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HMCS Chedabucto

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History
Canada
NameChedabucto
NamesakeChedabucto Bay, Nova Scotia
Ordered23 February 1940
BuilderBurrard Dry Dock Co. Ltd. Vancouver, British Columbia
Laid down24 January 1941
Launched14 April 1941
Commissioned27 September 1941
Out of service31 October 1943
IdentificationPennant number: J168
Honours and
awards
Atlantic 1942–43,[1] Gulf of St. Lawrence 1942[2]
FateSunk in collision 1943
General characteristics
Class and type Bangor-class minesweeper
Displacement672 long tons (683 t)
Length180 ft (54.9 m) oa
Beam28 ft 6 in (8.7 m)
Draught9 ft 9 in (3.0 m)
Propulsion2 Admiralty 3-drum water tube boilers, 2 shafts, vertical triple-expansion reciprocating engines, 2,400 ihp (1,790 kW)
Speed16.5 knots (31 km/h)
Complement83
Armament

HMCS Chedabucto was a Bangor-class minesweeper that served with the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War. She served primarily in the Battle of the Atlantic. During the Battle of the St. Lawrence in 1943, Chedabucto was sunk in a collision with a cable ship.

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Bangor-class minesweeper

Bangor-class minesweeper

The Bangor-class minesweepers were a class of warships operated by the Royal Navy (RN), Royal Canadian Navy (RCN), Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN), and Royal Indian Navy (RIN) during the Second World War.

Royal Canadian Navy

Royal Canadian Navy

The Royal Canadian Navy is the naval force of Canada. The RCN is one of three environmental commands within the Canadian Armed Forces. As of 2021, the RCN operates 12 frigates, four attack submarines, 12 coastal defence vessels, eight patrol class training vessels, two offshore patrol vessels, and several auxiliary vessels. The RCN consists of 8,570 Regular Force and 4,111 Primary Reserve sailors, supported by 3,800 civilians. Vice-Admiral Angus Topshee is the current commander of the Royal Canadian Navy and chief of the Naval Staff.

World War II

World War II

World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global conflict that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries, including all of the great powers, fought as part of two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. Many participants threw their economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind this total war, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. Aircraft played a major role, enabling the strategic bombing of population centres and the only two nuclear weapons ever used in war.

Battle of the Atlantic

Battle of the Atlantic

The Battle of the Atlantic, the longest continuous military campaign in World War II, ran from 1939 to the defeat of Nazi Germany in 1945, covering a major part of the naval history of World War II. At its core was the Allied naval blockade of Germany, announced the day after the declaration of war, and Germany's subsequent counter-blockade. The campaign peaked from mid-1940 through to the end of 1943.

Battle of the St. Lawrence

Battle of the St. Lawrence

The Battle of the St. Lawrence involved marine and anti-submarine actions throughout the lower St. Lawrence River and the entire Gulf of Saint Lawrence, Strait of Belle Isle, Anticosti Island and Cabot Strait from May–October 1942, September 1943, and again in October–November 1944. During this time, German U-boats sank over 20 merchant ships and four Canadian warships. There were several near-shore actions involving the drop of German spies, or the attempted pickup of escaping prisoners of war. Despite the 23 ships lost, this battle marked a strategic victory for Canadian forces as ultimately they managed to disrupt U-boat activity, protect Canadian and Allied convoys, and intercept all attempted shore operations. This marked the first time that a foreign power had inflicted casualties in Canadian inland waters since the US incursions in the War of 1812.

Design and description

A British design, the Bangor-class minesweepers were smaller than the preceding Halcyon-class minesweepers in British service, but larger than the Fundy class in Canadian service.[3][4] They came in two versions powered by different engines; those with a diesel engines and those with vertical triple-expansion steam engines.[3] Chedabucto was of the latter design and was larger than her diesel-engined cousins. Chedabucto was 180 feet (54.9 m) long overall, had a beam of 28 feet 6 inches (8.7 m) and a draught of 9 feet 9 inches (3.0 m).[3][4] The minesweeper had a displacement of 672 long tons (683 t). She had a complement of 6 officers and 77 enlisted.[4]

Chedabucto had two vertical triple-expansion steam engines, each driving one shaft, using steam provided by two Admiralty three-drum boilers. The engines produced a total of 2,400 indicated horsepower (1,800 kW) and gave a maximum speed of 16.5 knots (30.6 km/h; 19.0 mph). The minesweeper could carry a maximum of 150 long tons (152 t) of fuel oil.[3]

Chedabucto was armed with a single quick-firing (QF) 4-inch (102 mm)/40 caliber Mk IV gun mounted forward.[3][a] For anti-aircraft purposes, the minesweeper was equipped with one QF 2-pounder Mark VIII and two single-mounted QF 20 mm Oerlikon guns.[3][4] As a convoy escort, Chedabucto was deployed with 40 depth charges launched from two depth charge throwers and four chutes.[3][5]

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Halcyon-class minesweeper

Halcyon-class minesweeper

The Halcyon class was a class of 21 oil-fired minesweepers built for the British Royal Navy between 1933 and 1939. They were given traditional small ship names used historically by the Royal Navy and served during World War II.

