PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by dunmunro » Fri Mar 29, 2019 5:05 am

Bill Jurens wrote:
Fri Mar 29, 2019 2:52 am
I am wondering if the phrase 0611 Ceased Fire 14" listed in a memo above actually reflects the last shots fired. "Cease Fire" could mean "This was when the last shots were fired.", but it can also mean "This was when the formal order to stop shooting was given." In the latter case, nobody may have been shooting at all for some time, as for example on a rifle range where shooters may have expended a large number of rounds, but nobody goes out to the targets until a cease-fire flag is flown, to indicate not that one has stopped shooting, but only that no further shooting is allowed, even if all of the guns at that time had already been silent for a considerable interval.

That's the sort of discrimination which would have been evident to all in 1940, but may be somewhat ambiguous today...

Bill Jurens
If Y turret had not suffered a jammed shell ring, would it have fired more than 3 salvos? This is unknowable, but presumably the OIC would have continued to engage the enemy until ordered, by someone in higher authority, to ceasefire.

This is from PE's war diary:
0621 / 0621 hours-

King George erofinet noch einmal kurz das Feuer. Aufschlage bleiben auBerhalb des Bereiches
der Schiffe.
King George briefly opens fire once more. Strikes are outboard of the ship's proper. (p.21)
So was this PoW's last salvo?

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Fri Mar 29, 2019 8:13 am

Hello everybody,

I'm astonished to read things like "PoW ceasefire at 06:11" repeated here and more of them (see below) from people who read (and speaks) about this battle since years already...

I have already posted here (viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8491&start=330#p82636) the PoW original log snapshot where this 06:11 is totally incorrectly written, together with all the other imaginary timings for open fire (05:59 and Hood explosion 06:05...).
Do we all agree the PoW log entry is simply wrong ? (I hope so by now...)


Dunmunro wrote: "When was the last one fired? What was the time interval between first and last salvo? When was ceasefire ordered?"
1) Please study the NH69731 photo + the PG film and you will get the answer for all local salvos. It has been discussed at length...
2) 11 minutes, but irrelevant, as central fire direction ceased at 6:02 (as per McMullen table). I have already published here (viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8491&start=225#p82510) the "annoying table" including the local salvos, changing nothing anyway and getting no acknowledgement from Mr.Dunmunro (of course).
3)Who cares ? The run away imposed the cease fire (that was possibly never ordered, see McMullen) and just "happened" due to the emergency turn away (and to the subsequent "Y" turret jamming).

Dunmunro wrote: "This is from PE's war diary: 0621...King George briefly opens fire once more.....So was this PoW's last salvo?"
On board PG they thought it was PoW... It was Suffolk of course (see below her report), the only British ship firing at that time, based on a wrong radar measurement.
PoW never opened fire before the second engagement (see her GAR and Leach's report)....
Another statement lightly cherry-picked from a random log without any critical analysis, but presented as "evidence" (supporting only the "indeterminateness" theory) in a discussion that should be a serious one instead... :stop:

Suffolk_open_fire.jpg
Suffolk_open_fire.jpg (29.5 KiB) Viewed 519 times

Bye, Alberto
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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Fri Mar 29, 2019 8:39 am

Hello everybody,

coming back to a more realistic (and hopefully productive) discussion, leaving back all the above fantasies:
Byron Angel wrote: " I would estimate that Bismarck straddled Hood by her third salvo and likely ultimately scored three or four hits"
The only sure hit was the one that caused the explosion. A straddle is reported atr the third salvo but no hit is reported by anyone until 05:57:30 (boat deck hit coming from Prinz Eugen), Briggs accounts for another hit on the spotting top (quite after the boat deck one) just before the explosion (I would say it's probable), Tilburn speaks about an explosion at the base of the fore superstructure just before the explosion (but this may have been the explosion of a ready-to use ammunition locker IMHO). I would say 2 hits (possibly 3) , but of course we will never know for sure.

Byron Angel wrote: "The more interesting comparison would be to compare the gunnery of the two ships between 0553 and 0602."
:clap: and this is exactly the interval defined by McMullen (http://www.hmshood.org.uk/reference/off ... 09guns.htm)! :clap:
This is the PoW firing interval we are trying to compare, both in the "annoying table" (download/file.php?id=3435) and in the following list of gunnery parameters.
Of course for Bismarck we have only a different 14 minutes interval (from 05:55 till 06:09) and we can compare these two intervals only with the available data, averaging figures and getting some interesting results however.

