modern sense SAW is interchangeable with LMG anyways. They do the same thing and the M249 is both. Either way we are getting pedantic. The BAR is not suited to being a battle rifle.

          9. By Justin on

            //The BAR is not suited to being a battle rifle.//

            Who said it should be one? Auto rifle, LMG, whatever, the point is that the Union needs a dedicated suppressive fire weapon at the fireteam level more than semi-autos; the closest they’ve got is the M1919s, and those aren’t going to be doled out to each squad anytime soon.

            Phasing out the “M1945” Springfield is going to be just as hard as it phasing out the Allin-Silva – if implemented, it’s likely that the Allies will end up with trapdoors, bolt-actions AND semi-autos all at the same time! Might as well keep the ’45 and focus on some kind of SAW.

          10. By Matt White on

            //Who said it should be one?//

            Nobody. But if you go back and check the first post I made in this chain I had brought it up when I was talking about possible experimentation at the balkpan arsenal on autoloaders. All I said about the BAR was that while it make look like a good base for a battle rifle at first glance it wasn’t and something new would have to be developed. Then everyone started talking about the BAR.

          11. By donald johnson on

            I suppose that now we will have to wait for Taylor decide in about 2 books from now how he is going to handle it:-)

          12. By Justin on

            Right, and then I said “battle rifles or auto rifles?” and suggested that bolt-actions and a couple of ARs (BAR, Huot, whatever) would be better supply-wise.

            Ah well, probably won’t happen until three books from now anyway.

          13. By Matt White on

            Didn’t Courtney and Silva salvage a Lewis gun from the Beaufort wreck? That would be ideal for an LMG design. Makes a much better design than a BAR does at least and the design can take 30-06. They made a few but the army never used them because the head of ordinance hated Lewis.

          14. By William Curry on

            The BAR was not deployed as an LMG during WW2, it was deployed as an automatic rifle as the squad or fire team base of base. The Lewis gun was always deployed as an LMG with a squad to operate and support it. The difference is that an automatic rifle can be successfully operated by a single man an LMG requires a dedicated gun squad. The Chauchat and BAR were originally deployed in the Great War with a team of 3 men, gunner, loader and scout who’s purpose was to carry ammo and provide rear and flank security. The extra two were dispensed with in the 1920’s and the BAR was made integral to the rifle squad. An LMG is usually operated by a dedicated squad of 5, Squad Leader, gunner, assistant gunner and two ammo carriers who also provide rear and flank security for the gun as well as replacement is case the gunner or assistant gunner is put out of action. The BAR as integral to the rifle squad doesn’t need special flank and rear security, an LMG does because as soon as it opens up it becomes everyone favorite target. The LMG will go through ammo at a much fast rate than an AR and requires dedicated ammo carriers. LMG’s have been used in the squad as the base of fire, what that does is turn the rifle squad into a MG squad, where the riflemen just provide support to the gun instead of the other way around. I’ve talked to people who have seen infantry combat from WW2 through Iraq and everyone I’ve talked to says the the LMG should be a platoon level weapon under the control of the platoon leader rather than part of the rifle squad. The requirements of the LMG tends to hamper the maneuverability of the rifle squad where as the Automatic rifle or assault rifle used in the automatic rifle position doesn’t.

          15. By Justin on

            Just checked – the Beaufort had a Vickers (a GPMG). Either way, if weight is a problem, then neither it nor the Lewis should even be a contender – they’re twice as heavy as the Browning!

            To reiterate, the Allies can surely come up with a squad automatic other than the BAR, if the design is such a problem. An improved Type-96 or a gas piston Springfield with drum mag, for example.

          16. By Steve Moore on

            Did all the Japanese LMGs get squashed under the Hidioame?

          17. By Charles Simpson on

            No many Japanese arms were recovered, but limited Japanese Ammo, and no plans to make any. However if they captured the equipment to make Japanese Ammo in Zanzibar they may have bullets. Like .30-06 Japanese 6mm was standard for both rifles and LMGs.

      2. By Matt on

        //I hate to tell you this, but I cracked a rolling block to the first pin back in the 80s with a (light) book load of 2400. They ain’t ALL that strong. The later variants could definitely handle smokeless.//

        Yikes, I’ve never heard of one failing but rolling blocks are sadly thin on the ground here in Kentucky. I didn’t mean to imply that the early series guns from the 1860’s could take smokeless. I was referring to the fact that the action scaled well into the smokeless era, hell they were issued by the allies in WW1 for rear line duty chambering 8mm lebel and 7mm mauser.

        //Anyway, though some of the last ’84/’88 variants were chambered in .30 US (.30-40 Krag) for experimental purposes, I’ve never imagined trying one in .30-06.//

        I remember hearing Ian on forgotten weapons talk about those. Apparently they were really accurate and well liked. Probably could have made a good rifle if it wasn’t overshadowed by the Krag.

        Anyways back to the books, I’m doing a lot of splitballing here seeing what everyone else thinks. I think moving to a 30-06 infantry rifle of some kind for the west is the right move in the mid-term. Can’t have them for Soffeshk but it seems to me once that nut is cracked the action in the west for the time being is going to go more lower intensity as they mop up scattered Grik pockets or the surviving organized forces. Good times to start integrating the new rifles if they can be ready. First the last stragglers with muzzle loaders like the maroons get upgraded to allin-silva’s and then the surplus of them get shipped back to the east where they are sorely needed. They can probably get away with re-equipping all of the east with the breachloaders from the west. It wont happen overnight but if the math works out then the arsenals can switch full time to modern small arms. There’s no reason to make more black powder breachloaders than you absolutley have to, especially since it was meant to be a stopgap from day 1 (just like in the real world) and they will have limited use in a nitrocellulose army.

        Now what form that transition takes I think is the grey area. Do we try to adapt the trapdoors to smokeless? Is that doable? I thought it was given the Uberti’s are supposed to handle smokeless but everyone’s comments are making me rethink that. Do they try for a highwall/martini/rollingblock/something breach gun that can take 30-06? Or do they avoid the long term downsides of that wasted production and jump head first into 1903/M98 production? Also what model 1903 does the crew of the Walker have? Is it the older A1 or the newer A3 with the superior aperture sights?

        Reply
        1. By William Curry on

          The aperture sight on the M1903A3 was a piece of junk. It was not well made and the spring holding the slide with the aperture was weak. It tended to slip down towards the front under recoil. I’ve seen a lot of A3 sights with a set screw added to prevent this. The Uberti breech loaders currently made have smokeless powder CIP proof. Look for a proofmark with PSF. That doesn’t mean they are safe with any smokeless load you can cram in them. They are safe (if in good condition) for any smokeless load that complies with the CIP pressure standards for the cartridge that they are chambered for. Plus I’ve had a trap door auto-eject a case over my head because it didn’t lock properly. Don’t forget that the Allies are having quality control problems with their steel, witness the boiler tube problems in the last book.

          Reply
          1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Good point about the sight. I’ve got two of them–both new/unissued–and they both do that. A buddy of mine had an unissued 03A3 and we had to put a set screw in it.

          2. By Matt White on

            I didn’t know the 1903 had that kind of design flaw in the sights. Still I think that says more about that particular sight than apertures in general. I find open notches are the bare bones minimum and while they are easy to line up for windage, elevation is less easy. Peeps are great but tend to be too fragile and fittly for a combat weapon. A good aperture seems to be the best middle ground. Target aquisition is fast like open sights, maybe faster, but it naturally centers and makes aiming very easy even when under stress. I think the fact that the US armed forces have stuck with them since WW2 says a lot about their utility especially considering how obsessed with marksmanship they were and still to some degree are. I don’t consider myself a great shot, I’m a good shot but hardly competition capable, but if I had the choice of iron sights I’d choose an AR style aperture every time.

        2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          All ’03s are the A1 with Buffington sights. (Far more accurate than the 03A3 in ideal lighting, and if you can take careful aim, but not as good for snap shooting). Shoot, few of our guys would even be familiar with the 03A3 and may not think about a receiver mounted peep on a bolt gun unless they’d been exposed to P-17s (like Billy Flynn). Guys like Silva would have been exposed to a variety of peep sights, however. Even the Buffington has a peep if you flip it up–but SUPER accurate as that can make it, so far from the eye, it makes target acquisition even more difficult.

          The Uberti trapdoors can handle smokeless black powder “equivalent” loads just fine, structurally. So can most originals. But the smokeless “equivalent” loads can’t seem to match the performance of the “proper” :) black powder loads and all those considered “safe’ tend to sacrifice a few hundred fps compared to the original loads–with corresponding energy/accuracy sacrifices. Here’s a fun tidbit: I load my .50-95 Winchester with 80 grns of 3F Swiss under a 435grn bullet. (I actually settled on this load after an unprecedented amount of workup, and AFTER I came up with the .50-80 notion for the Allin-Silva). Anyway, since the bottleneck on a .50-95 is so insignificant, I doubt it adds much to the pressure and I consider it a good analog for the Allied .50-80 in the series. I have graphed this load, with Doppler radar, at 1,550 fps. Zeroed a few inches high at 100 yds, one need only cover the poa at 150 to hit there, and aim at the top of an 18” gong at two hundred. This would be like covering a Grik torso with the front sight to hit center mass at 200 yds. And that’s with no sight adjustments. Just as significant, even at that range, the energy is still greater than a .30-06. Just saying. And don’t forget, a large percentage of the US infantry storming the San Juan heights in Cuba (71st New York) were armed with trapdoor Springfields–against 7X57 ’98 Mausers

          Reply
          1. By William Curry on

            The 50-95 is a Black Powder Express Cartridge. Some of the British Black Powder Express Rifles could get over 2000 fps using only black. The 450 BPE 3 1/4 for example.

