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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-01-28 11:49am
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Thanas wrote:
A 64 still outmatches a super frigate, except if she was a converted indiamen or so.
Only very marginally. The main guns of both ships are 24 pounders with the 64 generally carrying 18 puonders or lighter guns on the upper deck while the heavy FFs had 32 pound carronades.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-01-28 01:03pm
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It is more a question of manpower and durability. A 64 is still required to stand in the line of battle and built like that (especially the early spanish 64s were very tough) whereas a frigate is not.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-01-28 02:59pm
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Well the 60-ish ships did come in several flavors, I would never recommend taking a heavy frigate up against a war-armed Swedish 62 which carried 36 & 24 pound guns on the main decks. But a standard 64 is only have a marginally larger crew, about the same size and inferior armament (at close range, superior at longer ranges). It really isn't a so much better fighter as to make the outcome of a fight inevitable.

As a note Swedish heavy frigates actually served in the line at Hogland, although IIRC this was probably mostly possible because the Russian ships didn't have any guns heavier than 24s.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-01-28 03:30pm
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thejester wrote:
Simon_Jester wrote:
Forester's quite famous- no one has a reputation for doing Age of Sail combat better, so far as I know.
Yeah there's this bloke called Patrick O'Brian, I hear he went alright...
O'Brian? Reputation for doing as well, but I don't think there's anything like wide agreement that he did the job better.

I talked about reputation for a reason. You get a reputation for being the best, not just by being the best, but by being obviously better than everyone else in your field. Forester wasn't that obviously the best- but I don't know of anyone who's universally regarded as being better.

At least, not from the places I've heard both authors spoken of.

We could argue all day about whether O'Brian is better than Forester or vice versa. What of it? What counts is that it's a matter for debate. It's not something stupid, like trying to argue about whether Shakespeare is a better author than Tom Clancy. Their consensus reputations place them in the same weight class, even if not everyone agrees about which of them is a little better than the other.

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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-01-28 03:36pm
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CJvR wrote:
Well the 60-ish ships did come in several flavors, I would never recommend taking a heavy frigate up against a war-armed Swedish 62 which carried 36 & 24 pound guns on the main decks. But a standard 64 is only have a marginally larger crew, about the same size and inferior armament (at close range, superior at longer ranges). It really isn't a so much better fighter as to make the outcome of a fight inevitable.


Nothing is inevitable in war. But attacking a SotL with a frigate is still pretty much suicide simply because the SotL will have larger timbers.

And yeah, IMO there is not even a debate between O'Brien and Forrester, simply because O'Brien has too much hero worship.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-01-29 01:49am
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While HMS Orion was a 74, carrying a heavier lower deck battery than a 64, her sinking the French frigate Serieuse with a single broadside at Aboukir Bay really speaks for itself.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-01-29 12:12pm
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Frank Hipper wrote:
While HMS Orion was a 74, carrying a heavier lower deck battery than a 64, her sinking the French frigate Serieuse with a single broadside at Aboukir Bay really speaks for itself.

Fun fact, the Serieuse was "off-line", and would have been ignored if she hadn't taken the chance to get some pot-shots (12pdrs! :lol: ) at the Orion when she was turning to re-engage the french line.

Orion pieces:
Gundeck: 28 × 32 pdrs
Upper gundeck: 28 × 18 pdrs
Quarterdeck: 14 × 9 pdrs
Forecastle: 4 × 9 pdrs

Doesn't look out of the ordinary - so we can say that a average 74' (broadside weight of 781 lbs) would be sufficient to cripple/sink a 140 ft /32 gun frigate. USS Constellation wasn't much bigger, USS Constitution only marginally.

On the other hand, the "Original frigates" fielded (including carronades, so 2/3rds of this could only be brought to bear at less than 300 yards...) a 4th rate's equivalent of broadside weight (+/- 600lbs), so they would also have made mincemeat of other contemporary frigates.

So if they could close in to the enemy quickly, they'd have a chance against a 4th rate.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-01-29 01:51pm
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There was a huge difference between a 32 and a 44, bigger than between a 64 and a 74.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-01-30 10:49pm
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Yeah, there's also the question of just how heavy the timbers of the US frigates were. A razee'd 74 or a razeed one of the French 80's (The Belle-Poule, probably one of the largest pure sailing frigates ever built, was actually based on a very similar hull design to the French 80's, but was built in 1828) with a heavy main battery armament would present a very serious challenge to a 64, since the timbers of the hull are on SOL standards. If the US frigates--and I'd have to look at the plans to know--were built not merely with the various technological tricks which make them so interesting to people, but also to SOL standards of construction by following a design pattern appropriate for a razee, the difference would be much less.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-01-31 01:38pm
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CJvR wrote:
There was a huge difference between a 32 and a 44, bigger than between a 64 and a 74.


Sure, but the main point still stands.