All the facts and the figures we can compare based on these intervals are listed here below (originally posted here viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8491&start=315#p82614) and nobody (except Mr.Jurens generic initial comment (viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8491&start=300#p82603) and Mr.Angel here above about the hits on Hood) has seriously commented on them, correcting me if needed and acknowledging what cannot be countered.

1) PoW actual RoF was very slightly better (1.89 vs 1,85) than Bismarck (assuming 108 ordered shots for Bismarck, much better if less than 108).
2) PoW output loss was larger than Bismarck's (26% lost shots vs 14%) due to mechanical problems / human errors
3) PoW effective RoF (1,4-1,5) was slightly less than Bismarck's one (1,6-1,65) but still in line with it (due to larger output loss).
4) PoW effective # shells delivered / minute was clearly higher than Bismarck's (7-7,4 vs 6,4-6,6).
5) PoW found her target before Bismarck, and hit the enemy less minutes (3) after having opened fire than Bismarck (3.5-4)
6) PoW hit the enemy form a much longer distance (from around 4000 yards more)
7) PoW was initially heavily handicapped by having only the fore turrets bearing for the first 8 salvos, and despite that, she hit first.
8) PoW hit only 3 times vs the 5 probable hits achieved by Bismarck, therefore her hit rate was worse than Bismarck's
9) In addition Bismarck had to switch target (this had probably not much impact, but it has to be kept into account). PoW had no such a problem.
10) No ship was able to hit enemy when maneuvering in emergency (PoW turned however 20° to port without affecting much the gunnery).
11) The 3 hits of PoW inflicted more serious damages to BS than vice-versa (while BS was devastating against Hood).


Does anyone feels necessary to add/correct/remove any of the above ? Please, one point at a time, to have a productive discussion, not mixing anything together...


Bye, Alberto
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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by wadinga » Fri Mar 29, 2019 11:41 am

Fellow Contributors,

Faced with Admiral Santarini's description of Bismarck using 40 rounds in 5 minutes and attempting to muddle things up with "ordered shots" those who wish denigrate Bismarck's output should see that the Baron, who was a gunnery officer in Bismarck also says shells.

Survivor statement:
He added then that "Hood" blew up on "Bismarck's" fifth salvo and cost Germany forty shells in all.


5*8=40 Arithmetic enough? Brief enough?

So if Bismarck could fire 8 shells/rounds/chunks of steel a minute, every minute at Hood, she could do it at PoW. And PoW never managed anything like 8 shells a minute except in one "mad minute".

So
1) PoW actual RoF was very slightly better (1.89 vs 1,85) than Bismarck (assuming 108 ordered shots for Bismarck, much better if less than 108).
is wrong Incorrect duration used
2) PoW output loss was larger than Bismarck's (26% lost shots vs 14%) due to mechanical problems / human errors
is wrong assumes we know how many misfires/unready to fire for Bismarck
3) PoW effective RoF (1,4-1,5) was slightly less than Bismarck's one (1,6-1,65) but still in line with it (due to larger output loss).
is wrong incorrect duration used
4) PoW effective # shells delivered / minute was clearly higher than Bismarck's (7-7,4 vs 6,4-6,6).
is wrong incorrect duration used
5) PoW found her target before Bismarck, and hit the enemy less minutes (3) after having opened fire than Bismarck (3.5-4)
is wrong no-one knows when PoW hit Bismarck
6) PoW hit the enemy form a much longer distance (from around 4000 yards more)
irrelevant because Bismarck never shot at PoW until close range
7) PoW was initially heavily handicapped by having only the fore turrets bearing for the first 8 salvos, and despite that, she hit first.
irrelevant because Bismarck never shot at PoW until close range
9) In addition Bismarck had to switch target (this had probably not much impact, but it has to be kept into account). PoW had no such a problem.
is right
10) No ship was able to hit enemy when maneuvering in emergency (PoW turned however 20° to port without affecting much the gunnery).
is rightish so why pretend ships making emergency turns fired at the same rate? Who says the 20 degree didn't make much difference?
11) The 3 hits of PoW inflicted more serious damages to BS than vice-versa (while BS was devastating against Hood).
is wrong one of PoW's hits caused insignificant damage Many of PoW's problem were due to her firing, not Bismarck's.

As we can see virtually all these assertions can be effectively refuted in one post.

