I would rate the Bismarck far below most of the new US, British, and Japanese battleships. Her max shell weight was only 1760lbs. While it is true they had a high velocity when you compare it to the 2700lbs ap shells of the American Iowa, South Dakota, North Carolina classes she comes out short. From what I have read the Bismarck?s armor protection scheme was also inefficient and poorly planned. The Bismarck was a huge ship nearly as big as the Iowa but she didn?t have a chance against any of the American battleships.
A lot of the battles at sea depended on luck of hit, but here are some facts that may help.
The Americans did not know that the Yamato had 18inch guns until after the war. Any American Captain, would have assumed that they were facing a 16" gun and would have closed as quickly as possible(to protect deck armour). The Yamato was dangerious from 40 thousand yards and the iowa could not hurt the Yamato until within 20 thousand yards. The Yamato did have radar( not as good as the Americans) and had very good optics, also they had a firing system that would bring the Iowa's under fire very quickly.
The American 16" shell was not as good as the Yamatos until the end of the war.
Please get over the hipe that the Iowa's were so great. If you research them they were little more than a battle cruiser and never proved themselves against an equal foe. their great size came from their clipper bow and not their weight of armour. The Iowa's fire control system was good, but had to get close enough to do damage to the Yamato. Remembering the amount of damage sustained to the masushi and the yamato by bombs and torpedos and take into account the bismark, battleship fire could not sink it, then the chances are that the an Iowa could sink the yamato by gunfire alone is unlikely.
Historicly the Americans were lucky to beat The Japanese and maybe we should trust in god this.
We can debate this for years. what if, what if, what if. The Yamato was designed to take on mulitiple battleships. Iowa could not penetrate Yamatos magazines until very close ranges ( please forget the controled test's on shinano armour). In a straight slug fest, ( hold your American ego) the Yamato delivered more weight of damage and recieved less damage in comparison. Please read other battles.
Yamato was the ultimate design in Battle ships. Even when battleships had been supersided by the air craft carrier.
If Yamato and Masushi had been at the Battle of Guadacanal a very different result may have been the result.
My comment about the japanese winning, when taken in context with what was written, is aimed at battles between Japanese and Amirican fleets. Not the over all War. I will atempt to be clearer in the future.
I am always amused by people who try to show their superior inteligence with comments that try to belittle others.
I have read my history books and not just the ones that glorify the greatness of the Americans.
I dont have the time tonight to go into great detail. So I will simplify this as much as possible. Gun fire alone dones not sink battleships, hence my reference to the Bismark.
The Yamato was dangerous to the Iowa from 40 thousand yards even if it had trouble hitting it at that range, the Iowas magazines could be penetrate by the Yamato well befor the Iowa could get into range to penetrate the Yamatos if possible.
The Yamato was designed to fight other battleships and not to fight off aircraft( bombs) and the main armour problem was where the main belt joined the lower belt, a problem that showed up against "Torpedos".
I like the idea of a computer simulation that pits the two together, but it would need to be written by someone less patriotic than yourself.
Battleship to Battleship, The Iowa would have to get close enough to inflict a "lot" of Damage will taking damage itself. So in a staight "slug fest" you would have to consider the ship whose magazines are better protected, is the ship that is going to last the longest.
Tactically, Yes the Iowa has the speed and the fire control. But (again) The Iowa captain would believe that he was facing 16inch guns and would charge in at full speed. The Yamato only has to get a couple of shots to hit Iowa and the 18inch would do a lot of damage. Now we get into what if, what if.
Speculate all you like and huff and puff all you like about the great Iowa. Forget about the Montana, it never happened. By definition, a Battleship is a vessel that can with stand its own fire power. The Iowa was a well built battle cruiser and the Yamato was a true battleship. Battle cruisers never won fights against Battleships.
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