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MS406france1940

FOUR PIPERS in Stalin's navy.

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The classes of destroyers collectively known as 'four pipers' (Caldwell, Wickes, and Clamson) need no introduction. They were designed and build between 1916 and 1922 originally to protect the convoys crossing the atlantic during WW1 and then to escort the new ships of a 'fast fleet' the US was planing after the war (I am talking about the construction of the Omaha class of cruisers and the  Lexington class battlecruisers) they were for more than a decade the only destroyers the US had on its fleet and even after the construction of modern destroyers like the Farragut and Mahan classes began in the mid thirties they remained very predominant in the navy  until the start of hostilities in 1941 at wich time the US still had 120 of them in commision or  in reserve. Haft of the destroyer force at the time acording to destroyer history foundation. 

Despite the newest ship of the group having 19 years by the time the US entered the war they still provided valuable service for the allies. In the Atlantic and the Pacific they escorted hundreds of convoys. Many were converted for other porpurses such as high-speed transports, or mine layers, or minesweepers and even those that remained as pure destroyers served well until the end of hostilities despite been anticuated in almost everyform. 

I could go on and on about their service history but for today I am going to focus on what is probaly the least known part of these destroyers history, and that is their service in-of all navies in the world- the Soviet one.  

0516711.jpg

Ex USS Cowell DD 167 as the soviet destroyer Zharkiy. 

 

Now a little bit of back story. In 1940 a group of politicians and admirals in the US made a bett on how desperate was Britain for convoy escorts so they agreed to offer them 50 old destroyers in exchange for bases in the Carebean, whoever lost had to clean the car of the winner whit its tongue. So when the the British actually acepted admiral Donald T Buchanna had to clean the Ford of the senator of Iowa whit his tongue in a scene that would have been funny if he hadn't contracted tetanus in doing so wich eventually let to his dead...:Smile_trollface:

(Hours after the effects of wathever I took passed) 

Okay MEAVY it didn't happen like that but what actually  happen was that under the 'destroyers for bases' agreement the US basically disposed of 50 decrepit destroyers in exchange for a big portion of the british west indies. NO ONE in Britain really liked the deal but they were so desperate for any help that they took the ships and they did what they could whit them, and in a testament to the desing durability they did a lot whit them. For one they fulfilled their porpuse as convoy escorts until more frigates and corvettes were abaliable. They also served as reinforcements for smaller navies in the allied side such as the Canadian, Norwigians and Dutch navy and in the case of the HMS Cambelltown  serving as the greatest bomb ever made when used against the dry dock at St Nazaire. 

 

0513104.jpg

HMS Cambeltown some time before she converted those Nazis on her deck and the gates she had crashed on into 'flaying atoms'

By 1944 whit the submarine war going firmly against the germans and whit literally hundreds of frigates, corvattes and even more modern destroyers (Well, as modern as the inter war classes could be, but at least they were some years younger and were in better matereal condition) going around the Atlantic chasing U-boats like it was a child's play there was no longer a reason for having these old bukets of rust in service any longer. So in 1944 the Royal Navy along side the Canadeans and the Norwegians began putting the 'four pipers' on reserve, somethimg that sounds okay until you realize that the reserve is intended for ships that are surpluss ships that would be needed on war time... and since they were AT WAR that meant the ships were lefts over even at a time they could be usseful whit no real perspective of been put back in service. So in short, they were waiting for the Germans to give up so they could scrap those old ships the Yankess had cheated them whit. And sure enough they did exactly that whit most ships. But for some ships the scrap yard eluded them for a little longer because something unusual happened. That unusual thing was that they were given to the glorious Red fleet commanded by Iosep Stalin.

 0513408.jpg

Soviet destroyer Derzkiy, ex HMS Chelsea and ex USS Crowninshield DD 134. 

So, why on eart the Soviet Union would get their socialist hands on ships that had their better days well behind them? Well, acording to the best sourse of information on the interned, Wikipedia :Smile-_tongue: they were given to the Soviet Union in lieu of Italian destroyers the reds were demanding as war reparation. Now WHY would that happen is not explain. My theories are the following ones. 

  • There were not enough Italian destroyers avaliable to be transfered. After all they had suffered heavy losses and not many were opperational by September 1943.
  • The British were not willing to give ships to the Soviets that would actually increased their navy capabilities so they just disposed of some trash that was more or less useless. 

Any idea what happened here? 

