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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 2:18 pm
 


jed7 jed7:
The US had something like 5 or 6 Dreadnaughts at the start of the war, the Royal Navy had somewhere in the region of 40 just in the home fleet.


Jed, I'd like to introduce you to a fact.

http://www.gwpda.org/naval/usnflt00.htm

We had 26 dreadnoughts and battleships afloat at the end of the war and 20 at the outset. The US Navy's building campaign - instigated by President Theodore Roosevelt when he was the acting Secretary of the Navy Department - was a major concern to the Royal Navy and the Royal Navy under Jacky Fisher considered the US its principal threat in the Atlantic. Roosevelt, in turn, had good cause to consider the British and French to be threats to the USA and he wanted the USA to have naval superiority against a combined British and French fleet. 110 years ago the US & UK may not have been enemies, but we had a long way to go to be considered friends. Again, you've got some reading to do.

jed7 jed7:
if America was at war with Britain, the Atlantic would not have been as important anyway, the focus for British supplies would have shifted to India


Geography is also not your strong suit. Those supplies from an India that could barely feed itself would have to pass through the Atlantic to get to the UK and there they would be vulnerable. Frankly, had the US dispatched our meager Pacific squadron (not even so much to call a fleet) to the IO the Brits would've had a hard time countering it (and I'm not saying they couldn't do it - just that it would not be easy). As it was, and like I've already pointed out, they had a bugger of a time with a dozen or so makeshift German raiders.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 2:28 pm
 


BartSimpson BartSimpson:
bootlegga bootlegga:
And my point about the US Navy not being able to break the blockade of Germany had nothing to do with the US ability/inability to build ships - it had everything to to do with the fact that IF the US entered on Germany's side, one of its key missions would have been to break that blockade - which given the relative sizes (and concentration) of the Allied naval forces vs the Central naval forces was almost impossible.


Your view of strategy is...novel.

If the US Navy had been deployed in favor of Germany it would've been silly to waste it in a frontal assault trying to break the Royal Navy blockade. Far better an idea would have been to deploy the US Navy to blockade the United Kingdom and to force the Home Fleet into blue water to come play where US Naval gunnery would have the advantage.

The advantage the Royal Navy had was that they controlled the approaches to the Baltic and had the relative 'high ground' against the High Seas Fleet that was bottled up in their ports. Were the Home Fleet to have to disperse to counter a US blockade that would have allowed the Germans some wiggle room to navigate in the North Sea.

Which never happened so I hope you accept this as friendly speculation. [B-o]


I find your view of naval strategy just as novel.

A much smaller US fleet (large scale construction of capital ships did not really take place until the Naval Act of 1916) blocakding Britain - which at the time had the world's largest fleet of capital ships and far more sea lanes to blockade? Hardly a possibility - especially given that the US was worried about the rise of Japan in the Pacific (very much so after the Battle of Tsushima in 1905) and had split its fleet to 'protect' its Pacific assets (much in the same way the Brits had ships stationed around the globe).

To break a US blockade of the UK (and likely a feeble one at that), all it would had to do was send a squadron or two of battelcruisers (enough for numerical superiority) at any point in the US blockade. It could easily have done so, either by recalling home units stationed around the world (such as the HMS Inflexible and Invincible), sending a few units from Scapa Flow, or requesting French assistance ( to break the blockade. With its numerical superiority over th Germans

Speculation is fun isn't it?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 2:42 pm
 


Indeed.

The thing is that the US would principally need to blockade a few key choke points to effect the isolation of the UK. Isolating the UK from Canada would be easier for the US to accomplish than for the UK to counter. We had naval bases and coaling stations up and down our coast and the UK had...Halifax. Mining the Gibraltar Strait would block that passage and preserve US surface combatants for other actions.

And while the Royal Navy enjoyed a clear numerical superiority over the US Navy the US Navy was not spread out all over the world. Recalling the RN from distant bases was not as easy as it sounds as those movements were often measured in weeks and then the British 'rear' (so to speak) would have been left vulnerable to those pesky German raiders. Add to this that the US Navy in 1914 enjoyed significant technological advantages over the RN with stabilising gyroscopes for aiming being incorporated into the big guns and with extremely accurate ranging scopes. Then there were the big guns themselves, the products of the Washington Navy Yard, that were the envy of the RN. In concert, these factors led to Jacky Fisher demanding a 3:1 advantage over the US Navy because a US ship sporting 12" guns was considered to be a match for a RN ship sporting less accurate 14" guns.

(Naval Firepower: Battleship Guns and Gunnery in the Dreadnought Era Friedman pps 223-227)


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 3:05 pm
 


BartSimpson BartSimpson:
jed7 jed7:
The US had something like 5 or 6 Dreadnaughts at the start of the war, the Royal Navy had somewhere in the region of 40 just in the home fleet.