Duchess, raze's are a different question of course, but given equally skilled personal the SOTL still wins simply because she has a heavier broadside. Frigates are no SotL, nor were they used as such.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-01-31 10:36pm
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Actually they were used in the line. The Swedish heavy frigates served in the line quite frequently in the Baltic wars. Although those ships were even more powerful than the US 44s in relation to their opposing SoLs.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-01 06:28pm
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CJvR wrote:
Actually they were used in the line. The Swedish heavy frigates served in the line quite frequently in the Baltic wars. Although those ships were even more powerful than the US 44s in relation to their opposing SoLs.


The Baltic wars however are a unique theatre of war, owing to the geography there. In several of the battles, frigates were the largest ships on both sides anyway. Heck, even galleys were still used there.

Using the baltics as any sort of indicator for how warfare on the atlantic would be happening is pretty absurd.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-01 08:44pm
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Sure there were actions like those, 1st & 2nd Svensksund for example. But I wasn't thinking of the coastal actions but the regular naval battles like Hogland & Reval. Coastal actions was a job for the army's fleet and the large frigates belonged to the regular navy. The large ships of the Army's fleet were the Hemmema and Turumna type frigates purpose built for coastal work and quite tough ships in their own right - the Hemmema carried 36 pounders!



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-01 08:58pm
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Again, these are not ships designed to travel the atlantic. They are for use in coastal waters and in coastal waters only.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-01 10:00pm
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Eh, no, they might be optimized for the baltics but that isn't quite the same thing.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-07 09:54am
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I have to bring up Peter Wessel Tordenskjold, the greatest Danish-Norwegian (well Norwegian) war hero of the Great Nordic War. On two occasions he attacked ships of the line with only a single frigate on his side. The first time was in 1715 towards the end of or shortly after the battle of Rügen where he first tried boarding a damaged 54 gun ship of the line, only to be spotted at the last moment. In the following exchange he battered the Swedish ship of the line, while escaping unscathed himself and forcing the ship of the line to flee.

A more interesting event was the skirmish at Jasmund (trefningen ved Jasmund) where Tordenskjold commanded the 30 gun frigate Hvite Ørn (White Eagle) and faced the 50 gun ship of the line Riga and the 34 gun frigate Phønix. He immediately attacked both ships and manoeuvred so cleverly that they were unable to land any serious hits on him, while he constantly pummelled them. In the end both ships were forced to flee, and only a chance hit on the Hvite Ørn forced Tordenskjold to stop the fight. Both Swedish commanders were court-martialled and the commander of the Phønix was sentenced to death.

Of course I should add that Peter Wessel Tordenskjold is rather unique in Danish-Norwegian history, in that he kept pulling off feats that were outright considered impossible. When you read a biography about him it tends to come off as particularly crazy pulp fiction.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-07 05:27pm
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CJvR wrote:
Eh, no, they might be optimized for the baltics but that isn't quite the same thing.


Alright then - if you think so, point out to any instances were frigates successfully engaged ships of the line in a battle in the atlantic. Surely, given the many wars between the british, french, spanish and dutch you will be able to do so?

Geography matters. The Baltic is completely unlikely the atlantic.



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A decision must be made in the life of every nation at the very moment when the grasp of the enemy is at its throat. Then, it seems that the only way to survive is to use the means of the enemy, to rest survival upon what is expedient, to look the other way. Well, the answer to that is 'survival as what'? A country isn't a rock. It's not an extension of one's self. It's what it stands for. It's what it stands for when standing for something is the most difficult! - Chief Judge Haywood

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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-07 07:28pm
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Well there was Pellew's action with Indefatigable and Amazon.
But neither the Spanish or the French would have needed to use heavy frigates in the line - they had SoLs. The US navy might have wolfpacked a SoL if they had built more than three super heavy frigates to begin with and the British didn't particulary favor the heavy frigate even after the unpleasant encounter with the USN's beasts. Also the smaller SoLs were phased out fairly rapidly at the time the super heavy frigates appeared so the relative lack of them taking on SoLs shouldn't be surprising.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-07 07:35pm
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CJvR wrote:
Well there was Pellew's action with Indefatigable and Amazon.


Which again involved unusual circumstances. Not making your point here.

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But neither the Spanish or the French would have needed to use heavy frigates in the line - they had SoLs.


There are numerous battles were using frigates would have been advantageous. The fact that neither side did, not even when desperately outnumbered, simply speaks to the fact that no frigate, no matter the design, can stand up to a SotL.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-08 11:45pm
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Thanas wrote:
Which again involved unusual circumstances. Not making your point here.
True, but then you didn't like the Baltic example where heavy frigates did serve in the line and unfortunately there isn't that many other examples of SoL/FF engagements due to a lack of frigates powerful enough to do any good as well as a doctrine to actually use them against SoLs.

Thanas wrote:
There are numerous battles were using frigates would have been advantageous. The fact that neither side did, not even when desperately outnumbered, simply speaks to the fact that no frigate, no matter the design, can stand up to a SotL.
Really? Which ones would that be, and were any of the available FFs powerful enough to do some good? If you are desperatly outnumbered the last thing you do is throw away more ships, particulary ships that can escape the debacle. I think the US super heavies could have taken on SoLs up to 64 guns as long as the SoLs didn't carry heavier guns than 24pdr.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-09 12:43am
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Did some digging on British super Frigates, didn't realize they were so few! Appart from a few French prizes (the French built about a dozen) the RN had 3 Razees and two purpose built ships before the USN shock caused the construction of a few more.

