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An alternative Royal Navy for the 1970s

Tony Williams

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I produced this scenario a while back, and am posting a link to it here for the ideas to be kicked around: http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/Alternative%20RN.htm
 

SteveO

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Good article Tony, read this a while back and it would still make sense to do a hi/lo mix today.
 

Anderman

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Oh i already quoted that article B)


http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,9047.msg81289.html#msg81289
 

JFC Fuller

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It is difficult to argue that the Type 41, 21 or any of the Type 22 ships were overly specialised. In fact given their displacement's they were remarkably general purpose and were well armed for both ASW and AA operations. It would have been nice if the Type 21 class could have been avoided but the Type 22 design was not ready so it had to be procured, it was still as general purpose as a Leander though. The Mk8 was pursued in large part because it was remarkably cheap. I do not have Friedman's destroyers with me so I cant check the numbers but it was a particularly cost effective weapon. The displacements for the proposed ships in Tony's article seem very low for the suggested configurations.

The problem with small combatants is they carry less stuff, not just weapons but things like sensors, directors, data-links, jammers, sonar etc, etc. The reason the Type 22 class got so large and expensive was the need for such a multitude of systems; they were excellent ships the real shame being that the RN never had enough Lynx (and did not fit its Lynx with a dipping sonar) to give each vessel the two it was capable of carrying. The Type 23 class may have come out smaller than Type 22 Batch III but it did so in part by sacrificing Sea Wolf carriage (32 versus a reported 60) and CIWS, the stretched Yarrow design that would have given 48 Sea Wolf and a pair of Goalkeepers is interesting though.

My opinion, it is pretty difficult to fault the post-66 RN fleet plan of relatively high-end GP frigates/destroyers with bias towards either AA (Type 42) or ASW (Type 22) using common GT propulsion configuration. That fleet structure made perfect sense and produced a balanced fleet well-suited to its defined roles. If one change could have been made it is that the Tiger class (and their conversion) would have been abandoned and the personnel and money used to keep Eagle in service alongside Ark Royal until 1979; unfortunately they were a product of the pre-66 grand delusion and then the inability in 1965/6 to see the chaos that would come in 1968. Lion's conversion was abandoned to provide manpower and cash for Ark Royal's retention.

A Seadart/Ikara/Exocet VLS is an interesting idea but the Ikara redesign would need to relocate the sustainer motor to behind the torpedo rather than above it if it was to allow a space efficient VLS system; that would be a very substantial change. Adopting the spey earlier in place of the Olympus/Tyne combination does not mean that another gas turbine would not come along later, indeed a marine version of the RB.211 was being talked about in the early-mid 70s and its entirely plausible that this would have been pursued later. The problem with standardisation is that it often contradicts the drive for technological improvement- why keep building the same thing when you can build something better.
 

Tony Williams

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Thanks for the comments - I do of course have some responses! B)

The one naval weapon which has proved to be generally useful since the 1970s ships emerged has been the medium-calibre gun. This was realised by the RN after the Falklands, hence the T22 Batch 3 and the reworking of the T23 design to incorporate one. On that account, the first two batches of T22 were not general-purpose in nature.

We will have to agree to disagree that the T21, T22 and T42 were "well armed for both ASW and AA operations". The T22 was well-armed for ASW but its AA capabilities were short-range, for self-defence or for covering ships in very close company. The T42 was good at plinking high-altitude targets at long range but the lower the altitude and the shorter the range the more vulnerable the ships became, as they had no effective close-range backup like Sea Wolf or even Phalanx (until the latter was hastily added post-Falklands). I can still recall seeing a TV interview before the Falklands fighting with the captain of a T42 who was asked about the low rate of engagement and limited number of Sea Darts carried, and said something to the effect that it was like a precision hunting rifle, able to hit targets at long range. I also recall thinking at the time that that was all very well, but what if the hunter was set upon by a pack of wolves? The T42 did at least have a gun, but very limited ASW and ASuW capabilities. The T21 had no advance in armament over the Leanders, except that it was able to carry both a gun and four Exocets (although it often didn't). Its AA capability was pathetic, the Sea Cat proving to be virtually useless, and the high-performance powerplant too expensive.

Perhaps most significantly, given the international sales success of the Leanders, IIRC none of the T21, T22 or T42 obtained any export orders, except for the pair of T42 sold to Argentina (of all countries!). Neither did the T23, although that ship had a better balance of characteristics. That's an indication that they were tailored too closely to the RN's specific requirements rather than being general-purpose and good value for money (or in the case of the T21, that they were simply too ineffectual).

Specialised warships are fine for large navies like the USN, although even they have taken the general-purpose route with the Arleigh Burke class, but given the small number of warships the RN had at its disposal compared with its commitments (even in the 1970s) it had enough trouble sending one ship to meet most needs - only in the case of a major national emergency like the Falklands could anything resembling a "balanced fleet"consisting of ships with different, complementary specialisms be sent. So all ships need a good general-purpose capability.

One of the key points in my proposal was to obtain greater international sales success, not just for ships but for weapon systems. No foreign navy bought Sea Dart or Sea Wolf to fit to their ships, which meant that the full financial burden of keeping them upgraded fell on the RN. Making the Sea Dart a VLS system, and working with the French and Australians to make Exocet and Ikara compatible with this, would have made the system vastly more versatile and attractive. As you say, there was nothing wrong with the 4.5 inch Mk 8 gun - except that again, it achieved few sales so that the cost of keeping it up to date and developing new types of ammunition for it fell on the RN - which is why the T26 will have a 127mm gun. Doing a trade with the Italians for OTO Melara guns in return for, say, VLS Sea Wolf, would have been in the UK's long-term interests.

I did not say that another gas turbine to replace the Spey would not eventually come along for later generations of ships, although it was adopted for the T23, so could have served for two generations of ships - just that it would have been less expensive to develop, acquire and maintain that one engine rather than two (or three, including the T23), and would also have permitted more versatile powerplant installations. The USN seems to have been happy enough with such a COGAG arrangement based on one type of turbine.
 

JFC Fuller

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Not having a medium calibre gun, which the T42s did have, does not equate to the vessels not being general purpose- it just means they did not have a gun. They still offered an effective combination of surface, ASW and AA warfare capability. It just happened to not include a main gun. More widely, your criticism that the T42 lacked a CIWS and AShM or the T22 lacked a longer range AA capability is only fair if we recognise that to fix either of these defects would require a substantial increase in displacement and result in increased unit costs in-turn resulting in less units. The RN actually attempted this with the Type 43 design and the result was a very expensive 7,000 ton design that got cancelled. The T42s ASW capability was not that limited, they still had a reasonable sonar outfit (Type 184M), helo capability and ASW torpedo tubes. T21 only really happened because of the need to fill the gap prior to the T22 class, its major development was its move to GT propulsion and away from steam.

Regarding exports; not the RNs fault. UK industry was not competitive as is demonstrated by the success of the Meko series in roughly the same time-period, which was not operated by its home country's navy. It is ironic though that on the second-hand market the Type 22s and 23s have been hot stuff; Type 22s picked up by Brazil, Romania and Chile and there was a bidding war between Pakistan and Chile for the Type 23s that ultimately ended up in Chile. It is easy to look back on Sea Dart/Wolf now and call them a mistake but it should be remembered that a total of 20 operational ships were fitted with Sea Dart and even more would have been without the cuts of 74/75 and 81. Sea Wolf, even after 81, was to have been installed in a total of 44 new-build vessels not to mention the upgraded Leanders and the proposed fits for the Invincibles and T42 Batch IIIs- that is a far from insignificant install base. The problem with equipment swaps is both sides have to play ball, the UK tried it with the Dutch and Sea Dart but they didn't want it.

The RN established standardised propulsion plants, Olympus-Tyne then Spey and then the CODLAG plant in the T23; however they constantly wanted to improve their plants, both in terms of fuel efficiency and plant noise. There was a standard configuration the RN just kept trying to make it better; they have always been technology drivers in surface combatant propulsion. Whether that constant drive for improvement was right or not is a different matter but clearly the RN thought it was necessary.
 

