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fighting ships of the world

FRENCH NAVY (FRANCE)

CAPITAL SHIPS

TONNERRE breastwork monitors (1879 - 1882)

Tonnerre 1879

Name No Builder Laid down Launched Comp Fate
Tonnerre   Arsenal de Lorient 10/1873 9/1875 1879 stricken 1905
Fulminant   Arsenal de Cherbourg 1/1875 8/1877 1882 stricken 1908

 

Displacement normal, t

Tonnerre: 5765

Fulminant: 5871

Displacement full, t

 

Length, m

73.6 pp 76.0 oa

Breadth, m

17.6

Draught, m

6.50 - 7.19 max

No of shafts

1

Machinery

HC, 8 cylindrical boilers

Power, h. p.

4200 - 4500

Max speed, kts

13.7

Fuel, t

coal 390

Endurance, nm(kts)

1400(10)

Armour, mm

wrought iron; belt: 330 - 250, breastwork: 330, turret: 330 - 300, deck: 50

Armament

1 x 2 - 274/20 M1875 No.2

Complement

220

Ship project history: Single-turret vessels with the hull mostly steel though retaining wrought iron armour. The turret was 10.5m in diameter with a central fixed 1.4m diameter shaft which supported a conning tower protected by an armoured collar on the turret. The superstructure was only 2.4m wide and it was theoretically possible to fire right astern, though it was reported that an attempt by Tonnerre to do so in 1884 blew away the fore pan of the superstructure, Tonnerre is also said to have come near to capsizing when turning hard a port under the combined action of screw and rudder. She had the reconstructed engine of the Normandie.

Ship protection: The belt was 330mm amidships with 250mm forward and 300mm aft and there was a 50mm deck over the belt outside the breastwork.

Modernizations: 1890s, Tonnerre: + 4 x 1 - 47/40 M1885, 4 x 5 - 37/20 M1885

1890s, Fulminant: + 4 x 1 - 47/40 M1885, 6 x 5 - 27/20 M1872

Naval service: During the 1890s both monitors were employed as torpedo depot ships.

 

Tonnerre 1885

 

Ivan Gogin, 2014