Masdea’s colonial cruiser:
The Calabria was designed in 1891 by Chief Engineer Edoardo Masdea (who will later sign the two Vettor Pisani). His specifications required a colonial building halfway between a cruiser and a gunboat. Recognizable by its classic masts and unique funnel, this stocky building was launched at the Spezia shipyard in 1894 and commissioned in 1897.
This is a placeholder post, waiting to be greatly enhanced and improved
Her hull was largely made of zinc plates and wood (to fight against tropical rust). Its range was 4730 km at 10 knots average (2500 nautical miles). Its original weaponry consisted of 4 pieces of 152 mm 40 caliber, 4 120 mm 40 caliber, 8 37 mm caliber 20 rapid fire, 2 Maxim machine guns, and two lateral torpedo tubes. She was rearmed in 1914 (see sheet).
Obsolete as a cruiser, it was used effectively as a colonial station (North Africa), and in 1921, rearmed again and finally reclassified as gunboat. He was then armed with a piece of 152, 6 of 120, 8 of 57, 2 of 37, and a 40 mm AA. He was stricken from the lists in 1924.
Cruiser calabria, state library John Oxley (cc)
Displacement: 2450t, 2660 t. FL
Dimensions: 81 x 12.7 x 5 m
Propulsion: 2 shaft VTE, 4 cyl. Boilers, 4260 hp. and 16.4 knots max.
Protection: Crew Deck 51, Blockhaus 51 mm; Crew 250
Armament: 6 x 120, 6 x 57, 2 x 37, 1 MG, 2 x 450 mm TTs.
Armoured cruiser Calabria – author’s illustration