This record was kindly provided by the generous assistance of Tony Cooper


U.  4 6 2
( A    S U P P L Y    U - B O A T )
I N T E R R O G A T I O N    O F    S U R V I V O R S



      (a)  Guns
      (b)  Armour
      (c)  Torpedo-Tubes
  Fuel Consumption
  Electric Motors
  W/T Equipment
      (a)  Aerials
      (b)  Sets
      (c)  General
  Voice Pipe System
  Rubber Dinghies
  Fuel Capacity
  Lubricating Oil Capacity
  Victualling Stores
  Spares Carried for other U-boats
      (a)  Torpedoes
      (b)  W/T Equipment
      (c)  G.S.R.
      (d)  Radar
  Tropical Kit
  Field Post Number
  Transshipment of Supplies
      (a)  37 mm. (1.45")
      (b)  20 mm. (0.79")
      (c)  Fire Discipline
  A.A. Training
  Operational Communications
  Low Speed of 1,600-ton Supply U-Boats
  U-boats without Electric Motors
  Static Trim
  1,200-ton U-boats with four Diesels
  U-boats with E-boat Engines
  Two-Man U-boats
  New Type of U-boat



  APPENDIX "A" - Building and Working up of U.462
  APPENDIX "B" - Early Patrols of  U.462
  First Patrol
  Second Patrol
  Third Patrol
  Fourth Patrol
  Fifth Patrol
  Sixth Patrol
  Seventh Patrol
  APPENDIX "C" - Ship's Company of U.462
  First Lieutenant
  Junior Executive Officers
  Engineer Officers
  APPENDIX "D" - Nominal Roll of U.462
  Total Crew



        U.462, a 1,600-ton Supply U-boat commanded by Oberleutnant zur See der Reserve Bruno Vowe, was sunk by Halifax "S" of 502 Squadron, assisted by Halifax "B" of 502 Squadron, Sunderland "B" of 461 R.A.A.F. Squadron, Liberator "O" of 53 Squadron, a U.S. Liberator and H.M. Ships of 2nd Support Group, at approximately 1216 on 30th July, 1943, in position 45006'N., 010058'W.  About six hours later sixty-four survivors were picked up by H.M.S. "KITE" and "WREN".  
          U.462 was proceeding in company with U.461 and U.504.  U.461 was sunk about 10 minutes before U.462, by Sunderland "C" of 461 Squadron.  (See C.B. 04051 (81).)  It is believed that U.504 was sunk at 1543 the same day by H.M. Ships of 2nd Support Group, in position 45033'M., 010046'W.  
          U.462 was on her eighth patrol.  On three of these she had only remained at sea for eight days or less, twice being forced to return to base on account of damage sustained during aircraft attacks.  
          Features of this report are:  
          (a)  Details of U.462 (Section II)  
          (b)  1,200-ton U-boats.  (Section V(viii))  
          (c)  U-boats with six E-boat engines (Section V(ix))  
          (d)  Statistics on the average age and experience of the ship's company.  (Appendix "C")  
          Equivalents of Royal Navy and German Naval ranks used in this report are:  
Lieutenant Commander
Oberleutnant zur See
Leutnant zur See
Junior Sub-Lieutenant.
Oberfähnrich zur See
Senior Midshipman.
Fähnrich zur See
Junior Midshipman.
Surgeon-Lieutenant (Junior)
Surgeon Sub-Lieutenant
Surgeon Midshipman
          The suffix "(Ing.)" after a rank in place of "zur See" denotes Engineer Officer; thus Oberleutnant (Ing.) = Leutnant (E).  The suffix "der Reserve" denotes a reserve officer.  
(i) Type: XIV.
(ii) Displacement: 1,600 tons.
(iii) Builders: Deutsche Werke, Kiel.
(iv) Construction: The inboard layout was similar to U.464.  (See C.B. 04051 (50).)  This includes a workshop aft, which was equipped with lathe with milling attachment, borer and usual grind stones.


