Author Topic: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question  (Read 1218 times)

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Offline Bob Tomlin

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Hi Gents,


I've been looking at the vent fairings on the forward hull on the IXC/40 trying to work out whether there were variations in the shapes of these or whether they were all a standard shape.
The reason for this is comparing period photos (which aren't always very sharp or clear) with current shots of the U534 (which may have been worn away or had reconstructive work done).


Here's a link to a period shot of the U889 (click on the boat to zoom in)


http://www.novamuse.ca/index.php/Detail/objects/137176


To my eyes the forward vent fairings in the two positions look to be of very similar (if not the same) style, in this shot, showing a tapered vent opening and a curve at the top.


Here are two of the same position forward vent fairings on the U534
Forward most vents:-



..and the next set adjacent to the main hull vent openings and in place of the first:-





Trying to compare with any more period photos of the same vents (if anyone has any pointers to any good close-ups I'd be very grateful).


Thanks for any help,
Bob.


PS I think it might be my set up here but I don't see peoples photos when they say they've posted one, just a paperclip at the top that's not 'clickable' for me.
Do I need to install something to view these photos?













« Last Edit: 13 Aug , 2016, 03:26 by Bob Tomlin »

Offline dougie47

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Re: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question
« Reply #1 on: 15 Aug , 2016, 15:50 »
Hello Bob,

Jon is the man to ask about this and perhaps he can advise if I have this wrong. In a photo of the boat after it had been raised it looks like two of the three vents in this position had mostly been corroded away. In one of the photos Jon send me from 2013 it looks very much like new fairings had been added because the difference between the new fairing and older hull seems evident. As you have noticed the reconstructed fairings are nothing like the normal fairing which was nearly full width and had a curve. 

There is a wartime shot of the U 534 (with Turm II and 105mm on the deck) and this shows the original three vents on the port side of the boat. These original three vents are the full width and definitely not the type on the boat at present.

Regarding the photos, if you make sure you are logged in and then also make sure you are on the thread (rather than recent posts) the photos should be visible.

Cheers,

Dougie

Offline Bob Tomlin

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Re: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question
« Reply #2 on: 16 Aug , 2016, 04:43 »

Hi Dougie,


Thanks very much for indulging me here. Yes, Jon has been a very big help with answering my questions in the past (as has yourself with all your great research findings).


Yes I know exactly what you mean about the reconstructive work on the current U-534 (it's a shame we can't rewind the clock and see what she was like when first raised  -  particularly for a poke into the rectangular diesel exhaust for me too). Yes, I know the early fit U-534 photos that you mentioned which (as you say) show full curved fairings on both bow sets of vents and I would have gone along with the corrosion theory except for a couple of niggles which were poking me in the back of my mind:-


1. This is an extract of a photo from page 6 of the 'Vom Original zum Modell' book (IWM credited) which I've lightened up a little. It shows U-1234 and U-1235 I think here.
    Have a look at the two sets of forward vent fairings and to my eyes the forward most sets look like they have larger, squarer apertures and less curves.



2. The second thing was that whilst U-534 went through some rapid corrosion when the air got to it and the front fairings almost disappeared altogether, I went back to a couple of photos I took back in 1998, before they'd done much reconstruction at all (no tower outer or anything) and back then, more of the foremost vent fairings were present. If corrosion had occurred, then it had done it in a very uniform way on both sides of the boat and only on the forward most sets of vents (compare on the starboard side here).
What I'm wondering now, (because of this and the previous shots of U-534 in the early fit) is whether there's a possibility of the vents undergoing modification at some later stage of the war for some reason (perhaps improve hydrodynamics/drainage)?










So what I've been doing is searching for answers in the past, by looking at period photos to try to find these squarer vent fairings for definite.


Anyway, I do think I've now found a photo which does clearly seem to show these fairing differences. Please can you let me know what you think? It gets much better when zoomed in.
Do you think that some of the IXC/40s might have been modified to look like this in the late war?


The caption says this is Canadian War Museum photo CWM 19930128-032 taken by William Prescott from HMCS North Bay at Lisahally.
A plate hanging off the tower looks to read U-1231(?).
Having some real problems linking directly to this site but it's worth bearing with it, I think.
Click on this link, then 'objects and photgraphs',then 'photos' and then 'page 10' of the photos. It's then 4th down on the right hand side. (phew!).



http://www.warmuseum.ca/cwm/exhibitions/navy/home-e.aspx




Would like to know what you think, especially Dougie and Jon of course?


