Hits on PoW and Bismarck

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Alberto Virtuani
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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Sun Oct 21, 2018 6:52 am

Hi Byron,

I'm afraid I don't understand your post above. What is clear is that the original "Baltic" white wave is surely in compartment XX and not XXI as per the drawing posted by Antonio and as per the frame of the film you indicated.

I don't see any significant change in the white bow wave position after the re-painting at Grimstadfjord (possibly a slight change in its shape, but the photo is not detailed enough IMO to make it clear). It's in the same position as before, in compartment XX, starting just after the end of the armor belt. Possibly this fact can change the exact frame where to locate the candidate "exit hole", but surely not move it in compartment XXI.


However, again, the closure rate of Bismarck in the PoW salvo plot leaves no doubt that she was on course around 220° during the whole time when Hood was afloat, never turning more west than that.
Therefore any hit (German accounts are in agreement that this bow hit was the very first one on board...) received between 5:55:xx (photo NH69722) and 6:00:30 (salvo 14 falling over after last straddle at salvo 13) must have come from forward the beam (around 20°). This fact is irrefutable, no matter which are the possible entry and exit holes of this shell and their exact position in the hull.



Bye, Alberto
Last edited by Alberto Virtuani on Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Antonio Bonomi » Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:02 am

Hello everybody,

@ Alberto Virtuani,

you got the point Alberto :
I don't see any significant change in the white bow wave position after the re-painting at Grimstadfjord (possibly a slight change in its shape, but the photo is not detailed enough IMO). It's in the same position as before, in compartment XX, starting after the end of the armor belt. Possibly this fact can change the exact frame where to locate the candidate "exit hole", but surely not move it in compartment XXI.
The previous photo taken from the film you posted from the Scheerhafen pier already showed that the white wave was well inside the compartment XX when translated on top of a drawing, … just as I showed before.

The white wave was surely not repainted on another position, but just slightly re-shaped on her top modifying a bit her final look.

This is the only reason why I showed it, so a real comparison with the last state of the art can be realized ( as for the Forensic Analysis approach ).

As a matter of fact the new top re-shaping of the white wave silhouette, moves that hit position a bit more toward the center of compartment XX.

Now who looks at the current wreck white wave profile can compare it with the last version of her profile after the re-shaping profile occurred even before reaching the Grimstad Fjord, ... and not with the April 1941 state of that white wave in Kiel at the Scheerhafen pier.

Just look at this Bismarck photo arriving at the Grimstad Fjord :

BS_Grimstad_Fjord_white_wave_starboard.jpg
BS_Grimstad_Fjord_white_wave_starboard.jpg (22.47 KiB) Viewed 221 times

As stated , ... just as for the Forensic Analysis approach requirement, ... :wink:

More, you wrote :


However, again, the closure rate of Bismarck in the PoW salvo plot leaves no doubt that she was on course around 220° during the whole time when Hood was afloat, never turning more west than that.
Therefore any hit (German accounts are in agreement that this bow hit was the very first one on board...) received between 5:55:xx (photo NH69722) and 6:00:30 (salvo 14 falling over after last straddle at salvo 13) must have come from forward the beam (around 20°). This fact is irrefutable, no matter which are the possible entry and exit holes of this shell and their exact position in the hull.
The Bismarck was on course 220° until from the Prinz Eugen the torpedo alarm was received and the Bismarck turned to starboard on course 270°, … and this occurred not before 06:03 battle time as for the Prinz Eugen official documentation available.

No one in this planet will be able to demonstrate that the bow hit could have come from aft the beam on the Bismarck, … because after 06:03 the PoW was only firing her 3 local control salvoes with 4 shells ( 2+1+1 ) and we have all her fall of shells visible on photos and film, … so surely no more hits were achieved on the Bismarck.

Easy and irrefutable, …

Bye, Antonio
In order to honor a soldier, we have to tell the truth about what happened over there. The whole, hard, cold truth. And until we do that, we dishonor her and every soldier who died, who gave their life for their country. ( Courage Under Fire )

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Byron Angel » Sun Oct 21, 2018 4:29 pm

Thank you for the prompt responses, but they really do not answer the questions raised.

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Sun Oct 21, 2018 4:46 pm

Hi Byron,
which question is still unanswered ?


Bye, Alberto
"It takes three years to build a ship; it takes three centuries to build a tradition" (Adm.A.B.Cunningham)

"There's always a danger running in the enemy at close range" (Adm.W.F.Wake-Walker)

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Byron Angel » Sun Oct 21, 2018 7:52 pm

Alberto Virtuani wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 4:46 pm
Hi Byron,
which question is still unanswered ?


Bye, Alberto

As a matter of courtesy, I will repeat in a simpler fashion the points upon which I requested a response -
1 - Why are the portholes in the color scheme profile positioned behind those of the longitudinal profile?
2 - Is there any proof that the repainting of Bismarck's camouflage moved the forward edge of the painted false bow wave back?