Jed, I'd like to introduce you to a fact.

http://www.gwpda.org/naval/usnflt00.htm

We had 26 dreadnoughts and battleships afloat at the end of the war and 20 at the outset. The US Navy's building campaign - instigated by President Theodore Roosevelt when he was the acting Secretary of the Navy Department - was a major concern to the Royal Navy and the Royal Navy under Jacky Fisher considered the US its principal threat in the Atlantic. Roosevelt, in turn, had good cause to consider the British and French to be threats to the USA and he wanted the USA to have naval superiority against a combined British and French fleet. 110 years ago the US & UK may not have been enemies, but we had a long way to go to be considered friends. Again, you've got some reading to do.

jed7 jed7:
if America was at war with Britain, the Atlantic would not have been as important anyway, the focus for British supplies would have shifted to India


Geography is also not your strong suit. Those supplies from an India that could barely feed itself would have to pass through the Atlantic to get to the UK and there they would be vulnerable. Frankly, had the US dispatched our meager Pacific squadron (not even so much to call a fleet) to the IO the Brits would've had a hard time countering it (and I'm not saying they couldn't do it - just that it would not be easy). As it was, and like I've already pointed out, they had a bugger of a time with a dozen or so makeshift German raiders.


Actually supplies from India would go through the suez canal, med, and yes also the atlantic, but far from US ports.

But as Ive already said, war with the US would make a large scale war in Europe, IMPOSSIBLE for britain. So this argument is completely pointless anyway.

The US fleet was much smaller then that in the atlantic, remember they had to operate in two different oceans as well.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 3:17 pm
 


PENATRATOR PENATRATOR:
EyeBrock EyeBrock:
GreenTiger GreenTiger:
Last night I saw the movie Passendale. It was a good movie. I'm interested in how accurate the attitudes, feeling of the people at the time in that Zeitgeist. Were they accurately depicted in the film?


. I don't know why Canada has such a problem acknowledging its Anglo-Celtic-Gaelic past.
.

But then they are all carrying the convict DNA! Buggers!.


I think this guy may have been where it started EB. Just a thought


I try to avoid stating the obvious Pen....mostly!


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 4:04 pm
 


jed7 jed7:
Actually supplies from India would go through the suez canal, med, and yes also the atlantic, but far from US ports.


True, but the US Navy in 1914 had already committed to a refit to oil* and could replenish fuel at sea in the space of an hour or so while the RN required colliers to chase it to and fro and then coaling tended to take days and the operation was not something that could be conducted at sea unless you were in a calm. The colliers were the weak link in the RN, as the Germans proved, and the best way to sideline an outstanding British battleship was to sink her collier. That said, the US Navy had better legs than the RN and could operate farther from home and at a higher tempo. In a nutshell, there could have been a second Battle of Trafalgar and this time there would have been no Nelson to save the day.

jed7 jed7:
But as Ive already said, war with the US would make a large scale war in Europe, IMPOSSIBLE for britain. So this argument is completely pointless anyway.


Actually, you just made my point. Thanks. [B-o]

jed7 jed7:
The US fleet was much smaller then that in the atlantic, remember they had to operate in two different oceans as well.


Hello. This is not where you double down on your error. This is where you say, "Gee, Bart, I didn't know that, thank you for the information and the direct link to the edifying information."

* That the USN mostly used oil by 1918 had much to do with the older ships we sent to reinforce the Brits at Scapa Flow. The only ships we could send were the ones that still used coal.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 4:27 pm
 


BartSimpson BartSimpson:

jed7 jed7:
But as Ive already said, war with the US would make a large scale war in Europe, IMPOSSIBLE for britain. So this argument is completely pointless anyway.


Actually, you just made my point. Thanks. [B-o]



Actually no. I didn't mean it militarily. No one can know how the Royal Navy would have stood up against the US fleet and the German fleet, it's purely speculation. What we do know is that the Royal Navy did have advantage in numbers over BOTH.

But when I say large scale war would be impossible, I meant logistically. There would be no chance the British government could support 8 million men in France and overseas without TRADE with the United states. So that would make WW1 as it was impossible, if US opinion is favourable to Germany before the war.

That does not make war exclusively between the UK and US impossible, as seen in the tensions of the 1920s


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 4:35 pm
 


Jed mate. What are you going on about?

Step away from the thread. Do it now.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 5:02 pm
 


jed7 jed7:
Actually no. I didn't mean it militarily. No one can know how the Royal Navy would have stood up against the US fleet and the German fleet, it's purely speculation. What we do know is that the Royal Navy did have advantage in numbers over BOTH.


And, according to successive First Sea Lords, that advantage was not enough due to severe technological advantages the USN had and that the Brits tried to obtain via espionage in 1912.

jed7 jed7:
But when I say large scale war would be impossible, I meant logistically.


That's the same thing. Logistically impossible is still impossible.

jed7 jed7:
That does not make war exclusively between the UK and US impossible, as seen in the tensions of the 1920s


Precisely. The 1922 Washington Treaty reflected the fact of those growing tensions and the US scored a victory of sorts when it demanded parity in capital tonnage. Our technological edge meant that we had superiority over British ships of the same vintage. For the Brits it was a victory of sorts because the US had to be present in three oceans while the RN only had to be in one if it came to that.

