Naval Equipment that should and shouldn't have entered service

Since we are currently using the Army equipment thread for this topic I'd thought I'd set up the naval equivalent.
My personal top pick for a piece of naval equipment that shouldn't have entered service is the MK.6 Magnetic Exploder. It was a good idea but the technology of the day wasn't up to the task. My top pick for a piece of naval equipment that should have entered service is the MK.71 8"/55 naval gun since a variant of it would have almost certainly been used on what became the Zumwalts and thus saved the design a lot of grief and moreover the Spruance class would have mounted it on their forward 5" gun position if it had entered service since they were designed to do so
 
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Well, to be fair to the Mk. 6, nearly every navy at the time tried to deploy some kind of magnetic exploder and ran into big problems with it. What made the Mark VI particularly bad was a combination of the numerous flaws in the Mark XIV and related torpedoes, quite aside from the detonator issue, and BuOrd's pigheaded stubbornness in refusing to either conduct proper tests or believe submarine commanders when they reported failures. Without those it would have been a relatively minor instance of "nice in theory, flawed in practice".

A piece of naval equipment that I would definitely nominate for "not a great idea" was the naval ram, specifically in the steam era (in previous eras, especially before the dominance of sailing ships, it was a perfectly sensible weapon). To be fair to the designers of the time, it was really not clear how to build a workable steam-powered ironclad battleship, as opposed to the centuries and even millennia of experience they had with sailing ships or galleys (respectively), but the main reason it even seemed sensible was an over interpretation of a limited amount of actual conflict where the success of the ram had as much to do with chance as with any actual advantages it might have had. In the event, they probably ended up doing more damage to the ships that carried them (due to accidents and the like) than to the enemy. Everyone involved would probably have been better off investing more in developing new guns.
 
The DASH anti submarine drone, the Wasp helicopter was way better.

I would also have liked to seen if the Mauler SAM would have been good.
 
To be fair to the designers of the time, it was really not clear how to build a workable steam-powered ironclad battleship,
They could build great ships. The problem is immature technology.
No quick firing guns.
Super duper heavy guns are king.
Super duper heavy guns are incompatible with high freeboard.

I would have to go looking for it but once I found a really interesting thesis describing the Victorian navy as two navies. On one hand you have the children of Warrior, less combat effective but able to rule the waves. On the other you have all the turrets ships, almost designed to assault harbours because that is all their sea keeping was good for. Victorian navies talked about harbours a lot. With that realisation the 1870s - 90s make a lot more sense.

Then they invent large quick firers and things change.
 
The Mark VI Magnetic Exploder is at the top of the list of those that shouldn't have been adopted. Followed by the Mark-13 air-dropped torpedo. The Mark-14s (subs) and 15s (surface ships) had their teething troubles, but the Mark-13 wasn't fully debugged until 1944.

The USN should have adopted the Mark 71 8-inch gun.

As for ships? The lead Zumwalt could be kept as a technology demonstrator and test bed. Cancel the rest.
 
the MASURCA huge, long range naval SAM was probably a waste. It also conflicted head-on with the Crusaders. Talos and Sea Slug were no better individually but at least RN and USN had more ships to bolster the numbers and fill the gaps. They got seven and eight when France only got three platforms - two frigates plus Colbert cruiser.

Get instead more Tartar systems for more ships, and also improved variants of it by 1980 (instead of Cassard frigates still having them into the 2010's, for frack sake).
 
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the MASURCA huge, long range naval SAM was probably a waste.
The Masurca seems to bolster a longer range than the Tartar.
I presume its development had a lot to do with Frace wanting to support its own defense industry, which is the reason numerous other systems were developed and deployed only on French warships during the Cold War. Sentiments prevailed economics.
 
Interestingly enough, other French SAMs of the Masurca's era were abandonned in favor of US systems like the HAWK, but that was just before De Gaulle took office (in fact HAWK was ordered right when De Gaulle took office and only Général Crépin's staunch support of the order prevented cancellation).

I guess that France could have purchased Tartar then Standard SAMs instead of Masurca if De Gaulle never got back in power or was more supportive of US designs, but to be fair Masurca was quite extensively upgraded over its life. The issue might be more with the limited upgrades that the radars and electronics got. Had France had a better industry or worked with foreign countries it might have been able to do better work (maybe a naval version of the proposed smaller diameter version Super 530F with Skyflash seeker in the case of an Entente-Cordiale wank?).

