The project of “Sevastopol” type battleships is often called the “scared project” - they say Russian sailors were so scared of the Japanese high-explosive shells in Tsushima that they demanded a full boarding reservation for their future battleships - and spat on the thickness of armor, just to protect themselves from monstrous land mines ... In fact, everything was a bit wrong.
The fact is that during the years of the Russian-Japanese war, the twelve-inch guns of the Russian and Japanese battleships were rather weak - they could penetrate the newest Krupp armor 229-mm armor just with 25-30 KBT. This, of course, was not enough, since the battle distances increased significantly, making up 40, and even 70 KBT - and therefore the post-war artillery had to make a big qualitative leap to keep up with the delights of naval tactics. Our gunners, based on the results of the battles, made two important conclusions.
First, it became clear that the main weapon Our battleships of the last war - the old 305-mm gun of the 1895 model, which, for example, our armadillos of the Borodino type were armed with, is no longer outdated and is definitely not suitable for future battles. At the main combat distances, which were now worth counting 45-70 kbts, the shells of such a gun were no longer pierced by enemy armor. And secondly, the shells with which we entered the Russian-Japanese war turned out to be completely flawed: a meager amount of explosives and unimportant fuses did not allow the enemy to inflict decisive damage. Practical conclusions from this were made fairly quickly: the new Russian armor-piercing and high-explosive shells, although they had the same weight as the Tsushima (331,7 kg), but contained several times more explosives and were equipped with adequate fuses. Almost simultaneously with their creation, the Russians set about developing a new 305-mm / 52 gun. If the old 305-mm / 40 Russian artillery system could only disperse the 331,7-kg projectile to 792 m / s, then the new artillery system should accelerate it to the speed of 950 m / s. Of course, the armor penetration of the new gun was much higher, but due to the fact that the light projectile quickly lost speed, at long distances its power quickly fell.
So, initially, when designing a Russian dreadnought, it was demanded that his armor belt be 305 mm thick. But the ship grew rapidly in size - heavy duty weapons, high speed ... something had to be sacrificed. And it was decided to reduce the armor - the fact is that according to the then calculations (made, it seems, based on the data of our new 305-mm cannon, firing a new 331,7 kg projectile), 225-mm armor reliably protected from 305-mm projectiles, starting with distances in 60 kb and above. And domestic admirals perfectly understood that in the future they will have to fight at distances even greater than 60 KBT. And because 225-mm armor (and even taking into account the 50 mm armor reassembly and bevels) they are quite satisfied as protection against armor-piercing 305-mm projectiles. Many even thought that 203 mm would be enough.
Alas, our sailors were wrong. They really did not take into account the crazy power that maritime artillery would soon acquire. But the fright had nothing to do with it - there was, of course, a miscalculation, but when designing protection, it was by no means focused on high-explosive, but on armor-piercing enemy projectiles.
But the height of the main belt wanted to do much more than the 1,8-2 m in old battleships, and for good reason. Russian FIRST IN THE WORLD understood that the reservation area plays no less a role than its thickness and that the existing armored battleships of the battleships, which sought to escape under water with minimal overload or even in fresh weather, are insufficient. Interestingly, the Americans later did the same (the height of their armored belts exceeded 5 m), but the British, lingering at the start, later on their battleships of the Second World War (the five "King George V") brought the height of the armored belt right up to 7 meters! And note that no one called the British and American battleships "scared projects."
Here I anticipate objections. Speaking about the “project of the frightened”, they mean not the height of the main armor belt, but the desire to protect the entire board with armor. Come on! Take a look at the reservation scheme of the same Orion (the scheme of which I cited in the first part of the article). He has booked almost the entire board, with the exception of small sections in the bow and stern.
Here are just a booking of domestic "Sevastopol" looks much more rational. Our dreadnoughts had 2 armor thickness prevailed - 225 mm for protection against armor piercing 305-mm projectiles and 125 mm for the tip and upper armor belt for protection against high-explosive. It was assumed that at distances 60 KB and more 225 mm will save from an armor-piercing projectile, and 125-mm armor will reflect the blow of a mine. If an armor-piercing projectile gets into 125, it will not break (a big hole), but pierce it and explode inside, leaving a neat hole in the armor, which will reduce flooding and simplify the struggle for survivability. Well, but what is interesting, the British were guided by making the upper belt 203 mm thick? Against land mines - unnecessarily, against armor-piercing - not enough. Our limited 125 mm, but booked almost the entire board.
And after all, what is interesting is not so much ours and made a mistake - as we see, at distances 70-80 KBT excellent German armor-piercing shells took 229-mm armor every time. But our “trouble” is that having said “A”, I had to say “B” as well. Realizing that the distances of naval battles had grown greatly, our artillerymen wanted to have armor-piercing shells capable of penetrating enemy armor at these increased distances. For this, the concept of “light projectile - high initial speed” was no longer suitable, so our developers created a Wunderwaffe 470,9-kg, with which the new 305-mm / 52 gun was ahead of the entire armor penetration plane. By that time, the first series of our battleships had long been standing on the stocks ... And then they passed the tests, and we were horrified, knowing that the armor of Sevastopol did not protect at all from our armor-piercing shells of the 1911 sample of that time also extremely vulnerable for that creations of gloomy domestic genius and that imported guns do not have such an all-destructive power, they somehow did not think about it.