B

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:45 pm

Hi Byron,
"as a matter of courtesy" ( :?: ), I try to answer in the straightest fashion:

1) I don't see any significant difference except a very slight misalignment, if you move them in the color scheme, aligning them to the drawing, nothing changes and viceversa. Compartment XX and XXI still have the same portholes. If you have more precise drawings and color schemes, please be so kind to post them, supporting your statement.
2) No, I have seen none, and I don't see the relevance of the question. In the original painting (Baltic), the position of the forward edge (in blue in the color scheme) is in compartment XX. If the wave was moved back in Grimstadfjord (I don't think so), it would be even more placed in compartment XX.

What is your point ? What are you trying to demonstrate ?


Bye, Alberto
"It takes three years to build a ship; it takes three centuries to build a tradition" (Adm.A.B.Cunningham)

"There's always a danger running in the enemy at close range" (Adm.W.F.Wake-Walker)

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Byron Angel » Sun Oct 21, 2018 11:31 pm

I am attempting to gently and politely point out two things -

1 - the fact that there is absolutely no primary source evidence that the projectile that struck Bismarck forward entered section XXI and exited via section XX. Not a single solitary survivor account, including those of personnel involved in the damage control effort, indicates anything of the sort. They all simply state that the projectile passed from port to starboard through the ship and, in doing so, "damaged" the two transverse bulkheads separating sections XXII/XXI and XXI/XX. Not a single source makes mention of the projectile passing through the XXI/XX transverse bulkhead.

2 - the fact that, so far, the only responses presented to support your bulkhead penetration argument are: (a) a vertical trace diagram of a purported projectile path from 20deg before the beam, created altogether by your goodselves, based (presumably) upon an assumption regarding Bismarck's relative heading which is in turn based upon an inference drawn from McMullen's salvo plot; (b) a pair of profiles of Bismarck's forecastle, with one showing a clear misalignment of the portholes (worth 6 to 8 feet at least) relative to the other - an important inconsistency when the porthole locations are so important with respect to approximating the location of the starboard exit hole(s).

What puzzles me no end is why you cling so desperately to such a weak position. This is a hugely complicated "cold case" detective investigation.
This is not a geometry exercise where there in only a single correct answer; for example, a single undetected one point evasive weave by Bismarck about her base course would explain any possible perceived inconsistency.

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Mon Oct 22, 2018 6:40 am

Hi Byron,

1) regarding 100% certainty, I agree there is not, as accounts are sometimes contradictory. The fact that the bulkhead between XX and XIX had to be reinforced due to the water pressure at high speed however points to an open ripped compartment XX, not to a simple "leaking" from compartment XXI.

2) a) I'm afraid this fact is irrefutable. Based on PoW salvo plot (and photo NH69722) Bismarck was on a course around 220° from 5:55 till 6:00:30, therefore the incoming shells could not come from aft the beam but only from forward. If you have an explanation for the range closure rate of almost 5000 yards in 4 minutes with Bismarck on a more westerly course (even for a very short time) please post it in the right thread (viewtopic.php?f=1&t=5752), where this has been analyzed in depth.
b) despite small inconsistency between drawings and color scheme (even by 6-8 feet), in any case the white bow wave is in compartment XX, not in compartment XXI. What is debatable is the distance of the hole from the bulkhead separating the 2 compartments.


As said I'm not much interested in locating the entry/exit holes but the course of Bismarck is fixed by the PoW salvo plot and this is a fact.


Bye, Alberto
"It takes three years to build a ship; it takes three centuries to build a tradition" (Adm.A.B.Cunningham)

"There's always a danger running in the enemy at close range" (Adm.W.F.Wake-Walker)

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Bill Jurens » Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:10 am

As the tone of the discussions has improved a bit, I will -- for better or worse -- attempt a re-entry into the discussion.

The main point of contention here seems to revolve around the angle of approach of the projectile which passed through Bismarck's bow.
In that regard, I must admit that I find some of the agonizing over the precise location of the exit hole -- provided it could be identified at all with any real degree of certainty -- a bit confusing insofar as even if the exit hole WERE precisely located this would in and of itself provide very little reliable information regarding the trajectory of the bullet as it passed through the ship prior to the exit.

Finding the exit -- again assuming this could be done in the first place -- really tells you very little about precisely how the bullet got there.

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Antonio Bonomi » Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:16 am

Hello everybody,

@ Alberto Virtuani,

I have to disagree with you.

There is 100% certainty that the compartments involved were the XX-XXI for hit Nr. 1and the XIII-XIV for the hit Nr. 2, ... lets forget the hit Nr. 3 on the boat.

This is what was communicated from the Bismarck and what is written into the official documents.

There is almost a certainty that the Bismarck was on a course of around 220° from the PoW salvo plot as well as from the PG battle map, since the Bismarck was following the heavy cruiser on her wake until 06:03 battle time and the torpedo alarm issued by the Prinz Eugen.

