PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

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Byron Angel
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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Byron Angel » Sun Mar 31, 2019 2:54 am

And now for something completely different!!!!! :dance:

Mr Virtuani was kind enough to refresh my memory that Adm Lutjens included range data in his lengthy transmission which appear to contradict those indicated by Mullenheim-Rechberg in his book. It is unclear as to where exactly Admiral Lutjens obtained his information, but it does strike me as unlikely that he would have reported any gunnery data to his superiors without having first consulted with Gunnery Officer Schneider - a simple enough task at the time.

The relevant passage in Lutjens' signal reads as follows -
"LAUFENDES GEFECHT ZWISCHEN ZWEI NULL ACHT BIS EINS ACHT NULL HM."
English translation - "Running battle between 208 and 180 hm (hectometers)."

Let us work with the above ranges (gun ranges or navigational ranges? unknown.):
208 hm = ~22,700 yards (0555 open fire on Hood)
180 hm = ~19,700 yards (0600-0601 fatal hit upon Hood
--------------------------------------------------------------------
208 hm - 180 hm = 28 hm = 2800 meters

If we take Admiral Lutjens at his word regarding time duration of Bismarck's engagement of Hood, it lasted "FUENF MINUTEN" ("five minutes").

According to Lutjens' range and time data, as reported to his superiors, the implied average range rate between 0555 and 0600 would be:
208 - 180 = 28 hm = 2800 meters = ~3,100 yards / 5 minutes = ~600 yards per minute ..... much less than has been discussed/assumed up until now.

Based upon McMullen's graphical range plot for the time period 0555 to 0600, this is impossible. PoW's Salvo 14, either fired or landing at approximately 0559:40/0600, is indicated as having straddled at a range of 16,450 yards (i.e. ~15,000 meters). Hood was nearer to Bismarck by several hundred yards.

The difference here is huge - at least 4,000 meters. How are these two data sets to be reconciled? The only theory I can suggest is that, if Schneider answered a request from Lutjens by passing requested gunnery details in the form of a hand-written note, Lutjens (or his clerk) may possibly have misread a "3" for an "8" and perhaps a "6" for a "0". If so, 130 hm (~14,200 yards) or 136 hm (~14,900 yards) would make a considerably better fit with McMullen's gunnery plot.

I have said this before: This is NOT a simple geometry exercise; it is a "cold case" detective investigation.


B

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by dunmunro » Sun Mar 31, 2019 7:26 am

Alberto Virtuani wrote:
Fri Mar 29, 2019 11:00 pm



Regarding hitting distances:
Bismarck opened fire at 20800 meters (Lutjens message viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8491&p=82430&hilit=lutjens#p82430). At 5:58 the distance of Bismack from PoW was around 18000 yards (see PoW salvo plot), at 5:59 it was around 17100 yards. Hood was slightly closer to Bismarck than PoW...

Therefore PoW hit BS 0.5 or 1 minute before (after open fire) and from around 4000 yards more (21450) than BS possibly hit Hood.


Bye, Alberto
Lutjens to Group West:
"0552/ 24: Am engaging two heavy units."

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Sun Mar 31, 2019 7:52 am

Hello everybody,

I will not loose my time to answer again and again to the same above theory of Mr.Dunmunro (tediously re-proposed at any post) about Bismarck opening fire at 5:52 :shock: . They have been discussed at length already and in this context they will make only worse Bismarck gunnery analysis. They are anyway not relevant at all here, as the 4000 yards difference between the first hit of BS and PoW are confirmed in any case by evaluated timings.
If Mr.Dunmunro wants to re-open a closed discussion, he can open a dedicated thread and present his (credible and supported) timetable for the whole battle, as claiming open fire at 5:52 or 5:53 would change everything (including Lutjens message itself as 5:52 is NOT 20800 yards).
Good luck!


Byron Angel wrote (quoting Lutjens): "Running battle between 208 and 180 hm (hectometers)"
The ranges provided by Lutjens are the open fire (Hood) and cease fire (PoW) ones, not the max and minimum distance. This is the usual way to report ranges in a battle. Therefore 208 hm is distance at 5:55 (confirmed by PoW salvo plot) and 180 hm are at cease fire at 6:09 (as per Antonio's reconstruction).
The sentence for Hood starts after this one and it relates to the 5 minutes engagement against Hood.

