Sumner and Gearing Class DD's

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Soth
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Sumner and Gearing Class DD's

Postby Soth » Sat Jan 05, 2008 4:03 am

I recently purchased the Order of Battle supplement for Victory at Sea. Im very well pleased with it, but i noticed that the U.S. Sumner and Gearing Class destroyers were not present. as I have several of these figurines for use in the game, I was wondering if there were some kind of chart, or way to make them myself. something somebody might have or might know thats usefull in creating the stats for these ships. Thank you.
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Postby BuShips » Sat Jan 05, 2008 7:24 am

As the Sumner/Gearing DDs were improvements of the Fletcher design, I'd just use the Fletcher stats but make sure to add the Radar trait (which the Fletcher has as well). Bump the secondaries from 1AD to 2AD and make them DP. Then bump the AA from 2 to 4. That's all I'd suggest to do for those ships. In service in 1944. The Gearing was in service in 1945 but because it's the same stats as the Sumner it isn't necessary to make special note of. VAS is not intended to take note of a 14' added hull section in the Gearings. Hmm, since it was for added fuel bunkerage it might help in a campaign, heh. Nah. :wink:
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Postby Soth » Sat Jan 05, 2008 5:53 pm

Thank you very much, next ship:Montana Class Battleship. I know this class was laid down and the first due to be commisioned in 1946, so I guess tecnically it would be considered Theoretical... conversion?
(Chuckles Mightily as he has a copy of Janes fighting ships dated print 1946)
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Postby DM » Sat Jan 05, 2008 6:34 pm

The Montana stats have been posted on the board a few times. If you do a search they ought o pop up somewhere :)
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Postby BuShips » Sat Jan 05, 2008 6:45 pm

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Postby Soth » Sun Jan 06, 2008 5:49 am

It is Interesting to note that both the sumners and gearings were not very seaworthy ships. very topheavy with the added AA armaments, and im not sure if even the extra 14 inches helped with the Gearing class
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Postby DM » Sun Jan 06, 2008 9:03 am

Its one of those aspects that doesn't come across in bog-standard wargaming, but I've played in and run campaigns where seaworthiness aspects have played a part and in situations like that you suddenly come to appreciate the benefits of a well designed destroyer hull!

The USN did have some seaworthiness issues with its DDs from time to time. Several were lost to bad weather during WW2 (and it was the analysis of the loss of four DDs during "Halsey's Typhoon" that led to the stability criteria that naval architects in the Western World have used since the 50s)
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Postby Soth » Sun Jan 06, 2008 5:26 pm

Well, The USN not only had seaworthiness issues with its DD's, but before WW2 Issues with its Cruisers as well.Prime examples being Pensacola class and Northampton class. Im certainly no naval architect, but it seems the Japanese and Germans didnt have much problems wth Heavy Cruiser Designs, but the Germans had problems with Light Cruisers, and it seems everybody had problems with balanced DD's. I dont suppose much research was put into hull design until after the war. while Its interesting to see something like that incorporated into a wargame, that would surely be cosidered an advanced rule, making a simple,easy to play game system, not so simple and easy to play.
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Postby Wishbone » Sun Jan 06, 2008 6:31 pm

Italian destroyers weren't brilliant either - they lost a couple of very modern destroyers to rough seas in the Med. The high bows they featured were adequate when sailing against the weather, but from any other angle they were vulnerable.

I also seam to recall that the Vittorio Venetos suffered a lot from water damage in the superstructure, including water getting into the gunnery range finders. This lead to an extra-ordinary requirement that all ships were to be completely waterproof! lol.

well, it amused me, anyway.
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Postby DM » Sun Jan 06, 2008 7:30 pm

Im certainly no naval architect, but it seems the Japanese and Germans didnt have much problems wth Heavy Cruiser Designs
They were pretty good from a hydrodynamic perspective (the German HC hullform has been used for various design studies post-war), but they had other interesting faults. The German designs featured particularly weak sterns (a feature shared with CL and BB designs as well) which led to several ships losing their sterns to torpedo damage and suffering various other indignities - apparently this was picked up in post-war US warship design with a number of features specified to eliminate potential problems. Meanwhile, Japanese cruisers featured a longitudinal bulkhead through the machinery spaces which looked good on paper - flooding from a side hit would be restricted to one side of the ship only, allowing propulsion to be retained - but in fact this caused a horrendous degree of asymmetry when flooded, which led to rapid capsize.
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Postby Soth » Sun Jan 06, 2008 11:23 pm

