Maximum battleship


Maximum battleship

The "maximum battleships", also known as the "Tillman Battleships" were a series of World War I-era design studies for extremely large battleships, prepared in late 1916 and early 1917 to the order of Senator "Pitchfork" Benjamin Tillman. The United States Navy was not interested in the designs at all, and only drew them up to win support from the Committee on Naval Affairs, on which Tillman sat. They were among the most spectacular battleship designs ever produced.

Senator Tillman had grown impatient with the Navy's requests for larger battleships every year as well as the Navy's habit of building battleships significantly larger than Congress authorized. He accordingly instructed the Navy to design "maximum battleships", the largest battleships that they could use.

The only limits on the potential size of an American battleship were the dimensions of the locks of the Panama Canal. The locks measure roughly 1,000 by 110 feet (300 by 34 m), and so the "maximum battleships" were 975 feet (297 m) long and 108 feet (33 m) in beam. Draft was limited to 39.5 ft (12.04 m).

Contents

Designs

Tillman's first request, in 1912–1913, was never completed, and though the studies it involved had some influence on the design of the Pennsylvania class of battleships, that class was essentially just an enlargement of the preceding Nevada class. In 1916, he repeated his request, and this time the Navy's Bureau of Construction and Repair produced a series of design studies, which again had some influence[citation needed] on the design of the next class of battleships, in this case the South Dakotas, an enlargement of the previous Colorado class.

After the first four design studies were complete, design IV was chosen for further development and three additional studies, IV-1, IV-2, and IV-3, were prepared. At the request of Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels, these designs used 18-inch guns instead of the 16-inch/50-calibers used in the earlier studies. The Navy decided that design IV-2 was the most practical (or perhaps the least impractical) and presented it to Congress early in 1917.

These designs differed from the battleships being built in two significant ways beyond just their size. Firstly, unlike preceding classes, the "maximum battleships" were designed with a continuous flush main deck. Most battleships in this era had a long forecastle deck. Secondly, the Tillman designs all included five casemate guns mounted aft, two on each side and one at the tip of the stern. Similar "stern chasers" had been previously mounted in the Nevada class, but were omitted from the Pennsylvania class. These casemates were a return to an older design idea; American battleship designers had abandoned hull-mounted casemates after the New Mexico class. They had transpired to be too "wet" -- heavy seas rendered them unusable—and they had been removed from all earlier classes. However, the casemates on the "maximum battleships" would have been higher above the waterline than they had been on earlier designs, so it is possible that their huge size and flush decks would have provided enough freeboard astern to keep the casemates dry.

The Washington Naval Treaty of 1922 limited naval armaments, causing the cancellation of the South Dakota-class battleships and halting all consideration of the "maximum battleships."

Tillman I Tillman II Tillman III Tillman IV Tillman IV-1 Tillman IV-2 South Dakota class Iowa class Montana class
Design 13 Dec 1916 13 Dec 1916 13 Dec 1916 29 Dec 1916 30 Jan 1917 30 Jan 1917 8 Jul 1918 9 Jun 1938 6 Feb 1940
Displace-
ment
70,000 tons 70,000 tons 63,500 tons 80,000 tons 80,000 tons 80,000 tons 43,200 tons 45,000 tons 70,000 tons
Length 975 feet 660 feet 860 feet 921 feet
Beam 108 feet 106 feet 108 feet 121 feet
Draft 32.75 feet 32.75 feet 36 feet 36 feet
Speed 26.5 knots 26.5 knots 30 knots 25.2 knots 25.2 knots 25.2 knots 23.5 knots 33 knots 28 knots
Main
battery
12 16"/50 in four triple turrets 24 16"/50 in four 6-gun turrets 12 16"/50 in four triple turrets 24 16"/50 in four 6-gun turrets 13 18"/50 in five twin and one triple turret 15 18"/50 in five triple turrets 12 16"/50 in four triple turrets 9 16"/50 in three triple turrets 12 16"/50 guns in four triple turrets

See also

Notes and references

External links


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Battleship (band) — Battleship is a band from Oakland, California.The members of Battleship are Aleksander Prechtl (ex Hatemail Express, Short Eyes) on vocals, Daniel Martens on guitar, and Gene bean Bae (ex Short Eyes) on bass. The band s original drummer was Joe… …   Wikipedia

  • Battleship — For other uses, see Battleship (disambiguation). The firepower of a battleship demonstrated by USS Iowa (ca. 1984) A battleship is a large armored warship with a main battery consisting of heavy caliber guns. Battleships were large …   Wikipedia

  • H class battleship (1944) — The H 44 class was the ultimate evolution of a series of battleship design studies, derived by the Third Reich s Kriegsmarine as an outgrowth of the H Class battleship program.The H 39 designThe H Class ships saw their design finalized by 1939,… …   Wikipedia

  • Charlemagne class battleship — The St Louis in April 1903 Class overview Name: Charlemagne Builders …   Wikipedia

  • Iowa class battleship — The Iowa class battleships were a class of six fast battleships ordered by the United States Navy in 1939 and 1940 to escort the Fast Carrier Task Forces that would operate in the Pacific Theater of World War II. Four were completed in the early… …   Wikipedia

  • North Carolina-class battleship — North Carolina steaming on 3 June 1946. By this time, many of the light anti aircraft weapons (Bofors 40 mm and Oerlikon 20 mm) mounted during the war had been removed, while more modern radars had been mounted on her forefunnel and mainmast …   Wikipedia

  • German battleship Bismarck — Bismarck in …   Wikipedia

  • Montana class battleship — A 1944 model of a Montana class battleship Class overview Name: Montana class battleship …   Wikipedia

  • N3 class battleship — …   Wikipedia

  • Nevada class battleship — USS Nevada after her 1942 reconstruction. Class overview Name: Nevada class Builders …   Wikipedia