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Old 11-25-22, 07:52 PM   #76
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Definitely looking forward to the first sailing day, even if it is just a shake-down cruise.
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Old 11-27-22, 07:40 PM   #77
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On September 1st 1939 at 04:47 the first shots of the Second World War were fired when the Schleswig-Holstein opened fire on the Polish positions on the Westerplatte.

The Seekriegslietung began preparations for commerce warfare in earnest. Although auxiliary cruisers were hardly a priority, 2 prewar studies were hastily carried out in the summer of 1939 and there was little support among the officers in the Seekriegslietung or the Naval High Command. In spite of this the Kriegsmarine’s auxiliary cruisers were to repeat the successes achieved by disguised commerce raiders of the Great War such as the Mowe, Seeadler, and Wolf IV. During WWII the newest and fastest freighters were reserved for troop transports therefore the conversion office of the Kriegsmarine was left with a pool of ships ranging from modern motorships with reliable diesel engines to steamers with recycled steam turbine engines from bygone passenger liners. 11 freighters were converted, 9 sailed, of these 6 were sunk in action. The “Thor” was destroyed by explosion in Yokohama, Japan. Only “Widder” and “Orion” survived. The last merchant raider sunk on the high seas was Schiff 28 also known as the “Michel” she was torpedoed and sunk by the submarine USS Tarpon (SS-175) some 50 miles from port. This marked the end of the Hilfskreuzer operations...........or so official history says,

However, there was a 12th raider a mysterious vessel doomed to sail the seas for eternity. By orders of the Führer, she sailed on a cruise of destruction, sinking ship after ship, destroying port after port, sowing minefield after minefield it was even said that she sank an entire convoy when the escorting destroyers abandoned their posts on sighting her terrifying silhouette, captured and held the Cocos Islands, and even took a battleship prize at the British Naval Base at Trincomalee, Ceylon.

In spite of this the allies were never aware of the existence of this raider as her activities were always linked with uboats, other commerce raiders, and even spies. It wasn’t until late 1944 when a British tanker was sunk in the Pacific Ocean roughly 80km off Papua New Guinea that shed light on the existence of this mystery raider, but Allied intelligence attributed this sinking to a Japanese raider.

She was never caught and subsequently undertook the return voyage to Germany, or what was left of it and surrendered in late 1945 at Kiel Harbor, Buoy Nr. 10.
This is story of the dreaded merchant raider Schiff Nr. 30
The “Wolf”.
.....................Die Piraten des Führer......................
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Kapitan.z.S Hartmann's (U-35,U-46-U-204-U-332-U-256-U-293, U-838, U-830, U-834, U-1188, U-1180, U-835, U-840, U-839, Schiff 44 “AFRIKA”, Schiff 77 "Stortebecker", "Schiff 66 "WOLF", Schiff 19, Schiff 30) motto: Eastward Ho!
"Be more aggressive"

Schiff 30 wird sie alle versenken!
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Old 11-28-22, 05:10 AM   #78
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" the escorting destroyers abandoned their posts on sighting her terrifying silhouette"
Now if I can only get the same effect from a Type IX........

Looking forward to hearing more CPTLTJASON, the secret patrol logs of "The Wolf."
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Old 11-28-22, 10:13 PM   #79
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Early 1935, Marinekommandiertenabteilung, Berlin.

The motorship “Weserfels” was originally part of the new Ehrenfels Class ships these large fast motorships were diesel powered giving them a tremendous advantage over coal or turbine ships. Most would end up sailing the DDG Hansa Line’s East Asia Route (Hamburg-Calcutta).

