The Battleship Iburi (What if? 1947)
Iburi Class Battleship
This is the first ship of a new huge diorama that I´m working, with over 20 ships, representing the Second Naval Battle of Tsushima, between Japan and Russia (which never happened).
More images here: www.flickr.com/photos/einon/
Many more photoshop images here: www.brickshelf.com/cgi-bin/gallery.cgi?f=533504
Nation: Japanese Empire
Number of ships built: 4 (Iburi, Oki, Shima, Suruga)
Builder: Kure DY
Laid down: 1942-1943
Displacement: 85 000 tons standard; 92 000 tons full load;
15 406mm guns in five triple turrets;
20 127mm guns in ten double turrets;
138 47mm AA guns in 46 triple turrets;
Armour: 420mm side armor; 670mm on the face of turrets; 230mm outer armored deck;
Range: 18 000km at 15 kts
Installed Power: 230 000shp
Speed: 30 kts;
Crew: 2 350
Aircraft: 3 hidroplanes; 1 aircraft catapult;
First: This is a What-If design for a What-If story that I made. This ship never existed and this story never happened.
I just love to build warships and planes. Everybody knows that.
However, last year I didn’t made a single ship. Therefore this year, I decided to create two new large, micro-scale LEGO fleets and a totally new What-If story.
In the past I made the “Old Dark Gray Fleet” and shortly after, the “Naval Battle of the Azores” (a story between the Royal Navy and the Kriegsmarine Plan Z fleet). Next, I made the Sovetsky Soyuz battleship and it’s escorts. Now, I want to create a new fleet between Japan and Russia, in 1947.
Let’s imagine that Hitler was murdered before he won the elections in 1933 and that a descendent of the Romanov dynasty in Russia survives, rebuilds Russia and starts a long arms race to create a huge fleet to crush Japan and revenge Port Artur and Tsushima (obviously, the Second World War never happened).
Russia is supported by:
England (who provides advanced technology like radars and free movement through the Suez Canal); (England fears the Japanese empire steady growth in the pacific region therefore supports Russia).
Italy (building and designing the Russian Battleships and Cruisers).
Since France supports the Russians, then Japan never had the awful 25mm Hotchkiss AA light guns. Therefore and since the Russians aircrafts were very armoured, in this story the Japanese use a triple 47mm auto-cannon based on the 40mm Bofors L/60 designed by the Americans.
Japan on the other hand is supported by:
Germany (weapons technology – supports Japan because the Germans fear that they might be invaded by Russia);
EUA (weapons technology – the Americans supports the Japanese because if Japan becomes bankrupt after the war, then they will be no longer a threat to the Americans in the region.
So this is the first of many new ships (I hope). The first 5 japanese warships (one large aircraft carrier, one destroyer, one Floatplane tender, one submarine and one Destroyer) are already made and they will be shown during September.
Comments saying “this never happened” or “Japan wasn’t at war with Russia in 1947” will be automatically removed. This a What-If story.