HMS Furious Project

Discussion in 'North Atlantic Treaty Combat Fleet' started by Bob Pottle, Jul 4, 2008.

  1. Bob Pottle

    Bob Pottle Well-Known Member

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    Most club members know I'm making a hull mold for HMS Furious. Furious and its half sisters of the Courageous Class will never be great combat models due to their great length and two turrets, but they make handsome models and were strange ships. (I love building odd-ball ships, whether they're good combatants or not.)

    I operated the first IRCWCC Courageous model for several years in the NABS fleet. The same model is now in the U.S. Treaty Combat fleet where the rules make it more effective.

    For one year Courageous was run with two 1.5 unit sidemounts under a local NABS rule, and was at its best. The next year NABS decided to comply fully with IRCWCC rules so Courageous lost the pair of 1.5 unit cannons and was switched back to dual stern guns and a rotating bow gun. The turning circle was so large it was rare to get the stern guns on target. It wasn't upgraded with the 50% larger rudder allowed after IRCWCC rule changes, but would have turned significantly better.

    After selling the Courageous mold to Rich Wands in the OAF I considered making a Furious hull mold. In 2003 I retrieved the 1997 Courageous hull plug's framework from a pile of scrap material and modified the frames with the wider bulges used on Furious. The project was off and on until this spring when I had to either abandon it or finish it. When I realized how much better it would perform under Washington Treaty rules the project was a go.

    There are a few advantages for HMS Furious under Treaty rules:

    Speeds are based on those of the real ships rather than ship length. As one of the very few capital ships capable of 31-32 knots Furious can out-run more powerful Nagatos, Bismarcks, Yamatos, etc. which were equally fast under IRCWCC/MWC rules but historically slower. Furious can now be used as an effective 'run and gun' model able to out-run most opponents.

    Treaty rules are more flexible about cannon magazine loads and placement, and allow Furious to divide its gun combat units based on total number of BBs. With 3.0 units in armament but only two main gun barrels it can divide the allowed 150 BB load into 50 shot and 100 shot cannons, or two 75 shot cannons.

    A 100 BB cannon can't rotate or be used as a sidemount. Courageous has already shown stern guns are not very practical in such a long, slow turning hull so attractive as a 100 shot stern gun sounds, the best option is two 75 shot sidemounts (shown to be the best arrangement with the Courageous). Another advantage under Treaty rules is that both turrets are allowed to rotate, giving up to 2 sidemounts per side quadrant.

    The hull mold is half done, with the starboard side completed on Sunday. Last night the mid-line molding flange was removed to allow the port side of the plug to be waxed. Unfortunately the silicone used to temporarily attach the flange was extremely adhesive and tore off a few chunks of the plaster plug. Repairs were made last night and this morning, but the fresh plaster has to be sealed again before waxing, causing a delay.

    The good news is that the mold should be finished and removed from the plug by Tuesday. If there are no significant gelcoat defects a few hours of fine sanding will have the mold ready for waxing and hull production. The first hull will be made July 29-31 after I return from vacation.

    There are 3 build options for the WWI hull:

    1) Furious as planned with 2 x 75 shot sidemounted rotating cannons.

    2) As a hybrid battlecruiser/carrier with the aft rotating turret and forward 'flying off deck', under which would be a fixed 75 shot bow cannon.

    3) As the WWI carrier with 5 versus 4 combat units: 1 pump, 1 x 50 shot cannon under the forward flight deck, and triple 50 shot cannons inside the hangar at quarterdeck level (which is quite close to the waterline). This option may not be very effective due to previously noted problems with stern guns in such long hulls. It remains to be seen how well the model will turn with a 50% larger rudder than the one used on the Courageous.

    Bob
     
  2. froggyfrenchman

    froggyfrenchman Well-Known Member

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    Bob
    Good to see that she is coming along.
    How you decide to arm her might well depend on how the fleets are stacked at your local battles.
    I have just started following your fleet make-up thread, but even that wil change from event to event due to attendence.
    A few things to keep in mind, based on the battles so far.