The minumum distance during the whole engagement would have been correctly around 13000 meters at around 6:02, as discussed.

Byron Angel wrote: "Hood was nearer to Bismarck by several hundred yards."
Well, Hood was nearer by very few yards: being at 800 yards distance ,behind but on her starboard side, PoW was almost at the same distance form BS than Hood (that's why the switch fire was so easy for Schneider.


Bye, Alberto
Last edited by Alberto Virtuani on Sun Mar 31, 2019 8:05 am, edited 3 times in total.
"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: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Sun Mar 31, 2019 7:57 am

Hello everybody,

@Bill Jurens:
you wrote: "I feel like a cop at a street riot. ...my best bet is often to start by simply arresting the demonstrators standing closest to me..."
Dear Mr.Jurens, if I can suggest a better way to act, try to feel as a referee in a football match: when a riot explodes in the playing field, a good referee usually warns or expels BOTH fighters, not only one (the provoked one...). :negative:

you wrote: " ...it would be better if one detects what they feel to be an intentional provocation, that instead of replying immeidately in anger directly to the perceived aggressor..."
I have pointed out several times the repeated provocations of Mr.Wadinga (the last one here viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8491&start=360#p82661 it would be better if one detects what they feel to be an intentional provocation), not reacting immediately and waiting (without any result) your intervention.

Please don't claim you will do in the future things you have never done, we are adults, not children, and we see very well how things go on here.

I have written an offline private mail to the webmaster with further comments.


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: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by pgollin » Sun Mar 31, 2019 10:28 am

Alberto Virtuani wrote:
Fri Mar 29, 2019 10:46 pm

.....
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: .......
.

And you wonder why people get upset with you. Using incorrect language (and I do realise that English is not your first language) is an important matter.

.

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Sun Mar 31, 2019 10:39 am

Hello everybody,

words may be important for someone not having many solid arguments to propose...but much, much less than facts and truth.

A native English speaker (I hope he will show up now, explaining (in better English than mine) to Mr.pgollin why he used first these terms, instead of insisting on "speculations"...) called them "total rounds fired/salvo" and "ordered to fire" when doing an excellent (at that time) job analyzing first the PoW GAR and building a table to try to identify each gun malfunction, without "exciting" Mr.pgollin's reaction against this "incorrect" (in his opinion only) usage: I wonder why... :lol: :

PoW_salvo_legend.jpg
PoW_salvo_legend.jpg (22.25 KiB) Viewed 530 times

As I said, "Mr.pgollin" is free to use the words he prefers (or to propose to the forum members a better wording: if everybody here is in agreement, we can shift to this new wording from the one we use since years, very clearly differentiating between physical "shells" and potential "ordered shots").



However, any "new wording" will NOT change the final figures demonstrating that PoW RoF was in line with Bismarck's (1.89 vs 1.85), her effective RoF was not far from her opponent's (1.4 vs 1.6) and her effective # shells delivered / minute was even better (7 vs 6.4) (see details here viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8491&start=315#p82614), a very good (if not excellent) gunnery performance indeed.


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: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by wadinga » Sun Mar 31, 2019 4:57 pm

Fellow Contributors,

I notice in that part of Barben's report which has made into these pages, PoW's guns are numbered sequentially across the turret. Does anyone know how the numbering scheme works?

All the best

wadinga
"There seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today!"

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Bill Jurens » Sun Mar 31, 2019 5:33 pm

Trying to restore 'order in the court'...

I assume, in rather broad terms, two proposals are being made, primarily championed by Mssrs. Bonomi and Virtuani.

These are:

a) That Mr. Bonomi's reconstruction of the Denmarck Strait action and associated timings, etc., though not perfect, are at least essentially correct.

and

b) That an interpretation and analysis of that track chart is sufficient to justify the allegation that the British undertook a subsequent 'coverup' to obscure inadequate leadership in the field.