Given the Bismarck course of 220° and the PoW incoming path direction, of around 330°, ... it is not that difficult to determine the hit Nr. 1 shell path into the above listed compartments, ... especially assuming that the exit hole is that one on the compartment XX.

@ Bill Jurens,

when I was writing I had not read your post.

You are absolutely right, and when I wrote that the shell path inside the ship was difficult to be determined precisely, someone had difficulties on realize it.

That is why, in my opinion, we have to use at first the above official information before checking the survivors statements that must be in line with the official communication from the Bismarck back to Germany provided in real time.

Bye, Antonio
Last edited by Antonio Bonomi on Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
In order to honor a soldier, we have to tell the truth about what happened over there. The whole, hard, cold truth. And until we do that, we dishonor her and every soldier who died, who gave their life for their country. ( Courage Under Fire )

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Bill Jurens » Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:25 am

For what it's worth, I see nothing very remarkable in the relative range and bearing rate plots, which I placed on my track chart of the action long before this discussion began. The relevant track chart will, of course, appear in the upcoming book.

From 0555-0603 the range rate seems to have dropped at a fairly steady rate of about -900 meters per minute. After 0603 the situation essentially reversed, and the range rate changed to one increasing at c. 850 meters per minute.

Nothing very unusual in this, at least to me, at all...

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Mon Oct 22, 2018 8:03 am

Bill Jurens wrote: "From 0555-0603 the range rate seems to have dropped at a fairly steady rate of about -900 meters per minute."
Hi Mr.Jurens, I fully agree with the above. This implies a fairly steady relative closing speed of around 30 knots between Bismarck and PoW and (due to the known course of BC1) a fairly steady course of around 220° for Bismarck.

Antonio Bonomi wrote: "I have to disagree with you. There is 100% certainty that the compartments involved were the XX-XXI for hit Nr. 1"
Hi Antonio,
while I agree that most probably things went exactly this way, I would say that there can be no 100% certainty that the shell could not pass only through compartment XXI (exiting at its extreme aft frames), causing such damages (big fragments, fractured pipes, etc.) to severely compromise watertight integrity also of the bulkhead with comp. XX, remote as this hypothesis can be.


Bye, Alberto
"It takes three years to build a ship; it takes three centuries to build a tradition" (Adm.A.B.Cunningham)

"There's always a danger running in the enemy at close range" (Adm.W.F.Wake-Walker)

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Byron Angel » Mon Oct 22, 2018 12:58 pm

Demosthenes is smiling broadly.

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by Antonio Bonomi » Mon Oct 22, 2018 1:39 pm

Hello everybody,

@ Alberto Virtuani,

in this "extreme" case, it is valid also the other way around, .... all into XX ( entry and exit holes ) and few involvement of the XXI by splinters thru the bulkhead separating them.

Still, as underlined, the official communication were mentioning both of them like for the XIII and XIV.

It is only at this point that the witness accounts start being important to really try to understand what happened there.

So far, ... and this is just my personal opinion, ... I am with Torsten Wahl about the way to read this event as explained above.

Bye Antonio
In order to honor a soldier, we have to tell the truth about what happened over there. The whole, hard, cold truth. And until we do that, we dishonor her and every soldier who died, who gave their life for their country. ( Courage Under Fire )

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Re: Hits on PoW and Bismarck

Post by wadinga » Mon Oct 22, 2018 2:20 pm

Hello All,
in this "extreme" case, it is valid also the other way around, .... all into XX ( entry and exit holes ) and few involvement of the XXI by splinters thru the bulkhead separating them.
No, reliable Lorenzen says:
Then, we sensed a strong shock in the ship. Damage control center made a group call [all-points call]. We ascertained that compartment 21 had been hit.
and
About 1 hour after the battle, we had to cut out plates with which the leak in compartment 21 was to be sealed. The plate had a diameter of 1 meter.

Manthey describes both compartments being fully flooded which is why the XIX-XX bulkhead needed shoring as well.

I heard that it was very difficult to enter the fully flooded compartments, but the divers accomplished laying a hose connection to the oil bunkers that permitted oil to be pumped from forward to aft [holds]. In the mean time, [the divers] also accomplished sealing the leaks.



This is an unsubstantiated claim:
since the Bismarck was following the heavy cruiser on her wake until 06:03 battle time and the torpedo alarm issued by the Prinz Eugen.
This is what was communicated from the Bismarck and what is written into the official documents.
Where in the official documents is it confirmed that Bismarck followed PG's wake on 220T until 06:03?


The latest version of the reconstructed Bismarck KTB just says course 220T was resumed after the "Crazy Ivan" manoeuvre at 05:32 There are no indications of temporary courses undertaken for tactical purposes either in the Denmark Straits action or when avoiding Swordfish attacks.


All the best

wadinga
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