IJN Asashio-class Destroyer

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Asashio, 1937

Briefly: Large destroyer with heady torpedo equipment!

Classifications:

Category: Destroyer
Subcategory: First-class Destroyer
Class: Asashio-class (1937-43) / Michishio-class (1943-45)
Design number: F48

History

Asashio-class Destroyer is Japanese large fleet destroyers completed during 1937~1939.

In London Naval Treaty, size, weapon and number of destroyers are limited. Because of it, they need to cancel Fubuki-class and start to build destroyers that smaller than 1500 t so they build several medium destroyers (F45 Hatsuharu-class early groups, F45B Ariake, F45C Yugure and F45D Shiratsuyu-class). However, to equip weapons that same as large destroyers, hull of them were too small. At first, Hatsuharu equipped 5x 12.7-cm gun, 3x triple torpedo tubes with 18x 61-cm torpedoes but due to problem of stability they were forced to get large modifications to remove weapons and decrease bridge equipment. After several modifications, finally they mass-produced Shiratsuyu-class destroyers, but it did not have required specifications: no enough weapons, no enough speeds and no enough cruise range. Also, in that time, international relations were getting worth and they decided to withdrawal from next naval treaty.

Due to these backgrounds, they decreased number of Shiratsuyu-class that build by 2nd Naval Armaments Supplement Programme (aka “②-plan”) from 14 to 4, and build 10 new large destroyers. For those new destroyers, IJN General Staffs requested specificasions as follows: speed reach to 35kt, expand cruise range and improve armaments to three 12.7cm twin turrets + two 61 cm quadruple torpedo tubes. To following those requirements, planned specifications was decided as below.

  • Standard displacement: 1,967 t
  • Trial displacement: 2,370 t
  • Length overall: 128.00 m
  • Waterline length: 115.00 m (at trial)
  • Length between perpendiculars: 110.00 m
  • Max width: 10.368 m
  • Depth: 6.30 m
  • Draft: 3.67 m
  • Engine: 2x Kampon-type Turbine
  • Boiler: 3x Kampon-type Ro-Go Boiler
  • Shaft: 2
  • Power: 50.000 SHP
  • Speed: 35 kt
  • Fuel oil: 378 t
  • Cruise range: 3,800 miles at 18 kt
  • Weapon:
    • 3x 12.7 cm twin gun
    • 2x 61 cn quadruple torpedo tubes
    • 16x Torpedoes
    • 2x 13.2 mm twin machine gun

Compare to Fubuki-class, dimentions of ship was similar and weight of machineries were decreased but displacement was incleased. It because to keep hull strength they incleased total weight of ship hull structures. However, after 4th fleet incident, they paused construction of ship and modified the design. By this changes, planned speed was decreased.

Construction of Asashio-class destroyers were started in September 1935.

List of Asashio-class destroyers

Name Laid down Launch Complete Sunk by Builder
Asashio
朝潮
September 7, 1935 December 16, 1936 August 31, 1937 March 3, 1943
by Air strike,
Battle of the Bismarck sea
Sasebo
Oshio
大潮
August 5, 1936 April 19, 1937 October 31, 1937 February 20, 1943
by Submarine torpedo,
during convoy escort
Maizuru
Michishio
満潮
November 5, 1935 December 3, 1937 October 31, 1937 October 25, 1944
byDestroyer fire and torpedo,
Battle of Surigao strait.
Fujinagata
Arashio
荒潮
October 1, 1935 May 26, 1937 December 20, 1937 March 3, 1943
byAir strike,
Battle of the Bismarck sea
Kobe Kawasaki
Asagumo
朝雲
December 23, 1936 November 5, 1937 March 31, 1938 October 25, 1944
byDD/CL fire and torpedo,
Battle of Surigao str.
Kobe Kawasaki
Yamagumo
山雲
November 4, 1936 July 24, 1937 January 15, 1938 October 25, 1944
byDestroyer fire and torpedo,
Battle of Surigao strait
Fujinagara
Natsugumo
夏雲
July 1, 1936 May 26, 1937 February 10, 1938 October 12, 1942
byAir strike,
Battle of Cape Esperance
Sasebo
Minegumo
峯雲
March 22, 1937 November 4, 1937 April 30, 1938 March 5, 1943
byDD/CL fire and torpedo,
Battle of Blackett strait
Fujinagata
Kasumi
December 1, 1936 November 18, 1937 June 28, 1939 April 7, 1945
byAir strike,
Battle of Cape Bonomisaki
Uraga
Arare
March 5, 1937 November 16, 1937 April 15, 1939 July 5, 1942
bySubmarine torpedo,
At anchor in the harbor
Maizuru

At the start of war, Asashio, Oshio, Michishio and Arashio were deployed at Destroyer Division 8, Asagumo, Yamagumo, Natsugumo and Minegumo were deployed at Destroyer Division 9 and Kasumi and Arare were deployed at Destroyer Division 18 with Kagero and Shiranui. Destroyer Division 8 and 9 were participated with invasion around South Pacific and Destroyer Division 18 was escorted 1st Air Fleet.

