LHMark
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Naval Gun Question

Tue Dec 12, 2006 11:42 pm

The gun armament on modern warships


seems anemic compared to the gun armament of old.


I know that a modern ship's primary armament is missile-based, but I have no clue about the capability of modern naval guns. How far do they fire? How accurate are they? How much have guns advanced since the "battery fire" days?
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UALPHLCS
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:07 am

The new gun is a modern variant of the World War II 5/38. It is a Mark 45 127mm/54 caliber gun. In World War II the 5" was a extremely accurate versatile gun. Range was approx 10 miles. And could fire up to 35,000 feet in Anti-aircraft mode. You don't need more than than now since missiles and aircraft will take care threats at greater range.

However, you're right, the Naval gun is really anachronistic. Frigates and Destroyers keep them mostly to put a shot over a ship bow. These work horses need them when they interdict ships at sea, like smugglers or commercial ships than need to be boarded. Missiles, are more powerful weapons but they would be too powerful in certain circumstances. Remember the fight the US Navy had with Pirates off the African coast a few months ago?
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LHMark
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:12 am

I read they just used light machine guns in that engagement. Silly pirates.

Maybe, now that there are fewer capital ships to shoot at, the gun will make a comeback. Missiles cost a lot more than shells.
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KROC
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:15 am

Why do Naval Vessels need guns?

Signed, the Canadian Navy
 
desertjets
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:28 am

AFAIK the 5"/54 seen on most American frigates, destroyers, and cruisers has little relation to the earlier 5"/38 (however early versions of the 5"/54 was simply an elongated version of the original 5/38)... which was put on everything from 1500 ton destroyers to the Iowa class battleships. The current 5"/54 Mark 45, and the new 5"/62 Mark 45 (used on Arleigh Burke class destroyers from DDG-82 on up, among others) are significantly different weapons compared to the old 5 inchers... largely in their level of automation and their ability to fire long range rounds.


Here is a little info on some of the guns currently used aboard USN ships.

http://www.navweaps.com/Weapons/WNUS_5-54_mk45.htm
http://www.navweaps.com/Weapons/WNUS_5-62_mk45.htm
http://www.navweaps.com/Weapons/WNUS_3-62_mk75.htm
Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
 
UALPHLCS
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:29 am

Quoting LHMARK (Reply 2):
I read they just used light machine guns in that engagement. Silly pirates.

Yes but it is an example of why the naval gun will never be completely obsolete. It fulfills a role when a commander needs firepower but the target doesn't fit the missile profile.

If you run into a target like a commerical ship you need to stop fer example. Small craft with pirates fleeing and out of range of machine gun fire. Missiles can't fulfill that role. They would destroy a commercial vessel completely when all you wanted to do was disable them, and small targets like speedboats I doubt can even be tracked by a missile.

Missiles give the greatest flexibility in war, you can hit warships from a stand-off position, or ground targets far inland. Ships with naval guns operate independently of the fleet sometimes. Running down vessels of interest and the like.

The modern fleet is a destroyer and frigate screen (the workhorses) with a maybe guided missile cruiser and an aircraft carrier. With more and more guided missile destroyers and frigates, cruisers are on the way out. The destroyers and frigates on the fringes of the screen or operating independently need to have a weapon with a knock out punch for close in work. Something missiles can't do very well.
A little less Hooah, and a little more Dooah.
 
desertjets
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:44 am

Quoting LHMARK (Reply 2):
now that there are fewer capital ships to shoot at, the gun will make a comeback. Missiles cost a lot more than shells.

Yes and no. The missile become the primary weapon on ship for anti-aircraft defense. Only later did you see the development of anti-shipping missiles like the Exocet and Harpoon. With a move towards developing stealth ships it isn't likely you'll see large batteries of guns. Though the new DD-1000 class ships are planned to have 2 155mm guns of rather advanced design.
Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
 
strasserb
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:45 am

Quoting KROC (Reply 3):
Why do Naval Vessels need guns?

Yes, that's a good question, when you already can control it with your mobile:

Still, even in the most arid desert is an airport somewhere ...
 
halls120
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:47 am

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 1):
Remember the fight the US Navy had with Pirates off the African coast a few months ago?

That was a debacle. I've seen the video, and it was laughable.

