"Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

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T. A. Gardner
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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by T. A. Gardner » 04 Jan 2022 22:01

thaddeus_c wrote:
04 Jan 2022 17:27
in my view the French Atlantic bases affected u-boat development, if they had operated from Norway or the Channel some of the issues would have to be dealt with sooner?

after June 1941 the life or death struggle for Germany was in the East, and an open wound was in the Med?

it is almost as if the KM was waging a whole separate war, albeit they were almost forced to send u-boats into the Med, which should have been a time to develop smaller boats?
The Type VII was about as small an ocean-going boat as you could make versus a coastal only submarine.

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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 04 Jan 2022 23:03

T. A. Gardner wrote:
04 Jan 2022 22:01
The Type VII was about as small an ocean-going boat as you could make versus a coastal only submarine.
What's your physics/science-based rationale?
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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by T. A. Gardner » 04 Jan 2022 23:15

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
04 Jan 2022 23:03
T. A. Gardner wrote:
04 Jan 2022 22:01
The Type VII was about as small an ocean-going boat as you could make versus a coastal only submarine.
What's your physics/science-based rationale?
It's more about industrial engineering. You need a certain amount of space for crew, equipment, fittings, etc., to make the boat effective. The Germans designed the Type VII quite well to ensure this human / equipment component was met. Sure, you could build something smaller like a Seehund two-man submarine, but those were all but worthless because they lacked this human / equipment component in their construction. It isn't just about the physics / mechanical engineering of it.

http://uboataces.com/uboat-type-vii.shtml

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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 05 Jan 2022 00:10

T. A. Gardner wrote:
04 Jan 2022 23:15
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
04 Jan 2022 23:03
T. A. Gardner wrote:
04 Jan 2022 22:01
The Type VII was about as small an ocean-going boat as you could make versus a coastal only submarine.
What's your physics/science-based rationale?
It's more about industrial engineering. You need a certain amount of space for crew, equipment, fittings, etc., to make the boat effective. The Germans designed the Type VII quite well to ensure this human / equipment component was met. Sure, you could build something smaller like a Seehund two-man submarine, but those were all but worthless because they lacked this human / equipment component in their construction. It isn't just about the physics / mechanical engineering of it.

http://uboataces.com/uboat-type-vii.shtml
Yeah duh but the T7 could reach the US East Coast while the Seehund could barely cross the Channel. That's an obvious and not very useful point.

The obvious point being made is that there is some room between the T7 and a purely coastal submarine, which may have been better for the Mediterranean. I'm not convinced that would have been a worthwhile use of German resources but I'm also convinced that it's a more serious point than to raise the false choice between T7 and Seehund.
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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by T. A. Gardner » 05 Jan 2022 01:21

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
05 Jan 2022 00:10
Yeah duh but the T7 could reach the US East Coast while the Seehund could barely cross the Channel. That's an obvious and not very useful point.

The obvious point being made is that there is some room between the T7 and a purely coastal submarine, which may have been better for the Mediterranean. I'm not convinced that would have been a worthwhile use of German resources but I'm also convinced that it's a more serious point than to raise the false choice between T7 and Seehund.
Not until late in 1942 with the new Type VIIC/42 they couldn't really effectively patrol off the US. But that design was cancelled. The Type VII was originally designed for a war against Britain, possibly France. It's 8,500 mile cruising range doesn't give it much room for patrolling off the US once it arrived.

It was the minimum submarine on the least tonnage the Germans could build that would be truly effective in such a war. And, it pretty much was. Previous designs (Type I to VI) were more coastal submarines.

My point in bringing up Seehund was simply to show what an absolute minimum submarine might be in design, and how that minimum design would be a failure compared to something that is better engineered from the equipment and human standpoint.

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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by ThatZenoGuy » 05 Jan 2022 04:47

I think the 7 is pretty easy to understand as a weapon designed to counter Britain, with less capability to take on America. With the 9's being true 'go anywhere I want' ocean submarines.

Not that the 7 was especially short ranged, but she was smaller than the big cruiser subs like the 9's, Japanese cruiser subs, American cruiser subs, etc. That small size was paid for in lesser abilities in terms of fuel storage and munitions.

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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by thaddeus_c » 05 Jan 2022 17:59

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
05 Jan 2022 00:10
The obvious point being made is that there is some room between the T7 and a purely coastal submarine, which may have been better for the Mediterranean. I'm not convinced that would have been a worthwhile use of German resources but I'm also convinced that it's a more serious point than to raise the false choice between T7 and Seehund.
for my part I was not "choosing" between the Type VII and a smaller Type XXIII (or some other designation) but simply that they became fixed on one type, and one type of operations.

