Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Discussions about the history of the ship, technical details, etc.
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Herr Nilsson
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by Herr Nilsson » Sun Dec 29, 2013 12:16 pm

That reminds me of a quote of Dr. Henry Walton Jones, Jr.:

"Archaeology is the search for fact ... not truth. If it's truth you're interested in, Dr. Tyree's philosophy class is right down the hall."
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Marc

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

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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by Thorsten Wahl » Sun Dec 29, 2013 5:42 pm

wadinga wrote:Season's Greetings to All,

I
Paul C Looking at the high quality Schmalenbach film on you tube I believe PoW fires only forward turrets and the white spot aft resolves clearly as a shell splash- opinion? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hU76vVM6lWY

wadinga
these were signs of firings from POW
few moments before this event one possibly can see splashes
see here

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=5830&p=55940#p55930
Meine Herren, es kann ein siebenjähriger, es kann ein dreißigjähriger Krieg werden – und wehe dem, der zuerst die Lunte in das Pulverfaß schleudert!

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José M. Rico
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by José M. Rico » Sun Dec 29, 2013 6:53 pm

paulcadogan wrote:
wadinga wrote:Paul C Looking at the high quality Schmalenbach film on you tube I believe PoW fires only forward turrets and the white spot aft resolves clearly as a shell splash- opinion? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hU76vVM6lWY
WoW! Sean, I've never seen that so clearly before! You are absolutely right that it looks like a shell splash - you can see other "overs" just prior to the guns firing! A straddle and very likely a hit in there...amazing!
It seems to me that YouTube video is a copy of the original uploaded by Thomas Schmid (3dhistory.de) years ago.
What usually happens is that someone uploads a video, others save it on their computers, and then upload it again.

Paul, check the following link to see the complete film taken aboard the Prinz Eugen.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pPmkOtSveXY

Happy holidays!

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RF
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by RF » Sun Dec 29, 2013 7:11 pm

alecsandros wrote: .
Most likely, the Prinz Eugen would be ordered to engage one of the British cruisers, while at least 1 of Bismarck's main turrets would be directed against the other.
But Bismarck would not open fire with 38cm shells until both British capital ships (Hood and Prince of Wales) woudl have been taken care of [this was standard German practice - to engage the most proeminent threat]
This is why the 2 cruisers would actualy have chances of doing ugly damage to Bismarck. They would have maybe 10-15 minutes of firing against the battleship and against PRinz Eugen....
The Prinz is a different proposition to Bismarck - it is a lot less well protected. Mixing it with one County Class cruiser is very risky in the German doctrine of avoiding action with equal or superior forces, let alone the risk of a second joining in.
The real danger is that Prinz Eugen becomes detached from Bismarck, for once that happens in an ongoing battle the Prinz basically is doomed... lesser ships can finish it off once it sustains heavy damage and its speed is impaired.

Lutjens decision to place his cruiser ahead of Bismarck was in fact a master stroke in the light of what happened after he did it.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

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RF
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by RF » Sun Dec 29, 2013 7:13 pm

paulcadogan wrote:
RF wrote:if I read Paul correctly what is being suggested is that the risk of losing POW is traded against still having Hood intact - in which case I think POW is more expendible.
Not really what I was thinking.... I was trying to make the point that the very same arguments we have been making on both sides of this debate would have applied and a decision would have had to be made at some level. The wisdom of that decision, whichever way it went, would have been shown by the outcome and if the outcome was unfavourable for the British then criticism of that decision would follow...
.
I'm sorry I misunderstood you - but yes, you are right
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by wadinga » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:52 pm

Hello All,

(Marc- if you enigmatically meant what I think you meant- I appreciate the accolade and will wear the hat! :D I do believe we must find and accept the facts whether they suit us or not.)

For those who have already decided Norfolk and Suffolk were within range here is some reinforcement from Suffolk's narrative.

1856 (B). Prinz Eugen opened fire, which was returned with three broadsides at G.R. 27,500 - 28,900 yards.
28,900 yds might be far beyond effective range and perhaps un-spottable, but 8" would reach. On the other hand if they were 15 miles away as the Baron says, they were out of range.