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        The superstructure had the addition of a gun platform abaft and about six feet clear of the "bandstand", connected to the "bandstand" by a cat walk.  These alterations had been carried out at Bordeaux in May, 1943 when the after 37 mm/ (1.45") gun was also dismounted.
(v)    Armament:
        (a)  Guns:  One 37 mm. (1.45") forward, one 20 mm. (0.79") on "bandstand", and two twin M.G.'s 81 on the bridge.
        On the after gun platform was a 20 mm. (0.79") quadruple mounting.
        (b)  Armour:  The bridge fairing was armour-plated all round.
        (c)  Torpedo-Tubes:  None.
(vi)    Diesels:  Two 6-cylinder 4-stroke G.W. with Rootes-type blowers ("Kapselgobläze").  Speeds were given as follows:
Slow 180 revs. 3-4 knots
Half 300    " 8    "
3/4 400    " 10    "
Full 480    " 13    "
        She had once reached 14 knots fully loaded, but she did not normally proceed at more than 10 knots.
(vii)    Fuel Consumption:  2 - 3 tons per day at about 10 knots.
(viii)    Electric Motors:  By Siemens.  Revolutions per minute were given as follows:
Slow 80 r.p.m.
Half 150    "
3/4 190    "
Full 250    "
                                                       Silent running 130 r.p.m.
        It was stated that maximum submerged speed was about 6 knots, but they seldom reached more than 5 knots.
        At full and three-quarter speeds the armature current was said to be 1,200 amps.
(ix)    Compressors:  Two Junkers free piston compressors in the Diesel compartment, two electrically driven compressors in the motor room.
(x)    Switchboards:  By Siemens.
(xi)    Batteries:  By Hagen of Westphalia, lead/acid type.  Two units each of 62 cells giving current at 110 volts.  Capacity was stated to be 11,000 amp./hrs.
        U.462 could proceed at slow speed for more than 24 hours, but seldom did so for more than six hours without recharging the batteries.
        An L.T.O. stated that the normal life of batteries is about three years, but this depends entirely on how they have been used, and he had known them occasionally to last only one year.


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(xii)    Welding:  Only one bottle of acetylene carried.
(xiii)    Radar:  Not fitted.
(xiv)    G.S.R.:  Metox Receiver with 'magic eye' visual tuning indicator.  A drum-shaped serial was fitted on the bridge.  It was stated that a continual watch was kept when the U-boat was on the surface.
(xv)    R.D.B. (Radar Decoy Balloon):  Fitted in U.462 during May, 1943.  This gear was described in C.B. 04501 (74), and that in U.462 was of the same type.  She carried between fifty and sixty balloons, packed in two cases.
        A balloon was said to float into the air at a height of 40 metres (131 feet) when it was automatically arrested at the end of the wire mooring it to the float.  It was never recovered.  Balloons were said to have been released one at a time; the total number released and the time interval being decided by the Captain.
        U.462's balloons had been used on her 6th and 7th patrols, but not on her last patrol.
(xvi)    S.B.T.:  Built in after first patrol on the starboard side behind the switchboard.  It had never been used and the boxes containing pills had been unopened.
(xvii)    Hydrophones:  Multi-unit (C.H.G.) type fitted.
(xviii)    W/T Equipment:    
        (a)  Aerials:  Jumping wire and extensible W/T Aerial D/F loop.
        (b)  Sets:  Two W/T transmitters in the W/T cabin and one carried elsewhere.  It was stated that the 200-watt transmitter in the W/T cabin was the most used.  All were supplied with current from the batteries through the rotary converters.
        Two W/T receivers.
        One Lorenz D/F receiver.
        No V.H/F.
        (c)  General:  According to a note in a junior officer's diary, U.462 also carried:
                1.  "Funkprüfer".  This is an omni-purpose tester like an "Avometer".
                2.  "Verschalterwiderstand" or variable resistance.
(xix)    Voice Pipe System:  It was stated that in U.462 orders were usually transmitted by word of mouth as voice pipes were found to be unsatisfactory, especially when submerging and surfacing.
(xx)    Rubber Dinghies:  A number of one-man inflatable rubber dinghies was carried as well as two large dinghies for use in transferring stores at sea.
(xxi)    Fuel Capacity:  Maximum 749 m3.  (629 tons)
        It was stated that on a previous patrol she had carried 728 m3 (619 tons) and 43 tons of provisions.
(xxii)    Lubricating Oil Capacity:  U.462 had carried up to 20 tons of lubricating oil on earlier patrols, but as it was seldom required by U-boats being refueled, they only had 5 m3 (4.25 tons) on their last patrol.
(xxiii)    Victualling Stores:  Normally about 40 tons carried for supply to other U-boats.


