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Effectiveness Of Straffing Aircraft Against Ships


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#121 shep854

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 0913 AM

The fog of war is easily dispelled by a good collation of AAR's and other data. Why someone made a decision is often based on intuition, gut instinct, panic, training and doctrine. How it ends up is probably also a great many dice rolls of luck. 

As this thread is again showing, the quality of the information recorded is crucial.  Many times, those involved had more immediately important things to tend to than detailing apparent minutia, not to mention simple distraction and preconceptions.  In the ideal world, everything would balance out, but when you throw people into the process...


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#122 Rich

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 0955 AM

 

The fog of war is easily dispelled by a good collation of AAR's and other data. Why someone made a decision is often based on intuition, gut instinct, panic, training and doctrine. How it ends up is probably also a great many dice rolls of luck. 

As this thread is again showing, the quality of the information recorded is crucial.  Many times, those involved had more immediately important things to tend to than detailing apparent minutia, not to mention simple distraction and preconceptions.  In the ideal world, everything would balance out, but when you throw people into the process...

 

 

Yep and I suspect part of the reason the Taffy 2 contribution weighs so heavily in the evaluation is because it is well-recorded in considerable detail, whereas the likely as weighty contribution of Taffy 3 aviators may have less weight because they were less well recorded.


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#123 shep854

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 1014 AM

 

 

The fog of war is easily dispelled by a good collation of AAR's and other data. Why someone made a decision is often based on intuition, gut instinct, panic, training and doctrine. How it ends up is probably also a great many dice rolls of luck. 

As this thread is again showing, the quality of the information recorded is crucial.  Many times, those involved had more immediately important things to tend to than detailing apparent minutia, not to mention simple distraction and preconceptions.  In the ideal world, everything would balance out, but when you throw people into the process...

 

 

Yep and I suspect part of the reason the Taffy 2 contribution weighs so heavily in the evaluation is because it is well-recorded in considerable detail, whereas the likely as weighty contribution of Taffy 3 aviators may have less weight because they were less well recorded.

 

Not having one's second-tier jeep carrier being ventilated by an honest-to-goodness line of battle does allow for a bit more tranquility


Edited by shep854, 24 May 2019 - 1016 AM.

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#124 rmgill

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 1045 AM

 

Yep and I suspect part of the reason the Taffy 2 contribution weighs so heavily in the evaluation is because it is well-recorded in considerable detail, whereas the likely as weighty contribution of Taffy 3 aviators may have less weight because they were less well recorded.

 

They probably recorded things quite precisely as Taffy2. Just their documentation ended up at the bottom. ;-)


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#125 Nobu

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 1252 PM

Fair enough, although I have to grin at the notion of "unworthy opponents". That kind of thinking is how nations end up losing wars.

 

Touche. One reason for that kind of thinking, and the empire's downfall, was an exaggerated sense of exceptionalism beyond nationalism on the part of Japan and Japanese. Kurita himself seems to have vacillated in his postwar assessment of his own decision making at Samar, from regretting his decision to standing by it, all the way up to refusing to speak with Toland in the course of his research for The Rising Sun to explain it.

 

'm not sure they are if Lundstrom gave you the impression that 280 aircraft on 10 carriers were constantly attacking after landing and rearming in 15-minute cycles. 

 

My exact words here were "...and whose decks were close enough to cycle rearmed aircraft back over the target area 10-15 minutes after launch." Poor choice of the word "cycle" on my part. What I should have said was "...and whose decks were close enough to put aircraft over the target area 10-15 minutes after launch." I respect the competence of the USN, but 15-minute aircraft arming cycles would be impossible for any navy.

 

Or that Spruance's "warning" meant that all 16 CVE had a torpedo strike ready and waiting for what was to come.

 

The reason I mentioned this message was to counter the argument that the carrier airpower potential of TG77.4 was not capable of the anti-shipping mission, either in general or on October 25. The issuance of such a message to Kincaid the morning of October 25 indicates a belief on the part of USN flag-rank officers otherwise.

 

Three DD and two DE did a lot of damage firing 34 torpedoes. The poor use of the Japanese DD had a lot to do with the outcome as well.

 

They did, and the Japanese DDs could have acquitted themselves a hell of a lot better in retrospect. Although I suspect that if the purported effectiveness of strafing against light warships versus heavier types is taken into account, the presence of a significant number of USN Hellcats and Wildcats throughout the day with .50 caliber ammunition loads and no Japanese fighters to expend them against may have had an effect on Japanese DD performance. 

