Twins v Warspite & Valiant

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Dave Saxton
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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by Dave Saxton » Tue Jan 08, 2013 2:14 am

paul.mercer wrote:which would almost even up the amount of shells flying through the air at each other with the weight of shell being on the RN's side
Weight of shell is irrelevant in this scenario as in most. If those shells can't defeat S&G's vitals protection at normal battle ranges they might as well be 333kg too. So we have both sides probably not capable of quickly destroying their opponants but instead knocking out the systems which can not be protected, which could have a snow ball effect on how the battle evolves. I think its more likely that the Germans will score first and hit more often in this case.
Entering a night sea battle is an awesome business.The enveloping darkness, hiding the enemy's.. seems a living thing, malignant and oppressive.Swishing water at the bow and stern mark an inexorable advance toward an unknown destiny.

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by alecsandros » Tue Jan 08, 2013 1:17 pm

Dave Saxton wrote:
paul.mercer wrote:which would almost even up the amount of shells flying through the air at each other with the weight of shell being on the RN's side
Weight of shell is irrelevant in this scenario as in most. If those shells can't defeat S&G's vitals protection at normal battle ranges they might as well be 333kg too. So we have both sides probably not capable of quickly destroying their opponants but instead knocking out the systems which can not be protected, which could have a snow ball effect on how the battle evolves. I think its more likely that the Germans will score first and hit more often in this case.
And let's remember what happened to Warspite and Malaya at Jutland when under fire from 11" guns...

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by ede144 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 8:53 pm

Till now nobody mentioned the biggest advantage of the twins: range and hit probability. At 25 km the Twins had around 10%, which is more than what the QE had at the same range. Ad the higher r/g/m. and you will find that it could have been disastrous for the RN

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by paul.mercer » Tue Jan 08, 2013 9:29 pm

alecsandros wrote:
Dave Saxton wrote:
paul.mercer wrote:which would almost even up the amount of shells flying through the air at each other with the weight of shell being on the RN's side
Weight of shell is irrelevant in this scenario as in most. If those shells can't defeat S&G's vitals protection at normal battle ranges they might as well be 333kg too. So we have both sides probably not capable of quickly destroying their opponants but instead knocking out the systems which can not be protected, which could have a snow ball effect on how the battle evolves. I think its more likely that the Germans will score first and hit more often in this case.
And let's remember what happened to Warspite and Malaya at Jutland when under fire from 11" guns...
Thats a fair point, I'm not sure about Malaya but did'nt Warspite have her rudder jam and thus steered very close to the German battle fleet? She took an awful pounding, but she survived. Also, if Scharnhorst could be seriously hurt by DoY's 14" surely being hit by a number of 15" is going to do as much if not more damage?

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by Dave Saxton » Tue Jan 08, 2013 11:12 pm

Who said Scharnhorst was seriously hurt by a DoY 14"? At least a normal battle range.
Entering a night sea battle is an awesome business.The enveloping darkness, hiding the enemy's.. seems a living thing, malignant and oppressive.Swishing water at the bow and stern mark an inexorable advance toward an unknown destiny.

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by alecsandros » Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:46 am

paul.mercer wrote: Thats a fair point, I'm not sure about Malaya but did'nt Warspite have her rudder jam and thus steered very close to the German battle fleet? She took an awful pounding, but she survived. Also, if Scharnhorst could be seriously hurt by DoY's 14" surely being hit by a number of 15" is going to do as much if not more damage?
I don't know the precise range, but from what I understand, Warspite was at least 10-12km away from the GErman battle line....
She took 13 hits (11" and 12" shells), many of which perforated the side armor (including main belt), took a lot of water in, and slowly retreated at max speed of 15kts.

Malaya was hit 8 times, and had 150 dead and wounded on board. She took a lot of water, had half of the secondary battery destroyed, and 1 main turret hoist damaged.

DoY hits on Scharnhorst caused damage, but nothing serious. It probably was Scharnhorst's machinery which broke down (again) during the pursuit, that made the ship lose speed.

