Pisa class armoured cruisers (1907)

Italy - Regia Marina Pisa, Amalfi

Based on the Regina Elena Battleships

Amalfi underway (postcard)

These two ships were designed in August 1904 by engineer Giuseppe Orlando on the model of the Regina Elena, but in reduced version. They were started at Orlando, Leghorn, and Odero at Sestri Ponente in February and July 1905, launched in September 1907 and May 1908 and commissioned in September 1909, six years after their conception.

They remained inferior to the battlecruisers that appeared at the same time. Actually, a third of the class was built, for the Greek Navy, the Giorgios Averoff, launched in March 1910 and completed in 16 May 1911. She took a major part in the Greek-Turkish war and remained in service during WW2, being only deactivated as a museum ship in 1984. She is the only remaining cruiser of this class to be visited today.

Design of the Pisa class

Armament

Close view on the turrets
Close view on Pisa's turrets

Unlike the Rgina Elena class battleships supposed to be based on, the two Pisa had four Cannone da 254/45 V Modello 1906 in twin mounts for and aft. They were hydraulically powered and the 254 mm (10.0 in) guns fired 217–224-kilogram (478–494 lb) armor-piercing (AP) projectiles at about 869 mps (2,850 ft/s). The third ship, Averoff, was fitted instead with smaller 234 mm (9.2 in) British Vickers guns (more on the Averoff to come).

Secondary armament comprised mounted eight Cannone da 190/45 V Modello 1906 in twin mounts, also hydraulically powered. They were placed on each side amidships and fired 91-kilogram (201 lb) AP shells at 850–870 mps (2,789–2,853 ft/s). But the Averof, once again, was armed with Vickers 190 mm (7.5 in) guns and these Elswick artillery piece were Pattern 'B' 7.5-inch furing similar 90.7-kilogram (200 lb) AP shells, a bit slower at 844 m/s (2,770 ft/s).

Tertiary armament comprised a solid defence against torpedo boats comprising the same 16 Vickers quick-firing (QF) Cannone da 76/50 V Modello 1908 artillery pieces, firing a 6.5-kilogram (14 lb) projectile at 930 mps (3,100 ft/s), plus eight on the Pisa and Amalfi and four on the Georgios Averof QF Cannone da 47/40 V Modello 1908 guns. As usual for close quarter, three submerged 450 mm (17.7 in) torpedo tubes were installed. However Georgios Averof had 457 mm (18.0 in) tubes instead (standard Britsih TT caliber).

Wartime modifications concerned the suviving Pisa only, which had its entire tertiary armament replaced by twenty modern dual purpose or AA 76/40 guns (six AA guns). Georgios Averof was also modernized but received just one additional 76 mm AA gun, changed after her 1925 refit to six 76 mm (4 low-angle, 2 AA guns) plus nine 47 mm (4 low-angle, 5 AA) 40 mm AA guns.

Protection

Brasseys Pisa protection schematics

Protection was similar in all three ships: They had an armored belt 200 mm (7.9 in) in nessthick amidships, down to 90 mm (3.5 in) bow and stern. The armored deck was 51 mm (2.0 in) in thickness and the conning tower 180 mm (7.1 in). The main gun turrets were had 160 mm (6.3 in) armour on the frontal arc and side, and the 190 mm turrets 140 mm (5.5 in). By comparison the contemporary Minotaur class, which succeeded to the British Duke of Edinburgh and Warrior classes were even faster at 23 knots, had four smaller 234 mm guns but ten 190 mm secondary guns (two more) to compensate, and 254 mm on their conning tower and blockhaus but a lighter 152 mm belt, 203 mm on the turrets and only 20 mm on the decks.

Propulsion

All three ships were powered by two vertical triple-expansion steam engines (VTE), connected to two shaft, while steam came from 22 Belleville boilers. The whole maximum output was as designed, 20,000 horsepower (15,000 kW) and designed speed of 22.5 knots (41.7 km/h; 25.9 mph). On trials both the Amalfi and Pisa reached 23.47–23.6 knots (43.47–43.71 km/h; 27.01–27.16 mph) obtained from a forced heated machinery at 20,260–20,808 ihp (15,108–15,517 kW). Cruising range at 12 knots was about 2,500 nautical miles (4,600 km; 2,900 mi), reduced to 1,400 nautical miles (2,600 km; 1,600 mi) if the ships reached 21 knots (39 km/h; 24 mph).

