Finnish Navy in Action

Discussions on the Winter War and Continuation War, the wars between Finland and the USSR.
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Tero T
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Post by Tero T » 28 Feb 2007 14:36

Thanks Martti !
I will contact you with PM when I clear my other projects. I am building an almost 2meter long Vesikko submarine. The is actually a Uboat II D class fibreglass hull that needs a bit of reshaping (removing long range full tanks) and shortening . The problem with collecting and interests in other hobbies puts a strain on the amount of time I can devote to each. My wife swears I have ADD(attention deficit disorder) and wants to have me tested. Thanks again
Tero T

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Tero T
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Post by Tero T » 28 Feb 2007 14:54

Good Day again


I would like to add that when I went to search for information on the Vesikko and in particular building a model I contacted Jari Aromaa in Finland who was extremely helpful. It was a bit of a surprise when he suggested I contact a fellow named Chris Klepsch here in Canada and about an hours drive from my home. Chris is a master builder of boats and a genuine nice guy. As most boat builders seem to be. Anyhow here are some pics of Chris and his Vesikko in war time colours. Regards
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Last edited by Tero T on 02 Mar 2007 14:23, edited 1 time in total.

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Tero T
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Post by Tero T » 28 Feb 2007 14:55

a few more. Brings out the colours of the ship that get hidden in black and white photos. Tero T
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Harri
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Post by Harri » 01 Mar 2007 13:16

Very impressive!! 8O

John T
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Post by John T » 01 Mar 2007 19:46

Tero T wrote: The problem with collecting and interests in other hobbies puts a strain on the amount of time I can devote to each. My wife swears I have ADD(attention deficit disorder) and wants to have me tested. Thanks again
Tero T
Know the symptom,
But I do not produce such nice model's.

I Looove the DC-racks on a submarine. 8-)

Cheers
/John T

John T
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Post by John T » 01 Mar 2007 20:48

Harri wrote:
John T wrote:Naval design first has to set the parameters of price and maximum displacement and then struggles within a triangle of
firepower,
protection and
speed.
This design put most on the first factor ignoring the two other.
....
Protection, 55 milimeter of armour isn't that much, they could be holed by Soviet destroyers, but to make them to take the Soviet 305mm rounds was out of budgetary limits so so why settle for a half measure?
It was effective against near misses of Soviet airial bombs.
...
Then speed of 14.5 Knot and range of 700 nm is little better than a barge, from naval warfare standpoint.
Like told fast speed was not an important design factor and more speed could have been achieved easily but there was no need because these ships were not intended to fight against torpedo boats and destroyers nor move fast from point A to B.
You miss an important factor in ship design, a cruiser where faster than the ships who had biggers guns and thus could afford less protection, they just run away at first shot from the bigger ships.

Väinämöinen where slower than any other ship that could harm her and less armoured than most. The limited displacement also made that she could take fewer hits before sinking.

And how could the designers specify that they where not to fight against torpedo boats and destroyers ???
What part of the Finnish navy would do that ?
Karjala et al?
I thought the enemy choose what to send against enemy coast's?

Harri wrote: Protection was not especially weak. It was similar to cruisers of the 1930's based on the latest construction solutions including the inner citadel with and an extra 30 mm armour protection.
A British heavy cruiser like Kent had similar armour but twice the speed.
Harri wrote: Because Ilmarinen and Väinämöinen had guns capable for the ranges of 36 kms it was unlikely any faster ships could have reached it before the attacker was self destroyed. They were intended for long range battles which explains also their armour arrangements.
How where they expected to use the 36km range?
Visibility, distance to the Horizon from her Battle mast...

The longest range engagement during ww2 was (IIRC) 24 km.
AP rounds does not make that much damage on a big ship like Marat, if it does not hit a magazine, and with 268 rounds total load, fired at longer range than Marat's 30,5
there a high probability that she runs aout of ammo long before Marat sinks.
(check the rounds time to target just as an indication of the problems to predict where to fall the round)

Harri wrote: Ilmarinen and Väinämöinen shared largely the same "design ideology" as the German Deutchland class and was designed to meet the enemy at long range.
Deutschland could outrun British battleships like Queen Elisabeth and out gun cruisers,
Hood was the only ship both faster and heavier armed.
(Renown where almost similar in armament and speed)
Harri wrote: For aerial attacks Ilmarinen and Väinämöinen had an etremely heavy AA protection because their eight 105 mm dual purpose guns in four twin turrets (aft, stern and on both sides) were super heavy AA guns as well.
Heavy indeed, but not that effective against lowflying aircrafts.
Harri wrote: When ships had been equipped with four stabilized 40 mm Bofors AA guns they had probably better long and medium-range AA protection than any ship of that era. Fire control system was rather advanced especially after the improvements Finns made.
Than any Finnish ship of that era I can accept, or might even be for ships of similar displacement. But look at German cruisers and BB's from 1937 forward and you'll find more comprehensive AAA on all of them.
Harri wrote: I would not say that the combination of speed, fire power and protection hadn't been well considered. In turn they were very well thought. Comparing these ships to much heavier ocean going fast cruisers or battleships is thus rather unfair and unnecessary especially if we talk about speed and range.
You still have to get into a artillery duel with other ships and then the weaknesses would have been shown.

