German View of British Gunnery

The following has been transcribed from Document 233 (page 451) in Volume II of The Beatty Papers, edited by B. Mcl. Ranft, published by the Navy Records Society (volume 132) in 1993.

Report from Admiral Hipper to Admiral Scheer (4 July 1916)

[copy from the RN's Naval Intelligence Division files, dated 21 September 1920]


...The fire of the English battle-cruisers has not caused to our battle-cruisers damage of considerable gravity. Since the fall of shot was rarely in proximity to our own ships it is not possible to judge very accurately as to the 'spread' of the shot.

On the other hand the fire of the Malaya battleships (5th BS) and equally later on, that of the bulk of the enemy, produced an excellent impression.

The salvoes arrived absolutely dense (with no spread).

The fall in elevation and direction covered almost the same spot.

The firing constituted a proof of the care with which the British have eliminated in their guns all influences which increase the 'spread,' and of the most remarkable manner in which the English fire control arrangements have been produced, both elevation and direction [sic].

If the English did not atttain greater results, it is on account of the bad quality of their shell, particulary with reference to theinsufficient efficiency of their exploders...

Last Updated: 13 October, 2001.

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