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|04-05-2007, 09:38 PM||#46|
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: College Station, Texas
Patrol Report: 13 April 1942 – 25 May 1942
USS Triton (SS-201)
Objective: USS Triton is to depart Pearl Harbor on 13 April for 125E 30N, in the East China Sea and attack merchant shipping in the area.
13 April 1942- After a month of R and R and a handful of weeks training new crew members and sea trials we are ready to head out to sea again. The USS Triton departs on her third war patrol at roughly 0800. The crew is eager to get back to the fight and I can see that they are defiantly refreshed from their month off in Hawaii. The relief crew did a good job repairing and replacing damaged and old machinery whilst in port. The Triton is ready for war.
18 April 1942- Storms pick up about a day out of pearl. Seas get rough and a haze/fog reduces visibility to nil as we head to Midway to top off our tank.
22 April 1942- Visibility returns. Seas are still a little rough and clouds hand low. Hot weather takes its toll on the watch crew. Continue heading west towards East China Sea.
23 April 1942 – Contact made with an enemy convoy. We rush ahead of their position whilst keeping COMSUBPAC informed to their position. Once ahead we close position. We make visual contact at about 1445. We dive but the seas are so rough we have to struggle with broaching and visibility through our periscope. We still manage to keep a fix on two heavy freighters towards the front of the convoy. After struggling with maintaining a visual, we line up 2 salvos of three torpedoes at each lead freighter. Our position is such that if we miss there is a chance that the torpedoes may hit overlapping targets. We fire spread and dive deep under the convoy. At 1535 sonar detects a torpedo detonation. As we try to determine which torpedoes are duds and which missed, sonar hears secondary explosions and bulk heads collapsing on the merchant sound contact. We gently slide up to Periscope to see burning oil on the surface of the convoy. Must have hit the large freighter and it succumbed to its wounds. We dive deep and clear the area.
26 April 1942- Another contact with a convoy bearing 270 heading straight towards us. We work out a search pattern and lay in wait for the approaching convoy at around 2240. Unlike our last attack, the seas have calmed somewhat, and this convoy has more escorts. We carefully try to identify the ships in the fading light and set up a three tube salvo on one of the closest lead freighters – a small old split superstructure freighter. We run the math on the second salvo to be fired at the large freighter just behind it. At 23:00 we fire the first salvo at the medium split and prepare to fire tubes 2, 4, and 6 at the large freighter behind it. As the third fish leaves the tube, Sonar man Eddie Dempsey reports that one fish is turning way off course while I’m scanning to convoy with my periscope. After a few seconds he determines the torpedo is running a circular course and coming around our starboard side. To compound the matters, I can see the steam whistles blowing on the freighters and the signal lamps on the DD’s blinking. The nearest DD has alter course right for us and the lead DD is turning hard to port to come at us. I order a crash dive and rig for depth charge. Sonar tracks the foul torpedo as it passes about 100 yards to our stern about 50 feet above us. I settle us down at 200 feet and turn hard to port to move away from the convoy. DD’s screw passes over head with a zum-zum, zum-zum noise. First depth charges drop on us are distant. The DD that passes over us drops a few charges that rattle the boat. A locker falls open and its contents spill out in the crew’s quarters. Crew reports only minimal damage - a few leaks and pipes that need to be retightened. While we are being depth charged two torpedoes explode, sinking a large freighter. As we shift away the DD’s grow distant to our stern. I am still near the convoy. I come up to periscope depth and fire all my rear tubes at the convoy. I watch as first we hit a small composite freighter and are forced to dive by the DD’s that return. We return to 250 feet and clear the area while DD’s try to bracket us.
27 April 1942- Slip through island chain south of Japan. Now in East China Sea. At 23:00 we spot two fishing sampans along the shore of an island, heading towards mainland Japan. I sound Battle Stations surface and we surprise the coastal fishing boats. Not knowing if they are pickets or just fishing boats, we light up the two wooden ships with 20mm AA gun fire and our deck gun. Within a few minutes they both sink.
1 May 1942- We come across a medium size convoy, but we are in a bad position. We rush to make intercept and work out a firing solution. We make visual contact early morning at 0350 thanks to full moon. While we set up the forward tubes, a DD spots our periscope – Probably due to the moonlight and the calm seas. The DD rushes us and we have to crash dive. Again we endure depth charges. Main pumps loose pressure and damage control party moves to fix. I take her town to 275 feet, 25 feet below our test depth and move forward at a slow rpm at around two knots. We clear the area; our only reward is survival to fight again.
3 May 1942- Aircraft begin patrolling over our area; they know we are in this sector. We remain submerged during daylight. No contacts.
6 May 1942- While recharging batteries we spot a small coastal freighter making its way south. We surprise it and sink it with surface fire. Crew is elated to be on surface physically shooting the Japanese rather than waiting and listening in the boat.
7 May 1942- Fuel is running low so plot return course. Staying submerged during day and traveling slowly at night to conserve fuel.
10 May 1942- Large two engine coastal plane spots our sub traveling at night on the surface. We crash dive narrowly avoiding two bombs that fall off to our starboard side. We zig-zag to throw off search planes that patrol the area.
