As I stated this would require a complete REDESIGNING of every ship using that Hull to "Add" more items to it to fill that now avalible space. This is pointless tedium that should be eliminated.I understand it a little bit better but I do have one point of contention. Refinements to a hull size should not reduce the number of turns but should increse the space (increase the ammount of items that can be put onto a ship) and maybe the ammount of armor mounted or something like that. Building something fast is not in the design of the thing itself but in the way things in general are built.
The "building it faster" is what the Refinment dose because thats a good simple and stratiforward bonus that the player can use without any tedius micro-managment. If it helps you think of refinment as "learning to build it faster" which is a legitimate area of improvment.
Its already desisde (because its a basic part of the HOI system) that they player explicity chooses to reserch "refinments" of specific aplied devices. That said I think it would be nice if you get "bonus" refinment levels based on some other "root" tec level advancment. For example I refined Laser to level 3 and my "Energy" theory is 2 above the requirments for laser so my lasers are at level 5.1) Improving the Components/Devices. This is a definate but it should not be a technology to be researched. The MOO2 way is exactly how it should be done. You researched the basic weapon and over time, improvements were made on it. This was far better than the MOO3 way of having to research 2 miniturization techs along with autofire, armor piercing, etc.
Also the miniturization of components will again lead to the nessesity to redesign and refit everything to get the advantage. Without miniturization you can skip the redesign and just bring your ships in for a refit that brings up all the components to your current max levels. Its functionaly equivilent in battle to have lasers with twice the rate of fire as to have twice as many lasers with half the size. We just save the player a ton of time and hastle this way.
Thats a realism argument and is thus of no relavence. That said its a very poor one as well because you seem to be comparing a Uzey to a Brownin Machine gun, the Uzey is an extreamly advanced sub-machine gun. For 2 guns of the same size/mass the modern one will have greater accuracy, rate of fire, damage ect ect. The invention of new gun tecnology improves all the guns but the basic catagories "pistol" "rifle" "Machine Gun" still continue to exist at very much the same size and mass. If some new tec comes along to alow a bigger gun it dosent eliminate the small ones either. All these sizes would simply be abstracted as "weapon mounts" like "Point defence" or "Super Heavy". In reality this will greatly reduce not incresse the number of tecnologies in the game.Look at the history of the machine gun. It started out big and clunky, had to be carried by two people and set on a tripod to be fired. Now you can hold one and fire it one handed. On the reverse, cannons started out fairly small and as time went on, we came up with ways of making it bigger meaning it could fire farther and do more damage.