Hood Gunnery on May 24

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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by alecsandros » Thu Feb 18, 2016 1:30 pm

... "Don't let the main target un-engaged - let's fire on both of them to be sure" ...

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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by alecsandros » Thu Feb 18, 2016 1:49 pm

But there is also the possibility for
"Prince of Wales - you have 6 guns bearing on the enemy NOW. Fire on the Bismarck, as I fire on the Prinz Eugen with my 4 guns bearing NOW"

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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by alecsandros » Thu Feb 18, 2016 1:51 pm

AND

"God damn it, those ships are perfectly alike... My intel must be wrong... it's Bismarck AND Tirpitz TOGETHER"... Bismarck must be flagship and leading... I'll engage the enemy flagship with my own flagship... So... Prince of Wales - open fire to the enemy to the right !

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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by Steve Crandell » Thu Feb 18, 2016 10:33 pm

As soon as the Germans open fire it is obvious which one is a battleship and which is not.

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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by paulcadogan » Fri Feb 19, 2016 4:19 am

alecsandros wrote:But there is also the possibility for
"Prince of Wales - you have 6 guns bearing on the enemy NOW. Fire on the Bismarck, as I fire on the Prinz Eugen with my 4 guns bearing NOW"
No...as far as Holland knew, PoW had been ordered to target the leading ship and would have assumed she was following orders. He would not have known of McMullen's and Leach's "mutiny". :wink:

So if he was unsure which was Bismarck and his own ship's guns are settled on the lead ship and ready to fire, why mess up his own Gunnery Officer - tell PoW to shift target right...
Steve Crandell wrote:As soon as the Germans open fire it is obvious which one is a battleship and which is not.
Exactly! And we have Ted Brigg's statement that the report came from the spotting top..."We're firing at the wrong ship, Bismarck is on the right not the left." "We're" firing" suggests it was after Hood opened fire and not before when the signal to PoW was timed. No further signal to PoW was needed because the order for her had already been given....

IMHO this is the truly plausible way to explain Hood continuing to fire at PG despite the 0552 signal to PoW to shift target right....
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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by paulcadogan » Fri Feb 19, 2016 4:24 am

alecsandros wrote:"God damn it, those ships are perfectly alike... My intel must be wrong... it's Bismarck AND Tirpitz TOGETHER"...
:shock: YIKES!! If that had been the case there would most likely have been quite an uproar on the compass platform followed by a frantic signal to the Admiralty and Tovey, followed by a rapid turn to port to open A-arcs immediately - deck armour or no deck armour...

Briggs and Dundas would have known.....
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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by alecsandros » Fri Feb 19, 2016 9:21 am

... One dubious question (another one... :D )

When Norfolk observed the enemy at around 5:41, did he observe/transmit that Bismarck was behind Prinz Eugen ?

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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by Herr Nilsson » Fri Feb 19, 2016 9:52 am

Norfolk observed/transmitted "one battleship". A cruiser isn't mentioned.
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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by alecsandros » Fri Feb 19, 2016 12:09 pm

Herr Nilsson wrote:Norfolk observed/transmitted "one battleship". A cruiser isn't mentioned.
Could Holland derive the position of the battleship relative to Hood from NOrfolk's message ? [ex. by triangulation]

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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by Herr Nilsson » Fri Feb 19, 2016 12:39 pm

Well, assuming Norfolk is shadowing from behind it implies that Bismarck is the second in line. Norfolk signaled her own position as well.
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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by alecsandros » Fri Feb 19, 2016 12:47 pm

Interesting :think:

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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by paulcadogan » Fri Feb 19, 2016 1:01 pm

We don't know if or when Holland was informed of Norfolk's report. He already had the enemy in sight. And in any case - he ordered both his ships to concentrate on the leading ship AFTER Norfolk's report was sent. So he did not consider it at the time....
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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by alecsandros » Fri Feb 19, 2016 1:30 pm

Another part of the story: could it be possible that Luetjens was deliberately using the "silence" of his guns, for as long as possible, as to confuse the enemy over the real identity of his ships , until his own artillery would enter killing grounds ? [50% of max ballistic range - this was first proposed by Tommy, IIRC]

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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by paulcadogan » Sat Feb 20, 2016 12:19 am

alecsandros wrote:nother part of the story: could it be possible that Luetjens was deliberately using the "silence" of his guns, for as long as possible, as to confuse the enemy over the real identity of his ships , until his own artillery would enter killing grounds ? [50% of max ballistic range - this was first proposed by Tommy, IIRC]
Interesting thought. Could be supported by the fact that Luetjens kept PG in line in violation of KM doctrine....drawing Hood's fire.
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Re: Hood Gunnery on May 24

Post by tommy303 » Sat Feb 20, 2016 1:00 am

For those who may not have seen it. I would recommend enlarging it slightly to give a better view, but this is how Prinz Eugen and Bismarck would have appeared to observers in Hood at about the time Holland gave the order to open fire.Image


This was initially on the Hood website, but I do not know if it is still there.

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.

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