Rather than continue what seems to have now deteriorated into a series of pointless and often offensive posts on either side, with no new evidence being put forward to further clarify the issues at hand I propose the following:

a) That members who wish to do so, post their overall evaluation of the two issues above, as being at this stage being either 'proven', 'indeterminate', or 'not proven'. So, everyone in effect, gets two votes, one on each issue. I would interpret a lack of specific input to represent, for whatever reasons, 'indeterminate'. Those who to conduct a 'secret ballot', for whatever reasons, may write me a private post at bjurens@shaw.ca.

b) That a two-thirds majority of expression on any particular issue be considered to represent a current 'consensus' of the forum.

b) That after this survey has been done -- and provided some consensus has been reached -- we temporarily close Denmark Strait topics. I would suggest a two-week moratorium which would allow participants on both sides to reassess and refine their arguments. At that point, after further discussion, provided there is any, we can attempt to reset the 'consensus' again. In that regard, in order to avoid simply going over old ground again, I would suggest that future commentary be limited to either rather substantive reinterpretations of what has gone on before, or to comments springing either from entirely or substantively new evidence.


So far as recent postings are concerned, Mr. Virtuani seems to be in rather passionate disagreement with virtually everyone on this forum, now apparently including myself and perhaps Mr. Rico as well. He is unhappy, and is clearly making others unhappy as well. My own offense aside -- as the saying goes "I've been called worse by better...", I see three options here: 1) a voluntary withdrawal from the forum, temporary or permanent, 2) a demonstrated commitment to adopt a less-argumentative stance on various issues, or 3) the imposition of a temporary or permanent ban as imposed by the moderators.

I leave that decision, at this point, up to Mr. Virtuani.

Constructive comments, as always, very welcome indeed.

Bill Jurens.

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by paul.mercer » Sun Mar 31, 2019 6:20 pm

Gentlemen,
Around 35 years or so ago I was extremely interested in steam railways and bought many books and countless magazines on the subject, some dealing with preserved railways in the UK but mainly dealing with pictures and articles on the past and I vividly remember one particular article that aroused a storm of comment in the letters columns for many months. It is so long ago that I cannot remember the exact details, but as far as I recall it was over whether on a certain day of a certain month in the 1930’s (I think) a train from Plymouth to Paddington arrived 1 minute or 2 minutes late with the dispute further complicated by arguments by others about what class of engine and what was its number pulled the train! Eventually, after filling numerous column inches in the magazine someone wrote in with a short note saying basically, ‘it was over 50 years ago so who the hell cares anyway’ and I’m afraid this particular thread is rapidly approaching that point.
Historical accuracy is all very well when people sit down immediately after the event in a secure situation on land and attempt to carefully analyse what was written at the time and they may well get very close to the truth (or of course as in history occasionally confuse the issue by putting forward a point of view which coincides with that of those in charge!), but there will always be someone who will be prepared to dispute it or put forward their own versions of what happened, with each determined to prove that it is correct one. However, perhaps it would be best to recognise that the mists of time and frightening events taking place on all the ships involved may well have distorted the actual timings of those events and the orders that were given and acted upon, at least by seconds if not minutes. Nevertheless, due to the contributions of all involved in this debate I think that a reasonable, if not 100% picture has been made and unless some new and vital evidence is found, further arguing over precisely occurred on the bridges of the ships is getting nowhere.
Furthermore, I think that HMSVF has very accurately summed up the situation when he wrote:
The divergence of opinion appears to be in regards to Leach's actions. Now having read the various debates over the years on here and on the HMS Hood forum (before it sadly disappeared) the alternative view is somewhat subjective and a matter of opinion. I suppose a lot depends on a persons starting point and the basis of their thesis. If you start with the premise that "X" happens then the evidences available have to be made to fit - where IMHO none of the available evidences make a clean fit, there are always odd shaped pieces, there are always pieces that are at odds with the rest of bigger picture.
Unfortunately war is like that, its human conflict. Witness testimony can be notoriously unreliable, charts,forms and logs are filled in by humans and therefore can be in error. Whilst it would be nice to have a purely statistical, clean,accurate account of Denmark Strait the truth of the matter is that this was a pre digital, analogue point of history which relied on less than perfect inputs and computations.
If we had the ability to time travel and place a GPS on each of the 6 vessels involved I'm pretty sure that what GPS recorded and what the 1941 crews documented would differ. The basis would be there for sure, but I would imagine that the actual timings would be different (understandably) as would the more intricate manoeuvres. The idea that a "perfect' reconstruction can achieved is flawed, a best guess is much more likely (acknowledging that it is a guess) due to the limitations of the available evidence, we only have survivors accounts from Hood & Bismarck and only 1 as far as I know who was actually on the bridge of one of these 2 vessels in Briggs. Thats a big gap, and the gap widens in the fact the only charts that survive are POW's and PE's
Again (to me) it depends on what your starting point is. If you start off thinking that something its a sacred cow, you will search for all the evidences that are available to prove it's a sacred cow.
When it might just be a holy goat.

