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Thread: Bring Back The Iowa Class Discussion And Debate

  1. #511
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pacfanweb View Post
    Yes, but BATTLESHIPS.
    Four BATTLESHIPS.

  2. #512
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    The crazy idea of recalling at least two of the four Iowa-class is being discussed at some level. Whether that glorious day will ever come is unlikely, but people like myself have remained vigilant and active in reminding the decision makers of the benefits provided by these ships. Don't be such a tin can, shout like a sixteen inch gun!!!

  3. #513
    Resident Curmudgeon Military Professional Gun Grape's Avatar
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    Don't let Trump do something this bad to the US Navy/USMC.

    4 ships that don't meet current USMC NSFS criteria. And like last time, would set Naval Gunfire support advancements back decades.

    Keep them where they belong. Tied up to a pier as museums.
    Human Scum. Proud Never Trumper

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  5. #515
    Resident Curmudgeon Military Professional Gun Grape's Avatar
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    You want to design a new version of the "Battleship" not bring back the old ones?
    Human Scum. Proud Never Trumper

  6. #516
    Defense Professional RustyBattleship's Avatar
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    You folks have no idea of what massive work would have to be done to reactivate all four Battleships.

    So far, only the New Jersey & Missouri have gotten full release from the 3 Navy restrictions and they can do anything they want with them such as the New Jersey has cut a big archway through the turret foundation and the lower barbette so tourists can view one of the shell decks.

    The Iowa and Wisconsin still have those restrictions:
    We cannot reactivate the crew's galley (chief's galley and officers galley okay to reopen).
    We cannot operate the boilers or unlock the props for for propulsion.
    We cannot operate the Navigation Equipment. Well, at least for navigating - since we can't turn the props, there's no reason to navigate.

    The Wisconsin had new air supply vents installed on turret I for clearance above green water coming over the bow. We added those same vents on Missouri. Iowa and New Jersey do not have that vent protection.

    When they were deactivated I was ordered to design coverings and other weather protection so the ships could be reactivated in 45 days. Well, those days have been long gone.

    For every ship, you need a very large dry dock. The ship's on the east coast and in Hawaii have dry docks close enough to do the bottom work (opening up sea chest closures, unwrapping the props, hydro or sand blasting the paint, welding up corrosion pits, repainting, etc.

    But greedy politicians and port controllers DESTROYED our dry docks at LBNSY, & closed off the dry docks at Hunters Point in Frisco. That left only the dry docks in Bremerton, WA available.

    Just a hundred miles South of San Pedro National Ship & Steel has a huge dry dock but is used ONLY for building super tankers. They also have a floating dry dock just wide enough to dock an LHA. In 2017 however, they are receiving a new floating dock that could take an Aircraft Carrier. BUT, they already have a long waiting list. To dock Iowa in there would require "temporary" nationalization (confiscation?) from the Oval Office to put Iowa in ahead of anyone else.

    BUT, if so ordered, we can do it. I may be 80 years old and now walk with a "hitch" to my gait, but THE LINE FORMS BEHIND ME.
    Last edited by RustyBattleship; 17 Nov 16, at 22:43.
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  7. #517
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    I can't imagine the amount of work and cost it would take to make even one Iowa safely operable again. What wouldn't need to be upgraded? The missile systems are outdated and would have to be completely replaced, the electronic warfare suits are outdated, the boilers and probably half the steam piping likely needs re-tubing, the crew requirements are huge (I know, the steam plant may be able to be somewhat automated, but still), it's like bringing an abandoned city back to life. All this cost and manpower for what? A ship with a primary purpose of firing shells 20 miles? The argument that it has armor and is more survivable I think is very debatable. I think people underestimate missiles and more importantly, torpedoes.

    I'm content with them staying museum ships as long as they're being well kept.
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  8. #518
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michigan_Guy View Post
    I can't imagine the amount of work and cost it would take to make even one Iowa safely operable again. What wouldn't need to be upgraded? The missile systems are outdated and would have to be completely replaced, the electronic warfare suits are outdated, the boilers and probably half the steam piping likely needs re-tubing, the crew requirements are huge (I know, the steam plant may be able to be somewhat automated, but still), it's like bringing an abandoned city back to life. All this cost and manpower for what? A ship with a primary purpose of firing shells 20 miles? The argument that it has armor and is more survivable I think is very debatable. I think people underestimate missiles and more importantly, torpedoes.

    I'm content with them staying museum ships as long as they're being well kept.
    Not disagreeing, but a bit of devil's advocate with some of your points here:

    Re: The missile systems, ESM, and such: You say they'd have to be replaced. Well, wouldn't a new ship need all that same equipment as well?
    Because since I assume the comparison is "cost of returning an Iowa to service vs a new Burke or some other ship", right?
    A new ship would need all that, in addition to the rest of the new ship being procured and built.

    A new Burke frightens $2 billion to death.

    As far as folks touting the armor and survivability, you certainly have a good point about the modern, large ASM's and of course, torpedoes.....but what is more likely to survive a hit by either? An Iowa, or any other surface ship other than a carrier?

  9. #519
    Patron Michigan_Guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pacfanweb View Post
    Not disagreeing, but a bit of devil's advocate with some of your points here:

    Re: The missile systems, ESM, and such: You say they'd have to be replaced. Well, wouldn't a new ship need all that same equipment as well?
    Because since I assume the comparison is "cost of returning an Iowa to service vs a new Burke or some other ship", right?
    A new ship would need all that, in addition to the rest of the new ship being procured and built.

    A new Burke frightens $2 billion to death.

