Stories and Battle Histories of the IJN's T.101 Class Landing Ship Tank

Febuary 2014

By Bob Hackett

with Sander Kingsepp

Discussion & Questions

(IJN T.101 Class LST T.149 landing a Type 95 "Ha-Go" light tank)

Built under the Japanese 1943 Program, the design for the 950-ton Landing Ship Tanks (LST) may have been supplied by Germany and based an American-built British LST used in North Africa. The Class could be constructed in 90-days using mass production techniques such as pre-fabricated parts and electric welding. The class were unstable in heavy seas.. The design featured a bow door and the bow was fitted with a double skeg. The class was equipped with AA guns, depth charges and radar.

The Type T.101ís were diesel powered, but the Type T.103ís were turbine powered. The absence of boiler rooms meant that the Type T.101s had more room for troops and cargo. Otherwise, structurally, the Type T.101s and Type T.103s were identical. The Type T.101s were officially know as Type SBD (Diesel) and the T.103s as Type SBT (Turbine).

In 1943, the IJN ordered 86 units of the Type T.101 and Type T.103-class. Twenty-eight SBTs were allotted to the Army, but the Army was unhappy with the turbine-powered T.103-class and later returned nine to the Navy. After the war, most surviving Japanese LSTs were assigned to the Allied Repatriation service and used for that duty. Laer, several were ceded to Allied powers and others were scrapped.

This page will cover all six units of the T.101-class. The careers of the more numerous T.103-class will be covered in a separate page in due course.

Builders and
Years Completed:
Osaka, Uranosaki and Hitachi, Mukajima
Displacement: 950-tons standard.
Dimensions: 264' (LOA) x 29.10' x 9.6'
Propulsion: 3 ◊ diesels, three shafts, 1,200 bhp, speed 13.5 knots
Armament: 1 x 8 cm/40 cal (3-inch) AA gun; 6 x 25mm (2 x triple) Type 96 AA machine cannons; (8 x 25mm (1 x 2)(2 x triple) from May '44) (21 x 25mm (3 x triple)(12 x1) from Sep '44) 12 depth charges (from May '44);
Equipment: Radar: 1 x Type 22;
Cargo Capacity: 14 ◊ Type 95 light tanks and 220 tons freight or or 7 ◊ Type 97 medium tanks or 4-5 ◊ Type 3 amphibious tanks, 218 tons freight or 120 SNLF troops and 67.4 tons freight.