German Navy's Aircraft Carrier

German Kriegsmarine 1935-1945.

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Postby Andy H » Wed Nov 29, 2006 7:21 am

Regarding the Auxiliaries - the average invasion barge might have been more heavily armed!!! A couple of puking sections of seasick infantry would still have more automatic weapons between them than an aged Lewis or Vickers or two LOL


A distinct possibility, though hopefully the gallant British captain will head full steam ahead and snap the tow line(s) LOL

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Postby lwd » Wed Jan 31, 2007 12:31 pm

Paul Lakowski wrote:T...
All barges had to meet following naval requirements…

Able to handle open water up to sea state 2 [Significant wave height of 1.4 feet or 0.4 meters], which was the basic English channel sea state.
...
However the barges exceeded these figures , here’s a quote from Schenk “Invasion of England 1940” Translated 1990, pp 70

"For the first criteria it was calculated that the barges would need a freeboard of at least 2 m and would have to be in a good state of repair. ...."

...
Schenk notes there were 1336 x type A1 "Péniche" barges @ 39 meters long 5 m ; wide & 2.3m high , with a capacity of 360 tonnes.

If you assume the barge is a rectangular solid and multiply 39x5x.3 ( to leave 2m freeboard) this is ~ 58 cubic meters. Which displased ~ 58 metric tons. what is the height mentioned?
In addition there were 982 larger "Kampinen" type A2 barges @ 50 meters long 6.6m wide & 2.5m high and a capacity of 620 tonnes [able to carry 4 tanks]

Similar calculations yield 165 metric tons with 2 m free board.
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Postby Paul Lakowski » Thu Feb 01, 2007 7:28 pm

The 1970s wargame is plain silly and unfortunately typical of many 1970s games. With out any explaination 50% of the German invasion fleet is wiped out in one day!!! Given that the 1st day invasion fleet counted 100 merchants and 1550 barges plus 400 tugs & similar number of coasters to say nothing of 180 minesweepers/VBoot/RBoot, that would require sinking atleast 750 barges & 50 merchants and 200 coasters. No doubt they would have to do this after they had destroyed a sizable section of the escorts and tugs etc. No one seems to be able to point to any realistic historical event that can be used as a yard stick with which to measure the validity of such claims. Crete proves the RN would have to be several times its historical size to achieve even a fraction of this.

Again given that in the entire war period the combined commonwealth/American fleets facing the AXIS in Europe, only sank 4200 vessels including merchants listed at 100 tons or more, during the entire 5 years of fighting during the war. We are left to ponder how on earth would the south coast section of the anti invasion fleet [200 trawlers , 1/2 of which would be armed, plus ~60 DD/CL], be able to achieve this in a day. RAF air power was only able to sink/destroy 65 barges/merchants in ~ 900 sortie in the week prior to the 'Planned Sealion' start.The word phantasy comes to mind.

There is no doubt that the German invasion would have taken longer than planned and cost them hugh in loses and had numerous problems ; but 7 sortie were planned with 2-4 days round trip adding up to 2-4 weeks. No invasion ever works exactly as planned and the fog of war plays a key role . What determines the out come is often the adaptablity and leadership of the invading army. The hugh disparity in expected training /expericence levels of the two armies would figure prominatly in this event.

lwd , what I reported was all that was there. However the barges all recieved concrete/steel/wood constructions to adapt the barges to landing mission. The amount of this averaged about 75-100 tons. In one exercise a merchant was unloaded on to the beach through 24 barge sortie in 14 hours and averaged about 40 tons per load. Its possible the weights listed were gross weight including cargo....but would concrete weight 1000kg/ cubic meter? I thought is was more like 2500kg per cubic meter?

The plan envisaged 1500 barge trips in the first day followed by 400 per sortie for seven consequtive trips. Atleast 400 barges were to remain on each side to help load and unload merchants to the beach.