Career of the Pisa and Amalfi

The career of the Amalfi was shortened during the conflict since she was sunk by the UB14 (U26 under Austro-Hungarian flag), on July 7, 1915 in the north of the Adriatic. A German submarine operating under the Austrian flag sank her. Indeed officially the Kaiser was not yet at war against Italy. Pisa for her part received a foremast, her tertiary artillery was modified with the addition of fourteen 76 mm guns and six 76 mm AA. In 1921 she was relegated to coastal defense, then became a training ship. A Macchi M7 reconnaissance aircraft was carried in 1925, and she later served as a cadets training ship and for naval lieutenants. She was retired from service in April 1937.

Pisa off Derna 1912
Pisa off Derna in 1912

Pisa

Pisa was the flagship of Rear-Admiral Ernesto Presbitero, commander of the 2nd Division of the 1st Squadron of the Mediterranean Fleet when the Italo-Turkish war broke out. She started the initial blockade of Tripoli with her sister-ship, searched for the Ottoman navy, and landed troops for the occupation of Tobrouk. She escorted along with Marco Polo and destroyers a convoy bound to Derna and shelled the port when negotiations broke down. The town was razed and taken on October 18 after several days of siege and constant bombardment. She also escorted troops from sicily and attempted to seize the port of Zuara before Christmas 1911.

Pisa

Early in 1912, the cruiser was in operations in the eastern Aegean Sea to try to lure out the Ottoman fleet, and shelled the Dardanelles forts while other ships systematically destroyed telegraph and radio stations, plus cutting underwater cables. With her sister ship she landed her armed crews to take the island of Astropalia on 28 April and convert it as a supply base, while she later covered the landings and occupation of Rhodes on 4 May. She spent some time after peace was signed, anchored at Constantinople and roaming the Aegean sea, showing the flag.

She later operated at Taranto, and Brindisi when the war broke out for Italy in 1915. During the war, she was redeployed at Venice by Admiral Paolo Thaon di Revel in order to prevent other sorties by the Austro-Hungarian fleet, bound on shelling coastal cities. After the loss of Amalfi she was transferred to Vlore, Albania in April 1916. She took part in the shelling of Durazzo on 2 October 1918. On 1 July 1921, Pisa was already considered a second-class battleship, and became coastal battleship doubling as training ship. In 1925 she was modified to operate a Macchi M.7 flying boat and until 1930, trained naval cadets and lieutenants.

Pisa 1932
Pisa in 1932, bound to China
Pisa in 1932, bound to China.[/caption]

Amalfi

There is little information in sources on Amalfi until the 1911 Italo-Turkish War (as for Pisa), however at the start of the war in 1911 she departed Syracuse for Tripoli with the bulk of the Regia Marina, comprising the battleships Roma and Napoli, armored cruisers Pisa, Giuseppe Garibaldi, Varese, and Francesco Ferruccio escorted by two flotillas of destroyers. She blockaded Tripoli after coaling at Malta, and on 15 October, was shelling Derna. In April 1912 she was in the Aegean Sea to bombard the Turkish coast and Dardanelles. Two squadrons had joined force from Tobrouk and Augusta and met at Stampalia on 17 April for the latter operations.

Amalfi and Pisa took over the dangerous task of entering deep the Dardanelles in order to draw out the Ottoman fleet. Meanwhile, they duelled for two hours with four Turkish batteries armed with 200 to 230 mm guns while the Italians fired at a range of 8,000 metres (8,700 yd). On 28 April she also landed a party of 250 men to fight off the Turkish garrison on the island of Astropalia and take the Island.

Stern of the Amalfi

During the interwar (1912 and 1915) Amalfi escorted King Victor Emmanuel III on the royal yacht Trinacria to the regatta at Kiel in Germany. Then on Trinacria and Stockholm. She later greeted USN Admiral Charles J. Badger at Naples on USS Wyoming. When the war broke out for Italy, and later in May 1915 she was part of th squadron anchored at Brindisi, comprising six pre-dreadnought battleships, those of the Regina Elena class and Ammiraglio di Saint Bon plus the cruisers San Marco, San Giorgio and her sister-ship.

