Eclipse Class Cruiser (1894)

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The nine Second-Class Cruisers of the Eclipse Class (sometimes referred to as the Talbot class) were completed for the Royal Navy between 1896 and 1898.

Binoculars

In September 1914, the ships were allowed four additional pairs of Pattern 343 Service Binoculars.[1]

Armament

Main Battery

Originally, all ships carried a mixed main battery mounted on the uppermost deck of the ship:[2][3][4]

  • Five 6-in P.II Mountings for Q.F. Mark II Guns allocated 200 rounds per gun
  • Six 4.7-in P.IV Mountings for Q.F. Mark IV Guns allocated 250 rounds per gun

With the exception of Eclipse all were re-armed with a single gun main battery (for dates see individual ships):

  • Eleven 6-in P.III U.D. Mountings for B.L. Mark VII Guns allocated 200 rounds per gun. Maximum elevation of 15 degrees, maximum depression 7 degrees, with a range dial graduation limited to 11,300 yards/14.5 degrees elevation.

Secondary Battery

  • Eight 12-pounder S.II Mountings for Q.F. 12cwt Guns allocated 250 rounds per gun. Maximum elevation of 20 degrees, maximum depression 10 degrees, with a range dial graduation limited to 8,100 yards/19 degrees 15 seconds elevation. These guns were also provided with blank charges for saluting.

Other Guns

By 1914 the minor armament was:

  • One 12-pounder G.I Mounting for Q.F. 8cwt Gun allocated 300 rounds. As well as being mounted for firing from the ship, this gun could also be mounted on one of the large ship's boats, or deployed with a landing party on a field carriage.
  • One 3-pdr Recoil Mark I Mounting for Q.F. Hotchkiss Gun. Maximum elevation of 25 degrees, maximum depression 30 degrees. This mounting had a simple non-telescopic sight with a range dial graduation limited to 3,400 yards/6 degrees 14 seconds elevation[5]. As well as being mounted for firing from the ship, this gun could also be mounted on one of the ship's boats.
  • Two Maxim Guns. As well as being mounted for firing from the ship, these guns could also be mounted on one of the ship's boats, or deployed with a landing party on a field carriage.

Torpedoes

There were three 18-in torpedo tubes, with original torpedo allocation as follows:[6]

  • two submerged tubes with three torpedoes each and one (shared between them) for exercise, depressed 3 degrees and bearing abeam; axis of tube was 6 feet below load water line and 10 inches above the deck.[7][8]
  • one above water stern tube with two torpedoes and one for exercise

Except in time of war, all torpedoes would be stored at the submerged tubes except a single one stored at the stern tube.

In Talbot's trials, she was able to fire from submerged tubes with no deflection while running full speed. Her stern tube appears to have been above-water by design but was firing reliably even when full of water at speed, unlike the Apollo class which found this problematic the same year.[9]

By 1914 the torpedo allocation had been increased to a total of 13 torpedoes, with the tubes themselves unchanged.

Fire Control

As completed the ships had no specific fire control apparatus. By 1914 ships upgraded with 6-inch B.L. Guns were provided with Visual Fire Control for daytime and Telaupad for night defence.

See Also

Footnotes

  1. Admiralty Weekly Order No. 331 of 8 Sep, 1914.
  2. Quarterly Appropriation List of Gun Mountings for B.L., Q.F, and Machine Guns, August 1914.The National Archives. ADM 186/195.
  3. List of HM Ships showing their armaments, April 1914. The National Archives. ADM 186/864.
  4. The Sight Manual, 1916. The National Archives. ADM 186/216.
  5. Handbook for Hotchkiss 6 pr and 3 pr quick-firing guns, including Japanese mountings, 1916.The National Archives. ADM 186/212.
  6. Annual Report of the Torpedo School, 1894. pp. 72-73.
  7. Torpedo Manual, Vol. III, 1909. p. 265.
  8. Torpedo Manual, Vol. III, 1909. p. 265.
  9. Annual Report of the Torpedo School, 1896. pp. 36, 37, 41.

Bibliography

  • Dittmar, F.J.; Colledge, J.J. (1972). British Warships 1914–1919. London: Ian Allan.


Eclipse Class Second Class Protected Cruiser
Diana Dido Doris Eclipse Isis
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