Fundy-class minesweeper

Fundy-class minesweeper

The Fundy-class minesweepers were a class of four minesweepers operated by the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War. All four ships entered service in 1938 and the class were discarded in 1945, sold for mercantile service. Three ended up sold to Chinese interests, while one remained active in Canada until 1987.

Diesel engine

Diesel engine

The diesel engine, named after Rudolf Diesel, is an internal combustion engine in which ignition of the fuel is caused by the elevated temperature of the air in the cylinder due to mechanical compression; thus, the diesel engine is called a compression-ignition engine. This contrasts with engines using spark plug-ignition of the air-fuel mixture, such as a petrol engine or a gas engine.

Length overall

Length overall

Length overall is the maximum length of a vessel's hull measured parallel to the waterline. This length is important while docking the ship. It is the most commonly used way of expressing the size of a ship, and is also used for calculating the cost of a marina berth.

Beam (nautical)

Beam (nautical)

The beam of a ship is its width at its widest point. The maximum beam (BMAX) is the distance between planes passing through the outer extremities of the ship, beam of the hull (BH) only includes permanently fixed parts of the hull, and beam at waterline (BWL) is the maximum width where the hull intersects the surface of the water.

Draft (hull)

Draft (hull)

The draft or draught of a ship's hull is the vertical distance between the waterline and the bottom of the hull (keel). The draught of the vessel is the maximum depth of any part of the vessel, including appendages such as rudders, propellers and drop keels if deployed. Draft determines the minimum depth of water a ship or boat can safely navigate. The related term air draft is the maximum height of any part of the vessel above the water.

Displacement (ship)

Displacement (ship)

The displacement or displacement tonnage of a ship is its weight. As the term indicates, it is measured indirectly, using Archimedes' principle, by first calculating the volume of water displaced by the ship, then converting that value into weight. Traditionally, various measurement rules have been in use, giving various measures in long tons. Today, tonnes are more commonly used.

Knot (unit)

Knot (unit)

The knot is a unit of speed equal to one nautical mile per hour, exactly 1.852 km/h. The ISO standard symbol for the knot is kn. The same symbol is preferred by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), while kt is also common, especially in aviation, where it is the form recommended by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). The knot is a non-SI unit. The knot is used in meteorology, and in maritime and air navigation. A vessel travelling at 1 knot along a meridian travels approximately one minute of geographic latitude in one hour.

Fuel oil

Fuel oil

Fuel oil is any of various fractions obtained from the distillation of petroleum. Such oils include distillates and residues. Fuel oils include heavy fuel oil, marine fuel oil (MFO), bunker fuel, furnace oil (FO), gas oil (gasoil), heating oils, diesel fuel and others.

Quick-firing gun

Quick-firing gun

A quick-firing or rapid-firing gun is an artillery piece, typically a gun or howitzer, which has several characteristics which taken together mean the weapon can fire at a fast rate. Quick-firing was introduced worldwide in the 1880s and 1890s and had a marked impact on war both on land and at sea.

Oerlikon 20 mm cannon

Oerlikon 20 mm cannon

The Oerlikon 20 mm cannon is a series of autocannons, based on an original German Becker Type M2 20 mm cannon design that appeared very early in World War I. It was widely produced by Oerlikon Contraves and others, with various models employed by both Allied and Axis forces during World War II. Many versions of the cannon are still used today.

Depth charge

Depth charge

A depth charge is an anti-submarine warfare (ASW) weapon. It is intended to destroy a submarine by being dropped into the water nearby and detonating, subjecting the target to a powerful and destructive hydraulic shock. Most depth charges use high explosive charges and a fuze set to detonate the charge, typically at a specific depth. Depth charges can be dropped by ships, patrol aircraft, and helicopters.

