Sea battles....

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by Lucky13, Jul 7, 2007.

  1. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    On a one vs one slugger match, who would come back home to port in better shape, USS West Virginia or Bismarck?
     
  2. ToughOmbre

    ToughOmbre Active Member

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    Even though BB-48 was older technology, her 16 inch rifles, better armor and underwater protection would probably give her a slight advantage. Against an Iowa class, the Bismarck, or any other BB for that matter, would not stand a chance. Including the Yamato.
     
  3. mosquitoman

    mosquitoman Active Member

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    The only time to discount the Yamato and Musashi is when there's aircraft about IMO.
     
  4. ToughOmbre

    ToughOmbre Active Member

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    The far superior fire control systems of the American BBs would be the determining factor. As long as they didn't get too close to those 18.1 inch rifles, they would score many more hits at range than the Yamato or Musashi.
     
  5. mosquitoman

    mosquitoman Active Member

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    True, but one lucky hit can always change everything, especially with guns that size.
     
  6. ToughOmbre

    ToughOmbre Active Member

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    Luck is always a factor, but I would rather depend on fire control than luck. :)
     
  7. mosquitoman

    mosquitoman Active Member

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  8. mkloby

    mkloby Active Member

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    At close range, the Bismark would likely have the advantage due to her WWI style armor scheme combined with guns that threw light shells at high velocity. At longer ranges, where the heavy plunging shell is superior, West Viriginia would have the advantage.
     
  9. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    Bismark.

    Delcyros has some convincing figures to show how good the armor type and the ptotection scheme was.
     
  10. renrich

    renrich Active Member

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    The Iowa class was designed to withstand 18 inch gunfire.
     
  11. ToughOmbre

    ToughOmbre Active Member

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    Her armor was pretty good, but not quite as good as the American BBs. And Bismarck's underwater protection was lacking.
     
  12. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    How far would West Virginia's main armament fire compared to Bismarck's?
     
  13. timshatz

    timshatz Active Member

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    Bismark is faster, had excellent fire control for 1941 and probably fired faster. I'd give it to the Bismark in 1941. Later in the war? Unknown. WeeVee got upgraded and Bismark got sunk.
     
  14. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Gotta go with the Bismarck in this scenerio.

    As syscom pointed out her armour was better than most people would like to admit.

    She had excellent underwater protection except for the rudder area (but no ships had armour to protect the rudder).

    Her armament was good eneogh.

    Her range finder and fire control was excellent for the time she was in service.

    Later in the war she would have been outclassed by the Iowas.

    In this scenerio though I have to go with the Bismarck.
     
  15. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    The WV was designed in WW1. Its armour protection scheme was a reflection of design philosophies of that the pre war era.

    The Bismark was better protected and probably had better damage control designs simply for being a product of the 1930's where the engineers had a better understanding of ballistics and damage control.

    I'd give the advantage in every category to the Bismark
     
  16. mkloby

    mkloby Active Member

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    The Bismark had more of a WWI era armor scheme. Read about the division of the deck armor, which greatly reduced her vertical protection. Also, the manner in which the deck armor met the belt was similar to WWI era ships. This also apparently limited the depth of the belt, creating more of a vulnerability to underwater damage.

    Bismark was much heavier than the Colorado class, with many more tons of armor. Even though Bismark would not compare favorably with the newer US BBs, she would seem to have the advantage over WV. WV best option would likely be a long distance duel where the heavier US shells (which most accounts give the best armor penetrating ability) would be most effective. Luckily for Bismark she didn't have the 2700lb shell (which was almost 1000lbs heavier than Bismark's puny 15" shells).
     
  17. ToughOmbre

    ToughOmbre Active Member

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    When you come right down to it, the fight would probably be a toss-up, pick 'em in Vegas odds. My American predjudice picked WV, but it could go either way. :|
     
  18. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    BB-48 armour:

    16"-14" Belt
    8" Belt (aft)
    3" Deck (ends)
    16"-9" Funnel bases
    18"-9" Turrets
    16" Conning tower and tube
    3 1/2" Upper and 2 1/2" lower armour decks.

    Bismarck armour:

    Side 12.59" tapered to 10.35" at bottom
    Deck 1.96" upper deck
    3.14" - 4.72" armor deck
    Forward Transverse Bulkhead 8.7"
    Turrets 14.1" faces
    8" - 5" sides and roof
    Barbettes 13.5" sides
    Conning Tower 14.1" sides.
     
  19. trackend

    trackend Active Member

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  20. Seawitch

    Seawitch Member

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    Hi all
    After what happened to H.M.S. Hood I firmly agree with those who talk of a lucky shot, and wonder about the Bismark's 'excellent' fire control..short comings there may have had her clobbered by a Swordfish:twisted: The Hood was sunk because it's commander Admiral Holland had to run a dangerous stage in his otherwise perfect approach to engage the Bismark....a single salvo found it's mark during a window of opportunity.
    'Something seems to wrong with our bloody ships today' said Admiral Beatty at Jutland when he was told (mistakenly that time) of another British ship exploding.
    I would want to know more about the American ships vulnerability to internal explosion, which seemed a bit of a curse with British capital ships, such a weakness creates quite a consideration!
    It did happen quite recently on board that American Battleship....name escaping me just now..but with less than terminal results.
     
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