Yubari, Japanese Light Cruiser

Photograph of IJN Yubari

Naval History and Heritage Command #NH 82098


Tonnage 2890 tons standard displacement
Dimensions 455'8" by 39'6" by 11'10"
138.9m by 12.04m by 3.58m
Maximum speed      35.5 knots
Complement 328
Armament 2x1, 2x2 5.5"/50 guns
1 3"/40 AA gun
2 13mm/76 machine guns
2x2 24" torpedo tubes (1 reload)
48 Type 1 mines
Protection 349.0 tons
1.5" (38mm) internal NVNC belt inclined -10 degrees plus 0.75" (20mm) HT outer plating
1" (25mm) NVNC armored deck
1.25" (32mm) NVNC uptakes
0.4" (10mm) HT turret front
3-shaft Mitsubishi-Parsons-Gihon geared turbines (57,900 shp)
8 Kanpon boilers
Bunkerage 916 tons fuel oil
Range 5500 nautical miles (10,200 km) at 10 knots
3310 nautical miles (6130 km) at 14 knots
1943: Two 5.5" guns removed and the light antiaircraft increased to 4x3 25mm/60 AA guns and 8x1 13/76 AA guns. Displacement increased to 4448 tons.

The Yubari was a 1923 experiment in squeezing the most possible ship into the smallest possible displacement to comply with the naval treaties of the 1920s.  The result was, predictably, more like an overpriced if powerful destroyer than a light cruiser.  The protection system was designed only against U.S. 4" destroyer shells. Her armor belt was inclined the wrong way, so that incoming shells hit at a more perpendicular angle and were therefore more likely to penetrate.  (No later Japanese cruiser repeated this mistake.)  However, as an experiment in ultimate displacement economy, the Yubari was a modest success, and many of her design features were used in the Furukatas. She thus became the forerunner of the Japanese heavy cruiser force.

Significant weight was saved by giving the belt armor no back plating and letting it contribute directly to the hull strength. The machinery was based on that of the Minekaze destroyer class and machinery dispersal was good. The boiler exhausts from both fire rooms were trunked into a single funnel and the enlarged bridge centralized all command, communications, and fire control.

Yubari was with Wake Invasion Force (Kajioka) when war broke out. She was torpedoed on 27 April 1944 by Bluegill off Palau.

References (accessed 2007-12-12)
Evans and Peattie (1997)
Lacroix and Wells (1997)
Whitley (1995)

Worth (2001)

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