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By Various Authors

Following are general naval reference works compiled mostly from articles sent in by our customers which were printed some years back in the Alnavco LOG. We invite our current customers to point out any errors they find and to submit similar articles which will be added to the ones below on our website. Please emphasize data over discussion. We hope all find the material below useful and informative.

Subjects covered: Abbreviations, U.S. BB list, Carrier Capacity, British BB & CB List, Jutland BB’s & CB’s

Ship Type Abbreviations

Those just getting into the hobby may not be familiar with the meaning of the ship type abbreviations used in our publications. We use the official U.S. Navy designations and they are As follows:

AD Destroyer TenderDM Seaplane TenderDM Minelayer
AE Ammunition ShipAVP AV, SmallDMS Minesweeper, High Spd
AF Stores ShipBB BattleshipsFF Frigate
AGC Amphib Command ShipCA Heavy CruiserFFG FF, Guided Missile
AGS Surveying ShipCB BattlecruiserLCI Landing Craft, Infantry
AH Hospital ShipCG Guided Missile CruiserLCM LC, Mechanized
AK Cargo ShipCGN CG, NuclearLCVP LC, Vehicle, Personnel
AKA Attack Cargo ShipCL Light CruiserLSD Landing Ship, Dock
AM MinesweeperCLAA CL, Anti-aircraftLSM Landing Ship, Medium
AO Fleet OilerCV Aircraft CarrierLST Landing Ship, Tank
AOG Gasoline TankerCVE CV, EscortPC Submarine Chaser
AP Troop TransportCVL CV, LightPF Patrol Frigate
APA Attack TransportCVN CV, NuclearPG Gunboat
APD Destroyer TransportDD DestroyerPT Motor Torpedo Boat
AR Repair ShipDDG DD, Guided MissileSS Submarine
ARS Salvage ShipDE Destroyer EscortSSBN SS, Ballistic Missile
AT Fleet TugDDL DD, LeaderSSN SS, Nuclear


