Thursday, December 13, 2012

U-1, a U-Boot typ IIA built in 1935

German submarine U-1 was the first submarine built for the Kriegsmarine. She was a type IIA U-boot, and she was built at the Deutsche Werke shipyards in Kiel, being laid down on February 11, 1935 and completed on June 29, 1935. Her crews were initially trained in the Netherlands.

Her pre-war service was unremarkable, and she did gain a reputation as a poor ship. Her rapid construction, combined with the inadequacy of the technology which was used to create her, made her uncomfortable, leaky and slow. When war came, there were already plans to shelve her and her immediate sisters of the Type II class for use as training boats only.

Owing to a shortage of available units she sailed on March 29, 1940 against British shipping operating off Norway, close to the limit of her effective operating range. She failed to find a target, but was sent out again on April 4 in preparation for Operation Weser├╝bung (the invasion of Norway and Denmark).

U-1 sent a brief radio signal on 6 April, giving her position before she disappeared. The cause of her loss is unknown, but she was scheduled to sail through a minefield laid unbeknownst to the Germans by the British submarine Narwhal that same day. U-1 may have also been sunk by the British submarine Porpoise, which reported launching a torpedo at an unidentified enemy submarine subsequently thought to be U-3 on April 16 following the invasion. She was the first of over 1,000 U-boats to serve during the Battle of the Atlantic and one of over 700 to be lost at sea (Wikipedia)

The kit is the 1/400 Mirage kit, and it is detailed with the Mirage photo-etch. A simple and pleasant build that will conveniently fit in even a studio-sized apartment.

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