U-109 - 4th War Patrol

Translation by Rainer Kolbicz

Departed
Date
Arrived
Date
Days at Sea
Lorient
27 December 1941
Lorient
23 February 1942
59

 

Click the icon to download a KMZ file displaying the U-boat track, significant events and locations for this patrol.  You must have Google Earth loaded on your computer to view this file.  Download Google Earth here

 

Ships Hit
Date
KTB Time
Position
Ship
Tons
Nationality
Convoy
23 Jan 42
08.12
43°23'N, 66°03'W
THIRBY
4,887
British
SC 66
1 Feb 42
03.30
38°47'N, 64°12'W
TACOMA STAR
7,924
British
 
5 Feb 42
01.42 - 02.32
35°41'N, 60°20'W
MONTROLITE
11,309
Canadian
 
6 Feb 42
00.07 - 07.45
34°05'N, 59°24'W
HALCYON
3,531
Panamanian
 
     
 Total = 27,651
   
Note:  The positions in the table above and in the Google Earth patrol summary are derived from the KTB and in many cases do not match those set forth in authoritative references such as Jürgen Rohwer, Axis Submarine Successes of World War Two or the Uboat.net website.  The goal here is to present the picture relative to the U-boat and not the absolute position that the ship was attacked or sank.


 
- 1 -
 
           
           
           
           
         
           
           
           
        K  r  i  e  g  a  t  a  g  e  b  u  c  h  
        =======================  
           
                    des Unterseebootes  " U  109  "  
                    ======================  
                            (4th War Patrol)  
           
                       beginning:    20.11.1941  
                       ending:         23. 2.1942  
           
                        Kommandant: Kapitänleutnant Bleichrodt.  
           
           
         
           
           
                        Copies to: 2 x O.K.M.  
        1 x B.d.U.  
        1 x 2.A.d.Uboote  
        1 x 2. U.-Flottille  
        Original for the boat  
           
        All times:  MESZ/CEST  
        All positions:  Marine Quadrant.  
           
           
    boat made 26.2.42 2.Ufl.    
    5x      
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . .      
                               
           
        © U-boat Archive 2014  - all rights reserved  
Click the flag to view the above page from the original German KTB
 
- 2 -
 
           
           
           
           
           
    1941
Dockyard period from 20.11.1941 to 27.12.1941
 
    20.11.41 Lorient Beginning of overhaul work.  Berth -A 4-.  
    21.11.41   First leave group:  1 Unteroffiziere mit Portepee, 6 Unteroffiziere, 8 men, home leave to Germany.  
    22.11.41   Moved from berth "A 4" with assistance of tug to "S 4".  
    24.11.41   First training group:  2 Unteroffiziere, 10 men to Carnac for training led by IWO.  
    02.12.41   Entered "Dock II".  Movement from berth "S 4" to dock assisted by 3 tugs.  
    04.12.41  

Return of the first leave group and the first training group.

 
      Second leave group:  1 Unteroffiziere mit Portepee, 4 Unteroffiziere, 9 men, home leave to Germany.  
    06.12.41   Second training group:  2 Unteroffiziere, 10 men to Carnac led by LI  
    13.12.41  

Left dock, moved to berth "S 4" assisted by 2 tugs.  Return of the second training group.

 
    15.12.41   Loaded fuel and lubricating oil at berth "S 4".  
    16.12.41   First test run at berth "S 4".  Broken off due to hot cylinder head.  
    17.12.41   Return of second leave group.  Entered "Dock II" to install bow caps for torpedo tube I, with assistance of tugs left dock again and moved to berth "B 6" by tug.  
    22.12.41   Loaded torpedoes.  Repetition of test run.  At berth "B 6".  
    23.12.41   Degaussing loop.  Turned after each run with the help of a tug.  At 11.45 hours grounded during ebb tide.  Held fast as water receded.  At 19.30 hours freed with own power and assistance of tug during flow tide.  Moved to berth "S 2".  
    24.12.41   Last test run.  Charging batteries.   At berth "S 2".  
    25.12.41   Last pass through loop.  Sea trials, test dive.  Moored at berth "E 1".  
    27.12.41   In the morning moved to berth "A 3" to leave under own power.  
                                                    
           
           
 
- 3 -
 
           
           
           
           
    1941      
    27.12.41      
    15.00 Lorient Put out to sea from ISERE.  Left under escort with U-130 for 4th war patrol.  
    17.03 "L 2" Released by escort at the rendezvous point "L 2".  Course 146°.  
    18.11 "Rosabella" Course 177° (route Cedernland)  
    20.41 "Ceder Course 238° (route Tannennadel)  
    22.43 "Tanne" Evaded several illuminated fishing vessels.  
    23.38 BF 5533 Sighted submarine to port ahead (German), Type IX, inbound.  
                                                    
    28.12.41 Bay of Biscay    
    00.00 BF 5833    
      NW 3, Sea 2, 4/10, slight swell, bright moonlight    
    04.00 BF 5843    
      Weather as before    
    08.00 BF 5786    
      W 3, Sea 3, 7/10, rain showers, poor visible horizon, dark clouds    
    08.59   Dived to continue submerged (test dive).  Deep dive trial.  At A +45 meters crackle noises in the hull. At A +50 meters a strong dull bang in the hull.  At the same time as the crackling, the diesel exhaust pipe pressure gauge showed full pressure.  It is assumed therefore that the diesel exhaust pipe is ruptured.  More precise investigations can only be done when we have access to the upper deck again.  
    10.00   One detonation.  Perhaps an aircraft bomb.  Far away.  
    12.00 45°33'N, 06°27'W Day's run:  surfaced = 219 nm  
      BF 8202              submerged =   10.7 nm = 229.7 nm.  
    14.00   Again one detonation far away. Could have been a torpedo hit.  
    16.00 BF 8136    
    19.02   Surfaced.  
    20.00 BF 8138    
      NW 3, Sea 2, 7/10, Vis. medium, bright night    
    21.00   Set course 270°.  
                                                    
    29.12.41 Western Bay of Biscay    
    00.00 BF 8141    
      NW 3, Sea 2-3, 8/10, rain, misty, slight swell    
           
Sun and Moon Data 27.12.41
Sun and Moon Data 28.12.41
 
- 4 -
 
           
           
           
           
    29.12.41      
    04.00 BF 7351    
      NW 3, Sea 2, 3/10, rain showers, Vis. medium    
    08.00 BF 7261    
      Weather as before    
    09.14   Dived to continue submerged (test dive).  
    12.00 45°15'N, 09°58'W Day's run:  surfaced = 126 nm  
      BF 7243              submerged =   30 nm = 156 nm.  
    16.00 BF 7241    
    20.00 BF 7162    
    20.10   Surfaced.  
                                                    
    30.12.41 Western Bay of Biscay    
    00.00 BF 7141    
      NNE 3, Sea 2, 4/10, bright moonlight, Vis. good    
    02.37   Radio message from BdU:  
        “New signature for 'U-109':  OH.”  
    04.00 BE 9351    
      Weather as before    
    08.00 BE 9262    
      Weather as before    
    09.33   Dived to continue submerged (test dive).  
    12.00 45°15'N, 13°45'W Day's run:  surfaced = 127 nm  
                     submerged =   33 nm = 160 nm.  
    16.00 BE 9243    
    20.00 BE 9241 Surfaced. Changed to "Ireland" Circuit.  
    21.59   Sent radio message: "Passed 15°W".  
                                                    
    31.12.41 Western Bay of Biscay    
    00.00 BE 9146    
      ESE 4, Sea 4, 10/10, bright night, Vis. medium    
    04.00 BE 8364    
      SSE 4, Sea 4, 10/10, Vis. medium, swell from the SW    
    08.00 BE 8344    
      S 4-5, Sea 4, 7/10, bright night,    
      wind shifting to the south, long swell from the SW    
    10.00   Dived to continue submerged (test dive).  
    12.00 45°06'N, 18°01'W Day's run:  surfaced = 132 nm  
      BE 8256              submerged =   28 nm = 160 nm.  
           
Sun and Moon Data 29.12.41
Sun and Moon Data 30.12.41
Sun and Moon Data 31.12.41
 
- 5 -
 
           
           
           
           
    31.12.41      
    16.00 BE 8255    
    19.55   Surfaced.  
    20.00 BE 8246 Radio message from BdU:  "At 08.00 hours on 1 January change to 'Greenland' Circuit."  
                                                    
   
1  9  4  2  .
 
    01.01.42 Western Bay of Biscay    
    00.00 BE 8164

Set course to 255°.

 
      SW 3, Sea 3, 10/10, medium swell, Vis. good Small celebration of New Year.  
    01.11 BE 8167 Sighted illuminated vessel ahead to starboard.  Headed towards it.  It is a small vessel of 500-800 GRT.  Assume small coastal steamer on a course towards the Spanish coast.  Evaded at high speed.  
    04.00 BE 8176    
      SW 2-3, Sea 2, 6/10, bright night, visibility poor in rain showers, swell from the SW    
    08.00 BE 7632 Changed to "Greenland" Curcuit in accordance with radio message 1958/31/152.  
      SW 3, Sea 2, 7/10, Vis. medium, swell from the SW  
    10.34   Crash-dive for drill (test dive).  Firing procedure exercises.  
    11.30   Surfaced.  
    12.00 44°40'N, 21°10'W Day's run:  surfaced = 118 nm  
      BE 7623              submerged =   26 nm = 144 nm .  
      SW 3, Sea 2, 8/10, Vis. medium    
    16.00 44°33'N, 21°43'W The wind gets stronger.  Boat is running on one engine at LF against the sea and high swell from SW and is making little headway.  This does not fit with our plan to proceed on our long approach to the patrol area as economically as possible.  
      BE 7314  
      SW 3-4, Sea 4, 10/10, Vis. medium  
    20.00 BE 7538    
      SW 4, Sea 4, 10/10, Vis. medium, rain showers, swell from the SW    
                                                    
    02.01.42 Western Bay of Biscay  
    00.00 BE 7551    
      SW 4-5, Sea 4, 10/10, Vis. poor, high swell from the SW    
    04.00 BE 7544    
      SW 6, Sea 5-6, 10/10, bright night, Vis. medium, rain showers    
    08.00 BE 7468    
      SW 6, Sea 5-6, 10/10, bright night, Vis. medium, rain showers    
           
Sun and Moon Data 01.01.42
 
- 6 -
 
           
           
           
    02.01.42      
    10.48   Crash-dive for drill.  Dive test.  Dive exercises.  
    12.00 44°05'N, 24°17'W Day's run:  surfaced = 123 nm  
      BE 7482              submerged =     4 nm = 127 nm.  
      SW 5-6, Sea 5-6, 10/10, heavy rain showers, Vis. poor, high swell from the SW    
    12.48   Surfaced.  
    16.00 BE 7475 The upper deck is still not accessible, that's why we still can't locate the cause for the crackling during the deep dive trial.  
      SW 5, Sea 4-5, 6/10, Vis. medium, swell from the SW  
    20.00 BD 9923    
      SW 5-6, Sea 5, 10/10, Vis. poor, rain, swell from the SW    
    21.38  

Radio message 2114/2/241:   "At first continue to the longitude of BC 5889."

 
        So as not to get too far to the south I change course to 270° at 00.00 hours.  
                                                    
    03.01.42 Western Bay of Biscay  
    00.00 BD 9916    
      WSW 5-6, Sea 5, 5/10, rainshowers, Vis. occasionally poor, swell from the WSW    
    04.00 BD 9835    
      SW 5, Sea 5, 10/10, Vis. medium, bright full moon, long swell from the W    
    08.00 BD 9825    
      WSW 5, Sea 5, 10/10, mist poor visible horizon, Vis. poor, high swell from the SW and the W    
    10.57   Crash-dive for drill.  
    11.00   Surfaced.  
    12.00 BD 9815 Day's run:  surfaced = 124 nm  
      43°39'N, 27°56'W              submerged =     8 nm = 132 nm.  
      WSW 5, Sea 4, 7/10, Vis. good, long swell from WSW    
    12.06  

Crash-dive for drill.  Test dive.  Firing procedure and dive exercises.  Serviced torpedoes, because the boat is rolling too badly to do it on the surface.

 
        While submerged a muffled banging is observed in the aft section.  Cause can not be determined.  Perhaps this sound is related to the crackling during the deep dive trial.  
    16.00 BD 9736    
    16.50   Surfaced.  
    20.00 BD 9725    
      W 3-4, Sea 3, 4/10, Vis. good, long swell from the W                                             
         
           
Sun and Moon Data 02.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 03.01.42
 
- 7 -
 
           
           
           
           
    04.01.42 North of the Azores    
    00.00 BD 9714    
      W 2, Sea 1-2, 10/10, Vis. medium, slight swell from the W    
    04.00 BD 8934    
      E 2-3, Sea 2, 8/10, bright night, Vis. medium, long swell from the NNW    
    08.00 BD 8924    
      E 2-3, Sea 2, 10/10, rain, Vis. medium to poor, long swell from the NNW    
    11.21   Alarm!  Crash-dive for drill.  Test dive.  
    12.00 43°39'N, 31°05'W Day's run:  surfaced = 121 nm  
      BD 8836              submerged =   18 nm = 139 nm.  
    12.54   Surfaced.  
    14.34  

The wind gets much stronger.  The seas are rolling very often from astern over the conning tower.  Have to change course to protect the men on watch on the bridge, went to course 290°.  Bridge watch strapped down.