In any case, that the two principals in that little drama were the US and UK reflects the fact that they saw each other as potential adversaries despite having fought side by side just a few years before.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 5:20 pm
 


[quote="BartSimpson"]

That's the same thing. Logistically impossible is still impossible. [/qoute]

well that's what i already said at the outset, you meant militarily. The British fleet swamped both fleets. I don't know about US technological advantages, you'll have to tell me more about that, but from what I understood, the British ships had the most advanced targeting and reloading systems in the world. mechanical computers, which were so advanced the officers didn’t understand how to use them. Which led to some of the problems at jutland


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 5:25 pm
 


"Advanced targeting systems" at Jutland? Yeah, here's a photo of it being deployed:

Image


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 5:49 pm
 


jed7 jed7:
I don't know about US technological advantages, you'll have to tell me more about that, but from what I understood, the British ships had the most advanced targeting and reloading systems in the world. mechanical computers, which were so advanced the officers didn’t understand how to use them. Which led to some of the problems at jutland


No, I don't need to tell you more about it. You need to read the books and do the study if you're going to profess more than a passing knowledge of the topic.

I've cited my sources and I've posted reference materials here to back up what I'm saying and you've done nothing of the sort.

Also, if as you assert, that the British had unworkably complicated kit for their gunnery then, again, you're making my point that the USN had superior gunnery.

You're essentially arguing against your position more effectively than I am and with fewer words. I'm not sure if you're winning this debate on style or losing it on substance. :mrgreen:


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 6:18 pm
 


BartSimpson BartSimpson:
jed7 jed7:
I don't know about US technological advantages, you'll have to tell me more about that, but from what I understood, the British ships had the most advanced targeting and reloading systems in the world. mechanical computers, which were so advanced the officers didn’t understand how to use them. Which led to some of the problems at jutland


No, I don't need to tell you more about it. You need to read the books and do the study if you're going to profess more than a passing knowledge of the topic.

I've cited my sources and I've posted reference materials here to back up what I'm saying and you've done nothing of the sort.

Also, if as you assert, that the British had unworkably complicated kit for their gunnery then, again, you're making my point that the USN had superior gunnery.

You're essentially arguing against your position more effectively than I am and with fewer words. I'm not sure if you're winning this debate on style or losing it on substance. :mrgreen:


Maybe you should read some more books on it then. I’m not talking about the skill or lack of, of the Royal navy personal. The British had the first computerized targeting system in the world. and the fastest reloading system. both are facts

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dumaresq


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 27, 2011 12:30 am
 


jed7 jed7:



Image

You are going to need better than wiki if you want to play on this forum...


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 27, 2011 11:16 am
 


jed7 jed7:
Maybe you should read some more books on it then. I’m not talking about the skill or lack of, of the Royal navy personal. The British had the first computerized targeting system in the world. and the fastest reloading system. both are facts

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dumaresq


As I'd already posted and substantiated, the USN at that time was deploying ships whose main guns were gyroscopically stabilised and they were also using optical ranging systems (that used German lenses...go figure) that in concert were more accurate than anyone else's systems in significant orders of magnitude.

Maybe the Brits could reload faster, so what? If the shots they fire don't hit the target then who cares?

In Massie's book, Dreadnought, he delves into the ill-considered Royal Navy 'tradition' of keeping gunnery practice to a minimum with the purpose of keeping the ships clean. In comparison, most USN captains and admirals gave little thought to tidyness so long as a ship's crew could put metal on target. Royal Navy attaches used to deride the USN for having dirty ships and the Americans would retort that in a war the Brits would be comforted by dying aboard clean ships.

The penultimate expression of this ill-thought RN 'tradition' was found when the Hood confronted the Bismarck. The Hood had been in service since 1920 yet when the Bismarck ended her trials she'd fired more practice rounds from her main guns than the Hood had fired since entering service in 1920*. In the confrontation with Bismarck the British fired some 2900 shells with the generous number of 400 being estimated to have made their target. That's a rate of accuracy of 13%. And that's in 1940. And most of those 400 successful shots took place at near point-blank ranges of less than 3km. :idea:

During that particular battle it is of note that the first casualty aboard Bismarck was inflicted by a biplane and not by RN gunnery.

Meanwhile, the USS Texas that had been sent to sea in 1912 as the first US battleship to be equipped with the Washington Navy Yard's gyroscopic stabilization system and then the optical sighting system maintained a rate of accuracy of 40.5% at 10,000 yards during practice operations in WW1 - a record that was only bested by the USS California after her post Pearl Harbor refit *2.

So the RN would need to fire three shells to have the same effect as the USN firing one shell. Being good at reloading was probably a good idea for them.

*1 Citation: Germany and the Second World War: Organization and Mobilization in the German Sphere of Power, Wartime Administration, Economy, and Manpower Resources 1942-1944/5. Mueller-Kroehner page 412 § 3

*2 Citation: Elementary Naval Ordnance and Gunnery Ramsey page 172


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