HMS Anson did pick a fight with a French 84
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On 15 September 1806, Anson encountered the French Foudroyant, 84, under jury rig some 15 miles off Havana. Assuming that she had been damaged in action Captain Charles Lydiard attacked but then after half an hour found that the French ship had only suffered from bad weather and retained all her fire power. He was forced to haul off after two men had been killed and 13 wounded, his sails and rigging had been badly damaged and the ships were drifting fast in shore.



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-09 06:25am
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HMS Anson was a razee, from an Intrepid-Class 3rd rate 64. As Thanas explained above, razees were something completely different from frigates or heavy frigates in terms of staying power.

Also, she was turned and damaged. Hardly a successful engagement.



The Greeks are somewhat undependable allies when it comes to keeping promises. I am sure the fleet of 300 galleys they promised will turn out to be 3 guys in an oversized cooking pot. (Thanas, revealing the plans for German world domination)

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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-09 10:31am
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Actually for even a heavy frigate to survive a 30 minute engagement with a 80 is an extremely successful outcome for the frigate.
A 64 wasn't that much more heavily built than the heavy frigates, you didn't get a heavy frigate simply by sticking 24 pounders on a 40 built for 18 pounders - at least not without bending the keel.

Endymion, 1797
Type: 5th Rate ; Frigate ; Armament 50 (24-pdr. )
BM: 1277 tons

Agamemnon, 1781
Type: 3rd rate ; Armament 64
BM: 1348 tons



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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-09 01:02pm
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CJvR wrote:
Actually for even a heavy frigate to survive a 30 minute engagement with a 80 is an extremely successful outcome for the frigate.


Eh...no. All that means is that the engagement lasted 30 minutes, not that she withstood 30 minutes of broadsides of a 84. It may just be that she approached, fired a broadside, was fired upon once and then turned away.

In fact, that is probably what happened here. 30 minutes is nothing in an engagement in those times where ships that made 12+ knots were considered fast. It could have easily cost that much time to just close to firing range.

Now, if you can show me where the ship withstood 30 minutes of direct broadside fire into the hull, then there would be a point (not much of a point as she still lost very easily, but still). But the damage shows the French tried to dismast here and failed, so it is not as if this proves that the ship could stay in the line of battle.

Quote:
A 64 wasn't that much more heavily built than the heavy frigates, you didn't get a heavy frigate simply by sticking 24 pounders on a 40 built for 18 pounders - at least not without bending the keel.

Endymion, 1797
Type: 5th Rate ; Frigate ; Armament 50 (24-pdr. )
BM: 1277 tons

Agamemnon, 1781
Type: 3rd rate ; Armament 64
BM: 1348 tons


That is not proving much at all. Please show me the timber strengths and material used and then we can talk further.



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A decision must be made in the life of every nation at the very moment when the grasp of the enemy is at its throat. Then, it seems that the only way to survive is to use the means of the enemy, to rest survival upon what is expedient, to look the other way. Well, the answer to that is 'survival as what'? A country isn't a rock. It's not an extension of one's self. It's what it stands for. It's what it stands for when standing for something is the most difficult! - Chief Judge Haywood

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 Post subject: Re: Age-Of-Sail Naval Question PostPosted: 2012-02-09 01:07pm
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Yes, but it was a razee of a well designed British class against a French class that was quickly given up for a revised design. The Tonnant class has a significant history of fighting badly under French crews and fighting well once they were reused in the British navy.

Surviving 30 minutes against a ship under jury rig is not that hard. From the text I read that he attacked, and got shot to pieces by the French response and had to flee, with the French not able to follow because of the already existing weather damage.
edit: Ninja'd by Thanas, but I might add that the engagement of USS President, Endymion fought for almost six hours, in which she only raked the Prsidend three times and then they exchanged one or two broadsides that crippled Endymions rigging. Six hours, six broadsides.

Also, the difference between tonnage is irrelevant, as BM only shows cargo capacity (=volume), not weight. It only uses length and beam for it's calculation.

HMS Endymion 15' 8" draught aft. ~ 1900 tons (using a block coefficent of 0,62)
Agamemnon had 17' 2" draught aft. ~ 2200 tons

So at the same lenght, the Agamemnon is 300 tons heavier, almost 15%, of which a lot was due to hull thickness. Given a extreme weight of a ton per m³ for oak (it's less) this might even mean that the 1000m² of the hull could be up to a full foot thicker than of Endymion (which means the Agamenon had more ribs, stringers and much thicker planking)



The Greeks are somewhat undependable allies when it comes to keeping promises. I am sure the fleet of 300 galleys they promised will turn out to be 3 guys in an oversized cooking pot. (Thanas, revealing the plans for German world domination)

I do archery skeet. With a Trebuchet.

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