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Here's a naval gunnery oddity...

JayhawkerJayhawker ModeratorPosts: 17,732 Senior Member
I've noticed in pictures of old British and American battleships, there is what appears to be a large clock in the superstructure of the ship...only recently I noticed that it's not a conventional clock face...not enough numbers...
What I learned is that this is a "Range Clock" that was invented before the use of radio communications..there are two range clocks on each ship...one facing forward and the other facing aft and they were used to communicate the range to the target a ship was engaging to other ships in the battle line...

The ship in the picture is the U.S.S. Arizona at sea...her Range Clock is visible in the  superstructure...


 
Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"

Replies

  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 17,732 Senior Member
    The U.S.S. Maryland.

    7
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • Wambli SkaWambli Ska Posts: 1,704 Senior Member
    Cool!!!!
    I’m baaaaaaaaack… 😬
  • TugarTugar Senior Member Posts: 2,376 Senior Member
    edited September 5 #4
    Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.
    Winston Churchill
  • jbp-ohiojbp-ohio Senior Member Posts: 10,450 Senior Member
    edited September 5 #5
    Were there two hands? They had a range of 20+ miles. Every thousands yards  the second hand moved maybe?

    3600 yards would have one hand on the 3 and one on the 6.....

    "The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not." Thomas Jefferson
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 17,732 Senior Member
    As I understand it there were two hands...one denoting hundreds of yards and the other for thousands of yards...which was which, I have no idea....
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 22,602 Senior Member
    Big hand for thousands, little hand for hundreds???
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 17,732 Senior Member
    That would make sense...but then then it IS a British invention sooo....
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 8,883 Senior Member
    Makes me wonder about the communications system worked up for use of such a thing.  If you know range to your friendly ship, and the friendly ship gives you THEIR bearing and range to target, the rest should be pretty quick math for those with the ability and/or tables to triangulate off it.

    Serious gunnery can get to be some mind-bending stuff.  I found an aerial gunnery training manual in with some of my grandfather's WWII material.  Waist gunners in bombers especially had to deal with forward speed of their own aircraft in addition to whatever the other guy was doing, PLUS the natural trajectory of their own rounds.  I tried to comprehend a couple pages of it before diving under a blanket to start sucking my thumb. :D

    Shows you what a game changer radar was - that we were still daylight and optical only even creeping up to WWII.
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 17,732 Senior Member
    edited September 5 #10
    Just finished a book...Neptunes Inferno...about the naval actions off Guadalcanal...

    The Japanese Navy's gunnery was all optical...just one reason for the towering pagoda masts on their capital ships...
    While quite a few American ships had radar, many ships captains didn't trust it or know how to use it...Those who did were very successful against the Japanese ...quite a few of those that didn't ended up with their ships laying on the bottom of Iron Bottom Sound...

    One of the more interesting engagements was between the U.S.S. Washington and the IJN Kirishima which ended up in a close range gunfight between the two...The Washington was firing "super heavy" 16" rounds (2700+ lbs) at such a flat trajectory that the short rounds were acting like torpedoes and punching holes in Kirishimas hull below the waterline...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • CHIRO1989CHIRO1989 Senior Member Posts: 13,649 Senior Member
    edited September 7 #11
    Was that at night or during daylight hours? Nevermind, I see it was a nighttime engagement, would have been something to see the rounds impacting like that.
    I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn away from their ways and live. Eze 33:11
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 17,732 Senior Member
    The Japanese had been practicing night time engagements for years...the U.S. not so much since it was "hazardous".....but we sure got a costly on-the-job lesson in it...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
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