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Soviet Naval Battles - Baltic Sea during WW2 (re-done)

Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 05 Oct 2013, 15:41


30 November 1939
Finnish steamer Auvo (195 GTR) captured and seized by Soviet destroyer Grozyastchyi, with support of submarine chaser MO-111 (Finnish source wrongly said Steregushchyi). Soviet destroyer Gordyi sunk the small Finnish coast guard motorboat AV-45 at Lavansaari island (4 KIA) that was occupied by Soviet forces.

Battles during the GREAT PATRIOTIC WAR:

Attention: the following list doesn't include ALL the small skirmish, many of them (especially the ones without damage or casualties) are not mentioned. Only the most relevant enemy ships sunk by minefields laid by soviet warships are reported, many are still unclear events of difficult attribution.


22 June 1941
Soviet submarine chaser MO-238 intercepted by a group of enemy motor torpedo boats and sunk by German MTB S-44

On the same day, German motor torpedo boat S-59 torpedoed and sunk Soviet merchant Gaysma (3077 GRT) (cargo of timber), while S-31 sunk merchant Liiza (782 GRT).

23 June 1941
German motor torpedo boat S-44 torpedoed and sunk Soviet merchant Alf (166 GRT) and S-43 sunk the floating lighthouse Khiumadal.

24 June 1941
Ignoring the order to scuttle the submarine S-3 in Libau harbor, the commander tried to sail away from the city, carrying also 100 (the crew of the submarine and many workers of the harbor). The submarine sailed slowly and could not dive, and was attacked by the German MTBs S-60 and S-35 that missed the S-3 with torpedo. A gunfire battle begun and the Germans had the advantage of being small and fast targets for the submarine, with higher rate of fire of their 20mm that outmatched the slower Soviet fire of 100mm and 45mm. The two S-60 and S-35 however were reached by soviet fire (with a total of 4 WIA on S-35 ), but the damage on S-3 was heavier and was also hit with hand grenades and finally S-60 launched a depth charge directly in front of the submarine, sinking it. Most of the survivors were machine gunned in water (only 3, 9 or 20 (according different sources) POW).

26 June 1941
German submarine U-149 lightly damaged by unidentified soviet submarine chasers with depth charges. Not enough to prevent a day later the torpedoing and sinking of soviet submarine M-99.

27 June 1941
German motor torpedo boats attacked a group of soviet destroyers while they were sailing to lay mines.
Storozhevoyi hit by S-31 or S-59 and damaged by a torpedo but did not sunk (84 KIA). Soviets believed the attacker was a submarine. That night also lost the soviet MTB TK-47(old name TK-163) damaged and captured by the German S-35. Soviet destroyer Stoikyi reported to have fired at MTBs the day 26 and 29, while on day 27 subjected to another attack but could not fire against the attacking MTBs.
Storozhevoyi was the largest Soviet warships ever hit by German MTB.

Photo of the repaired destroyer. Despite the huge damages, the ship showed great resistance did not sunk. The ship repaired and returned in service in 1943 with a new forward turret.

On the mines laid by Soviet destroyers inside and close the Gulf of Riga (especially Irben Straits) can be recognized some victories:
Mines laid by destroyers Serdityi, Stoikyi and Storozhevoyi between 24 and 25 June sunk on night of 26/27 June the German motor torpedo boat S-43
Mines laid by destroyers Serdityi, Stoikyi, Storozhevoyi, Silnyi, Strashnyi, Smetlivyi and Grozyashchyi between 26 and 27 June sunk the German motor torpedo boat S-106 alongside S-43.

Sweeping such mines will cause the loss of:
Between 10 and 11 July 1941 : Sinking of minesweeper M-201(later raised and recovered). Minesweeper M-23 damaged and grounded, later recovered.
1 October 1941 : Sinking of auxiliary minesweeper R-205 (former Dutch boat).
19 November 1941: Heavy damaging of auxiliary minesweeper R-203, who was then broken up (former Dutch boat).

Other heavy minelaying operations involved the soviet minelayer Marti that laid many mines, sometimes together the auxiliary minelayer Uragan.
On mines laid by Marti can be recognized these successes:
1 October 1941 : sunk German submarine chaser UJ-117 close Hanko
21 November 1941: sunk German tug Fohn (303 GRT) on convoy to Tallinn.
11 June 1942 : sunk German support ship MRS-11 Osnabruck close Tallinn (later recovered, but 84 KIA).

Photo of the Marti. It was the largest and most powerful soviet minelayer.

Multiple defensive fields laid by many units (including minelayers Kalinin and Ural) inside the Gulf of Finland saw less success:
On 9 September 1941 German auxiliary minesweeper R-58 suffered damage due mine.

However the most lucky ship was surely the Fugas-class minesweeper T-204 Fugas.
Between 22 and 23 June 1941 she laid alone the large number of 206 mines close Libau.
German mines probably caused the sinking of the German minesweeper M-3134 (often assigned to T-204) on 1 July 1941.
These other victories are instead recognized to T-204:
German submarine chaser UJ-113 on 10/July.
German patrol ship V-309 Martin Donandt on 28/October.
German minesweeper M-1708 Aldebaran on 31/October.
German minesweeper M-1706 Gertrude on 22/November.

2 July 1941
Finnish submarine Saukko received slight damage after depth charging of submarine chasers after a failed attempt to attack Someri harbor. Unclear the attacker (soviet data for 1941 lacking, possibly small MO-4 class submarine chasers).

On the same day, Finnish submarine Vesihiisi received slight damage after depth charging of submarine chasers after a failed attempt to attack a merchant. Unclear the attacker (soviet data for 1941 lacking, possibly small MO-4 class submarine chasers).

3 July 1941
Finnish submarine Vesikko received slight damage after depth charging of submarine chasers after sinking merchant Vyborg (only merchant ship sunk by Finnish sub.). Unclear the attacker (soviet data for 1941 lacking, possibly small MO-4 class submarine chasers)

6 July 1941
Battle of Kolka
While the Soviet destroyer Serdityi and Silnyi were laying mines; they spotted the German support-ship MRS-11/Osnabruck sailing with minesweepers M-31. The destroyers attacked the enemy; Silnyi received a direct hit of a shell of 105mm fired by the minesweeper M-31 causing moderate damage and a little fire (4 KIA, 7 WIA). Silnyi stopped the action after having fired 33 shells of 130mm. However Serdityi kept fighting, she fired 115 shells of 130mm: some sources claim that MRS-11 received light/splinter damages due near misses, but this is unconfirmed by German sources.
The first Soviet destroyer engagement fought at excessive range; this caused the enemy to escape without real damages.
Soviets believed to have engaged and damaged an auxiliary cruiser (converted merchant), but Onsabruck operated as an anti-mines ship.

On that same day, Finnish motor torpedo boats Syoksy, Vinha and Raju sunk a sailing fishing vessel with depth charges.

10 July 1941
German motor torpedo boats S-26 and S-28 attacked and finished with torpedo the already heavily damaged and abandoned (after mine hit) Soviet merchant Rasma (3204 GRT). Ship had cargo of flour and grain.

12-18 July 1941
Campaign of Gulf of Riga
While German forces started their advance to the Baltic Countries; Vice-Admiral Drodz organized an offensive of surface ships against the barges, ferries and transports that had infiltrated into the Riga Gulf.
Motor torpedo boats, aircrafts and destroyers carried a number of attacks. Soviet motor torpedo boats TK-17, TK-87, TK-73 and TK-93 attacked on day 13 July the convoy led by German gunboats SAT-3 August, LAT-21 Gretchen, LAT-23 Deutschland, the command unit Feyya escorting multiple barges and tugs. Extra cover to the convoy provided by minesweeper M-251, auxiliary minesweepers R-28, R-29, R-168, R-169, R-170, motor torpedo boat S-58 (later augmented by S-47 and S-57). All torpedoes missed targets, but gunboat SAT-3 August damaged (struck by 60 hits of machine guns) and other minor damage inflicted to barges B-1P, B-2P and Eemlan (again by machine guns).
Air raids were more successful, sinking the landing unit Deutschland (not the LAT) and causing damages to the tugs R.18 and D.118, the barges A-279, A-291, S-289, the auxiliary minesweeper R-169 and motor torpedo boat S-58 (1 WIA). Also the assault boat UK.126 suffered underwater damage. Human losses on ferries, tugs and transport and barges combined together were 5 KIA and 27 WIA.
Other damages (and light casualties) were inflicted by air attacks to other convoys the next days.
In the end the Soviet claimed to have sunk , destroyed or damaged 37 targets but Germans confirmed loss of 1, other 2 badly damaged and 23 with light damages (a total of 26).
During the last engagement on 18 July, the Soviet motor torpedo boat TK-123 sunk by aircrafts (claim by German minesweepers is wrong).
Soviet destroyer Strashnyi made the first and only destroyer’s torpedo attack in Baltic, launching 2 torpedoes without success, before suffering damage due mine (11KIA,7 WIA, German motor torpedo boats wrongly claim torpedo hit), while destroyer Steregushchyi claimed to have sunk 2-5 targets and damaged other 2 with gunfire. The lone action of destroyer Steregushchyi inflicted only light damages to auxiliary minesweepers R-30 and R-31 (the latter also damaged by aircraft, 3 WIA).
The first Soviet surface offensive operation in Baltic Sea failed to inflict significant damages, likely due overestimation of enemy forces, damage inflicted and excessive firing range.

