AHQ: U-boat sinking rate to achieve victory?

Sure. I think the performance of the uboatwaffe would've been improved, and its effectiveness prolonged, perhaps considerably, if three changes were made. First, emphasize Type IX construction. Considering that the bulk of sinkings and the most remunerative patrols occurred in remote, peripheral areas, the Germans should've invested more in long range boats. Second the IXs should not have been used in anti-convoy operations, not even on their first patrols when coming out of the Baltic. Third, they should've maintained absolute radio silence, save for emergencies, when transiting to or from patrol areas.



Well, even if the Germans emphasized long range boats they still had to attack convoys, at least occasionally, with the VIIs they had so the allies had to maintain the convoy system, to the detriment of efficient shipping circulation.
The IX boats were hampered by being much slower diving than the VII's. This becomes a factor when operating close to coasts early in the war and later on when there was pervasive ASW patrols via escort carriers and long range ASW aircraft later on.
 
The IX boats were hampered by being much slower diving than the VII's. This becomes a factor when operating close to coasts early in the war and later on when there was pervasive ASW patrols via escort carriers and long range ASW aircraft later on.
Sure but in general, operating in remote areas diminished the risk of encountering strong allied ASW forces. Allied aircraft were still a big problem in the Bay of Biscay, but if IXs maintained radio silence (not even daily position reports) it would've been harder for aircraft over the bay, or hunter killer teams, to find them. Many more would've reached operational areas and bagged many more ships; moreover, not knowing how many boats were headed where would've forced the allies to squander a lot more resources defending remote areas. They'd have to reinforce certain areas on a continuing basis instead of just temporarily reinforcing them. It's likely that by the end of '43 stronger defenses would've thwarted the u-boats even in peripheral areas, but not until after a much heavier toll in shipping had been extracted; in addition, tying down a lot of planes far from Britain might've affected the course of the war in Europe.
The changes may not have won the war for the reich, but if (starting in January 1943) all the IXs had been sent to the Cape of Good Hope and other remote areas higher shipping losses, coupled with dilution of allied assets, might've made the allied war effort more anemic.
 
Sure but in general, operating in remote areas diminished the risk of encountering strong allied ASW forces. Allied aircraft were still a big problem in the Bay of Biscay, but if IXs maintained radio silence (not even daily position reports) it would've been harder for aircraft over the bay, or hunter killer teams, to find them. Many more would've reached operational areas and bagged many more ships; moreover, not knowing how many boats were headed where would've forced the allies to squander a lot more resources defending remote areas. They'd have to reinforce certain areas on a continuing basis instead of just temporarily reinforcing them. It's likely that by the end of '43 stronger defenses would've thwarted the u-boats even in peripheral areas, but not until after a much heavier toll in shipping had been extracted; in addition, tying down a lot of planes far from Britain might've affected the course of the war in Europe.
The changes may not have won the war for the reich, but if (starting in January 1943) all the IXs had been sent to the Cape of Good Hope and other remote areas higher shipping losses, coupled with dilution of allied assets, might've made the allied war effort more anemic.
Working in remote areas also reduces your number of targets. And the importance of what those targets are carrying. Not much point in successfully shutting off 100% of routes that only carry 2% of Britain's imports.
 
Working in remote areas also reduces your number of targets.
But generally by 1943 at the latest no number of u-boats would've made much difference in the North Atlantic. Defenses had become so strong the u-boats would only get a bloody nose. In April-May 1943 the Germans committed their IXs as well as VIIs to the North Atlantic but the result was a massacre.
Sending most boats to remote areas would've reduced opportunities to sink vessels on the North Atlantic run (not that I advocated giving up there entirely) but it would've led to far more sinkings overall, at far less cost, and this would've had indirect effect in the Atlantic, due to diminished tonnage.

And the importance of what those targets are carrying. Not much point in successfully shutting off 100% of routes that only carry 2% of Britain's imports.
But impeding shipping to Egypt, India and the USSR might've gravely hurt the British war effort and also the Soviet effort, inasmuch as a lot of LL supplies went via the Persian gulf after passing the Cape of Good Hope.
 
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It would've reduced opportunities to sink vessels on the North Atlantic run, (not that I advocated giving up there entirely) but it would've led to far more sinkings overall, and this would've had indirect effect in the Atlantic, due to diminished tonnage.
Use surface raiders to scatter convoys and the U-boats will do the rest.
But impeding shipping to Egypt, India and the USSR might've gravely hurt the British war effort and also the Soviet effort, inasmuch as a lot of LL supplies went via the Persian gulf after passing the Cape of Good Hope.
It's pretty risky operating that close to India and Ceylon especially. Japanese assistance would probably be required for it to be successful.
 
