Orion Class Dreadnought Battleship

World War 1 Naval Combat

World War 1 Naval Combat

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HMS Orion Orion Class.  Easy to distinguish for previous British battleships by the all centre line armament and both forward and aft super-firing turrets.  The tripod is positioned behind the funnel again.

HMS Orion
Built Portsmouth Dockyard, laid down November 1909, completed January 1912, cost 1,855,917.

HMS Conqueror
Built Beardmore, laid down April 1910, completed November 1912, cost 1,891,164.

HMS Monarch
Built Armstrong, laid down April 1910, completed February 1912, cost 1,888,736.

HMS Thunderer
Built Thames Iron Works, laid down April 1910, completed May 1912, cost 1,892,823.

Size:
Length 576 feet waterline 581 feet overall, beam 88 feet 6 inches, draught 27 feet 6 inches normal, displacement 20,797 tons light 27,120 tons deep.

Propulsion:
4 shaft Parsons turbines, 27,000 shp, 21kts.

Trials:
Orion 30,112 shp = 21.05 knots
Conqueror 33,198 shp = 22.13 knots
Monarch 32,277 shp = 21.88 knots.
Thunderer 27,427 shp = 20.79 knots

Armour:
12-8in belt, 10-3in barbettes, 11in turret faces, 4-1in decks

Armament:
10 x 13.5in 45cal MK V (5 x 2), 16 x 4in (16 x 1), 4 x 3 pounder (4 x 1), 3 x 21in TT

Comments:
The first of the so called "super Dreadnoughts".  Huge improvement in main armament with an all centreline armament and the introduction of the powerful 13.5 inch gun.   In expectation that foreign navies would also increase the firepower of future ships the armour was much improved both in terms of thickness and in the area covered.  Crew 754.

World War 1 Service:
Orion

2nd Battle Squadron Grand Fleet
Present at the Battle of Jutland 1916. Fired 51 13.5in rounds.  Received no damage.
December 1922 sold for scrap.

Monarch
2nd Battle Squadron Grand Fleet.
8 August 1914 unsuccessfully attacked by U15 off Fair Isle.
27 December 1914 rammed form behind by HMS Conqueror.
20 January 1915 rejoined Grand Fleet after repairs at Scapa Flow and Devonport.
Present at the Battle of Jutland 1916. Fired 53 13.5in rounds.  Received no damage.
1925 sunk as target.

Conqueror
2nd Battle Squadron Grand Fleet.
27 December 1914 rammed HMS Monarch.
March 1915 rejoined Grand Fleet after repairs at Scapa Flow, Invergordon and Devonport.
Present at the Battle of Jutland 1916. Fired 57 13.5in rounds.  Received no damage.
December 1922 sold for scrap.

Thunderer
2nd Battle Squadron Grand Fleet.
December 1914 refit.
Present at the Battle of Jutland 1916. Fired 37 13.5in rounds.  Received no damage.
November 1926 sold for scrap.

HMS Orion.  When initially completed she had a tendency to roll too much but this was corrected by enlarging the bilge keels.  This led to a further problem that the ships could not fit into existing docks and so in the end a compromise had to be accepted with the bilge keels reduced but still larger than originally fitted.  This reduced rolling to an acceptable level and the class were considered good sea boats.  HMS Orion

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