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Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them?

 
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Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/17/2007 11:37:45 PM   
KPAX


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The Japanese "Long Lance" torpedo was by far the best torpedo in the Pacific, if not of WWII.

1. Is there any reference of the Allies capturing a Long Lance? They got their hands on an intact Zero, I would think a torpedo would be easier.

2. Were the Allies aware of the vast superority of the Long Lance?

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/17/2007 11:44:27 PM   
niceguy2005


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quote:

ORIGINAL: KPAX

The Japanese "Long Lance" torpedo was by far the best torpedo in the Pacific, if not of WWII.

1. Is there any reference of the Allies capturing a Long Lance? They got their hands on an intact Zero, I would think a torpedo would be easier.

2. Were the Allies aware of the vast superority of the Long Lance?

Oh, they were aware of it alright!

As to why they didn't have it, I don't know. They had bigger fish to fry at the beginning of the war like why the torpedos they did have wouldn't explode. Actually, IIRC, the Navy didn't initially believe reports that torpedo detenators were faulty in the first place and it took 6 months to even admit there was a problem.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/17/2007 11:50:46 PM   
Terminus


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I would think getting an intact Long Lance would be A HELL OF A LOT MORE DIFFICULT. As it turned out, the Long Lance was only superior in theory anyway...

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 12:00:19 AM   
KPAX


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Terminus

Terminus, I would think getting an intact Long Lance would be A HELL OF A LOT MORE DIFFICULT. As it turned out, the Long Lance was only superior in theory anyway...


Why more diffucult ? A pilot can jump in a Zero and take off to a different location. Whereas, a torpedo would have to be loaded )or destroyed, same as an plane)

Why do you say in theory it was better ?

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 12:09:58 AM   
Terminus


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Well, if you had to wait for a Long Lance to come to you it would probably arrive in shrapnel form.

And as for my "in theory" comment, try to find out how many times the IJN used the weapon successfully according to pre-war doctrine. Wasn't very many. The times where the Japs launched their Long Lances taking full advantage of the weapon's monstrous range can be counted on one hand.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 12:21:02 AM   
Terminus


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Take Savo Island, for example. Five Allied cruisers were sunk or put out of action during that fight:

- HMAS Canberra was struck by two torpedoes (most likely Long Lances) and more than twenty 8-inch rounds, and was still around to be scuttled the next morning by nearly 300 5-inch shells and several torpedoes.

- USS Chicago was struck by a single torpedo (again, assumed to be a Long Lance) but was able to control her damage and stay in the fight.

- USS Astoria, Vincennes and Quincy were all sunk by Japanese 6-inch and 8-inch gunfire. Astoria was hit by no torpedoes, Vincennes and Astoria by three each, but all three cruisers went down fighting and had to be pounded to pieces by Jap guns.

My point is, if the LL had been the Wonder Weapon that some people make it out to, why did the Japanese have such a hard time blowing these ships to pieces with gunfire?

I used to be a believer, but not anymore...

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 12:40:18 AM   
Demosthenes


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Terminus is right about this,
In fact the only Long Lance torpedo hit at Savo Is that had a bearing on the battle was the hit on Chicago (which did not sink nor cripple her) - because it took Chicago away from the fight(went off in the wrong direction).
All the other torpedo hits (of which the second hit on Canberra was almost certainly fro a US DD because of the direction it came from) had no direct decision in the battle because the Allied CAs were hit by torpedoes AFTER they were already turned into blazing wrecks by gunfire.
Furthermore, you won't read of any hits beyond the 10,000 yard bracket in any of the battles (possible exception of Java Sea night phase).
quote:

ORIGINAL: Terminus

Take Savo Island, for example. Five Allied cruisers were sunk or put out of action during that fight:

- HMAS Canberra was struck by two torpedoes (most likely Long Lances) and more than twenty 8-inch rounds, and was still around to be scuttled the next morning by nearly 300 5-inch shells and several torpedoes.

- USS Chicago was struck by a single torpedo (again, assumed to be a Long Lance) but was able to control her damage and stay in the fight.

- USS Astoria, Vincennes and Quincy were all sunk by Japanese 6-inch and 8-inch gunfire. Astoria was hit by no torpedoes, Vincennes and Astoria by three each, but all three cruisers went down fighting and had to be pounded to pieces by Jap guns.

