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#4538577 - 09/27/20 09:44 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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33lima Offline
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With the UZO, I keep a watchful eye on the destroyer as we race along. Suddenly, I realise that he's changing course...in our direction. It's not just a zig-zag.

[Linked Image]

Has he spotted me? Escorts have no radar, at this point in the war...

[Linked Image]

...but I'm not disposed to take any chances. Down we go!

[Linked Image]

I creep away to the south at periscope depth. And this time, I keep going. If nothing else, it'll give the crew a break from all the recent tension. Secured from silent running, the remaining reserve torpedoes can now be loaded into Tubes 1, 2 and 3.

[Linked Image]

After daylight, I check with the hydrophone operator that he can hear no contacts. Then I make a couple of sweeps of the horizon with the periscope.

[Linked Image]

All is clear, so up we come into the clear, fresh air, at last.

[Linked Image]

The convoy, of course, is long gone. Nothing else for it but to resume my search pattern.

[Linked Image]

I'll be quite happy if we pick up another ship sailing independently. These well-escorted convoys seem hard nuts to crack!

...to be continued!

Last edited by 33lima; 09/27/20 09:46 PM.
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#4539070 - 10/01/20 07:44 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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We plough on up to the north-north-west, back onto our search pattern.

[Linked Image]

It's mid-morning when we get lucky. One of the look-outs spots a merchantman, off the port quarter.

[Linked Image]

I order course changed towards the sighting and study her through my binoculars.

[Linked Image]

Time to pick up the target in the U-boat Zeil Optik. Small fry, I can see, but unescorted and almost certainly unarmed.

[Linked Image]

She's soon fine off the starboard bow and I decide this is going to be a gun action. Best not to use up any of my few remaining torpedoes.

[Linked Image]

The orders are given and the deck gun quickly manned.

[Linked Image]

The steamer maintains her speed and course, seemingly oblivious to our approach. Not for much longer!

...to be continued!

#4539075 - 10/01/20 08:04 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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The gun crew is soon pumping rounds into the oncoming ship, which just continues to hold her course.

[Linked Image]

The odd round goes wide, but most are on target. The freighter is starting to burn as she comes up on our port bow, making no attempt to ram us, in fact turning slightly away.

[Linked Image]

The gun crew ceases fire and trains their weapon forward.

[Linked Image]

Sure enough, the steamer is going down, and quickly. It's at this point that I notice the flag she's flying. Isn't that the Stars and Stripes? Oh dear - I've sunk a neutral!

[Linked Image]

Soon all that's left is some flotsam and fading wisps of smoke.

[Linked Image]

I quickly remember seeing earlier on the map a green-marked neutral ship, but I thought that we were well clear of her and didn't check. Evidently, my victim was that ship. And now, she's gone.

[Linked Image]

This time, embarrassed, I don't make a report to BdU. That can come later, if I can report some success at the same time.

It seems I might soon have my chance, for a nice, red enemy contact is reported to the west-north-west.

[Linked Image]

I plot a dog-leg interception course, aiming to get onto her track well ahead of her, then turn back towards her on a reciprocal course. I reckon this works better for me than trying to plot a directly intersecting course.

[Linked Image]

And sure enough, early in the afternoon, our prey is spotted, within one degree of straight ahead!

[Linked Image]

Now's my chance to make amends!

...to be continued!

Last edited by 33lima; 10/01/20 08:05 PM.
#4539192 - 10/02/20 06:22 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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33lima Offline
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There she is!

[Linked Image]

She's coming pretty well straight at us, which will save me a certain amount of bother.

[Linked Image]

A tanker, this time! A perfect target! A better contribution to denting Mister Churchill's war efforts would be hard to imagine.

[Linked Image]

Another job for the deck gun, this one. The gun crew is soon in position.

[Linked Image]

The first shells are soon on their way, the trajectory high at this range. Through the binos, I can see the tanker is starting to turn across our bows.

[Linked Image]

Something doesn't look quite right. As the tanker slides to my right, I see what it is. There's a second ship close behind her, a freighter!

[Linked Image]

This should be interesting!

...to be continued!

#4539194 - 10/02/20 06:34 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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33lima Offline
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The deck gun pounds the tanker, which is soon starting to burn and won't last much longer.

[Linked Image]

From this point, I'm more concerned about the other ship. Is she armed? That's the question.

[Linked Image]

Out of the corner of my eye, I see a brief red glow on the sea, just to port. No-one says anything, and in retrospect it could have been a reflection from the deck-gun's muzzle flash. But I am taking absolutely no chances, and down we go, just as the tanker also slips beneath the waves.

[Linked Image]

I realise fairly quickly that I've been over-cautions. There's no sign of a gun on the big freighter. But while I'm here I may as well use a torpedo, I decide. I can surface to finish her off later.