Tony Williams

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JFC Fuller said:
Not having a medium calibre gun, which the T42s did have, does not equate to the vessels not being general purpose- it just means they did not have a gun. They still offered an effective combination of surface, ASW and AA warfare capability. It just happened to not include a main gun.
Your definition of "general purpose" evidently differs from mine. I would define a general purpose warship as one which is equipped, at least to some level, to cope with all of the typical tasks which it might be called upon to undertake. So it needs not just some level of ASuW, ASW and AAW capability but also the ability to provide NGS to amphibious operations and to attack land targets close to the coast (as seen most recently in Libya which saw a significant expenditure of 4.5 inch ammo). A medium calibre gun is also useful in firing warning shots as a display of determination without inflicting damage or casualties, and for engaging less valuable surface targets not worth one of the limited number of costly AShM carried. So from that perspective, no gun = not general purpose.

More widely, your criticism that the T42 lacked a CIWS and AShM or the T22 lacked a longer range AA capability is only fair if we recognise that to fix either of these defects would require a substantial increase in displacement and result in increased unit costs in-turn resulting in less units.
Sure - but I was simply pointing out that the T21, 22, and 42 were not "well armed for both ASW and AA operations" as you stated. The biggest failing - that of a lack of inner-layer air defence for the T42 AAW destroyers - was of course addressed by adding Phalanx later, as a result of war experience. The lack was pretty obvious from the start, though.

Regarding exports; not the RNs fault. UK industry was not competitive as is demonstrated by the success of the Meko series in roughly the same time-period, which was not operated by its home country's navy.
Hmm - I suspect that would be a difficult one to unpick. The RN had some very specific requirements which the industry focused on providing. It then transpired that (almost) no-one else wanted the ships which emerged. Maybe that was because they didn't have decent general-purpose capabilities, or because they cost too much - hard to tell at this distance. The fact that the Meko series were not ordered to a national requirement was, I suspect a major advantage: it meant that the designers had a free hand in developing general purpose vessels at an affordable price which various navies actually wanted to buy.

It is ironic though that on the second-hand market the Type 22s and 23s have been hot stuff; Type 22s picked up by Brazil, Romania and Chile and there was a bidding war between Pakistan and Chile for the Type 23s that ultimately ended up in Chile.
They were big, well-maintained hulls at a small fraction of the price of new build, so I'm not suprised that they were in demand (especially the T23). Note that the Romanians and Chileans promptly added a 76mm gun to their T22s...

It is easy to look back on Sea Dart/Wolf now and call them a mistake but it should be remembered that a total of 20 operational ships were fitted with Sea Dart and even more would have been without the cuts of 74/75 and 81. Sea Wolf, even after 81, was to have been installed in a total of 44 new-build vessels not to mention the upgraded Leanders and the proposed fits for the Invincibles and T42 Batch IIIs- that is a far from insignificant install base.
I never suggested that we shouldn't have developed Sea Dart and Sea Wolf - just that it could have been better if they had been developed for VLS at the start. An international customer base would have meant a sharing in the cost of subsequent upgrades.

The RN established standardised propulsion plants, Olympus-Tyne then Spey and then the CODLAG plant in the T23; however they constantly wanted to improve their plants, both in terms of fuel efficiency and plant noise. There was a standard configuration the RN just kept trying to make it better; they have always been technology drivers in surface combatant propulsion. Whether that constant drive for improvement was right or not is a different matter but clearly the RN thought it was necessary.
Of course there should be a constant drive for improvement, in terms of extracting better efficiency and less noise from the power plant. But it's cheaper to do that with one engine than several.
 

JFC Fuller

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The T22 and T42 were well armed for ASW, AA and surface action, they were equipped for the typical tasks in which it was expected that they would be called upon to undertake, it was not expected that the T22 would engage "less valuable targets" and if it was required that they do so there were sufficient 4.5 inch guns on other ships in the fleet. The T22/T42 were to be the SACLANT fleet. They were also always intended to work together, the reason being that the RN had studied (and actually built one) ships which combined the best ASW outfit, the best AAW outfit and a main gun into a single hull (rather than producing units bias in one direction) and what they found was it ended up in a 7,000 ton ship so expensive it would result in a dramatic reduction in fleet size. The split T42/T22 family were a direct consequence of this realisation. The same thing was rediscovered in the late 70s with the Type 43 design. The lack of a CIWS can be explained by the non-existence of such a type during the design phase- and much of the production phase. Phalanx was first installed operationally in 1980.

Re exports; UK industry had a strong history in producing private designs for exports, the Brazilian Niteroi's being an example. However, UK industry was out-competed, notably by the Meko series- that is not the RN's fault. It has been possible to install 76mm guns on the exported Batch I/II T22s because of the adoption of much smaller and lighter weight AShM canisters which allow for their relocation from the bow to the superstructure; an advantage the RN did not have in the 1970s.

It might be cheaper to develop one engine than several; but ultimately that engine will need to be replaced in order to take development to the next level- as I said, whether the RN was right to continually push the boundaries is a different matter and one on which I do not have an opinion.
 

Tony Williams

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JFC Fuller said:
The T22 and T42 were well armed for ASW, AA and surface action, they were equipped for the typical tasks in which it was expected that they would be called upon to undertake, it was not expected that the T22 would engage "less valuable targets" and if it was required that they do so there were sufficient 4.5 inch guns on other ships in the fleet. The T22/T42 were to be the SACLANT fleet.
Indeed. But that reasoning assumes that the enemy is going to turn out to be who you expect, and is going to fight in the way you expect, and that you will always have a fleet operating together. All of which turned out to be untrue, the first two points being demonstrated first by the Falklands (with Iraq next up), with the last being obvious in many minor single-ship operations ever since.

They were also always intended to work together, the reason being that the RN had studied (and actually built one) ships which combined the best ASW outfit, the best AAW outfit and a main gun into a single hull (rather than producing units bias in one direction) and what they found was it ended up in a 7,000 ton ship so expensive it would result in a dramatic reduction in fleet size. The split T42/T22 family were a direct consequence of this realisation. The same thing was rediscovered in the late 70s with the Type 43 design.
Yes, the fully-capable ASW/AAW ships would be big and expensive, so there wouldn't be many of them. But in my proposal, the numbers are restored by the smaller and cheaper frigate, in a high/low mix rather than an AAW/ASW mix. That way, every ship would have a general-purpose capability so could operate alone as required (with the frigates being sent on the less dangerous missions).

The lack of a CIWS can be explained by the non-existence of such a type during the design phase- and much of the production phase. Phalanx was first installed operationally in 1980.
That's true, although the first prototype system emerged in 1973 and (as history showed) it was easy to bolt on to an existing ship, so it didn't have to be taken account of in the design. Anyway, Sea Wolf was known about - and the ships in my scenario could have had that.

Re exports; UK industry had a strong history in producing private designs for exports, the Brazilian Niteroi's being an example. However, UK industry was out-competed, notably by the Meko series- that is not the RN's fault.
Judging by the time taken in getting the T22 and T42 into service, which led to the RN buying the off-the-shelf T21, the British warship design industry was fully stretched at the time, so working on separate commercial proposals may have been difficult. Anyway, the fact remains that the RN-specified T22 and T42 were unattractive to foreign buyers, with one minor exception. So the lack of overseas sales of the RN warship classes can be attributed to them being overspecialised to meet the RN's needs (and maybe too expensive as a result).

It might be cheaper to develop one engine than several; but ultimately that engine will need to be replaced in order to take development to the next level- as I said, whether the RN was right to continually push the boundaries is a different matter and one on which I do not have an opinion.
Of course. But as I keep pointing out, had the Spey been chosen at the start instead of the Olympus and Tyne followed by the Spey, the Spey would have remained in service with two generations of warships - until the T45 and T26.
 

JFC Fuller

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One can only prepare for the conflict one expects to be in; preparing for all possible scenarios is impossible. With that said, part of the T22 calculation was that there were already a lot of 4.5 inch guns on other ships in the fleet.