Construction and career

Chedabucto was ordered on 23 February 1940[6] and her keel was laid down on 24 January 1941 by Burrard Dry Dock Co. Ltd. in Vancouver, British Columbia. The minesweeper was launched on 14 April 1941 and commissioned later that year on 27 September at Vancouver.[7] The vessel was named for Chedabucto Bay, Nova Scotia.[8]

After working up Chedabucto left Esquimalt, British Columbia on 11 November 1941 and arrived at Halifax, Nova Scotia on 17 December. On 12 January 1942, Chedabucto rescued the crew of the merchant Independence Hall which had run aground on Sable Island. On 8 April, Chedabucto attacked a surfaced U-boat off Halifax. However, the ship's steering gear jammed and the U-boat was able to evade the minesweeper.[8] On 10 April SS Trongate caught fire in Halifax harbour. Among the contents of her cargo were explosives. Chedabucto sank Trongate with non-explosive practice shells fired into the hull to scuttle the ship.[7][9]

Assigned to the Western Local Escort Force (WLEF) briefly, she was transferred to the Gulf Escort Force in June 1942.[7] On 20 July 1942, convoy QS 19, escorted by Chedabucto and the corvette Weyburn, came under attack by U-132 in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. One merchant vessel was sunk.[10] At the end of September convoy QS 38, which the minesweeper was escorting, came under attack by U-517. One merchant was hit but no contact was made between the escorts and the submarine.[11] In September she was re-assigned to Sydney Force before returning to the WLEF in January 1943. Chedabucto then went for a refit at Lunenburg, Nova Scotia which were completed in June 1943. She was then assigned to the Gaspé Force in July.[7][8] In October, Chedabucto was detailed to escort the cable ship SS Lord Kelvin through the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The minesweeper screened the cable layer until Father Point and then detached to patrol duties.[8]

Sinking

Lord Kelvin, the vessel that rammed Chedabucto
Lord Kelvin, the vessel that rammed Chedabucto

On 31 October 1943, Chedabucto was sailing down the Saint Lawrence River to rendezvous with the fire tugboat Citadelle when the minesweeper collided with the cable ship Lord Kelvin near Rimouski, Quebec. Lord Kelvin rammed the minesweeper on the port side, just aft of the wardroom. Lord Kelvin reversed, leaving a 25-by-12-foot (7.6 by 3.7 m) hole in the side of the ship and a 10° list to port. The United States Coast Guard vessel Buttonwood was hailed and attempted to tow the stricken minesweeper closer to shore. However, the minesweeper grounded 2.4 km (1+12 mi) from shore and the list increased to 40°.[8] The tow attempts were ceased and the crew of Chedabucto was transferred to Lord Kelvin[12] and Chedabucto's sister ship Swift Current which had also arrived on the scene. The minesweeper later rolled onto her side and sank.[8] There was one casualty aboard Chedabucto, suffered during the collision.[7] The ship sank 48 kilometres (30 mi) from Rimouski.[13][14]

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Keel

Keel

The keel is the bottom-most longitudinal structural element on a vessel. On some sailboats, it may have a hydrodynamic and counterbalancing purpose, as well. As the laying down of the keel is the initial step in the construction of a ship, in British and American shipbuilding traditions the construction is dated from this event.

Burrard Dry Dock

Burrard Dry Dock

Burrard Dry Dock Ltd. was a Canadian shipbuilding company headquartered in North Vancouver, British Columbia. Together with the neighbouring North Van Ship Repair yard and the Yarrows Ltd. yard in Esquimalt, which were eventually absorbed, Burrard built over 450 ships, including many warships built and refitted for the Royal Navy and Royal Canadian Navy in the First and Second World Wars.

Chedabucto Bay

Chedabucto Bay

Chedabucto Bay is a large bay on the eastern coast of mainland Nova Scotia between the Atlantic Ocean and the Strait of Canso next to Guysborough County. At the entrance to Chedabucto Bay is the community of Canso at the head is the community of Guysborough and on the other end is the town of Mulgrave.

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia is one of the thirteen provinces and territories of Canada. It is one of the three Maritime provinces and one of the four Atlantic provinces. Nova Scotia is Latin for "New Scotland".

CFB Esquimalt

CFB Esquimalt

Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt is Canada's Pacific Coast naval base and home port to Maritime Forces Pacific and Joint Task Force Pacific Headquarters. As of 2018, 4,411 military personnel and 2,762 civilians work at CFB Esquimalt.

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax is the capital and largest municipality of the Canadian province of Nova Scotia, and the largest municipality in Atlantic Canada. Halifax is one of Canada's fastest growing municipalities, and as of 2022, it is estimated that the CMA population of Halifax was 480,582,with 348,634 people in its urban area. The regional municipality consists of four former municipalities that were amalgamated in 1996: Halifax, Dartmouth, Bedford, and Halifax County.