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by Dave Saxton » Wed Jan 09, 2013 2:28 pm

The first Duke of York hit knocked out Anton. It is not known for sure if it was a barbet hit or a hit directly to the turret. However the battle range was no more than 11,000 meters. The three or four hits during the next 90 minutes were not as serious.
Entering a night sea battle is an awesome business.The enveloping darkness, hiding the enemy's.. seems a living thing, malignant and oppressive.Swishing water at the bow and stern mark an inexorable advance toward an unknown destiny.

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by Byron Angel » Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:53 am

alecsandros wrote:
I don't know the precise range, but from what I understand, Warspite was at least 10-12km away from the GErman battle line....
She took 13 hits (11" and 12" shells), many of which perforated the side armor (including main belt), took a lot of water in, and slowly retreated at max speed of 15kts.

Malaya was hit 8 times, and had 150 dead and wounded on board. She took a lot of water, had half of the secondary battery destroyed, and 1 main turret hoist damaged.

..... German AP projectiles did pierce the side armor of Warspite and Malaya at Jutland, but, with the exception of one underwater hit which penetrated the tapered lower extremity of Warspite's main belt (7.5in), the penetrations were made versus 6in armor.

B

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by MikeBrough » Thu Jan 10, 2013 3:15 pm

Dave Saxton wrote:The first Duke of York hit knocked out Anton. It is not known for sure if it was a barbet hit or a hit directly to the turret. However the battle range was no more than 11,000 meters. The three or four hits during the next 90 minutes were not as serious.
Dave, I thought DoY overcame S's belt armour at extreme range, destroying No 1 boiler room.

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by RNfanDan » Thu Jan 10, 2013 7:53 pm

ede144 wrote:Actually the armor of Hood was outdated. KGV would not suffered the same damage. So Hood and it's sinking is the proof that armor and damage control capabilities are a basic need aand could not be overrated
You still don't seem to get it. You are correct to a point, Hood's horizontal armor WAS outdated and inadequate. That she was sunk is certainly proof of destructability, no doubt. HOWEVER, it is NOT required to explode an enemy ship, nor even sink it, to defeat it in battle. Bismarck had a very strong and battleworthy armor scheme; so did Prince of Wales. However, both were effectively defeated without sinking them.

Had Bismarck not sunk before the British ran out of time (low fuel, low ammunition, etc.) and lost all hope of sending the ship on its seafloor trials, it would have made little difference; Bismarck was FINISHED. Prince of Wales, although somewhat lucky not to have suffered even further damage (see Garzke & Dulin analysis), was dealt a "blow to the head" that effectively ended its ability to carry out the battle.

Bismarck's armor scheme saved its wreck from sinking. It did nothing to prevent its destruction and defeat. Ditto for Scharnhorst, to all intents and purposes. Armor protects propulsion, magazines, and certain vital systems. It does NOT save its radar, rangefinding and director equipment, nor much of anything outside and/or above its confines. S&G were fine warships, fast and dangerous and well-protected. They were quite capable of being destroyed without sinking, and the same applied to virtually all battleships.

So to repeat my original point, armor is over-rated when it comes to defeating an enemy. Not SINK, but DEFEAT.

Thank you for confirming this.
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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by ede144 » Thu Jan 10, 2013 8:50 pm

@RNfanDan
You missed my point entirely. Hood is the proof for following points:
Warships need to be sturdy and robust. They must be able to take hits, in order to strike back. Hood was so weak that she failed to do any damage to KM ships. SD wAs at Guadalcanal in a similar situation. The lack of AP ammo and US Washington saved her day. No armor, no subdivision or other means will prevent a defeat if the ods are against aship or fleet

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by Dave Saxton » Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:02 pm

MikeBrough wrote:
Dave Saxton wrote:The first Duke of York hit knocked out Anton. It is not known for sure if it was a barbet hit or a hit directly to the turret. However the battle range was no more than 11,000 meters. The three or four hits during the next 90 minutes were not as serious.
Dave, I thought DoY overcame S's belt armour at extreme range, destroying No 1 boiler room.

Nobody knows for sure what caused SH's loss of speed. There were only (IIRC) 39 survivors -all ratings. Those that had some knowlege on this question said that it was broken steam piping, and did not report a shell penetration into a boiler room. Some reported flooding from a torpedo hit, but this surely came during the torpedo strike phase which came after the loss of speed in the chronological order.