Fate of the Ehrenfels Class ships during and after WWII.
M/S Ehrenfels Sunk off Mormugoa 09.03.1943
M/S Weserfels - - - - - - - - Not Built - - - - - - - -(Officially)
M/S Reichenfels Sunk off Kerkenna Island on 21.6.1942
M/S Kandelfels Converted into Hilfskreuzer and sunk on 8.5.1941 by H.M.S. Cornwall (56)
M/S Kybfels Sunk off Leukás, Greece 21.5.1941
M/S Goldenfels Converted into Hilfskreuzer and sunk off 22.11.1941 by H.M.S Devonshire (39)
M/S Hohenfels Sunk by the crew in the Port of Bandar Shapour on 25.8.1941
M/S Tannenfels Sunk as a blockship at Bordeaux-Bassens on 25.8.1944
M/S Moltkenfels Sunk off the roadstead of Hela in East Prussia on 11.4.1945
M/S Neidenfels Taken prize at Eckernförde on 25.5.1945, scrapped on 8.10.1975

The “Weserfels” was taken over before her keel was laid at the Deshimag A.G. Weser Werft, Bremen. However, she was still being designed and was not expected to be laid down until later in the year with her sister and namesake of the class Ehrenfels, but planners in the Marinekommandiertenabteilung had other plans. In mid-1934 KAdm Karl von Werner of the Marinekonstruktionsamt (K) proposed the construction of a disguised commerce raider from the keel up, this project was initially met with strong opposition, the Reichsmarine was in the midst of building the last Panzerschiffe, known as Panzerschiff C costing 82,000,000 RM and were finalizing plans for the Admiral Hipper-class cruisers in spite of this Adm Reader Chef der Marineleitung authorized von Werner to proceed with the project with utmost secrecy and so on January 2, 1935 at 10:00 hrs. the teletype at the A.G. Weser Werft tapped out the a directive from Berlin, Officials from the Reichsmarine’s Marinekonstruktionsamt (K) soon took over the plans of the “Weserfels” and began a study into a possible design and construction of a “Handelsstorkreuzer” or “Trade Disruption Cruiser” for this the ship was given the designation of H.S.K. (10).

Unlike the Hilfskreuzers of the Great War which were just converted freighters this study was to design and build a Hilfskreuzer from the keel up. This vessel would be heavily armed with 10 x 15cm guns, an array of secondary and anti-aircraft guns, 6 torpedo tubes, a catapult, the space to carry 8 aircraft, range 180,000km, an endurance of at least 300 days, space for up to 580 mines, cargo space for captured cargo, specially built refrigeration rooms, large pens for livestock, prisoner quarters, etc. Although being heavily armed they lacked above all things armor. With the “Weserfels” it was decided to augment the sand ballast, it was decided to install armor plates on her decks and sides with a thickness of 3/4” on the deck and 1” on the hull from frame 10-frame 210.5 This greatly increased her weight from 8,000 grt to 12,000 grt. but it provided protection for her machinery spaces, magazines, torpedo rooms, mine rooms, and her 8 x 15cm guns hidden behind flaps which were a headache to design in less than two months.
During this phase in the design process, It was eventually decided to build the ship independently of the other Ehrenfels Class ships which is the reason she does not appear as an Ehrenfels Class ship.

The superstructure layout was retained being only slightly modified, along with the engine installation. The original length of the ship was to be 506ft however this increased to 600ft. This new length would give the ship the extended range and greater endurance that the naval architects and engineers were looking for and the option to install improved machinery the downside was that she would be easily singled out and hard to camouflage.
Her keel was laid down on January 20, 1935 at the Deschimag A.G. Weser Werft in Building Way Nr. V.

During the construction of the ship, the commander was assigned, the newly promoted Korv.Kpt. Hellmuth Wilhelm Hartmann the II. Artillery officer of the pocket battleship Deutschland. Previously he had served as commander of the minesweeper M-21. He joined the Kaiserliche Marine in October 1918, one month later the war ended, however Hartmann was retained and was swiftly promoted by 1928 he held the rank of Kapitanleutnant and was in command of M-21 before being transferred to the newly completed Panzerschiffe Deutschland as II. Artillery Officer in June 1933 shortly after the ship entered service. After being given command he began assembling his crew, rejecting the entire roster provided by the Personnel Office. Instead, he handpicked his officers, petty officers, and ratings. Once the crew selection was completed the crew of 440 were housed in barracks in Bremen the nature of the ship was still a mystery to the crew and was to remain for the remainder of her construction.