As some one who was born and raised in the UK , even as a child the idea that the weather in the channel would make any crossing impossible , seemed absurd. Any who bases his National Security on such a unpredictable weather happening is plain irresponsible.
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Postby Troy Tempest » Fri Feb 02, 2007 2:57 am

Allright Paul! :D Another tip-top post for our mental stimulation! Kriegsmarine/SeeLöwe = Kent beach landing!

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Postby lwd » Fri Feb 02, 2007 6:40 am

Did the results of the wargame state they were sunk or just put out of action?
Paul Lakowski wrote:.... Crete proves the RN would have to be several times its historical size to achieve even a fraction of this.

I would say just the opposite. One of the things that saved a bunch of the German boats at Crete was that they retreated. This could save them in Sea Lion as well but if they return to port they aren't going to help the invasion much.
Again given that in the entire war period the combined commonwealth/American fleets facing the AXIS in Europe, only sank 4200 vessels including merchants listed at 100 tons or more, during the entire 5 years of fighting during the war. We are left to ponder how on earth would the south coast section of the anti invasion fleet [200 trawlers , 1/2 of which would be armed, plus ~60 DD/CL], be able to achieve this in a day.

Only half the trawlers were armed????
In any case in the Battle of the Bismark sea PT boats and planes sank 8 out of 8 cargo ships and 4 out of 8 DDs. While the air component of the RAF might not be as effective the RN presence would definitly be greater and the German escort relativly speaking weaker.
RAF air power was only able to sink/destroy 65 barges/merchants in ~ 900 sortie in the week prior to the 'Planned Sealion' start.

That involved strikes against heavily defended ports. This is hardly comparable to the situation with the invasion fleet. Also from acounts of Pacific battles even air strikes that didn't do any physical damage to the convoys tended to diorder them badly. And don't forget that in test at least one German barge swamped because the infantry on board all rushed to one side because another barge got "too close". The likelyhood of similar events when under naval and air attack is high. The swamping under the above conditions also calls to question the sea worthiiness of the barges. It's also quite likely that a fair number of the barges that beached would be damaged, damaged, stressed, or grounded in such a way that at best their turnaround time would go up a day or so and some would be unuseable or founder on latter trips.
...t 7 sortie were planned with 2-4 days round trip adding up to 2-4 weeks.

I've seen elsewhere that the Germans planned on it taking 3 days to unload the first wave. This ups the round trip to at least 5 days for the barges and at least 3 days for the cargo ships plus whatever time it takes them to load up in port so you are probably looking at more like a week per sortie. Now your sorties take almost 2 months. The faster bigger cargo ships are also likely to attract the most attention from the RN and the RAF. Frankly I would be surprised if more than a handful at best would survive to make all 7 sorties.
lwd , what I reported was all that was there. However the barges all recieved concrete/steel/wood constructions to adapt the barges to landing mission. The amount of this averaged about 75-100 tons. In one exercise a merchant was unloaded on to the beach through 24 barge sortie in 14 hours and averaged about 40 tons per load. Its possible the weights listed were gross weight including cargo....but would concrete weight 1000kg/ cubic meter? I thought is was more like 2500kg per cubic meter?

I assumed the tonage of the barges was their cargo carrying capacity. This would work out pretty well with both of the above if they have .5m or less freeboard. What it does say is that they can't carry anywhere near their capacity for the invasion. The 40 tons you mention seams reasonable..
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Postby lwd » Fri Feb 02, 2007 6:44 am

Paul Lakowski wrote:...
As some one who was born and raised in the UK , even as a child the idea that the weather in the channel would make any crossing impossible , seemed absurd. Any who bases his National Security on such a unpredictable weather happening is plain irresponsible.

