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The world is rearming at an unprecedented pace and the RN is having a clearance sale

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The world is rearming at an unprecedented pace and the RN is having a clearance sale

Old 19th Sep 2023, 08:23
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Originally Posted by NutLoose
Why is it costing anything, you spend 3 billion and do not even get a warranty?
Because if you want a warranty, the price is 4 billion.
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Old 20th Sep 2023, 13:06
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Originally Posted by Davef68
Is the disposal of the Batch 1 Rivers expected?
They've already been decomissioned once.

I am not against 20 year old OPVs being sold, so long as they are replaced.

The Batch 2 Rivers seem to be a big hit, so perhaps three more? They are not that expensive and offer a great High/Low mix for the RN freeing FFs and DDs from policing duties and flag waving.

As for the MCMVs - technology is moving on. The hunts - if they were cars - would be the age of a MK2 Ford Escort. Still goo dbit s of kit but we are seeing vessels like RFA Stirling Castle arrive - which will the basis for future MCM ops - along with future designs of ship.

The shortage of FFs is a big problem but nobody seems to be that concerned about our amphibious capabilites.

We currently do not have an operational LPD. The three Bays - we did have four - are working hard - and we are using the ancient and proved not to be great at the job, RFA Argus. Just over a decade ago, the UK had a fantastic amphibious force with a dedicated LPH, two LPDs and four LSD9A)s Unless the plan is to use a QE as an LPH as cicrumstances require, this is a massive capability dowgrade. Remmeber amphibious forces are not just about beach assaults, they are just really usefule ships to have around.

Also Ford Vic is old and not in the best of health I understand. Since the short sighted scrapping of her sister - this is the RN's only AOR to support two CV and whatever they all amphibious forces these days.


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Old 20th Sep 2023, 15:16
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"Just over a decade ago, the UK had a fantastic amphibious force with a dedicated LPH, two LPDs and four LSD9A)"

Agreed - and there never seems to have been any coherent plan to replace them - it seems the Carriers will be required to do it all
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Old 20th Sep 2023, 19:57
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Future Commando Force (deliberately) changed the game for amphibious vessels: forward deployment of RM units on forward deployed vessels, MRSS/Littoral Strike Ship, and yes, some deployment as part of a CSG. Not to mention RFA (and RN) recruitment and retention affecting the ability to crew the existing vessels..

Anyway for the sheer hell of it, here's RFA Mounts Bay in the vicinity of Southampton Ocean Cruise Terminal at the weekend (quality due to zoom on phone through a dirty window)


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Old 21st Sep 2023, 06:35
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Lyme Bay in Falmouth in July - plus the "Argos" parked round the corner of course



maybe we should rent one of those cruise ships for the RN??
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Old 21st Sep 2023, 09:08
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Call me old fashioned but I have always looked on all things military ( and especially how things are going in the world right now ) that you should not flog off vessels until the replacements are built, have undergone sea trials and are in service, to sell off ships with no replacements built leaves a capability gap, now I know they are oldish and the technology may be getting on, but it is better to have something that can do the job, than to have sweet F all but a pile of steel sheets stacked up at some shipyard awaiting welding together.
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Old 21st Sep 2023, 13:42
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or worse a list of "aspirations" sitting in some Minister's PR file
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Old 23rd Sep 2023, 07:19
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Unfortunately, this represents progress.

At least, today, the RN seem to have regained control of what they do or do not want, and what to do with it.

Some older readers may remember the 1991 policy whereby AMSO(RAF) controlled RN avionic assets, and decided to change the stores classification of repairable equipment to consumable, to avoid repair costs. The kit was then scrapped and never replaced. Tens of millions down the pan (or in the crusher) on SHAR nav kit alone.
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Old 24th Sep 2023, 07:16
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"At least, today, the RN seem to have regained control of what they do or do not want, and what to do with it."

Well not so sure - I'll bet they WANT a few more F-35's ASAP but it's not their call
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Old 24th Sep 2023, 08:16
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Originally Posted by Asturias56
"At least, today, the RN seem to have regained control of what they do or do not want, and what to do with it."

Well not so sure - I'll bet they WANT a few more F-35's ASAP but it's not their call
They can also see how hard it is to get / keep pilots and maintainers for them, which is probably why the RN aren't making TOO much noise about F-35. I don't know if they're keeping up their end of the quota though.

As Dirty Harry Callahan said, "good man always knows his limitations".....
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Old 24th Sep 2023, 09:24
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I read an interesting article (mainstream media) about the increasing length of V boat patrols, 6 months plus (in the days of the R boats it was 3 months), caused by availability of hulls, maintenance issues, spares availability, dry dock provision, etc. All stems from short sighted money saving decisions made years ago, which of course have big long term impacts (How often have we seen this).

