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Destroyers: Weapons of Mass Production

One of the more difficult things about my Jutland project was knowing that the "Destroyer Problem" was lurking just under the surface like a tethered mine...
Jellicoe's Grand Fleet had 46 Destroyers, Beatty's Battlecruisers had 27, for a total of 73 British destroyers. On the German side the High Seas Fleet had 31 and the Battlecruisers had 30 torpedo boats (roughly the equivalent to a British destroyer), for a total 61. Together these add up to 134 of these small ships! 

And the complexity doesn't end with the sheer numbers, either. There was as huge demand for destroyers by both the German and British navies to cover convoy escort duty, anti-submarine work, establish screens, and for offensive fleet actions (massed torpedo attacks). To try and match demand, both nations' navies essentially put together their requirements for the destroyer class and then farmed out production to any shipyards not currently making capital ships or submarines. This led to a d…

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