Tiamarda ships

Another Karadenian warship, specifically an Invictus-class battleship, sitting next to the Selsequenter.  The Invictus is a much more modern-looking design, but these two ships were contemporaries (and built from the exact same Tiamarda hull), and simply filled different roles.  Thanks to her sails, Selsequenter was faster, and she was armed with a large number of medium-sized guns, thus was optimised for sieges.  The Invictus-class, on the other hand, relied on additional boilers (hence the extra funnel) to power the two engines, and still could not match the Selsequenter for speed or range.

Just as, in past centuries, the Karadenians had used sixty-something-gun galleons to obliterate first-rate ships-of-the-line through the use of explosive shells, the Invictus-class battleships were used as dreadnought-killers, armed with four massive 380-mm (15-in) guns.  The main turrets were offset from centre, mainly to make more room to move around them both above and below decks.  This was unusual, but by no means unique.  In fact, the famous pre-dreadnought USS Maine had the same configuration, but with a much more pronounced offset, as did the HMS Inflexible and many Italian battleships of the same era.  However, among Rossberan navies, this is exclusively a Karadenian practise.  The offset turrets were not as much of a concern, of course, as the guns in them.  The Tiamarda hull lacks a keel (which is not unusual), and relies on a combination of the deep draught and low position of the ballast to remain stable.  However, there were concerns that the recoil from all four guns firing at once to the same side of the ship might cause it to list enough for water to pour into the open gunports (which is an awful lot, look at how high they are).  Thus, the magazines were loaded with half-charges, meaning that the canisters had to be modified and loaded in tandem in order to make use of the guns’ full power.

As for the Invictus herself (by the way, I must digress here – I do not always refer to ships as female, but rather as they would be within their respective navies, e.g. ships are neuter in Rhûn and Kantossa, just as they are in Russia), she struck a mine, and the resulting explosion blew off the forward main turret.  Were it not for the way that turrets are held in place on battleships (they’re not, by the way, they fall right off ships that capsize), the incident could have blown the entire ship apart.  The Karadenian navy balked at the prospect of repairing the ship, as the damage was quite extensive.  The Invictus spent the next ten months sitting in drydock before the navy figured out what to do with her.  Fortunately, they needed a salvage ship, and so the Invictus was repurposed.  In the very first book of The Nine Empires, which I have fully outlined and a few chapters written, one of my point-of-view characters, Agent Bedalia Crassus, is assigned to take the ship on a critical recovery mission.

Like the Selsequenter, the Invictus, both before and after her modifications, will be available in my Shapeways shop in the near future.

 

 

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