Victorious and its involvement

Discussions about the history of the ship, technical details, etc.

Moderator: Bill Jurens

User avatar
tommy303
Senior Member
Posts: 1528
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2004 4:19 pm
Location: Arizona
Contact:

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by tommy303 » Tue Jul 31, 2012 2:08 am

I think it was from Ark Royals second torpedo hit the evening before.
Indeed. The torpedo or possibly torpedoes struck between compartments VII and IX on the port side. William Garzke believes the detonation was partially on the lower edge of the belt and partially below it. Most of the damage was contained by the side defence system, but there were tears in the torpedo bulkhead which allowed some sea water and nitrogen gas and smoke from the torpedo detonation to penetrate into the port turbine room. Sea water also entered the port shaft tunnel and although the leaks in the port turbine room were sealed off and the room pumped out, it is thought the shaft tunnel was not dewatered. By morning of 27 May, most but not all the port list had been corrected by pumping and counter flooding.

Their shoulders held the sky suspended;
They stood and Earth's foundations stay;
What God abandoned these defended;
And saved the sum of things for pay.

User avatar
RF
Senior Member
Posts: 7588
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2006 1:15 pm
Location: Wolverhampton, ENGLAND

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by RF » Tue Jul 31, 2012 9:03 am

jason spurr wrote:The order to scuttle the ship was given at 09.30, yes, so why did the British not give the order to cease fire until 10.16am?
Tovey and his officers would not be aware of any of the orders given on Bismarck, they are not there to witness or overhear them.

The British continued to fire because Bismarck was still afloat and seemingly capable of remaining a threat. That decision was correct.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

User avatar
RF
Senior Member
Posts: 7588
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2006 1:15 pm
Location: Wolverhampton, ENGLAND

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by RF » Tue Jul 31, 2012 9:15 am

jason spurr wrote:
I am sorry if the insinuations of war crimes has enraged you RF.. Do you believe the good British people are not capable of such things? You are probably aware the British are facing claims at the moment over torturing POW's. We dont live in a perfect world RF, mistakes were made and covered up! You can spend your entire life studying a lie and never learn the truth...
All British servicemen are subject to Queens' Regulations and International Law. As such any breach of military discipline involving war crime is answerable to Court Martial and also to international courts.
Individual cases of breach of discipline and accepted conduct do happen and are punished. That is totally different to concerted actions of war crime by whole military units given to order which you allege. This allegation is malicous, false and fictitous and that is why the claim is a disgrace. Trying to legitimate it by claiming the true event is a lie is even more despicable. You don't need to live in a perfect world to realise that.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

User avatar
Herr Nilsson
Senior Member
Posts: 1377
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 11:19 am
Location: Germany

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by Herr Nilsson » Tue Jul 31, 2012 3:28 pm

Are we talking about these pictures?

Click
Regards

Marc

"Thank God we blow up and sink more easily." (unknown officer from HMS Norfolk)

jason spurr

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by jason spurr » Tue Jul 31, 2012 8:56 pm

Yes we are! The description my grandfather gives on each photo corresponds with the history books. All but one.. The bottom left has a description that reads " Victorious torpedo hits Bismarck" This photo was not taken on the 24th, the Victorious was 120 miles from the Bismarck and well out of visual. So when was it taken?? It clearly shows a ship in the distance recieving two major hits, bang bang!! Bismarck?? That's what the description says..

User avatar
tommy303
Senior Member
Posts: 1528
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2004 4:19 pm
Location: Arizona
Contact:

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by tommy303 » Wed Aug 01, 2012 12:18 am

Most likely it was taken on the 24th May from a Swordfish torpedo plane that had already completed its torpedo run and was still wave hopping away from the target. It was usual for very slow torpedo planes to continue flying low until they were out of effective gun range of the target; this helped them open the range up more quickly as any attempt at climbing would not only slow them down but make them better targets. Note that there is no sign of a wake or wave from the bow as one might expect from a ship. The planes had a crew of three, pilot, observer/radar operator, and gunner/radio operator. The picture was probably taken by the observor in the center cockpit and the dark mass to the left is probably the shoulder of the gunner. The very dark smoke fits with the visual discriptions of the hit which is said, by Victorious' air crews to have resulted in a large amount of dark smoke coming from the funnel. The lighter 'smoke' is probably the remenants of smoke and spray from the actual torpedo strike on the starboard side. This torpedo was a surface runner and none of the explosive gases vented into the ship; consequently the amount of smoke and spray from the hit was considerably greater than what one normally saw with a torpedo hit.

Their shoulders held the sky suspended;
They stood and Earth's foundations stay;
What God abandoned these defended;
And saved the sum of things for pay.

