Kaibōkan

Kaibōkan (海防艦, "sea defence ship") or coastal defense ship is a type of naval ship used by the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II for escort duty and coastal defense. The term escort ship is used by the United States Navy to describe this category of Japanese ships.[1]

Japanese escort ship Etorofu 1943
The Japanese Etorofu in May 1943.

Description

These ships were the Japanese equivalent to Allied destroyer escorts and frigates, all three types of warships being built as a less expensive anti-submarine warfare alternative to fleet destroyers.[2] Kaibōkan had few counterparts among Japan's Axis allies: the 10 Kriegsmarine escort ships of the F-class, and Amiral Murgescu of the Romanian Navy.

In the course of the war, the design was simplified and scaled down to permit larger numbers of vessels to be built more quickly.

Old definition

Before the World War II, kaibōkan was the catchall name for various ships, from battleships to sloops, which had become obsolete.

Classes

Shimushu class (Ishigaki)

  • Also known as Type A - multi purpose patrol, escorts or minesweeper.
  • Main Engine: Diesel X 2, double shaft (4,200shp)
  • Max Speed: 19.7kn
  • Range: 8,000 mile (16kn)
  • Fuel: Oil X 120t

Etorofu class (Matsuwa)

  • Modified Type A
  • Main Engine: Diesel X 2, double shaft (4,200shp)
  • Max Speed: 19.7kn
  • Range: 8,000 mile (16kn)
  • Fuel: Oil X 120t

Mikura class (Chiburi)

  • Also known as Type B
  • Main Engine: Diesel X 2, double shaft (4,200shp)
  • Max Speed: 19.5kn
  • Range: 6,000 mile (16kn)
  • Fuel: Oil X 120t

Ukuru class (Okinawa)

  • Modified Type B
  • Main Engine: Diesel X 2, double shaft (4,200shp)
  • Max Speed: 19.5kn
  • Range: 5,754 mile (16kn)
  • Fuel: Oil X 120t

Type C and Type D

Same design with different engines; diesels for Type C and turbines for Type D. More than 120 were mass-produced during the war, employing modular design method.

Others

In addition, two former Chinese light cruisers were used, renamed Ioshima and Yasoshima.

See also

References

Notes

  1. ^ Bob Hackett, Sander Kingsepp and Peter Cundall (15 September 2013). "Stories and Battle Histories of the IJN's Escorts". Combinedfleet.com. Retrieved 2013-10-19.
  2. ^ Potter, E.B.; Nimitz, Chester W. (1960). Sea Power. Prentice-Hall, p. 550

Sources

  • Stories and Battle Histories of the IJN's Escorts 9 July 2011 By Bob Hackett, Sander Kingsepp and Peter Cundall
  • Kimata Jirō (木俣 滋郎). Military history of Japan's coastal defense ships (『日本海防艦戦史』). Toshu Publishing (図書出版社), 1994. p. 299

Further reading

  • Stille, Mark (2017). Imperial Japanese Navy Antisubmarine Escorts 1941–45. Oxford: Osprey. ISBN 9781472818164.
Convoy Hi-71

Convoy Hi-71 (ヒ-71) was one of the World War II Hi convoys of fast tankers and troop transports from Japan to Singapore. The heavily defended convoy was specially loaded with reinforcements for defense of the Philippines, and encountered a wolfpack of United States Navy submarines in the South China Sea after being scattered by an August 1944 typhoon. Personnel losses were high because heavy seas prevented rescue of crewmen from sunken ships.

Destroyer escort

Destroyer escort (DE) was the United States Navy mid-20th-century classification for a 20-knot (23 mph) warship designed with endurance to escort mid-ocean convoys of merchant marine ships. Kaibōkan were designed for a similar role in the Imperial Japanese Navy. The Royal Navy and Commonwealth forces identified such warships as frigates, and that classification was widely accepted when the United States redesignated destroyer escorts as frigates (FF) in 1975. From circa 1954 until 1975 new-build US Navy ships designated as destroyer escorts (DE) were called ocean escorts. Destroyer escorts, frigates, and kaibōkan were mass-produced for World War II as a less expensive antisubmarine warfare alternative to fleet destroyers. Other similar warships include the 10 Kriegsmarine escort ships of the F-class and the two Amiral Murgescu-class vessels of the Romanian Navy.

Postwar destroyer escorts and frigates were larger than those produced during wartime, with increased antiaircraft capability, but remained smaller and slower than postwar destroyers. As Cold War destroyer escorts became as large as wartime destroyers, the United States Navy converted some of their World War II destroyers to escort destroyers (DDE).

Etorofu-class escort ship

The Etorofu-class escort ships (択捉型海防艦, Etorofu-gata kaibōkan) were a group of fourteen kaibōkan escort vessels built for the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II. Eight of the fourteen ships were sunk during the war. The class was also referred to by internal Japanese documents as the "Modified A-class" coastal defense vessel (甲型海防艦, Kō-gata kaibōkan).

General stores issue ship

General stores issue ship is a type of ship used by the United States Navy during World War II and for some time afterwards.

The task of the general stores issue ship was to sail into non-combat, or rear, areas and disburse general stores, such as canned goods, toilet paper, office supplies, etc., to ships and stations.

Guard ship

A guard ship is a warship assigned as a stationary guard in a port or harbour, as opposed to a coastal patrol boat which serves its protective role at sea.

Hi convoys

Hi convoys (ヒ) were a numbered series of World War II trade convoys between Japan and Singapore. Merchant ships from Moji and Kaibōkan from Sasebo formed southbound convoys in Imari Bay to carry supplies for the Burma Campaign. Northbound convoys transported food, petroleum, and raw materials to Japan from the captured European colonies of the Dutch East Indies, French Indochina, and British Malaya and Burma. These convoys were initiated in mid-1943 to protect fast, high-value tankers and troopships from the improved effectiveness of Mark 14 torpedoes carried by United States submarines.

