Elbing-class torpedo boat

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T 35 as DD 935 in US seas August 1945.jpg
T-35 seized by the U.S., as DD 935.
Class overview
Name: Flottentorpedoboot 1939
Builders: Schichau, Elbing
In commission: 1941-1944
Completed: 15
Lost: 11
General characteristics
Type: Torpedo boat
Displacement: 1,295 long tons (1,316 t) (standard)
1,755 long tons (1,783 t) (maximum)
Length: 97 m (318 ft 3 in) (w/l)
102.5 m (336 ft 3 in) (o/a)
Beam: 10 m (32 ft 10 in)
Draft: 3.22 m (10 ft 7 in)
Installed power: 32,560 shp (24,280 kW)
Propulsion: 2 × Wagner geared steam turbines
2 × shafts
Speed: 32.5 kn (60.2 km/h; 37.4 mph)
Range: 2,400 nmi (4,400 km; 2,800 mi) at 19 kn (35 km/h; 22 mph)
Complement: 205
Armament: 4 × 105 mm (4.1 in) guns
4 × 37 mm (1.46 in) anti-aircraft guns
9 × 20 mm (0.79 in) anti-aircraft cannons
6 × 533 mm (21.0 in) torpedo tubes
50 × mines

The Elbing-class torpedo boats (or Flottentorpedoboot 1939) were a class of 15 small warships that served in the Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine during World War II. Although classed as Flottentorpedoboot ("fleet torpedo boat") by the Germans, in most respects—displacement, weaponry, usage—they were comparable to contemporary medium-size destroyers. The most notable difference was in the armament of the Elbings being fewer in number and of a slightly smaller caliber — 105 mm (4.1 in) compared to the 4.7 in (120 mm) of contemporary British destroyers such as the "L"- and "M"-classes.

Service was either in western France from late 1942-August 1944 or in the Baltic Sea from March 1944 until the end of the war.

The design and weapons mix resulted from experience of earlier, more specialised classes such as the Type 35. The Elbings were a radical change to an all-purpose vessel capable of torpedo attacks, anti-aircraft defence and escort duties. These ships adopted unit machinery with two separate engine rooms and two boiler rooms. Their machinery was however relatively unreliable.

They were effective fighting vessels, a notable success being the sinking of the British light cruiser HMS Charybdis and the escort destroyer HMS Limbourne by torpedoes, off Brittany in October 1943. The 4th Torpedo Boat Flotilla—T22, T23, T25, T25, and T26—had been protecting an important blockade runner though despite their success it ran aground and was lost. Two vessels, T25 and T26, were lost in a similar operation three months later. Three ships—T22, T30, and T32—were accidentally lost on 18 August 1943 on a German minefield in the Gulf of Finland. In April 1944 the Canadian destroyer HMCS Athabaskan was torpedoed by T24.

Construction of the class took place in the Schichau shipyard in Elbing (now Elbląg), hence the Allied name for the class. The first examples were commissioned in late 1942 and the last in late 1944.

The ships[edit]

The ships were unnamed, but numbered T22-T36.

Number Laid down Launched Commissioned Fate
T-22 1940 1941 28 February 1942 sunk 18 August 1944 - mined in the Baltic.
T-23 1940 14 June 1941 14 June 1942 scrapped February 1955, after serving in the French Navy as the Alsacien.
T-24 1940 13 September 1941 17 October 1942 sunk 24 August 1944, by aircraft launched rockets near Bordeaux.
T-25 1940 1 December 1941 12 December 1942 sunk 28 December 1943, by British cruisers HMS Glasgow and Enterprise in the Bay of Biscay (Operation Stonewall).
T-26 1941 18 February 1942 27 February 1943 sunk 28 December 1943, by British cruisers HMS Glasgow and Enterprise in the Bay of Biscay (Operation Stonewall).
T-27 1941 20 August 1942 17 April 1943 destroyed 6 May 1944, T27 ran aground, en route to L'Aber Vrac'h for repairs after an action against Force 26 on the night of 28/29 April 1944. She was finally destroyed by British MTBs on 6 May after several unsuccessful air attacks.
T-28 1941 24 June 1942 19 June 1943 escaped from western France after D-Day, scrapped 1959, after serving in the French Navy as the Lorraine.
T-29 1942 16 January 1943 21 August 1943 sunk 26 April 1944, by HMCS Haida and other Canadian destroyers near Brittany.
T-30 1942 13 March 1943 24 October 1943 sunk 18 August 1944 - mined in the Gulf of Finland.
T-31 1942 22 May 1943 5 February 1944 sunk 20 June 1944 by Soviet Navy MTB.
T-32 1942 17 July 1943 8 May 1944 sunk 18 August 1944 - mined in the Gulf of Finland.
T-33 1942 4 September 1943 15 June 1944 scrapped 1957-1958 after serving in the Soviet Navy as the Primerniy (Примерный).
T-34 1942 23 October 1943 12 August 1944 sunk 24 November 1944 - mined near Cape Arkona.
T-35 1942 11 December 1943 7 October 1944 scrapped 3 October 1952 - transferred to France and used for spare parts.
T-36 1942 5 February 1944 9 December 1944 sunk 5 May 1945, damaged by a mine near Swinemünde and sunk by Soviet bombing.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  • Gröner, Erich (1990). German Warships: 1815–1945. Volume 1: Major Surface Warships. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-790-9. 
  • Rohwer, Jürgen (2005). Chronology of the War at Sea 1939-1945: The Naval History of World War Two (Third Revised ed.). Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-59114-119-2. 
  • Whitley, M. J. (1991). German Destroyers of World War Two. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-55750-302-8. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 45°31′N 01°01′W / 45.517°N 1.017°W / 45.517; -1.017