March 17

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Pass of Fire

 

 

 



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Posted March 17, 2016 by Taylor Anderson in category "Uncategorized

4,934 COMMENTS :

  1. AvatarBy Justin on

    On another note: would Cat pilots keep their kilts inside the cockpit?

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    1. AvatarBy Doug White on

      Watched on What About It’s life stream. They had astronaut Scott Paraczynski join them. Pretty fun stuff.

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    2. AvatarBy Neal Potts on

      Finally some good news for the year! A new step forward for our space aspirations.

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      1. AvatarBy Taylor Anderson on

        Yes indeed. Perhaps not as awe inspiring as a Saturn V liftoff, but maybe even more promising in the long run. Honestly, if you’d told me in 1969 that the US and Russians (preferably working together) wouldn’t already have thriving colonies on all the useful worlds and in the asteroids by now, I would’ve said you were nuts. But there’s money to be made in space and maybe it’ll take a commercial effort to get humanity back on track. I hope so.

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        1. AvatarBy Alexey Shiro on

          Well, Tsiolkovsky Rocket Equation is pretty cruel. Space is costly to reach; Saturn-V was an engineering marvel, but its cost was simply enormous. In 1960s, the only thing that could really boost the space program was probably the placement of nuclear warheads on high orbit.

          Which, actually, isn’t a bad idea. Nuclear missiles on high orbit (geostationary, or semi-stationary) are the perfect retaliation weapon – enemy attack would took hours just to reach them, and in space it is very hard to hide such attack. On the other hands, high-orbit missiles are useless as first-strike weapon, because they need hours to reach Earth – and so the opponent would not worry about you suddenly attacking him.

          So essentially, nuclear missiles on high orbit are good for retaliation, but bad for attacking first – which essentially made them an excellent peace-keeping weapon.

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          1. AvatarBy Steve Moore on

            In orbit, there’s nothing to hide behind or under, unless you can make them stealthy in orbit and re-entry. Might as well put a bumper sticker on saying SHOOT ME. Subs and cruise missiles a little better choice, if we’re going to keep following MAD. Seems to me the enemies we really need to worry about are not the ones who depend on each other and share the same target circle, but those wo don’t really give a rat’s a** about humanity. Put ’em on the Moon, pointing outwards, make the best of Tsiolkovsky’s genius, whether for defense or exploration, and get them the hell off Earth.

            Oh, and those pesky little pantywaists at the UN and in Clowngress would probably soil their drawers over it. God knows what the EU would do, probably talk more about it or try to tax them since they’d be AMERICAN.

          2. AvatarBy Alexey Shiro on

            *In orbit, there’s nothing to hide behind or under, *

            Exactly. That’s the whole point. Orbiting missiles are safe from sudden attack – such attack would be obviously visible long before it would reach the targets. And since the opposing side could observe your missiles constantly – they would not fear your sudden attack also. Much better than submarines, which are a constant threat of sudden strike by definition.

          3. AvatarBy Steve Moore on

            Somehow I’m not really comfortable with the concept that after I’ve been nuked, my robots will avenge me.

          4. AvatarBy Alexey Shiro on

            *Somehow I’m not really comfortable with the concept that after I’ve been nuked, my robots will avenge me.*

            But this is what nuclear deterrence all about. As long as the opponent knew, that your robots would avenge you, he would not dare to attack. Frankly, this logic worked quite good for more than four decades of Cold War; both side knew that attack would be useless because opponent would retaliate, so they would not attack.

      2. AvatarBy Justin on

        Hoping SpaceX remains a contractor, though. If they start operating independently of NASA – or at least doing it without oversight – it’s only a matter of time before they start bringing xenomorph eggs home for study and blowing up alien villages…

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        1. AvatarBy BigPony on

          They already do work 100% independently of NASA on a few projects. Starship and Falcon Heavy.

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    3. AvatarBy Matt White on

      A truly historic moment. If it wasn’t for COVID I would have made the trip down to watch the launch. Maybe next time.

      Reply
  2. AvatarBy Justin on

    May just be PRH’s preview, but Chapter 1 appears to have three different typos: “Confdration” and “Confedartion.” Hope there’s enough time to head over to the publisher and sort things out.

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    1. AvatarBy Justin on

      Nevermind, it’s just PRH. Probably an intern or something.

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  3. AvatarBy Paul Smith on

    If push comes to shove, could they mine the POF? Is the bottom shallow enough to hold the mines at the correct depth? Are the edges of the pass shallow enough to mine & force the league into a narrow channel & have enough hidden artillery to be able to damage/destroy the thinner skinned ships namely oilers, destroyers & repair/support ships.

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    1. AvatarBy Justin on

      Most importantly, do they have weights and chains capable of withstanding the Atlantic flowing into the Pacific (and vice versa) twice a day?

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      1. AvatarBy Mason McCormick on

        Well they have whatever they were using for the anchors on the seagoing Homes.