11-15 May 1942- Air patrols slow progress back to Midway Islands. Usual amounts of warship activity. Maybe they are massing for something…
20 May 1942- Refit at Midway from the submarine tender Sperry. Once ready we set out for Pearl Harbor at sunset.
25 May 1942- We dock at Pearl, Pier 3 at about 12:00. Admiral Lockwood greets the Triton as she pulls in. We learned a vital lesson on this patrol- Avoid attacking in rough seas. I discuss with Admiral Lockwood about my displacement with Mk14 Torpedoes and their horrible failure rate. Hopefully this problem will be remedied.
In Memory of the USS Triton (SS-201) - May We Never Forget Those On Eternal Patrol
|04-05-2007, 11:07 PM||#47|
Join Date: Apr 2007
USS Seadragon in the Luzon Strait...
3 & 1/2 hours, 18 torps and 53 rounds of AP later, six of seven on the bottom.
|04-06-2007, 10:03 PM||#48|
Join Date: Apr 2007
A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Osaka…
En-route to Osaka to drop off an agent, with only a few hours to reach the drop-off point, radar picks up a large inbound convoy. The bright clear skies meant there was no way to avoid them on the surface and so my only hope was to dive to the bottom of the rather shallow bay and hope to avoid the numerous destroyers that were bound to be protecting the ships. To the bottom I dove and ordered the ship to run silent. With bated breath we waited as the ships drew closer. Sonar was picking up contact after contact including a disturbingly high number of war ships. This was not going to be easy.
The minutes ticked by and the ships drew ever closer. Then the pinging started. Damn these shallow waters. The first destroyer closed in on the sub while four of his friends started steaming to catch up. After the first wave of depth charges I didn't have high hopes of being able to get out of this alive so I set I direct course for the convoy. Perhaps I could lose the destroyers by hiding under the merchant ships. Despite the constant barrage of depth charges from the destroyers I made it to the convoy without taking any serious damage.
At first everything seemed like it was going to work. By sailing under the merchant ships the destroyers could not get to me and thus a great naval traffic jammed formed as merchants tried to move out of the way for the destroyers. Just as I was about to breath a sigh of relief an urgent shout emits from the conning tower. Warship closing fast! What? A new destroyer? Something doesn't seem right. There seems to be as many escorts for this convoy as there are merchants.
The pinging starts again as this new destroyer barrels right towards the sub. Here we go again I think to myself. Then it happens. The command room is filled with the sound of a rather large explosion followed by several more. What the hell was that? That was no depth charge! For a moment there was nothing but silence. Then the sounds of more small explosions and the sweet sounds of bulkheads collapsing.
It is then I realize that the pinging of the incoming destroyer has stopped. Brining the ship up to periscope depth I look through the scope towards the bearing of the once inbound destroyer to see nothing but a burring oil slick where the ship should be.
What….the….hell? Did it hit a mine? Several splashes are made in the water near the burning oil slick. Then several more and for a brief instant I see the silhouette of a plane. HAhahaha! I burst out laughing uncontrollably at the realization of what just happened. It would appear that a very eager and very, very novice pilot was trying to help out with the sub hunt by dropping some bombs on my location. Unfortunately for the Japanese this pilot was WAY off the mark and dropped his ordinance right on the destroyer! How ironic; saved by the very plane set out to kill me.
Turning the scope around I see the other destroyers are just starting to get unstuck from the traffic jam and so I start to make my escape. Deciding to make a sweep of the area with the periscope I notice a large grey silhouette off in the distance. Considering that this tiny convoy had such a high number of escorts I had a hunch that the lone silhouette in the distance was a carrier and most likely the one that launched the plane that saved me. I was tempted to go after it but thought better of it as the destroyers were making their way past the merchants now and I couldn't count on inept pilots saving me again so I crept away and made my escape.
|04-11-2007, 11:15 PM||#50|
S-39 to base: Scratch 1 flattop!
Torpedoed one large AC probable Shokaku class, 2 hits, large secondary explosion, sinking rapidly. Went deep to evade escorts. Kuma class picking up survivors, put two fish into her, two hits, also blew up.
(note:escorts made zero effort to look for me )
Send Canopus, we need more icecream and new movies.
|04-13-2007, 07:52 AM||#51|
Join Date: Mar 2007
Uss Barb Report
Left Pearl on March 27, 1943 at 1720. Course Midway Speed 16kts
March 29, 0600: Met a small US convoy
March 31, 0544 refitted the Barb with diesel, set course to Honshu Island where we are ordered to patrol. Constantly 10kts surfaced to have enough diesel to patrol off Honshu for quite some time.
April 2, 2241 stiff winds WS 15m/s direction 335. Only making 9kts atm.
April 5, 0955 wind 268 at 10m/s
April 8, 1800 reports coming in. 2 enemy task forces both over 700nm SW. Before attacking this time we try to reach our patrol area. Another mission not accopmplished won’t look good in the boat’s log.