The RN looked at small and cheap frigates too; prior to 1966 convulsions the Type 19 studies revealed that small light frigates were virtually useless due to their inability to carry sufficient sensors, combat processing, weapons systems and crew to operate it all to be effective in any given role. The Type 42 was the smallest ship able to carry a credible Sea Dart system and it made a number of detail design sacrifices to pull it off whilst the T22s and T23s were the smallest platforms that could comfortably accommodate a high-quality ASW outfit, AShM capability and a point defence missile system. The Type 23 studies looked at all sorts of ways of saving weight and cost but still came out roughly the same size as the Batch I/II T22s whilst the Type 26 looks likely to come out even larger.

Seawolf was considered as a retrofit for for the Batch III T42s and the Invincivbles, however, back in the late 60s the RN was expecting high-flying big Soviet missiles rather than small low-flying French ones. Phalanx, as you say, is great because it is an easy bolt-on; Sea Wolf not so much because of its separate directors and launchers and it is difficult to see how, even with the lightweight Seacat derived 4-round launcher, space could be found on a T42 without making it larger.

There was plenty of design capacity within British yards for private ventures, see the Niteroi class, they were just out-competed. The Type 21 was actually designed with export in mind and Yarrow produced a bunch of designs throughout the 80s. Customers preferred designs from other European yards.

The Spey could have stayed in service for two generations, or if they had not bothered with the Spey the Olympus/Tyne could have stayed in service for two generations, or the Spey could have been chosen in the first place but only served one generation because the RN then pursued some other plant- Marine RB.211 for instance. The Tyne-Olympus configuration came out of some of the earliest RN GT studies and first appears on pre-66 frigate studies in the form of an Olympus-Proteus configuration so its origins stretch back to around the time the Spey was first run as an aero-engine. In fact BSEL started working on a marine Olympus in 1962, two years before the Spey first ran as an aero-engine. Also, my understanding is that the marine Spey is actually closer to the Tay and RB.211 than it is to the Spey used in Phantoms and Buccaneers so selecting the Spey in 1964-6 would need another development cycle in the late 70s to get to the Spey SM1A of the early 80s.
 

Abraham Gubler

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Tony Williams said:
I produced this scenario a while back, and am posting a link to it here for the ideas to be kicked around: http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/Alternative%20RN.htm

On engines the Olympus/Tyne engine room was developed from the mid 1960s with some Australian input (money) to meet the requirement for a 3,000 to 5,000 tonne surface combatant. The issue with Marine Spey in the 1960s was not engines but gearboxes. SM1 requires multiple input gearboxes to be efficient compared to the one or the other type in the Olympus/Tyne arrangement. If such were available in the 1960s then a more efficient engine room could have been developed with Spey or a number of other engine options. But they weren’t.



On missiles to make Sea Dart vertical launch capable you need a steerable booster. This was part of the Sea Dart block II plan (cancelled by Thatcher) and if technically feasible would have been part of it from scratch. Vertical launchers aren’t necessarily so space efficient as rail launchers. The Sea Dart magazine is very poor in space efficiency because unlike American launchers it is just one big ring. No inner ring (Mk 13) or grid type arrangement (Mk 26). If a higher density magazine had been developed then you could have more Sea Darts for volume and even spare slots for Exocets. There was an arrangement prepared by the RN for a joint Sea Dart/Ikara launcher with two separate magazines (one vertical and one horizontal). You wouldn’t need to design a new Ikara missile to fit in the Sea Dart magazine with this arrangement and it would help with fire power density.


http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,5525.msg81069.html#msg81069

On guns the Mk 8 is a pretty good weapon for a naval gun. It’s very much a tortoise compared to the hare in relation to weapons like the Bofors 120mm. I doubt anyone would sign up for a missile-gun swap because of the huge deficit in cost. Besides who makes naval artillery that would want to buy British missiles? The only possible contender is the French and they would want a much better deal than >20 odd 100mm guns for 2-4 Sea Dart systems and 10-12 Sea Wolfs.



In relation to the 30mm KCB interestingly at this time the RAN decided they wanted to adopt this weapon via the USN’s new Ex 74 twin mount (aka Emerlec-30). Two of these were to be fitted to the RAN’s new DDL ship (which was to use the Olympus/Tyne). These guns are often mistaken by people reverse understanding these ships as an early CIWS arrangement but their intention was entirely as anti surface weapons. Extensive Australian experience shooting up Junks and lighters in Operation SEADRAGON during the VietNam War and planning to do similar against Indonesia in the Confrontation reinforced the importance of a maritime interdiction weapon against small ships. The 30mm Ex 74 was designed for this role by the USN and the RAN wanted them. Of course they had excellent close in anti aircraft capability especially as integrated to the Signaal WM 25 radar.



If you want the RN to be adopted a similar gun in 1970 you could give them some more small boat fighting experience form the Confrontation. The Indonesians kind of learnt their lesson when the Dutch thumped their torpedo boats of New Guinea in ’62 but if they had tried to tangle with the RN more and gotten into some gun fights with RN frigates on station then maybe a new light gun would be required for the new classes of ships. Though reading D.K. Brown they (the DNC) tried for years to get the RN to accept a Centurion turret and 105mm gun for the anti small boat role on some of their ships but despite the proven effectiveness compared to Bofors 40mm they never got it accepted.



Finally on the case of the Type 21. I’m sure if the RN boats had been built to the RAN specification back when they were conceived (RAN later dropped what became the T21 for the DDL) then no one would think they were a compromised ship. The RAN wanted a higher speed (>35 knots) which was fine with the engines but needed a stronger hull. Also the RAN weapon mix included the Sea Sparrow system. Both the hull and anti aircraft system would have performed a lot better in the Falklands if so equipped.
 

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Abraham Gubler said:
If you want the RN to be adopted a similar gun in 1970 you could give them some more small boat fighting experience form the Confrontation. The Indonesians kind of learnt their lesson when the Dutch thumped their torpedo boats of New Guinea in ’62 but if they had tried to tangle with the RN more and gotten into some gun fights with RN frigates on station then maybe a new light gun would be required for the new classes of ships. Though reading D.K. Brown they (the DNC) tried for years to get the RN to accept a Centurion turret and 105mm gun for the anti small boat role on some of their ships but despite the proven effectiveness compared to Bofors 40mm they never got it accepted.
Given Tony's expertise he is probably well aware of this but the Coastal Forces, prior to their 1957 abolition, were working on a 3.3" gun derived from the 20pdr AT weapon for small boat versus small boat operations- Coastal Forces System Mk2 (CFS2), it was stabilized but hand worked if I recall correctly.

Additional Sea Dart launchers are interesting but to take full advantage of them you probably need another pair of directors (the launcher was already relatively fast firing); which further increases overall size and cost. The combined Sea Dart Ikara launcher with separate magazines is going to be a real pain from a ship design perspective because you have to locate it so that you have room for two magazines in very different locations- one level with and behind the launcher and the other directly below. That is an awkward shape to squeeze in.
 

Abraham Gubler

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JFC Fuller said:
The combined Sea Dart Ikara launcher with separate magazines is going to be a real pain from a ship design perspective because you have to locate it so that you have room for two magazines in very different locations- one level with and behind the launcher and the other directly below. That is an awkward shape to squeeze in.
It looks pretty simple in the vertical sketch in the thread discussion linked to in my last post. It would be a nightmare to retrofit but simple to design in.
 

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Thanks for the info on the Spey dates and gearboxes. I would obviously have to start a bit further back with planning for this power plant!

In terms of a weapon systems swap, the French would get Exocet not only bought by the British for both "high" and "low" classes of ship, but because of the versatility of the VLS system (including a repackaged Ikara), a better chance of achieving more sales to third parties.

As I have said, I have nothing against the 4.5 inch gun except that its small customer base makes it very expensive to develop new ammunition for - the main reason why it is being dropped now. OTO Melara might not have sold that many 127mm guns either, but at least they use the same ammo as the USN's standard 5 inch.

The 105mm proposal which I have a brochure for used the tank gun and ammunition but in a larger turret with greater elevation and a stabilised gun. It looks like an interesting option - here's a photo mockup:

 

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Abraham Gubler said:
It looks pretty simple in the vertical sketch in the thread discussion linked to in my last post. It would be a nightmare to retrofit but simple to design in.
Only because it is a very simple line drawing of a very preliminary proposal. Get to the detail design and its going to get awkward. For a start, having a magazine directly below the bridge and within the superstructure is less than ideal. Now the Mk26 on the other-hand is a wonderful concept.