Compiled by Bill Novobilsky, Hopewell, NJ

Hull No.NameLengthDispl.CommissionedMain Arm.
(2nd L)TEXAS308’10”6,31518952 x 12″
(2nd L)MAINE319′6,68218954 x 10″
BB-1INDIANA350’11”10,28818954 x 13″
BB-2MASSACHUSETTS350’11”10,28818964 x 13″
BB-3OREGON351′ 1/2″10,28818964 x 13″
BB-4IOWA362’5″11,41018974 x 12″
BB-5KEARSARGE375’4″11,54019004 x 13″
BB-6KENTUCKY375’4′11,54019004 x 14′
BB-7ILLINOIS375’4″11,56519014 x 13″
BB-8ALABAMA374′11,56519004 x 13″
BB-9WISCONSIN373’10”11,65319014 x 13″
BB-10MAINE393’11”12,84619024 x 12″
BB-11MISSOURI393’11”12,36219034 x 12″
BB-12OHIO393’10”12,72319044 x 12″
BB-13VIRGINIA441’3″14,94819064 x 12″
BB-14NEBRASKA441’3″14,94819074 x 12″
BB-15GEORGIA441’3″14,94819064 x 12″
BB-16NEW JERSEY441’3″14,94819064 x 12″
BB-17RHODE ISLAND441’3″14,94819064 x 12″
BB-18CONNECTICUT456’4″16,00019064 x 12″
BB-19LOUISIANA456’4″16,00019064 x 12″
BB-20VERMONT456’4″16,00019074 x 12″
BB-21KANSAS456’4″16,00019074 x 12″
BB-22MINNESOTA456’4″16,00019074 x 12″
BB-23MISSISSIPPI382′13,00019084 x 12″
BB-24IDAHO382′13,00019084 x 12″
BB-25NEW HAMPSHIRE456’4″16,00019084 x 12″
BB-26SOUTH CAROLINA452’9″16,00019108 x 12″
BB-27MICHIGAN452’9″16,00019108 x 12″
BB-28DELAWARE518’9″20,380191010 x 12″
BB-29NORTH DAKOTA518’9″20,000191010 x 12″
BB-30FLORIDA521’6″21,825191110 x 12″
BB-31UTAH521’6″21,825191110 x 12″
BB-32WYOMING562′26,000191212 x 12″
BB-33ARKANSAS562′26,000191212 x 12″
BB-34NEW YORK573′27,000191410 x 14″
BB-35TEXAS573′27,000191410 x 14″
BB-36NEVADA583′27,500191610 x 14″
BB-37OKLAHOMA583′27,500191610 x 14″
BB-38PENNSYLVANIA608′31,400191612 x 14″
BB-39ARIZONA608′31,400191612 x 14″
BB-40NEW MEXICO624′32,000191812 x 14″
BB-41MISSISSIPPI624′32,000191712 x 14″
BB-42IDAHO624′32,000191912 x 14″
BB-43TENNESSEE624’6″32,300192012 x 14″
BB-44CALIFORNIA624’6″32,300192112 x 14″
BB-45COLORADO624’6″32,60019238 x 16″
BB-46MARYLAND624’6″32,60019218 x 16″
BB-47WASHINGTON624’6″32,600(Cancelled 1922)———-
BB-48WEST VIRGINIA624′32,60019238 x 16″
BB-49SOUTH DAKOTA624′32,600(Cancelled 1922)———-
BB-50INDIANA624′32,600(Cancelled 1922)———-
BB-51MONTANA624′32,600(Cancelled 1922)———-
BB-52NORTH CAROLINA624′32,600(Cancelled 1922)———-
BB-53IOWA624′32,600(Cancelled 1922)———-
BB-54MASSACHUSETTS624′32,600(Cancelled 1922)———-
BB-55NORTH CAROLINA728’9″35,00019419 x 16″
BB-56WASHINGTON729′35,00019419 x 16″
BB-57SOUTH DAKOTA680′35,00019429 x 16″
BB-58INDIANA680′35,00019429 x 16″
BB-59MASSACHUSETTS680’10”35,00019429 x 16″
BB-60ALABAMA680′35,00019429 x 16″
BB-61IOWA887’3″45,00019439 x 16″
BB-62NEW JERSEY887’7″45,00019439 x 16″
BB-63MISSOURI887’3″45,00019449 x 16″
BB-64WISCONSIN887’3″45,00019449 x 16″
BB-65ILLINOIS887’3″45,000(Cancelled 1945)———-
BB-66KENTUCKY887’3″45,000(Cancelled 1947)———-
BB-67MONTANA925′60,500(Cancelled 1943)———-
BB-68OHIO925′60,500(Cancelled 1943)———-
BB-69MAINE925′60,500(Cancelled 1943)———-
BB-70NEW HAMPSHIRE925′60,500(Cancelled 1943)———-
BB-71LOUISIANA925′60,500(Cancelled 1943)———-

(Reprinted from the December 1970 Alnavco LOG)


Dave Dickson, Memphis, TN

Aircraft abbreviations:
VF – Fighter
VB – Dive Bomber
VT – Torpedo Plane
VFN- Night Fighter
VS – Search Aircraft

At various times during the war, the American and Japanese navies changed their aircraft loading practices on their ships. A rough outline of the loading practices of the USN, IJN and RN follows:


SARATOGA (Rated A/C Complement: 9)

  • Pre-Midway : 70 – 22VF, 18VB, 18VS, 12VT
  • Midway : 70 – 22VF, 18VB, 18VS, 12VT
  • Guadalcanal : 87 – 36VF, 18VB, 18VS, 15VT
  • Post – ” : 87 – 36VF, 18VB, 18VS, 15VT

RANGER (Rated A/C: 86)

  • Pre-Midway : 72 – 54VF, 18VB
  • (Atlantic Fleet Practice after that)

ENTERPRISE (Rated A/C Complement: 100)

  • Pre-Midway : 71 – 20VF, 19VB, 19VS, 13VT
  • Midway : 79 – 27VF, 18VB, 18VS, 15VT
  • Guadalcanal : 87 – 36VF, 18VB, 18VS, 15VT
  • Post – ” : 70 – 31VF, 21VB, 15VT, 3VFN

