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Postwar Royal Navy Battleships? (NOT including the Vanguard!)

Blacktail

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I was reading about the Royal Navy's 16" gun project a while back on NavWeaps, which was initiated to arm the Lion class Fast Battleships (a project that ultimately came to grief, with none being built);
http://www.navweaps.com/Weapons/WNBR_16-45_mk2.htm

It read like the usual summary of a cancelled warship gun project, until I reached the last paragraph, in which this jumped-out at me;

It is notable that the Admiralty put serious effort into designing new battleships so late in the war. It has been suggested by John Roberts that this was the result of having almost all of the "air minded" senior officers located in the Far East during the final year of the war and thus unable to bring their considerable experience to the late-war design conferences. However, considering that work on designing new battleships and new heavy guns went on well past the end of the war and into 1949, it must be concluded that these obsolete warships still ranked highly in the thinking of the post-war Royal Navy.
I nearly fell off my chair, learning that Britain repeatedly designed new Battleships all the way into 1949.

Does anyone have any information about these projects? Schematics perhaps? ;)
 

Grey Havoc

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Leaving aside the issue of whether or not battleships were really obsolete, one of the major drivers for continued Royal Navy/related R&D into battleships in the late 1940s would have been the K-1000 panic.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/K-1000_battleship
 

JFC Fuller

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Try the never were warships forum, I am sure there is an existing thread on this: http://www.phpbbplanet.com/forum/index.php?mforum=warshipprojects

The short story, the RN tried to build new 16" battleships throughout the war and on an almost annual basis tried to re-insert them into the building programme- aircraft carriers and other units were always the priority though. New battleships stayed in the long term plans until financial reality kicked in in 1946. The reason was very logical, the RN found that with 1940s technology the radar controlled big-gun was still the most assured means of sinking an enemy warship in northern waters, think of the battle of North Cape. They also recognised that modern AA guns (RPC radar controlled sextuple bofors mountings for example) could provided a formidable air defence capability that would be difficult to penetrate. It was for this same reason that the RN kept trying to build new big gun cruisers through to 1957. The Soviets were actually building a large force of big-gun cruisers and battlecruisers into the 1950s.
 

Blacktail

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Grey Havoc said:
Leaving aside the issue of whether or not battleships were really obsolete, one of the major drivers for continued Royal Navy/related R&D into battleships in the late 1940s would have been the K-1000 panic.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/K-1000_battleship
Ah, the K-1000 hoax!

It's funny that someone went to all the trouble to spread rumors of a fake Soviet Battleship, when a REAL Soviet Battlecruiser was actually under construction;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stalingrad-class_battlecruiser
 

Blacktail

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JFC Fuller said:
Try the never were warships forum, I am sure there is an existing thread on this: http://www.phpbbplanet.com/forum/index.php?mforum=warshipprojects

The short story, the RN tried to build new 16" battleships throughout the war and on an almost annual basis tried to re-insert them into the building programme- aircraft carriers and other units were always the priority though. New battleships stayed in the long term plans until financial reality kicked in in 1946. The reason was very logical, the RN found that with 1940s technology the radar controlled big-gun was still the most assured means of sinking an enemy warship in northern waters, think of the battle of North Cape. They also recognised that modern AA guns (RPC radar controlled sextuple bofors mountings for example) could provided a formidable air defence capability that would be difficult to penetrate.
Not only that, but main battery rounds set to airburst at a specific distance would be rather brutal against aircraft as well. Those huge shell splinters can cause casualties out to 1000yds, so the damage against a large formation of aircraft would be considerable.


It was for this same reason that the RN kept trying to build new big gun cruisers through to 1957.
Holy cow, I wasn't aware of THAT, either. O.O


The Soviets were actually building a large force of big-gun cruisers and battlecruisers into the 1950s.
The Project 82 Battlecruisers (the Stalingrad class) are already becoming more and more known on the internet, but the Soviet pos-war Heavy Cruiser projects are still very obscure.
 

carsinamerica

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The reference is probably a reference to further developments of the Lion class. The Royal Navy did keep refining the design in the years after the war. I can't remember if it's in Breyer, Roberts, or Garzke & Dulin (and my books are in boxes at the moment for a move, otherwise I'd look for you), but I do know that the final specs for the Lion in the postwar period envisaged a design with of 50,000+ tons, but with the main battery reduced to 6x406 mm in two triple turrets. The reason was to strengthen the horizontal armor against more powerful (and more accurate) bombs, as well as a greater beam to incorporate a greater depth in the torpedo defense. Even then, it was concluded that such a ship would be in danger from aircraft ordnance.

