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Impressive Pic Of Ijn Musashi


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This was the cover photo of the September edition of Warship International. I don't recall ever seeing it or a similar view before. Taken during her sea trials, it illustrates the absolute massiveness of the design, very beamy with the swayback fore deck. The quality of the scanning suffered from the periodical production, maybe also the colorizing, but I thought it worthy of attention.

 

The credit line was a Japanese blog: http://blog.livedoor.jp/irootoko_jr/archives/1433792.html but all I found were German warship pics also colorized.

 

 

 

Y8JIUo.jpg

 

Found another copy here: https://blogs.yahoo.co.jp/jimmypage660825/69776679.html

 

OGPRnY.jpg

 

Compare to a similar view of an Iowa class BB [45,000 tons standard designed vs the Musashi's 65,000 equivalent displacement]

 

 

016132.jpg

 

or,

 

 

 

 

.

Edited by Ken Estes
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Some of that is positional/optical perspective.

Some is also that the Iowas had a more cluttered beam area with the 5 per side 2x 5" DP turrets on the Iowa vs the 1 per side 1.5cm triple turrets.

Some is absolute size.

USS Iowa Beam - 108 ft 2 in (32.97 meters)
IJN Musashi beam - 121 ft 1in (36.9 meters)

A difference of 13 feet 1"

The Iowa was also built as a Fast BB. The planned but unbuilt Montantas were to be 121 ft 2 in .



re the 'clutter' of the armament. The Iowa class has more superstructure extends out on the deck to elevate more of the secondary armament.
​

1920px-Musashi1942.png

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The Iowa pics didn't come through

OK, I'll supply the URL as well.

 

 

Gill fails to grasp the esthetics, but in any case, one can note that Musashi on trials had very little AAA fitted, and the later IJN decks became quite full in 1944-45 with the inadequate 25mm guns.

 

 

bz1m4I.jpg

Edited by Ken Estes
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Certainly demonstrates the difference in philosophy regarding secondary / AA armament, with the US going for a universal ten turret twenty gun battery, whilst the Japanese has the two different calibres of twelve 15.5cm guns, unsuitable for AA and another twelve 127mm guns for AA.

 

The use of the 25mm cannon was certainly inferior to anything that the US placed on ships after 1942 when the 1.1in gun was being replaced by 20mm and 40mm guns.

 

One last point about the Musashi main battery. The blast from the nine 18" guns was sufficient to injure anyone on deck not protected behind blast proof shields, such as that covering the 127mm guns.

 

Which is also why the ships' aircraft and boats were stowed under armour at the stern.

Edited by DougRichards
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The US AA fits increased over time as well. Compare the North Carolinas at the start of the war with the late war fit.

 

I'm quite aware of the Japanese sense of aesthetics having lived there for a period of time. But I also know about perspective and visual issue that can influence such a view. A clean unfitted out BB is also a very fancy thing but still incomplete. It's a weapon of war, NOT a sports car.

 

But the point about perspective still stands with the nature of the deck also shifting the perspective as well. The lack of fit during the trials also supports my point, the big empty space that demonstrates the substantially larger beam is there because it's not filled up as in the Iowas. Again, it's only a difference of 13 feet which given the size, is less than a 10% difference. Not dramatic. If you compared a completed Montana with 5"/54s out at the deck edge with the above Musashi that would ALSO make the Musashi look beamier than the Montana which given the difference of 1" would be an exaggeration of perspective alone.

 

Compare the images above of the Iowa and the Yamato classes. Which looks longer?

 

 

Regardless of the visual issues, yes, the Musashi was impressive. But, as nifty as the Yamato class ships were, they had insufficient AA fits. Better they died at the hands of our air power than our men and BBs dying at the hands of Japanese air at the end of the war.

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Certainly demonstrates the difference in philosophy regarding secondary / AA armament, with the US going for a universal ten turret twenty gun battery, whilst the Japanese has the two different calibres of twelve 15.5cm guns, unsuitable for AA and another twelve 127mm guns for AA.

 

The use of the 25mm cannon was certainly inferior to anything that the US placed on ships after 1942 when the 1.1in gun was being replaced by 20mm and 40mm guns.

 

One last point about the Musashi main battery. The blast from the nine 18" guns was sufficient to injure anyone on deck not protected behind blast proof shields, such as that covering the 127mm guns.

 

Which is also why the ships' aircraft and boats were stowed under armour at the stern.

Most true, Doug, and the French, German, Russian and Italian post-London BBs also clung to the separate secondary caliber, single purpose, sometimes mounted in cruiser type turrets. It's somewhat explained by the lack of appreciation for carrier aviation as a threat, but also the fixation on Jutland-like battleline engagements where the battleships would have to deal with some cruisers accompanying destroyers in torpedo attacks, without distracting from main battery targets.

 

Almost every film of IJN triple 25mm mounts in action shows one or more gun not firing; it was apparently a hassle for the loaders to get find enough room to serve the weapons.

 

I thought the clean sea trial condition of Musashi offered an unusual opportunity to appreciate her design and mass. I also thought the almost humorous small boats added in davits strapped on deck must indicate what a pain it was to unship the ships boats from their after stowage area. Probably a safety measure in the event of a man overboard.