User avatar
Herr Nilsson
Senior Member
Posts: 1377
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 11:19 am
Location: Germany

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by Herr Nilsson » Wed Aug 01, 2012 9:23 am

I totally I agree with Thomas.
jason spurr wrote:Yes we are! The description my grandfather gives on each photo corresponds with the history books. All but one.. The bottom left has a description that reads " Victorious torpedo hits Bismarck" This photo was not taken on the 24th, the Victorious was 120 miles from the Bismarck and well out of visual. So when was it taken?? It clearly shows a ship in the distance recieving two major hits, bang bang!! Bismarck?? That's what the description says..
My English isn't very good, but isn't there only one torpedo hit mentioned in the description: "[One] Victorious torpedo hits Bismarck"? Shouldn't multiple hits read "Victorious' torpedoes hitting Bismarck" or "Victorious torpedo hits on Bismarck". ..or am I wrong?
Regards

Marc

"Thank God we blow up and sink more easily." (unknown officer from HMS Norfolk)

User avatar
RF
Senior Member
Posts: 7588
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2006 1:15 pm
Location: Wolverhampton, ENGLAND

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by RF » Wed Aug 01, 2012 6:30 pm

There was one torpedo hit only, so the references to the singular are correct.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

jason spurr

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by jason spurr » Wed Aug 01, 2012 11:19 pm

I understand where your coming from Tommy, but this photo was not taken from a plane! It is a clear shot taken from the side of Victorious, catching a sailors arm in the picture. This is why you don't see any bow waves or wake and this is not the shoulder of a man sitting in a cockpit. Yes Marc your right, one torpedo hit, thats what it says... The other explosion is a shell hitting Bruno, this happened first, then a torpedo was dropped on the port side. Like i said, it was all over. This white explosion is not the remnants of there hit on the starboard side.. It is ammunition exploding out of the front of the ship, just like you see in the first Tirpitz photo. You cannot see the flash on the horizon in your photo, but on mine you can clear see a flash on the opposite side of the Bismarck. What is this giving off a great flash? British guns, Yes! The Victorious could not see the Battleships, but they could see the flashes from there big guns. The Victorious was out of visual from the rest of the fleet, making it too easy to leave without anyone knowing she was there. You remember that Tovey was stated to have lost track of his ships at one point and the Victorious ended up being 200 miles further south then where he thought she was.. Lets be realistic here, mistakes happened, they tried to bomb there own ship at one point. A number of years ago i had the ink on the backs of these photos tested and the experts clearly dated it to be around the early 40's. The descriptions are correct! Do your copies have anything on the back?

User avatar
Herr Nilsson
Senior Member
Posts: 1377
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 11:19 am
Location: Germany

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by Herr Nilsson » Thu Aug 02, 2012 2:39 am

Ok, lets assume you are right. The battle had started. Where are shell splashes of The British? Where is Bismarck's bow in that picture? Left or right?
Got Victorious any hits from Bismarck? If Bismarck was visible from Victorious, then Victorious was visible from Bismarck. Is it wise to bring an relative unprotected carrier in the range of battleship guns? What was the advantage of an aircraft carrier compared to battleships?
Where was the position of Victorious? You say on the other side of Bismarck, which means somewhere in the East. Norfolk was in the northeast. Dorsetshire is coming from southeast.
What about the destroyers? What about Victorious escort ships? Any idea?
Regards

Marc

"Thank God we blow up and sink more easily." (unknown officer from HMS Norfolk)

User avatar
tommy303
Senior Member
Posts: 1528
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2004 4:19 pm
Location: Arizona
Contact:

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by tommy303 » Thu Aug 02, 2012 3:44 am

I concur with Marc on this.

Alright then, let's do a little analysis of the photograph of Bismarck emitting a large cloud of smoke, and let's assume you are correct that the photo was taken from the Victorious. The height of the photographer would have to be about 75 feet up, somewhere in the superstructure of the Victorious. From that height, one can estimate the visible distance to the horizon, which according to WW2 era reference tables, works out to about 20,000 yards. The Bismarck, in the photo is not hull down beyond the horizon, since you can see her hull from virtually the waterline on up. The horizon appears to cut across the ship at about the level of the lower navigation bridge or the top of Bruno or Caesar turret. Allowing for the fuzziness of the picture, let's give it the benefit of the doubt and call horizon line 50 feet up into the superstructure. This would give a figure of about 16,000 yards between the horizon and the Bismarck, meaning then that the picture was taken at a range of about 4000 yards--two miles or possibly less.

Now, we know from German witnesses, and British ones, that Schneider in the foretop of Bismarck selected Rodney as his target. At that time, only A and B turrets would bear on Rodney and KGV, leaving C and D turrets relatively idle early on. Don't you think, that the Germans, seeing a carrier just 4000 yards or less away, would not have at least engaged with the 15cm guns on the unengaged starboard side and possibly with the 4 deadly guns in C and D turrets.

