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HMS Captain (1870)

Ocean-Going Ironclad Warship / Turret Ship

United Kingdom | 1870

"HMS Captain proved a poorly-designed warship, ultimately capsizing after just a few short months at sea."

Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one sea-going vessel design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for HMS Captain (1870).
8 x Rectangular boilers with 1 x Reciprocating 4-cylinder horizontal trunk engine developing 5,400 horsepower and driving 2 x shafts; 3 x Sail masts.
15.3 kts
17.5 mph
Surface Speed
1,303 nm
1,500 miles | 2,414 km
The bow-to-stern, port-to-starboard physical qualities of HMS Captain (1870).
320.0 ft
97.54 meters
O/A Length
53.0 ft
16.15 meters
25.0 ft
7.62 meters
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of HMS Captain (1870).
4 x 12" muzzle-loading main guns
2 x 7" muzzle-loading rifled guns
Ships-in-Class (1)
Notable series variants as part of the HMS Captain (1870) family line as relating to the Captain group.
HMS Captain
Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 05/22/2018 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.

HMS Captain was built to a "turret ship" standard common to the late-19th Century. These ships differed from earlier war models in that they held their primary armament (rifled cannon) in traversing turrets which offered for broadened firing arcs as well as protection for the gunnery crew. Warships could now engage from any approach angle instead of hoping to maneuver into position to deliver devastating broadsides. Laid down on January 30th, 1867 by Laird Brothers of Birkenhead, she was launched on March 27th, 1869 and formally commissioned in April of 1870.

As built, HMS Captain carried a crew of about 500 made up of a mix of enlisted and officer personnel. Propulsion was from a reciprocating 4-cylinder horizontal trunk engine developing 5,400 horsepower and this was fed by 8 x Rectangular boiler units all used to drive 2 x Shafts at the stern. Maximum speed (in ideal conditions) reached a useful 15.25 knots. As a "steam-and-sail" warship, HMS Captain retained the form and function of a three-masted sailing arrangement alongside her engine/boiler propulsion scheme. With sails as part of her drive system, she held essentially unlimited range.

Armament was 4 x 12" (25-ton) muzzle-loading rifled guns in two twin-gunned emplacements and 2 x 7" (6.5-ton) muzzle-loaded rifled guns in two single-gunned emplacements. Armor protection reached up to 8" at the belt and 10" at the turrets.

HSM Captain's service life was a short one by any standard for, on September 6th, 1870, she faced steadily increasing winds while sailing with ships of both the Mediterranean and Channel Squadrons. The storm only grew worse into the night until the vessel ultimately rolled over, took on water, and sank with some 480 souls aboard. Twenty-seven managed to survive by clinging to a boat that had become loose during the ordeal.

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Global operator(s) of the HMS Captain (1870). Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national naval warfare listing.
National flag of the United Kingdom

[ United Kingdom ]
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Image of the HMS Captain (1870)
Image from the Public Domain.

Going Further...
HMS Captain (1870) Ocean-Going Ironclad Warship / Turret Ship appears in the following collections:
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