April 9, 0909 range to end is 1134nm or 117h to go. Ordered crew to observe high for possible aircraft contacts. Range to Yokosuka, Shizouka and Yaizu now less than 800nm and Higashi to SW only 500nm away. For a G4M Betty with a range between 2200nm and 3100nm it would’t be a problem to spot us, and perform several attacks before the pilot had to head home. Even a A6M “Zero” would now be able to at least detect us and send a report to the nearest “Betty”. Also one should have in mind the possible presence of Carriers. So I recommend to all skippers to have an eye at the sky. Weather report: Light fog with winds 242 at 11m/s.
April 11, 1113 No AC so far. Must be lucky. Still watches on their toes. Can’t be long for a first welcome by the japs airforce or naval fliers.
April 12, 1900 More reports about small and large convoys SE of our position. Decided not to intercept. Mission first, afterwards hunting. Weather is ok with winds 222 at 13m/s. Still no aircraft spotted. Would be nice to reach patrol point without loosing time diving. Listened to CBS News whole day long. McGee being drafted! The crews favourite. 38h to go. Max range at current speed: 10960. This gives us enough juice to possibly intercept targets at flank speed.
Time 2133 Radar contact on convoy heading SSW. 8 merchants and 4 escorts running at each side of the convoy. No zig-zaging. Current course will bring us into a good position. Sunset should help us to get in range for an attack.
2136 Starboard and aft escorts spreading out with starboard escort beeing back in position 2 minutes later while aft heading north.
2138 Now bow escort spreading out. Port escort still not moving around. Starboard escort doing minimal zigs.
2204 Something must have warned the convoy. They changed course to SSE making a mess of my calculations. Still no visual with leading escort. Distance 8nm. No fog, wind 222 at 13m/s.
2219 Decided to change course to 240. Maybe I can get one or two of them with my aft torpedoes. Radar contact lost at 2220 due to dead angle. I hope that we’ll catch them soon again without having to zig-zag too much. 340nm distance to our patrol area.
2222 and still not dark! Gonna wait some 30minutes more before sending a report and waiting for orders.
2235 Ship spotted! Finally! Indentified as ****atsuyu Destroyer. Ordered scope depth and course 044 to intercept.
2240 Called all hands to battlestations torpedo! Course 316 to bring us inside the convoy passing in between the escorts. Getting a picture of the situation while scoping the surface.
2247 course 060 and 80ft depth. Going blind with sonar updating nearest merchant.
2249 Ordered 2kts. Time to wait for the convoy to pass us by. With a little luck we should be inside the convoy when they come across so we could use bow and aft torpedoes and then go deep immediately.
2253 Sonar reports warship bearing 359. Looks like we could make it inside the convoy. 2 other escorts at 260 and 324. Both long range.
2300 Picked 2 targets right in front of me with less then 1000 yards distance and another one a few yards further away. As soon as all torpedoes were running hot, straight and normal I switched to stern tubes. One merchant was passing my stern some 800 yards away. We sent off 3 torpedoes. 4 of 6 fishes hit the 2 merchant on our bow, one torp damaged the ship further away from us (but not too bad. It went on with the same speed) and one dud. The 2 ships sunk immediately. The one on our stern also got 3 hits and exploded just the second I swirled the scope around to him.
At 2309 the party was over and I ordered to go deep and silent. At 200ft I was hoping to pass the thermal layer.
2318 Still not passed thermal layer. We’re at 225ft now. Going a little deeper to 240ft. Passed the layer at 235ft.
2320 Secured from battlestation.
2323 started zig-zaging out of the convoy at 3kts and 240ft depth changing course every 1nm for the first 3 WP and then every 2nm for the next 3. This should give us a good sonar report of our surrounding.
0047 Ordered periscope depth. Scope up, checked the situation around us to see if an escort has slipped through sonar reports. Nothing – great! Surfaced the boat.
0055 Back on course to patrol area. In less than 10 miutes we destroyed 3 merchants. 1x Medium Old Composite Freighter (3998 tons), 1x Large Old Split Freighter (8378 tons) and 1x Medium European Composite Freighter (5289 tons) making it a total tonnage of 17665. Not bad for one approach. I still don’t understand why the escorts didn’t even try to ping us. Ok, we were hiding between the convoy ships making it nearly impossible for them to hear us with all the ships around camouflaging our own screws sound. But not a single DC was heared! Strange, isn’t it? They’ve lost 3 ships and didn’t even try to hunt us down?
April 13 1200 Still no welcome by enemy planes. Running surfaced all the way to patrol area. Weather: Wind 222 at 13m/s.
1400 Radar picked up a convoy heading NE. Too far for us to intercept we let him go. Only 27h untill reaching the patrol area. So no chasing for now. Gotta save some diesel for the patrol off Honshu.
April 14 0006 Radar contact. Small convoy. 2 Mechants and 3 escorts. Gonna move a little closer to have a look at it. 3 ships to cover 2 merchants seems a little too much for beeing normal freighters.
0123 Periscope depth. One of the escorts is coming way too close. Don’t think that we can intercept the convoy submerged.
0150 Waves making it impossible for us to scope the surface. Sonar reports merchants and warships bearing 028, long range. No chance to get close to them. Braking off the chase.
0223 Back on course to patrol area. Had a break untill 0522. Crew was exhausted. So I ordered all stop. Just me and the XO checking sonar.
