U-628 - 3rd War Patrol

Translation by Jerry Mason with the help of Ken Dunn and Rainer Kolbicz

Days at Sea
8 April 1943
19 May 1943


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Ships Attacked
KTB Time
17 Apr 43
47°17'N, 21°43'W
HX 233
coup de grace
attacked with artillery
5 May 43
02.43 - 02.46
55°23'N, 43°03'W
16.51 - 17.37
55°11'N, 42°43'W
         sunk by artillery    
 Total = 12,215

                                  K  r  i  e  g  s  t  a  g  e  b  u  c  h  
                                                  "  U-628  "  
                      3rd Patrol from 8 April to 19 May 1943.  
                         Commander:  Kapitänleutnant Hasenschar.  
  © U-boat Archive 2014  - all rights reserved  
Click the flag to view the above page from the original German KTB
- 1 -
  10.03.43 - Brest Boat vacated.  
  12.03.43 Begin shipyard period.  
  13.03.43 Entered Dry Dock 4.  
  25.03.43 Left dry dock.  
  02.04.43 Shipyard testing, trim test, degaussing.  
  03.04.43 End of shipyard period.  
  04.04.43 Loading ammunition and torpedoes.  
  05.04.43 Took over the boat from the shipyard.  
  06.04.43 Loaded provisions.  
  07.04.43 Final trim tests, sound gear testing, direction finder calibration, trimming.  
  08.04.43 Brest Departed Brest for the third war patrol.  
  16.35 Trim test, Fu.M.G. testing.  
  The boat had departed on the previous war patrol with an inoperable Fu.M.G., this time, despite a great effort by the boat, the command did not succeed in installing the equipment in time.  Thus the boat departed in less than acceptable condition, which could have a very unfavorable effect on capabilities at sea.  
  18.10 Proceed astern of mine escort.  
  20.05 Mine escort ended.  Transferred 2 men of the shipyard news department staff to the Sperrbrecher.  
  20.05 - 22.18 Escorted by patrol boats.  
  22.18 Released by escort at Point 346.  Proceeding alone on route "Kernbeisser".  Both diesels HF.  Many fishing vessels along the route.  No enemy radar detections.  
  09.04.43 Bay of Biscay Course 270°, both diesels LF.  
  04.24 E 1, Sea 0-1, Vis. very good, lightly cloudy  
  06.40 BF 5491 Dived to proceed submerged.  Deep dive test to depth A +60 meters.  Damage control exercises, practice depth keeping.    
  08.00 BF 5483  
  12.00 BF 5481 Day's run:    131.8 nm  
  Lat  :  46° 47' N                        16.2 nm  
  Long:   6° 20' W                         148.0 nm.  
  16.00 BF 5473  
  20.00 BF 5471  
  21.51 BF 4669 Surfaced.  Proceeding on the surface.  Ahead a bright, flickering light is sighted on the water.  A moment later an aircraft approaches from that direction at short range to starboard probably a "Whitley", range = 1-200 meters.  
Sun and Moon Data 08.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 09.04.43
- 2 -
  23.18 Crash dive after the aircraft passes.  Enemy radar was detected on 152 cm for the first time just before the aircraft was sighted (30 seconds).  It is believed that the bright light originated from the aircraft.  No bomb release.  10 minutes later nothing is seen of the light in the periscope.  
  10.04.43 Bay of Biscay  
  01.14 BF 4659 Surfaced.  
  WNW 1-2, Sea 1, strongly cloudy, Vis. variable  
  02.25 BF 4658 Fu.M.B. reports enemy radar detection on 142 cm, at the same moment a flare is sighted again ahead to starboard.  Crash dive.  Submerged, the magic eye still shows detection.  It is internal noises of the device.  
  02.54 BF 4657 Surfaced.  Proceeding on the surface.  
  06.41 BF 4568 Crash dive for aircraft, crossed approximately 100 meters astern.  Altitude approximately 200 meters.  No enemy radar detection.  Engine sounds were heard before sighting.   Proceeding submerged because dawn is breaking.  
  08.00 BF 4568  
  12.00 BF 4559 Day's run:       61.0 nm  
  Lat  :  46° 48' N                        54.0 nm  
  Long:   9° 08' W                         115.0 nm.  
  16.00 BF 4557 The entire day is completely overcast with a particularly low ceiling.  
  20.00 BF 4548  
  22.00 BF 4547 Surfaced.  After initial heavy cloudiness the clouds are breaking up.  Suddenly ahead it is light as day, while in the east the sky is black as ink.  An aircraft approaching from astern would be impossible to make out.  Because after the experiences of the day before timely detection of enemy radar detection is not assured, I decide to proceed submerged until visibility changes.  
  23.30 BF 4468 Dived.  
  11.04.43 Bay of Biscay Surfaced.  
  01.05 BF 4467  
  Wind calm, Sea 0, cloudy, starlit  
  01.43 BF 4459

Enemy radar detection on 168 cm, volume 5.  Just as I order the crew to secure the anti-aircraft weapons and to enter the boat, a land-based aircraft approaches obliquely from starboard astern.  Cuts across our course approximately 100 meters ahead of the bow at an altitude of 50-100 meters.