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by HMSVF » Sun Mar 31, 2019 6:52 pm

paul.mercer wrote:
Sun Mar 31, 2019 6:21 pm
Post copied and deleted, sorry

Definetly Holy Goat!

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by dunmunro » Sun Mar 31, 2019 7:43 pm

wadinga wrote:
Sun Mar 31, 2019 4:57 pm
Fellow Contributors,

I notice in that part of Barben's report which has made into these pages, PoW's guns are numbered sequentially across the turret. Does anyone know how the numbering scheme works?

All the best

wadinga
IIRC, A1 = left hand gun when facing forward.

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by wadinga » Sun Mar 31, 2019 8:02 pm

Hello Dunmunro,

So if standing in the turret looking out at the target, gun No 1 is the left gun - even in Y turret?

All the best

wadinga
"There seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today!"

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by dunmunro » Sun Mar 31, 2019 9:07 pm

wadinga wrote:
Sun Mar 31, 2019 8:02 pm
Hello Dunmunro,

So if standing in the turret looking out at the target, gun No 1 is the left gun - even in Y turret?

All the best

wadinga
I am fairly certain that's true.

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by northcape » Sun Mar 31, 2019 9:09 pm

Bill Jurens wrote:
Sun Mar 31, 2019 5:33 pm
Trying to restore 'order in the court'...

I assume, in rather broad terms, two proposals are being made, primarily championed by Mssrs. Bonomi and Virtuani.

These are:

a) That Mr. Bonomi's reconstruction of the Denmarck Strait action and associated timings, etc., though not perfect, are at least essentially correct.

and

b) That an interpretation and analysis of that track chart is sufficient to justify the allegation that the British undertook a subsequent 'coverup' to obscure inadequate leadership in the field.


Rather than continue what seems to have now deteriorated into a series of pointless and often offensive posts on either side, with no new evidence being put forward to further clarify the issues at hand I propose the following:

a) That members who wish to do so, post their overall evaluation of the two issues above, as being at this stage being either 'proven', 'indeterminate', or 'not proven'. So, everyone in effect, gets two votes, one on each issue. I would interpret a lack of specific input to represent, for whatever reasons, 'indeterminate'. Those who to conduct a 'secret ballot', for whatever reasons, may write me a private post at bjurens@shaw.ca.

b) That a two-thirds majority of expression on any particular issue be considered to represent a current 'consensus' of the forum.

b) That after this survey has been done -- and provided some consensus has been reached -- we temporarily close Denmark Strait topics. I would suggest a two-week moratorium which would allow participants on both sides to reassess and refine their arguments. At that point, after further discussion, provided there is any, we can attempt to reset the 'consensus' again. In that regard, in order to avoid simply going over old ground again, I would suggest that future commentary be limited to either rather substantive reinterpretations of what has gone on before, or to comments springing either from entirely or substantively new evidence.



Bill Jurens.
This is the only sensible way forward. I read somewhere in this thread that "we are grown ups, not childs", but everybody should rest assured that the outside impression of this "discussion" is completely the opposite. And even my 3 years old daughter behaves ways more reasonable than some participants in that forum.

As for the vote:

Question (a) is too vague. What does "though not perfect, but at least essentially correct" mean? To me it is essentially correct that Hood has sunk after an explosion caused by Bismarck shells. Is it essentially correct that this happened at 6:00 or 5:59 or 6:05? To answer this, you would need to define what "essentially" means, e.g. specify a desired accuracy range. I would rephrase the question to "Do you agree that the detailed reconstruction of Mr. B. is proven by facts, or do you think that the majority of the proposed details are based on assumptions?" To this question, I would answer "based on assumptions" (or "Not proven", if the question is rephrased).

For question (b), my answer is "Not proven".

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Re: PoW's gunnery VS BSM's gunnery

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Sun Mar 31, 2019 9:39 pm

Hello everybody,
northcape wrote: "even my 3 years old daughter behaves ways more reasonable than some participants in that forum"
..."noise" ? ...


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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