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Garlicdesign
Post subject: Re: French Armoured Cruisers - rebootPosted: June 26th, 2017, 6:16 pm
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Hi everyone

@waritem, Hood:

From what I have read, the actual monarchist (or Napoleonic) tendencies in the French navy - although real - were quite exaggerated in size by a series of radical left-wing governments around the turn of the century. The Minister of the Navy at the time the Republique-class battleships and Gambetta-class cruisers were ordered (and named), one Jean Marie Antoine de Lanessan, had started out as a sympathizer of the 1870 Commune of Paris and probably saw monarchist conspiracies everywhere in 'his' service; his successor Camille Pelletan was even worse and actively tried to reduce the navy to a pure coast defence force consisting exclusively of torpedo boats and submarines. Especially the latter - who earned the nickname 'naufrageur de la marine' (wrecker of the navy) felt only contempt for the service he was appointed to govern, which somehow reminds my of current affairs in Germany, with similar results.

Greetings
GD


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Garlicdesign
Post subject: Re: French Armoured Cruisers - rebootPosted: July 1st, 2017, 12:52 pm
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Hi everyone

And on it goes: The big three: Ernest Renan, Edgar Quinet and Waldeck-Rousseau.

In 1904, a fifth Gambetta-class ship with the same armament as Jules Michelet was authorized and laid down, but France's designer-in-chief Emile Bertin promised a speed of 25 knots if the hull was considerably lengthened and experimental narrow-tube boilers were fitted. The plans were altered in a lengthy process; the longer hull was implemented (at nearly 160 meters, the cruiser was now as long as HMS Dreadnought) at a rather moderate weight increase, only 500 tons more than Jules Michelet which was thirteen meters shorter. The new boilers were however considered too experimental and traditional Niclausse-boilers were installed for a design speed of only 23 kts, making the redesign seem hardly worth the effort. When the new cruiser was commissioned in 1909 after more than five years building, the longer hull paid off handsomely; the Ernest Renan (named for a 19th century French writer who wrote a lot of racist stuff; I personally fail to see what qualified him to be chosen namesake for a French cruiser by a left-wing radical Naval Minister like Camille Pelltan) exceeded her design speed by 1,4 knots without exceeding her designed hp and always remained one of the fastest armoured cruisers of her era.
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Her wartime modifications were rather minor; four of her 47mm guns were placed on AA pedestals (some sources claim the AA calibre was 65mm; available photographs are inconclusive) and w/t equipment was augmented.
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She served in the Mediterranean in the first world war but saw little action. She was retained after the war as a TS and sunk as a target after 1931.

The new hull form of the Ernest Renan was considered a success even before she was launched, but the French also saw that Renan was hilariously underarmed for her size. The next two armoured cruisers received a hull of similar dimensions and the same machinery, and their protection scheme also was the same. They did however receive a single-caliber main armament of 14 195mm guns in two twin turrets, six single turrets and four casemates. Both easily made their design speed of 23 knots, but there are no reports on how far they could be pushed. When completed, they differed only in rather small details (arrangement of portholes in the bridge structure, shaping of ventilators and amidships superstructure, design of the main engine room ventilator amidships, arrangement of gaffs and rigging, shape of funnel bases and tops). Their names were Edgar Quinet (after an 18th century French writer who ticked all the right boxes - republican, anti-clerical, and hating Germany's guts)...
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... and Waldeck-Rousseau (after a leftist and laicist politician who headed France's government from 1899 through 1902).
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Both served in the Mediterranean, and were fitted with two 65mm or 75mm (sources vary) AA guns during the war, mounted on the aft flank turrets in Waldeck-Rousseau and the central ones in Edgar Quinet. The characteristic deck-mounted searchlights (placed next to the flank tunnels on rails that allowed them to be retracted under cover) were re-arranged on newly erected platforms around the masts. They also received a new fire-control system with a triple main rangefinder and improved w/t arrangements.
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Edgar Quinet lost her mainmast to enable her to deploy a kite balloon late in the war (written sources do not mention this, but there is a photograph definitely showing her without the mast; on the other hand, many sources claim the older Ernest Renan landed her mainmast, which in turn is not supported by any photographic evidence. Probably the ships simply got confused).
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Both were retained for a long time after the war, unlike many other older cruisers on active duty rather than as TS. Waldeck-Rousseau participated in the Allied intervention in the Russian civil war on behalf of the Whites and suffered a mutiny of pro-communist sailors in 1919, which however was quickly put down. Edgar Quinet was converted to TS in 1925 and wrecked in 1930 off the Algerian coast; Waldeck-Rousseau was hulked in 1936 and broken up by the Germans during the second world war.

