- In a Dutch or BeNeLux techtree.
- In the British techtree as a premium.
- Other (Please explain).
- I said ‘No’ in the first question.
Hello everyone, today I’d like to suggest a Dutch interwar period class destroyer!
This is the Admiralen-class destroyer, Kortenaer!
History about the Admiralen-class
The Admiralen-class (In English, Admiral-class) destroyers were made out of the need to replace the ageing Roofdier-class destroyers. The Roofdier-class consisted of eight ships, therefor this new Admiralen-class would also consist of eight ships.
These ships being:
- HNLMS Evertsen (EV)
- HNLMS Kortenaer (KN)
- HNLMS Piet Hein (PH)
- HNLMS De Ruyter (DR) (Later renamed Van Ghent (GT))
- HNLMS Van Galen (VG)
- HNLMS Witte de With (WW)
- HNLMS Banckert (BK)
- HNLMS Van Nes (VN)
The (EV), (PH) or (BK) in the names of the ships is a shortening of the ship’s name, and interestingly also painted on the side of each ship is very large letters. Thus you can very quickly reconize the different ships by reading the letters.
The ships were laid down in three batches, of which the first batch differed from the second and third. First ‘Evertsen’, ‘Kortenaer’, ‘Piet Hein’ and ‘De Ruyter’ were laid down during August of 1925. Then ‘Van Galen’ and ‘Witte de With’ followed in May of 1927. And at last ‘Banckert’ and ‘Van Nes’ were laid down in August of 1928.
Just like many ship classes, the first batch of four ships served as a good testing ground to futher improve the class. To point out some differences, this first batch originally had much shorter smoke stacks, which quickly proved to be very annoying, so they were lengthened shortly after, and for the second and third batch this lengthened smoke stacks came standard.
HNLMS De Ruyter (Later renamed to Van Ghent), of the 1st Batch, with the original shorter smoke stacks
Also something the first batch differs in is secondairy armaments. The 40mm pom-pom was not quite in use yet for the Dutch so this first batch had to do without, whereas the second and third batch did have pom-pom’s. But to make up for this lack of autocannons, the First batch did recieve an extra secondairy 75mm gun, giving it two compared to the single on found on the second and third batch.
When the ships were laid down, it turned out that the ships were very well designed, and overall a succes. One ship of the class (HNLMS Piet Hein) reached a top speed of 36 knots during a test once. That was 4 knots faster then what was originally intended for the design.
The only downside to the class design was that they were fairly lightly armed compared to other destroyer designs of the time. But they made up for it with the excellent Dutch fire control systems.
At first the ships were used in the Dutch Caribbean during their early career. They mostly patrolled the waters there, and did not engage in any battles.
After 1933 the ships started to move towards the Dutch East Indies, where they carried out more patrol duties, and simple duties like going to a location just to show the Dutch dominance there.
During the 1940’s the ships carried out guarding and escort duties.
HNLMS Van Galen, HNLMS Banckert and HNLMS Arend in Curaçao during 1931
Ship design (1st Batch Admiralen-class)
Blueprint of the 1st Batch destroyers ‘Evertsen’, ‘Kortenaer’ and ‘Piet Hein’
The design of the ship was based on the British Ambuscade and Amazone destroyers. These two British destroyers served as the prototypes for the Admiralen-class.
The primary armament of the Admiralen-class consisted of four single 120mm guns. On the 1st Batch these were the No. 4 type. While four primary guns is not very impressive, the fire control system on the ships was excellent. Thus making the guns much more accurate then what can be seen on ships of other countries.
The 12cm No. 4 guns on HNLMS Kortenaer
The secondairy armaments for the 1st Batch consisted of two 75mm No. 6 guns. These were located amidship on a raised platform. These guns were dual purpose, so they could also engage aircraft.
The 7,5cm No. 6 gun on board HNLMS Kortenaer
Futher weaponry include four 12.7mm Browning machine guns, with two being located on near the bridge, and the other two near the 75mm gun platforms. Six 533mm torpedo tubes in two tripple tube launchers were also carried. These carried Whitehead Type II torpedoes with a range of 4.000 meters.