Finally, all ships were sunk during the Pacific War.


Arare (April 7, 1945)
She was last survivor of Asashio-class.

Design

Superstructure

Basically, superstructures of Asashio-class were based upon Shiratsuyu-class. Height and freeboad are lower than previously vessels like Fubuki-class.

Bridge is simlpe one that similar to Shiratsuyu-class, and layouts of weapons are similar, too.

Next torpedo loaders for front torpedo tube are placed on both side of second funnel, and rear tube loader is placed on rear superstructure under second turret.

On rear deck, there are loading trainer gun, depth charge thrower, depth charge loader, two paravanes and six depth charge droppers.

Machinery room

Machineries were separated to 1~3 boiler room and engine room. 1st boier and 2nd boier are connected to front funnel, and 3rd boier is connected to rear funnel.

Turbines are placed on engine room pararelly. RPM of propeller shaft was 380RPM.

Fuel tanks were placed on both side of boiler room and 2nd turret ammo storages that same as other Japanese destroyers.

At first, turbine of Asashio-class had serious problem that vibration damages the turbine. Almost all Japanese warships had Kanpon-type turbine, so extraordinary institutional investigation committee was established with Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto as the chairman, and a large-scale confidential investigation was conducted. Finally, they provened that it was problems peculiar to Asashio-class, so they needed to modify only Asashio-class’s turbines. Now, this incident is known as “臨機調事件”.

Weapons

Main gun

Asashio class had 50 caliber 3rd Year Type 12.7 cm gun, the standard naval gun for Japanese detroyers. For Asashio-class, each gun was mounted on Model C turret that same as Shiratsuyu-class. This turret was designed for decrease weight, but maximum vertical angle was only 55 degrees.

Future of this gun is its velocity. Mazzle velocity reachs 910 m/s so in game it is advantage for captains to fought against other countries destroyers at long distance. In contrst, loading speed was not a good. Especially, in high angle, rate of fire was only 4 rounds per minute.

Torpedo

Asashio class had Type 94 Quadruple Torpedo Tubes Model 2, one of the popular Japanese torpedo tubes since Shiratsuyu-class. Asashio-class had two torpedo launchers with torpedo reloader. Total number of torpedoes was 16.

At first, Asashio-class had “Type 90 Torpedo”. It was large 61-cm caliber torpedo for Japanese destroyers before WW2. Until the start of war, they replaced torpedoes to “Type 93 torpedo”. As well known, it was one of the best torpedoes during the World War Two. This torpedo has two major variants: Model 1 and Model 3. In game, Model 1 have very good speed (91 km/h), extreamely long-range (20 km) and large warhead (TNT equivalent 627.2 kg). Model 3 is late-war improved variant with decreased – but still long-range (15 km) and incleased huge warhead (TNT equivalent 998.4 kg).

AA gun

At first, Asashio-class had two twin machine guns on machine gun platform on both side of the funnel. It is unclear which machine gun they had, but in common theory they had Type 93 13.2 mm twin MG or Type 95 25 mm twin MG. In the drawing of Arashio, there are Vickers 40 mm machine gun, but it is unclear that actually she equipped it.

In 1943, they reinforced AA guns. They replaced twin guns on both side of funnel to 25 mm triple machine gun and added macine gun platform on front of bridge and add 25 mm twin machine gun. Additionally, in 1944, they removed second main gun and added two 25 mm triple machine gun and several single machine guns.

Anti-Sub weapons

At first, Asashio class had one Y-gun and six depth charge droppers but they did not have any sonar. In 1940, they equipped Type 93 active sonar, but reliability was not a good.

Also, in 1944, depth charge droppers were replaced to depth charge rails to able to drop depth charge continuously.

Radar

During the war, this class equipped some radars. In estimate, in 1943 there are possibility that they equipped Mk.22 Radar (Mark 2 Radio Locator Model 2) was equipped on the front mast. This radar was small surface search radar. Early variant did not have enough reliability and accuracy, but late war variant, Mod 4 with superheterodyne receiver that produced since August 1944 had enough accuracy for not only search surface things but also control fire.

Also, in 1944 they equipped aircraft search radar, Mk.13 Radar (Type 3 Mark 1 Radio Locator Model 3). Asashio-class equipped it on rear mast.