 
    16.00 BD 8823    
      E 6-7, Sea 6, 10/10, Vis. poor, rain and fog, heavy sea from the ENE    
    20.00 BD 8579    
      ENE 7, Sea 7, 10/10, Vis. moderate, rain squalls, heavy long swell from the ENE    
                                                    
    05.01.42 North of the Azores    
    00.00 BD 8492    
      ENE 7, Sea 6, 10/10, rain, Vis. poor, heavy sea from ENE    
    04.00 BD 8459    
      NE 6-7, Sea 6, 10/10, rain showers, Vis. poor, long swell from the NE    
    08.00 BD 8446 Barometer is falling fast and sharply.  
      NNE 7, Sea 7, 10/10, Vis. moderate, bright night, low clouds, long swell from the NNW    
    1130  

Dived.  Test dive.  Serviced torpedoes.

 
        Proceeded submerged on course 180° to get more to the south again.  Boat is still rolling badly at a depth of A -40 meters, up to 10 degrees to each side; at the same time we notice a muffled swoosh and gurgling above the diesel room.  
           
Sun and Moon Data 04.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 05.01.42
 
- 8 -
 
           
           
           
           
        Searched for the cause almost two hours while submerged, but nothing located.  Furthermore the submerged rolling showed a light rattling of a trim weight in the keel underneath the diesel control stand.  
    12.00 44°21'N, 34°02'W Day's run:  surfaced = 135 nm  
      BD 7663              submerged =     4 nm.  
    16.00 BD 7669    
    19.07  

Surfaced.  The wind reached strength 10-11.  Heavy high seas from NNE.  Have to heave to in order to recharge.  Boat is lying badly in the sea.  Diving tank 7 is not yet flushed, that’s why the boat is lying deeper by the bow and is taking much water over it.  Bridge watch is strapped down. Visibility gets worse, less than 500-300 meters.

 
    20.00 BD 7696    
      NNE 10-11, Sea 8-9, 10/10, rain and fog, heavy storm from NNE, Vis. bad    
                                                    
    06.01.42 North of the Azores    
    00.00 BD 7696    
      ENE 10-11, Sea 8-9, 10/10, heavy rain showers, dark night, Vis. bad, long swell from ENE    
    00.05   Dived to continue submerged to the west.  
    04.00 BD 7694    
    08.00 BD 7686    
    12.00 BD 7684 Day's run:  surfaced =    5 nm  
      43°55'N, 34°40'W              submerged =  57 nm = 62 nm.  
    12.40   Surfaced.  Went to course 200°.  Wind turned to SE and calmed down a bit.  Crossing seas.  Can not steer to the west due to the high seas that are rolling over the bridge from astern.  
    16.00 BD 7836    
      SSE 6, Sea 6, 6/10, Vis. medium, high swell from ESE    
    17.00   Went again to course 240° in longer and weaker seas.  
    20.00 BD 7829    
      SSE 6, Sea 5, 4/10, Vis. bad in rain squalls, high swell from ESE    
                                                    
    07.01.42 North of the Azores    
    00.00 BD 7849

Wind calmed down further.  Seas get weaker.  Went to course 260°.  From 23.00 to 02.00 hours, the receiving conditions on the "Greenland" Circuit are very bad essentially not available at all.  The same phenomenon appeared on the last patrol in these longitudes.  However, very good conditions on the "Ireland" Circuit.

 
      SSE 5, Sea 4-5, 3/10, Vis. medium, rain squalls, dark night, long swell from ESE  
           
Sun and Moon Data 06.01.42
 
- 9 -
 
           
           
           
           
    07.01.42      
    04.00 BD 7769    
      W 5, Sea 3-4, 8/10, rain showers and fog banks, Vis. medium to poor, high swell from ESE    
    08.00 BD 7783    
      W 4-5, Sea 3, 4/10, no changes    
    11.30   Dived.  Test dive.  Serviced torpedoes.  Firing procedure and dive exercises.  
    12.00 43°06'N, 38°01'W Day's run:  surfaced = 149 nm  
      BD 7784              submerged =     4 nm  =  153 nm.  
    16.00 BD 7772    
    16.05   Surfaced.  
    17.20   Received radio message from BdU:  New patrol areas!  Assigned to BB 47 and 71, but I am still 1020 nm to the east because my advance to the west had been delayed by the prolonged bad weather and I had to proceed submerged to conserve fuel.  
    20.00 BC 9962    
      SSW 6, Sea 6, 10/10, Vis medium, occasional rainstorms, swell from the SW    
    22.30  

Course 290°

 
        The wind gets stronger again.  Wind shifts from SW to W.  Boat is making only a little headway with one engine at LF and is moving against the sea but not moving over the ocean floor.  
                                                    
    08.01.42 Northwest of the Azores  
    00.00 BC 9929 Bridge watch strapped down.  
      WSW 7, Sea 6-7, 10/10, Vis. bad, dark night, heavy seas from the SW and W    
    01.33   Dived to continue submerged.  Wind reached strength 10-11 again.  Sea 9-10.  Visibility worsens to about 300-400 meters.  Ongoing rain showers.  Went to course 280°.  Submerged I can get more to the west than surfaced.  
    04.00 BC 9924    
    08.00 BC 9915    
    12.00 BC 9836 Day's run:  surfaced =  50 nm  
      43°42'N, 40°01'W              submerged =  46 nm =  96 nm.  
    12.44   Surfaced.  Course 260°.  
    16.00 BC 9834    
      WNW 5-6, Sea 5, 10/10, Vis. medium, long swell from the W    
    20.00 BC 9855    
      WNW 5, Sea 3-4, 6/10, Vis. good, long swell from WNW                                             
         
         
Sun and Moon Data 07.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 08.01.42
 
- 10 -
 
           
           
           
           
    09.01.42 Northwest of the Azores    
    00.00 BC 9842    
      ESE 4-5, Sea 3-4, 7/10, no changes    
    04.00 BC 9738 Bridge watch strapped down.  
      SE 7, Sea 6, 10/10, Vis. medium, dark night, high swell from the SE    
    08.00 BC 9729    
      SSE 8-9, Sea 7, 10/10, Vis. poor, rain showers, heavy sea from the SSE    
    10.32   Dived to continue submerged.  Hurricane force winds up to strength 11.  Heavy long seas, strength 9.  Heavy rain and very bad visibility, 400-500 meters.  Went to course 270° while submerged.  
    12.00 43°34'N, 42°27'W Day's run:  surfaced = 100 nm  
      BC 9727              submerged =     7 nm = 107 nm.  
    12.45   Noticed hissing noise outside of the boat, for about 30 seconds.  Air bottles are tight.  Cause can not be determined.  
    16.00 BC 9719    
    19.25   Surfaced.  Went to course 260°.  Diving tank 7 flushed.  Bridge watch strapped down.  
    20.00 BC 9717    
    23.30  

Received radio message from BdU:  New patrol areas.  For me area IV and V are assigned.  BdU assumes that all boats will reach the patrol areas on 13 January.  I am still about 700 nm east of the ordered area, due to the weather conditions during the last week we proceeded only very little and slowly westwards.

 
                                                    
    10.01.42 Western North Atlantic  
    00.00 BC 9717 Dived to continue submerged.  Course 270°, because the boat makes no headway on the surface.  
      W 8-9, Sea 8-9, 10/10, Vis. medium to bad, dark night, high and steep swell, from the WNW    
    04.00 BC 8939    
    08.00 BC 8937    
    12.00 43°35'N, 43°42'W Day's run:  surfaced =     0 nm  
      BC 8928               submerged =  55 nm  =  55 nm.  
    12.07   Surfaced.  
    16.00 BC 8917    
      WNW 4-5, Sea 3, 10/10, Vis. good, long high seas from the NW    
    20.00 BC 8733    
      SSW 5, Sea 4, 7/10, Vis. medium, long swell from the SW                                             
         
Sun and Moon Data 09.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 10.01.42
 
- 11 -
 
           
           
           
           
    11.01.42 Western North Atlantic    
    00.00 BC 8722    
      SSW 6, Sea 5, 10/10, Vis. medium, freshening wind from the S by SW, seas and swell from the SSW    
    04.00 BC 8711    
      S 8, Sea 6, 7/10, Vis, poor, dark night, high swell from the S    
    08.00 BC 7923    
      SSE 10, Sea 7, 10/10, Vis. medium, dark night, rain squalls, steep swell from the SSE    
    08.31  

Dived.  Test dive.

 
        Adjusted the bearing of the starboard diesel's water cooling pump.  Serviced engines and torpedoes.  
    12.00 43°44'N, 48°28'W Day's run:  surfaced = 157 nm  
      BC 7921              submerged =    11 nm  =  168 nm.  
    14.54   Surfaced.  Hove to.  Recharged batteries.  Hazy weather.  Visibility sometimes only 500-800 meters.  
    16.00 BC 7913 Course 230°.  
      S 10, Sea 8-9, 10/10, Vis. poor, very long high swell from the S    
    16.30  

Received radio message from BdU:   For information:  About 04.30 hours on 11.01.42 collision and call for help from several merchants, which probably belong to one convoy in BB 7694.  I am still too far east.  Course 250°.

 
    20.00 BC 7915 Wind gets weaker, proceeded with one engine at LF.  
      WSW 8-9, Sea 7, 10/10, fog, rain showers, Vis. poor, long heavy sea from the SW    
                                                    
    12.01.42 Western North Atlantic    
    00.00 BC 7839 Wind turned northwards and got very weak.  Crossing seas.  
      WNW 6-7, Sea 5-6, 5/10, misty visible horizon, Vis. medium, long swell from the SW    
    04.00 BC 7852 Gyrocompass is no longer working reliably.  The dial of the main compass and the repeater sometimes get stuck and moves jerkily thereafter.  
      W 4, Sea 3, 4/10, Vis. medium, dark night, high swell from the W  
    08.00 BC 7847    
      W 5, Sea 3-4, 10/10, Vis. poor, misty, swell from the WSW    
    12.00 43°07'N, 50°48'W Day's run:  surfaced = 102 nm  
      BC 7794              submerged =     7 nm = 109 nm.  
      SSW 3-4, Sea 3, 6/10, Vis. S, dark night, slight swell from the WSW    
    12.41   Test dive.  Steering exercises.  Maintenance on the gyrocompass.  Searched for the cause of the malfunction  
           
Sun and Moon Data 11.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 12.01.42
 
- 12 -
 
           
           
           
           
    12.01.42      
        without success.  
    15.00   Surfaced.  
    16.00 BC 7785, SW 4, Sea 4, 8/10, Vis. medium, rain squalls, medium swell from the W Gyrocompass still gets stuck.  
    19.50   Dived again to repair the transmission system for the gyrocompass.  Shut down the system to remove the motor.  Found a loose contact.  Let the gyroscope adjust itself for 1½ hours.  
    23.55   Surfaced.  
                                                    
    13.01.42 Newfoundland Bank  
    00.00 BB 9995 My neighboring-boat U-130 reports that it was noticed. What a pity, unfortunately the Canadians are now aware of German U-boats operating off their coast.  
      SW 4, Sea 3-4, 10/10, dark night, Vis. medium to poor, slight swell from the SW  
    04.00 BB 9976    
      SSW 3-4, Sea 2-3, 10/10, no changes    
    08.00 BB 9894    
      W 3, Sea 2-3, 10/10, low hanging clouds, Vis. poor, slight swell from the SW    
    12.00 43°05'N, 54°41'W Day's run:  surfaced = 148 nm  
      BB 9875              submerged =   17 nm = 165 nm.  
      No change, Vis. medium, dark night, light swell from the WSW    
    12.26   Test dive.  Depth keeping exercises.  
    14.47   Surfaced.  
    16.00 BB 9796

Finally calm weather and sunshine!

