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Kaga was completeted as a fast battlecruiser just weeks before the Washington treaty of 1922. Under the terms set forth in that treaty, Kaga was to be scrapped.  However after the Tokyo earthquake of 1923 which destroyed Akagi's sister ship, Amagi, Kaga was to be converted into a carrier as a semi-sister to Akagi. Like the USN's Lexington & Saratoga, and the RN's Furious, Kaga emerged in 1928 as a huge carrier. Featuring a 2 level hangar deck and massive amunition stores. Working closely with Akagi,  Kaga served as second-in-command of the 1st air fleet, Under Chiuchi Nagumo. After Peral Harbor, Kaga participated in the Indian Ocean raids, and in the bombing of Port Darwin. On June 5, 1942, Kaga was smashed by american "Dauntless" dive-bombers, and scuttled the next day.

Kaga's Specifications

Specifications as completed

Displacement: 33,161 tons trial

Dimensions: 754.5 x 97 x 26 feet/230 x 29.5 x 8 meters

Extreme Dimensions: 782.5 x 100 x 26 feet/238.5 x 30.5 x 8 meters

Propulsion: Steam turbines, 12 boilers, 4 shafts, 91,000 shp, 27.5 knots

Crew: 1340

Armor: 11 inch belt

Armament: 2 dual, 6 single 8/50 SP, 6 dual 4.7/45 DP, 22 MG

Aircraft: 60

Specifications following reconstruction

Displacement: 43,650 tons full load

Dimensions: 788.5 x 106.5 x 31 feet/240.3 x 32.5 x 9.5 meters

Extreme Dimensions: 812.5 x 106.5 x 31 feet/247.6 x 32.5 x 9.5 meters Propulsion: Steam turbines, 8 boilers, 4 shafts, 127,400 shp, 28.34 knots

Crew: 2016

Armor: 11 inch belt

Armament: 10 single 8/50 SP, 8 dual 5/40 DP, 22 25 mm AA

Aircraft: 81 (90 maximum)

A fast battleship cancelled under the Washington Treaty and reordered as a carrier to replace Amagi. She was Japan's second large carrier became a semi-sister to Akagi.

Hull essentially unchanged. Completely reworked from the main deck up, with dual-level hangar. Had short flying-off decks at the bow, opening directly from the hangars, in addition to the main flight deck. Completed without an island. She mounted a cruiser's gun armament, partially in turrets and partially in casemates. The short flying-off decks were nearly useless. Boiler exhausts were run aft to the stern beside the hangar deck. Limited by relatively slow speed.

A small island was installed on the starboard side prior to reconstruction.

Underwent a major reconstruction to remove the forward flying decks, improve speed, and modernize the ship. The forward flying decks were eliminated, the hangars extended forward, and the main flight deck lengthened, widened and strengthened. A starboard-side island was installed. The gun armament was re-arranged and improved. She was completely re-engined; boiler exhuasts replaced by a downward-angled starboard-side funnel. Aircraft arrangements were improved and there were general updates throughout.

Generally operated with semi-sister Akagi. Saw extensive service as one of the primary Japanese carriers prior to and during WWII.

Departure from Service/Disposal:
Lost at Midway.

 More Images of Kaga