Drake's Drum

As announced previously, my book, Drake's Drum: The Peace of Amiens has recently been published by Sea Lion Press. I ask the moderators indulgence in starting a new thread to host tidbits from the world of Drake's Drum.

I’m pleased to announce the launch of the Drake’s Drum website today. There are photographs, fact files and all sorts of information to interest and amuse. Links in blue are 'live' links in grey are coming soon. ish.

www.drakesdrum.co.uk

Below is a photograph from the world of Drake's Drum. A Messerschmitt Me 364 bomber above New York City, 23rd June 1945.

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Photographs from the world of Drake's Drum.

'Montana class battleships were the backbone of the US Navy's battle line...'

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BB68 USS Ohio seen from the air, September 1947.

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BB70 USS New Hampshire entering New York harbour, December 1948
 
As the ships of the Drake's Drum timeline have stimulated a lot of interest on various message boards here are a couple more. These two designs were the main protagonists at TTL's Battle of the River Plate. Graf Spee is based on one of the OTL initial designs for Scharnhorst, Neuentwurf D-02-31. The battle cruisers Invincible and Inflexible are based on a fictional design which I have called 'E3'. It is essentially based on the British K2/K3 design of 1921 OTL but with characteristics of the final G3 design.

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'Essentially conceived as a heavy raider the design of the Hipper class battle cruisers grew out of two inspirations. Though based on the Deutschland type they also owed much to the concept apparently embodied in the design of the Soviet battle cruiser Frunze. Co-operation between the German and Soviet military's was close in the late 20s and early 30s and German designers were very impressed with the Frunze not realising that she was a failure.

Hipper survived the war of 1940, Graf Spee left Germany shortly before the outbreak of hostilities and undertook a lengthy raiding cruise in the South Atlantic. She was sunk on 13th December 1939 at the Battle of the River Plate when she encountered the much faster and more powerful British battle cruiser Invincible. Though she put up a brave fight she was quickly silenced and sank seven minutes after the engagement began with heavy loss of life.'

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This is a picture of HMS Inflexible at the 1933 Fleet Revue.
 
More 'never weres' from the world of Drake's Drum. These are Photoshopped images of the Amagi class battle cruisers, Atago and Takao. The top image shows Atago shortly after completion, the lower one, Takao after her re-construction in the early 1940s. The website has also been updated with photographs from the 1940 US Presidential Election.

www.drakesdrum.co.uk

 
"The design of the Caracciolo class battleships went through several phases and was even changed after the ship was laid down. The Italian Admiralty were unhappy with the placing of the mainmast in the early design, citing the problem of smoke interference from the forefunnel. The decision to move the conning tower and mainmast forward caused a rearrangement of the forward turrets. As well as this, ‘A’ turret was judged to be too near the end of the ship in a position where the movement of the hull in a lively sea would affect gunnery adversely. Also, the height of the turret rear (due to the height of the forecastle) meant that end on fire forward with B turret at 0 degrees elevation was impossible. When ‘A’ turret was moved aft it had little effect on internal arrangements but a two feet reduction in the height of A barbette was acheived because it was further back on the sloping focsle. A small increase in the height of ‘B’ barbette was also made. The photographs show the ship as she was in the late 1920s and after her reconstruction in 1944." www.drakesdrum.co.uk #DrakesDrum #AlternateHistory

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"The design of the Caracciolo class battleships went through several phases and was even changed after the ship was laid down. The Italian Admiralty were unhappy with the placing of the mainmast in the early design, citing the problem of smoke interference from the forefunnel. The decision to move the conning tower and mainmast forward caused a rearrangement of the forward turrets. As well as this, ‘A’ turret was judged to be too near the end of the ship in a position where the movement of the hull in a lively sea would affect gunnery adversely. Also, the height of the turret rear (due to the height of the forecastle) meant that end on fire forward with B turret at 0 degrees elevation was impossible. When ‘A’ turret was moved aft it had little effect on internal arrangements but a two feet reduction in the height of A barbette was acheived because it was further back on the sloping focsle. A small increase in the height of ‘B’ barbette was also made. The photographs show the ship as she was in the late 1920s and after her reconstruction in 1944." www.drakesdrum.co.uk #DrakesDrum #AlternateHistory

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The Itlians had the best looking ships in my eyes, also i like the Dazzle camouflage ore if that is what it is called.
 
There are new updates to the Drake's Drum website. The Photographs section has been expanded and Appendix 17: The Royal Navy Air Arm 1932 to 46 has been posted.

www.drakesdrum.co.uk

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Above: A RAAF Cormorant Mk II at Darwin, 1946. The RAAF used small numbers of ex-Royal Navy Cormorants as land based dive bombers, though the dive bombing role was later supplanted by fighter-bombers. The Cormorant was based on the Boulton Paul P.96A design of 1941.

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Above: A Fairey Firefly Mk II. This aircraft originated with a 1939 Royal Navy specification, NAD925/39A for an interceptor. A parallel project for a two seat fighter with a much thicker wing to specification N.8/39 did not proceed far.

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Above: Hawker Sea Furies. The type's powerful Bristol Gemini engine made it extremely fast.
 