 
      W 3, Sea 2, 8/10, Vis. good, slight swell from the SW Sent one man on upper deck to close hatches that came loose.  
    20.00 BB 9776 There is no crack or break in the diesel exhaust pipe that could explain the crackling noise heard during the deep dive trial.  
      SW 3, Sea 3, 10/10, Vis. changing good to poor, medium swell from the SW  
                                                    
    14.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia  
    00.00 BB 8995    
      WSW 5-6, Sea 4-5, 10/10, Vis. changing from good to poor, medium swell from the W    
    04.00 BB 8984 Large drop in temperature.  Icing up.  -10°C.  Driving snow.  
      NW 8, Sea 6-7, 10/10, Vis. poor, hail and snow, swell from the W    
    08.00 BB 8976    
      WNW 8, Sea 8, 10/10, Vis. poor, hail storms, high swell from the W    
           
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 13.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 14.01.42
 
- 13 -
 
           
           
           
           
    14.01.42      
    11.11   Dived.  Test dive.  Due to icing the starboard diesel air intake valve did not close completely.  Water in the air intake.  Serviced torpedoes.  
    12.00 42°59'N, 57°48'W Day's run:  surfaced = 112 nm  
      BB 8978              submerged =  10 nm = 122 nm.  
    16.00 BB 8899    
    16.48   Surfaced.  
    20.00 BB 8889    
      WNW 4, Sea 4-5, 7/10, Vis. medium, shimmering air, medium swell from the NW    
                                                    
    15.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia    
    00.00 CB 3231    
      SW 5, Sea 4, 8/10, Vis. good, medium swell from the W    
    04.00 CB 3213    
      WSW 7, Sea 6, 6/10, Vis. medium, rain showers, swell from the W    
    08.00 CB 3132    
      WSW 4-5, Sea 5, 7/10, dark night, Vis. medium, swell from the SW    
    10.30   Radio message from BdU:   "Report fuel status when using radio for other reasons."  
    12.00 42°50'N, 60°10'W Day's run:  surfaced = 114 nm  
      CB 3122              submerged =   14 nm = 128 nm.  
      SW 5, Sea 4, 10/10, dark night, Vis. poor, rain showers, slight swell from the W    
    12.25   Test dive.  Serviced torpedoes.  
    16.00 CB 3112    
    16.30   Surfaced.  
    20.00 CB 2332    
      WSW 5, Sea 4, 10/10, Vis. good, medium swell from the W    
                                                    
    16.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia    
    00.00 CB 2313    
      WSW 5, Sea 5, 10/10, dark night, Vis. medium, medium swell from the W    
    04.00 CB 2232 Arrival in the designated attack area.  Decided to continue to the west to operate in the southern part of the attack area first.  Because U-130 had been sighted the northern part will no longer be unprepared.  
      W 5, Sea 5, 10/10, Vis. good, dark night  
    08.00 CB 2221    
      W 5, Sea 5, 8/10, dark night, Vis. medium, driving snow, swell from the W    
    12.00 42°47'N, 63°09'W Day's run:  surfaced = 144 nm  
      CB 2133              submerged =  12 nm  = 156 nm.  
      WNW 6, Sea 5, 7/10, dark night, Vis. medium, swell from the W    
    12.52   Dived.  Test dive.  Serviced torpedoes.  
    16.00 CB 2126    
           
Sun and Moon Data 15.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 16.01.42
 
- 14 -
 
           
           
           
           
    16.01.42    
        At periscope depth, heavy driving snow .  Visibility 300 meters.  
    19.50   One detonation heard far away, probably depth charge.  
    20.00 CB 2124  
    20.20   5 detonations heard, again far away. - depth charges -  
    20.27   Surfaced.  Still driving snow.  Visibility at times only 500 to 300 meters.  
                                                    
    17.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia    
    00.00 CB 1336    
      WNW 6-7, Sea 6, 10/10, Vis. changing medium to poor, 200 m in driving snow, swell from the N    
    01.22  

Radio message from BdU:   "At 23.26 hours DSZ a westbound U-boat was sighted in grid BB 7528."  Because I am about 100 nm more to the south, it can't be me.  Either it is Kals who was observed entering the area or it was a wishful observation of the Canadians.  Anyway the area is no longer undisturbed.

 
    01.37   Dived, due to the low visibility caused by driving snow.  Again iced up.  
    02.26   Six depth charge detonations heard north of us.  
    02.45   Two depth charges a bit closer.  Went to course 210° to avoid the area.  
    04.00 CB 1338    
    08.00 CB 1364    
    08.20   Dull enduring detonation, probably close to the shore.  Apparently a hunt for the supposedly sighted U-boat.  
    10.07   Surfaced.  
    12.00 42°16'N, 64°53'W Day's run:  surfaced = 42 nm  
      CB 1832              submerged = 48 nm = 90 nm.  
      NNW 5, Sea 5, 10/10, dark night, Vis very poor in driving snow, swell from the N

Radio message from BdU:

 
              1.)  Report situation  
              2.)  Allowed to shift attack area on own initiative, if shipping or defense situation makes it necessary.  
       

Wait to send radio message until midnight because the sending conditions are better then.

 
        The sighting of U-130 on 13.01.42 and the sighting report of a U-boat off Halifax led to anti-submarine operations in attack area V, so I decide to stay in the southern part of attack area IV until they calm down up there.  
    16.00 CB 1616    
      NNW 5-6, Sea 5, 10/10, Vis. medium to poor, weak driving snow, swell from the W    
    20.00 CB 1534    
      W 5, Sea 5, 8/10, Vis, good, sea and swell from the W, very cold wind from the W-NNW    
           
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 17.01.42
 
- 15 -
 
           
           
           
           
    17.01.42      
    22.34  

Sent radio message FT 2216/17 on circuit Bruno 3 frequency 8 (alternative frequency)

 
       

Since 16 January in attack area IV.  No experience in area V yet.  An enduring period of bad weather made use of weapons difficult.  Driving snow, bad visibility, -10°C.  Heard submarine hunt close to the shore, 115 cbm, grid CB 12.

 
        The error in the gyrocompass appears again.  Cause of the malfunction is not found.  
    22.45   On course 14° towards the coast.  Dived to avoid of being surprised by reconnaissance in the twilight.  
                                                    
  18.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia    
    00.00 CB 1527    
    01.07   Surfaced after dawn to head north during the night.  
    04.00 CB 1522 Bridge watch strapped down because the seas are running from astern over the conning tower.  
      SW 7, Sea 7, overcast, dark night, Vis. good  
    08.00 CB 1256    
      WSW 7, Sea 7, 6/10, Vis. good, heavy swell from the SW    
    11.34   Dived to continue submerged.  
    12.00 CB 1231 Day's run:  surfaced = 140 nm  
      42°49'N, 65°56'W              submerged =     7 nm = 147 nm.  
    15.40   Four detonations far away, probably depth charges.  
    16.00 BA 9989    
    20.00 BA 9988    
                                                    
    19.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia    
    00.00 BA 9997    
    00.47   Surfaced to advance in the area close to the shore off Cape Sable.  Assume there the crossing point of the shipping lanes in N-S and E-W directions.  
    01.07  

Radio message FT 112/18/264:  BdU assumes that I am off Halifax.  So it seems my situation report on the alternate frequency was not understood.

 
    04.00 BA 9965    
      WSW 6, Sea 5-6, 10/10, dark night, Vis. medium, long swell from the WSW    
    03.46   Sighted white light on port side ahead.  Headed towards it. – fishermen.  
    04.00   At action stations!  
    04.06   Sighted second white light on starboard ahead.  Headed towards it.  Red side lights and stern light are visible.  
           
Sun and Moon Data 18.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 19.01.42
 
- 16 -
 
           
           
           
           
    19.01.42      
        Turned to run parallel to it.  Steamer is steering 260-280° at a speed of about 7-8 knots.  It is a freighter of about 4000-5000 GRT, heavily loaded.  
    04.53  

Approached to fire multiple shots from tubes II and III.

 
       

Fired torpedo from tube II and III:

 
       

        Enemy speed:  8 knots

 
                Target angle:  bow left 80°  
                Distance:  800 meters  
       

Tube III did not fire because the firing lamp did not light up and the command transmission failed.

 
       

Missed!

 
       

During comparison of the UZO settings with the torpedo data computer a transmission error of 5° was noticed which had to be considered by the aimer when firing.  The T.O. erroneously corrected this error to the wrong side.

 
       

The UZO mechanism had been iced up in the last days and had to be moved with force for the aiming procedure, probably causing this 5°error.

 
        Turned away again.  Enemy has slowed down.  Steamer asks the radio station at Yarmouth on the 600 meter and 36 meter frequencies for a position fix.  Name of the steamer can’t be found on the list of call signs.  
    05.30   Approached again to fire tube III (Ato)  
    05.40  

Fired torpedo from tube III:

 
                Enemy speed:  6 knots  
                Target angle:  bow left 60°  
                Distance:  800 meters  
       

Missed!

 
       

After 6 minutes 58 seconds a torpedo detonation was heard in the boat, probably the torpedo exploded at the end of its run in shallow waters.

 
        Steamer must have slowed down further during our approach.  When turning away we immediately made tube VI ready, it looks like the steamer stopped.  
    05.42  

Fired torpedo from tube VI:

 
                Enemy speed:  0 knots  
                Target angle:  bow left 90  
                Distance:  500 meters  
       

Missed!

 
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 19.01.42
 
- 17 -
 
           
           
           
           
    19.01.42      
       

The torpedo was fired with the wrong target angle because it was not yet adjusted after switching to the stern tubes.

 
       

Headed away again to calculate the exact firing data. Steamer still talks with Yarmouth.

 
       

Enemy seems to change his speed constantly; probably he waits here for the position fix from Yarmouth.

 
        I overtake him to fire a stern torpedo from tube V and then wait with one engine at KF to let him run slowly into my line of fire.  Enemy is approaching very slowly, running at 4 knots at most.  
    06.24  

Fired torpedo from tube V:

 
                Enemy speed:  4 knots  
                Target angle:  bow left 100°  
                Distance:  1500 meters  
       

        Depth:  2 meters

 
       

This shot missed as well, despite exactly calculated firing data.  In this approach we fired with a fixed target angle from the UZO.  Later we realized that the T.W.L. read off a wrong value for the side from the torpedo data computer and reported it to the T.O.

 
        To top it all the torpedo detonated apparently at the end of its run because one could hear a detonation in the boat after about 6 minutes.  
       

I've lost all confidence in the torpedo data computer and decide to fire the next shot directly aimed with the net deflector on a fixed target angle and side of 0°.

 
        Headed off a bit to overtake for the next approach.  Sighted a white light on port side ahead, comes closer fast.  After recognized a slim silhouette we have to turn fast for the attack.  This steamer has to fall!  
    06.47  

Fired torpedo from tube I aimed with the net deflector:

 
        Went closer to the steamer to a distance of 500 meters.  
                Enemy speed:  4 knots  
                Target angle:  bow left 90°  
                Distance:  500 meters  
                Depth:  3 meters, due to high and long swell  
       

After 100 m the torpedo comes out of the water, runs a distance as surface runner and dives shortly before reaching the steamer.

 
           
Sun and Moon Data 19.01.42
 
- 18 -
 
           
           
           
           
    19.01.42      
        This torpedo missed the target as well.  Assume that it passed underneath the steamer.  
       

The vessel from the port side ahead is approaching fast, heads for the steamer and blinks now and then with a lamp.  Have to turn away to avoid being seen and departed southwards.  Doing so I pass the vessel at a distance of about 300 meters. It is a small, slim, fast running vessel, bow right at 40°.  Could be a pilot boat or a customs cruiser.

 
    07.30   Get a bit too close to the vessel and have to turn hard at high speed towards south-east.  It is possible that they have noticed me.  My old steamer soon moves out of sight.  Steamer and side lights are no longer visible.  
    08.00 BA 9993    
      SSE 4, Sea 3-4, 6/10, Vis. good, sea and swell from the S    
    08.30   Lights of the small vessel move out of sight.  
    08.40   Sighted two small white lights to port ahead.  Headed towards them.  Recognized as fishing vessels and avoided.  
    12.00 CB 1352 I head still further to the south-east to be in deeper water at dawn.  
      42°34'N, 64°52'W Day's run:  surfaced = 75 nm  
      SSE 4, Sea 3-4, 6/10, very dark night, misty horizon, Vis. medium              submerged = 39 nm = 114 nm.  
    13.00   Dived to continue submerged.  
    16.00 CB 1364    
    20.00 CB 1367 During the day we continually hear single depth charge detonations.  
                                                    
    20.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia  
    00.00 CB 2145    
    00.26   Surfaced.  
    04.00 CB 1383    
      SSE 3-4, Sea 3, 10/10, dark night, Vis. medium    
    04.08  

Received radio message from BdU on 19.01.42:  Bleichrodt report situation.

 
        Because I have planned a second foray to the coast for the next night, there is no way to send a long radio message now without possibly disclosing my presence in the area.  
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 19.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 20.01.42
 
- 19 -
 
           
           
           
           
    20.01.42      
    05.45   Dived. Dense fog.  No visibility.  
    08.00 CB 1375    
    10.17   Surfaced.  Visibility still bad.  Rain showers.  
    12.00  

Overhauled the UZO and checked the torpedo data computer.

 
      41°58'N, 65°51'W Day's run:  surfaced = 77 nm  
      CB 1531              submerged =  48 nm = 125 nm.  
      SSE 4, Sea 3-4, 10/10, very dark night, Vis. poor 3-500 m, heavy rain, swell from the SSE    
    12.38   Dived.  Bad visibility.  Continued submerged.  Course 300° towards the coast.  
    16.00 CB 1288    
    20.00 CB 1284 Surfaced.  Again checked the UZO with the zero marker on the bow.  In so doing noticed:  UZO aims in the amidships direction when in the neutral position.  The error has to be in the transmission from the UZO to the torpedo data computer.  The equipment is ready except the side transmission.  
    22.33                                               
         
    21.01.42 Southeast coast of Nova Scotia    
    00.00 CB 1254    
      WNW 4-5, Sea 3-4, 2/10, Vis. good, red sunset, long swell from the W    
    01.58  

Received radio message from BdU 1317/20:  Bleichrodt report immediately position, situation and successes.

