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Re: Dreadnoughtus weight calculation

Did Greg fire the fire shot of the post media frenzy shrink ray?

It always tickles me that so many Dinosaur guys are also military 
hardware/history guys.  Must be something about BIG things.  Me, I’ve always 
been a WW2 tank guy.


On Sep 8, 2014, at 2:09 PM, Thomas R. Holtz, Jr. <tholtz@umd.edu> wrote:

> Yes. It is more "Ye Olde English" [sensu RenFaire speak]), not "Old English"
> Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
> Email: tholtz@umd.edu Phone: 301-405-4084
> Office: Centreville 1216                      
> Senior Lecturer, Vertebrate Paleontology
> Dept. of Geology, University of Maryland
> http://www.geol.umd.edu/~tholtz/
> Fax: 301-314-9661             
> Faculty Director, Science & Global Change Program, College Park Scholars
> http://www.geol.umd.edu/sgc
> Fax: 301-314-9843
> Mailing Address:      Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
>                       Department of Geology
>                       Building 237, Room 1117
>                       University of Maryland
>                       College Park, MD 20742 USA
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: owner-DINOSAUR@usc.edu [mailto:owner-DINOSAUR@usc.edu] On Behalf Of 
>> Roland Sookias
>> Sent: Monday, September 08, 2014 5:08 PM
>> To: Dinosaur Mailing List
>> Subject: Re: Dreadnoughtus weight calculation
>> I'm not going to comment on anything helpful or biological here, but I feel 
>> it must be mentioned (as I was infuriated by it) that
> the
>> etymology section erroneously also states that the word "Dreadnought" (or 
>> perhaps the words "dread" and "nought", depending
>> how you read it) is from Old English.
>> Whilst the precursors of these words existed (as "adrædan" and "nawiht") in 
>> Old English (a language which was replaced by Middle
>> English around 1100), "dread" and "nought" as spelt today were first used in 
>> Middle English, and obviously both words continue to
> be
>> used in Modern English (with quite a different pronunciation), though use of 
>> "nought" for "nothing" has stopped.
>> Thus at the earliest it could be called Middle English, and Early Modern or 
>> archaic Modern English (depending when this usage of
>> "nought" became entirely poetic) would probably be more like it.
>> On 8 September 2014 16:00, Ben Creisler <bcreisler@gmail.com> wrote:
>>> Oops. Wrong subject line.
>>> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
>>> From:  <GSP1954@aol.com>
>>> Date: Mon, Sep 8, 2014 at 5:50 AM
>>> Subject: Please forward this to dinolist too
>>> To: bcreisler@gmail.com
>>> In a message dated 9/7/14 2:23:16 AM, tijawi@gmail.com writes:
>>> << I found GSP's post very interesting.  However, it is worth noting
>>> that, from a historical perspective, the name _Dreadnoughtus_ is
>>> perhaps more appropriate than GSP made out. The archetypal dreadnought
>>> (HMS Dreadnought, launched 1906) was a product of the naval arms race
>>> between Great Britain and Germany prior to World War I.  The
>>> Dreadnought was part of a broader British strategy of deterrence - the
>>> importance of having a large, powerful and technologically advanced
>>> fleet to reinforce Great Britain's superiority at sea, rather than
>>> deploying warships as a decisive military force.  Under First Sea Lord
>>> Fisher, the role of the British war fleet was intended to be mostly
>>> defensive - to protect the homeland; guard the British Empire's
>>> strategic ports; and enforce a naval blockade against Germany should
>>> war break out.  As it turned out, the greatest sea-born threat to
>>> Great Britain during World War I turned out to be German U-Boats and
>>> their unrestricted warfare against enemy and neutral shipping.  It was
>>> this that ultimately helped draw the United States into World War I.
>>> The above analysis is correct. And I am not particualrly opposed to
>>> applying dreadnought to sauropod names. It was the way in which
>>> Lacovara et al did so, incl in PR in the science media, that is not in
>>> accord with history.
>>> Had
>>> I reviewed the paper I would have done something about that. And the
>>> mass estimates.
