home

fighting ships of the world

ROYAL NAVY (UNITED KINGDOM)

CAPITAL SHIPS & MONITORS

MINOTAUR broadside ironclads (1867-1868)

Agincourt 1869

 

Name

No

Yard No

Builder

Laid down

Launched

Comp

Fate

Minotaur (ex-Elephant)   81e Thames Iron Wks, Blackwall 12/9/1861 12/12/1863 1/6/1867 TS 1895
Agincourt (ex-Captain)   291 Lairds, Birkenhead 30/10/1861 27/3/1865 19/12/1868 TS 1895
Northumberland     Millwall Iron Wks, Blackwall 10/10/1861 17/4/1866 8/10/1868 depot ship 1898

 

Displacement normal, t

Minotaur: 10690

Agincourt: 10600

Northumberland: 10784

Displacement full, t

 

Length, m

122.0 pp 124.0 oa

Breadth, m

18.1

Draught, m

8.46

No of shafts

1

Machinery

Minotaur, Northumberland: sails + 1 2-cyl HSE, trunk, 10 rectangular boilers

Agincourt: sails + 1 2-cyl HSE, double piston rods, 10 rectangular boilers

Power, h. p.

Minotaur: 6702

Agincourt: 6867

Northumberland: 6558

Max speed, kts

Minotaur: 14.4

Agincourt: 15.4

Northumberland: 14.1

Fuel, t

coal 750

Endurance, nm(kts)

1200(10)

Armour, mm

Minotaur, Agincourt: iron; belt: 146 - 114 with 254mm teak backing, bulkhead: 140

Northumberland: iron; belt: 146 - 114 with 254mm teak backing, bulkheads: 140, CT: 114

Armament

Minotaur, Agincourt: 4 x 1 - 229/14 MLR Mk IV, 24 x 1 - 178/16 MLR Mk III, 8 x 1 - 148/11 24pdr brass MLSB howitzers

Northumberland: 4 x 1 - 229/14 MLR Mk IV, 22 x 1 - 203/15 MLR Mk III, 2 x 1 - 178/16 MLR Mk III

Complement

705

Ship project history: Initially ships of class were designed as 50-gun armoured frigates with full length protection to the battery to avoid unprotected gun positions on the main deck, really they were enlarged version of Achilles with a ram-shaped bow, heavier armour and armament and increased engine power. They were the largest warships to be propelled by single screw. Northumberland was built under design modified by Reed and had heavier armament and fewer guns, enabling the battery to be shorter.

    Minotaur was really completed in 1865 but spent 18 months testing experimental armaments and rigs before commission. Originalle she had a square rig on her first four masts and a spanker on the 5th mast, this proved unsatisfactory and the yards were removed from the 4th mast. Other sister-ships were completed with this rig. Northumberland had a gaff on all masts, other two ships had no gaff on the 2nd mast. The sail area was 3010m2. These were unhandy vessels and poor sailers, their best speed under sail was 9-10kts, but they were good seaboats, being very steady and steamed well. In 1870s two first ships received steam-powered steering gear and Northumberland was so completed being the first ship so fitted.

Ship protection: On Minotaur and Agincourt the armour (146mm amidships and 114mm near the ship ends) covered the entire side from the upper deck to 1.8m below the waterline, except for the extreme forward end between the main and upper decks. Single 140mm bulkhead closed the fwd end of the battery and extended to the top of the bulwarks to give protection to chase guns on the forecastle.

    On Northumberland the side armour between the main and upper decks covered only the length of the battery (56.3m) to compensate for the increased armament weight, and the ends were enclosed by 140mm bulkheads extending the full depth of the side armour. Also Northumberland had armoured CT protected by 114mm plates.

Modernizations: (1873-1875), Minotaur, (1875-1877), Agincourt: were reboilered, new propeller and steam steering were fitted (6288hp, 14.1kts), completely rearmed with 17 x 1 - 229/14 MLR Mk IV, 2 x 1 - 95/21 20pdr 16cwt BL

(1875-1879), Northumberland: 2nd and 4th masts were removed, ship was re-rigged as a barque, was completely rearmed with 7 x 1 - 229/14 MLR Mk IV, 20 x 1 - 203/15 MLR Mk III, 2 x 1 - 95/21 20pdr 16cwt BL, 4 x 1 - 356 TT

early 1880s, Minotaur, Agincourt: - 2 x 1 - 229/14; + 2 x 1 - 152/26 BL Mk III/IV/VI

(1885-1887), Northumberland: - 2 x 1 - 203/15; + 1 x 1 - 152/26 BL Mk III/IV/VI, 1 x 1 - 127/25 BL Mk I/II/III/IV/V

(1891-1892), Minotaur, Agincourt: + 4 x 1 - 120/40 QF Mk I/II/III/IV, 8 x 1 - 47/40 Hotchkiss QF Mk I, 8 x 1 - 11.4/87, 2 x 1 - 356 TT

early 1890s, Northumberland: + 6 x 1 - 120/40 QF Mk I/II/III/IV, 10 x 1 - 47/40 Hotchkiss QF Mk I, 6 x 1 - 11.4/87

Naval service: Minotaur was converted to TS at Portland and renamed Boscawen in 1904, Ganges in 1906, Ganges II in 1908 and sold for BU 30/1/1922. Agincourt also became TS at Portland in 1895, renamed Boscawen III in 1904 and Ganges II in 1906, in 1908 converted to coal hulk C109 and arrived for BU 21/10/1960. Northumberland became depot ship in 1898, TS Acheron in 1904 and coal hulk C8 in 1909 (since 1926 C68) and sold in June 1927.

Thanks to Wolfgang Stöhr for additional information on this page.

Northumberland with three masts.

© Ivan Gogin, 2008-14