I haven't heard anyone say that weather in the channel would make crossings impossible. However the probability of weather causing a significant problem to marginally sea worthy vessels is pretty high if they are constantly at sea over a 2 month period especially in the September October time frame. That this same weather could prevent Luftwaffe support is another major problem for the invasion forces.
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Postby phylo_roadking » Fri Feb 02, 2007 7:59 am

A few things to put in here:-

1. Brought up on the Irish Sea coast of Northern Irleand,beside a fishing community, I can confirm that in any "straitened "sea i.e. channel between two shores - the main danger is from the Equinocial and "neep" ides half way between each equinox. Each of these tidal periods is usually accompanied by inclement weather - thats the polite way of referring to it! Betwen two shores the effect of gales is magnified - hence the terrible Channel gales that wrecked the RN's fleets on lee shores during the Napoleonic blockade, and that period of bad weather immediately before and then after D-Day in 1944, the second one being the storm that wrecked the American Mulberry. Weather like this would have decimated barge strings and shallow-draught coasters -no matter how well ballasted.

2. Not all concrete is created equal! remember, for example the craze for CONCRETE-hulled sailboats in the 1970s? The weight per cubic foot/yard/metre of concrete depends on the type of aggregate i.e. crushed rock - used, and - of course - whether or not its reinforced concrete with steel cores!!! Very often when you read about concrete, the author forgets to mention whether or not its got the steel in it! LMAO I've seen the film of concrete being poured into the bilges of barges to ballast them, and reinforce the strengthening frames put in to support tanks. its NOT "reinforecED concrete", hence it would be at the lighter end of the weight scale.

3. RE the Royal Naval Patrol Service, AKA "Harry Tate's Navy" - this force of commandeered trawlers was used for a wide variety of purposes, but here are the main types...

A/ convoy escort. The stronger, bigger, steel-hulled deepsea types were fitted with depthcahrge racks, ASDIC, and used as convoy escorts in the North and South Atlantic. These vessels usually were armed with two or three Lewis guns and a deck gun, as they were stronger enough to mount a deck gun - but still often required a railway-sleeper platform built to carry the weight.

B/ the North Sea Patrol and fishery escort. Older vessels assisted the RN is interdicting shipping to and from Scandanavia, boarding and searching "neutral" ships. Agains, all they received the a minimal AA armament, Some times depthcahrge racks, (one in every three or so IF the ships could carry the weight....and were fast enough! Fishing boats are SLOOOOOW, but for depth charges they have to be able to get out of the blast! Several had their sterns blown off in the course of the war!) Again, the provision of deck guns depended IF the boat could carry the!

C/ the MOST numerous in Home waters....antisubmarine patrols and particularly minesweeping. Not deepsea minesweepers that we'd more commonly think of, but trawlers - four five or six of them - assigned to EVERY coastal or tidal port, and tasked with trawling tidal estuaries and sea roads' EVERY morning, after possible aerial minelaying, and proably evening as well. The battle against the magnetic mine began in late 1939, and it became clear very quickly that these boats had to be older, wooden shallow-draught types. Some of these were also specifically tasked to bring up AND BEACH magnetic mines and other types for examination, a VERY dangerous procedure LOL where a mine would cripple a capital ship....it would disintegrate a fishing boat - and frequently did. Again, these vessels had only machine-gun AA defences, and rarely deck guns.

D/ a large numbers of fishing boats were sent to ALL areas where the RN operated and performed the above duties, so the number of vessels available to the Patrol Service in home waters was only about half of the total number at any time.

E/ armed fishingboats accompanied the Fleet and acted as auxiliaries in actions such as Norway and D-Day.

Occasionally - like off the soon-to-be-abandoned stockpiles at Narvik - the trawlers frequently "acquired" extra armament, but only about 40% of the total number were equiped with deck guns, those on non-coastal patrol duties. Even these scarecely put them on a par with the deck armament - cannon and machinegun - of the average U-boat! This percentage improved during the war as weapons became available, but only very slowly and NOT in 1940!

They were themselves very fragile to enemy fire, mines, mishap (!) etc. During the war, for example - over TWO HUNDRED were sunk. They were very old-fashioned, almost always coalburners, and at any one time 25% of fleet was rotated out for boiler-cleaning to keep up top speed....sometimes only as much as seven or eight knots AT BEST. The motor-barges would be faster!!!
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Postby Paul Lakowski » Fri Feb 02, 2007 8:48 pm

lwd wrote:Did the results of the wargame state they were sunk or just put out of action?
Paul Lakowski wrote:.... Crete proves the RN would have to be several times its historical size to achieve even a fraction of this.