Blacktail said:
Not only that, but main battery rounds set to airburst at a specific distance would be rather brutal against aircraft as well. Those huge shell splinters can cause casualties out to 1000yds, so the damage against a large formation of aircraft would be considerable.
Not that effective, if we're honest. The Japanese put specialized anti-aircraft shells (called Sanshiki) into the Yamato's 46 cm main batteryin 1945, and they were quite ineffective even against the massed attack that sank her. Plus, the discharge of the main battery had the natural effect of disrupting coordinated fire control of the dedicated AA battery, making the use of such shells even less effective.
 

Blacktail

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carsinamerica said:
Not that effective, if we're honest. The Japanese put specialized anti-aircraft shells (called Sanshiki) into the Yamato's 46 cm main batteryin 1945, and they were quite ineffective even against the massed attack that sank her.
The Sanshiki is irrelevant to the ability of an HC round to destroy aircraft with a blast and shrapnel, because as designed it used neither --- it was an incendiary weapon;
http://battleshipyamato.info/weapons.html

Needless to say, spattering the skin of an all-metal aircraft with debris that burns for a few seconds is not only not a good idea, but also completely different from using an HC round.


carsinamerica said:
Plus, the discharge of the main battery had the natural effect of disrupting coordinated fire control of the dedicated AA battery, making the use of such shells even less effective.
Actually, the Yamato's anti-aircraft fire was never coordinated at all, and all batteries were intended to fire independently from the outset;
http://www.combinedfleet.com/yamato.htm

It was every gun crew for themselves in every air raid, with predictable results.
 

Abraham Gubler

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carsinamerica said:
The reference is probably a reference to further developments of the Lion class. The Royal Navy did keep refining the design in the years after the war. I can't remember if it's in Breyer, Roberts, or Garzke & Dulin (and my books are in boxes at the moment for a move, otherwise I'd look for you), but I do know that the final specs for the Lion in the postwar period envisaged a design with of 50,000+ tons, but with the main battery reduced to 6x406 mm in two triple turrets. The reason was to strengthen the horizontal armor against more powerful (and more accurate) bombs, as well as a greater beam to incorporate a greater depth in the torpedo defense. Even then, it was concluded that such a ship would be in danger from aircraft ordnance.
DK Brown's "Rebuilding the Royal Navy" has a sketch of the post war Lion class design with the two forward turrets.
 

JFC Fuller

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Which has been posted online here: http://www.godfreydykes.info/OUR%20LAST%20BATTLESHIP.htm

I do not have access to my books at the moment but I am almost certain that X and Y turrets are 4.5 inch and not 6 inch. Looking at the drawing you can see the air defence capability of the design, there are eleven sextuple bofors mountings each with its own CRBF (Probably with Type 262 radar as in Vanguard and one assumes remote power control) and eleven twin mountings for the 4.5 inch QF MkV- each of the five pairs of turrets and the forward single turret has a HA director probably with Type 275 radar and RPC for the turrets (again as in Vanguard), it would also have had the usual array of air warning radar.
 

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Blacktail said:
carsinamerica said:
Not that effective, if we're honest. The Japanese put specialized anti-aircraft shells (called Sanshiki) into the Yamato's 46 cm main batteryin 1945, and they were quite ineffective even against the massed attack that sank her.
The Sanshiki is irrelevant to the ability of an HC round to destroy aircraft with a blast and shrapnel, because as designed it used neither --- it was an incendiary weapon;
http://battleshipyamato.info/weapons.html

Needless to say, spattering the skin of an all-metal aircraft with debris that burns for a few seconds is not only not a good idea, but also completely different from using an HC round.


carsinamerica said:
Plus, the discharge of the main battery had the natural effect of disrupting coordinated fire control of the dedicated AA battery, making the use of such shells even less effective.
Actually, the Yamato's anti-aircraft fire was never coordinated at all, and all batteries were intended to fire independently from the outset;
http://www.combinedfleet.com/yamato.htm

It was every gun crew for themselves in every air raid, with predictable results.

Incorrect.