Another piece of interesting information. From Battleship,Cruiser, Destroyer by Haines and Coward. "For A V Godding, who was an Ordnance Artificer in Prince of Wales , the technical problems were considerable. Quote ""We were accompanying Hood to Iceland when we were diverted to intercept Bismarck and Prinz Eugen. We closed up at Action Stations and our first action after loading the guns was when the enemy was at about 22,000 yds, and A and B turrets opened fire. Owing to the ship's position, Y turret would not bear on the enemy he held fire until we were about 16,000 yds range. I remember the range because just prior to opening fire, the Royal Marine on the local rangefinder had called out """Range 16,000 yds!""" I was at this time in the gun house. "" "

Unfortunately he doesn't tell us which salvo PoW's Y turret first joined in on, but the Gunnery faults report tells us of Y
Salvo 11 - No. 3 central ammunition hoist was raised with shell but no cordite; No. 25 interlock having failed to prevent this. The interlock was functioning correctly before the engagement. There has been no opportunity to investigate this. It is also reported that the reason no cordite had been rammed was that the indicator in the cordite handling room did not show that the cage had been raised after the previous ramming stroke. This caused the gun to miss salvoes 15 to 20.
There is no indication unfortunately when the A arcs closed again when PoW turned towards the enemy to avoid Hood's wreck and Y turret would no longer bear.

All the Best

wadinga
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Antonio Bonomi
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by Antonio Bonomi » Sun Dec 29, 2013 9:28 pm

Hello everybody,

@ Wadinga,

you mean this hat ? Just jocking of course my friend ... I was just following Marc inputs, ... :D
Indian_Jones_questions.jpg
Indian_Jones_questions.jpg (78.72 KiB) Viewed 561 times
Regarding Suffolk and Norfolk I think you would agree in this occasion at least with 3 of my 10 previously listed facts, on page 59, the number 4, 5 and 6 :
1) it is a fact that Capt Leach retreated PoW at 06.01 and 30 seconds as LtnCdr Rowell ( Pow navigating officer ) map and PoW gunnery map clearly shows.
2) it is a fact that Capt Leach changed his "version" of the event/timing and operating guns 3 times in 15 days
3) It is a fact that Adm Tovey wrote on his dispatches 06.13, adding 12 minutes to that event and it is FALSE, confirmed by the RN Admiralty too being wrong.
4) it is a fact that both Suffolk and Norfolk could have been well into their gunnery range that morning, but they "manoeuvred away" to keep themselves OUT of the battle.
5) it is a fact that Ellis wrote he was 14 sea miles from the enmy at 05.42 and turned away backwards because of a " mirage " effect.
6) it is a fact that at 05.41 Norfolk started an " outrageous ARC " to stay away from the enemy.

7) it is a fact that Wake-Walker, Phillips and Luce wrote and draw they were at 10 sea miles from Hood at 06.00 and 11 from Bismarck, ref. Hood first board diagram B.
8) It is a fact that Wake-Walker on the second board went there with a FALSE track plot and the board changed to 15 sea miles his distance to Hood/enemy
9) it is a fact that Adm Tovey wrote again on his dispatches that both cruisers were 15 sea miles away and NOT in condition to engage the enemy, and it is FALSE again.
10) it is a fact that Royal Navy Admiralty and Churchill wanted to court martial both Leach and Wake-Walker, but after some evaluations it was called back.
I think we should be OK now with PoW firing fwd and aft turrets on the film clip too, ... and with the first 3 facst above directed to Leach/PoW as well.
Am I right or you still have doubts about those facts too ?

If you are ok with the first 6 facst above, than we can summarize also the other 4.
But if you do not agree, please tell me were you find not correct statements or way to read what I listed above.

Bye Antonio ... and pardon me again for my little joke ... we are among friends ... :D
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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Herr Nilsson
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by Herr Nilsson » Sun Dec 29, 2013 10:16 pm

At least 4), 6) and 9) are no facts but judgements.
Regards

Marc

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

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Antonio Bonomi
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by Antonio Bonomi » Mon Dec 30, 2013 9:29 am

Hello everybody,

@ Herr Nilsson,

Marc, can you be a little more precise about what you do not consider being a fact and only my personal opinion ?

Ref. Point 6 - Do you mean that Norfolk did not turn at 05.41 south changing course ?

Ref. Point 4 - Do you mean that both Norfolk and Suffolk did not change their course at 05.41 and 05.42 respectively enlarging/keeping distance from the enemy as consequence ?

Ref. Point 9 - Do you mean that Adm Tovey did explain correctly and precisely what happened about both cruisers on his dispatches at point 17 ?

