Going to the beginning of the XX century followed the rest of the main “sea players” to build a large armored cruisers, Britain was at a crossroads. A very large armored ships in this class are medium and small sizes were like outside of the game Really, they are obviously and hopelessly lost to any battle with a well-booked “at arms”, and even surpassing them in size and armament. As opponents of the cruisers of the 2nd and 3rd grade remained except older vehicles of the same type, and even the products of sir Armstrong, designed for overseas meanwhile, the theory of war at sea remained close to linear classics, it was Assumed that the outcome of the struggle for possession of the sea would decide the General battle, which will involve numerous armadillos And such squadrons need a good tactical intelligence, conduct which could only cruiser So the need for light high-speed units has not been disputed, and there remained only the problem of selecting the required combination of power and speed.
Here the British decided to save it was thought that the main battle will occur near its shores, somewhere in the North sea or the English channel in the worst case, close some overseas bases of its own So for the scout almost fell off one of the main qualities of pure cruising — long range Not so dire was a question about the combat strength of each unit. “Mistress of the seas”, still adhere to the principle of “standard, the two opponents”, according to which the British Navy had to be equal to the total power the total power of the two next naval powers, not too afraid for the outcome of the battle, the task of the reconnaissance was principally to the detection of the enemy and report his coordinates and of course the command of the fleet Then entered numerous battleships and armored cruisers In General, these “pathfinders” were not given the responsibility to break the power of the enemy veil or not to allow the cruisers of the enemy to his squadron. But to keep the vehicle for such a limited purpose would obviously be irrational So the scouts (the British and called new class — “scout”) part was intended for joint action with the newfangled and ever-increasing squadron destroyers. They could lead the attack of torpedo forces, or to help repel a similar assault by the enemy.
Such tasks are not demanded too strong weapons (in the early twentieth century to combat the then squadron destroyers with a displacement of up to 300 — 400 t fit even a three-inch plank). However, it is necessary is a high speed and in order to evade prosecution after a successful exploration, and in order to keep up with their “torpedo”
A very successful ship of this kind was the Russian “Novik”, with their 120-mm guns and 25-knots speed. He was just asking as a prototype “scout” But “the British have their own pride,” and they decided to go their own way. And slowly. The first step they made in 1903, laying a series of four units called gems Step was very, very shy – in fact, they were nothing more than a further development of the notorious cruisers of the 3rd class, a few increased in size and more fast. It remains the case design, with forecastle and poop bulwarks and impressive in the middle part
The ships turned out not too successful, but played an important role for the British shipbuilding the fact that the Admiralty decided to repeat the old “field” experience, similar to what was carried out 70 years ago to compare the qualities of paddle wheels and screw Now was not less important question is how suitable new-fangled turbines as the main engines for large ships, particularly cruisers this time not even had to resort to “tug of war” Turbine “Amethyst” ordered, by the way, Armstrong the admirals finally decided to use the experience and skill of the famous private firm for their needs — demonstrated excellence already at the design stage When the model displacement and size, the same protection and the artillery he had almost half more powerful powerplant and half a knot more speed than the others, equipped with the most advanced four-cylinder steam engines. The only drawback was considered low efficiency at low speed for 10 knots, the ship could pass only 5.5 thousand miles, while “the locomotive” — 7 thousand (the Reason was unprofitable low-speed mode for turbines with direct drive on the shaft; to finally get rid of this property was possible only with the introduction of gears.) However, the disadvantage is offset by half the increase in range at high speed.
Nevertheless, even the rather successful “Amethyst” quite reasonably believed enough speed for the reconnaissance role. The Admiralty cancelled the order for another four “precious stones” and went in further search of the ideal To work with the Navy and the leading destroyers, according to the calculations of admirals, required at least 25-knots speed, it is Clear that while maintaining or even reducing the size of the scouts were required to sacrifice other qualities. Had to go to a decrease the main fire of artillery, which decided to reduce to 76 mm.
Then followed an interesting experiment by the Government for several years willingly gave orders to private firms, but all the cruisers were built according to very strict specifications, usually on drawings developed in the management of shipbuilding is Not as was the case with the destroyers, which were asked only the most General elements (speed, weapons, the approximate displacement), leaving to the will the skill and imagination of the firm-the Builder of the concrete implementation of such a principle first tried on cruisers-the”scouts”. Eight ships were pairwise distributed “Armstrong”, “Fairfield”, “Cammel Laird” and factory “Vickers” in barrow-in-Furness, just joined the ranks of the shipbuilders.