 
        Can not report before tomorrow due to the reasons mentioned above.  
    04.00 BA 9997 Outer beacons of Seal and Cape Sable in sight.  
      NNW 4, Sea 3-4, 10/10, Vis. medium, swell from the NW No traffic along the coast.  
    06.31  

Sighted light 10° on port side aft.  Head towards it on course 270°.  Forward light and green side lights of a steamer are visible.

 
       

To battle stations!

 
        Steamer is approaching fast and I have to turn to starboard to get on a parallel course.  Doing so the steamer moves into a favorable firing position and on the spur of the moment I give the order to fire.  
    07.11  

Fired torpedo from tube III:

 
                 Enemy speed:  8 knots  
                Target angle:  bow right 80°  
                Distance:  800 meters  
       

Missed!

 
           
Sun and Moon Data 20.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 21.01.42
 
- 20 -
 
           
           
           
           
    21.01.42      
      long swell

After firing the torpedo I saw that we had underestimated the speed of the enemy which was running at a very high speed.  While turning away after firing the steamer moves ahead fast.  I had to go to GF. to overtake him again.

 
       

After 11 minutes a torpedo detonation could be heard in the boat.

 
       

It was a heavily loaded steamer of approximately 6000 GRT on a general course of 40°.  I get ahead slowly.

 
        Steamer suddenly turns away to port and heads towards a bright, high and permanent shining light from the direction of Shelburne.  I turn with him, but have to evade two fishing vessels and I am now further away from the steamer.  Have to give up the hunt, because the coast is only 8 nm away and I could no longer reach a favorable firing position.  
    08.00 BB 7747

Headed southwards to get enough distance from the coast, because I have to send a situation report to the BdU on the U-boat frequency.

 
      NNW 4, Sea 3, 6/10, dark night, Vis. medium, swell from the NNW Still I notice that all coastal lights were burning and in the vicinity of Shelburne a wide, high light into the sky was shining.  Probably approach point for an airfield or searchlight barrage.  
    12.00 42°35'N, 65°04'W Day's run:  surfaced = 136 nm  
      CB 1327              submerged =   25 nm = 161 nm.  
      SW 5-6, Sea 5-6, 10/10, heavy rain, Vis. poor, high swell from the SW    
    12.37   Dived.  Test dive.  Continued submerged and serviced torpedoes.  
    16.00 CB 1357    
    20.00 CB 1376 While submerged again continually heard depth charge detonations at regular intervals.  It is remarkable that only single depth charges are dropped and sometimes are far away and then again much closer.  Assume depth charges dropped by patrol aircraft.  
                                                    
    22.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia  
    00.00 CB 1377    
    00.02   Surfaced.  
    04.00 CB 1537    
      W 3-4, Sea 2, 6/10, Vis. medium, swell from the W    
    05.15  

Sent radio message:  No experience yet in Area V.  Since 16 January in Area IV.  To date the use of weapons constricted by bad weather. 

 
           
Sun and Moon Data 21.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 22.01.42
 
- 21 -
 
           
           
           
           
    22.01.42   6 misses.  No success.  Average traffic close to the coastline.  Single ships proceeding illuminated.  Navigational lights are burning.  100 cbm, grid CB 15.  
        Radio message was sent in good conditions on the Ireland frequency, understood and confirmed.  
    08.00 CB 1277 Went to 340° to get closer to the coast again in the northwest. Planned a new foray at night to the coast near Seal Island.  
      NW 3-4, Sea 2-3, 4/10, Vis. medium, starry sky, slight swell from the west  
    12.00 42°26'N, 67°00'W Day's run:  surfaced = 109 nm  
      CB 1164              submerged =   32 nm = 141 nm.  
      NW 2-3, Sea 2, 4/10, Vis. good, slight swell from the W Gyrocompass is again not working properly.  Compass roses hang often for 1 to 2 minutes, causing a course divergence.  
    13.05  

Dived to continue submerged at depth A -40 meters.

 
        Turned off gyrocompass for inspection.  
    16.00 CB 1126    
    18.00   Heard screw noises at 40°  
    18.04  

At periscope depth.

 
        Sighted two masts of a steamer on starboard ahead.  
        On port side abeam a very dark column of smoke.  Run at high speed towards the steamer.  Funnel and bridge are now visible.  Bow left, angle 60°.  Course of enemy approximately 240°. Went to 20 meters and headed with both engines at G.F. towards the steamer for an attack.  
    20.00 CB 1122 Back to periscope depth after 10 minutes.  Steamer now on course 120-140 at about 8000 meters distance.  The dark column of smoke to port is out of sight.  I am too close to the steamer to surface and overtake, so I turn on parallel course and have to wait.  Steamer gets smaller but screw noises still clearly heard.  
    20.35   While taking a panoramic view sighted two masts with sail right aft.  Heard screw and engine noises.  Turn away to port but masts stay at angle 0.  Sailing vessel turns 180° and leaves.  I still can't surface to overtake the steamer.  
    21.14   Sailing vessel with auxiliary engine slowly moves out of sight.  The screw noises of the steamer are still barely audible.  
    21.15   Surfaced.  Steamer is out of sight, the dark column of smoke on port side is in sight again.  The mast tips of the sailing vessel are barely visible.  Turned to port towards the column of smoke.  It has to be a very fast vessel because it pulls the smoke fast astern.  Masts could not be seen yet.  Enemy slowly gets away to port, apparently steering a westerly course.  
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 22.01.42
 
- 22 -
 
           
           
           
           
    22.01.42      
    21.38   Sighted aircraft ahead to port.  Large land based aircraft is coming over the horizon and then turns towards us.  
    21.40   Dived for aircraft.  At periscope depth.  
    21.55   Aircraft no longer in sight.  Sighted a black cloud of smoke and mast tips on port aft, gets quickly bigger.  Destroyer, angle 0°.  It is coming at high speed towards me.  
    22.05   Destroyer is passing at high speed on course 270° above us. Noises soon get weaker.  Went to course 120°.  
    22.30   Turned to 180°, abreast of the course of the enemy.  Have to go to a depth of A -20 meters.  
    22.45  

At periscope depth.

 
        Sighted again a dark cloud of smoke on port side ahead.  Heard screw noises of a fast running vessel from the same direction.  
    22.48   Several depth charges, close to us!  
    22.50   They can't mean us with them, because the aircraft could not have seen me.  
    23.30  

We can no longer hear the screw noises.  Changed course to 70° to be closer to the coast for the planned foray.

 
        Dived to a depth of A -40 meters.  
                                                    
    23.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia  
    00.00 CB 1122    
    00.40   A series of depth charges, far away.  
    01.00   Surfaced and headed towards Seal Island.  
    04.00 BA 9974    
      WNW 3, Sea 2, 6/10, bright night, Vis. good    
    05.40   Sighted a white light on port side ahead.  Headed towards it and recognized as fishing vessel.  Evaded to starboard and went on closer to the coast.  Lights on Seal Island and Cape Sable are burning.  
    06.10   Sighted a white light on port side ahead.  When getting closer a red side light can be seen and a silhouette of a steamer is recognized.  Turned on a parallel course.  Steamer is heading about 240°, running at 7-8 knots; the forward and side lights are lit.  About 4-5000 GRT, heavily loaded.  
    06.30   Steamer turns to starboard, so I turn with him.  Estimated by the light of Seal Island he is steering on course 320°, probably heading for Yarmouth.  
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 22.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 23.01.42
 
- 23 -
 
           
           
           
           
    23.01.42      
    06.50  

Sighted a white light on port side ahead.  Shortly thereafter a green side light is visible.  I'm heading towards it and turn on a parallel course.  Steamer is steering about 70° and gets closer only slowly.  Measured course and speed exactly and let him run into my line of fire for a stern attack.

 
        Steamer is passing very close to me.  
    08.00 BA 9959    
      WNW 2-3, Sea 1-2, 6/10, Vis. good to medium, smooth sea    
    08.12 BA 9956

Fired torpedo from tube V:

 
                Enemy speed:  7 knots  
                Target angle:  bow right 80°  
                Distance:  800 meters  
       

After a running time of 28 seconds:  hit!

 
       

Close behind the funnel.

 
        High detonation cloud.  Steamer immediately settled on an even keel, then slowly by the stern.  Crew is abandoning ship in lifeboats; their lights are clearly visible on the water.  
    08.20  

Steamer sends SSS on the 600 meter frequency and a radio message to the "Camperdown" station.  He asks the station to hold, but he can't continue because the steamer sinks by the stern and raises the bow high out of the water.  Depth of water at the sinking position is 40 meters.  It is the Greek ANDREAS (6566 GRT), heavily loaded.

 
        Departed at high speed to the southeast.  The first steamer is no longer in sight.  
    09.30  

Observed directly behind us a high darting flame.  Sighted a white light on port side ahead which turns out to be a fishing vessel.  Evaded.

 
        Continued to the southeast to have passed the shallow waters at dawn and to be in deeper waters.  
    12.00 42°02'N, 65°50'W Day's run:  surfaced = 135 nm  
      CB 1267              submerged =   34 nm = 169 nm.  
      WNW 2-3, Sea 1-2, 4/10, Vis. good, slight swell from the W    
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 23.01.42
 
- 24 -
 
           
           
           
           
    23.01.42      
    12.45   Dived to continue submerged.  
    16.00 CB 1374 Have to turn off the gyrocompass again because the compass rose still hangs badly.  Inspected turning engine and cooling water pump, but the cause of the malfunction is not found.  
    20.00 CB 1379

Departed to the east and turn later to northeast.  Planned another foray in the area of Liverpool during the night on 24 to 25 January.

 
        While submerged continually heard depth charge detonations from the coast.  They are apparently searching for us.  
                                                    
    24.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia  
    00.00 CB 1385    
    01.00   Surfaced.  
    04.00 CB 1363    
      SW 4, Sea 3-4, 10/10, Vis. medium, dark night    
    08.00 CB 2121    
      SW 5, Sea 4, 10/10, Vis. poor, inky black night, swell and sea from the SW    
    12.00 43°08'N, 63°28'W Day's run:  surfaced = 95 nm  
      BB 7881              submerged = 35 nm  =  130 nm.  
      SW 3, Sea 2, 10/10, Vis. poor, very dark night, long swell from the SW Visibility sometimes only 300-400 meters.  
    13.00   Dived to continue submerged.  Test dive.  Course towards the coast.  
    16.00 BB 7857 While submerged tested the deviation of the magnetic compass, because the gyrocompass had to be turned off again.  Magnetic compass swings up to 40° to each side.  
    20.00 BB 7851

Dismantled the turning engine of the gyrocompass.  Finally the cause of the malfunction is found.  The anchor of the engine slipped and the wheels of the gear box are very dirty.  After 9½ hours of work the malfunction is fixed, the gyroscope adjusted itself and is ready again.

 
        While submerged again heard continually depth charge detonations.  
                                                    
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 24.01.42
 
- 25 -
 
           
           
           
           
    25.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia    
    00.00 BB 7827    
    00.37   Surfaced for the foray towards the coast between Liverpool and Halifax.  
    03.51   Sighted a cloud of smoke to starboard ahead.  Headed towards it. Slim silhouette recognized, not illuminated.  Bow left.  Turn again on parallel course.  Vessel turns away to starboard and quickly moves out of sight.  Apparently a patrol vessel, type not identified.  
    04.00 BB 7577    
      WNW 4, Sea 2-3, 4/10, bright moonlight, Vis. good. long and slight swell from the W    
    04.20   Sighted a white light on port side ahead.  Headed towards it.  Green side light is visible and slowly the silhouette of a steamer can be seen.  Bow right abeam, is passing fast to starboard.  Turned to starboard and have to go to highest speed to maintain position.  It is a big steamer with high and long superstructure.  Can't get ahead, bearing is clear.  Steamer zigzags around course 50 to 70°.  After a turn to port I am again wide behind the vessel.  
    05.59 BB 7541 Sighted a slim shadow to starboard ahead.  Is coming closer fast, a destroyer with bow left, angle 20 to 30°.  I turned away to starboard; the steamer moves out of sight fast.  The destroyer turned away to starboard on a parallel course to the steamer.  Changed course again towards coast to continue my search.  Pity, this would have been a good target.  
    06.40   Sighted a shadow on port side ahead.  Looks like an old German torpedo boat.  Patrol vessel with two funnels, gets bigger quickly.  Bow left, angle 40-50°.  Have to turn away and leave at high speed on course 180°.  The distance slowly increases.  The destroyer turns after me but he can't have seen me because I am in the dark horizon in the bright moonlit night with good visibility.  
    07.00  

I head a bit to the east to get closer to the coast again behind the patrol vessel that steers a changing course.  Have to turn to the south again because he gets closer.

 
    07.30  

Patrol vessel is out of sight.  Headed again towards the coast and then followed the coast parallel to the southwest at a distance of about 10 nm.  No traffic.  This area is much better guarded than the other off Cape Sable to the south.

 
           
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 25.01.42
 
- 26 -
 
           
           
           
           
    25.01.42      
        Unfortunately nothing more was sighted after the single steamer.  
    08.00 BB 7579

Sighted a bright searchlight to starboard aft at the horizon.