  01.45 Crash dive.  
Sun and Moon Data 09.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 10.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 11.04.43
- 3 -
  01.47 At A -20 meters one aircraft bomb.  The aircraft must have sighted me while flying over and then turned back.  
  03.06 BF 4459 Surfaced.  A flickering light on the water surface is sighted bearing 80°T.  Probably thrown from the aircraft to keep it in contact  
  03.09 BF 4458 Dove again as it must be assumed that the aircraft is still nearby.  
  04.11 BF 4458 Surfaced.  On course 287° headed for ordered position BE 14.  
  06.50 BF 4445 Dived to proceed submerged.  
  12.00 BE 6662 Day's run:       47.7 nm  
  Lat  :  47° 01' N                        58.2 nm  
  Long: 11° 44' W                         105.9 nm.  
  14.20 BE 6661 Surfaced.  Proceeding on the surface because of clear visibility and light clouds.  
  16.54 BE 6628 Dived due to increasing cloudiness.  Proceeding submerged.  
  20.00 BE 6627  
  22.15 BE 6616 Surfaced.  Proceeding on the surface.  
  Incoming radio message 21.33/88/11:  
  New positions:  
  AK 75 for Popp, Hasenschar, Wolf, Koch, Looks, Franke, Bruns, Borchers etc.  
  Course remains 287°.  
  12.04.43 Bay of Biscay  
  00.00 BE 6614  
  SW 4, Sea 2-3, Vis. good, overcast, freshening from the SW  
  04.00 BE 6289  
  07.46 BE 6276 Dived to proceed submerged.  
  12.00 BE 6271 Day's run:       88.8 nm  
  Lat  :  47° 38' N                        37.1 nm  
  Long: 14° 29' W                         125.9 nm.  
  15.15 BE 6192 Surfaced to shoot the sun and air the boat.  Heavy low clouds.  Proceeding submerged.  
  20.00 BE 6159  
  22.32 BE 6158 Surfaced.  Proceeding on the surface.  
  23.50 BE 6146 Dived for enemy radar detection (172 cm).  
Sun and Moon Data 11.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 12.04.43
- 4 -
  13.04.43 Western Bay of Biscay  
  00.40 Surfaced.  
  04.00 BE 5362  
  NW 4, Sea 3-4, Vis. good, variable cloudiness  
  05.48 ß Signal on "Ireland" circuit.  
  My position is BE 61.    U-628.  
  The signal was not heard outside the zero beat but by better tuning and good receiving conditions was received by Norddeich at 00.55 hours.  
  08.00 BE 5328  
  12.00 BE 5314 Day's run:       96.0 nm  
  Lat  :  48° 11' N                        34.0 nm  
  Long: 17° 23' W                         130.0 nm.  
  16.00 BE 2889  
  20.00 BE 2870 At 18.00 switched to "Ireland" circuit.  
  14.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 SW 3-4, Sea 2, completely overcast, Vis. good  
  04.00 BE 2742  
  08.00 BE 1938  
  09.00 BE 1937 Test dive.  Transferred fuel oil from torpedo compensating tank 1 to the regulating fuel oil tank.  
  12.00 BE 1925 Day's run:       156.0 nm  
  Lat  :  49° 00' N                            3.0 nm  
  Long: 21° 11' W                           159.0 nm.  
  16.00 BE 1612  
  20.00 BE 1833  
  15.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BE 1589  
  NW 4, Sea 3-4, variable cloudiness, occasional rain showers, Vis. good  
  03.06 One-time enemy radar detection on 140 cm, about 6 seconds long.  
  04.00 BE 1576  
  08.00 BE 1492  
  09.26 BE 1467 Test dive.  
Sun and Moon Data 13.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 14.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 15.04.43
- 5 -
  12.00 BE 1458 Day's run:       128.1 nm  
  Lat  :  49° 32' N                            2.0 nm  
  Long: 24° 09' W                           130.1 nm.  
  Incoming radio message 10.47/15/188:  
  1.)  Hasenschar, Looks, Koch, Bruns, Borchers, Ölrich, Manke, Gretschel, Sträter and Folkers contrary to previous order proceed to AL 15.  
  On course 355° heading for ordered position.  
  LF - diesel-electric.  
  16.00 BE 1425  
  20.00 BE 1181  
  16.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BE 1119  
  N 2-3, Sea 1-2, Vis. good, bright moonlit night  
  04.00 AL 7873  
  05.20 Franke reports at 04.34 hours a convoy in BD 9345.  Proceeding at cruising speed on course 190° until receiving course information, because in my opinion, operating on a south or west-bound convoy is not possible from our position.  
  05.40 Franke reports convoy course NE, speed 9 knots.  
  Per incoming radio message 06.24/16/115:  
  1.)  Hasenschar, Bruns, Borchers, Koch, Looks operate at highest speed on Franke message.  
  2.)  Franke attack and maintain contact."  
  Operating on convoy at AK, course 172°.  
  08.00 BE 1116  
  12.00 BE 1451 Day's run:       205 nm  
  Lat  :  49° 46' N  
  Long: 24° 29' W  
  16.00 BE 1758  
  20.00 BE 4194  
  22.00 BE 4462 Positioned at the expected meeting place.  Because this is based on the first message, it is not likely that I will make contact according to plan before the coming of darkness.  Proceeding back and forth for 1-1/2 hours at GF across to the convoy's course until darkness, because I suppose that convoy is behind schedule.  
  23.50 BE 4437 At 23.31 hours Bruns reports destroyer in BE 4542.  Believe that destroyer belongs to the escort.  Operating on the report at highest speed, course 72°. (Presumed enemy course 45°).  
Sun and Moon Data 15.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 16.04.43
- 6 -
  03.07 BE 4288 Because there was no sighting at the meeting point, dived to listen. Weak sound bearings at 130°T and 160°T.  
  ENE 2, Sea 1-2, completely overcast, Vis. variable  
  03.41 Surfaced.  Changed course to 110° on the basis of the sound bearings.  
  05.30 - 05.56 BE 4532 Dived to listen.  
  Sound bearing confirms the same picture.  Sound is somewhat louder.  Subsequently operated on sound bearing on course 110°.  
  07.14 BE 4614 2 detonations (torpedoes or depth charges) heard loudly on the surface.  Must be close to the convoy's position.  
  07.24 See above Destroyer in sight bearing 190°T.  A short time later several big shadows are detected to the south.  Boat arrived at the convoy which therefore steers 50-60°.  
  07.53 ß Signal:  
  Have contact on convoy.     U-628.  
  The attack begins immediately because little time remains before dawn.  I manage to push through the screen unnoticed between the forward flank destroyers cutting sharply across to within approximately 5000 meters of the convoy.  The convoy is arrayed in 2 or 3 columns in line ahead in a long formation.  At least 15 very big, heavily laden ships are present; however, there are probably more.  Between the ships or at a short lateral distance two other escorts can be seen.  
  07.45 BE 4615 I had intended to shoot at two overlapping freighters each 2 double shots, The first, a fan from tubes I and III, was fired by hand without targeting due to a crewman's error.  
  ENE 3-4, Sea 2, completely overcast, Vis. good  
  07.47 Fan from tube II and IV on two medium-sized freighters lying deep the in the water.  
  T 3, MZ on.  
  Target speed 8 knots, target angle 75°, estimated range 4000 meters, depth 7 meters.  
  07.49 Turned for a stern shot from tube V on the following freighter - Eto - depth 3 meters.  Same firing data, target angle continuously updated.  After 3 min 55 seconds a hit on the forward freighter, two seconds later a pistol detonation is clearly heard in the boat.  Apparently a Pi - failure.  After approximately 3 minutes (time not clocked) running time approximately 4-1/2 minutes hit on most recently fired at freighter, forward of the bridge.  Bright flash, otherwise no direct effect noted.  The first ship hit sets a white masthead light.  
Sun and Moon Data 17.04.43
- 7 -
  By now is was getting very light, nevertheless I again succeed in leaving the convoy on the surface unseen.  It is remarkable to me that we are not sighted by the destroyers approximately 5-6000 meters distant which can both be seen clearly with the naked eye.  I run off to the southwest.  
  08.15 BE 4617 It is now so light that I decide to dive in order not to be sighted.  Dived.  In the periscope I observe a ship sinking astern.  I permit 2 torpedoes to be loaded and approach the ship lying stopped submerged.  During the approach destroyer noises are heard in the sound gear from 3 different directions.  Nothing is to be seen in the periscope.  
  11.30 BE 4615 Shot from tube II with a T 3, MZ on.  Depth 7 meters, fixed firing angle of 0°, estimated range 300 meters.  After 20 seconds a hit amidships with a bright explosion plume.  Ship is raised in the middle and breaks.   After part floods fast.  Freighter is estimated to be approximately 5000 GRT.  Two heavy masts, truncated, with heavy cargo loading equipment, 5 hatches.  Additionally, after edge of the bridge signal mast has a night signaling apparatus.  Armament:  
  Astern and amidships a 7.5 cm cannon.  
  Astern on raised platform a quadruple pom pom.  
  On the bridge wing a 3.7 cm, the same atop the bridge.  
  Upper deck load of wood, approximately 8 meter long logs, probably pulp wood.  
  The crew had already abandoned ship.  
  Shortly after firing a destroyer comes to sight.  Approaches the wreck at high speed, a few minutes later 2 other destroyers from different directions.  It is obviously a searching group which had waited on the edge of visibility while the ship received a coup de grace.  Possibly the same group reported by Looks.  
  The first destroyer runs past at high speed at approximately 2000 meters.  Because I have only one torpedo in the tubes, a shot is not promising.  It then stops and approaches bow on.  Went to depth 2 A meters.  
  12.00 BE 4615 Day's run:       292.6 nm  
  Lat  :  47° 12' N                          26.4 nm  
  Long: 21° 46' W                           319.0 nm.  
Sun and Moon Data 17.04.43
- 8 -
  All 3 destroyers close slowly using active sonar, stopping occasionally to listen.  Very good listening conditions.  After initial charges that were poorly placed two approaches follow at 12.49 hours and 13.09 hours with approximately 15 well placed depth charges which detonated at almost the same moment.  The last series was especially well placed exactly above the boat.  Afterwards the boat was repeatedly overrun by a depth sounding destroyer without depth charges.  Flooding equipment operated 3 times, moved off to the south.  All auxiliary machinery including gyroscopes turned off.   Sonar and screw noises draw gradually astern.  
  3 different detection modes were determined.  
  1.)  Asdic  
  2.)  Explosive location  
  3.)  Echo sounding.  
  To 1 and 2 no special statements.  Destroyers starting to throw depth charges regularly employed depth sounding (approximately 4 impulses per second).  The impulse striking the boat's hull while passing over was plainly heard.  Then afterwards the depth charges fell in rapid succession.  Failures included moderate glass damage and small failures in auxiliary machinery. (See section in the KTB Maschine).  Attack periscope shows several spots on the graticule plate.  In upper deck the stern torpedo storage canister is dented, also, the overlaying deck planks are buckled.  The deepest depth reached = 2 A + 28 meters.  Because the main bilge pump is temporarily out of order, ballast tank 3 was blown with compressed air.  
  15.30 At periscope depth I determine that the bow section of the wreck is still afloat.  I prepare for artillery combat.  