>>> In a message dated 9/7/14 3:42:44 PM, design@starfleetgames.com writes:
>>> << Everybody had battleships before 1906, but they tended to have two
>>> or four big guns for long-range pot-luck sniping a lot of medium-sized
>>> guns to do the real dirty work up close. The term battleship had
>>> actually been in use for centuries and applied to what we moderns call
>>> "ships of the line".
>>> Nelson called them "Line of Battle Ships" or simply "battleships."
>>> There was even a wooden battleshp called Dreadnought in the 1700s.
>>> The continuing and steady improvement in gunnery, optics, and other
>>> mechanical sciences meant that long-range gunnery had reached the
>>> point that it might actually work. Several nations started building a
>>> new kind of battleship, the "all-big-gun" battleship. The trick was,
>>> nobody knew what one looked like because nobody had ever seen one. The
>>> first to start construction was the USS South Carolina and her sister
>>> the USS Michigan.
>>> Everybody else was starting this new kind of ship, independenty, on
>>> their own.
>>> Britain, German, Italy, Russia, all had plans in hand or keels on the
>>> slipway.
>>> The British started HMS Dreadnought somewhat later, but built it much
>>> faster, so it was the first all-big-gun-battleship in service.
>>> Dreadnought was a very bad design. It had all big guns, but because
>>> the British couldn't figure out how to have Turret #2 shoot over
>>> Turret #1, only eight of the ten cannons could shoot right or left,
>>> and there was not much in the way of internal compartments (another
>>> new idea) so a torpedo hit was going to be sudden death overtime. It
>>> did have the new kind of modern turbine engines.
>>> USS Michigan came out next, and it had four double gun turrets with #2
>>> shooting over #1 (on the front) and #3 shooting over #4 (on the back)
>>> so with only eight guns it had the same firepower as Dreadnought (8 vs
>>> 8). It had internal compartments, turbines, and was superior to
>>> Dreadnought in every way, BUT, Dreadnought was first so now
>>> "dreadnought" is interchangable with "battleship"
>>> when it shouldn't be. HMS Dreadnought was so bad that the British
>>> never sent it into battle and quickly copied Michigan. Maybe you'd
>>> call it a "loss leader"
>>> to "capture the brand name."
>>> So now we just need a dinosaur called Michigandus magnificus and we'll
>>> be historically accurate. >>
>>> I have some disagreements with the above.
>>> The predreadnoughts of the late 1890s and very early 1900s generally
>>> had two main battery turrets, one fore and one aft, twins mounting 4
>>> guns of
>>> 11 or
>>> 12" bore, with a bunch of 6 or 8" guns astride the superstructure.
>>> Athough the main guns were modern rifles able to fire very long
>>> ranges, the fire control systems were lacking so battles were intended
>>> to be at a few thousand meters, with the possibility of ramming with
>>> the ram bows -- but during the Russo-Japanese war the predreadnoughts
>>> sometimes banged away at one another at greater ranges. The tubby
>>> batships were also slow at about 18 kts.
>>> Lord Fischer wanted to markedly increase the power of the battle fleet
>>> while keeping costs down, and with the same number of ships. How to do
>>> that?
>>> Obvious. Double the broadside of heavy guns while not increasing
>>> tonnage all that much (already nervous about a radical new design that
>>> would obsolesce the predreadnought force, Parliament was not about to
>>> pay for much bigger ships), which required getting rid of the
>>> intermediate guns. There was also talk of how a large set of all heavy
>>> guns would also make long range gunnery possible because their uniform
>>> ballistics would allow long range over-under salvo spotting, but the
>>> required technology was not yet on hand. Fisher also took the
>>> opportunity to do what he liked best and increase speed to 21 kts via
>>> the brand new turbines, a concept he took further with the equally big
>>> battlecruisers which were not as bad as many think they were.
>>> The Dreadnought itself and 6 semi-sister ships had five turrets with
>>> two on the wings because that allowed it in principle to fire three
>>> turrets forward as the fleet charged -- ram bows generating
>>> magnificent bow waves
>>> -- at
>>> short range directly at the enemy. In reality the blast of the side
>>> turrets was so intense that they could only fire broadside, which soon
>>> became a problem because only 4 turrets could engage in the preNelson
>>> line of battle that the Royal Navy and everyone else readopted in the
>>> late 1900s going into the Great War.