WASP (1) (Rated A/C Complement: 84)

  • Midway : 79 – 28VF, 18VB, 18VS, 15VT
  • Guadalcanal : 79 – 28VF, 18VB, 18VS , 15VT

ESSEX (Rated A/C Complement: 100)

  • Post- ” : 91 – 36VF, 36VB, 15VT, 4VFN

INDEPENDENCE (Rated A/C Complement: 45)

  • Post – ” : 33 – 24VF, 9VT

These groups might have varied from ship to ship for many reasons but the above represents standard USN practice during the war. Many ESSEX class ships carried nearly 100 aircraft. At Okinawa, ESSEX’s carried 72VF,15VT because of the Kamiakaze menace. IJN

AKAGI (Rated A/C Complement: 91)

  • 12/41 – 10/42 : 63 – 21VB, 21VB, 21VT

KAGA (Rated A/C Complement: 90)

  • 12/41 – 10/42 : 81 – 30VF, 21VB, 30VT

HIRYU/SORYU (Rated A/C Complement: 73)

  • 12/41 – 10/42 : 63 – 21VF, 21VB, 21VT

SHOKAKU (Rated A/C Complement: 84)

  • 12/41 – 10/42 : 63 – 21VF, 21VB, 21VT
  • 10/42 – 1945 : 75 – 27VF, 27VB, 18VT

SHOHO/ZUIHO (Rated A/C Complement: 30)

  • 12/41 – 10/42 : 23 – 12VF, 11VT
  • 10/42 – 1944 : 30 – 21VF, 9VT

JUNYO (Rated A/C Complement: 53)

  • 10/42 – 1945 : 54 – 27VF, 18VB

TAIHO ( Rated A/C Complement: 53)

  • 10/42 – 1945 : 75 – 27VF, 27VB, 18VT

RYUHO (Rated A/C Complement: 31)

  • 10/42 – 1945 : 27 – 27VF/VFB

CHITOSE (Rated A/C Complement: 30)

  • 10/42 – 1945 : 42 – 18VF, 18VB, 6VS

SHINANO (Rated A/C Complement: 47)

  • 10/42 – 1945 : 8VT

RYUJO (Rated A/C Complement: 48

  • 10/42 – 1945 : 37 – 16VF, 21VT

UNRYU (Rated A/C Complement: 53)

  • 10/42 – 1945 : 54 – 27VF, 18VB, 9VT

IBUKI (Rated A/C Complement: 27

  • 10/42 – 1945 : 27 – 27VF/VFB

The Japanese air groups are based on the histories by Samuel Eliot Morrison and Zero!. SHINANO probably would have been loaded similar to SHOKAKU or JUNYO. She was designed to carry 18 A7M VF, 18 D4Y VB and 6 C6N VS.


At the beginning of the war, British carriers were loaded as follows:

COURAGEOUS (Rated A/C Complement: 48) : 24 Swordfish

GLORIOUS (Rated A/C Complement: 48) : 36 Swordfish, 12 Sea Gladiators

FURIOUS (Rated A/C Complement: 33) : 18 Swordfish, 8 Skuas, 4 Rocs

EAGLE (Rated A/C Complement: 21) : 18 Swordfish

HERMES (Rated A/C Complement: 15) : 9 Swordfish

ARK ROYAL (Rated A/C Complement: 72) : 48 Swordfish, 18 Skuas

The carriers of the British Pacific Fleet had the following air groups:

