Tenryu Class, Japanese Light Cruisers

Photograph of IHN Tenryu

Naval Historical Center #NH 42660


Tonnage 3230 tons standard displacement
Dimensions 468'10" by 40'5" by 13'1"
142.9m by 12.34m by 3.96m
Maximum speed       33 knots
Complement 327
Armament 4 5.5"/50 guns
1 3"/40 AA guns
2 13mm/76 AA guns
2x3 21" torpedo tubes
48 Type 1 mines
Protection 176 tons
1.5"+1" (38mm+25mm) HT belt
1" (25mm) HT deck
2" (51mm) HT conning tower
3-shaft geared turbines (51,000 shp)
10 Kanpon boilers
Bunkerage 920 tons fuel oil
150 tons coal
Range 6000 nautical miles (11,000 km) at 10 knots
5000 nautical miles (9300 km) at 14 knots

The Tenryus were completed in 1919 in Navy yards following careful study of the British Caledons. They were Japan's first modern light cruisers and established the precedent of designing such as destroyer flotilla leaders. Their machinery even consisted of three sets of destroyer turbines. Succeeding classes of light cruisers closely followed their pattern. However, the Tenryus were rapidly outclassed by the very destroyers they were intended to lead. Their protection was inadequate, being designed only against 4" (102mm) U.S. destroyer shells, and their range was inadequate for Pacific service. Two of their boilers were of mixed design, capable of burning either oil or coal. The ships cost ¥4,550,000 apiece.

Units in the Pacific:


Wake Invasion Force (Kajioka)     

Torpedoed 1942-12-18 by Albacore east of Madang


Wake Invasion Force (Kajioka) Torpedoed 1944-3-13 by Sandlance off Yokosuka


Evans and Peattie (1997)

Lacroix and Wells (1997)
Whitley (1995)

Worth (2001)

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