19 July 1941
Soviet minesweeper T-202 Buy (Fugas-class) damaged with direct gunfire hit the Finnish motor torpedo boat Vinha, towed away to safety by the Raju, while Syoksy launched torpedo with no effect. There were no casualties. Finnish attacking units believed to have fought against a Soviet destroyer.

20 July 1941
Destroyers Yakov Sverdlov, Volodorskyi and minesweeper T-207 Shpil (Fugas-class) heavily engaged against German units, the Sverdlov fired against S-boats but they believed it was coastal artillery fire. Later, other soviet boats rushed to the scene including MO and TK, but the only direct contact occurred again to Yakov Sverdlov that chased the S-boats and fired against a group of R-boats. There was no report of damage on both sides.

21 July 1941
German submarine U-140 damaged by depth charges of soviet submarine chasers after having torpedoed and sunk the soviet submarine M-94.

22 July 1941
German motor torpedo boats sunk the Soviet motor torpedo boat TK-71 and torpedoed the icebreaker Laichplesis (580 GTR): she sunk seven days later, after cargo (torpedoes) saved.

26 July 1941
Battle of Bengtskar
During the Soviet failed attempt to land on Bengskar the soviet submarine chaser MO-306 (previously known as PK-238) sunk by the Finnish gunboat Uusimaa (16 POW). Other Soviet units involved in battle were MO-238, MO-311 and MO-312, and on Finnish side the gunboats Hamenmaa and patrol boat VMV-13.
The same Finnish gunboat Uusimaa and the coastal battleship Ilmarinen lightly damaged by aircrafts with 2 KIA and 13 WIA.
The relatively powerful coastal battleship did not reached the actual gunnery battle in time, but she sailed in case of feared presence of Soviet destroyers.
MO-237 and MO-236 later bombed the island but could not change the outcome.

26 July 1941
Soviet motor torpedo boats attacked a group of enemy R-boats, after aircrafts sunk R-169 (11KIA, 12 WIA) and damaged R-53 and R-63, but they failed to inflict damage and briefly clashed with R-168 and R-170.

1 August 1941
Soviet destroyer Silnyi, opened fire against unidentified small units without effect.
During a separate fight, four Soviet motor torpedo boats attempted an attack against German anti-mine ship MRS-12 escorted by minesweepers M-3, M-4, M-8, M-7 and M-20: no damage inflicted and TK-103 suffered light damages. German motor torpedo boats attacked too: S-55, S-57, S-58 and S-59 made repetitive attacks (8 torpedoes launched) against destroyers Artem and Engels but scored no hits and soviet reaction fire caused no damage. Soviet destroyers Statnyi and Surovyi were also on sea but could not locate the enemy.

5 August 1941
Finnish submarine Vesihiisi damaged with depth charges by Soviet auxiliary minesweeper Menzhinskyi (converted trawler) and submarine chasers MO-212 and MO-142. The Menzhinskyi was the larger soviet warship (an ex-civilian ship) confirmed to have hit with depth charges a submarine in Baltic.

6 August 1941
Soviet destroyers Surovyi and Statnyi opened fire against the German auxiliary minesweeper R-31: the boat grounded (suffering damage) and destroyers engaged a coastal battery, scoring a direct hit on an ammunition cache (3 WIA).

8 August 1941
Failed attempts of Finnish MTBs and patrol boats to interdict evacuation convoys from Hanko. Soviet patrol boats MO-211 and MO-142 opened fire but scored no hits. On the way back to harbor, the Finnish vessels suffered attacks from Soviet aircrafts, inflicting damages to patrol boats VMV-11 and VMV-17 (2 KIA, 2 WIA) and motor torpedo boats Syoksy and Nuoli .

12 August 1941
A clash on Peipus Lake was fought by Soviet ships (gunboat Embach and two KM-boats) and German patrols. No damages were reported but there are few details about this engagement. It's relevant for being the first of the two clashes on Peipus Lake, with unclear results.

12 August 1941
German motor torpedo boats S-26, S-28, S-39 and S-40 sunk soviet small minesweeper T-41. During the fight, S-39 suffered damages.

16 August 1941
Soviet motor torpedo boats TK-17, TK-57, TK-111 and TK-121 attacked and lightly damaged with gunfire German motorboat Melpomone with one hit, TK-121 suffered light damages too.

17 August 1941
During the Battle of Narva, the soviet large gunboat Krasnoye Znamya bombed German land forces and during this operations reportedly destroyed some pontoons used by Germans to cross the river. Full confirmation is unclear (no Kriegsmarine involvement) but appears realistic, German Ju-88 inflicted light damages to the gunboat.

19 August 1941
German motor torpedo boat S-58 torpedoed and sunk Soviet icebreaker Merikaru (178 GRT).

21 August 1941
Soviet destroyers Artem and Surovyi intercepted and attacked a small German convoy. There was an heavy gunfire battle, both the destroyers suffered light damages, Artem (2 WIA) fired 110 shells of 102mm and Surovyi fired 145 shells of 130mm in just half hour. They shelled the German gunboat SAT-1 Ost, escorting the transports Maggie and Olga, alongside six ferries and two motorboats.
During the fight, the SAT-1 Ost grounded and temporarily abandoned (1 KIA, 3 WIA) but at that point the Soviet destroyers left, overestimating the success and fearing air attacks.
The last direct combat with Soviet destroyers against enemy ships in Baltic was also the most successful, but the temporary sacrifice of the gunboat (recovered) prevented damages to the transports.
The Artem was a veteran of the Russian Civil War (and known at the time as "Azard"). During that war, she sunk the British submarine L-55 with gunfire (later recovered by Soviets).

Photo of the SAT-1 Ost, armed with a main gun of 150mm and smaller weapons.

24 August 1941
Soviet cruiser Kirov and the leader destroyer Leningrad made successful (even if moderate) bombing against German forces near Ygisu Cape. One ex-soviet riverine ferry (steamer) previously captured by German Army and used to ferry troops, reportedly hit and destroyed on river Keila. This victory is reasonably possible but there is scarce confirmation because lack of German Army (Heer) documentation over the case, the probable victory assigned to gunfire of leader destroyer Leningrad.

27 August 1941
Soviet motor torpedo boat TK-57 (later renamed TK-94) with three other units, attacked the German motorboats Adele and Diete Korner. Both vessels grounded and strafed druing the attack.

28 August 1941
Soviet gunboats BK-213 and BK-214 attacked close to the Finnish shore a small convoys of unarmed Finnish barges with a series of ramming attacks (to not alert enemy patrols with gunfire).
They inflicted a number of losses: 2 pontoon ferries sunk and other 2 damaged beyond repair and 4 motorboat sunk (motorboats were towing the pontoons).
By chance, the pontoons did not carried troops (they were on the way back after a mission) and Finnish sources indicate only 3 KIA and 4 WIA.
Soviet gunboats reported 10 enemy target sunk/destroyed, and Finnish confirmation downplay this claim of two units.
Interestingly, BK-213 will play a significant action in Lake Peipus during 1944, scoring another fully confirmed success with ramming attack!

27-28 August 1941
Evacuation of Tallinn
(Naval engagement):
During the Naval evacuation of Tallinn, the Soviet Navy suffered terrible losses and so the people carried on transport and warships when the fleet sailed in mines barrages and was subjected to German air raid.
The total losses estimated of 8,000 to 12,000 soldier and civilians killed: the long list of ships lost include 13 military warships and 30 merchants. Other sources include up to 16 warships and 25-34 merchants, while others even 22 warships and 42 merchants: the research of these losses is beyond the scope of this text.
The Evacuation included also few enemy surface attacks: Finnish patrol boat VMV-17 (temporarily armed with torpedo-launchers) sunk the Soviet schooner Atta with torpedo, while Soviet tugs I-18 and Paldiski seized by Finnish other Finnish patrol boats.
German motor torpedo boats were less successful: the attack of S-26, S-27, S-39, S-40 and S-41 repulsed by Soviet destroyers fire (including the fire of the leader destroyer Leningrad and Minsk), but without damages. Despite the huge human and material losses of the entire operation, the gunnery defense proved somewhat successful to force the S-boats to give up their attack, while Finnish boats contented to attack minor units.

2 September 1941
Soviet MTB TK-57 (later renamed TK-94), TK-67 and TK-154 attacked the minesweepers M-3 and M-20, with no damage on both sides.

On the same day, the Finnish motor torpedo boat Syoksy sunk the Soviet merchant Meero (1866 GRT).

13 September 1941
One of the most important soviet naval success occurred during the enemy Operation Nordwind.
A large enemy operation that involved the battleship Tirpitz and the light cruisers Emden, Köln, e Leipzig and other smaller warships.
The main aim purpose was to distract the Soviet Navy from the German landings on Estonian islands and at the same time planned to intercept and Soviet warships attempting to flee to neutral Sweden (the Soviet Navy had no plans for such breakout attempt).
The Finnish Navy took part into this coordinated operation, with the coastal battleship Ilmarinen: such warship struck mines laid by the Soviet torpedo boats Tsiklon and Sneg and the minesweeper minesweeper T-201 Zaryad (Fugas class), sinking with the loss of 271 KIA. It was the greatest naval loss for Finland and by category (coastal defense ship /coastal battleships acted as capital ships), the most significant warship sunk by the Soviet Navy.
The impact of such loss remarked what was already clear: in Baltic Sea and Gulf of Finland there was no space for large operations of warships due the danger of mines.

(photo of Tsikoln)
The soviet torpedo boats never really used for the original role due poor quality (rated as “Guard Boats” by Soviet Navy) and stability during bad weather. Still they provided the Soviet Navy with one of their most important victories as minelayers.

The Finnish designed such coastal battleships (or coastal defense ships) as other Nordic countries: smaller and stubby warships that could easily navigate and hide within the complicated mass of islands and inlets found in the Finnish Archipelago, but armed with 254mm main guns. More than enough to deal with the larger soviet cruisers of the time (Kirov and Maxim Gorkyi, in Baltic).

14 September 1941
Soviet motor torpedo boat TK-104 (other name TK-65) sunk with torpedo the German minesweeper M-1707 Lunenberg already abandoned by crew after both mine and coastal artillery hits. It was the first confirmed sinking achieved by Soviet motor torpedo boats in Baltic (even if shared).

15 September 1941
During a landing attempt, 2 German MFP landing crafts and 2 Siebel ferries briefly clashed against an unidentified Soviet boat, likely the submarine chaser MO-216. Germans claimed hits scored on the enemy (but she suffered no real damage) while MFP F-102 suffered a single splinter hit.

22 September 1941
Finnish motor torpedo boat Syoksy torpedoed and sunk the Soviet auxiliary minesweeper Sergey Kirov (35 KIA, 1 POW).

23 September 1941
Soviet motor torpedo boats n°12 and n°22 attacked German patrol ships and n°12 sunk with torpedo the German patrol ship V-308 Oscar Neynaber but subsequently sunk with gunfire by V-309.
It was the first full individual victory of a Soviet motor torpedo boat in Baltic (shadowed only by her immediate loss). Interestingly, both vessels were part of D-3 class and Soviet historiography do not use the “TK-“code for their initial operations.

Small offensive fields of mines laid close Finnish routes between summer and fall 1941 caused some losses.

The most significant loss was German minelayer Konigin Luise sunk on 25 September 1941 by soviet mines in front of Hanko. The ship sunk on minefields laid by soviet submarine chasers of MO-4 class (of the three possible fields, the first laid by MO-206, MO-210, MO-211, MO-227 and MO-252, the second and the third ones laid by MO-206, MO-210, MO-211 and MO-232).

Photo from Navypedia.

On 3 November 1941 Finnish auxiliary minesweeper Siika suffered damage (2 KIA) but was later repaired).
On 28 November 1941 Finnish small auxiliary minelayer Porkkala struck a mine and sunk (all crew of 32 KIA) while carrying supplies, but later raised and repaired. Field laid by MO-200, MO-204, MO-211 and MO-227 on 10 September 1941.

27 September 1941
Soviet motor torpedo boats TK-67, TK-83, TK-111, TK-164 made the only Soviet attack of the war against enemy cruiser, launching torpedoes against the light cruisers Emden and Leipzig.
No hit scored, and TK-83 sunk by returning fire. Soviets believed to have hit light cruiser Leipzig and the claim reported by wartime propaganda (Soviet commander awarded).

Photo of cruiser Leipzig before the war.

30 September 1941
Finnish motor torpedo boats Nuoli and Sisu made a daring raid in the Soviet Suursaari harbor.
A torpedo exploded close the moored Soviet submarine L-3, inflicting light damages, while another torpedo grounded after missing the target.
Finnish sources claim the sinking of a Fugas-class minesweeper: actually motor torpedo boat Sisu launched her two torpedoes against T-215 and T-218 but missed them.
Nuoli and Sisu retreated, with Finnish sources reporting minor splinter damages (likely by combined Soviet defensive fire).
Regardless the wrong claim on minesweeper, the Finnish action was courageous but missed by chance the opportunity to sink submarine L-3 (later become the most successful Soviet submarine in WW2!).
Last edited by 1redItalian on 21 Feb 2019, 17:28, edited 81 times in total.
Reason: minor corrections
Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 09 Oct 2013, 15:54

Soviet motor torpedo boats laid multiple defensive fields of mines, especially around Bolshoi Tyuters Island.
The size of each fields was small: closeness between fields, approximation and overlapping make impossible to assign individually a victory to a specific group of units (considered collective successes).
During 1942 the following victories recognized:
On 3 July 1942 damaged auxiliary minesweeper R-74.
On 10 July 1942 sunk landing craft MFP F-256 (heavy casualties).
On 7 August 1942 sunk submarine chaser UJ-1211
On 26 October 1942 sunk submarine chaser UJ-1204

June 1942
No less than six different skirmishes fought between Finnish patrol boats and motor torpedo boats against soviet light crafts in June 1942: no unit damaged and there were no casualties on both sides.

8 - 11 July 1942
Battle of Someri Island.
During the failed Soviet attempt to land on the island, there were a number of naval actions with heavy Soviet losses.
The total report losses was unclear for years by Soviets and Finnish/Germans sources but there are modern assessments.
Soviet light forces employed as “had hoc” landing crafts, suffered heavy losses when shelled by defensive Finnish ground fire:
Motor torpedo boat TK-22 (of D-3 class) destroyed, motor torpedo boats TK-31, TK-71 and TK-121 sunk (all of G-5 class) while TK-62, TK-131 and TK-152 damaged.
Submarine chasers MO-306 (not to be confused with the unit bearing the same name lost in Battle of Bengtskar) also sunk while MO-110, MO-402 damaged.
The proper naval battle begun when Finnish gunboats Uusimaa and Hameenmaa attacked the Soviet units (already battered by the Finnish shore fire): they shelled the wreck of TK-22, and sometimes it is claimed they sunk TK-31 (but it is now confirmed as lost due ground fire). The first real victory of the two Finnish gunboats was TK-113, while TK-73 attempted and failed counter-attack with torpedo.
Pressing on their advantage, Uusimaa and Hameenmaa quickly sunk in succession TK-123 and TK-83 (the latter was of older G-4 class, not to be confused with homonymic loss in 1941).

Photo of Uusimaa. The successful use of Finnish gunboats caused heavy losses to the motor torpedo boat, used as landing boats and vulnerable to the violent Finnish attack.
All sides dispatched reinforcement for the battle: Soviet Navy sent gunboat Kama and the enemy sent Finnish gunboat Turunmaa and German minesweeper M-17.
Soviet Pe-2 aircrafts gave some relief to the Soviet surface units, inflicting damages to M-17 (4 KIA), Hameenmaa (4 KIA, 9 WIA) and Turunmaa (2 KIA, 8 WIA).
Finnish aircrafts claimed the sinking of the Soviet gunboat, but this completely refused: Kama’s only activity was shelling the Finnish ground forces on the island and she suffered no damage.
It is unclear, and probably will be never explained, if Hameenmaa and Kama made a brief skirmish at long distance, before Hameenmaa retreated due lack of ammunition. New reinforcements joined the operations: Soviet torpedo boat Burya and Fugas-class minesweepers T-205 Gafel and T-207 Shpil, balanced by Finnish minelayers Riilahti and Routsinsalmi, the German gunboat SAT-1 Ost, the tender Nettelbek and minesweeper M-19. Shortly later, Nettelbek suffered damage by Soviet aircraft (2 WIA).
Once again, there is no clear evidence on both sides about a possible exchange of gunfire between the opposing units.
Some German sources mistakenly identify M-18 and M-37 as the minesweepers engaged in battle.
On a separate encounter, Soviet submarine chasers MO-103 and MO-213 scored one hit and damaged the Finnish motor torpedo boat Nuoli. The latter was on patrol duty without directly taking part at the main fight.

13 August 1942
Finnish motor torpedo boats Vinha, Raju and Nuoli briefly clashed with Soviet patrol boats (1 WIA on Finnish side).

15 August 1942
In Ladoga Lake.
Italian motor torpedo boats MAS-528 and MAS-527 attacked Soviet gunboats Nora and Selemdzha and submarine chasers MO-199, MO-202 and MO-209. Italians torpedoes missed the gunboat Selemdzha that was however hit (1 WIA) and lightly damaged by gunfire from MAS-527 that took herself a direct hit from return fire with heavier damage. It was the only Italian attack on Ladoga with some little result: Italian sources still nowadays wrongly claim a “Bira-class” gunboat sunk despite all vessels are known and accounted-for.

Painting of Selemdzha: italians claimed to have sunk a "Bira class" gunboat during the attack, but the torpedo likely exploded on the seabed (causing the confusion).

25 August 1942
In Ladoga Lake.
Soviet submarine chasers MO-206, MO-213 and MO-215 seized the Finnish small guard motorboat E-32 (2 POW, later provided intelligence).

26 August 1942
Soviet motor torpedo boat TK-152 (D-3 class) torpedoed and sunk the German submarine chaser UJ-1216 Star XXII

28 August 1942
In Ladoga Lake.
Italian motor torpedo boats MAS-528 and MAS-527 attacked the Soviet gunboat Sheksna without success.
Italian sources wrongly claim the sinking of a barge.

1 September 1942
In Ladoga Lake.
Soviet submarine chasers MO-201, MO-213 and MO-215 engaged the Italian motor torpedo boat MAS-529. During a short artillery fight, suffered a direct hit with damage but successfully escaped at high-speed.
Finnish and German aircrafts later strafed the three soviet submarine chasers, causing light damages (6 WIA).

MO-215 has been preserved.

4 September 1942
In Onega Lake.
Finnish auxiliary gunboats Karhumaki, Ilmari and patrol boat VTV-1 engaged in combat with Soviet gunboat KL-12, later reinforced by battle BKA-22, BKA-41, KL-11 and KL-15 in two separate skirmishes.
The largest and only real direct surface engagement between the opposite sides in Onega Lake resulted in no damage or casualties on both sides.

29 September 1942
In Ladoga Lake
Italian motor torpedo boats MAS-528 and MAS-529 attacked the Soviet gunboat Lachta without success (no damage on both sides).
This was the fifth and last encounter between Italians and Soviets in Ladoga Lake.

10 October 1942
In Ladoga Lake.
The German flotilla of Siebel-class artillery ferries attempted to approach Suho Island but failed due bad weather.
The flotilla encountered the lonely Soviet submarine chaser MO-175, sinking her with gunfire (9 POW). The loss represent the only Soviet vessel sunk by enemy surface action in the Lake.

22 October 1942
Battle of Suho Island
In Ladoga Lake.
After the failed approach on 10 October, the German flotilla on the Lake accomplished a landing operation/raid against Suho Island.
Interestingly, Luftwaffe men operated the flotilla and the whole operation planned with the sole intention of motivate its existence before the incoming winter would freeze the Lake.
The flotilla included 7 infantry boats and 11 escort artillery ferries (heavy SF-11, SF-13, SF-15, SF-17, SF-21, SF-23, SF-25 and the light SF-12, SF-14, SF-22 and SF-26), the transport ferries (T-2, T-4 and T-6), a command-ferry and an hospital ferry and the Italian motor torpedo boat MAS-528, the landing party was formed by 70 soldiers.
The first immediate Soviet naval response was the reaction of small minesweeper Tszcz-100 (ex-Finnish tug seized after Winter War) alongside submarine chaser MO-171. Landed German troops successfully destroyed 2 artillery pieces of 100mm, but failed to destroy the third one, while the lighthouse was damaged but not fully conquered. Artillery ferry SF-22 suffered a direct hit from the survived coastal gun, and grounded: while attempting to rescue the grounded vessel SF-12, SF-13, SF-14 and SF-26 all grounded too because the Luftwaffe crewmembers did not possess proper hydro-geographic maps about the rocks.
Alerted, the Soviet Navy dispatched the gunboats Bira, Selemdzha and Nora with submarine chasers MO-198, MO-201, MO-205, MO-206, MO-214: by the time of their arrival, Germans recovered SF-14 but facing the stronger Soviet vessels and unable to save quickly the ferries, they scuttled heavy ferries SF-12, SF-13 and light ferry SF-26. Effectively, Germans lost these vessels due indirect Soviet action (their presence, with risk of seizures).
Interestingly, the Soviet Navy later recovered SF-26 (entered service as DB-51).
In clear disadvantage, the Germans retrieved the landed troops and escaped with SF-21 covering the retreat and opening fire against the survived artillery piece on the island.
The heavy artillery barge suddenly experienced leaks (unclear if by splinters or some failure) and the Germans abandoned her, partially scuttling the vessel.
While Bira and Selemdzha chased the main German flotilla, the sister-ship Nora encountered the abandoned SF-21 and sunk her with short-range 130mm shelling.
Soviet submarine chaser MO-214 seized the abandoned infantry boat I-6: originally towed to SF-21, the Soviet vessel fond it floating and undamaged.
During the chase of German Flotilla, gunboats Bira and Selemdzha suffered light damage (2 WIA on Selemdzha) and MO-198 suffered 1 WIA: the Germans escaped having suffered minor splinters on multiple units (1 KIA, 14 WIA). Soviet motor torpedo boats TK-61 and TK-81 attempted a torpedo attack but failed, while it is unknown the activity of the Italian MAS-528.
During the ground fighting on the Island, the Germans lost 22 KIA (5 counted as MIA) and 43 WIA (two died of wounds), while the Soviet garrison lost 7 KIA, 23 WIA (two died of wounds) and 6 POW. Germans paid a high price for their raid: the relatively low-profile operation, proved costly in human and material losses. The Battle of Suho currently recognized as a rare decisive naval battle won by the Soviet Navy.

Painting of the battle.

Photo of two of the enemy ferry barges abandoned by enemy.

5 November 1942
Soviet submarine ShCh-305 rammed and sunk on surface by Finnish submarine Vetehinen. Apparently, it was the only submarine-on-submarine sinking achieved with ramming! ShCh-305 previously scored no victories and Vetehinen scored scored one (merchant damaged on mine, victory achieved as minelayer unit).

18 November 1942
Finnish motor torpedo boats Syoksy, Vinha and Vihuri attacked the Soviet harbor of Moshchny Island, and Syoksy successfully torpedoed and sunk Soviet large gunboat Krasnoye Znamya (64 KIA). The Soviet ship raised, repaired and returned in service in 1944, but the sinking was still the most significant surface victory scored by the Finnish Navy against a Soviet target.

The temporary loss of the armed gunship still represented a good Finnish success: with five 130mm guns, Krasnoye Znamya was a quite powerful vessel.
Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 15 Oct 2013, 17:37

22 May 1943
German MFP F-189, F-188 and F-191 attacked and sunk with gunfire the Soviet submarine ShCh-408 with at least 6 direct hits. During the fight, the submarine engaged with the 45mm guns and damaged F-188. The recent recovery and study of the wreck allowed to understand how the submarine sunk entirely by the gunfire action: past claims in the following days from Finnish minelayers are discredited. Soviet fighters dispatched to try to help the submarine, but after losses (4 shot down), there were no more attempts.

Soviet painting of the last stand of the submarine: the submarine's crew honored for the behavior in fight.

23 May 1943
Battle of Seivasto
Soviet submarine chasers MO-207 and MO-303 surrounded and attacked by a large group of Finnish units: the patrol boats VMV-8, VMV-9, VMV-10, VMV-11, VMV-17 and the motor torpedo boats Hyoky, Hirmu, Hurja, Hyrsky and Haijy (motor torpedo boats however did not directly took part at the fight). The fight was fierce and later widely reported by propaganda of both sides: Finnish claimed the sinking of two Soviet vessels but actually, none of them sunk, even if MO-207 suffered damage (2 KIA, including captain, and 3 WIA). The Soviet boats manage to break the enemy encirclement after inflicting damage to the flagship VMV-17 (2 KIA, 1 WIA), towed away by another boat. After the breakthrough, MO-207 and MO-303 retreated with help by MO-124.
For years, Soviet sources believed the battle caused the sinking of Finnish motor torpedo boat Raju, but she sunk that same month for not-battle reason (collision).
Despite the wrong claims on both sides, the outcome was a Soviet successful escape with heavier damage inflicted to the enemy.

Soviet painting of the battle, with the MTB Raju claimed sunk in the engagement. Nowadays it is clear no vessel sunk during this battle but the Soviet boats escaped from the enemy superior numbers and damaged the flagship.

31 May 1943
Soviet submarine chasers MO-101, MO-121, MO-122 and MO-302 fought against Finnish motor torpedo boats Hyrksy, Hirmu, Jyske and Vihuri and patrol boats VMV-8, VMV-9, VMV-10 and VMV-11. During the fight Finnish boats Jyske and Vihuri collided and suffered some damage while Hyrsky damaged by Soviet fire.

2 June 1943
Soviet submarine chasers MO-413, MO-104, MO-105, MO-302, MO-101 and patrol boats SKA-172 and SKA-182 fought against a number of Finnish VMV patrols. During the fight MO-413 encircled by VMV patrols and saved by the counter-attack of other Soviet units. One soviet sailor WIA. Finnish coastal artillery also opened fire but without success.

Both SKA-172 and SKA-182 were former motor torpedo boats of D-3 class converted aspatrol boats.

As happened in 1942, Soviet motor torpedo boats laid offensive mines around Bolshoi Tyuters Island (under Finnish control).
Once more, it is impossible to assign victories to individual units and considered collective victories.
On 4 August 1943 sunk the German gunboat SAT-1 Ost(89 KIA). She was the same gunboat that engaged in battle Soviet destroyers in 1941.
On 15 August 1943 damaged the German minesweeper M-22. Interestingly, she suffered mine damage also in Arctic (submarine-laid mine) but repaired and moved to Baltic.

17 July 1943
Soviet submarine chasers MO-207 and MO-302 fought against Finnish motor torpedo boats Tarmo, Taisto and Tyrsky. Both Soviet vessels suffered some damages, while the lead boat of the Finnish suffered a single machinegun hit. Subsequently, MO-404 and MO-408 engaged VMM-9, VMV-10, VMV-12, VMV-17 and MO-404 had glasses pierced. Finnish motor torpedo boat Vasema acted independently and briefly took part at both actions.

19 August 1943
Soviet submarine chasers MO-124 and MO-203 fought against enemy boats VMV-8, VMV-9, VMV-11, VMV-17, motor torpedo boat Vasema and auxiliary minesweeping boat AV-138. Both soviet vessels suffered splinter damages (2 WIA).

23 August 1943
Two Soviet motor torpedo boats attacked the Finnish minelayer Riilahti that was on anti-submarine patrol. TK-94 (a veteran unit) scored a torpedo hit and sunk the Riilahti (24 KIA, including commander). Other crewmembers saved by Finnish patrol boat VMV-1. The victory was a good success for the Soviets because Riilahti was very active as multi-role vessel alongside her sister-ship.

Photo of the minelayer. Her sinking was an effective revenge for the sinking of Krasnoye Znamya. The Riilahti was the largest Finnish warship sunk by Soviet MTB

30 August 1943
Battle for Kronstadt channel
Soviet auxiliary minesweeper n°605 (of KM-class) clashed against a group of German Army motor-cutters on a special mission to lay mines on the Kronstadt-Leningrad sea channel. The Soviet small vessel sunk after a close-range fight (including launch of hand-grenades), suffering 3 KIA (including commander) and 6 saved.
Interestingly, the Soviets at the time underestimated the enemy mission and the effect of the small boat sacrifice: her own firing aimed at the water line of the enemies caused the subsequent sinking of 3 motor-cutters and damages at other two motor-cutters. The damages forced the Germans to abandon the mission and eventually scrap further attempts.

A boat of the class.

6 September 1943
Soviet motor torpedo boats TK-14, TK-44, TK-76 and TK-94 attacked German gunboats SAT-5 Robert Muller, SAT-15 Polaris and minesweeper M-16. Torpedoes missed the targets, but SAT-15 Polaris suffered damages due gunfire (2 WIA, including commander).

7 September 1943
Finnish motor torpedo boats Taisto, Tuima, Tuuli and Jyske accomplished a rare success in harassing raids against Soviet shipping lines to Moshchny Island.
At first, they engaged MO-124 and MO-207, inflicting 4 gunfire hits with damage to the latter (1 KIA, 1 WIA), later they found and sunk with torpedoes the tug K-12 and barge LPT-11.

Photo of preserved Tyrsky, of Taisto-class: the most advanced (entered service in 1943) Finnish motor torpedo boats, built in Finland after Italian design.

14 September 1943
German minesweeper M-22 sunk Soviet motor torpedo boat TK-95 during a failed torpedo attack (3 POW).

17 September 1943
On Ilmen Lake
Soviet motor cutter n°3 (BKM-70 type) of the local flotilla seized a fishing schooner (3 POW including a woman).

Likely the victory scored by the smallest-type of vessel in the Soviet Navy:

30 September 1943
On Ilmen Lake
Soviet patrol boats Ya-6 and Ya-7 (both of Ya-5 type) of the local flotilla seized two fishing schooners (4 POW).

2 October 1943
On Ilmen Lake
Soviet patrol boats Ya-6, Ya-7 and Ya-8 (all of Ya-5 type) of the local flotilla seized two fishing schooners (4 POW). The action involved direct boarding. In the lake Germans pressed local collaborationists to fish for their Army. This incident and the two previous cases on the lake represent a rare case of local repetitive successful raids achieved by Soviet surface units (excluding motor torpedo boats). Similar successes were rare for the main fleets, resulting only in occasional victories during surface engagements.

Photo of one Ya-5 type armed boats. Used in different roles.

21 October 1943
Finnish motor torpedo boats Tuisku, Tuuli, Tarmo, Jylhä, Jymy, Jyry and Jyske made inconclusive torpedo attacks and then engaged Soviet patrol boats.
No real damages inflicted nor received, but Tarmo and Jyry accidentally collided and damaged each other.

30 October 1943
Soviet motor torpedo boats engaged a group of German minesweepers, but the superior size and firepower of the enemy sunk TK-75, TK-134 and damaged TK-85 (all G-5 class). Only minesweeper M-16 suffered slight damage (a single machinegun hit).

2 November 1943
Soviet motor torpedo boats attacked a group of German minesweepers. In two rounds of battles, TK-146 and TK-106 sunk (both of D-3 class). Again, the German standard minesweepers proved to be a formidable opponent.
Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 24 Oct 2013, 15:20

14 May 1944
German motor torpedo boats S-132, S-79, S-91, S-135 and S-76 attacked Soviet submarine chasers MO-122, MO-213, MO-202, MO-401 and MO-413. During the battle, MO-122 sunk (9 KIA), while S-91 suffered 2 WIA. Advantage in size and quality made for a different outcome, compared to the previous skirmishes with Finnish boats.

16 May 1944
Soviet submarine chasers MO-101 and MO-313 fought against German motor torpedo boats S-90, S-39, S-79, S-91, S-97, S-114, S-132 and S-135.
Later MO-104, MO-105, MO-107 and MO-207 joined battle. MO-313 suffered 5 WIA after enemy fire, while S-132 suffered 1 WIA due accidental explosion.

26 May 1944
Soviet submarine chasers MO-302, MO-104 and MO-313 fought against German motor torpedo boats S-91, S-97, S-114, and S-135.
During the battle, MO-302 suffered damage (commander Lt.Sidorenko and 2 other sailors KIA, 11 WIA), while S-97 suffered a direct 45mm hit with heavy damages (3 KIA, 1 WIA) and S-114 suffered light damages (1 WIA).

Painting of MO-302 from

30 May 1944
Skirmish between Soviet motor torpedo boats attacking a group of four German minesweepers (including M-37). Germans suffered 1 WIA.
Interestingly, this is the last active participation of Soviet motor torpedo boat TK-94, an active unit.

5 June 1944
Soviet motor torpedo boats finally scored a torpedo victory in Baltic against the large German minesweepers.
An attack wave composed by TK-15, TK-35, TK-45, TK-55 and TK-65 torpedoed and sunk minesweeper M-37 (collective victory).
Soviets paid for their success with the loss of TK-46, sunk by other German minesweepers (2 KIA, 8 POW).

German minesweepers of "1935" series (as M-37) could deal with enemy boats very well: Soviet Navy lost a number of MTBs against them because of their main 105mm gun.

8 June 1944
Skirmish between German minesweepers and Soviet motor torpedo boats leave 3 WIA among the German crews.
Claim of loss of two Soviet motor torpedo boat sunk is incorrect.

13 June 1944
On Lake Peipus.
Soviet gunboats BK-213 and BK-322 attacked a group of 4 German auxiliary minesweepers. During the fight, KM-19 damaged by direct hit with 3 WIA and forced to escape with other two units but KM-08 was left behind and suffered multiple direct hits until BK-213 performed a ramming attack and pushed the boat on rocks. Germans suffered 5 KIA, 4 POW (two died of wounds) and 2 survivors escaped capture hiding on shore. BK-213 suffered light damage due ramming attack (2 WIA).
German aircrafts later strafed the boat to prevent Soviets recovering her. Interestingly, it is the only known proper German Kriegsmarine military boat lost by direct combat action from a Soviet surface combatant (excluding motor torpedo boats). BK-213 also known for a successful action against a small Finnish convoy in 1941.

Painting of the ramming. BK-213 was the same unit involved in 1941 in another successful ramming attack against a group of Finnish barges and motorboats.

17 June 1944
Finnish patrol boats VMV-13, VMV-16 and motor torpedo boat Vasama (ex-Soviet boat) damaged and seized the Soviet motor torpedo boat TK-51.
Vasama suffered 1 WIA, possibly by friendly fire from the VMV boats, while seizing TK-51.

20 June 1944
I Battle of Nerva Island
With the Soviet offensive on the islands of Vyborg Bay, the Kriesgmarine dispatched destroyer-sized warships for the first time since the beginning of the war in Baltic.
Elbing-class torpedo boats (or “fleet torpedo boats”) were on match to Western destroyer in terms of size and gunnery: T-30 and T-31 initiated “Operation Drosselfang”, an offensive patrol to destroy as much as possible Soviet light boats operating in the Bay.
Soviet Navy operated 14 motor torpedo boats, 10 patrol boats/submarine chasers (MO-4 class) and 4 small gunboats.
The Germans begun shelling the Soviet formation, causing light damages on submarine chaser MO-106 (captain KIA) and on small gunboats BK-503 and BK-505.
Soviets counter-attacked with waves of motor torpedo boats, aiming for the larger opponents: the first attack repulsed with damages on TK-53, TK-63 (heavy damages, 3 hits) and TK-153. A second attack wave also repelled with damages on TK-101 and TK-103.
The third attack wave succeeded: TK-37 and TK-60 split and attacked on both sides the German torpedo boat T-31 launching their torpedoes at the same time.
It is impossible to define which boat was victorious but T-31 sunk as consequence of their attack (76 KIA, 8 POW).
While pulling back, the motor torpedo boats strafed also T-30, inflicting light damages (1 KIA, 13 WIA).
The outcome of the Battle was the most significant Soviet Naval victory of WW2! With the loss of a relatively strong enemy warship by direct action.
While wartime reports of T-30 claimed multiple attacking motor torpedo boats sunk, this was false and no Soviet vessel sunk during the battle.

Painting of the battle (wrongly portray T-31 with two guns in frontal position). During one of the most important and large naval battles of Baltic, the Soviets used a number of boats and crafts of different type, making many efforts to attack the large and powerful torpedo boat (destroyer-sized) of Elbing class, resulting in the sinking of the T-31 and the failure of the German operation. It was also the first of two German attempts to operate large ships in the Bay of Vyborg.

30 June 1944
German scored a small revenge for T-31 loss, during a fight between German minesweepers against Soviet motor torpedo boats.
Two separate clashes caused the sinking of TK-43, TK-63, TK-161 and damages to TK-14, with no German damage or casualties.

4-5 July 1944
Battle of Vyborg Bay.
In coordination with the Red Army ground offensive, intense naval fighting occurred in the Bay of Vyborg for two consecutive days.
Soviet submarine chasers MO-512, MO-520, MO-522, MO-524 (of BMO-class), MO-101, MO-104 and motor torpedo boats TK-10, TK-16, TK-26, TK-36, TK-56, TK-166, TK-196, TK-197 fought against a mixed formation of Finnish warships including the gunboats Hamenmaa, Uusimaa and Turunmaa.
No Soviet torpedo achieved hit, and Finnish ships reported no damage by Soviet naval gunfire, while submarine chaser MO-524 and motor torpedo boats TK-10, TK-16, TK-56, TK-166, and TK-197 suffered light damages (combined losses: 1 KIA and 17 WIA).
While the surface engagement was not successful, Soviet aircrafts enjoyed air superiority and attacked in waves supported by ground 85mm and 45mm artillery installed on the captured islands.
Gunboat Hamenmaa suffered damages alongside Uusimaa (2 ground artillery hits, captain KIA), Turunmaa (two hits by Il-2 attack aircrafts) and supporting patrol boats VMV-10 and VMV-11.
After the damages and casualties (combined losses: 13 KIA, 15 WIA), the Finnish vessels retreated.
The following day, Finland Navy dispatched auxiliary gunboats Aunus and Viena escorted by VMV-5, VMV-14, VMV-15, VMV-16: Aunus suffered 3 hits by 100kg bombs and suffered heavy damages alongside Viena (combined losses: 10 KIA, 13 WIA) and the Finnish formation retreated to save the gunboats. German minesweeper M-15 (departed to help the damaged gunboats) suffered one aerial bomb hit with damages.

Photo of gunboat Turunmaa. The clash ended with a soviet success thanks the air superiority.

15 July 1944
German submarine U-679 had a gunfire battle against the submarine chasers MO-104 and MO-105 and motor torpedo boats TK-47 and TK-57. During the battle, a torpedo fired by TK-57 barely missed the target and the U-679 damaged by gunfire with five hits and 8 WIA. Germans mistakenly claimed to have damaged a soviet unit, but none of them suffered damage.

16 July 1944
II Battle of Nerva Island
After the defeat during the I Battle of Nerva Island, the Kriegsmarine attempted a second similar operation with the “Operation Buckenwald”.
The Elbing-class fleet torpedo boat T-30, and the smaller T-8 and T-10 engaged Soviet submarine chasers MO-112, MO-121 and patrol boat SKA-069.
Submarine chaser MO-121 suffered damages (8 WIA, two later died), and MO-112 suffered splinter light damages but the German fire achieved nothing else.
Differently from the first battle, the Soviet Navy dispatched the Soviet torpedo boat Tucha and minesweepers T-211 Rym and T-217 Kontr-Admiral Yurkovskiy as counter-offensive.
This proved to be a rare gunnery duel between (by Western rating) German and Soviet “torpedo boats” (even if Soviet Navy classified its large torpedo boats as “Guard boats”).
No hits or casualties suffered, during this encounter: German warships retreated after T-10 experienced engine failures and T-8 had gun failures.
The battle was the last German attempt to engage the Soviet Navy in the Gulf of Finland with relatively large warships.

24 July 1944
Submarine U-479 lightly damaged by unidentified Soviet submarine chasers with depth charges

30 July 1944
German submarine U-250 torpedoed and sunk Soviet submarine chaser MO-105. Shortly after this attack, other Soviet vessels begun chasing the submarine. Eventually Soviet submarine chaser MO-103 identified attacked and sunk with depth charges U-250 (6 POW, including Captain). Interestingly, the wreck sunk in low waters and Germans made attempts (artillery shelling, depth charges) to destroy the wreck/disrupt recovery attempt, without success. On the wreck, the Soviet Navy recovered the newest models of advanced German acoustic torpedoes (GNAT).

It was the only confirmed sinking of enemy submarine with depth charges in Baltic (and according the modern evaluation, one of the two ones achieved by Soviets in the whole conflict).

Photo of the raised wreck of U-250: the sinking provided valuable information to the Soviet Navy.

1 August 1944
Submarine U-348 lightly damaged by patrol boats SKA-83 and SKA-103 and submarine chaser MO-108 with depth charges.

As happened in the previous years, Soviet motor torpedo boats laid offensive fields of mines, and their successes considered collective victories.
Once more, it is impossible to assign victories to individual boats, because of small size of fields and closeness.
On 10 August, sunk German auxiliary minesweeper R-70
On 28 August, sunk German gunboats (modified MFP barges) AF-35 and AF-50.

Interestingly, mine warfare in August 1943 marked by the large loss of three German Elbing-class torpedo boats: T-22, T-30 and T-32, all sunk on their own mines on 18 August 1944 with large loss of lives (including POWs captured by Soviets). At first Germans even believed such loss caused by a Soviet motor torpedo boats attack, but there was no Soviet action. Losing three large vessels (in addition to the previous loss of T-31) marked the end of Kriegsmarine attempts to operate relatively large warships in the Gulf of Finland.

26 August 1944
German submarine U-745 torpedoed and sunk Soviet auxiliary minesweeper T-45
After the attack, patrol boat SKA-292 attacked with depth charges and caused light damages to submarine U-745

1 September 1944
German motor torpedo boats attempted to destroy the wreck of submarine U-250 to avoid Soviet recovering. Soviet submarine chaser MO-312 opened fire and chased away the group. On the way back, German motor torpedo boat S-80 sunk on drifting mine (5 MIA) of difficult identification (floating away from one of the many fields, including German, Finnish and Soviet ones).

18 November 1944
I Battle of Sorve Cape
The Soviet offensive in the Gulf of Riga brought to the first of two naval engagements between middle-size warships.
First stage of the first battle included a skirmish between opposing motor torpedo boats, including the German S-65, S-68, S-69 and S-116.
S-68 suffered damages by Soviet gunfire, while S-116 damaged by La-5 plane (1 KIA). Soviet motor torpedo boat TK-801 damaged, while TK-807 temporarily grounded after collision with TK-801.
The second stage of the battle focused on a gunnery duel between German minesweepers M-328 (backed by four R-boats) against the Soviet gunboats Volga, Bureya, Zeya and Fugas-class minesweepers. During the battle, Soviet minesweeper T-207 Shpil received a 105mm hit with damage, German and Western sources commonly inflate this hit and describe the sinking of a Fugas-class minesweeper, but this is a mistake. The fight ended with a draw and mutual retreat.

Painting of the Soviet gunboats: the backbone of a number of medium size operations in Baltic and Ladoga Lake, taking part in some battles (taking place of larger destroyers, too vulnerable to mines and air attacks). Ironically the hulls built before the war in Germany: the Soviet Navy then converted them in gunboats.

21 November 1944
II Battle of Sorve Cape
A second heavier battle around Sorve Cape once again split in different phases.
On the morning, Soviet motor torpedo boats TK-96, TK-136, TK-195, TK-197 and TK-198 attacked the German minesweeper M-328 and patrol ships V-5713 Sudetenland, V-302 Bremen.
No torpedo hit, TK-96 and TK-198 suffered light damages by enemy gunfire.
Many sources wrongly believe Soviet Bira-class gunboats (the same Volga, Bureya and Zeya) fought during the second afternoon battle but this is a mistake.
In reality, Soviets dispatched the small gunboats BK-503, BK-513, BK-515, BK-518 engaging a gunnery battle with German minesweeper M-328, M-423 (recently joined the group) and patrol ships V-5713 Sudetenland, V-302 Bremen. V-5713 Sudetenland suffered a direct 75mm hit; opening a leak on the hull and V-302 Bremen towed her away forcing the Germans to retreat.
BK-518 suffered 3 WIA without real damage.

Photo of BK-506. The project161 (also known as MBK) developed and realized during the war in besieged Leningrad, to provide larger and more armed version of projects 1125/1124 concept. This battle was their peak of success, defeating stronger and larger enemies.

27 November 1944
The recent discovery of wreck of German submarine U-479 west to Osmussari Island allow after decades to identify the cause of sinking.
Damage and location make clear she sunk on mine: it is possible (considering the place) she stuck an old 1941 mine of the defensive barrages laid by Soviet minelayers Marti and Ural. However it is likely she sunk on a drifting mine from the huge own German barrages laid in following years.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 11879
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 06 Dec 2009, 23:17
Post 25 Oct 2013, 14:13
Interesting, thanks.
Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 25 Oct 2013, 18:31
Interesting, thanks.

Thank you for leaving a comment ^^
BTW every kind of question, curiosity for details etc... it's very welcome.
Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 05 Mar 2014, 16:48

4 or 6 January 1945
Soviet submarine S-4 went missing and (by 2018) the wreck is undiscovered. She was the only Soviet submarine battle loss in Baltic for1945.
Interestingly there are two German similar reports: German torpedo boat T-3 claimed ramming a submarine on the 4/6 January night.
German torpedo boat T-33 claimed ramming a submarine on the 6/7 January night.
Once confirmed, the sinking would be the only case of major warships (large torpedo boats) sinking a Submarine in Baltic.

Photo of torpedo boat T-1, sister ship of T-4.

9 January 1945
The recent discovery of wreck of German submarine U-679 allow after decades to identify the cause of sinking.
The sinking point match exactly with the mine field laid by Soviet minesweepers T-352, T-354, T-370, T-371 and T-372. However the damage on the hull appears too heavy for the kind of mines used, it is possible she sunk on a heavier drifting mine from the western barrage laid by T-352, T-354, T-370, T-371 and T-372, or a German own drifting mine.

Photo of Tszcz-352. Soviet minesweepers of MT class designed and built in Leningrad during the war.

18 February 1945
Many sources credited Soviet motor torpedo boat TK-158 with the sinking of German merchant Tolina (1923 GTR), modern research established she sunk by Soviet aircraft.

18 March 1945
A battle between German and Soviet motor torpedo boats caused the sinking of TK-66 and damage to TK-195.

27 March 1945
A second battle between German and Soviet motor torpedo boats: S-64, S-69 and S-81 attacked the Soviet boats TK-16, TK-60, TK-136, TK-166, TK-196 and TK-200. As happened during the earlier battle, Soviet D-3 boats suffered a disadvantage in terms of size and firepower, compared to the German boats.
S-64 sunk TK-166 with gunfire, while S-81 boarded and scuttled TK-196. From the two lost boats, Germans took 14 POW. TK-16, TK-60, TK-136 and TK-200 suffered multiple damages and retreated. The only loss for Germans was a single sailor WIA.

Photo of S-81. German Schnellboote of large size compared to Soviet D-3 class.

15 April 1945
Raid in Danzig Bay
Latest losses against German S-boats made clear the large need for the Soviet Navy to engage in battle the newest motor torpedo boats of project123bis class.
Only four vessels entered in service by this stage of war: TK-131 and TK-141 sailed for a bold and rare strike for the enemy-controlled Danzig Bay.
The two Soviet boats aimed for the German destroyer Z-34, scoring one torpedo hit and inflicting heavy damages, before retreating without own damages.
The raid was a good success for the Soviets, Z-34 did not sunk and retained enough engine power to sail independently to west, but the effective damage put her out of service until the end of the war.
After the war, Z-34 assigned to the United States but she deemed unworthy for repair.
The attack represented the best Soviet surface victory against a major surface warship, alongside the full sinking of T-31 on 1944.

Painting of the attack

Photo of destroyer Z-34. A modern and late-production destroyer, she was larger and more heavily armed than most of Allied destroyer.

Photo of TK-131. After the war it will be mass-produced (as project123K) and scored victories against the Kuomintang Navy (including a former American escort destroyer sunk) in the last phase of the Chinese Civil War. TK-131 has been preserved as a memorial.

16 April 1945
Soviet small gunboats BK-200, BK-201, BK-202, BK-204, BK-205, BK-206, BK-212, BK-213 and BK-214 attacked a small German convoy and claimed the sinking off 2 barges and 2 other boats. Considering the loss of German KTB (War Diaries) there is no confirmation, with current research ongoing on secondary sources (British Ultra files etc.). German landing craft PiLb-554 reportedly sunk by mine that very night, maybe she was actually sunk in battle.

21 April 1945
Soviet motor torpedo boats, including TK-55, T-135 and TK-269 attempted to attack a convoy of merchants close to Hela, but torpedoes missed. Also attacked German torpedo boat T-108, that was escorting the convoy and returned fire (no damage on both side).

25 April 1945
German merchant Emili Sauber (2475 GTR) torpedoed and sunk by soviet motor torpedo boat TK-133 (one of the few newest project123bis). At the time, the merchant was empty because planned to transport civilians and military personnel to west. Many sources argued she sunk instead by air attack, but latest Russian research based on German records and Ultra files, describe how indeed the merchant previously received some damage by air attack but remained operative until attacked and torpedoed by TK-133.

Photo of the Emili Sauber: she was the only enemy merchant sunk by a Soviet MTB in Baltic Sea.

26 April 1945
Many sources credited Soviet motor torpedo boats TK-131 and TK-135 for the sinking of German MFP landing craft F-248. Currently the loss re-evaluated as caused by aircrafts.

On the same day, a surface fight occurred at Pillau. Soviet small gunboats claimed the sinking of one enemy barge and damages to a second vessel.
Modern research out of Ultra intercepted files make no confirmation, and German own vessels (2 unidentified MFP landing crafts and 2 unidentified KFK auxiliary patrol boats) claimed the sinking of one Soviet motor torpedo boat. Soviets suffered light damages on submarine chasers SK-508 and SK-513 (BMO type). Soviet motor torpedo boats engaged in the landing of troops and TK-802 accidentally grounded and was lost: it is likely the Germans witnessed the grounding and took claim of it, but Soviet description of the event stressed it was not due enemy action.

6 May 1945
Many sources credited Soviet motor torpedo boats for the loss of German landing craft PiLB-43I. Modern research credit the victory to aircrafts.

On the same day.
A group of Soviet submarine chasers including MO-590, MO-591, MO-592, MO-593 and MO-595 encountered a group of far more powerful German warships.
The German group included destroyers Z-6, Z-10, Z-14, Z-20, Z-25 and torpedo boats T-17, T-19, T-23, T-28, T-35. This casual meeting was a rare encounter between Soviet and a large group of enemy major ships. Soviet boats outgunned and outnumbered by the enemy escaped total destruction due Germans intention to retreat west with the increased risk of Allied air attacks and incoming surrender.
MO-595 received fire from the torpedo boat T-28 and sunk (12 KIA, 8 POW).

9 May 1945
The official day of surrender of Nazi Germany for Soviet Union (Victory Day: it was 8 May for the Allied due time-difference).
Soviet motor torpedo boat TK-93 briefly engaged German motor torpedo boats and got damages, while a soviet aircraft damaged the motor torpedo boat S-216 (1 KIA, 13 WIA).

On the same day there was the last naval fight occurred on the European front of WW2.
Convoy Rota
With the end of the War, the Kriegsmarine made a series of convoy to remove as much as military personal and local collaborationists from the Courland Pocket.
Due bad weather, some vessels of the Fifth convoy scattered and left unprotected by German escort ships.
Ships included armed tugs Rota (lead-ship, 300 passengers), Una (100 passengers) and Strelnieks (150 passengers), two towed barges and two schooners (all carrying other people).
Soviet ships attacking the group: submarine chasers MO-121, MO-122, MO-131, MO-204, patrol boats (former D-3 motor torpedo boats) SKA-175, SKA-176, SKA-177, SKA-183, SKA-192, and the BMO-type submarine chasers MO-537, MO-540, MO-541, MO-542, MO-543, MO-545 and MO-546.
Strelnieks had engine troubles, as soon as she saw Soviet boats, the tug opened fire but sunk after she was hit back.
After this first loss, tug Rota stopped, threw arms overboard and surrendered. Only the third tug, Una, managed to escape.
Soviet boats immediately scuttled one towed barge and two schooners, while retaining the second barge, n°833.
The total number of prisoners is uncertain (between 670 or up 800): some were spread on the Soviet boats because there was no more space left on the captured Rota and n°833.
This surface engagement was the largest Soviet surface success for number of enemy boats directly sunk/seized accomplished by Baltic Fleet small boats (excluding motor torpedo boats).
Old Soviet sources mistakenly describe n°833 as a MFP landing craft, but she was an ex-civilian barge. Also tug Rota sometimes is labelled just with the “C” letter.
Technically, Soviet sources claim the sinking of 6 tugs, 2 schooners, 2 barges and 2 lighters, in addition to the seizure of 1 tug and 1 barge.
It is possible that other enemy vessels suffered similar attacks, but there are scarce details due the end of war.

Photo of a BMO-class (officially project194) submarine chaser/patrol boat after the war.
Soviet cogitations: 1
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 31 Mar 2015, 03:03
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 31 Mar 2015, 19:32
This is an amazing report, may I ask your sources please? I'm going to write an article about Italian MAS on Ladoga lake with the real facts explained and I'd like to give some precise sources.

Best regards

Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 19 Apr 2015, 22:09

90% of works came from. ... +German%22
The original Kriegsmarine war diaries translated in english.

Most of works has been done thanks long discussion from this forum: ... &start=645
There are 44 pages of debate, with multiple links to different sources.

Finnish users contributed providing original finnish war diaries.

Russian users contributed providing checks with "Chronicles of Great patriotic war". That's an huge russian encyclopedia.

Much more material came from
That has scores of discussions, and a number of russian authors provides direct question&answers with original documents and sources.
(the best and most famous there is Miroslav Morozov - aka "Botik Petra Velikogo".

I am italian myself, regarding the MAS actions on Ladoga Lake, i've wrote more detailed reports here on an italian site: ... topic=2421 ... topic=3839

Regarding the Lagoda Lake, the 4 main naval skirmishes that in most sites just copy very old and unproved italian (fascist) claims, in the end the MAS torpedoed or sunk nothing: Ladoga Lake isn't suited for torpedo attacks especially close the coast due shallow waters and torpedoes exploded underwater.
Additionally to the night hour of the attacks and the usual behavior of making overclaims (made by all the Navies), it resulted in the old mistakes.

In the end the MAS activity in the lake resulted in 2 own units damanged-in-action, causing only 1 Soviet gunboat lightly damaged (one wounded) in the first action.

You can also see the fate of all the Bira-class gunboats here (Italian sources claimed one sunk in action, but never occurred).

You could also find interesting the page about the Black Sea actions only by italians: ... 2413&st=40
Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 02 Mar 2016, 11:21
Added at beginning of 1942 brief list of enemy ships lost by mines laid by Soviet motor torpedo boats in Gulf of Finland.
Almost impossible to identify the minelayer-boats (multiple missions, overlapping fields, etc...)
Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 02 Jan 2017, 21:03
Updated with small section for victims of Soviet mines laid in Gulf of Finland during summer 1943.
Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 18 Nov 2017, 11:55
Updates some minor successes scored with mines on 1941 and 1944. Few corrections.
Updated two naval actions in late 1945.
Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 17 Mar 2018, 10:36
Edited the Soviet composition of forces for the Battle of Viipuri Bay and II Battle of Sorve (both in 1944).
I should also remind that the action on 6 May 1945 received a big edit, previously.
Soviet cogitations: 284
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 Feb 2010, 11:57
Resident Admiral
Post 21 May 2018, 13:05
UPDATES: Some important one. Refined some details of Battle of Suho (1942).
Added few successful confirmed Soviet surface attacks in Ilmen Lake (September 1943) with seizure of fishing boats.
Added entry for loss of U-boat U-479 (last entry for 1944 section): discovery of wreck indicate possible Soviet mine as cause (old Marti mines or drifting).
Fixed entry for loss of U-boat U-679 (early 1945 section): discovery of wreck indicate possible Soviet mine as cause (on lines of newly laid fields by MT-class): previously believed sunk by a submarine chaser MO-4 type.
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