    We are seeing the cannons move from the stern of some ships towards the bow.
    Either into forward-sidemount positions, or bow quadrant, depending on the speeds of the ships, and fleet make-up.
    Ships that were not able to bring stern cannons into play under IRCWCC rules
    are finding it easier to utilize them if the ship in question kept their speed, and some of the ships on the opposing team are now running slower.

    We have also seen that bow cannons are coming into play more on the faster ships, as they can at times become the hunters.

    Mikey
     
  3. Bob Pottle

    Bob Pottle Well-Known Member

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    Mikey,
    For some reason, though the bow isn't turning any faster through a turn than the stern, it seems easier to bring a bow gun on target in a long, slow turning model. Probably has to do with the turn away from the target to use stern guns.

    Rotating both turrets on the Furious is possible, but the rotating bow turret on Courageous wasn't useful at IRCWCC speed (20% faster than Treaty for Furious and Courageous). I may try a fixed gun in the bow and rotating aft turret, which is closer to the waterline and should be more effective.

    It's possible to make two exchangable forward superstructures so Furious can be run as the battlecruiser or as the bizarre looking battlecruiser/carrier hybrid. The only practical difference is that the forward BB cannon would be right at the bow (under the flying off ramp) in the hybrid, but can only be effective as a sidemount in the battlecruiser.

    The forward turret is quite far aft and the bow slopes up to barbette height. That makes it impossible to depress the forward cannon more than a couple of degrees below horizontal anywhere in the forward quadrant. If used in the forward quadrant it could only hit the hulls of long range targets.

    I've just finished gelcoating the second half of the Furious mold and will glass it tomorrow. Almost finished! A turret mold for the unique single 18" gun turret is next.

    Bob
     
  4. crzyhawk

    crzyhawk Well-Known Member

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    I agree with the comments about bow guns. Both the faster ships and slower ships are gaining potential with bow guns. The faster ships can become hunters...particularly cruisers... and the slower ships can trail the action and wait for someone to turn.

    I am really really looking forward to my Tone after watching Bob's 86 regionals video yesterday. Myoko and Zara took on the Allied fleet (including like three battleships) and pretty much kicked their teeth in.
     
  5. Gettysburg114th

    Gettysburg114th Well-Known Member

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    I did not pay him to say that. Scramble(#%$THE@^%$CHECK%*#^%IS(*&^(IN%%@*&THE*^&MAIL.
     
  6. Bob Pottle

    Bob Pottle Well-Known Member

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    The Furious mold came off the hull plug this morning with only a few small defects in the gelcoat. All but two can be sanded out due to the thick (1/8") layer of gelcoat and only two dime sized areas need filling and sanding. Two evenings of sanding should have the mold ready for use.

    The first hull (for me) will be laid up in late July when I get back from vacation, and hulls can be ordered in August. The turret mold is next. I plan to make the pine master while on vacation.

    Bob
     
  7. Bob Pottle

    Bob Pottle Well-Known Member

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    The Furious mold had a few small gelcoat defects filled last night and was sanded and polished this morning. It'll be waxed tonight, so I'll probably have time to lay up the first hull before I leave on Friday. Photos will be posted when I return from vacation.

    The mold turned out better than expected. Not perfect, due to the complex hull lines and many compound curves, but on par with the mold for the Courageous.

    Bob
     
  8. crzyhawk

    crzyhawk Well-Known Member

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    I'm looking forward to seeing the Furious on the water. I'm thinking my next project is going to be the nearly equally oddball HIJMS Tone.

    Have you and Ralph ever given thought to doing a Kirov class cruiser?
     
  9. Powder Monkey

    Powder Monkey Active Member

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    it’s good to be different after all it aint easy being green you know [:D]
     
  10. Chris

    Chris New Member

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    Maybe an off topic. But, I'm looking for a fiberglass QE hull. Does anyone in this forum know of where one might be obtained?
     