          2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            //The 50-95 is a Black Powder Express Cartridge//
            True, but obviously, I don’t load mine as one. It has a faster twist and likes heavier bullets. Fine with me.

          3. By Matt White on

            No doubt the allin Silva’s can reliably hit a man/Grik sized Target at 100-150 yards. In the right hands they should be able to reliably hit twice that far. I doubt under stress and with the very real fog of war on the field they are reliable farther. A 1903 should be easy. Of course volley fire into massed ranks should be achievable at much farther distances. The Marshall report and others like it showed that engagement ranges for infantry rarely exceed 300 yards which is probably the max we can reliably expect an average rifleman with open sights to achieve anyways. Because of that I think the 1903s they do have should be issued only to sharpshooters who are tasked with taking out command elements further back. Putting them in the line, even on a raider unit is a waste of their potential. They wouldn’t be adding much there, but used deliberately against officers would give those rifles an effectivness far above what they would usually achieve.

          4. By Lou Schirmer on

            One of the reasons engagements are mostly inside 300 yards is a man sized target is hard to see at that range, especially if they’re not moving. Eyes can pickup movement well past that, but when standing still, an individual tends to blend into the background. Now massed ranks is a different thing entirely, as they are easy to spot & engage. A spread out unit moving tactically, using cover & concealment, makes for a difficult target, brush, trees, tall grass & broken terrain make it even harder.

          5. By Steve Moore on

            Right on, Matt. And even if you don’t kill the target, wounding them (especially a senior officer) will usually involve about six or eight more of the enemy to move him to the rear, on in the case of the Grik, to the mulligan stewpot.

          6. By donald johnson on

            A question to taylor. I did see a doomwhomper in your arsinal but don’t remember seeing the alan silva. Did I miss it cause a was looking for the doomwhomper.

          7. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Hey Don. I thought I showed it to you?

        3. By donald j johnson on

          Dang did Matt, I was in Western Kentucky on this trip I missed out seeing two of you on one trip. what part of Kentucky, I was in the western area for the solar eclipse

          Reply
          1. By Matt White on

            Lexington. Work precluded me from going down to hopkinsville but I heard it was packed anyways. Got a decent show at any rate even if it wasn’t totality.

      3. By Charles Simpson on

        Now is not the time to field new weapons. Not until both the Grik and the Holy Dominion are down. They are still using muzzleloaders on that front. Unless the League of Tripoli jumps in the Allin/Silva and the Republic rifle are fine. Unless the League supports the Holly Dominion with modern bolt action rifles there is no need for them on that front.

        If the tooling is made the start of production and sending them to units that can most use them. The Japanese weapons and ammunition toolage might be sent to King Scott. Manufacturing tool for the Allin/Silva may be sent to the South American front to provide arms for local malitias and civilian use post war.

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          I’m going to mostly agree with no fielding of a new main battle rifle at least until after the Grik issue is truly settled. Just pushing them out of Sofesshk won’t be enough to ensure that though. Even if they get Esshk & The Chooser, there are other regencies that can rally the Grik for a counter attack &/or an insurgency, if there’s a smart regent out there observing the war.

          That said, they should have one in development & testing & getting production tooling ready. When operations against the Grik start winding down & they rotate units back for R&R, they can start the rearming process & ship half the 50-80s East & keep the rest as a reserve for emergencies. Since they’re already sending some east now & the Empire is probably tooling up for them also, they may not need more.

          Reply
  32. By Paul Smith on

    If this has been asked before, I apologize. Is the sonar from the Hidoiame recoverable(not destroyed in the sinking/ wrecking of the ship) and if so, are the manuals available? Her sonar should be a lot better than Walkers. If not, could it be reverse engineered from the pieces. I assume the big differences would be in the design of the sound head, or maybe the amplification section of the sonar.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Sonar sets are usually somewhere between the bridge and the bow keel, so it should have survived an amidships collision.

      Problem is that even interwar ASDIC is a no-go right now. Hydrophones, definitely. Passive sonar, perhaps.

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        Walker’s sonar seems to be doing OK. It found & helped sink the Sourcouf type sub & is used in active mode to scare off mountain fish. They’ve installed at least the ping generators in most ships for that purpose & I think the new DDs have full up active & passive sonar.

        Reply
      2. By Matt White on

        When you really get down to it hydrophones are passive sonar. In modern terms when we talk about a passive sonar system we are talking about an array of hydrophones as well as the computing powder behind it for signal processing. Active is that plus a big ass speaker to make the ping.

        There are three ways you make sonar better. 1: a better array, as in placement and number of hydrophones. 2: the performance of the hydrophones in sensitivity, spectrum range etc. And 3: the quality of the filtering and processing behind it all.

        I highly doubt the Japanese sonar set is going to be a huge improvement over that in walker. Walker has an active set as well as passive which means it doesn’t date back to ww1 and was likely a refit in the 20’s or probably 30’s. The next big leap in sonar didn’t come until the German type XXI uboat which had a much more capable system with better hydrophones and a highpass filter among other improvements. It was so good both the Russians and the US straight copied it post war as the BQR2 and stag ear sets.

        Point is I don’t think the Japanese sonar set would be much of an improvement. Most of the advances made by both sides happened after the crossover of Walker and Hidioame. If they had a later war fleet boat cross over then real improvements can be made. Around 1942 the US developed a more reliable piezoelectric transducer. The real win would be a friendly German type XXI though.

        Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      Plus, she was hit by two torpedoes, so she may have significant damage to the port screws & possibly damage to the port reduction gearing & some flooding. Even with weak torpedo warheads, that section even on BBs is lightly armored if it has any.

      Reply
      1. By Charles Simpson on

        Flooding was reported, and they called for firemen to keep steam up for the pumps in the book.

        Reply
      2. By Lou Schirmer on

        If they have to do repairs on her engines, they might as well swap her old turbines & boilers out for new Walker turbines & boilers. With 23K extra horse power, she could probably do 24 knots or so, plus they wouldn’t have to build & test one of a kind parts for her.

        Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Granted she may not do 24 knots, but she will get a speed increase from an extra 23K HP. She was capable 0f 20 knots on 29K HP, even with a bluff hull form she’ll be a few knots faster.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Sigh.

            To get “Conte di Cavour” going from 22 knots to 27 knots, the Italians basically DOUBLED the power output of her boilers & turbines (actually, her max required TRIPLE power increase – forced draught up to 93000 hp), completely redesigned her screws arrangement and remade her hull to be longer.

            //Granted she may not do 24 knots, but she will get a speed increase from an extra 23K HP. She was capable 0f 20 knots on 29K HP, even with a bluff hull form she’ll be a few knots faster.//

            What’s the difference between 20 and 21-22 knots in 1930s?

            And I doubt that the destroyer-grade turbines would be really good for massive battleship… Remember; the “Savoie” have geared turbines, not electrical type.

          3. By Lou Schirmer on

            Sigh.

            She would be getting about an 85% increase in power. That should get her a couple of knots. The main thing however would be installing new equipment the Union knows how to operate & maintain & that isn’t thirty years old with no recent overhaul & that probably couldn’t make 20 knots anymore. Her power plant would be much more reliable & fuel efficient. They wouldn’t have to make parts for just one ship. The Walker turbines are geared, but we’ve had that discussion before about putting them into larger ships & our local experts said it makes no real difference, especially since the Walker turbine sets are more powerful than what they’re replacing.

          4. By Justin on

            With the book’s numbers, it’s actually a 63-75K horsepower increase (up from 29K). That IS a tripled power output, so at least 25 knots seems reasonable.

            I’d be more worried about the guns – nobody’s making 13.4″ any time soon…

          5. By Alexey Shiro on

            Or the stress would start to rip her hull apart. You seems to forget, that in ship’s cases, the hydrodynamic is as important as overall power. Ships AREN’T rockets; they aren’t moving in vacuum, where their engines is the only source of acceleration.

            // that isn’t thirty years old with no recent overhaul //

            Er… all “Bretange”-class battleships have mid-life upgrade in 1930s. Not very complex, but their boilers were replaced and their turbines changed from direct-action to geared.

            So the “Savoie”‘s powerplant is, actually, NEWER AND BETTER than “Walker”‘s.

            //our local experts said it makes no real difference, especially since the Walker turbine sets are more powerful than what they’re replacing.//

            I’m not so sure about that. Especially considering that the “Savoie”‘s turbines are newer.