Quoting DesertJets (Reply 4):
AFAIK the 5"/54 seen on most American frigates, destroyers, and cruisers has little relation to the earlier 5"/38 (however early versions of the 5"/54 was simply an elongated version of the original 5/38)... which was put on everything from 1500 ton destroyers to the Iowa class battleships. The current 5"/54 Mark 45, and the new 5"/62 Mark 45 (used on Arleigh Burke class destroyers from DDG-82 on up, among others) are significantly different weapons compared to the old 5 inchers... largely in their level of automation and their ability to fire long range rounds.

Correct. there is very little commonality between the old 5"/38 and modern weapons.

It sure was a blast being in the turret when the 5"/38 fired, however.
"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." Mark Twain, a Biography
 
UALPHLCS
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:50 am

Quoting DesertJets (Reply 4):
The current 5"/54 Mark 45, and the new 5"/62 Mark 45 (used on Arleigh Burke class destroyers from DDG-82 on up, among others) are significantly different weapons compared to the old 5 inchers... largely in their level of automation and their ability to fire long range rounds.

Just to clarify, if I wasn't before, I wasn't saying the WWII 5/38 was the SAME as the new 5/45. But they are in the same line and their versatile mission is the same.

You are right to point out the automation. I know my 5" guns from my work on the BB62 so I couldn't speak to that. But I do know the role the gun plays today is the same as it's ancestor.
A little less Hooah, and a little more Dooah.
 
cfalk
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 1:10 am

The Air Force had the same experience in the 50's and 60's. They built fighters like the F-4 Phantom and others and equiped them only with missiles, thinking that the age of guns in the air was over. WRONG! Which is why all modern fighters once again have guns.
The only thing you should feel when shooting a terrorist: Recoil.
 
IAH777
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 1:22 am

Quoting LHMARK (Thread starter):
Naval Gun

I once fired a grape at my dog using my belly button. He caught it in mid-flight, but spit it out when he tasted my lint cheese.

Signed,
BAB
 
sprout5199
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 1:39 am

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 1):
Frigates and Destroyers keep them mostly to put a shot over a ship bow.

Well things may have changed. But when I was in, we had a 76mm(3inch) gun onboard. We used it for anti-air mainly. There is an area between the missile kill zone and the CIWS kill zone that we used the gun. We had IR and radar fuses. The gun was radar controlled/aimed and very accurate. We could use it for surface targets, but the shell was sort of small. The nice thing about it, was the fast engagement/fire rate. we had "quick draw" exercises, where the battle group commander would tell us over the radio where the target was. we had to engage the "target" within so much time. Usally we would fire within 20 seconds. Plus with a 80 rnds per minute rate of fire, it puts a lot of shells out quick.

Dan in Jupiter
 
UALPHLCS
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 1:46 am

Quoting Sprout5199 (Reply 12):
Plus with a 80 rnds per minute rate of fire, it puts a lot of shells out quick.

BTW, it is intersting to note that while the 3" was super quick, the 5" even with all the new automation was just as fast as the hand loaded 5/38.

The record on the BB62 was 22 rounds a minute.

In WWII 18 to 20 rounds was standard, depending on the angle of the gun. This is with 13 guys in the mount and another 12 in the upper handleing room. Not a bad rate of fire.
A little less Hooah, and a little more Dooah.
 
halls120
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 1:54 am

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 13):
BTW, it is intersting to note that while the 3" was super quick, the 5" even with all the new automation was just as fast as the hand loaded 5/38.

But the successors to the 5"/38 were more accurate. The GFCS we had with our 5"/38 was a comptele POS.
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dl021
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 1:56 am

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 1):
However, you're right, the Naval gun is really anachronistic.

I don't know if that's the right way to put that. There is a definite need for naval rifles, or guns, in modern warfare and it's not being well addressed right now. The new 5" guns are basically 127mm cannon (not howitzers) which carry a relatively small round that can accurately hit targets out to 20 something KM when using assisted rounds. It's useful for ADA as well as for shore fire when you don't need big guns, but the real need for a good 6 or 8 inch class rifle (or a 155mm to 210mm gun) is real. Ask any marine ashore whether they want some vessels in the littoral with artillery capable of reaching 10 to 20 miles inland that can have real effect on an ongoing basis. Air support cannot deliver the same persistent fires on the same target and is significantly more expensive, and the towed artillery brought by Marines is generally not available during the initial phases of any assault. The need is modern, and the guns presently in use are anachronistic but hte ones on the drawing board and in testing aren't.

