German midget submarines

Manned Torpedoes

A Marder type manned torpedo.

These were cheap and very easy for mass produce, simple weapons which consisted of a carrier-body which looked like a large torpedo in which the operator in the bow section sat in a Perspex-covered cockpit which reached up to 18 inches above the waterline. Thus the following boats were not submarines as such. The cockpits were extremely simple with only start, stop, fire and a lever to turn left or right.

The operators had usually only about 50/50 change of surviving in these vessels and they were manned by volunteers for Opferkämpfer (sacrifice missions) but in reality these were little different from suicide missions.

The German Navy experimented with 3 types that can be called manned torpedoes; the Neger, Marder and Hai.

German midget submarines