Let us, like a sane strategic force, work backwards.
1. 2020 Agogo.

Assume that we need to sink the Norwegian, French, British and US merchant marine in the Atlantic to the point where France and the UK are incapable of war against Germany.
2. That is a WAG with no operational lessons learned to provide foundational planning for force structure and use. The Americans figured they would have to kill 90% of the tanker fleet (1943) to make the tanker war work.

At what point of import loss do these economies "tank?"
3. Depends on the types of imports; and the carriage % via sea. US Civil War experience and lesson learned was 75% stoppage.

How many tonnes of merchant marine must be sunk to achieve this? How many tonnes of merchant marine can be constructed by France, Norway, Britain and the US before they experience negative economic consequences from having to construct merchant marines causing them to exit the war?
4. Out of 40,000,000 tonnes global? About 30,000,000 tonnes.

How long can Germany sustain a war against France and Britain?
5. Without Russian assistance and without France collapsing? About 1 year.

How do we achieve the required sinking in 3 years, or the length we can sustain war against France and Britain, which ever is lesser.
About 200 Type IX U-boats (snort equipped) at sea and 300 reserve.

What form of evidence would we use to track reality against our planned capacities and requirements?
Newspapers, sleeper agents and aerial reconnaissance and neutral naval attaches reports.

Can we do so? At what cost? Do we even have the capacity to expend that cost?
No. Bankrupt the economy. No.

Those are the questions I'd ask before transit times, submarine livability, etc.
I would ask if the answers are universal as generated above, someone would come to the correct conclusion and say "Keep the PEACE, you ___ ___ed fools!" and/or shoot the Berlin Maniac.
 
France had, at my very lazy count, 124 submarines built, under construction, or authorized at the start of the war. This includes subs of all types: obsolete, coastal, cruiser and modern fleet subs. If Germany did a better job somehow of putting that fleet to work for them, including finishing the ones under construction, they would have a big leg up. How that would happen, I have no idea.

 
Not really. Anything under a C3 is easy prey for a deck gun.
Greatest Uboat ace of all time did so primarily with a deck gun.
I don't recall saying deck guns were a bad idea. In WW1, when von Arnauld de la Perière (I always have to look up his name, because I can't recall past "Lothar"... :rolleyes: :teary: ) did it, aircraft were less of a threat.
Americans had developed radio guided torpedo in 1930. Germans had Goliath tank. Dedication of resources there would see easy payof, after all it’s just slaving an electro wire to either the hidrophone or periscope of a submarine.
Yet not essential against merchantmen. Why make a torpedo, already a complex machine, more complicated?:confounded:
Yes. And USN was torture with poor torpedos on top. Study of it and implementation that is effective isn’t too far out of range of possibilities.
I really have no idea what this means.
Modular in terms of having engines, torpedo tubes and batteries ready, not modular in terms of having hull sheets pre-prepared for assembly.
That makes sense. (It's not what I'd call "modular"...)
It would greatly increase survivability if submarine by serving as a decoy that behaves realistically. Germany already had zig zag pattern torpedos, all they’d need to do is slow them down and make them depth capable.
And every one of them would take away a warshot. The idea is to increase sinkings.
Submarines suffered something like 75% casualty rate.
The Germans did, in the face of BdU demanding absurdly high use of radio. Take that away, you're making U-boats a lot harder to locate & attack.
supposing that Britain will kee it that way in a war when they have already shown both innovative ness and dedication to ASW is silly.
The losses OTL were mainly in lone ships, when the Brits did show exactly that. There might be stronger emphasis on convoy discipline, reducing rompers & stragglers. There might be stronger emphasis on radio discipline in convoys (& if there isn't, the Germans should be exploiting it). There might even be greater insistence on convoys to reduce the number of solo sailings; IDK why there were so many. I take as given Britain will respond. My thinking is, the German improvements, as proposed, can make up those changes. (In particular if applied to tankers.)
Making the crew more confident by giving them greater odds of survival would alone pay dividends in more attacks and less missed opportunities due to fear. And that is without factoring in the survival of the ships and valuable veteran crew. While my proposal does require innovation of both technology as well as naval doctrine it’s not impossible for the time period at years of preparation.
You're not wrong. I suggest better training & (more important) better selection of commanders is key. IDK how you learn in advance a commander is no good, so I'd take Lockwood's approach: two unproductive patrols, & he's gone. (No, I'm not sure Uncle Charlie didn't give them more than that. I wouldn't.)
A better solution IMO would've been radar or at least radar detectors--though in the case of the latter it was hard to keep pace with the allies.
I'd agree on both counts. IMO, the Germans squandered their lead in radar, thanks in part to a systematic inability for science, industry, & BdU to communicate effectively.