          6. By Lou Schirmer on

            It appears you’re quite right Alexey, some boilers were change to oil firing in the refit & the direct drive turbines went to geared drive. The horse power was increased to 43K SHP & she went up to 21.4 knots. Amazing!
            While her equipment may be newer, it’s certainly not as powerful as the Walker turbines, & I still think it would be a good idea to replace them, especially if the machinery was damaged by the torpedo hits. After serving with the LOT for five years with presumably low maintenance priority, her machinery is probably in as bad a shape as Walkers was when she crossed over.

            http://www.navypedia.org/ships/france/fr_bb_bretagne.htm

          7. By Justin on

            That was the Courbets in the Thirties; the Bretagnes in the Twenties upgrades their fire control and main battery elevation, and got ONE set of new boilers: https://books.google.ca/books?id=YnS9AwAAQBAJ&pg=PA18&lpg=PA18&dq=bretagne+battleship+refit&source=bl&ots=BT3vlHAySb&sig=yIivV9OCjWQJ4AcHrfbLSS5iXOc&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjd0LPGitrVAhVeHGMKHWehCvsQ6AEIYTAK#v=onepage&q=bretagne%20battleship%20refit&f=false

            Given that none of them increased their displacement or got any faster, it’s safe to say any “modern” turbines are no more powerful than the last set.

          8. By Justin on

            Ninja’ed, and corrected. Regardless, even two of Ellis’ turbines would be an upgrade – especially because the French machinery is incompatible with the rest of the Union’s.

          9. By Lou Schirmer on

            The Bretagne class had several overhauls, two in the 20s & one in the early 30s. One of the 20s overhauls replaced the coal boilers with oil fired, but no power upgrade. The overhaul from 31-34 replaced all the boilers & the direct drive turbines with geared drive & raised power to 43K & speed to 21.4 knots.

            http://www.navypedia.org/ships/france/fr_bb_bretagne.htm

      3. By Steve Moore on

        Swap her to the RRP for assets to be named later, like maybe a new-construction cruiser or two. Closer than Baalkpaan, and they’ve got the monitors’ crews to help crew her. Even if she’s parked in harbor, that’s one hell of a shore battery.

        The Alliance needs faster hulls and more commonality in an ocean-spanning fleet. The RRP needs something to stick closer to home, although Cape-able (that’s for Justin) to kick the crap out of anything the League has.

        Failing that, just tow her up to the Zambezi and jam her into the channel. Imagine the fire support she could provide.

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Or a few Amerika-clone troopships, with Walker turbines & boilers. Just the thing for a fast cruise to the Caribbean and through the Casa Fuego (whatever the hell the name is)

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Or a few Amerika-clone troopships, with Walker turbines & boilers. Just the thing for a fast cruise to the Caribbean and through the Casa Fuego (whatever the hell the name is)//

            Just a target practice for the first League cruiser met.

            The “Savoie” currently is more valuable than half of whole Alliance fleet. She is the only ship, that could really absorb battle damage, stand and fight, not just bite and run away.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            OK, so keep them away from the LOT’s area of operations and just use them in the Pacific. Getting kind of late, brain ells obviously slipping a few cogs, so will wait for any more snappy comments from you fellows on the other side of the Eggsan-Bacon line until my circadian rhythms start perking again.

            Still think the Savoie is not much more than scrap. Heck, even the FRENCH wanted to get rid of her and keep a puny DD.

        2. By Alexey Shiro on

          //Swap her to the RRP for assets to be named later, like maybe a new-construction cruiser or two.//

          Er… what? Trade the battleship – combat-capable, albeit damaged – for a couple of future cruisers?

          This doesn’t make any sense.

          //Even if she’s parked in harbor, that’s one hell of a shore battery.//

          Oh yeah, gave up the most capable surface combatant avaliable, the only one in the whole Alliance navy, which could really absorb damage!

          //The Alliance needs faster hulls//

          Faster than what?

          // and more commonality in an ocean-spanning fleet. //

          They currently have no commonality at all, so the point is moot.

          //The RRP needs something to stick closer to home, although Cape-able (that’s for Justin) to kick the crap out of anything the League has.//

          The Republic didn’t have any sea-going navy at all! They have no clue what to do with battleship, they have no shore facilities to support her, and they have no escort ships to support her! The Alliance have.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            The Union’s commitments span half the known world and more. They need heavies that can keep up with 4-stackers as they race across the Atlantic and make hit-and-runs against the League… or at the very least can make it across the Indian and Pacific in a week, and without stopping for gas.

            Whereas the Republic only needs to defend their borders and the Cape, and possibly attack West Africa right in front of them – perfect for a slow, short-range dreadnought.

            So even if the Union keeps Savoie for now, she needs to operate out of Alex-aandra where she can help the most. Once the Republic’s finished taking notes and can put some proper cruisers together, the Union can hand her over in exchange for a panzerschiffe or two.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            Combat-capable? On the beach, shot full of holes, one turret’s damaged. Oh year, and everything’s en francais with maybe one or two French Nazis to translate.
            LOT’s not going to be a problem for a few years, while the Alliance doesn’t really have the need for Savoie.
            Commonality? Same turbines, same boilers, same guns, same crews .
            Monitors are closer to battleships than 4-stackers.
            Savoie’s a ‘nice to have’, but it’s like owning a Citroen DS-19..

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            //The Union’s commitments span half the known world and more. They need heavies that can keep up with 4-stackers as they race across the Atlantic and make hit-and-runs against the League… or at the very least can make it across the Indian and Pacific in a week, and without stopping for gas.//

            One small problem. The Alliance carriers are slower than “Savoie”, so all this “keep up with 4-stackers” literally make no sence.

            The destroyers are the ESCORTS. They are forced to keep up with capital ships, not visa-versa. For foreseable future, the average speed of Alliance Navy would be less than cruising speed of “Savoie” (10 knots) simply because of extensive use of slow carriers and auxilaries.

            And considering range… the economical range of “Bretagne”-class is 4600 nm. The economical range of “Wickes”-class is 3800 nm. So basically, it would be “Walker”, who would slow down the “Savoie”, not visa-versa.

            //Once the Republic’s finished taking notes and can put some proper cruisers together, the Union can hand her over in exchange for a panzerschiffe or two.//

            Make literally no sence. Nothing the Republic could build in 10-15 years would be as capable as “Savoie”. Don’t forget, their planned “panzerschiffe” are some sort of “coastal battleship-cruisers” of late XIX century.

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Monitors are closer to battleships than 4-stackers.//

            Monitors could not OPERATE with battleships. “Savoie” need destroyers to cover her, fast cruisers to scout for her, and carriers to protect her. The Alliance have all she need. The Republik have literally nothing.

            //LOT’s not going to be a problem for a few years, while the Alliance doesn’t really have the need for Savoie.//

            Yeah, yeah. And how, for Pete’s sake, the Alliance should know that?

          5. By Justin on

            //The destroyers are the ESCORTS. They are forced to keep up with capital ships, not visa-versa. For foreseable future, the average speed of Alliance Navy would be less than cruising speed of “Savoie” (10 knots) simply because of extensive use of slow carriers and auxilaries. //

            A) If the CVs are in any situation where they need 13.4″ support, then they AND Savoie are goners. Remember what happened to Exeter and Nerraca? The best they can hope for is to run and hope whoever’s chasing them is happy with one wooden CV.

            B) For escorts, they sure seem to do a lot of the heavy lifting.

            The Union’s new BB is tough, but she’s still just one ship, and a slow one.
            Inferior odds: toast.
            Superior odds: the League can evade or intercept by the time she gets there.
            Convoy/base raid: See above.
            Escort: still able to do that under the Kaiser – and lets the Republic start building something close to proper capitals.

            What the Union really needs is a Graf Spee-esque raider that can work in tandem with Walker and the others when they go on yet another harebrained adventure.

            //And considering range… the economical range of “Bretagne”-class is 4600 nm. The economical range of “Wickes”-class is 3800 nm. So basically, it would be “Walker”, who would slow down the “Savoie”, not visa-versa.//

            That’s at flank speed – ships spend most of their time at cruising speed. Cruising range of a Bretagne is 4,600 NM at 10 knots – a Wickes can cover 5,000 @ 15 and 3,400 @ 20. Walker just has more mileage.

            Long term, the Union needs a sprinter, or at least an endurance runner; at this point Savoie is neither – she’s more like a floating battery. And after Sofesshk falls, the best place for a floating battery is plugging either Good Hope or the Pass of Fire.

            //Don’t forget, their planned “panzerschiffe” are some sort of “coastal battleship-cruisers” of late XIX century.//

            Generation 1, yes – Generations 2 and 3, given Savoie and a few Union expats to work with, will inevitably be better.

            If we’re drawing up plans for the Union to build a 25,000t battlecruiser, then the Republic (with an immensely superior tech/industrial base and some help) can surely get to an 18-19,000t pocket BB.

          6. By Alexey Shiro on

            Justin, you get it all wrong.

            //A) If the CVs are in any situation where they need 13.4″ support, then they AND Savoie are goners. Remember what happened to Exeter and Nerraca? The best they can hope for is to run and hope whoever’s chasing them is happy with one wooden CV.//

            Exactly what the Union carriers are unable to do, is run. The League have a lot of really fast combatants – light & heavy cruisers, destroyers, large torpedo boats – that could chase and hit the carriers easily. Especially dangerous are cruisers and large destroyers, because they are superior to Union units.