Under orders from Admiral Anton Haus, the Austro-Hungarian Navy raided Italian coast on the night of 23/24 May 1915 to disrupt the Italian mobilization, striking Ancona hard. The fleet safely made home, showing some form of impunity, while the Italian fleet was just too far away to do anything. Pressure from Rome to act translated send the fleet to Venice to supplement the local fleet, and it acted as planned as a deterrent against further raids, while this made a tempting prize for the Austrian U-boats roaming in the sector.

Giorgios averoff in 1932

Indeed, the consequence was dire for Amalfi and her light underwater protection. Shortly after her arrival at Venice, she made reconnaissance mission near the Austro-Hungarian port of Pula during the night of 6/7 July 1915. Making it back to Venice she was only 20 nautical miles (37 km; 23 mi) when she was torpedoed by the Austrian submarine U-26 at dawn. The latter was the rebranded UB-14, flying the Austrian flag, under command of Oberleutnant zur See Heino von Heimburg. He was just making his first patrol and was awarded at his return.

The unfortunate cruiser sank relatively slowly (30 minutes), listing to port and gradually evacuated. Distress calls to the division also made many ships arrive to save the crew. However losses were about 200, down to 67 fatalities in an official report. Pisa and the other armored cruisers at Venice stayled mostly inactive in harbor due to the result of this action before being ordered to Valona in April 1916.


Illustration of the Pisa in 1914

Pisa-class specifications

Dimensions140.5 x 21 x 7.1 m ()
Displacement 9832t, 10 600tonnes FL
Crew687
Propulsion2 shafts VTE, 22 Belleville boilers, 20,000 hp.
Speed23 knots (31 km/h; 20 mph)
Range5,800 nmi (10,700 km; 6,700 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph)
Armament4 x 254 (2x2), 8 x 190 (4x2), 16 x 76, 8 x 47, 4 MGs, 3 TT 450 mm sub.
ArmorBelt 200, Decks 51, CT 180, turrets 160-130 mm

Sources/Read more

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pisa-class_cruiser
http://www.navypedia.org/ships/italy/it_cr_pisa.htm
Campbell, John (1985). Naval Weapons of World War II. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press.
Fraccaroli, Aldo (1970). Italian Warships of World War I.
Carr, John C. (2014). R.N.H.S. Averof: Thunder in the Aegean.
Friedman, Norman (2011). Naval Weapons of World War One.
Gardiner, Robert & Gray, Randal, eds. (1984). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships: 1906–1921 and Conway's all the world fighting ships 1860-1905.

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Essex class CVs (1942)
Bogue class CVEs (1942)
Sangamon class CVEs (1942)
Casablanca class CVEs (1943)
Commencement Bay class CVEs (1944)
Midway class CVs (1945)
Saipan class CVs (1945)

WW2 American destroyers
Wickes class (1918)
Clemson class (1920)
Farragut class (1934)
Porter class (1935)
Mahan class (1935)
Gridley class (1936)
Bagley class (1936)
Somers class (1937)
Benham class (1938)
Sims class (1938)
Benson class (1939)
Fletcher class (1942)
Sumner class (1943)
Gearing class (1945)

GMT Evarts class (1942)
TE Buckley class (1943)
TEV/WGT Rudderow classs (1943)
DET/FMR Cannon class
Asheville/Tacoma class

WW2 American Submarines
Barracuda class
USS Argonaut
Narwhal class
USS Dolphin
Cachalot class
Porpoise class
Shark class
Perch class
Salmon class
Sargo class
Tambor class
Mackerel class
Gato Class

USS Terror (1941)
Raven class Mnsp (1940)
Admirable class Mnsp (1942)
Eagle class sub chasers (1918)
PC class sub chasers
SC class sub chasers
PCS class sub chasers
YMS class Mot. Mnsp
PT-Boats
ww2 US gunboats
ww2 US seaplane tenders
USS Curtiss ST (1940)
Currituck class ST
Tangier class ST
Barnegat class ST