  16.22 BE 4642 Surfaced.  Bow section still floats on a completely even keel.  In the surrounding area empty lifeboats, debris and a big field driftwood from the upper deck load.  Fired 130 artillery rounds into the wreck until the upper deck was completely under water and bridge and upper deck load burning.  The wreck does not sink further, however, it is completely destroyed.  Obviously floating on the cargo.  Not to lose any more time, broke off, and hurried in pursuit on course 50° at AK.  
  20.00 BE 4389  
  18.04.43 North Atlantic  
  BE 5127  
  NE 1, Sea 0-1, Vis. variable, cloudy, light swell, occasionally bright moonlit night.  
Sun and Moon Data 17.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 18.04.43
- 9 -
  04.00 BE 2817  
  05.00 - 05.39 BE 2878 Dived to listen.  Continued after sound bearing on course 50°.  
  06.51 - 07.04 BE 2581 Dived to listen.  Still heard weak sound bearing at 60°T.  
  07.31 BE 2582 Since there is no chance of gaining contact before light and based on sound bearings I am still behind the convoy, operation broken off and I am proceeding to ordered position BD 51 on course 260°.  
  (In accordance with radio message 01.47/18/161).  
  Borchers reports at 03.40 hours having sunk a damaged ship of 7000 GRT in square BD 46.  Since no boat other than mine has fired, it certainly concerns the second ship I torpedoed.  Square corresponds with my firing location.  
  12.00 BE 2494 Day's run:       236.9 nm  
  Lat  :  49° 20' N                          16.6 nm  
  Long: 19° 25' W                           253.5 nm.  
  16.00 BE 1922  
  16.09 BE 2477 Crash dive for 4-engine aircraft bearing 350°T, range = 4000 meters, course 240°, altitude 3-400 meters. believed to be escorting an auxiliary cruiser reported by Borchers in BE 4275.  
  17.08 BE 1699 Surfaced.  
  20.00 BE 1922 Proceed at HF on both diesels, to meet the above-mentioned possibly north-bound auxiliary cruiser before dusk.  
  23.28 BE 1836 Proceeding on course 180° operating on the convoy reported by Gretschel in square BE 1947.  Only 25 nm away by an inaccurate fix.  
  19.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.30 BE 1955 Incoming radio message 23.58/18/184:  
  NW 3-4, Sea 3, Vis. variable, Moonlit night Gretschel-convoy in square BE 1948, on easterly course.  
  Operating on radio message at highest speed, course 105°. After plotting I must proceed for approximately 2 hours to gain contact.  
  0236 - 0250 Dived to listen.  Weak sound bearing from 125 - 135°T.  Went to course 110° based on sound bearing.  
  04.11 - 04.31 BE 1992 Dived to listen.  Sound bearing has not grown louder.  Convoy must still be far away.  Morning navigation fix requires a correction of 21 nm to the NW.  
  Radio message 00.20/19/187:  
  "No operation on Gretschel-convoy intended.   Gretschel attack only if presented with a favorable shooting opportunity:" - was not received clearly.  
Sun and Moon Data 18.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 19.04.43
- 10 -
  Only now is it submitted to me in the correct wording. Operation broken off, transit to the ordered position in reconnaissance line continued.  
  ß Signal:  My position is BE 19.  Starting advance according to plan.    U-628.  
  Message delivered at 05.39 hours on 36 meters outside the beat frequency gap, but was not given a receipt.  Because by 06.15 hours no confirmation had taken place, the signal was delivered again at 06.23 hours on "Diana" circuit.  
  08.00 BE 1896  
  12.00 BE 4213 Day's run:       260.1 nm  
  Lat  :  48° 11' N                            4.9 nm  
  Long: 23° 08' W                           265.0 nm.  
  15.02 BE 4161 Smoke cloud in sight bearing 326°T.  Turns out to be a heavily smoking independent.  Course 65, speed 10 knots.  Maneuvered ahead.  
  15.18 BE 4137 A U-boat in sight bearing 40°T, 6 nm.  Assume it is Borchers and the steamer reported by him.  Believe ship is a straggler from the Gretschel - convoy.  
  18.17 BE 1875 Dived for attack, because I assume that Borchers had missed his chance to shoot.  Closed at GF for 30 minutes on course 245°.  Owing to depth keeping difficulties resulting from a flooded upper deck torpedo storage canister, I came to periscope depth too late, so that the steamer passes by and I see him only at a blunt angle and can no longer shoot.  
  Ran off to the NW.  
  19.52 Surfaced.  Because I will not arrive in time at position in the reconnaissance line if I continur the pursuit, sent:  
  Radio message 19.35/19/119:  
  Very Very Urgent square BE 1877.  Question: Is hunt authorized for northeastward bound independent?  Speed 10 knots.  
  20.19 BE 1872 Meanwhile, radio message 17.40/19/114 received from Borchers, stating that it is an Irish ship.  Therefore pursuit broken off.  Transit to ordered position continued.  Both diesels 2 x HF.  
  21.15 BE 1874 Incoming radio message 20.39/19/121:  
  To Hasenschar.  
  1.)  There are no restricted areas in the North Atlantic at this time.  
  2.)  Sighted ship is with almost surely an "Irishman" sighted by Borchers.  Do not attack.  See serial number 17.40/19/114.  
  As this message is received I am already proceeding to the ordered position.  
Sun and Moon Data 19.04.43
- 11 -
  20.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BE 4122  
  SW 3, Sea 2, Vis. good, slight swell from the NW  
  04.00 BD 6365  
  08.00 BD 6378  
  09.27 U-boat in sight bearing 110°T.  No recognition signals exchanged.  Half an hour later lost from sight.  
  12.00 BD 6527 Day's run:       275.5 nm  
  Lat  :  47° 08' N                            7.2 nm  
  Long: 27° 24' W                           282.7 nm.  
  Overcast, Vis. good, occasional rain  
  16.00 BD 6491 Because since the night the wind had increased strongly from the SW, I will not arrive on time at my position in the reconnaissance line.  
  ß Signal 16.08 on 36 meters:  
  Approach order cannot be implemented because of weather conditions.  Advance is delayed about 5 hours.    U-628.  
  The signal had sent previously at 13.46 hours on 36 meters but was not understood.  As previously noted, Norddeich acknowledged received signals outside the beat frequency gap only with time group and ii, instead of by 3 repeats of the call sign D A N  or  r s k .  
  (In accordance with Standing Kriegsmarine Order 200 paragraph 39 and 206 paragraph 5).  
  20.00 BD 6479  
  21.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BD 5951  
  NNW 5, Sea 4-5, Vis. good, Heavy sea and swell from the NNW, bright moonlit night  
  02.45 BD 5971 Initial position in reconnaissance line reached.  Course 270°, LF.  
  04.00 BD 5892  
  08.00 BD 5852  
  12.00 BD 5765 Day's run:       262 nm.  
  Lat  :  46° 04' N  
  Long: 32° 46' W  
  16.00 BD 5748  
  20.00 BD 4958  
  22.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BD 4869  
  W 4-5, Sea 4, Vis. variable, foggy, occasional rain  
Sun and Moon Data 20.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 21.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 22.04.43
- 12 -
  04.00 BD 4858  
  08.00 BD 4769  
  09.52 - 10.19 BD 4767 Test dive.  
  12.00 BD 4758 Day's run:       201.8 nm  
  Lat  :  45° 56' N                            0.9 nm  
  Long: 37° 44' W                           202.7 nm.  
  Reached position in newly ordered reconnaissance line.  Continued on course 270°, 7 knots.  
  16.00 BD 4747  
  20.00 BC 6983  
  23.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BC 6948 In accordance with radio message 17.28/22/758:  moving back and forth in reached position in reconnaissance line.  
  NW 2, Sea 1-2, lightly cloudy, Vis. good  
  04.00 BC 6945  
  08.00 BC 6972  
  10.20 - 10.48 Test dive.  
  12.00 BD 6948 Day's run:       162.0 nm  
  Lat  :  46° 56' N                            1.2 nm  
  Long: 39° 46' W                           163.2 nm.  
  Incoming radio message 10.57/23/767:  
  Group "Specht" at 11.30 hours course 335°, day's run 150 nm etc.  
  In accordance with the above, course 335°, diesel-electric LF.  
  16.00 BC 6917  
  20.00 BC 6595  
  21.00 Incoming radio message 17.32/23/773:  
  At 25 April 14.00 hours form as new group "Specht" Kottmann, Heinsohn, Zitzewitz, Winkler, Müller, Deecke, Pich, Otto, Purkhold, Ölrich, Hasenschar, Gretschel, Manke, Looks, Sträter, Borchers, and Folkers in reconnaissance line from AJ 6762 to AK 7791, course 40°, day's run 150 nm.  Operation on "Carlsen" convoy intended.  Named boats switch to "Hubertus" circuit on 24 April at 08.00 hours.  
  On course 359°, speed 8 knots to new position.  
Sun and Moon Data 22.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 23.04.43
- 13 -
  24.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BC 6537  
  NNW 6, Sea 4-5, completely overcast, Vis. variable, occasional rain, freshening  
  04.00 BC 6291  
  08.00 BC 6234  
  12.00 BC 3867 Day's run:       172.0 nm  
  Lat  :  48° 42' N  
  Long: 40° 28' W  
  SW 7-8, Sea 6-7  
  16.00 BC 3597  
  20.00 BC 3561  
  25.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BC 3294  
  W 3, Sea 2, Vis. variable, overcast  
  04.00 BC 3226  
  08.00 AJ 9959  
  09.15 - 09.45 AJ 9953 Test dive.  
  09.45 In accordance with radio message 08.48/25/888:  
  1.  Bülow report observations.  
  2.  Group "Specht" operate on Bülow-convoy.  
  Operating on Bülow-convoy, at 08.25 hours located in AK 4737, westerly course, first reported on course 340°, GF.  
  11.19 Incoming radio message 10.44/25/890:  
  1.)  Item 2 in serial number 888 invalid.  
  2.)  From 14.00 hours reconnaissance sweep ordered to proceed on course 40°, speed 10 knots.  
  Proceeding to ordered position.  
  12.00 AJ 9685 Day's run:       198.2 nm  
  Lat  :  52° 02' N                            1.9 nm  
  Long: 40° 46' W                           200.1 nm.  
  14.00 AJ 9656 Reached position in reconnaissance line, course 40, speed 10 knots.  
  16.00 AJ 9635  
  20.00 AK 7157  
  26.04.43 North Atlantic  
  AK 7132  
  Vis. moderate, overcast  
Sun and Moon Data 24.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 25.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 26.04.43
- 14 -
  00.30 AK 4799 In accordance with radio message 22.27/25/801:  
  Group Specht, if no contact before 26 April at 00.30 hours, turn to course 220°, speed 6 knots.  At 09.00 hours occupy positions reached as stationary patrols.  
  04.00 AK 7129  
  08.00 AK 7157  
  09.00 AK 7173 Position in patrol line reached.  Back and forth hourly on course 130 or 310°, Diesel-electric at LF.  
  12.00 AK 7173 Day's run:       198 nm  
  Lat  :  53° 06' N  
  Long: 39° 33' W  
  12.47 - 13.20 AK 7173 Test dive.  
  15.46 AK 7181 Incoming radio message 12.31/26/810:  
  Group Specht in the order Heinsohn, U-662, Winkler, Deecke, Pich, Kottmann, Zitzewitz, Wolfram, Auffermann, Otto, Purkhold, Carlsen, Ölrich, Hasenschar, Gretschel, Manke, Looks, Sträter, Borchers, Folkers, on 27 April at 09.00 hours form patrol line from AJ 5593 to 9264 and AK 7467 to 7883 northeast-bound convoys are expected.  Proceeding to new position in long search legs, one engine KF.  
  20.00 AK 7184  
  27.04.43 North Atlantic  
  AK 7174  
  SW 1-2, Sea 1, Vis. good, light swell