On another topic, having Italy repell the stupid rule that prevented the Navy from getting fixed-wing aircrafts earlier than 1989 could allow Italy to purchase Harrier IIs for the Giuseppe Garibaldi, ideally in the same timeframe as the Spanish or earlier. Not a "should have entered service" per se, but more "should have entered service earlier".
 
I would have to go looking for it but once I found a really interesting thesis describing the Victorian navy as two navies. On one hand you have the children of Warrior, less combat effective but able to rule the waves. On the other you have all the turrets ships, almost designed to assault harbours because that is all their sea keeping was good for. Victorian navies talked about harbours a lot. With that realisation the 1870s - 90s make a lot more sense.
There's an examination of this in John Beeler's Birth of the Battleship: British Capital Ship Design 1870-1881 (2001), which may be the source you are thinking of. Don't have it to hand, but there's the same differentiation between ocean-going vessels, and armoured assault ships.
 
was really not clear how to build a workable steam-powered ironclad battleship, as opposed to the centuries and even millennia of experience they had with sailing ships or galleys (respectively), but the main reason it even seemed sensible was an over interpretation of a limited amount of actual conflict where the success of the ram had as much to do with chance as with any actual advantages it might have had. I
One if the few 'modern' periods where armor was superior to guns, and CSS Virginia showed that it worked, and then with Austria and Italy a fews years later made it seem a viable weapon
 
Yamato class of battleships - what a waste. Use the resources spent into aircraft carriers, radars and other electronics, more & better naval aircraft, more destroyers.
 
The DASH anti submarine drone, the Wasp helicopter was way better.

I would also have liked to seen if the Mauler SAM would have been good.
DASH did well in Japanese service, so that suggests to me that the US Navy wasn't using it properly.

For shouldn't have entered service: most post-Korea naval fighters. Planes like the Skyray, late-model Furies, and Tiger all didn't bring enough performance to the table. The Cutlass and Scimitar were downright dangerous. The Demon was dangerous, too, but at least it brought Sparrow capability. Only the Sea Vixen and Crusader were truly acceptable aircraft.
 
Scimitar were downright dangerous. The Demon was dangerous, too, but at least it brought Sparrow capability. Only the Sea Vixen and Crusader were truly acceptable aircraft.
This is made even worse when you consider the Sea Vixen could do the Scimatar's job just as well, as proved by it's use on HMS Centaur during the Tanganyika crisis.
 
The DASH anti submarine drone, the Wasp helicopter was way better.

I would also have liked to seen if the Mauler SAM would have been good.
I'd argue against including the DASH. While manned helicopters were more capable DASH came about in an era where most of the US destroyer fleet was lightly modernized WW2 designs that couldn't operate larger manned helicopters without thorough reconstructions. Combined with nuclear torpedos and depth charges it added a major increase in ASW relatively cheaply and allowed the USN to focus money in other areas ( New Planes, SAMs, and nuclear subs).

In the end Vietnam diverting pretty much all the funding and the old WW2 boats wearing out faster then planned ( also thanks to Vietnam) killed the program.

Not the best for its role of ASW but a major improvement over no helicopter.
 
One if the few 'modern' periods where armor was superior to guns, and CSS Virginia showed that it worked, and then with Austria and Italy a fews years later made it seem a viable weapon
Yes, that's what I was referring to with "over interpretation of a limited amount of conflict". Basically, navies took the evidence of the Civil War and the Battle of Lissa and decided that this meant that the ram had made a comeback, which it really hadn't.
 
Bf 109T would have been a nightmare for German carrier pilots.
But anyway, the Graf Zeppelin should never have even been conceived.
Germany cannot afford a carrier.
Money better spent on fixing up torpedoes, developing radar faster, and making more U-boats.
 
HMS Nelson and Rodney as built. They were 1500 tons underweight possibly the only ships ever launched that were lighter than designed. With another 1500 tons of structural steel the hull could have been made more resilient around the barbettes meaning ten years wouldnt be wasted on strengthening the turret roller path.
 
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