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Canadian Fantasy Fleet

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    Canadian Fantasy Fleet

    Granny001 posted a very interesting er post in Naval News V about the future of the RCN component of the CF

    Using Granny001's post as a starting point

    Full disclosure: I like the idea of our friend and ally having a powerful Navy
    I miss these Fantasy Fleet discussions which stopped in 2005 when we all went boring and sensible
    So I have no interest in picking holes in the feasibility of this plan

    Amendments (or ‘amendments’):
    For war fighting you need boats, you want to sink skimmers or deters the opposition's boats you need boats. Ideally they'd be SSNs but I shall make a pretence at realism by sticking to SSKs

    Your MPAs are not going to last forever and I think the US and Russians have it right, Naval Aviation makes sense for operating MPAs

    Your model does not include area air defence at a distance (tbf neither does current RCN)

    I’m not convinced that you need quite so much expeditionary capability nor that it makes sense to have two separate classes

    Don’t fall into the trap that the RN has by using expensive, high cost of operation assets for routine patrols, increase the number of patrol boats (handily this will also increase the number of posts for training the COs of your big units)

    Since this an aviation fan forum
    AEW is not only a Force multiplier but also vital to avoid being shot out of the sky

    This force model is going to need political will and capital; let’s buy some from both Canadian parties by agreeing to a fudge which gets the RCAF lower hours airframes with twin engines

    I don’t know enough about RFAs to comment on your AOR plans so I’ll leave them alone

    So my suggestion
    4 Juan Carlos LPD (2 on each coast)

    18 SSK (9 on each coast)
    24 Saab Swordfish MPA
    (as with P3, half with ASW kit and half without for SAR, ASuW, Training, etc; 6 of each type on each coast)
    16 T26 with Standard SM6 (8 on each coast)
    12 Arctic Patrol (6 on each coast)
    12 Saab Globaleye (4 on each coast, 4 in the middle)
    All of the low hours classic F/A 18s possible from Australia, Finland, Spain
    Last edited by Al.; 12th September 2017, 18:30. Reason: Taking advice onboard
    Rule zero: don't be on fire

    IF you get SAAB Swordfish, why not go for commonality with the AEW & buy SAAB Globaleye?
    Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.


      Because I didn't think of it!

      Good idea.

      They both use Bombardier airframes as well don't they? Which keeps some of the money spent in Canada.
      Rule zero: don't be on fire


        Absolutely right. Bombardier Global 6000.
        Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.


          If you want to go with a new MPA why not consider using the new Bombardier CSeries as the airframe and call it the 'Argus II'!

          Manning a craazy large fleet is frankly out of the question. So I would keep it simple with a modest expansion of 13 additional hulls over what the RCN currently fields would be a stretch to integrate but not out of the question.

          • 12 Halifax replacements ship for ship
          • scrap 6 Kingston Class ships and convert the remaining 6 to true minehunters. Build 6 corvettes like the Braunschweig's the German Navy is building to back up the frigates and destroyers and provide a real combat capabiity the Kingston's simply canot provide
          • 4 Horizon/Burke/Daring class destroyers with the command facilities, Area air defense and perhaps an anti missile capability that would replace and enhance what the old Iroqious class once provided
          • The upcoming Protecteur class AOR's (based on the German Berlin class) are going to be a massive upgrade on what the old retired ships are going to bring - no need to do anything else here
          • The 'Asterisk' 'interim' AOR being converted by Davie should be permanently retained as well to support an an increased operational tempo
          • SSN's or some top flight SSK (of the capability of the JMSDF Soryu class) - around 6 say, would enhance the ability of the RCN to do more under ice operations up north. Both the Russians AND USN need to know that the RCN is capable of monitoring what goes on up top. Having a TLAM capacity would be a no brainer as well.
          • A 'SOSUS" type system up north in some of the choke points like those in the Northwest passage is definitely needed as well to help the RCN be smart about know where and when to deploy their forces
          • A RCAF base up north to support MPA's on a permanent or at least an extended TDY basis. Iqaluit would be a great choice. You can also base a MALE UAV capability there as well
          • Two LPD's of the class of HMS Albion or the USN San Antonio Class. One on each coast to help the Army do its thing and of course to assist in disaster relief
          • 3 top flight arctic icebreakers that are armed with at least a 76mm Oto Melara pop gun to show the flag and patrol up north all year long! There are a few spares lying around from the old Iroqious class decomissioning.

          This would no nicely
          "It was a magnificent display of trained and disciplined valour, and its assault only failed of success because dead men can advance no further."


            That looks like a nice balanced fleet
            Rule zero: don't be on fire


              bgnewf: that looks more sensible than some of the - shall I say over-optimistic - wish lists.