1.Sanshiki shells are not pure incendiaries. When they burst they throw out about 2500 tube shaped steel fragments which expands outwards in a ring pattern. Each tube weigh about a pound. These would have been formidable shrapnels for cutting apart an aluminum plane. Each tube is filled with rubber thermite which ignites as the shell bursts and burns hot enough to melt aluminum on contact for about 5 seconds. So it won't just stick to the plane. Instead in addition to the tube cutting into the plane, the thermite would melt anything in the plane it touches, to say nothing of igniting any fuel in the plane the tubes cuts into.


2. Yamato's AA batteries were not designed to fire in local control. It's 5" dual purpose AA mount were controlled by techymetric directors, 3 mounts to each director. The director was highly advanced, comparable to American mk 37, more sophisticated than anything the Germans ever put on ships.

Yamato's 25mm battery was designed to be controlled 2 mounts to a director. The 8 mount originally came with the ship was remotely power operated from their directors. Many of the later added mounts lacked power or remote control. But they were still director controlled. The director transmitted training and elevation instruction to the mount by electrically turning a needle on a dial on the mount. The crew in the mount then had to crank the mount by hand to match the elevation and bearing on shown by the dial.
 

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As ever the Navweapons site is somewhat mixed up.


There was a major post-war paper as to need for and desired type of new battleship.


The study basically stated that there was no perceived need.


The study envisaged an outline design with 12-inch decks, 12-inch belt and 6 (two twin turrets forward) "automatic" 16-inch Mark IV guns. Tonnage was VERY ROUGHLY 65,000 tons - BUT it was realised that the cost would be enourmous as slips and docks would need modification to cope.


Summary ; to big, too expensive and not required.


HOWEVER, it is right to comment that the RN was severely concerned about surface raiders well into the late 1950s because poor weather and the then state of radar (the British were ALWAYS more concerned regarding radar jamming or spoofing than the US) meant that anti-surface warfare was regarded as a real requirement.
 

JFC Fuller

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phil gollin said:
.


As ever the Navweapons site is somewhat mixed up.


There was a major post-war paper as to need for and desired type of new battleship.


The study basically stated that there was no perceived need.


The study envisaged an outline design with 12-inch decks, 12-inch belt and 6 (two twin turrets forward) "automatic" 16-inch Mark IV guns. Tonnage was VERY ROUGHLY 65,000 tons - BUT it was realised that the cost would be enourmous as slips and docks would need modification to cope.


Summary ; to big, too expensive and not required.


HOWEVER, it is right to comment that the RN was severely concerned about surface raiders well into the late 1950s because poor weather and the then state of radar (the British were ALWAYS more concerned regarding radar jamming or spoofing than the US) meant that anti-surface warfare was regarded as a real requirement.
Also not the whole story. The War Cabinet discussed new battleships and ordered the redesign of Lion and Temeraire (Conquerer and Thunderer remained suspended) as well as the manufacture of six turrets for them in 1944 with the 1945 programme in mind (a proposed budget was also put forward in June 1945), these were obviously never pursued. The fact was that in 1945 the RN was not attached to reality, it was busy buying up most of bombed-out Devonport with the intention of massive expansion of that base and Friedman outlines a proposed fleet composition including battleships and numerous aircraft carriers in multiple regional fleets. Ultimately there was not even a construction programme in 1947/8 and 1948/9, no battleships were ordered and most of Devonport was returned to its residents. However, the fact remains that had the RN had the finance they would likely have pursued new battleships and had the Soviet Project 82 class been completed it is entirely plausible that the RN would have pursued heavier big-gun ships just as they pursued new 6" cruisers up to 1957 with the Sverdlov class in mind.
 

starviking

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JFC,

which Friedman book has the information on the Regional Fleets?
 

JFC Fuller

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starviking said:
JFC,

which Friedman book has the information on the Regional Fleets?
'British Cruisers: Two World Wars and After' Pg.273.
 

CNH

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What was the point of building new battleships? The KGVs and Vanguard were almost brand new.
 

JFC Fuller

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CNH said:
What was the point of building new battleships? The KGVs and Vanguard were almost brand new.
That is true, but all the others were not. The logic seems to have been that the RN needed additional modern battleships as the vast bulk of its fleet was worn out and outdated. War Cabinet minutes from 1944 include an odd comment about the UK being deficient in battleships compared to the US. Just so nobody jumps on me I said this earlier:

The fact was that in 1945 the RN was not attached to reality
By February 1946 the Prime Minister was sitting in on Cabinet Defence Committee meetings demanding to know why individual guns and tanks (not programmes but individual items) then in construction had not yet been cancelled. Reality hit fast and hard.
 