  11. Chris Easterbrook

    Chris Easterbrook Well-Known Member

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    Hey Chris Ralph Coles has a mold for the QE and Bob Pottle has a mold for the main turrets.
     
  12. Gettysburg114th

    Gettysburg114th Well-Known Member

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    I've seen a few of these hulls in combat. Very nice.
     
  13. Chris

    Chris New Member

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    Does anyone have Ralphs contact info?
     
  14. Chris Easterbrook

    Chris Easterbrook Well-Known Member

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    You can send him a private message , his handle is ralphster30. Just go to the members section and click on his account and you can send him a message that way. Hope this helps you out

    Chris.
     
  15. Bob Pottle

    Bob Pottle Well-Known Member

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    Wet weather has delayed the Furious project but Kim just left for a course in Latvia so I can now fiberglass inside. The Furious mold was gelcoated today, will be glassed tomorrow morning, and the first hull will be trimmed and removed from the mold Monday AM.

    I think I'll build it as the hybrid battlecruiser/carrier with a 75 shot bow gun under the launching ramp and a rotating 75 shot aft cannon.

    Bob
     
  16. crzyhawk

    crzyhawk Well-Known Member

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    Glad to hear it Bob, I am doing sea trials tomorrow on your old Courageous. She's combat ready for the first time in 4 years. I'll try to get a picture or two of her, and will definitely let you know how she performs at NATS. I expect her to be the fastest capital ship at Xenia, which should make her very, very interesting. I'm set up with 2 1.0 unit guns and a 2.0 unit pump, so I should be able to take a few hits. Mike Deskin will have his Renown and I'll have the Big C, so we should have a pretty nice fast BC wing.

    Next year I am planning on running a Queen Mary, set up with two 75 round sidemounts and a 1.5 unit pump. I expect that ship is going to be a lot of fun as well.
     
  17. Bob Pottle

    Bob Pottle Well-Known Member

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    I like the looks of those Lion Class BCs. How do they perform in combat? The closest I've seen in action and battled was the late Dan McGuffin's Kirishima, converted from an HMS Tiger model. It turned better than I expected.

    I plan to have Furious and the more practical HMS Indefatigable ompleted by the spring. Ralph Coles and I would like to attend Treaty NATS next year, as long as it's no further away than NY state. That's about the limit on pracical driving range from Halifax. I'd love to see the Furious and Courageous running together!

    Bob
     
  18. crzyhawk

    crzyhawk Well-Known Member

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    Nobody has run a Lion in Treaty yet, so I'll find out next year! Don Fisher ran a Lion in the IRCWCC; I don't think he was overly pleased with it's performance. I think there are some in the MWC, but not sure how well they do there. I really think they should be a fairly strong ship with decent firepower, decent speed and decent maneuverability. That's something we've found so far in treaty is that we haven't found any ships that are "must build" nor have we found any yet that are total dogs that you should stay away from.

    Based on what I saw out of my Invincible last year, you're going to like that Indefatigable. If I find that I don't really care for the Queen Mary, I'll probably go back to the Invincible as my primary ship, it was really a blast to drive.
     
  19. Bob Pottle

    Bob Pottle Well-Known Member

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    The first HMS Furious hull is finished and turned out great! It has more voluptuous lines than the slightly narrower Courageous Class. Like those hulls the cleaver bow, outward sloping hull sides and wide bow flare will make it a good sea boat. (There's a NABS video of my HMS Courageous slicing cleanly through waves on Maynard lake.)

    The 18" turret mold should be finished by September but I'm tempted to build the model as the WWI full carrier and get a 5th combat unit. (The prospect of 1/144 biplanes on the forward flying off deck and an airship on the aft landing deck is attractive too.)

    Bob
     
  20. Bob Pottle

    Bob Pottle Well-Known Member

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    Furious photos have been added to the Photos section of the forum.

    Bob