INDOMITABLE (Rated A/C Complement: 72) : 44 – 29VF, 15VT

VICTORIOUS (Rated A/C Complement: 36) : 54 – 37VF, 15VT, 2VS

ILLUSTRIOUS (Rated A/C Complement: 36) : 52 – 36VF, 16VT

INDEFATIGABLE (Rated A/C Comp.: 69) : 69 – 40VF, 9VFB, 20VT

FORMIDABLE (Rated A/C Complement: 36) : 43 – 28VF, 15VT

The Germans planned to load GRAF ZEPPELIN originally with 12VB, 20VF*. They later changed this to 28VBm 12VF. These air groups compare favorably with RN groups and the German’s lack of experience with VB’s would cause them to turn to the nearest example, the RN. (The RN and the Germans were skeptical about the sizes of the USN and IJN air groups and their speeds achieved in aircraft handling). For that reason, I doubt if she would have a much large air group. SEYDLITZ was to carry 10VF and 8VB. A drawing of this ship shows a very small hanger deck. She did have stability problems. Another problem with the Germans in actual practice was the number of air groups training for CV work with CV aircraft. They indicate the loading outlined above. The Italian AQUILA was to carry 36VF, VFB RE-2001’s.

* Initially she was to carry 10VS, VT/10VF, 13VB. The VS/VT was the F1-167 biplane- torpedo-bomber. When this didn’t work out, the Bf 109T and the Ju 87-C-O became the only CV aircraft planned by the Germans. (Reprinted in part from the March 1972 Alnavco LOG)


By Dave Dickson, Memphis, TN

Some further comments: First. On ESSEX class CV’s, the air groups varied greatly during the war but there were two standard mixes carried on these ships. Up to the Okinawan campaign, their standard air groups were 36VF/36VB/19VT. Because of the Kamikaze threat at Okinawa, the mix was changed to 72VF/15VB/15VT. The BENNINGTON air groups was a good example of one of the small variations showing two extra fighters over the standard. Though the early mix called for 90 aircraft, the number was rarely that. For instance at the Battle of the Philippine Sea, six ESSEX CV’s fought and had the following air groups embarked:

BUNKER HILL (CV-17) : 37VF, 33VB, 18VT, 4VF(N) = 92

ESSEX (CV-9) : 38VF, 36VB, 20VT, 4VF(N) = 99

HORNET (CV-12) : 36VF, 33VB, 18VT, 4VF(N) = 92

LEXINGTON (CV-16) : 37VF, 34VB, 17VT, 4VF(N) = 94

WASP (CV-18) : 34VF, 34VB 18VT 4VF(N) = 89

YORKTOWN (CV-10) : 41VF, 44VB, 17VT, 4VF(N) = 107

The ENTERPRISE could carry more than 85 aircraft but her first air group rating was 85 (Source: Ships Data U.S. Naval Vessels). HORNET was rated at 81 while YORKTOWN and ENTRPRISE were 85. In Combat Operations these ships carried the following air groups:

Coral Sea :

YORKTOWN – 20VF, 38VB, 13VT = 71

Midway :

ORKTOWN – 25VF, 37VB, 13VT = 75

HORNET – 27VF, 37VB, 15VT = 79

ENTERPRISE – 27VF, 38VB, 14VT = 79

Solomons :

ENTERPRISE – 36VF, 36VB, 15VT = 87

Santa Cruz :

ENTERPRISE – 36VF, 36VB, 12VT = 84

HORNET – 36VF, 36VB, 15VT = 87

Gilberts :

ENTERPRISE – 36VF, 36VB, 18VT = 90

Marshalls :

ENTERPRISE – 32VF, 30VB, 16VT = 78

Truk Raid :

ENTERPRISE – 36VF, 30VB, 16VT = 82

Philippine Sea :

ENTERPRISE – 31VF, 21VB, 14VT, 3VF(N) = 69

Leyte Gulf :

ENTERPRISE – 39VF, 34VB, 19VT = 92

Okinawa :

