Kamikaze-class destroyer (1905)

The Kamikaze-class destroyers (神風型駆逐艦, Kamikaze-gata kuchikukan, "divine wind") were a class of thirty-two torpedo boat destroyers (TBDs) of the Imperial Japanese Navy. The Kamikaze class of destroyers were the first destroyers to be mass-produced in Japan. The class is also sometimes referred to as the Asakaze class.[1] This class of destroyer should not be confused with the later Kamikaze-class destroyers built in 1922, which participated in the Pacific War.

IJN Ushio at Vladivostok Taisho 9.jpg
Japanese destroyer Ushio at Vladivostok 1920
Class overview
NameKamikaze class
Operators Imperial Japanese Navy
Preceded by Harusame class
Succeeded by Umikaze class
In commission16 August 1905 – 1 April 1928
Completed32
Lost2
Retired30
General characteristics
TypeDestroyer
Displacement
  • 381 long tons (387 t) normal,
  • 450 long tons (460 t)
Length
  • 69.2 m (227 ft) pp,
  • 72 m (236 ft)
Beam6.57 m (21.6 ft)
Draught1.8 m (5.9 ft)
Propulsion2-shaft reciprocating, 4 coal-fired boilers, 6,000 ihp (4,500 kW)
Speed29 knots (54 km/h)
Range850 nmi (1,570 km) at 11 kn (20 km/h)
Complement70
Armament

BackgroundEdit

The Kamikaze-class destroyers were part of the 1904 Imperial Japanese Navy Emergency Expansion Program created by the outbreak of the Russo-Japanese War. Twenty-five vessels were ordered in 1904; an additional four vessels were ordered in 1905, and three more in 1906, bringing the total to thirty-two ships. The Japanese governmental shipyards were overwhelmed with the volume of construction, and for the first time civilian shipyards were also assigned to produce warships.[2]

DesignEdit

In terms of design, the Kamikaze-class ships were substantially identical to the previous Harusame class, in terms of hull design and external appearance, retaining the flush deck design with a distinctive "turtleback" forecastle inherited from the Ikazuchi class, as well as the four-smokestack profile. However, with operational experience gained in the Russo-Japanese War, the Kamikaze class employed shorter smokestacks with spark and glow arrestors to give the ships a more stealthy capability for night combat operations.

Internally, design and production issues still existed with the Japanese copies of the Yarrow water-tube boilers in the coal-fired triple expansion steam engines, which could produce only 6,000 shaft horsepower (4,500 kW); however, with the final three vessels (Uranami, Isonami, Ayanami), many problems had been resolved, and the engines modified to be run on heavy fuel oil as well as coal.

Armament was the similar in layout to the previous Harusame class, but with larger secondary guns; i.e. two QF 12 pounder 12 cwt naval guns (on a bandstand on the forecastle and on the quarterdeck), four additional short barrel 12 pounder guns (two sited abreast the conning tower, and two sited between the funnels), and two single tubes for 18-inch (457 mm) torpedoes.

Operational historyEdit

Only two Kamikaze-class vessels were completed in time to see combat service in the Russo-Japanese War.

Considered too small, unsuitable for heavy seas, and obsolete by the time of completion, the Kamikaze-class destroyers were quickly removed from front-line combat service after the end of the war, and were de-rated to third-class destroyers on 28 August 1912. Asatsuyu was wrecked off Nanao Bay on 9 November 1913.

