Warships that should never been built?

Coulsdon Eagle

Monthly Donor
I tried SO hard not to have to pore more venom out on the Alaska Class, but no...

The Alaska's were not fine ships. They had an exceptional 12 inch gun, possibly one of the best naval rifles every designed. Unfortunately those 12" guns were located on a battleship size hull (808 feet long, 91 feet wide, 35,000 tons full load) with heavy cruiser protection. Had the ship been a balanced design (i.e. proof against its own main battery) it would have had a displacement greater than the North Carolina class (728 feet L, 108 feet W, 45,000 tons full load) and South Dakota class (680' L, 108' W, 45,200 tons full load) battleships. The only ships the U.S. built during WW II that cost more than the Alaska class were the Iowa class battleship, the Kearsarge (which managed to cost $22M dollars more than the rest of the Essex Class for some bloody reason), and the Midway. Yep, the Alaska class cost MORE (fractionally, but still more) than a full on battleship with 9 sixteen inch guns and 20 5"/38s (the Alaskas carried 12 5"/38 and 1/3 fewer 40mm guns than the fast BB classes).

The ships handled like a pig in a poke (ONE rudder! 800 feet long, 35K tons, and ONE GODDAMNED RUDDER, which resulted in an 800 YARD turning radius), were extremely vulnerable to battle damage for a ship of their size due to the aforementioned single rudder and the complete lack of torpedo blisters or any other enhanced underwater protection (hey, it was only a $78 million, in 1940 USD, ship, who cares if a single torpedo can stop it dead if not sink it outright), and quite literally had no useful function that could not to fulfilled by either an actual battleship or by the two heavy cruisers or three CLAA that could be built for the same cost.

While BuShips can be forgiven for starting the design process while the Deutschland class "pocket battleships" were all the rage, the fact that the program officer spent one dollar on these insults to naval architecture after December 10, 1941 comes close to criminal.

BTW: NONE of the hulls had even been laid down before Pearl Harbor, they kept going with the building plans even AFTER it was obvious that the ship had no useful purpose. They were even built in the SAME YARD that built the Independence class CVL. SAME YARD. Five of the Independence class were laid down AFTER the Alaska. They wouldn't have even needed to change the destination for the building materials if they had changed over to carrier construction. Think about that for a second.

It was an abomination. Thank God the U.S. had so much excess capacity and an nearly unlimited supply of money.

Come on Cal, stop holding out on us & tell us what you really think!
 
HMS Bristol, a carrier escort cruiser ordered after the carrier she was to escort had been cancelled. A complete white elephant.
 
(why this wasn't included in Hornet I have no idea).
It wasn't a true elevator. It was an outrigger attached to a small lift stuck on the side of the flight deck/hangar.



Black tail on the aircraft at the time means she was part of Wasp's group.

Hornet was a slightly modified (wider flight deck) Yorktown, a design that was ready-to-go when an extra carrier was bought.

Regards,
 
Exactly. The Coast Guard get screwed at budget time, always has. A bunch of low hour, high speed, low manning cost (40-50 personnel vs. 113 for the Legend class or 160+ for the Hamilton class) that can be used specifically for the drug interdiction role (one thing the LCS classes are is FAST, as in freeway legal speed fast) that are designed for both helicopter operations and small boat ops is better than a kick in the nuts.
True but they're still crap ships, also gotta rip out the missile battery as I don't think CG's are meant to have those.
 
How about the RN's Type 21? . . . cheap and nasty.

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They'd been better off waiting a few years then building more Type 22's instead . . . and that's before we get on to the Alli' used in it's structure.

Did the job (barely) . . . but don't set fire to them

View attachment 517494

View attachment 517495

Best part . . . the RN are about to make the same mistake in the Type 31's.
I don't like the Type 21 either.

Unfortunately, it wouldn't have been possible to build 8 Type 22s instead of the 8 Type 21s because AIUI the design wasn't ready.

Even if the Type 22 design was ready in 1969 (when the first Type 21 was ordered) Sea Wolf and the Type 2016 sonar were not.

Therefore, we would have had 8 Type 22s completed 1974-48 "fitted for, but not with" Sea Wolf. "B" and "X" positions would have been occupied by twin 40mm gun mountings or vacant because Sea Wolf wasn't due to be installed until their mid-life refit. At least half of them would still be without Sea Wolf in the spring of 1982.

