Swiftsure Class (1904) BB

Both ships of this class were originally ordered by the Chilean Government but were later bought by the British Admiralty.

Although similar to contemporary British designs, they were longer and narrower than other battleships of the time. This gave them an advantage in speed, with both ships exceeding 20kts in their initial trials, the first battleships to do so. However normal maximum was kept to 19kts.

Their armament was very different to other battleships, having 10in guns as the main armament rather than 12in, and the unusual 7.5in secondary gun battery.

Their armoured protection was lighter than other battleships of the time and overall they were considered as "lightweight" battleships.

The gooseneck cranes were easily recognised identification features.


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This page last edited - 17 September, 2012.

Copyright Ian M King, except where otherwise indicated.