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(xxiv)    Spares Carried for Other U-boats:
        (a)  Torpedoes:  No torpedoes were carried on the last patrol.  On all previous patrols U.462 had carried four, but the upper deck containers had been removed before the last patrol, as it was not often necessary to supply torpedoes.
        (b)  W/T Equipment:  She carried W/T receivers for other U-boats, but no transmitters.
        (c)  G.S.R.:  "Southern Cross" aerials and Metox receivers were carried.
        According to a note in a junior officer's diary on one patrol U.462 carried:
        "Two Metox;
        One oscillograph;
        Two rotary converters;
        Two 'Southern Cross' aerials with cables."
        (d)  Radar:  On her last patrol U.462 carried two supernumerary leading telegraphists and a 'new type of electrical equipment' (sic), to be transferred to an operational U-boat at sea.  It was stated that this U-boat, which U.462 was to rendezvous in the Atlantic, was bound for Japan.  Prisoners thought the equipment might be Radar.
(xxv)    Tropical Kit:  Carried on all patrols.
(xxvi)    Badge:    An octopus.
(xxvii)    Field Post Number:  M. 26839.
        U.462 sailed from Bordeaux at noon on Wednesday, 28th July, 1943, in company with U.461, commanded by Korvettenkapitän Stiebler, and one other supply U-boat, possibly U.460 commanded by Oberleutnant zur See der Reserve Schnoor.  They had an escort of about nine ships, including three Narvik Class destroyers, a Sperrbrecher and minesweepers.
        The next day the third supply U-boat developed a faulty clutch and put back to Bordeaux.  In her place the 740-ton U.504, commanded by Kapitänleutnant Luis and outward bound from a different base, joined the group.
        The escort parted company at 2300 on 29th July, and the three U-boats proceeded on the surface together throughout the night.
        (N.I.D. Note:  See C.B. 04051 (81), Interrogation of Survivors from U.461).
        On the morning of 30th July, 1943, the three U-boats were proceeding on the surface at 10 knots.  The first aircraft appeared at about 1000 and circled the U-boats without attacking them.  Nearly an hour later another aircraft appeared, but did not approach, and it was a further half an hour before an attack developed.
        According to prisoners, it was at about 1130 when three aircraft appeared and one dropped three depth charges from a low height, all of which fell about 20 yards on U.462's starboard quarter.  It was stated that U.461 was then the centre U-boat, with U.462 to starboard and U.504 to port.


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        (N.I.D. Note:  Halifax "B" of 502 Squadron sighted three U-boats, fully surfaced, with Sunderland "U" of 461 Squadron and a U.S. Liberator circling.  The Halifax decided to attack the near U-boat which was slightly detached and to starboard, releasing at 1148, three A/S bombs, which were seen to overshoot exploding in one big plume.  No results were seen from the attack.)
        A second aircraft then ran in to attack U.462, but the U-boat opened up with all her guns and the pack circled, thus evading the aircraft.  During the subsequent minutes, the three U-boats beat off further attacks, putting up a concerted barrage, and the Captain of U.462 claimed to have shot down one aircraft.
        (N.I.D. Note:  Immediately after the attack by "B" of 502 Squadron, Sunderland "U" of 461 Squadron ran in to attack the same U-boat from astern.  The three U-boats turned to bring all broadsides to bear and put up such a heavy barrage that the aircraft was compelled to break away.  "U" of 461 Squadron then endeavored to get ahead of the U-boats in order to make a bow attack, but the entire pack wheeled inside the aircraft's turning circle, preventing the attack.  It was presumably at about this time that an attack was made by Liberator "O" of 53 Squadron, which was shot down, her crew later being rescued by H.M. Ships.)  Penned Note:  O/53 landed in Portugal
        During the course of this action, one rating aboard U.462 was killed by gunfire, and the Second Lieutenant was severely wounded in the face when the 37 mm. had a barrel premature.
        U.462 was then attacked by an aircraft from dead astern at a height beyond the range of her A.A. guns.  The aircraft dropped one bomb which fell close astern of the U-boat and damaged her rudder so that she started to circle out of control.
        (N.I.D. Note:  At 1158, Halifax "S" of 502 Squadron attacked a U-boat from dead astern at 3,000 feet, releasing one 600 lb. A/S bomb.  The bomb was seen to explode close to the stern and slightly to starboard, and the U-boat began circling slowly to starboard, with dark smoke streaming from the after part of the conning tower.)
        On board U.462, it was realized that damage was extensive.  The after torpedo hatch was buckled, so that the U-boat could no longer dive, the stern compartment was slowly flooding and there was water in the engine room.  A further bomb was then dropped by the Halifax, but fell well astern.
        Until this point all three U-boats had kept up a concentrated barrage against the aircraft, but ammunition was running low.  One prisoner admitted that finally U.462 had only forty-eight of her 37 mm. shells left.
        At about mid-day U.461 was seen to sink rapidly.
        (N.I.D. Note:  U.461 sustained various attacks.  About mid-day the U.S. Liberator attacked unsuccessfully, but drew the fire from all three U-boats.  Taking advantage of this, Sunderland "U" of 461 Squadron attacked and sank U.461 at approximately 12105.  Position was given as 45042'N., 011000'W.)
        U.462 signaled Control that U.461 had been sunk and ten minutes later Vowe gave the order to prepare to scuttle.  Before the order was carried out two further aircraft attacks developed.  The first was by a low flying aircraft using all its armament and the second by a bomb from a high flying aircraft.
        (N.I.D. Note:  "S" of 502 Squadron circled the U-boats until 1205 when they appeared to break formation and again attacked U.462 from dead ahead at approximately 2,000 feet, releasing one 600 lb. A/S bomb, which was seen to explode along track and 260 feet astern of the U-boat, which was still circling slowly to starboard.  As "S" of 502 Squadron turned away after this attack, it observed the final attack on U.461 by "U" of 461 Squadron.  At this moment the U.S. Liberator was seen to track right over U.462, apparently attacking with machine-gun fire.  At 1214 "S" of 502 Squadron made its third attack on U.462, which was still circling to starboard, but slower than before.  No Flak was experienced from U.462, but U.504, which had remained close by, attempted covering fire.  The run up was again made from approximately 2,00 feet, this time from dead astern, but the U-boat