Anyway, the article also discussed impact on morale, recruitment, retention of submariners - all of which were not good, especially in high tech specialist trades. An issue the RN seems to have little ability to tackle in the short term.

Last edited by Biggus; 24th Sep 2023 at 09:36.
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Old 24th Sep 2023, 11:30
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To quote from a DT article back in June:

The Royal Navy is struggling to recruit submariners because Generation Z do not want to be cut off from their smartphones, the First Sea Lord has admitted.

Speaking to The House magazine, Admiral Sir Ben Key said that while the Navy he had joined had 75,000 members, there were now about 36,000 in the service and that it was a struggle to recruit submariners.

“We are effectively in a war for talent in this country – there is no great secret in that,” he said, adding that there were “very few people who have got direct experience of coming from a naval family. Whereas if you track back 100 years, a lot of people had experience of a military family or a naval family.”

He said that younger recruits expected a greater level of contact with their friends and families, so that the experience of living on a submarine with limited connectivity was less attractive.

He once returned home from a six-month trip to find that one of his children did not recognise him, whereas nowadays, “expectations of contact with people you love are changing… and the ability for near permanent connectivity cannot be met if you are in a submarine.”

“I’m not going to sit there and say that we are awash with people,” he added.

(...)

“The whole objective of the submarine is not to send messages to families, it’s to do our job,” he said.

He added: “Ultimately, if you’re part of the nuclear deterrent and you’re 18 years old living on your personal device, it’s very difficult if you’re used to being on Snapchat, it’s very difficult for families.

“Some young recruits have had messages from girlfriends saying if you haven’t replied by next week I’m assuming you’ve left me.”
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Old 24th Sep 2023, 11:36
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On a more positive note the RN website published a story on Friday about preparations for building the Fleet Solid Support ships.

Work has begun revamping the world-famous Harland & Wolff yard in Belfast so it can build three new support ships for the Navy.

The existing fabrication halls at the shipbuilders are being significantly enhanced to support construction of the successors to RFA Fort Victoria.

Three Fleet Solid Support vessels are being ordered to replace the venerable ‘one-stop-shop’ which provides ammunition, food, dry stores and spare parts to Royal Navy warships.

The new ships will be an integral part of a carrier strike group. At 40,000 tonnes and 216 metres long they will be second only to HMS Queen Elizabeth and Prince of Wales in length and displacement, more than 34 metres wide, with a capacity for 9,000 square metres of stores (that’s almost the size of a football pitch).

The trio – as yet unnamed – are being constructed by the Team Resolute consortium (comprising Navantia UK, Harland and Wolff and BMT) which was selected back in January by the MOD.

The final assembly of all three ships will be completed at Harland & Wolff, famous for building the Titanic and her sisters and, more during WW2 and afterwards, a host of RN vessels from Flower-class corvettes through to carrier HMS Eagle.

Blocks and modules for each vessel will be constructed in Belfast, plus Appledore in Devon, and Navantia’s yard in Cadiz, Spain.
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Old 24th Sep 2023, 11:38
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So we have to revamp a shipyard before it can build the ships we want!

How much is that adding to the final bill, and how much extra time before delivery?
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Old 24th Sep 2023, 11:55
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Given there was at one time a high chance the order would go abroad it would have been madness to invest given the UK's lack of competitiveness in building civil ships. It's 20 years since H&W built anything significant. The ships of last new RFA class, the Tides, were built by Daewoo in South Korea, no UK yard even bid for the order.
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Old 24th Sep 2023, 13:03
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Another sop to N Ireland politics - they say it's Harland & Wolf but the original shipyard was run down to about 100 staff. The last real ship they built was about 20 years ago.

It was then bought by a small UK oil company, Infrastrata, who are run by some guys who have been very good at getting grants, subsidies etc in a number of ventures in N Ireland
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Old 24th Sep 2023, 13:14
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Hopefully the end product(s) will not be the maritime equivalent of a DeLorean.

Hmm, but on the other hand...
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Old 24th Sep 2023, 13:15
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welllll...... it looked good........................

and starred in a movie
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Old 25th Sep 2023, 12:54
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Originally Posted by langleybaston
Arse, my good man, ARSE.

The other is a donkey sort of thing.

Bum would complicate matters further for the cousins.
Excuse me, but I intend to take my support donkey with me... There will be nothing like turfing up at Gates of Heaven with a barbeque already roasted for St Peter to dine on, while he welcomes me in..
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Old 28th Sep 2023, 16:41
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Original topic appears to have been exhausted, and the thread derail is wandering further afield. Closed.
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