AK 7422

Since the sea has calmed down, I decided to use the opportunity to transfer upper deck torpedoes.  After opening the forward torpedo storage canister we discovered that the tail piece of the torpedo is completely dented up to its engine section.  Since the canister is obviously leaking, I decide to take the unusable torpedo below decks regardless of its condition and keep the storage canister flooded for trimming/diving control purposesWhen the torpedo is lifted onto the cradle, the after support of the cradle bends when a pin of the brace slips out.  Due to the misalignment, the head of the torpedo can not pass through the hatch because the after support of the slide is now positioned too low.  Further, the attempt to bring the torpedo back to the torpedo storage tube fails.
  The attempt to lift the torpedo including the whole sea-transfer-rig and thus allowing us to raise the cradle also fails because it is not possible to attach the hoisting ring at the center of gravity of the torpedo.  
Sun and Moon Data 26.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 27.04.43
- 15 -
        This leaves no other solution except lifting the torpedo including the transfer-rig by attaching a line to the head of the torpedo and then after opening the fasteners to drop it overboard.     
        The stern torpedo storage canister is heavily dented by depth charge exposure at several places such that the torpedo can not be pulled out. Also, the upper deck has bent, so that the canister can not be raised.  As a result, both upper deck torpedoes are unusable.  
  09.35 AK 7443 U-707 in sight.  
  After a navigation fix I am 10 nm too far to the southeast.  
  12.00 AJ 9636 Day's run:       123.0 nm  
  Lat  :  52° 36' N                            2.0 nm  
  Long: 40° 02' W                           125.0 nm.  
  On courses 120° and 300°.  
  1-1/2 hours back and forth in the patrol line at diesel-electric LF.  
  12.18 - 12.51 AK 7417 Test dive.  
  16.00 AK 7417 In accordance with radio message 14.53/27/819:  
  Group "Specht" with 20 boats proceed at 9 knots to occupy new reconnaissance line from AJ 4378 to 5913 to 9386. Must arrive by 28 April at 09.00 hours.  Another northeast-bound convoy is expected tomorrow.  etc. -  
  Proceeding to new position, diesel-electric HF.  
  20.00 AJ 9388  
  28.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 AJ 9269  
  S 2, Sea 1-2, Vis. variable, heavily cloudy, light swell  
  04.00 AJ 9227  
  08.00 AJ 6799  
  09.00 AJ 6795 Reached the southeastern edge of my position in the reconnaissance line.  Back and forth on courses 120° and 300°.  
  11.00 - 11.40 AJ 6783 Test dive.  
  12.00 AJ 6783 Day's run:       192.3 nm  
  Lat  :  53° 55' N                            4.2 nm  
  Long: 43° 35' W                           196.5 nm.  
  16.00 AJ 6783 Because of the seas continued back and forth on courses 340° and 160°.  
  W 7, Sea 5-6, Vis. good, occasional rain and  
Sun and Moon Data 27.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 28.04.43
- 16 -
  hail showers, large swells from the west  
  20.00 AJ 6768  
  29.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 AJ 6783  
  W 7, Sea 6, Vis. variable, cloudy, snow showers  
  03.30 - 03.43 AJ 6783 Dived to listen.  Nothing heard.  
  08.00 AJ 6794  
  08.48 AJ 6783 U-boat in sight for a short time bearing 60°T.  
  12.00 AJ 6783 Day's run:       129.5 nm  
  Lat  :  53° 56' N                            0.7 nm  
  Long: 43° 46' W                           130.2 nm.  
  15.02 AJ 6786 U-108 in sight bearing 260°T, 6 nm, on eastward course.  Exchanged recognition signals.  Convoy bearing 225°T, 8 nm another U-boat in sight, probably "U-707".  
  16.00 AJ 6783 On course 217°, diesel electric LF again, in accordance with radio message 13.26/29/841:  
  1.)  Group "Specht" in order Heinsohn, U-662, Winkler, Deecke, Pich, Auffermann, Otto, Purkhold, Carlsen, Ölrich, Hasenschar, Gretschel, Manke, Looks, Sträter, Borchers, Folkers on 1 May at 08.00 hours in new patrol line from AJ 7575 by 8824 to BC 2381.  Radio silence except for tactically important messages.  etc.  
  20.00 AJ 6788  
  30.04.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 AJ 9119  
  SSW 6-7, Sea 6, Vis. moderate, light rain, heavy sea and swell  
  04.00 AJ 9147  
  08.00 AJ 8395  
  09.45 - 1026 AJ 8631 Test dive.  
Sun and Moon Data 28.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 29.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 30.04.43
- 17 -
  12.00 AJ 8626 Day's run:       114.6 nm  
  Lat  :  52° 39' N                            3.4 nm  
  Long: 45° 06' W                           118.0 nm.  
  15.34 AJ 8651 Crash dive for aircraft bearing 260°, 8000 meters, course east.  Approaching me.  Because I have a lot of time, I remain submerged 1-1/2 hours so as not to be surprised by this aircraft from the low clouds again, if it had sighted me before diving.  
  17.04 AJ 8646 Surfaced.  
  18.30 AJ 8672 Proceeding to position in new patrol line in accordance with radio message 17.55/30/861:  
  Tomorrow in new reconnaissance lines:  Group Specht AJ 7679 by 8824 to BC 2666.  
  Group Amsel BC 3472 by 3875 to 9264.  
  20.00 AJ 8675  
  01.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 AJ 8919  
  NE 4-5, Sea 3, Vis. variable, overcast, occasional rain and snow showers  
  04.00 AJ 8949  
  08.00 BC 2221  
  09.00 - BC 2221 Reached position in patrol line.  
  10.00                10.42 See above Test dive and deep dive test to A +60 meters.  Hull valve for the main bilge pump still leaks water, although it was tried for days to seal it by retightening the packing bolts.  Packing apparently defective.  
  12.00 BC 2224 Day's run:       114.7 nm  
  Lat  :  50° 54' N                            8.3 nm  
  Long: 45° 27' W                           123.0 nm.  
  Proceeding back and forth on N + S courses every hour because of westerly seas.  The visibility is so good that I can survey my patrol position just like that. 1 diesel KF.  
  16.00 BC 2221 Seas shifting to the SW, continued back and forth in the direction of the patrol line.  
  20.00 BC 2221  
Sun and Moon Data 30.04.43
Sun and Moon Data 01.05.43
- 18 -
  BC 2221 Several smoke clouds in sight bearing 265°T.  A short time later after closing a single mast.  
  Radio message 20.29/1/221:  Several smoke clouds in BC 2215.     Hasenschar.  
  The single mast disappears occasionally, then quickly stands out again.  Determined to be a heavily zig zagging starboard forward sweeper.   
  ß Signal 22.00:  
  A destroyer square 8899, northerly course.    U-628  
  In order to deliver an accurate message about whether the smoke clouds are the expected convoy, I close the destroyer formation at high speed.  A short time later I can clearly distinguish a large number of mastheads to the west, this is the convoy.  
  ß Signal 22.56:  
  Convoy in AJ 8899.    U-628.  
  Unfortunately the convoy is positioned on the dark horizon while I am positioned before a clearly visible horizon.  Bearings on the convoy show that the course is 0°, speed 8 knots.  
  23.00 AJ 8976 Now the sweeper quickly stands out very high again, such that I must run off at high speed.  At the same time a U-boat comes in sight bearing 120°T on course NW.  The boat runs up to me, Morses with the Varta-lamp.  Apparently the destroyer has seen that, because now he follows bow on. Both boats run off to the east on the surface at AK.  
  ß Signal 23.25  
  Convoy in AJ 8896, course 0°, speed 8 knots.    U-628.  
  I am hopeful that the destroyer will break off pursuit soon, since it approaches very slowly.  However, it remains persistent and drives me off ever further to the east.  
  ß Signal 23.36:  
  Driven off by destroyer.    U-628.  
  Because of interference on the short-wave band all signals are not received by headquarters.  On group frequency long periods without contact.  The radio repeater also forwards only after repeated transmissions.
  At the program time at 00.34 hours on group frequency transmitted:  
Sun and Moon Data 01.05.43
- 19 -
  "At 23.25 hours convoy located in AJ 8896, course 0°, 8 knots.  Driven off.    Hasenschar  
  No acknowledgement from any boats.  
  02.05.43 North Atlantic.  
  00.00 AJ 8985 The second submarine dives.  Because the distance from the destroyer decreases only slowly, I hope to lose him in the approaching twilight on the surface.  Besides, I hope to provide my submerged comrade with an opportunity to shoot at the pursuing destroyer.  
  S 4, Sea 3-4, Vis. good, increasing cloudiness  
  00.12 Destroyer shoots two salvos with artillery apparently to determine range.  Impacts lie far astern. (2-3000 meters).  
  00.45 AJ 8986 U-boat bearing 170°T, course NW.  It later dived for the destroyer.  
  As a result of the low overcast the twilight lasts later than expected.  As a result the destroyer approaches gradually nearer.  Turning gradually to the SE against the seas.  The destroyer follows, although he certainly cannot see me any longer in the twilight.  I suppose that he hears me, because no radar is detected.  After darkness arrives I change course about 80° to the NE, simultaneously going to LF to reduce propeller noises.  At first the destroyer remains on his previous course, however, he quickly determines my position, turns shortly before crossing my wake at 1500-2000 meters and runs in at a sharp target angle.  
