J Class, British Destroyers

Photograph of Javelin-class destroyer

Imperial War Museum. Via Wikipedia Commons


Tonnage 1690 tons standard displacement
2330 tons fully loaded
Dimensions 348' by 35' by 9'
108.6m by 10.8m by 2.7m
Maximum speed       36 knots
Complement 220
Armament 3x2 4.7"/45 guns (250 rounds per gun)
1 4"/45 DP gun
1x5 21" torpedo tubes
4x1 40mm/40 AA guns
4x1 20mm Oerlikon AA guns
1 depth charge track (20 depth charges)
2 depth charge throwers
2-shaft Parsons geared turbine (40,000 shp)
2 Admiralty 3-drum boilers
Bunkerage 484 tons fuel oil
Type 285 radar
Type 286P radar
Range 5500 nautical miles (10,200km) at 15 knots
1942: Type 291 radar

Numerous and variable modifications as the war progressed, including restoring a second bank that had been removed in 1941 and adding a few more 20mm guns, updated radars, and HF/DF.

The "J" class or Javelins were completed in 1939-1941. The design was developed partially in response to criticisms of the previous "Tribal" class, which was thought to be too large and too gun-oriented. The new design was smaller and more balanced, though the desire to use a dual-purpose main armament was thwarted by the lack of a really suitable weapon. The ships were somewhat wet but otherwise had good seakeeping. Machinery dispersal was somewhat inadequate, due to the decision to go to two boilers with a single funnel, but the use of longitudinal framing imparted great hull strength.

Their balanced design ended further discussion of constructing separate classes of attackers (emphasizing torpedoes) and counter-attackers (emphasizing gunnery), and their basic hull form would be adopted for the mass production destroyers of the war years.

Units in the Pacific:

Changi      Mined 1942-2-28 off Java


Friedman (2006)

Gogin (2010; accessed 2012-12-25)

Whitley (1988)

Worth (2001)

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