Poll

Which do you think is the better path forward?

Retain production of the older Fox
0 (0%)
Upgrade the Fox
8 (32%)
Replace the Fox lines with a Destroyer line
10 (40%)
Replace the Fox lines with a new Corvette line
1 (4%)
Replace the Fox lines with a dedicated transport warship
0 (0%)
Replace the Fox lines with Star Lord lines
0 (0%)
Replace the Fox lines with Monolith lines
1 (4%)
A mixed strategy (In post)
3 (12%)
Replace with a cheaper Jolly Rogers alternative
0 (0%)
Replace Fox with a Raider line
1 (4%)
Other (In post)
1 (4%)

Total Members Voted: 25

Voting closed: 23 May 2024, 21:29:15

Author Topic: FC Naval Command Decision  (Read 4512 times)

Cannonshop

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #90 on: 18 May 2024, 14:15:08 »
So I'm torn on this.
We have the Davion-II as a starting point.
Adding Fighters = York basically.
Meanwhile we have the new FC ships & their 4-6 Collars each.
Then finally while both those destroyers are larger at 580/600, I have this fascination with using Monolith yards which are 430KT.
The Smaller size is economical & supports it being a fairly numerous ship as well.

Blending them all together gives you 430KT,  6-8 Collars, & 54 Fighters in my "ideal" layout.
My ideal weapons would be NAC-20's, NL-55's, AR10s for Caps & ERLL/LPL for standards & some AMS/Screens for protection.

So a downsized Avalon + Fighter Wings.
I can see this since we did have plans for the Baby-Mjolnir, but, I'm not sure it would look exactly like that.

So Durendal,  Baby-Mjolnir,  Avalon,  BigMjolnir

While that might be an "ideal" layout, I'm not sure we'd actually see that for the FC navy.

I'm thinking more a BigMJ + Avalon as a major TaskForce CO/XO type set up.
This gives you the Big Tank & the Fuel Tanker/Missile Spam.   Both of these would be "Block-II" to fix some of the issues.
Then tack on a Pair of the DDs & a Quartette of the Trackers for Recon.
That gives you 8 WS which is small for the SLDF but insanely large for a House in the 60-70s really.
Its also a full Brigade of ASF & over 2 Dozen DS. 
(You would likely see at least 1 per "House" of the FC minimum w/ a Max of 1 per March)

The BabyMJ becomes your "small taskforce" Flagship with a single DD a pair of Trackers & some LFB-JS added on.
These might be what each "Non-Capital" March gets.

Finally single DDs are a mobile "Region/Sector/PDZ" back up for single Trackers that are doing most of the day to day tasks you mentioned.

Not disagreeing with your layout just scaling it back a bit to what a House "might" actually be able to pull off if the CW & Jihad never happened.

I like your numbers better than mine on a pragmatic level, sometimes theorycrafting is crafting the theory that everyone claims to be using, then violates the hell out of because they really can't do it.
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Hellraiser

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #91 on: 18 May 2024, 16:02:09 »
I like your numbers better than mine on a pragmatic level, sometimes theorycrafting is crafting the theory that everyone claims to be using, then violates the hell out of because they really can't do it.

LOL.
Yeah, I was just trying to blend "theory" w/ what we have in Canon.


Total #s:

This is honestly stretching it & I've revamped a bit from the above.


Big MJ:   We have 1.5 completed.   I'd like that to be a full 2 (4 if I'm wishful)   1/House, ideally, make it 2, 1 per Hostile House Border (FS/DC,  FS/CC,  LC/DC,  LC/FWL)
+ Baby MJ:  Revising my thoughts here & thinking maybe this is a late comer w/ 4 made as the actual Escort for the Big MJ.  These are the major Offensive Fleets.

Avalon:   Going from 7 to 8  (This + the Covenant gives you a Full Cruiser in every March)   (Call them Command & Defensive Response Fleets)
+ Durendal:  1/PDZ is probably far too many for realistic construction. 
  Heck, just 1 per Operations Area is 20 alone.  But that works for now.  Each OA has 1 & those that are on March Capitals operate as Escorts for the Avalons.

Foxes:  So we already had 20-ish of them in Canon.   I'm thinking 1/OA with the goal being to eventually add on an additional 1+ assigned to each "Combat Organization",  say on a 1 Fox per 3 Full Mech Regiments ratio in the Org ratio.
So 2 for the Davion Brigade (8 Regiments) & 1 for the Robinson/Syrtis units.  2 each for the Avalon/Crucis Orgs.  Etc etc.
   This could push the total up to more than double the current Fox totals but not into totally unrealistic figures.
They escort the troop convoys but they also are the class that might have more than 1 in an entire OA so they are going to be the first thing any Defensive action can count on to show up.