0523 Surfaced and had a single radar contact bearing S. Bad weather. Waves swapping over the bridge.
0759 As we try to intercept the single contact radar reports a Task Force 18 miles NNE of our position heading SW. If the single contact turns out to be a freighter we better get him down fast before his TF friends are coming for help. Battlestations torpedoes. Tubes 1, 2 and 3 ready for a surface attack!
0854 TF now 8nm on starboard. They are going medium speed while single contact is bearing 032 at 5nm distance. We better submerge.
0933 We are waiting in position for a clean shot..
0939 TF turns out to be 3 Warships (Fubuki DDs) and one Large Old Passenger Carrier going SW still at medium speed. Calculated speed of the ships is 11kts. Over 6000 yards makes it sensless to try a snapshot at the Carrier. I’ll stay with the Freighter.
0943 Sea is rough. Scope is under water for more than 30s sometimes.
If the single freighter stays on course he is going to pass my bow at less than 1000 yards.
1009 Cross checked enemy course with scope and sonar. Still on same heading. He’s moving with 3kts. Single contact clearly identified as Small Modern Composite Freighter at 1016.
1027 Torpedos in the water. First hit destroyed her just 30s later. 2nd and 3rd torpedo hit also. Helped her to sink faster. What a waste of amunition. But who knows if on or more of the torps are duds? Better to send out too many than having a premature explode near the ship and alerting the crew.
1029 Secured from battlestations. Good job crew! Another 1853 tons on our account. And still 111nm to our patrol area. 4 Cargo Ships sunk and 12 torpedoes left. Searched the surface for survivors with the scope. Only one small boat with no one inside. Poor devils.
1047 Surfaced the boat.
1903 Diving! Unidentified high speed contact reported by radar! Sure it must be a japs AC
1920 Surfaced the boat. Radar reports single contact heading ENE, slow. Changed course to get in front of the target.
2051 Waiting for the pray again. Reached the patrol area 20 min ago. All hands battelstation!!
2054 All stop! Ready tubes 1, 2 and aft 7. Plan is to let off 2 fish, dive, pass underneath the ship, PD again and finish her with tube 7 if necessary.
2056 Indentified as Large Modern Composite Freighter
2110 Fired tube 1 and 2 with a 10s intervall. Taget distance is 1021yards
2111 Two hits but no secondary explosions nor slowing down. Make ready a 3rd fish on bow or follow the plan? Now she’s turning her aft to us. We are too close to surface. Her guns could hurt the Barb. Ordered course changes to bring us broadside and follow her. She’s making 7kts.
2126 She has done a deadly mistake manouvering her broadside just in front of our bow tubes. Made ready tubes and fired 3 more torpedoes just to be sure to sink her this time. The first impact was followed by a secondary explosion that blew her out of the water. 2nd and 3rd torpedo hit a sinkin ship. No survivors detected. The explosion must have killed them all. An unbelievable fireball filled the scope. Darn – I should have taken a photo of her sinking.
2130 Cleared from battlestation. New depth 80ft. Gonna let the crew have some easy going staying submerged untill SS +30(Sunset is when map and boat interior goes “night”. Than I normally wait 30min to be sure it’s darkening outside). Just surfaced to send a report:
14/04/1943 Time 2134
USS Barb, Position Long 133 57’ E, Lat 31 52’ N
Torpedoes left: 7, Cargo ships sunk: 5, Total tonnage: 26.693
This is my report so far. No pics because i don't use external views. Could have done some while scoping but it would have been possible only during the last 2 attacks.(I normally use shoot, scope down and go deep) Nothing you never seen before.
I'm very proud that the game has choosen me for the command of the Barb, the boat that sunk a train (read "Thunder Below" at least 3 times ) Also english is not my native language. So forgive me my mistakes
Hope you enjoyed reading!
|04-13-2007, 08:28 AM||#52|
Join Date: Apr 2005
Unlucky, sitting duck
So it was my first patrol, orders stated that I was to patrol the Phillipines. I started just outside Manila and made my way north, hugging the coastline on the surface. Radar picked up a couple of targets on the way, turned out to be friendly merchants. I hurried past and continued on my way. Just before swinging East to head towards the Northern port of Aparri, radar picked up two merchants slowly heading SSW. I did some quick calculations and waited just off their esimated path and waited in silence. I spotted a smear of smoke on the horizon, and slowly the two Medium split freighters passed perfectly in front of me at 90 degrees AOB. being the first day of patrol I didn't want to waste up to 6 torpedoes, so i fired a torpedo at each of their sterns and knocked out the propellors on both ships. i crept a little closer and made sure neither were armed merchants. I surfaced the boat and my gun crew began to pound the waterlines on both. After a while both ships were heading to the bottom, leaving 4 lifeboats bobbing in the swell. i carried on round to the northern point of Luzon and round to my patrol area. Not one ship came my way. I hung around for 48 hours keeping an eye on all the juicy convoys and task forces that were being called in over the radio as they crossed the Formosa Strait. After 48 hours I headed across the Luzon Strait and picked out a port on the South coast of what is now Taiwan. As i drew nearer radar picked up several contacts in the vicinity of the port. As i approached a plane hove into view and we had to crash dive, with the bombs narrowly missing us behind. Just as i thought it was all clear, the desroyer which I assume had been on port patrol, came bearing down on me. With complete luck and good fortune I got off 2 torpedoes, both of which hit it bow on and nearly lifted the ship out of the water, but just as i thought the momentum would carry it under the waves, it recovered and ploughed on, I was gobsmacked! It closed in and I attempted a right hand, ahead flank evasion manuever, but i wasn't quick enough. 2 DC s exploded under my stern and 2 amidships. I thought that was it, but somehow my baby was still alive! I got the damage control team on the job, but it was too much. i was crippled, with no electric power ,in need of surface repairs and the water was too shallow to go beneath periscope depth. I could only watch as the DD circled, getting closer, i tried another torpedo when he crossed my bow, but it passed harmlessly underneath him, at this point I was out of options, and then the pinging started and he turned, turned and within a few seconds he had dropped 8 DCs along the length of my sub. I watched them float down, waiting for the inevitable destruction of the USS Sturgeon and all those on board. Then it happened........BOOM.....my computer crashed to desktop!