My point is, if the LL had been the Wonder Weapon that some people make it out to, why did the Japanese have such a hard time blowing these ships to pieces with gunfire?

I used to be a believer, but not anymore...


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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 1:46:49 AM   
BrucePowers


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Also, storing the O2 did have its disadvantages. It wasn't the safest weapon to have in your on deck torpedo tubes.

< Message edited by BrucePowers -- 9/18/2007 2:57:05 AM >

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 2:42:08 AM   
AW1Steve


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My understanding of it was that the allies were uncomfortable with the oxygen propulsion system. The British played with oxygen propelled torpedo's in the 1920's and found them to be very dangerous and unstable (sort of like their experince with hydrogen peroxide submarines). In fact I seem to remenber that the Japanese had some nasty explosions during developement ,but  worked through them.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 2:50:05 AM   
rtrapasso


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There have been a couple of threads quoting evidence that the Long Lance torps may have cost the IJN as many of their own ships as enemy ships sunk.

Several ships were apparently severely damaged and/or sunk when their Long Lance torps were detonated by Allied action. In addition, in at least on instance, the long range of the torps caused them to run into IJN transports after they missed Allied warships (e.g. - the action with the Houston.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 2:54:45 AM   
AW1Steve


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I wonder if any simply blew up? Or pehaps a sympathetic explosion? I wonder if anyone has reseached unusal explosions of Japanese warships? The only one I'm familar with is the battleship Mutsu , but I had heard that was a magazine explosion.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 2:56:54 AM   
BrucePowers


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The IJN spent a lot more time practicing torpedo tactics than any of the allied navies.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 12:32:52 PM   
hvymtl13


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This article refers to a Japanese midget submarine captured at Pearl shortly after the intial attack.


Sakamaki's midget sub had several mechanical problems, including a non-functioning gyrocompass, so he and his crewman Kiyoshi Inagaki could not control its direction. They eventually abandoned the midget after setting explosives to scuttle it, but they failed to explode. The small craft ran aground and was recovered so that Navy Intelligence could investigate this Japanese secret weapon and its contents. Inagaki died on the way from the midget submarine to the shore, but Sakamaki was captured after washing up on the beach.

In addition:
The submarines were each armed with two 17.7 inch (450 mm) torpedoes in muzzle-loading tubes one above the other on the port bow. In the Pearl Harbor attack the specially designed type 97 torpedo was used, but problems with the oxygen flasks meant that all later attacks used the type 91 torpedo designed for aircraft launching. There was also a demolition charge which it has been suggested was large enough to enable the submarine to be used as a suicide weapon, but there is no evidence that it was ever used as one.

And in conclusion:
Only one submarine is known to have penetrated the harbor and it fired its torpedoes at the USS Curtiss and USS Monaghan. Another sub fired its torpedoes at the USS St. Louis as she exited the harbor. The remaining three subs (the one captured, one found in 1960 and one found in 2003) had their torpedoes onboard when found.

I can find no mention of the type 93 Long Lance torpedo being captured. Though the type 97 is a variant developed fromn the original type 93 Long Lance.

A 17.7 inch (450 mm) version designated the Type 97 torpedo was later developed for use by midget submarines, but it was not a success and was replaced operationally by the Type 91 torpedo. A 21 inch (533 mm) version for use by submerged submarines was designated the Type 95 torpedo and was highly successful, but did not have as great an effect on the war as it might have had, owing to the Japanese tactic of using submarines to engage warships rather than merchantmen

< Message edited by hvymtl13 -- 9/18/2007 12:58:12 PM >


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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 5:33:28 PM   
spence

 

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Shattered Sword goes into considerable detail of the trials and tribulations of the Mogami and Mikuma following their collision near Midway. Both were evidently struck by a bomb in the vicinity of the torpedo mounts/room. The DCA on Mogami immediately jettisioned his torpedos even though it ran counter to Japanese martial philosophy if not doctrine. The DCA on the Mikuma did not. The fires on both ships were difficult to control. On Mikuma the fire ultimately caused a sympathetic detonation of the torpedos which devastated the midships area of the ship and made further damage control efforts fruitless. Although struck again in the midships area by a large bomb Mogami's DCA succeeded in bringing the fire under control and saving the ship.