In any case, wathever Churchill was laughing about the matter or if any admiral was actually sorry about it, some Wickes and Clemson class destroyers made their way towards Murmansks were they entered service in the Soviet North Fleet as, what else, convoy escorts. 

Now, logic dictates that I tell you about the service of these ships under their new owner, but at least a quick search doesn't give to much material to work whit. Out of 8 ships from the Wickes and Clemson classes that were tranfered only one has more than 6 lines to their name on Wikipedia. That is the Zhivuchiy (Survivable in Russian) So I am going to copy-paste her history here as I think is a good representation of the service history of all of them (Sourse Wikipedia) 

The former Richmond was commissioned in the Soviet Navy as Zhivuchiy (rus. Живучий, "Survivable") on 24 August 1944. On 17 August 1944, Zhivuchiy, as a member of the Russian Transfer Force, sailed to meet convoy JW 59. The convoy was attacked by U-boats until the convoy reached the Soviet Union on 25 August.[7] On 22–23 November Zhivuchiy was a member of the escort of convoy BK 38 comprising six transports and three tankers sailing from Archangel to Murmansk.[8] At the beginning of December 1944, Zhivuchiy was targeted by U-295 using a T5 acoustic torpedo. The torpedo missed and in response, the submarine was hunted by Zhivuchiy and Deyatelny. On 6 December, Zhivuchiy was among the Soviet vessels sent to augment the escort of convoy JW 62. The convoy arrived in the Soviet Union on 7 December. Before the return convoy RA 62 could sail, the Soviet Navy sent out a destroyer force, of which Zhivichiy was a part of, to attack U-boats lying in wait at the entrance to Kola Inlet. During the engagement, Zhivuchiy was targeted by U-997 on 9 December, which missed. The sinking of U-387 is disputed, with Soviet sources claiming Zhivuchiy rammed and sunk the submarine while Rohwer claims that HMS Bamborough Castle sank the submarine using depth charges.[9]

From 3–5 January 1945, the Soviet convoy BK 41 sailed from Archangel to Murmansk composed of 14 ships. Zhivuchiy was part of the initial escort, however on 4 January the escort was strengthened. The convoy reached port safely.[10] On 7 January, Zhivuchiy sailed with convoy JW 63 as part of its escort. Eight merchant vessels were brought from Kola Inlet to Molotovsk.[11] On 16 January, Zhivuchiy was part of the covering group for Soviet convoy KB 1 sailing from Kola Inlet to the White Sea. On 21 and 24 January Zhivuchiy was among the destroyers sent to hunt U-boats between Jokanga and Kola.[12] On 5 February Zhivuchiy was among the escort for Soviet convoy BK 2 sailing from Archangel to Murmansk. On 11 February, the destroyer joined the escort of convoy JW 64 in order to escort 15 merchant vessels traveling to the White Sea.[13] On 16 February, Zhivuchiy was among the vessels sent to drive the gathered U-boats from the entrance to Kola Inlet.[14] Zhivuchiy was among the Soviet escorts for convoy RA 65 from Archangel to the Barents Sea from 21–25 March 1945.[15] The Soviet Union returned the ship in 24 June 1949 to Britain, which sold her for scrap in July of that year.

Fairly active considering the ships was 26 years old by this point and definetly more usseful than the other "donations" the allies gave  to Soviet navy and the Northern fleet. You know ships like the battleship HMS Royal Sovering that saw "So much service" That when it was returned to the British they discovered in no time that most of her equipment was unoperable. Or the cruiser Murmansks  who's biggest achivement was to be a premium ship on this game. 

The only other notable thing to happen to any of this was that on January 16 1945 the Deyatelny ('Active' in Russian) was sunk presumably by the U-boat U 286 to the east of Cape Terebersky, whit only seven sailors surviving. 

0519821.jpg

A photo of five of the seven survivors of the sinking of the Deyatelny. 

 

If you read the wiki segment you know what happens next. The surviving ships remained in some form of service until 1949 when all of them were returned to britain and then were swifly scraped. A some what different destiny from her sisters that lasted in service 10 seconds after the war ended and then were scraped as fast as tehy could get them to the scrap yards, but at the end they still did the same as all their sisters, escort convoys to safety and to then tranform into a pile of metal. 

