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Thread: Bring Back The Iowa Class Discussion And Debate

  1. #16
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    BB reactivation

    Ive been reading, listening and debating about this subject this subject since 1990. After nearly 14 years I don t know if I have much to add but here are a coupla thoughts.

    The people issue We have four old AOEs(600 crew apiece)(the four newest( 3 are now) will be MSC by summer 2004) that should be decom or transferred to MSC. We have 4 Command ships and 2 tenders that(AFAIK) are stationary most of the time that could be temporarily downgraded to Reduced Operating Status in certain areas. Not to mention skilled ENG rates off the recently retired USS Constellation and the 2 Anchorage class LSDs and one next year. Thats alot of ENG personnel, Bosun Mates, Admin & support rates, not to mention sources of young Seaman and Fireman from all those sources. GMs may be a problem but the NRF and retired ranks will have to provide many of these especially for the 16' guns anyway. Also I would reduce the OHPs by 8-18 again providing a great source of personnel including many GMs among other ratings and officers.

    A non-issue if you ask me.

    The money issue Well if you look above alot of money will be saved there and the Navy and Congress between them should be able to come up with the rest. Again for me a non-issue.

    Escort issue With the finally operational ESGs(btw envisioned in some form for over 20 years at least). Look at the "Conceptual U.S. Navy Surface Combatant Formations" from the House, Committee on Armed Services Hearings of March 1982 to get a sense of why this too is a non-issue.

    The BBs utility of course will remain a question for many. If their 16" guns can only fire some 20 miles inland then that of course is a good question. As compared to the reach of Aviation and Missles. People will also question how they fit into OMFTS and the RMA. Those are questions that should be debated. Also the fact that 3 are virtual museums and the fourth, well Im not convinced that it is in the best of shape although I hope Im wrong. Everything else is excuses IMHO.

  2. #17
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    With Scramjet projectiles the range of the 16" rifles can be increased to 4-600 miles.

    While we are waiting for the technology for those to mature, the 11" DARPA rounds from the 1980's will strike up to 100 miles inland.

    With simple laser guidance and onboard RPV's, the BB so equipped would be a potent ASuW and STRIKE asset, without equal in that 100 mile exclusion zone.

  3. #18
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    I understand all that but its not me you need to convince.

  4. #19
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    Has anyone actively started a petition or something to bring them back?
    Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.

    Abusing Yellow is meant to be a labor of love, not something you sell to the highest bidder.

  5. #20
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    The USNFSA headed by Willian Stearman is actively pursuing reactivation.

    They have a BBG concept that is just flat awesome.

  6. #21
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    Crap our posts went away.

    Well what I was saying is that the Millenium Gun has "sub-penetrators" which release and impact the target a long with the front part of it that impacts like a regular 35mm bullet.

  7. #22
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    That's odd...

    Anyway, back to millenium...

    The Goalkeeper has a ROF of 4,200rpm and uses FMPDS rounds with a Mv of 5000+ FPS.

    And like i said, it's radar suite is most impressive.

    Not that millenium is bad, i just like Goalkeeper more- ESPECIALLY for antisurface attacks on small fast moving combatants.

  8. #23
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    Besides, that millenium STUPIDLY forces one to buy a whole new caliber of ammunition.

    There is nothing else in the entire NATO arsenal that fires the 35mm except the German Gephard AAA vehicle.

    The 30x173mm cartridge is already used by the A-10, there is the USAF 30mm GAU-13 3bbl rotary cannon pod that uses it, the ASP 30mm Hv chaingun uses it, and of course, the Goalkeeper(already in service with 3 NATO countries)uses the 30x173.

  9. #24
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    Well you changed my mind, the Goal Keeper is better for threats like Super-Sonic Cruise Missiles. There is no need for guns to take out boats because you got the 5" guns and all you need is one round from it.

    But how do you counter the Submarine threat through?
    Last edited by Praxus; 03 Sep 03, at 03:58.

  10. #25
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    "Well you changed my mind, the Goal Keeper is better for threats like Super-Sonic Cruise Missiles. There is no need for guns to take out boats because you got the 5" guns and all you need is one round from it."