Trackers end up being the real work horses here with the DD+ sized vessels still being too thinly spread to "be everywhere".
But with multiple Merchant yards & even couple ships per year, we could see a few dozen out patrolling the borders.
Between these and Foxes you can actually pull off more than 1 Warship in a PDZ on some occasions as their patrols overlap.
The nice thing w/ the Tracker is the 2 DS can really augment them in terms of ability since the WS itself is so limited.
Intruder + Leo-CV........ sounds like a solid little "Inspection Team".

The more I started looking at construction #s the more I don't see any house ever looking like the SLDF did  :cry:

I feel like any "Major" operation is going to come down to one of the bigger ships stripping the OA of everything under it to become it's "Escorts/Taskforce"

Mjolnir + Baby Mjolnir + Avalon + Durendal *2 + Fox *3 + Tracker *6....... It's stripping the bulk of 2 entire OAs for an Offensive Operation, but, 14 Warships backed up by an equal # of LFB Equipped Jumpships is a heck of a force.  Yeah, I know, the Trackers barely count, but still.
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Cannonshop

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #92 on: 18 May 2024, 17:01:49 »
LOL.
Yeah, I was just trying to blend "theory" w/ what we have in Canon.


Total #s:

This is honestly stretching it & I've revamped a bit from the above.


Big MJ:   We have 1.5 completed.   I'd like that to be a full 2 (4 if I'm wishful)   1/House, ideally, make it 2, 1 per Hostile House Border (FS/DC,  FS/CC,  LC/DC,  LC/FWL)
+ Baby MJ:  Revising my thoughts here & thinking maybe this is a late comer w/ 4 made as the actual Escort for the Big MJ.  These are the major Offensive Fleets.

Avalon:   Going from 7 to 8  (This + the Covenant gives you a Full Cruiser in every March)   (Call them Command & Defensive Response Fleets)
+ Durendal:  1/PDZ is probably far too many for realistic construction. 
  Heck, just 1 per Operations Area is 20 alone.  But that works for now.  Each OA has 1 & those that are on March Capitals operate as Escorts for the Avalons.

Foxes:  So we already had 20-ish of them in Canon.   I'm thinking 1/OA with the goal being to eventually add on an additional 1+ assigned to each "Combat Organization",  say on a 1 Fox per 3 Full Mech Regiments ratio in the Org ratio.
So 2 for the Davion Brigade (8 Regiments) & 1 for the Robinson/Syrtis units.  2 each for the Avalon/Crucis Orgs.  Etc etc.
   This could push the total up to more than double the current Fox totals but not into totally unrealistic figures.
They escort the troop convoys but they also are the class that might have more than 1 in an entire OA so they are going to be the first thing any Defensive action can count on to show up.

Trackers end up being the real work horses here with the DD+ sized vessels still being too thinly spread to "be everywhere".
But with multiple Merchant yards & even couple ships per year, we could see a few dozen out patrolling the borders.
Between these and Foxes you can actually pull off more than 1 Warship in a PDZ on some occasions as their patrols overlap.
The nice thing w/ the Tracker is the 2 DS can really augment them in terms of ability since the WS itself is so limited.
Intruder + Leo-CV........ sounds like a solid little "Inspection Team".

The more I started looking at construction #s the more I don't see any house ever looking like the SLDF did  :cry:

I feel like any "Major" operation is going to come down to one of the bigger ships stripping the OA of everything under it to become it's "Escorts/Taskforce"

Mjolnir + Baby Mjolnir + Avalon + Durendal *2 + Fox *3 + Tracker *6....... It's stripping the bulk of 2 entire OAs for an Offensive Operation, but, 14 Warships backed up by an equal # of LFB Equipped Jumpships is a heck of a force.  Yeah, I know, the Trackers barely count, but still.

Figure in something else: readiness rates.  Not all your warships can be at sea all the time-they're going to need stand-down or they're going to start breaking down.

Yard maintenance, crew leaves, restock and inspection schedules.  Figure between 1/4 and 1/3 of your fleet should be on stand-down at any given time, with another 1/4 to 1/3 of your fleet on standby, that is, awaiting orders or 'hot ready' but not on patrol.

Which means it's going to be a lot harder to get your battlegroup assembled until you've built up enough weight in hulls to cover everything while still doing routine critical maintenance.  (battletech authors often ignore this, but they tend to ignore it universally, not just with ships and dropships).