Cheers,


Bob
« Last Edit: 16 Aug , 2016, 05:49 by Bob Tomlin »

Offline dougie47

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Re: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question
« Reply #3 on: 16 Aug , 2016, 13:36 »
Hi Bob and Jon,

Very well done on finding that U 1231 photo. The opening is very visible (despite the poor quality image) and this style looks very like the squarer ones on the front of U 534.

I've had another look at a few photos. Here is an early shot of U 534 with the Turm II -



It looks to me like the forward set is square and the rear set (just in front of the main drainage area) is rounded. Does anyone agree or disagree?

If this is right then it might be quite simple - the front set was always of the square type and the rear set was always the rounder type.

I have yet to find the rounder style on the forward set (and similarly have not found the squarer type on the rearmost set).

Cheers,

Dougie


Offline Bob Tomlin

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Re: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question
« Reply #4 on: 17 Aug , 2016, 13:26 »
I've been 'googling' more photos online and it looks like there were differences in fairing types in the same places on the IXC/40 boats.
My main reason for this is to try to get the right type on the U-889. Looking at photos of that, I think I'm going for the larger squarer aperture type on that boat.

One thing I notice in the different fairing types is that with the ones that look to have the larger square apertures (when viewed from the side) and less fairing, the apertures are viewable when looking from the front whereas with the ones with more fairing and less aperture, the aperture can't be seen from the front (because it's obscured by the fairing).

Here are some IXC/40 boats which have the larger 'squarer' apertures on the bow vents (I hope these links work):-

U-1228
This shot shows a good contrast between the bow vent type with the larger apertures and the fairings just before the main hull vents
http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?t=206611

U-805
Fabulous colour shot showing the large aperture vents on a schnelltauchback boat
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_submarine_U-805#/media/File:German_submarine_U-805_being_escorted_to_Portsmouth_Navy_Yard_in_May_1945.jpg

U-873
Larger, squarer apertures again (3rd shot from page bottom in sepia)
http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?t=214430

U-858
Larger squarer apertures again
http://footage.framepool.com/en/shot/395920303-u-boat-prisoner-of-war-end-of-war-second-world-war

http://footage.framepool.com/en/shot/153522325-u-boat-prisoner-of-war-end-of-war-second-world-war

Then there are these boats which show different looking fairings where the fairing looks quite extended out to the sides (almost like an aircraft exhaust stub) and the aperture is not visible from the front:-

U-532
Different fairing style
http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205160015

This next shot's a little distant but shows how you don't see the apertures from here on this type of fairing
http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205194311

U-190
Different fairing shape without the apertures visible and centre fairing set below the other two (same after the hull 'schnelltauch' mod).
17th image down the page captioned 'U-190 without the schnelltauchback'
http://typeix-c132scale.blogspot.co.uk/2015/02/u-170-u-190-u-190-without-athe.html


 Cheers Bob.
« Last Edit: 17 Aug , 2016, 13:46 by Bob Tomlin »

Offline dougie47

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Re: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question
« Reply #5 on: 17 Aug , 2016, 16:15 »
Hello Bob,

Great work again. I think you have provided enough evidence of the different types. Can folks have a look over the following and let me know if I have this correct (the names A, B and C aren't official, I added them so we can discuss them easily without a full description) -

Style A - This is the more normal type of fairing without the apertures visible; it was only used on the 3 vents farther forward on the hull. There were variances in the pattern (U 190 had the middle one situated lower down; U 530 had the rearmost one farther back). Boats that had this were 190, 530, 532, 534 (when launched).

Style B - This is the larger square aperture type with less fairing present; it was only used on the 3 vents farther forward on the hull. Boats that had this would be 805, 858, 873, 889, 1228. 

Style C - This is the rounded type that featured on the 3 directly ahead of the main drainge area and on the 6 directly behind the main drainage area. Presumably this style was used on all boats which had vents in this area and only used on these vents.

A pattern is appearing here for the boat numbers mentioned above. All the boats with style A were launched between June 42 and September 1942. All the boats with style B were launched between May 43 and May 44. My guess is that style A was the original style favoured in the early boats launched in 1942. Then there was a changeover to style B used on boats launched in 1943 and 1944.

The U 534 Turm II photos show that this boat had style A in the mid-war period (it is definitely not style B at that point). But the photos taken when the boat had been raised do look like style B, though I suppose we can't be sure due to the possibility of corrosion. It could be that U 534 originally had style A but it was cut back to become style B. If so the reason is not clear. Would cutting them back make an improvement?

Other boats don't seem to have been changed from one style to another. 

Please let me know if there are errors in the above.

