GD Logo small.gif (6909 bytes)

Kriegsmarine Geleitboot 1941




GD mini Logo.gif (2341 bytes)


GD mini Logo.gif (2341 bytes)

 Special thanks to Michael Emmerich of for the use of images and information in this section.


Appearance of the Geleitboot 1941 Project

History Overview

During World War II the German Kriegsmarine had no well designed escort vessels and had to use various other ships for this task. Since the pre-war design of the Flottenbegleiter had proved to be a failure, Destroyer, Torpedoboote, captured ships and other smaller ships were used for escort duty.

When the allied threat to German shipping - especially air attacks - got more intense in 1942 the design of the Schnelle Geleitboote 1941 was made.
Based on the pre-war design of the Kanonenboot 1938, those ships differed mainly in a stronger propulsion system, more antiaircraft guns and the possibility to carry mines.

A total of 24 ships were ordered, the first four at a German shipyard (Stülcken in Hamburg), the others at shipyards in the Netherlands.

The first of the ships - G1 - was laid down on 25.11.1942, but construction was stopped in May 1943. The incomplete ship was destroyed during an air attack.
None of the other ships was laid down, but some construction preparations were made for G2 , G5 and G6 . The orders were cancelled in 1942 and 1943.


Construction Data Dimensions Commanders
Laid down:     H.C. Stülcken Hamburg, 15.11.1942 (G1)
Fate:     destroyed in shipyard on 27.07.1943
Costs:     4,8 Mio Reichsmark
Size (Max):     1794 t
Length (Total):     89,25 m
Length (Waterline):     84,00 m
Beam:     11,00 m
Draft:     3,81 m
Crew:     158



Armour and Aircraft

Engines & Performance

10,5 cm Flak L45:     4
3,7 cm Flak L83:     8
2 cm MG:     8
Mines      50
Depth Charge Launcher:     4
Shafts:     3
Engines:     3
Type:     Lentz expansion engines
Total Performance:     6750 shp
Speed:     21 kn
Range:     6000 sm at 20 kn

Operational History

The escort vessels (in German called "Flottenbegleiter") F1 - F10 could be described with a single word: Failure.

In the early 1930s a group of ten escort vessels was build. Since those ships should not only have been used as fast escort ships but also as fast mine-sweepers, submarine hunter and test beds for the new high-pressure destroyer engines, too much was expected of the design.

The result was a very bad designed ship with a totally unreliable engine system that spent a long time in shipyards for repair. As a result, the Flottenbegleiter were almost never seen in operational action and were transferred to several different secondary tasks. Some were used as fleet tenders, some for training Uboat crews.

As the number of engine breakdowns increased to an tolerable level in the later years of the war, the ships were taken out of action. Only one of them, the F9 , was lost through enemy actions, when it was hit by a torpedo of the British submarine Ursula in December 1939 and sunk within 3 minutes.

A successor class of "Schnelle Flottenbegleiter" - fast escort vessels - was planned but never realized. To close the gap of desperately needed escorts, several captured ships (French and Dutch) in combination with destroyers, torpedo boats and mine hunters  were used for this task, especially in the British Channel and French waters.