Warships that should never been built?

Cancel hms Vanguard, IMPLACABLE and indefatigable and build HMS AUDACIOUS as a priority. It should be obvious from 1940 onwards that the future of the RN is Carrier aviation
It’s only obvious with the hindsight we have with the internet. Nobody expected carriers to overtake battleships. As late as 1945, some American admirals such as Admiral Spruance believed battleships were still the backbone of a navy.
 
Cancel hms Vanguard, IMPLACABLE and indefatigable and build HMS AUDACIOUS as a priority. It should be obvious from 1940 onwards that the future of the RN is Carrier aviation
Obvious might be well over stretching it, not too mention the Audacious is based off of years of experience, 1940 doesn't have that experience. The Implacables were well needed when you consider the losses the RN had taken, and they should have been pushed up in priority in building. Vanguard was a questionable choice by the time tbf.
 
It's not that the Implacables shouldn't have been built, they were badly needed. They should however, have been built on larger hulls with full height hanger decks.
 
It's not that the Implacables shouldn't have been built, they were badly needed. They should however, have been built on larger hulls with full height hanger decks.
Given when they were laid down, would that have been likely? How much extra work would have been needed in the design period?
 
Work on the two ships was suspended for two years just after they were laid down. There was plenty of time to redesign them to remove the compromises imposed by the Treaty limits. Even at the time they knew 14ft high hangers were inadequate.
 
There are plenty of light FFG/Heavy corvettes that they could have chosen. A reworked/enlarged Sa'ar 5 would have been an easy solution. Damned ships were even built in Mississippi (of all places) by a major U.S. defense contractor.

The problem the U.S. ran into is the same one that has screwed up the F-35 program for so long. They tried to create an "all in one" jack-of-all-trades ship rather than build proper ships for the roles. That is clever as hell if/when it works, the operative term being "if/when", when it doesn't you wind up the F-111 (thank God for Tom Connolly). Coup-led to that was the over reliance on vaporware to make the ships function, especially the Non-Line-of-Sight Missile. There was also the classic "oooh...shiny" problem when it came to the concept of "mission modules", several of which were themselves reliant on unproven/undeveloped tech to work.

The result was a 3,000 top warship, the same size as a Sumner class DD (3x2 5"/38, 3x2 3"/50 DP, 10 21"torpedoes, and misc light automatic weapons/Robert B Smith class DD/minelayer (as before except with 80 mines replacing the torpedo tubes) armed with a 57mm gun, two 30mm chain guns (sometimes, they are part of the Surface warfare module) and 4x1 M2 .50 cal. The LCS are far faster than the older DD, but are also shockingly less survivable than a 72 year old design and carry armament that barely qualifies them as an inshore patrol boat.

Never buy something designed by a committee working for four or five different bosses with entirely different goals.
By the time you rework the Sa'ar 5 into something the USN finds useful you are better off having started with a new hull. Once you make it actually seaworthy, add room for one SH-60 let alone two, and put in the stuff the USN wants but ISC finds no need for, and take out the stuff the ISC needs but the USN has no need for it's a different ship. The USN does not need a missile boat for sinking large enemy surface ships, or something to cover them from air attack, it has CVNs and SSN's for the sinking and DDGs/CGs to cover them, it needs something to cover all the scutwork the world's largest navy with the biggest commitments has to do

The LCS tried to do everything in one because it was predicted that they would only get budget for one class of small ship in the 00's. Ergo they felt there was no choice but to build a do everything ship. If you told them that Congress would fund more than one anyways, well you would have probably gotten a Light Frigate, a Minesweeper/Patrol Ship and a new Gunboat

Mission Modules as a concept had been proved with Stanflex back in the 90's. Execution was botched, but that's the "Oh Shiny" symptomatic of Rumsfeld's "Skip a Generation" ideas
 
Actually the Iowa class was the future of the USN battle cruiser. 5 knots faster than the "Fast Battleship" classes (North Carolina, South Dakota and the never built Montana classes were all 27 knots) it was a a battle cruiser, but in the school of "G3" design. The Iowas were not a balanced design, unlike the Montanas, and they were clearly built to accompany the fast carrier force (i.e. the Scouting Force). The fact the BB-61 class was arguably the best overall battleship design of all time, with exceptional protection and God's Own 16" rifle, obscures this, but the data makes it pretty clear.

