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Prinz Eugen In 1945

Discussion in 'What If - European Theater - Western Front & Atlan' started by Shuttlelover101, Feb 4, 2010.

  1. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Maybe but I certainly wouldn't bet on it. I'd give Baltimore a significant edge in this engagement and would probably also favoer a Cleveland or Brooklyn and certainly a DesMoins or one of the US large curisers.
     
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  2. brndirt1

    brndirt1 Saddle Tramp

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    I have to agree "lwd", the oversized Hipper class Prinz would be outclassed by the Des Moines class without doubt. And in the other cases she would probably blow a steam boiler and be a sitting duck for the more reliable USN ships.
     
  3. Carronade

    Carronade Ace Patron  

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    Heavier guns, heavier armor... Like many US guns of the period, Baltimore's 8" fired an usually heavy shell, 335lb compared to around 260lb for most 8" weapons. 6" belt armor to PE's about 3". IIRC Baltimore's turret faces were also a bit thicker. I'm not familiar with PE's armor in detail, but the arrangement in German capital ships was inferior to most of their contemporaries.

    Smaller factors, Baltimore's 4-shaft engineering plant, on the unit system, was less vulnerable. Secondary armament broadside was eight 5" to six 4.1".

    PE and most of the world's cruisers had one advantage - torpedo tubes - which most US cruisers lacked. Landing an "eel" or two is about the only chance I see for PE other than sheer luck.

    At other than long ranges, a 10,000-ton "light" cruiser like USS Cleveland was a fair match for most heavies, PE included.

    Des Moines with automatic 8" guns outclassed any other cruiser, no comparison even to be made.
     
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  4. brndirt1

    brndirt1 Saddle Tramp

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    Here is the stuff on the PE's armor that I have found:

    Armour: belt 80 mm (3.1"), turrets 70-160 mm (2.75"-6.2"), upper deck 30 mm (1.18"), armour deck 30 mm (1.18"), conning tower 150 mm (5.9"), torpedo bulkhead 20 mm (0.79").

    And it was really no faster than the USN contemporaries, like the single Witchita, or the Baltimores and had poor propulusion reliablity all it's life. Just like the Hippers.

    I think people just fall in love with its looks and overlook its flaws. It did look sort of like a pygmy Bismarck afterall. But to be fair the last Des Moines class was really a much later ship, wasn't that class commisioned post-war or dang near the end?
     
  5. Carronade

    Carronade Ace Patron  

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    The three Des Moines class did commission post-war, around 1948. Although similar in appearance to WWII CAs, they were significantly larger, over 17,000 tons compared to about 13,300 standard for Baltimore.

    Reminds me, PE was around 14,000 tons, I believe the largest WWII cruiser, but none of her characteristics, singly or in combination, show any significant advantage over her contemporaries. She did have one interesting feature, an array of hydrophones along much of the length of the ship, one of the first long-range passive sonar systems. Apparently she detected Hood and Prince of Wales by sound before they were spotted visually.
     
  6. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    A couple of other points:
    By mid war most US cruisers had at least a decent RDFC capability by late war they pretty much all had good ones and were experianced in using it.

    I suspect the high pressure steam system of the PE's would be more suspetable to battle damage but not sure of that. In general a small hole in a high pressure system is more significant than one in a lower pressure system but the higher pressure system should it least have tougher components.

    That brings up another point. It's been mentioned many times that for US BBs much of the internal structure was actually armor quality steel. If this holds true for the cruisers which I suspect it does they are potentially much less suseptable to splinter damage.

    The PE's were lower in displacement than the US large cruisers.
     
  7. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    the Prinz still would not have had a chance, Clint pointed out in an earlier posting, the Prinz and to excellent effect was used with distinction though her crew probably thought ill but was used as a floating artillery barrage along with her cousins the Zerstörers and to a lesser degree even the Torpedoboots. Only in summer of 44 and onward till wars end in the Baltic could the Prinz and smaller vessels be truly recognized but not even for her prime duty of being in sea to sea combat situation(s)
     
  8. Shuttlelover101

    Shuttlelover101 Member

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    Guys,
    How would she fair against The US light cruisers: USS Brooklyn, Philadelphia, Savannah, Nashville, Phoenix, Boise, Honolulu, St. Louis. they had 15 × 6 in (150 mm)/47 cal guns, 8 × 5 in (130 mm)/25 cal AA guns.. What do you guys thing?
    Nikki
     
  9. Carronade

    Carronade Ace Patron  

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    Good topic, one which highlights the absurdity of labeling 10,000-ton ships "light cruisers". Ships like the Brooklyns were better balanced than 8" treaty cruisers, with heavier armor, about a 5" belt, than many "heavy cruisers" including the significantly larger Prinz Eugen. Their weight of broadside was only slightly inferior, especially with USN's 130lb 6" shell; taking rate of fire into account they put out more metal. The 8" gun ship would only have an advantage in an engagement outside effective 6" range, basically a daylight battle, which was more the exception than the norm in WWII.

