Italian WoWS tech tree Part 3 – Destroyers: Medaglie d’Oro and Capitani Romani

Source: Deamon93 (WoWS  EU supertester)

Medaglie d’Oro (Tier IX)

Story

The whole line up to this point is pretty much a continuous work on a 1915 design to keep it with the standards. When WWII broke out the flaws on the designs became apparent: poor sea worthiness, range, poor accuracy of the primary armament and lack of proper AAA and ASW equipment. The project which was chosen to solve these issues was the Medaglie d’Oro-class, also known as Comandanti-class. The name comes from the namesakes: every ship was named after a commander who died earning the Medaglia d’Oro(the same medal earned by the captain of the Folgore). The original plan was to build twenty-four  ships, reduced to twenty by 1943. They were supposed to be built in three series(8-8-4 respectively), but not a single ship was ever completed due to the war. This was probably the finest destroyer ever designed by Italy but it came too late to change the outcome, as other sound designs such as RN Aquila(one of the two Italian aircraft carriers almost completed by the time the Armistice became active).

They were much larger than the previous destroyers(with full load displacement over 3000 tons) and the improvements were all across the board. Before talking about the improvement i prefer to talk about one radical change in this design: every single destroyer i wrote about in this topic was designed to be fast and only then was supposed to fight. The maximum speed of older destroyers were achieved only in light configuration and it was impossible to reach them with full load. On the other hand this destroyer wasn’t meant to go fast: the maximum speed was “only” 34 knots, which doesn’t sound a lot compared to the 38 knots of the older designs and the 40 knots of Capitani Romani placed at tier X. Another difference from the older designs was the presence of radar on every single ship, technology which was considered almost as witchcraft by the Italian Navy until Cape Matapan. Then there’s a huge step forward as far as armament is concerned: the old 120/50 were replaced by the newer 135/45 in single mounts and AAA was improved drastically. The amount of AA guns was increased and the primary armament was mounted on DP mounts(although i have to verify this information). All this was achieved without sacrificing the torpedo armament which remained the standard 2×3 533 mm TT, making this class a good all rounder with good primary armament, AAA and reasonable torpedo armament(although Italy won’t shine on that regard).

Here are the three series and their technical data

I series

Technical data

Full load displacement: 3000 tons

Length: 120.7 m(overall length)

Beam: 12.3 m

Draught: 3.9 m

Installed power: 60.000 hp

Maximum speed: 34 knots

Armament: 4×1 135/45, 12×1 37/54, 2×3 533 mm TT

II series

Technical data

Full load displacement: 3000 tons

Length: 120.7 m(overall length)

Beam: 12.3 m

Draught: 3.9 m

Installed power: 60.000 hp

Maximum speed: 34 knots

Armament: 5×1 135/45, 2×4 37/54, 2×4 20/65, 2×3 533 mm TT

III series

Technical data

Full load displacement: 3200 tons

Length: 120.7 m(overall length)

Beam: 12.3 m

Draught: 3.9 m

Installed power: 60.000 hp

Maximum speed: 34 knots

Armament: 5×1 135/45, 2×4 37/54, 3×4 20/65, 2×3 533 mm TT

The differences between the series are on AAA(which changed on all three), an improvement in primary armament between the I and II and a change in engine layout between the II and the III. Every destroyer until the III series had the engine compartment as compact as possible and that lead to unpleasant events in case of a hit(many ships became dead in the water due to this). To avoid that issue the engine compartment was enlarged and divided into two smaller compartments. Thanks to this arrangement if one group(made of two boilers and a turbine) gets damage the other can still drive the ship making her less vulnerable.