Specification (as completed)

Displacement 2,000 t (Standard)
2,400.473t (trial)
2,635.893 t (full load)
Length overall 118.00 m
Waterline length (Trial) 115.00 m
Length between perpendiculars 110.00 m
Max width 103.86 m
Waterline width (Trial) 10.352 m
Max widh under waterline 10.352 m
Depth 6.30 m
Freeboard (Bow) 6.21 m (bow)
2.76 m (stern)
2.61 m (midship)
Average Draft 3.712 m (trial)
3.957 m (full-load)
Fuel oil 572.884 m
Cruise range 18 knots – 3,800 miles
Engine 2x Kampon-type Turbine
Boiler 3x Kampon-type Ro-Go Boiler
Shaft 2
Speed (Planned) 34.85 knots
Speed (Trial) 35.98 knots (Oshio)
35.17 knots (Arashio)
34.70 knots (Asagumo)
Power (Planned) 50,000 SHP
Power (Trial) 51,026 SHP (Oshio)
53,225 SHP (Arashio)
52,009 SHP (Asagumo)
Crew 230

Weapons

As completed

type name number
Main gun 50 caliber 3rd Year Type 12.7 cm gun Model C twin turret 3
AA gun Type 93 13 mm or Type 96 25 mm twin MG 2
Torpedo tube Type 92 quad torpedo tube Model2 Mod1 2
Torpedo Type 90 Torpedo 16
Depth charge dropper Hydraulic type depth charge dropper Model 3 2
Manual type depth charge dropper Model 1 4
DC launcher Type 94 depth charge thrower (“Y-gun”) 1
Depth charge Type 91 depth charge 36
Main gun FCS Type 94 director with 3-meter rangefinder 1
Type 94 difrector 1
Torpedo FCS Type 91 Model 3 director 1
Type 92 Model 2 torpedo fire control system 2
2-meter rangeifinder 1
Searchlight 9 m Searchlight 1

1943 (estimate)

type name number
Main gun 50 caliber 3rd Year Type 12.7 cm gun Model C twin turret 3
AA gun Type 95 25 mm machine gun, Triple mount 2
Type 95 25 mm machine gun, Twin mount 1
Torpedo tube Type 92 quad torpedo tube Model2 Mod1 2
Torpedo Type 93 torpedo Model 1 Mod 2 16
Depth charge dropper Hydraulic type depth charge dropper Model 3 2
Manual type depth charge dropper Model 1 4
DC launcher Type 94 depth charge thrower (“Y-gun”) 1
Depth charge Type 95 depth charge 18
Sonar Type 93 active sonar 1
Radar Mark 2 Radio Locator Model 2 1 ?

1944

type name number
Main gun 50 caliber 3rd Year Type 12.7 cm gun Model C twin turret 2
AA gun Type 95 25 mm machine gun, Triple mount 4
Type 95 25 mm machine gun, Twin mount 1
Type 95 25 mm machine gun, Single mount 7~14
Type 93 13 mm machine gun, Single mount 0~4
Torpedo tube Type 92 quad torpedo tube Model2 Mod1 2
Torpedo Type 93 torpedo Model 3 16
Depth charge dropper Depth charge drop rail 2
DC launcher Type 94 depth charge thrower (“Y-gun”) 1
Depth charge Type 95 depth charge
Sonar Type 93 active sonar 1
Radar Mark 2 Radio Locator Model 2 1
Type 3 Mark 1 Radio Locator Model 3 1


Weapon layout of Michishio, 1944

For game

In game, this ship will be addition before Yugumo-class. Also, refits during the war will be very good premium ship for beginners, too.

In this suggestion, I suggest three refits. Each refits will be interesting for game.
Also, if they become selectable option it will be great.

Refit 1: Asashio-class, 1937
Compare to Yugumo-class, torpedo is different. Yugumo have Type 93 but Asashio have Type 90. Others are similar to Yugumo.

Refit 2: Asashio-class, 1943
Compare to Yugumo-class, AA guns are improved. Also, it has good Type 93 torpedoes.

Refit 3: Asashio-class, 1944
In 1944, it removed one main turret to equip more 25 mm machine guns.

References

雑誌丸編集部, 1990, 「写真日本の軍艦 第11巻 駆逐艦II」, 光人社, pp.67-92
EN: Editorial department of Magazine Maru, 1990, “Photo Japanese Warships, Vol.11, Destroyers II”, Kojinsha, pp.67-92
ISBN4-7898-0461-X

福井静雄, 2016 「各艦機銃、電探、哨信儀等現状調査表 - 「あ号作戦」後の兵装増備位置青図集」」潮書房光人社
EN: Fukui Shizuo, 2016, “Current status survey of machine gun, radar IFF etc on each ships – Blueprints of weapon reinforcement positions after ‘Operation A-Go’”, Ushio-shobo KoKojin-sha
ISBN978-4-7698-1613-3

「一等駆逐艦 一般計画要領書 附現状調査」
EN: “First class Destroyers, General Plan Sheet, with current status survey”
桜と錨の海軍砲術学校−史料展示室「一般計画要領書」(旧海軍艦艇要目簿・要目表)造工史料

https://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/朝潮型駆逐艦
https://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/朝潮_(朝潮型駆逐艦)

2 Likes

+1

Pretty interesting +1