Training rotations in peacetime as well-an undrilled crew is an unskilled crew, and there are a host of tasks that don't simulator very well (see: damage control), and crew rotation-enlisted personnel reach the ends of their enlistment term, Officers get promoted off the ship, or demoted, or fired, or Riffed in tight budget times, or get better offers outside the service.  (While not all merchant captains make good warship drivers, the needs of warships means Warship officers would be in demand for Merchant berths).

so figure around 1/3 to 1/2 your total fleet units are in some form of 'work-up' or drill/training at any given time in peacetime as well, just given that an Able Spacer can probably make more in the Merchant fleet, than he can as an enlisted sailor, with more comfortable conditions, fewer (necessary) restrictions on his social life, and less time away from family for the same (or better) money.

NOT having a system in place to upkeep skill levels between galaxy-shattering conflicts is a bad idea, not having a system in place to keep a flow of able crewmen DURING galaxy-shattering wars is even worse.  Rotating your veterans into the training machine is good for maintaining skill levels in crews, so is spending lots of time drilling in the black.

something that most BT writers don't consider or think of, but it's a proven system that works, and works far better than the system used by the Axis in World War Two, where people were kept on the front lines until they died, getting huge kill rates early on and dying in droves later, once that initial crop of rock-stars has passed beyond the pale.

This is part of why I've said that there isn't a Canon naval force in the Canon (not even the Snow Ravens) that can be objectively termed 'elite' except in comparison with the rest of the unskilled labor that are their peers.

And that's actually what you get, based on what's actually written.  When you mothball your fleet for thirty to fifty years, the crews aren't going to be adequate, much less capable, when you finally bring it out of mothballs-they're going to be lucky if they can switch on the power grid without setting something on fire, and navigate without hitting a planet.

one should desire to develop a higher level of performance than that, and one of the best ways to do so, is to have an active Naval force that is mainly a working navy, as opposed to a parade navy.

Which also means your 'on call' fleet is backed up by ships 'waiting in queue' or doing maintenance and upgrade, or training and readiness preparation when they're not out on active patrol...and it needs a robust recruitment and training establishment to replace attrition due to enlistments ending, retirements, or injuries and deaths.

It does you absolutely no good, if you have a single point of failure that can result in defeat, or that you cannot replace in the event of loss.

That which you cannot afford to lose, you cannot afford to use.
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Hellraiser

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #93 on: 18 May 2024, 19:49:34 »
Figure in something else: readiness rates.  Not all your warships can be at sea all the time-they're going to need stand-down or they're going to start breaking down.

What???  PMCS is a thing????   Say it ain't so.

Yeah, I don't even have that above because what I have above is well, a pretty extreme expansion of canon in only a few years.

But this reminds me of something I miss, the old HM-Aero program had a "maintenance" stat when adding crew to LargeCraft.
I used to love that because in most cases you'd see the "Minimum" Crew # & then it would only be 70-80% of the Maintenance needs.
I would always round up to the next 100 mark for Crew/Officers/Gunners just to have some room for Sick Call & such w/o falling below 100% Maintenance.

I'd also give Quarters to all my "Bay Crews" & then fluff the "Bays" as being available for extra temporary passengers.

Which doesn't even touch the idea of having say 3 Crews for every 2 Warships or so, so your always having someone back on planet or at a space station or where ever "SanDiego Naval Station" is for the Inner Sphere.
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Daryk

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #94 on: 18 May 2024, 19:53:54 »
Campaign Ops still has maintenance rules...

I also do the permanent quarters for bay personnel thing... :)

Colt Ward

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #95 on: 18 May 2024, 20:43:45 »
One thing to also remember is that the IS powers after 3050 as they were recovering warship abilities PROBABLY had a Gold & Blue crew rotation.  IIRC the Zec's fluff pretty much says this.

It would ALSO be how you wanted to train them.

Course post Jihad, I would expect the Lyrans used the Tharkad as a training ship- after all not all spaces would be for a museum and SOMEONE has to maintain the ship for that purpose anyway.
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Gorgon

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #96 on: 19 May 2024, 06:53:30 »
That's an interesting idea about the Tharkad, or museum ships in general. I could see that, also with the few other museum ships we've read about over the years - like the Samarkand, the Combine kept around up until the Jihad, IIRC. Something like that could help training up the first crews for the warship program of the 3050's.
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Cannonshop

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #97 on: 19 May 2024, 07:29:26 »
One thing to also remember is that the IS powers after 3050 as they were recovering warship abilities PROBABLY had a Gold & Blue crew rotation.  IIRC the Zec's fluff pretty much says this.