I would say just the opposite. One of the things that saved a bunch of the German boats at Crete was that they retreated. This could save them in Sea Lion as well but if they return to port they aren't going to help the invasion much.
Again given that in the entire war period the combined commonwealth/American fleets facing the AXIS in Europe, only sank 4200 vessels including merchants listed at 100 tons or more, during the entire 5 years of fighting during the war. We are left to ponder how on earth would the south coast section of the anti invasion fleet [200 trawlers , 1/2 of which would be armed, plus ~60 DD/CL], be able to achieve this in a day.

Only half the trawlers were armed????
In any case in the Battle of the Bismark sea PT boats and planes sank 8 out of 8 cargo ships and 4 out of 8 DDs. While the air component of the RAF might not be as effective the RN presence would definitly be greater and the German escort relativly speaking weaker.
RAF air power was only able to sink/destroy 65 barges/merchants in ~ 900 sortie in the week prior to the 'Planned Sealion' start.

That involved strikes against heavily defended ports. This is hardly comparable to the situation with the invasion fleet. Also from acounts of Pacific battles even air strikes that didn't do any physical damage to the convoys tended to diorder them badly. And don't forget that in test at least one German barge swamped because the infantry on board all rushed to one side because another barge got "too close". The likelyhood of similar events when under naval and air attack is high. The swamping under the above conditions also calls to question the sea worthiiness of the barges. It's also quite likely that a fair number of the barges that beached would be damaged, damaged, stressed, or grounded in such a way that at best their turnaround time would go up a day or so and some would be unuseable or founder on latter trips.
...t 7 sortie were planned with 2-4 days round trip adding up to 2-4 weeks.

I've seen elsewhere that the Germans planned on it taking 3 days to unload the first wave. This ups the round trip to at least 5 days for the barges and at least 3 days for the cargo ships plus whatever time it takes them to load up in port so you are probably looking at more like a week per sortie. Now your sorties take almost 2 months. The faster bigger cargo ships are also likely to attract the most attention from the RN and the RAF. Frankly I would be surprised if more than a handful at best would survive to make all 7 sorties.
lwd , what I reported was all that was there. However the barges all recieved concrete/steel/wood constructions to adapt the barges to landing mission. The amount of this averaged about 75-100 tons. In one exercise a merchant was unloaded on to the beach through 24 barge sortie in 14 hours and averaged about 40 tons per load. Its possible the weights listed were gross weight including cargo....but would concrete weight 1000kg/ cubic meter? I thought is was more like 2500kg per cubic meter?

I assumed the tonage of the barges was their cargo carrying capacity. This would work out pretty well with both of the above if they have .5m or less freeboard. What it does say is that they can't carry anywhere near their capacity for the invasion. The 40 tons you mention seams reasonable..


As I recall they reported 50% destroyed in the first day.

In the crete situation 15 cruiers and destroyers mounted 20 attacks over a week, sinking 5 merchants 3-4 destroyer/ TB & 11 barges leaving the other 40 and one torpedoboot . The retreat of the fleet was ordered by the Italian Admiral who freaked about his fleet being 400km away without radar facing an enemy had radar and who seemed to always know were they were [Ultra decrpts]. The Italian admirals had be waring over the importance of radars and this basically brought the point home...so he ordered the fleet home. Don't think a German fleet would face the same problem [few ships had radar in 1940 and no ultra] and thus would not be recalled ,especially since the crossing was under army control and they would balk at the loss of a few barges.

AS I recall later that week another invasion fleet got through?

Yes only 1/2 the trawlers had 1 x 12 lb or 1 x 4" guns .

I've read battle for the Narrow sea and holding the narrow sea and its clear that allied claims of enemy vessels sunk by coastal forces are as bad as RAF claimes of Luftwaffe planes shot down. The Coastal defense forces claimed that in 450 battles they sunk 250 vessels loseing about 80 of their own. I checked some of the battles against german accounts and many times the claimed sunk vessels were not only ,not sunk they were only damaged and remained operational during that period. To be fair they do report how difficult it is to report anything for certain in such clashes [the fog of war].