Cheers,

Dougie

Offline Capt Kremin

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Re: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question
« Reply #6 on: 18 Aug , 2016, 08:01 »
Hi Bob, Dougie et al,


Since this subject reared it's head I have been mulling over my U 534 photos and my conclusion is that for some reason the forward vent fairings were cut back during her service life, due to a lack of in service photos it is impossible to tell whether this was done before the first patrol or the 3rd and last patrol.


The current port forward fairings are modern reconstructions and are thus null and void for authenticity.
Attached is a couple of zooms from when she was salvaged and one from her time with the Warship Preservation Trust. The WPT photo is a better resolution although there is significantly more corrosion. Having said that on the WPT photo the edges on the forward 2 fairings, the 3rd being pretty much corroded away completely, seem to have straight edges around the area that is 'missing'. Whilst the salvage photo is of poorer quality the fairings seems to have straight edges.


Regards
Jon
"Here's Peter Jason Quill, He's also called Starlord",
"Who calls him that?",
"Himself Mostly".

Offline Bob Tomlin

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Re: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question
« Reply #7 on: 23 Aug , 2016, 14:14 »
Hi Gents and thanks to Dougie and Jon for the very useful feedback.
Yes, trying to make some sense out of what appeared to be different shaped vents on different IXC/40s is the thing that prompted me to post this in the first place.
Firstly I wanted to make sure that my eyes weren't playing tricks and I wanted to see if others were seeing it the same way or not.


Questions that are then raised:-


Did different shipyards use their own variations or was there a standard pattern?


Were some boats modified at later stages in the war?


Did some boats (built later in the war) launch with a later design (avoiding the need for modification)?


Today I decided to have a nip over to have a look at the U-534 again, as I wanted to make sure what the different types of vent fairings on that look like when viewed from front and rear (in order to aid comparison with wartime shots). I agree with Jon that the current Vent fairings on the U-534 have had reconstructive surgery and so may not be accurate representations of the wartime examples. Having said that, they still bear some considerable resemblance to photos of her when she was first raised (prior to reconstructive work) and to some vent fairings seen in wartime photos.


I think so far, (unless someone here tells me different) that the rear sets all look pretty much the same. The rear vent fairings on the U-534 look to be original to me?
The fairings are full, have curved profiles which are cut off neatly at their rear end at a right angle to the hull. No aperture is visible when viewed from the front.
Here's a shot taken today of the set on the U-534:-




The front two sets of fairings do seem to differ (on most boats)* from each other, with the front most set having the larger square looking shaped apertures which can be seen (if only slightly) when viewed from the front (see here on the '534 today from front):-



They also look different when viewed from the rear:-



This is one wartime shot below that I wanted to compare the contemporary U-534 example with:-
This is IWM photo 28896 (reversed - note the writing on the ramp the soldier's walking down and the schnorkel on the wrong side of the type VII).
I thought this showed the front vents to look 'squarer' than the set behind but wanted to see if you thought so as well?


http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205160208


Looking at the U-534 in the wartime shot, she looks to have then had the same type of fairings that were on the U-532 (out of the same shipyard).
The current '534 (and how she looked when first raised) might suggest she was modded at some stage whereas the shots of the ;532 going into Barrow and Liverpool show that the 532 still had the fuller fairings for some reason.


The design on the U-889 fairings looks slightly different again (to my eyes), in that it has the larger apertures that are visible from the front, but the fairings are not as 'square', having a 'sloping top to the faring and a curve in the top corner of the aperture? Furthermore, on this boat both sets of vents are visible from the front (See this shot again):-
http://www.novamuse.ca/index.php/Detail/objects/137176


Is it possible that this boat, being a later build, perhaps had a newer design built in (not requiring a mod)? Or is it the case that this is what all the 'squarer' shaped vents look like when viewed closer (without any corrosion)?
I've seen this same looking type of vent fairing on two other boats:-
One is what I think is the U-883 (which is a type IXD but funnily enough, launched out of the same yard as the U-889 only slightly later) see here:-
http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205159999


and then there's this boat on the left of picture here :-
http://www.u-historia.com/uhistoria/historia/bajas/deaduboots/img/lisahally.jpg


Would like to know if anyone agrees or disagrees on any of this or has information or comments to throw into the mix? Ideally a photo that has a good close-up of the bow vents would be useful.
Thanks.


Thanks also Dougie for the advice on how to view images. Just seen Glenn Cauley's amazing WIP for the first time. Thank you.
Cheers Bob.






