All that said....I'd like to keep one battlewagon under steam....there's nothing like a broadside from 9 16" guns all landing in one grid square at the same time.......

Quoting DesertJets (Reply 4):
5"/62 Mark 45 (used on Arleigh Burke class destroyers from DDG-82 on up, among others) are significantly different weapons compared to the old 5 inchers... largely in their level of automation and their ability to fire long range rounds.

Their ability to accurately and rapidly fire longer range rounds placing fewer men at risk.

Quoting DesertJets (Reply 6):
Though the new DD-1000 class ships are planned to have 2 155mm guns of rather advanced design.

True, but someone needs to finish getting the things ready.

Quoting Halls120 (Reply 8):
It sure was a blast being in the turret when the 5"/38 fired, however.

Showing a little age there, Coastie.
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UALPHLCS
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 2:06 am

Quoting Halls120 (Reply 14):
But the successors to the 5"/38 were more accurate.

I always heard the 5/38 was a very accurate gun.

Quoting DL021 (Reply 15):
I don't know if that's the right way to put that. There is a definite need for naval rifles, or guns, in modern warfare and it's not being well addressed right now.

Hold on, I think by taking just that part you misunderstand me. I think we are both coming to the same conclusion from different directions.

The need for a naval gun is anachronistic, but it DOES fill a vital role. However, the reason we see guns no bigger than 5 or 6 Inches is that there will never be a naval gun to gun engagement ever again. WWII didn't even have one of those. Warship to Warship engagements will be fought with missiles and air power, with the combatants standing off.

But there is a role for the naval gun, which is why the navies of the world are loath to completely get rid of them.
A little less Hooah, and a little more Dooah.
 
sprout5199
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 2:42 am

Was the 5"/38 the one that had the "nice bark" and did the smoke ring when fired?

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 16):
WWII didn't even have one of those

I believe there was few. HMS Hood was sunk by gunfire.

Dan in Jupiter
 
Juls
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 2:48 am

The new F125 stabilization frigates/destroyers of the German navy will have an 155 mm howitzer. The turret comes from the Pzh2000 howitzer and is almost unmodified. Range will be > 80,000 meter.

Test of the fire control system.
http://www.dutchfleet.net//files/panzerhaubitze_2000_op_fregat_hessen_518.jpg

Test of the mounting.


Integration test on a F124 frigate.
 
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vzlet
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 2:57 am

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 16):
there will never be a naval gun to gun engagement ever again. WWII didn't even have one of those.

It would seem you're overlooking the numerous British/German engagements (Bismarck vs. Hood, for example), and action near Guadalcanal:

Washington fires upon Japanese battleship Kirishima during the battle on November 14-15, 1942. The low elevation of the gun barrels is due to the relatively close range of the two adversaries.

Vincent O'Hara's The German Fleet at War, 1939-1945 details "sixty-nine surface engagements involving the Kriegsmarine from September 1939 through March 1945, each one fought 'between purpose-built surface warships displacing at least five hundred tons full load where torpedoes and/or gunfire were exchanged'." (I don't know how many of those engagements involved only torpedoes.)
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UALPHLCS
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:14 am

Quoting Vzlet (Reply 19):
It would seem you're overlooking the numerous British/German engagements (Bismarck vs. Hood, for example), and action near Guadalcanal:

Yeah I guess I ought to have said "didn't have MANY of those." However, my point holds about naval engagements today! Do you really think you will see a ship to ship gun fight in the 21st Century?

That pic in your post where did you get it? I wonder if the Washington was a South Dakota Class battleship because her turrets sure look like an Iowa class. Not that I'm disputing the caption because I know no Iowa's were in the Pacific that early. On the other hand the Navy had a habit of deliberately misidentifying the Iowa's when they where first launched to fool spies. So the date of the pic and the Identification could be off.

On the other hand South Dakota's did look similar to Iowa's eventhough they where smaller.
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desertjets
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:14 am

Quoting DL021 (Reply 15):
All that said....I'd like to keep one battlewagon under steam....there's nothing like a broadside from 9 16" guns all landing in one grid square at the same time.......