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    2. AvatarBy Alexey Shiro on

      I really doubt that League would attempt to force through enemy-controlled strait. Recall Dardanelles in WW1 – how the RN and MN blundered here! League clearly would knew better; and they have no real reason to even enter the PoF, actually.

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  4. AvatarBy Mason McCormick on

    The preview is finally out! Thank you so much Taylor!!! 😆

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  5. AvatarBy Lou Schirmer on

    In PoF, Fiedler says: “in six months, perhaps a bit more, you can expect the Dominion to have the aid of . . .” He considered. “Perhaps three to five battleships, old and new, and at least that many light and heavy cruisers.”

    So they have about six months to get Savoie repaired & across the Pacific, along with whatever other ships & tech Reddy can scrape up. But it begs the question, how does a Ju-52 pilot from a fourth string, ill considered partner nation, become privy to the strategic deployment considerations of the LOT fleet? He might know they’re going to send something, but types & numbers? Either the LOT OPSEC sucks, he’s guessing, they’re feeding him disinformation to forward to the allies or some combination of the above. He may know what they have, but he should have little or no idea what or even if, they’re sending anything. After all, he was in the Indian Ocean when Gravois was making deals with the Doms.

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    1. AvatarBy Mason McCormick on

      He was a pilot who was ferrying around intelligence officers who viewed him as unimportant and of no consequence if he learned anything from them. Also could of seen the ships while flying, and he is with a U-boat captain, so Hoffman could have helped him estimate. Then they are also intercepting League communications.

      Reply
  6. AvatarBy jbmedd on

    while I am sure we will see a new dive bomber variant I cant see it being overly effective given a lack of familiarity with the pilots and their lack of experience with LOT armed ships.
    I think Tara and possibly another of her sister ships will bring a fleet of MTB’s and PB-5’s . Use the PB-5s to scout ahead of the fleet as they have the legs for search patterns. Once the LOT is located get Tara within 200 miles then flush the MTB’s . Have them towed in lines of say 5 or 6 behind the destroyers to within their strike range of the LOT fleet. A night action would increase their chances and have them focus on the oilers and other supply ships. Then beat feet back to their tow ships to hitch a ride back to the fleet. Repeat as necessary. They arent subs but they make a dam fine Wolf Pack. you could build 100 MTB’s for every Savoie you could build. Obviously they would be useless if the sea kicks up .

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    1. AvatarBy Alexey Shiro on

      I didn’t like dive bombers. Didn’t like them at all. They are nothing more than a technological dead end, bring into prominence only due to particular combination of factors. Spending resources on something that would essentially be exercise in going nowhere…

      ” Have them towed in lines of say 5 or 6 behind the destroyers to within their strike range of the LOT fleet. ”

      LOT destroyers would have the day of their lives. All those nice, clumsy, defenseless and vulnerable MTB’s to run & tear apart… League destroyer commander who bring back less than five confirmed kills would be ridiculed.

      Seriously, motorboats are NOT the superweapon. They could attack large warships, yes, but they really bad against destroyers, who are faster than MTB’s, have better seakeeping ability and guns to destroy MBT’s.

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      1. AvatarBy Lou Schirmer on

        Granting that dive bombers were an eventual dead end, at the time they were developed, they were the only game in town for accurate delivery of bombs. Especially against maneuvering ships. It’s still in use today in ground attacks, as a cheap, reasonably accurate, alternative to more expensive guided munitions. The technique these days isn’t an almost vertical dive anymore, but a more shallow diving run.

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        1. AvatarBy Alexey Shiro on

          * It’s still in use today in ground attacks, as a cheap, reasonably accurate, alternative to more expensive guided munitions. *

          Actually no) The guided munition is a very cheap alternative of putting a very costly plane with a VERY costly pilot into the range of enemy AA systems)

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          1. AvatarBy Lou Schirmer on

            If your air force can afford it, yes. Many smaller nations can’t, so they still use unguided munitions dropped from relatively cheap platforms (close support aircraft usually). Even the USAF still uses “dumb” bombs regularly on the A-10 & other aircraft.

        2. AvatarBy Justin on

          In other words, glide bombing, which is what Union seaplanes are using right now… and which would probably get a lot of Cats shredded by League AA. Dive bombing appears to be right on the money for now.

          Though they’re definitely going to need a new airframe for it. Not sure what a DP1M1’s rip off speed is, but I don’t think it’s high. And I don’t think it has dive brakes either.

          Reply
    2. AvatarBy Steve Moore on

      MTB’s are an inexpensive weapon intended for use primarily against similar vessels or supply/transport vessels. That was the painful lesson both the Americans and British learned in WW2, and I think the Soviet Union had the same experience in the Black Sea. My background on that is somewhat fuzzy, so if you have any comment Alexey, feel free to step in and correct me.

