Operation Deadlight Expedition II

by Innes McCartney

Day Six: 9 May, 2002

Unidentified U-boat - Which turned out to be the OTHER TYPE XX1 - U-2506
Depth: Weather and sea conditions:
66m - Wind 2-3 westerly, overcast

Diving report:
As soon as I saw this monster come out of the gloom, I was sure it was the other type XXI. I didn't dare to believe it until the bows with the Balcony sonar array were fully in view. Sheer ELATION!

Incredibly, this submarine wreck is completely intact. It is as complete as U-778, which we found on last year.

The 20mm gun barrels on both turrets are in place, the bridge is complete, the schnorchel, scopes etc are all there. There is almost no wear to the casing at all. Only the rudder has fallen off. I kneeled on the sand under the conning tower and was awed by the sheer beauty of the wreck of this mighty killing machine. It is simply the greatest U-boat dive I have ever done. It isn't every day you dive a virgin XXI wreck.

We now plan to investigate this wreck further next week.

The fantastic weather has ended for now. It may be Monday-Tuesday before we get back to this wreck. We have now dived every known/surveyed submarine wreck on Chart 2811. It is perhaps, Murphys Law that the last wreck turned out to be Horst von Schroter's elusive U-boat.

Its days like this that make days like yesterday all the more worthwhile.

Innes McCartney

This article was published on 13 May 2002.

Operation Deadlight Expedition II

Day One: 4 May, 2002 - Diving on the U-1271 since U-861 is hard to locate.

Day Two: 5 May, 2002 - The broken down wreck of U-1009, plus the Laurentic.

Day Three: 6 May, 2002 - Going back to the U-2511 which Innes describes as the world's greatest submarine dive.

Day Four: 7 May, 2002 - A dive on the U-1104 in a nice Atlantic swell.

Day Five: 8 May, 2002 - Another unidentified U-boat location, plus a steamer from WWI.

Day Six: 9 May, 2002 - A dive on another unidentified boat which turned out to be an awesome dive on the other type XXI boat there!

Day Seven: 12 May, 2002 - Finally Oesten's elusive U-861 is located.

Day Eight: 13 May, 2002 - No diving due to poor weather conditions.

Day Nine: 14 May, 2002 - No diving due to poor weather conditions.

Day Ten: 15 May, 2002 - Another visit on the type XXI boat U-2506.

Day Eleven: 16 May, 2002 - Dropping onto the U-1271.

Day Twelve: 17 May, 2002 - The end report of the Operation Deadlight Expedition II.

Go to the front page of

Royal Navy and German Naval Disarmament, 1942-1947, The

Madsen, Chris

Buy this title at

Books dealing with this subject include

Czarne dni U-Bootwaffe. Perepeczko, Andrzej, 1961.
The Grey Wolves of Eriboll. David M. Hird, 2010.
The Royal Navy and German Naval Disarmament, 1942-1947. Madsen, Chris, 1998.
U-Boat Fact File. Sharpe, Peter, 1988.
The U-Boat Wrecks of Operation Deadlight. McCartney, Innes, 2003.

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