 

Samar itself should probably be considered the ultimate laboratory test of the effectiveness of strafing against warships, as there were plenty of fighters with motivation to strafe present, no Japanese air cover for the fighters to engage or to bother them while executing their strafing runs, and a comprehensive sample of warship types available for strafing, ranging from DDs to the heaviest battleship ever launched.

 

Not having one's second-tier jeep carrier being ventilated by an honest-to-goodness line of battle does allow for a bit more tranquility

 

It does. I would also say, however, that at this point in history, not having air cover for surface ships in the presence of enemy carrier airpower in daylight does not.

 

The fog of war is easily dispelled by a good collation of AAR's and other data. Why someone made a decision is often based on intuition, gut instinct, panic, training and doctrine. How it ends up is probably also a great many dice rolls of luck. 

 

I would agree with this in just about every aspect.

 

As far as panic goes, I would not want to be aboard a Japanese DD later in the day with McCain's TG38.1 fleet carrier strike piloted by what some might consider the first team of USN naval aviators, and armed with bombs instead of torpedoes, inbound.


Edited by Nobu, 24 May 2019 - 1625 PM.

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#126 Rich

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 1816 PM

Touche. One reason for that kind of thinking, and the empire's downfall, was an exaggerated sense of exceptionalism beyond nationalism on the part of Japan and Japanese. Kurita himself seems to have vacillated in his postwar assessment of his own decision making at Samar, from regretting his decision to standing by it, all the way up to refusing to speak with Toland in the course of his research for The Rising Sun to explain it.

 

Well, I wasn't actually going for points, I was trying for accuracy. :D

 

 


My exact words here were "...and whose decks were close enough to cycle rearmed aircraft back over the target area 10-15 minutes after launch." Poor choice of the word "cycle" on my part. What I should have said was "...and whose decks were close enough to put aircraft over the target area 10-15 minutes after launch." I respect the competence of the USN, but 15-minute aircraft arming cycles would be impossible for any navy.

 

As here. :D  If you look at the actual strikes, you will find the times between launch and strike varied from about 45 to around and hour and ten minutes, not "10-15 minutes after launch". The problem was the Japanese kept moving, the rain squalls kept moving, and the Taffies kept moving, so each strike had to spend some time getting off the carriers, forming up, flying to where the Japanese were supposed to be, visually spotting the Japanese, adopting an attack disposition, and actually attacking. The impression that you and the Japanese (and perhaps Lundstrom) had that they were cycling ever 10-15 minutes is do to the disorganized and uncoordinated state of most of the strikes and that they were dispatched from multiple task units and carriers.

 

The arming cycle varied from 30 minutes to an hour depending on the ordnance...but also the organization. One problem was that the TBMs were all configured as bombers, because that was what they had been doing for four days. To arm them with the few torpedoes available meant installing the torpedo bracing and arming circuits, which were removed when bombs were carried. The other issue was getting bombs from the magazine, most of the CVE had GP bombs in the hangers for the planned bombing missions, the few SAP bombs available had to be brought up from the magazine, but they then had to be spotted in the hanger, which meant the bombs already there needed to be cleared or at least moved. That is why, especially in Taffy 3, whatever was on deck was what got loaded.

 

 

 


The reason I mentioned this message was to counter the argument that the carrier airpower potential of TG77.4 was not capable of the anti-shipping mission, either in general or on October 25. The issuance of such a message to Kincaid the morning of October 25 indicates a belief on the part of USN flag-rank officers otherwise.

 

It is not that they were not capable of the anti-ship mission. The problem is their capability was so limited. In theory, the 16 carriers available should have had 144 torpedoes aboard for their 143 TBM. In practice though, approximately three-quarters of the TBM strikes were done with bombs and perhaps something around one-third to one-half of the torpedoes were ever used for various reasons (including the CVE was bombed, kamikazied, or otherwise sunk or put out of action).

 

 

They did, and the Japanese DDs could have acquitted themselves a hell of a lot better in retrospect. Although I suspect that if the purported effectiveness of strafing against light warships versus heavier types is taken into account, the presence of a significant number of USN Hellcats and Wildcats throughout the day with .50 caliber ammunition loads and no Japanese fighters to expend them against may have had an effect on Japanese DD performance.

 

Yep.


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#127 rmgill

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 2343 PM

I'd be curious to see a study on the methods of carrier ordnance storage, movement and hoisting in various ship classes to now.  :rolleyes:



Huh...


Edited by rmgill, 27 May 2019 - 1444 PM.

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#128 shep854

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Posted 25 May 2019 - 1829 PM

There are some links to weapons handling videos back in the Queen Elizabeth thread.