I did a bit of research re IJN cruisers which were lost following the detonation of their own torpedos. There were quite a few. Two of the CAs lost by the IJN in the Battle off Samar (Leyte, 1944) were rendered unnavigable by their torpedos exploding after damage and a fire near the tubes. My recollections of the specifics are a bit hazy but IIRC there were about 8 IJN heavy and light cruisers lost following the detonation of their own torpedos following damage.

I think the US lost a destroyer (USS Strong?) to a Long Lance at some incredible range on one occasion near Kolombangara in the Solomons. The loss was attributed to a mine during the war since the only indication to the US that any IJN ships were anywheres about was a couple of blips just disappearing off the edge of the 20 mile range scale of their radar scopes 20 mins before the DD was hit.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 6:08:44 PM   
herwin

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: spence

Shattered Sword goes into considerable detail of the trials and tribulations of the Mogami and Mikuma following their collision near Midway. Both were evidently struck by a bomb in the vicinity of the torpedo mounts/room. The DCA on Mogami immediately jettisioned his torpedos even though it ran counter to Japanese martial philosophy if not doctrine. The DCA on the Mikuma did not. The fires on both ships were difficult to control. On Mikuma the fire ultimately caused a sympathetic detonation of the torpedos which devastated the midships area of the ship and made further damage control efforts fruitless. Although struck again in the midships area by a large bomb Mogami's DCA succeeded in bringing the fire under control and saving the ship.

I did a bit of research re IJN cruisers which were lost following the detonation of their own torpedos. There were quite a few. Two of the CAs lost by the IJN in the Battle off Samar (Leyte, 1944) were rendered unnavigable by their torpedos exploding after damage and a fire near the tubes. My recollections of the specifics are a bit hazy but IIRC there were about 8 IJN heavy and light cruisers lost following the detonation of their own torpedos following damage.


I think I saw similar evidence when I investigated it about twenty years ago. In fact, I think eight cruisers lost that way is a conservative estimate.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 7:24:41 PM   
AW1Steve


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quote:

ORIGINAL: KPAX

The Japanese "Long Lance" torpedo was by far the best torpedo in the Pacific, if not of WWII.

1. Is there any reference of the Allies capturing a Long Lance? They got their hands on an intact Zero, I would think a torpedo would be easier.

2. Were the Allies aware of the vast superority of the Long Lance?

If any of you guy's live in the Pacific North west , you might contact the Navy museum at Keyport WA. They (the base) have done a great deal of the torpedo research during and after the war (up to the present) and should know if the US had captured a long lance. In fact if one was taken , there's a 50% chance that they have it. Besides , it's a pretty cool museum on it's own.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 7:43:28 PM   
niceguy2005


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Terminus

Take Savo Island, for example. Five Allied cruisers were sunk or put out of action during that fight:

- HMAS Canberra was struck by two torpedoes (most likely Long Lances) and more than twenty 8-inch rounds, and was still around to be scuttled the next morning by nearly 300 5-inch shells and several torpedoes.

- USS Chicago was struck by a single torpedo (again, assumed to be a Long Lance) but was able to control her damage and stay in the fight.

- USS Astoria, Vincennes and Quincy were all sunk by Japanese 6-inch and 8-inch gunfire. Astoria was hit by no torpedoes, Vincennes and Astoria by three each, but all three cruisers went down fighting and had to be pounded to pieces by Jap guns.

My point is, if the LL had been the Wonder Weapon that some people make it out to, why did the Japanese have such a hard time blowing these ships to pieces with gunfire?

I used to be a believer, but not anymore...

Interesting Thread. One could certainly see that the Long Lance was no silver bullet, however, certainly if employed properly it was a weapon to be feared. A single torpedo hit is far more likely to be crippling than a single shell hit and a torpedo hit is almost never minor, at best its going to lead to a lot of flooding.

Obviously I'm not too much of a student of naval tactics...seems to me that one of the greatest advantages of a long lance attack might be that after you fire you are free to manuever, meanwhile your enemy, if they are aware of torpedos, is going to be obliged to manuveur to avoid the torpedos.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 7:47:00 PM   
marky


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interesting, tho IIRC only 4 Allied CAs were sunk at Savo

Canberra, Astoria, Quincy and Vincennes

Chicago survived

theres sum really good books on Savo too

im lookin at 1 sittin on my bookshelf, i cant remmeber wat its called and i cant read it from here and i dont feel like getting up

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 7:48:39 PM   
marky


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more good stuff

http://www.combinedfleet.com/lancers.htm

http://www.combinedfleet.com/torps.htm

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/18/2007 8:59:08 PM   
spence

 

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Compiled the following stuff from the IJN cruiser TROMs at Combined Fleet.com

quote:

1. About 90 shells hit the FURUTAKA and some ignite her Type 93 "Long Lance" torpedoes that start heavy fires. The fires draw more gunfire.


