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"Waterspout dimensions?" Topic

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Personal logo 4th Cuirassier Supporting Member of TMP31 Oct 2017 5:46 a.m. PST

When a 15" shell hit the water, how tall and wide would the resulting waterspout have been?

Would there have been much difference between 12" and 15"?

alan L31 Oct 2017 9:11 a.m. PST

I too would be interested in this as I am intending to make some markers. Also, what about smaller calibers?

alan L01 Nov 2017 12:28 a.m. PST

Might be better reposting this as "Shell-splash dimensions"? To me, a waterspout is a natural feature akin to a tornado.

Just a thought as it might get a better response.



Shagnasty Supporting Member of TMP01 Nov 2017 7:39 a.m. PST

From the comments by shooting reformers at the time of the "Dreadnought" everything bigger than 6" made a splash that was hard to distinguish for fire adjustment observation. The large splashes were described by observers on capital ships as masthead height. So to answer the OP question, probably no.

22ndFoot02 Nov 2017 10:09 a.m. PST

I find, regardless of the scale of ships involved , in my sea battles (which may not be the use to which you intend to put the information), all shell splashes which must be represented, regardless of calibre, equate to an upturned white golf tee. Odd how that happens.

If I really needed to distinguish between calibres, I might put a coloured line around the tee. Yarkshire Gamer in his recent Jutland games used a series of upturned tees on clear bases which showed the firing ship to show multiple ships firing on a single target. Very effective.

hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP03 Nov 2017 5:17 p.m. PST

See image from the attack on Mers el Kebir showing British 15" shell splashes, at bottom of page:


hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP04 Nov 2017 2:41 a.m. PST
colkitto05 Nov 2017 8:00 a.m. PST

Very useful pictures. The 15" ones look huge. As for the others: maybe twice the funnel height, roughly?

Yellow Admiral Supporting Member of TMP06 Nov 2017 12:15 p.m. PST

I find, regardless of the scale of ships involved , in my sea battles (which may not be the use to which you intend to put the information), all shell splashes which must be represented, regardless of calibre, equate to an upturned white golf tee. Odd how that happens.
That's totally wrong. Everyone knows they're the size of Litko splash markers!

Here's a larger picture of those splashes at Mers-el-Kebir:

Here's another that purports to be at Mers-el-Kebir, of French return fire (13.5"…?) falling between Hood and Valiant:

Going by height, golf tees look roughly 1/1200 or 1/1000 scale, large Litko splashes are maybe about 1/2000 scale. I've always meant to get around to making nicer shell splashes out of cotton and washers, but that never seems a good use of precious crafting time while I have oodles of perfectly adequate Litko splashes. :-\

I'd be interested to hear how others use their splash markers. Mine get used to indicate invocation of the "one up" GQ3 rule (too many batteries on one target), and I use red/yellow flame markers to indicate hits. The former isn't strictly necessary and the latter leaves out armor penetration values, which matter a lot. I've long considered printing armor penetration values on the bases of splash markers, first to help speed up adjudication of shooting, second to encourage the use of splash markers (they look cool), but that would mean having big boxes of them, players wasting game time digging around for the right one, re-sorting them when they get all mixed up, etc. If anyone has a better system, I'm all ears.

- Ix

hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP07 Nov 2017 6:09 p.m. PST

Yellow Admiral, that last image seems unlikely to be French shell splashes at Mers el Kebir. For one thing, the guns on both ships are trained fore and aft, and they are not positioned tactically for a gunnery action. They would have been had the French fleet still been operational.

Also, that same image is on page 204 of "The Battlecruiser HMS Hood" by Bruce Taylor. It is labeled "The Hood under attack from Italian S.M.79 bombers in the western Mediterranean, 9 July 1940". The photo is stated to have been taken from the Ark Royal's flight deck.


hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP07 Nov 2017 6:28 p.m. PST

There are 6" shell splashes visible in images of the Battle of Cape Spada, where Bartolomeo Colleoni was sunk by Sydney. (All spelled from memory …).


Bozkashi Jones13 Nov 2017 3:16 a.m. PST

The Prinz Eugen film shows 14" and 15" splashes. They look to be about twice the height of the Bismarck to me. Denmark Straits is from 2:30.


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