While for nostalgia's sake it might be nice to keep a battleship or two operational, it is an awfully expensive platform to maintain for one mission. Sure a refit Iowa was a pretty capable ship, but beyond the big guns, a VLS equipped Ticonderoga had more capability in C&C and a larger missile payload.

Though I do understand the need to continue to have larger naval guns onboard. Obviously the DD-1000, whenever they enter service, will have the new 155mm gun. Though what strikes me as odd, the ships that will be operating in the littoral waters such as the new LCS ships, and the new San Antonio Class LPDs, don't have a large caliber cannon. IIRC the LCS only carries a 57mm gun, and the San Antonios do not carry anything bigger than 30mm close-in gun.
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sprout5199
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:20 am

Quoting Juls (Reply 18):
The new F125 stabilization frigates/destroyers of the German navy will have an 155 mm howitzer. The turret comes from the Pzh2000 howitzer and is almost unmodified. Range will be > 80,000 meter.

At least they could have painted it grey.

Dan in Jupiter
 
halls120
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:23 am

Quoting DL021 (Reply 15):
Quoting Halls120 (Reply 8):
It sure was a blast being in the turret when the 5"/38 fired, however.

Showing a little age there, Coastie.

LOL, that was on a 327' Secretary class cutter in 1974 to be exact. The USCGC Ingham on a cadet cruise.

My last ship, the Storis, had a 3"/50 main battery - pre WWII vintage. No GFCS whatsoever. The ammo we'd shoot often misfired, it was so old.

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 16):
Quoting Halls120 (Reply 14):
But the successors to the 5"/38 were more accurate.

I always heard the 5/38 was a very accurate gun.

Maybe with a GFCS that was worth a shit it was accurate. What we had in the CG was crap. we couldn't hit the broad side of a barn.
"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." Mark Twain, a Biography
 
MDorBust
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:28 am

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 20):
I wonder if the Washington was a South Dakota Class battleship because her turrets sure look like an Iowa class.

NC class
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desertjets
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:35 am

Quoting MDorBust (Reply 24):
Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 20):
I wonder if the Washington was a South Dakota Class battleship because her turrets sure look like an Iowa class.

NC class

Both the North Carolina and South Dakota classes carried the triple 16"/45 Mark 6 gun. Which look an awful lot like the 16"/50s on the Iowa.



USS Washington



USS Iowa
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miamiair
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:39 am

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 20):
Iowa class

Only four of those...

Wisconsin,
New Jersey,
Iowa,
Missouri
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UALPHLCS
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 4:04 am

Quoting Miamiair (Reply 26):
Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 20):
Iowa class

Only four of those...

Wisconsin,
New Jersey,
Iowa,
Missouri

I wasn't saying the Washington was an Iowa Class. I was suggesting the Photo was an unidentified Iowa (Probably the Iowa since it was late 1942) and that the photo was misidentified by the Navy during WWII.

I saw this on the New Jersey, in photos captions by the Navy Identifiing the New jersey and her sisters as "Heavy cruisers" and Photos of the New jersey Identified as other ships to throw off potential spies.

So I was suggesting that the identification of the Washington firing COULD have been a Iowa if the Navy captioned the pick with misinformation. Which did happen.
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GDB
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 4:07 am

As it focussed more and more on Cold War roles, the Royal Navy started dropping medium caliber guns.
The Leander Class frigates, originally with twin 4.5 inch guns, during refits starting in the early 1970's, swapped them for first the Ikara torpedo launching system-from Australia, then later ships installed 4 x MM38 Exocets and a 3rd SeaCat SAM forward.
Then the later batches swapped the guns for 4 x MM38 Exocets and the SeaWolf SAM forward.

The new build Type 22 Frigates-but actually more Destroyer sized, had 4 X MM38 Exocets and a SeaWolf forward-with a 2nd SeaWolf atop the aft helicopter hanger.
With no medium caliber gun-by then the newer single barrel one was standard on other 1970's built ships.

Then the Falklands War happened.
Some ships wore out their barrels in that operation, mostly naval gunfire support, but a Type 21 Frigate also caught an Argentine military supply ship that had ran the blockade, whilst probing the planned landing zone in San Carlos Water.
Too close for Exocets, the Argentine ship was sunk by 4.5 inch gunfire.