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appeared to make a final evasive turn and the third A/S bomb undershot by 70 feet dead on track.)
        In U.462 the vents were opened and the Captain gave the order to abandon ship.
        (N.I.D. Note:  At 1216 the damaged U-boat came to a standstill and was seen settling slowly on an even keel, while a number of the crew were seen taking to dinghies.  Just before the conning-tower, from which smoke was still emerging, finally disappeared, splashes were seen in the sea and sloops were sighted in the distance.  No shells were seen to fall nearer than 500 yards from the U-boat, which disappeared ten to fifteen seconds after the shelling was first seen.  Position of sinking was given as 45008'N, 010058'W.
        The third U-boat dived and is believed subsequently to have been attacked with depth charges by H.M. Ships of 2nd Support Group and sunk at 1543 in position 45033'N., 010046W.  There were no survivors.)
        Survivors from U.462 remained in their dinghies for about five hours before being picked up by H.M.S. "KITE" and "WREN".
(i)    Transshipment of Supplies.
        The method of transferring supplies from U.462 always varied according to the weather, sea-way and other conditions.
        In calm weather it was said to be possible for U-boats to go alongside one another for direct trans-shipment, in which case fuel was supplied through a short hose.  It was more normal, however, for the U-boats to proceed slow ahead, with the supply U-boat leading and the other U-boat on her quarter.
        The refueling hose was said to be about 120 mm. (4.7") in diameter.  The lubricating oil hose was smaller in diameter.
        The transfer of torpedoes was said to be an infrequent operation and a prisoner stated that U-boats seemed to carry sufficient torpedoes for use on one patrol.  When necessary they were, however, transferred in one of the rubber dinghies or hauled from one U-boat to the other supported by rubber floats.
        (N.I.D. Note:  For further details see C.B. 04051 (79).)
(ii)    Guns.
        (a)  37 mm. (1.45"):  It was stated that the forward 37 mm. gun fired single rounds and did not have belt feed.  It was best served by four men, although it could be fired by two.
        (b)  20 mm. (0.79") Quadruple Mounting:  In U.462 the 20 mm. quadruple mounting was said to consist of four normal 20 mm. guns mounted in a square.  The guns were fired in pairs diagonally and were operated by two foot pedals.  The guns and mounting revolved together and the gun was trained and elevated by means of hand wheels.
        There were no sights, the aiming being entirely by observing the course of the tracer.  A prisoner believed that only tracer bullets were loaded into the magazines, each of which contained twenty rounds.  There was only one magazine on each gun; further supplies had to be passed down from the 'bandstand'.
        Effective range was given as 1,000 yards and the gunlayers usually waited until the target came within this range before opening fire.  It was stated that the minimum permissible elevation for forward fire with the quadruple 20 mm. gun was 450.