  01.30 AJ 8998 Crash dive!  Went to depth 2 A meters.  Ran off crosswise at high speed, destroyer goes across the stern without throwing depth charges.  Stops in order to listen.  Runs back and forth a considerable time at listening speed, stopping occasionally. Assumed I was probably still on the surface.  
  02.00 7 weak explosions, apparently in close proximity to the boat. Some seem to lie exactly over the boat.  Assume scare charges.  Destroyer remains in the vicinity for some time moving back and forth at listening speed and apparently runs off on a northerly course.  
  03.00 Surfaced.  Hurried in pursuit on course 340° at GF.  
  04.04 AJ 8991 2 star shells bearing 278°T.  Afterwards multiple loud depth charge detonations heard in the boat.  
  05.10 - 05.52 AJ 8961 Dived to listen.  
  Weak sound bearings 290°T.  Operating on the bearing on course 320°.  
  08.00 AJ 8689 Continuing search on course 40°.  
  09.34 - 10.19 Because there is no sighting as it gets light again dove in order to listen.  Weak sound bearing 300°T, broad band (30°).  
  Radio message 09.56/2/237:  
  From AJ 8695 weak sound bearing at 300°T, broad band, Convoy apparently steering  
Sun and Moon Data 01.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 02.05.43
- 20 -
  0° - 20°.  Operating on sound bearing.  Both torpedo storage canisters dented from depth charge detonations.  S by E 7, Sea 6, freshening, overcast, Vis. 3-5 nm, + 6, 14 mb falling, 38 cbm.    Hasenschar.  
  Because I cannot run exactly before the seas, continuing on course 20°.  
  12.00 AJ 8666 Day's run:       205.9 nm  
  Lat  :  52° 18' N                            8.0 nm  
  Long: 44° 39' W                           213.9 nm.  
  16.00 - 16.48 AJ 8399 Dived to listen.  No sound bearings detected.  Continuing search on course 330°, at HF.  
  19.57 - 20.45 AJ 8361 Because of bad visibility (3 nm) dove in order to listen.  No sound bearings detected.  
  Given my previous good experiences operating on sound bearings I would have to be within sound range on reciprocal heading N - NE.  Because nothing has been detected, I must suppose that convoy has changed course to the east.  
  Radio message 20.45/2/242:  
  From AJ 8361.  Search on convoy course NE-N unsuccessful.  No sound bearings detected.  As of now, suppose change of course to the east.    Hasenschar.  
  The radio message 14.32/2/236, in which I was asked to report my situation, is received only at 19.00.  Likewise radio message 05.16/2/224. (Hasenschar or one of both neighboring boats report situation.-)  Nevertheless continue to search on northerly courses.  
  03.05.43 North Atlantic.  
  00.00 - 00.48 AJ 5976 Dived to listen.  
  SW 3-4, Sea 4, Vis. moderate, overcast, medium swell from the SW, abating Nothing heard.  
  04.04 - 04.44 AJ 5919 Dived to listen.  Nothing heard.  Search continued on easterly courses  
  06.16 AJ 5928 Because we have received for approximately one hour at irregular intervals enemy radar detection on 145 cm, probably the destroyer that detected me after the sighting, (long continuous tone with loud volume) dived to listen, in order to gain contact.  No sound bearings detected.  
  06.51 Surfaced.  Searching on easterly courses continued.  Because up to now none of the other boats has gained contact, I am more and more convinced that the convoy changed to an easterly course as early as the first night.   
Sun and Moon Data 02.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 03.05.43
- 21 -
  08.00 AJ 5937  
  12.00 AJ 6751 Day's run:       189.0 nm  
  Lat  :  54° 15' N                            7.3 nm  
  Long: 43° 50' W                           196.3 nm.  
  W 7 - 8, Sea 5 - 6, Vis. variable, heavy snow and hail squalls, Vis. occasionally 200 m  
  12.55 - AJ 6756 Dived to listen.  
  13.10 Nothing heard.  
  13.40 AJ 6764 On course 15° per radio message 11.43/3/261:  Proceeding to ordered position in reconnaissance line.  At HF can arrive at 24.00 hours.  Any earlier is not possible due to the heavy seas.  
  16.00 AJ 6498  
  20.00 AJ 6214 In accordance with radio message 16.50/3/269:  proceed in reconnaissance line from 18.00 hours on course 205°, speed 4 knots and stop at 00.00 hours in reached position as a patrol line.  I reached this position at 23.00 hours.  
  23.00 - 23.17 AJ 6272 Dived to listen.  
  No sound bearings.  In patrol line back and forth on 320° and 140° across the seas.  
  04.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 AJ 6271  
  SW 5, Sea 4, Vis. variable, high swell, occasional snow squalls  
  03.36 AJ 6271 The Watch Officer sighted a destroyer momentarily bearing 320°T.   The Watch Officer does not regain contact after an immediate turn in the direction of the sighting.  Therefore, I decide to dive in order to listen.  
  04.19 - 05.05 AJ 6274 Dived.  Nothing heard.  Continued searching on various courses, speed 10 knots.  
  08.00 AJ 6274  
  12.00 AJ 6274 Day's run:       194.5 nm  
  Lat  :  55° 46' N                            4.8 nm  
  Long: 42° 45' W                           199.3 nm.  
  13.53 AJ 6274 A destroyer in sight bearing 40°T.  Due to the rough sea and high swells he comes out high very quickly, so that I must dive.   
  14.07 Dived.  Destroyer can not be seen with the sea in the periscope.  Sound gear cannot determine a bearing.  It must be inoperable.  Investigation determines that moisture has  
Sun and Moon Data 03.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 04.05.43
- 22 -
  entered the inlet cable terminals of 10 receivers.  
  14.42 Surfaced.  Destroyer bears 270°, at 4 nm.  Immediately dove again.  For a time I can also see him in the periscope.  Bearings show a southwesterly course.  
  15.47 AJ 6277 Surfaced when nothing could be seen in the periscope.  
  ß Signal 16.21:  
  1 destroyer AJ 6271.    U-628.  
  Transmission takes place only now because of a loose contact in the high voltage switch of the transmitter selection board.
  Suppose that the destroyer sighted today belongs to a stationary searching group.  
  By radio message 11.49/4/277:  I am asked to report situation and weather.   Because of diving and transmitter malfunction delivery is only now possible.  
  Radio message 16.40/4/281:  
  Situation:  Destroyer briefly sighted tonight at 03.36 hours.  No sound bearings on convoy.  14.00 hours destroyer, course SW, slow speed.  Both AJ 6271.  Assume stationary.  Contact not held on convoy.  
  W 6, Sea 5-6, overcast, altostratus, Vis. 8 nm, 0°, 38 mb, steady, 29 cbm.    Hasenschar.  
  17.00 AJ 6274 Weak smoke clouds sighted bearing 270°T, headed for it, after 10 nm still nothing seen.  
  18.07 AJ 6195 "U-Carlsen" comes in sight.  He is of the same opinion that several boats have sighted the destroyers of a search group.  
  18.45 Still further to the SW another U-boat in sight.  Because these boats have seen nothing, I do not operate further on cloud of smoke, because I supposed that it is from one of the escorts who has smoked briefly.  Proceeding to position again.  
  19.05 AJ 6195 Destroyer mast briefly in sight bearing 50°.  Although I hold on to it, it passes out of sight.   
  20.05 AJ 6196 2 mastheads in sight bearing 38°.  On the same bearing numerous mastheads.  Convoy.  
  ß Signal 20.18:  
  Convoy in AJ 6271.    U-628.  
  Bearings result first in a southern course, later exactly 200°, speed 7 knots.  Contact keeper messages are provided once per hour.   
  I am already positioned ahead of the convoy, also up wind and in the sun sector,  
Sun and Moon Data 04.05.43
- 23 -
  which very much facilitates holding contact.  The front sweeper occasionally moves outward, however, seems to remain close to the convoy.  A distant escort is not observed.  I now suppose that the destroyers sighted previously were the distant escort moving far ahead of the convoy, because they also steered a southwesterly course.
  I remain on this bearing, because I am favorably positioned for an attack at the beginning of darkness.  
  21.50 AJ 6196 U-boat in sight bearing 333°T.  
  23.50 AJ 6436 Another U-boat in sight bearing 200°T.  Both boats inexplicably exchange recognition signals - by shooting signal flares.  
  By the beginning of darkness Gretschel, Poser, Looks, Auffermann, Pich, Carlsen, Mäder report contact on the convoy.  Thus attack is approved for me.  
  05.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.50 AJ 6436 Distant depth charge detonations.  
  WSW 4, Sea 3-4, abating, Vis. good, light swell With beginning of twilight, about 01.30 hours I begin to draw slowly closer in order to attack if possible right at the beginning of the night.  During twilight the starboard forward sweeper positions far to the west, while the second destroyer pushes ahead to the south.  I succeed in breaking through the gap between them, and in the meantime in the partial darkness gain contact on the main body.  I am positioned to the west of the convoy and immediately begin the attack.  By my observation the convoy is formed in a double V-formation (Rhombus).  
  Because the forward escort has pressed a little bit to the north, the across distance will be quite large, so that I arrive at the shooting position at an already blunt angle to the forward most ships.  To maneuver ahead by running along appears not advisable because in the meantime the flank escort is moving closer, so I am forced to shoot from a greater range.  Because the firing solution is based on precise plotting I decide on aimed single shots in spite of the long range.  All Etos are fully heated and charged.  