The 105mm seems very much like an enlarged version of the CFS2.
 

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JFC Fuller said:
Abraham Gubler said:
It looks pretty simple in the vertical sketch in the thread discussion linked to in my last post. It would be a nightmare to retrofit but simple to design in.
Only because it is a very simple line drawing of a very preliminary proposal. Get to the detail design and its going to get awkward. For a start, having a magazine directly below the bridge and within the superstructure is less than ideal. Now the Mk26 on the other-hand is a wonderful concept.
I strongly suspect that the dual Ikara/Sea Dart launcher only ever got a brief study to say 'Yes, this is probably feasible.' That it was never (to our knowledge) taken further should be somewhat illuminating.
 

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JFC Fuller said:
Only because it is a very simple line drawing of a very preliminary proposal. Get to the detail design and its going to get awkward.
How so? The drawing as provided outlines how the magazines can both feed the same launcher. The only detail issue from this point is how the launcher interfaces can physically accommodate two dissimilar missile types.

JFC Fuller said:
For a start, having a magazine directly below the bridge and within the superstructure is less than ideal.
Yet the USN and Japan could build around 100 ships with an ASROC magazine in the same place?


RLBH said:
I strongly suspect that the dual Ikara/Sea Dart launcher only ever got a brief study to say 'Yes, this is probably feasible.' That it was never (to our knowledge) taken further should be somewhat illuminating.
That’s mere association by coincidence. The reason this ship was never built was it became the Bristol class and grew considerably in size to accommodate growth in propulsion and sensor systems so making the space savings of dual launchers unnecessary.
 

Abraham Gubler

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Tony Williams said:
The 105mm proposal which I have a brochure for used the tank gun and ammunition but in a larger turret with greater elevation and a stabilised gun. It looks like an interesting option - here's a photo mockup:
Thanks for the great picture.
 

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Abraham Gubler said:
How so? The drawing as provided outlines how the magazines can both feed the same launcher. The only detail issue from this point is how the launcher interfaces can physically accommodate two dissimilar missile types.
By being a simplistic general arrangement drawings as part of whole series of simplistic general arrangement drawings that show no other major structural detail. The drawing gives us no indication how the arrangement impacts the rest of the design and it does not tell us how such a ship may perform.

Yet the USN and Japan could build around 100 ships with an ASROC magazine in the same place?
Does not make it ideal.

That’s mere association by coincidence. The reason this ship was never built was it became the Bristol class and grew considerably in size to accommodate growth in propulsion and sensor systems so making the space savings of dual launchers unnecessary.
Actually the design in question appears to save neither space or weight, its only attribute being that it increases the number of launchers able to fire each missile type. The configuration still requires the same magazine space per missile. If anything it might be a heavier installation as it doubles the missile handling gear and uses two heavy launchers- the Ikara launcher clearly being lighter than a Sea Dart launcher. It was obviously rejected very early in the design phase too, suggesting there was something fundamental that was not liked about it. Of course, if you have a source stating exactly why this configuration was not adopted I would love to see it.
 

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JFC Fuller said:
It was obviously rejected very early in the design phase too, suggesting there was something fundamental that was not liked about it. Of course, if you have a source stating exactly why this configuration was not adopted I would love to see it.
We don't even have a source stating what the purpose of these drawings was, let alone which of them was selected (if any, although 6.5 is not dissimilar to Type 82 in fit and the timescale works for concept sketches) and why. The website they originally came from now seems to be defunct, and as I recall it offered no context beyond 'Type 19 studies'. We're not going to know anything for sure unless someone gets down to Kew or Greenwich (could be either) and has the relevant files dug out.
 

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JFC Fuller said:
By being a simplistic general arrangement drawings as part of whole series of simplistic general arrangement drawings that show no other major structural detail. The drawing gives us no indication how the arrangement impacts the rest of the design and it does not tell us how such a ship may perform.
Ahh so? What structural detail is there that could somehow make any issue? An elevator through the middle of the Ikara magazine? This is a general arrangement produced by the MoD. They don’t produce mash ups by 12 year olds on Shipbucket. While a sketch design it would have had to incorporate all the things needed to make a ship work and have a rough weight study, etc.

I fail to see what secret hidden problem there could be in this design that you keep suggesting there must be? It is a very simple arrangement using off the shelf components that could clearly present an Ikara missile to the port rail of a modified Sea Dart launcher. There would have needed to be some mechanical system of running the missile out on the launcher but this wouldn’t be rocket science to build. Nor would it have any significant effect on the ship beyond the need for an extra berth for the rating with an oil can and a bit of gross weight for the machinery in question.

JFC Fuller said:
Does not make it ideal.
There’s about 99 things out of 100 on a warship design that aren’t ideal. However it is not a “deal breaker”. It is more than acceptable to store weapons inside the structure of a warship. Some would even suggest it’s pretty bloody important.

The Ikara magazine was designed to withstand sympathetic destruction of the entire rocket and warhead stock without harm to the rest of the ship. You can even watch this happen on YouTube. This is why they were freely integrated in underneath various things in several designs. From the flight deck of the CVA-01 to that of the VT Mk 10 frigate sold to Brazil. It like the joint supply to the Sea Dart launcher is the biggest non-issue in naval design turned into some kind of ‘red flag’ 50 years later by a commentator.

JFC Fuller said:
Actually the design in question appears to save neither space or weight, its only attribute being that it increases the number of launchers able to fire each missile type.
That’s a pretty big attribute. It’s called survivability. It’s the same reason naval ship designers have been duplicating things for centuries: to survive damage. By using the dual missile launcher this 1962 frigate design enables far greater survivability within the same length as a ship with separate but singular Sea Dart and Ikara launchers. That is far less length and therefore hull size, weight, cost, etc as a ship with two Sea Dart and one or two separate Ikara launchers.

JFC Fuller said:
It was obviously rejected very early in the design phase too, suggesting there was something fundamental that was not liked about it.
Ahh this is the RN we are talking about. There is only one attribute that lead to the abandonment of ship designs: cost. The Type 82 eventually ended up with the Sea Dart aft and Ikara forward. It could have had fore and aft dual launchers (with the same number of missiles: 40 and 20) but it would have cost more. To assume it had to be some mechanical issue is blatant false positive generation.

RLBH said:
We don't even have a source stating what the purpose of these drawings was, let alone which of them was selected (if any, although 6.5 is not dissimilar to Type 82 in fit and the timescale works for concept sketches) and why.
We don’t need a ‘source’. We can say with the same certainty that Sherlock Holmes was able to declare that the cab driver was the murderer what these ship designs were for. It’s called the process of deduction. The “CF.299 Frigate” of 1962-63. Which according to D.K. Brown (you know the guy who was there) later became the Type 82 destroyer.
 

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Tony Williams said:
Thanks for the info on the Spey dates and gearboxes. I would obviously have to start a bit further back with planning for this power plant!
Despite writing a page of criticisms of your original article I strongly sympathise with your point of view. I also appreciate the inspiration provided by your article and support the desire to see if it was possible for the RN to have a much more survivable fleet in the Falklands War than was available. Though on the later topic if HQ 3rd Flotilla had been deployed as task force staff and 800 Squadron forced to get competent on the Sea Harrier platform then it is unlikely the Argentines would have even sunk a single British ship. If you send the B Team you get B Team results.

However back to destroyers I think it is possible for the RN to have a balanced, survivable ship without requiring to too much in fictional engineering and weapons development. All that was needed was the right requirements writing at that crucial time when CVA-01 was cancelled and the RN had to morph from a carrier fleet into a destroyer fleet. Interestingly as I approach all this from an Australian perspective the same process was forced upon the RAN five years earlier. They had been told by Government that HMAS Melbourne would decommission in 1962 and it’s air wing (Sea Venom and Gannet) would be replaced by Wessex. So the RAN had to come up with a destroyer that could provide the anti-submarine and anti-aircraft capability of the carrier. They went to the RN and asked for a County class with amongst other changes: two channel Tartar for AA, three Wessex (!) for AS, two each of 4.5” Mk 6 and Sea Cat for close defence with one 4.5” to be replaced by Ikara for AS when it was ready. The very capable requirement for this ship was determined by the impending loss of carrier based AS and AA capability. Of course the RN said we can’t design this, Melbourne got a reprieve (as a Wessex carrier but the RAN kept smuggling Sea Venoms onboard) and later a refit and new air wing and the Charles F. Adams was acquired though the RAN kept looking at building one or more of these with Wessex (up until 1968).

