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Japan's Imperial Navy flag

Japan's Kaga class Battleships

Photos

A partially complete Tosa being towed from Nagasaki in 1922:
A partially complete Tosa being towed from Nagasaki in 1922
Kure Maritime History and Science Museum

Design

The Kaga class battleships were to be improved Nagato class were ordered in the 1918 Program to be part of the 8-8 Project (8 battleships / 8 battlecruisers).

Y. Hiraga was the designer of the Kaga class.

Main Armament

It was intended that the Kaga class would carry ten 16" guns.

Washington Treaty

The terms of the Washington Treaty of 1921 said that the uncompleted Kaga class battleships had to be destroyed. Both had already been launched and the Tosa was used as a target and the Kaga was converted into the IJN Kaga aircraft carrier.

Ships

IJN Kaga

  • Manufacturer: Kawasaki at Kobe
  • July 19, 1920: Laid down.
  • November 17, 1921: Launched.
  • May 5, 1922: Cancelled.
  • 1924 - March 31, 1928: Conversion to aircraft carrier.

IJN Tosa

  • Manufacturer: Mitsubishi at Nagasaki
  • February 16, 1920: Laid down.
  • December 18, 1921: Launched.
  • May 5, 1922: Cancelled.
  • February 9, 1925: Sunk as target.

Usage

The gunnery school took over the Tosa in June 1924 and used it as a target for mines, torpedoes, and gun shells.

Originally the Kaga was to be scrapped but it was turned into an aircraft carrier.

Specifications

  Kaga class
Crew  
Displacement 38,500 tons
Displacement - Loaded  
Physical Characteristics  
Length 768'
234.1 m
Length - Water Line 760'
231.7 m
Length - Between Perpendiculars 715'
218 m
Beam 100'
30.48 m
Draft / Height 30' 9"
11.43 m
Performance  
Speed 26.5 knots
Range at 16 knots 5,000 nautical miles
Armament 16" twin turrets: 5
16" L/50, 40.6 cm twin turrets: 5
5.5": 20
5.5" L/50, 14 cm: 20
Anti-Aircraft 3", 8 cm: 4
Torpedo Tubes 24": 8
Torpedo Tubes - Above Waterline 24": 4
Torpedo Tubes - Below Waterline 24": 4
Aircraft  
Armor  
Barbettes 9" - 11"
Belt - Main - Aft 9" - 11"
Belt - Main - Amidships 11"
Belt - Main - Bow 9" - 11"
Bulkheads 10"
Control Tower 10" - 14"
Deck 4", 4" - 6"
Deck - Over Machinery 5.5"
Deck - Over Magazine 6"
Turrets  
Turrets - Front  
Engines  
Boilers Kanpon Type RO coal fired: 4
Kanpon Type RO mixed firing: 8
Shafts 4
Turbines Impulse reaction
Brown-Curtis impulse reaction
HP 91,000
Coal 1,700 tons
Oil 3,600 tons

Sources:

  1. Japanese Warships of World War II, A. J. Watts, 1966
  2. The Imperial Japanese Navy, A. J. Watts and B. G. Gordon, 1971
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site