Alf Jacobsen wrote this in his notes:
Note to Pg 201: The real turning point in the battle was when the Scharnhorst reduced speed from about 30 knots to a bare to 20 knots between 1/2 past six and a 1/4 to seven in the evening. It is no longer possible to determine precisely what caused her to do so; the statement of witnesses are too much at variance. It may have been a shell from Duke of York, but it could also have been engine trouble, as the engines had long been over taxed. Scharnhorst had problems with her boilers and turbines on several occasions in the past, one such being during engagement with Renown in April 1940. See Bredemeier pg 43


British Intel in the interrogation report thought that the loss of speed was likely correlated to Duke of York's final hit, but they were basing this on faulty chronology, incorrectly believing that the Duke of York radar plot began to plot the loss of speed at the same time as the last salvo fired by DoY of this battle segment at 18:24 hours. However, the loss of speed did not occur at that time, but about 15 minutes later.

Various theories have been postulated to connect the loss of speed with a Duke of York hit. The battle range at the time DoY ceased fire was 19,500 meters. The belt penetration of the 14” at 19,500 meters battle range was only about 380mm at broadsides on target angle. But this was a stern chase so the target angle was oblique, unless it happened the exact moment when Scharnhorst had turned to fire its final broadside. Even then the shell would need to also defeat the scarp-an impossibility.

The deck penetration of the 14” at this battle range was less than 80mm. So a deck penetration is hardly likely. The most popular theory is that the shell passed over the belt and skidded up against the boiler hump. It’s possible, but hardly likely.

One survivor reported that the shell in question exploded in his area among some sacks of potatoes, killing a wounded ship mate he had left there. This explosion would have been above the panzer deck in this case.

Some have speculated that shock from the hit may have broken some Scharnhorst’s weakened steam lines.

Fraser, didn’t know the exact cause of Scharnhorst’s loss of speed, but as I recall he speculated; that if it was a from a Duke of York hit, it probably came from an earlier hit or hits, and that it gradually took effect over a period of time.
Entering a night sea battle is an awesome business.The enveloping darkness, hiding the enemy's.. seems a living thing, malignant and oppressive.Swishing water at the bow and stern mark an inexorable advance toward an unknown destiny.

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by MikeBrough » Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:58 pm

Dave, my sources aren't the best but is it possible that a long range shell, arcing in from astern is going to hit the upper armoured deck (50mm) and then the thinner part of the main armour deck (20mm vs the thicker 50mm directly above the vitals)? The 14" shell would have a reasonable chance of defeating that level of armour (less than 70mm effective) but would it be able to reach No 1 boiler room? I don't have access to any ship plans so it's difficult for me to tell.

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by Dave Saxton » Fri Jan 11, 2013 2:02 am

Hi mike,
It depends on what you mean by "long range". The longest range that SH and DoY exchanged salvoes was only 19,500 meters. At that range the angle of fall of the British 14" is no more than about 17*. The SH had a 50mm upper armoured deck and the main armoured deck was 80mm over the machinery. To defeat this array the British 14" would likely need to be fired from a greater range than 25,000 meters (27,400 yards). Another factor may be the average fuse delay of 0.025 sec of British AP shells, at these less than 20km battle ranges. Unless the shell is a dud it may detonate before it reaches the panzer deck.
Entering a night sea battle is an awesome business.The enveloping darkness, hiding the enemy's.. seems a living thing, malignant and oppressive.Swishing water at the bow and stern mark an inexorable advance toward an unknown destiny.

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Re: Twins v Warspite & Valiant

Post by RF » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:37 am

RNfanDan wrote: Prince of Wales, although somewhat lucky not to have suffered even further damage (see Garzke & Dulin analysis), was dealt a "blow to the head" that effectively ended its ability to carry out the battle.
This isn't correct. POW under the orders of its XO was able to disengage from the battle, and was later in a condition where that battle could be recommenced.
So to repeat my original point, armor is over-rated when it comes to defeating an enemy. Not SINK, but DEFEAT.
Thank you for confirming this.
I think this is a rather arrogant and intemperent point. It is also inaccurate and out of context to the position that Bismarck and Scharnhorst respectively were in.
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