  The nearest ship in the starboard column shows at the point of firing a target angle of 90°, the most forward 120-130°.  The 2nd and 3rd ship are big ones, the rest medium freighters.  
Sun and Moon Data 04.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 05.05.43
- 24 -
  02.43 - 02.46 AJ 6436 Single shots from tubes I - IV on 5 different freighters from the forward to after ones.  Targeting constantly updated. Distance 4-5000 meters, target speed = 8 knots, depth 3 meters.  
  Target angle:  For the final shot 94°.  Rest of the shots not noted.  
  Turned to starboard for stern shot and ran off at AK on the surface to the NE, because the starboard forward escort is closing again.  
  Counting from firing the first shot there were 4 hits, first came after 7 minutes 58 seconds, the last after 9 minutes 04 seconds.  The 2nd and 3rd detonations were not timed.  Interval approximately 10-20 seconds between the firing.  Time from firing tube I up to firing the shot from tube V was a period of 3 minutes.  
  Only 3 hits are observed.  The first with high explosive pillar on a big freighter, 2 others on 2 medium-sized freighters.  One shows with the detonation a very strong explosion, so sinking is probable.  The third ship shoots 2 signal rockets and begins to burn. While running off a muffled explosion is heard at 03.05 hours on the first big freighter, possibly a boiler explosion.  At the same moment a big, black smoke cloud which still hangs long in the sky is observed. Afterwards nothing more is seen of the ship.  In the boat sinking sounds were heard.  Ship sunk.  
  As we retire star shells are continuously fired at the after end of the convoy.  Some are close by but we are not detected.  
  Because I now have only one torpedo remaining I decide that after reloading I will first return to the shooting location to sink possibly disabled vessels.  
  04.25 With the approach to the shooting location numerous illuminated lifeboats are sighted.  A short time later a shadow with a weak red masthead light.  Shows at first little target angle, moved off a little.  Ran along briefly and then close with diesel at KF.  While closing a corvette is recognized which now lies stopped.  Bow right, target angle 110°.  Closed to about 800 meters.   
  05.02 AJ 6436 Shot from tube III.  
  WSW 3, Sea 2-3, dark night, light swell MZ on, depth 4 meters, target speed 0, target ahead 0°.  
Sun and Moon Data 05.05.43
- 25 -
  After 28 seconds an enormous tongue of flame, a shower of sparks, then nothing more.  A strong pressure wave follows.  I suppose that the whole depth charge load has exploded.  The corvette is literally atomized.  Directly after the shot a second shadow is sighted approximately 2000 meters to starboard, also with a red masthead light.  Turned away and ran off to the north at AK.  Shadow becomes gradually weaker and is lost from sight.  Since I have fired all but the damaged upper deck torpedoes, and as of now 8 boats have contact with the convoy, I decide to remain by day in the sinking area to search for disabled vessels.  
  0x.20 - 0x.39 AJ 6511 Several star shells bearing 200°T, in the direction of the convoy.  
  08.02 AJ 6514 "U-Carlsen" in sight bearing 170°T.  Began return transit.  A short time later in the dawn to the south a weak shadow is seen, a destroyer or corvette.  Ran off to the north.   
  09.00 - 09.42 AJ 6511 Test dive.  
  11.08 AJ 6514 A burning vessel bearing 150°T, bright cloud of smoke, with escorting vessel nearby.  Am holding contact in the hope that the escort vessel will depart sooner or later.  
  12.00 AJ 6439 Day's run:       127.1 nm  
  Lat  :  55° 14' N                            7.3 nm  
  Long: 43° 02' W                           134.4 nm.  
  14.30 Destroyer mast out of sight to the SW.  Crept with just the bridge above the water's surface towards the disabled vessel lying stopped, then dove at 14.46 hours.  Approached submerged at GF.
  In the periscope I determine that the steamer is abandoned.  It floats with a list to starboard and down by the stern. Lifeboats hang run out in the davits, the gangway and abandon ship lines hang overboard.  
  16.51 AJ 6542 Surfaced.  Prepared for artillery shooting.  The steamer is sunk with the remaining 40 rounds of 8.8 cm ammunition and 100 rounds of 2 cm armor piercing ammunition.  
  Firing from a range 5-400 meters proves disadvantageous.  When firing at such short range into the waterline the barrel can not be lowered sufficiently.  Firing is only possible to the side.  
Sun and Moon Data 05.05.43
- 26 -
  17.37 Freighter sunk.  Lists to starboard and capsizes.  
  Astern a 10.5 cm cannon, above on a raised platform an 8.8 cm or a 7.5 cm cannon.  Aft of the stack 2 automatic cannons, the same on both bridge wings.  On the forecastle no armament noted.  
  At the top of the forward mast is a 1.5-2 meters long cylindrical-shaped body, diameter approximately 20-30 cm. Suppose it is a direction-finder.  
  Freighter displays the shipping company badge of the "Harrison - line" on the stack.  Nearby a cutter with sails set shows the name "H A R B U R Y" (5081 GRT.).  
  Type picture matches the sunken freighter.  Supposes that it was a disabled vessel torpedoed by me during the night.  
  Proceeding to supply boat square.  
  19.49 Own radio message 19.02/5/267:  
  1.)  02.44 hours AJ 6436 one large freighter sunk, 1 medium freighter sinking presumed after explosion, 1 freighter left burning.  1 additional hit heard.  
  2.)  05.02 hours in the shooting square corvette sunk.  MZ on, depth 4 m.  Atomized.  
  3.)  Just now in 6543 sank the "HARBURY" by artillery presumably damaged by me.  25 cbm.  
  4.)  Until now main transmitter failed.  GHG still inoperable, Proceeding to supply boat.    Hasenschar.  
  Since the main transmitter failed this morning, delivery was only now possible.  Delivery with the reserve transmitter was not heard.  
  19.53 AJ 6552 Crash dive for 4-engine aircraft, bearing 340°T, course west.  
  20.36 AJ 6552 Surfaced.  
  23.45 AJ 6647 Crash dive for aircraft, bearing 280°T, course north.  
  06.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.27 AJ 6647 Surfaced.  
  S 2, Sea 1, Vis. good, overcast  
  04.00 AJ 6686 In accordance with radio message 00.33/6/294 proceeding to supply square BD 1255.  Diesel-electric LF.  
  08.00 AJ 6939  
  12.00 AK 4772 Day's run:       175.5 nm  
  Lat  :  53° 56' N                          12.4 nm  
  Long: 39° 45' W                           187.9 nm.  
Sun and Moon Data 05.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 06.05.43
- 27 -
  16.00 AK 7125  
  20.00 AK 7164  
  07.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 AK 7199  
  W 5, Sea 4, Vis. moderate occasionally very poor, rain, misty, overcast  
  04.00 AK 7542  
  08.00 AK 7585  
  10.42 - AK 7823 Test dive.  
  12.00 AK 7834 Day's run:       140.0 nm  
  Lat  :  51° 42' N                            1.0 nm  
  Long: 37° 24' W                           141.0 nm.  
  16.00 AK 7869  
  20.00 BD 1213  
  08.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BD 1255  
  W 1, Sea 0-1, Vis. variable, overcast., calm sea  
  04.00 BD 1255 At the supply point on electric motors KF back and forth.  
  08.00 BD 1255  
  10.35 BD 1256 Dived due to thick fog.  
  12.00 BD 1256 Day's run:       104.5 nm  
  Lat  :  50° 35' N                            2.0 nm  
  Long: 36° 15' W                           106.5 nm.  
  13.21 See above Surfaced.  
  13.32 Dived still thick fog.  
  15.18 BD 1255 Surfaced.  
  16.00 BD 1255  
  20.00 BD 1255  
  22.15 BD 1264 After operating on bearing signals supplier Kamecke and Loewe in sight bearing 140°T.  Loewe takes over provisions. Arrange meeting place for tomorrow at dawn in the ordered supply square.  
  Since winds are expected to increase over night, I take over the cylinder head which I am ordered to deliver to Ölrich, stowing it near the forward torpedo hatch in the upper deck.  
Sun and Moon Data 06.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 07.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 08.05.43
- 28 -
  09.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BD 1264  
  SSE 3, Sea 3, Vis. poor, rain, light swell  
  00.22 Dived.  Intend to run submerged at KF during the night in position.  
  04.00 BD 1255  
  07.58 BD 1255 Surfaced.  Because it is getting light and nothing is seen at the meeting place for the supplier, searched to the east.  
  12.00 BD 1267 Day's run:         81.3 nm  
  Lat  :  50° 33' N                          17.3 nm  
  Long: 36° 30' W                             98.5 nm.  
  15.05 BD 1255  
  W 4, Sea 4, Vis. medium, overcast Operating on bearing signal requested by ÖlrichKamecke and Loewe in sight bearing 295°T.  
  15.26 Ölrich in sight bearing 320°T.  Because Loewe is still taking on fuel, I transfer the cylinder head directly to Ölrich.  It was fortunate that I had already taken it to the upper deck yesterday, today it would no longer be possible because of the sea.  
  19.10 - 20.00 BD 1254 Fuel transfer from Kamecke .  I now have 27 cbm after taking on 9 cbm from Kamecke.  
  Return transit.  Diesel-electric LF.  
  10.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 AJ 1268  
  WSW 3, Sea 3, Vis. good, variable cloudiness, abating  
  04.00 BD 1376  
