HMS Hood (BC-1920)


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HMS Hood, myth and legend. Carrying the title 'Largest Warship' for 20 years is no mean feat. Unfortunately in the real world it cost Hood dearly. Because the Hood was so important to the Admiralty as much for its pin-up value as anything else, the Hood was not taken in hand for rebuilding when it should have been. Meeting Bismarck in her original condition was always a recipe for disaster and so it proved. Jutland came back to haunt the British as another battlecruiser blew up under the guns of a German ship.

The Hood/Admiral class battlecruisers never makes it in the Fisherless RN, they are replaced by the four ship Majestic Class.

The Hood was completed in 1920 with the turret ramps for aircraft that were in vogue at that time:

The other three Admiral class (Anson, Howe, and Rodney)  were to be built to a slightly different configuration than the Hood.

Below: HMS Hood as she appeared in the Denmark Strait in 1941 for its date with destiny.

In my world that meeting may not happen as world events may never bring those two ships into contact. May 1941, Hood is just being released from the builders yards and undergoing its sea trials after its rebuilding process. New propulsion, deck armour, secondary armament, AA armament, new bow and superstructure all combine to create a completely new silhouette. The Hood used the latest battleships superstructure as a template for its new bow and bridge.

I am not a fan of this drawing. The idea of using the Vanguard/Lion bridge and superstructure was sound enough but these superstructures were just too big and heavy and could do with smaller units to help with the weight saving that was required by the Hood and its suspect hull. The AA armament could do with changing as well, stick with the lighter 4.5" twins over the bigger and more cumbersome 5.25". Replacing the eight gun 2 pounder mountings with quad and twin 40mm mountings will also save more weight. One major thing that I do need to follow is the new bow section. Reading about the Hood, the forward messdecks were so wet and damp that the incidence of tuberculosis was three times higher than any other ship of the fleet. Giving the ship a new bow will stop the ships tendency to 'plunge' into the waves which will make the ship ride better and will help stop the stress on the hull. Lets see what I can come up with. Probably two attempts: 1. British 1941-42, 2. Lend-Lease 1942 (Hoods damage from the French 13" shell hits in July 1940 requires a full dockyard).

RN Version:

US Version:

A note on the 15" turrets. On the RN Parts sheet in Shipbucket are 4 different 15" turrets. The ones on the earlier drawings of Hood are actually the turrets that were drawn for the Queen Elizabeth class. The turrets I have put on the rebuilds are those marked on the parts sheet as being the ones for HMS Hood.

With its new components Hood dropped nearly 3000 tons from its standard displacement, a drop that was badly needed as the overstressed hull needed the relief. The biggest saving was in the latest propulsion technology which provided the same power at about 65% of the weight of the old system. The Hood spent most of the 20's and 30's being flagship of the 1st Battlecruiser squadron with the Renown and Repulse. The advent of the aircraft carrier and how that ship type altered thinking, the battlecruisers were split up to provide heavy cover for the aircraft carriers. Renown and Repulse got one of the Ark Royal type each, while the Hood stayed with the Home fleet where the Courageous and Furious were stationed till Hood was sent in for rebuilding in mid 1939.


  As Built 1920 UK 1940-41 rebuild US 1940-41 rebuild
Displacement 42,500 tons standard, 47,350 tons full load 39,000 tons standard, 43,700 tons full load 39,000 tons standard, 43,700 tons full load
Length 860 ft 875 feet 892 feet
Breadth 104 ft 114 feet over bulges 114 feet over bulges
Draught 31 ft 30 feet 30 feet
Machinery 4 shafts, Steam Turbines, 144,000shp 4 shaft, geared turbines, 130,000shp 4 shaft, geared turbines, 130,000shp
Speed 31 knots 30 knots 30 knots
Range 5,500 at 20 knots 8,000 miles at 14 knots 8,000 miles at 14 knots
Armour 12" sides, 3" deck, turrets 11". 12" belt, 5.5" deck, 11" turrets. 12" belt, 5.5" deck, 11" turrets.
Armament 8 x 15" (4x2)
12 x 5.5" (8x2)
6 x 4" AA (6x1)
8 x 15" (4x2)
20 x 4.5" (10x2)
70 x 40mm (9x4, 17x2)
8 x 15" (4x2)
20 x 5" (10x2)
54 x 40mm (10x4, 7x2)
Aircraft nil 4 2
Torpedoes 8 x 21" fixed above water nil nil
Complement 1450 1450 1450
  HMS Hood (1920) Sunk by Bismarck at Battle of Denmark Strait (RTL)
HMS Anson (Laid down 1916, 1917 suspended, 1919 cancelled)
HMS Howe (Laid down 1916, 1917 suspended, 1919 cancelled)
HMS Rodney (Laid down 1916, 1917 suspended, 1919 cancelled)


Hood during the 1920's.

Another attempt to show Hood in a 1942 rebuilding state.



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