The ship was completed on April 5, 1935 The launching took place on April 10, 1935 and without ceremony one of the last ships launched under the flag of the Reichsmarine floated high on the River Weser. The “Weserfels” was then towed to the Fitting out Pier where she was completed by April 30th.
On completion the cost of the new raider was over 31,000,000 Reichsmarks due to the high cost and size of the vessel further ships of this type were not pursued and efforts were shifted to what would end up being the never completed Plan Z.

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Kapitan.z.S Hartmann's (U-35,U-46-U-204-U-332-U-256-U-293, U-838, U-830, U-834, U-1188, U-1180, U-835, U-840, U-839, Schiff 44 “AFRIKA”, Schiff 77 "Stortebecker", "Schiff 66 "WOLF", Schiff 19, Schiff 30) motto: Eastward Ho!
"Be more aggressive"

Schiff 30 wird sie alle versenken!

Last edited by CPTLTJASON; 11-29-22 at 08:04 AM.
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Old 11-28-22, 10:27 PM   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rwearjr View Post

" the escorting destroyers abandoned their posts on sighting her terrifying silhouette"
Now if I can only get the same effect from a Type IX........

Looking forward to hearing more CPTLTJASON, the secret patrol logs of "The Wolf."
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"The clever combatant imposes his will on the enemy but does not allow the enemy's will to be imposed on him" Sun Tzu


Kapitan.z.S Hartmann's (U-35,U-46-U-204-U-332-U-256-U-293, U-838, U-830, U-834, U-1188, U-1180, U-835, U-840, U-839, Schiff 44 “AFRIKA”, Schiff 77 "Stortebecker", "Schiff 66 "WOLF", Schiff 19, Schiff 30) motto: Eastward Ho!
"Be more aggressive"

Schiff 30 wird sie alle versenken!
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Old 11-30-22, 05:22 AM   #81
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Good stuff CPTLTJASON! Not sure if I was reading a fictional account of an SH5 mod, or a novel/documentary about "Weserfels." Nice work Kaleun. Perhaps you should be (if not) a writer? Could it be her cargo bay is designed to carry a type II U-Boat as well?
Thank you for sharing these, as obviously you put quite a bit of thought into Weserfels back story.
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Old 12-07-22, 07:11 PM   #82
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I appreciate the comment Rwearjr but I’m hardly a writer!


The Type II uboat would be useful for port raids, mining operations, and reconnaissance and would greatly expand the operations of the raider, however there is no way to transport the vessel realistically. The uboat can’t be carried in pieces as there would be no way to assemble the boat nor a way to launch it without a heavy duty boom (279 tons). I have read about these uboats being transported on barges for operations in the Black Sea and in the couple pictures I’ve managed to find they are transported with hulls fully assembled with the exception of the conning tower and the 2cm MG C/30 ahead of the conning tower. On top of that the hold would be extraordinarily long which would be unusual for a merchant ship of the era. With that being said the ship is already a stretch being 606ft in length and equipped like a light cruiser, I’d like to keep it as realistic as possible. There is the option of a joint operation like Schiff 33 and UA carried out briefly in the South Atlantic all that amounted to was the resupply of the uboat with torpedoes, fuel, and provisions and being towed to another operational area. But in my opinion a more in depth and long term operation would both hamper the Hilfskreuzer and the uboat which could result in both being sunk.

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Kapitan.z.S Hartmann's (U-35,U-46-U-204-U-332-U-256-U-293, U-838, U-830, U-834, U-1188, U-1180, U-835, U-840, U-839, Schiff 44 “AFRIKA”, Schiff 77 "Stortebecker", "Schiff 66 "WOLF", Schiff 19, Schiff 30) motto: Eastward Ho!
"Be more aggressive"

Schiff 30 wird sie alle versenken!
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Old 12-09-22, 05:26 AM   #83
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My post was perhaps a bit tongue-n-cheek, given the specs of Weserfels as outlined. TY for the reply nonetheless, popcorn in hand, awaiting the first patrol. Be it pre-war, or after. Weserfels will be wreaking havoc on the high seas.
"Niemals aufhoren zu jagen"

Last edited by Rwearjr; 12-13-22 at 05:06 AM.
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Old 12-12-22, 10:51 PM   #84
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I see, nevertheless an interesting concept. Perhaps later in the war when the smaller midget subs are brought into service like the "Seehund" or "Hecht". Schiff 30 could carry perhaps 2 of the craft.

