Practical ranges

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby alecsandros » Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:37 am

Neoconshooter wrote:
alecsandros wrote:... And Oldendorf's battleships opened at 22000 yards, or 20km, during the night, with radar-ranged salvos, scoring hits in the first salvos.

Above 25km, depending on the gun, either dispersion is to large, or the angle of fall becomes to steep, and danger space is to small to consistently hit an opponent.
MOreover, the time of flight of the shell is so long that a fast enemy can change position and heading quite easily in the 45-60 seconds necessary for the shell to strike.This is not true. It takes so long for a BB to change direction that it would have had to have had the rudder hard over for 30-60 seconds before the shell was fired to change the ships course more than a few degrees and few dozens of meters.

Maybe straddling, yes, but hits - very difficult...

Late war after much fiddling, the average/maximum, depending on who said what, spread of salvo for the Iowa and her sisters was 269 yards long at 25,000 yards. Given late war Radar and FCS, such a salvo would have a >16% of any given shell hitting a broad side target 35 M wide and 10 high. If the target was nose, or stern on, the width of such salvo would be half that 269 yards, or 135 yards wide, thus a the typical ~7,000 M^2 target area BB would give a larger, 25% chance to be hit. So with that most excellent FCS and gun/system accuracy, it would be entirely possible for Iowa and her sisters to take out Bismarck or Tirpitz at >39,700 M, given the Strategic Imperative to do so regardless of Munition expenditure!


This may be possible in perfect conditions and against a stationery target.
The numbers are absurd for any moving target.

Given the low shell weight/SD, very high velocity and low elevation and subsequent angle of "Fall of shot" Iowa and her sisters might be immune to Bismarck and Tirpitz return fire until such time as the range has shortened considerably. Given the USN's insistence on superior maneuverability and speed, it is doubtful that either German ship could either close the range, or escape.


Long range destruction is a fantasy, as has been discussed several times on this very forum.

Look for Bill Jurens's posts in this matter - he agrees that practical hiting probabilities for > 25km shootings, even late war, were < 1%.

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby alecsandros » Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:43 am

Neoconshooter wrote:
alecsandros wrote:A, nice info
Still, it appears that only a 3 or 4 hits were made > 20km, the others coming after the twins had closed the range quite a bit, at 15km or so.

IIRC, Hoffman was criticised on return for wasting expensive ammunition...

At long range, it only takes three or four hits to sink most ships. Plunging fire and less thick deck armor combined with the lack of armored bottom to stop flooding results in easy kills. See;
http://web.archive.org/web/200702052335 ... 50_mk7.htm


No,
A battleship could be sunk that fast only if hit in the powder magazines.
WW2 battleships magazine cartrdiges were resistant to any kind of shell at ranges < 30km , and any hit beyond this range was extremely improbable.

See the case of the prehistoric IJN Yamashiro, under fire from several 16" battleships, hit dozens of times from ranges of 18-22km, and still operational at the end of the battle (albeit with heavy damage)

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby Dave Saxton » Tue Dec 04, 2012 4:56 pm

Neoconshooter wrote:Given the low shell weight/SD, very high velocity and low elevation and subsequent angle of "Fall of shot" Iowa and her sisters might be immune to Bismarck and Tirpitz return fire until such time as the range has shortened considerably. ..


The deck protection of Iowa calculates to about 14cm effective, which is not bad. The German 15" can defeat that much at battle ranges above 30.5km though.
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: Practical ranges

Postby Neoconshooter » Wed Dec 05, 2012 8:31 pm

alecsandros wrote:A, nice info
Still, it appears that only a 3 or 4 hits were made > 20km, the others coming after the twins had closed the range quite a bit, at 15km or so.

IIRC, Hoffman was criticised on return for wasting expensive ammunition...

This objection is strange, if you look at the cost of a capital ship and the damage it can do to your soft squishy stuff if you do not kill it. How many secondary caliber shells does it take to sink a cargo ship or tanker?
No one expects to get a large porportion of hits at long range, how much does the entire compliment of a BB/HC's munitions cost when compaired to the damage the target could do, or even better it's cost? I suspect that even counting the most expencive AP ammo, the Iowa's 1250 rounds of 16" cost a great deal less than any DD, let alone all the soft and squshy stuff it could sink. (I did not mention BBs or larger ships because no rational person would think they were compairible.)
As a second part of the idea, how many large caliber hits does it take to cripple, or sink any ship?
The culmination of this line of thought is that the longest range that at which the weapon system can shoot and expect to get the few hits from the question above, is thus the longest effective range. For Iowa, that is >38,000 M.

