2022 A Year in Port Polar Bear
Brouhaha Sat/Sun March 19, 20 2022
Brouhaha 2022 (14th annual) was attended by Bob (Nagato), Andy (Nagato), Mike S (Seydlitz), Peter (Erin), and Tyler (Tiger). Also in attendance were Mike T (Scharnhorst), Gerald (on loan Liberte), Dirty (Kongo), Tom P (interwar proposed Montana), Rick (Jamaica), Ted (VDT and Scheer), Wade (Lutzow). Tyler, Bob, and Andy drove and stopped at the Sullivan Brothers Museum in Waterloo, Iowa for about an hour on the way down, it was $1 Thursday. We stopped over night north of Jackson, MS and drove to Batton Rouge on Friday to see the museum ship the USS Kidd, which was pretty cool, well worth the stop. Mike and Peter went to the ship as well on Monday before their flight left.
The attendance was a little lighter than usual. We mixed the teams every battle and were able to get in 3 complete battles each day. The battling was fairly close in terms of scores. The Polar Bears generally fought in some combination against each other all weekend though it would have been cool to try a PPB vs the World battle. The most lop sided battle was when Tyler and Bob were on the same team, the other capitol ships were the Scharnhorst which was having some technical issues off and on and the Kongo which had to withdraw right before battle started and didnít make the water for any of the battle. Tylerís drive shaft bound in the first sortie and the outcome was a massacre as it was basically only Bob left with a functional capital ship on that fleet vs the rest of the field. We experienced a few minor breakdowns that were generally fixed between sorties: Tiger had the port shaft bind and a few pump issues, Andy had accidentally unplugged a drive motor ESC for a sortie and at a different time lost drive due to I think a gear issue and later had a gun up-feed issue, Bob had two of the input battery plugs come loose but didnít effect performance before he found the issue and fixed it, Peter and Mike both had pump issues which lead to sinks as well and Peter also had a rock jam his rudders. Wade took out a ship (Lutzow) that was newly constructed by Ted and a few of the Texas guys and made 4 sorties. Gerald intended to fight his Kongo class battle cruiser but had major drive/ESC issues and ended up using Brandonís French pre-dreadnaught Liberte on itís first combat sea trial. Overall, it felt good to get things started for the season and it really put me in a mood to work on ships.
Itís a good thing too, as we took home an additional 10 semi-completed ships or fresh hulls from Geraldís collection (plus Tom will be bringing 2-3 more that were not able to fit when he comes in May), as well as most of John Sís gear and few ships that he still had at Wadeís. Tylerís truck was completely full of stuff very carefully packed to the max, though we joked on the way home that we should have tried harder and been more dedicated to get a few more ships in as we could have held a few on our laps for the 17.5 hour drive.
We stayed at a different hotel for the first time that I can remember that was a little further out of town, it was much nicer and more expensive but essentially every hotel in the vicinity was completely booked by FEMA workers and displaced people from Hurricane Ida that hit in the fall of 2021. Wadeís house was still completely gutted to the studs. I try to keep tabs on the ever-changing restaurant in the parking lot of the old hotel, this time it was Marianoís where we had our awards banquet on Sunday as we typically do, oddly enough there was an ďAmerican IdolĒ watch party for a contestant who was a New Orleans native who advanced past the initial round of auditions in the restaurant, which without that group we probably would have had the place to ourselves as usual but with them it was very crowded and noisy. Peter and Mike on arrival took a hitchhiker in their rental car from the airport to a near by neighborhood, Mike is just a friendly guy looking for good deeds, evidently when they dropped her off the household she went up to didnít recognize her, I wonder how that ever turned out.
Awards: Best of Class: 6-8 Tom, 5 Mike T, 4 Mike S, 1-3 Rick. Most Feared Allied: Tyler. Most Feared Axis: Bob. Best of Scale: Mike T (3d printed Scharny). Winning Admiral: Peter. Losing Admiral: Peter.
Next battle is Memorial Weekend Saturday and Sunday May 28/29. The Royals are in town playing the Twins Friday May 27 so we will probably check out a baseball game that weekend as well.
PPB Memorial Weekend Battle Sat/Sun May 28, 29 2022
We hosted our typical 2 day Memorial Weekend battle. The local regulars in attendance were: Tyler (Yamato), Andy (Nagato), Bob (Johnís Kongo), Zach (Nagato), Peter (Erin), Mike (Seydlitz), Bryan (Idaho), McCoy (Zara), Addie (Tourville). The KC regulars came up as well: Tom (Montana), Rick (Jamaica). We had two of the old regulars show up: Ron, Ryan. And we had two new hopefully-soon-to-be regulars come to their first battle: Caden, Owen. We were able to do 6 complete battles.