I used the Med for a quick reference to the size/type of boat I was speculating upon, but more broadly I meant something that could have been transportable overland, even if in sections. (well suited to the Black Sea)

certainly when they "inherited" so much coastline to defend, some "different" if not smaller boats would have been warranted?

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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 05 Jan 2022 20:22

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Last edited by TheMarcksPlan on 06 Jan 2022 06:10, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by Terry Duncan » 05 Jan 2022 20:36

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
05 Jan 2022 20:22
thaddeus_c wrote:
05 Jan 2022 17:59
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
05 Jan 2022 00:10
The obvious point being made is that there is some room between the T7 and a purely coastal submarine, which may have been better for the Mediterranean. I'm not convinced that would have been a worthwhile use of German resources but I'm also convinced that it's a more serious point than to raise the false choice between T7 and Seehund.
for my part I was not "choosing" between the Type VII and a smaller Type XXIII (or some other designation) but simply that they became fixed on one type, and one type of operations.

I used the Med for a quick reference to the size/type of boat I was speculating upon, but more broadly I meant something that could have been transportable overland, even if in sections. (well suited to the Black Sea)

certainly when they "inherited" so much coastline to defend, some "different" if not smaller boats would have been warranted?
I absolutely got your point - something between T7 and T23 in size. T.A. Gardner, however, does not get that point. I was merely expressing annoyance at this poster's tendency to opine on subjects requiring technical insight without evincing any such insight nor the effort to gain it.
Maybe you should consider just sticking to the discussion itself and not passing comments about other members insights, lack of, or knowledge?

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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 06 Jan 2022 06:12

Terry Duncan wrote:
05 Jan 2022 20:36

Maybe you should consider just sticking to the discussion itself and not passing comments about other members insights, lack of, or knowledge?
I should. Comment deleted. Apologies to both Terry's.
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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 06 Jan 2022 09:04

thaddeus_c wrote:
05 Jan 2022 17:59
I used the Med for a quick reference to the size/type of boat I was speculating upon, but more broadly I meant something that could have been transportable overland, even if in sections. (well suited to the Black Sea)

certainly when they "inherited" so much coastline to defend, some "different" if not smaller boats would have been warranted?
They didn't really rely on the Uboats for coastal defense, however - not to any great degree. Rather the (IMO correct) strategy was to use Uboats to sink shipping, which would reduce Allied strategic mobility and protect Europe in general.

This strategy worked to a greater degree than most commentators realize. Allied shipping shortages were THE constraint on strategic options during 1942-43. Absent the U-boats, Allies probably could have invaded Europe in 1942 - they certainly could have done ROUNDUP in 1943. For roughly 5% of the armaments budget and a small manpower commitment, Uboats bought Germany roughly two years before facing the full might of the Wallies.
-------------------------------------------

Re transporting Uboats overland in sections, not sure that's really possible. Unlike an Eboat or Siebel Ferry, a Uboat's structural requirements are such that you'd need, basically, to have a final assembly point on the Med/Black seas.

...which isn't a bad idea if Italy, Romania, Bulgaria, or occupied SU had the capability/willingness to host such facilities and had Germany invented modular submarine construction earlier. There was some German shipbuilding happening in Bulgaria, Italy, and occupied SU (Nikolaev), not sure whether they could have been brought up to snuff for Uboats though, absent a crash investment and workforce-relocation/training program. Doenitz and Raeder did discuss moving U-boat production to the Baltic before Ostheer started retreating. I wonder whether the archives contain any detailed analysis of such plans or if they were just notional.


For a Med-optimized sub, what would you imagine? T7 was ~800t, T2 ~250t. I could see a 500t sub being useful and less expensive than T7 for non-coastal Med ops. You don't need 8,500nm range to operate effectively in the Med.

The per-boat savings seems perhaps unjustified, however, by the need to design a whole new boat, invest in new construction facilities, and loss of scale economies for T7/9 production (assuming resources are shifted Med-ward from T7/9).
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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 08 Jan 2022 18:55

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
06 Jan 2022 09:04

Re transporting Uboats overland in sections, not sure that's really possible. Unlike an Eboat or Siebel Ferry, a Uboat's structural requirements are such that you'd need, basically, to have a final assembly point on the Med/Black seas.