            The “Savoie” is a game-changer. She could simply stand and fight, covering the carriers retreat. In combination with destroyers, she could sucsessfully chase off the LOT light forces without being seriously damaged.

            //The Union’s new BB is tough, but she’s still just one ship, and a slow one.//

            The one battleship is more than enough to make possible combined torpedo-artillery tactics, greatly improving the Union naval capabilities. Battleships and destroyers work quite good in combination, forcing the opponent to divert attention.

            //Inferior odds: toast.//

            NO. Exactly because they have balanced forces, they could get out of inferior odds. Simply speaking, its always hard to crash a balanced force, where participants are capable of full spectrum of tactical solutions.

            //Superior odds: the League can evade or intercept by the time she gets there.//

            Sigh. The Union have carrier superiority, man! They could screen their deployment from Leagues aerial reconnaisance and provide superior situational awarness!

            //Convoy/base raid: See above.//

            Exactly how the League convoy or BASE would evade “Savoie”?

            //What the Union really needs is a Graf Spee-esque raider that can work in tandem with Walker and the others when they go on yet another harebrained adventure.//

            Such useless units are literally the least they need. There are absolutely zero tactical value for heavy raiders in their situation. The League “civilian” communications are all in Mediterranean, and their outer bases are probably supplied by rather large convoys, with coastal aviation to cover. The Union heavy raider would have no chances.

          7. By donald johnson on

            There will be NO new builds by anyone in the next 25 years that will equal the Savoi or any of what the league presently has. The league will NOT risk what they have unless they will have overwhelming force that is capable of totally destroying the enemy with no losses as any loses are irreplaceable within a reasonable time.
            the only present group that has the steel production capability is south Africa and the grik. the British in hawaii cam build the steel but not in the quantity’s needed for battleships nor do they have the iron mines in the quantities necessary.
            The Grik will be landlocked by the end of the next book unless there is a real screw-up so they will not be a real hindrance.

          8. By Justin on

            //The “Savoie” is a game-changer. She could simply stand and fight, covering the carriers retreat. In combination with destroyers, she could sucsessfully chase off the LOT light forces without being seriously damaged.//

            Except a League attack won’t risk one or two light ships piecemeal, they’re going to hit with a full battlegroup of their own.
            Against a lone BB, or a pair of cruisers, or half a dozen DDs, “TF Fir Tree” is strong… against all of them at once? Hence the push for an engine upgrade – even the French BBs can make more than 20 knots! It’s why they threw Savoie away in the first place!

            If the Union’s attacking, they’re going to have her and Walker out front and the CVs in back – strategic depth and all that. Retreating, same thing.
            Either way, if the League thinks it’s alright to trade a couple of light ships to cripple an enemy capital – and they likely will – it’s going to be Exeter, Encounter and Pope all over again.

            Savoie makes the Allies strong enough to plug either the Cape or the Pass of Fire. That’s it.

            //The one battleship is more than enough to make possible combined torpedo-artillery tactics, greatly improving the Union naval capabilities. Battleships and destroyers work quite good in combination, forcing the opponent to divert attention.//

            Which assumes that the Union has superior enough numbers that attention can be diverted.

            The League outnumbers the Allies – send cruisers to block the DDs and let the BBs pound Savoie. They don’t even need to sink her, just mission kill a la Kirishima.

            //Simply speaking, its always hard to crash a balanced force, where participants are capable of full spectrum of tactical solutions.//

            It’s a lot easier when your balanced force is WAY more “balanced” than theirs.

            //The Union have carrier superiority, man! They could screen their deployment from Leagues aerial reconnaisance and provide superior situational awarness!//

            Again, even their BBs are faster and longer-range. “Situational awareness” in this case means a perfect view of the League’s rear ends… and as previously agreed, existing Union bombers won’t even dent them.

            //Exactly how the League convoy or BASE would evade “Savoie”?//

            A) Savoie‘s 20 knots is her top speed. Obviously, she’s not going to steam at flank all the way, because no ship has enough fuel for thatt. Her cruising speed is 10-15 knots – about as fast as a convoy.
            B)”Or intercept.” By the time Savoie reaches a base at 10-15 knots, or even 20, the League’ll have noticed and sent a (faster) battleship of their own to block her. Best of luck withdrawing.

            //The League “civilian” communications are all in Mediterranean, and their outer bases are probably supplied by rather large convoys, with coastal aviation to cover. The Union heavy raider would have no chances.//

            Yet they’ve got ships in the Caribbean, and bases in the Pacific. They can’t be heavily defending everything.

            What the Union needs to do is find a lightly-guarded strongpoint, hit it with everything they’ve got, and get the hell out before the League responds. Savoie, in her current state, is a bit too clumsy for that.

          9. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Except a League attack won’t risk one or two light ships piecemeal, they’re going to hit with a full battlegroup of their own//

            I.e. they need to move around with no less than full battlegroups.

            Should I explain, how it would hamper their ability to project power?

            //Against a lone BB, or a pair of cruisers, or half a dozen DDs, “TF Fir Tree” is strong… against all of them at once? Hence the push for an engine upgrade – even the French BBs can make more than 20 knots! It’s why they threw Savoie away in the first place!//

            The Union currently have one (damaged) battleship, one (near-complete) light cruiser, and three operable destroyers. This is enough, to start forming the actual task force.

            //If the Union’s attacking, they’re going to have her and Walker out front and the CVs in back – strategic depth and all that. Retreating, same thing.
            Either way, if the League thinks it’s alright to trade a couple of light ships to cripple an enemy capital – and they likely will – it’s going to be Exeter, Encounter and Pope all over again. //

            Sigh. You obviously did not uderstood the situation. This couldn’t be Exeter, Encouter and Pope all over again simply because the Union have carriers. They have superior aerial reconnaisance, and fighter screening against League reconnaisance.

            Simply speaking, the Union could threw “fog of war” around, by using the fighters to chase away LOT aerial scouts and Nancy’s to spot LOT surface scouts. Which means, that League’s navy would have hard time trying to anticipate their actions!

            //Which assumes that the Union has superior enough numbers that attention can be diverted.

            The League outnumbers the Allies – send cruisers to block the DDs and let the BBs pound Savoie. They don’t even need to sink her, just mission kill a la Kirishima.//

            For that, League would be forced to combine really large number of their ships in the strike force, and moreover – they need somehow to force Union fleet to meet them. Because Union fleet – due to carrier superiority – could easily AVOID contact with League’s main forces. And stall long enough to engage not in daylight, but in nighttime action.

            Should I remind you, that LOT navy have no particular nighttime training? The USN and IJN were much better than continentals in that kind of action! And the nighttime combat, is a chance for weakest.

            //It’s a lot easier when your balanced force is WAY more “balanced” than theirs.//

            Well, the superior numbers always have a superiority. So what? Surrender immediately? :)

            //Again, even their BBs are faster and longer-range. “Situational awareness” in this case means a perfect view of the League’s rear ends… and as previously agreed, existing Union bombers won’t even dent them.//

            Situational awarness means, that League doesn’t know, where exactly are the Union ships, while the Union knew exactly, where are the League’s ships. The Nancy’s useless as bombers, but they are good scouts. The Union could provide round-the-clock 24/7 contact with League’s forces, thus providing the excellent situation for ambushes, nighttime combined attacks, or strikes against flanks and smaller sub-groups of League’s forces.

            This is all basics of naval tactics, man! Seriously, stop thinking about the naval warfare as some kind of chess party!

            //A) Savoie‘s 20 knots is her top speed. Obviously, she’s not going to steam at flank all the way, because no ship has enough fuel for thatt. Her cruising speed is 10-15 knots – about as fast as a convoy.//

            The actual crusing speed of average cargo hauler of 1930s is no more than 6-7 knots, 8-10 max. This was basically the reason, why US invested so much in “Liberty” ships – beacuse they were FASTER than average civilian hauler, and thus much less vunerable to u-boats (they could travel in “fast” convoys, while the average cargo ships could only move in “slow” convoys).

            //B)”Or intercept.” By the time Savoie reaches a base at 10-15 knots, or even 20, the League’ll have noticed and sent a (faster) battleship of their own to block her. Best of luck withdrawing.//

            So the League must disperce their fleet to have battleships at each base? :) Congratulations: you just lose the war.

            Strategical lesson number one: NEVER DISPERCE THE FORCES UNLESS IT’S UNAVOIDABLE!

            //Yet they’ve got ships in the Caribbean, and bases in the Pacific. They can’t be heavily defending everything.//

            You contradict yourself:

            * They can’t be heavily defending everything
            * the League’ll have noticed and sent a (faster) battleship of their own to block her.

            Please chose something one; either they have battleships everywhere, or their bases aren’t well protected.

            //What the Union needs to do is find a lightly-guarded strongpoint, hit it with everything they’ve got, and get the hell out before the League responds. Savoie, in her current state, is a bit too clumsy for that.//

            You obviously have no idea, about what are you talking about…

            Ok, let’s assume that Union navy hit League station on, say, Azoers. The closest heavy naval presence of the League is in Gibraltar, thousand miles away. How long it would take for the League’s, say, “Leonardo da Vinci” refitted battleship to came from Gibraltar to Azores? Three days, on cruising 12 knots.