4 depthcharge throwers, with a total of 12 depth charges, and 2 minelaying rails with a total of 24 mines completed the armaments of the 1st Batch Admiralen-class.
One last thing that the Admiralen-class also had was a aircraft catapult. This was located on top of the aft Torpedo tube launcher. This catapult could carry a Van Berkel W-A floatplane. But in reality this plane was never really carried a lot. And during the course of the 1930’s, this catapult was discarded.
A Van Berkel W-A floatplane
A hull blueprint of the 1st Batch destroyers ‘Evertsen’, ‘Kortenaer’ and ‘Piet Hein’
History of Kortenaer
HNLMS Kortenaer being finished in Rotterdam
On the 4th of November 1935, Kortenaer left for the Dutch East Indies, but on the way there she collided with an Egyptian fishing vessel. The damage was not to bad, and no water was leaking in so she carried on without repairs to the East Indies.
In 1942 the Kortenaer was assinged to an attack squadron of the Allied forces. Kortenaer was part of the fleet that took aprt in the battle of the Java Sea.
During the battle the cruiser HMS Exeter was hit by a Japanese 20cm shell, and had to return for repairs. This sudden change of course confused the Japanese, and so they launched a total of 68 Long Lance torpedoes.
Many of these torpedoes were dodged, but at 17:15 Kortenaer was hit by one. The torpedo hit smack in the middle of the ship, and it ripped the ship in two.
The commander of the Kortenaer managed to get as many people as possible into the life rafts, and ordered everyone to tie them together. Hours after the battle the crew managed to get saved by an allied destroyer that was ordered to scout for survivours.
In the end 59 of the total 149 crew members died during this battle.
Length: 98,15 m
Width: 9,45 m
Depth: 3 m
Displacement: 1.316 Tons empty, 1.680 tons fully loaded.
Engine: 2 x Parson turbines, 3 x 3-drum Yarrow waterpipeboilers
Engine power: 31.000 hp
Number of screws: 2
Max speed: (Planned) 32 knots / (Achieved during a test by HNLMS Piet Hein) 36 knots
- 4 x 1 120 mm No. 4 cannon
- 2 x 1 75 mm No. 6 cannon
- 4 x 1 12.7 mm Browning machine gun
- 2 x 3 533mm Torpedo tubes, with Whitehead Type II torpedoes (Max range of 4.000 meters)
- 4 x 1 Depth charge throwers, with 12 depth charges total
- 2 x 1 mine lauching rails, with 24 Vickers mines total
- 1 x 1 Aircraft catapult, with the Van Berkel W-A floatplane carried. (Max speed 135 km/h, 1 x 7.92 mm Lewis machine gun in a gunner position)
The floatplane catapult was discarded early on in the 1930’s
Ingame I would like to see these ships added in a Dutch or BeNeLux techtree. The ships are not extremely powerfull so putting them in, for example, a British techtree will just make people skip past them. But in a Dutch or BeNeLux techtree they would actually form the backbone of the destroyer line, so there they would serve a much better purpose.
If a Dutch or BeNeLux techtree is out of the question, then having it in the British techtree as a premium makes the most sense.
The fast speed and accurate guns will make the Admiralen-class a pretty fun class to play. The only problem with HNLMS Kortenaer is that she lacks large anti-aircraft autocannons. But still with the ability to lay mines, launch aircraft, and drop pretty good torpedoes, the HNLMS Kortenaer will prove to be a very capable ship!
Make sure to check out the other ships of the Admiralen-class!
HNLMS Kortenaer going at full speed
And there we go, that was the Admiralen-class destroyer HNLMS Kortenaer!
Make sure to vote in the poll above, and put a comment down below! See you next time!
- Nederlandse marineschepen 1939-1945, Deel 1 , book by Peter Kimenai.
Van Berkel W-A floatplane:
- https://nimh-beeldbank.defensie.nl/foto-s/?q=torpedobootjager kortenaer&fq=search_s_mediatype:“Foto’s”&mode=gallery&view=horizontal&page=1