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Kapitan.z.S Hartmann's (U-35,U-46-U-204-U-332-U-256-U-293, U-838, U-830, U-834, U-1188, U-1180, U-835, U-840, U-839, Schiff 44 “AFRIKA”, Schiff 77 "Stortebecker", "Schiff 66 "WOLF", Schiff 19, Schiff 30) motto: Eastward Ho!
"Be more aggressive"

Schiff 30 wird sie alle versenken!
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Old 12-14-22, 04:51 PM   #85
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UPDATE:

Finalizing the the storyline for the 1935 portion of Schiff 30.
This will cover the design and construction phase, Launching, commissioning, and fitting out. Then the trial cruises, loading of cargo, etc., and finally the departure. I expect Schiff 30 to sail soon.


Attached Images
File Type: jpg 83576347_2927019154074260_5530245026140913664_n.jpg (97.4 KB, 21 views)
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"The clever combatant imposes his will on the enemy but does not allow the enemy's will to be imposed on him" Sun Tzu


Kapitan.z.S Hartmann's (U-35,U-46-U-204-U-332-U-256-U-293, U-838, U-830, U-834, U-1188, U-1180, U-835, U-840, U-839, Schiff 44 “AFRIKA”, Schiff 77 "Stortebecker", "Schiff 66 "WOLF", Schiff 19, Schiff 30) motto: Eastward Ho!
"Be more aggressive"

Schiff 30 wird sie alle versenken!
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Old 12-17-22, 09:20 PM   #86
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On September 1st 1939 at 04:47 the first shots of the Second World War were fired when the Schleswig-Holstein opened fire on the Polish positions on the Westerplatte.

The Seekriegslietung began preparations for commerce warfare in earnest. Although auxiliary cruisers were hardly a priority, 2 prewar studies were hastily carried out in the summer of 1939 and there was little support among the officers in the Seekriegslietung or the Naval High Command. In spite of this the Kriegsmarine’s auxiliary cruisers were to repeat the successes achieved by disguised commerce raiders of the Great War such as the Mowe, Seeadler, and Wolf IV. During WWII, the newest and fastest freighters were reserved for troop transports therefore the conversion office of the Kriegsmarine was left with a pool of ships ranging from modern motorships with reliable diesel engines to steamers with recycled steam turbine engines from bygone passenger liners. 11 freighters were converted, 9 sailed, of these 6 were sunk in action. The “Thor” was destroyed by explosion in Yokohama, Japan. Only “Widder” and “Orion” survived. The last merchant raider sunk on the high seas was Schiff 28 also known as the “Michel” she was torpedoed and sunk by the submarine USS Tarpon (SS-175) some 50 miles from port. This marked the end of the Hilfskreuzer operations...........or so official history says,

However, there was a 12th raider a mysterious vessel doomed to sail the seas for eternity. By orders of the Führer, she sailed on a cruise of destruction, sinking ship after ship, destroying port after port, sowing minefield after minefield it was even said that she sank an entire convoy when the escorting destroyers abandoned their posts on sighting her terrifying silhouette, captured and held the Cocos Islands, and even took a battleship prize at the British Naval Base at Trincomalee, Ceylon.

In spite of this the allies were never aware of the existence of this raider as her activities were always linked with uboats, other commerce raiders, and even spies. It was not until late 1944 when a British tanker was sunk in the Pacific Ocean roughly 80km off Papua New Guinea that shed light on the existence of this mystery raider, but Allied intelligence attributed this sinking to a Japanese raider.

She was never caught and subsequently undertook the return voyage to Germany, or what was left of it and surrendered in late 1945 at Kiel Harbor, Buoy Nr. 10.

This is story of the dreaded merchant raider Schiff Nr. 30
The “Wolf.”