Seems to me all ships should have been waterproof in the first place LOL.And it is very interesting that centerline bulkhead, obviously a unique idea, but not very practical. And ive heard a number of times, the mention of the German Mackensen class BB, which had the weak stern, but never actually seen pictures of the design, supposedly a lot of the German ships get theyre Ideas from this planned class from WW1. Anybody seen any pics of this class, or design drawings?
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Postby Soth » Sun Jan 06, 2008 11:35 pm

Also a what if scenario a friend and I have been debating for some time. The scenario being a U.S. Iowa Class BB engaged in a gun duel with The Japanese Yamato. some debate among us as to the outcome of that battle.Ive read one article that says the 16 Inch gun on the Iowa class would have been the equivalent of the 18 inch guns on Yamato.Be interested in what folks opinions of this are. Im personally thinking it might have taken 2 Iowa's to take down Yamato. but just my opinion, also bearing in mind im a noob to VAS,but not a noob to the love of Naval combat. anybody gamed out a scenario like that yet?
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Postby MektonZero » Mon Jan 07, 2008 12:51 am

Soth wrote:Also a what if scenario a friend and I have been debating for some time. The scenario being a U.S. Iowa Class BB engaged in a gun duel with The Japanese Yamato. some debate among us as to the outcome of that battle.Ive read one article that says the 16 Inch gun on the Iowa class would have been the equivalent of the 18 inch guns on Yamato.Be interested in what folks opinions of this are. Im personally thinking it might have taken 2 Iowa's to take down Yamato. but just my opinion, also bearing in mind im a noob to VAS,but not a noob to the love of Naval combat. anybody gamed out a scenario like that yet?
A lot would have to depend on what gaming system you use to play it out. In VaS I'd say it was very close. The 18" guns are measurably better, but the US gets Radar. Iowa is faster and gets more choices of engagement range. Mostly, enough dice will get thrown around that luck won't play too big a part. It would probably just be a matter of chance who gets crippled first; first one to crippled is probably going to die. Yamato's best choice might be to charge in and accept the 6 to 9 gun disadvantage until the shorter range eliminated the US Radar advantage, then go broadside to broadside when the larger guns make the most difference. If the Iowa tries to extend the range, it would have to accept a 3 to 6 gun disadvantage to do so.

2 Iowas would eat Yamato for lunch.
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Postby BuShips » Mon Jan 07, 2008 1:27 am

Yep, that subject is one of the classics that war-gamers mull over. It's the Hood vs. Bismarck thing, super-sized with a large order of fries and a cold drink. :wink:

In a way it's an endless and un-winnable debate out of gaming circles, as they never fought for real. The only existing method to analyze it anew would be to use a detailed computer reconstruction of the ships innards and fight it dozens or hundreds of times over to see what transpires. I'd think that either ship could kill the other. The Yamato is more than a bit heftier in tonnage and has 18.1" main guns, while the Iowa class STS enhanced face-hardened belt armor and faster firing 'magnum' 16" guns help to make up the difference. Iowa could certainly have done lethal damage to the Yamato's thick hide.

An analysis was done by Nathan Okun around 1999 that disputes the ability of a non-mint 16"/50 naval gun to penetrate completely through the front turret armor (basically 26" thick, inclined at 45-deg.) of the Yamato class. This was done in October 1946 on an actual piece of turret armor that was made for the third Yamato class ship, the Shinano.

My feeling is while that may be true, the balance of the other 98% or so of the surface area targetable on the ship would of course not be that thick. A glancing blow for example might still put a turret out of commission, as it did with the case of the fight between the USS Massachusetts and the French BB Jean Bart. A deck or belt penetration of other vitals would provide for many results that could spell the doom for either of those ships.

I still like the photo of the ballistic tests, as it does show that a real test was done. A U.S. Navy 2700-lb 16" Mark 8 Mod 6 AP shell was fired at the 25.99" thick turret face of a Yamato class vessel, just like we wargamers would like to have seen done :D. While I think that Nathan Okun did some very interesting analysis, it did not convince me that a ship of the Yamato class was shall I say, untouchable. :wink:

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Postby Soth » Mon Jan 07, 2008 1:47 am

I had personally figured the Radar Fire control would have made a big difference in that engagement, but I had also considered the fact of the actual damage Yamato had taken when she was destroyed. Its true that Aerial torpedos and Bombs dont do as much per shot as a 16 inch shell does, but Yamato absorbed so much damage and in the end it was a japanese destroyer that finished her off,but i do believe Two Iowa's would have eaten her up, i was thinking the VAS system to test out that engagement actually.
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Postby Soulmage » Mon Jan 07, 2008 3:06 am

Well. . . ultimately the combined might of the FOUR Iowas that were actually built would have been capable of taking down the TWO Yamato classes that were built. :)

Which was the whole problem the Japanese had. It wouldn't have mattered if ton for ton their ships were superior in every way. . . the U.S. was just able to produce so many that they were doomed from the start.
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Stats

Postby rbax » Mon Jan 07, 2008 3:12 am

In Answer to the intial question.....

