:: HMS NELSON (1925) ::

HMS Nelson battleship (1925) High resolution picture

The HMS Nelson, launched in 1925, and her twin HMS Rodney were the first British battleships equipped with 406-millimeter cannons; these were all allocated before the superstructure, giving these ships an unorthodox appearance. This design was influenced by the limitations in displacement (35000 tonnes) imposed by the Washington Naval Treaty. This unusual distribution of the main armament allowed to build a shorter hull, and for the first time in a British battleship the armor was distributed following the scheme "all or nothing".

Because of the limitations in tonnage, these ships were built with only two propellers, which caused a very poor speed. Furthermore, the awkward layout of the project caused a poor maneuverability. The artillery power was the strong point in these ships and the antiaircraft dotation was rather good for that time. Despite of the limitations of the design, the characteristics of these ships were generally superior than those of the foreigner counterparts, and the protection was better than in the largest part of the subsequent battleships.

Commissioned in 1927, the HMS Nelson served extensively in the Mediterranean, the Atlantic and the Indian during the Second World War, before being decommissioned in 1948 and finally scrapped in 1949. The illustration shows the HMS Nelson as she was in 1945, with increased antiaircraft armament.

Class: Nelson (2 units - Rodney, Nelson)

Type: Battleship

Length: 216.4 meters

Beam: 32.3 meters

Draught: 10.6 meters

Displacement (standard): 36000 tonnes

Propulsion: 2 x shaft, 2 x steam turbine Brown-Curtiss, 8 x boiler Yarrow, 46000 horsepower

Speed: 23 knots (42.5 kilometers/hour)

Range: 13870 nautical miles (25660 kilometers) at 12 knots

Fuel: 3815 tonnes of petrol

Complement: 1361

Armament (in 1945): 9 x 406-millimeter 45-caliber cannon, 12 x 152-millimeter 50-caliber cannon, 6 x 120-millimeter 40-caliber cannon, 64 x 40-millimeter cannon, 61 x 20-millimeter cannon, 2 x 622-millimeter torpedo tube

Armor: 356 millimeters in belt, 76-159 millimeters in middle deck, 159 millimeters in lower deck, 356-381 millimeters in barbettes, 178-406 millimeters in main turrets, 25-38 millimeters in secondary turrets, 340 millimeters in conning tower

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