[Linked Image]

If it only it turned out that simple!

...to be continued!

#4539987 - 10/08/20 08:07 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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33lima Offline
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[Normal service is resumed after waiting for a replacement CPU fan]

Safe at periscope from any guns real or imagined, I line up the freighter and let her have it. I have only three forward tubes loaded, but reckon that two will be enough.

[Linked Image]

Nothing! Not a single explosion. Was I too close? Was the gyro angle excessive? Were one or both eels duds? What did forget to do? Whatever the problem, it repeats itself with both Tube 3 and the stern tube, more careful though I try to be.

[Linked Image]

So it's to be the deck gun after all. Up we go...

[Linked Image]

The gun is soon in action and pumping rounds into the freighter, with nothing coming our way in reply.

[Linked Image]

We're soon seeing results.

[Linked Image]

Strange that the bridge watch mans the deck gun. Perhaps there's a way of ensuring both are manned at the same time.

[Linked Image]

Anyway I'll worry about that later.

[Linked Image]

Looks like she's going down by the stern!

[Linked Image]

Before she can sink, explosions wrack the ship and her back breaks.

[Linked Image]

Well, that worked.

[Linked Image]

I've wasted my remaining torpedoes though, apart from a couple I want to keep for self-defence or opportunity targets on the way home. Which is where I'm going next, I decide. But again, it's not going to be that simple.

...to be continued!

#4539988 - 10/08/20 08:31 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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33lima Offline
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I set a course to the south-east, to give me lots of sea room for a final more easterly leg back to St Nazaire. And I have a patrol report sent. BdU likes to be kept informed.

[Linked Image]

He seems pleased enough, from the reply.

[Linked Image]

This is where it all begins to go wrong. I find I'm stuck. Time won't accelerate and the boat refuses to come onto the new course. Orders for fresh course changes are ignored.

[Linked Image]

Hours later, and while contacts are popping up on the map and time is definitely passing, I'm still stuck.

[Linked Image]

I'm forced to save the patrol and exit. If the problem recurs, I can always revert to the previous save. I'm not sure whether I've fallen victim to something getting corrupted, maybe even due to my CPU fan failing and overheating, confusing the CPU. Maybe the torpedo misses were also a symptom. It's a frustrating way to end the patrol, but better than being sunk I suppose. Which is what happened on a patrol I started after loading SH3 onto a laptop to keep me busy while waiting for the new CPU fan, this time in April 1943. First patrol, I sank two ships from a large, heavily-defended convoy in daylight, drifting deep under the escorts' depth charges until the convoy caught me up, then popping up to periscope depth and creeping away after the attack. Tried something similar on the second patrol, but only after getting shelled and hit by the leading escorts when I ran into them at full time acceleration on the surface in daylight. I nearly drifted under the convoy but despite ample use of the Bold 'Submarine Bubble Target', a huge pattern of depth charges from the three escorts which were hunting me sent me to the bottom. I think I'll load the previous save onto my repaired desktop, so I can have the challenge of a more dangerous, later career in parallel. It's a fantastic sim, SH3, even out of the box, and the Steam version was a good investment.

[Linked Image]

#4540365 - 10/11/20 02:03 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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33lima Offline
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Well, the saved mission re-loaded and I could play on. At this point, short on torpedoes, I have no particular ambition other than to get home safely.

[Linked Image]

However, I abandon my course back to Brest when several contacts are reported. Instead, I plot a dog leg course to intercept the one to the south-west, which won't take me back out into the Atlantic.

[Linked Image]

While en route, another contact is reported a short distance to the east, so I go for him instead. I just hope it's not a warship! Either way, I should be able to reach him before daylight.

[Linked Image]

The run-in towards where the contact should be is always nerve-wracking!

[Linked Image]

I make the sighting myself with my binos. It's a merchantman, coming nearly straight at us! She might be armed, so before she spots us, I dive to periscope depth for a submerged attack.

[Linked Image]

The problem I have is that only my stern tube is loaded. Try as I might, I haven't been able to persuade the crew to load the reserve eel under the foredeck casing into one of the forward tubes!

...to be continued!

Last edited by 33lima; 10/11/20 02:05 PM.
#4540366 - 10/11/20 02:13 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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U-100's electric motors whine gently as we slip slowly towards our intended victim.

[Linked Image]

As we near the target, I alter course out to port so as to bring the stern tube to bear at reasonably close range and without an excessive angle.

[Linked Image]

To avoid being spotted and triggering a zig-zag, I'm raising and lowering the scope while the hydrophone operator tracks the target, Finally I raise the scope again so I can track the target long enough to get a decent firing solution.

[Linked Image]

Torpedo los!

[Linked Image]

The stopwatch ticks down to the impact point and then beyond it. Another miss!

