2D Class, Japanese Cargo Ships

Diagram of 2D-class Japanese merchant ship

U.S. Navy. Via


Tonnage 2300 GRT
3850 DWT
Dimensions 300'10" by 44'0" by 19'2"
91.69m by 13.41m by 5.84m
Maximum speed       11 knots
1-shaft reciprocating engines
Coal boilers
Range 4000 nautical miles (6400 km) at 9 knots

The 2Ds were standardized cargo vessels built under the 1944 program of the Navy Ministry, whose Technical Bureau developed the designs based on work done by the Ministry of Communications in 1942. They were designed for mass production rather than commercial economy, like the American Liberty Ships. The ships therefore had a reduced number of transverse frames (weakening their hulls), although they retained full double bottoms. The design relied as heavily as possible on prefabrication. As with their American equivalents, special yards were set up for their construction. However, the Japanese yards lacked the cranes to lift prefabricated sections as substantial as 50 tons, as was common practice in American yards

These were powered by coal-fired reciprocating engines and had the deck house located at the rear of the ship to reduce shaft lengths.

These slow, fragile ships proved easy prey for submarine attack.

Production Schedule:

Year Units Completed




Heal (2003)

Jentschura, Jung, and Mickel (1977)

Parillo (1993)

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