All the best

wadinga
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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Fri Mar 29, 2019 12:31 pm

Hello everybody,
Wadinga wrote: "5*8=40"
Finally a good calculation. Still Santarini and the Baron (just fished out of the water) doesn't specify if they were 40 ordered shot or 40 shells. This is not "muddling", it's trying to speak "gunnery", complex as it can be.
Inconveniently for Mr.Wadinga, if Bismarck fired 40 shells to Hood, and we see the photos and the film with 10 semi-salvos =40 shots fired after 6:03, it means that she fired only 3 or 4 semi-salvos to PoW between 6:00 and 6:03 (a very poor gunnery performance indeed, not surely 8 shells / minute... :lol: ), but enough to give the impression of a hurricane of shells that forced Capt.Leach to disengage...
Obviously, having Bismarck fired 93 shots and ordered at least 96, most probably 104 to 112 shots, this identifies the 40 as shots, not shells....


1) what is correct ? An alternative must be proposed as 5:55 and 6:09 are commonly accepted and very reasonable assumption looking at German official docs + last salvo photo... Mr.Wadinga is not able to propose even a "pure speculation" of any significantly (not by 30 seconds...) different timing... :negative:

2) assuming 108 ordered shots 14% is an easy calculation. What is Mr.Wadinga proposing (based on what we know) ? More or less than 108 ? Less will make things worse for himin terms of RoF, more will make also the only PoW weakness (output loss) close to Bismarck's... No way out here.

3) see 1)

4) see 1)

5) see salvo plot (PoW straddled only 3 times, so this is the most probable assumption).

6) Very relevant. BS fired at Hood without hitting before 5:58:xx or possibly even after. Therefore it is true that PoW hit from longer distance.

7) so what ? PoW was handicapped finding the range by having only 3 theoretical shells against 4 in the air at any salvo (Hood or PoW as target is really irrelevant here)

10) Irrelevant comment because we have film and photos showing the exact contrary of what Mr.Wadinga tries to state once again after having been demented by everybody, as Germans used to fire during turns and were prepared to do so.

11) For Mr.Wadinga the statement should be rephrased into: "The sum of the 3 hits of PoW inflicted more damage to BS than vice-versa...". It changes nothing of course.

Happy to see that point 8) and 9) are fully accepted by Mr.Wadinga, only because they are convenient for him. :kaput:


As we can see virtually all these "assertions" can be effectively confirmed in one post. However to progress this discussion I strongly suggest to concentrate on one point at a time (e.g. BS firing action duration) to hear what the forum members think about it, based on evidences, not conveniences.



Bye, Alberto
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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by pgollin » Fri Mar 29, 2019 3:02 pm

.

I am at a loss at what people mean by differentiating "shots" and "shell" (as far as the RN was concerned there wasn't any OTHER THAN with regards to the type of projectile, "shot" being solid, "shell" having a filling - which seems irrelevant to the present discussion.

On the matter of ordering fire, the RN had entire manuals (the firing manual") to the whole process. The one that was in use at the time of the action was pre-war, a new edition was released about 18 months later - these are both available in the archives. (IN ADDITION there would have been changes enacted by CAFO's or GI's, SOME of those are available.)

When it comes to ordering salvo (or broadside) fire the firing officer decided when to fire based on reports over the fire control telephone circuit and the ready lights - it was his (and only his) decision. When firing in concentration there was a specified time period each minute when he could fire, as the end of that period approached he had to decide whether to fire what guns were available or else wait until the next firing period. Once Hood had sunk the POW could fire whenever she wanted.

IF one talks about percentages (or other measures of efficiency) these should be of the guns bearing to fire, i.e. not include wooded ones. One may, or may not, make a note of casualties and their effect on output.

.

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Fri Mar 29, 2019 5:33 pm

Hello everybody,
I am at a loss at what people mean by differentiating "shots" and "shell..."
from PoW GAR (http://www.hmshood.org.uk/reference/off ... 09guns.htm) the two different "parameters"

total guns fired : the ones we call here shells, the actual fired physical shells.

total guns able to fired : the ones we call here (ordered) shots, the theoretical shells that could have been fired in case of no malfunction at all for the only bearing guns.

The difference between the two of them is the output loss and the percentage of the output loss vs ordered shots is the "percentage output loss".


At this point in time, I wonder if some forum members here have ever taken the time to study the PoW GAR and to understand the table in it (Enclosure I)....


Bye, Alberto
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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by wadinga » Fri Mar 29, 2019 5:38 pm

Fellow Contributors,

Both The Baron and Santarini say rounds/shells/chunks of metal, not imaginary "shots" Bismarck would like to have fired but didn't.


Not in the least bit unfortunate is this:
and we see the photos and the film with 10 semi-salvos =40 shots fired after 6:03
is completely imaginary evidence. There is no evidence of the timing of the film at all.
1) what is correct ? An alternative must be proposed as 5:55 and 6:09 are commonly accepted
Why must an alternative be proposed? If there is no actual real evidence, why should another equally imaginary alternative be proposed? From numerous comments here, they are clearly not accepted by the perceptive and well-informed people who post here.
based on evidences, not conveniences.
At last we agree on something

I'm glad a correspondent likes 5*8=40 rounds/shells/chunks of metal, in five minutes (Lutjen's signal timing), I expect an attempt to try and conveniently explain it away and why a gunnery officer would say shells when he means "shells we didn't fire".