So in place of the 1965-66 decision making that resulted in – build Bristol as a trials ship, design a super cheap AA ship for Sea Dart (Type 42) and build Type 21s in the meantime, upgrade Leanders with surplus Ikaras and later build a Type 22 AS Ship as their replacement – could the RN have taken a leaf from the RAN five years earlier and said let’s start fresh with a new general purpose (AS and AA) destroyer that can do AS without the AA (and now anti surface) cover of a carrier with all the new weapons and propulsion we will have. So this would mean a ship with Olympus/Tyne for propulsion, Sea Dart (full 38 ring missile magazine), Sea Wolf (when available and Sea Cat in place on the early units), Ikara, AS torpedos (in place of Limbo), two Lynx helicopters (or one Sea King), 4.5” Mk 8, STIR, TIR, HMS, VDS, ADAWS and an anti-ship missile.

One of the key problems the RN had designing ships in the 1970s was the anti-ship missile problem. They looked at Penguin but went for the longer range of Exocet but at the cost of the rocket motor requiring the very heavy “Coffin” canisters to protect the ship from the missile. But what if in 1965 they said lets develop a British anti-ship missile that can use a launcher we are currently buying so we don’t have to try and stick huge French coffins for flying fish on our ships ten years from now. And the answer to this requirement is a new Australian project underway (at this time) for a ship launched target drone: Turana (Flyer). This missile was sized to fit into the Ikara magazine and launcher and first flew in 1971. Unlike Exocet it had a Microcell turbojet motor so didn’t have the high risk of the solid propellant rocket motor (and the blue-green glow, high visual signature of the rocket plume). There is no reason with UK expertise and some money an off the shelf Bullpup warhead couldn’t be fitted to Turana (as in Penguin) and a radar seeker and appropriate sized turbojet and fuel to fly this all for 25-50 NM. Such a weapon could be in service in the mid 70s and use the Ikara magazine for anti-ship capability. Because it didn’t have a rocket motor any canisters while bulky would be very light and could be stuck on the sides of Leander class frigates, fast attack craft and what not. Such a Turana would be a more than viable weapon than the Exocet (lighter) and where politics allowed displace the French from much of their ship launched market.

So if we have the anti-ship capability solved how do we then fit the large Sea Dart magazine, Ikara, helo hangar and flight deck, Sea Wolf and everything else onto a destroyer hull? The big problem is that the 38 missile ring Sea Dart magazine is very wide and can’t go forward of the engine room without a bulky, un-seaman like, hull form as in the Type 42. It also can’t go aft as on the Type 82 because otherwise where would the helicopter go? So you either have to compromise on the hull form for sea-keeping or put it somewhere else. Inspiration comes from the later Type 43’s solution to a similar missiles vs flight decks problem. Its solution was an amidships flight deck. No need for such on this ship but what about an amidships missile magazine? It is of course a dangerous place to locate missiles being the centre mass target and the part of the ship that holds the rest together but this could be compensated by some old fashioned armouring. It would make for a very robust hull if an inch of RHA was boxed in amidships around the Sea Dart magazine. If so fitted forward and aft of the magazine can be two unit engine rooms each with an Olympus and Tyne driving a shaft via gear. Apart from improving survivability by splitting the engine rooms you split the stack which can be offset to each side. Which frees up room on the other beam of the stack for the eventual Sea Wolf launchers (Sea Cat on initial ships) and directors. Though realistically this port and starboard offset space should be for the 909 Sea Dart illuminator with the Sea Wolf director’s fore and aft for full 360 degree coverage. However I doubt the RN would agree to an apparent secondary position of the primary weapon’s guidance system. Forward and aft of the Sea Dart and two engine rooms the ship is conventional with foremast, STIR, bridge and gun to the bow and hangar, flight deck, VDS to the stern. The Ikara magazine can go under the flight deck with the launcher either on the aft step down deck or if flush decked in a hull cut-out like HMA Ships Swan and Torrens (second batch of RAN Type 12s). With plenty of room under the flight deck a double Ikara arrangement could be provided with 40 missiles, two loading systems and two launchers (like on the RAN Charles F. Adams class). Which would enable plenty of space for Turana anti-ship missiles (16 sound like enough?). If this ship had helicopters (and it does) they could keep the nuclear depth charge mission allowing for a cheap off the shelf Australian standard Ikara launcher rather than the RN’s gold plated and super noisy version.

Such a ship would be smaller than a Type 82 (which is the name it would probably have) and bigger than a Type 42 but costing like a former. But it could do the full AS mission and look after itself. With Sea Wolf fitted it would have no problem in the Falklands. If built one for one in place of the Bristol, Types 21, 42 and 22 there could be 20 in service by 1982. Of which four would have been built with Sea Wolf and at least another four had Sea Wolf available for refit (in place of Leander Sea Wolf conversions). With two Sea Wolf ships for close protection of the carriers that would enable up to six ships with both Sea Wolf and Sea Dart to go in close around the Falklands which would make for a huge difference in fighting off Argentine air attacks (assuming the SHARs were as badly handled as in real life enabling too many strike packages to press their attacks unhindered). By 1990 the RN could have 32 in service all with Sea Dart, Sea Wolf and CIWS making for a formidably survivable and lethal destroyer fleet.
 

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That's an intriguing alternative proposal. The immediate objection which pops into my mind is of course cost - 32 high-end GP destroyers would cost a great deal more than the 12 high-end and 24 low-end ships of my proposal, which was geared (as far as I could) to cost pretty much the same as was historically spent on the T21, 22 and 42 plus adapting the Leanders.

The other point which comes to mind is this: all of the difficulties with locating the bigger Sea Dart magazine would be avoided by designing it from the start to use a VLS. Designing Ikara from the start to fit into the same VLS would also make life for the ship designer much simpler.

Developing a turbojet-powered AShM is an interesting idea, I suppose I took the route of buying Exocet mainly because I was trying to keep missile development costs about the same as they were, and also that it might persuade the French to adopt Sea Dart. On the other hand, to be able to offer a complete package of SAM, guided ASW and AShM using a common VLS would be a massive marketing advantage.

I was in two minds about Sea Wolf. VLS would have a greater long-term potential, so I eventually went for that, but I was attracted to the low cost and simplicity of the four-round lightweight launcher as a straight Sea Cat replacement, with maybe a heavyweight doubled-up 12-round launcher for the carriers.
 

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Tony Williams said:
That's an intriguing alternative proposal. The immediate objection which pops into my mind is of course cost - 32 high-end GP destroyers would cost a great deal more than the 12 high-end and 24 low-end ships of my proposal, which was geared (as far as I could) to cost pretty much the same as was historically spent on the T21, 22 and 42 plus adapting the Leanders.
Of course you’re right I’ve done no costings just added up the number of ships built and replaced them one for one. With publically available information it wouldn’t be too hard to do a costings estimate and see what you could get with the same amount of dosh. If you push down the low end with something like D.K. Brown’s warfighting Castle class corvette you could maintain the hull numbers (or as RN leadership sees them: command billets) and keep the balanced destroyer numbers high.

Tony Williams said:
The other point which comes to mind is this: all of the difficulties with locating the bigger Sea Dart magazine would be avoided by designing it from the start to use a VLS. Designing Ikara from the start to fit into the same VLS would also make life for the ship designer much simpler.
VLS is great and everybody loves them but you can’t fire a Sea Dart out of it until 1989. For an illumination directed anti-aircraft missile (beam rider, semi active) to work in a vertical launcher it needs an autopilot. The US had this onboard their missiles from SM2 as designed for AEGIS but the UK didn’t plan this for Sea Dart until the cancelled Mk 2 (1980) and later the ADIMP upgrade (Mod 2: 1989). Because the missile needs to know where to fly so its seeker head can then receive the homing signal. It won’t get this sitting in a cave looking up at the sky (vertical launcher). It just isn’t technically feasible for this capability to be in the Mod 0 Sea Dart. Command guided missiles like Sea Wolf or Ikara are fine in vertical launchers though of course the later would need significant redesign.

