Main Battery System

Inside the Prinz Eugen's 20.3cm main battery turret. This is B turret, looking forward at the trainer's and sight-setter's station located on the starboard side of the turret. The trainer sat and used the control wheel in the center of the photo while the pointer used the control wheel on the left-center. The wheel in the left foreground was used by the Chief Petty Officer gun captain during operation.

A view of Prinz Eugen's B turret range finder from inside. We are looking slightly up, toward the side of the turret. Two range finder operator's seats are visible as is one of the range finder control wheels (partially hidden, upper left quadrant).


Inside the Prinz Eugen's B turret, this is the pointers station (control wheel in the middle of the photo), forward port side of turret.

This is the foil blast gauge inside the Prinz Eugen's B turret. Photo is looking aft and to port inside the turret. The foil blast gauge was used to measure the blast pressure from firing the 20.3cm guns.


The left breech of the Prinz Eugen's B turret, looking forward. The shell rammer piston is in the lower foreground and the spent shell casing transfer tray is to the left. In the left background one can see the trainer's station, already shown here.

This is the right breech of Prinz Eugen's B turret, looking forward.


This is the elevating gear for the Prinz Eugen's B turret. The guns were electrically elevated.

On the Prinz Eugen's Unteres Plattformdeck, B turret handling room, compartment XI 7.29, a view of the foil blast gauge.


On the Prinz Eugen's Unteres Plattformdeck, compartment XI 7.31. This view is inside the Prinz Eugen's 20.3cm shell magazine for A turret, looking aft. The shells were stored in racks with wooden sides. The chains used with the hoists for lifting the shells can be seen at the top of the photo.

On the Prinz Eugen's Oberes Plattformdeck, compartment XI 8.30 - a view of the Prinz Eugen's powder magazine for A turret, looking forward. The 20.3cm guns used a dual bag system as most German main guns of the time, a silk-wrapped fore charge and a brass casing main charge. The brass casing helped seal the breech during firing, preventing gasses from entering the turret chamber.


Another view in the Prinz Eugen's powder magazine for A turret on the Oberes Plattformdeck compartment XI 8.30, looking aft. The sloping bulkhead on the left is caused by the Panzerdeck turtle-back armor plating, a portion of which is just visible at the extreme upper left. In the left middle of the photo, just under the control wheel, one can see a small fraction of the outward angled inner torpedo bulkhead.

A view of the amplifiers in the Prinz Eugen's main battery control room located on the Unteres Plattformdeck compartment X 7.2. Listed as amplifiers 8,9, and 11.


A view of the amplifiers in the Prinz Eugen's main battery control room located on the Unteres Plattformdeck compartment X 7.2. Listed as amplifiers 1 to 7.

Looking to port, a view of the dummy director error recorders in the Prinz Eugen's main battery control room located on the Unteres Plattformdeck compartment X 7.2. The error records were located toward the front of the compartment with the dummy director right across from it; in the photo the dummy director is in the left foreground. The dummy director was used during practice drills and the error recorder checked the calculations for accuracy.


A similar view as the previous photo of the amplifier error recorders in the Prinz Eugen's main battery control room on the Unteres Plattformdeck compartment X 7.2. The dummy director is readily visible in the left foreground of this photo.

Some of the instruments in the Prinz Eugen's main battery director station located on the Vormarsstand. A US Navy Sailor is visible on the left. During normal operation, there would be 8 personnel on duty in the main battery director station.


This is one of the two directors (cover removed) in the Prinz Eugen's main battery director station on the Vormarsstand. Alongside the unit is a local Gyro unit to stabilize the director in case of master stabilizer element failure. The Germans employed an extensive system for stabilizing their optics to ensure accurate fire control.

The Prinz Eugen's range finder train drive located in the main battery director station on the Vormarsstand. The range finder station (above the main battery director station) and the radar station (above the range finder station), rotated together on a single turntable.


The Prinz Eugen's range finder training rack located in the main battery director station on the Vormarsstand.

The Prinz Eugen's range finder control in the main battery director station on the Vormarsstand.


Photo of the Prinz Eugen's main battery director station on the Vormarsstand. The black circular ring marked in degrees indicated the current direction the range finder (located above this compartment) was pointing. A periscope is located in the middle left of the photo.

In the Prinz Eugen's main battery director station a US Navy sailor lookis through one of the periscopes. The circular ring indicating the range finder pointing direction is clearly seen around the top of the compartment. The two ladders lead up to the range finder compartment.


We are now in the Prinz Eugen's range finder station located above the main battery director station. During normal operation 4 personnel were on duty here. An individual is sitting at the one of the controls, his hat just visible in the center of the photo partially obscured by the white tube.

We have climbed one deck higher to the Prinz Eugen's radar station, located just above the main range finder station. The radar station was manned by 5 individuals and had instruments lining one bulkhead and a table on each of two opposing bulkheads. The radar station rotated on the same turntable as the range finder station; the rotation could be controlled from either station.


Photo of the Prinz Eugen's main battery plotting room, compartment X 7.1. This photo looks directly aft at the sight angle and deflection computer. On the bulkhead to the right of the computer is a fuze box. On the bulkhead to the right are the communication phones and the target designator for the conning tower and admiral's bridge.

Turning 90 degrees from the prior photo and facing to starboard, we are now looking at the position keeper and gun order transmitter in the Prinz Eugen's main battery plotting room.


We are now looking forward in the Prinz Eugen's main battery plotting room, compartment X 7.1. The items in this view are from left to right, starting against the forward bulkhead in the back: a fuze and switch box (partially cut off in the photo), the star shell computer, the training and elevation recorder for the four main 20.3cm turrets, and a switch box and an electrical distribution box both of which are partially obscured by the position keeper and gun order transmitter device, already shown in the prior photo here.

Looking at the starboard, forward corner of the Prinz Eugen's main battery plotting room, compartment X 7.1. The device in the left forground is the star shell computer with the training and elevation recorder, and then the fuze and switches. In the lower right foreground is a bombardment computer.


The Prinz Eugen's central artillery switchboard room located on the Unteres Plattformdeck, compartment X 7.29.

The Prinz Eugen's searchlight control panel located in the central artillery switchboard room on the Unteres Plattformdeck, compartment X 7.29.


Switchboards located in the Prinz Eugen's central artillery switchboard room on the Unteres Plattformdeck, compartment X 7.29.

Switchboards located in the Prinz Eugen's central artillery switchboard room on the Unteres Plattformdeck, compartment X 7.29.


Switchboards located in the Prinz Eugen's central artillery switchboard room on the Unteres Plattformdeck, compartment X 7.29.

The data board for photographic recording in the Prinz Eugen's main battery amplifier room, compartment X 7.2. The board is located immediately next to the door upon entering the amplifier room (the door is visible to the right). To the left is a 220 volt transformer protected by a cage with a sign that reads "Danger - High Voltage. Life Threatening."


This is a close up of a jackscrew and some flex cabling in the Prinz Eugen's main battery plotting room. The jackscrew was used to level the equipment.