US Coat Guardships
Lake class
Northland class
Treasury class
Owasco class
Wind class
Algonquin class
Thetis class
Active class

US Amphibious ships & crafts
US Amphibious Operations
Doyen class AT
Harris class AT
Dickman class AT
Bayfield class AT
Windsor class AT
Ormsby class AT
Funston class AT
Sumter class AT
Haskell class AT
Andromeda class AT
Gilliam class AT
APD-1 class LT
APD-37 class LT
LSV class LS
LSD class LS
Landing Ship Tank
LSM class LS
LSM(R) class SS
LCI(L) LC
LCT(6) LC
LCV class LC
LCVP class LC
LCM(3) class LC
LCP(L) class LC
LCP(R) class SC
LCL(L)(3) class FSC
LCS(S) class FSC
British ww2 Royal Navy

WW2 British Battleships
Queen Elisabeth class (1913)
Revenge class (1915)
Nelson class (1925)
King Georges V class (1939)
Lion class (Started)
HMS Vanguard (1944)
Renown class (1916)
HMS Hood (1920)

WW2 British Cruisers
British C class cruisers (1914-1922)
Hawkins class cruisers (1917)
British D class cruisers (1918)
Enterprise class cruisers (1919)
HMS Adventure (1924)
County class cruisers (1926)
York class cruisers (1929)
Surrey class cruisers (project)
Leander class cruisers (1931)
Arethusa class cruisers (1934)
Perth class cruisers (1934)
Town class cruisers (1936)
Dido class cruisers (1939)
Abdiel class cruisers (1939)
Fiji class cruisers (1941)
Bellona class cruisers (1942)
Swiftsure class cruisers (1943)
Tiger class cruisers (1944)

WW2 British Aircraft Carriers
Courageous class aircraft carriers (1928)
HMS Ark Royal (1937)
HMS Eagle (1918)
HMS Furious (1917)
HMS Hermes (1919)
Illustrious class (1939)
HMS Indomitable (1940)
Implacable class (1942)
Malta class (project)
HMS Unicorn (1941)
Colossus class (1943)
Majestic class (1944)
Centaur class (started 1944)

HMS Archer (1939)
HMS Argus (1917)
Avenger class (1940)
Attacker class (1941)
HMS Audacity (1941)
HMS Activity (1941)
HMS Pretoria Castle (1941)
Ameer class (1942)
Merchant Aircraft Carriers (1942)
Vindex class (1943)

WW2 British Destroyers
Shakespeare class (1917)
Scott class (1818)
V class (1917)
S class (1918)
W class (1918)
A/B class (1926)
C/D class (1931)
G/H/I class (1935)
Tribal class (1937)
J/K/N class (1938)
Hunt class DE (1939)
L/M class (1940)
O/P class (1942)
Q/R class (1942)
S/T/U//V/W class (1942)
Z/ca class (1943)
Ch/Co/Cr class (1944)
Battle class (1945)
Weapon class (1945)

WW2 British submarines
L9 class (1918)
HMS X1 (1923)
Oberon class (1926)
Parthian class (1929)
Rainbow class (1930)
Thames class (1932)
Swordfish class (1932)
HMS Porpoise (1932)
Grampus class (1935)
Shark class (1934)
Triton class (1937)
Undine class (1937)
U class (1940)
S class (1941)
T class (1941)
X-Craft midget (1942)
A class (1944)

WW2 British Amphibious Ships and Landing Crafts
LSI(L) class
LSI(M/S) class
LSI(H) class
LSS class
LSG class
LSC class
Boxer class LST

LST(2) class
LST(3) class
LSH(L) class
LSF classes (all)
LCI(S) class
LCS(L2) class
LCT(I) class
LCT(2) class
LCT(R) class
LCT(3) class
LCT(4) class
LCT(8) class
LCT(4) class
LCG(L)(4) class
LCG(M)(1) class