I have never really understood why the USN was, after the Lexingtons were cancelled, absolutely allergic to the term "battle cruiser", but it was (the example being the Alaska class being called CB ( Cruiser, Big), which was, frankly not even good grammar much less a proper descriptive instead of the closer to the truth BC).
I think the aversion to "Battle Cruiser" is a direct product of having seen the concept fail at Jutland, and also Dogger Bank, with the RN losing BCs despite having speed and hitting power. I suspect the Lexington-class were sacrificed upon that sober altar. I assume the USN thought funding for something better would come rather than engage in the refit to purpose dance. And indeed, I have mentally regarded the Iowa as the USN Battle Cruiser. But also the last of her kind given how the BB was now a dead end, in its place the fast BB was both, but fast enough to be relevant.

Without the maturity of airpower as we transition from 1000 to 2000 HP power, the Montana-class would be the necessary capstone to fight the decisive fleet battle. Minus WW2 they would be our last BB and swiftly overtaken in the next decade. I think the unfortunate Alaska was an unfortunate dead end on the way to a BC with Cruiser roots, and oddly in contradiction to the weak protection issue I propose killed Lexington. But as distant hunter transitioning to CV escort, a role better taken by Iowa, it is not wholly illogical. On the dark side of alternatives the Alaskas might have crowded out the Iowas. My logic is that without the G3 line being built, the USN is not pressed for speed, Alaska fits the bill "cheaper", is NOT a BB, and fills a niche with the Montana pushed forward to create a new standard battle line and so on. And I know such butterflying annoys you, so I do not offer the notion lightly. This time after Treaties, as air power matures and absent the motivator of PH leaves me with a murky set of dead ends and carry forwards that fight the last war in philosophy. Now I backtrack to unravel that muck. Part of me wants to tank the WNT and let the Lexingtons show the way to Iowa, the other BBs growing towards Montana from the 1920 SoDaks, a far better line by late 1930s even if some dogs are built in between but aging out.
 
Only when compared to later designs. For the 1920s they were decent ships. But by 1940 they were painfully obsolete
Over gunned. Under hulled. Way too many. In the 1920s. They managed to pack the capabilities of a 5000 ton ship in 7000 tons. Their only saving grace was that they were there in 1941.
 
This thread is awesome.... I never heard of the HMS Captain before, nor her sister ship the HMS Monarch... I found a model of the HMS Captain and I am in love with it, despite it's flaws...

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Driftless

Donor
A ship I was thinking of is the Omaha class light cruisers. Useless hunk of metals.
Obsolescent/Obsolete... take your pick and you are correct, but they still provided useful service throughout WW2. They operated in secondary roles, which freed up other ships. They, like many ships with a great deal less mileage on them, got sent off to the bone yard as soon as the shooting stopped, but they did serve a purpose.

By comparison, the USS Wolverine and USS Sable were converted paddlewheel steamers turned into aircraft carriers for training on Lake Michigan. How many hundreds of budding naval aviators flew off those ancient ships?
 
By the time you rework the Sa'ar 5 into something the USN finds useful you are better off having started with a new hull. Once you make it actually seaworthy, add room for one SH-60 let alone two, and put in the stuff the USN wants but ISC finds no need for, and take out the stuff the ISC needs but the USN has no need for it's a different ship. The USN does not need a missile boat for sinking large enemy surface ships, or something to cover them from air attack, it has CVNs and SSN's for the sinking and DDGs/CGs to cover them, it needs something to cover all the scutwork the world's largest navy with the biggest commitments has to do

The LCS tried to do everything in one because it was predicted that they would only get budget for one class of small ship in the 00's. Ergo they felt there was no choice but to build a do everything ship. If you told them that Congress would fund more than one anyways, well you would have probably gotten a Light Frigate, a Minesweeper/Patrol Ship and a new Gunboat

Mission Modules as a concept had been proved with Stanflex back in the 90's. Execution was botched, but that's the "Oh Shiny" symptomatic of Rumsfeld's "Skip a Generation" ideas
If the Navy wanted a cool-looking ship to sell to Congress, the French La Fayettes might have been a good choice. A US equivalent of the French version might have a 76 mm gun, a SeaRAM, a pair of autocannons, ASW torpedoes, and two quad-pack Harpoon launchers. There would be extra space for at least the self-defense Mk. 41 VLS firing ESSMs. The French designed the La Fayettes for the "mid-intensity" environment that the LCS is supposed to be optimized for, but they also have sound-dampened engines and Prairie-Masker to make them viable ASW combatants and fair replacementsfor the Perry-class.