Tony Williams said:
Developing a turbojet-powered AShM is an interesting idea, I suppose I took the route of buying Exocet mainly because I was trying to keep missile development costs about the same as they were, and also that it might persuade the French to adopt Sea Dart. On the other hand, to be able to offer a complete package of SAM, guided ASW and AShM using a common VLS would be a massive marketing advantage.
I’m not buying into the 1960s VLS but a weaponised Turana is a great idea for the RN, RAN and MdB because it leverages the Ikara launcher to provide anti ship capability. As a canister launched missile it can utilise a lightweight GRP canister that would be much lighter than even the Penguin canister launcher not to mention Exocet.

Tony Williams said:
I was in two minds about Sea Wolf. VLS would have a greater long-term potential, so I eventually went for that, but I was attracted to the low cost and simplicity of the four-round lightweight launcher as a straight Sea Cat replacement, with maybe a heavyweight doubled-up 12-round launcher for the carriers.
Sea Wolf has never seemed to be constrained by its launcher. It’s a small missile with equally small launchers. The key problem in fitting Sea Wolf onto a ship is the large director needed for its command guidance system. Which is why it cannot replace Sea Cat within its footprint at least in an all weather version.
 

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Abraham Gubler said:
Ahh so? What structural detail is there that could somehow make any issue? An elevator through the middle of the Ikara magazine? This is a general arrangement produced by the MoD. They don’t produce mash ups by 12 year olds on Shipbucket. While a sketch design it would have had to incorporate all the things needed to make a ship work and have a rough weight study, etc.
Except there is no indication of weight, no indication of machinery, no indication of crew accommodation, no indication of stability, no indication of fuel capacity, no indication of speed etc, etc. What is missing is every other detail of the ship except for the location of the launchers, magazines, radars and the un-described machinery so we have no idea what impact this configuration had. What we do know is this is a very preliminary drawing from very early in the design phase- we know that because of the date on the drawing; February 1962. Of course, if you have some evidence to suggest any other work beyond this line drawing was done on the dual launcher configuration please post it?

I fail to see what secret hidden problem there could be in this design that you keep suggesting there must be? It is a very simple arrangement using off the shelf components that could clearly present an Ikara missile to the port rail of a modified Sea Dart launcher. There would have needed to be some mechanical system of running the missile out on the launcher but this wouldn’t be rocket science to build. Nor would it have any significant effect on the ship beyond the need for an extra berth for the rating with an oil can and a bit of gross weight for the machinery in question.
At no point have I criticised the launcher itself, only the magazine arrangement- and even their I can see potential benefits for a single-ended vessel.

There’s about 99 things out of 100 on a warship design that aren’t ideal. However it is not a “deal breaker”. It is more than acceptable to store weapons inside the structure of a warship.

The Ikara magazine was designed to withstand sympathetic destruction of the entire rocket and warhead stock without harm to the rest of the ship. You can even watch this happen on YouTube. This is why they were freely integrated in underneath various things in several designs. From the flight deck of the CVA-01 to that of the VT Mk 10 frigate sold to Brazil. It like the joint supply to the Sea Dart launcher is the biggest non-issue in naval design turned into some kind of ‘red flag’ 50 years later by a commentator.
Quite, different naval design authorities will make different judgements, but putting the magazine inside the bridge structure will in turn displace elements that would ordinarily go there forcing them to be relocated elsewhere. We know the RN chose not to do this because this design was never adopted. I like how 50 years on a commentator has picked up a single preliminary line drawing out of a whole series of drawings that include multiple different weapons types in multiple configurations, lacking in almost every sort of detail, from the very beginning of a design process, that was seemingly rejected almost immediately and assumed it to be flawless.

That’s a pretty big attribute. It’s called survivability. It’s the same reason naval ship designers have been duplicating things for centuries: to survive damage. By using the dual missile launcher this 1962 frigate design enables far greater survivability within the same length as a ship with separate but singular Sea Dart and Ikara launchers. That is far less length and therefore hull size, weight, cost, etc as a ship with two Sea Dart and one or two separate Ikara launchers.
Indeed, and that is even more suggestive that there was a fundamental reason why this configuration was not adopted.

Ahh this is the RN we are talking about. There is only one attribute that lead to the abandonment of ship designs: cost. The Type 82 eventually ended up with the Sea Dart aft and Ikara forward. It could have had fore and aft dual launchers (with the same number of missiles: 40 and 20) but it would have cost more. To assume it had to be some mechanical issue is blatant false positive generation.
No, there were multiple reasons why the RN abandoned ship designs and weapons/combat systems, especially at this stage in the design process- that often being because the arrangement was not liked or was even found to be impossible upon detailed design. There are multiple other drawings in this series, were they all abandoned because they would have cost more? Or as is self-evident this is a standard part of the RN design process that explores and rejects multiple configurations in order to achieve the optimum design.

We don’t need a ‘source’. We can say with the same certainty that Sherlock Holmes was able to declare that the cab driver was the murderer what these ship designs were for. It’s called the process of deduction. The “CF.299 Frigate” of 1962-63. Which according to D.K. Brown (you know the guy who was there) later became the Type 82 destroyer.
That these are were very early alternative arrangements for the Type 82 has never been in doubt, what we need is a source for is your assertion that:

The reason this ship was never built was it became the Bristol class and grew considerably in size to accommodate growth in propulsion and sensor systems so making the space savings of dual launchers unnecessary.
Despite the fact that the arrangement being discussed is obviously heavier than using one Sea Dart and one Ikara launcher- a configuration that also exists in this series of drawings.
 

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Abraham Gubler said:
VLS is great and everybody loves them but you can’t fire a Sea Dart out of it until 1989. For an illumination directed anti-aircraft missile (beam rider, semi active) to work in a vertical launcher it needs an autopilot. The US had this onboard their missiles from SM2 as designed for AEGIS but the UK didn’t plan this for Sea Dart until the cancelled Mk 2 (1980) and later the ADIMP upgrade (Mod 2: 1989). Because the missile needs to know where to fly so its seeker head can then receive the homing signal. It won’t get this sitting in a cave looking up at the sky (vertical launcher). It just isn’t technically feasible for this capability to be in the Mod 0 Sea Dart. Command guided missiles like Sea Wolf or Ikara are fine in vertical launchers though of course the later would need significant redesign.
My scenario envisaged Sea Dart being designed for VLS for the start, rather than being the actual missile as built.
 

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JFC Fuller said:
Except there is no indication of weight, no indication of machinery, no indication of crew accommodation, no indication of stability, no indication of fuel capacity, no indication of speed etc, etc. What is missing is every other detail of the ship except for the location of the launchers, magazines, radars and the un-described machinery so we have no idea what impact this configuration had. What we do know is this is a very preliminary drawing from very early in the design phase- we know that because of the date on the drawing; February 1962.
You point being? That somehow because you don’t have the full legend you can claim that there was some significant downside to the double ended ship? There is quite a bit of information about the CF.299 frigates on page 88 of D.K.Brown’s “Rebuilding the Royal Navy”. We may lack a full Roseta Stone but anyone with a small dash of judgement can draw some reasonable conclusions.

JFC Fuller said:
Of course, if you have some evidence to suggest any other work beyond this line drawing was done on the dual launcher configuration please post it?
Since I’ve made no such suggestion why would make such a claim? Because when something comes up against the opinion fortress of Sealordlawrence aka JFC Fuller it has to be written in triplicate no matter how obvious a judgement call it is for the rest of us. This is very tiresome.

JFC Fuller said:
Quite, different naval design authorities will make different judgements, but putting the magazine inside the bridge structure will in turn displace elements that would ordinarily go there forcing them to be relocated elsewhere. We know the RN chose not to do this because this design was never adopted.
But the reason it wasn’t adopted may not have anything to do with the CO’s cabin and/or wardroom having to be down a corridor from the ladder to the bridge.

JFC Fuller said:
I like how 50 years on a commentator has picked up a single preliminary line drawing out of a whole series of drawings that include multiple different weapons types in multiple configurations, lacking in almost every sort of detail, from the very beginning of a design process, that was seemingly rejected almost immediately and assumed it to be flawless.
What you can’t invent your own turn of phrase? Have to regurgitate mine back at me? How droll.

