Moltke Class Battlecruiser

World War 1 Naval Combat

World War 1 Naval Combat

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SMS Moltke
SMS Moltke
Moltke class.  Visually similar to the previous Von der Tann although with the extra turret aft.  The guns were also of an improved type although the range was initially less as the maximum elevation was only 13.5 degrees.  After Jutland Moltke had the elevation increased to 16 degrees increasing range by nearly 2000 yards.

SMS Moltke
Built Blohm and Voss, Hamburg, laid down December 1908, completed March 1912, cost 42,603,000 Marks.

SMS Goeben
Built Blohm and Voss, Hamburg, laid down August 1909, completed August 1912, cost 41,564,000 Marks.

Length 522 feet waterline 526 feet overall, beam 82 feet 6 inches, draught 31 feet 5 inches, displacement 18,596 load22,540 tons deep.

4 shaft Parsons turbines, 52,000 shp, 25.5 knots

Moltke 85,780 shp = 28.4 knots
Goeben 85,660 shp = 28.0 knots

11-3in belt, 9in barbettes, 9in turrets, 3-1in decks

10 x 11in SKL/50 (5 x 2), 12 x 5.9in (12 x 1), 12 x 3.45in (12 x 1), 4 x 19.7in TT

A considerable increase and size and capability on the previous class.  Armament was increase with an extra turret superimposed aft and the guns themselves were a 50 calibre version rather than the 45 calibre version used in Von der Tann.  The armour was increased although there was a significant thinning in the barbette armour behind the main vertical armour.  They were fitted with tandem rudders rather than the twin rudders of their predecessor.  Crew 43 officers and1010 men.

World War 1 Service:

I Scouting Group Group.
3 November 1914 took part in the bombardment of Yarmouth.
16 December 1914 involved in the bombardment of Hartlepool.
24 January 1915 took part in the Battle at the Dogger Bank.
19 August 1915 whilst operating near Riga was hit by a torpedo from the  British submarine E1.
20 September returned from repairs.
24 April 1916 raid of Yarmouth and Lowestoft.
31 May-1 June 1916 Battle of Jutland.  Fired 359 11 inch shells and was hit by 4 15 inch and 1 13.5 inch shells suffering 17 killed and 23 injured.
July 1916 under repairs at Hamburg.
23 April 1918 whilst trying to raid a convoy to Norway was heavily damaged when one of her screws fell off and suffered engine damage. resulting in about 2000 tons of flooding.
25 April 1918 whilst under tow SMS Oldenburg was hit by a torpedo fired by the British submarine E42.
Under repair until the end of August 1918.
Post war interned and scuttled at Scapa Flow.

Part of the Mediterranean Division.
4 August 1914 bombarded Philippeville.
7 August 1914 short engagement with British light cruiser HMS Gloucester.
10 August 1914 entered the Dardanelles.
16 August1914 sold to the Ottoman Empire and renamed Yavuz Sultan Selim but retained the German crew.
29 October 1914 bombards Sevastopol and is hit 3 times by coastal battery.  On the return journey forces Russian minesweeper Prut to scuttle and fires and damages escorting destroyer.
18 November 1914 involved in the Battle of Cape Sarych with Russian pre-Dreadnought battleships and was hit once by a 12 inch shell causing 13 killed and 3 wounded.
26 December 1914 hits two Russian mines whilst entering the Bosporus.  About 2000 tons of water entered the ship.  As there were not suitable docking facilities cofferdams had to be used for repairs which take several months.
2-3 April 1915 sortie in the Black Sea sinking two Russian merchant ships.
10 May 1915 engaged with the Russian Black Sea Fleet pre-Dreadnought battleships and is hit three times by 12 inch shells but manages to achieve no hits herself..
14 November 1915 attacked unsuccessfully by Russian submarine Morz.
8 January 1916 in action with the Russian battleship Imperatrtsa Ekaterina. Neither ship hit although Yavuz suffers splinter damage.
4 July 1916 bombards Tuapse sinking a merchant ship and damaging others.
6 July - September 1916 undergoing repairs.
20 January 1918 attempt to raid British forces outside the entrance to the Dardanelles.  Sinks the British monitors Raglan and M28 at Imbros but is struck by 3 mines and runs aground.  
26 January 1918 the ship is re-floated.
1971 Sold for scrap .

Moltke with Von der Tann in the background.  It had been hoped that Moltke would be stationed in the Far East as part of the German Asiatic squadron but the poor condition of the boilers and turbines of her sister Goeben in the Mediterranean meant that the plan was changed and Moltke was scheduled to replace Goeben in October 1914.  In the end was intervened and Goeben made her famous escape from British and French forces to be taken over by the Ottoman Empire. SMS Moltke
SMS Moltke

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