RZS Barad-Dur (CL-1927)


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The Rohan class was only ten years old, but the advances made during World War One, had made them virtually obsolete. New ships of a similar type were required. The four ship Tower Class were designed 1923-24, with the first ship being laid down in 1924 and then one per year thereafter. The final ship of the class being completed in 1930. These ships were all that the Senate would let the Zealandian Navy build during this period. The Zealandian Admiralty could only watch as the rest of the world built 8" gun cruisers while they could only build their cruisers with six 6".

The design was a standard two forward, one aft twin turret configuration with single 4" AA and a pair of the new quad 2 pounder AA guns, while a pair of single 2 pounder guns were mounted on either side of the bridge. The speed of the Zealandian cruisers was increasing from class to class, Rohan class 26 knots (28 after rebuilding), Celeborn class 30 knots, while the Tower class all made at least 32 knots on trials. The 6" twin turret was of the new type originally designed for the N3/G3 series of capital ships. These guns fired as far as the previous 7.5", 26,000 yards at 45 degrees elevation.

Designed as patrol cruisers, they were fitted with aircraft handling facilities. A set of torpedoes on each beam gave some teeth against larger targets. These ships had some of the first HACS units fitted to control the 4" AA guns.

Displacement 4,900 tons std 6,750 tons full load
Length 492 ft
Breadth 54 ft
Draught 18 ft
Machinery 2 shaft steam turbines, 70,000shp
Speed 33 knots
Range 7000 miles at 14 knots
Armour 3" side, 1.5" deck, 2" turrets.
Armament 6 x 6" (3x2)
6 x 4" (6x1)
12 x 2pd (2x4, 4x1)
Aircraft 1
Torpedoes 6 x 21" (2x3)
Complement 510 (535 as Leader)
Notes RZS Barad-Dur (11/1927)

RZS Minas Ithil (12/1928)

RZS Minas Mogul (07/1929)

RZS Minas Echelion (06/1930)

Virtually from the start of their careers right through till their retirement to the reserve fleet in 1945, these ships were being refitted from small additions through to quite major rebuilds. The drawing below is the final version that all remaining ships of the class were refitted to by the end of 1943. As with all cruisers that made it past 1941, the need to remove topweight to balance out the new equipment being added, meant the removal of the aircraft handling facilities and torpedoes.

Twin 6" from bow.


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