HMAS Dunedin (AC-1919 (1939-mod))
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These two ships, HMAS Dunedin and HMAS Geelong, were conceived to find, run down and sink the German raiders that were operating in the Indian Ocean and South Atlantic in1915-16. Laid down in 1915 these were the largest cruisers yet built for the Australis Navy and were originally classed as Armoured Cruisers as they were of a size and armour with the earlier Duke class ships Australia had built. The 7.5" guns for the ships were provided from the old pre-Dreadnought Otago and the spares that had been kept for those ships. The armament was to comprise 4 twin turrets of 7.5" in pairs fore and aft with superfiring turrets as per the Queen class layout. Speed was kept to the same 28-29 knots as the light cruisers of the C type. These were the Australis Navies equivalents to the Frobisher class.
Completed too late for the First World War, they were nearly axed by the Washington Treaty as their standard displacement exceeded treaty limits. The two ships were given a dispensation because the Australis Navy said outright that they were not going to scrap two brand new cruisers over 1000 tons just because some foreign people said they should. The language used at the time was slightly more colourful and got the point across to the "stuffed shirts".
Taken in hand for the rebuilding process in 1938, both ships were remodeled using the Hobart class as a template. The chance was taken to remove the old propulsion system and replace it with up to date machinery of the same pattern as the Melbourne class. This had the effect of increasing the speed from 28 to 31 knots. While only 3 knots it did mean that the ships were mow able to act with the faster ships of the fleet. Having been built as trade protection cruisers the ships were fitted with aircraft handling facilities to aid searching for raiders and other threats.
|Displacement||11,500 tons std, 15,200 tons full load|
|Machinery||2 shaft steam turbines 72,000shp|
|Range||5000 miles at 15 knots|
|Armour||5.5" side, 3" deck, 5.5/3" turrets|
|Armament||8 x 7.5" (4x2)
8x 4" (4x2)
12 x 2pd (3x4)
10 x 20mm (4x2 2x1)
|Torpedoes||8 x 21" (2x4)|
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