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BELLEISLE armoured rams (2, 1878 - 1882)


Photo



Belleisle

Ships


Name

No

Yard No

Builder

Laid down

Launched

Comp

Fate

Belleisle (ex-Peyk-i-Sheref)     Samuda, Poplar 1874 12/2/1876 19/7/1878 target 1900
Orion (ex-Büruc-i-Zaffer)     Samuda, Poplar 1875 23/1/1879 3/7/1882 depot ship 1902


Technical data


Displacement normal, t

4870

Displacement full, t 
Length, m

74.7 pp

Breadth, m

15.9

Draught, m

6.40

No of shafts

2

Machinery

2 2-cyl HSE direct-action, 4 boilers

Power, h. p.

4040

Max speed, kts

13

Fuel, t

coal 510

Endurance, nm(kts)

1824(10)

Armour, mm

iron; belt: 305 - 152 with 406 - 254mm wood backing, battery: 267 - 203, bulkheads: 229 - 127, deck: 76 - 51, CT: 229

Armament

4 x 1 - 305/14 RML Mk I, 4 x 1 - 100/21 20pdr 16cwt (saluting) BL, 2 - 356 TC

Complement

250



Graphics


<i>Belleisle</i>
Belleisle


Ship project history


Armoured rams designed by Ahmet Pasha for Ottoman Navy and purchased by Admiralty 13/2/1878, during the Russian war scare. Ships were intended for service in the Eastern Mediterranean, but with their limited endurance and seagoing qualities were of little use un the RN. Belleisle was originally classified as armoured ram, and Orion as armoured corvette, later both were reclassified as 2nd class battleships and eventually as coast defence ships. The two-storey central battery had an upper section containing 305mm gun at each corner, and lower section containing coal bunkers at the sides and ready use ammunition lobby amidships. Unlike earlier central battery ships the magazines were amidships between the engine and the boiler rooms, greatly simplifying ammunition supply.

Rams were regarded as handy ships, but they rolled heavily and were very wet in rough weather. Belleisle was completed with a short funnel and square rig on the foremast, Orion was completed with raised funnel and without the rig.

Ship protection


The belt was 3.05m deep and 305mm amidships, 178mm forward and 152mm aft. The ram consisted of 8t of solid forging projecting 3.05m from the bow and was supported by the side armour. Upper section of battery had 267mm sides and 243mm corners, lower section had 229mm sides and 203mm corners.

Modernizations


1879, Belleisle: funnel was raised by 4.9m

1880, Belleisle: square rig on foremast was removed

mid-1880s, both: torpedo net defence was added; + 6 x 1 - 47/40 Hotchkiss QF Mk I

Naval service


Belleisle was used as target in 1900-1903 and wrecked as such 4/9/1903. Orion became torpedo boat depot ship at Malta in 1902, renamed Orontes in December 1909 and sold to BU 19/6/1913.