            By that time, “Savoie” would be long gone, and – due to the “small fact”, that Union fighters are screening around, hampering the League’s aerial reconnaisance – the “Leonardo” have no idea, where exactly “Savoie” went after attack. To Republic? To NUS? To Carribean? The ocean is big, and battleships are pretty small.

          10. By donald j johnson on

            The one thing to remember is that all we know of the league ships is what one man told us. How do we know he wasn’t lying. Depending on how he was trying to help or hurt the league if he was not trying to hurt us instead he could have underestimated the league so that we would get clobbered or he could have overestimated the league so that we wouldn’t want to fight soon sooner than necessary. We need to get some of our own reconnaissance Over The League bases to determine the truth of the League’s capabilities. Then we will know what we have to worry about. As it is unlikely that the league has radar capable of more than just general detection art long range reconnaissance seaplanes should be able to overfly their bases reasonably well at least once as long as they don’t stop to play like the P-40 did. If they overfly the base Get Over the Horizon and then change directions the league won’t be able to easily take them out before they get their information back. Yes the risk will be great but the information is priceless if they can get it back and with a group of planes transferring all the information between the planes and another group of planes that are only there to read the radio messages and send them back without actually overflying the bases the knowledge will be more likely to come back.

          11. By Justin on

            //Simply speaking, the Union could threw “fog of war” around, by using the fighters to chase away LOT aerial scouts and Nancy’s to spot LOT surface scouts. Which means, that League’s navy would have hard time trying to anticipate their actions!//

            Three problems:
            1) We don’t know if Christmas Island was their only hidden station.
            2) The League’s still tapping the Union’s comms. The Union needs a cipher – even with codewords, all the enemy needs to hear is “Able Zebra is out of water” or something.
            3) If the Buzzard can see the enemy, the enemy can see the Buzzard. No amount of misdirection is going to stop the League radioman from getting on the horn and saying “enemy plane in the open ocean, suspected CV.”

            All it takes is one red flag, and some admiral’s going to scramble the fleet and meet Savoie halfway.
            Goodbye fog of war… unless the plan is to raise so many false alarms that the enemy runs out of gas, THEN attack. That might work.

            //I.e. they need to move around with no less than full battlegroups.//

            As you noted, Rule #1 is Never Disperse; the League may “split up and look for clues,” but they won’t attack one at a time like a Bruce Lee movie.
            Enemy pickets or patrols can always retreat and return with backup. If Savoie tries to attack the backup, she loses and retreats. If she runs or evades, the target is safe for another day. Mission accomplished.

            Crud, they don’t even have to attack the TF – knowing the League, they’re ready to rush the Cape/Caribbean while they’re gone. Then the TF will have to abandon the offensive and find and attack them, and/or come back to a smoking ruin.

            //The Union could provide round-the-clock 24/7 contact with League’s forces, thus providing the excellent situation for ambushes, nighttime combined attacks, or strikes against flanks and smaller sub-groups of League’s forces.//

            Unlike Kurokawa and the Grik, the League’ll be watching for those, and can react accordingly. Light ships will be screening on all sides. Sub-groups can use their superior speed to withdraw. And even with the new torps and a night attack, it’s unlikely that Walker et all will be able to close to 5,000-odd yards (effective Union torp range).

            //The actual crusing speed of average cargo hauler of 1930s is no more than 6-7 knots, 8-10 max.//

            Fair enough.

            //Please chose something one; either they have battleships everywhere, or their bases aren’t well protected.//

            “Defending,” as in “planes.” Even the bombers are limited.

            The League’s been here six years (and just look at how much the Allies have done in three), so they obviously have a strong presence in the Mediterranean.

            Beyond the Med, they’ll have a lot of footholds, but six years might not be long enough to properly fortify and garrison all of them. So some of them will be proper naval/air bases with adequate air cover; others will be mines, rigs, fuel depots and/or listening outposts that can be hit before even bombers arrive… given lack of warning, of course.

            //Ok, let’s assume that Union navy hit League station on, say, Azoers. The closest heavy naval presence of the League is in Gibraltar, thousand miles away. How long it would take for the League’s, say, “Leonardo da Vinci” refitted battleship to came from Gibraltar to Azores? Three days, on cruising 12 knots.//

            The Azores it is, then. It’s too far for any Union ship, so let’s sail through the Carib and bring a tanker.
            Savoie can get there in 11 days’ cruising speed, 6 days’ top speed; a Walker-class can do 5-7 cruising and 3 top, if not better.

            Again, they’re likely to be spotted before they get there.
            If Walker, Ellie and their new sisters go alone, they’ll likely be in and out before reinforcements, but obviously they won’t have enough “punch” to deal with the garrison.
            If Savoie comes along, her low speed and small fuel tanks slow everyone down long enough for Vinci – or worse, Caracciolo – to show up. No-go.

          12. By Alexey Shiro on

            //All it takes is one red flag, and some admiral’s going to scramble the fleet and meet Savoie halfway.
            Goodbye fog of war… unless the plan is to raise so many false alarms that the enemy runs out of gas, THEN attack. That might work.//

            Sigh.

            The “Buzzard” average range, lets assume, is around 1000 km. She is a flying boat, so she could be refueled in sea, if conditions allow that.

            So the only thing that League gonna learn from “Buzzard” contact – “there is a point from where she take off in 1000 km radius”.

            Justin, you constantly forgot; ocean is BIG. Even just 500 km circle defined the area 785398 square kilometers. Without radars, it took A LOT of efforts to just search this area by planes – assuming there are no enemy fighters to hamper with efforts.

            So, your brave League admiral is basically scrambled the fleet and sortied pointlessly. He doesn’t know anything about “where those blasted Union forces are?”. The only thing he knew, is that there are some point from where planes are launching – somewhere around. Nothing more.

            THIS is the “fog of war”. The enemy knew that you are somewhere nearby – but he doesn’t knew exactly where, and the area where you could be is just too big.

          13. By Justin on

            Yup, just like space. Little to no chance of seeing an asteroid, much less hitting one – haven’t forgotten that.
            Also just like space, there’s only a finite amount of approach vectors; if the League knows where the Union came from and kind of where they are now, they can figure out where they’re going.

            What the League admiral would know is the general area in which the Buzzard was spotted… where the Union’s bases are… and where his bases are. From there, it’s just estimating fuel consumption and strategic importance.

            Yes, the Union can plan to fly This Way and make the League guess wrong and sail That Way instead. But a lot of things can go wrong with that, because they can’t control the enemy’s patrol schedule – I believe the KISS principle applies here.
            Not to mention that in the Atlantic proper, there’s a total of about three big island chains, and the League could probably sortie to defend all of them and still match the Union ship for ship.

  33. By Justin on

    Just to recap – our theoretical Fleashooter replacement sports a wooden cover over a wood/steel frame, with a covered cockpit, and a copied BMW 132 (rated at 700+ hp) with a supercharger.

    In which case, we (if not Mallory) happen to have the perfect frame of reference… and ironically, she’s French: http://www.cmchant.com/bloch-mb-700-ww2-fighter

    Reply
    1. By Matthieu on

      This engine is really really optimistic for those planes.

      The supercharger is incredibly complicated to produce (given their current technology). Even if you push things a lot don’t forget that you assume that in less than 5 years they are able to move from brass to highly controlled steel and that they have 87 octane fuel.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Centrifugal-type_supercharger#/media/File:ATI_ProCharger_Supercharger_Cutaway.jpg

      Are they going to be able to produce blueprints for it? Probably if they have one to work on. Will they be able to produce it now? No way. You need to give them some years to do so.

      Reply
      1. By William Curry on

        What the Allies learned in order to produce the reduction gears for the new ships will supply as lot of the machining knowledge necessary to produce both geared and turbo-superchargers.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Sigh. Again: it isn’t as simply as you think to “just reproduce” the superchargers. Without the precise knowledge of exact materials & alloys, exact methods of working, and a lot of high-quality industrial gears – NOT the horde of generally incompetent Lemurians with jury-rigged bad quality tools! – you have the same chances to reproduce the superchargers as to build the space rocket.

          Reply
        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          They could go with a turbo supercharger instead & bypass the gearing issue. If you mount it at a distance from the engine, you also reduce the high heat problems for the impellor, something like the P-47 layout. Exhaust temperatures drop quickly the farther you get from the exhaust manifold. If you put your hand on a car exhaust pipe in front of the muffler, it’s warm but not hot & that’s only about 3 feet from the engine. It doesn’t have to be a high speed one either, if they build it to be a larger, slow turning one, regular engine bearings might work, although roller bearings would be better. Louis Renault patented a centrifugal supercharger in France in 1902, & turbo superchargers were coming into use with aircraft in the early 1920s, so it’s not out of their reach technologically. They just need something to maintain power at altitude if they’re going to have any chance at being competitive with the LOT aircraft.