I belive there where other reasons than fleet in beeing- theory that they where held far back most of the war, out fo harms way.

Cheers
/John T.

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Juha Tompuri
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Post by Juha Tompuri » 01 Mar 2007 21:33

John T wrote: How where they expected to use the 36km range?
Visibility, distance to the Horizon from her Battle mast...
The Ships were intented to have been used inside the archipelago, firing (from positions unseen to the enemy ships) over the islands, (also) using island/shore based forward artillery observation.

Regards, Juha

John T
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Post by John T » 01 Mar 2007 23:08

Juha Tompuri wrote:
John T wrote: How where they expected to use the 36km range?
Visibility, distance to the Horizon from her Battle mast...
The Ships were intented to have been used inside the archipelago, firing (from positions unseen to the enemy ships) over the islands, (also) using island/shore based forward artillery observation.

Regards, Juha
Makes some sense, as an intergrated part of the coastal artillery.
To get accurate enough rangefinding you "just" needed some guy's measuring angle to target from different skerries and working communication with the ship.

But how many mobile coastal artillery batteries you'd get for the same money?

Cheers
/John T.

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Juha Tompuri
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Post by Juha Tompuri » 01 Mar 2007 23:56

John T wrote:Makes some sense, as an intergrated part of the coastal artillery.
To get accurate enough rangefinding you "just" needed some guy's measuring angle to target from different skerries and working communication with the ship.
Exactly so.
Actually the accuracy of the "guys measuring the angle" can even be greater than the ships (6-meter) rangefinder, as at the "manual" version the "base" of the "rangefinder" can be of kilometers.
JT wrote:But how many mobile coastal artillery batteries you'd get for the same money?
If mobile enough to be able to travel protected at some degree, from the mainland to Aland... I'd say something like 2 batteries of four guns of 254mm

Regards, Juha

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Minas Henrik
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Post by Minas Henrik » 02 Mar 2007 01:08

Ohhh Lovely indeed im realy stunn by this lovely and historik U-boat.


Regards Henrik.

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Juha Tompuri
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Post by Juha Tompuri » 02 Mar 2007 08:46

Minas Henrik wrote:Ohhh Lovely indeed im realy stunn by this lovely and historik U-boat.
Yes, a Very well made model.
Are there any photos of Vesikko at the anti-sub mode?

Regards, Juha

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Harri
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Post by Harri » 02 Mar 2007 10:07

John T wrote:
Harri wrote:Like told fast speed was not an important design factor and more speed could have been achieved easily but there was no need because these ships were not intended to fight against torpedo boats and destroyers nor move fast from point A to B.
You miss an important factor in ship design, a cruiser where faster than the ships who had biggers guns and thus could afford less protection, they just run away at first shot from the bigger ships.
Väinämöinen where slower than any other ship that could harm her and less armoured than most. The limited displacement also made that she could take fewer hits before sinking.
You forget that they didn't operate in the middle of an ocean but close to a coast when they possibly could have other artillery and aerial support as well. ILmarinen and Väinämöinen were not cruisers and were not intended to be cruisers. They were "coastal defence ships" which operated in the middle of islands on shallow waters not passable for any bigger or more powerful ships.
John T wrote:And how could the designers specify that they where not to fight against torpedo boats and destroyers ???
What part of the Finnish navy would do that ?
Karjala et al?
I thought the enemy choose what to send against enemy coast's?
Finns were not expect to fight in the middle of open seas.

Finnish navy had also smaller units but a fixed heavy and super heavy coastal artillery had basically that task. Alone the most common Finnish costal artillery piece 152 mm Canet gun had a range of 25 kms and was very deadly to all smaller ships (not to talk about 254 or 305 mm guns).
John T wrote:
Harri wrote:Protection was not especially weak. It was similar to cruisers of the 1930's based on the latest construction solutions including the inner citadel with and an extra 30 mm armour protection.
A British heavy cruiser like Kent had similar armour but twice the speed.
They needed speed because they opereated in the totally different "environment". That fast speed would have needed turbines (+ much more fuel) and also different hull shape which were made the ships much larger and heavier and that was not wanted. You can't get something unless you don't compromise.