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby Neoconshooter » Wed Dec 05, 2012 8:45 pm

Thorsten Wahl wrote:
At long range, it only takes three or four hits to sink most ships

any sample available?

See several of the posts above about Glorious and 11" shells, but think about Hood, PoW, which took a single 500 Kg bomb hit, IIRC and several IJN aircraft cariers hit by dive bombers with very much less power than a major caliber shell.

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby alecsandros » Wed Dec 05, 2012 8:49 pm

Neoconshooter wrote:
alecsandros wrote:A, nice info

This objection is strange, if you look at the cost of a capital ship and the damage it can do to your soft squishy stuff if you do not kill it. How many secondary caliber shells does it take to sink a cargo ship or tanker?

The problem is the hit ratio at long range.
As we know, even late 1944/5 RDFC had it\s limitations, and that's why all the major navies restricted their attack ranges at 27km or less.
For the Royal Navy, 25-28km was considered "extreme" range; the USN had a limit of 27km for effective engagement; the Kriegsmarine considered 25km to be very long range, etc.

In reality, long range shootings and hits were extremely rare, for all types of guns (mounted on BB, BC, CA, CL, etc).
Given the extremely low hit rate, expending ammo for a possible cripling hit isn't justified, as that crippling hit never occured in reality...

[Maybe once when WWarspite hit Giulio Cesare at 24km]

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby Neoconshooter » Wed Dec 05, 2012 8:54 pm

alecsandros wrote:
Neoconshooter wrote:
alecsandros wrote:... And Oldendorf's battleships opened at 22000 yards, or 20km, during the night, with radar-ranged salvos, scoring hits in the first salvos.

Above 25km, depending on the gun, either dispersion is to large, or the angle of fall becomes to steep, and danger space is to small to consistently hit an opponent.
MOreover, the time of flight of the shell is so long that a fast enemy can change position and heading quite easily in the 45-60 seconds necessary for the shell to strike.This is not true. It takes so long for a BB to change direction that it would have had to have had the rudder hard over for 30-60 seconds before the shell was fired to change the ships course more than a few degrees and few dozens of meters.

Maybe straddling, yes, but hits - very difficult...

Late war after much fiddling, the average/maximum, depending on who said what, spread of salvo for the Iowa and her sisters was 269 yards long at 25,000 yards. Given late war Radar and FCS, such a salvo would have a >16% of any given shell hitting a broad side target 35 M wide and 10 high. If the target was nose, or stern on, the width of such salvo would be half that 269 yards, or 135 yards wide, thus a the typical ~7,000 M^2 target area BB would give a larger, 25% chance to be hit. So with that most excellent FCS and gun/system accuracy, it would be entirely possible for Iowa and her sisters to take out Bismarck or Tirpitz at >39,700 M, given the Strategic Imperative to do so regardless of Munition expenditure!


This may be possible in perfect conditions and against a stationery target.
The numbers are absurd for any moving target.

Given the low shell weight/SD, very high velocity and low elevation and subsequent angle of "Fall of shot" Iowa and her sisters might be immune to Bismarck and Tirpitz return fire until such time as the range has shortened considerably. Given the USN's insistence on superior maneuverability and speed, it is doubtful that either German ship could either close the range, or escape.


Long range destruction is a fantasy, as has been discussed several times on this very forum.

Look for Bill Jurens's posts in this matter - he agrees that practical hiting probabilities for > 25km shootings, even late war, were < 1%.

I only have two points in reply;
1. That hit %age varis greatly between Navies and in Navies between ship types.
2. Even if it was only 1%, how many hundreds of rounds must be fired to sink any BB?
( Iowa caried well over 1200 rounds, which at only 1%, would equate to 12 hits. Can anyone here find any instance of any ship surviving half that many plunging hits from major caliber shells?)

