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warships: Japanese heavy cruisers of "Myoko"

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko» Cruiser "Ashigaru" , Kiel, May 1937 g.

Probably, It looks a bit strange, but I decided to start it with the Japanese cruisers. Why? Well, At first, it was interesting ships. Secondly, they, Unlike many colleagues (Soviet, French, Italian, German), really otpahal the war. Some have even lived to see the inglorious end, that did not detract from the merits of their combat.

If you look biased, then during the Second World War only cruiser British Commonwealth, The US and Japan were engaged in business. The rest of the way ... The French quickly ended all, Italians and took care of our materiel on gifted Admirals, not capable, generally, no matter what, Germans ... With the Germans generally a separate conversation will, About, they called cruisers and what it did in the war.

So - let's talk about the Japanese ships.

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko» Cruiser "Myoko" after the war. Singapore, 25 September 1945 of the year

The impetus for the construction of these ships has become the same Washington Naval Treaty 1922 of the year, strictly regulate the arms race on the sea. And heavy cruisers of the "Myoko" were the first ships, constructed in accordance with the Washington Treaty. Bounded by the displacement 10 000 tons and tools 203 mm.

In Japan, there were two magician-shipbuilder: Yuzuru Hiraga and Kiku Fujimoto. These two constructors have designed so many ships, that it causes and wonder, and respect. "Yubari", "Aoba" - and that's the next step — "Myoko".

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko» "Myoko" sea trials after the second modernization. Neighborhood Ugurudzima island, 31 Martha 1941 of the year

Conceived Hiraga eventually culminated in the draft, which was for some time classics in the Japanese navy. Ten guns of the main fire in five two-gun turrets, three in the bow and two at the stern. Yes, in Europe and the US preferred three-gun turrets on cruisers, but a certain logic in the Hiraga was. One "extra" trunk 203 mm, which it was hardly more than actually.

And such a scheme is maintained for a long time, until he was drafted cruiser "Tone", in which all the four towers of the main fire installed in the bow.

Hiraga all wanted to go further, removing weapons from the torpedo tubes in general, and instead install another artillery tower. Thus, the output would turn the ship with a very impressive broadside, but the naval command decided otherwise, torpedo tubes and besides that were left, so also the caliber of torpedo rose to 610 mm.

Japanese admirals liked the idea of ​​the destruction of the enemy fleet after an artillery duel sudden attack from a distance, It can be even at night, using these "Long Lance".

And finally in 1923-1924 years were laid four ships, who for 1924-1929 years were built two state («Mёko" and "Nati") and two private ("Haguro" and "Ashigaru") shipyards.

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko» Construction cruiser "Haguro" in drydock shipyard "Mitsubishi". Nagasaki, 20 October 1928 of the year.

By virtue of the first set of circumstances was completed "Nati". Still, a series called "Myoko", since the first was laid precisely this cruiser. Despite, that in order "Myoko" entered the penultimate. it happens.

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko» Cruiser "Ashigaru" , Kiel, May 1937 g.

By the beginning of the war cruiser underwent a series of upgrades, and as a result the data of the type "Myoko" looked like: cruiser type "Myoko" had long 203,8 m and a width of midship frame 19,5 m.

Draft - 6,36 m. Full displacement - 15 933 t. Originally developed cruiser full speed in 35,5 host, but the maximum speed after the Bulls fell to installation 33,3 host.

Power Vehicle power plants - 130 250 HP. Practical cruising range 14-nodal progress was 7500 nautical miles.

The number of commands cruisers "Haguro" and "Nati" when used as champions divisions was 920 human, team "Myoko" and "Asagari" in the version flagships fleets - 970 human.

Onboard the cruiser armor belt had a length 123,15 m at a height at the edges 3,5 and 2 m. Thickness bronepoyasa - 102 mm, Belt inclination to the vertical wall - 12 degrees, bronepaluby thickness - 35 mm, bridge not quite BOOK.

If we compare with colleagues, cruisers from other countries, the "Myoko" looked very, very worthy. Faster it was only the Italian cruiser, but in terms of booking and weapons (after replacement of the 200-mm shells at 203 mm) general was one of the best.

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko»

weaponry. No less important part of, than armor or driveability ship.

Chief caliber "Myoko" consisted of ten 203-mm guns in five two-gun turrets model "O". Three towers of "pagodnomu" principle is in the bow of the ship, two - at the stern. On board could fire all 10 guns, to fire forward or backward could four guns.

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko» The bow of the "Myoko", 1931 year. Nasal see two turrets and a 6-meter range-finders on their roofs

Medium-caliber artillery consisted of eight universal guns caliber 127 mm "type 89NA). The guns were installed in the two-gun turrets, two on board.

Flak, initially consisting of machine guns 13.2 mm, subsequently complemented with anti-aircraft guns "Type 96" caliber 25mm. Machines were installed in single-barrel (manual control) and two versions- and triple-version with electric drive.

