Tomozuru Class, Japanese Torpedo Boats

Photograph of IJN Tomozuru

Wikipedia Commons


Tonnage 815 tons standard
Dimensions 269' by 24'3" by 8'2"
81.99m by 7.39m by 2.49m
Maximum speed       28 knots
Complement 113
Armament 3x1 4.7"/45 gun
1 light machine gun
1x2 21" torpedo tubes
2-shaft geared turbine (11,000 shp)
2 Kampon boilers
Bunkerage 150 tons fuel oil
Range 9000 nautical miles (17,000 km) at 10 knots
Modifications 1942: One 4.7" gun and the light machine gun removed to take on 10 25mm/60 AA guns and 48 depth charges

Ordered in 1931 and completed in 1933-1934, the Tomozurus had about half the displacement of a destroyer and were slower, in contrast with U.S. motor torpedo boats.  They were something of a throwback to the pre-First World War torpedo boats that were ancestors to the destroyer.  Probably the Japanese would not have bothered except that ships of this type were not restricted by the naval disarmament treaties. However, when war came, the ships proved highly valuable as escort vessels, though they were never an adequate substitute even for second-class destroyers.

The ships were not very seaworthy, with 22.7% of their weight in armaments on a hull with a beam of only 24'6" (7.5m) with a draft of just 8' (2.4m).  In fact, they were so unstable that Tomozuru herself capsized in a typhoon in 1934. As a result, the sixteen units of the class that had not yet been laid down were canceled, and the units that were already completed were reconstructed to improve stability. In the process, they lost one of the two twin 21" torpedo mounts of the original design.

Units in the Pacific:


At Magong with Third Surprise Attack Force (Hirose)      

Torpedoed  1944-12-24 by Tilefish off Yokosuka


At Magong with Third Surprise Attack Force (Hirose)


At Magong with Third Surprise Attack Force (Hirose)

Sunk by aircraft 1945-3-1 off Okinawa


At Magong with Third Surprise Attack Force (Hirose)

Sunk by aircraft 1945-3-24 off Shanghai


Evans and Peattie (1997)

Jentschura, Jung, and Mickel (1977)

Morison (1950)

Whitley (1988)

Worth (2001)

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