|04-14-2007, 10:03 PM||#53|
Join Date: Sep 2005
While on patrol I encountered a pretty standard enemy convoy, about 8-10 merchants with 4 DD's escorting, one in front, one behind, one on either side. After carefully following the convoy for about an hour, I decided to punch a hole into the soft chewy merchant center. Two fishes swam their way into the side of the DD on the convoy's "port" side, and down it went. Before the rest of the escorts came, I proceeded to fire torp after torp into the convoy while still approaching, eventually I dove under the convoy to confuse the remaining three escorts. The DD's seemed hesitant to try and plough through the merchants, some were limping from impacts and one (which I will get to in a second) was dead in the water and well on its way to the bottom.
After a gruelling cat and mouse game, I was out of torps and had to make a run for it. The order was given, and the Seadragon slowly and silently turned and began to head in the opposite direction of the convoy. I was about 20 meters under, close enough to the top so I could go to periscope depth to check the situation if necessary. I popped up to take a look, and found to my delight the remaining two DD's (I had sunk another while I was among the merchants) were at the head of the convoy. I quickly surfaced and began firing my deck gun at the wounded merchants who were still limping along. The DD's quickly spotted me, but it took them a fair bit of time to get through the convoy for a clear shot. However, I got carried away with the merchants, and I looked up to see two very angry Matsukis bearing down on me quickly. I had to act fast, I was caught out in the open. I dove and went silent, but should I keep trying to escape the convoy perimeter, or try some other tactic? Then I remembered the Medium Freighter that was dead and soon to be sinking. I had to hide, and what better place? I dove deeper and managed to get under the freighter before the DD's could get a good run over me. I stayed their, praying the hull of the medium freighter above me wouldn't give out while I was directly under it.
An hour went by. The DD's finally gave up and sped off to catch up with what remained of their convoy. I quickly scooted out from under the freighter, and just as I put about 500 meters between me and my little safe haven, it sunk, racking up one more for the Seadragon. All and all, a very exciting and fruitful patrol.
|04-17-2007, 08:40 PM||#54|
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Toronto, Ontario
I snuck up on a convoy, fired a spread and hit about 4 different ships. A small tanker was disabled so I waited for the convoy to move off so I could finsih off the tanker.
I lined up and shot from 2000yrds. Good thing too because the sucker blew up real bad. I mean: I watched a deck hatch or something fly up in a graceful arc, spinning in the air and flying directly at me. It flew over me and landed about 200 yrds behind me with a big splash. I have never seen that before. I followed it with my binos as it arched towards me. I didnt even have time to take a screenshot or order the boat out of the way.
U-46: Oct 1943 off Portugal
|04-18-2007, 02:59 AM||#55|
Join Date: May 2005
Sometime 1943 (wasn't paying too much attention...), I steam out of Brisbane on my way to patrol the bismark sea. I take a little shortcut through the channel north of rabul (Risky, i know, but it offers some good oppertunities sometimes). I patrol around for a while, then sonar picks up a mass of ships coming my way. Its not coming on very fast, so i reckon its just merchant ships or something. Get into a attack position... Periscope up. Carriers, not sone, not two, but 6 carriers in the middle of a small flotilla of light cruisers and destroyers. Two columns of carriers, a chance too good to pass up. I move into a position where i am in between the columns, and open and prepare all tubes. Man, that many carriers going past less than 300 meters away is noisy!!!
All tubes away, 6 forward at the Taiho fleet carrier and 4 aft at the Taiyo escort.
I must have hit the escort carrier in the magazines or fuel storage, because it basically evaporated. The Taiho starts to turn to port, and speeds up, so my torpedos hit along the back. Generally when that happens with merchant ships, It stays afloat, and I thought the carrier would stay up, but nope. Very quickly it floods and sinks away. I go down to 200ft and slink away. However, the engagement wasn't over, the destroyers gave me a pounding, then turned away.
A few game hours later, there is still a warship on the surface according to sonar, so i come up and look through the scope. There is a carrier there, down at the bow, dead at the water. It was the Shokaku. Evidently one of the torpedos that missed hit it, or something, i couldn't really explain it, i hadn't aimed a torpedo anywhere near it. Not being one to pass up on an easy kill, i put my last 4 torpedos into it, and it went down.
