Fubuki (1927)

Fubuki, probably in the 1930s. Her name is painted along her side, which was removed during hostilities to make identification more difficult. Note the squadron identification bands on her funnel. IJN photo, now public domain.

Ship Class
Ship Type
Laid Down

Fubuki was the lead ship of a class of twenty-four destroyers. At the time of her launch, Fubuki was considered 10 years ahead of her time, and completely outclassed any other destroyer in the world. Commissioned 10 August, 1928, Fubuki was optimized for fleet actions, and was armed with three triple torpedo tubes and three twin 12.7cm (5") gun turrets. While impressive, her class proved to be top-heavy, and were modified to improve structural stability. Fubuki received these upgrades in the mid 1930s. She saw service off China during the Second Sino-Japanese War, and was part of the support force for the invasion of Indochina and Malaysia in December, 1941. Her first combat action came at the end of January, 1942, when she torpedoed the destroyer HMS Thanet in a skirmish off Endau, north of Singapore. In February, Fubuki moved into the Dutch East Indies, and was part of the escort force that sank the allied cruisers Houston and Perth in the Sunda Strait. She spent March and April covering further landings, before redeploying to Japan in May. Part of the main body, Fubuki missed the main action during the Battle of Midway, but was part of the screen of the cruiser force sent to bombard the islands the following day, which was mauled by air attack. Fubuki ran escort missions and bombardment missions for the next several months, moving into the Solomons when the Allies invaded in August. During the Battle of Cape Esperance, 11 October, 1942, Fubuki was sunk by naval gunfire, with the loss of 110 of her 219 crew.