RWR would help save U-boats--but better radar would improve hit probability & so increase sinkings, which means the per-patrol tonnage goes up, which means the sustained force can be smaller...
 
As we both concluded in a long back and forth, you solve it in the crews and in the weapons. Wakehomers or screw chasers, and give the crews a reliable ergo-friendly launch platform that can sprint on the surface and dive to attack using sonar and radar to set up ambush shots. And a QUIET boat is better than a Type XXI deathtrap. Speed + noise = dead U-boat.

Cause Fido will get you.
 
As we both concluded in a long back and forth, you solve it in the crews and in the weapons. Wakehomers or screw chasers, and give the crews a reliable ergo-friendly launch platform that can sprint on the surface and dive to attack using sonar and radar to set up ambush shots. And a QUIET boat is better than a Type XXI deathtrap. Speed + noise = dead U-boat.

Cause Fido will get you.
Solution to noise= anechoic tiles
OTL the Germans used it and it worked.
 
Anechoic tiles for German U-boats in WWII has been thoroughly debunked.

McP.

Four ships sunk in the Channel in August 1944, when the Channel has to be crawling with Allied ASW.
And U-480 survived that mission undetected.

You can't argue with results.
 

Four ships sunk in the Channel in August 1944, when the Channel has to be crawling with Allied ASW.
And U-480 survived that mission undetected.

You can't argue with results.
BULL. It was MINED and killed.

I debunked this one example, when I pointed out that of the ten lousy U-boats tiled (U-480- included), seven never actually fought anything and the three which did, two were destroyed (U-480 was one of them.) and the third turned coward and ran.
 
BULL. It was MINED and killed.

I debunked this one example, when I pointed out that of the ten lousy U-boats tiled (U-480- included), seven never actually fought anything and the three which did, two were destroyed (U-480 was one of them.) and the third turned coward and ran.
From your own source:
"U-480 left Trondheim, Norway, on 6 January 1945 for its third and last patrol. It did not return."

But it wasn't hunted down and sunk by Allied ASW like many others, as it couldn't be detected by sonar.
That's the difference right here.

And the sinking occurred in 1945, U-480's kills were in 1944.
As well, one of the ships sunk by U-480 was a RCN Flower class corvette, an Allied ASW ship.

I here I thought ASW ships were supposed to have sonar and use it to HUNT submarines.
 
From your own source:
"U-480 left Trondheim, Norway, on 6 January 1945 for its third and last patrol. It did not return."

But it wasn't hunted down and sunk by Allied ASW like many others, as it couldn't be detected by sonar.
That's the difference right here.

And the sinking occurred in 1945, U-480's kills were in 1944.
As well, one of the ships sunk by U-480 was a RCN Flower class corvette, an Allied ASW ship.

I here I thought ASW ships were supposed to have sonar and use it to HUNT submarines.
a. Ambush minefield. The British knew where it was and how to kill it.
b. Blundered into it.
c. Hells Bells. A much better navy with far superior submariners that did not blunder into ambush minefields or misuse their boats, once they figured out how to fight a successful submarine campaign. The only successful submarine campaign I may add.
 
From your own source:
"U-480 left Trondheim, Norway, on 6 January 1945 for its third and last patrol. It did not return."

But it wasn't hunted down and sunk by Allied ASW like many others, as it couldn't be detected by sonar.
That's the difference right here.

And the sinking occurred in 1945, U-480's kills were in 1944.
As well, one of the ships sunk by U-480 was a RCN Flower class corvette, an Allied ASW ship.

I here I thought ASW ships were supposed to have sonar and use it to HUNT submarines.
Some days you are the windscreen, some days the fly

Lots of Escorts were sunk by u-boats in WW2 - dangerous job you know.
 
Some days you are the windscreen, some days the fly

Lots of Escorts were sunk by u-boats in WW2 - dangerous job you know.
Another example.

Roughly speaking, twice as many IJN ships went blub blub to subs, both in tonnage and numbers as to surface ships' gunfire. Subs killed fewer warships by tonnage than aircraft, but more ships (5 in ratio) sunk by subs for every one lost to aircraft(to 4). US Subs killed roughly 2 out of every 5 IJN subs lost to ASW action!

Destroyers? About 2 to 1 honors there. US subs winners on that side of the ratio,

From the wiki article about U-480...

