RPN Reliance (BB-1934)

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1930 and the Treaties lapse as Japan fails to sign the latest London version. All of the signatories lay down ships at the 35,000 ton limit, but most exceed that limit by 3-4,000 tons to achieve a better balanced ship than could be achieved at 35,000 tons. The Panagaean Navy already knew that building a decent ship at 35,000 tons did not quite work. They had the experience with the Repulse and Retribution classes. Fifteen years of progress made the design for the new ships better than the earlier models. The dual purpose guns made a big difference. Not having to carry secondary 6" then tertiary 4" and 3" saved a lot of weight that could be better used for protection. The main armament would be nine 16' in triple turrets as being a gun size Panagaea was already familiar with.

Big powerful ships. The Panagaean Navy had found the same solutions as the other countries building 35k battleships. Those that used 15" guns were slightly faster than the 16" ships. Those countries that used secondary and tertiary armaments instead of a dual purpose armament paid a penalty for the extra weight requirements. Large numbers of light AA were fitted to put up a barrage that aircraft could not operate in or through. (never happened!) Multiple gun directors were fitted for the main and dual purpose armaments.

Refits took place whenever new weaponry and electronics were added to the inventory. The funnels were capped to try and lessen smoke interference. 20mm Hispano-Suiza cannons were produced and twelve were added to the original 2 pounder and half inch machine gun anti-aircraft weapons. Electronics started really coming in about 1937-38 when the earliest radar sets were added. These were replaced and upgraded over the next 20 years of service of the ships. By 1943 all of the previous light AA has been stripped out and replaced with the much more capable twin 40mm Bofors weapons. Coupled to radar predictors the 40mm guns had a superb knock down capability. The two ships spent their wars with the main fleet units and carriers. Operating as Task Force Units with the US Pacific Fleet. 

Displacement 38,000 tons standard, 44,750 tons full load
Length 767 ft
Breadth 108 ft
Draught 28 ft
Machinery 4 shaft, steam turbines, 140,000shp
Speed 29 knots
Range 6000 miles at 15 knots
Armour 14" side, 7" deck, 15" turrets
Armament As completed

9 x 16" (3x3)
20 x 4.5" (10x2)
64 x 2pd (7x8, 2x4)
12 x 20mm (12x1)
24 x 0.5"mg (6x4)
Late 1942 refits

9 x 16" (3x3)
20 x 4.5" (10x2)
32 x 40mm (16x2)

Aircraft 4 4
Complement 1850-1880 as Flagship
Notes Reliance -
Implacable -

Attaching the crane ring to the Swordfish ready to haul it aboard ship.


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