>>> (The Germans also initially used wing turrets, even more inefficiently
>>> in their first dreadnoughts. The RN gradually and awkwardly went
>>> superimposed, the Neptunes had one aft, with central turrets actually
>>> meant to fire through the superstructure when needed -- kind of crazy
>>> but the Invincibles did that at the Falklands to the discomfort of
>>> those in the the opposite turrets.
>>> They did not remount the sighting hoods on the turrets tops so upper
>>> gun sets could not fire straight forward or aft over the lower turrets
>>> during WW 1, but they did not care because by then the line of battler
>>> was back in vogue.
>>> The USN immediately went to efficient superimposed turrets as per the
>>> Michigans. )
>>> As the war approached systems were developing to allow long range fire
>>> under central control, eventually using salvo techniques especially by
>>> the Brits
>>> - its a very complicated story of competing systems being applied
>>> semi-haphazardly to differing vessels at differing times that I have
>>> never fully sorted out -- but their whimpy rangefinders reduced their
>>> ability to initially find the range. Over all the gunnery was fairly
>>> equal at Jutland, Beatty's battlecruisers had initial problems because
>>> they were not able to conduct gunnery practise at Rosyth, and also had
>>> worse back lighting conditions during the run south. By the end of the
>>> war the Grand Fleet had the world's best long range systems, but the
>>> problems were not really solved until high frequency, broad scan
>>> phased array radars atop the main range finders allowed RN and USN
>>> batships to straddle fast moving targets at ranges up the max of 20
>>> plus miles (the 3 old batships with the new system immediately
>>> straddled the poor Yamashiro at Suriago Straight when they opened fire
>>> at 10 miles at night).
>>> Of course the 3 Brit batcruisers blew up at Jutland with virtually all
>>> crews lost because the RN was using dangeorusly unstable cordite
>>> charges (still doing that in 41 when the fast battleship she was NOT a
>>> battlecruiser Hood went poof), not because of inadequate armor -- at
>>> Dogger Bank, Jutland and the final battle of the Bismarck the Germans
>>> were having their turrets taken out by the often heavier RN guns left
>>> & right without the ships blowing up because they used a very stable
>>> cordite formula that flash burned (killing all in the magazines and
>>> turrets, like what happened on the Iowa in 89) rather than immediately
>>> exploded. Same for the Americans, so the USS Boise took an AP round in
>>> a magazine during a Solomons night battle and stayed in the action
>>> with the three forward turrets burned out (that is the other reason
>>> that the Arizona's exploding so quickly still has them scratching
>>> their heads).
>>> Had the Brits who were running an oceanic empire paid proper attention
>>> to their ammo, i. e. had stable cordite and AP rounds that actually
>>> worked most of the time (the shells were too brittle and the primitive
>>> fuses rarely worked), Jutland would have been a significant RN
>>> victory, with no major Grand Fleet losses and probably 3-4 High Seas
>>> Fleet batcruisers sunk. Oh well.
>>> It is correct that the RN, in part because of habitability issues for
>>> ships sent to distant empire stations, did not pay sufficient
>>> attention to underwater protection, unlike the Germans and Americans.
>>> That is why the new super dreadnought Audacious sunk after hitting
>>> just one mine, along with inadequate damage control early in the war,
>>> and detail problems ("watertight" doors jarred open by the initial
>>> shock, etc). But the similar Marlborough took a torpedo in engineering
>>> at Jutland and maintained its place in the battle line (we can imagine
>>> its Scotty keeping the steam up despite the pressure).
>>> The Dreadnought was with the Grand Fleet at Scapa Flow until she was
>>> assigned with ye old predreadnoughts to defend the Thames outlet. So
>>> the Dreadnought herself alas missed the colossal battle of Jutland she
>>> inspired. Shortly after that she rejoined the Grand Fleet -- the 6
>>> other oldest dreadnoughts in Jellicoe's fleet hardly being different
>>> in design. She did ram and sink a pesky sub at one point.
>>> As it happens I have a criticism of USN WW 2 torpedoes in the Sunday
>>> Washington Post --
>>> http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/more-on-alexandrias-torpedo-factor
>>> y-and-a-soviet-leader-who-did-shop-at-giant/2014/09/06/b89e43ba-3436-1
>>> 1e4-9e92-0899b306bbea_story.html
>>> GSPaul
>>> </HTML>