A flight of fancy perhaps . . .

Discussion in 'General Military Arms & History Forum' started by Pistolenschutze, Feb 7, 2007.

  1. Should we bring back the battlewagon as a fleet element? Now, before y'all think I'm nuts and a total anachronism (especially you old navy files :D ), consider this . . .

    The wars we fight today, and will likely fight in the foreseeable future, are limited conflicts. I think a reasonable argument can be made that a truly modern, purpose-built battleship, would be ideal, both for its psychological impact on potential third-world enemies, and as a highly effective weapons system against likely targets, given modern technological innovation. Envision a ship of about 100,000 tons (approximately the size of a modern super carrier), but armed not only with modern fire-control and heavy guns (perhaps in the 18-20 inch range), but also heavily equipped with harpoons, tomahawks, standards and any other missile system we desired to put on it, even verticle-launch tubes for strategic nuclear weapons of the type carried by missile subs. Couple that with modern armor protection, and, unlike a carrier, such a vessel would be impervious to anything an enemy could throw at it short of a nuclear-tipped missile. How would you like a ship of that power sitting off your coast while the diplomats "negotiate?"

    OK, it's a wild idea and it won't ever be built, but it might be fun to toss it around. How would you arm a vessel such as that, and would it be worth its cost? Food for thought.
  2. JohnK3

    JohnK3 New Member

    May 5, 2003
    I like it!

    They should be named after states. First up, USS Texas. [grin]

  3. Well, I was thinking the USS Colorado, but I could certainly live with the USS Texas. Indeed, she would be named after a ship with a proud history either way. :D
  4. Marlin

    Marlin *TFF Admin Staff Chief Counselor*

    I had in mind the USS Maine !!!!!!!!! :)

    Wouldn't you agree, Racer ???
  5. Might be OK, Marlin . . . so long as we didn't have to send her on any missions to Havana. :D ;) :p
  6. JohnK3

    JohnK3 New Member

    May 5, 2003
    The New UltraDreadnought Class:

    USS Texas
    USS Colorado
    USS Maine

    Debating with myself on whether to suggest the Arizona. Would it be considered sacrilege by many? Or a tribute to those that died on the original, much the same way the Maine would be a tribute to those who died on her.

    We are, after all, building a fantasy fleet. What other new classes could we build for that fleet? New destroyers, maybe? Anything else?
  7. Arizona is certainly an appropriate suggestion, John, but I think I think that name will be forever enshrined at Pearl Harbor and perhaps that is best. Besides, isn't the Arizona still officially carried as an active ship in the U.S. Navy in remembrance of her sacrifice? I seem to remember reading that somewhere.

    Hmmm, new ship classes . . . Didn't the naval designers consider building a carrier/battleship at one time? A ship with a carrirer deck but also with heavy guns and armored like a battlewagon? If we added missile armament she would be a powerful vessel indeed. She might be armed with the naval variation of that new Joint Strike Fighter. Perhaps we could name her USS Virginia, after the Confederate vessel of the same name. :D
  8. JohnK3

    JohnK3 New Member

    May 5, 2003
    So, Schtuzen, what would you put on a new class of destroyer? Stealth tech? Hydroplanes? Tomahawks or other cruise missiles? What about a cruiser class? What would a 21st century cruiser look like? Special role, if any?

    I'm not sure I like the idea of the CarrierWagon. I have some concerns with the idea:

    How would you coordinate heavy guns and aircraft takeoff/landing simultaneously? I'd be concerned about hitting aircraft or other problems with the big guns. Missiles, however, sounds very feasible.
  9. Nighthawk

    Nighthawk New Member

    Aug 22, 2006
    South Central Texas
    how easy would it be to find and take out that large a target. it would have a lot of protective devices but seems it would be a very desirable target for enemy.
  10. It would be a big target Night, that is true. But then, so is one of today's supercarriers. Without its battlegroup escorts, a Nimitz class carrier is very vulnerable . . . neither heavily armored nor particularly well armed except for aircraft.
  11. I think stealth tech should be included for sure, especially on destroyers and cruisers. We're getting better and better at that technology and I think it will be a definite part of any future naval vessels we design, let alone the speculative ships we're talking about here.

    The carrier/battleship is just a thought, though it would seem that guns and planes would not likely be employed simultaneously. Gun armament is not likely to have a range much beyond 50 miles at most, even with modern technology added. Aircraft, of course, would still be used for deeper penetrations.

    Now, as for cruisers, what would stop us from building a nuclear powered cruiser/submarine, i.e., a submarine the size of a modern cruiser but armed with large magazines of harpoons and tomahawks that could be fired from the surface or submerged. Equipped with stealth technology, it could theoretically operate on or below the sea. Yeah, it's a wild idea, but hey, that's the purpose of this thread. :D
  12. Xracer

    Xracer *TFF Admin Staff Mediator*

  13. OK, I wasn't sure about that X. I just seemed to remember that she was still carried as an honorary active ship of the line in respect for those who crewed here and still lie within her hull. I've visited the Memorial twice, and it is a very moving experience to do so I must say. If ever there is a place where ghosts live, it is there.
  14. Pat Hurley

    Pat Hurley Former Guest

    Sep 30, 2006
    Naples, Florida
    Go to www.battleship.org. There is a movement afoot to save (perhaps re-commission?) the remaining two seaworthy battleships (USS Wisconsin and New Jersey). The March/April edition of American Handgunner has - on it's last page - an article dedicated to this story. Pick up a copy and read it.
    Sounds like a great cause!
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2007
  15. You know, Pat, the pundits can say what they will about battleships being obsolete, but I do think they still have a place in the scheme of things. The days of battleship to battleship combat are long gone, never to return, that is certainly true. But a high-explosive 16" shell weighing well over a ton still speaks as loudly as it ever did against inland targets.
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