HMS Lion (1910)
HMS Lion was a battlecruiser built for the Royal Navy in the 1910s. She was the lead ship of her class, which were nicknamed the “Splendid Cats”. They were significant improvements over their predecessors of the Indefatigable class. Lion served as the flagship of the Grand Fleet’s battlecruisers throughout World War I. She sank the German light cruiser Cöln during the Battle of Heligoland Bight.
About HMS Lion (1910) in brief
HMS Lion was a battlecruiser built for the Royal Navy in the 1910s. She was the lead ship of her class, which were nicknamed the “Splendid Cats”. They were significant improvements over their predecessors of the Indefatigable class in terms of speed, armament and armour. Lion served as the flagship of the Grand Fleet’s battlecruisers throughout World War I, except when she was being refitted or under repair. She sank the German light cruiser Cöln during the Battle of Heligoland Bight and served as Vice-Admiral Beatty’s flagship at the battles of Dogger Bank and Jutland. She spent the rest of the war on uneventful patrols in the North Sea. Lion was put into reserve in 1920 and sold for scrap in 1924 under the terms of the Washington Naval Treaty. The ship displaced 26,270 long tons at normal load and 30,820 long tons at deep load. At full capacity, she could steam for 5,610 nautical miles at a speed of 10 knots. Lion mounted eight BL 13. 5-inch Mk V guns in four twin-gun turrets, designated ‘A’, ‘B’, ‘Q’ and ‘X’ from front to rear. Her secondary armament consisted of sixteen BL 4-inch Mark VII guns, most of which were mounted in casemates. She had a maximum ceiling of 10,000 ft, but an effective range of only 1,200 yards. A single Q-inch AA gun was added in January 1915, and another the following July.
The gun fired a 6-pound shell at a muzzle velocity of 1,765 fts at rate of fire of 20 rounds per minute. It did not reach the bow or stern ends of the ships, but not the stern or bow ends of either ship. Lion had two paired sets of Parsons direct-drive steam turbines, each driving two propeller shafts, using steam provided by 42 Yarrow boilers. The turbines were designed to produce a total of 70,000 shaft horsepower, but achieved more than 76,000 during her trials, although she did not exceed her designed speed of 28 knots. She carried 3,500 long tons of coal, and an additional 1,135 long tons of fuel oil that was sprayed on the coal to increase its burn rate. The Krupp water belt measured 9 thick amidships; their waterline measured 4 inches thick towards the bow and 4 inches towards the stern. The starboard forward group of four-inch guns was removed after April 1917. The single quick-firing 6- pounder Hotchkiss gun on a high-angle mounting was fitted from October 1914 to July 1915. It had amaximum depression of 8° and a maximum elevation of 60°. It fired a 5-pound shell at 12,500ft at a velocity of 2,500 ft per minute at a rate of 12–14 rounds perminute.