 
      W 4, Sea 2-3, 2/10, no changes Seems to be a searchlight barrage over Liverpool.  The navigational light of Ironbound Island was burning.  
        The bright moonlit nights make it difficult to operate in guarded areas.  
    12.00 43°07'N, 63°38'W Day's run:  surfaced = 107 nm  
      BB 7873              submerged =   21 nm = 128 nm.  
      WSW 3-4, Sea 3, 2/10, Vis. good, starry night, slight swell from the W    
    12.35  

Dived to continue submerged.  Test dive.

 
        Went on west course to be in a position to head north towards the coast to operate off Seal Island again in the following night.  
    16.00 CB 2125    
    20.00 CB 2124 While submerged we continually hear depth charge detonations again.  
                                                    
    26.01.42 Southeast Coast of Nova Scotia  
    00.00 CB 2115  
    00.53  

Surfaced for our foray to the coast near Cape Sable and Seal Island.

 
        Moonlit night as bright as day.  Good visibility.  
    01.50   Sighted a shadow on port side ahead.  Headed towards it. Recognized as patrol vessel.  Evaded, then continued to the northwest.  
    04.00 CB 1321 Navigational lights on Cape Sable and Seal Island are dimly visible.  I'm heading towards the lights of Cape Sable.  
      WNW 4, Sea 2, 4/10, Vis. good, bright moonlight  
    08.00 BA 9965 Sighted brightly illuminated vessel to starboard ahead.  Headed towards it.  Vessel shows four very bright white lights, each two of them one below the other.  No side lights visible.  It is steering a changing course and is a small vessel. Probably a fishing vessel or a trap.  No escorts can be seen nearby.  Continued to the coast.  No traffic.  The lights of Seal Island and Cape Sable are clearly visible.  
      WNW 3, Sea 2-3, 5/10, no changes  
    09.30   Headed off to the southeast.  
    12.00  

 

 
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 25.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 26.01.42
 
- 27 -
 
           
           
           
           
    26.01.42      
    12.00 42°32'N, 66°00'W              CB 1253 Sighted many flashes at a time for three hours to starboard ahead.  Assume heat lighting.  
      WSW 4, Sea 2-3, 4/10, no changes Day's run:  surfaced = 121 nm  
                   submerged =   37 nm.  
    12.40  

Dived to continue submerged.

 
        The area has become better guarded in the last few days.  The bright moonlit nights make successful attacks on escorted steamers difficult.  
    15.00   I decide to change the patrol area to area III.  Perhaps I can get 20 cbm of fuel from U-130 and stay a bit longer in area III.  Can not imagine that there will be no traffic.  
    16.00 CB 1282    
    20.00 CB 1289                                             
         
    27.01.42    
    00.00 CB 1534    
    00.43   Surfaced.  The wind increases.  Completely overcast.  Vis. moderate.  Hazy horizon.  Went to southerly course 189°.  
    04.00 CB 1564    
      NE 6, Sea 5-6, 10/10,  Vis. moderate to medium, rain, swell from the E    
    05.16   Sent radio message to BdU:  "On 23 January sank Greek ANDREAS off Cape Sable.  Since then improved defenses, aircraft and destroyer patrols close to the coast.  On 26 January, no more traffic found off Cape Sable.  
        Change to area III.  8 Etos left, 85 cbm.  Ask for 20 cbm fuel from Kals.  ENE 6, 1014 mb, grid CB 15."  
    08.00 CB 1589    
      NNE 6, Sea 6, 10/10, Vis. poor, rain, fog, high swell from the NNE    
    11.26  

Radio message from BdU:   "To Kals and Bleichrodt:

 
                1.)  Carry out transfer of fuel in CB 4845 at night on 29.01.42.  
                2.)  For this purpose be at the meeting point from 20.00 hours on 29.01.42.  
                3.)  Afterwards, Bleichrodt is allowed to attack at will in all coastal areas."  
        I'm heading towards meeting point.  
    12.00 40°40'N, 66°03'W Day's run:  surfaced = 77 nm  
      CB 1855              submerged =  35 nm = 112 nm.  
      NW 5-6, Sea 5, 10/10, dark night, Vis. medium, long swell from the N    
           
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 26.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 27.01.42
 
- 28 -
 
           
           
           
           
    27.01.42      
    13.10   Dived. Test dive.  
    14.30   Surfaced.  
    16.00 CB 1885    
      NW 6, Sea 5, 10/10, Vis. medium, swell from the NNW    
    20.00 CB 4252    
      WNW 6, Sea 5, 8/10, Vis. medium to good, long swells from the NNW    
                                                    
   
28.01.42
North of Bermuda
 
    00.00 CB 4527 Course 180°.  
      WNW 3, Sea 3, 10/10, Vis. medium, slight swell from the WNW From 27 to 28 January, the water temperature increased from 8°C to 18°C.  The influence of the Gulf Stream.  
    04.00 CB 4584    
      WNW 2-3, Sea 3, 10/10, dark night, Vis. good, swell from the W    
    08.00 CB 4851    
      WNW 3, Sea 3, 4/10, bright moonlight, Vis. good, swell from the W    
    12.00 37°38'N, 66°12'W Day's run:  surfaced = 157 nm  
      CB 4884              submerged =     5 nm = 162 nm.  
      SW 4, Sea 3, 0/10, bright moonlight, Vis. medium, sea and swell from the W    
    13.12   Dived.  Test dive.  
    14.25   Surfaced.  Course 42°.  
    16.00 CB 4872    
      SW 3-4, Sea 3, 2/10, Vis. good, sea and swell from the SW    
    17.25  

Radio message from BdU:  For Bleichrodt and Kals:

 
       

If the meeting does not take place until 21.00 hours, then Bleichrodt should send bearing signals per War Order 211 paragraph 1a without signal on 852 meter wavelength.

 
    20.00 CB 4842    
      SW 5, Sea 3-4, 8/10, no changes    
                                                    
   
29.01.42
North of Bermuda
 
    00.00 CB 4846

Course 60°

 
      SSW 6, Sea 5, 10/10, rain showers, Vis. sometimes under 2 nm, high swell from the SSW

The wind changes to south and gets stronger.  Hove to.

 
    04.00 Position unchanged    
           
Sun and Moon Data 28.01.42
 
- 29 -
 
           
           
           
           
    29.01.42      
    04.00 S 7-8, Sea 7, 10/10, heavy rain, Vis. poor, long swell from the SW Let’s hope that the weather calms down soon, so that the transfer of fuel can be carried out.  
    06.38   Radio message from Kals:  "D/F inoperable.  If necessary I will send bearing signals on the 852 meter frequency for Bleichrodt at 21.00 hours on 29.01.42."  
           
    08.00 Position unchanged    
      SSW 7, Sea 7, 8/10, bright moonlight, Vis. good, high swell from the S, heavy rain showers    
    12.00 Position unchanged

N o  p o s i t i o n  f i x  b e c a u s e  i t  i s  c o n s t a n t l y  o v e r c a s t    !

 
      SSW 7, Sea 7, 10/10, Vis. poor, occasional heavy rain showers, high sea and swell from the SW Heavy rain showers, visibility sometimes as low as 100 meters.  
        Day's run:  surfaced = 26 nm  
                     submerged =  18 nm = 44 nm.  
    13.06   Test dive.  Engine inspection.  Refilled battery cells with water.  
    16.00 Position unchanged    
    19.10  

Surfaced.

 
        Wind reaches hurricane strength in gusts.  
    20.00 Position unchanged

Hove to, strapped down the bridge watch.

 
      NNW 11, Sea 8-9, 10/10, rain showers, heavy seas from the NW

Fuel transfer is impossible.

 
       

To keep Kals from sending unnecessary bearing signals:

 
        Radio message to Kals at 20.16 hours:   "No bearing signals needed, wait until 30.01.42, NNW 11, Sea 9-10, 998 mb, had to heave to, CB 4840 inaccurate."  
                                                    
   
30.01.42
North of Bermuda
 
    00.00 Position unchanged    
      NW 10-11, Sea 8-9, 10/10, Vis. poor, low hanging clouds, sea from the NW    
    01.03   Dived.  Course west.  
    08.00 Position unchanged    
    12.00      "             "    
    12.42   Surfaced.  The wind only calmed down a bit.  
    16.00      "             "

Because it's still not possible to transfer fuel:

 
      NW 9-10, Sea 8, 10/10, Vis. medium, high swell from the NW Radio message to Kals:   "Please wait for weather improvements. 78 cbm, CB 48."  
    20.00 Position unchanged    
      NW 9-10, Sea 8, 9/10, no changes                                             
           
Sun and Moon Data 29.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 30.01.42
 
- 30 -
 
           
           
           
           
    31.01.42 North of Bermuda    
    00.00 Position unchanged    
      NNW 7, Sea 7, 10/10, no changes    
    02.00   Dived to continue submerged to southeast.  
    08.00 Position unchanged    
    12.00      "             "    
    12.56  

Wind and seas have calmed down.

 
        Surfaced.  A position fix shows a great shift to the northwest; despite heading submerged to the southeast we are almost 32 nm northwest of the meeting point.  
    16.00 38°06'N, 66°44'W    
      CB 4842    
      NNW 2, Sea 2-3, 6/10, Vis. medium, moderate swell from the NNW    
    16.20  

Sighted cloud of smoke to starboard ahead.  Headed towards it.

 
        Sighted U-boat to starboard abeam.  U-130.  I'm heading at high speed towards Kals to inform him that I will chase the steamer first and that he should wait at the meeting point for me.  
       

Headed again towards the cloud of smoke.  Wide and high funnel and two high masts.  Course east.  Steered changing course to get ahead.  Progress is slow despite both engines running at GF.

 
        Steamer is running fast and zigzags.  
    17.30  

Radio message from Kals:   "Enemy in sight, CB 4842, course east, slow speed."

 
        Because we listened to the "Africa" frequency we heard this signal, previously sent at 15.42 hours on "Greenland" frequency, only now when it was repeated on the "Africa" frequency.  
    17.55  

Radio message from Kals:   "Steamer is in CB 4827 m., speed 10 knots, course 50°."

 
       

Also this signal arrives too late due to the reason above.

 
        The steamer was sighted before the radio messages were received.  While overtaking we notice that the steamer is steering on a base course of 60-80° zigzagging 40° to each side.  
    20.00 CB 4829    
      No changes    
    20.10   I’m ahead of the steamer.  Measured speed is 12-13 knots. Enemy follows a zigzag course of about 40°-80° around the base course every 8-10 minutes.  
    20.43   Dived for submerged attack.  Heading towards the steamer.  
           
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 31.01.42
 
- 31 -
 
           
           
           
           
    31.01.42      
    21.00   Turn to base course of 70°.  Steamer quickly comes closer.  Painted grey.  Guns on the forecastle and stern.  Wide and high funnel.  Pole masts behind bridge and cruiser stern.  
    21.22   Steamer is at bow left, angle 20°, steering 130°.  Distance about 6000 meters.  I'm getting closer.  
    21.31   Steamer turns now to port, bow right and angle 20°, course about 90°. Reached transverse distance of about 2000 meters.  
    21.37  

Enemy continues the turn to port, bow left, angle 60°.

 
       

Turn around for stern attack.  Distance increases rapidly.  At an angle of 80° the distance is about 3000 meters.  Decide not to fire because the distance is too great.

 
        Turn to 60° with both engines at GF.  The steamer has to turn to starboard soon.  But the enemy stays on this course for about 20 minutes and passes.  
    21.59   Steamer turns now to starboard, bow right and angle 140°.  
    22.15   Turned on a course to the south and waited until I could surface to overtake him again.  
    22.42   Surfaced.  
    23.00   Radio message to Kals:   "Still chasing steamer.  New rendezvous point in CB 4965 at 13.00 hours on 01.02."  
    23.16 Bright moonlit night, Vis. good and far Sighted steamer again on port side ahead.  Headed northwards to overtake on the suitable side again.  Swell from northwest gets higher, can only run both engines at GF.  
                                                    
   
01.02.42
North of Bermuda
   
    00.00 CB 4687    
      N 3, Sea 2, 5/10, Vis. good, high swell from the N    
    02.30  

Steamer is abeam, still zigzagging along the base course 70°.

 
        Single clouds promise an approach at a good shooting distance despite the bright moonlight.  
    02.50   Steamer is now behind us.  
    03.00  

Turned around for an attack.  At this moment the steamer turns to starboard about 20° and is now bow left, angle 80°.

 
        Overtake again at full speed.  
    03.20   Turned around for an attack.  Enemy has now bow left, angle 70°.  Distance about 2000 meters.  Suddenly the moon shines through the clouds.  Continued my approach to the enemy  
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 31.01.42
Sun and Moon Data 01.02.42
 
- 32 -
 
           
           
           
           
    01.02.42      
        with both engines at HF.  
    03.30 38°46'N, 64°17'W

Fired a spread of three torpedoes from tube I, III and IV:

 
      CB 5447         Enemy speed:  13 knots  
                Target angle:  bow left 90°  
                Distance:  1200 meters  
                Depth:  3 meters  
       

After 2 minutes 45 seconds and 2 minutes. 49 seconds: 2 hits!

