WW2 and History Collection / Weapons and Equipment / Ships / Country J / Japan / Submarines / Kaidai Type KDIIIa-class / I-53 

March 27th, 2016

Japanese Empire

I-53 (I) / I-153

Kure Kaigun Kosho
Laid down:
April 1st, 1924
August 5th, 1925
March 30th, 1927
November 20th, 1945
May 1946 (Iyo-nada)

August 5th, 1924, launching of I-53

The Teikoku Nihon Kaigun (TNK - Imperial Japanese Navy) submarine I-153 was a submarine form the Kaidai Type KD3a-class submarines. At first this submarine was taken into service as the I-53.

I-53 in open sea

The keel for the I-53 (I) was layed down on April 1st, 1924 at the yard of Kure as Submarine No. 64. The ship was named the I-53 on November 1st, 1924. The vessel was launched on August 5th, 1924. On the 20th of that same month, Sho-sa (Lieutenant Commander) Takasu Sanjiro was given command of the final construction.

I-53 (I) was completed on March 30th, 1927 and placed under the command of the Kure Chinjufu (Kure Naval District) under the command of  Chu-sa (Navy Captain) Takasu Sanjiro, who was promoted on December 1st, 1926.

After being taken into service, I-53 was stationed at Kure and was, together with I-54 and I-58, transferred to 18 Sensuikantai (18th Japanese Submarine Division) on December 1st, 1927. That same day, command was given to Sho-sa (Lieutenant Commander) Sato Tsutomu.. The years that follow, command regularly passes to another submarine commander, until command passes to Sho-sa (Lieutenant Commander) Nakamura Shozo on January 31st, 1941. In between these command changes, the ship was damaged during fleet exercises on May 10th, 1936, when she collided with I-155 at Kyushu.

December 1st, 1941, the ships division was send to Samah, China to be used as escort in Operation E, the Invasion of Malaya. The ship took a position North of the island Anambas. On December 20th, 1941, I-53 (I) was on position in Camranh Bay from where it left for patrolling Northwest of Java on January 6th, 1942. Delay was caused due to damage by heavy sea.

During the Japanese invasion of the Dutch East Indies, I-53 sailed near Java as protection for the invasion fleet. Doing this, I-53 sunk the Dutch Benzinetransportschip 2 (Ben 2, m.s. Moesi) on February 27th 1942 and the British s.s. City of Manchester on February 28th, 1942. March 16th, 1942 I-53 left the area and sailed for Kure.

As from March 25th, 1942 the ship was relieved from operational service and assigned as a training ship. She was damaged on May 6th, 1942 when she collided with the Submarine Tender Chogei. On May 20th, 1942, I-53 was renamed to I-153. After participating in training and experiments with camouflage patterns, I-153 was put in reserve on January 31st, 1944 and officially deleted from the Japanese Navy list on November 20th, 1945. In May 1946 the ship was sunk in the Ido Nada and was raised and scrapped in 1948.

By I-53/I-153 sunken ships:

February 27th, 1942
m.s. Moesi (Benzinetransportschip 2), Royal Dutch Navy
February 28th, 1942
s.s. City of Manchester, Ellerman Lines Ltd. (UK)

The on February 27th, 1942 by I-53 sunk ms Moesi

The on February 28th, 1942 sunken ss City of Manchester

Commanding Officers:

Sho-sa (Lieutenant 1st Class) Sanjiro, Takasu No image available
August 20th, 1926
Sho-sa Tsutomu, Sato
December 1st, 1927
(Image: as Rear Admiral)
Sho-sa Rokuzo, Hirano No image available
December 10th, 1928
Sho-sa Kiyosuke, Hayashi No image available
December 1st, 1930
Sho-sa Noboru, Ishizaki No image available
December 1st, 1931
Sho-sa Yoshiro, Kato No image available
November 15th, 1932
Sho-sa Katsuji, Minamizato No image available
November 15th, 1934
Sho-sa Katsuji, Nanri No image available
December 15th, 1934
Sho-sa Shimizu, Taro No image available
November 15th, 1935
Sho-sa Mizohata, Sadaichi No image available
December 1st, 1936
Sho-sa Narahara, Shogo No image available
November 1st, 1937
Sho-sa Takao, Sano No image available
December 1st, 1938
Sho-sa Otoji, Uno No image available
March 19th, 1938
Sho-sa Ankyu, Eitaro No image available
July 30th, 1938
Sho-sa Tatsushi, Irie No image available
November 20th, 1939
Sho-sa Nakamura, Shozo No image available
January 31st, 1941
Sho-sa Izutsu, Monshiro No image available
May 24th, 1942
Sho-sa Shimizu, Tsuruzo No image available
December 15th, 1942
Sho-sa Wada, Mutsuo No image available
May 25th, 1943
Sho-sa Imoto, Masayuki No image available June 25th, 1943
Chu-sa (Commander) Hori, Takeo No image available January 10th, 1944

Subordinated to:
March 30th, 1927:
Kure Chinjufu (Kure Naval District)
May 1st, 1927:
17 Sensuikantai, Submarine Squadron 2
September 5th, 1927:
18 Sensuikantai, Submarine Squadron 2
December 1st, 1930
18 Sensuikantai, Kure Local Defence Squadron
December 1st, 1931:
18 Sensuikantai, Submarine Squadron 2
November 15th, 1933:
18 Sensuikantai, Kure Local Defence Squadron
December 11th, 1933:
18 Sensuikantai, Kure Keibi Sentai (Kure Naval Guard Squadron)
February 1st, 1934:
18 Sensuikantai, Submarine Squadron 2
November 15th, 1935:
18 Sensuikantai, Submarine Squadron 1
November 15th, 1939
18 Sensuikantai, Submarine Squadron 4
March 10th, 1942:
18 Sensuikantai, Kure Keibi Sentai (Kure Naval Guard Squadron)
August 7th, 1942:
18 Sensuikantai, Submarine Squadron 4
December 1st, 1943:
18 Sensuikantai, Kure Submarine Squadron
January 31st, 1944:
4th Reserves, Kure

I-53 / I-153
Kaidai Type KDIIIa-class submarine
Imperial Japanese Navy
1635 BRT (Standard)
1800 BRT (Surfaced)
2300 BRT (Submerged)
Kure Kaigun Kosho
Length: 100,61 m
Width: 7,98 m
Draught: 4,83 m
2 Kampon Diesels 6800 bhp / 2 Electric Engines 1800 shp
2 shafts
20 knots (Surfaced)
8 knots (Submerged)
19.000 km (10.000 nm) at 10 knots surfaced
11.400 km (6130 nm) at 16 knots surfaced
170 km (90 nm) at 3 knots submerged
Diving Depth:
60 m (operational)
1x 4.7'/45 Dual Purpose gun (1 - 120/45 11-shiki)
8x 533mm (21') Torpedo Tubes (6 bow, 2 stern)
16 Torpedoes

Text: Wilco Vermeer
Fighting Ships of the World (Retrieved, December 6th, 2014)
- Imperial Japanese Navy Page (Retrieved, November 25th, 2014)
- Kaidai Type Submarines / Wikipedia (Retrieved, December 6th, 2014)
- Steve's IJN Submarine Page (Retrieved, November 25th, 2014)
- The Pacific War Online Encyclopedia (Retrieved, December 6th, 2014)
© WW2 History Collection, Wilco Vermeer, 2015