The number of machines in the course of the war, all increased, and 1944 year ranged from 45 to 52 aboard. true, guns were not the best in its class, lightweight shell could not provide an acceptable range of, so that the offset amount of automatic frankly weak - that another option.

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko» The central part of the "Haguro", 1941 year. One can see the 127 mm installation type A1 and 25-mm twin automatic type 96, between 4,5 m-type rangefinder Suazo 91.

but, Looking ahead, I note, that of aviation he met his death is only one of the four cruisers "Myoko". So we can say, that tactic paid off.

torpedoes. Each cruiser carrying four triple-tube torpedo caliber of 610 mm. Ammunition torpedoes "Type 96" was 24 pieces.

Nominally on board provided basing three seaplanes, but usually the cruiser took on board two.

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko» Launch catapult seaplanes left "Ashigaru". 127 mm installation № 4 also visible, two paired 25mm automaton, rangefinder type Suazo 91 and sighting column type 95. Java Sea, May 1943 of the year.

Only four cruisers of "Myoko" was built. Head "Myoko" and "Nati" were built on public shipyards in Yokosuka and Kure, and the other two ship - to private shipyards. «Asigara» built a company «Kawasaki» Kobe, and the "Haguro" - the company "Mitsubishi" Nagasaki.

In operation four cruisers entered between 28 November 1928 g. and 20 August 1929 g. The ships reached the 4th Division cruisers, which was included in the 2nd Fleet. Cruisers mostly swim together, participated in numerous exercises and shows of the 30s.

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko» "Nati", "Myoko", Xaguro ', Asigara ' (from far to near) parked in Beppu, 1930 year.

Naturally, first voyage revealed and the first "baby" disease. The main finding was that unpleasant, the smoke from the chimneys to throw the bridge, creating unbearable conditions for officers.

To the Japanese sailors could be on the bridge without masks, It was made very original solution: front chimney extended to 2 m. measures have helped, but the sight of the ship has become more than the original. Although he was quite unordinary and so.

But the main modification was the replacement of cruisers in 1933-1935 years old 200-mm artillery shells at the latest 203-mm, after which the artillery cruisers "Myoko" became the same, like heavy cruisers "Takao".

In general, the beginning of World War II cruisers approached, so to speak, head-on. It really was very good ships with modern weaponry, designed for the most diverse applications.

After the war began four divided, and "Ashigaru" became the flagship of the 16th Division of the 2nd Fleet Admiral Nobutaka. Navy secured the capture of the Philippines continue to meet the challenges of counter possible attempts to return the territories.

Xaguro ', "Myoko" and "Nati" became part of the 5th Division, He commanded by Admiral Takagi. 5-Division also participated in the occupation of the Philippines. Here, "Myoko" first became acquainted with American bombers, "Catching" a bomb of B-17, and forced off for repairs.

Then four cruisers united, and it so happened, that in the first battle very well participated. It was in the Java Sea, where the battle occurred Japanese squadron of 4 heavy cruisers (we know "Haguro", "Nati", "Myoko" and "Ashigaru"), 2-x light cruisers ("Youngster" and "Naka") and 15 destroyers and squadrons of allies (USA, United Kingdom, Netherlands) composed of 2 heavy cruisers (American "Houston" and the British "Exeter"), 3-x light cruisers (Dutch "De Ruyter" and "Java", Australian "Perth") and 8 destroyers.

Allied squadron commanded by a Dutch Admiral Karel Doorman, keep your flag in the cruiser "De Ruyter".

Battle noteworthy, it is here that the Allies felt on my own skin, that is, the Japanese "Long Lance". Prior to that, torpedoes for the US and its allies were not known completely, so that the Karel Doorman made a pretty big mistake, become acquainted with the Japanese fleet.

The Japanese have been enthusiastic about the prospects suddenly opened ...

First three torpedoes, issued with the "Haguro", hit the "Exeter". "Exeter" caught fire and sank the next day, finished off by torpedoes the. Then torpedomen "Haguro" torpedo put into Dutch destroyer "Kortenauer". One torpedo destroyer enough for the eyes, especially since it came into the cellar area, destroyer exploded and also went to the bottom.

Further, for the sake of diversity gunners Japanese cruisers sank the British destroyer gunfire.

Following the baton took torpedomen with the "Nati", sending a volley into the side of the cruiser "Java". "Java" broke and drowned.

A final point in the battle set included in a rage torpedomen "Haguro". Their torpedo caught flagship "De Ruyter" and tore it. Of all the teams managed to rescue three dozen people.

heavy cruiser, two light and two destroyers. If this does not defeat, I do not even know, that the defeat of something called ...

But the next morning the beating continued. "Ashigaru" gunfire sank the American destroyer "Pillsmbari" and the US gunboat "Asheville".

A final point in the battle cruiser set "Mikuma", "Mogami" and "Natori" the destroyer escort, who intercepted the fleeing Allied cruiser "Houston" and "Perth". Torpedoes and missiles are both sent to the bottom of the cruiser.

surprisingly, but in all battle, which lasted 2 day, in Japanese ships he did not get none of the projectile!