« Last Edit: 24 Aug , 2016, 00:46 by Bob Tomlin »

Offline Bob Tomlin

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Re: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question
« Reply #8 on: 24 Aug , 2016, 04:20 »
Hi again Gents,
Just realised how confusing my post sounds when I read it back so just trying to simplify things a little.
I also realised that it's not as easy and automatic viewing linked images so I've done some rough sketches to try to explain things a little better.


Please note that these are representative, rough and not to scale (purely to show what I'm talking about).
It would be great if people could have a look at wartime photos and compare what we're looking at here in the drawings to what they're seeing in photos please.
If you see something different - that's great and please can I see the photo, or can you let me know how to amend the drawings please?
I'd be particularly interested in the type A ones (as on U-190 and U-532, early U-534, etc).


Going on Dougie's A, B and C type designations we have:-


Type A
I'm still not exactly sure in photos what I'm looking at with these - (they almost look like they have an 'aircraft' style stub that protrudes out from the main fairing which projects out).
I'll come back to you on these when i've seen them in more photos if that's okay? (bit of a cop out I know).


Type B
I'm going to split these into two sub-types if that's okay.
B1:-



B1 is what I'm calling the type currently seen on the U-534.
As Jon says, these are largely reconstructed and the vents might well not have looked like this when the boat was operational.
Nevertheless, as previously said, the salvage shots do show the vents still looking like this, but slightly ragged, (may be down to corrosion, or may be what the vents looked like after modification?).
Looking in wartime photos, there are some shots with vents in that do look like this (to my eyes!).
Fairings look squared off in appearance and the apertures are visible when viewed from the front as well as the side.


B2:-

B2 is what I think I'm looking at on the U-889 and some other boats.
It may be that B1 and B2 are one and the same and that B1 only looks the way it does because of corrosion/reconstruction, but my eyes think that they've seen both in wartime photos and I'd like to be proved wrong or right about these (please).
These have similarly square-ish apertures which are visible when viewed from the front. However, the fairings appear to angle down at the top (and angle up slightly at bottom) and the leading top corner of the aperture is more of a curve than in B1.
I think I'm looking at this sort of thing on U-889, U-883 and some others, but would like to know if you see different.
(I'm also not sure if U-889 has this sort as the second set too).


Type C





This is a sketch of the ones on the U-534 at present. Again, as previously pointed out by Jon, these have had reconstructive work done on them and may not look exactly like they did in wartime.
However, also as previously said, they did look like this when salvaged and before reconstruction.
These are in essence very similar to the stern type vents except that the aperture edge is slightly angled, allowing some aperture to be seen from the side (but not from the front).
Curved in appearance, nearly cover the aperture when viewed from the side.


Type D



These are the type seen on the stern vents (six of them - or two sets of 3, nearly joined at centre).
I've included them as a comparison against Type C.
Again curved in appearance (although the first two in each set of three is flat-ish forwards initially and curves more towards the aperture at rear).
The rear end where the aperture is, is cut at right angles to the hull and no aperture is visible from the side (compare this with Type C).
I've only seen this sort of vent fairing on the stern vents in photos but you might have seen different.


Hope these help illustrate things a little better.
cheers Bob.










Offline dougie47

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Re: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question
« Reply #9 on: 24 Aug , 2016, 12:55 »
Hi Bob,

Nice to hear your got to the U 534. Have they picked up the panel that was lying on the ground yet?

I applaud you dedication to this subject. There is not much I can add to the topic. I haven't noticed a difference between style C and style D as I thought they looked the same. But I haven't looked at them in as much detail as you have so you may be right.

Classifying into sub-groups is a very good idea. This is what happens when one style is adopted very slightly differently by different yards. If you are looking at this feature in minute detail, and had good photos of every single IX, you may (or may not) find that every yard had their own sub-style. The lack of photos means we can't say this, though.

As always we are limited by research material.

Cheers,

Dougie 

Offline Bob Tomlin

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Re: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question
« Reply #10 on: 24 Aug , 2016, 13:31 »
Dougie, you're right of course and I'm noticing more and more things in common with boats from the same yards.
I guess they might have had their different interpretations of what the standard was?
I have noticed for instance that the U-889 bears many similarities with the type IXD boats that came out of the same place, besides vent fairings (e.g. the tower rail design that goes
overhead the lower wintergarden).

Offline dougie47

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Re: Type IXC/40 forward hull vents fairings shape question
« Reply #11 on: 25 Aug , 2016, 12:28 »
Hi Bob,

That's right, just different interpretations by workers at different yards.

All the IXD2 were built in the same yard (Weser in Bremen) as U 889. So U 889 would have had similarities, especially with U 883 which was built at the same time.

Cheers,

Dougie