It is not surprising that all pairs turned out to be a little like each other, Armstrong decided to make a “adventure” and “Attentive” four-pipe, with a graceful bow clippersi, while other builders were limited to three tubes and kept ramming the shape of the nose. The most consistent Keeper of traditions was “Fairfield”, leaving a familiar architecture with forecastle and poop other was limited to high forecastle, with the result that a small cruiser bought rapid “Menomonie” for a long time a distinctive external feature of the British (and then all others), “intelligence”. Different was the type and even the number of boilers and steam engines (as installed yet they are: to the bookmarks “scout” beautiful results “Amethyst”, had to wait about a year). The complete lack of coordination was observed even in such an important element of armor protection! The requirement of the Admiralty was formulated as “a 37-mm armor deck or equivalent to the side armor”. Armstrong has gone the traditional route, however, being able to “carve out” 51 mm bevels, ships “Vickers” in full compliance with the specifications (deck with 37-mm bevels), but the other two couples got 51 mm side belts for the first time on small cruisers.
Here, each Builder went his own way. “Fairfield” was supplied with “Forward” and “foresight” longer belt, along the engine and boiler rooms, while landowska “Pathfinder” and “Petrol” were limited to short, only next to the machines the Rest of the body was covered with regular deck with bevels.
91. Cruiser-“scout” “Cuarto” (Italy, 1913)
Built at the shipyard of the Navy of Venice. The displacement of 3270 tons, the maximum length of 131.6 m, beam 13.8 m, draught 4,1 m. Power chetyrehbalnoy steam turbine 25 000 HP, speed 28.5 per node. Armament: six 120-mm/50 and six 76-mm/50 rapid-fire guns, and two 450 mm torpedo tubes. Booking: deck 37 mm, cutting 100 mm. In 1936, three 76-mm anti-aircraft guns replaced. Excluded from the lists in 1939
92. Cruiser-“scout” “Petrol” (England, 1906)
It was built by the firm “Cammel Laird” in Birkenhead. A displacement of 2900 tons, the maximum length 115,52 m, width of 11.77 m, draft of 3.96 m. Capacity twin-shaft plants triple extension 16 500 HP, speed 25 knots. Armament: ten 76-mm rapid-fire guns, eight 47-mm small-caliber, two 457-mm torpedo tubes. Reservations: belt 51 mm, deck 16 — 37 mm, cutting 76 mm Only in 1904 built two units: “Pathfinder” and “Petrol”. “Pathfinder” was sunk in September 1914, “Petrol” excluded from the lists in 1920
93. Cruiser-“scout” “Marsala” (Italy, 1914)
Built at the shipyard of the Navy in Castellammare. The displacement of 3575 tons, the maximum length and 140.3 m, beam of 13.00 m, draft of 4.1 m. the thickness of a three-shaft steam turbine 22 to 500 HP, speed of 27.5 knot. Armament: six 120-mm/50 and six 76-mm/50 rapid-fire guns, and two 450 mm torpedo tubes. Booking: deck 37 mm, cutting 100 mm. during 1914 built two units: “Marsala” and “Nino Bixio”. Excluded from the lists in 1927 and 1929 respectively.
The scouts had one absolute and several less obvious disadvantages. Unconditional was relatively weak arms. Just shortly after their entry into operation, the destroyers were rapidly “swell” in size, and 76 of graph paper as the main caliber of their “leaders” looked quite convincing the British at first, added another pair, and six years later replaced them with more appropriate military objectives nine chetyrehluchevoy. However, the first “scouts” very fast obsolete Their 25-knots speed, outstanding on the background of the 18-node battleships, looked far less convincing after the appearance of 21-node dreadnoughts Armor is not too well protected from the guns of the destroyers, who also got 102-mm caliber it is not surprising that in the First world war the pathfinders are not famous and was used on the third cast. The most famous in the history of the eight left the Pathfinder, and then only on a sad occasion: it was the first surface ship to be killed by the torpedo of a submarine.
Eight frail scouts for leading the increasing in number, size and speed of the destroyers is still not enough. Therefore, the Admiralty decided to repeat the experience, this time authorizing the construction of all future cruisers of this class the same state-owned shipyard in Pembroke, hoping that if she cannot meet all the requirements immediately, then at least consistently will improve your own project. For this purpose, the ships were ordered in small batches: first in pairs, and between the first and the second had a two-year period, it seems to be sufficient for making the necessary changes.
However, the attempt to patch a bad idea, in fact, led to even greater failure of the Initial pair ordered according to the program of 1907 (“Bodice” and “Bellona”), was hardly better than the first “pathfinders”. Although the new ships had modern turbine mechanical installation of the drive on four shafts (and this is on the cruiser with a displacement of only 3,300 t), the speed remained at the same lack of 25-uz-fishing level. Protection deteriorated almost below the permissible limit was only 25 mm armour deck in the area of turbine and boiler departments, uttanasana more to the extremities. A further cover was provided by coal (boilers had mixed coal-oil heating), but in General, this cruiser was doomed in a battle with almost any opponent in its class. Did not give optimism and armament, which consisted of only six chetyrehluchevoy from which to fire simultaneously on Board could only four Obvious inferiority artillery partially offset during the First world war, adding in 1915 and 1916, there are four 102-graph paper But to save the obviously weak ships such measures could not.