2. At 0851, CHOKAI is taken under 5-inch fire from "Taffy 3" escort carriers and destroyer escort ROBERTS. She is hit starboard side amidships, perhaps by ROBERTS. At 0859, a secondary explosion, probably caused by CHOKAI's armed torpedoes on deck, knocks out her engines and rudder. She shears out of formation to port and moves eastward.

3. MIKUMA is hit by at least five bombs in the forecastle, bridge area and amidships and set afire. The hit on the forecastle puts the forward guns out of commission. The hit near the bridge area sets off some ready service AA shells and causes considerable damage to the bridge and personnel. The hit amidships sets off several torpedoes and the resultant explosions destroy the ship. Captain Sakiyama is wounded severely. MIKUMA turns on her portside and sinks at 29-22N, 176-34E. 650 crewmen are killed.

4. At 1050, SUZUYA is attacked by 30 other carrier aircraft. A near-miss to starboard by a bomb sets off SUZUYA's No. 1 torpedo tubes loaded with oxygen-propelled Type 93 "Long Lance" torpedoes. At 1100, additional torpedoes start to explode. The fire and blasts damage the starboard engine rooms and the No. 7 boiler room. SUZUYA becomes unnavigable. At 1105, destroyer OKINAMI is ordered to assist SUZUYA. At 1130, Vice Admiral Shiraishi again transfers his flag, this time to TONE. At noon, SUZUYA's remaining torpedoes and ammunition explode. At 1150, Abandon Ship is ordered. At 1315, SUZUYA turns on her starboard side. At 1322, she sinks at 11-45.2N, 126-11.2E. Captain Teraoka and 401 officers and men are rescued by OKINAMI.

5. Sulu Sea. Between 1006-1044, the ABUKUMA suffers three attacks by Consolidated B-24 "Liberator" bombers of the 5th Group, 13th Air Force. At 1006, she takes a direct hit near the No. 3 140-mm gun mount. At 1020, B-24 bombers of the 33rd Squadron, 22nd Group, 5th Air Force score two direct hits aft that start heavy fires. Power is lost, the steering gear breaks down and her speed falls off. The fire spreads to the aft engine and torpedo rooms. At 1037, four Type 93 "Long Lance" oxygen-propelled torpedoes explode.


Only counting cruisers principally sunk by torpedos the "Type 93 Scoreboard" looks like so:

RNS De Ruyter - Java Sea
RNS Java - Java Sea
USS Northampton - Tassafaronga
USS Helena - Kula Gulf

Of course the IJN scored Long Lance hits on many more cruisers than just those 4: a fairly complete list (maybe)

HMAS Perth - Sunda Strait
USS Houston - Sunda Strait
USS Chicago - Savo Island
HMAS Canberra - Savo Island
USS Astoria - Savo Island
USS Atlanta - Naval Battle of Guadalcanal (13Nov42)
USS Juneau - Naval Battle of Guadalcanal (13Nov42)
USS Portland - Naval Battle of Guadalcanal (13Nov42)
USS Minneapolis - Tassafaronga
USS New Orleans - Tassafaronga
USS Pensacola - Tassafaronga
USS St Louis - forgot the name of this engagement (middle Solomons)
HMNZS Leander - forgot the name of this engagement (middle Solomons)
USS Honolulu - not sure if this belongs here or not (middle Solomons?)

So it looks like IJN cruisers sank 4 cruisers and damaged 14 with their torpedos losing 5 of their own number due to the explosion those same torpedos after other damage and fire.



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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/19/2007 12:06:53 AM   
trollelite

 

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They are the worst day-time torpedo in the game, in daytime they are no better than non-existing!!

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/19/2007 4:53:57 AM   
Local Yokel


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This is from memory, so may be completely wrong.