It would ALSO be how you wanted to train them.

Course post Jihad, I would expect the Lyrans used the Tharkad as a training ship- after all not all spaces would be for a museum and SOMEONE has to maintain the ship for that purpose anyway.

I doubt they'd be ABLE to use the Tharkad as a training ship-the structure wouldn't handle the forces of movement-under-power, and without the ability to actually practice (because it's basically a wreck in space and so compromised it'll never go anywhere under its own power again) what you end up with is a simulator...and a dedicated simulator can be built cheaper, maintained more easily, and doesn't represent an historical heirloom.

"Museum Ready" isn't the same as "Mothballed for service".  Not only are the presevation methods different, but if it's a museum (or kept in museum quality status) it's basically an expensive sculpture, not a functional ship.

Not that the Tharkad is functional post-jihad anyway, and if they could restore it to even partial function, they probably would've just to ease the load on the bare handful of relic ships they had left over in the fleet.

further, the tech on it?? is obsolete, the metals the hull is made from is past the sell-by-date (think; microfractures and radiation erosion).

The task of working with the yard to rebuild it might be good training for Damage Control and Inspection tasks, but that's more or less a one-time thing and then you need to find another mostly-functioning wreck to do it with for the next class.

Budget writers and peace-dividend activists aren't going to look at that with smiling eyes anyway, never mind the outraged letters from the Mothers of the Commonwealth if an accident kills their little darling because the structure was so old and compromised that it was effectively unsalvageable.

Historical precedent here, but a 'Training ship' still needs to be minimally functional as a ship, or it's worthless.
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Colt Ward

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #98 on: 19 May 2024, 10:14:52 »
I doubt they'd be ABLE to use the Tharkad as a training ship-the structure wouldn't handle the forces of movement-under-power, and without the ability to actually practice (because it's basically a wreck in space and so compromised it'll never go anywhere under its own power again) what you end up with is a simulator...and a dedicated simulator can be built cheaper, maintained more easily, and doesn't represent an historical heirloom.

How would ratings get used to living and working in space?

How would ratings learn to perform maintenance in micro G?

How would ratings learn to manually take over the guns?

Yes, a bridge crew might not be able to learn how to drive the ship but for most of the crew a navy will need to train the ship does not exactly have to be moving.
Colt Ward
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Daryk

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #99 on: 19 May 2024, 10:34:05 »
I don't think he meant a ground-based simulator... ;)

Hellraiser

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #100 on: 19 May 2024, 14:55:29 »
further, the tech on it?? is obsolete, the metals the hull is made from is past the sell-by-date (think; microfractures and radiation erosion).
See, I wonder about this, as it's something in the BTU that is totally different than Real World.

Aircraft & Blue Water Ships totally have a shelf life, their hulls flat out corrode & wear out, and FAST-ISH too.  Actually so do our cars.

Mechs get used for Centuries all over in the fiction.  Dropships even more so.   (ASF & Tanks probably similar if more "destroyable" as a whole)

The Clans WS fleets are all based on SLDF era ships,  let alone the few in caches that were even older AoW vessels.

I get the distinct impression that Sea Water corrosion &/or Airframe G-Tolerances don't have equivalents for wear & tear in black space.
  At least in the BTU.     No idea what that International Space Station up there is like.

3041: General Lance Hawkins: The Equalizers
3053: Star Colonel Rexor Kerensky: The Silver Wolves

"I don't shoot Urbanmechs, I walk up, stomp on their foot, wait for the head to pop open & drop in a hand grenade (or Elemental)" - Joel47
Against mechs, infantry have two options: Run screaming from Godzilla, or giggle under your breath as the arrogant fools blunder into your trap. - Weirdo

Cannonshop

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #101 on: 19 May 2024, 16:01:59 »
See, I wonder about this, as it's something in the BTU that is totally different than Real World.

Aircraft & Blue Water Ships totally have a shelf life, their hulls flat out corrode & wear out, and FAST-ISH too.  Actually so do our cars.

Mechs get used for Centuries all over in the fiction.  Dropships even more so.   (ASF & Tanks probably similar if more "destroyable" as a whole)

The Clans WS fleets are all based on SLDF era ships,  let alone the few in caches that were even older AoW vessels.

I get the distinct impression that Sea Water corrosion &/or Airframe G-Tolerances don't have equivalents for wear & tear in black space.
  At least in the BTU.     No idea what that International Space Station up there is like.

Entropy DOES seem to take a backseat in the Battletech 'verse (PhasaFiziks) or only turns up when it's 'dramatic' (RewluvKewl).

