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fighting ships of the world

ROYAL NAVY (UNITED KINGDOM)

CAPITAL SHIPS & MONITORS

SWIFTSURE central battery ironclads (1872-1873)

Swiftsure 1881

 

Name

No

Yard No

Builder

Laid down

Launched

Comp

Fate

Swiftsure   240 Palmer, Jarrow 31/8/1868 15/6/1870 27/6/1872 stores hulk 1901
Triumph   241 Palmer, Jarrow 31/8/1868 27/9/1870 8/4/1873 depot ship 1900

 

Displacement normal, t

Swiftsure: 6910

Triumph: 6640

Displacement full, t

 

Length, m

85.3 pp

Breadth, m

16.8

Draught, m

7.62

No of shafts

1

Machinery

1 Maudslay 2-cyl HRCR, 6 rectangular boilers

Power, h. p.

Swiftsure: 4910

Triumph: 4890

Max speed, kts

Swiftsure: 13.7

Triumph: 14.1

Fuel, t

Swiftsure: coal 540

Triumph: coal 550

Endurance, nm(kts)

Swiftsure: 1640(10)

Triumph: 1680(10)

Armour, mm

iron; belt: 203 - 152 with 254 - 203mm wood backing, battery: 152, bulkheads: 127 - 102

Armament

10 x 1 - 229/14 MLR Mk IV, 4 x 1 - 160/16 MLR 64pdr 71cwt, 6 x 1 - 95/21 BL 20pdr 16cwt (saluting)

Complement

450

Ship project history: Modified Audacious class with a deeper draught, single screw and higher level of stability, designed for service in the Pacific where good sailing and steaming qualities were required. The armour, guns and general layout were identical to Audacious. These were the first British capital ships to be sheathed in wood and copper following the discovery that iron hulls fouled more quickly than wood. Wood-copper sheathing increased displacement of Swiftsure by about 900t and Triumph by 630t.

    Ships were ship-rigged with sail area of 3060m2 and additionally 840m2 of stunsails. They were good, fast, handy and steady sailers and they were the last British ships with lifting screws.

Ship protection: Ships had a narrow 2.4m-high waterline belt 203mm amidships and 152mm at the ends. The central battery on the main deck was 18m long with 152mm sides, 127mm fwd and 102mm aft bulkheads. The upper battery on the upper deck had 152mm armoured sides and corners only.

Modernizations: (1879-1881, Devonport DYd), Swiftsure: was re-rigged as a barque with 2120m2 of sail area; - 4 x 1 - 160/16; + 8 x 1 - 102/27 BL Mk II/III/IV/V/VI, 4 - 356 TC

(1882-1884, Portsmouth DYd), Triumph: was re-boilered with cylindrical boilers, re-rigged as a barque with 2120m2 of sail area; - 4 x 1 - 160/16; + 4 x 1 - 127/25 BL Mk I/II/III/IV/V, 8 x 1 - 57/40 Hotchkiss QF Mk I, 8 x 1 - 47/40 Hotchkiss QF Mk I, 4 - 356 TC

1886, Swiftsure: was reboilered with cylindrical boilers; + 4 x 1 - 57/40 Hotchkiss QF Mk I, 4 x 1 - 47/40 Hotchkiss QF Mk I

Naval service: Swiftsure was hulked in 1901, renamed Orontes in March 1904 and sold for BU in July 1908. Triumph was converted to depot ship in 1900, renamed Tenedos in April 1904 and later used as training ship. In 1912 she was renamed Indus IV, in January 1915 Algiers and sold for BU 7/1/1921.

Swiftsure as barque-rigged

Thanks to Wolfgang Stöhr for additional information on this page.

© Ivan Gogin, 2008-14