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby Dave Saxton » Wed Dec 05, 2012 9:01 pm

Maybe once when Warspite hit Giulio Cesare at 24km]
Even considering Cesare's weak deck protection it didn't cripple Cesare. The assumption that a handful of extreme range hits would destroy more modern battleships is unlikely as well.
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: Practical ranges

Postby alecsandros » Wed Dec 05, 2012 9:10 pm

Neoconshooter wrote:
I only have two points in reply;
1. That hit %age varis greatly between Navies and in Navies between ship types.
2. Even if it was only 1%, how many hundreds of rounds must be fired to sink any BB?
( Iowa caried well over 1200 rounds, which at only 1%, would equate to 12 hits. Can anyone here find any instance of any ship surviving half that many plunging hits from major caliber shells?)

1% is alot when firing > 30km.
Remember the enemy is moving at 30kts, and shell time of flight for 16" Mk7 was > 60seconds at that distance.
In 60 seconds, a target moving at 30kts would have travelled ~ 1000meters, in any direction. Thus, a salvo had very slim chances of landing a single hit, let alone multiple strikes.

Considering that, by some acts of the gods, the 16" shells realy do hit at 1% hit ratio, it would depend on the exact point of entry, effects of enemy armor array, and wether the shell\s trajectory through the enemy ship reaches and damages any vital part.

Let\s not forget Bismarck, Scharnhorst and Yamashiro got plastered with 16" and 14" AP shell gunfire, and still they were not destroyed or seriously damaged by 10-12 heavy hits... [Yamashiro is very interesting as it was hit at ranges of 19-22km]

The BBs that did get sunk quickly were very old battlewagons (Hood, Bretagne, Kirishima), with inadequate armor protection for the time they were fighting...

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby Neoconshooter » Wed Dec 05, 2012 10:19 pm

alecsandros wrote:
Neoconshooter wrote:
alecsandros wrote:A, nice info
Still, it appears that only a 3 or 4 hits were made > 20km, the others coming after the twins had closed the range quite a bit, at 15km or so.

IIRC, Hoffman was criticised on return for wasting expensive ammunition...

At long range, it only takes three or four hits to sink most ships. Plunging fire and less thick deck armor combined with the lack of armored bottom to stop flooding results in easy kills. See;
http://web.archive.org/web/200702052335 ... 50_mk7.htm


No,
A battleship could be sunk that fast only if hit in the powder magazines.
WW2 battleships magazine cartrdiges were resistant to any kind of shell at ranges < 30km , and any hit beyond this range was extremely improbable.

See the case of the prehistoric IJN Yamashiro, under fire from several 16" battleships, hit dozens of times from ranges of 18-22km, and still operational at the end of the battle (albeit with heavy damage)

Acording to Wiki;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IJN_Yamashiro
Yanashiro was sunk. It was never able to shoot back and it was hit with the FIRST SALVO at 20,850 M. see;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_ ... October.29
"At 03:16, West Virginia's radar picked up the surviving ships of Nishimura's force at a range of 42,000 yd (38,000 m) and had achieved a firing solution at 30,000 yd (27,000 m). West Virginia tracked them as they approached in the pitch black night. At 03:53, she fired the eight 16 in (410 mm) guns of her main battery at a range of 22,800 yd (20,800 m), striking Yamashiro with her first salvo. She went on to fire a total of 93 shells. At 03:55, California and Tennessee joined in, firing a total of 63 and 69 14 in (360 mm) shells, respectively. Radar fire control allowed these American battleships to hit targets from a distance at which the Japanese battleships—with their inferior fire control systems—could not return fire.[4][13]"

I would counter that 20,850 M is not that long a range. This is close to, if not in the ship's "Immune Zone" from 14" shells. What I want to see is plunging fire at long range, if it is Mano-a-mono, ship against ship.

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby Neoconshooter » Wed Dec 05, 2012 10:50 pm

alecsandros wrote:
Neoconshooter wrote:
alecsandros wrote:A, nice info

This objection is strange, if you look at the cost of a capital ship and the damage it can do to your soft squishy stuff if you do not kill it. How many secondary caliber shells does it take to sink a cargo ship or tanker?