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Even if reverse engineering the BMW or Pratt & Whitney engines is too much for them for now (although I think the BMW is doable), they do have the 10 cylinder radial in production now. The engine is maturing & may be uprated to its full potential (430-440 HP) eventually. They could put a simple turbo supercharger on it & with low boost, so as not to stress the engine excessively maybe put it in the 500-550 HP range, but more importantly, maintain its power at high altitude.

          2. By Justin on

            // They just need something to maintain power at altitude if they’re going to have any chance at being competitive with the LOT aircraft.//

            Union/Republic pilots need to develop the tactics that let them keep that power, too.

            We haven’t seen much of the 3rd’s dogfighting style, but Amerika crossed over back when “turn n’ burn” was par for the course – and if the Allies try that, the League’ll chew them up like Zekes against Hellcats. An upgraded engine plus doctrine that favours energy fighting might be enough to level the playing field.

          3. By Steve Moore on

            The Alliance has been in aerial combat for nearly a year, and ground attack against defended targets before that. Compare that to the League, which unless part of the British fleet came over, hasn’t been fighting anyone before or after the transfer. The P-40 and MM’s were pretty evenly matched, and the 3rd Pursuit came out on top. Even dogfighting with Grikbirds, who are energy fighters, probably has helped.

            Secondly, they probably have 3-5 years before the LOT can stage a fleet to the Indian Ocean, maybe 2-3 years to the Carribean. Either place, they’ll need a land base, unless they can build a carrier.

          4. By Justin on

            Yet for the most part the Union’s enjoyed near-total air superiority on both fronts; save for Mallory and Shirley, no living pilots have flown against enemy planes, much less ones that outclass them.
            They’ll need to learn just as much as the League needs to – fly Finger Fours instead of Vics, avoid turning fights, yada yada.

          5. By donald johnson on

            before the League can stage a fleet that will be safe for their own crews they will need to make their ships usable in the Atlantic ocean. Their present fleet is NOT designed for safe operation in the Atlantic but for use in the Mediterranean Sea except for the French fleet. I doubt that there were any German fleet units in the med as they most likely were being used to blockade England along with the French units that were Atlantic capable. They most likely sent what they had already that was Atlantic capable.
            I would not be surprised if the league were not digging a ditch across the Suez as fast as their slaves will let them. This will allow their present fleet to operate in the red sea which is safe for them and will allow them to reach the Indian ocean without having to cross the Atlantic. If so this will take them several years at least. It will also take several years to modify their med fleet to make it Atlantic fleet. The Spanish Destroyers were already Atlantic capable because Spain needs its fleet to be Atlantic capable.

          6. By Lou Schirmer on

            //They’ll need to learn just as much as the League needs to – fly Finger Fours instead of Vics, avoid turning fights, yada yada.//

            Actually, with the P-1Cs, a turning fight is exactly what they want. A lighter, slower fighter will almost always be able to turn inside a heavier, faster opponent. The Italian CR.42 proved that to the British Hurricane pilots dismay at Malta. If the P-1C is what they have if/when the LOT shows up again, they’ll have to adjust their tactics to the fact their only advantages will be the ability to out turn LOT fighters & that they will probably out number them. The Thach Weave may be reinvented by Mallory or some bright cat.

          7. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Actually, the most experienced combat pilot left alive in the Union–complete with experience defeating Zeros in P-40s–is Orrin Reddy. Granted, he hasn’t been featured much lately but that could change…

          8. By Justin on

            // If the P-1C is what they have if/when the LOT shows up again, they’ll have to adjust their tactics to the fact their only advantages will be the ability to out turn LOT fighters & that they will probably out number them. The Thach Weave may be reinvented by Mallory or some bright cat.//

            Sure, Turn n’ Burn’s better than nothing for now, but the Allies shouldn’t double down on it like the OTL Japanese did – lest the Fleashooters end up like Zeroes against Lightnings and Corsairs.

            Remember that there’s equally bright Leaguers that’ll quickly learn to counter with Boom n’ Zoom.
            “Your Macchi’s stronger, so don’t get suckered into a turn with a P-1. Climb up and out, wait for the stronzo to break off, then come back when he’s stalling – or let your wingman do it from behind him.”

          9. By Justin on

            //Actually, the most experienced combat pilot left alive in the Union–complete with experience defeating Zeros in P-40s–is Orrin Reddy. Granted, he hasn’t been featured much lately but that could change…//

            Duly noted – shit, left him out of just one book and I forget he even existed!

            Still, it doesn’t look like Jenks or Lelaa will be able to spare him anytime soon…

          10. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Still, it doesn’t look like Jenks or Lelaa will be able to spare him anytime soon…//

            Well, strategically speaking, going into all this Empire-Dominion mess was the Alliance most costly mistake – instead of expanding their resource base, they actually limited it, and seriously stretched the logistic. I really doubt that Reddy would make such mistake again…

          11. By Justin on

            Seemed like a good idea at the time, didn’t it?

            It works out anyway, since the protagonists are still mostly dominating both fronts. And in the long term, it turns the Pacific into an Allied lake.
            Picture the then-Alliance winning at New Britain and going home… then watching ten books later as the Dommies try again. Or worse – the Dommies letting League raiders through.

          12. By Alexey Shiro on

            //It works out anyway, since the protagonists are still mostly dominating both fronts. And in the long term, it turns the Pacific into an Allied lake.
            //

            Yes, but I doubt Reddy would ever do that again. He already was forced to learn quite fast just to keep pace with Kurokawa (who, let’s admit, was MUCH more capable strategist – which exactly what made him such interesting Bad Guy!), and now he understood that two-front war is pretty much the worst nightmare of any strategist.

            Which made interesting situation about NUS, which are in contact with at least some other powers besides Dominion (more than that, it seems that they are in contact with power that rival Dominion…). I doubt that Reddy would like to be dragged into one more war…

          13. By Charles Simpson on

            Given what they knew at the time, the Grik reeling back from the Alliance, and being a party to the war with the Dominion was Don Hernan’s decision, not Matt Reddy’s.

            Kurokawa may have thought strategically but tragically tended to go off mission when the forces meet. He has panacked multiple times and turned tail and ran. Had Silva not blown it up he would have tried to escape in Nachi.

            They don’t need better aircraft to finish the Grik, the escaping Japanese only have ammunition for one strike, so they don’t balance Alliance air superiority. However Matt must convince the Grik to join the hunt against the League of Tripoli rather than grinding the Grand Swarm and his military to nothing, IMHO.

          14. By Alexey Shiro on

            Kurokawa main problem was the utter lack of correct data about the opponent capabilities. Simply speaking – he have no worthy strategical rdconnaisance or intelligence, and he was completely unable to create one for obvious reason. A few planted agents would gave him everything he need to know to make Alliance history – but the problem was, he has no way to plant said agents. It is pretty hard to put Grik spy into Alliance ranks, after all, and Japanese agent would also be unable to blend in.

            Thats why Kurokawa was constantly unable to correctly estimate the Alliance technical & indistrial capabilities. His personal cowardness, frankly, play very little role in his defeats; if he have correct data, he would won almost all of them.

          15. By Justin on

            The problem was more his delusions and failures of imagination; even with correct data, he’d have rationalized away anything that disproved his existing assumptions.

            Reddy doesn’t have modern aircraft. Oh, he does? Well, he doesn’t have torpedoes – he has those too? Well, he’s only got two destroyers. And now we’ve sunk one! Union guesswork was miles ahead of his throughout the series, if only because group discussion beats autocracy.

          16. By Steve Moore on

            Ego, cowardice or whatever.. eventually you just go to seed.

          17. By donald johnson on

            speaking of going to seed, did they study the plant long enough to determine how it is pollinated. If it is like many other tropical plants it needs a specialized pollinator and can not even pollinate the flowers that are a needed requirement without which the thorns won’t develop. ergo the kudzo plant will be safe from spreading. remember the discussion here on another plant from central america that they were trying to grow in madigasgar in the 1850.s

      2. By Nestor on

        Concur with Matthieu on superchargers. And they can sidestep the issue somewhat by copying the 14 cylinder Pratt & Whitney R-1830’s from their old PBY instead of the 9-cyl BMW’s. R-1830’s have better performance at 1,200 hp. Hopefully they didn’t leave them submerged at the bottom of Baalkpan Bay. :)

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Er… with the avaliable tech level, their P&W copy would probably tear itself apart at first test run. Again: they have NO trained engineers, NO highly-experienced workforce, and NO technology links & materials required.

          Reply
          1. By Nestor on

            Think of it as gradual progression: If you follow the premise that their original 5-cyl was inspired by the R-1830’s and they’ve already coupled two 5-cyl radials into a double-row 10-cyl for their P-1C’s then beefing up the crankcase further and adding 4 more cylinders may not be too much of a technological leap.

            I’d like to give Lemurians enough credit for their craftsmanship and ingenuity as long as is properly channeled.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            If it was that simple, there would be no problem for any country to build the powerful aircraft engines.

            Unfortunately, it isn’t that simple. Just the calculation of all stresses and vibrations would require a large team of skilled mathematics & engineers. Just think about it: it took for USSR two years (two years!!!) just to reproduce Wright R-1820 – and two more years to be able to do that without importing details from USA. And the USSR brought all specification on the engine and have direct US help with copying.