 
       

First hit at the forward hold

 
       

Second hit amidships in the engine room.

 
       

Steamer is covered by the detonation clouds for a long time.  Turns completely around to starboard and then settles fast by the bow.  The stern lifts high out of the water and the ship sinks after 4 minutes.

 
       

Steamer sent a radio message with its name and an incorrect position, perhaps the position about 12 hours earlier.  It was the refrigerator ship TACOMA STAR (7924 GRT), heavily loaded.  Crew abandoned ship in lifeboats

 
        Turned away on a southerly course to a new rendezvous point with Kals.  
    03.50   Sighted 5 illuminated lifeboats on port side abeam.  
    04.00 CB 5447 Because it gets windier again, I decide to ask Kals by radio message for an earlier rendezvous point to transfer fuel as soon as possible.  
      S 4, Sea 3-4, 6/10, Vis. good, long swell  
    05.11   Radio message to Kals:   "Just sank TACOMA STAR.  Please meet me earlier in CB 4965 at 09.00 hours."  
    08.00 CB 4962    
      S 6, Sea 4-5, 10/10, Vis. good, medium swell and seas from the S, night of a full moon    
    09.25  

Radio message from Kals"Can't reach rendezvous point before 15.00 hours."

 
        In the meantime the weather worsened again.  
    12.00 37°58'N, 64°30'W Day's run:  surfaced = 196 nm  
      CB 4965              submerged =     5 nm = 201 nm.  
      Vis. medium, rain showers, high seas from the S

It gets windy fast.  I calculate with a deviation to the northwest and steer a southeasterly course.

 
       

Hove to.  I'm at the arranged rendezvous point in CB 4965.  Boat is lying well with one engine at KF.

 
        Again no opportunity to transfer fuel.  
    16.00 Position unchanged    
      SSW 8, Sea 7, 10/10, Vis. medium, rain showers, high short sea and swell from the SSW    
         
           
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 01.02.42
 
- 33 -
 
           
           
           
           
    01.02.42      
    20.00 Position unchanged Heavy storm from SSW with gusts as strong as 12, heavy rain, banks of fog.  Visibility several times reduced to less than 150 meters.  
      SSW 10, unchanged  
                                                    
   
02.02.42
North of Bermuda
   
    00.00 Position unchanged    
      WSW 5-6, Sea 6, 10/10, heavy rain showers, Vis. poor, high swell from the SW    
    04.00 Position unchanged    
      SW 4-5, Sea 6, no changes, Vis. medium, bright moonlight, very high swell from the SW    
    08.00 WSW 5, Sea 6, no changes,    
    12.00 38°05'N, 64°30'W Day's run:  surfaced = 0 nm  
      CB 4962              submerged = 0 nm.  
      WNW 4-5, Sea 5, 10/10, heavy rain, Vis. poor, swell from the SW    
    16.00 CB 4965 Nothing to see from U-130.  No fix yet, position is approximate.  This way a rendezvous is not possible; have to ask Kals by radio message for bearing signals.  
      WNW 1-2, Sea 2  
    17.10  

Radio message to Kals:   "Start sending bearing signals at 18.00 hours." 

 
        The bearing signals are heard well at 345°.  Went to course 340°.  Bearing signals pass to port at 332° at 22.15 hours.  Then again to starboard.  
    20.00 CB 4992    
      WNW 5-6, Sea 4-5, 8/10, Vis, medium, heavy rain squalls, swell from the W    
    22.25  

Radio message to Kals:   "Please head for me on course 140°."

 
        A position fix with the help of the stars shows that I am about 50 nm southeast of the rendezvous point.  Therefore no deviation to the northwest as on 30.01.42, but one to the southeast.  
                                                    
   
03.02.42
North of Bermuda
   
    00.00 CB 5778    
      WNW 3-4, Sea 3, 10/10, no changes    
    00.15   It is remarkable that there is a deviation to the south and southeast at the southern border of the Gulf Stream.  
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 02.02.42
 
- 34 -
 
           
           
           
           
    03.02.42      
    02.33  

Radio message from Kals:   "At the moment a meeting is hopeless.  I wait and send bearing signals after 13.00 hours."

 
        Last bearing was at 353°, went to course 350°.  
    04.00 CB 5748 During the night the diesel engine's water cooling pumps had to be inspected.  The bearings of the connecting rods have to be scraped out almost every 8 days.  A curse that gets worse from patrol to patrol, despite a complete overhaul during the shipyard period.  
      NW 4, Sea 3, 10/10, very dark night, Vis. poor, heavy rain, sea and swell from the NW  
    08.00 CB 5742    
      N 4, Sea 3, no changes in the weather, heat lighting    
    12.00 38°03'N, 64°07'W Day's run:  surfaced = 106 nm.  
      CB 5742    
      N 4-5, Sea 3-4, 10/10, rain, Vis. medium, swell from the NNW    
    13.14   Bearing signals from U-130 can be heard clearly at 175°.  Went to course 180° towards U-130.  
    16.00 CB 5787    
      N 5, Sea 4, 10/10, Vis. poor, heavy rain, swell from the N    
    16.12   Radio message to Kals:   "I hear you at 170°."  
    16.33   Sighted U-130 on port side ahead.  Went closer to hailing distance.  Because transfer of fuel is not yet possible due to the weather, we agree to head together to the southeast until the weather improves.  
           
    20.00 CB 8168 It gets windy.  I only have 58 cbm of fuel left and because Kals can only hand over 20 cbm, it is no longer possible to operate closer to the coast.  
      NW 6, Sea 5, 10/10, rain squalls, Vis. medium, swell from the N  
                                                    
   
04.02.42
North of Bermuda
   
    00.00 CB 8279    
      NNW 7, Sea 6, 10/10, rain, Vis. poor, sea and swell from the NW    
    04.00 CB 8535    
      NNW 6, Sea 6, 10/10, Vis. poor, heavy rain and thunderstorms, high swell from the NNW    
    08.00 CB 8654    
      NW 5, Sea 5, 6/10, Vis. medium, occasional rain squalls, high swell from the NW    
    12.00 35°54'N, 60°47'W Day's run:  surfaced = 182 nm.  
      CB 8693    
      NW 5, Sea 5, 10/10, no changes    
           
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 03.02.42
Sun and Moon Data 04.02.42
 
- 35 -
 
           
           
           
           
    04.02.42      
    16.00 CB 9476 Still strong wind and high seas prevent the transfer of fuel.  
      NW 5-6, Sea 5, 6/10, Vis. good, long swell from the NW    
    20.00 CB 9728 It gets windier again.  I suggest Kals to head south to get out of this area of bad weather.  Went together on course 180°.  
      NNW 6, Sea 6, 5/10, Vis. good, Sea and Swell from the NNW  
    21.22   Sighted mast tips to starboard ahead.  Informed U-130 and asked him to wait for me.  Headed towards the steamer.  It gets closer fast.  It's a tanker with two high masts in the first third.  Turned on parallel course and overtake him.  Tanker is steering a base course of 320-330° against the seas.  I get ahead well against the heavy seas with both engines at LF x 10.  Boat is taking much water over the conning tower.  Bridge watch has to be strapped down.  
                                                    
    05.02.42 North of Bermuda  
    00.00 CB 9724 At dusk I am well ahead of the tanker.  Turn to 170° towards him so as not to lose him.  
      NNW 6, Sea 7, 10/10, rain showers, Vis. medium, high swell from the NNW  
    00.15-00.50   Steamer moves out of sight in a heavy rain squall.  Turn to 280° to pass his course.  
    01.00  

Sighted tanker again on port side abeam.  It is a very dark night and the visibility bad due to the rain showers.

 
        I position myself directly ahead of the tanker at low speed and let him come closer, so that I can turn away for a stern attack.  
        Tanker is slowly coming closer.  
    01.37   Turn to starboard for a torpedo spread from the stern tubes.  
    01.42 35°38'N, 60°20'W

Fired torpedo from tube V, after 15 seconds fired torpedo from tube VI:

 
      CB 9713  
                Enemy speed:  6 knots  
                Target angle:  bow right 80°  
                Distance:  1000 meters  
                Depth:  3 meters  
       

The torpedoes are running across the seas and are thus less influenced by depth changes within the high waves.

 
           
Sun and Moon Data 05.02.42
 
- 36 -
 
           
           
           
           
    05.02.42      
       

Hit aft after 90 seconds, between the mast aft and funnel.  A high darting flame and thick black detonation cloud.

 
       

Now the crew gets active on deck, boats were lowered.  The tanker turns to port and remains afloat.

 
       

The second torpedo missed.

 
        The tanker turns further to port and stops athwart to the seas.  
        Tanker sends SSS and position on the 600 meter frequency.  It is the British tanker MONTROLITE (11,309 GRT).  
        Tanker is now drifting in the seas.  It seems that some boats are returning to the torpedoed ship.  I decided to fire a coup de grace because the steamer is not settling.  
    02.25   Approached for a single torpedo shot from tube I.  
    02.32  

Fired torpedo from tube I:

 
                Enemy speed: 0 knots  
                Target angle: bow left 90°  
                Distance: 800 meters  
                Depth: 3 meters  
       

Hit after 110 seconds.  High, lasting darting flame, black cloud of smoke. Torpedo also hit between mast aft and funnel, but this time on the port side.

 
        Initially the tanker settled slowly, then more over the stern.  The bow rises steeply and is gone after about 5 minutes.  
    02.40   Turned towards the rendezvous point with U-130.  
    04.00 CB 9752    
      NNW 6, Sea 5-6, 7/10, Vis. medium, rain squalls, swell from the N    
    05.23  

Radio message to BdU:  "Patrolling off the coast is no longer possible due to fuel shortage.  Since 03.02.42 on slow return journey with Kals towards CC 80.  Until now bad weather prevented the transfer of fuel.  Just sank tanker MONTROLITE.  2 Etos, 58 cbm.  Grid CB 9713.

 
        To Kals:  Please send bearing signals after 11.00 hours."  
    08.00 CB 9752    
      NNW 6-7, Sea 6, 7/10, rain squalls, Vis. moderate, sea and swell from the NNW    
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 05.02.42
 
- 37 -
 
           
           
           
           
    05.02.42      
    11.19   Bearing signals from U-130 are heard at 248°, went to course 240° because signals passed to port side.  
    12.00 35°19'N, 60°09'W Day's run:  surfaced = 162 nm.  
      CB 9728    
      NNW 5-6, Sea 6, 6/10, rain showers, Vis. medium, high swell from the NW    
    12.20   Sighted U-130 ahead.  After exchange of experiences sailed on a course to the east at low speed because transfer of fuel still not possible.  
    16.00 CB 9738    
      NNW 4, Sea 4, 5/10, Vis. good, rain squalls, medium swell    
    20.00 CB 9819    
      7/10, NNW 4, Sea 3-4, otherwise no changes    
    20.25  

Sighted a cloud of smoke on port side aft.

 
        Informed U-130, afterwards headed towards the cloud of smoke.  Two masts and a wide, high funnel became visible.  
        Overtaken at high speed.  Steamer is steering approximately on course 180°.  Visibility very good.  Steamer can be seen at a distance of 8 nm.  Steamer seems to zigzag, but yaws and sometimes leaves the course up to 20°.  Measured the speed of the enemy at 10-11 knots.  
    23.20   I’m ahead of the steamer.  
    23.21   Dived for a submerged attack in the twilight.  
                                                    
    06.02.42 North of Bermuda    
    00.00 CB 9878

Head towards the enemy at GF and then directly into a favorable attack position.  It gets darker quickly.

 
      NNW 4, Sea 3, 7/10, Vis. good, medium swell Steamer is passing ahead of a dark rain cloud, but can still be seen clearly in the periscope.  I'm in attack position and let him run into my line of fire.  Angle and distances are difficult to estimate.  
    00.07  

Fired torpedo from tube I:

 
       

        Enemy speed:  11 knots

 
       

        Target angle:  bow left 90°

 
                Distance:  2000 meters  
                Depth:  3 meters  
           
Sun and Moon Data 05.02.42
 
- 38 -
 
           
           
           
           
       

Because nothing more can be seen at 1/16 magnification, deliberately set a longer distance.  Missed!

 
       

It was already too dark, I wouldn't shoot anymore.

 
       

As we noticed later the enemy was running at 8-9 knots and in ballast.

 
        The screws of the torpedo were heard for 10 minutes.  
    00.29  

Surfaced. I'm about 4000 meters behind the steamer.  Estimate its size at approximately 5-6000 GRT.

 
       

Turn on parallel course and run alongside of the steamer at a distance of about 4-5000 meters to measure its speed.  Steamer runs at 8.5 knots and is in ballast.

 
        Overtake him again for an attack on the surface.  
    02.35   Turn around for a shot from tube IV.  
    02.41  

Fired torpedo from tube IV:

 
                Enemy speed: 8.5 knots  
                Target angle: bow left 90°  
                Distance: 1200 meters  
       

Again missed. Torpedo ran well.

