Actually, quite true. The Type 82 (Bristol, et al) was to be the primary platform for both Ikara and BAE Seadart systems (itself based on the American Talos system)FlagWagger said:I heard that similar cost-cutting was undertaken on T42s with Batch 1 & 2 being cut-down cost-reduced versions before the bean counters conceded defeat and allowed Batch 3 to be built which met all the origianl design requirements.
When the Labour Government of 1966 decided to scrap the proposed light carrier, bang went it's escort ships (the Bristol, plus her three sister, but we were lumbered with an already bought and paid for Seadart and Ikara legacy. Simple solution - build smaller ships, house the dart in them (hence they are effectively 'back to front' in design on 42s and up forward, so they could manage a Wasp with fight deck ops back aft) and match up the recently tested (on HMS Exmouth) COGOG propulsion design (this is pre-1973 energy crisis)
No room to house Ikara - stick it on the Leanders (what the **** use it was, anyway). The original 'Town Class' (taking the name from the original Type 82s) was indeed the stretched version. Never mind this 'broad margin' shit spun post Corporate - the lies that they were redesigning 42s with room enough to fit Exocet and Seawolf (the Argentines have fitted Exocet to Hercules, since). They came in at over Â£21 million per hull, which was ludicrously over budget and to cut the maximum amount out, they chopped 46 feet out of the forward hull, naroowed the beam to length ratio and Sheffield rolled out of the yard in 1973 at an announced Â£19 million. It took her three years of trials to get things right, and it was apparent through the first six batch ones and the minor upgraded batch twos that the platform, as an air capable weapons launch facility, was hideously poor in a sea state over five. So they halted Manchester's build and 'stretched' her, incorporating subsequent modifications in later 42s which made every single one of the last four built different in some significant way. All of the later ships suffered from hull cracking in some ways, hence the swages, and all 42s have their own structural fun and games package, largely due to the hideous amount of mods and alterations incorporated to keep them 'current'.
They have fucked about with many things on the remaining 42s, Phalanx in odd places, BMARC, new propulsion proposals (even the Argentinians have lengthened the flightdeck and built a huge hanger on the ARA Hecules (the Santissima Trinidad sits alongside in Argentina just as nature intended, however) but they are still ******* good ships, strong, durable (if horrendously obsolete) and, until this ****'s nest of a government had their say, dependable.