home

fighting ships of the world

IMPERIAL JAPANESE NAVY (JAPAN)

MINE WARFARE SHIPS

SOKUTEN, HIRASHIMA and AJIRO minelayers - netlayers (1938-1944)

SOKUTEN 

Sokuten 1941

Name No Builder Laid down Launched Comp Fate
測天 <Sokuten>   Mitsubishi, Yokohama 6/1937 27/4/1938 12/1938 sunk 25/7/1944
白神 <Shirakami>   Ishikawajima, Tokyo 9/1937 25/6/1938 4/1939 collision 3/3/1944
成生 <Naryu>   Mitsubishi, Yokohama 3/1939 28/8/1939 6/1940 sunk 16/2/1945
巨済 <Kyosai>   Ishikawajima, Tokyo 6/1938 29/6/1939 12/1939 surrendered 8/1945, to United Kingdom 11/1947, BU
浮島 <Ukishima>   Ishikawajima, Tokyo 7/1939 9/12/1939 10/1940 lost 16/11/1943

HIRASHIMA

Name No Builder Laid down Launched Comp Fate
平島 <Hirashima>   Mitsubishi, Yokohama 9/1939 6/6/1940 12/1940 sunk 27/7/1943
澎湖 <Hoko>   Mitsui, Tamatsukuri 11/1940 8/9/1941 12/1941 sunk 29/8/1943
石埼 <Ishizaki>   Mitsubishi, Yokohama 3/1941 13/8/1941 2/1942 surrendered 8/1945, to USA 10/1947, BU
鷹島 <Takashima>   Tsurumi, Yokohama 12/1940 18/10/1941 3/1942 sunk 10/10/1944
済州 <Saishu>   Sasebo K K 1/1941 15/11/1941 4/1942 surrendered 8/1945, to China 10/1947 (Yung Ching)
新井埼 <Niizaki>   Mitsui, Tamano 7/1941 2/3/1942 8/1942 surrendered 8/1945, BU 1947
由利島 <Yurijima>   Tsurumi, Yokohama 10/1941 4/7/1942 11/1942 sunk 14/1/1945
怒和島 <Nuwashima>   Osaka SB, Osaka 11/1941 31/7/1942 11/1942 sunk 7/5/1945
前島 <Maeshima>   Nippon Kokan 7/1942 18/4/1943 7/1943 sunk 18/10/1944

AJIRO

Name No Builder Laid down Launched Comp Fate
網代 <Ajiro>   Hitachi, Innoshima 9/1943 4/1944 7/1944 sunk 1/10/1944

 

Displacement standard, t

720

Displacement normal, t

750

Length, m

69.5 pp 73.5 wl 75.5 oa

Breadth, m

7.85

Draught, m

2.60

No of shafts

2

Machinery

diesels

Power, h. p.

Sokuten class: 3600

Hirashima, Ajiro classes: 3500

Max speed, kts

20

Fuel, t

Sokuten, Hirashima classes: diesel oil 35

Ajiro class: diesel oil 53

Endurance, nm(kts) Sokuten, Hirashima classes: 2550(14)

Armament

Sokuten class: 1 x 2 - 40/62 HI 91-shiki, 1 x 2 - 13.2/76, 120 mines

Hirashima class: 1 x 1 - 76/40 11-shiki, 1 x 2 - 13.2/76, 120 mines

Ajiro class: 1 x 1 - 76/40 11-shiki, 2 x 3 - 25/60 96-shiki, 120 mines, 4 DCT (36)

Complement

100

Ship project history: Built under 3rd, 4th and 5th Supplementary programs of 1937 (Sokuten class), 1939 (Hirashima class) and 1941 (Ajiro class). In total 5, 10 and 15 ships respectively have been ordered, but building plans of only Sokuten class in full have been fulfilled. Orders for one ship of Hirashima (Moroshima) and 13 for Ajiro (Kamishima, Shinoshima, Muso, Namizaki, Terajima, Kyobun, Kosei, Futsutsu, Sugashima, Niijima, Hikoshima, Himeshima, Tateshima) classes were cancelled in 1943.

Multi-purpose minelayers-netlayers. Intended for defence of bases and ports. Represented moderated variant of Hatsutaka class. Among themselves Sokuten and Hirashima classes insignificantly different by only armament. Ships of this classes possessed good seaworthiness and high manoeuvrability.

Modernizations: 1943, all completed Sokuten and Hirashima groups: diesel oil stowage was increased to 53t; + 4 DCT (36).

1944, all survived Sokuten and Hirashima classes: - 1 x 2 - 13.2/76; + 2 x 3 - 25/60 96-shiki

late 1944, Saishu: + 3 x 3 - 25/60 96-shiki

Naval service: Hirashima 27/7/1943 was sunk at coast of Japan by American submarine Sawfish. Hoko 28/9/1943 was sunk off Buka by American aircraft. Ukishima 16/11/1943 lost by unknown cause SE off Hatsushima, possibly sunk by American submarine. Shirakami 3/3/1944 at Urup (Kuriles) during a storm collided with s/s Nichiran Maru and has sunk. Sokuten 25/7/1944 was sunk off Palau by American carrier aircraft. Ajiro 1/10/1944 was sunk off Bonin by American submarine Snapper. Takashima 10/10/1944 was sunk at Okinawa by American carrier aircraft. Maeshima 18/10/1944 ran aground at evasion from attack of American carrier aircraft at Luzon. Yurishima 14/1/1945 was sunk at eastern coast of Malacca by American submarine Cobia. Naryu 16/2/1945 was sunk S off Honshu by American submarine Sennet. Nuwashima 7/5/1945 was hard damaged at Kyushu by American aircraft (aft part was broken off) and ran ashore, subsequently she was broken up. Kyosai 6/8/1945 was hard damaged by American carrier aircraft.

Saishu was transferred to China on reparation in 1947.

 

Saishu after war

Hirashima

 

  Ivan Gogin, 2008-14