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        The gun's crew was three men, one being the ammunition supply number.  In an emergency it could be fired by one man.
        It was claimed that the gun suffered no ill effects from prolonged submersion, but it had to be carefully maintained and stripped and greased at least once a day; the magazines had to be entirely water-tight.  It was stated that jams were infrequent and the firing mechanism simple.  One prisoner had a high opinion of its fire power and efficiency and described it as a very handy weapon.
        (c)  Fire Discipline:  Prisoners stated that against individual aircraft fire discipline was very strict but against more than one aircraft the gunlayer had more independence.
(iii)    A.A. Training.
        One Leading Seaman had done an eight weeks' course, between 1st April and 1st June, 1943, at the A.A. School at Köelin.  Training was in stripping and assembling the Oerlikon and C.38 20 mm., but only in firing the latter.
        Daily training lasted about six hours.  In the forenoon there was one hour's theory, followed by two hours' gun drill.  In the afternoon, about three hours were spent in practical firing, but each man did not necessarily fire every day.
        Theory appears to have been limited to little more than nuts and bolts and superficial instruction on the theory of sighting.  No instruction was given on ammunition nor on the theory of tracer sighting.
        For practical firing, drogues were towed at a height of about 500 metres (1,640 feet) at ranges varying between 600 and 1,500 metres (656 and 1,640 yards).
        At the end of the course there was one day set aside for examination.  The class had each to fire one clip of 20 rounds, for which speed in gunnery manipulation was of more importance than accuracy.  They also had to strip and assemble the 20 mm. and a few oral questions were put as to the names and functions of various parts.
        Passing of this test qualified ratings to wear a special badge.  It was added that they were not entitled to call themselves 'Flak specialisten' unless they had done a 12 weeks' course, for which they were entitled to wear a single chevron below the badge.
        (N.I.D. Note:  See also C.B. 04051 (74). Section V(ii)).
(iv)    Operational Communications.
        Normal procedure for communication with other U-boats on the surface was by semaphore.  It was stated that when U-boats are proceeding in groups, a leader is appointed.  When fighting off attacking aircraft on the surface, they occasionally use red and green flags for turns to port and starboard.
        According to one prisoner, no attempt is made to communicate with other U-boats while proceeding submerged.  Signals to Control when submerged could not be made below periscope depth.
(v)    Low Speed of 1,600-ton Supply U-boats.
        A prisoner criticized the lack of speed in supply U-boats, when proceeding submerged.  He said that, once detected, it was impossible to escape submerged and be certain of avoiding attack.
(vi)    U-boats without Electric Motors.
        Another prisoner said that he had heard that an experimental U-boat without electric motors had already been built.  He considered that production of such boats would overcome the present Allied A/S methods.


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        Mention was made of liquid oxygen being used in this connection, and a submerged speed of 15 knots.
        (N.I.D. Note:  There is no confirmation that liquid oxygen has been used in submarines).
(vii)    Static Trim:
        One prisoner had heard that the Japanese had discovered a method to produce static trim, by means of a small pump.  He said that it would not be necessary to run the motors and suggested that it would, therefore, in future be possible for U-boats to escape detection whenever necessary.
(viii)    1,200-ton U-boats with four Diesels.
        A Leading Stoker corroborated previous descriptions of 1,200 ton U-boats with four Diesels, two 9-cylinder M.A.N. and two 6-cylinder M.W.M.
        (N.I.D. Note:  See C.B.'s 04051 (56) Page 15 and 04051 (60, Page 15.)
        He stated that the layout, port and starboard, consisted of a generator forward, solid coupled to a 6-cylinder Diesel.  Abaft the latter was a 9 cylinder Diesel, coupled through a clutch to the main motor, which was itself coupled through a clutch to the propeller shaft.
        The U-boat could be propelled on the surface:
        (a)  By the main Diesels;
        (b)  By the small Diesels, propulsion being Diesel-electric;
        (c)  By a combination of (a) and (b).
        The batteries might be charged:
        (a)  From the generators driven by the small Diesels;
        (b)  From the main motors run as generators;
        (c)  From a combination of (a) and (b).
(ix)    U-boats with E-boat Engines.
        One prisoner stated that he had been on board a new type of boat in Bordeaux.  He said she was fitted with six 20-cylinder V Mercedes Benz E-boat engines, for surface propulsion, which would give a maximum speed of about 24 knots.
        These engines were described as follows:
        They were in two groups of three, port and starboard.  Each group was arranged with two engines forward and one abaft a common Vulkan fluid coupling, gearing all three to one shaft.  There was a normal dry plate clutch between the engines and the fluid coupling drive.  The two outer forward engines were raised 3 ft above the forward inner ones.  Leading Stokers attended each engine, one at the after end of each of the two outer engines and one at the forward end of each of the other four.
        The prisoner estimated that 6 gallons of lubricating oil were used for every ton of fuel expended.
        He stated that there were special hatches for changing the Diesels.  An officer prisoner from U.607 stated that a 1200 ton U-boat, commanded by Kapitänleutnant Fruherr Von Buetholtz, was fitted with six E-boat engines and was capable of a greater speed than any other U-boat.
        (N.I.D. Note:  Prisoners have previously stated that the endurance at full speed of an E-boat engine is 500 hours before a major refit is necessary and 1,000 hours before replacement is imperative.  Prisoners have previously mentioned this type of U-boat which they believed to be a 1,200-tonner:  see C.B.'s 04051 (60), Page 15 and 04051 (81) Section V(ix)).


