Moose I agree with almost everything you said. I agree that no Nuke would ever take the kind of chances that would be involved with "rescue refueling". Nukes are trained that way , and for a damned good reason. (Imagine an airdale attitude with a nuclear reactor (shudder). I agree it would be tough, not in procedure , and probably stupid. EVERYTHING you have said is logical,sensible and practical. No argument, total disagreement.
A couple of questions though; 1) did any sub on patrol ever run out of fuel? Then they would not have needed to implement the procedure, would they? How much of our problem with subs running out of fuel is game related? If so, generally it would have people screaming "gamey" (unless of course it affected primarily AFB's. JFB's tend to scream far more often then AFB's do, I don't know why , but it just seems to go that way).
2) are ww2 submariners anything at all like modern submariners? Similar mind set? Training? Values and mentality?
3) and finally , do you honestly feel that even the most cautious of todays well trained nuclear submariner would honestly say "screw you buddy, it's too much of a risk and goes against doctrine?"
My thoughts , for whatever they may be worth (obviously not much) is that the problem we have with subs constantly running out of fuel did not happen in real life, that it is a "anomoly" associated with the game. If it did happen in real life , we'd have lots of heroic stories of submariners risking it all , and trying to immplement the "procedures" that were not unused , and as you point out, probably impractical. I do not belive that sailors, regardless if they sailon the seas, below them, or over them, do not allow fellow sailors to die without making heroic , stupid and sometimes suicidal attempts to save them. I don't know crap about submarine procedures. I freely admit that. But I have strong feelings about people in general, and sailors in particular. And I can't help but feel that they wouldn't give up.
Now here's the rub. It's a game. It has occassional flaws. And this might be one (or not, depending on your point of view , we've established that differences of opinion). But the real question here (at least to me) is , assuming that there is a flaw, can a house rule fix this? Can anyone? Then if not, shall we debate it endlessly , or "suck it up" and get back to our games?
To my knowledge no USN sub ran out of fuel on patrol in WWII. If you read patrol reports and logs, available on-line, you see how closely they monitored fuel. In the USN, every day in the noon reports made to the CO (usually while he's eating lunch) the OOD sends the Fuel and Water Report. Also magazine temperatures (if applicable), a report on chronometer winding and comparison (if applicable), the daily muster report (the binnacle list of sick men more or less at sea), and the position report. In subs he also got speed, depth, and number of sonar contacts.
It also matters what era you're talking about. In 1942 a sub leaving Midway was going off the edge of the world. There was no help out there. By mid-1944 there was a tender at Saipan. Later on also at Ulithi. The table got smaller, many more boats were available to help in an emergency, fleet tugs were an option sometimes. But still, I don't think any ran out of gas. It would have been the ultimate in unprofesioanlism. The main danger was loss of fuel from battle damage. Tanks were isolated and cross-connections were redundant, same as aircraft, but if they took a shell aft and lost 50% of the fuel rapidly they might not have had enough to get to safety.
If that happened they would have radioed in. Other boats might have heard, or might not. I'm not sure how daily codes worked then. And if another boat could have helepd SubPac would have pulled it off patrol and ordered it to help. A sub CO would not do so without orders; he woudln't have run off his station independently. One in range would have also broken radio silence to tell SubPac he could help, but he wouldn't have done it unless ordered. That said, SubPac was a submariner and he would have ordered in help if there were any in range. It's just that there likely would not have been in 1942 and much of 1943.
If another could help they would not have tried towing. You risk two boats then if they can't dive. Diving is life. The rescue boat would have taken off the crew and sunk the first with the deck gun. Then they would have come back to the nearest friendly base as fast as possible. Two crews would have overwhelmed the potable water production as well as atmosphere limits and space to sleep. Fleet boats were very, very tight.
In the game there's no reason to run out of fuel unless from damage. Players who do aren't paying attention. I can't see a need for any HR, nor do I see what it could be anyway. The code is the code.
< Message edited by Bullwinkle58 -- 1/20/2013 7:35:32 PM >