    We did a lot of thinking on what CIWS to use, and even considered straight up SeaRam mounts, but decided that SeaRam(in place of current phalanx mounts), AND Goalkeeper would give the best layered protection, particularly against small surface combatants.

    The proposed Mk45 Mod4 5" guns are excellent units overall, but are a bit lacking in ROF, which would be a problem vs very fast suicide boats. Goalkeeper would utterly shred a destroyer in a matter of seconds, let alone a zodiac raft...


    "But how do you counter the Submarine threat through?"

    Escorts. The 'plan' is to operate the Iowa's as the center of a BBBG(there's a mouthful), with one Aegis warship and one FFG in attendence, and operating as an independent battlegroup.

    If attatched to an ARG, the Battleship is protected by the existing escorts, while at the same time adding MASSIVE NGFS, Strike, ASuW, area AAW, and PMDS capability.

    So far it's a pipedream, but as i said, there are those working every day to make it happen.

    USNFSA has managed to get P&W to privately fund development of 16" scramjet projectiles, so SOME progress is being made.

  11. #26
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    I think a BBBG would be a wicked thing, and just and save a messload of navy money. Instead of an air sortie from a carrier, just use the 16".
    Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.

    Abusing Yellow is meant to be a labor of love, not something you sell to the highest bidder.

  12. #27
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    Sorry Sniper but the plan was to use 1 Tico and 3 Burkes as escorts for the BBs. In reality it turned out to be 1 CG, 1 DDG, 1DD, 1 FFG and 1 FF nominally. It varied as do all USN formations.

  13. #28
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    Either one is still a very formidable force.
    Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.

    Abusing Yellow is meant to be a labor of love, not something you sell to the highest bidder.

  14. #29
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    Ah battleships. My first love when I was 7 or 8 and the love affair continues to this day. One of the finest days in my life was last December when I walked the teakwood decks of USS Alabama (BB-60) and clambered into the 16-inch turrets and 5-inch gun mounts. Hell, I went everywhere I could
    I do think that if the battleships were recommisioned, there would have to be a great effort to reduce the manning levels of the ships. Not too much, mind you, because battleships are by their nature manpower-intensive. On the other hand, new technology like better paints and so forth should be employed (on ALL ships) to reduce the amount of chippin' and paintin'. A new point-defense system would be good, probably the new upgraded Phalanx Block 1B. VLS is also a good option to consider but I shudder to think of how and where it would need to be put in. The remaining 5-inch guns could hopefully be replaced by the MK 45 5-inch / 62-caliber with ERGM (if it even works), probably a total of 4 mounts would suffice.
    I'm sure there are plenty of other electronic upgrades that can be used as well, although when it comes to the fire-control for the 16-inch guns, the 1940's-vintage "computers" work just fine. Although I wonder if there are/were/could be some modern electronic aids that could complement them
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, than to take rank with those poor, timid spirits who know neither victory nor defeat ~ Theodore Roosevelt

  15. #30
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    "A new point-defense system would be good, probably the new upgraded Phalanx Block 1B."

    The USNFSA calls for 4x Goalkeeper CIWS and 4x SeaRam/Phalanx 11rd mounts.

    "VLS is also a good option to consider but I shudder to think of how and where it would need to be put in."

    96 Mk41 cells between the funnels. That's what the BBG plan states.

    "The remaining 5-inch guns could hopefully be replaced by the MK 45 5-inch / 62-caliber with ERGM (if it even works), probably a total of 4 mounts would suffice."

    4x Mk45 Mod4 5"/62's is the plan.

    "I'm sure there are plenty of other electronic upgrades that can be used as well, although when it comes to the fire-control for the 16-inch guns, the 1940's-vintage "computers" work just fine. Although I wonder if there are/were/could be some modern electronic aids that could complement them"

    The mechanical fire control computer would be augmented with a navalized variant of the US Army firefinder radar if the BBG plan were to be enacted. Aegis Mk7 is of course an option, albeit an expensive one.

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