Sims-class destroyer

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USS Sims 0540906.jpg
USS Sims (DD-409), lead ship of the class.
Class overview
Name: Sims-class destroyer
Builders: Bath Iron Works
Federal Shipbuilding
Newport News Shipbuilding
Boston Navy Yard
Norfolk Naval Shipyard
Charleston Navy Yard
Philadelphia Naval Shipyard
Operators: US flag 48 stars.svg United States Navy
Preceded by: Benham class
Succeeded by: Benson class
Built: 1937–40
In commission: 1939–46
Completed: 12
Lost: 5
Retired: 7
General characteristics
Type: Destroyer
Displacement: 1,570 tons (standard)
2,465 tons (full load)
Length: 348 ft 4 in
Beam: 36 ft 0 in
Draft: 13 ft 4 in
Propulsion:
  • 3 Boilers
  • 2 Westinghouse Turbines (50,000 horsepower)
Speed: 37.7 knots
Complement:
  • 16 Officers
  • 235 Enlisted
Armament:
Notes: fuel capacity: 2,929 barrels

The Sims-class consisted of 12 destroyers in the United States Navy, built in seven various shipyards, and commissioned in 1939 and 1940. It was the last United States destroyer class completed prior to World War II. All Sims-class ships saw action in World War II, and seven survived the war. No ship of this class saw service after 1946.

Of the five ships lost, four were at the hands of the Japanese and one at the hands of the Germans. Three of the seven survivors were undergoing overhauls that were left unfinished at war’s end and ultimately scrapped. The remaining four seaworthy ships were used as targets during the 1946 Operation Crossroads atomic tests at Bikini Atoll. One was sunk by the first blast, while the other three were sunk as targets two years later after serving as experimental platforms.

The Sims class ships were the sixth and final class of the "third-generation" 1500-ton pre-war destroyers that modernized the United States navy in the 1930s. They were the last built with a single engine room, changed with the Benson-class destroyers for increased survivability. However they were also the first increased in hull length, and the precursor for the numerous larger, faster destroyer classes that marked war-time construction.

The Sims class introduced installation of Mark 37 Gun Fire Control System.[1] Distinguished by a turret mounted gun director, the advanced system controlled by a Ford Mark 1 Fire Control Computer mounted deep in the hull enabled automatic aiming of guns against surface or air targets with first-hit solutions in near real-time. The system would evolve and be used extensively to control most 5 inch guns on destroyers and larger ships, and remained in service on US ships until the 1970s.

Early units completed with 12 torpedo tubes (3×4) while later ships completed with 8 (2×4) on the centerline. All were converted to 8-tube configuration before World War II began.

USS Russell (DD-414) in 1943.

Ships in class[edit]

Ship Name Hull No. Builder Laid down Commission Decommission Fate
Sims DD-409 Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine 15 July 1937 1 August 1939 Sunk by Japanese aircraft in the Battle of the Coral Sea, 7 May 1942. (14 survivors).
Hughes DD-410 Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine 15 September 1937 21 September 1939 28 August 1946 Damaged during Operation Crossroads atomic tests at Bikini Atoll, July 1946. Sunk as target, 16 October 1948.
Anderson DD-411 Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Company, Kearny, New Jersey 15 November 1937 19 May 1939 28 August 1946 Sunk during Operation Crossroads atomic tests (Test "Able"), at Bikini Atoll, 1 July 1946.
Hammann DD-412 Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Company, Kearny, New Jersey 17 January 1938 11 August 1939 Sunk by Japanese submarine I-168 during the Battle of Midway with the same torpedo spread (salvo) that also sunk the USS Yorktown (CV-5), 6 June 1942. (80 killed).
Mustin DD-413 Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company 20 December 1937 15 September 1939 29 August 1946 Damaged during Operation Crossroads atomic tests at Bikini Atoll, July 1946. Sunk as target off Kwajalein, 18 April 1948.
Russell DD-414 Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company 20 December 1937 3 November 1939 Sold for scrap, September 1947
O'Brien DD-415 Boston Navy Yard 31 May 1938 2 March 1940 Torpedoed by Japanese submarine I-19, with the same torpedo spread (salvo) which also sunk the USS Wasp (CV-7) and damaged the USS North Carolina (BB-55), 15 September 1942. Sank 19 October 1942 out from Suva while en route to Pearl Harbor for repairs.
Walke DD-416 Boston Navy Yard 31 May 1938 27 April 1940 Sunk in Naval Battle of Guadalcanal, 15 November 1942. (88 killed).
Morris DD-417 Norfolk Navy Yard, Portsmouth, Virginia 7 June 1938 5 March 1940 9 November 1945 Sold for scrap, 2 August 1947.
Roe DD-418 Charleston Navy Yard 23 April 1938 5 January 1940 30 October 1945 Sold for scrap, August 1947
Wainwright DD-419 Norfolk Navy Yard, Portsmouth, Virginia 7 June 1938 15 April 1940 29 August 1946 Damaged in the Operation Crossroads atomic tests at Bikini Atoll, July 1946. Sunk as target in Pacific, 5 July 1948.
Buck DD-420 Philadelphia Naval Shipyard 6 April 1938 15 May 1940 Sunk by U-616 off Salerno, Italy, 9 October 1943. (150 killed)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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