All in all, along with the merchant ships sunk in this patrol, i had 82000 tons of shipping sunk.
Not too bad i think.
Side note. Both the main carriers i sunk were historically involved in the Battle of the Phillipine Sea, so who knows what effect i could have had on history here. Ironically enough, both these carriers were sunk by submarines in that battle...
|04-20-2007, 10:49 AM||#56|
Join Date: Apr 2005
Disclaimer: I reloaded a save game in the middle of this one. NEVER go off to the bathroom (or anyplace else) and leave the game running on time compression. That's the moral of this story.
June 12, 1942. I'm ordered to depart Pearl Harbor and make a photo recon of the Japanese port of Osaka. We set off to the NNW at Ahead Full bound for Midway. Along the way we encounter a friendly TF, one carrier with plenty of escorts, bound to the north. Hmmm, wonder if there are Jap fleet remnants up there running from the battle at Midway. No matter, I'm not going to investigate.
After a refuelling at Midway we head due west. Less than 100 miles from Midway we get attacked by a Zero. What? Where the hell is a Zero coming from out here? And why didn't my brand new, I-SD radar pick it up? Damned new tech, prone to breakdowns (1.2 breakdown, I suppose). From this point, we adopt hostile waters SOP. Submerge half an hour before dawn, surface half an hour after dusk, run at Ahead 1/3 the entire way. The trip from there to Japan is uneventful.
Intel has suggested the possibility of minefields in the vicinity of Osaka. Examination of the naval charts shows the channel is very narrow between the islands, but there is deep water on both sides of the narrows. I decide on an inbound course hugging the left side of the deeper water in the center. The plan is to run submerged during the day until we get close, wait for full dark, surface, and cross the narrows during darkness, then hide in the deep water in the bay. As it happens, dark falls before we arrive at the shallow narrows, so we surface. The weather is horrible: heavy rain, high winds, heavy seas, visility 500 yards or so. We go to Ahead Full and race through the narrows. When we get into the deeper section, we drop back to periscope depth and do a hydrophone depth. With no near shipping, it's safe to use the fathometer. The bottom here is perhaps 120 feet down, so we come to a stop and settle down to 105 feet deep, waiting for daylight.
Once daylight comes, it becomes apparent that the water here is rather clear, so we begin moving again. I have chosen to approach near to the end of the deep water during the day, when I can see through the observation scope if there are any deep mines planted. Hopefully we will be able to stop in time, if so. We arrive at the chosen Listening Post/Observation post without incident, and settle down to wait.
I have a good sonar crew; through the rest of the day we plot the positions of the merchant and warship traffic through the harbor. This gives us a general course which should be free of mines.
Dusk falls at 11pm, Pearl time. We wait until midnight, rise to periscope depth, and I have a look around through the scope. The weather is still just as bad as the night before, visibility will be crap, so it should be safe to move on the surface. We go ahead and surface here, stationary for a few minutes to replenish the fresh air on the boat, then start moving in down the chosen route at just above periscope depth. The bottom continues to rise, eventually forcing us up to the point where the hydrophones can't pick up surface contacts any more. I hope we don't blunder into a subchaser there as it's way to rough to use the deck gun (not that I'd want to in any event) and too shallow to fully submerge.
We continue moving on ahead to the objective, however visibility is so bad nothing can be seen. We continue dead ahead for Osaka harbor. As we get closer, I can distinguish a few large silhouetes against the barely visibile backdrop of the harbor, but not enough to identify anything, much less photograph. I have the navigator plot suspected positions of enemy ships on the chart, and we continue creeping closer. We've had to rise to 40 feet here.
We continue ahead at slow speed, and I eventually decide to turn around. Nothing is visible. With the boat facing back on the reverse course we took coming in I bring us to a halt, then to Back Slow. We're going to back into the harbor, so we can race out if we need to. Eventually I get to the point where I can identify a ship: it's an old style medium tanker, but photgraphs are right out. We're at 500 yards from the ship and photos aren't going to come out, so I decide just to wait. We go back to Ahead 1/3 and make our way back to the LP/OP. I rise to the surface again about 6 am, to refresh the air, then we sink back to near the bottom and wait for the next evening.
Come the next night, we rise back to periscope depth just after midnight PHT, and a look through the scope confirms that the weather has cleared. Seas are still high, but no rain, and visibility is perhaps 4500 yards. We surface for fresh air, drop back to 57 feet, and start heading in again. This time things go much better. We have a close call on the way in, as a gunboat was heading out of Kishiwada, but it never got close enough to see us. We got in just close enough to ID all the ships in both harbors (Osaka and Kishiwada). The largest military vessel there was a subchaser, but there were two large modern tankers anchored, and I took photos of them for Military Intelligence to pore over, then we headed back out.
We head back out into deeper water. We take up a position on the southern side of the deep water, about halfway down the length of it. We come back to the surface for fresh air again about 6 am, then settle back down. We had another close call with that same gunboat, as it was moving so slowly we ran up on it heading out, but again weren't spotted.