CNH

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A lot of the fleet was knackered by the end of WWII - the battleships were the one part of it that wasn't. Indeed we were mothballing ships throughout the 50s, as the photos in Gove show.
 

JFC Fuller

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CNH said:
A lot of the fleet was knackered by the end of WWII - the battleships were the one part of it that wasn't. Indeed we were mothballing ships throughout the 50s, as the photos in Gove show.
The KGVs and Vanguard were in good shape, the others were worn out and slow. The RN, or parts of it, believed in its planning for the post-war period that it would need more than five battleships. That everything except Vanguard was placed in reserve in short order just demonstrates how disconnected that 1944-5 planning was with economic reality.
 

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As I understand it the RN's post war planning was for a fleet made up of fleet units each of which was to have four carriers, two battleships in support of the carriers (therefore fast battleships), two heavy cruisers in support of the battleships and four light cruisers in support of the carriers and a destroyer screen. I'm pretty sure they planned for three or more (4?) fleet units so there is a requirement for six or more (8?) fast battleships.
 

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Abraham Gubler said:
As I understand it the RN's post war planning was for a fleet made up of fleet units each of which was to have four carriers, two battleships in support of the carriers (therefore fast battleships), two heavy cruisers in support of the battleships and four light cruisers in support of the carriers and a destroyer screen. I'm pretty sure they planned for three or more (4?) fleet units so there is a requirement for six or more (8?) fast battleships.
The Friedman piece is difficult to decipher but that is roughly my interpretation as well, though I count only two 4 carrier units with a further two 2 carrier units plus reserves which gives a similar number of battleships. I am hoping to track down something in the archives that gives more precise detail.
 

chuck4

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Looks like RN was hoping to create some updated version of IJN's kido butai of 1941 with each of these fleet units.
 

Abraham Gubler

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chuck4 said:
Looks like RN was hoping to create some updated version of IJN's kido butai of 1941 with each of these fleet units.
Not likely. The fleet unit concept was based on Pacific Fleet experience (RN and USN) about how many fleet carriers you can sail together at the same time. The IJN may have worked out the same issues in the 1930s - and tried some radical stuff like opposing left and right recovery patterns to maximise carrier concentration - but that does not mean the RN was reflecting this practise. Convergent evolution if anything.
 

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Grove's "Vanguard to Trident" is possibly the best book to read (there are many more which add detail).


The RN studied the post-war fleet during the war (and found it too expensive).


They modified the plan post-war (and found that too expensive).


They then tried to run what they had (and found that too expensive).


The best example are the armoured fleet carriers. There are plans about every two years for them to be refitted in a cycle to keep them all useful (either as front-line, convoy escorts or training carriers) which get big changes when first steam catapults and angled decks come along. All these many, many plans were abandoned except, of course, for Victorious - but they all had effects on specifications for aircraft, equipment and manning/reserves.


As for battleships - they just weren't necessary - even two operational with a few in reserve were hard to justify.


The early post-war years were an incredible shock to the RN, going from its largest ever down to a rump grubbing around for sufficient money to run a service which had more show than substance. It was the mid-50s before things really improved and National Service helped keep costs down.
 

JFC Fuller

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phil gollin said:
The RN studied the post-war fleet during the war (and found it too expensive).

They modified the plan post-war (and found that too expensive).

They then tried to run what they had (and found that too expensive).

As for battleships - they just weren't necessary - even two operational with a few in reserve were hard to justify.

The early post-war years were an incredible shock to the RN, going from its largest ever down to a rump grubbing around for sufficient money to run a service which had more show than substance. It was the mid-50s before things really improved and National Service helped keep costs down.
Yes, as I explained above. The fact remains though that two battleships were in the 1945 estimates, with their redesign authorised by the war cabinet in 1944, and battleship design studies continued into 1946 and according to D.K. Brown development of the 16" gun continued into 1948. The continued development of gun armed battleships should not be surprising to us either given the ongoing design efforts for gun armed cruisers up to 1957.
 

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You are too optimistic.


There were NEVER any real plans to build two new battleships.


The plans were not even started in anything other than "back-of-envelope" manner.


.
 

JFC Fuller

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phil gollin said:
You are too optimistic.

There were NEVER any real plans to build two new battleships.

