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Inter-War Construction - Surface Craft

The first construction on surface craft of any Importance undertaken by the U..S.S.R. was on the, SHTORM class torpedo boats; the first of these craft was completed in 1932. They have a normal displacement of 800 tons and an overall length of 251 feet; their, beam is 2J+ feet. They have a designed full speed of 25 knots, and had a mean speed on trials of 21 knots. They carry 2 J+u guns and 3 3" high altitude guns with a maximum range of 27,900 yards; they have 3 18B broadside torpedo tubes in a single turret. They carry 50 mines and 4 D.C.T. These boats are excessively armed for their size; they are reported as being poorly constructed and roll heavily, owing to excessive top hampers.

The Leningrad class destroyer leader represents the first attempt of the U.S.S.R. in larger ship construction; the first unit of this class was completed in 1935• They had a standard displace ment of 2900 tons, a length of 400 feet, and their beam was 38 1/2 feet. They have 5 5.1 inch-guns and 2 3 inch anti-aircraft guns and 2 1.4-6 anti-aircraft guns. Their construction is said to have been supervised and influenced by French technical experts and are quite unsatisfactory; they are reported to be poor seaboats, very wet forward. Despite this fact, however, additional units were still being built.
In 1936 an order was placed by the U.S.S.R. at the Odero-Terni-Orlando Yards, in Leghorn (Italy) fora destroyer leader. All subsequent types of Soviet destroyers reflect this design. The first destroyers built by the U.S.S.R. were the Gordi Glass, which were first laid down in 1937. They have a standard displacement of 1600 tons, a length of 375 feet, and a beam of 33 l/2 feet. Their armament is similar to that placed on the Leningrad Class. More recently, probably not before 1938, an improved type of these destroyers was laid down. They are slightly larger, and have a standard displacement of about 1800 tons. Their main difference in silhouette is that they have two separate raking, squat, flat-sided stacks instead of one. They are indicative of the latest turn in Soviet destroyer construction.

In 1935, construction was first begun on cruisers, namely, the KIROV class.. By 1943 a total of 5 units of this class had been completed and constructionon 5 more was started before the outbreak of the war, but it was doubtful whether any progress can be made on them in wartime. These ships had a standard displacement of about 8,000 tons and a length of 613 l/2 f eet. : Their beam is 58 feet. They had 9 7.1 inch guns in triple turrets, 6 3*9 inch guns and 4 1.4.6 inch anti-aircraft guns. They normally carry 3 aircraft which are launched by: means of a catapult. Depth charges; are released by means of 2 depth charge rails.. They had a designed full speed of 34- knots. The design and technical advisor of the construction of these, units is said to have been furnished by ANSALDO. They are lightly built, but well laid out.

Although considering the possibility, no action was taken on the possible construction of battleships until/fairly recently. After the ORLOV theory had more or less been accepted, plans were laid for the construction of large units. To this end in 1937 one battleship (and perhaps a second) was laid down at Leningrad, and in 1938 another one at Nikolaev. These units were to have a displacement of 44,190 tons, to be 794V, overall length, 119! in beam, and to have a mean draft of 29f10"5 they were to carry 9 16" guns, 12 5.9" guns and 12 3.9" guns. By the time that the Germans captured Nikolaev the battleship under construction there was about 40% completed. Since the outbreak of the war, further construction at Leningrad was impossible.




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