JFC Fuller said:
No, there were multiple reasons why the RN abandoned ship designs and weapons/combat systems, especially at this stage in the design process- that often being because the arrangement was not liked or was even found to be impossible upon detailed design.
Sure but it is clear this would cost more than the arrangement of Sea Dart at one end and Ikara at the other. It is not so clear that anything else could be a significant issue (hallway to the officer’s cabins aside) though how they managed on the County class with the Admiral’s cabins taking up that prime, under the bridge real estate is beyond me.

JFC Fuller said:
There are multiple other drawings in this series, were they all abandoned because they would have cost more?
No because they included weapon systems the RN didn’t want to acquire: ASROC, Malafon, etc... There is one with double Limbo. Why didn’t the RN acquire double Limbo for Type 82 in place of single Limbo. Surely two is better than one? What factor could have stopped them? Available space on the quarterdeck for the officers to stroll while having a smoke? Must have been…

JFC Fuller said:
That these are were very early alternative arrangements for the Type 82 has never been in doubt, what we need is a source for is your assertion that:

The reason this ship was never built was it became the Bristol class and grew considerably in size to accommodate growth in propulsion and sensor systems so making the space savings of dual launchers unnecessary.
Despite the fact that the arrangement being discussed is obviously heavier than using one Sea Dart and one Ikara launcher- a configuration that also exists in this series of drawings.
Ahh this old chestnut. Of course in your quote you miss out the context of my discussion of the importance of length in warship design determining size of the ship. And how every naval architect in the world talks about controlling length as the crucial issue in most warship designs. But you of course don’t believe that and we’ve had this out in the thread about the RN’s 1960s Escort Cruiser. Over this very same launcher configuration which is no surprise.

In this case a short ship like the CF.299 is much smaller (>4,000 tonnes) than a longer ship with similar fitout of systems (like Type 82 at >7,000 tonnes). Put simply the dual launcher arrangement as displayed in the CF.299 Frigate vertical allows for a ship to have 40 Sea Darts and 20 Ikaras on a length of around 400 feet. The Type 82 has a length of over 500 feet as determined by the hull form and the need to accommodate the desired lines with the steam and gas turbine propulsion and Broomstick CDS radar. So there is no shortage of length in the Type 82 within to plonk separate launchers.

See you learn something new every day.
 

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Tony Williams said:
My scenario envisaged Sea Dart being designed for VLS for the start, rather than being the actual missile as built.
But the technology didn’t exist to design Sea Dart Mod 0 to do that.
 

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Abraham Gubler said:
You point being? That somehow because you don’t have the full legend you can claim that there was some significant downside to the double ended ship? There is quite a bit of information about the CF.299 frigates on page 88 of D.K.Brown’s “Rebuilding the Royal Navy”. We may lack a full Roseta Stone but anyone with a small dash of judgement can draw some reasonable conclusions.
My point being that we actually no virtually nothing about the dual-launcher design therefore it is very difficult to judge its qualities aside from the fact it was rejected. There is nothing in "Rebuilding the Royal Navy" about the Dual Launcher design in the image referenced here.

Since I’ve made no such suggestion why would make such a claim? Because when something comes up against the opinion fortress of Sealordlawrence aka JFC Fuller it has to be written in triplicate no matter how obvious a judgement call it is for the rest of us. This is very tiresome.
You made an assertion and I asked for evidence, you don't have any evidence and that is fine- I just wanted to be sure.

But the reason it wasn’t adopted may not have anything to do with the CO’s cabin and/or wardroom having to be down a corridor from the ladder to the bridge.

Sure but it is clear this would cost more than the arrangement of Sea Dart at one end and Ikara at the other. It is not so clear that anything else could be a significant issue (hallway to the officer’s cabins aside) though how they managed on the County class with the Admiral’s cabins taking up that prime, under the bridge real estate is beyond me.
See above, we have no idea what sacrifices this design made because the one available drawing is lacking in detail; but it was rejected. The necessity to find room for four separate magazines in very different locations could have had all sorts of negative effects on other aspects of the design ranging from accommodation to fuel stowage to the location of the operations room. All we know is this design was rejected and we should try and avoid:

mere association by coincidence
No because they included weapon systems the RN didn’t want to acquire: ASROC, Malafon, etc... There is one with double Limbo. Why didn’t the RN acquire double Limbo for Type 82 in place of single Limbo. Surely two is better than one? What factor could have stopped them? Available space on the quarterdeck for the officers to stroll while having a smoke? Must have been…
Or it impacted on the ships stability, on the ships accommodation, volume, other elements of the ships structure, etc, etc.

Ahh this old chestnut. Of course in your quote you miss out the context of my discussion of the importance of length in warship design determining size of the ship. And how every naval architect in the world talks about controlling length as the crucial issue in most warship designs. But you of course don’t believe that and we’ve had this out in the thread about the RN’s 1960s Escort Cruiser. Over this very same launcher configuration which is no surprise.

In this case a short ship like the CF.299 is much smaller (>4,000 tonnes) than a longer ship with similar fitout of systems (like Type 82 at >7,000 tonnes). Put simply the dual launcher arrangement as displayed in the CF.299 Frigate vertical allows for a ship to have 40 Sea Darts and 20 Ikaras on a length of around 400 feet. The Type 82 has a length of over 500 feet as determined by the hull form and the need to accommodate the desired lines with the steam and gas turbine propulsion and Broomstick CDS radar. So there is no shortage of length in the Type 82 within to plonk separate launchers.

See you learn something new every day.
Except, ship design is far more complex than just managing length; These various drawings also perfectly demonstrate this- they all have superstructures of very different sizes and almost certainly very different overall displacements which assuming they all have the same length and beam will impact draft which in turn will impact speed and endurance and may therefore drive changes in propulsion. Furthermore the dual design here actually takes up more rather than less length due to the fact that each launcher has a magazine both below it and behind it. Type 82, originally around this size and probably even started life as one of this very series of drawings, grew because the systems it was planned to carry grew in size and weight as Friedman describes in detail, this ship would also have grown and probably to even greater size than Bristol did. I would still like to see a source for:

The reason this ship was never built was it became the Bristol class and grew considerably in size to accommodate growth in propulsion and sensor systems so making the space savings of dual launchers unnecessary.
 

Abraham Gubler

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JFC Fuller said:
I would still like to see a source for:

The reason this ship was never built was it became the Bristol class and grew considerably in size to accommodate growth in propulsion and sensor systems so making the space savings of dual launchers unnecessary.
Are you incapable of understanding that some people form opinions based on judgements and that they express these opinions in sentence form? Your niggling with this source demand after having said opinion explained time and time again in great detail is the worst kind of passive aggressive forum behaviour.
 

Tony Williams

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Abraham Gubler said:
Tony Williams said:
My scenario envisaged Sea Dart being designed for VLS for the start, rather than being the actual missile as built.
But the technology didn’t exist to design Sea Dart Mod 0 to do that.
Radio command guidance was around - it could be used to control the missile up to the point when the SAR locked on to the target.

In fact, there would be advantages to making the missile radio command guided for much of its flight, as that would enable a more efficient interception trajectory to be plotted, with SAR taking over when the missile approached the target.

That could have two other advantages, too: it would mean that the SAR illuminators would only be required briefly, meaning that the system could potentially handle several missiles in the air simultaneously, and it might be possible to have the Sea Dart and Sea Wolf radio command directors compatible, which would allow a great deal more flexibility. But maybe I'm being too ambitious :).
 

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Radio Command though can be much more easily damaged by ECM.
 

Abraham Gubler

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Tony Williams said:
Radio command guidance was around - it could be used to control the missile up to the point when the SAR locked on to the target.
You’ve just consumed all the fuel with the need for weight and volume in the missile to accommodate a second guidance system.

Tony Williams said:
But maybe I'm being too ambitious .
You could make a two stage weapon with the first stage being the command guidance system that flies the Sea Dart from vertical launch into a vector so the seeker is pointing at the RF coming back from the target. But it would add hugely to the cost and complexity of Sea Dart just to avoid using a perfectly acceptable rail launcher and magazine.