We wait out the day, and today, as it turns out, is heavy traffic day. The sonar watch gets lots of practice with all the merchant traffic we hear. In the early afternoon we start hearing lots of traffic at the narrows. LOTS of traffic. It looks like a convoy is heading in. Uh oh. They come in through the narrows and keep going north. Whew, ok, they must be heading up to one of those ports.
OUT OF CHARACTER: here's where things went wrong. I got up to go to the bathroom and left the game running at 128x TC. The boat was 110 feet down, 10 feet above the bottom. We were motionless and rigged for silent running, making no noise. I start hearing explosions from the bathroom. Somehow they've changed course, sailed right over the top of my boat, and detected me down at the bottom. This is where I reloaded the save from the last fresh air stop, just before dawn.
Now, watching that convoy, it gets fully into the bay then changes course for Osaka. It's going to pass right over me, so we start up and head north. I barely get out of the path of the lead escort, but we make our way successfully around the convoy and go on back to rest. About 8 pm, while it's still daylight, we start moving again back to where the water starts getting shallow, there to wait until dark. Near dark, there's more traffic at the narrows, so I decide to try to slip out between the islands. This proves to be impossible, as the weather is clear and the islands have shore batteries that will spot us. So, I redirect us to the narrows. A subchaser is going out, and we follow it, but not too close, on the surface. Trying to stay out of the center of the channel, I get a little to close to Shikoku and a shore battery opens up on us. We go to Ahead Flank and run. The subchaser starts turning around, so we sink down to 55 feet and hope he misses us.
He misses us, but the commotion has also attracted a gunboat from out in the other side of the narrows, so we have to change course, running back across to the eastern side, and remaining submerged. So much for the quick dash across the narrows. We missed all this in the storm on the way in. After several hours, we made it clear of the patrols there, out into deep water, and surfaced to recharge batteries. It's 4 am Pearl time, and I could have made it this far in half an hour if we'd have been able to run surfaced through the narrows. Oh well, we're out of the bay and should hopefully be safe now.
We, the unwilling, led by the unknowing, are doing the impossible for the ungrateful. We have done so much, for so long, with so little, that we are now qualified to do anything with nothing.
|04-22-2007, 01:54 AM||#57|
Join Date: Mar 2007
I'm not much of a writer or know how to put screenshots in, but I'll just stick with the basics of the patrol:
USS Tuna First Patrol
Departed Pearl Harbor on April 12th, 1942. Mission, insert agent at Qingdao.
Topped off fuel at Midway and proceeded toward objective. Avoided enemy contact as mission was of utmost importance.
Aircraft radar contact twice after passing north of Wake island, dove to avoid detection.
Aircraft radar contact NW of Volocano Islands. Dove to avoid detection. Stayed submerged throughout the day.
Picked up sonar contact to SW. Fast moving merchant. Set up intercept, surfaced flank speed to move into position.
Periscope depth and waited for target to approach. Large ocean liner, dispatched with two torpedoes. Maintained depth and proceeded back on coarse to objective.
Ran on surface at night and submerged during the day, slow speed. Avoided enemy contacts enroute to objective.
Dropped off agent, moved to deeper water and radioed base. New Objective, patrol East China Sea.
Made way to patrol area. Sank single enemy merchant ship enroute.
Made contact with a small convoy in patrol area. Moved into position and sank 4 merchants. Avoided enemy destroyers and exited combat area.
Surfaced at midnight and radioed report. New Objective, Patrol Luzon Strait. Made way to patrol area, intercepted and sank single ocean liner enroute.
Arrived in patrol area, received radio contact of enemy convoy near position. Plotted intercept course and engaged.
Sank 3 merchants, exited combat area to the north and proceeded back to base low on torpedoes(2).
Made contact with single merchant NW of the Marianas. Fired 1 torpedo from stern, stopped enemy dead in the water. Surfaced to finish off target with deck gun.
Proceeded back toward Midway. Made contact with small merchant NE of Marianas at night, engaged and sank target with deck gun.
Received message near Midway of enemy forces approaching the island, made best speed and refitted at Midway June 2, 1942.
Patrolled west of Midway, weather turned bad. Heavy seas and rain, visibility near zero. Made radar contact to the SW of task force moving east fast.
Flank speed to intercept. Made distant torpedo attack by radar contact on last ship in main column, no hits scored. Proceeded to follow task force toward Midway. Contact lost.
Received radio message of major engagment at Midway, proceeded at flank speed through the night. No further contacts made. Weather cleared by mid morning, seas still heavy.
Plotted course back toward Pearl. Made contact with fast moving task force ESE of Midway, plotted intercept course. Spotted US carrier task force heading to Pearl from Midway. Traveled with task force through the day and reduced speed at night.
Made way into Pearl June 14th. Patrol ended.
12 enemy ships for 80,000 tons
I played the career patrol over 4 days. What i found so thrilling was the multiple missions in a single patrol and when getting back toward Midway on that date, I had a shot at a Japanese BB task force. I used the cam to confirm to was a Japanese TF. But in the zero vis weather and myself not knowing first hand how to set up manual TDC solutions, I blew it
The patrol still rocks, great game
|04-23-2007, 01:59 PM||#58|
Join Date: Apr 2005
I was on my way back to base (from Celebes sea to Freemantle, Australia) when I decided to see if I could 'unload' my last few torpedoes in Balikpapan harbor and get my tired crew back home for christmas.