Therefore, I think that 8 Type 42s should have been built instead of the 8 Type 21s in spite of them costing about twice as much. (OTOH the unit cost of 14 Batch 1 Type 42s might have been less than the unit cost of the 6 Batch 1 ships of OTL through economies of scale.)

On the subject of the Type 42 the Batch I and 2 ships of OTL should have been built with the larger hull of the OTL Batch 3 ships.
 
USS Wasp CV-7 should have never been built as she was(ie a relatively slow poorly protected death trap)if only because the US literally only needed to wait eight more months to build her as a full sized Yorktown class ship.
Unfortunately, that isn't true.

American law limited the USN's aircraft carrier fleet to a maximum of 135,000 tons until well after the First WNT expired. Until 1938 in fact, when a law increasing the 175,000 tons was passed.
 
I don't like the Type 21 either.
In defense of the Type 21, as an export design, they had better habitability than their RN contemporaries. Even the senior ratings had their own cabins. (British yards aren't stupid; they tend to provide officers with excellent accommodation in export designs, as they'll be the ones making decisions on what the next design to be bought will be.)

They did have their problems as light, cheap frigates, but they provided experience in building all-gas turbine ships. And their Falklands service I don't think can be fairly criticized.

My thoughts,
 
HMCS Bra Dor DHE 400 hydrofoil was a waste of time and money.
She started as a small Royal Navy, Coastal Command patrol vessel. By the time they handed the project to the National Research Council of Canada, she had morphed almost as big as a DDE with all the bells and whistles except for a helicopter. As her engineering officer explained to me: Bras Dor was ahead of metallurgy. She developed cracks and leaks and needed another decade for steel alloys to catch up.
Meanwhile, the Royal Canadian Navy was realizing that they could not afford an aircraft carrier and was busy perfecting the Beartrap helicopter haul-down system for destroyers.
I served on the flight decks of HMCS Athabaskan and HMCS Iroquois.
 

This was one ship that was sensibly terminated during construction, and this is the Stalingrad Battlecruiser, which for no good reason was being built in the 1950s at a time when new technologies had rendered this type of ship obsolete. To be fair though, the only good thing from the class could've been it's armor, which would be useful against missiles. I had just learned that Stalin apparently wanted this type of ship, which is not really surprising.

 

CalBear

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True but they're still crap ships, also gotta rip out the missile battery as I don't think CG's are meant to have those.
Since that require removal of a single Mark 49 RIM launcher on both subclasses it is about a three day yard job (the rest of the system can stay since there is "space and weight saved" policy common on all USCG cutters dating back decades).

Honestly I'm simply trying to find a way to keep them from being the fastest harbor tugs in U.S. naval history. It is either that so use 'em up in SinkEx since sending them into a even a medium risk environment is tantamount to premeditated murder.
 
To be fair the Maine's and many other earlier US battleships long construction times were a result a mixture of not enough funding, rapidly changing technology,and the fact that US shipyards had basically been out of the warship building business for almost two decades among other factors
“Rapidly changing technology”

That’s why early American battleships are shit, they paled behind European designs and were already obsolete when commissioned
 
Since that require removal of a single Mark 49 RIM launcher on both subclasses it is about a three day yard job (the rest of the system can stay since there is "space and weight saved" policy common on all USCG cutters dating back decades).

Honestly I'm simply trying to find a way to keep them from being the fastest harbor tugs in U.S. naval history. It is either that so use 'em up in SinkEx since sending them into a even a medium risk environment is tantamount to premeditated murder.
You mean they never installed the VCS?? Talk about your useless weapon.
 
Unfortunately, that isn't true.

American law limited the USN's aircraft carrier fleet to a maximum of 135,000 tons until well after the First WNT expired. Until 1938 in fact, when a law increasing the 175,000 tons was passed.
That can be blamed on Congress being morons and not allowing for the carrier fleet to expand by changing the law the second the WNT and First London expired since the USN's main rivals in the RN and IJN were going to do so(although to be fair Japan was out the treaty system by then)
 
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That can be blamed on Congress being morons and not allowing for the carrier fleet to expand by changing the law the second the WNT and First London expired since the USN's main rivals in the RN and IJN in the were going to do so(although to be fair Japan was out the treaty system by then)
Politicians were cheapskates then and the American public was firmly isolationist
 
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