The problem is the hit ratio at long range.
As we know, even late 1944/5 RDFC had it\s limitations, and that's why all the major navies restricted their attack ranges at 27km or less.
For the Royal Navy, 25-28km was considered "extreme" range; the USN had a limit of 27km for effective engagement; the Kriegsmarine considered 25km to be very long range, etc.

In reality, long range shootings and hits were extremely rare,True, but not realivant. for all types of guns (mounted on BB, BC, CA, CL, etc).
Given the extremely low hit rate, expending ammo for a possible cripling hit isn't justified,This is an oppinion that is open to debate. as that crippling hit never occured in reality...
That is not true. If Glorious had not been hit in such a way as to render escape impossible, what would the availibility of that ship some place else later in the War be worth?
From Wiki;
"Warspite, not aware of the Italian firing patterns, split her guns between the two ships. During the exchange one of Giulio Cesare's rounds fell long and caused splinter damage to Warspite's escorting destroyers (Hereward and Decoy) which had formed up on the far side of the action.[18] At 15:54 Malaya started firing, well out of range, hoping to cause some confusion on the Italian ships. Meanwhile the Italian heavy cruisers came into action and started firing on Warspite at 15:55 but had to break off as the Allied cruisers returned.[16]

At 15:59 two shells from Giulio Cesare fell very close to Warspite. Almost immediately after one of Warspite's 15-inch (381 mm) rounds hit the rear deck of Giulio Cesare, setting off the stored ammunition for one of her 37 mm anti-aircraft guns. Two seamen were killed and several wounded. The fumes from the burning ammunition were sucked down into the engine room, which had to evacuate and shut down half of the boilers. Giulio Cesare's speed quickly fell off to 18 knots and Conte di Cavour took over. Giulio Cesare and Warspite were well over 24,000 metres (26,000 yards) apart at the time of the hit, which was one of the longest-range naval artillery hits in history.[Note 1]"

Knowing the above, what if the British Commander had taken advantage of this oportunity and clossed with his superior forces to destroy the slowed Italian BB? Would not that single hit count as a critical hit? It certainly slowwed the Italian BB and at 18 Knots took away the only advantage the Italians had, faster speed that stopped the Brits from closing and winning the battle.

[Maybe once when WWarspite hit Giulio Cesare at 24km]

Talking about facts, probabilities and ideas, which are all seperate things. Facts, few actions/hits at long range. Probabilities, hits are few and far between at long range. ( More so for some than others.) The idea is that it is advantagious for the ship with the best FCS to open fire as soon as possible is based on the idea that eliminating major enemy units that can not be replaced is such that the expenditure of ammo cost is insignificant compaired to the potential gains.

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby Neoconshooter » Wed Dec 05, 2012 11:00 pm

Dave Saxton wrote:
Maybe once when Warspite hit Giulio Cesare at 24km]
Even considering Cesare's weak deck protection it didn't cripple Cesare. The assumption that a handful of extreme range hits would destroy more modern battleships is unlikely as well.

This is a failure of the thought processes. That hit did cripple Giulio Cesare! It caused the ship to slow to 18 knots, a speed where, if the commander had wanted, let the slower Royal Navy BBs close the range and prevented it's escape to pummel it further and possibly sink her.
Secondly, nine hits at close range sank a IJN BB off Guadalcanal. Close range hit are much less likely to damage a heavily armored ship than plunging fire. Three hits sank HMS Glorious. Hood? No it is eminently possible for a few hits to sink any ship. Particularly if they are falling at a steep angle.

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby Neoconshooter » Thu Dec 06, 2012 12:02 am

alecsandros wrote:
Neoconshooter wrote:
I only have two points in reply;
1. That hit %age varis greatly between Navies and in Navies between ship types.
2. Even if it was only 1%, how many hundreds of rounds must be fired to sink any BB?
( Iowa caried well over 1200 rounds, which at only 1%, would equate to 12 hits. Can anyone here find any instance of any ship surviving half that many plunging hits from major caliber shells?)