Like I said in my original post in this thread if you really want a high density magazine for Sea Dart, ‘Tubular’ Ikara and Exocet just build something like the American Mk 26 GMLS.

http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/ship/weaps/mk26-gmls.pdf
Potential growth weapons[/q]
Weight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 997.9 kg (2,200 lb)​
Maximum length . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 508.00 cm (200.00 in)​

Maximum diameter . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37.465 cm (14.750 in)
 

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Abraham Gubler said:
You could make a two stage weapon with the first stage being the command guidance system that flies the Sea Dart from vertical launch into a vector so the seeker is pointing at the RF coming back from the target.
I like the sound of that - thanks for the suggestion.

But it would add hugely to the cost and complexity of Sea Dart just to avoid using a perfectly acceptable rail launcher and magazine.
Would it really? Just plug in the command guidance module from the Sea Wolf and add steerable fins to the booster. In fact, I like that idea of that too, since it would enable the Sea Wolf directors to handle Sea Dart launches.

Like I said in my original post in this thread if you really want a high density magazine for Sea Dart, ‘Tubular’ Ikara and Exocet just build something like the American Mk 26 GMLS.

http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/ship/weaps/mk26-gmls.pdf
Potential growth weapons[/q]
Weight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 997.9 kg (2,200 lb)​
Maximum length . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 508.00 cm (200.00 in)​

Maximum diameter . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37.465 cm (14.750 in)
That looks as if it could be an option, although with the disadvantage that if a problem occurred with the launcher (as a Sea Dart launchers suffered in the Falklands) you are totally buggered, to use a technical phrase. When was it available?
 

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The Mk 26 went to sea on the Kidd class but had been a system considered in USN planning in the 1960s. I don't know when it was approved for service but probably around the early to mid 1970s. Sea Dart is to tubby for it but you could solve that with folding wings.
 

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Abraham Gubler said:
Are you incapable of understanding that some people form opinions based on judgements and that they express these opinions in sentence form? Your niggling with this source demand after having said opinion explained time and time again in great detail is the worst kind of passive aggressive forum behaviour.
We should absolutely make judgements, but we should make them on the basis of available evidence. Things here are clear, we have a series of drawings that are obviously very early alternative layouts for the Type 82 class, I strongly suspect that one of the missing drawings from this series may well be the configuration that became HMS Bristol. The RN self-evidently rejected all the designs that made it online and picked another. At the time this was standard practice in the RN, multiple designs would be developed simultaneously and only a few or even one selected for detail design. However, in this instance we have so little detail on each design it is impossible for us to judge why each was rejected. You stated that dual launcher design was not built because the Type 82 grew so no longer needed the weight savings of the dual launcher, however it seems to me that the dual launcher does not actually save any weight, I am just trying to get to the bottom of that and assumed that you perhaps had a source given the certainty of your assertion.
 

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Abraham Gubler said:
The Mk 26 went to sea on the Kidd class but had been a system considered in USN planning in the 1960s. I don't know when it was approved for service but probably around the early to mid 1970s. Sea Dart is to tubby for it but you could solve that with folding wings.
Norton Sound took it to sea for testing in 1974 and Virginia took it to sea in 1976 granted she didn't make a proper deployment until about 1978, but the system was there and long before the Kidd's were in service.

I think we can all agree that if the RN had adopted the Terrier/Standard, Mk-26, ASROC, Harpoon, and even Tartar/Mk-13 that they would have had a better go of designing some more capable ships. Politics and a whole laundry list of other issues prevented it though. If only...
 

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JFC Fuller said:
Abraham Gubler said:
Are you incapable of understanding that some people form opinions based on judgements and that they express these opinions in sentence form? Your niggling with this source demand after having said opinion explained time and time again in great detail is the worst kind of passive aggressive forum behaviour.
We should absolutely make judgements, but we should make them on the basis of available evidence. Things here are clear, we have a series of drawings that are obviously very early alternative layouts for the Type 82 class, I strongly suspect that one of the missing drawings from this series may well be the configuration that became HMS Bristol. The RN self-evidently rejected all the designs that made it online and picked another.

You have no evidence for these assertions, they are conjecture. How do you know they didn't pick one of the known designs but then evolve it over time? Where's your source?

JFC Fuller said:
At the time this was standard practice in the RN, multiple designs would be developed simultaneously and only a few or even one selected for detail design. However, in this instance we have so little detail on each design it is impossible for us to judge why each was rejected. You stated that dual launcher design was not built because the Type 82 grew so no longer needed the weight savings of the dual launcher, however it seems to me that the dual launcher does not actually save any weight, I am just trying to get to the bottom of that and assumed that you perhaps had a source given the certainty of your assertion.

it seems to me that the dual launcher does not actually save any weight

Sounds like "argument from personal incredulity" to me. If you have a better explanation of why a dual launcher would have been designed, give it. Endlessly repeating a demand for sources for other people's opinion while offering your own opinions without evidence is simply derailing this discussion.
 

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PaulMM (Overscan) said:
You have no evidence for these assertions, they are conjecture. How do you know they didn't pick one of the known designs but then evolve it over time? Where's your source?
Paul, we know that by mid-1962 the RN was engaged in the detail design of a Sea Dart/Ikara Type 82 design using single missile type launchers. We know this because Friedman states that to be the case in his book "British Destroyers and Frigates", Friedman's narrative on the Type 82 is wonderfully detailed. We therefore know that the other alternative weapons configurations had been eliminated by this time. This is also entirely consistent with the RN ship design process at the time that involved the creation of a range sketch designs- with very little detail, prior to the selection of one (and sometimes more) design for detail design. That I can not be certain beyond all doubt is true, that is why I said "I strongly suspect".

Sounds like "argument from personal incredulity" to me. If you have a better explanation of why a dual launcher would have been designed, give it. Endlessly repeating a demand for sources for other people's opinion while offering your own opinions without evidence is simply derailing this discussion.
I am not really sure what you are asking here so I apologise if I have missed your point. The answer is analysis of alternatives, the stage of the design process in which these drawings were produced always involved the analysis of multiple alternatives, sometimes including very impractical ones, as a means of deriving the best configuration for detail design. The reasons for considering a dual launcher in the first place are entirely logical; a higher rate of fire and launcher redundancy. Given the state of RN radar guidance at the time the former was probably redundant, the on-board systems would have been unlikely to be able to handle the volume of missiles that could be fired though the latter certainly has validity. However, as the drawings demonstrate the dual launcher configuration requires a very large superstructure and 4 separate magazines, something likely to complicate internal design and increase displacement which would of course affect the rest of the ship design. I would love to see notes from the meetings where the Type 82 designs were discussed, but we do not have them- thus to state conclusively why any of these designs was not pursued is impossible. I certainly do not have an "argument from personal incredulity", what I have is an understanding of the RN design process in this period and an appreciation of the complexity of warship design which makes it impossible to accept, without evidence, that the RN did not pursue the design for any specific reason. The forum rules themselves state that a source should be given, and I was simply hoping that Abraham had a source. Without one I don't think we should be making sweeping assertions like:

The reason this ship was never built was it became the Bristol class and grew considerably in size to accommodate growth in propulsion and sensor systems so making the space savings of dual launchers unnecessary.
or,

Ahh this is the RN we are talking about. There is only one attribute that lead to the abandonment of ship designs: cost
So I am clear, and I apologise if I have not been so before; my position here is that we do not have any supporting evidence to determine why any of the preliminary sketches were not pursued and we should therefore not be giving unsupported assertions as to why they were not pursued.
 

Abraham Gubler

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Tony Williams said:
That looks as if it could be an option, although with the disadvantage that if a problem occurred with the launcher (as a Sea Dart launchers suffered in the Falklands) you are totally buggered, to use a technical phrase. When was it available?
The solution to this problem has been to install two launchers and make a double ended ship. Quite a few USN ships went down this path and of course there was the (contentious?) CF.299 Frigate proposal with dual launchers. One of the reasons everyone loves VLS is the low maintenance requirement and high reliability of the launcher. But it was a system that needed natural development of technology to make it viable. Transporting VLS back in time a decade or two smacks to me more like science fiction than alternate history.
 
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