              But developing a new MPA just for Canada? SAAB's already gone to the trouble to design one based on a Canadian airframe, & sold a few of the AEW variant to the UAE.
              Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.


                that looks more sensible than some of the - shall I say over-optimistic
                b0770ck5 to that; by keeping most of the fleet reasonable you get to have SSNs instead of SSKs
                Rule zero: don't be on fire


                  For me I would go for something like
                  4 Destroyer’s (Holbert or Type 45) 2 on each coast
                  14 Type 31’s ( Arrowhead 120) 8 Pacific coast and 6 Atlantic coast
                  12 90m River class fitted with a 57mm main gun and off board multi mission units to allow patrol and mine hunting 6 on each coast
                  7 SSK’s 4 Pacific coast and 3 Atlantic coast
                  2 Juan Carlos assault ships 1 on each coast


                    Would you be british?


                      Holbert? Do you mean Hobart - the Australian variant of the Spanish F-105?
                      Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.


                        So yes I am British now living in France and yes I did mean Hobart. I would also look at the Horizon Class if it was fitted with a 5 inch gun but for me the thing with the Classes I like is that most have already been built under license


                          If I'm writing the cheques I go shopping mainly in Japan, Denmark and the UK

                          6 Soryu class SSK

                          4 Hyuga Mod DDH
                          4 Absalon DD
                          4 Iver Huitfeldt DDG
                          8 Type 26 Mod FFG
                          6 BMT Venari-85 MCMW

                          4 Ulstein Discovery ice patrol vessels
                          4 Impeccable class research ships

                          SSN's I dont have the infrastructure to support and, for Canada, I need it spread over two very widely separated coasts. To deploy nuclear then I need to build the infrastructure twice and it cant mutually support very easily. Thats a huge cost element right there and I dont get enough from SSN's for the spend. The money I save there goes in to providing persistent ASW sensor coverage in the form of the Impeccable class SURTASS boats instead of with SSN tails. For the submarine service I leverage the skilled SSK operators I already have and give them proven Japanese kit to work with.

                          I have the UW space surveilled as much as I can with SURTASS so my attention needs to shift to AW. Conventional sea control is out as I've no interest in buying into CATOBAR naval air and dont get any real benefit from going the slow/LPH/F-35B route as I'm not really planning a forced entry capability over anyones beaches. I want a fast, Fleet manoeuvre capable, through-deck hull that can support ASW/ASuW/AEW&ASAC choppers, tilt-rotors and emerging ESTOL UAV's. Japans Hyuga class is one of the very few fast through-decks tried and tested in the market. Its the right size and offers some familiar systems. 2 per coast gives me some continuity of operation.

                          The Hyugas are my Fleet taskgroup centres and around these I build-in AAW off the Huitfeldt DDGs and ASW/land attack/force protection/MCMW with the T26's and their mission bays.

                          For forward-deployment MSO, peacekeeping support, SAR, MCMW and disaster assistance type missions I have the Absalons, Venari's and Ulsteins in a separate Patrol command. UxV's and operator teams are pit-crewed and shared between Patrol and Fleet commands as necessary for the individual mission profile. Best bang for buck and maybe a way to give a varied and interesting career path for the kind of highly skilled people I need to attract and retain to support the high-end kit.

                          Optimistically about a $25bn spend so about $2.5bn per year over a 10yr cycle.

                          Edit: Maths error counting s as $s
                          Last edited by Jonesy; 29th September 2017, 19:09.


                            What about supply ships?

                            Would you build the Hyugas as dedicated helicopter carriers or keep the on-board sensors & weapons of the originals?

                            What radars/sonars/guns/missiles would you fit? I presume you wouldn't fit every ship with exactly the same as the originals, but seek commonality.
                            Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.



                              For UNREP I'd agree with the earlier comment that the planned mod Berlins look like a solid buy. I'd not interfere with that. Thats already in train and funded to the best of my knowledge so it can sit outside of this plan.

                              The Hyuga's would stay as DDH's albeit with significant modification to machinery, weapons and sensors (as the big ticket items) to bring in the commonality that you rightly note as a key efficiency driver.

                              Weapons possibly represent the easiest common factor to implement. Unsurprisingly these are almost exclusively American. Launchers would be restricted to 3 types across all hulls - Mk41 strike length, ExLS 3 cell and Topside Launcher configuration for SSM.

                              MCG would be the 5" Mk45 mod4 again across all frigate and destroyer classes barring the DDH. ASCG/CIWS and primary minor combatant mount would be Thales Rapid Sea Guardian 40mm. Missiles would be the familiar SM series for the AAW hulls, ESSM blk2 for all fleet hulls, VL/Topside LRASM for dual role land attack/antiship for the T26 and DDGs and VLA for T26.