British ww2 Landing Crafts
LCA
LCP
LCM

WW2 British MTB/gunboats.
WW2 British MTBs
MTB-1 class (1936)
MTB-24 class (1939)
MTB-41 class (1940)
MTB-424 class (1944)
MTB-601 class (1942)
MA/SB class (1938)
MTB-412 class (1942)
MGB 6 class (1939)
MGB-47 class (1940)
MGB 321 (1941)
MGB 501 class (1942)
MGB 511 class (1944)
MGB 601 class (1942)
MGB 2001 class (1943)

WW2 British Gunboats

Denny class (1941)
Fairmile A (1940)
Fairmile B (1940)
HDML class (1940)

WW2 British Sloops
Bridgewater class (2090)
Hastings class (1930)
Shoreham class (1930)
Grimsby class (1934)
Bittern class (1937)
Egret class (1938)
Black Swan class (1939)

WW2 British Frigates
River class (1943)
Loch class (1944)
Bay class (1944)

WW2 British Corvettes
Kingfisher class (1935)
Shearwater class (1939)
Flower class (1940)
Mod. Flower class (1942)
Castle class (1943)

WW2 British Misc.
WW2 British Monitors
Roberts class monitors (1941)
Halcyon class minesweepers (1933)
Bangor class minesweepers (1940)
Bathurst class minesweepers (1940)
Algerine class minesweepers (1941)
Motor Minesweepers (1937)
ww2 British ASW trawlers
Basset class trawlers (1935)
Tree class trawlers (1939)
HMS Albatross seaplane carrier
WW2 British river gunboats

HMS Guardian netlayer
HMS Protector netlayer
HMS Plover coastal mines.
Medway class sub depot ships
HMS Resource fleet repair
HMS Woolwhich DD depot ship
HMS Tyne DD depot ship
Maidstone class sub depot ships
HmS Adamant sub depot ship

Athene class aircraft transport
British ww2 AMCs
British ww2 OBVs
British ww2 ABVs
British ww2 Convoy Escorts
British ww2 APVs
British ww2 SSVs
British ww2 SGAVs
British ww2 Auxiliary Mines.
British ww2 CAAAVs
British ww2 Paddle Mines.
British ww2 MDVs
British ww2 Auxiliary Minelayers
British ww2 armed yachts

✙ Axis ww2 Fleets

Japan ww2 Imperial Japanese Navy
WW2 Japanese Battleships
Kongō class Fast Battleships (1912)
Fuso class battleships (1915)
Ise class battleships (1917)
Nagato class Battleships (1919)
Yamato class Battleships (1941)
B41 class Battleships (project)

WW2 Japanese cruisers
Tenryū class cruisers (1918)
Kuma class cruisers (1919)
Nagara class (1920)
Sendai class Cruisers (1923)
IJN Yūbari (1923)
Furutaka class Cruisers (1925)
Aoba class heavy cruisers (1926)
Nachi class Cruisers (1927)
Takao class cruisers (1930)
Mogami class cruisers (1932)
Tone class cruisers (1937)
Katori class cruisers (1939)
Agano class cruisers (1941)
Oyodo (1943)

Seaplane & Aircraft Carriers
Hōshō (1921)
IJN Akagi (1925)
IJN Kaga (1927)
IJN Ryujo (1931)
IJN Soryu (1935)
IJN Hiryu (1937)
Shokaku class (1937)
Zuiho class (1936) comp.40
Ruyho (1933) comp.42
Junyo class (1941)
IJN Taiho (1943)
Chitose class (comp. 1943)
IJN Shinano (1944)
Unryu class (1944)
IJN Ibuki (1942)

Taiyo class (1940)
IJN Kaiyo (1938)
IJN Shinyo (1934)

Notoro (1920)
Kamoi (1922)
Chitose class (1936)
Mizuho (1938)
Nisshin (1939)

IJN Aux. Seaplane tenders
Akistushima (1941)
Shimane Maru class (1944)
Yamashiro Maru class (1944)

Imperial Japanese Navy Aviation

WW2 Japanese Destroyers
Mutsuki class (1925)
Fubuki class (1927)
Akatsuki class (1932)
Hatsuharu class (1932)
Shiratsuyu class (1935)
Asashio class (1936)
Kagero class (1938)
Yugumo class (1941)
Akitsuki class (1941)
IJN Shimakaze (1942)