...which isn't a bad idea if Italy, Romania, Bulgaria, or occupied SU had the capability/willingness to host such facilities and had Germany invented modular submarine construction earlier.
I'm working my way through Rossler's Uboat "bible," noticed that Germany planned exactly this for T23:
those boats destined for operations in the
Mediterranean and the Black Sea would be built by
their foreign outlets in Toulon (Arsenal); Genoa
(Ansaldo); Monfalcone near Trieste (Cantiere
Riuniti); and Nikolayev. On 20 September 1943,
DW was given a contract for a total of 140 of these
small boats, of which 50 would be built at
Hamburg-Finkenwerder, 30 each at Toulon and
Genoa, and 15 each at Monfalcone and Nikolayev.
As early as December, the yard at Odessa (at that
time under Rumanian authority) was mentioned as
suitable for Black Sea boats
T23 sections were to be rail-transportable for final assembly at the foreign ports.

...which isn't surprising, given that a few Germans are/were smart and the utility of this plan is sort of obvious. The only questionable part is assuming Germany still holds the foreign locales for long but you can't build an assumption that you'll lose the war into your planning... [I mean they should have by then, but the appropriate response is to join the resistance rather than building submarines]
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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by thaddeus_c » 04 Feb 2022 07:17

kfbr392 wrote:
07 Jan 2022 19:39
IMHO, a German Med optimized uboat for 1943 onwards would have had to have the following characteristics:
- assembly in the Med (straits of Gibraltar had become too dangerous) from prefab sections
- ability to march and attack submerged more or less permanently (too many Allied ASV aircraft, escorts, and also shore based radar systems)
- small size in order to not be spotted from the air while at periscope depth (the water was very clear)
- quick diving time
- endurance >2500nm
- at least 2 torpedo tubes and no less than 4 torpedoes

Basically, the XXIII would have almost perfectly fit the bill, albeit on the low end, if it had been lengthened by about 1300mm and been given two torpedo reloads in the bow room. This actually was a consideration in February 1944, but because it would have resulted in delays in XXIII deliveries the proposal was rejected. The wrong decision, IMO.

The XXIX would have been an exellent fit also, on the high end.
thanks for highlighting the Type XXIX, they had a "manic" development program as their situation worsened, and with all the plans (and speculative types) had not really noticed that one.

when we discuss the smaller uboats and mini subs, recall one problem was launching them, think the Seeteufel tracked boat was an innovative design. if they had launched that and the Seehund earlier the designs might have matured.

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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by kfbr392 » 04 Feb 2022 16:11

Greetings Thaddeus.
Seeteufel and Seehund were too small and too slow.
The cramped conditions were too much for the human body to endure for more than a few days.

No, Germany at the end of the war was looking at "big midget submarines" with high underwater and snorkel speeds.
Like Typ XXXIV, a 98t closed-cycle boat, using a S-Boot diesel engine and liquid oxygen storage, which would have been quite formidable for its size. And one where a man could stand up in and stretch every once in a while, also have a bed (one bed to be shared between 4 men) to sleep on.
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Re: "Bastard" Electro U-boats From Early 1943?

Post by thaddeus_c » 04 Feb 2022 16:56

kfbr392 wrote:
04 Feb 2022 16:11
Greetings Thaddeus.
Seeteufel and Seehund were too small and too slow.
The cramped conditions were too much for the human body to endure for more than a few days.

No, Germany at the end of the war was looking at "big midget submarines" with high underwater and snorkel speeds.
Like Typ XXXIV, a 98t closed-cycle boat, using a S-Boot diesel engine and liquid oxygen storage, which would have been quite formidable for its size. And one where a man could stand up in and stretch every once in a while, also have a bed (one bed to be shared between 4 men) to sleep on.
I was speculating in parallel to the Type XXIII and the other developments you mentioned not as an alternative. (and in any case for "short" specific operations yes. for instance the only type available for use at Anzio was the manned torpedo Neger)

some of the "big midget subs" mentioned would be hard to imagine (under any scenario) being ready by '43 or early '44 don't you think?

they had already identified the need for a larger diesel engine for the Seeteufel as well as improved tracks, cannot imagine the KM could proceed thru the development of an engine using liquid oxygen as fast as they could prepare more conventional types?

OTOH, my rationale for pressing the Type XXIII forward prior to the Type XXI, is that it seems more feasible to actually produce and it would not monopolize all their production, so you could envision the production of some of the more advanced types?

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