Yamato was the
flagship of the Japanese Combined Fleet. By
size, she was the biggest battleship ever built.
Fully loaded, Yamato outweighed the biggest Allied
battleships by more than 20 percent.
Even at this
gigantic size, Yamato could reach top speed of 28
knots per hour. This extraordinary performance had
much to do with her bulbous bow, which jutted
out 10-feet (3-meter) waves that cancels out other
waves generated by the main part of the ship,
greatly reduced drag at the front. To come up
with this great design, the Japanese tested 50
could survive 3,000-pound armor piercing projectiles
like those from the U.S. Iowa's guns. At
23,000 tons, her steel armor weighed more than
30 percent of her total weight. Armor plates
of unprecedented 25 inches (63cm) thick shielded the
turrets of her main guns.
Yamato's nine main guns were the largest to ever
crown a warship. Each gun was 69 ft (21 meters)
long, weighed 147 metric tons and was capable of
firing high-explosive or armor-piercing shells
26 miles (42 kilometers.) The guns fired shells 18
inches (46 cm) in diameter which weighed about a
Honda Civic car. And these guns could dangerously
strike at an unprecedented range of 25 miles (40
km.) The nine guns were mounted on three
turrets. Each of these turrets weighed more
than an entire American Fletcher-class destroyer (3,000 tons versus 2,100 tons.)
Yamato's secondary guns were also impressive. Her
six inch guns - that is, guns firing shells six
inches in diameter, had a range of 17 miles (27
kilometers). And her 24 five inch guns,
mounted in 12 turrets, could destroy targets nine
On April 7, 1945, the battleship faced the
whole American fleet practically alone. She
was heading towards Okinawa. The escorts protected her
from submarine attacks, but no airplanes helped her
on the air. Yet Yamato remained her course
towards the fifteen-hundred-ship American fleet.
destroyers and one cruiser, the Yahagi , assisted
Yamato to fend off her attackers. By the end
of the battle, Yahagi and most of the destroyers
were sunk. American pilots concentrated their
torpedoes below Yamato's waterline near her bow and
stern where her armor was thinnest. And the
attacks were on just one side of the hull.
Yamato took 12 bomb and seven torpedo hits within
two hours of battle. Her 1,000
watertight compartments couldn't save her. An
astounding series of explosions onboard Yamato
produced the mushroom cloud. Experts believe
that a fire raging in the battleship's aft secondary
magazine caused tons of ammunition to ignite
simultaneously, producing the blasts that tore the
ship in half and sank her. These blasts were
the largest ever to occur at sea.
including Vice-Admiral Seiichi Itō, the fleet
commander— went down with Yamato. Only 269 survived. Surrounding Japanese ships
lost an additional 1,467 men.
Yamato puts up a
tremendous battle but she was not a match against
nearly four hundred attack planes all alone without
any air support. The battle was hopeless but
she fought valiantly. She settled on the
seafloor 1,400 feet down and about 50 miles
southwest of Kyushu, Japan.
The sinking of Yamato ended the era of battleships.
Aircraft carriers became king of the seas
Like all of our warship
models, this Yamato battleship model
has the following qualities:
- Plank-on-frame, hollow hull construction, weighing
less than 20 lbs (A solid hull of this model
would be over 60 lbs, requiring 2 people to
handle and a fortified table to accommodate.)
- Hollow superstructure comprised of many individual
thin pieces of wood glued together, not few blocks stacking on top one
- Windows are cutouts (not black decals), thanks to the
- Light rust appearance
to give the ship a tough battle look.
- >95% of parts are wood and metal.
Dimensions: 59" L x 15
T x 9 W
S & H is $220
(base is included).
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