Gneisenau Encounter with Rodney

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g.flotron
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Gneisenau Encounter with Rodney

Post by g.flotron » 01 Oct 2020 18:57

I'm trying to get an idea how close Gneisenau was to HX114 when she encountered the Rodney. Likewise how close the Scharnhorst was as they were operating some distance apart at this time I believe.
Thanks

g.flotron
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Re: Gneisenau Encounter with Rodney

Post by g.flotron » 02 Oct 2020 16:32

I'm curious as that I saw one reference which said Gneisenau had "3 blips" on her radar, and am just wondering how close the convoy may have been.
The Ramillies and Malaya encounters are always discussed in the context of the convoys they were guarding, the missed opportunity.
In the case of the Ramillies I understand early in Operation Berlin, still not ready to tip off Royal Navy that they are at sea, avoid enemy battleships per orders, etc, but in the Rodney instance, the operation was weeks in, coming to an end soon, and despite the operation orders/limitations, the situation could have been exploited further.
For the 3rd time there was (I think, why I’m asking) a 25+ ship convoy of tankers and freighters within their grasp.

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Re: Gneisenau Encounter with Rodney

Post by Thoddy » 02 Oct 2020 17:30

wich day ?
"Meine Herren, es kann ein siebenjähriger, es kann ein dreißigjähriger Krieg werden – und wehe dem, der zuerst die Lunte in das Pulverfaß schleudert!"

g.flotron
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Re: Gneisenau Encounter with Rodney

Post by g.flotron » 02 Oct 2020 18:56

March 16th.
The Royal Sovereign was with HX114 also I believe, or was near enough, and detached on the 17th.

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Sheldrake
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Re: Gneisenau Encounter with Rodney

Post by Sheldrake » 02 Oct 2020 21:19

While Admiral George Bridges Rodney and August Wilhelm Antonius Graf Neidhardt von Gneisenau both served in His Britannic Majesties forces in the War of the American rebellion there is no evidence they ever met...


I'll get my coat...

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Re: Gneisenau Encounter with Rodney

Post by Thoddy » 04 Oct 2020 11:23

When did the british battleship sighted Gneisenau? At what distance?
Is there any document available?
Thanks

I will take a view into the war diary of Gn, when i will be back at home.

As far as i remember correctly, the week around this day offered excellent visual conditions. Radar was therfor only used sporadically at night.

For instance Scharnhorst masts in one case could be seen out to 42 km.

In cases of excellent optical conditions EM2(Radar) was not used, because the electromagnetic emissions could be detected outside own detection ranges.
"Meine Herren, es kann ein siebenjähriger, es kann ein dreißigjähriger Krieg werden – und wehe dem, der zuerst die Lunte in das Pulverfaß schleudert!"

Thoddy
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Re: Gneisenau Encounter with Rodney

Post by Thoddy » 04 Oct 2020 19:48

the War diary consist of an addendum "experience report on the use of EM2 (radar)
during the Feb March undertaking

Ranges for tactical search were the same as ranges obtained with optics depending on height of the target(reflective surfaces).
ranges obtained for the fine ranging unit were about 7 % less then the tactical instrument with accuracy ~ 50 m (later specified) but clearly better then the differences of the optical equipment.

distant contacts -prominent Landmarks- could be seen up to 160 km -canary islands / jan mayen Norwegian coast as well as Aircraft

(there were also unusual overreaches - up to 400 -700 km around the Canaries)
distant contacts were identified and measured by changing puls repetition frequency via Frequenzumschalter

development of suppression of distant return signals using frequency wobble.

they had a zoomable spotting unit for shell impacts ->electronic zoom ranging unit(Messkette) for the area +-1000 m around the target
Aufschlagmessgerät.jpg
EM2 unit on board Gneisenau could detect EM2 impulses from other EM2 units on other ships at the same distance as they could detect targets on the tactical display.

maximum detection range mentioned 35 km
width of the radar beam 5-6 degrees accuracy for deflection obtained about 2 Degrees using Maximumpeilung
From the description given Gneisenau had no fine bearing unit
against Malaya Gneisenau was "Ready to Combat" at 28 km
they explicitely mentioned that they could observe shells in flight up to the expected range, but ther was also a comment
that they missed the impact splashes on the screen at 20 km in one case.

As the transmitter tubes are susceptible to failure, they recommend 10 replacement tubes available for a single mission
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Last edited by Thoddy on 05 Oct 2020 09:19, edited 3 times in total.
"Meine Herren, es kann ein siebenjähriger, es kann ein dreißigjähriger Krieg werden – und wehe dem, der zuerst die Lunte in das Pulverfaß schleudert!"

Thoddy
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Re: Gneisenau Encounter with Rodney

Post by Thoddy » 05 Oct 2020 05:45

In the case of Rodney they had EM2 contact with three targets at around 20 km distance.

Rodney was identified by Uckermark visually.
"Meine Herren, es kann ein siebenjähriger, es kann ein dreißigjähriger Krieg werden – und wehe dem, der zuerst die Lunte in das Pulverfaß schleudert!"

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Andy H
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Re: Gneisenau Encounter with Rodney

Post by Andy H » 18 Nov 2020 16:32

g.flotron wrote:
01 Oct 2020 18:57
I'm trying to get an idea how close Gneisenau was to HX114 when she encountered the Rodney. Likewise how close the Scharnhorst was as they were operating some distance apart at this time I believe.
Thanks
Hi

In Ian Ballantynes HMS Rodney P.2008 he states on Pg123-4
"the German warship continued to pour shells into her and ordered a lifeboat to come alongside, intening the Chilean Reefers survivors to join other Merchant Navy men in captivity. It was at this moment Rodney steamed over the horizon, just as the sun was setting. The British BB's lookouts had sighted a large ship and a blaxing merchant vessel at a range of 15miles.......Lookouts in the German BC had watched in dread as the masts of what could only be a very large ship crested over the northwest horizon. Rodney then signalled What Ship? Lutjens flashed back she was the British cruiser Emerald. This created enough confusion (or delay~my words) for her to escape"

He then mentions on Pg126
"at the Britannia Royal Navy College in Dartmouth an old Rodney shipmate said the German BC was in Rodneys sights for 3-4minutes at only 6miles.......However the Rodneys gunnery officer L.Cdr William Crawford states we got to the stage in the dusk where we saw a shadowy thing in the distance, about 15-16miles away and then she disappeared behind the smoke and we never saw her again"

Hope this helps

Regards

Andy H

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