Either sides claimes of kills are not to be trusted. Only each sides reported returns can be trusted. But even if you take the inflated RN claim, its always a battle between many vessels on each side, so 450 battles probably represents 1000-2000 vessels achieveing 250 kills or an average of 0.25 to 0.12 kills per clash and probably more realistically 1/2 of those. This agrees well with other reports of coastal craft clashes, where 1/3 of the vessels are damaged with 1/2 of those crippled/destroyed.

The barge fleet attacked was scores of vessels tied to each other in rows many deep. But since Germans controled the channel it would be all good, or bad depending on your POV.

You are right about the problem of controling troops in barges, but many exercises occured and only few such instances reported .Schenk reports they took steps to instruct and train troops on barge edicate :wink:

Remember with 2400 barges to pool from and only 400-800 needed per wave after the first , keeping the flow at or near capacity would not be the problem some make. This also assumes no repairs to fleet which is unrealistic if the action takes weeks or months.

In the end its rather moot , you can't win or lose a war based stricktly on logistics, which was the flaw in RN strategy. Given the demonstrated robustness and adaptablity of German combat units in battle even with limited logistics, they would have enough of what they need to achieve their goal of over running the Uk in a month. Once the UK ports and airflields and radar stations start falling into German hands the whole thing would snowball and the country & institutional structure would disintegrate beneath the RN/RAF no matter how courageous they are , forcing them into a 'fight or flight' situation.
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Postby lwd » Mon Feb 05, 2007 12:34 pm

Paul Lakowski wrote:....
As I recall they reported 50% destroyed in the first day.

Would be nice if they gave a bit more details. Makes it real hard to back out who did what. They could even be assuming a large number were wrecked due to sea conditions or landing.
In the crete situation 15 cruiers and destroyers mounted 20 attacks over a week, sinking 5 merchants 3-4 destroyer/ TB & 11 barges leaving the other 40 and one torpedoboot . The retreat of the fleet was ordered by the Italian Admiral who freaked about his fleet being 400km away without radar facing an enemy had radar and who seemed to always know were they were [Ultra decrpts].

And you don't think this was the correct response. If I'm in an unarmed vessel and most/all my escort is sunk or damaged I'm certainly not going to try getting past a bunch of faster armed vessels especially when shore is closer in the other direction.
Don't think a German fleet would face the same problem [few ships had radar in 1940 and no ultra] and thus would not be recalled ,especially since the crossing was under army control and they would balk at the loss of a few barges.

I see this as a perscription for disaster. While not as many British ships had radar there are a whole lot more recon elements out there to direct them.
AS I recall later that week another invasion fleet got through?

Once there weren't any British naval assets in the area.
.... Only each sides reported returns can be trusted. But even if you take the inflated RN claim, its always a battle between many vessels on each side, so 450 battles probably represents 1000-2000 vessels achieveing 250 kills or an average of 0.25 to 0.12 kills per clash and probably more realistically 1/2 of those. This agrees well with other reports of coastal craft clashes, where 1/3 of the vessels are damaged with 1/2 of those crippled/destroyed.

I would expect higher casulty rates in this case however. The British nead to defeat the invasion and the Germans need to protect the invasion fleet. But even if this is the case after only 2 sets of engagments casulaties are running over 50%. The supperior odds and ships of the RN will tend to make their losses relativly lower than the KM resulting in a rapidly deteriating situation for the Germans. Also if the KM wins a fight then they just cut down the odds a little. If the British win one they are into the invasion fleet. The latter might happen even without the British "defeating" (ie causing more casualties than they take) the escorts.

The barge fleet attacked was scores of vessels tied to each other in rows many deep. But since Germans controled the channel it would be all good, or bad depending on your POV.