 

In all a very placid scene for the ship and crew compared to the ships' horrific end.

Edited by Ken Estes
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Certainly demonstrates the difference in philosophy regarding secondary / AA armament, with the US going for a universal ten turret twenty gun battery, whilst the Japanese has the two different calibres of twelve 15.5cm guns, unsuitable for AA and another twelve 127mm guns for AA.

 

The use of the 25mm cannon was certainly inferior to anything that the US placed on ships after 1942 when the 1.1in gun was being replaced by 20mm and 40mm guns.

 

One last point about the Musashi main battery. The blast from the nine 18" guns was sufficient to injure anyone on deck not protected behind blast proof shields, such as that covering the 127mm guns.

 

Which is also why the ships' aircraft and boats were stowed under armour at the stern.

Most true, Doug, and the French, German, Russian and Italian post-London BBs also clung to the separate secondary caliber, single purpose, sometimes mounted in cruiser type turrets. It's somewhat explained by the lack of appreciation for carrier aviation as a threat, but also the fixation on Jutland-like battleline engagements where the battleships would have to deal with some cruisers accompanying destroyers in torpedo attacks, without distracting from main battery targets.

 

which nobody really had an appreciation of until battle experiences were made. Can be seen in the ever increasing number of AAA on all warships that could carry more.

 

Almost every film of IJN triple 25mm mounts in action shows one or more gun not firing; it was apparently a hassle for the loaders to get find enough room to serve the weapons.

 

I thought the clean sea trial condition of Musashi offered an unusual opportunity to appreciate her design and mass. I also thought the almost humorous small boats added in davits strapped on deck must indicate what a pain it was to unship the ships boats from their after stowage area. Probably a safety measure in the event of a man overboard.

 

Also life boats in case something goes terribly wrong during the trials.

 

In all a very placid scene for the ship and crew compared to the ships' horrific end.

 

 

The silence before the storm.

 


 

When I saw the thread title, I was expecting underwater pix of the sunk Musashi ahehe....

 

Impressive, and the pic shows just how massive it was. Iowa's OTOH look slim.

 

 

Me too. I expected underwater photography, too. And I agree, because of its proportions the Musashi make it look mightier than the Iowa. The Iowa class always looked slim to me.

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The reosurces if spent on a few more carriers and cruisers.......

 

You mean like the Shinano?

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_aircraft_carrier_Shinano

 

 

She remains the largest warship ever sunk by a submarine.

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The reosurces if spent on a few more carriers and cruisers.......

 

Would only give them 2 more carriers, and the Japanese didn't run out of carriers, they ran out of aircrews.

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Going off topic, I posted this on the because Japan thread, but maybe it warrants going here. Its an American historian that interviewed some of the last surviving Japanese aircrew, and talking about how they trained and operated. Quite interesting. Apparently the Army Aviation hated the naval aviation because they had a better diet. :D

 

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Yamato and Musashi were designed to overpower the US battleships in order to make up for the difference in numbers. At the time of PH (which comes round tomorrow), Japan had just 8 BBs (soon to be 9 with Yamato getting commissioned later in Dec 41). US had 17 or so, 9 of which in the Pacific if I'm not mistaken. The PH attack reduced that number of 9 down to 1. One would return after a few months, and two more (IIRC) later in mid and late 1942. But even with those coming back and additional newly made ones coming about, the purpose of the Yamato class had largely been removed by the PH attack for the early part of the Pacific War. Had the American BBs not been lost at PH, Yamato probably would have had higher chances of putting its original purpose to the test.

Edited by JasonJ
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If ive read correctly, the whole concept of Musashi and Yamato (and latterly the I400's) was to plug into a whole fleet concept in which the IJN would get to fight a big fleet on fleet action with the USN, which it would it believed win. Which is perhaps understandable, in that Trafalgar had been a big fleet on fleet contest, and the Tsushima strait had also been a fleet on fleet action. So had Jutland, abortive though it turned out to be. So, to an extent, was the Spanish American war. The only problem was, nothing like that materialized in WW2, perhaps because fighting among the islands made big fleet actions impractical, but also perhaps because radio control had meant control of fragmented fleets easier than it had been before. That and carrier air meant combat without fleets even seeing each other had at last arrived. So it was perhaps a great design for a situation that never really arrived.

 

The problem with the Yamatos to me looks that the guns demanded that the most effective use of them was made out of range of enemy fleets, which effectively meant over the horizon attacks. The only effective way they could do that would be with the on board spotter aircraft, which of course mean control of the skies over any major actions they might be employed. And of course, to get air superiority, you need carrier air, and if you have carrier air, why do you need a battleship at all, as you rightly point out the Americans found out themselves.

 

All that said, I think they would have proven useful if only for the guns and the armour on them. Im distinctly glad they never got that chance in any kind of surface action.

Edited by Stuart Galbraith
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Sometimes though whenever I read about the actual various battles and campaigns in 1942, the possibilities seemed rather open ended given how often chance seemed to play a factor. At that time, it was not so necessary for it to turn out the way things went. Had the carriers on both sides knocked each other out 1 to 1, then the BBs would remain standing as the top tier for a period of time.

 

BTW, very interesting video Stuart, I had watched that one sometime ago.

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