The plans were not even started in anything other than "back-of-envelope" manner.
No I am not, I am merely stating facts; two battleships (Lion and Temeraire) were authorised by the War Cabinet in 1944 with permission given to redesign the ships and turrets (and begin construction of the latter) and the two ships were included in the original 1945 estimates complete with specific annual spending projections required for their completion. There were VERY real plans to build new battleships right up to late 1945.
 

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Those who mention the RN battleship admirals being divorced from reality are spot on. The end of lend--lease nearly ruined Britain economically, and Britain simply did not have the wherewithall to rebuilt its fleet. Also, IIRC Britain's involvement in the Pacific sea war was fairly minimal, so they were not familiar with the concept of carrier fleet vs carrier fleet, and looked more to convoy escort where large carriers and fast, powerful aircraft were not crucial.
 

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JFC Fuller said:
No I am not, I am merely stating facts; two battleships (Lion and Temeraire) were authorised by the War Cabinet in 1944 with permission given to redesign the ships and turrets (and begin construction of the latter) and the two ships were included in the original 1945 estimates complete with specific annual spending projections required for their completion. There were VERY real plans to build new battleships right up to late 1945.

There was NO, repeat NO, design work done on the Lions in 1945.


The ships covers are there if you want to go and look.


The only work done was a back-of-an-envelope type study which came up with VAST designs (well over 60,000 tons which were unaffordable and politically and operationally unneccessary.
 

JFC Fuller

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phil gollin said:
There was NO, repeat NO, design work done on the Lions in 1945.


The ships covers are there if you want to go and look.


The only work done was a back-of-an-envelope type study which came up with VAST designs (well over 60,000 tons which were unaffordable and politically and operationally unneccessary.
Already have, and as ever ships covers only tell part of the story. There was considerable effort expended in 1944-5 looking at multiple new battleship configurations (as well as multiple other components of the post-war fleet) and two new ships were inserted into the original 1945 estimates with planned completion dates of 1952. You can use caps-lock all you like but the Admiralty did not out things into estimates unless they were serious and the War Cabinet did not approve things unless they were serious. All of this was backed up by remarkably prescient estimations of what the Soviets might do with their own naval programme.
 

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The standard post-war planning was that the Soviets would be NO threat until at least 1956.


.
 

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phil gollin said:
The standard post-war planning was that the Soviets would be NO threat until at least 1956.
I understood, that the general assumption just after WW II was, that the Soviets would be no
nuclear (!) threat until the mid '50s. But to my opinion, they were very well be regarded as threat
with regards to conventional warfare.
 

JFC Fuller

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Actually it is totally correct. Every proposed RN fleet structure produced during the war and after up until the early 50s included battleships- in most cases more than the 4 KGVs plus 1 Vanguard. Those discussions on the size of battleships and the future of the fleet include specific memorandums on what the Soviet Navy might do- including the construction of battleships.

The War cabinet authorised the redesign of Lion and Temeraire in 1944, a staff requirement was raised and design studies undertaken through to mid-1945, those ships were then inserted into the original 1945 estimates and circulated to the cabinet- completion dates were planned for 1952. The design of the 16" gun mountings (as well as new 14", 15" and 16" shells) continued until 1948 and a flashless 16" charge was being developed in 1945.

All of this is in the PRO at Kew. The programme was very real, it may have had a snowballs chance in hell of actually happening, but the RN were very serious about building new battleships.

You can throw phrases like "Total rubbish" around all you like but the archival evidence makes it very clear that the RN were planning for new battleships and in the process evaluated at least three separate derivations of the Lion class.
 

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royabulgaf said:
Those who mention the RN battleship admirals being divorced from reality are spot on. The end of lend--lease nearly ruined Britain economically, and Britain simply did not have the wherewithall to rebuilt its fleet.
This is less a reply to Royalbulgaf, and more to various posters on the thread - it is very easy to use the benefit of hindsight for us, but it was not available to the RN's planners in 1945. If they were economists, they might have had some sense of foreboding (or maybe not, economics being one of the more "pick what you like" sciences) - but they were not. Let's cut the RN planners some slack.
 