As a result, the Batch 3 Type 22's, brought to replace war losses, had a 4.5 inch forward, the design of the Type 23's, originally to be little more than a towed array sonar tug with either no gun or a 76mm, morphed into an excellent general purpose vessel, still optimised for ASW, but with 4.5 inch gun now, as well as Harpoon SSM (like the Type 22 Batch 3's).

The latest 4.5 inch gun, has updated systems, actuation and a 'steathly' installation.
The RN are looking at a 6 inch design, most likely a version of the BAE 'Braveheart' SP gun as used by the Army, rather like the process the Germans are doing as illustrated above.

The most recent use of the 4.5 inch guns was against Iraqi positions in 2003.
 
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vzlet
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 4:48 am

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 20):
Do you really think you will see a ship to ship gun fight in the 21st Century?

I don't think they'll be common, but because there will be ships are running around with gun armament, it's certainly possible, especially in a littoral environment.

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 20):
That pic in your post where did you get it?

It's used in this Wikipedia article. (How's that for a guarantee of accuracy?  Wink )
"That's so stupid! If they're so secret, why are they out where everyone can see them?" - my kid
 
UALPHLCS
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 5:05 am

OK

Quoting Vzlet (Reply 29):
It's used in this Wikipedia article. (How's that for a guarantee of accuracy? )

LOL

In fact after looking very closly at the bridge an conning tower I think the pic is captioned correctly. I took a look at some pics at navsource.org the distictive armoured conning tower is clear in the muzzle-flash in the pic from Wikipedia.
A little less Hooah, and a little more Dooah.
 
sprout5199
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 5:20 am

Quoting Vzlet (Reply 29):
I don't think they'll be common, but because there will be ships are running around with gun armament, it's certainly possible, especially in a littoral environment.

And the times where it will be ship vs patrol craft. I know in 1987 the US was putting 25mm chain guns on FFG's and DD's due to the small boat threat. A 40mm bofors would have been great.

Dan in Jupiter
 
dl021
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 5:58 am

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 16):
The need for a naval gun is anachronistic, but it DOES fill a vital role. However, the reason we see guns no bigger than 5 or 6 Inches is that there will never be a naval gun to gun engagement ever again. WWII didn't even have one of those. Warship to Warship engagements will be fought with missiles and air power, with the combatants standing off.

Warship to warship engagements are not the main reason for naval gunfire. Shore bombardment and interdiction of smaller and commercial vessels are excellent reasons for having accurate and powerful guns on naval vessels.
I do think we're agreeing that they're necessary, but the need is not an anachronism. Modern naval guns are coming 440degrees from direct fire to bombardment to direct fire again and then both.....

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 16):
But there is a role for the naval gun, which is why the navies of the world are loath to completely get rid of them.

the contrary....many navies would happily rid themselves of bigger guns.....the US navy tried but the Marines and Army would not let them.

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 20):
Do you really think you will see a ship to ship gun fight in the 21st Century?

yes....perhaps not cruisers and battleships but certainly patrol boats and destroyers...

Quoting DesertJets (Reply 21):
Quoting DL021 (Reply 15):
All that said....I'd like to keep one battlewagon under steam....there's nothing like a broadside from 9 16" guns all landing in one grid square at the same time.......

While for nostalgia's sake it might be nice to keep a battleship or two operational, it is an awfully expensive platform to maintain for one mission. Sure a refit Iowa was a pretty capable ship, but beyond the big guns, a VLS equipped Ticonderoga had more capability in C&C and a larger missile payload.

The effect of a battleship on the scene is incredible, and the ability to mount missiles on such a vessel is limited mostly by the cost of retrofitting.....
the impact of the artillery it brings is unquestionably devastating. Nothing that's not completely dug in can really withstand repeated bombardment from these guys.....we're not going to get BB's back into the active fleet more than likely, but we need the 155s and we could certainly use some 8 inch guns back in the fleet mounted on vessels the Navy will be willing to take close into shore (say within 10 miles) so they can lay supporting fires 15 to 20 miles inland.....
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Banco
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 7:22 am

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 20):
Yeah I guess I ought to have said "didn't have MANY of those."