                              Sensors/combat systems would be spllt between Thales and Saab for maximum packaged cost savings and commonality benefits. Machinery would be streamed similar. Classes would look as follows:

                              Machinery: COGAG 4 x RR MT30
                              Sensors: TACTICOS. Thales Artemis, Thales SeaMaster400, Thales APAR blk2
                              Armament: 6 x 3-cell ExLS (60 ESSM blk2, 12 Nulka), 3 x Rapid Sea Guardian

                              Machinery: CODAD 4 MTU 8000
                              Sensors: TACTICOS, Thales Artemis, Thales SMART-L MM, Thales APAR blk2
                              Armament: 4 x Mk41 (32 SM-x), 4 x ExLS (48 ESSM blk2), 1 x Mk45 mod 4, 2 x Rapid Sea Guardian

                              Machinery: CODAD 2 MTU 8000
                              Sensors: SAAB 9LV, Sea Giraffe 4A, Ceros 200, Sagem EOMS-NG
                              Armament: 1 x Mk45 mod 4, 2 x Rapid Sea Guardian. FFBNW 4 x ExLS. 2-4 x 4 Topside LRASM

                              Machinery: CODLAG 1 MT30 + MTU diesel gensets
                              Sensors: SAAB 9LV, Sea Giraffe 4A, Ceros 200. Sagem EOMS-NG. CAPTAS-4
                              Armament: 4 x ExLS (48 ESSM blk2) 3 x Mk41 (24 VL LRASM/VL ASROC) 1 x Mk45 mod 4, 2 x Rapid Sea Guardian.

                              Minor war vessels get the Rapid gun as main mount. Saab 9LV, Giraffe1X, Ceros and the Sagem EOMS

                              Minimum systems numbers across the fleet to maximise logistics and training efficiency advantages. Pull through of existing experience with ESSM, Mk41, 9LV etc. Maximum use of dual-role systems and transferable offboard effectors.
                              Last edited by Jonesy; 30th September 2017, 03:35.


                                If I was holding the purse strings in Canada I wouldn't be shopping for ships and submarines in Japan, they have pretty much zero experience of exporting combat vessels and no knowledge of running international program offices to support what they have sold.

                                I know people love to fantasy fleet but Canada is in a dire situation when it comes to their current fleet, support infrastructure and manning. Going on a wild global shopping spree is not going to help them one iota!

                                Operating multiple frigate and destroyer classes from multiple international suppliers is crazy! They need to get the Halifax upgrade finished and the next generation frigate program going! They need to pick a design and then stick to it without prevarication and political interference. The nation/company that supplies the design and program support need experience supporting that kind of program especially when it comes to project management.

                                They need to get the Protecteur class finished and into service, retaining the interim IOR seems sensible to me.

                                Buying Soryu class from Japan?! NO NO NO! Brilliant submarine, one of the best SSK in the world but it failed to get what everybody assumed was a shoe in with Australia losing to a paper design! Not to Labour the point too much but Japan has no experience building and selling submarines to other nations. By all accounts the companies in Japan associated with building the Soryu were luke warm to building submarines for export and hostile to the idea of making any changes. If Canada decides to replace the Victoria class it needs to come from somebody who is used to exporting submarines and dealing with foreign navies when it comes to supporting them. HDW, DCNS, Navantia, SAAB and even Daewoo have more experience doing that and all have submarines available that are a far more realistic supportable proposition for Canada. (If you asked my personal opinion Canada should be running a contest then buy something off HDW, they are the most credible and successful submarine exporter in the world. A Type 214 variant is going to be significantly better than their current Victoria class and when you look at the spec sheet for the Dolphin 2 variant I would be biting their arm off!)
                                Last edited by Fedaykin; 3rd October 2017, 14:07.
                                Because sometimes in life we need a bit of fun



                                  The first point would be that they, the Canadians, dont have $2.5bn a year for the next 10yrs for a naval capital spend program anyway. So that probably puts the rest of the topic into its proper perspective.

                                  The key to the story i've written though is what the mission parameters would be for the putative fantasy Canadian fleet. Not necessarily what would be sought in the real world. My definition of the objective 'good' Canadian force mix, based off current real-world manning levels, would be for at least a modest, all aspect, sea control capacity in both oceans as well as limited forward-deployed OOTW capability. This is against a background narrative in the thread of LPD's and SSN's.

