for Fun Miscellaneous
Tanks Trains Contact Me
Notes: The "K" class cruisers represented a completely fresh design and incorporated the newly developed electric welding techniques, as well as the triple turret for the 5.9" guns, with one sited on the forecastle and two aft. The aft turrets were offset from the centerline, in an effort to allow them to bear more to the forward arcs of fire. For the first time, both steam and diesel machinery was installed. Each could only work individually; the diesels allowed an extended cruising range at a slower speed, while the steam turbines were used for "dash" capabilities. The "K" class were regarded as a good sea boats, and were very maneuverable. But insufficient quarters for her crew was a problem; KARLSRUHE did not have enough accommodations for 27.5% of her crew (Gröner, GERMAN WARSHIPS 1815-1945, VOL.1, p.120; see Bibliography). And as it turned out, the "K" class were too lightly built for duties in heavy seas, and significant strengthening had to be added to their hulls. For KARLSRUHE, this first occurred while on an overseas tour; she was refitted and strengthened at San Diego, California (USA) in April, 1936. This increased her beam by over four feet, and her displacement by nearly 1,700 tons.
Upon commissioning, KARLSRUHE served as a gunnery training ship, and made many cruises abroad. In 1933, her anti-aircraft armament was augmented by the addition of four more 3.45" (88mm) guns. In 1934, the 19.7" torpedoes were replaced by 21" torpedoes. In 1935, she was fitted with a catapult and two seaplanes. In 1938, KARLSRUHE had more strengthening added to her hull; at this time, her diesel engines and their exhaust piping were removed, the deckhouses and searchlight arrangements were modified, and the 3.45" AA guns were replaced by 4.1" (105mm) guns (six, in three twin mounts). When used as a minelayer, KARLSRUHE could carry up to 120 mines. At the beginning of World War II, KARLSRUHE was involved in minelaying operations in the North Sea. During the invasion of Norway, KARLSRUHE was assigned to Task Force 4 for the landings at Kristiansand and Arendal. On 9 April 1940, KARLSRUHE was torpedoed by the British submarine TRUANT off the coast of Norway. She was too badly damaged to be saved, and was scuttled by two torpedoes from the torpedo boat JAGUAR. 11 of her crew were killed.