Sable Island

Sable Island

Sable Island is a small Canadian island situated 300 km (190 mi) southeast of Halifax, Nova Scotia, and about 175 km (109 mi) southeast of the closest point of mainland Nova Scotia in the North Atlantic Ocean. The island is staffed year round by three federal government staff, rising during summer months when research projects and tourism increase. Notable for its role in early Canadian history and the Sable Island horse, the island is protected and managed by Parks Canada, which must grant permission prior to any visit. Sable Island is part of District 7 of the Halifax Regional Municipality in Nova Scotia. The island is also a protected National Park Reserve and an Important Bird Area.

Corvette

Corvette

A corvette is a small warship. It is traditionally the smallest class of vessel considered to be a proper warship. The warship class above the corvette is that of the frigate, while the class below was historically that of the sloop-of-war.

German submarine U-132 (1941)

German submarine U-132 (1941)

German submarine U-132 was a Type VIIC U-boat built for Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine for service during World War II. She was laid down on 10 August 1940 by Vegesacker Werft, Bremen-Vegesack as yard number 11, launched on 10 April 1941 and commissioned on 29 May that year under Kapitänleutnant Ernst Vogelsang.

Gulf of St. Lawrence

Gulf of St. Lawrence

The Gulf of St. Lawrence is the outlet of the North American Great Lakes via the St. Lawrence River into the Atlantic Ocean. The gulf is a semi-enclosed sea, covering an area of about 226,000 square kilometres (87,000 sq mi) and containing about 34,500 cubic kilometres (8,300 cu mi) of water, at an average depth of 152 metres (500 ft).

German submarine U-517

German submarine U-517

German submarine U-517 was a Type IXC U-boat of the Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine during World War II.

Lunenburg, Nova Scotia

Lunenburg, Nova Scotia

Lunenburg is a port town on the South Shore of Nova Scotia, Canada. Founded in 1753, the town was one of the first British attempts to settle Protestants in Nova Scotia.

Source: "HMCS Chedabucto", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2023, January 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMCS_Chedabucto.

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References

Notes

  1. ^ The 40 calibre denotes the length of the gun. This means that the length of the gun barrel is 40 times the bore diameter.

Citations

  1. ^ "Battle Honours". Britain's Navy. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
  2. ^ "Royal Canadian Warships – The Battle of the Gulf of St. Lawrence – Second World War". Veterans Affairs Canada. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Chesneau, p. 64
  4. ^ a b c d Macpherson and Barrie, p. 167
  5. ^ Macpherson, p. 19
  6. ^ "HMCS Chedabucto (J 174)". Uboat.net. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
  7. ^ a b c d e Macpherson and Barrie, p. 169
  8. ^ a b c d e f Darlington and McKee, pp. 106–109
  9. ^ Naftel, p. 237
  10. ^ Rohwer, p. 178
  11. ^ Sarty, pp. 190–192
  12. ^ Milner, Marc (22 October 2010). "The Accidental Enemy: Navy, Part 41". Legion Magazine. Retrieved 5 September 2016.
  13. ^ Colledge, p. 77
  14. ^ Rohwer, p. 282

Sources

  • Chesneau, Roger, ed. (1980). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922–1946. Greenwich, UK: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-146-7.
  • Colledge, J. J.; Warlow, Ben (2006) [1969]. Ships of the Royal Navy: The Complete Record of all Fighting Ships of the Royal Navy (Rev. ed.). London: Chatham Publishing. ISBN 978-1-86176-281-8.
  • Darlington, Robert A.; McKee, Fraser (1996). The Canadian Naval Chronicle 1939–1945: The Successes and Losses of the Canadian Navy in World War II. St. Catharines, Ontario: Vanwell Publishing. ISBN 1-55125-032-2.
  • Macpherson, Ken (1997). Minesweepers of the Royal Canadian Navy 1938–1945. St. Catharines, Ontario: Vanwell Publishing Limited. ISBN 0-920277-55-1.
  • Macpherson, Ken; Barrie, Ron (2002). The Ships of Canada's Naval Forces 1910–2002 (Third ed.). St. Catharines, Ontario: Vanwell Publishing. ISBN 1-55125-072-1.
  • Naftel, William D. (2008). Halifax at War: Searchlights, Squadrons and Submarines 1939–1945. Halifax, Nova Scotia: Formac Publishing Company. ISBN 978-0-88780-739-8.
  • Rohwer, Jürgen (2005). Chronology of the War at Sea 1939–1945: The Naval History of World War Two (Revised & Expanded ed.). Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-59114-119-2.
  • Sarty, Roger (2012). War in the St. Lawrence: The Forgotten U-Boat Battles on Canada's Shores. Toronto: Penguin Group. ISBN 978-0-670-06787-9.
External links

Coordinates: 48°14′N 69°16′W / 48.233°N 69.267°W / 48.233; -69.267

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