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Numerous post-war fleet plans are quoted in Grove, et al. It seems that the most detailed plan published immediately after the war was 'Composition of the Post-war Navy' PD 0140/45 Adm 167/124 dated 12 September 1945. This is referenced in "In Jeopardy: The Royal Navy and British Far Eastern Defence Policy 1945-1951" by Malcom Murfett. I'd love to see a copy of the entire document, but I don't think it's online. A lot of 1946 information is available free on the PRO - excuse me, National Archives - website. The online file is CAB/3. You can find the tables quoted by Grove that Alexander sent Atlee on pages 121 et seq, but the real treat begins on pg 395 where there is a detailed exposition of forces required for "Training For War" and "Police Forces." Better yet, start reading on page 388 for CoS's plans for the Navy, Army, and RAF through 1948. It seems that plans to keep ten battleships weren't changed until 1947. The USN kept 15 battleships and 2 Alaskas well into the 50's.
 

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JFC Fuller


No, No, No.


The Mark II and IV 16-inch guns were ONLY minor work - NOTHING was done on turrets. I don't know anyone who things that an"automatic" 16-inch gun was possible - it took several years in the 50s for the RN to get the automatic 6-inch to work properly.


NO re-design work was done on the Lions. There was ONLY a paper study to show what sort of "new" battleship was required (too big, too expensive, no foreseeable foe).
 

JFC Fuller

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Yes, yes, yes.

This all available at the PRO Kew, the ships were included in the original 1945 estimates, were discussed at the full war cabinet in 1944, Churchill wrote to the Chancellor stating he approved of the ships inclusion in the 1945 estimates. Design work was done on the turrets, and was being done at low level until 1947 as was the design of new 14", 15" and 16" shells. In 1945 trials were under-way to develop a flashless charge for a 16 inch gun. The process under-way in terms of ship design in 1944-5 is recognisable as being similar to any other early stage design process for an RN ship in this time-frame, with multiple design studies being undertaken to produce an optimal combination of size, fire-power, protection, speed, range and manpower requirements- under the auspices of the "Committee on the Size of Battleships". The documents at Kew identify at least 3 different alternatives, B, B7 and X and show discussions between various staff looking at further alternatives. All of this was a product of RN planning for the post-war period that suggested a fleet composition including aircraft carriers and battleships at a ratio of roughly 2-1.

You can rant all you like but the documentary evidence is clear, the RN was serious about acquiring new battleships, the Churchill government had given tentative approval and an early stage design process had been initiated only to be curtailed by the revised (much reduced) 1945 estimates.
 

phil gollin

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PLEASE quote the reference for the turret work - certainly Vickers don't have any records and the SUPP 6 files don't either.


For shells, ONLY theoretical work was done and that mainly on a novel design of rebounding high capacity design (got nowhere).


FLashless was a requirement for the 16-inch


Your ideas on the progress of design are overly-optimistic to say the least - these are NOT design, merely sketches, or ideas.
 

JFC Fuller

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My ideas are not overly optimistic at all, I have only ever said that the ships were in an early stage of the design process, just as every RN ship class went through during this period as you well know. Calling them "back of the envelope" is deliberately disingenuous.

For, the flashless charge see: WO 195/7717
For the turret and shell work see: ADM 1/25853

And lets once again point out the facts you keep ignoring; the redesign was authorised by the War Cabinet in 1944 with the intention of including the ships in 1945 estimates, they were then included in the 1945 estimates and Churchill wrote to the Chancellor of the Exchequer indicating his approval for the two battleships being in the 1945 estimates.

Yet you said:

phil gollin said:
There were NEVER any real plans to build two new battleships.
The body of evidence demonstrates that statement to be completely and totally incorrect.
 

starviking

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Brown and Moore's Rebuilding the Royal Navy has some info on the RN's immediate post-war plans:

"Initially the Admiralty hoped for a large fleet, with a distribution very similar to pre-war days. The battleship was still seen as essential, and it was even hoped to complete at least two new ones."
Page 8, regarding the immediate post-war period.

"The 1945 Programme approved by the Board of Admiralty included the reinstated battleships Lion and Temeraire, where new designs were being considered...The war was to end before these aims were formally placed before the Cabinet." (Late June 1945)Page 19

"The planned battleships Lion and Temeraire died at this point
(Autumn 1945) although, incredibly, development of the 16in Mark IV gun intended for the ships continued - albeit slowly - until 1948." Page 19
 

Sea Skimmer

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Navweapons has some brief details of the continued work on the 16in gun postwar.
http://www.navweaps.com/Weapons/WNBR_16-45_mk2.htm


Work like this was by no means cheap either, as battleship caliber ammunition had prices more akin to what we think of as guided missile prices today. It would not be done if some serious intent did not exist to use the work.
 
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