All the best

wadinga
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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Fri Mar 29, 2019 5:49 pm

Hello everybody,
Wadinga wrote: "Both The Baron and Santarini say rounds/shells/chunks of metal..."
...ask them....
40 is simply 8*5 (a bit too perfect to be shells without a single malfunction)... Anyway they don't match with the subsequent shooting (viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8491&start=345#p82648). Answer to what I have written, don't run away without answering and proposing again the same interpretation, if you can.

Wadinga wrote: "There is no evidence of the timing of the film at all"
Wrong.
The film has been timed precisely (as any photo) by Antonio in his reconstruction that Mr.Wadinga doesn't like but is totally unable to counter with any possible alternative (he tried even to say that the film was turned between 05:55 and 06:00 (!), before Hood demise and he was miserably proven wrong...)

Wadinga wrote: "Why must an alternative be proposed?"
because without any alternative, 05:55 and 06:09 are recorded by Germans and are supported by photos. Else it's just "indeterminateness" attitude at any cost here and no point in discussing further.


Bye, Alberto
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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by dunmunro » Fri Mar 29, 2019 6:34 pm

Alberto Virtuani wrote:
Fri Mar 29, 2019 8:13 am

3)Who cares ? The run away imposed the cease fire (that was possibly never ordered, see McMullen) and just "happened" due to the emergency turn away (and to the subsequent "Y" turret jamming).

Dunmunro wrote: "This is from PE's war diary: 0621...King George briefly opens fire once more.....So was this PoW's last salvo?"
On board PG they thought it was PoW... It was Suffolk of course (see below her report), the only British ship firing at that time, based on a wrong radar measurement.
PoW never opened fire before the second engagement (see her GAR and Leach's report)....
Another statement lightly cherry-picked from a random log without any critical analysis, but presented as "evidence" (supporting only the "indeterminateness" theory) in a discussion that should be a serious one instead... :stop:


Suffolk_open_fire.jpg


Bye, Alberto
Any rounds that could have been fired from Y turret but were not, caused a loss of output, that then should be tabulated into your calculations when comparing gunnery output.

When you find it convenient PE's War Diary is written in stone, but then you casually dismiss anything that runs contrary to your theories. How is it that PE mistook Suffolk which was bearing almost due north (and supposedly very close), for PoW which was bearing almost due east, and whom PE had been engaging 10 minutes before?

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Bill Jurens » Fri Mar 29, 2019 6:39 pm

Mr. Virtuani wrote:

"The film has been timed precisely (as any photo) by Antonio in his reconstruction..."

I would be very interested in knowing the precise methods by which the timing was done. The frame rate of the original film is, so far as I know, actually not known, although it -- or something close to it -- can probably be surmised via standard camera settings. (Even then, the correspondence between 'set' speed and actual speed was often allowed to drift quite a bit, as there were few instances where this was important, especially when sound was not being recorded as well.) Even worse, digitization -- i.e. the transfer from film to video -- can mess this value up considerably. So far as I know, nobody has done an actual frame count, which is critical for forensic analysis, e.g. as used on the famous Zapruder film of the Kennedy assassination.

Further, even if we knew elapsed time, i.e. could establish the precise time difference between events on the film -- assuming frames have not been removed during editing to make the ship appear to be shooting faster -- as might well have been done for propaganda purposes -- we really have, so far as I know, no way to conclusively tie the overall timing of the film into an overall timeline, i.e. to synchronize it with various and sundry log entries, etc. To go back to Zapruder, although we might be able to establish the precise timing between events 'A' and 'B', we really cannot very reliably tie the whole incident down to clock time, i.e. the precise time of day...

Comments, as always, welcome.

Bill Jurens

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by pgollin » Fri Mar 29, 2019 7:23 pm

Alberto Virtuani wrote:
Fri Mar 29, 2019 5:33 pm

....total guns able to fired : the ones we call here (ordered) shots, the theoretical shells that could have been fired in case of no malfunction at all for the only bearing guns. ....


The word "shot", or words "ordered shots" is complete rubbish and incorrect usage. What you can say is "bearing guns", and "casualties" - unless you know the reason for bearing guns that aren't casualties not firing then you are not helping. Why did the firing officer not order the gun(s) to fire ?

.