            With all respect, but the Alliance capabilities is FAR, FAR, FAR below the USSR, or even Spain or Poland.

          3. By Charles Simpson on

            Alexey they have one trained engineer Colonel Ben Mallory.

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            One. And he wasn’t specialized engine engineer, as far as I recall.

            In short – high-powered piston engines are far outside the Alliance capabilities. In a decade, they probably would be able to start working on them, and by late 1950s, they would probably be able to build the engines with enough reliability to put them on a plane.

            But for now, their only way is to put more and more of their primitive engines on plane.

          5. By Nestor on

            Perhaps I should have been more specific, not meant to confuse: I didn’t mean producing a reversed-engineered direct copy of the P&Ws, just a more simplified and less powerful equivalent *inspired* by it, as with their previous radials. Still end up with a slightly upgraded 14-cyl radial using their current expertise without needing to recall Mallory from the frontlines.

          6. By Matthieu on

            It’s still far too optimistic for them. Any change in the design means a complete new analysis and they just don’t have the brains for that.

            If you want an equivalent: between 1914 and 1918 thousands of trained engineers with unlimited supply were tasked to develop new engines. Look at what they’ve been able to do in four years. Now you assume that the alliance will be able to do something much much better in the same timeframe without a single engineer and without any high quality materials…

          7. By donald johnson on

            If they build copy’s of the turbochargers on the P-40 and use good bronze bearings using proper lubrication they should not have too many problems. the bug thing to avoid is excessive rotational speed. so they need to go to a larger impeller in the supercharger and avoid exhaust powered superchargers and place the supercharger directly on the crankshaft. Yes it will be slower and will need be much larger but will not have any belts or gears to go bad.

          8. By Lou Schirmer on

            Exhaust driven turbo superchargers can be used as long as they mount them at a distance so the exhaust charge has a chance to cool. Like the P-47 system. You don’t have to have high temp metals & bearings then. To keep rotational stress down they would do as you said, make the impeller bigger. Exhaust gases cool rapidly to reasonable temps. Just check your car exhaust pipe. With an exhaust driven supercharger you don’t have to worry about gearing at all.

          9. By Matthieu on

            “the bug thing to avoid is excessive rotational speed. so they need to go to a larger impeller in the supercharger and avoid exhaust powered superchargers and place the supercharger directly on the crankshaft. ”

            That’s exactly the point: it’s completely impossible for them to know that. Don’t forget that superchargers were even secret (well, many people knew that they existed but all internal components were highly secret!). Save for specialized engineers, they won’t even really understand how the thing works (they don’t have the formulas to link speed/pressure/temp and so on).

          10. By donald j johnson on

            My feeling is that after they try it as they are and have some bad accidents with parts flying Etc they will try a simpler method and they will probably come down to putting the impeller on the crankshaft because that is close to where the carburetor is or fuel injection if they have determined that and I believe that the P-40 had fuel injection so they should know what it is. Without accurate knowledge they will have to develop it and to develop it they will need to work with what they do have which is a working model on the P40. They are not stupid so they will know that things don’t always work exactly the same with copies they already know what kind of troubles they had with the steam engines and boilers. It will be a long slow development but would be even longer and slower if they don’t try. They love to try new things so they’re going to be trying lots of things

          11. By Lou Schirmer on

            They had been in use on aircraft & automobiles for 20 years by then, so not so secret. What WAS secret were the new designs, which as you say were highly developed & required high strength materials, fine tolerances & complex gearing. A simple, non-geared supercharger is possible however, either direct, belt (which with different sized pulleys is a simple “gearing”) or remote exhaust driven.

      3. By Steve Moore on

        I agree, things would need to move along for these engines to be developed. But let’s reflect on a few things.

        Bernie’s turned out some pretty impressive torpedoes. Lot of technical work there. Naval artillery and gas-operated machine guns require some talent as well.
        The RRP has 30 years of post-1914 industrial development building steam locomotives, monitors, Derby guns and Maxims, not to mention the Cantets.
        Reddy just captured 200 Japanese, and thousands of ‘yard’ Griks in Zanzibar. Bushman (aka Kurokawa) and Muriname built some pretty impressive planes, in less than 2 years.
        Even the Empire has an optics industry, where close tolerances are key.
        I’d consider several of the Destroyermen ‘seat-of-the-pants engineers’, not to mention the Canopus mechanic that came in with the prisoner ship.

        All in all, I think they’ve got a chance at knocking out a simple one-stage compressor, and build a curve to better models.

        Reply
      4. By Matt White on

        They wont be making a modern ball bearing ceramic centrifugal blower. I just got back from my yearly tour of the Air Force Museum in Wright Pat and they had forced induction examples of engines dating back to the 20’s. The blowers were huge, clearly lower pressure affairs but they worked and the power gains even with those were impressive over a purely naturally aspirated engine. https://media.defense.gov/2016/Aug/16/2001606687/670/394/0/160816-F-IO108-005.JPG

        The weird thing about the prototype turbo liberty is that the exhaust manifold for the turbo is really inefficient. It was apparently a successful design though.

        Its a far cry from the supercharger in the P-40 and especially from the unit in the DB601 that powers the German not-109s so we shouldn’t make comparisons to those far more advanced engines. The 132 is an early 30’s design and the 700hp model wasn’t even the most powerful one available. I don’t see why it couldn’t be copied. Obviously there will be teething issues and QC issues with the steel and seals. Anything high temp and high speed requires fairly exacting QC but with three examples to work off of I think the ICE house can get reliable copies working.

        Reply
  34. By Alexey Shiro on

    Just a fun thought… what if SHE get transferred?

    https://orig14.deviantart.net/e88d/f/2011/310/1/7/japanese_kawasaki_kx_03_flying_boat_by_kara_alvama-d4fae5h.png

    Overall length;162m, Span;180m, Height;35.4m, Wing area;1,150square meter,
    Gross weight;460ton, Range;18,520km, Payload;900 soldiers with normal equipments,
    Engines; Ne201 turbo prop engine(7,000hp + static thrust 900kg/each engine)×12(total 132,000hp),
    Ne330 jet engine×6(total equivalent 7,920hp), crews;24.

    Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        Is it just my screen being too wide and stretchy, or do the engines look just a LITTLE small?

        How about air freighting one of the mines down to the RRP and see if they can copy them? Still thinking about putting a cork up the Grik Empire’s collective bum. Or maybe giving the RRP a squadron or two of P-1C’s to copy & train on? Don’t really think the Alliance has 20 years to wait for the RRP to develop their own planes. They’re already copying Donaghey’s Nancy, why not build Nancys with double-row radials and P-1Cs?

        Reply
        1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          The Cantets might already give the P-1s (at least) a run for their money. The Republic has had aviation for a while, just hasn’t developed it as fully as they “should” (from our and the Allies’ perspective) over the last decade or more. Same old story–with a twist. From their perspective, flying around where the Grik might see them might draw unwanted attention. The Nig Taak has had his hands tied until recently by a parsimonious and isolationist Senate.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            Er… they came from 1914. In 1914, the heavier-than-air aviation was still considered more an oddity, than respected combat force. Especially by German Navy.

          2. By Matthieu on

            Stupid question: is there oil in south africa?

            Without they can produce planes but they can’t fly them.

          3. By Charles Simpson on

            Hmm, there are many captured British engineers and only SMS Amerika’s engineers. So why a German prototype? Perhaps the German engineer had a brother an aircraft engineer?

            Why no internal combustion land transport Trucks would be very useful?

          4. By Steve Moore on

            If Muriname comes in on the side of Esshk (perhaps presented with a choice of being an ally or being dinner), Cantets won’t be much good. Remember, the Japanese planes, like most 1930’s era planes, are built to operate from rough fields. I don’t think that Esshk is going to take too long to realize that the Alliance does not have the level of air support he saw in Madagascar and Zanzibar. Even a Clipper raid or two with incendiaries would take a chunk out of Grik troop concentrations. P1C’s and Nancys also have well-developed radio links.

    1. By Steve Moore on

      Transferred in from a world where hopefully the Japanese were US allies, as in the first war.

      Reply
  35. By Charles Simpson on

    How hard will it be to in jam Savoie’s rudder? See:

    https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Bretagne_Brassey%27s.png

    As you can see her sisters had a single centerline rudder COMPLETELY below the water line. Thus a dry dock likely needed her 544′ 7″ length 88.25 foot beam should fit Tarrakaan Island’s 100 by 800 foot well. Ugh were not the Island SPDs designed to take aboard the smaller carriers ie 850′ length 150′ beam?

    Reply
    1. By Alexey Shiro on

      For such limited repair, they may use cofferdam around her stern.

      Reply
    2. By Lou Schirmer on

      Charles, I’ve got some hires deck plans for the Bretagne class. Should I post them on the DD wiki?

      Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          Yes, that’s where I got them, but I can’t get to the site now for some reason.