1% is alot when firing > 30km.
Remember the enemy is moving at 30kts, and shell time of flight for 16" Mk7 was > 60seconds at that distance.
In 60 seconds, a target moving at 30kts would have travelled ~ 1000meters, in any direction.Not true at all! To change direction, all capital ships take time, 15-30 seconds, to move the rudder hard over. After the rudder is hard over, it takes up to one minute longer to even beguin to change direction. During this time the very high drag of the hard over rudder causes the ship to slow. Then the ship beguins to turn and with a turn diamiter of 600-1200 M, it takes 90 seconds for a BEST CASE world's most maneuverable ship to make a U-Turn! So at two salvos per minute. the target is under effective fire for four salvos at a MINIMUM! Thus, a salvo had very slim chances of landing a single hit, let alone multiple strikes.See the post babove where IJN Kirashima was hit with the very first salvo!

Considering that, by some acts of the gods, the 16" shells realy do hit at 1% hit ratio, it would depend on the exact point of entry, effects of enemy armor array, and wether the shell\s trajectory through the enemy ship reaches and damages any vital part.Except for the act of GOD part and the 1% hit ratio, this is ALL TRUE!

Let\s not forget Bismarck, Scharnhorst and Yamashiro http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_battleship_Yamashiro got plastered with 16" and 14" AP shell gunfire, and still they were not destroyed or seriously damaged by 10-12 heavy hits... [Yamashiro is very interesting as it was hit at ranges of 19-22km]And sunk acording to the link above! Note that at almost 21 kM, it was hit on the FIRST SALVO!

The BBs that did get sunk quickly were very old battlewagons (Hood, Bretagne, Kirishima), with inadequate armor protection for the time they were fighting...

I counter with the simple fact that NO BB EVER BUILT can withstand major caliber AP Shell at very long range! Just because they were old has nothing at all to do with the simple fact that their decks were perforated and shells detonated in their magazines! How does that help any other ship where the enemies shell detonates in your magazine? ( or boiler room, thus slowing the ship to make it an easy target?)
Even Yamato could not stand up to long range plunging fire from any contemperary! What is worse is that American 14" Super Heavy AP Shell fired at +40 degrees elevation would make all BBs world wide vulnerable to plunging fire!

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Re: Practical ranges

Postby Dave Saxton » Thu Dec 06, 2012 4:43 am

This is a failure of the thought processes

In your opinion. I think your too invested in this plunging fire idea. As Alex has pointed out it does not guarantee destruction of the target ship. And who is to say what ship will score the first hits, if any, or more often in an extreme range scenario? It could work both ways. Alex has also pointed out the unlikelness of such a scenario in WWII, and Thorsten has pointed out that it didn't yield any real world results.
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: Practical ranges

Postby alecsandros » Thu Dec 06, 2012 6:31 am

Neoconshooter wrote:
Acording to Wiki;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IJN_Yamashiro
Yanashiro was sunk. It was never able to shoot back and it was hit with the FIRST SALVO at 20,850 M. see;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_ ... October.29

Wiki is a nice, fast source, but not that reliable when it comes to very specialised areas...
There is a very good research made by Arthur Tully, "Battle of Surigao Strait".
The author joined sources from the USN with the few Japanese survivors testimonies, and the picture is quite different from the one usualy perceived:
Yamashiro suffered "dozens" of heavy hits, lost 2 of the 4 main turrets, BUT it was unscathed beneath the armored deck, continued to fire very well (it crippled a US DD), and left the battle scene 15 minutes after being hit by the opening salvos from West Virginia &Co.
Yamashiro suffered 2 torpedo hits at ~ 3:30, which reduced her speed to 16kts. At 4:20, a good time after being out of BB gun fire, it suffered 2 further torpedo strikes, fired at extreme range from US DDs. The ship stopped, rolled over and sank.

I would counter that 20,850 M is not that long a range. This is close to, if not in the ship's "Immune Zone" from 14" shells. What I want to see is plunging fire at long range, if it is Mano-a-mono, ship against ship.

West Virginia yielded the 16"/L45 guns... against which, theoretically, Yamshiro did not have any imune zone...

West Virginia's captain withheld fire because he was well aware of the probabilities of a hit at 27km ( close to 0). This was mainly because of the trajectories of shells close to the maximum range for gunfire. Hitting space is much smaller at long range, as the angle of descent is steeper. And of course, salvo spread is larger...


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