      Even now, when MTB’s have standoff weapons, they’re still not as effective as 400 knot plus attack aircraft against larger ships; the only modern use I can see for them is brown-water operations.

      However, when it’s all you have, you can produce them cheaply, and you have a 19th century naval opponent, or fighting in night operations in restricted waters, they’re better than nothing.

      Reply
      1. AvatarBy Alexey Shiro on

        “MTB’s are an inexpensive weapon intended for use primarily against similar vessels or supply/transport vessels. ”

        Er, MBT were not intended to be used against similar vessels. Initially they were designed as a means to attack enemy heavy ships near coastlines – i.e. as coast defense forces.

        ” I think the Soviet Union had the same experience in the Black Sea. My background on that is somewhat fuzzy, so if you have any comment Alexey, feel free to step in and correct me.”

        Generally our experience was, that hydroplanes are bad MTB’s. Our most numerous MTB’s G-5 series were build using a floatplane float as hydrodynamic prototype, and they were… troublesome. Still, they were quite good in harassing transport shipping, being able to hit-and-run against small convoys quite efficiently.

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        1. AvatarBy Lou Schirmer on

          It would depend on where the engagement took place as to whether they could use the MTBs. On the open sea, they would be both exposed & too slow to catch the LOT fleet. They would be a viable option if the allies were planning their main action around a choke point of some sort. The MTBs could sortie from inlets near the action after the battle starts & attack while the LOT are distracted by whatever ships Reddy can scrape together to face them. At night or near dawn or dusk they would be next to invisible against a dark shoreline. Even if some of the LOT ships have radar, the early radars had difficulty picking out ships against shorelines, much less smaller MTBs. The WW2 Guadal Canal battles come to mind. We had radar & it didn’t do us much good at first. The Pass of Fire is one choke point option. It would depend on Taylor’s map to know any others, but between Florida & Cuba would be another possible site. It’s a fairly large area in our world, but with the lower sea levels there it should be considerably narrower.

          Reply
          1. AvatarBy Alexey Shiro on

            Let’s not forget, that Italians were the one who invented MTB’s, and one of the most efficient MTB users during both World War I and World War II. So basically everything Reddy might knew about MBT – Italians would knew better.

          2. AvatarBy Lou Schirmer on

            Knowing about their use & expecting/ready for it are two different propositions. Plus we don’t even know if Reddy’s bringing any.

          3. AvatarBy john medd on

            Another MTB option is for the nussies to be given the plans for an unscale full 80 foot elco . The NUS shipyards are of absolutely no use in buiding modern warships but they could rapidly build a mosquito fleet. They build the hulls and the alliance supplies the torps, tubes and engines. I assume with the improvements in engine designs they should be able to do 30-35 knots. The japs in WWII called them devil boats and that was with the for sh*t torps the americans were using. The alliance has shown their torps work and I think the range is now up to 8500 yards. In and around all those carib islands these would be a huge improvement over their existing fleet

          4. AvatarBy john medd on

            Also the nussies are predominately sailors so planes would take too long to train for and the same for a modern warship.
            An MTB would be easy to adjust to and give them the ability to immediately harass the LOT

  7. AvatarBy Justin on

    Come to think of it, we only know roughly how many planes the League’s got, but technically the limit of their capabilities is in how many trained pilots.

    If the League air force is understrength, then many of the M&Ms and bombers can be written off – they’re grounded without anybody to fly them (unless, of course, the League reinvents the Special Attack Units).
    But if they’re overstrength, then they’ve got spare hands to design, build and fly, and it might be a good idea to prepare for biplanes scattered among the moderns.

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    1. AvatarBy Mason McCormick on

      Why not monoplanes? The Alliance managed them with less experienced people.

      Reply
  8. AvatarBy jbmedd on

    just read this puplisher summary on audible. “Undermined by treachery on a stunning scale, Matt Reddy must still steam his battered old ship halfway around the world, scraping up what forces he can along the way, and confront the mightiest armada the world has ever seen in a fiery duel to the death.”

    jeez Taylor outgunned at least three to one wasn’t enough you had to add “treachury on a stunning scale”
    man June 9 feels like a lifetime aaaahhhhhhh

    Reply
    1. AvatarBy Mason McCormick on

      Try doing a countdown on a calendar, it makes it feel like time is going faster somewhat. At least you can get it June 9, I will have to wait a week or 2.

      As for the Worlds I’ve Wondered, Courtney doesn’t necessarily live. It could be something like what happened with Robert Jordan. Courtney could have a large portion of it done (He has had long periods of nothing to do on ships), then they finish it for him. I hope he lives though, his antics never get old!

      Reply
      1. AvatarBy Steve Moore on

        Or, he can become the Alliance version of Eisenhower.I kinda like that idea… SPINOFF time? With Halik in the role of Tito; not an enemy, not a friend.

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    2. AvatarBy Steve White on

      It’s part of the “rules of publishing” — when in doubt, add treachery… :-)

      Reply

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