Long live the great ships!


February 10, 2003, 10:12 AM
I would love to see fiveor so of these old giants re-activated waiting off Kuwait with their 16-20" guns awaiting the order....

Let them all shake in fear again!

oh well, nice to dream...some really cool photos


My pop was a 40mm gunner and will enjoy the photo of some New Jersey crewmen preparing shells.

God bless the old warriors!

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February 10, 2003, 10:28 AM
I too would love to see the old battlewagons shipping out again. When it comes to an amphibious landing, NOTHING does the job of fire support like a 16" gun. It's like the wrath of God coming down.

I'd even settle for the Navy reinstating the old 8" gun crusiers like the old Vietnam era Newport News. These were also great fire support ships.

When facing fortifications on a hostile beach, rapid fire 5" guns just don't do the job.

2nd Amendment
February 10, 2003, 10:39 AM
I'm not certain but I don't think more than 3 exist which could be reactivated. Likely they never will be. Silly claims of cost in the face of massive budget absurdities and cost snafus for systems that have no presence and only minimal effect. There's something to be said for the value of simply having ships like these, but such is politics.

J Miller
February 10, 2003, 10:41 AM

Thanks for posting this thread. My dad was in the Navy during WW II. I found a section in this site that should get me pics of his ships and maybe even him. Since I have his service record, I'm going to give it a whale of a try.

Mike Irwin
February 10, 2003, 11:20 AM
Go to www.warships1.com for everything you could ever possibly want to know about American, and the world's, navy ships.

D.W. Drang
February 10, 2003, 11:36 AM
I have to agree. As a former muddy-boot Army guy I have to say that, short of a squadron of A10s overhead, knowing that a Missouri-class battleship is in range is about the most comforting thought there is. (I can talk to the warthogs a lot easier than the battleship...)

I've got a couple of former Navy ordnance types working for me--one of them is Active Reserves and management is constantly asking if he's gotten orders yet--and we got to talking about the old battlewagons. One of them mentioned that the biggest factor in the decommisioning was the way the gulped fuel. Another guy used to be gov't security at Bremerton, where the old ships are in mothballs, and HE mentioned that "they" looked at converting them to nukes, but in order to get an atomic reactor into them they would have had to start over from scratch--he said that due to the construction they couldn't even remove decking and drop it in from the top. (Not that I regard everything he says as gospel :rolleyes: but...)

Mike Irwin
February 10, 2003, 12:33 PM
Skip bringing the battleships back into service.

This was booted around a couple of years ago on the warships1 discussion boards.

The battleships, while certainly impressive as hell, are really overkill for what is required these days.

We ended up coming up with a VERY interesting series of prototypes for proposed bombardment support ships.

The basic theme was something along the lines of:

They would be sized appropriately to carry 4 modern 10" to 12" guns, which would be capable of using a wide array of munitions, from high explosive to bunker piercing to area denial munitions (cluster bombs).

Before you say that 10" to 12" guns aren't enough, remember that during WW II the majority of naval bombardment was done with cruiser guns, 6" and 8", while the battleships normally dealt only with the heaviest, and hardest, targets. Given advances in munitions, a 10" to 12" shell could very well be the equivilent of a 14" or 16" shell.

They would also combine attributes of the "arsenal ships" that were proposed a number of years ago -- large numbers of Tomahawks and Harpoons. A sub use would be as an adjunct to the Aegis cruisers used for fleet protection.

Other aspects, such as propulsion, armor, radar, etc. would be fully integrated into a modern design, not retrofitted.

Someone even suggested that these ships not be operated by the Navy, but by the Marine Corps...

February 10, 2003, 12:57 PM
Iowa (for some reason) and Wisconsin are still in the mobilization reserve. Given the wear and tear on Iowa and the fact that she is still (IIRC) one turret down would mean that any mobilization would fall to The Whiskey.

It is still not likely to happen ever again, certainly not for Iraq. North Korea? Hmmm...if that goes completely sideways, maybe. I dunno.

I agree with Mike. They're too expensive for what they do. Ah, it IS a pity, though...


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