I'm not sure even that's true. I suspect it may be because you are concentrating on the USN (and at war's end RN) vs Japan side of the naval war. The British fought numerous ship to ship engagements against German or Italian foes throughout the war, not just the most famous ones such as the Bismarck engagement. Whether it be the battles of Narvik, the sinking of the Scharnhorst, Warspite's endless brushes with the Italian Navy, gunfire engagements with U-Boats (more common than you might suppose) or destroyer actions, ship to ship warfare remained extremely common.

Though I believe Duke of York's sinking of Scharnhorst at the end of 1943 was the last occasion two battleships (if you grant Scharnhorst that title) was the final dreadnought action.
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greasespot
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 7:42 am

Quoting KROC (Reply 3):
Why do Naval Vessels need guns?

Signed, the Canadian Navy

Hey my sister is in the Navy here,,,They have guns.I have seen them up close.....Now ammunition for the guns is another story  wink 

GS
Sometimes all you can do is look them in the eye and ask " how much did your mom drink when she was pregnant with you?"
 
LHMark
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 7:45 am

Didn't the Canadian navy once have an aircraft carrier? The HMS Reasonable, or something like that...
"Sympathy is something that shouldn't be bestowed on the Yankees. Apparently it angers them." - Bob Feller
 
N1120A
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 7:55 am

Quoting KROC (Reply 3):
Why do Naval Vessels need guns?

Signed, the Canadian Navy

Oh really? So is that thing on the front just for show?

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a9/HMCS_Toronto_%28FFH_333%29_3.jpg/800px-HMCS_Toronto_%28FFH_333%29_3.jpg

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/c8/HMCS_Algonquin_%28DDH_283%293.jpg/800px-HMCS_Algonquin_%28DDH_283%293.jpg

Quoting Cfalk (Reply 10):
They built fighters like the F-4 Phantom and others and equiped them only with missiles, thinking that the age of guns in the air was over. WRONG! Which is why all modern fighters once again have guns.

The F4E had an internal canon, as did the F4G Wild Weasel II.
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dl021
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 9:56 am

Quoting N1120A (Reply 36):
Oh really? So is that thing on the front just for show?

The 57mm Bofors gun that the Canadians use is useful for AAA and against small vessels, but not much else. It's got little shore bombardment application. Plus...it's on one of Her Majesties Canadian Ships....

....So...yeah...it's pretty much just for show...

Quoting N1120A (Reply 36):
The F4E had an internal canon, as did the F4G Wild Weasel II.

What he was talking about was the F-4C and others that had no cannon armament and we lost pilots and planes because the missiles were nowhere near perfect, and our enemies had cannon. We shot down MiGs with Spads in Vietnam......so crews were trying to strap them onto airplanes and the Navy finally caved in and added cannon back into the airframe with the E model. They also started the top gun school.....

Wild Weasels had the cannon deleted for equipment packages.
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UALPHLCS
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:10 pm

Quoting DL021 (Reply 32):
The effect of a battleship on the scene is incredible, and the ability to mount missiles on such a vessel is limited mostly by the cost of retrofitting.....
the impact of the artillery it brings is unquestionably devastating. Nothing that's not completely dug in can really withstand repeated bombardment from these guys.....we're not going to get BB's back into the active fleet more than likely, but we need the 155s and we could certainly use some 8 inch guns back in the fleet mounted on vessels the Navy will be willing to take close into shore (say within 10 miles) so they can lay supporting fires 15 to 20 miles inland.....

Granted, it would be fun to see the big guns doing their job again, but that is highly unlikely. As you mentioned the effective range of the big guns is about 20 miles inland. Officially it's 23 miles but I factored in some sea room there. The effective range of cruise missiles is hundreds of miles inland. When BB62 put to sea in 1983 she carried more missiles than any surface ship in the world she carried 32 Cruise missiles and 16 Harpoons. This was a reasonable benefit to put a ship to sea that required a crew of 1200. Today, and someone can correct my rough numbers, but a DDG can carry 90 some missiles with a third of the crew, and the new ships have even fewer crew 58 I think. So the ONLY benefit to a BB is the big guns, and you only get 10 miles extra range on the guns. Air power can cover more effectively than a BB can now. The last BB to fire her guns in anger was the Missouri she fired into Kuwait and stopped when the Marines had out run her support. The limited use of the big guns is not cost effective, and THAT is the bottom line in today's Navy.

