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Project 1058 Gibbs and Cox Hybrid

American foreign policy in the 1930s was not anti-Soviet: ship designers Gibbs and Cox even developed combat ships for Stalin. In the late 1930s, the Soviet government decided to create a powerful navy. In order to ascertain the possibility of receiving technical assistance in this matter, a commission was sent to the United States under the leadership of the Chairman of Amtorg DA Rozov, who was authorized to make orders for the purchase of naval equipment and weapons.

On 13 November 1937, the commission members negotiated with the leadership of the Gibbs and Cox firm on the development of a project for the USSR of a battleship with all weapons. On the basis of this project, it was planned to order the construction of a battleship in the United States with all the weapons and equipment, and, according to these drawings and with the technical assistance of American firms, to build in the USSR a second, the same, battleship.

Following negotiations on the possibility of placing an order for the American battleship project, in 1938 a commission of specialists from the People's Commissariat of the Defense Industry ( NKOP ) and the People's Commissariat of the Navy ( NKVMP ) was sent to the United States consisting of: G. Fedin, B. S Smirnova, AN Kirilyuk. At the first stage of negotiations with American firms, in order to evaluate the proposed ship project, a commission was working in the USA consisting of: I.S. Isakov, Deputy Chief of the NKVMF; A.M. Redkin, Chief of the 2nd Head of the NKOPM, A.B. Redkin, Chief Designer of the Design Bureau B. G. Chilikin, Head of the mechanical sector KB-4 LV Tageeva, artilleryman of the Research Artillery Institute VN Melnikov. Members of commissions carefully studied the issue of American technical assistance for the construction of the battleship.

The USSR contracted American engineers to develop a hybrid aircraft carrier and battleship design, among them a project that would become known as Project 1058.1. The hybrid, created by New York ship design firm Gibbs & Cox, was a 73,000 ton monster to be armed with 8x457-mm or 12x406-mm heavy cannons, 28x127-mm and 32x28-mm guns, and an aircraft contingent of 36 deck-launched planes, plus 4 seaplanes. The ship was to be equipped with two catapult systems, and fitted with armor between 197-mm and 330-mm thick. Further design efforts proved unsuccessful, the ship was deemed impractical, and the Soviet Union ultimately gave up on the idea of a carrier-battleship hybrid.

The Soviet Union in 1936 under the name of state-owned import and export company in the United States AMTORG to set up offices, agents (by Soviet agents) hired American Gibbs Cox, a 35 thousand ton aircraft battleship, the project named "Object 10581". The design was made by the U.S. firm Gibbs & Cox Co. in 1937 / 1938 and 2 ships would have been built. 3 versions were made of these hybrid battlecarriers: designs A,B and C, with their Soviet designations as Project 1058 for A, 1058.1 for B and 1058.2 for C. The United States Navy approved the contract, the design requirements of Gibbs Cox's drawings and data transfer in the United States before the Soviet naval review, to ensure that no leakage of U.S. military secrets.

The navigational speed 30 knots, nine 16 inch guns, 14 inch side armor and 60 carrier aircraft. The technical support for such a grandiose ship was absent: there were no slipways and docks, there were no guns and towers of the main caliber, machine-boiler plant. The Soviet Navy conducted a series of experiments in the central aerohydrodynamics Institute in Moscow that large wind tunnel, aviation battleship huge superstructure, gun and angled flight deck together will form a huge interference way of aircraft landing operations flow. This new aircraft battleship to spend the equivalent of building a 50 thousand ton BB and a 20 thousand ton CV, but battle effectiveness and survival ability is far less than a battleship and an aircraft carrier (fuel depot is easy to be destroyed). Therefore, the "Object 10581" was rejected.

On November 11, 1938 ICPC M. Kaganovich and NKVMF MP Frinovsky addressed to the Chairman of the Defense Committee of the Council of People's Commissars ( SNK ) V.M. Molotov with the proposal: "To recognize the unacceptable conditions of the project company - Gibbs for the design and construction of a 45,000-tonne battleship in the United States. To consider expedient the use of American technology in the construction of a battleship. Involve one of the American firms to develop a preliminary, general, working project and build a battleship on this Soviet shipbuilding project..... It is not advisable to purchase the project material of the 62,000-ton bunker shown to the members of the commission by the management Firm-Gibbs. In view of the fact that the negotiations on the draft of the battleship with all major American shipbuilding firms were not completed by the mediator, AMTORG should be asked to promptly ascertain the attitude of the firms (-New York Shipbilding, New Harbor News and Bethlehem) to this order."

The Soviet side was completely disappointed in hybrid ships. This is not surprising, since they looked good only on paper, for the construction of such an "aircraft carrier battleship", costs were required as for two separate ships, and the combat stability was very doubtful: in the battle of artillery ships, there was the probability of failure of a flight deck and the ignition of an aviation fuel; and when attacking from the air this is a big and vulnerable target. In September 1939, when the Soviet Union invaded Poland, Gibbs - Cox terminated the contract with the Soviet Union and returned the money.

A total of only 2 ships would had been built. Three versions were made of these hybrid Battlecarriers, designs A,B and C. Their soviet designations were Project 1058 for A, 1058.1 for B and 1058.2 for C.


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Page last modified: 10-04-2019 12:04:59 ZULU