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        The prisoner from U.462 added that this U-boat had recently made a patrol which lasted 138 days.  She was heavily escorted through the Bay of Biscay and later met a Japanese submarine.  She took over a Japanese Naval Captain and a submarine engineer, as well as forty-eight bars of gold.  He said that both the Japanese were experts on two-man U-boats, and that the Captain had taken part in the attack on Pearl Harbour.
(x)    Two-Man U-boats.
        The same prisoner thought that Germany is now building two-man U-boats, which could carry four torpedoes.  The two Japanese experts mentioned in (ix) were to advise on their construction.
        He coupled the mane 'Henoung' with those craft.
        (N.I.D. Note:  'Henoungs' have been previously referred to in C.B.'s 4051 (48), (49) and (50).)
(xi)    New Type of U-boat.
        The Second Lieutenant of U.607. who is still under interrogation, stated that some 740-ton U-boats are being modified to carry 35 torpedoes.  About twenty of these would be stored in an additional torpedo compartment.
        (N.I.D. Note:  Prisoners from U.706 mentioned a modified 500-ton U-boat, said to carry 42 torpedoes:  see C.B. 04051 (80), Section V, (vi), (b).)
        One prisoner stated that new U-boat shelters were now being built at Bordeaux, which he said had had at least ten feet of concrete on the roof, and were also covered with sand.
        U-boat crews were accommodated in barracks in the country, a few miles from Bordeaux, probably at Arcashen, whence they were said to proceed by bus.  These barracks were described as comfortable and well built and there were ample facilities for recreation.


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        U.462 was built at the Deutsche Werke, Kiel, and several of her ship's company were drafted to stand by her during November and December, 1941.  She was probably launched in January and commissioned in late February or early March, 1942.  She was one of the series U.459 to U.464 built at this yard (See C.B. 4051 (50) Pages 6 and 9.
        She did the normal periods of working up in the Baltic, and probably returned to Kiel for final overhaul in June.
(i)    First Patrol.
        U.462 sailed on her first patrol from Kiel in July, 1942.  She operated in the Atlantic and supplied a torpedo to one U-boat.  Throughout her eight weeks at sea, she was attacked by neither A/S nor aircraft.  She entered St. Nazaire in early September.
(ii)    Second Patrol.
       She sailed again in October, 1943, and carried out refueling operations in the Atlantic.  She entirely escaped attacks and returned to St. Nazaire in December.
(iii)    Third Patrol.
        She put to sea in the middle of January, 1943, and was forced to return to St. Nazaire after four days on account of an oil trace.  She went into dry dock until February.
(iv)    Fourth Patrol.
        About the middle of February, U.462 proceeded on patrol to the North Atlantic.  Once again she escaped all attack.  After four weeks she entered Bordeaux.
(v)    Fifth Patrol.
        During April she made a patrol from Bordeaux lasting two to three weeks.  According to one prisoner, she refueled a number of U-boats in the vicinity of the Azores.  On return to port the ship's company received leave and the U-boat was docked.  She was overhauled, the additional gun platform was built in and all upper deck torpedo containers were removed.  Radar Decoy Balloon gear was also fitted.
(vi)    Sixth Patrol.
        U.462 sailed from Bordeaux in mid-June, 1943.  When two or three days out she was machine-gunned by an aircraft and sustained casualties, one number of the quadruple gun's crew being killed and four others wounded.  Shots penetrated the outer skin of the U-boat, but the pressure hull was not damaged.
        She entered Bordeaux six days after she had first sailed.  Minor repairs were effected and the bridge fairing was armour-plated.
(vii)    Seventh Patrol.
         She sailed again at the end of June.  On 2nd July, when about 80 miles