Frankly, I think the Air force and Navy are in for some serious downsizing in the near future. If I were to advise a young man who wanted to be an officer I say go to the Marines or the Army. The technology heavy services, the Navy and the Air force, are rapidly making their weapons autonomous, eliminating the human factor. The Army and Marines the MAN IS the weapons system, and men need other to lead them.
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Pyrex
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 6:39 pm

Quoting DesertJets (Reply 4):
the 5"/54 seen on most American frigates, destroyers, and cruisers

Do they use the Italian OTO Melara cannons as well?

Quoting Cfalk (Reply 10):
The Air Force had the same experience in the 50's and 60's. They built fighters like the F-4 Phantom and others and equiped them only with missiles, thinking that the age of guns in the air was over. WRONG! Which is why all modern fighters once again have guns.

A really tragic mistake to make...

Quoting DL021 (Reply 15):
All that said....I'd like to keep one battlewagon under steam....there's nothing like a broadside from 9 16" guns all landing in one grid square at the same time.......

If I were an enemy combatant I would be more terrified of that than of a B-52 flying overhead carpet-bombing my ass. There is nothing like the danger you cannot see...

I imagine a salvo of those things really made the ground shake.

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 16):
However, the reason we see guns no bigger than 5 or 6 Inches is that there will never be a naval gun to gun engagement ever again.

I wouldn't be so sure of that... a border pissing match between North Korean and South Korean vessels (just one small example) can turn into a gunfight more easily than into a missile engagement...

Quoting Juls (Reply 18):
Range will be > 80,000 meter.

80 kms from a 155 mm howitzer? On second thought - waiter, cancel my Tomahawk!

Quoting DL021 (Reply 37):
We shot down MiGs with Spads in Vietnam......

Just out of curiosity, what are these Spads you are reffering to? I imagine you are not talking about WWI biplane fighters...

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 38):
and you only get 10 miles extra range on the guns

The key is in the concentration of fire - 9 16" shells landing at once do not produce the same effect as 1 5" shell, no matter the rate of fire you can get in those latter mounts.
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dl021
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 9:44 pm

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 39):
Just out of curiosity, what are these Spads you are reffering to? I imagine you are not talking about WWI biplane fighters...

Ut was the last piston engine fighter/attack craft in the US inventory serving with the Air Force and Navy until the seventies and with other nations forces even later. It had 4x20mm cannon, a huge loadout of rockets and legs....it could fly a very long way and loiter while taking fire...which made this plane the best CSAR escort and COIN/attack aircraft available until the introduction of the A-10.

http://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=297
http://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/shared/media/photodb/photos/050317-F-1234P-043.jpg
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halls120
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 11:20 pm

Quoting DL021 (Reply 40):
Ut was the last piston engine fighter/attack craft in the US inventory serving with the Air Force and Navy until the seventies and with other nations forces even later. It had 4x20mm cannon, a huge loadout of rockets and legs....it could fly a very long way and loiter while taking fire...which made this plane the best CSAR escort and COIN/attack aircraft available until the introduction of the A-10

When I was growing up, my back yard was NAS Los Alamitos. I saw just about every military aircraft in the inventory from 1963-1971 taxi past our back fence. B-52's, F-4, C-141's - but the Spad was truly impressive.
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desertjets
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 11:43 pm

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 39):
I wouldn't be so sure of that... a border pissing match between North Korean and South Korean vessels (just one small example) can turn into a gunfight more easily than into a missile engagement...

But in the area around the Korean peninsula having air cover would be relatively easy. So what would start out as gun fight between two ships would change quickly as air cover arrived. And it cannot be iterated enough, but the vast majority of the missile armament on any modern is for anti-air defense. Most larger ships carry a small complement of Harpoon or Exocet type anti-shipping missiles.

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 39):
Do they use the Italian OTO Melara cannons as well?

The 76mm OTO cannon is used on the Oliver Hazard Perry class Frigate.
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Pyrex
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 11:44 pm

Quoting DL021 (Reply 40):

I had no idea the A-1 Skyraider was called the Spad. It was in fact an impressive aircraft, proof that it isn't always the highest technology in the field that wins the battle. The USAF must have hated it even more than they hate the A-10 right now...
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UALPHLCS
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Wed Dec 13, 2006 11:57 pm

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 39):
The key is in the concentration of fire - 9 16" shells landing at once do not produce the same effect as 1 5" shell, no matter the rate of fire you can get in those latter mounts.