The coating[edit]

A close-up view of an Alberich tile, which illustrates the holes pattern

The Germans developed a 4-millimetre (0.16 in) thick sheet of synthetic rubber anechoic tile.[5] The coating reduced echoes by 15% in the 10 to 18 kHz range.[6] This frequency range matched the operating range of the early ASDIC active sonar used by the Allies. The ASDIC types 123, 123A, 144 and 145 all operated in the 14 to 22 kHz range.[7][8] However, this degradation in echo reflection was not uniform at all diving depths due to the voids being compressed by the water pressure.[9] An additional benefit of the coating was it acted as a sound dampener, containing the U-boat’s own engine noises.[6]

The rubber contained a series of holes, which helped break up sound waves. There were problems with this technology: the material performed differently at different depths, due to the holes being compressed by water pressure, and securing the tiles to the submarine's hull required a special adhesive and careful application. The first tests were conducted in 1940, but it was not used operationally until 1944, with U-480. According to the Naked Science television episode "Stealth Submarine", U-480 had a perforated inner rubber layer covered by a smooth outer one. This formed air pockets with the right separation and size to muffle sonar waves.
I would suggest that debunking using the very source cited as "success" is the best evidence of its ineffectiveness. The Germans DID NOT USE IT because it failed.
 
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1. 2020 Agogo.
Well. The sane part. Yeah. But 1861. 1789-1815. 1914 both ways.

4. Out of 40,000,000 tonnes global? About 30,000,000 tonnes.

5. Without Russian assistance and without France collapsing? About 1 year.
And 500 boats by 1939. Ha.

Ancillary question, as the KM will not be a war winning tool to 1941: what is the best strategic use of submarine production capacities in terms of maximising the chance of the Fall of France by 1941, and, in causing misallocation of resources by the French and British such that Germany expends *proportionately* less (Including critical resources) of its economy than France and UK do of theirs over the mutual blockades. In other words: how can the KM achieve war assisting or prolonging bang for buck given it cannot win?

I would ask if the answers are universal as generated above, someone would come to the correct conclusion and say "Keep the PEACE, you ___ ___ed fools!" and/or shoot the Berlin Maniac.
Well I did specify sane. We now have a working hypothesis of the competence and quality of mind of the German naval command don’t we? Because Adolf got his war. A sane military command is a large ask. Correspondingly note how Macnamara and his coconspirators didn’t price humanity or war crimes at certain levels, despite having a head for numbers. ObWI: how could Kennedy planning immanent offensive nuclear war cause a chiefs of staff coup d’état on the basis of military responsibility to avoid crimes against humanity?
 
Enjoying learning new things, not so much back and forths that I cannot really follow, though, so some questions...

First, is there a quick and easy way to have nested posts contained within my reply to messages that quote a third parties content? Below, I attempted to do this, but will not know how it looks until I actually post it. The preview thing works, but Not sure I trust it, or at least, my skill in making use of it, lol. What I am asking specifically is, is there an easier way to make a post, that includes content from one member, that is replied to by another, and then responded to in turn by me? I'm looking to get some much needed clarification, in order to track the facts, as things seem to be getting muddled about a bit, and that only further confuses my poor brain.

Four ships sunk in the Channel in August 1944, when the Channel has to be crawling with Allied ASW.
And U-480 survived that mission undetected.

You can't argue with results.
I would suggest that debunking using the very source cited as "success" is the best evidence of its ineffectiveness. The Germans DID NOT USE IT because it failed.
Outside of a Tom Clancy novel, I have personally never heard about the 'rubber coated' submarine stuff, and am struggling with the back and forths within this thread. On the one hand, from what I can gather, @BlackDragon98 is claiming that a specific German u-boat, the u480, successfully used this stuff to operate in heavy ASW zones, sink enemy shipping, and escape? And by escape, that is escape destruction, or survive a late counter attack, or escape detection altogether? I would have to ask first if this is true, and then ask if there were other factors that played a role in this, and if not, I would have to rate that as proof that the stuff worked, at least insofar as that one, specific sub was concerned.

Now, that part above seems clear to me, if I have indeed understood what has been written up thread so far. But then
I read the response by @McPherson where is saying the bolded part above. Simple question from my simple mind, did the U480 succeed as described, yes or no? If the answer is no, then the stuff either didn't work, or only partially worked, and other factors may have been at play that wouldn't always be the case, may have made it seem better than it really was. If the answer is yes, then my confused mind has to interpret the bolded text as either being wrong flat out, or is not addressing the specific sub in question, but rather more broadly the whole 'rubber coating' think in the context of the entire submarine fleet and the war as a hole.

Can I get a definitive answer from the community as a whole on this stuff? Because it makes me refrain from participating it a discussion when I don't understand what folks are talking about. Am I correct in my understanding that the two posters are indeed coming from different places, in that one is talking about a specific sub, while the other is not?

Help! :)
 
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