Would I put any of these ships in the game as premiuns? Maybe... Probaly... I dont know to be honest. My standar for making a ship premium is for it to have a crap ton of history behind her (USS Arizona, Missuri, Roma, or Tripitz) or for it to have something different about her gameplay (HMS Belfast, USS Atlanta) And anything in between is either an okay ship or a cash grab, specially when a ship of teh same class is already in game and they just paint her differently,  and for me these ladies fall somewhat in between cash grab and historical ships. One of the most famous and important United States ships of the Dreadnough era whit an interesting side story as to how they ended on a foreing navy that went on to be the main rival of the US during the cold war, but that did nothing during their service whit that navy and that already exist in game in 3 encarnations. Probably the best solution would be to have them as a reward ship or something similar. 

 

To end this properly, I am going to save you the effort and list all the ships of the Wickes and Clemson classes that were tranfered. Wiki list 8 Wickes but was only able to find 7 and I only found one Clemson, so if any ship is missing, please mention it down at the comments: 

Zhivuchiy (Tenacious in Russian) EX HMS Richtmond and Ex USS Fairfax DD93

   0509323.jpg

 

ZHGUCHIY (Fiery in Russian) Ex HMS Leamington and ex USS Twiggs DD 127

 

0512724.jpg

(No photo of her in Russian service. So here is her under British service whit alot of ice over her) 

Derzkiy (Insolent in you know what lenguage) ex HMS Chelsea and ex USS Crowninshield DD 134

0513415.jpg

(My favorite picture, taken from the battleship Arkangels ex HMS Royal Sovering) 

Zharkiy (Torrid) Ex HMS Brighton and ex USS Cowell DD 167

0516701.jpg

 

Doblestny (Valiant)  Ex HMS Georgetown and ex USS Maddox DD 168

0516907.jpg

 

 Zhyostky (Rigid) ex HMS Roxborough and ex USS Foote DD 169

0516903.jpg

(Again, no photo of her in Russian service so here she is as HMS Roxbough)

Dostoyny (Worthy) Ex HMS St Albans and ex USS Thomas DD 182 

0518208.jpg

(No image of her as a comunist so here she is as USS Thomas DD 182)

Deyatelny (Active) Ex HMS Churchill and ex USS Herdon DD 198 

0519803.jpg

 

And that is all really hope you like it

Edited by MS406france1940
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Four pipes? That's nothing.

Get ready...for the FIVE-PIPER!

 

Spoiler

1280px-Askold1901Kiel.thumb.jpg.477cfd29cafc7809bd40c59d7a7cd6d9.jpg

 

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4 hours ago, BrentD15 said:

Four pipes? That's nothing.

Get ready...for the FIVE-PIPER!

 

  Hide contents

1280px-Askold1901Kiel.thumb.jpg.477cfd29cafc7809bd40c59d7a7cd6d9.jpg

 

THE LEGANS WERE TRUE. A SHIP WHIT A LOT OF FUNNELS TO RULE OVER ALL SHIPS WHIT A LOT OF FUNNELS. :Smile_teethhappy:

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Whilst the ships undoubtedly had interesting careers, by the time they reached Russia service most of them were in full escort form. Generally speaking, this means 1 4" gun forward, a 3" DP gun aft, one set of torpedo tubes on the centreline for Mk X depth charges, and various light AA guns. Naturally, there is some variance, but given how much Campbeltown is already derided, you can't really go below that, and cloning her seems a bit of a poor effort. 

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12 hours ago, mr3awsome said:

Whilst the ships undoubtedly had interesting careers, by the time they reached Russia service most of them were in full escort form. Generally speaking, this means 1 4" gun forward, a 3" DP gun aft, one set of torpedo tubes on the centreline for Mk X depth charges, and various light AA guns. Naturally, there is some variance, but given how much Campbeltown is already derided, you can't really go below that, and cloning her seems a bit of a poor effort. 

While I lack the knowledge to properly balance a ship in this game. If had the chance to desing one of this ships I would put a double 4 inch mount on the front and a single one on the stern, giving them the same armament as teh Wickes and the Clemson. Whit the torpedoes been the same ones that are in the Gremyashchy and whit 4-6 Oerlikons as the main AA, whit the good old 3 inch/23 caliber (Or something similar) as a suplement. But I doubt WG would do something so radical in a ship that isn't a paper desing and that actually existed. 

But even putting that aside, I still think there isn't enough here to convince to much people to buy it. Even whit the better torpedo placement and the good old American guns.  

Edited by MS406france1940

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