Howdy BB1987, good looking remake of the Tenryu type. Any thoughts on the CVL conversion I have seen proposed for the ships. With six of them you might have a couple spare for experimentation.
I have to be honest, it is the first time i ever heard about a CVL conversion plan for the Tenryuus. They had a very tight beam so I no not know how much useful carriers they would have been, they were repeatedly considerered for conversion into AA cruisers instead, until the IJN choose to stick with the Akizukis.
Anyway, let's go on with the Shion class destroyer. Actually a repost of the original part one with an extra drawing to cover the 1930-1940 timeframe
Shion Class Destroyer (Part 1, 1923-1940):
After the WNT was signed, 21 of the planned Sato class Destroyers were canceled and reordered as two new classes: 15 of them went up to form the Shion class. The Shion were smaller than the previous Sato, Kuchikukan 27 and Kuchikukan 12 units, the Naval Staff intended to provide with relative ease and cost savings a class suited for coastal operations. Blue-water and capital-ship escort duties would have been performed by the larger Okaze class, whose construction paralleled that of the Shions.
To cut design time and start construction as soon as possible, the Shion class ended up beign nothing more than a Japanese Wakatake with minor modifications, the only one beign truly recognizable was the bridge beign slighly different in shape and having more windows around it. The ships were armed with three single 120mm/45 Type3 single guns ins hielded positions and two twin 533mm torpedo launchers. Two 7.7mm machine guns were also carried, and the ships had the capability to fit 20 mines on board for minelaying operations. Despite beign planned as a coastal unit, the Shion, with her 36-knot top speed and 3.000 nautical mile endurance at 15-knots, was both the fastest and most durable destroyer Koko no Kaigun had at that point. four ships were built at Kousaten Navy Yard, nine at Toumachi Naval arsenal and Two at the civilian Yamatogawa Shipyards. Shion, the lead ship, was laid down in July 1922 and was in service by 1923, her sisters followed by 1927.
The last four units, Ajisai, Karukaya, Suzuki and Kuroda, recieved the newer 120mm/45 Type10 guns, which, having a maximum elevation of 70° effectively served as bot surface and AA guns. Also, they sported depth charges instead of the mine-laying gear of the earlier sisters.
The fifteen sisters formed four Kuchikutai units (three 4-unit and one 3-unit) until their refit during the mid-30's. By 1937 the Shions, with the retirement of the last of the Kuchikukan-27 class unit, were heavily outclassed by any other destroyer in koko no Kaigun's inventory. Still it was still felt they could be needed for second-line duties like escort and patrol along convoy routes in case of war. So, by 1940, all were slightly refitted: the forward funnel was capped to improve smoke clearing from the bridge area, all ship recieved the DP 120mm/45 Type10 guns and two twin 13mm machine guns were fitted on newer platforms added abreast the midship searchlight.
By late 1940, all the Shion class Destroyers had been reassigned to Suirai Sentai 3, 8 and 12 under light Cruisers Kashino, Izayoi and Saigyouji. Effectively considered second-rate ships no more fit for fronline duties they spent the year leading to the start of the Pacific War in uneventful patrols, and acted mainly as training vessels, forming the crews intended to man the newer Shizuha and Tenshi class destroyers.
Ships in class: (laid down-launched-commissioned - fate)
shion 1922 1923 1923 - ?
omodaka 1923-1923-1923 - ?
botan 1923-1924-1924 - ?
basho 1923-1924-1925 - ?
nadeshiko 1923-1924-1924 - ?
kikyo 1923-1924-1925 - ?
yuri 1924-1925-1925 - ?
ayame 1924-1925-1925 - ?
kaido 1924-1925-1926 - ?
kakitsubata 1924-1925-1926 - ?
tsutsuji 1924-1925-1925 - ?
ajisai 1925-1926-1927 - ?
karukaya 1925-1926-1926 - ?
suzuki 1925-1927-1927 - ?
kuroda 1925-1927-1927 - ?