ENTERPRISE – 32VF, 21VT = 53

The reason for the small group at Okinawa was ENTERPRISE’s designation as a “night carrier.” All or almost all of her aircraft were night fighters and night attack aircraft. More importantly, the average number of aircraft carried (discounting Okinawa) was 81 so a figure larger than 85 is unrealistic. The number of aircraft carried by INDEFATIGABLE is higher than I’ve ever seen for a RN carrier although I’m sure it is probably correct. At Okinawa, she carried 40 Seafires, 9 Fireflys and 20 Avengers for a total of 69. SHINANO was to be converted into a strong floating air base capable of launching, retrieving and supplying naval aircraft operating from land bases and other ships. She carried no planes of her own and was not capable of storing them. She first planned to play the part of a combatant auxiliary, a sort of “aircraft tender.” Final plans called for her to be 68,000 tons island-type CVB capable of handling 18VF, 18VA and six scouts and to supply many more aircraft were ready in September, 1942. GRAF ZEPPELIN’s design is the subject of several articles. One says that the original figure of 50 to 60 planes had been narrowed down in early design changes to between 40 and 43 and these planes would be mainly concerned with reconnaissance. The first group for the ship was 20 Fi 167 biplane torpedo scout planes, 10 Bf 109T and 13 Ju 87 for a total of 43. The second group was to be 30 Bf 109 and 12 Ju 87. This change took place in 1938. In 1941, the final group was set at 28 Ju 87 and 12 Bf 109 for a total of 40. These are the only air groups that were considered. SEYDLITZ’s hanger deck was very small. She had a very high center of gravity for such as ship. (Reprinted in part from the March 1972 Alnavco LOG)


Compiled by William R. Hamblen, Nashville, TN

The following is a chronological list by completion dates of all British dreadnought battleships and battlecruisers, from DREADNOUGHT to VANGUARD.

DateShipDispl.BeltDeckArmor TurretMain GunsSpeed (knots)
1910ST VINCENT19,56010″2.5″11″10-12″/5021.7
1912KING GEORGE V23,00012″3.0″11″10-13.5″/4522.1
1912NEW ZEALAND18,5006″2.0″7″8-12″/5026.3
1912PRINCESS ROYAL26,7209″2.0″9″8-13.5″/4528.5
1913QUEEN MARY27,0009″2.0″9″8-13.5″/4528.0
1914IRON DUKE25,00012″3.8″11″10-13.5″/4521.5
1914AGINCOURT (ex-SULTAN OSMAN I; ex-RIO DE JANEIRO)27,5009″4.0″12″14-12″/4522.4
1914ERIN (ex-RESHADIEH; ex-RESHAD)22,78012″2.5″11″10-13.5″/4522.0
1914EMPEROR OF INDIA25,00012″3.5″11″10-13.5″/4521.5
1915QUEEN ELIZABETH29,15013″3.8′13″8-15″/4224.0
1916ROYAL OAK28,00013″4.2″13″8-15″/4220.5
1916ROYAL SOVEREIGN28,00013″4.2″13″8-15″/4220.5
1940KING GEORGE V36,75915″7.0″16″10-14″/4529.2
1941PRINCE OF WALES36,75015″7.0″16″10-14″/4529.2
1941DUKE OF YORK38,00015″7.0″16″10-14″/4529.2

Number of ships: 55;
Total tonnage: 1,319, 813;
Building period: 40 years and 5 months;
The last “Dreadnought”, VANGUARD was placed in reserve in the mid-fifties and was scrapped in 1960, ending a 55 year period of big ships and big guns. (Reprinted from the March 1973 Alnavco LOG)





Battleships (from van to rear when deployed)