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Byron Angel » Fri Mar 29, 2019 8:50 pm

Alberto Virtuani wrote:
Fri Mar 29, 2019 5:33 pm
Hello everybody,
I am at a loss at what people mean by differentiating "shots" and "shell..."
from PoW GAR (http://www.hmshood.org.uk/reference/off ... 09guns.htm) the two different "parameters"

total guns fired : the ones we call here shells, the actual fired physical shells.

total guns able to fired : the ones we call here (ordered) shots, the theoretical shells that could have been fired in case of no malfunction at all for the only bearing guns.

The difference between the two of them is the output loss and the percentage of the output loss vs ordered shots is the "percentage output loss".


At this point in time, I wonder if some forum members here have ever taken the time to study the PoW GAR and to understand the table in it (Enclosure I)....


Bye, Alberto

I think would be entirely reasonable to assume that more than one participant on this forum has studied and properly grasped McMullen's gunnery report.

B

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Byron Angel » Fri Mar 29, 2019 10:11 pm

"BS fired at Hood without hitting before 5:58:xx or possibly even after.

The accuracy of this statement depends a great deal upon how much credence one wishes to place in Mullenheim-Rechberg's account.
> 0553 - Hood opens fire at 22,000 meters (approx. 24,000 yards).
> 0555 - Bismarck opens return fire: 1st (ranging) salvo 1 falls short; salvoes 2 and 3 fired as a 400 meter forking group, with 2nd (long) salvo falling over and 3rd (base) salvo sensed by Gunnery Officer Schneider as a straddle.
Rapid fire ordered
> 0557 - fire forward of Hood's mainmast observed (attributed to prinz Eugen's 2nd salvo

Between 0555-0559 - six salvoes apparently fired by Bismarck at Hood, Leach called the 3rd salvo a straddle; numerous PoW observers cited 4th salvo also as a straddle; Santarini considers 5th salvo to have straddled.

0601 - the mortal blow hit Hood at an estimated range of 18,000 meters.

- - -

"Therefore it is true that PoW hit from longer distance."

> M-R states that Bismarck opened fire at a range of 22,000 meters at 0555 and scored the ultimate killing blow about 6 minutes later at 18,000 meters at 0601. If one chooses to believe that Bismarck only scored a single hit at 0601, the discussion ends here; I do not, however, believe that to be the case. It is argued that both ships maintained steady courses over this period. If so, assuming a reasonably steady range rate, what would Bismarck's range have been at, say, 0558? Would it be reasonable to say that the range at 0558 was in the vicinity of 20,000 meters? 20,000 meters = approx. 21,900 yards. The range given by McMullen for PoW's first straddle on Salvo 6 at 0556 was 21,450 yards (19,600 meters).

The ranges do not coincide within the two respective time frames. I would suggest that much depends upon how precisely the Bismarck and PoW times have been synchronized - especially so given the fact that the final answer to the question could hang upon a movement of time of a few seconds either way.

FWIW.

B

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Fri Mar 29, 2019 10:46 pm

Hello everybody,
Dunmunro wrote: "How is it that PE mistook Suffolk...."
ask them, not me. The shells were from Suffolk (viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8491&start=345#p82645), surely not from PoW (read what's written in Leach's report and PoW GAR instead of insisting posting these speculations, just to muddle water)...

pgollin wrote: "The word "shot", or words "ordered shots" is complete rubbish and incorrect usage"
in "pgollin" high opinion of course... :lol:
anyway, I use the word I want, the word usage doesn't change the reality. Don't play the game to be surprised about these words that have been used since 5 years discussing on this forum about gunnery...
If happy with the words , fine. If not, pgollin can use the word he prefers. :stop:

Bill Jurens wrote: "I would be very interested in knowing the precise methods by which the timing was done."
I wonder whether Antonio will be willing to repeat once again the whole reconstruction and analysis of the film. Everything has been written already on this forum, even very recently.
For sure the film is showing Bismarck on course 270° firing aft of her beam: at no point in time before 6:03 (torpedo alarm) Germans went on this course from their initial 220°; in the film we see the PoW salvo 20 and 21 fired after minute 6:04:00; at the beginning of the film, PG is turning and the turn is at 6:04 on her original battlemap, etc. etc.

Byron Angel wrote: "I think would be entirely reasonable to assume that more than one participant on this forum has studied and properly grasped McMullen's gunnery report."
I'm sure you have. Apparently other "members" have not if they still (after 5 years discussion) ask about shells and ordered shots, explained in detail several times already.....


Bye, Alberto
Last edited by Alberto Virtuani on Fri Mar 29, 2019 11:29 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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