König Class Dreadnought Battleship

World War 1 Naval Combat

World War 1 Naval Combat

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SMS Konig König class.  Basically this class were improved Kaisers with similar protection and propulsion but with an improved main armament lay out.  Late in the war the forward pole mast was replaced with a more substantial tubular mast necessary to carry the improved fire control equipment that ships were fitted with during the war

SMS König
Built Wilhelmshaven Navy Yard, laid down October 1911, completed August 1914, cost 45,000,000 Marks.

SMS Grosser Kurfürst
Built Vulcan, Hamburg, laid down October 1911, completed July 1914.

SMS Markgraf
Built Weser, Bremen, laid down November 1911, completed October 1914.

SMS Kronprinz (re-named  Kronprinz Wilhelm in 1918)
Built Germaniawerft, Kiel, laid down May 1912, completed November 1914.

Size:
Length 575 feet 6 inches overall, 96 feet 9 inches beam, draught 30 feet 6 inches deep load, displacement 25,390 tons normal 29,200 tons deep load.

Propulsion:
3shaft Parsons/AEG-Vulcan/Bergmann turbines, 31,000 shp = 21kts

Trials:
König 43,300 shp = 21.0 knots (Parsons)
Kurfust 45,100 shp = 21.2 knots (AEG-Vulcan)
Markgraf 41,400 shp = 21.0 knots (Bergmann)
Kronprinz 46,200 shp = 21.3 knots (Parsons)

Armour:
14-3in belt, 12in barbettes, 12in turrets, 2.5in decks

Armament:
10 x 12in SKL/50 (5 x 2), 14 x 5.9in (14 x 1), 10 x 3.45in (14 x 1), 5 x 19.7in TT

Comments:
All centreline main armament introduced although they retained the 12 inch gun at a time when most other major navies had switched to more powerful 13.5/14 inch weapons.  It had originally been hoped to fit them with a hybrid diesel/steam turbine propulsion but this was abandoned following problems with Prinzregent Luitpold.  Crew was 41 officers and 1095 men.

World War 1 Service:
König

III Battle Squadron.
7 December 1914 collided with SMS Grosser Kurfürst near Wilhelmshaven.
1916 Battle of Jutland.  Fired 167 12 inch rounds and was hit by 4 15inch 9 13.5 inch and 4 6 inch shells with 45 killed and 27 wounded.
Repaired at Kiel.
October1917 operations in the Baltic Islands.
17 October 1917 engaged Russian battleships, sinking the Slava .
Interned and Scuttled at Scapa Flow at the end of World War 1 

Grosser Kurfürst
III Battle Squadron.
7 December 1914 collided with SMS König near Wilhelmshaven.
Present at Battle of Jutland in 1916.  Fired 135 12 inch rounds.  Hit by 4 15 inch 3 13.5 inch shells causing 15 dead and 10 wounded.
Repairs at Hamburg.
5 November 1916 torpedoed by British submarine J1 off the Danish coast.
February 1917 returned from repairs.
9 February 1917 ran aground.
5 March 1917 collided with SMS Kronprinz Wilhelm.
April 1917 repairs.
October 1917 part of operations near the Baltic Islands.
12 October 1917 hit as mine.
December 1917 returned form repairs in Wilhelmshaven.
25 April 1918 damaged entering Wilhelmshaven harbor.
May 1918 returned from repairs in Wilhelmshaven.
30 May 1918 ran aground near Heligoland.
August 1918  returned from repairs in Wilhelmshaven.
Interned and Scuttled at Scapa Flow at the end of World War 1 

Markgraf
III Battle Squadron.
Battle of Jutland 1916.  Fired 254 12 inch rounds.  Hit by 3 15 inch 2 13.5 inch shells causing 11 dead and 13 wounded.
July 1916 repairs at Hamburg.
October1917 operations in the Baltic Islands.
Interned and Scuttled at Scapa Flow at the end of World War 1 

Kronprinz
III Battle Squadron.
At the Battle of Jutland 1916.  Fired 144 12 inch rounds, no damage.
5 November 1916 torpedoed by British submarine J1 off the Danish coast.
December 1916 returned from repairs.
5 March 1917 collision with SMS Grosser Kurfürst in Heligoland Bight.
May1917 returned from repairs.
October1917 operations in the Baltic Islands.
12 October 1917 mined.
27 January 1918 re-named  Kronprinz Wilhelm
Interned and Scuttled at Scapa Flow at the end of World War 1.

SMS Grosser Kurfürst at the time of the surrender of the High Seas Fleet.  The large white circles on the forward turrets were added late in the war to aid recognition of the ships from aircraft to help prevent "friendly fire" incidents. Grosser-kurfurst.jpg (73806 bytes)

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