I can think of no engagement in which the Japanese got the opportunity to implement their 'long range concealed firing' tactic using Type 93's. Perhaps the closest they got to it was Tassafaronga, where Tanaka's squadron may well have been able to launch from a position of concealment because the US forces were distracted by Takanami (which paid the full penalty for having attracted so much US attention). With tongue somewhat in cheek, I suggest that the resulting score of 3 CA mission kills and one CA sunk looks like a convincing vindication of the work the Japanese put into this weapon.

I would have thought that the Allies were unaware of the Type 93's potency for most, if not all, of the war's duration. If I remember correctly, HNMS Kortenaer was sunk by a Type 93 fired at long range at Java Sea, but it was thought at the time that the weapon had come from a nearby submarine.

Whilst on the subject of good WWII torpedoes, the British Mark VIII deserves a mention: after forty plus years still preferred to a wire-guided state-of-the-art job and entirely adequate for the destruction of a Brooklyn CL in 1982.

I believe USS St Louis, USS Honolulu and HMNZS Leander were struck by torpedoes at Kolombangara.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/19/2007 5:03:58 AM   
BrucePowers


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The other reason for awful US torpedoes during the first part of the war was political manuvering at Bureau of Ordnance

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/19/2007 6:57:03 AM   
marky


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quote:

ORIGINAL: BrucePowers

The other reason for awful US torpedoes during the first part of the war was political manuvering at Bureau of Ordnance



yah it was just disgraceful

they kept getting reports...


the torps arent working!!!

the fish arent exploding!!!


and they just said, nahh theyre fine

wasnt till like mid 43 that they actually tested em

greatyly prolonged the war

and how about all the times USN boats ran into IJN carriers and didnt get em cuz the bloody fish didnt work?


disgraceful, makes me feel like pukin

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/19/2007 12:00:43 PM   
Charles_22


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Terminus

Take Savo Island, for example. Five Allied cruisers were sunk or put out of action during that fight:

- HMAS Canberra was struck by two torpedoes (most likely Long Lances) and more than twenty 8-inch rounds, and was still around to be scuttled the next morning by nearly 300 5-inch shells and several torpedoes.

- USS Chicago was struck by a single torpedo (again, assumed to be a Long Lance) but was able to control her damage and stay in the fight.

- USS Astoria, Vincennes and Quincy were all sunk by Japanese 6-inch and 8-inch gunfire. Astoria was hit by no torpedoes, Vincennes and Astoria by three each, but all three cruisers went down fighting and had to be pounded to pieces by Jap guns.

My point is, if the LL had been the Wonder Weapon that some people make it out to, why did the Japanese have such a hard time blowing these ships to pieces with gunfire?

I used to be a believer, but not anymore...


Remember Pearl Harbor was no clam bake.

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/20/2007 2:03:52 AM   
KPAX


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Wasn't their a movie, which had a decent part in it which addressed the USN torpedo?

What was the name of that movie? 

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RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/20/2007 2:36:16 AM   
Fishbed


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Charles_22


quote:

ORIGINAL: Terminus

Take Savo Island, for example. Five Allied cruisers were sunk or put out of action during that fight:

- HMAS Canberra was struck by two torpedoes (most likely Long Lances) and more than twenty 8-inch rounds, and was still around to be scuttled the next morning by nearly 300 5-inch shells and several torpedoes.

- USS Chicago was struck by a single torpedo (again, assumed to be a Long Lance) but was able to control her damage and stay in the fight.

- USS Astoria, Vincennes and Quincy were all sunk by Japanese 6-inch and 8-inch gunfire. Astoria was hit by no torpedoes, Vincennes and Astoria by three each, but all three cruisers went down fighting and had to be pounded to pieces by Jap guns.

My point is, if the LL had been the Wonder Weapon that some people make it out to, why did the Japanese have such a hard time blowing these ships to pieces with gunfire?

I used to be a believer, but not anymore...


Remember Pearl Harbor was no clam bake.

Sure, but japanese airborne torpedoes were not long lances AFAIK

I suppose we can technically take the risk to say that, on that very ground, nothing in the USN inventory could come close to the Long Lance in terms of performances, except on the explosive power (when the US torpedo would explode of course). I suppose that the explosive power of the Long Lance could have been improved if the Japanese had been anywhere serious about researching new explosives - something the Allied did with the new Torpex heads for their own fishs.
But sheer performances only are sufficient to demonstrate the superiority of the Japanese weapon over its USN counterpart, even though this came with the price of security (something the Japanese could probably have addressed too if they had felt it to be necessary...). Long Lances were catastrophes waiting to happen for their own ships, but well on the other hand, if we take a look at the USN surface ships hall of fame when it comes to torpedoes, one must admit the torpedo tubes aboard US destroyers were eventually more of a nice-looking toy than anything else...