Next cruisers took part in many operations of the Japanese fleet, landed troops on the island of Kiska and Attu, garrison evacuated Guadalcanal, He participated in the Battle of Tarawa.

There was manifested in full measure, such a useful option, as speed. Cruisers were attacked many times by American submarines, but it turned out, that to get to the torpedo cruiser, which proceeds at a rate 30 knots, not so easy.

Cruiser took part in the Battle of the Philippines 19 June 1944 of the year, in which the Japanese carrier-based aircraft suffered heavy losses in the pilot and aircraft. Next cruiser stood for repairs, where they got such a useful thing, as the radar "Type 22".

Then they waited for the battle of Leyte Gulf, which can be called "a disgrace of Leyte Gulf".

At the beginning of the battle, 23 October 1944 city, US submarine "Darter" boat and "Daisy" staged in the Strait of Palawan bloody show, torpedoes sinking two heavy cruisers, "Atago" and "Maya", and damaging the heavy cruiser "Takao". Next was a massacre, arranged by American pilots, which resulted in superlinkor "Musashi" and three cruisers sunk, and a bunch of ships was damaged.

"Myoko" got into the side of the torpedo, "Haguro" with the word bomb in the tower, which is out of order.

Damaged "Myoko" decided to put in repair, and the ship went to Singapore, where he stood for repairs. 13 December 1944 g. cruiser came from Singapore to Japan, here it and got the Americans. Submarine "Bergell" regaled "Myoko" two torpedoes, resulting in a cruiser completely lost stroke.

Towed cruiser returned to Singapore, where it was used as an anti-aircraft battery, imbedded in the shallow waters near the same comrade in misfortune, "Takao". British after the liberation of Singapore towed the damaged cruiser "Myoko" in the Strait of Malacca, where flooded.

Damaged "Haguro" also went to Singapore, where it was placed in dry dock naval base Selstar repair. Renovated "Haguro" regularly take people and cargo to the islands of the Dutch East Indies and the coast of the Bay of Bengal. speed allowed.

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko» Cruiser "Haguro" a touch of American bombers. Rabaul, 2 November 1943 of the year.

Night 16 May 1945 year running with a load of provisions on the Andaman Islands "Haguro" was attacked by British destroyers "Sumares", "Verulam", "Vydzhylent", "Venus" and "Virago".

Gunners "Haguro" immediately struck by a shell "Sumares", then the British decided not to wait and fired a volley of torpedoes first. Xaguro ', receiving three torpedo board, It sank within 40 minutes.

"Nati" fought in the north, He fought near the Commander Islands, American cruiser "Salt Lake City" broke a tie, sending each other for repair. 6 September 1943 g. cruiser was hit by two torpedoes, issued by the American submarine "Helibat", but, surprisingly, torpedo explosion of serious damage to the cruiser did not cause.

The slaughter of Leyte Gulf "Nati", together with "Ashigaru" took part in a night battle in the Straits of Surigao, where the Japanese were defeated, and the "Nati" collided with "Mogami" and broke his nose. To repair the cruiser left the Philippines, where the harbor naval base Kavita "Nati" finally has finished the US Air Force.

warships: Japanese heavy cruiser type «Myoko» The death of the cruiser "Nachi"

Nine torpedoes and at least 20 bombs have turned the once cruiser into a pile of scrap metal, and he sank in Manila Bay.

Cruiser "Ashigaru" became 10 April 1942 g. the flagship of the Southern Expeditionary Fleet, and most of the war, and he escorted convoys to deliver cargo to the islands of the Dutch East Indies.

Close to Sumatra 8 June 1945 g. British submarine "Trenchent" released "Ashigaru" five torpedoes. In this career, "Ashigaru" was over.

properly, a fitting end for ships, provoevavshih the war. And - definitely fought well. Of course, use a heavy cruiser as transport - not the smartest idea, but nothing, we also drove the cruiser everything.

That is to say about the project?

impossibly fortunate. Especially in terms of weapons. 10 guns 203 mm in five two-gun turrets - is not a European standard 4x2 and 3x3 American. Yes, despite, that the exchange rate could not be carried out the shooting of a large number of barrels, but broadside to "Myoko" only cruiser "Pensacola" could be compared.

Reservation how all the "Washington" cruisers were, generally, no, i.e, capable of protecting from small bombs and shells to the 152 mm.

but in general,, in "Washington" to create a normal part of the ship was simply unrealistic. Terms of the agreement clearly sacrificed speed, armor, weaponry, or all at once.

But in the mid 20-ies of the last century it was actually very advanced ships.

Yes, war "Myoko" entered, greatly differing from that, that entered into operation, because it was replaced by a lot of weapons, with zero put defense, appeared radar, but nonetheless, for that technology base, which it had Japan in those years, so it was a real masterpiece. What successful to a certain point cruisers combat service only confirms.

/Roman Skomorokhov,

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