.....................Die Piraten des Führer......................
__________________
"The clever combatant imposes his will on the enemy but does not allow the enemy's will to be imposed on him" Sun Tzu


Kapitan.z.S Hartmann's (U-35,U-46-U-204-U-332-U-256-U-293, U-838, U-830, U-834, U-1188, U-1180, U-835, U-840, U-839, Schiff 44 “AFRIKA”, Schiff 77 "Stortebecker", "Schiff 66 "WOLF", Schiff 19, Schiff 30) motto: Eastward Ho!
"Be more aggressive"

Schiff 30 wird sie alle versenken!
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Old 12-17-22, 09:55 PM   #87
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Mid-1934, Marinekommandiertenabteilung, Berlin.


In July 1934 KAdm Karl von Werner of the Marinekonstruktionsamt (K) proposed the construction of a disguised commerce raider from the keel up, von Werner had served aboard the raiders Mowe and Wolf IV in the Great War, the project was initially met with strong opposition, the Reichsmarine had just launched the Panzerschiffe Admiral Graf Spee, known as Panzerschiff C costing 82,000,000 RM and were planning for the Admiral Hipper-class cruisers which would cost 85,000,000.00 RM, in spite of this Adm Erich Reader Chef der Marineleitung authorized von Werner to proceed with the project with utmost secrecy.

He met with the owners of the Deutsche Dampfschiffahrts-Gesellschaft Hansa at their Bremen Headquarters to discuss the requisitioning of one of their new future class of motorships of the Ehrenfels Class. The Reichsmarine would end up buying the ship for 4,250,000.00 RM was accepted on July 19th. The payment was received on July 20th, 1934 at 12:01pm then on July 21, 1934 at 08:00 hrs. the teletype at the A.G. Weser Werft tapped out a directive from Berlin, 1.Marineleitung. Iac. 33928/34 geh.

The chosen ship was the “Weserfels” she was originally the second ship of the new Ehrenfels Class of motorships to be built by the Deschimag A.G. Weser Werft, Bremen. These large, fast motorships were diesel powered giving them a tremendous advantage over coal or turbine ships. She was to have sailed on the bi-weekly Hamburg-Calcutta run via the Suez Canal.
Specifications (as planned)

Length 506ft
Beam 61ft
Draft 31ft (Loaded 33ft, Empty 27ft)
Tonnage: 7.764 GRT (4.795 NRT 10.450 tdw)

Engine installation:
2 x 6-Zylinder doppeltwirkende Zweitakt-Dieselmotoren
Deschimag Werk A.G. "Weser", Bemen
Maschinenfabrik Augsburg-Nürnberg (MAN), Augsburg: Typ: D 6 Zu 53/76
7.600 PSe, 210 UpM, Vulcan-Getriebe 86 UpM

1 x Propeller / 1 x Rudder / 16.0 knots

Crew: 44
Passengers: 12

Loading gear:
1 x 50 t Boom
1 x 15 t Boom
6 x 10 t Boom
14 x 5 t Boom

The ship was given the designation of H.S.K. (10). But to maintain the secrecy of the project official documents refer to H.S.K. 10 as Schiff Nr. 30. Officially the ship was a special transport, destined to sail under the Reichsdienstflagge, the Reich Service Flag.
Unlike the Hilfskreuzers of the Great War which were just converted freighters this Hilfskreuzer was to be built from the keel up. The vessel would be heavily armed with 10 x 15cm guns, an array of secondary and anti-aircraft guns, 6 torpedo tubes, a catapult, the space to carry 8 aircraft, range 180,000km, an endurance of at least 300 days, space for up to 500 mines, cargo space for captured cargo, specially built refrigeration rooms, large pens for livestock, prisoner quarters, etc.

Most of the disguised raiders of the Great War were heavily armed however, they lacked above all things armor. With the “Weserfels” it was decided to augment the sand ballast with the installation of armor plates on her decks and hull with a thickness of 0.5” on the deck and 1” on the hull from frame 10.0 to frame 255.5 This greatly increased her weight from 7,700 grt to 10,800 grt. but it provided protection for the machinery spaces, magazines, torpedo rooms, mine rooms, and 8 x 15cm guns hidden behind flaps which were a headache to design in less than two months. During this phase in the design process, It was eventually decided to build the ship independently of the other Ehrenfels Class ships which is the reason she does not appear as an Ehrenfels Class ship in any register.