However, despite the re-classification, all remaining vessels saw service in World War I. Shirotae was lost in combat on 3 September 1914 off Tsingtao (36°00′N 110°30′E / 36.000°N 110.500°E / 36.000; 110.500), while in combat against the German gunboat SMS Jaguar.[3] This was the first significant warship loss by Japan during World War I.[4]

Eighteen of the remaining surviving vessels were converted into minesweepers on 1 December 1924, and the others struck. However, all of the converted vessels were retired and/or scrapped soon afterwards.[5]

ShipsEdit

Construction data
Name Kanji Builder Laid down Launched Completed Fate Name meaning
Kamikaze 神風 Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Japan 20 August 1904 15 July 1905 16 August 1905 Minesweeper 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 Divine wind
Hatsushimo 初霜 Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Japan 20 August 1904 13 May 1905 18 August 1905 Minesweeper 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 First frost (October)
Yayoi 弥生 Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Japan 20 August 1904 7 August 1905 23 September 1905 Retired 1 December 1924; expended as a target 10 August 1926 Month of born plants(March)
Kisaragi 如月 Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Japan 10 September 1904 6 September 1905 19 October 1905 Minesweeper 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 February
Asakaze 朝風 Mitsubishi shipyards, Nagasaki, Japan 30 December 1904 28 October 1905 1 April 1906 Minesweeper 1 December 1924; struck 1 April 1928, expended as a target 1 August 1929 Morning wind
Shiratsuyu 白露 Mitsubishi shipyards, Nagasaki, Japan 25 February 1905 12 February 1906 23 August 1906 To Reserves 1 December 1924; Scrapped 1930 White dew
Shirayuki 白雪 Mitsubishi shipyards, Nagasaki, Japan 24 March 1905 19 May 1906 12 October 1906 To Reserves 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 White snow
Matsukaze 松風 Mitsubishi shipyards, Nagasaki, Japan 25 September 1905 23 December 1906 15 March 1907 To Reserves 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 Wind to pines in coast
Harukaze 春風 Kawasaki Dockyards, Kobe, Japan 16 February 1905 25 December 1905 14 May 1906 To Reserves 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 Spring wind
Shigure 時雨 Kawasaki Dockyards, Kobe, Japan 3 June 1905 12 March 1906 11 July 1906 Scrapped 1 December 1924 East Asian rainy season
Asatsuyu 朝露 Osaka Iron Works, Osaka, Japan 28 April 1905 2 April 1906 16 November 1906 Wrecked at Nanao Bay 9 November 1913; struck 15 April 1914 Morning dew
Hayate 疾風 Osaka Iron Works, Osaka, Japan 25 September 1905 22 May 1906 13 June 1907 BU 1 December 1924 Fresh breeze
Oite 追手 Maizuru Naval Arsenal, Japan 1 August 1905 10 January 1906 21 August 1906 BU 1 December 1924 Pursuer (an army of the front)
Yūnagi 夕凪 Maizuru Naval Arsenal, Japan 20 January 1906 22 August 1906 25 December 1906 BU 1 December 1924 An evening calm
Yūgure 夕暮 Sasebo Naval Arsenal, Japan 1 March 1905 17 November 1905 26 May 1906 Minesweeper 1 December 1924; scrapped 1928 Evening (sunset)
Yūdachi 夕立 Sasebo Naval Arsenal, Japan 20 March 1905 26 March 1906 16 July 1906 Minesweeper 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 A shower
Mikazuki 三日月 Sasebo Naval Arsenal, Japan 1 June 1905 26 May 1906 12 September 1906 Scrapped 1928 A sickle moon
Nowaki 野分 Sasebo Naval Arsenal, Japan 1 August 1905 25 July 1906 1 November 1906 BU 1 December 1924 A gale between grass (autumn typhoon)
Ushio Kure Naval Arsenal, Japan 12 April 1905 30 August 1905 1 October 1905 Minesweeper 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 A tide
Nenohi 子日 Kure Naval Arsenal, Japan 25 June 1905 30 August 1905 1 October 1905 Minesweeper 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 Pine of New Year's Day
Hibiki Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Japan 28 September 1905 31 March 1906 6 September 1906 Minesweeper 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 An echo
Shirotae 白妙 Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Japan 24 March 1905 30 July 1906 21 January 1907 Combat loss off Shantung Peninsula 4 September 1914; written off 29 October 1914 White cloth
Hatsuharu 初春 Kawasaki Dockyards, Kobe, Japan 11 November 1905 21 May 1906 1 March 1907 Retired 1 December 1924; expended as a target 13 August 1928 Early spring (New Year)
Wakaba 若葉 Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Japan 20 May 1905 25 November 1905 28 February 1906 Minesweeper 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 Young leaves
Hatsuyuki 初雪 Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Japan 11 September 1905 8 March 1906 17 May 1906 Minesweeper 1 December 1924; BU 1 April 1928 The first snow of the year
Uzuki 卯月 Kawasaki Dockyards, Kobe, Japan 22 March 1906 20 September 1906 6 March 1907 Reclassified as a radio-controlled target ship, January 1929 Month of Deutzia (April)
Minatsuki 水無月 Mitsubishi shipyards, Nagasaki, Japan 25 February 1906 5 November 1906 14 February 1907 Minesweeper 1 December 1924, renamed W-10 1 August 1928; scrapped 1930 Month of the submerged rice field (June)
Nagatsuki 長月 Uraga Dock Company, Japan 28 October 1905 15 December 1906 31 July 1907 Minesweeper 1 December 1924, renamed W-11 1 August 1928; retired 1 June 1930 Month of long night (September)
Kikutsuki 菊月 Uraga Dock Company, Japan 2 March 1906 10 April 1907 20 September 1907 Minesweeper 1 December 1924, renamed W-12 1 August 1928; retired 1 June 1930 Month of chrysanthemum (September)
Uranami 浦波 Maizuru Naval Arsenal, Japan 1 May 1907 8 December 1907 2 October 1908 Minesweeper 1 December 1924, renamed W-8 1 August 1928; utility vessel 1 June 1930, scrapped 1935 Wave in an inlet
Isonami 磯波 Maizuru Naval Arsenal, Japan 15 January 1908 21 November 1908 2 April 1909 Minesweeper 1 December 1924, renamed W-7 ` August 1928; utility vessel 1 June 1930 Wave on a sea shore
Ayanami 綾波 Maizuru Naval Arsenal, Japan 15 May 1908 20 March 1909 26 June 1909 Minesweeper 1 December 1924, renamed W-9 1 August 1928; utility vessel 1 June 1930 Cross wave

ReferencesEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Jentsura, Warships of the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1869-1945
  2. ^ Howarth, The Fighting Ships of the Rising Sun
  3. ^ [1] World War I Naval Combat
  4. ^ "Japanese Navy, IJN, World War 1".
  5. ^ Watts & Gordon. The Imperial Japanese Navy. pp. 242–244.

BooksEdit

  • Evans, David & Peattie, Mark R. (1997). Kaigun: Strategy, Tactics, and Technology in the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1887–1941. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-192-7.
  • Friedman, Norman (1985). "Japan". In Gardiner, Robert & Gray, Randal (eds.). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships: 1906–1921. Annapolis: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-907-3.
  • Friedman, Norman (2011). Naval Weapons of World War One. Barnsley, South Yorkshire, UK: Seaforth. ISBN 978-1-84832-100-7.
  • Howarth, Stephen (1983). The Fighting Ships of the Rising Sun: The Drama of the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1895–1945. Atheneum. ISBN 0-689-11402-8.
  • Jentschura, Hansgeorg; Jung, Dieter & Mickel, Peter (1977). Warships of the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1869–1945. Annapolis, Maryland: United States Naval Institute. ISBN 0-87021-893-X.
  • Lyon, David (2006). The First Destroyers. Mercury Books. ISBN 1-84560-010-X.
  • Todaka, Kazushige; Fukui, Shizuo; Eldridge, Robert D. & Leonard, Graham B. (2020). Destroyers: Selected Photos from the Archives of the Kure Maritime Museum; the Best from the Collection of Shizuo Fukui's Photos of Japanese Warships. Japanese Naval Warship Photo Album. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 978-1-59114-630-8.
  • Watts, Anthony J. & Gordon, Brian G. (1971). The Imperial Japanese Navy. London: Macdonald. ISBN 0-35603-045-8.

External linksEdit