If the Navy is still wed to the modules and the Frigate/Minesweeper/Marine transport idea, the Danish Absalons were showing up at the same time. Stanflex modules were already common, not that I would call them all that great of an idea. The real draw is the size, which gets you two big helicopters and a huge storage deck that can carry minelaying or minesweeping gear or a company landing team. What the Absalon lacks compared to a La Fayette, especially one like the Singaporean variant, is general warfighting capability, although two helicopters count for a lot in ASW and it can be configured to carry a lot of missiles.
 
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If the Navy wanted a cool-looking ship to sell to Congress, the French La Fayettes might have been a good choice. A US equivalent of the French version might have a 76 mm gun, a SeaRAM, a pair of autocannons, ASW torpedoes, and two quad-pack Harpoon launchers. There would be extra space for at least the self-defense Mk. 41 VLS firing ESSMs. The French designed the La Fayettes for the "mid-intensity" environment that the LCS is supposed to be optimized for, but they also have sound-dampened engines and Prairie-Masker to make them viable ASW combatants and fair replacementsfor the Perry-class.
They are also pretty good stealth-wise from what i've read. The ability to carry a VLS is enough of a selling point alone...
 
If the Navy wanted a cool-looking ship to sell to Congress, the French La Fayettes might have been a good choice. A US equivalent of the French version might have a 76 mm gun, a SeaRAM, a pair of autocannons, ASW torpedoes, and two quad-pack Harpoon launchers. There would be extra space for at least the self-defense Mk. 41 VLS firing ESSMs. The French designed the La Fayettes for the "mid-intensity" environment that the LCS is supposed to be optimized for, but they also have sound-dampened engines and Prairie-Masker to make them viable ASW combatants and fair replacementsfor the Perry-class.
Or the Singaporean variant of the same? I mean that's already designed for S-70's and Harpoons unlike the La Fayettes
 
Or the Singaporean variant of the same? I mean that's already designed for S-70's and Harpoons unlike the La Fayettes
The Formidables' status as Singapore's capital ships has pushed them to have area air defense capabilities that a La Fayette-derived LCS wouldn't need. The LCS should have followed the example of the Perry's local area air defense rather than a Knox or Spruance's point defense of an Aegis ship's wide area air defense capability. Modern ESSMs and sensors can basically match the Perry's air warfare capabilities.
 
The Formidables' status as Singapore's capital ships has pushed them to have area air defense capabilities that a La Fayette-derived LCS wouldn't need. The LCS should have followed the example of the Perry's local area air defense rather than a Knox or Spruance's point defense of an Aegis ship's wide area air defense capability. Modern ESSMs and sensors can basically match the Perry's air warfare capabilities.
Sure but for the Formidable you already have the design ready for a VLS section, surely it would be easier/cheaper to replace the Aster with the Mk 41 for the ESSM's rather than have to modify the La Fayette to have a VLS compartment? And I'd presume either the French or Singaporean design would get a change to US radar systems and the like rather than the Formidabl'e systems? And again the 76mm conversion work is done already.

But basically yeah something along those lines would have made more sense I would have thought than what we see in the LCS, I often wonder what the sailors of both the LCS's and Formidable's have thought of each others designs when the LCS hulls were in Singapore?
 
Sure but for the Formidable you already have the design ready for a VLS section, surely it would be easier/cheaper to replace the Aster with the Mk 41 for the ESSM's rather than have to modify the La Fayette to have a VLS compartment?
The LaFayette is already fitted for but not with a VLS section, so technically you wouldn't need to modify it (the hull at least, fitting a Mk41 VLS may be a issue otoh). Granted at the end, the USN version would probably be unique in its own way, such as how the Formidable is derivative of that of the LaFayette.
 
That was less the actual concept and much more the error of the Admirals command the fleets at sea. Big as a battleship, guns as big as a battleship, has "Battle" in the name = BATTLESHIP, well at least until they get hit by a battleship size round when they become "lost with all hands".

The USN made an opposite mistake, but one that has similar tragic results, with the Juneau class AA cruisers. They named them Light Cruiser, Anti-Aircraft instead of something more in keeping with their design, even destroyer leader anti-aircraft would have been a better designation. Instead they started with CL, so they were used in a similar way to light cruisers. Bad idea. A truely descriptive name would have been Big Destroyer with a shit-ton of ammunition, surface combat contra-indicated since there effectively overstuffed 5"/38 magazines with engines.
What happened with the Juneau's?
 
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