Capitani Romani (Tier X)

Story

In the early ’30s France developed two fast destroyers: Fantasque and Mogador. Both were much faster than every Italian destroyer in line and, due to the rivalry between the two nations, Italy decided to respond accordingly. The answer was Capitani Romani. During all the line there’s an increase in weight and installed power but with this class the Italian engineers decided to come very close to the boundary between destroyers and light cruisers to fit all the improvements. Compared to the latest pre-war destroyers the improvements are massive:

-better artillery armament, based on four twin turrets with 135/45 guns

-better AAA with 8×1 37/54 and 4×2 20/65(or 20/70)

-better torpedo armament with 2×4 533 mm TT

-more installed power with 110.000 hp, comparable(if not superior) to the values seen in most cruisers(only Trento and Bolzano had a more powerful machinery)

The trade of of all this is a big increase in displacement: over 5000 ton in full load configuration stretching the boundary between destroyers and cruisers since the tonnage is more similar to a cruiser but the design itself is more similar to destroyers(although brought to the extreme). Twelve ships of this class were ordered: Attilio Regolo, Scipione l’Africano, Pompeo Magno, Giulio Germanico, Ulpio Traiano, Ottaviano Augusto, Caio Mario, Lucio Cornelio Silla, Claudio Druso, Claudio Tiberio, Paolo Emilio and Vipsanio Agrippa. Of these only the first three came into service while the others remained uncomplete(although Giulio Germanico has a story worth mentioning). The three completed haven’t seen much action due to how bad the situation was between 1942 and 1943. Their stories basically start with the Armistice: the Attilio Regolo was the lead ship of the few which helped the survivors of the Roma and brought them to the Balearic. She returned back home at Taranto, as the other ships, only on 1945. After WWII she was given to France as war reparation. The Scipione l’Africano was the escort of the corvette Baionetta, the ship used the King and the Italian government to flee southwards. After escorting the King to safety she stayed with the only two remaining Littorio-class battleships at Great Bitter Lake: Littorio(renamed Italia) and Vittorio Veneto. She was then given to France as war reparation. The last one with active service, Pompeo Magno, was at Taranto with the battleship Caio Duilio and she reached Malta safely. After WWII she was refitted with ASW equipment, renamed San Giorgio and served with the MMI until 1979 spending her final years as a training ship. The last ship worth mentioning is the Giulio Germanico, which was almost completed when the Armistice became active. She was at the shipyard of Castellamare di Stabia(near Naples) that day and her crew, lead by Corvette Captain Domenico Baffigo, helped with the defense of the base against the Germans sent to take the base and the ship stationed there. After three days of fighting Baffigo was invited by the Germans to negotiate. The negotiations never started: he was taken as prisoner, brought

to Naples and executed(for his action he got the Medaglia d’Oro). The ship was soon after scuttled by the retreating Germans, salvaged after the war and served with the MMI as San Marco. She got the same refit of her sistership Pompeo Magno/San Giorgio and remained in service until 1971.

Technical data

Standard displacement: 3987 tons

Full load displacement: 5600 tons

Length: 138.7 m(water line), 142.2 m(overall length)

Beam: 14.4 m

Draught: 4.9 m

Installed power: 110.000 hp

Maximum speed: 40 knots

Armament: 4×2 135/45, 8×1 37/54, 4×2 20/65(or 20/70), 2×4 533 mm TT

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6 thoughts on “Italian WoWS tech tree Part 3 – Destroyers: Medaglie d’Oro and Capitani Romani

  1. Best of luck for your exam !!!

    As for the DD classes, the Medaglie d’Oro class looks quite similar to the German Narvik class when looking from above … especially to Z-28. Without checking the dimensions should be quite similar …

    The Capitani Romani Class is listed as fast scout cruisers in all naval books I have (at least some I have), so there might be a problem to re-classify those ships into DDs. Otherwise the Yubari could go as a DD as well … easily …

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    1. I guess that is the best classification for it – it fits both classes well, but it has those cool torpedoes…

      Thanks! I hope and pray I will get a good score tomorrow. Now I have to learn -_- missed some HD renders, this makes me so sad!!!

      Like

  2. You won’t miss anything, promised, as it will be there tomorrow as well – your exam now has priority!
    😉

    Like

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