As to Victorious not being seen by the home fleet as they began the bombardment of Bismarck, that would be virtually impossible. Victorious' superstructure would have been plainly visible from the gunnery tops of KGV and Rodney, not to mention the Norfolk which was off Bismarck's unengaged side and was already beginning to join in on the gunnery action. This makes the assumption the photograph was taken off Bismarck's starboard side. If it was taken from Port, then Victorious would have been between the Bismarck and Tovey's battleships. Furthermore, if during the gunnery action, where are the shell splashes from 8-in, 14-inch, and 16-in guns. Salvos from Rodney, KGV, Norfolk (and shortly thereafter Dorsetshire as well) would have been landing around Bismarck every 20 seconds or so.

No, I am sorry but the only logical explanation for the photograph is that it was taken from a Swordfish as it maneuvered away from Bismarck on the 24th after making its torpedo run. The sea state in the photograph is in complete agreement with film footage of the action a few hours before against Hood and Prince of Wales, but is much less than the sea state seen in stills and film footage of Bismarck's final action.

Their shoulders held the sky suspended;
They stood and Earth's foundations stay;
What God abandoned these defended;
And saved the sum of things for pay.

User avatar
RF
Senior Member
Posts: 7588
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2006 1:15 pm
Location: Wolverhampton, ENGLAND

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by RF » Fri Aug 03, 2012 8:07 am

I concur with the previous two posts.

Also if the photograph was taken from Victorious, then as I have previously posted, the entire ships company would have known of the proximity of Bismarck and neither official or unofficial blanketing of information could have prevented somebody on that ship disclosing the ''true situation'' decades before now. And of course that would apply equally to the personnel on the cruiser/destroyer screen escorting Victorious.



No, it is clearly an incorrect interpretation of where that picture was taken.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

User avatar
RF
Senior Member
Posts: 7588
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2006 1:15 pm
Location: Wolverhampton, ENGLAND

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by RF » Fri Aug 03, 2012 8:13 am

Another consideration is that when Tovey finally disengaged on 27 May he issued an order that any ship in close proximity to the floating wreck of Bismarck was to close and finish her off with torpedoes. Dorsetshire duly did this.

If Victorious' escort cruisers were almost as close as Dorsetshire surely they would all have gone in and done so, even after Bismarck sank, and be noticed by Dorsetshire? And certainly record their attempt in their war diaries? And their crews brag about how they nearly sank Bismarck?
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

jason spurr

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by jason spurr » Fri Aug 03, 2012 4:14 pm

Yes, lets assume i am right. The battle had just started and the British had just found there range. When this photo was taken there might not have been any splashes in the water, but there was a flash on the horizon on the other side. The bow of the ship is facing to the right of the picture. You can make out the superstructure so this means the two explosions are hitting the port side, white smoke coming from the front of the ship and black smoke coming from the middle of the ship. I cannot believe people still think this photo was taken on the 24Th. These are two major explosions hitting the ship, not a torpedo hitting the armor belt below the water line. They are the same explosions in exactly the same places as what hit the Tirpitz. Yes the Bismarck would have seen the Victorious on one side and the Battleships on the other. Some survivors said they felt like the British had them surrounded and they were being attacked from all sides. Was the Victorious in range of Bismarck's guns. She might have been! My stepfather told me the only thing my grandfather said to him about the battle was " We could see the cruisers pounding it all night and the next morning we came out of a rain squall and there she was!! Was this another mistake by the British? Like i said, i have had this photo tested and it was concluded that the flash on the horizon was caused from a bright light, like the flash from a big gun. There was no battleships firing at the Bismarck on the 24Th. So with all respect Tommy if you believe it was taken out of a plane on the 24Th, I'm afraid you are wrong..

User avatar
tommy303
Senior Member
Posts: 1528
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2004 4:19 pm
Location: Arizona
Contact:

Re: Victorious and its involvement

Post by tommy303 » Fri Aug 03, 2012 10:59 pm

With all due respect, your sticking to your version has become something of a Théâtre de l'Absurde. If Victorious had been close enough to take that picture, she was close enough for Bismarck to have blown her out of the water in a couple of minutes (even an exhausted crew could hardly miss at 4000 yards or so range), and if she was that close, she was close enough to the action to be seen by Tovey's battleships, Norfolk, Dorsetshire, and Maori, among others. It sounds very much like things got turned around as the story was passed down from grandfather to stepfather, to you. Among other things, during the night Bismarck was attacked, unsuccessfully I might add, by Vian's destroyers and no other vessels. As to splashes, Dorsetshire, when she joined in, only fired a small number of salvos since as her captain stated, it was impossible to spot her own fall of shot with the amid the forest of splashes being thrown up around the Bismarck by KGV's and Rodney's main and secondary batteries, and the main battery of Norfolk. If the picture depicts a hit by a torpedo dropped from a plane in dive bombing mode (which would have disintegrated a Swordfish)hitting Bismarck at the same time as witnesses saw an explosion which blew the back off Turret Bruno, where are the other splashes from the shells in that salvo--they did not all hit. Furthermore, the explosion in Bruno was sometime into the action and well after both Bruno and Anton had already been silenced.

Their shoulders held the sky suspended;
They stood and Earth's foundations stay;
What God abandoned these defended;
And saved the sum of things for pay.

Post Reply