Help support TMP

"How much does cargo displace on a warship?" Topic

15 Posts

All members in good standing are free to post here. Opinions expressed here are solely those of the posters, and have not been cleared with nor are they endorsed by The Miniatures Page.

Please avoid recent politics on the forums.

For more information, see the TMP FAQ.

Back to the Spaceship Gaming Message Board

Back to the WWII Naval Discussion Message Board

Back to the WWII Naval Gallery Message Board

Back to the Modern Naval Discussion (1946 to 2013) Message Board

Areas of Interest

World War Two at Sea
Science Fiction

Featured Hobby News Article

Featured Link

Featured Ruleset

Featured Showcase Article

Victory as a Campaign System

Can a WWII blockgame find happiness as a miniatures campaign system?

Featured Movie Review

2,108 hits since 25 Mar 2021
©1994-2024 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

TMP logo


Please sign in to your membership account, or, if you are not yet a member, please sign up for your free membership account.
Akalabeth25 Mar 2021 10:32 a.m. PST

Anyone know about how much cargo like food and fresh water displaces on a warship? Most stats I've found just either have the empty load, or they had the load with fuel and ammunition in addition to stores. That would be a question for just a regular warship, like a Cruiser or Frigate.

Another question may be in addition to that how much displacement do the aircraft take up on an aircraft carrier? Like the aircraft, parts, aviation fuel, aircraft munitions.

When you have a game where you're designing a warship, whether historical, modern or futuristic often the rules don't take these things into account. They just talk about hull, guns, armor and fuel- and sometimes control systems. But stores for the crew, or weight limits for aircraft and their stores is rarely taken into account in my experience.

Perun Gromovnik25 Mar 2021 11:21 a.m. PST

Well it depends on ship class and for what it would be used, for approximation you can read this:


Best way to find data would be to research exactly ship that you want. I hope i helped you

DyeHard25 Mar 2021 11:32 a.m. PST

You can assume food is very close to 1 cubic centimeter per gram. (or a pint per pound)

The water is easy to find a reference:
water 2 litres/person/day

Food is oddly hard to find, unless you plan to feed your crew like an 18th century ship.

But some modern ships:
For something like 5770 sailors:
In a day, the ship's crews can go through 1,600 pounds of chicken, 160 gallons of milk, 30 cases of cereal and 350 pounds of lettuce

Or for 5000
According to the ship's public-affairs office, a typical menu uses 40 gallons of chicken soup, 2,000 pounds of flour, 1,500 pounds of chicken, 80 gallons of gravy, 1,000 pounds of mashed potatoes, 600 pounds of sugar, 120 pounds of butter, 500 pounds each of green peas and white corn, 200 dozen cookies, 1,500 pounds of fresh vegetables, 600 gallons of fresh milk, 240 gallons of cold drinks, 400 pounds of bread – all seasoned with 60 pounds of
salt and 12 pounds of pepper.

Old Glory Sponsoring Member of TMP25 Mar 2021 11:44 a.m. PST

How many sailors does it take to eat a chicken ?

OSCS7425 Mar 2021 1:00 p.m. PST

DyeHard, all the naval ships I've been own make their own potable water. Sometimes there are water restrictions on showering when there is a failure of equipment or engineers. Usually it is a junior engineer turning a wrong valve and dumping potable water overboard.

Murvihill25 Mar 2021 1:40 p.m. PST

My first ship the standing joke was the first word after passing the sea buoy was water hours. But in the main ships make water. They needed far more for the boilers than the crew.

LostPict25 Mar 2021 3:53 p.m. PST

Here is a logistic study all about food stores on LCS ships. link

Archon6425 Mar 2021 7:41 p.m. PST

Don't forget to leave room for the flogging.

emckinney25 Mar 2021 11:05 p.m. PST

Fresh water storage is tiny in plans of WWII battleships, although it varies tremendously from navy to navy (and how long they were expected to deploy).

Here's a side plan of the Richelieu from Wikipedia. It's an SVG, so if you pick original size, you can pretty well zoom in as much as you want. link

Since you posted to Spaceships, I'll mention that the ship design system for Squadron Strike explicitly include cargo space for food, water, oxygen, spare parts, etc. Each ship has an Endurance based on cargo/crew. Some scenarios impose penalties on ships with low Endurance. It's even more important in campaigns, obviously.

Mr Elmo26 Mar 2021 4:44 a.m. PST

Ships on water can make seawater drinkable. In space you have to it all with you; unless water planet stops are part of the background.

I know cruise ships carry 20,000+ eggs and like 4 tons of cheese.

Mr Elmo26 Mar 2021 4:49 a.m. PST

I just thought of the ISS. It gets about 2.3 tons of supplies every 90 days or so.

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP26 Mar 2021 6:23 a.m. PST

Water is far more common in space than most people realize, at least within a star system. Hydrogen is the most abundant element in the Universe, and oxygen isn't far off from that. Many asteroidal and cometary bodies contain significant amounts of water ice— certainly sufficient to resupply a vessel. No need for stops at planetary bodies (though really interplanetary travel doesn't necessarily allow for "stops" at any body— you're either planning to intersect with that specific body's orbital trajectory and speed or you're not— there are no watery "drive thrus" in space).
More significantly, water can be reclaimed by ship's systems from crew waste. I wouldn't assume 100% efficiency, of course, but it's a feasible approach even at much lower recovery rates, reducing the necessary amount of water as cargo. (On the other hand, water can be very effective radiation shielding— the stuff has many uses in space!)
So in science fiction, a certain amount of "handwavium" is in place— and as one assumes greater and greater levels of technological capability, the need for cargo planning drops even more. A culture which can engineer matter/antimatter power systems could conceivably just "make" water or even complex proteins and carbohydrates as needed from the raw materials of interstellar space. Indeed, if you're imagining the equivalent of a Star Trek setting, water and food cargo levels become secondary concerns to a level of potential insignificance— "consume all you want; we'll make more."

williamb26 Mar 2021 9:06 a.m. PST

One rule set that includes life support and food supplies along with crew accommodations in the ship design rules is 2300 AD Star Cruiser. Available at Wargame Vault link

Thresher0126 Mar 2021 8:30 p.m. PST

It depends upon if it is FTL or STL capable.

STL vessels are going to need a lot of fuel………

Akalabeth09 Apr 2021 10:21 a.m. PST

Thanks for all the links guys. will check them out.

Sorry - only verified members can post on the forums.