On Friday night 8 of us went to the first place Twins vs last place Royals game which was really fun. The game was fairly long and Tyler/McCoy left in the 7th and the rest left in the 8th. I think the game ended at 10:40. Twins won which saved us a bunch of money on the Saturday post battle Pizza. Tom was a team player and told his guys to lose for us. The teams ended up splitting the series 2-2.
As is typical the Saturday morning battle was slightly slow getting started because of the usual get stuff set up, clear a path/weed whack, ĎI thought that system was working fineí type of delays. The first day was mostly Tyler, Tom, Peter, McCoy, Addie, Owen vs Andy, Zach, Bob, Mike, Rick, Caden. Ron/Ryan ran the Derfflinger 2 a little bit but she had some unusual gun problems, I think the elbow is already wearing out and causing jams. The first 2 battles were extremely close with score differentials less than 1000 points and each team taking a win. The 3rd battle got out of hand and Andyís team won by 5900 points. Bob was battling Johnís Kongo that had been sitting in a New Orleans attic for the better part of a decade and expectedly had some issues with gun boards, damage control, and glitching. Towards the end of the weekend it was working fairly well and was on par with the more competitive Kongos Iíve seen. In the 2nd battle Andy got caught in a hole because his forward acceleration wasnít up to snuff and Tyler emptied the entire dual stern sidemount from the Yammer into him, he sank in 30 seconds and had 50 below. He was a victim of circumstance as Tyler had just happened to see a good opportunity and wasnít really targeting him. The Yamato sank in all 3 battles on Saturday with moderate damage, somewhat due to really poor hull skin and somewhat due to pump problems. I was later able to change the length of pump hose and it made a huge difference for the poorly functioning starboard pump, Iím really glad I sank 3 times at the local battle so I could play with things and figure that out before Nats. Another improvement to the Yamato I am making is to move the guns closer to shooting parallel, they were too far apart and their convergence point was too erratic, hopefully this will blow more panels out.
Sunday was also a little slow going due to weather, there was morning rain and storms that were mostly breaking up by the time they were hitting the battle pond but we ended up waiting to set up until 9 rather than the usual 8AM. For the first two battles we had similar teams but Zach and Peter flipped sides. The first battle was a blow out 6000 point win for the Tyler/Tom/Zach team enabled by pump clog on Andyís Nagato, Bryan eating a dual Yammer sidemount, Bob having ship issues and sinking early/often, and Mike also having some pump issues. The second battle was much closer with a 850 point Andy/Bob team win. Yammer had put what seemed like a crushing sidemount pass into the Seydlitz and spent the rest of the battle chasing him to try to put her down. Mike has an amazing stern deck seal and was able to back out essentially submerged several times. Eventually getting caught next to shore, several ships tried to prop wash her under but couldnít do it, despite having an impressive score of 34a-29o-42b. That little boat is hard to sink. The third battle was one of attrition: Bob resorted to taking out Zachís Nagato after Zach left. Andy and Bryan only made it 1 sortie. We ended up again trying to prop wash Mikeís Seydlitz which had a score of 78a-18o-36b and were again not able to do so. We played around after the battle by holding it under and watching in amazement as it kept popping back up until we finally got the critical amount of water on board. Also after the battle McCoy and Addie re-loaded and shot up the Yamato for gunnery practice.
Both days we had brats pond side for lunch. Owenís mom brought brownies, rice crispy bars, and cookies. The two new captains Owen and Caden who ran Bobís and Brandonís pre-dreads seemed to have a very good time, hopefully they will stick around. It was also awesome that Ron and Ryan came out Saturday, it had been roughly 8 years since they battled last and hopefully they have found the itch again. As I was compiling scores it amazed me how much damage we are taking, it seems that our ship building quality is really going up. There were 18 times that a capital ship took 40+ below of the 46 battle data points, only 6 of them were sinks. 6 times a ship took 50+ below and only 3 of them were sinks, one of them was Tom who took 65 below and didnít sink. There will always be circumstances that are not well reflected in the data points, but in general it seemed like the ships were taking a pounding and more often than not surviving it well.
Another fun thing I like to draw attention to is Rick not patching. He is clearly an experienced cruiser captain and can use his intuition/experience and his shipís speed to stay out of trouble, totals for his entire 12 sorties were: 8 above, 4 on, 6 below. However, McCoy was right on his tail with 13 above, 6 on, 17 below. Perhaps he will one day take over the ďRick Whitsell - Do You Even Bring Patching Material? Take No Damage In A Cruiser Award.Ē McCoy told me that he was really trying to work on not getting caught by battleships, his gun skills are really getting good as well. I think itís time to end the young guy grace period.
Nats is in July. We will battle again September 10/11, the weekend after Labor Day.