I'm not sure how you can claim the Germans controled the channel. Was the plan really to tie the barges to gether in rows? This seams like another perscription for disaster. It takes away all maneuverability and if a vessel founders it can drag down its mates.
You are right about the problem of controling troops in barges, but many exercises occured and only few such instances reported .Schenk reports they took steps to instruct and train troops on barge edicate :wink:

Can you tell me more about these? Such as when and where and what was involved. Most I've read about were in daylight with good weather and of course no opposition.
...
In the end its rather moot , you can't win or lose a war based stricktly on logistics, which was the flaw in RN strategy.

Are you really trying to destroy any credibility you have in this regard? It may be hard to win purly on logistics but you certainly can loose based on them. In fact there is a pretty convincing argument that that is why both the Germans and Japanese lost WWII.
Given the demonstrated robustness and adaptablity of German combat units in battle even with limited logistics, they would have enough of what they need to achieve their goal of over running the Uk in a month.

With the equipment they are taking over agains a very light defence I doubt that they could advance more than 10 miles a day. The defence they encounter will be anything but light especially after the first day.
Once the UK ports and airflields and radar stations start falling into German hands the whole thing would snowball and the country & institutional structure would disintegrate beneath the RN/RAF no matter how courageous they are , forcing them into a 'fight or flight' situation.

There is a very good chance indeed almost a certainty that any ports they capture won't be very usuable for longer than a month. Loosing the radar stations will hurt some but it's not as if the British wouldn't know at this point where to find the LW and if by chance they are not there well then they can attack surface targets. As for airfields taking them is all fine and good but they don't do you much good until you have pushed the front lines out of artillery range of them.
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Postby Black Baron » Mon Feb 05, 2007 4:37 pm

Out of artillery range. I didn't think they had any. They did have the Destroyers & Cruisers though with their rather impressive range. Tanks are gonna have to go pretty far inshore to get out of range of those.

& man for man Brits would likely have a huge numerical advantage. 14 yr old kids with 22 huntin rifles & every grandpa with a shotgun will be there to welcome the visitors.
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Postby phylo_roadking » Mon Feb 05, 2007 5:27 pm

The British had a suprising amount of artillery lined up onshore, everything from reconstituted RA batteries right the way up to the big permanent guns that were dug in along from Dover early in the summer. These maintained a contunous artillery duel with their counterparts outisde Calais until late summer 1944.
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Postby sid guttridge » Tue Feb 06, 2007 5:54 am

Hi Guys,

Something from the Conference between Raeder and Hitler on 15/6/42.

"5. Auxiliary aircraft carriers:- The plans for the auxiliary aircraft carriers will be submitted within a week. Four weeks later the construction will reach the stage where the materials can be ordered.

Number of aircraft:
Europa - 18 bombers, 24 fighters.
Potsdam - 8 bombers, 12 fighters.
Seydlitz - 12 bombers, 6 fighters.
Gneisenau - 8 bombers, 12 fighters.

It will not pay to convert the Seydlitz, now 90% completed, since the superstructure of the vessel would have to be removed to the level of the armoured deck."

Cheers,

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Postby phylo_roadking » Wed Feb 14, 2007 7:23 am

I've just come across a recent magazine article on the GZ which mentions the Bf109T-O...but says that up to SIXTY were built??? AND that a dozen Ju87-C's were actually built and tested, these with electrically-operated folding wings, unlike the Bf's manually raised ones. Anyone confirm the Ju87 story? And if so...what happened to them?
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Postby Tiornu » Wed Feb 14, 2007 4:51 pm

The 109T-0 was the pre-production plane (ten examples converted from E-1's). The T-2 was put into production with 60 units completed by Fieseler.
For the Stuka, the 87C-0 pre-production type navalized from the 87B. The 87C-1 was the production plane, but I don't think any were completed as such but converted to 87B-2's.
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Postby sid guttridge » Thu Feb 15, 2007 4:53 am

Hi Guys,

.......and then there was the Fi167:

http://www.german-navy.de/kriegsmarine/ ... index.html

The same site has simmilar information on the Ju87C/D amd Bf109T.

Cheers,

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