Interesting pre-war thoughts.
Jump to content
Posted 28 June 2019 - 0739 AM
This is extremely interesting, thanks for the link!
I have been involved in countless (heated) debates over the internet in the previous 20+ years about exactly this - had we only known about these calculations and models. But apparently they have been classified until recently.
I wonder about (at least) one thing though - and that is how accuracy/hit probability was assessed? During WWI, when the USN sent a battle squadron to join the British Grand Fleet they found out that USN gunnery was dreadfully inefficient. The part originating in procedures and training was quickly caught up with, but USN heavy guns had an inherent spread about double that of RN guns, which alone would mean a much lower hit probability - IIRC I "guestimated" about 50% in a 1920s battle.
On top of this the USN heavy shells also appear to have had a tendency to shatter when in contact with heavy armor. The RN shells also had during WWI, but the "Green Boy" shells introduced from 1918 were a great improvement.
By WWII the accuracy and shell problems har been largely solved, but I would like to know if these factors were included in the rather harsh judgement the USN in an interwar engagement vs the RN (blue vs red). BTW I do wonder why they estimated the RN as that superior at long range. IIRC only Nelson, Rodney and Hood had 20+ degree elevation!? At least until the reconstructions in the late 1930 of Warspite, QE, Valiant and Renown. If ignoring the accuracy problem I would say US battleships with their all-or-nothing armor layout had an advantage at long range, whereas the (pre Nelson) British battleships were more fit for medium to short range actions.
Anyway the basic claim of the article - "Battleships were not done with by Pearl Harbor" is very interesting and appear well documented. And actually I had overlooked how fast most of the battleships hit at PH were back in service again. It even more underlines the "I'm afraid we have just wakened the bear" part of the Japanese evaluation of PH.
If you go bear hunting you must hit it fatally in the first shot, but Japan went Grizzly hunting with finely tuned, handmade and gold plated - cal. 22 LR...
Posted 28 June 2019 - 0921 AM
"BTW I do wonder why they estimated the RN as that superior at long range."
USN 14" and I think 16" guns had a max. elevation of 15°, the RN's 15" could be elevated to 20°. However, when the USN and the RN were going on about the other being superior they were actually meaning the IJN. Because as long as they could deal with each other they would clearly overmatch the IJN.
0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users