This is an apolitical forum for discussions on the Axis nations, as well as the First and Second World Wars in general hosted by Marcus Wendel's Axis History Factbook in cooperation with Michael Miller's Axis Biographical Research and Christoph Awender's WW2 day by day.
Alte Mann wrote:Mike_Fiz, I haven't seen the picture you mentioned, but . . . If the expolsions were to small for a 105mm, I think there are two possibilities. First, it might be the artist's conception of the size of the explosions. Second, the smaller caliber weapons would explode on contact with the ocean surface. Were the explosions in the painting close to the surface? It seem like this is a reasonable explanation because I am sure that the Swordfish would have been at very low altitude when close to the ship in order to reduce the stress on the torpedos when they hit the water, and to keep them from going under the ship during the torpedos initial dive.
Fairey Swordfish I, L9726 '4M' of 818 Sqn, HMS Ark Royal pulls a tight, climbing turn through a hail of anti-aircraft fire as its torpedo strikes home, jamming the steering gear of the mighty Bismarck and setting in motion the beginning of her dramatic end.
Tiornu wrote:The 10.5in shells had time fuzes which were set at the mount. One quirk was the fact that the battery was split between two different mounts. The fore guns thus had different training and elevation limitations, which could not have helped matters any.
The 37mm and 20mm cannon would have contact fuzes. As far as I know, the Americans were the only ones to have a fuze in war service sufficient to explode a shell within the framework of a fabric wing.
Slow-firing cannon like the 37mm were still common in several navies in the early part of the war. Actually, we can say that weak AA was standard for all navies early in the war.
Before someone comments that the Swordfish were too slow for German FC to handle, I'll point out that they attained speeds as fast as 200mph during their approach.
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