                                  Essentially, instead of those kinds of units, I would suggest that the optimal mission capability, for Canadian requirements, would be better served with 8 destroyers and 8 frigates (albeit caveating the fact that 4 destroyers are effectively light fleet carriers). The Danish designs share common heritage and would, likely, be built in Canada at this point anyway. The same would go for the BMT MCMW hulls. So its fanciful, but, there is a few crumbs of sense there also.

                                  Japan has little experience exporting in the defence sphere but does manage to export more than 4000 individual product lines to 200+ countries/territories worth $600mn+ a year. It is therefore not incapable of arranging export deals.

                                  More importantly it has platforms that are a bit different than the rest of the marketplace. Can you think of another fast fleet light through-deck?. As you note the oceanic capable SSK designs from Europe are currently vapourware. Given that Japans are actually in the water and well proven I'd, personally, have accorded higher credit to than the Aussies did. For me the chance to negotiate the package of DDH and SSK together, and thus incentivise the Japanese to make accommodations inline with the size of order, would bring greater benefit than there would be trouble in having to work up a formal and structured relationship with the Japanese.
                                  Last edited by Jonesy; 3rd October 2017, 17:44.


                                    Japan has little experience exporting in the defence sphere but does manage to export more than 4000 individual product lines to 200+ countries/territories worth $600mn+ a year. It is therefore not incapable of arranging export deals.
                                    Yes Japan is very experienced at international trade but the defence arms of their major companies have been insulated from that. They have no experience managing major defence projects outside of Japan or dealing with a customer beyond their own Self Defence Force. I am keen to see Japan branch into the international export market when it comes to defence but Canada has to be realistic about its defence procurement. Japan makes some lovely ships but Canada needs to play it safe!

                                    You are right that Europe doesn't make an Oceanic SSK per say but they do make Submarines in the same class as the Victoria class SSK. Not particularly picking out the HDW option but they do make variants Dolphin II for example that are almost exactly the same size as the Victoria and they have decades of experience dealing with international customers.

                                    I don't see anything particularly wrong with Canadas current procurement plans, the midlife upgrade of the Halifax keeps them credible and the Canadian Surface Combatant Project is sensible. Canada is struggling to keep what they have going, logistically it will be far easier for them to run than a mixed fleet like you are suggesting.

                                    My issue with Canadian defence procurement is the constant prevarication, political interference and unrealistic specification drawing.
                                    Last edited by Fedaykin; 3rd October 2017, 19:04.
                                    Because sometimes in life we need a bit of fun



                                      This is my take on the Canadian fantasy fleet, not too flashy and mainly like for like replacements of current capability

                                      • Halifax replacements.
                                      4x Absalons. As command ships, army support, MCM, HADR.
                                      8x Iver Huitfeldts

                                      • Kingston replacements
                                      12x Fassmer OPV-80 with ice-strengthened hull. With deployable containerized MCM systems, containerised towed ASW sonars.

                                      • Submarines
                                      4-6x Shortfin Barracuda or the DolphinII

                                      • Arctic Offshore Patrol Ship
                                      6x Harry DeWolf class

                                      • AOR
                                      3x Protecteur class

                                      Overseas fly the flag deployments could be economically done with the long ranged (8600NM) OPV-80s, instead of the Absalons or Huitfeldts. For those with multinational task forces the Absalons and Huitfeldts would be used.

                                      The OPV-80 with its ice-strengthened hull would be ideal for patrols around canadian waters, compared to other designs.


                                        Victoria Class Replacement
                                        6x Scorpene Class Submarines (3 on each coast)
                                        *Six 533mm torpedo tubes

                                        Iroquois Class Replacement
                                        4x FREMM Class Frigates (2 on each coast)
                                        *One 57mm cannon, Eight NSM launchers, One 16-cell SCALP vertical launch system, One 8-cell Aster-15 vertical launch system, One 8-cell Aster-30 vertical launch system, One SeaRam launcher, Six 324mm torpedo launchers, One CH-148 helicopter

                                        Halifax Class Replacement
                                        8x GoWind 2500 Class Frigates (4 on each coast)
                                        *One 57mm cannon, Eight NSM launchers, One SeaRam launcher, One 8-cell Aster-15 vertical launch system, Six 324mm torpedo launchers, One CH-148 helicopter

                                        Kingston Class Replacement
                                        8x GoWind 1000 Class Corvettes (4 on each coast)
                                        *One 57mm cannon, Four NSM launchers, One SeaRam launcher, One MQ-8C unmanned helicopter

                                        6x Harry DeWolf Class OPV
                                        *One 57mm cannon, One CH-148 helicopter

                                        2x Protecteur Class Replenishment Ship
                                        *Four CH-148 helicopters


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