Just my curiosity about what I consider evident and irrefutable facts, ... in comparison of others way to read the same events or statements ... and you know I care a lot about your opinion.

What do you think about the other points I have listed ?

Do you agree that PoW fired fwd and aft turret on the film clip ?

Ref. my Indiana Jones little joke, ... who between Wake-Walker ( 30.000 yards ) and Phillips ( still 20.000 yards ) was a liar according to you ?

Bye Antonio :D
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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Herr Nilsson
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by Herr Nilsson » Mon Dec 30, 2013 10:18 am

maybe facts:
4) it is a fact that both Suffolk and Norfolk could have been well into their gunnery range that morning...
6) it is a fact that at 05.41 Norfolk started an " outrageous ARC "...
9) it is a fact that Adm Tovey wrote again on his dispatches that both cruisers were 15 sea miles away and NOT in condition to engage the enemy


certainly opinions:
4) ..., but they "manoeuvred away" to keep themselves OUT of the battle.
6) ... to stay away from the enemy.
9) ... it is FALSE again.

By the way, the "inflationary" use of the term "irrefutable" sounds to me more like a self-affirmation than a valid conclusion. If your facts are good enough, there is no need to declare irrefutability.
Antonio Bonomi wrote:
Ref. my Indiana Jones little joke, ... who between Wake-Walker ( 30.000 yards ) and Phillips ( still 20.000 yards ) was a liar according to you ?
No one.
Regards

Marc

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

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Alberto Virtuani
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Mon Dec 30, 2013 10:47 am

Antonio Bonomi wrote: "Ref. my Indiana Jones little joke, ... who between Wake-Walker ( 30.000 yards ) and Phillips ( still 20.000 yards ) was a liar according to you ? "
The one who risked to be Court-Martialled telling the truth :oops: , the same one who said 10 miles at the first Board of Inquiry...and then changed his mind at the second ! :lol:
Wake-Walker

Bye, Alberto

P.S. My best wishes to all of you for a Merry Christmas (sorry to be late...) and for a Happy New Year !
Last edited by Alberto Virtuani on Mon Dec 30, 2013 12:39 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Antonio Bonomi
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by Antonio Bonomi » Mon Dec 30, 2013 10:49 am

Hello everybody,

@ Herr Nilsson,

OK, I see now what your opinion is, so now I am curious about your way to read the reasons why :

1) Norfolk and Suffolk did those manoeuvres at 05.41 and 05.42 according to you if not to stay away from the enemy and the engagement in battle ?

2) Norfolk turned south instead of keeping a straight 240 degree course toward the enemy ?

3) While Capt Ellis himslef on his report wrote 14 sea miles distance from the enemy at 05.42, do you think that it is not a false statement from Adm Tovey that Suffolk was at 15 sea miles and not in condition to close and engage the enemy ?

I like to see your way to read those facts, ... and I see that basically you are accepting the listed facts but do not agree with my interpretation of them which to me sounds just the only logic way to read them.

Last, I personally think that Captain Phillips was clear enough with his deposition about what he saw and what he showed to RearAdm Wake-Walker on Hood hull, just pointing out were the torpedo tubes were located. Capt. Phillips reinforced to the Hood Second Board of Inquiry what he previously stated on June to teh first board of Inquiry, I mean the fact that he could see both Hood and PoW from near the waterline upwards. Wake-Walker told the same inquiry he could see only the top of the Hood structures, changing from his own first deposition in June.
Phillips provided a second set of sketches of what he saw, it is the Exhibit 6 of ADM 116/4352 at page 49, drew on 4 phases.

http://www.hmshood.org.uk/reference/off ... m#Phillips

It should not take much in my opinion to realize who is the liar, but again just my personal opinion here too.
Phillips did not have any reason to lie intentionally, while Wake-Walker needed to save himslef from the Court Martial after the first board results on Diagram B.

Your opinion here ?

Bye Antonio :D
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: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by Byron Angel » Mon Dec 30, 2013 11:35 am

Antonio,

Have you ascertained from what respective decks levels Captains Phillips and Wake-Walker were making their observations of Hood?


B

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Antonio Bonomi
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Re: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by Antonio Bonomi » Mon Dec 30, 2013 12:05 pm

Hello everybody,

@ Byron Angel,

sure, according to their depositions on Hood First Board on Inquiry both ( Phillips and Wake-Walker ) were in HMS Norfolk Compass Platform ( Bridge ) together with Viscount Kelburn.
Warship_bridge.jpg
Warship_bridge.jpg (135.47 KiB) Viewed 501 times
Commander Luce was on a different position on board HMS Norfolk; he was on the flag deck.