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N.W. of Cape Ortegal, she was again attacked by aircraft.  She received a direct hit forward as she was diving and sustained considerable damage to tanks; the pressure hull was not pierced and there was no water entry.  She put back to Bordeaux with destroyer and air escort, entering port only eight days after she had sailed.
        The complement of U.462 was sixty-five, consisting of seven officers, a midshipman, 4 Chief Petty Officers, six Petty Officers and forty-seven other ratings.  The average age of the Chief and Petty Officers was just over twenty-six years.  Of the other ratings all were twenty-three years or under, with the exception of one aged twenty-eight, nineteen of them were twenty years or under and four of them were only eighteen.  The average age of these ratings was twenty years and ten months.
        Only one rating did not survive.
(i)    The Captain.
        The Captain of U.462 was Oberleutnant zur See der Reserve Bruno VOWE.  He is aged thirty-nine years and had served in the "KARLSRUHE" before joining the U-boat Arm in 1935.  For the four years prior to the outbreak of war he was a C.P.O. (Navigation) and he was promoted Junior Sub-Lieutenant of the Reserve in September, 1939.  Subsequently he was an instructor at the U-boat school for some time.  U.462 was his first command and he had been Captain throughout.  He was not particularly well educated nor unduly security-conscious.  He was popular with his ship's company.
(ii)    First Lieutenant.
        Oberleutnant zur See der Reserve Hans LOEWER was First Lieutenant.  He is aged forty-one and had served as an officer in the merchant navy.  He became a German Naval reserve officer in 1940 and served in minesweepers before joining the U-boat Arm.
(iii)    Junior Executive Officers.
        Oberleutnant zur See der Reserve Hans JAROLIN and Leutnant zur See Hans HARTMANN are aged twenty-five and twenty-two respectively.
        JAROLIN was wounded during the action prior to the sinking of U.462 and has not been available for interrogation.
        HARTMANN probably joined the Navy in 1940.  He was very inexperienced.
(iv)    Engineer Officers.
        Two Engineer Officers were carried in U.462.  The senior, Oberleutnant (Ing.) Hans KRÜGER, was aged thirty-five years and had joined the Navy in 1926.  He was promoted Leutnant (Ing.) from the lower deck in 1941, and Oberleutnant (Ing.) in 1942.  Since the outbreak of war he had been as instructor at the Naval School, Wesermünde, until he joined U.462 before her commissioning.
        The junior Engineer Officer was Leutnant (Ing.) der Reserve Albert KAMPLING.  He was aged thirty-three and had served as an engineer with the Hansa Line until 1936.  He then worked in Bremen as an aircraft mechanic at a factory building for Junkers.  He joined the German Naval Reserve in 1940.  Until October, 1942, when he was drafted to the U-boat School, he served in minesweepers on the lower deck.  He was promoted Leutnant (Ing.) in February, 1943, and U.462 was his first operational U-boat.


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(v)    Surgeon Lieutenant.
        The Surgeon Lieutenant was Konrad Friedrich Walter MEBERT, aged thirty-one.  He joined the Navy as Marineunterarzt in June, 1937, and served at the Naval Hospital at Kiel-Wik.  In March, 1938, he was promoted Marineassistentarzt and obtained his degree.  During that year he served in the Naval Hospital at Stralsund.
In accordance with the terms of the Geneva Convention he has not been available for interrogation.
(vi)    Midshipman.
        Oberfähnrich zur See Hans BRIX is aged twenty.  He joined the German Navy in May, 1941.  He did eight weeks' recruits' training at Stralsund, before being drafted to minesweepers operating in the Bay of Biscay.  In December, 1941, he was promoted Seekadett and was drafted to a patrol boat flotilla based on Holland.  In February, 1942, he underwent a course at the Naval School, Flensburg, and was promoted to Midshipman in August.  He then made one patrol from La Spezia in U.331, commanded by Kapitänleutnant von TIESENHAUSEN.  (Sunk on 17th November, 1942.  See C.B. 04051 (56).).  In October, 1942, he went to the U-boat school at Gdynia.  He made two short patrols in U.462 before her last patrol.
(vii)    General.
        The ship's company of U.462 were not as a whole inexperienced.  Of the Chief and Petty Officers, nearly all had previously served in other U-boats and had stood by the building of U.462, making all patrols in her.
        The C.P.O. (Navigation) was formerly in the S.S.  He had joined the German Navy in 1934.  In 1938 he stood by the construction of "SCHARNHORST" and had served in her until April, 1941.  He served in minesweepers for six months before joining the U-boat Arm in November, 1941.  U.462 was his first U-boat.
        Of the forty-six other ratings to survive, nearly fifty percent had stood by the construction and made all patrols, and only about thirty percent were on their first or second patrols on board.  Not many of them had served in other U-boats.