  08.00 BD 1631  
  10.12 - 1048 BD 1633 Test dive.  
  12.00 BD 2414 Day's run:       135.0 nm  
  Lat  :  50° 00' N                            1.4 nm  
  Long: 33° 50' W                           136.4 nm.  
  16.00 BD 2429  
  20.00 BD 2438  
  11.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BD 2542  
  WSW 4, Sea 4, Vis. good, variable cloudiness  
  04.00 BD 2559  
  08.00 BD 2677  
Sun and Moon Data 09.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 10.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 11.05.43
- 29 -
  12.00 - BD 2688 Test dive.  
  12.33 Lat  :  49° 16' N Day's run:       164.0 nm  
  Long: 30° 10' W  
  16.00 BD 2933  
  20.00 BD 3728  
  12.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BD 3763  
  Vis. good, variable cloudiness, occasional rain showers  
  04.00 BD 3857  
  08.00 BD 3894  
  12.00 - BD 3978 Test dive.  
  12.35 Lat  :  48° 22' N Day's run:       166.0 nm  
  Long: 26° 10' W                            1.5 nm  
                            167.5 nm.  
  16.00 BD 6323  
  20.00 BE 4128  
  13.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BE 4153  
  SSW 2, Sea 2, Vis. very good, variable cloudiness  
  01.49 BE 4165 Shadow in sight bearing 208°T.  On closing determined it is a destroyer.  
  02.17 BE 4162 Can make out a large number of other shadows.  A NE-bound convoy.  I stand in the lee of the moon directly ahead of the convoy.  With the ideal attack conditions I very much regret that I have no more torpedoes.  I could start the attack immediately just like that.  Convoy proceeds at 10-11 knots.  
  Before delivery of the first contact keeper message the main transmitter fails again.  It appears to have been damaged originally by the hard depth charges.   Loose contact in the transmitter selection board.  Heating control for tubes interrupted.  
  06.00 Delivery with reserve transmitter is not heard.  After main transmitter is operable, the first contact keeper message is transmitted old time group:  
  ßß Signal 03.41:  Convoy BE 4141.    U-628.  
  ßß Signal 04.02:  Course 40°, speed 11 knots.    U-628.  
  Contact temporarily broken off in rain squalls in bad visibility.  
  06.17 BE 1879 Convoy again in sight bearing 259°T.  
  ßß Signal 06.41:  Convoy 06.17 hours in BE 1878, 45°, 10 knots.    U-628.  
Sun and Moon Data 11.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 12.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 13.05.43
- 30 -
  With dawn breaking I move off to the east.  
  ßß signal 07.48:  
  Enemy in sight 1881, course 45°.   U-628.  
  07.33 While closing again after daylight a U-boat is sighted approaching the convoy on a northwest course bearing 120°T, 6 nm.  Shoots repeated recognition signals - I join him to hand over responsibility for contact on the convoy, because I can no longer operate because of fuel.  
  08.05 BE 1888 A flying boat bearing 330°T in the direction of the convoy.  Dived.  
  08.25 Surfaced, when in there was nothing more seen in the periscope.  
  08.34 BE 1889 While closing the convoy the same flying boat appears from the clouds at 4-5000 meters.  It flies toward the second U-boat Crash dive!  A "Catalina".  Ran off submerged on course 120°.  
  08.54 2 aircraft bombs.  
  09.05 6 depth charges.  
  08.43 10 depth charges.  
  After this series the flying boat comes in view again in the periscope for a while to the north.  Depth sounding explosions are heard in the boat at irregular intervals.  At times far off, then apparently very near.  The propeller sounds of a destroyer are not distinguishable, nothing seen in the periscope.  
  Are these explosives thrown by the aircraft to hold the boats under water?  Some more depth charge series are thrown.  Because I no longer have a combat mission to fulfill, I remain submerged for a while because of the low clouds.  
  11.30 BE 4331 Surfaced.  Continued return transit.  
  12.00 Lat  :  48° 16' N Day's run:       165.6 nm  
  Long: 22° 25' W                          13.8 nm  
                            179.4 nm.  
  Own radio message 11.33/13/25:  
  At 08.55 hours convoy in BE 1855.  At dawn a "Catalina".    Resumed return transit because of fuel.  Main transmitter temporarily out of service. (Weather).  Hasenschar.  
  16.00 BE 4318  
  20.00 BE 4356  
Sun and Moon Data 13.05.43
- 31 -
  14.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BE 5174  
  NW 2, Sea 1-2, Vis. good, cloudy  
  04.00 BE 5423  
  08.00 BE 5463  
  12.00 - BE 5549 Test dive.  
  12.34 Lat  :  46° 52' N Day's run:       178 nm  
  Long: 18° 32' W  
  16.00 BE 5586  
  20.00 BE 5833  
  15.05.43 North Atlantic  
  00.00 BE 5927  
  NNE 3, Sea 3, Vis. good, overcast,  
  04.00 BE 5964  
  08.00 BE 6774  
  12.00 - BE 9121 Test dive.  
  12.40 Lat  :  45° 36' N Day's run:       150.0 nm  
  Long: 15° 24' W                            1.5 nm  
                            151.5 nm.  
  16.00 BE 9123  
  20.00 BE 9136  
  21.20 BE 9214 Dived to proceed submerged.  
  16.05.43 Western Bay of Biscay  
  00.00 BE 9215  
  04.00 BE 9224  
  08.00 BE 9226  
  09.58 BE 9234 Surfaced.  Proceeding on the surface.  
  12.00 BE 9314 Day's run:       76.3 nm  
  Lat  :  45° 27' N                        40.3 nm  
  Long: 13° 00' W                         116.6 nm.  
  15.46 BE 9326 Crash dive for land-based aircraft bearing 339°T, course south, flying at about 500 meters.  
  18.03 BE 9326 Surfaced.  
  18.48 BE 9335 Crash dive for land-based aircraft, bearing 160°T, course 30°, very low altitude.  
  Proceeding submerged because of low, very dazzling sun.  
  20.00 BE 9336 While proceeding submerged several distant depth charges heard.  
Sun and Moon Data 14.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 15.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 16.05.43
- 32 -
  17.05.43 Bay of Biscay  
  00.00 BF 7114  
  04.00 BF 7116  
  08.00 BF 7125  
  09.23 BF 7126 Surfaced.  
  10.17 BF 7135 Crash dive for aircraft bearing 200°T, course 30°.  
  11.01 See above Surfaced.  
  11.23 BF 7136 Crash dive for aircraft bearing 100°T, course 280°.  
  12.11 BF 7214 Surfaced  
  Lat  :  45° 27' N Day's run:       58.6 nm  
  Long: 10° 18' W                        54.7 nm  
  E 2-3, Sea 2, light swell, cloudless, lightly misty on the horizon                         113.3 nm.  
  12.20 BF 7214 Crash dive for aircraft bearing 250°T, course east.  
  13.30 Surfaced.  
  15.04 ß Signal:  Position 48 hours from return port.    U-628.  
  16.30 BF 4885 Crash dive for aircraft bearing 280°T, course east.  
  To depth 65 meters, 5 aircraft bombs.  Except for some fuses, no failures.  It must have been a very fast aircraft because it was first sighted at a range of 10-12000 meters and was upon us very quickly.  
  17.45 One detonation nearby, supposed scare bombs.  
  18.03 BF 4886 Surfaced.  So far I have had no success with the Fu.M.B. on the bridge, I now leave it below because no surprises are expected with the good visibility and high-standing sun and after all it hinders getting inside quickly during a crash dive very much.  
  18.15 BF 4886 Crash dive for aircraft bearing 250°T, course 30°.  
  19.10 BF 4894 Propeller noises are heard in the boat (GHG is inoperable).  In the periscope a fishing steamer proceeding on approximate course 340°.  Large flag from stern topmast.  Probably Spanish.  
  21.56 BF 4895 Surfaced after sunset to charge batteries and air the boat.  
  22.32 BF 4893 Dived to proceed submerged.  
  18.05.43 Bay of Biscay  
  00.00 The radio message 19.52/17/25, reporting a Ju-88 crew afloat in BF 4873, is received only at 00.49 hours during the long wave program time.  Because it is now night, searching is useless.  The steam trawler sighted earlier may have been searching for the reported shipwrecked crew.  Some of the sighted aircraft may have been our own.  
  04.00 BF 4948  
Sun and Moon Data 17.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 18.05.43
- 33 -
  06.26 BF 4949 Surfaced at sunrise.  
  07.09 BF 4954 Dived.  
  09.25 BF 4955 Surfaced.  Proceeding on the surface.  
  12.00 BF 5717 Day's run:       86.8 nm  
  Lat  :  46° 18' N                        53.0 nm  
  Long:   7° 01' W                         139.8 nm.  
  NE 1, Sea 0-1, Vis. good, no clouds  
  14.53 BF 5722 2 fishing steamers bearing 102°T, 9 nm.  
  16.00 BF 5497  
  18.00 BF 5571 Dived.  Proceeding submerged.  
  22.10 - Surfaced for navigation fix.  
  19.05.43 Bay of Biscay  
  00.00 BF 5572  
  04.00 BF 4549  
  05.26 - Surfaced for navigation fix.  Completely overcast.  
  07.32 Surfaced.  Proceeding on the surface by "Kernleder" -   "Ladebrücke" - "Herz".  
  14.21 Taken under escort by patrol boats.  
  17.45 Taken by mine escort.  
  19.46 Brest, Bunker E 1, made fast.  
  Total distance covered:  
                        6470.8 nm  
                           522.7 nm  
                            6993.5 nm.  
  General observations:  
  1.)  The Fu.M.G. was inoperable during this patrol from the first time it was put in service.
  2.)  A reminder to all boats appears to be needed to be extremely careful using visual signal methods close to a reported convoy. (Morse with searchlight, shooting of signal flares.)  
  3.)  On all previous patrols 80% of all bridge binoculars have become unusable due to penetration of moisture.  
                                 Kapitänleutnant and Kommandant  
Sun and Moon Data 18.05.43
Sun and Moon Data 19.05.43