    As far as folks touting the armor and survivability, you certainly have a good point about the modern, large ASM's and of course, torpedoes.....but what is more likely to survive a hit by either? An Iowa, or any other surface ship other than a carrier?
    That's a valid point but that's also assuming that they'd be recommissioned instead of another ship being built. I guess the comparison would be the cost of building a ship that can do the things a BB could do Vs. recommissioning a BB. If that's the case, then we're already seeing that plan come into fruition with the Zumwalt class destroyer. The single Zumwalt we have now has cost roughly $7.5 billion with an R&D cost of something like $22 billion that shoots rounds 80 miles at a cost of $800,000 per round. Come to think of it, we'd have 4 pretty sweet BB's for all that money. Now you got me thinking...

    Where's Gun Grape when you need him?
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  10. #520
    Senior Contributor SteveDaPirate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michigan_Guy View Post
    That's a valid point but that's also assuming that they'd be recommissioned instead of another ship being built. I guess the comparison would be the cost of building a ship that can do the things a BB could do Vs. recommissioning a BB. If that's the case, then we're already seeing that plan come into fruition with the Zumwalt class destroyer. The single Zumwalt we have now has cost roughly $7.5 billion with an R&D cost of something like $22 billion that shoots rounds 80 miles at a cost of $800,000 per round. Come to think of it, we'd have 4 pretty sweet BB's for all that money. Now you got me thinking...

    Where's Gun Grape when you need him?
    Of course now that the R&D and infrastructure investments in the Zumwalt class are already sunk costs, producing additional ships shouldn't be TOO painful. DDG 1002 cost $2.4 billion to procure if you don't lump in R&D costs.

    You also have to consider that the compliment from a single 1980s Iowa can staff just shy of 13 Zumwalts...

  11. #521
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveDaPirate View Post
    Of course now that the R&D and infrastructure investments in the Zumwalt class are already sunk costs, producing additional ships shouldn't be TOO painful. DDG 1002 cost $2.4 billion to procure if you don't lump in R&D costs.

    You also have to consider that the compliment from a single 1980s Iowa can staff just shy of 13 Zumwalts...
    $800,000 per round. For a 6" gun. That shoots 60 miles.

    Eventually we are going to have to fight somewhere besides a middle eastern desert, right?

    Let's say North Korea...or somewhere in that area. Naval fire support is needed. How expensive does THAT get at 800k per shot?
    You could pay a lot of Iowa crew members for several years from one good fire mission.

    I totally get it if the age of the BB's is truly the limiting factor, but the math is not working in the favor of the Zumwalts here. There's no way you can not recommission and modernize and operate probably all 4 Iowas for what's been spent just in R&D on the Zumwalts, not to mention the cost per ship.
    And when you add in 800k per round, hell...you can't even USE the Zumwalts. Regardless of what you think of using an Iowa, the Zumwalts have been a disaster so far.

  12. #522
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveDaPirate View Post
    You also have to consider that the compliment from a single 1980s Iowa can staff just shy of 13 Zumwalts...
    I think you nailed it right there. The cost of manpower and lack of manpower to run a single Iowa is pretty ridiculous for what you get out of one ship. Like you said, the cost to build the Zumwalt class should be significantly lower for the next ships, problem is they're only planning on 2 more. That could change and I'm sure it will when more Tico's start decommissioning. I'm curious what they'll do to bring the cost of the rounds down for the Zumwalts. From what I understand, the high cost is directly an effect of the low build count for the Zumwalts.
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  13. #523
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michigan_Guy View Post
    I think you nailed it right there. The cost of manpower and lack of manpower to run a single Iowa is pretty ridiculous for what you get out of one ship. Like you said, the cost to build the Zumwalt class should be significantly lower for the next ships, problem is they're only planning on 2 more. That could change and I'm sure it will when more Tico's start decommissioning. I'm curious what they'll do to bring the cost of the rounds down for the Zumwalts. From what I understand, the high cost is directly an effect of the low build count for the Zumwalts.

    I would not be surprised to see Raytheon competing a couple of new 155mm variants (with and without rocket assist) of their Excalibur N5 (for use in 5-inch naval guns), which shares a guidance package with the Excalibur S, which is an upgrade to the Excalibur 1B (M982-1) adding semi-active laser (SAL) target seeking capability. Sharing some elements in common should help reduce unit cost.
    Last edited by JRT; 20 Nov 16, at 23:35.
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  14. #524
    Senior Contributor SteveDaPirate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pacfanweb View Post
    $800,000 per round. For a 6" gun. That shoots 60 miles.
    The LRLAP rounds have been scrapped due to cost and the USN has requested a low cost alternative. There was a discussion about the Zumwalt ammunition situation recently here http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/sho...=62664&page=20

    Personally I'd like to see them pull the AGS from the Zumwalts altogether and stuff in a pair of EM railguns in their place. They are effectively technology demonstrators at this point, so they may as well use them accordingly.

    Hopefully after a few years of driving the Zumwalts around and working out the kinks, they can turn out a CG(X) and/or DDG(X) based on the Zumwalt's hull and tech.
    Last edited by SteveDaPirate; 21 Nov 16, at 01:51.

  15. #525
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    Rusty, your forgetting a drydock.. Pearl Harbor, and I know that an Iowa can fit, since the Missouri was recently in it, and received her new paint (blue if I recall).. oh, while were at it, do you still have the drawings to remove the ABL's and install the VLS launchers in their place.. if so, there's what 128 TLAM cruise missiles (or LRASM for anti-ship work)...

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