Allen M. Sumner/Gearing Class Destroyer
Ships of this class: Allen M. Sumner, Moale, Ingraham, Cooper, English, Charles S. Sperry, Ault, Waldron, Gearing, Eugene A. Greene, Gyatt, Kenneth D. Bailey, William R. Rush, William M. Wood, Wiltsie, Theodore E. Chandler

Originally proposed as an improvement to the Fletcher-class destroyer, the Allen M. Sumner-class bore little resemblance to the FLETCHER whose hull and machinery they were built around. The Sumner-class hull was almost identical to the Fletcher except for a 1' wider beam and having twin rudders, yet the topside of the vessels differed considerably. The five single 5-inch guns were replaced three twin 5-inch gun mounts. The Sumner also had a larger bridge area, which included for the first time in a US Navy destroyer, a Combat Information Centre (CIC), and a heavier anti-aircraft battery. All this added weight cost the Sumner approximately 3 knots on their top speed. They also did not meet the Navy specifications for operational range.

Despite these deficiencies, 70 Sumner’s were completed while the Navy's Bureau of Ships’ designers sought a fix. The fix came in the form of the "addition" of a fourteen-foot section to the mid-ship to accommodate increased bunker oil storage. The result was the Gearing-class destroyer, of which the no less than 98 were constructed.

Speed: 7”Armour: 2+ Special Traits: Agile, Sub-Hunter, Radar
Turning: 2 Damage: 3/1 In Service: 1944
Target: 6+ Crew: 13/4

Weapon Range AD DD Special
Secondary Armaments 12” 2 1 Weak
AAA 5” 4 -
Port/Starboard Torpedoes 10” 5 4 AP, One-Shot
Depth Charges 3” 6 2 Slow-Loading

Length: 383 ft. Displacement: 3,460 tons Speed: 36.5 kts. Crew: 336
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Postby BuShips » Mon Jan 07, 2008 5:22 am

Soth wrote:I had personally figured the Radar Fire control would have made a big difference in that engagement, but I had also considered the fact of the actual damage Yamato had taken when she was destroyed. Its true that Aerial torpedos and Bombs dont do as much per shot as a 16 inch shell does, but Yamato absorbed so much damage and in the end it was a japanese destroyer that finished her off,but i do believe Two Iowa's would have eaten her up, i was thinking the VAS system to test out that engagement actually.
Yes, radar would be a big plus for the Iowa, and the fact that they had worked out the kinks that were in the early war radar units.

You might be thinking perhaps of another ship where it was scuttled by a friendly destroyer though. I do not recall any of the Yamato's escorts giving any assist.

To continue soulmage's "joke" of an ever-increasing 2:1 ratio of Iowas over Yamatos, If the Shinano was completed as a BB, then it would have been hunted by the Illinois and Kentucky, lol. :lol:

If anyone has thoughts of mentioning the 20" gunned Yamato follow-ons, let me suggest the word Montana. :wink:
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Postby DM » Mon Jan 07, 2008 5:25 am

Its true that Aerial torpedos <and Bombs> dont do as much per shot as a 16 inch shell does
In reality (as far as the torpedo is concerned at least) its the other way round.
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Postby DM » Mon Jan 07, 2008 5:34 am

it is very interesting that centerline bulkhead, obviously a unique idea, but not very practical.
You'd have thought it was unique, but actually they were also used extensively on pre-dreadnought battleships (and indeed on battleships and larger carriers in general). The difference,, certainly as far as the bigger ships are concerned, is that big ships can cope with asymmetry whereas smaller ones can't. The noted British naval architect and historian DK Brown once said that "longitudinal subdivision has no place on anything smaller than a battleship" and having worked in and studied this area for over 20 years he's dead right :) RN ships weren't immune to this problem either. The Arethusas had wing compartments outboard of some of their machinery spaces and in this case extensive hand calc analysis showed that the ships could survive damage to these without causing problems. Unfortunately damage to these spaces PLUS (IIRC) a space forward or aft put the ship in peril. Nowadays a young naval architect would look at that and say, "but thats 10 seconds analysis on a PC"** and wonder why their predecessors were such idiots, but actualy the calcs concerned, if done properly, take weeks to complete when done manually.

** and even today some aspects of ship stability can come as a "surprise" to naval archs and operators for variosu reasons, even with the apparent abilty to analyse every possible case.
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