  Appendices to U-628's KTB - click on the text at left to proceed to the documents
Radio Summary Excerpt of radio log (Funkkladde).
Track Chart Track Chart of the 3rd War Patrol from 04 April to 19 May 1943
Chart 1 Track chart covering convoy action on 16-17 April 1943
Chart 2 Combat sketch of convoy action on 1-3 May and 4-5 May 1943
Torpedo Torpedo Firing Reports (Schussmeldung)


Commentary of the Befehlshaber der Unterseeboote

to the K.T.B. of "U-628" (Hasenschar) from 08.04.43 - 19.05.43

The patrol included participation in 3 convoy operations.  From 16-17 April the boat operated very well in group "Specht" on the "Franke-convoy", quickly gaining contact and deciding to attack at night at the first opportunity.  From 01-03 May and 04-05 May the Commander again operated skillfully and successfully on the "Hasenschar-convoy".
On 01 May at 23.00 hours the improper behavior of the U-boat which morsed recognition signals with the Varta-lamp during dusk was responsible for the fact that a very promising operation did not get started.
Concerning 05 May at 02.43 - 02.46 hours, the hits observed from the boat after 7 minutes 58 seconds to 9 min 4 seconds are believed to be very improbable, because after a period of 7 minutes the steering capability of the Eto is usually exhausted and afterwards as the velocity of the torpedo falls to less than 16 knots the Eto goes deep.  Further, hit observations at a range more than 5000 m appear doubtful, possibly the attack of another boat.  Therefore, the resulting success is only conditional and is recognized with reserve.
Accredited successes:
1 freighter
1 freighter
1 freighter
sunk by own account
1 freighter
sunk by own account
1 freighter
sunk by own account
1 steamer
1 corvette

For the Befehlshaber der Unterseeboote

- The Chief of Operations -

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