Second Battle Squadron
KING GEORGE VKING GEORGE V25,500 tons10-13.5″21-22 knots
AJAXKING GEORGE V25,500 tons10-13.5″21-22 knots
CENTURIONKING GEROGE V25,000 tons10-13.5″21-22 knots
ERINERIN25,250 tons10-13.5″21 knots
ORIONORION25,000 tons10-13.5″21-22 knots
MONARCHORION25,000 tons10-13.5″21-22 knots
CONQUERORORION25,000 tons10-13.5″21-22 knots
THUNDERERORION25,000 tons10-13.5″21-22 knots
Fourth Battle Squadron
IRON DUKEIRON DUKE30,380 tons10-13.5″21-22 knots
ROYAL OAKROYAL SOVEREIGN33,500 tons8-15″21-23 knots
SUPERBBELLEROPHON18,600 tons10-12″21-22 knots
CANADACANADA32,000 tons10-14″21-22 knots
BENBOWIRON DUKE30,380 tons10-13.5″21-22 knots
BELLEROPHONBELLEROPHON18,600 tons10-12″21-22 knots
TEMERAIREBELLEROPHON18,600 tons10-12″21-22 knots
VANGUARDST. VINCENT22,900 tons10-12″21-22 knots
First Battle Squadron
MARLBOROUGHIRON DUKE30,380 tons10-13.5″21-22 knots
REVENGEROYAL SOVEREIGN33,500 tons8-15″21-23 knots
HERCULESCOLOSSUS22,500 tons10-12″21-22 knots
AGINCOURTAGINCOURT30,250 tons14-12″22 knots
COLOSSUSCOLOSUS22,500 tons10-12″21-22 knots
COLLINGWOODST. VINCENT22,900 tons10-12″21-22 knots
NEPTUNENEPTUNE22,000 tons10-12″21-22 knots
ST. VINCENTST. VINCENT22,900 tons10-12″21-22 knots
Battlecruisers (temporarily attached)
INVINCIBLEINVINCIBLE20,000 tons8-12″25-26 knots
INFLEXIBLEINVINCIBLE20,000 tons8-12″25-26 knots
INDOMITABLEINVINCIBLE20,000 tons8-12″25-26 knots
Battlecruisers (from van to rear)
LIONLION26,350 tons8-13.5″28-32 knots
First Battlecruiser Squadron
PRINCESS ROYALLION29,700 tons8-13.5″28-32 knots
QUEEN MARYLION30,500 tons8-13.5″28-32 knots
TIGERTIGER35,000 tons8-13.5″28-30knots
Second Battlecruiser Squadron
NEW ZEALANDINDEFATIGABLE20,000 tons8-12″25-27 knots
INDEFATIGABLEINDEFATIGABLE20,000 tons8-12:25-27 knots
Fast Battleships (temporarily attached)
BARHAMQUEEN ELIZABETH33,000 tons8-15″25 knots
VALIANTQUEEN ELIZABETH33,000 tons8-15″25 knots
WARSPITEQUEEN ELIZABETH33,000 tons8-15″25 knots
MALAYAQUEEN ELIZABETH33,000 tons8-15″25 knots



Battleships (from van to rear)

Third Battle Squadron
KOENIGKOENIG25,390 tons10-12″21-23 knots
GROSS. KURFURSTKOENIG25,390 tons10-12″21-23 knots
KR. PR’Z WILHELMKOENIG25,390 tons10-12″21-23 knots
MARGRAFKOENIG25,390 tons10-12″21-23 knots
KAISERKAISER24,380 tons10-12″21-23 knots
KAISERINKAISER24,380 tons10-12″21-23 knots
First Battle Squadron
FRIEDRIECH D’GR.KAISER24,380 tons10-12″21-23 knots
OSTFRIESLANDHELGOLAND22,800 tons12-12″21 knots
THURINGENHELGOLAND22,800 tons12-12″21 knots
HELGOLANDHELGOLAND22,800 tons12-12″21 knots
OLDENBURGHELGOLAND22,800 tons12-12″21 knots
POSENWESTFALEN18,900 tons12-11″20 knots
RHEINLANDWESTFALEN18,900 tons12-11″20 knots
NASSAUWESTFALEN18,900 tons12-11″20 knots
WESTFALENWESTFALEN18,900 tons12-11″20 knots
DEUTSCHLANDDEUTSCHLAND13,040 tons4-11″18 knots
HESSENBRAUNSCHWEIG12,997 tons4-11″18 knots
POMMERNDEUTSCHLAND13,040 tons4-11″18 knots
HANNOVERDEUTSCHLAND13,040 tons4-11″18 knots
SCHLESWIG-HOL’NDEUTSCHLAND13,040 tons4-11″18 knots
THE Battlecruiser Force
LUTZOWDERFFLINGER28,000 tons8-12″27-28 knots
DERFFLINGERDERFFLINGER28,000 tons8-12″27-28 knots
SEYDLITZSEYDLITZ28,000 tons10-11″27-30 knots
MOLTKEMOLTKE22,640 tons10-11″27-29 knots
VON DER TANNVON DER TANN21,000 tons8-11″25-28 knots

(Reprinted from the December 1970 Alnavco LOG)