          Reply
  36. By Joe Thorsky on

    “It’s not what happens, but how the leader sees what happens,
    that counts.”…
    “Books represent the accumulated knowledge and wisdom of the ages, available for pennies on the dollar. Books preserve the greatest thoughts, the greatest ideas, and the greatest insights of human experience.”…
    “And reading is one of the best, most time-tested avenues to leadership experience. If other people’s experiences is the best teacher, books are the best transmitter of that experience.”…
    From “Launching a Leadership Revolution”
    by Chris Brady and Orin Woodward

    A Speculative Inquiry
    Why was there only a LOT transfer and not a second
    corresponding GB-Commonwealth/Czarist Russian asset
    transfer event that could have simultaneously occurred as well?
    Is this the reason why the LOT is working and operating in
    the shadows and background? They always and constantly are
    fearfully looking behind themselves and over their shoulders
    in dread of something or someone from somewhere, somewhen?
    Isn’t now as good time as any for Taylor to introduce
    the “Dogs of War” into this no holds barred Katfight?
    A good “FIDO” could prove to be “Leigh Light” illuminative
    and indispensable to the Alliance. Also, satiating a craving
    of “Squid” seems to be both in/on order here.

    Legacy of Washington Naval Treaty
    “Article 22 of the 1930 Treaty of London relating to submarine warfare declared international law (the so-called “cruiser rules”) applied to submarines as well as to surface vessels. Also, unarmed merchant vessels which did not demonstrate “persistent refusal to stop…or active resistance to visit or search”[3] could not be sunk without the ships’ crews and passengers being first delivered to “a place of safety” (for which lifeboats did not qualify, except under particular circumstances).[4] The 1936 treaty confirmed Article 22 of the 1930 treaty remained in force, and “all others Powers [were invited] to express their assent to the rules embodied in this Article”.[5][6] This became known as the London Submarine Protocol, and over thirty-five nations eventually did subscribe to it, including the U.S., Britain, Germany, and Japan.[7] It was this Protocol which was used at the post war Nuremberg Trial of Karl Dönitz for ordering unrestricted submarine warfare. These regulations did not prohibit arming merchantmen,[8] but arming them, or having them report contact with submarines (or raiders), made them de facto naval auxiliaries and removed the protection of the cruiser rules.[9] This made restrictions on submarines effectively moot.[10]”….
    From

    “Churchill was right when he talked about “the proper
    application of overwhelming force.”…
    “Thus the key task for convoy escorts, whether surface or aerial,
    was to prevent enemy submarines from launching their torpedoes
    at the flock of merchantmen in the first place.
    The later introduction of acoustic or homing torpedoes, or of much more sophisticated U-Boats near the end of the war, did not alter that
    basic fact.”…

    “Among those many advances, four were described:”…
    Introduction of long range and heavily equipped bombers
    that could stay with the convoys all the way,…
    Development and mass production of centimetric radar,…
    The Hedgehog mortar and it’s derivatives the Squid and Limbo
    Weapons Systems,…
    Deployment of the hard hitting convoy support groups;
    Aka- Hunter Killer Task Forces built around Bogue Class
    escort carriers and new types of purpose built corvettes and
    frigates”.…
    From Engineers of Victory by Paul Kennedy
    Is this where Taylor’s next is going?

    Reply
    1. By Alexey Shiro on

      //Why was there only a LOT transfer and not a second
      corresponding GB-Commonwealth/Czarist Russian asset
      transfer event that could have simultaneously occurred as well?//

      Because transfer mechanism are clearly disinterested in politics.

      Reply
      1. By Joe Thorsky on

        Alexey
        Irrespective of the Politics involved.
        Can’t intimate that the event (it) was just
        another case of “Spontaneous Selection.”

        Reply
  37. By Justin on

    We know aluminum’s out of the question unless the Union finds a natural cryolite deposit… but what about synthetic cryolite?

    Aluminum oxide they can get from refining bauxite, hydrofluoric acid from fluorine and sulfur, and sodium hydroxide from electrolysis of basic table salt. They should probably interrogate Bradford once he gets back from Africa.

    Reply
    1. By donald j johnson on

      Maybe what they really need is to get a hold of that Handbook of chemistry and physics that was on the ship that just transferred along with an old radio amateur handbook just spark up the radio technology

      Reply
    2. By Alexey Shiro on

      I think, steel is more simple & viable solution for Alliance’s aircraft program than aluminium.

      P.S. Hovewer, with a lot of magnium & a few of aluminium (9% to be precise) you could have Elektron – quite efficient alloy.

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        Due to the scarcity of aluminum, even Elektron would have to be used sparingly. It could be used as a leading edge wing sheath, or where high strength & low weight are needed. The rest of the aircraft could be steel stringers & wing spars with plywood frames, wing ribs & fuselage & wing skins.

        Lets not forget that magnesium burns readily & can’t be extinguished. Several types of incendiary bombs were designed using Electron.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Yes, that’s the problem. On the other hands, considering that the average Alliance pilot, downed above sea is 100% doomed… I think, that Alliace could just use Japan philosophy “forget the durability, if the plane could not land on carrier it’s as good as destroyed”.

          Reply
        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          Here’s a thought. Some enterprising soul should come up with an inflatable raft attached to the pilots harness. That way, if they bail out over water, when they get near the water, they activate the CO2 cartridge to inflate the raft which stays attached to the harness, so it’s right there when they hit the water. They should be able to get into the raft before the first flashie gets there, unless they’re wounded. The raft could be made with thick material & have multiple air pockets in case of leaks or punctures. This would give the pilots at least some chance over water & nearby ships could pick them up. If I was a pilot there, I’d be giving this quite a bit of thought.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            I’m afraid, it wouldn’t work against flashies. Let’s not forget, they have a tendency to bump even a boats… so inflatable raft would be only a very short-therm solution.

          2. By Lou Schirmer on

            True, but short term might be enough to get a boat to them if they bail out near a ship.

          3. By Charles Simpson on

            Remember in Crusade when the PBY inflated a raft, the flashies tore it toshreds before any one could get in.

      1. By Steve Moore on

        Wonder if the Leets gasket material could be formulated as a glue; seems to resist the moisture.

        Reply
    3. By Justin on

      Both excellent points, but Matt’s pointed out that steel’s usually too heavy for large aircraft, and that wood only works if you’ve got airplane glue that can resist the heat and Gs involved in dogfighting.

      What about nickel, beryllium or titanium?

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        Tube steel can be fairly light, if you use a thin gauge. They could put a bamboo core in it with resin glue to up its strength & durability.

        Forget Titanium. In the 1960s Lockheed had lots of problems with that making the SR-71. Nickel & beryllium are usually used in small amount to make alloys with other metals, like copper & steel.

        Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            Side note: despite a lot of urban legends, Ho.229 ISN’T “stealthy”. Her forms gave her a bit of radar reduction, but her steel frames under wooden skin are a real mess of corner reflectors.

          2. By Nestor on

            True, the intent of the Weimar brothers was mainly to meet RLM speed and performance requirements. Only long after the war they started to muse about possible stealth capabilities.

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            Exactly. The stealth theory wasn’t even understood in 1940s. UK, Germany and USA tinkered with the idea of “radar-absorbing paint”, but without understanding of the theory of beam reflection and dispercion, it was only marginally useful.

      2. By Alexey Shiro on

        //Both excellent points, but Matt’s pointed out that steel’s usually too heavy for large aircraft, and that wood only works if you’ve got airplane glue that can resist the heat and Gs involved in dogfighting.//

        Well, the Soviet engineers were quite able to build steel planes in 1930s. In 1939, the “Stal-7” twin-engine plane (with all-steel hull) set a world speed record on 5000 km flight. She was capable of 450 km/h, could climb up to 10000 meters and could carry about 12 peoples or several tons of cargo. And her range was quite good, too.

        http://www.airwar.ru/image/idop/cw1/stal7/stal7-1.gif

        If the Union would be able to build something like “Stal” series, they would have a really good medium bomber (for 1930s, of course).

        //What about nickel, beryllium or titanium?//

        They are costly… and the titanium is really hard to produce in sufficient quantites. As far as I knew, for quite a long time only USSR was able to produce enough titanium to use it even on submarine hulls.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Go figure… say, a Stal-8 might work as a main fighter too.

          Reply
  38. By Lou Schirmer on

    I was curious to see what a P-1 would look like with an enclosed cockpit, so went & drew it.
    At the speeds they’re flying at, the pilot is essentially being asked to fly & fight a high performance aircraft while in a tornado. The enclosed cockpit would make things a bit easier for them. This is a modification of one of Taylors pictures from the Art section…back when you could save the full sized picture.

    http://loupy59.deviantart.com/art/P-1D-Design-Study-696621134

    Reply
  39. By Joe Thorsky on

    Lou-Guys

    If you’re fishing for the big fish don’t you
    need to attract them by tempestesting them with
    the smaller fish first.

    You’re are partially right in your assessments,
    but I was asking for a Taylored made Destroyermen’s
    aka specifically Silva’s answer/response to the
    growing submarine threat to Alliance shipping.
    A marriage of biology to technology would seepy be the ideal answer.

    There’s a strong possibly of Axis Submarine aircraft carriers
    being part of the Lot’s sub fleet?
    As reference see- I-400-class submarine

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I-400-class_submarine&gt;

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *