, the largest Battleship ever built, had 18 inch naval guns. It's sometimes mistakenly said that Yamato would never have fired it's main guns. But they certainly were put in plenty of use in the Battle off Samar, where several Allied ships were destroyed. At least USS Gambier Bay and USS Hoel took some serious punishment from Yamato and USS Johnston can very likely be added to the list.
Yamato Naval Battles
This page is a collage of all the fights that Yamato took part in. Quite ironically, even Yamato-class vessels were the most powerful warhips, they didn't really participate that much in fighting. Yamato and Musashi were enormous oil-hogs and were kept at port in Kure the most of the time, since the Japanese wanted to save them for a decisive battle that never came.
However, Yamato did take part in many operations and was a fearsome weapon for more than three years. Have a look at the important locations during Yamato's career and make sure you don't miss the action photos from the Battle off Samar, some of those shells may very well be fired from Yamato!
Battleship Yamato's main guns
Yamato's nine main guns, mounted in three turrets, were the largest to ever crown a warship. They fired shells 18 inches (46 cm) in diameter, and each armour piercing shell weighed as much as a small car. They also could strike at an unprecedented range of 25 miles (40 km). Ironically, while designed to sink enemy battleships, they were never tested against one. Yamato fought allied ships only once, in the battle of Samar Gulf, where she sank one American escort and one destroyer with other ships form the Japanese force A. For her final mission, the imperial navy swapped out some armor piercing projectiles for incendiary, anti-aircraft shells, but Yamato's awesome guns were still ill equipped for aerial warfare.
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