 
        The miss is unexplained. Possible is only that the torpedo passed underneath the target.  
    04.00 DD 3117                         NNW 4, Sea 2-3, 8/10, dark night, Vis. medium, swell from the NNW

Passed behind the steamer in a northerly direction and overtake him slowly on his starboard side.  I order the boat to be prepared for an artillery attack.

 
     

The 105 mm, 37 mm and 20 mm were made ready.

 
        It is still very dark, so that I have to wait for the moon to rise for the gunfire attack.  Stay in contact on the favorable side.  
    05.30  

Gave the order to open fire with the 105 mm deck gun.

 
       

I'm behind the steamer, bow right at 150°.  Initial distance was 3500 meters.  The target was bracketed with a double salvo and we began to fire for effect after the fourth salvo.  The fourth round was a hit amidships underneath the funnel.  Sixth and eighth salvos hit the bow and stern.  We initially fired with incendiary rounds and a fire was started on the stern of the steamer.  Seven minutes after opening fire, the steamer sends on the 600 meter frequency:  name, position and "bombarded".

 
       

It is the steamer HALCYON (3531 GRT) registered in Panama.

 
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 06.02.42
 
- 39 -
 
           
           
           
           
    06.02.42      
        Steamer turns away to port with bow left.  Turn with it, get a bit closer and continue the gunfire attack on changing course from distances between 2000 and 1200 meters.  The long swell from NW makes aiming difficult.  Despite that we observed 28-30 hits on the ship, 5-6 hits into the engine room.  Ship released steam amidships and stopped.  
        We could not observe the crew abandon ship.  The fire in the stern gets bigger, bright flames are visible.  
    06.33  

Fired 100 rounds. Gave the order to cease fire to get closer. Doing so we sighted a raft with two men aboard.  No lifeboats can be seen and we evaded the raft.

 
       

HALCYON had a heavy list to starboard.  The blaze in the stern gets bigger.  The stern settled a bit, but the steamer does not sink despite the many hits.  Opened fire again with the 105 mm and 37 mm guns.  List to starboard increases.

 
       

Ceased fire and change to the starboard side of the steamer.  While passing the stern we notice a list of about 25-30°.  The bridge is completely smashed.  The hold cover aft is destroyed.

 
       

Ladders on the side and missing lifeboats indicate that the crew must have abandoned ship.  At a distance of about 4-500 m we now fire the last rounds (20) into the steamer, mainly into the slowly settling stern.  Doing so we fire 50 rounds from the 37 mm gun from aft to the bow into the side along the waterline.

 
        Steamer looks very bad.  The upper deck with a list to starboard is completely devastated.  I circle the steamer one more time.  The fire in the stern is still getting bigger.  The list to starboard is increasing and the ship is settling by the stern, but remains afloat.  Due to the starboard list the holes on the port side are now over the waterline and work as vents.  
        The side plates on the port side of HALCYON are holed from bow to the stern like a sieve.  I wait for half an hour.  Steamer is settling aft very slowly and the list is increasing more and more.  
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 06.02.42
 
- 40 -
 
           
           
           
           
    06.02.42      
        Now has a list of 40-45° and will capsize soon.  
    07.35   Turn away on a course for the rendezvous point with U-130, to use the good weather as soon as possible to transfer the fuel.  
    07.45  

The fire and cloud of smoke from the stern of the steamer suddenly go out.  Steamer capsized.  We fired 200 rounds of 105 mm with about 50-60 hits and 37 mm rounds.

 
        Steamer HALCYON was not loaded.  His draft may at the most have been 2.5 meters.  Both torpedoes apparently passed underneath the target.  
    08.00 DD 3171 Weather stays good.  Finally we will be able to transfer fuel.  
      NNW 4, Sea 2-3, 8/10, Vis. medium, swell from the NNW    
    12.00 35°01'N, 59°00'W Day's run:  surfaced = 199 nm  
      CB 9881             submerged  =     7 nm =  206 nm.  
      N 3, Sea 2-3, no changes, rain squalls    
    12.02   Radio message to Kals:  
        "Please send bearing signals after 13.00 hours."  
    13.20   Hear U-130 at 270°, went to 270° to head for Kals - at high speed.  After two hours, the radio operator reports that he made a mistake in the determination of the side and the correct bearing signal is at 90°.  We ran two hours in the wrong direction.  Turned around and went to course 90°.  
    16.00 CB 9843    
      N 3, Sea 2, 5/10, Vis. good, light swell from the N    
    16.32   Radio message from BdU:  
        "At 07.00 hours, a US unit was ordered to go to DD 3145, where steamer HALCYON was fired upon by unknown raider."  
    20.00 CB 9943    
      NE 3, Sea 2, 5/10, no changes    
    22.28  

Sighted U-130 ahead.

 
       

Went to hailing distance and immediately started the transfer of fuel.  Connected the hoses.  U-130 gave two hoses to us and we lengthened it with one.  Both boats are turning into the wind respectively to the seas.  U-130 is running a straight course with both engines at KF and I follow behind a bit to the port side, to let the hoses loose.

 
           
        U-130 delivers the fuel at 2 Atm.  
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 06.02.42
 
- 41 -
 
           
           
           
           
    06.02.42      
        Both boats are lying well and after two hours we had received 18.3 cbm by 00.26 hours.  
                                                    
    07.02.42 Western Atlantic  
    00.00 CB 9937    
      Swells from the NE, otherwise no changes    
    01.00   Boats separated and began return journey.  
    04.00 CC 7711    
      E 2, Sea 2, 5/10, dark night, Vis. good, long swell    
    05.20   Radio message to BdU:  
        "Just finished transfer of fuel in CB 9937.  On 06.02.42 sank HALCYON in BD 3174 after two misses with artillery, enemy course 180°.  On 05.02.42 sank MONTROLITE in CB 9713, enemy course 320°.  On 01.02.42 sank TACOMA STAR in CB 5447, base course 80°.  Altogether sank 4 steamers totaling 29,330 GRT.  Out of torpedoes and ammunition.  Return journey.  NE 2, Sea 1, low swell, 1024 mb, 64 cbm, grid CB 9937."  
    08.00 CC 7484    
      E 2, Sea 2, 10/10, Vis. good, bright night    
    12.00 36°05'N, 56°06'W Day's run:  surfaced = 205 nm.  
      CC 7468    
      S 2-3, Sea 2, 8/10, Vis. good, light swell    
    13.16   Dived.  Test dive.  
    14.00  

Surfaced.

 
       

U-130 no longer in sight.

 
        To not reach the bad weather zone too early, I turn on course 77°.  
    16.00 36°16'N, 55°31'W    
      CC 7542    
      SSW 5, Sea 4, 6/10, medium swell, Vis. good    
    18.17   Sighted a mast tip on port side abeam.  After 10 minutes another smaller mast and a funnel becomes visible. Recognized a bridge, a destroyer bow right, angle 100-120°.  
    18.22   Dived.  Could not hear screw noises.  Through the periscope nothing can be seen, because it is difficult to stay at periscope depth in these seas.  
    19.02   Surfaced.  Nothing more in sight.  
    20.00 CC 7614    
      SSW 5, Sea 4, 5/10, Vis. good, sea and swell from the SW    
                                                    
           
Sun and Moon Data 07.02.42
 
- 42 -
 
           
           
           
           
    08.02.42 Western Atlantic    
    00.00 CC 7623 Course 77°  
      SW 6, Sea 5, 10/10, Vis. good, otherwise unchanged    
    04.00 CC 8174    
      SW 5, Sea 4-5, 5/10, dark night, Vis. good, long swell from the SW    
    08.00 CC 8183    
      SSW 4-5, Sea 3-4, 3/10, unchanged    
    12.00 37°00'N, 52°11'W

With sunshine, wind and seas from astern to the east.

 
      CC 8248 Day's run:  surfaced = 166 nm  
      WSW 4, Sea 3, 4/10, bright moonlight, Vis. good, light swell from the SW              submerged =   30 nm = 196 nm.  
    16.00 CC 8261    
      WSW 4, Sea 3, 3/10, Vis. very good, sunshine, light swell from the WSW    
    20.00 CC 8318    
      WSW 3, Sea 2, 4/10, Vis. good, light swell from the W    
                                                    
    09.02.42 Western Atlantic  
    00.00 CC 8334    
      WSW 2, Sea 2, 4/10, unchanged, swell from the WNW    
    04.00 CC 9113    
      WSW 2, Sea 1, 7/10, Vis. medium, light swell from the W    
    08.00 CC 6794    
      WSW 2, Sea 1, 5/10, dark night, occasional misty visual horizon, Vis. medium, light swell from the W    
    12.00 37°46'N, 48°22'W    
      CC 6873 Day's run:  surfaced  = 183 nm.  
      NNE 2, Sea 2, 10/10, Vis. good, swell from the WNW    
    12.46   Dived. Test dive.  
    13.18   Surfaced.  
    16.00 CC 6868    
      NE 3, Sea 2, 8/10, Vis. good, light swell from the NE    
    20.00 CC 6946    
      SE 3, Sea 2, 10/10, otherwise unchanged                                             
           
Sun and Moon Data 08.02.42
Sun and Moon Data 09.02.42
 
- 43 -
 
           
           
           
           
    10.02.42 West of the Azores    
    00.00 CC 6939    
      ESE 4, Sea 2-3, 10/10, freshening wind from the E to SE, otherwise unchanged    
    04.00 CD 4725    
      ESE 3, Sea 2, 4/10, dark night, Vis. medium, swell from the E    
    08.00 CD 4812    
      E 4, Sea 3, 3/10, unchanged    
    12.00 38°30'N, 44°11'W Day's run:  surfaced = 200 nm  
      CD 4595              submerged =     2 nm = 202 nm.  
      E 6, Sea 4, 8/10, Vis. good, swell from the ENE    
    12.33   Dived. Test dive.  
    13.05   Surfaced.  
    16.00 CD 4673    
      E 5, Sea 4, 7/10, Vis. good, medium swell from the ENE    
    16.45  

Radio message from BdU to Zahn and Folkers:   "From now on complete radio silence in a circle of 400 nm around rendezvous point (CE 4184)."

 
        I'm in this area.  
    20.00 CD 5447    
      E 4, Sea 3, 8/10, unchanged, swell from the E                                             
         
    11.02.42 West of the Azores    
    00.00 CD 5453    
      SSE 3, Sea 2, 6/10, Vis. good until darkness, then misty horizon, swell unchanged    
    04.00 CD 5519 Strong marine phosphorescence.  
      SE 3-4, Sea 3, 10/10, Vis. medium, long swell from the E    
    08.00 CD 5535    
      ESE 6, Sea 4, 10/10, very dark night, Vis. poor, strong heat lightening, rain, swell and sea from the SE    
    12.00 39°19'N, 39°42'W Day's run:  surfaced = 212 nm  
      CD 5388              submerged =     2 nm = 214 nm.  
      SSE 5, Sea 4, 10/10, unchanged    
    12.37   Dived.  Test dive.  
    13.12   Surfaced.  Course 63°.  
    16.00 CD 6171    
      SSE 3, Sea 3, 10/10, Vis. medium, rain showers, medium swell from the SE    
           
Sun and Moon Data 10.02.42
Sun and Moon Data 11.02.42
 
- 44 -
 
           
           
           
           
    11.02.42      
    20.00 CD 6152    
      SSE 3, Sea 3, 7/10, Vis. medium, rain showers, heavy thunderstorms, swell from the SE    
                                                    
    12.02.42 West of the Azores  
    00.00 CD 6214    
      SSE 3, Sea 3, 7/10, Vic. medium, swell from the SE    
    04.00 CD 3835, SSW 4, Sea 3, 7/10, dark night, Vis. medium, strong heat lightening, swell from the S    
    08.00 CD 3947    
      SSW 5, Sea 4, 5/10, isolated rain showers, otherwise unchanged    
    12.00 40°50'N, 36°00'W

With one engine at HF and wind and seas from astern we make good progress to the east.

 
      CD 3929 Day's run:  surfaced = 192 nm  
      WSW 5, Sea 4, 5/10, Vis. medium, rain squalls, swell from the SW              submerged =     2 nm = 194 nm.  
    12.43   Dived.  Test dive.  
    13.12   Surfaced.  
    16.00 CE 1712    
      W 7, Sea 5-6, 3/10, Vis. good, heavy swell and sea from the WSW    
    20.00 CE 1491    
      W 6, Sea 5-6, 6/10, rain squalls, otherwise unchanged.    
                                                    
    13.02.42 North of the Azores    
    00.00 CE 1546    
      W 5-6, Sea 6, 7/10, Vis. medium, high swell from the W    
    04.00 CE 1535, WSW 5, Sea 4, 6/10, very dark night, Vis. poor, rain showers, swell from the SW    
    08.00 CE 1387    
      WSW 4, Sea 3, unchanged, Vis. medium    
    11.27   Dived.  Test dive.  
    12.00 42°19'N, 31°58'W Day's run:  surfaced = 194 nm  
      CE 1369              submerged =     4 nm = 198 nm.  
      WSW 4, Sea 3, 5/10,Vis. very good, long swell from the WSW    
    12.45   Surfaced.  
    16.00 CE 2152 Set both engines at HF to proceed faster.  
      SW 3, Sea 3, 4/10, unchanged    
    20.00 CE 2212    
      WSW 4, Sea 3, 7/10, unchanged    
                                                    
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 12.02.42
Sun and Moon Data 13.02.42
 
- 45 -
 
           
           
           
           
    14.02.42 North of the Azores    
    00.00 BD 8995 Wind turns again to S and gets stronger.  
      S 5, Sea 4, 10/10, very dark night, Vis. poor, swell from the WSW    
    04.00 BD 9758    
      S 6, Sea 5, 10/10, Vis. medium, swell from the SW    
    08.00 BD 9842    
      SSE 7, Sea 6, 10/10, dark night, rain shower, Vis. poor    
    12.00 BD 9837

Have to slow down again, because we are using too much fuel for the progress we are making.