[Linked Image]

There's no sign that the freighter is armed so I've one last chance - the deck gun. Surface the boat!

[Linked Image]

...to be continued!

Last edited by 33lima; 10/11/20 02:14 PM.
#4540367 - 10/11/20 02:21 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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The 8.8cm gun is soon hammering rounds at the fleeing freighter.

[Linked Image]

Our boat is rolling in the swell and we have some misses, but also some hits.

[Linked Image]

I increase speed and the range drops. The ship is soon burning astern.

[Linked Image]

I slow right down as we come abeam of her. Every shell is now a hit.

[Linked Image]

Boom! There she goes!

[Linked Image]

Back broken, my victim is soon slipping beneath the waves.

[Linked Image]

That was well worth the detour! Now, to get home!

...to be continued!

#4540368 - 10/11/20 02:33 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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A fresh course for Brest is soon plotted. I come out of maximum time acceleration just to check that crew fatigue isn't building up, but all seems well.

[Linked Image]

By time we're running in towards base with land in sight to port and starboard, it's dark again.

[Linked Image]

Up ahead there somewhere is our berth.

[Linked Image]

Those large yellow dockside cranes conveniently mark out where we're going. By now, I've cut the speed right back and just need a sharp turn to port to take us in.

[Linked Image]

Dark though it is, the quayside is crowded with well-wishers, including the band whose strains I can hear as I stop engines and let U-100 drift gently into her berth.

[Linked Image]

Not a bad trip! Six merchantmen sunk and despite one being a neutral, I've been awarded an EK1 and a coupe of U-Boat awards. I also have some awards to distribute to the crew, not to mention additional renown which I can use to get some improvements made to the boat.

[Linked Image]

I've still plenty of space for more medals, and I'm looking forward to earning them!

[Linked Image]

So far, so good!

Last edited by 33lima; 10/11/20 02:33 PM.
#4540381 - 10/11/20 05:00 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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I've been following your patrol reports mate and good work. Keep it up.

The only things that should prevent you downloading the topside torpedoes are sea state, silent running and insufficient or exhausted crew. You must also download them to a reserve slot, not straight to an empty tube. If none of these things are the case I can't say what is preventing it.

I like the fact you know your uboat history, like the comments you made about the losses of Shepke, Prien and Kretschmer. The convoy was Halifax 112. Vanoc had depth charged U-100 and -- heavily damaged -- Shepke decided to surface and fire his stern torpedo. He mistakenly ordered full speed ahead rather than astern on the starboard motor as he attempted to maneuver the boat to bring the tube to bear, fouling his shot and Vanoc rammed the boat squarely on the bridge, the bow killing Shepke as you noted. Just six men survived the sinking of U-100, which interestingly is the same boat you are in. Vanoc's detection of the surfaced U-100 was the first verifiable example of shipborne radar detecting a uboat in the war. The loss of these three Ritterkreuz holders in such a short time was a massive shock to the uboat arm. I'm sure you know this, more for the general audience.

Good luck in your patrols, I do wish you had opted for manual targeting, but it's a great AAR all the same smile

Good hunting Herr Kaleun.


Animals flee this hell, the hardest stones cannot bear it for long. Only men endure
#4540551 - 10/12/20 06:28 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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Thanks for the tips and the encouragement! One possible cause for my useless eels may have been that the weapons officer slot was left vacant, resulting in nobody setting up the firing data from the scope (there seems only one in SH3, a sort of dual sky periscope and attack periscope, both available only in the control room; maybe later boats to the VIIB are different). So maybe manual TDC is better after all!

Been working my way through my small stock of mostly 1970s U-boat paperbacks. Just finished Hirschfeld (one of the best by any standard) and before that Ali Cremer's U-333. Next up I think is Grey Wolves, Grey Sea, about U-109, not autobiographical and said by Jurgen Rohwer to have factual errors but still one of the classics IIRC.

Last edited by 33lima; 10/12/20 06:29 PM.
#4540553 - 10/12/20 06:49 PM Re: U-100 - third patrol [Re: 33lima]  
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This past spring I also posted an AAR, using SH4's Operation Monsun mod. I tried to describe my torpedo firing method in this post

I think it's not as difficult as some may imagine, but that's down to expectations perhaps and each individual skipper. My method does require map contact updates and benefits from the unfailing accuracy. That however is the only realism setting I leave unchecked. WW2 boats had a tracking party, and the sim does not, so I don't mind using this. I do wish it had some variability perhaps due to the crew's ratings or the skipper's observations, but it's all we have so I make the best of it.

If you do determine the reason why your topside fish wouldn't download I'd be interested to know the cause. Good luck on patrol four.

Speaking of sub books, do you have Blair's Hitler's U Boat War (two volumes)?


Animals flee this hell, the hardest stones cannot bear it for long. Only men endure
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