I was able to sneak into the harbor at night, undetected. Didn't see or hear any escorts, either. I cofidently proceeded to sink a couple of small vessels, and took my time doing it. However, by the time I was about to leave it was already dawn. I was about to order my helmsman to get us out of there when it came: "Ping!" What the...? I hadn't really payed much attention to what was happening behind me (gross overconfidence), and now it seemed I was going to pay the price. Coming in fast came a Mutsuki DD, and it was coming straight at me. In a near panic I started a wild evasive manouver and let loose my last torpedo at it. But it missed by miles. The Mutsuki dropped some charges, but had misjudged my actual position a little. I was thoroughly cornered with practically no room to manouver. I managed to move the boat up close to a large tanker and just sat there. The Mutsuki knew I was there, but couldn't reach me and had come to a full stop.
There I was. The classic mouse with the cat knowing exactly where I was and waiting for me to make a move. Things were not looking good. For now there was little else to do but sit and wait...
Not five minutes later I hear 'aircraft spotted!' From the west a plane approches, coming my way. but what's this? The plane goes into a dive and promptly proceeds to drop its load onto the Mutsuki, hitting it full in the stern. The first thing I thought was 'hurray for our flyboys!' But then I noticed by the plane's silhouette it was really a Betty that had just commited an act of friendly fire.
The Mutsuki's stern was on fire, but she didn't sink. I took a calculated risk in assuming it was dead in the water. I decided that if I was going to make a move, it would be now. I ordered ahead flank to get us out of there. Luckily it was indeed dead in the water and we eventually made it safely to deep waters.
The fact we were still alive had everything to do with luck and nothing with skill. A valuable lesson learned.
Visit Juju\'s Combat Mission mods for screenshots of all my CM mods.
|04-23-2007, 07:36 PM||#59|
Join Date: Apr 2007
Planes planes everywhere
So I'm on my second mission in a row to deliver either supplies or men to the Phillipines in early '43. Traffic everywhere, plenty of targets of opportunity on the way. I sink a 10,000 ton old Euro liner and a similiarly sized frieghter on my way up, nothing special. Once I get near the Phillipines I start getting attacked by Bettys and Zeros of course. Starting to get more bold and sick of crash diving all the time, I let my AA gunners get some practice on the dual 20mm's more and more. Here is where it gets interesting. I've noticed some weird ways planes can die or not die in all these shootdowns. Seems like shooting at planes makes them more likely to miss your sub, which is realistic enough. However for the first time, my AA gunners hit the BOMBS falling from a Betty in mid flight, causing a huge explosion out from which to my amazement flys the still intact plane! (albiet with 2 engines on fire). It continued on its way, then continued to loop around and go on two more passes at me, both of us exchanging fire but no one apparently hitting anyone. Later, I shot down a zero and it kamikazed my sub, BOUNCED off doing crazy somersaults (ala killing aircraft carriers with the planes blowing up off the deck), and into the water where it exploded in water and pieces (AWESOME LOOKING but no damage to my sub?). Even later, I shot down a Betty or H8k and it crashed into the water causing a splash and shrapnel, yet bounced back into the air for another few hundred yards before crashing again. (Realistic or buggy? both?) Overall I'm impressed with the amount of seeming randomness built into the damage model, even if its not always accurate yet.
|04-25-2007, 12:41 AM||#60|
Join Date: Apr 2007
First patrol for fleet in my Gar. Off to coast of japan... But before that I sank couple merchants with gun. And then received word of convoy coming my way, maybe 10 or so merchants mainly small with 2-3 mediums and one big. Escorted by 3 destroyers in wedge in front of the convoy.
Started my attack by hitting medium split on side of convoy, so far so good. It did not sink it but everyone got wakeup. That is when things started to go horribly wrong.
Escorts did charge towards me but I managed to avoid them since I was careful and sneak deeper into convoy. Torpedo here, torpedo there... Escorts keep their nice formation and sail around, closest to about 300 meters from me and my attack periscope continuously up IN DAYLIGHT.
Eventually they left for north side of convoy, hanging around where I had done my first attack while I was in the middle of convoy. If I had my VIIC and reliable torpedoes that convoy would have been down under in moments. Now I had to waste torpedoes due to premature detonations. (I reloaded and shot all my torpedoes with realistic loading time, should tell something about passive approach of convoy, not to mention me never going silent running)
So, almost ran out of torpedoes and decided to finish few listing ships with gun. I did one peek to surface, got attacked by planes and crashed. After while tried again. No planes, no escorts (still north of convoy). I blasted away most of my ammo sinking few more ships and then sailed south still on surface. I believe those three destroyers are still there wondering what happened.
Needless to say, I was not impressed by IJN performance. Or supplies provided by USN. Having to hit dead on medium freighter with five torpedoes is ridiculous. Not to mention all the beautiful geysirs my torpedoes made out in the open far from their targets.
Last edited by Tiwaz; 04-25-2007 at 02:15 AM.