imaginary encounter

From the Washington Naval Treaty to the end of the Second World War.
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hans zurbriggen
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Re: imaginary encounter

Post by hans zurbriggen »

Hello Mr. Mercer,
you are right. However, I would say that consequences of explosion inside bow would have been almost the same, or even less. Hit would have destroyed "only" capstans, possibly not piercing large hole (just spliter small holes) on starboard (exit) side. Of course you never know, but, outside citadel, Bismarck had no vital equipment and all fuel forward resulted lost anyway. I doubt a single AP shell (not a lot of explosive charge inside) could have had catastrophic consequences on Bismarck bow structural stability. It took a Tallboy to make unseaworthy Tirpitz, not causing anyway any significative danger to ship buoyancy.

hans
dunmunro
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Re: imaginary encounter

Post by dunmunro »

hans zurbriggen wrote: Thu Apr 20, 2023 2:11 pm Hello Mr. Mercer,
you are right. However, I would say that consequences of explosion inside bow would have been almost the same, or even less. Hit would have destroyed "only" capstans, possibly not piercing large hole (just spliter small holes) on starboard (exit) side. Of course you never know, but, outside citadel, Bismarck had no vital equipment and all fuel forward resulted lost anyway. I doubt a single AP shell (not a lot of explosive charge inside) could have had catastrophic consequences on Bismarck bow structural stability. It took a Tallboy to make unseaworthy Tirpitz, not causing anyway any significative danger to ship buoyancy.

hans
I would expect shell detonation to send fragments through the adjacent bulkheads, and increase the volume of flooding. Increased flooding forward, would have decreased Bismarck's speed and increased the pressure on the intact bulkheads.
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marcelo_malara
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Re: imaginary encounter

Post by marcelo_malara »

Would not such explosion ignite the fuel? There is an instance of a RN cruiser in the Med impacted by a torpedo and the explosion igniting fuel.

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hans zurbriggen
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Re: imaginary encounter

Post by hans zurbriggen »

Hello Mr. Dunmunro and Mr. Malara,
you are both right but, in my poor opinion, an explosion of hit n.1 inside hull would have caused less damages: shell destroyed (passing through) watertight bulkhead between compartments XX and XXI even without exploding. Other watertight bulkheads were too far to be impacted by explosion splinters. Small splinter holes instead of large exit shell hole would have allowed less water inside and less pressure on bulkhead between compartments XIX and XX (critical one). They would have been easier to patch. Exit hole was lower than entry one and it was main responsible for flooding.

Regarding fire, again it is quite unpredictable what would have happened: hit n.2 did not start any fire despite exploding and piercing several fuel tanks.

Of course we will never know for sure.

hans
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