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Nominal Roll of U.462.
(i)    Survivors:
Name. Rank. British Equivalent.
VOWE, Bruno Oberleutnant zur See der Reserve Sub-Lieutenant (Naval Reserve
10. 7.04.
LOEWER, Hans           do.           do.
7. 3.02.
JAROLIN, Hans           do.           do.
20. 8.17.
MEBERT, Konrad, Friedrich, Walter Marinestabsarzt Surgeon-Lieutenant
25. 6.12.
KRÜGER, Hans Oberleutnant (ing.) Sub-Lieutenant (E)
14. 2.08.
HARTMANN, Hans Leutnant zur See Junior Sub-Lieutenant
26. 8.20.
KAMPLING, Albert Leutnant (Ing.) Junior Sub-Lieutenant (E)
BRIX, Hans Oberfähnrich zur See Midshipman
1. 5.23.
DRASDO, Kurt Obersteuermann C.P.O. (Navigation)
1. 2.14.
KABISCH, Walter Obermaschinist Chief Stoker & Chief E.R.A. 1st Class
13. 9.16.
BÄUCHLE, Karl           do.           do.
6. 7. 17.
WIMMER, Gerhard           do.           do.
19. 2.18.
RÜHRER,, Karl Bootsmann P.O. (Seaman's Branch)
11. 4.15.
HEIMKE, Albert Oberbootsmannsmaat Acting P.O. (Seaman's Branch)
12. 6.19.
DÖHRING, Gustav Obermachinenmaat Acting Stoker P.O. & E.R.A. 4th Class
HOPPERDIETZEL, Richard Oberfunkmaat Acting P.O. Telegraphist
TREUDLER, Gerhard           do.           do.
6. 2.17.
GRANHENAUER, Arthur Verwaltungsobermaat Acting (Supply) P.O.
22. 5.16.
STENNER, Paul Bootsmannsmaat Leading Seaman
30. 1.21.
KRAUS, Kasper           do.           do.
6. 2.22.
WILLMANN, Herbert Maschinenmaat Leading Stoker & E.R.A. 5th Class
TANK, Siegfried           do.           do.
8. 3.20.
ROTHÄMEL, Herbert           do.           do.
8. 3.22.
VOGT, Ernst           do.           do.
31. 1.20.
ZINGELER, Hans           do.           do.
5. 1.21.
BARTELS, Harry           do.           do.
25. 2.20.
VOLKER, Rudolf           do.           do.
20. 5.21.
AMBROSIUS, Werner           do.           do.
FRIEDEL, Josef, Franz Funkmaat Leading Telegraphist
JANSEN, Hans           do.           do.
12. 2.30.
MEHLHOFF, Heinrich Matrosenobergefreiter Able Seaman
27. 4.23.
FERBER, Heinz           do.           do.
DIETRICH, Anton           do.           do.
17. 4.23.
GRAUL, Karl Heinz           do.           do.
27. 3.23.
SCHWEIKERT, JAKOB           do.           do.
NIEMZ, Alfred           do.           do.
19. 4.22.
HAMEL, Erwin           do.           do.
8. 2.23.
BRÜCKNER, Gerhard Maschinenobergefreiter Stoker, 1st Class
HILBK, Wilhelm           do.           do.
25. 9.22.
LAND, Werner           do.           do.
21. 3.22.
RÜCKER, Horst           do.           do.
SCHMIDT, Fritz           do.           do.
13. 8.24.
HENK, Kurt           do.           do.
24. 3.22.
BECKER, Kurt           do.           do.
JACOBI, Heinz           do.           do.
9. 3.25.
ANGELEAU, Gustav           do.           do.
6. 2.22.
BÄR, Kurt Hans Funkobergefreiter Telegraphist
29. 5.21.
VANEK, Ernst           do.           do.
20. 5.25.
STROTH, Kurt Matrosengefreiter Able Seaman
26. 7.24.
DITSCHER, Heinz           do.           do.
21. 2.22.
WETZORKE, Kurt           do.           do.
20. 1.25.
GRONWALD, Hans           do.           do.
23. 9.24.
BEIER, Franz           do.           do.
16. 9.24.
TRÖGER, Paul           do.           do.
10. 2.23.


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(i)    Survivors (continued)
Name. Rank. British Equivalent.
SCHÜLER, Paul Maschinengefreiter Stoker, 1st Class
18. 9.21.
WENDEL, Georg           do.           do.
15. 2.24.
KAISER, Günther           do.           do.
6. 1.25.
MIELSCH, Willi           do.           do.
13. 9.23.
SCHREYER, Ludwig           do.           do.
20. 2.23.
SCHAFFHÄUSER, Eduard           do.           do.
BURCZYK, Erwin           do.           do.
7. 5.23.
WIEGANDT, Werner Mechanikergefreiter Able Seaman (S.T.)
15. 2.24.
KOBEL, Rudolf Karl Sanitätagefreiter Sick Berth Attendant
4. 8.21.
STAWICKI, Josef Matrose Ordinary Seaman
17. 7.15.
Chief & Petty Officers:
(ii)    Casualties:
Name. Rank. British Equivalent.
SAUER, Karl-Heinz Matrosenobergefreiter Able Seaman
Chief & Petty Officers:
(iii)    Total Crew:
Chief & Petty Officers:



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