Greetings
GD


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emperor_andreas
Post subject: Re: French Armoured Cruisers - rebootPosted: July 1st, 2017, 1:06 pm
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Awesome job!

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eswube
Post subject: Re: French Armoured Cruisers - rebootPosted: July 1st, 2017, 4:01 pm
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Great work.

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adenandy
Post subject: Re: French Armoured Cruisers - rebootPosted: July 1st, 2017, 8:11 pm
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Jolly nice work GD :!:

Well Done sir :D

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Garlicdesign
Post subject: Re: French Armoured Cruisers - rebootPosted: August 13th, 2017, 10:34 am
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Hello again!

These three have not yet been drawn, but I'll post them under 'reboot' anyway: The Dupleix-class armoured cruisers.

These three ships, all laid down 1899 and completed 1903/4, were among the smallest and weakest armoured cruisers still in service during the first world war (only the swedish Fylgia was even smaller). They displaced 7.400 ts and carried eight 165mm guns in four twin turrets in the typically french lozenge arrangement, augmented by four 100mm, ten 47mm and four 37mm cannon plus two above water 450mm torpedo tubes. The complete belt was 100mm thick. They were obviously too weak to fight any contemporary armoured cruiser, and at only 20 kts design speed also too weak to run from one. Redeeming features: none I know of. Although they looked alike from a distance, they differed in virtually every little detail when viewed up close: porthole and hatch arrangement, height and shape of funnels, arrangement of steampipes, and shape and size of ventilators, were different on all three; in addition, Kleber had differently shaped turrets and a slightly differing boat stowage. The class sported all three different colour schemes used prior to 1908: black-buff, black-white (both used in home waters), and white-buff (usually applied for deployment on overseas stations).
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All were fitted with improved bridges and rangefinders prior to 1914. During the first world war, they served in the Mediterranean, but were not very active. Early in 1917, Dupleix was placed in reserve; she was discarded immediately after the war and scrapped in 1921.
[ img ]

Kleber, a thoroughly luckless ship, stranded in 1915 during the Gallipoli campaign, was then refloated only to collide with a British transport, and after repairs hit a German mine (laid by UC61) and sank just outside Brest in June 1917.
[ img ]

Desaix landed her 100mm cannon during the second half of the war (probably for installation in escort craft) and received two 47mm AA guns. I failed to find any information about her employment during the war; she did however last longest of her class and was scrapped in 1927.
[ img ]

Greetings
GD


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eswube
Post subject: Re: French Armoured Cruisers - rebootPosted: August 13th, 2017, 12:19 pm
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Excellent drawings.

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Hood
Post subject: Re: French Armoured Cruisers - rebootPosted: August 13th, 2017, 12:38 pm
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Excellent additions Garlicdesign to your usual high standards.

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Colombamike
Post subject: Re: French Armoured Cruisers - rebootPosted: August 13th, 2017, 12:49 pm
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Garlicdesign wrote: *
Desaix landed her 100mm cannon during the second half of the war (probably for installation in escort craft) and received two 47mm AA guns. I failed to find any information about her employment during the war; she did however last longest of her class and was scrapped in 1927.
@Garlicdesign :
Desaix patrolled the channel from august to early december 1914, capturing the austro-hungarian ship "Gradac" on 07 august 1914 at 04.55pm in the channel-entry. With Montcalm & AMC Requin she made the french contribution to the 1915 defence of the Suez-canal. Off Syria by august 1915, capture the small turc sailing-ship "Sélimié" on 07 october 1915 (the turkish ship was finished-off by twelve 47mm shell). At Dakar in 1916. Her 100mm guns were removed to arm merchant-ship in 1917 & she received two 47mm AA guns. In 1918 she relieved Gloire in the West-Indies & after the war by 1919 served in the Far-East (Indochina ?). Returned to Toulon the 31 march 1921 & quickly stricken by 30 june 1921 from active-list, some rumors about a possible sold to polish navy by 1925. Various claims about two differents end :roll: : scrapped by 1927 or finally sold by 26 april 1928 (I personnaly see a french 1928 newspaper extract about the april 1928 administrative-sold).


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Jackie Treehorn
Post subject: Re: French Armoured Cruisers - rebootPosted: August 14th, 2017, 6:11 am
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Wow, very nice drawings and a nice addition. Will be interesting to see the rest of the French Armoured Cruiser like the Dupuy the Lome and other daring designs.


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