    I would just say "cruiser" and reserve "light cruiser" for ships like Atlanta, Arethusa, Agano, Condottieri classes, though it might be difficult to draw the line precisely. It was absurd to call say a Furutaka a "heavier" cruiser than a Brooklyn!

    Small point, St. Louis and Helena were a separate class and mounted eight 5"/38 AA guns in twin turrets, with the Mk37 control system vice Mk 33. By 1945, Savannah also had these, installed in her reconstruction after the 1943 guided bomb hit.
     
  10. Shuttlelover101

    Shuttlelover101 Member

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    Guys,
    I got this from a friend and wanted to see what you guys thing: Prinz Eugen would have had her armament disabled so that she was no longer a ship capable of fighting. what are the few vital part, you can take out on the guns.
    Nikki
     
  11. Carronade

    Carronade Ace Patron  

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    The breech blocks, the piece which closes the rear of the gun after loading. This was the common means of disarming a ship. For example, the French ships in Alexandria in 1940, battleship Lorraine, several cruisers, etc. Their commander worked out an arrangement with Admiral Cunningham, commanding the British Mediterranean Fleet, by which they removed their breech blocks and a few other vital items. This also allowed the ships to be easily made operational when they rejoined the Allies after the demise of Vichy France in 1942.
     
  12. Shuttlelover101

    Shuttlelover101 Member

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    Carronade,
    what are the The breech blocks? i don't totally understand? Can you Explain it to me??
    Nikki
     
  13. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    It's the "backdoor" of a canon closed after the shell is put inside. Without this piece the synergic energy cannot be made properly and the gun cannot be fired.
     
  14. Carronade

    Carronade Ace Patron  

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    Like Skipper said, after the shell and powder are loaded, the breechblock is the heavy metal piece that slides or screws in behind them and seals the barrel. Basically it's what turns a metal tube into a gun. Easily removed or replaced, but the gun's useless without it.
     
  15. Shuttlelover101

    Shuttlelover101 Member

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    Guys,
    O ok. i get it now, did they do that with PG, i haven't seem anything about what they did to her, other then taking the offloading shells?
    Nikki
     

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  16. Carronade

    Carronade Ace Patron  

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    Might be hard to find information that detailed, but I did note that when we got her to the States, the guns of turret A were removed for examination, so I would guess that all the parts were probably with them at that point. I think that's from the same website as the photos you posted.
     
  17. Shuttlelover101

    Shuttlelover101 Member

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    Guys,
    I know She was Escorted by light Cruiser Dido and Heavy cruiser Devonshire and Two Distroyers (H.M.C.S. Iroqoois and H.M.S. Savage). my question is Were Was Devonshire, was she behind Prinz Eugen or where was she at, Exactly? that was one question, i haven't found an answer to!
    Nikki
     
  18. Carronade

    Carronade Ace Patron  

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    Does that mean you know where the other three ships were? ;) Seriously, while we like to think that every bit of information is out there somewhere, the formation of a small group of ships in 1945 is probably pretty hard to come by..... My guess would be the senior ship, presumably Devonshire, leading, Dido trailing, one destroyer each side.

    If this is getting back to your original question about PE making kind of escape, there's not a chance in the world of that happening, even though she did have some of her German crew on board to help handle her tempermental high-pressure engineering plant.
     
  19. Shuttlelover101

    Shuttlelover101 Member

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    Carronade,
    No, its Not, i had a friend asked and i wasn't sure either! But that question Had come out of a dream i had about her! a friend said you didnt have to take breech blocks out totally, you could just take the firing pins out of the breech blocks! what do you thing?
    Nikki
     
  20. Carronade

    Carronade Ace Patron  

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    Dunno, references to ships being disarmed usually say "removed the breech blocks" but I suppose firing pins would do the trick.
     

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