WW2 Japanese Submarines
KD1 class (1921)
Koryu class
Kaiten class
Kairyu class
IJN Midget subs

WW2 Japanese Amphibious ships/Crafts
Shinshu Maru class (1935)
Akistu Maru class (1941)
Kumano Maru class (1944)
SS class LS (1942)
T1 class LS (1944)
T101 class LS (1944)
T103 class LS (1944)
Shohatsu class LC (1941)
Chuhatsu class LC (1942)
Moku Daihatsu class (1942)
Toku Daihatsu class (1944)

WW2 Japanese minelayers
IJN Armed Merchant Cruisers
WW2 Japanese Escorts
Tomozuru class (1933)
Otori class (1935)
Matsu class (1944)
Tachibana class (1944)
Ioshima class (1944)
WW2 Japanese Sub-chasers
WW2 Japanese MLs
Shinyo class SB

⚑ Neutral

Armada de Argentina Argentinian Navy

Rivadavia class Battleships
Cruiser La Argentina
Veinticinco de Mayo class cruisers
Argentinian Destroyers
Santa Fe class sub. Bouchard class minesweepers King class patrol vessels

Marinha do Brasil Brazilian Navy

Minas Gerais class Battleships (1912)
Cruiser Bahia
Brazilian Destroyers
Humaita class sub.
Tupi class sub.

Armada de Chile Armada de Chile

Almirante Latorre class battleships
Cruiser Esmeralda (1896)
Cruiser Chacabuco (1911)
Chilean DDs
Fresia class subs
Capitan O’Brien class subs

Søværnet Danish Navy

Niels Juel
Danish ww2 Torpedo-Boats Danish ww2 submarines Danish ww2 minelayer/sweepers

Merivoimat Finnish Navy

Coastal BB Ilmarinen
Finnish ww2 submarines
Finnish ww2 minelayers

Nautiko Hellenon Hellenic Navy

Greek ww2 Destroyers
Greek ww2 submarines
Greek ww2 minelayers

Marynarka Vojenna Polish Navy

Polish ww2 Destroyers
Polish ww2 cruisers
Polish ww2 minelayer/sweepers

Portuguese navy ww2 Portuguese Navy

Douro class DDs
Delfim class sub
Velho class gb
Albuquerque class gb
Nunes class sloops

Romanian Navy Romanian Navy

Romanian ww2 Destroyers
Romanian ww2 Submarines

Royal Norwegian Navy Sjøforsvaret

Norwegian ww2 Torpedo-Boats

Spanish Armada Spanish Armada

España class Battleships
Blas de Lezo class cruisers
Canarias class cruisers
Cervera class cruisers
Cruiser Navarra
Spanish Destroyers
Spanish Submarines
Dedalo seaplane tender
Spanish Gunboats
Spanish Minelayers

Svenska Marinen Svenska Marinen

Gustav V class BBs (1918)
Interwar swedish BB projects

Tre Kronor class (1943)
Gotland (1933)
Fylgia (1905)

Ehrernskjold class DDs (1926)
Psilander class DDs (1926)
Klas Horn class DDs (1931)
Romulus class DDs (1934)
Göteborg class DDs (1935)
Mode class DDs (1942)
Visby class DDs (1942)
Öland class DDs (1945)

Swedish ww2 TBs
Swedish ww2 Submarines
Swedish ww2 Minelayers
Swedish ww2 MTBs
Swedish ww2 Patrol Vessels
Swedish ww2 Minesweepers

Türk Donanmasi Turkish Navy

Turkish ww2 Destroyers
Turkish ww2 submarines

Royal Yugoslav Navy Royal Yugoslav Navy

Dubrovnik class DDs
Beograd class DDs
Hrabi class subs

Royal Thai Navy Royal Thai Navy

Taksin class
Ratanakosindra class
Sri Ayuthia class
Puket class
Tachin class
Sinsamudar class sub

minor navies Minor Navies


The Cold War

Royal Navy Royal Navy
Sovietskaya Flota Sovietskiy flot
US Navy USN (1990)


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