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T3, R1, Prng 103: Asar-i Tevfik (Turkey) vs Redoutable (France)

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  • T3, R1, Prng 103: Asar-i Tevfik (Turkey) vs Redoutable (France)

    In your opinion, which of these two warship types was most significant, influential and/or effective?
    Feel free to apply those criteria as you please, along with any others you think appropriate.
    Note: Suggestions for some additional criteria are at the foot of this post.

    According to the criteria as you see and apply them, please vote for your preferred candidate in the attached poll.
    If your chosen criteria are significantly different from those suggested, telling us what they are and why you used them would be helpful.

    140: Asar-i Tevfic

    The ironclad warship Asar-i Tevfik (“God's Favor”) was built in France for the Ottoman Navy, as part of an expansion and modernization program for the Ottoman fleet following losses suffered during the Crimean war. She was laid down in 1867 and commissioned in 1870. Her design was based on contemporary French warships like the Colbert class, although significantly reduced in size. These were central battery ironclads, with their main armament concentrated in an armored casemate positioned amidships on the gun deck. However, Asar-i Tevfik carried two of her 220mm (8.7in) main guns in armored barbettes (open topped pivot mountings) on the deck above, providing a much wider field of fire for these weapons.

    The ship had an iron hull with a partial double bottom and a ram bow, as was customary for ironclads of the period. As built, she was protected with an iron armor belt that was 200mm (8in) thick. The transverse bulkheads that connected both ends of the belt were 75mm (3in) thick. The central battery had thinner iron plating than the belt, at 150mm (6in), and the barbette guns were protected with 130mm (5in) of iron.

    Steam was provided by six box boilers, which were trunked into a single funnel amidships.
    Asar-i Tevfik served in the Ottoman fleet over a period of more than four decades. Her actions included service in two major wars; the Russo-Turkish War of 1877–1878 and the First Balkan War in 1913. During the former conflict, she was torpedoed by a Russian torpedo boat but only slightly damaged. She took part in the abortive Battle of Elli against the Greek Navy in December 1912 during the First Balkan War.
    From 1903–06, the ship had been extensively rebuilt in Germany and a new battery of 150mm (5.9in) and 120mm (4.7in) quick-firing guns replaced the older weapons. The reconstruction also added a 75mm armored deck, and the new conning tower was protected with 150mm thick armor plating.

    After more than 40 years in service, while operating against Bulgarian positions in February 1913, Asar-i Tevfik ran aground. She was then shelled by Bulgarian field artillery. The damage they inflicted, coupled with heavy seas, destroyed the ship.

    General characteristics
    Displacement – 4,687t (4,613 long tons)
    Length – 83.01m (272.3ft)
    Beam – 16m (52ft)
    Draft – 6.5m (21ft)
    Power – 1 x horizontal compound steam engine
    Armament (as built) – 8 x 220mm (9in) guns
    Complement – 320 officers and men

    General layout


    Tevfik before her reconstruction


    120: Redoutable

    Redoutable was a central battery and barbette ship of the French Navy, built at the Arsenal de Lorient. She was launched in September 1876 and began her trials in November 1878, entering service the following month. Redoutable is credited as being the first warship in the world to use steel as her principal building material. Compared to iron, steel allowed for greater structural strength for a lower weight. At that time however, steel plates still had some defects, and the outer bottom plating of the ship was made of wrought iron.

    Redoutable diplaced from 8,858 – 9,430 metric tons (8,718 – 9,280 long tons) and had 8 boilers providing steam for two engines, powering two shafts. This article, from Scientific American, provides some interesting details:
    "The Redoutable is built partly of iron and partly of steel and is similar in many respects to the ironclads Devastation and Courbet of the same fleet, although rather smaller. She is completely belted with 14 in [360 mm] armour, with a 15 in [380 mm] backing, and has the central battery armoured with plates of 9½ in [240 mm] in thickness.
    The engines are two in number, horizontal, and of the compound two cylinder type, developing a horsepower of 6,071 [4.527 MW], which on the trial trip gave a speed of 14.66 knots. Five hundred and ten tons of coal are carried in the bunkers, which at a speed of 10 knots should enable the ship to make a voyage of 2,800 nautical miles [5,200 km]. Torpedo defense netting is fitted, and there are three masts with military tops carrying Hotchkiss revolver machine guns.
    The offensive power of the ship consists of seven breechloading rifled guns of 27 centimeters (10.63 in.), and weighing 24 tons each, six breechloading rifled guns of 14 centimeters (5.51 in.), and quick-firing and machine guns of the Hotchkiss systems. There are in addition four torpedo discharge tubes, two on each side of the ship.
    The positions of the guns are as follows: Four of 27 centimeters in the central battery, two on each broadside; three 27 centimeter guns on the upper deck in barbettes, one on each side amidships, and one aft. The 14 centimeter guns are in various positions on the broadsides, and the machine guns are fitted on deck, on the bridges, and in the military tops, four of them also being mounted on what is rather a novelty in naval construction, a gallery running round the outside of the funnel, which was fitted when the ship was under repairs some months ago.
    There are three electric light projectors, one forward on the upper deck, one on the bridge just forward of the funnel, and one in the mizzen top."
    Initially, Redoutable formed part of the French Mediterranean squadron but subsequently served elsewhere around the World. For example, she was present during the negotiation of the Boxer Protocol, a treaty signed on 7 September 1901 with China. She had quite a long career and was not struck until March 1910.

    General characteristics
    Displacement – 9,430 tonnes (9,280 long tons)
    Length – 95m (311ft 8in) between perpendiculars; 100.7m (330ft 5in) overall
    Beam – 19.76 m (64 ft 10 in)
    Draft – 7.8 m (26 ft)
    Power – 2 x horizontal connecting rod compound steam engines + sailing rig
    Armament (primary) – 7 x 270mm and 6 x 140mm guns + 4 torpedo launchers
    Complement – 30 officers & 679 ratings

    Redoutable in 1889


    An earlier photo of Redoutable in dry dock


    So, what's it to be?
    Turkish Delight on Asar-i Tevfik or Crκpes Suzette aboard Redoutable?

    Suggested additional criteria you might wish to consider, along with any others you deem appropriate.
    (Note: Some of these could be considered already covered by Significant, Influential and Effective)

    Which warship type ...
    • was the best?
    • was the greatest?
    • was the most widely used?
    • had the greatest longevity in service?
    • was the most versatile?
    • represented the best value for the cost/effort invested ("bang for the buck" in today's language)?
    • was the easiest to operate?
    Any other criteria you have applied (please tell us what they were).

    Asar-i Tevfik central battery ironclad
    Redoutable central battery ironclad
    Last edited by panther3485; 05 Sep 19, 10:59.
    "Chatfield, there seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today!"
    Vice Admiral Beatty to Flag Captain Chatfield; Battle of Jutland, 31 May - 1 June, 1916.

  • #2
    Redoutable, being more of a warship than the Turkish monitor design. She is clearly seaworthy, and the use of steel marks the future.
    Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes? Who is watching the watchers?


    • #3
      Originally posted by Mountain Man View Post
      Redoutable, being more of a warship than the Turkish monitor design. She is clearly seaworthy, and the use of steel marks the future.
      Agreed again. Redoutable has about twice the displacement, mind you; but your points hold good. Also, the French vessel was developed 6 - 7 years later, which makes some difference too, at a time when the pace of warship development was very fast.

      "Chatfield, there seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today!"
      Vice Admiral Beatty to Flag Captain Chatfield; Battle of Jutland, 31 May - 1 June, 1916.


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