The lords of the Admiralty didn’t know where to adjust the “leaders” behind destroyers already at 5 — 7 knots they were Not good, and service within the cruising squadron, consisting by the time of the much better armed and protected vehicles In the result in the main battle of world war I — Jutland — they acted as a kind of “wandering forwards”, not included in the specific units Fate (and the commanders) kept them, and both the cruiser had survived the battle, after which they were sent for further conversion In 1917, the former “scouts” have turned into fast mintage and managed to end the war put nearly five hundred mines With the completion of the productions they have become altogether unnecessary, and ended his career as port vessels
Not benefited and a two-year term reserved for project improvements the Second pair Pembroke cruisers, “Blonde” and “Blanche”, almost completely repeated the first Extra 50 tonnes displacement has gone on thickening the deck in the area of mechanical installation up to 40 mm and an additional four 102-mm guns Another change was the caliber of the torpedo tubes brought to a new standard — 533 mm For the modification was necessary, however, to pay a modest design speed fell on the floor site, despite attempts to ease congestion, reducing the amount of fuel Slow “walkers” were waited by the same fate as their predecessors lackluster career during most of the First world war, and then, in 1917, alteration in mintage and rapid delivery for scrapping, They have served only about ten years, which speaks only of the mediocrity of the project.
However, with persistence, worthy the best application, the Admiralty continued the experiment under the program, 1910 urgently laid another series, this time from the three units. “Amfion”, “Fearless” and “active” is very little different from its predecessors, presenting a strange combination of “Bellona” and “Blonde”. They carried ten guns, but the 18-inch torpedo tubes In a desperate attempt to somehow strengthen the protection, the engineers resorted to a surrogate, increasing the thickness of plating of side in the area of turbines and boilers, creating a 19 — 25 mm Pseudomonas “Pseudo” because the material was ordinary shipbuilding steel, quietly penetrated by any shells destroyers But she was protected at least from small fragments
The fate of the last of the trio of scouts was somewhat different from the service the previous four With the beginning of the First world war they really were the leaders menomoni fleets Less fortunate “Amfion”, which became the first British ship to be killed in the “slaughter the world” on 5 August 1914 he and a couple of destroyers his fleet discovered the German minelayer “Konigin Louise”, a flooded team
However, the “Germans” did their dirty work when they return home the next morning, the cruiser ran into two mines, one of which caused the explosion of the cellars And the most curious was a career “Fearless” He served for two years as the leader of a flotilla of destroyers, and then had a unique job, becoming a “head” group of the cruising submarines of the type “K” it was Assumed that these high-speed submarines, led by the cruiser, will operate in combat formations of the Grand fleet But by the end of the war, they participated in only one battle on 31 January 1918 when a large training output units of the fleet took place the confusion that led to the collision and death or serious injury from five boats “Fearless” contributed, sinking dashing smashing blow “To 17” to Restore the unnecessary and badly damaged the ship had no much sense In 1920, he and most “slow” “active” went for scrapping, having been on active service only 5 — 6 years — a record of futility in the very sought after class of combat vessels
Thus ended, barely begun, the story of the British “scouts” Small Lee-Dery-the scouts were too poorly protected, poorly armed and not enough speed In those same years we have built a more balanced (albeit larger) units, completely superseded these “zany” to say that such a cruel experiment with such devastating results could afford, except that the first Maritime power of the world the experience of the British decided to try a few First, their loyal disciples in those days — the Italians Almost simultaneously with the unfortunate “blond” in 1909 was founded the scout “quarto”, is considered one of the most successful ships of Italy of the time, even if slightly smaller than its British cousins, the displacement of the “quarto” was a powerful turbine allowed to develop almost 29 knots (at trials and this line managed to surpass) the stronger was the armament and the armor protection Plus the cruiser could, without compromising other qualities make up to 200 minutes, an Unexpected “bonus” was, in General, a vicious ability to create a huge wave at the stern for Vogue Impressed by the powerful breaker, German and Austrian divers again and again “anointed”, greatly exaggerating the speed of their goals in solving the torpedo triangle “Cuarto” had survived the First world war and, unlike “British”, almost got my Second Othersie nose “elder brother” the Italians decided to build on the success laid two years later, two more “scouts” In project “Marsala” and “Nino Bixio” made a lot of changes, which, as it seemed, had to go only on advantage. In particular, now on Board could shoot five guns (instead of three or four on the “quarto”) Completely changed the silhouette has acquired a beautiful fluid contours, However, and the losses were large reduction of the total power turbine (in the new project became three instead of four) led to the decrease in the grid speed of 27.5 knot, However, the design course was able to develop only “Marsala”, and after much anguish, the “Nino Bixio” not obeyed and 27 And the service, and these are not too outstanding characteristics of “sunk” very quickly mechanical installation had all the time to repair and upgrade did Not help and change boilers “Marsala” In the end “superior” Italian “scouts” went “into retirement” much earlier than the firstborn “quarto”
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