The problem is that that concentration of fire is only able to attack a narrow strip of land. Smaller guns and air power can do the same job without the expense of a large capital ship requiring 1200 in crew. The cost isn't worth the benefit.

Again remember why the BB were returned to service in the 1980s. It WASN'T for the big guns. It was for the missile platform. They where the only surface ships that could carry that many missiles, the Big Guns were icing on the cake. Today the Navy gets more missiles with fewer crew. The Navy can still provide shore bombardment. 20 miles inland the Marines can use artillery or air power.
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dl021
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Thu Dec 14, 2006 2:56 am

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 44):
The Navy can still provide shore bombardment. 20 miles inland the Marines can use artillery or air power.

The navy cannot provide adequate shore bombardment as we speak. The problem with using aviation for artillery is that the airplanes run out of gas and don't carry as much. They don't have staying power...artilllery is the King of Battle, and if the Marines have not been able to land the big guns and sight them in (it's not as easy as 1-2-3, even with GPS...because you must be precise and have spotting) they still need to be able to call for fire.....and those 127mm/5" cannon on the destroyers aren't enough for all the targets.

The Navy wants to downplay the need, the Marines know the reality on the ground....it's going to be partially handled when the new 155mm guns come online with the new ships, but we really need an 8" answer.
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miamiair
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Thu Dec 14, 2006 3:06 am

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 43):
It was in fact an impressive aircraft, proof that it isn't always the highest technology in the field that wins the battle.

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c325/miamiair/SkyraiderToilet.jpg

Yup, that's a General Purpose Toilet Bomb.
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UALPHLCS
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Thu Dec 14, 2006 3:07 am

Quoting DL021 (Reply 45):
The Navy wants to downplay the need, the Marines know the reality on the ground....it's going to be partially handled when the new 155mm guns come online with the new ships,

I have to side with the Navy on this one. When is the last time there was a substantial breach landing opposed by hardened emplacements.

If someone opposes the Marines their emplacements can be taken out WEEKS in advance by bunker busters. Leaving the Marines with regular ground opposition.

The last two large amphibious landings where Somalia, where the Marines and SEALS where met by the Media and Kuwait. Where we won't know the answer to the question because the Missouri was there.

There certainly isn't the pressing NEED for large caliber Naval Guns.
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dl021
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Thu Dec 14, 2006 4:28 am

I'm speaking as one who has felt the dear need on more than one occasion for arty support and did not get it because it was either non-existent or too far away and had to rely on air support. Airplanes run out of gas and ordnance very quickly. Naval vessels carry lots of shells.

Quoting UALPHLCS (Reply 47):
The last two large amphibious landings where Somalia, where the Marines and SEALS where met by the Media and Kuwait. Where we won't know the answer to the question because the Missouri was there.

There certainly isn't the pressing NEED for large caliber Naval Guns.

The Kuwait operation was one where the enemy was surrendering to the Battleship's drones, and the big guns were able to provide close support for the Marines and the entire right flank as it moved up the coast road toward Kuwait City. That support was crucial to the success of the operation and released more air assets further inland.

The Somalia landing was a publicity stunt/goat screw that some numbnuts decided to turn into a PR event..... The SEALs that came ashore to prep for the Marines who were to cover the retreat ordered by the administration (who had lost their taste for battle when it got a little difficult with 18 lost in a battle where hundreds of the enemy were killed, and they were lost because the administration refused the equipment requested which was readily available) was not really a landing against an entrenched enemy.

The fact that we don't foresee an opposed landing by marines from landing craft doesn't mean that we don't prepare for it or have the equipment necessary. The day we have to seize a port facility or installation near a shore from an enemy who has armor and dug in positions is the day before we have congressional inquiries as to why we did not have proper naval gun support.
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Pyrex
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RE: Naval Gun Question

Thu Dec 14, 2006 4:46 am

Quoting Miamiair (Reply 46):
Yup, that's a General Purpose Toilet Bomb.

What is the purpose of it? To scare the sh*t out of the enemy?

Seriously, is that photo real?
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