You can find the evidences of what I am stating here into the Hood First board of Inquiry ( Adm Blake ) report.

http://www.hmshood.org.uk/reference/off ... 1stNorfolk

So it is obvious to me that Capt Phillips was showing to RearAdm Wake-Walker what he saw and drew, while he was talking to him having him very close on the HMS Norfolk compass platform ( bridge ) and consequently RearAdm Wake-Walker should have been able to see the same things Capt Phillips saw from the same observation point.

But as said, this was true for the first Hood Board of Inquiry ( Adm Blake ) in June 1941, were both said, wrote, signed and drew for 20.000 yards ( 10 sea miles ).

During the Hood Second Board of Inquiry in August 1941 ( Adm Walker ) RearAdm Wake-Walker changed his version moving Norfolk position from Hood from 20.000 to 30.000 yards ( 15 sea miles ), while Capt Phillips confirmed his version of 20.000 yards and added a second and more precise set of sketches on 4 phases, showing Hood from near the waterline once again, so from about 20.000 yards as he had stated and signed for previously on June.

As Alberto confirmed, only Wake-Walker needed that distance to be changed and increased from June diagram B evidence of 10 sea miles from Hood and 11 from Bismarck, since being at 11 sea miles from the enemy without opening fire he was going very likely to be Court Martialled, at 15 sea miles from the Bismarck he was safe because out of gunnery range.

The Norfolk and Suffolk battle track, the Exhibit A of ADM 116/4352 was realized just to support this new version of the events, placing Norfolk at 15 sea miles from the enemy.

Bye Antonio :D
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: Denmark Strait and RN Articles of War

Post by wadinga » Mon Dec 30, 2013 12:58 pm

Hello All,

Marc- I think you are being unnecessarily generous "4,6 and 9 are perhaps facts?"

Alberto Thank you for yet another performance of "he said it was 10 miles!" this is just the kind of thing Paul C was complaining about :lol: We all know that, thank you. We all know about the "Triangle of Doom". However just because it is printed does not mean it correct. Since the "ADM 116/4352 Exhibit A" would not be drawn up for several months, how would WW know what the distances actually were? It is not unreasonable to imagine none of the witnesses were prepared for questions about the relative distances at either enquiry, (because it was irrelevant) and this is confirmed by the fact that "ADM 116/4352 Exhibit A" was only hastily drawn up during the second enquiry, including the mistakes like getting the date of the battle wrong! :shock: Incidentally the legend says it was traced, so this surely limits the cartographer's ability to distort things to suit the Admirals hanging over his shoulder so desperate to "save their reputations" at the Enquiry the following day. (Pretty poorly organised conspiracy this :wink: )

Antonio- I notice you are no longer quoting geometry to support close distances for Suffolk and Norfolk, (the direct measurement of range by the Germans has not been mentioned for some time), but have you lost faith in the purple annotations on plan 4? That they represent HF/DF bearings from PoW is a speculation, but since they also have ranges, which D/F cannot have, they probably aren't, and are perhaps just doodles created whilst trying to get "best guess" positions for the cruisers based on their inaccurate position reports. There is no indication PoW sighted either cruiser. Stating the position errors of the cruisers so definitively, indicates you do not really appreciate the indefined nature of the error. Norfolk herself gave two different positions for Hood's sinking, and Suffolk spends most of the day trying to update her position relative to CS One (see the narrative) until they get a sight of the Norfolk at 17:51.

If all that is left "they could see right down to the waterline" as evidence well there is a wealth of information on cold water mirages eg
Superior mirages are mirages that form above the horizon. This occurs when there is a cooler level of air lower than a warmer level of air, typically over icy landscapes or very cold water. This mirage causes you to see a scene much higher than it should be. For example, you might see a mass of land or a boat floating in midair.
The East Greenland Current is very cold water, and by cooling the air layer just above it could create exactly the conditions Captain Ellis describes.

I am reading Marco Santarini's new book on the Denmark Straits battle in which he reproduces Ulrich Elfrath and Herzog's map which ascribes the three extremely short salvoes south of the german's tracks as shots from Norfolk. Where did they get that idea? PS Antonio, Marco gives your Storia article as a reference.

All the Best

wadinga
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