On the other hand Finns didnt have many faster ships, so why the coastal defence ships should have been faster?
John T wrote:
Harri wrote:Because Ilmarinen and Väinämöinen had guns capable for the ranges of 36 kms it was unlikely any faster ships could have reached it before the attacker was self destroyed. They were intended for long range battles which explains also their armour arrangements.
How where they expected to use the 36km range?
Visibility, distance to the Horizon from her Battle mast...
Like you have perhaps noticed the main mast for observers was especially high and massive in these vessels. Additionally they could use the land based observation like Juha told.
John T wrote:The longest range engagement during ww2 was (IIRC) 24 km.
AP rounds does not make that much damage on a big ship like Marat, if it does not hit a magazine, and with 268 rounds total load, fired at longer range than Marat's 30,5
there a high probability that she runs aout of ammo long before Marat sinks.
(check the rounds time to target just as an indication of the problems to predict where to fall the round)
You don't have to sink an opponent. In most cases good hits ended the battle after which the damaged ships stayed months on the dock for repair. IIRC the maximum effective range (for example against other ships) of 254 mm Bofors guns was 31 km but longer ranges could be used against land targets.
John T wrote:
Harri wrote:Ilmarinen and Väinämöinen shared largely the same "design ideology" as the German Deutchland class and was designed to meet the enemy at long range.
Deutschland could outrun British battleships like Queen Elisabeth and out gun cruisers,
Hood was the only ship both faster and heavier armed.
(Renown where almost similar in armament and speed)
I'm talking about constructional solutions. Tactical use was of course different.

(Battlecruisers Repulse and Renown had eight 380 mm guns vs. six 280 mm of the Germans and because of their speeds were about equal, British being slighly faster, they had been more than serious opponets to German pocket battleships).
John T wrote:
Harri wrote:For aerial attacks Ilmarinen and Väinämöinen had an etremely heavy AA protection because their eight 105 mm dual purpose guns in four twin turrets (aft, stern and on both sides) were super heavy AA guns as well.
Heavy indeed, but not that effective against lowflying aircrafts.
Light AA protection was without doubt rather bad initially (4x 40 mm Vickers "Pom-Pom" and 2x 20 mm Madsen + 7.62 mm MGs) but by 1944 there were 4x 40 mm Bofors and 8x 20 mm Madsen which was enough.

Close to a coast or in archipelago neither aircraft couldn't attack as freely as in open seas where 105 mm guns could have been used also against low flying planes.
John T wrote:
Harri wrote: When ships had been equipped with four stabilized 40 mm Bofors AA guns they had probably better long and medium-range AA protection than any ship of that era. Fire control system was rather advanced especially after the improvements Finns made.
Than any Finnish ship of that era I can accept, or might even be for ships of similar displacement. But look at German cruisers and BB's from 1937 forward and you'll find more comprehensive AAA on all of them.
Anyway I consider the AA protection very heavy compared to any ships of that size. See for example what kind of AA protection typical large destroyers had: only very few had heavy 75/76 mm AA guns (usually one or two) and typically it was only a few 37/40 and 20 mm guns + HMGs and MGs.
John T wrote:
Harri wrote:I would not say that the combination of speed, fire power and protection hadn't been well considered. In turn they were very well thought. Comparing these ships to much heavier ocean going fast cruisers or battleships is thus rather unfair and unnecessary especially if we talk about speed and range.
You still have to get into a artillery duel with other ships and then the weaknesses would have been shown.
But they were not intended to "traditional" ship vs. ship battles which makes such comparing unnecessary.
John T wrote:I belive there where other reasons than fleet in beeing- theory that they where held far back most of the war, out fo harms way.
These ships being the most powerful in their class in the world were priority targets of the Soviet Air Force. During the Winter War both ships were in the basically static AA defence of the city of Turku (Åbo) and did well in that job although surrounded by ice.

The situation had changed after the Winter War because of the Soviet Hanko naval base and no independent Estonia. Now the direction of Åland Islands was even more important it had been earlier. On 22.6.1941 ships were used in their intended role when they protected the convoys which transported Finnish troops to Åland Islands. They were the first targets of Soviet Air Force attacks started early on that day.

During the Continuation War ships were initially used against the Hanko base but when they participated in the naval operation with Germans later on 13.9.1941 (which Finnish Navy opposed) Ilmarinen was sunk when hit by a sea mine (in Finnish only):

http://koti.mbnet.fi/~karsikas/psl/

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Post by Seppo Koivisto » 02 Mar 2007 10:56


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Hanski
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Post by Hanski » 03 Mar 2007 06:08

Let me join the congratulators of that Vesikko scale model builder, what a great achievement!

----

Opinions have been presented with the wisdom of hindsight that from the viewpoint of national defence, Väinämöinen and Ilmarinen were misinvestments that were made for irrational political reasons, such as national pride for the young Republic, because large ships flagged for parade were simply such an impressive sight that it had emotional appeal beyond reason. There was an influential popular movement supporting (or even demanding) the build-up of navy, which then was undertaken at the expense of other branches of defence.

The argument goes, if a similar investment had been made in time for example to build up fighter air force, or to produce en masse the Suomi submachine gun (that was practically shelved from production soon after its introduction), much better value for money would have been made.

What do you make of this?

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A Dane, a Finn, a Swede and Deutschland...

Post by John T » 04 Mar 2007 12:37

Models of a slightly smaller scale ;)
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