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#129 Chris Werb

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Posted 25 May 2019 - 2111 PM

I'd be curious to see a study on the methods of carrier ordinance storage, movement and hoisting in various ship classes to now. 

Huh...

 

In the UK ordinances are stored like this:
 

ImageVaultHandler.aspx.jpg​


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#130 Rich

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Posted 26 May 2019 - 1004 AM

 

I'd be curious to see a study on the methods of carrier ordinance storage, movement and hoisting in various ship classes to now. 

Huh...

 

In the UK ordinances are stored like this:
 

ImageVaultHandler.aspx.jpg​

 

 

Cheeky bugger! :D


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#131 shep854

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Posted 26 May 2019 - 2050 PM

 

 

I'd be curious to see a study on the methods of carrier ordinance storage, movement and hoisting in various ship classes to now. 

Huh...

 

In the UK ordinances are stored like this:
 

ImageVaultHandler.aspx.jpg​

 

 

Cheeky bugger! :D

 

Yep, that was a good catch and riposte.  ^_^


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#132 Rich

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Posted 26 May 2019 - 2059 PM

 

 

 

I'd be curious to see a study on the methods of carrier ordinance storage, movement and hoisting in various ship classes to now. 

Huh...

 

In the UK ordinances are stored like this:
 

ImageVaultHandler.aspx.jpg​

 

 

Cheeky bugger! :D

 

Yep, that was a good catch and riposte.  ^_^

 

 

English is such a wonderful language. I always think of George Carlin and the Seven Things you Cannot Say on Television, "You can prick your finger, but never finger your prick..."


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#133 rmgill

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Posted 27 May 2019 - 1443 PM

 

I'd be curious to see a study on the methods of carrier ordinance storage, movement and hoisting in various ship classes to now. 

Huh...

 

In the UK ordinances are stored like this:
 

ImageVaultHandler.aspx.jpg​

 

Hah...you lot should embrace the printing press and book binding...


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#134 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 28 May 2019 - 0228 AM

They tried, about 2 years ago. Turned into a running gun battle, and eventually the Lords gave in.

https://www.dailymai...-GOAT-SKIN.html

In actual fact there are good practical reasons for using vellum, it lasts forever. And personally I have great pleasure at the thought that the nearest thing Britain has to a constitution is written on an 800 year old cows arse.


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#135 DB

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Posted 10 June 2019 - 0912 AM

I have forgotten the technical terms, but the "ing" form if the verb "to strafe" is "strafing" with one "f". It would only be "straffing" if the verb was "to straf" or "to straff". This is not a matter of British or American spelling rules.

I have never seen straffing in British English. If we wanted it pronounced like that, we might have considered spelling like "straph" as in graph (although there are regional differences in how the a would be pronounced in graph, see also bath, with long and short variants.)

It's always been strafe; strafing.

We really mess about with "a".
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#136 Chris Werb

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Posted 03 July 2019 - 1631 PM


 


I'd be curious to see a study on the methods of carrier ordinance storage, movement and hoisting in various ship classes to now. 

Huh...

 
In the UK ordinances are stored like this:
 
ImageVaultHandler.aspx.jpgâ
 
Hah...you lot should embrace the printing press and book binding...

I can't believe you of all people are advocating reeware?!!! :) In my current job, I've spent a lot of time helping to eliminate paper from our health board's record keeping system. There are some persistent holdouts, but we're getting there.
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#137 Harold Jones

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Posted 03 July 2019 - 1746 PM

I know there are advantages to having data in a server somewhere but sometimes I stop and think about what your standard issue 14 year old script kiddie could do to or with it if he lucked out and got access.


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#138 rmgill

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Posted 03 July 2019 - 2108 PM

Given how data bit rot or worse, some badly executed scripts or delete command can make things go.... I'm rather enamored with hard copy backups or at least a backup scheme that's off site and immune to idiots with too much access.

We had a rather bad scare this past week where someone trying to deal with untagged virtuals (and thus no departmental accounting) managed to delete EVERY single virtual in our AWS environment.
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#139 Ivanhoe

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Posted 03 July 2019 - 2135 PM

 

I'd be curious to see a study on the methods of carrier ordinance storage, movement and hoisting in various ship classes to now. 

Huh...

 

In the UK ordinances are stored like this:
 

ImageVaultHandler.aspx.jpg​

 

 

Concerning ordinance v ordnance, it occurs to me that I should remind y'all that the pen is mightier than the sword.


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#140 rmgill

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Posted 03 July 2019 - 2151 PM

Only because the pen can be used to plot artillery fires.
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