Does anyone have something about the number and the circumstances of US surface combattants' (apart from the PT boats) torpedo hits in battle?

(in reply to Charles_22)
Post #: 27
RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/20/2007 6:07:15 AM   
hvymtl13


Posts: 214
Joined: 8/29/2007
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quote:

ORIGINAL: trollelite

They are the worst day-time torpedo in the game, in daytime they are no better than non-existing!!

This should not be.. The oxygen used for propulsion is for the most part consumed and leaves very little bubble trails. Another plus for the Japenese to overlook the potential hazrds. They did in fact add an additional flask for normal air to be used at launching, then swapped over to the oxygen flask to continue on. It helped fix the explosions they were having in testing.

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(in reply to trollelite)
Post #: 28
RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/20/2007 6:09:22 AM   
hvymtl13


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quote:

ORIGINAL: KPAX

Wasn't their a movie, which had a decent part in it which addressed the USN torpedo?

What was the name of that movie? 

I remember this movie I think. They show the torpedoes being dropped from a crance at dockside to test different detonators?

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(in reply to KPAX)
Post #: 29
RE: Long Lance - Why Allies did not have them? - 9/20/2007 7:42:07 AM   
Charles_22


Posts: 3993
Joined: 3/12/2001
From: Dallas, Texas, USA
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: Fishbed


quote:

ORIGINAL: Charles_22


quote:

ORIGINAL: Terminus

Take Savo Island, for example. Five Allied cruisers were sunk or put out of action during that fight:

- HMAS Canberra was struck by two torpedoes (most likely Long Lances) and more than twenty 8-inch rounds, and was still around to be scuttled the next morning by nearly 300 5-inch shells and several torpedoes.

- USS Chicago was struck by a single torpedo (again, assumed to be a Long Lance) but was able to control her damage and stay in the fight.

- USS Astoria, Vincennes and Quincy were all sunk by Japanese 6-inch and 8-inch gunfire. Astoria was hit by no torpedoes, Vincennes and Astoria by three each, but all three cruisers went down fighting and had to be pounded to pieces by Jap guns.

My point is, if the LL had been the Wonder Weapon that some people make it out to, why did the Japanese have such a hard time blowing these ships to pieces with gunfire?

I used to be a believer, but not anymore...


Remember Pearl Harbor was no clam bake.

Sure, but japanese airborne torpedoes were not long lances AFAIK

I suppose we can technically take the risk to say that, on that very ground, nothing in the USN inventory could come close to the Long Lance in terms of performances, except on the explosive power (when the US torpedo would explode of course). I suppose that the explosive power of the Long Lance could have been improved if the Japanese had been anywhere serious about researching new explosives - something the Allied did with the new Torpex heads for their own fishs.
But sheer performances only are sufficient to demonstrate the superiority of the Japanese weapon over its USN counterpart, even though this came with the price of security (something the Japanese could probably have addressed too if they had felt it to be necessary...). Long Lances were catastrophes waiting to happen for their own ships, but well on the other hand, if we take a look at the USN surface ships hall of fame when it comes to torpedoes, one must admit the torpedo tubes aboard US destroyers were eventually more of a nice-looking toy than anything else...

Does anyone have something about the number and the circumstances of US surface combattants' (apart from the PT boats) torpedo hits in battle?


I just assume they were LL's for some reason, but even if they were not, they were modified and tested to run shallower than normal, thereby mkaing them "special" anyway, even if they weren't technically LL's , and I'm not sure they were not. Just using a lack of distinct data in this case, it just doesn't seem likely that they would arm their Kates on what turned out to be their main attack, without them being LL's. Then again, if the other types wroked very well, IJ might had decided they would better be saved for an attack that wasn't so well set up (where their advanatages might be more felt). Besides, even if they weren't LL's, and I would assume any of us take the LL's to be the best they had, if their second or third best torps are used at PH instead, what would that say about what LL's would had done? Of course they may not had been able to get them to run shallow, and therefore would had done worse at PH.


< Message edited by Charles_22 -- 9/20/2007 7:45:34 AM >

(in reply to Fishbed)
Post #: 30
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