Final plans were approved by the Reichsmarine, and the contract was signed on August 31st. at the Deschimag A.G. Weser Werft. The keel was laid in Building Way Nr.V. on September 1st. at 07:00 hrs.
During the construction of the ship, the commander was assigned, the newly promoted Korv.Kpt. Wilhelm Hellmuth Hartmann, the II. Artillery officer of the pocket battleship Deutschland. Previously he had served as commander of the minesweeper M-21. He joined the Kaiserliche Marine in October 1918, one month later the war ended, however Hartmann was retained and was swiftly promoted by 1928 he held the rank of Kapitanleutnant and was in command of the minesweeper M-21 before being transferred to the newly completed Panzerschiffe Deutschland as II. Artillery Officer in June 1933 shortly after the ship entered service.

After being given command he began assembling his crew, rejecting the entire roster provided by the Personnel Office which were basically undesirable officers and ratings. Instead, he handpicked his officers, petty officers, and ratings. Once the crew selection was completed the original crew of 440 were housed in barracks in Bremen the nature of the ship was still a mystery to the crew and was to remain for the remainder of her construction.

The ship was completed on February 11, 1935. The launching took place on the 12th. and without ceremony one of the last ships launched under the flag of the Reichsmarine floated high on the River Weser. The “Weserfels” was then towed to the Fitting out Pier where she was completed by April 30th.

__________________
"The clever combatant imposes his will on the enemy but does not allow the enemy's will to be imposed on him" Sun Tzu


Kapitan.z.S Hartmann's (U-35,U-46-U-204-U-332-U-256-U-293, U-838, U-830, U-834, U-1188, U-1180, U-835, U-840, U-839, Schiff 44 “AFRIKA”, Schiff 77 "Stortebecker", "Schiff 66 "WOLF", Schiff 19, Schiff 30) motto: Eastward Ho!
"Be more aggressive"

Schiff 30 wird sie alle versenken!

Last edited by CPTLTJASON; 12-19-22 at 08:11 PM.
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Old 12-17-22, 10:06 PM   #88
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1.5.1935 Deutsche Schiff-und Maschinenbau A.G. Weser Werft, Bremen, Commissioning Pier

On May 1, 1935. The M/S “Weserfels” was commissioned into the Reichsmarine as Schiff Nr. 30 under the command of Korv.Kpt. Hellmuth Wilhelm Hartmann. Officially she is still the “Weserfels.”

Schiff 30 was the last ship to be commissioned into the Reichsmarine, afterwards the ship was moved to the Naval Fitting out Depot and began taking aboard her equipment
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"The clever combatant imposes his will on the enemy but does not allow the enemy's will to be imposed on him" Sun Tzu


Kapitan.z.S Hartmann's (U-35,U-46-U-204-U-332-U-256-U-293, U-838, U-830, U-834, U-1188, U-1180, U-835, U-840, U-839, Schiff 44 “AFRIKA”, Schiff 77 "Stortebecker", "Schiff 66 "WOLF", Schiff 19, Schiff 30) motto: Eastward Ho!
"Be more aggressive"

Schiff 30 wird sie alle versenken!
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Old 12-17-22, 10:26 PM   #89
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2.5.1935 Naval Fitting Out Depot, Bremen.

The ship was moved to the Naval Fitting out Depot and began taking aboard her equipment. from 2.5.-10.5. After which the ship will return to Deschimag then proceed on her sea trials.

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"The clever combatant imposes his will on the enemy but does not allow the enemy's will to be imposed on him" Sun Tzu


Kapitan.z.S Hartmann's (U-35,U-46-U-204-U-332-U-256-U-293, U-838, U-830, U-834, U-1188, U-1180, U-835, U-840, U-839, Schiff 44 “AFRIKA”, Schiff 77 "Stortebecker", "Schiff 66 "WOLF", Schiff 19, Schiff 30) motto: Eastward Ho!
"Be more aggressive"

Schiff 30 wird sie alle versenken!

Last edited by CPTLTJASON; 12-17-22 at 11:04 PM.
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Old 12-18-22, 05:09 AM   #90
Rwearjr
Machinist's Mate
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Seattle WA
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