Z-class destroyer, INS Eilat (K-40). Destroyed in action

Would you like to see this ship added to the game?
  • Yes
  • No

0 voters

In what configuration would you like to see her?
  • 1956 (4 x 113mm, 6 x 40mm, 8 x torpedo tubes)
  • mid-1960’s (4 x 113mm, 6 x 40mm, 4 x torpedo tubes)
  • 1967 (3 x 113mm, 6 x 40mm, 4 x torpedo tubes)
  • I said ‘No’ in the first question.

0 voters

Hello everyone, today I’d like to suggest one of two Israeli Z-class destroyers!

This is the INS Eilat (K-40)!

Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:אילת_עוגנת_בחיפה.jpg

Quick note:

Israeli naval vessels are not the easiest things to find sources for. So sadly I’ve had to resort to using Wikipedia more then I’d like for this suggestion. I’ve done my best to not copy paste everything, but since the history for the INS Eilat is rather short I was left with only a few options.



Source: File:INS Eilat Q-40 1966-01-02.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

The INS Eilat started it’s life as the Z-class destroyer HMS Zealous (R39). She was put into service in October of 1944 where she was put into the 2nd destroyer flotilla. But we’re not here to go into great depth on the HMS Zealous, so I’m going to stop here. Do feel free to look up her WW2 carreer if you are interested.

Now moving on with the INS Eilat:

In 1955 the UK sold HMS Zealous to Israel, which commissioned her into the Israeli Navy in July 1956 as the INS Eilat. INS Eilat was named after the Israeli southern coastal city of Eilat. By looking at photos of the two Israeli Z-class destroyers, it would seem that when first given to Israel, the ships were only armed with the primary guns, a single twin 40mm Mark V Bofors mount, four single 40mm Mark VII mounts and two quad torpedo tube launchers. But later this was changed in the mid-1960’s by removing one of the torpedo launchers. Eilat and her sister ship INS Yaffo would also see one of their rear primary turrets removed around this time. But it is likely that Yaffo was the first that had it removed, and Eilat follow a little bit after that.

On the 29th of October 1956, the Suez Crisis broke out. And Israel found itself together with France and the UK, fighting against the eqyptians. The INS Eilat was ofcourse also present during this conflict and would be brought into action only a two days later. On the morning of 31 October an Egyptian destroyer shelled Haifa harbour. This sparked an counter attack by a French destroyer, the Israeli INS Yaffo and ofcourse INS Eilat. The three ships forced the Egyptian destroyer to steam back towards Port Said. It was then also attacked by a pair of IDF/AF Ouragans and a Dakota. After this final attack the crew of the badly damaged vessel finally capitulated, and the Israelis towed the ship to Haifa, it later became the INS Haifa in the Israeli Navy.

This would not be the last time INS Eilat had to face of against Egyptian forces, because later in 1967, the War of Attrition happend. During a patrol on the night of 11–12 July 1967, INS Eilat and two other Israeli torpedo-boats encountered two Egyptian torpedo-boats off the Rumani coast. They immediately engaged the vessels and sank both.

A little later on the 21st of October 1967, early on in the War of Attrition, INS Eilat was hit by three Soviet-made Styx missiles launched by Egyptian missile boats. The Egyptian missile boats were Komar-class missile boats that had positioned themselves within the harbour at Port Said. The Egyptian boats fired two missiles at the Israeli destroyer. INS Eilat’s radar did not reveal any suspicious activity or movements because the Egyptians launched the missiles from within the port.

Eilat’s captain ordered evasive action when the missiles were detected, but the first missile hit the ship just above the waterline. Two minutes later the second missile struck, causing additional casualties. While INS Eilat began to list heavily, the crew tended to the wounded and engaged in rescue and repair operations while waiting for additional ships of the Israeli Navy to come to their rescue. Approximately one hour later another Egyptian Komar-class missile boat from Port Said harbour fired two more Styx missiles at Eilat. The third missile hit Eilat amidships, causing more damage and further fires, while the fourth went astray and crashed in the water nearby. INS Eilat sank about two minutes later. Out of a crew of 199, 47 were killed or missing and 90–100 were wounded.

Source: File:JackCohenDestroyeidINSEilat1968.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

A set of torpedo tubes (Which had been removed in the mid-1960’s) are preserved at the Clandestine Immigration and Naval Museum, Haifa, and a Monument to the Fallen of INS Eilat was established just outside the Museum, the work of sculptor Igael Tumarkin.



Displacement: 1,710 tons
Length: 362.7 ft (110.6 m)
Beam: 35.7 ft (10.9 m)
Propulsion: 40,000 hp (30,000 kW)
Speed: 37 knots (69 km/h; 43 mph)
Complement: 186

Armament (1956)

If you look closely at the photo below you’ll see that two torpedo tube launchers are present on the ship. Also seen on the photo is a piece of a 40mm Mark VII mount right next to the bridge, and the twin 40mm Mark V mount can be seen too.

Source: File:D374-094.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

In the photo below we again see two torpedo tube launchers and all the 40mm guns.

Source: File:MTBsReceivingTanin.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

4 x 1 QF 4.5-inch (113 mm) Mark V guns
1 x 2 40 mm Mark V Bofors guns
4 x 1 40 mm Mark VII Bofors guns
2 x 4 21-inch (533 mm) torpedo tubes

Armament (Mid-1960’s)

In the photo below we see the rear of INS Eilat (The ship on the left). If you look closely you will see that one torpedo tube launcher has been removed (The one that used to be between the twin 40mm Mark V mount and the C turret)

Source: File:WelcomeSubTanin1959.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

4 x 1 QF 4.5-inch (113 mm) Mark V guns
1 x 2 40 mm Mark V Bofors guns
4 x 1 40 mm Mark VII Bofors guns
1 x 4 21-inch (533 mm) torpedo tubes

Armament (1967)

This is the final refit known of Eilat. The only thing that differs between this refit and the previous one is the removal of one of the rear turrets. Specifically the superfiring one located on the raised platform.

A similar refit had been done to her sister ship INS Yaffo, who to her one of her rear turrets removed. But interestingly she had her rear most turret removed, and the one of the raised platform remained. Just a small detail that helps you tell the two ships apart.

Source: Reddit - Dive into anything

3 x 1 QF 4.5-inch (113 mm) Mark V guns
1 x 2 40 mm Mark V Bofors guns
4 x 1 40 mm Mark VII Bofors guns
1 x 4 21-inch (533 mm) torpedo tubes



The INS Eilat would be quite interesting for the Israeli navy, since she together with her sister ship are the only bigger-ish ships Israel has operated. The Z-class destroyer together a single Hunt-class destroyer escort are the only destroyer types Israel has operated.

The low number of primary guns, together with a lack of smaller autocannons would make this ship a BR 3.7 - 4.0 destroyer for sure. The ship would be able to down some planes with her six 40mm Bofors guns, but the lack of primary guns is still it’s biggest downfall.

Source: File:IsDeestroyersVisiting2.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

That is all for now folks! Make sure to comment down below and submit your vote in the poll above!

Also check out my post of the sister ship of INS Eilat!

More images


Source: File:INSEilat.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

Source: File:ZiporYochay31960.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

Source: File:Insyafeilatfuelex58.jpg - Wikimedia Commons



Vehicle sources:
The Sinking of the INS EILAT: 50th Anniversary of the First Surface to Surface Engagement with ASCM’s – Steeljaw Scribe
HMS Zealous (R39) - Wikipedia

Image source:
Search media - Wikimedia Commons