But the Tharkad class ship was explicitly stated as being pretty much a complete wreck in the Sarna entry, bad enough that by the 3140s it was still unrepaired.

likely because 'twas unrepairable.

You know, a timeframe where it might've been very Useful to have a BATTLESHIP when you've got two Clans coming right down Tharkad (the star system's) throat.

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Colt Ward

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #102 on: 19 May 2024, 16:20:32 »
She was broken at the end of the Jihad riding to Tharkads rescue- if you ever watched neo BSG, they gave her Galactica type history except she became a museum ship.

And even as a museum ship, she has to be maintained to be a safe place to visit.

Besides, I think the Wolf & Falcon invasion of Tharkad was written before the movie Battleship, so they could not riff on dropping anchor to deliver a broadside from the museum ship.
Colt Ward
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"We come in peace, please ignore the bloodstains."

"Greetings, Mechwarrior. You have been recruited by the Star League to defend the Frontier against Daoshen and the Capellan armada."

Cannonshop

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Re: FC Naval Command Decision
« Reply #103 on: 19 May 2024, 17:13:02 »
She was broken at the end of the Jihad riding to Tharkads rescue- if you ever watched neo BSG, they gave her Galactica type history except she became a museum ship.

And even as a museum ship, she has to be maintained to be a safe place to visit.

Besides, I think the Wolf & Falcon invasion of Tharkad was written before the movie Battleship, so they could not riff on dropping anchor to deliver a broadside from the museum ship.

Kinda my point there with that ship-too broken to be a trainer, unless you're training in inspection and repair...which, changing my mind, would be a good training to have on a ship that's almost guaranteed the fixes won't hold.

the problem then becomes cycling enough trainees through to be worth the effort, while having them build enough experience in Damage Control tasks while still having the wreck stay a wreck.

It's still not as good as live experience doing Navy tasks in the field, and won't develop NEW doctrines that way nearly as quickly as having, say, a simultaneous activity using light corvettes to develop your officer and crew cadre before moving them up to something bigger.

A dozen or so light corvettes are going to simultaneously develop a lot more personnel than one wreck that is, essentially, a big damaged sculpture.

I guess I'm looking at the problem not the way the Devs or writers do.  I see a 'Navy' as a personnel thing.  You can have a collection of relic warships under amatuers, or a professional navy made of cheap dropships, and the pros will eventually eat your collector's parade.  IOW personnel actually matters when you have an arm that literally dies in place if they don't have good teamwork and a broad spread of institutional knowledge.

Which is quite unlike 'mechwarrior culture, which lets you have guys like Aidan Pryde or Kai Allard Liao, who can defeat whole formations by themselves using psychic superpowers and their trusty personal suit of walking tank.

In a Navy, if Crewman Gerrold on third shift forgets his job, everybody dies.  If Paula in life support takes a powder, everybody dies.  If Lt. Chuck doen't know how to calculate an insertion? everybody dies.  if Captain Harry doesn't grasp basic operations, but can shoot the wings off a fly with a sixteen inch gun without phasing the rest of the fly?? everybody dies anyway.

The environment will kill you if enough of your gear fails, so you can't have illiterate sailors or inept sailors, because space will kill you.

even in peacetime.

a lot of the slop that is perfectly safe for surface forces, can't be allowed in a Navy, because that slop is fatal, not just to the one guy, but to the whole crew, the whole ship.

even when nobody is shooting at you.

To be effective then, your FSN has to have a completely different institutional culture than the rest of the AFFC, or it's going to be a mess that can't keep a fleet functioning (see: Canon).

also see history-the IJN copied the Royal Navy, but not perfectly-they didn't drill every rate in damage control and maintenance, and that cost them the war to a degree heavier than merely being outnumbered by the USN.

for a jump-capable, space-going Navy then, the central tenet has to begin with fostering a specific internal culture-one where your birthright means nothing, the son of a garbageman can become an Admiral commanding the sons of Dukes on straight merit alone.  if you don't have that, you end up with Warriors who sometimes go into Space to DIE, rather than Sailors who win wars.

I'd almost suggest that, with the need to restart from base zero, they should begin by giving everyone a number and requiring them to only use numbers between them, cut off all outside contact for the first eighteen months and outlaw membership in any non-service civil or political associations.  This wouldn't need to last long, just long enough to drive off the worst of the worst and drive home that the priority goes Nation/Sovereign/Service/ship/family/self, in that order.

or close to it.

"If you have to ask permission, then it's no longer a Right, it has been turned into a Privilege-something that can be and will be taken from you when convenient."