 
      43°36'N, 26°58'W Day's run:  surfaced = 228 nm  
      S 6, Sea 6, 10/10, Vis. medium, rain showers, swell from the SSE              submerged =     3 nm = 231 nm.  
    15.02 BD 9915

Sighted mast tips to starboard ahead.  Seems to be a big steamer, the two masts are wide apart; high thick funnel and bridge amidships.  Steamer is steering on course 50-60°.

 
        Turned away.  Steamer moves out of sight quickly.  Went again to old course.  Not reported, because I am on route "Anton".  Perhaps a prize on a dummy course.  
    16.00 43° 46'N, 26° 23'W    
      BD 9677    
      S 6, Sea 6, 10/10, unchanged    
    20.00 BD 9685    
      SSE 7-8, Sea 7, 10/10, Vis. medium, rain showers, long swell from the S    
                                                    
    15.02.42 North of the Azores    
    00.00 BD 9693    
      S 7, Sea 7, 10/10, Vis. moderate, rain showers, sea and swell from the SSE    
    04.00 BE 7473

Boat is working in the seas and doesn't make much progress.

 
      SSE 7, Sea 7, 10/10, steady rain, Vis. poor, very dark night, marine phosphorescence, swell from the SSE Because fuel consumption is too high I decide to continue submerged during the day.  
    08.00 BE 7467    
      SSE 7-8, Sea 7, 10/10, heavy rain, Vis. poor, dark night    
    11.30   Dived to continue submerged.  
    12.00 44°17'N, 23°19'W Day's run:  surfaced = 171 nm  
      BE 7545              submerged =     2 nm = 173 nm.  
    16.00 BE 7542 Refurbished the bearings of both cooling water pumps.  
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 14.02.42
Sun and Moon Data 15.02.42
 
- 46 -
 
           
           
           
           
    15.02.42      
    20.00 BE 7552    
    21.10   Surfaced.  
                                                    
    16.02.42 Western Bay of Biscay  
    00.00 BE 7375    
      S 5, Sea 5-6, 5/10, Vis. good, high swell from the S    
    04.00 BE 7383    
      S 4, Sea 3, 4/10, Vis. good, dark night, high swell from the S    
    08.00 BE 7369    
      SSE 2-3, Sea 3, 6/10, Vis. poor, occasional fog    
    12.00 BE 8154

Course 90°.

 
      ESE 4, Sea 3, 10/10, thick fog, Vis. poor, misty horizon

Water entered cylinder I in the port diesel engine.  Feed lines were disconnected and the piston raised, doing so noticed that the cylinder bushing is ruptured.

 
       

Port diesel engine can only do 320 revolutions right now.

 
        Day's run:  surfaced = 102 nm  
                     submerged =   32 nm = 134 nm.  
    13.34   Radio message 1218/16 from BdU:   "At 16.00 hours on 16 February change to 'Ireland' Circuit."  
    14.24 BE 8164

Sighted two vessels on port side abeam, bow right, angle 50-60°.

 
        They appear suddenly out of the hazy horizon.  Turned away!  
        A motor merchant with high forecastle, clipper bow, short funnel and high bridge.  The second vessel is a steamer with usual silhouette and is a bit further ahead to port of the motor merchant.  
    14.28  

Dived.

 
        Went back on a course of 90°.  Due to the fog, the vessels are only vaguely seen and are soon out of sight.  
    15.15   Surfaced.  The motor merchant can still vaguely be seen to starboard ahead.  Went to a northeasterly course.  Vessel soon drops out of sight behind us.  Both steamers steered about 120-130°.  We did not report them because I was still on route "Anton" and we had to reckon with homebound prizes.  
    16.00 BE 8164 Changed to "Ireland" Circuit.  
      SE 4, Sea 3, 10/10, rain showers, fog, Vis. poor, long swell from the S    
           
Sun and Moon Data 16.02.42
 
- 47 -
 
           
           
           
           
    16.02.42      
    20.00 BE 8246    
      SE 4, Sea 3, 10/10, dark night, Vis. poor, swell from the SSW    
                                                    
    17.02.42 Western Bay of Biscay    
    00.00 BE 8264    
      SE 4-5, Sea 3, 10/10, dark night, rain showers, Vis. poor, short swell from the SSW    
    04.00 BE 8346    
      SSE 5, Sea 3, 10/10, dark night, rain showers, Vis. medium, swell from the S    
    08.00 BE 8364

It gets windy.  Heavy short seas.

 
      ESE 7, Sea 6, unchanged Boat does not make much speed with one engine at LF  I have to save fuel.  
    11.09   Dived to continue submerged.  
    12.00      
      45°11'N, 16°05'W Day's run:  surfaced = 155 nm  
      BE 8366              submerged =     9 nm = 164 nm.  
    15.37   Heard three series of depth charges at an interval of 4 minutes.  Far away.  
    16.00 BE 9145    
    20.00 BE 9146 The flooding valve of the negative buoyancy tank on port side leaks.  
    21.09  

Surfaced.

 
       

Weather is still the same.  Just here where at this time of the year the westerly winds are prevalent, we have ESE wind.

 
       

Have to go on a course of 70° to make at least a little progress on one engine at LF.

 
        Due to this lousy weather actually get in serious fuel trouble.  
                                                    
    18.02.42 Western Bay of Biscay    
    00.00 BE 9153    
      SE 6, Sea 7, 10/10, Vis. medium, heavy rain, high short swell from the ESE    
    04.00 BE 9183    
      ESE 6-7, Sea 6-7, fogbank, otherwise unchanged    
    09.32   Dived to continue submerged.  
    12.00 45°32'N, 13°52'W Day's run:  surfaced = 62 nm  
      BE 9291              submerged = 35 nm = 97 nm.  
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 17.02.42
Sun and Moon Data 18.02.42
 
- 48 -
 
           
           
           
           
    18.02.42      
    15.42   One detonation, far away.  
    16.00 BE 9223    
    19.40   One detonation, far away.  
    20.00 BE 9232    
    20.38   Surfaced.  Still the same lousy weather.  The sea has turned to southeast.  Changed course again to 90°.  
    20.46   Radio message 0930/18 from BdU:   "Port of arrival is Lorient ."  
                                                    
    19.02.42 Western Bay of Biscay  
    00.00 BE 9311    
      SE 8, Sea 7, 10/10, dark night, Vis. poor, heavy rain squalls, up to 10, short high seas from the SE    
    04.00 BE 9321    
      ESE 7-8, Sea 6-7, 10/10, dark night, Vis. poor to medium, light rain showers, otherwise unchanged    
    08.00 BE 9323    
      ESE 6, Sea 6, 10/10, Vis. moderate, occasional rain showers, high swell from the SE    
    09.25   Dived to continue submerged.  
    12.00 BE 9332 Day's run:  surfaced = 56 nm  
      45°32'N, 11°44'W              submerged = 35 nm = 91 nm.  
    14.20   Two detonations, probably aircraft bombs  
    14.22              ''                                "  
    16.00 BF 7111    
    20.00 BF 7113    
    20.37   Surfaced  
                                                    
    20.02.42 Bay of Biscay  
    00.00 BF 4786 Still the same weather.  
      ESE 6-7, Sea 5-6, 10/10, Vis. medium, high swell from the ESE    
    04.00 BF 4871    
      ESE 6, Sea 6, 3/10, unchanged    
    08.00 BF 4858    
      ESE 6. Sea 5, otherwise unchanged    
    09.13   Dived to continue submerged.  
    10.25   Aircraft bombs, a bit closer as yesterday.  
    10.28              "                               "  
    12.00 46°03'N, 08°54'W Day's run:  surfaced = 79 nm  
      BF 4864              submerged = 46 nm = 125 nm.  
    15.05   Detonation, far away.  
           
           
           
Sun and Moon Data 18.02.42
Sun and Moon Data 19.02.42
Sun and Moon Data 20.02.42
 
- 49 -
 
           
           
           
           
    20.02.42      
    16.00 BF 4866    
    18.48   Two detonations, far away.  
    20.00 BF 4945 Depth keeping is difficult due to slow flooding of the negative buoyancy tank.  
    20.24   Surfaced.  Weather unchanged.  
                                                    
    21.02.42 Bay of Biscay  
    00.00 BF 4954    
      E 7, Sea 6, 10/10, Vis. medium, bright night, high swell    
    04.00 BF 4964    
      E 7, Sea 6, unchanged    
    08.00 BF 4966 No position fix!  
      E 7, Sea 6, 2/10, unchanged    
    08.36   Dived to continue submerged with the negative buoyancy tank completely flooded.  
    12.00 46°05'N, 06°56'W Day's run:  surfaced = 52 nm  
      BF 5744              submerged = 32 nm = 84 nm.  
        While submerged heard several detonations, probably aircraft bombs.  
    16.00 BF 5746    
    20.00 BF 5754    
    20.37   Surfaced. No position fix!  
           
    21.53  

Radio message to BdU short signal:   "I'm 36 hours away from arrival port."

 
        Changed to coastal frequency.  
    22.48   Radio message from BdU (confirmation of short signal): 'Bleichrodt arrives off Lorient at 10.00 hours on 23.02.42."  
                                                    
    22.02.42 Bay of Biscay    
    00.00 BF 5764    
      ENE 6, Sea 5-6, 7/10, Vis. medium, short sea and swell from the E    
    04.00 BF 5844 Finally the weather improves.  
      ENE 5, Sea 4, 10/10, dark night, Vis. poor, swell from the E    
    08.00 BF 5854 No position fix!  
      E 4, Sea 4, 10/10, occasional rain, otherwise unchanged    
    08.31   Dived to continue submerged.  
    12.00 46°05'N, 04°34'W Day's run:  surfaced = 62 nm  
      BF 5856              submerged = 36 nm = 98 nm.  
    16.00 BF 5865    
           
Sun and Moon Data 21.02.42
Sun and Moon Data 22.02.42
 
- 50 -
 
           
           
           
           
    22.02.42      
    18.12   Heard screw noises on starboard abeam.  Fast running vessel, which soon disappears astern.  
    20.00 BF 6744    
    20.27   Surfaced.  No position fix.  
    21.02   Radio message 2042 to BdU:  
        "Ask for bearing signals from St. Nazaire after 23.00 hours and from bearing station 2 from 01.00 hours."  
    21.45   Radio message 2111 from BdU:  
        "For Bleichrodt: from 01.00 hours, the bearing station 2 will be working."  
    22.50   Radio message 1125 from BdU:  
        "Escort for Bleichrodt at Point "L.2" at 11.30 hours on 23.02.42"  
    23.10 Point "Tanne" about 10 nm abeam    
    23.30  

Position fix by bearing signals.

 
        Continued on route "Tannennadel"  
                                                    
    23.02.42    
    01.08 Point "Ceder" Route "Cederland"  
    04.05 Point "Rosabella" Route "Rosabella"  
    04.38   Radio message 0435 to BdU:  
        "Will wait on the bottom at "L.2." at 06.00 hours."  
    06.00 Point "L.2"    
    06.27  

Dived. Lay on the bottom at a depth of 51 meters with 30 cbm negative buoyancy.

 
        Boat is rolling badly, moves to each side and hits the bottom hard.  
    11.15   Heard slow screw noises on port side.  
    11.25  

Surfaced.  Escorts in sight.

 
        Entered port behind the escorts.  
    13.24 Lorient Moored at berth "A 4".  
                                                    
                                                  Kapitänleutnant  
                                                  und Kmdt. "U 109".  
           
Sun and Moon Data 22.02.42
Sun and Moon Data 23.02.42

 

Appendices to U-109's KTB - click on the text at left to proceed to the documents
Chart A Track chart covering entire war patrol 27 December 1941 to 23 February 1942
Chart B Track Chart covering movements 16 January 1942 to 27 January 1942
Chart C Track Chart covering movements 31 January 1942 to 4 February 1942

 
 
     
     
 

Commentary of the BdU

 
 
to the KTB of "U-109" from 20.11.41 to 23.02.42
 
     
 

 

 
 
1.) The actually good success was affected by personnel failure during the first attacks.
   
2.) The frequent departures from the coast, where the boat itself had observed heavier traffic, is not completely understandable.
   
3.) The later, successful attacks were carried out well.
 
     
     
     
 

 

 
     
                                                                          Signed in draft: Dönitz  
                                                                          Validized:  
 
          
                                                                              Leutnant z.S and Adjutant  
     
     
     


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