Convoy routing was through the East China Sea, Formosa Strait, and South China Sea. Ships often joined or left convoys at the Formosan ports of Takao and Keelung, at the Mako naval base in the Pescadores, and at the Vietnamese ports of Cape Saint Jacques and Cam Ranh Bay. Some convoys stopped at Manila until MATA and TAMA feeder convoys between MAnila and TAkao enabled Hi convoys to avoid United States submarine wolfpacks in the Luzon Strait by hugging the Asian coast between Hainan and Shanghai.

Hiburi-class escort ship

The Hiburi-class escort ship (日振型海防艦,, Hiburi-gata Kaibōkan) was a sub class of the Mikura-class escort ships of the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN), serving during and after World War II.

Japanese escort ship Okinawa

Okinawa was an escort ship ("Kaibōkan") of the Imperial Japanese Navy during the Second World War. She belonged to the Ukuru class. The ship is most notable for its possible participation in the sinkings of two submarines.

List of Japanese Navy ships and war vessels in World War II

This List of Japanese Navy ships and war vessels in World War II is a list of seafaring vessels of the Imperial Japanese Navy of World War II. It includes submarines, battleships, oilers, minelayers and other types of Japanese sea vessels of war and naval ships used during wartime.

List of escort vessel classes of World War II

During World War II, the navies of both the Allies and the Axis Powers built and operated hundreds of relatively small warships for the purpose of ensuring the safety of merchant convoys. These warships displaced around 1,000 tons and were typically armed with one-to-three guns of three-to-five inches in caliber, numerous smaller anti-aircraft guns and depth charge throwers.

Mikura-class escort ship

The Mikura-class escort ships (御蔵型海防艦, Mikura-gata kaibōkan) were a class of fourteen kaibōkan escort vessels built for the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II. Eight of the fourteen ships were sunk during the war. The class was also referred to by internal Japanese documents as the "B-class" coastal defense vessel (乙型海防艦, Otsu-gata kaibōkan).

Minehunter

A minehunter is a naval vessel that seeks, detects, and destroys individual naval mines. Minesweepers, on the other hand, clear mined areas as a whole, without prior detection of mines. A vessel that combines both of these roles is known as a mine countermeasures vessel (MCMV).

Repair ship

A repair ship is a naval auxiliary ship designed to provide maintenance support to warships. Repair ships provide similar services to destroyer, submarine and seaplane tenders or depot ships, but may offer a broader range of repair capability including equipment and personnel for repair of more significant machinery failures or battle damage.

Shimushu-class escort ship

The Shimushu-class escort ships (占守型海防艦, Shimushu-gata kaibōkan) were a class of destroyer escort vessels built for the Imperial Japanese Navy just prior to World War II. Four ships out of an initially planned 16 vessels were completed. The class was also referred to by internal Japanese documents as the "A-class" coastal defense vessel (甲型海防艦, Kō-gata kaibōkan).

Type C escort ship

The Type C escort ships (丙型海防艦, Hei-gata kaibōkan) were a class of escort ships in the service of the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II. The Japanese called them "Type C" ocean defense ships, and they were the fifth class of Kaibōkan (Kai = sea, ocean, Bo = defense, Kan = ship), a name used to denote a multi-purpose vessel.

Type D escort ship

The Type D escort ships (丁型海防艦, Tei-gata kaibōkan) were a class of escort ships in the service of the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II. The Japanese called them "Type D" coast defence ships, and they were the sixth class of Kaibōkan (Kai = sea, ocean, Bo = defence, Kan = ship), a name used to denote a multi-purpose vessel.

USS Torsk

USS Torsk (SS-423) is a Tench-class submarine built for the United States Navy during World War II. Armed with ten torpedo tubes, the Tench-class submarines were incremental developments of the highly-successful Gato-class submarines that formed the backbone of the US Navy's submarine force during the war. Torsk was laid down at the Portsmouth Navy Yard in June 1944, was launched in September that year, and commissioned in December.

In 1945, Torsk made two war patrols off Japan, sinking one cargo vessel and two coastal defense frigates. The latter of these, torpedoed on 14 August 1945, was the last enemy ship sunk by the United States Navy in World War II. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, she operated primarily as a training vessel; she also went on deployments to the Mediterranean Sea and helped to train elements of the Atlantic Fleet in anti-submarine tactics. Decommissioned in 1964, she served for another seven years as a training vessel for the Naval Reserve. She was stricken from the Naval Vessel Register in December 1971 and turned over to the state of Maryland for use as a museum ship. She is now part of the historic fleet of Historic Ships in Baltimore.

Ukuru-class escort ship

The Ukuru-class escort ships (鵜来型海防艦, Ukuru-gata kaibōkan) were a class of twenty-nine kaibōkan escort vessels built for the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II. The class was also referred to by internal Japanese documents as the "Modified B-class" coastal defense vessel (改乙型海防艦, Kai-Otsu-gata kaibōkan), and they were the fourth class of kaibōkan.

Yaeyama-class minesweeper

The Yaeyama class is the largest class of Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force minesweepers, designed for open-sea mine clearance operations. Three ships were built in the class, a further three ships were planned but were cancelled. The ships use wooden hulls to reduce their magnetic signature. Yaeyama class is one of the largest-sized wooden hull ships designed today (except old and replica ships).

Jane's Fighting Ships notes their similarity to the U.S. Avenger-class minesweepers.

All three vessels are named after World War II Japanese ships: Yaeyama after a minelayer, and Tsushima and Hachijo after kaibōkan. Of their World War II namesakes, only Hachijo survived the war.

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