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Some Regia Marina carriers from the Drake's Drum timeline. Top Leonardo Da Vinci after her reconstruction. Bottom, Aquila at sea, 1946.

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Top: An Me 364 bomber prepares to take off. The outboard jetisonable undercarriage legs are in place, suggesting she has a full load. Bottom: A Ju 187 of TragerGruppen 186 from the carrier Strasser.

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There is a new update to the Drake's Drum website. Appendix 14: The Armada Espana 1939 to 48 has been posted.

Below, two shots of the battleship Pelayo. Initially named Impero, she was built for the Regia Marina but sold to the Armada in 1941 . The purchase was financed with loans from the Reichsbank. The ‘Super Washington type’ heavy cruiser Andalucia was built at El Ferrol. Her construction was an unhurried affair, but she was both fast and powerful.

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Here are two more Photoshopped images of warships from the Drake’s Drum timeline. The first is the Soviet battleship Frunze (formerly the Poltava) which has undergone a comprehensive reconstruction to become a battleship. Although certainly ambitious, this reconstruction was actually contemplated in OTL, though it was never carried out. The second is HMAS Endeavour, seen here running her trials in 1926. In Drake’s Drum, HMAS Australia becomes a museum ship and an incomplete Hood class battle cruiser is purchased by the Royal Australian Navy (with a little help from the RN) to replace it. There is a significant redesign, the ship becomes flush decked, the height of the aft barbettes are increased, the secondary armament is modified and a more modern style of conning tower is fitted. There would need to be more hull volume aft to compensate for the extra weight and the ships draught would increase. Top speed would be slightly reduced.

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The photographs section of the Drake’s Drum website has also been updated and you can read the full story of the Frunze in the 'Peterson's World Fighting Ships' section of the Appendices section.
 
Just finished reading it. I liked the detail and found the plot both enjoyable reasonably plausible... with three huge exceptions.

You've allready written your book, which is more than I ever did with any of my TLs, so it seems somewhat churlish to criticize, but I will do it just the same (spoilers follow in white-type).

1. It seems to me incoceivable that Britain would divest itself of Empire, and India in particular, with Japan rampaging through China and Indochina, and the Nazis at the Urals
2. That Hitler would stumble into a war with the U.S over the Azores without first trying to Neutralize Britain (which in and of itself could be the trigger for war with the U.S) seems even less conceivable.
3. Finally, the Soviets rebuilding a functional state behind the Urals, engaging the Germans in large scale combat, and doing all this without the Germans in Azerbijan realizing that the Brits were resupplying them or taking steps to complete the destruction of the Soviets seems far-fetched. The survival and relatively good performance of rump CHina to 1945 with Japan neither starved for oil nor engaged in the pacific war seems only slightly less plausible.

(as an aside, that a Pakistan would come into existence without the Brits birthmaiding it also seems unlikely. Nehru would simply crush the muslim sepratists with the Indian army, and the bloodside would be relatively one sided. The only reason this didn;t happen OTL was that the British divided the army and determined the borders before leaving. If they simply hand over the keys to a majority government then the majority crushes the minority

Likewise a managed population transfer of ALL Muslim Palestinians to the Transjordan, even in the immediate aftermath of crushing the Great Arab Rebellion is also unworkable. Transjordan simply couldn;t support them all and a loyal British client would be royally ticked off and shoved into the axis camp. What COULD perhaps be done, is a managed population transfer involving Assyrians as well as Jews from Iraq to Mandatory Palestine. Iraq had the land to to support the Palestinians and the position of the Assyrians, who the British maintained as clients but were unable to protect from massacrres, was precarious. Something similiar versus Egypt, perhaps with Copts being concentrated in the canal zone might also have been managed.)

The thing is, I think you could have maintained your plot and theme without these blunders. Simply have Britain take steps towrds imperial divestment in the 1940s but wait for full implementation, particularly in India (perhaps dominion independence coupled with a defense alliance?), have Hitler invade Britian in retaliation for their revealed support of the soviet rump (and Japan do the same), and then have the U.S intervene, either immediately or following the resumption of submarine warfare.
 
Very proud to announce that Drake's Drum: The Peace of Amiens is now available as a paperback.
So all those of you who've been saying 'Oh, sorry, I don't do e-books' are out of excuses. ;)
 
Yboxman, again thank you for your input. To answer your points in a largely spoiler free way;

1) A blueprint for action, and action itself, are not necessarily the same thing.

2) It happened in OTL. Why not here? In fact the TTL circumstances are far more enticing to the Germans. This is a topic I touch on in the first book but go into in more detail in the second – which I hope will be released before the end of the year. (I had hoped to release the entirety of Drake’s Drum in a single volume. My publisher prefers releasing it in 3 parts. I trust his expertise but this means some issues are explained over the 3 books not all at once.)

3) The OTL ‘Generalplanost’ was vague, stopped at the Urals and also took no account of the reservations you raise. The combat is not large scale. Yet. This issue is explored in the first book but there is more about it in the second.

The aside – The Brits did not ‘Birthmaid’ Pakistan. Mohammed Ali Jinnah did. In OTL and TTL the British negotiators didn’t understand they were in a poker game and completely underestimated the willpower and political acumen of the Indian politicians.

The second aside – See my point 1.

:D
 
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