But back to the "scared project." Such criticism sounded not once or twice - they say, why was it at all to strive for continuous booking of the board, even if it was of moderate thickness, so if they used all-or-nothing protection when armor was pulled from the ends to thick, impenetrable for the main shells of the enemy shells, that's when it was ... Well, no, the high-explosive “suitcases” with shimoza were scared before that Tsushima horror was completely out of it. But you could have figured out what kind of crazy it would be in a duel of dreadnoughts that you would throw bombs at the enemy? Show it!
In fact, such a "crazy" in the world was. And this (drum roll) ... none other than Great Britain, the mistress of the seas!
The British, who had their observers in Tsushima, came to very interesting conclusions. They understood that the distances at which the sea battle is being waged grow also understood that the armor-piercing shells of their 305-mm guns would not be very good at hitting enemy ships at long distances - power is not enough. And at a time when the Russians, who had learned their bitter experience, rushed to create 305-mm shells capable of striking the enemy at increased distances, the British ... thought that the main role in future battles would be played not by armor-piercing, but by high-explosive and semi-light armor!
The idea was this: from long distances, the British battleships would hail the enemy with high-explosive and semi-armor shells and would inflict heavy damage on enemy ships, even if they were not punching their main armor. And then, when the enemy is beaten enough, they will come closer and finish off the enemy with armor-piercing shells without any special danger for themselves.
So the question arises: if the trendsetter, "Lady of the Seas", a recognized leader in the field of military fleet, if Great Britain itself did not consider it shameful for itself to use the “Tsushima” tactics of the Japanese fleet, then why should defense against such tactics be considered “a consequence of the pathological horror of Russian sailors”?
It must be said that both ours and the Germans thought it possible to use high-explosive shells until they came together at a distance with which the enemy armor penetrates the armor-piercing shells - shoot high-explosive, they would be easier to shoot and the damage would be inflicted on the enemy, while the armor-piercing projectiles, while armor does not penetrate, the enemy ship will only scratch. Armor is not mastered, they will explode in vain, and if they hit the unarmored side, the fuse will not have time to work, and the projectile will fly away without exploding. But they were going to fight with high-explosives only during rapprochement, for our and German sailors the main shell remained armor-piercing, but for the British ... Before the war, armor-piercing shells made up almost a third of their ammunition! For example, in peacetime, the British battle cruisers consisted of 24 armor-piercing, 28 semi-armor, 28 high-explosive, and also 6 shrapnel shells. During the war, the ammunition increased to 33 armor-piercing, 38 semi-armor and 39 high-explosive.
The British created a very powerful semi-slaughter shell. He did not have as much explosives as he had in the high-explosive shell, but he was stronger than the high-explosive and could pierce quite thick armor - in this he was similar to an armor-piercing. But the armor-piercing projectile has a delay of the fuse - it is necessary that he first broke the armor plate and only then, having overcome the protection, would have flown another ten meters and exploded deep inside the ship. And the British semi-demurder's detonator did not have such a delay - so the projectile exploded either during the armor breakdown or immediately behind the armor ...
In Jutland, semi-armor 343-mm projectiles pierced 200 mm and 230 mm armor. But how?
“16 h. 57 m. The second 343 mm projectile from Queen Mary from the 13200 - 13600 m distance (71-74 cable) hit the 230 mm thick side armor opposite the barbet of the left side tower and exploded in the hole he had drilled. The fragments of armor and shell fragments pierced the barbet wall, which had a thickness of 30 mm in this place, penetrated into the transshipment room of the tower and lit two main semi-charge and two additional charging cases in the working compartment (damage to the Seidlitsk cruiser. Husbands, Germany Linear Cruisers ").
Usually English shells exploded at the time of penetration of armor. Therefore, if they fell into relatively weakly armored places (100-127 mm), their ruptures led to the formation of large holes in the hull, but the ship’s interior did not suffer from this, although, of course, such a projectile could hit the waterline. extensive flooding. But if the projectile fell into a sufficiently thick armor, the holes were not too large, and only fragments of the projectile penetrated inside, albeit at high speed. In other words, the spaced booking of the Russian battleship was quite adequate to withstand the English semi-armored 343-mm projectiles, although when hit in 203-mm armor of the towers and 150-mm armor of barbets they could do things ... as, however, they could mess things up with Russian 470,9-kg the shells that hit the 225-280 mm armor of the British Orion towers.
In general, the idea of a semi-slaughter shell did not justify itself, and the British quickly figured it out - after the battle of Jutland, the ammunition load of armor-piercing shells on the gun increased from 33 to 77. But the neglect of armor-piercing shells cost the British fleet dearly - high-quality shells of this type appeared only after the war. And for the entire first world, the maximum thickness of the armor punched by the British armor-piercing projectile was 260 mm, and its fifteen-inch projectile from the battleship "Rivend" broke through.
Do you still believe that the 275 mm aggregate armor of the Russian dreadnought, which covered the engine rooms and boiler rooms and barbettes, was such a bad defense?
There is no doubt that, in Orion’s cellars, full-fledged armor-piercing projectiles (at least similar to German ones), he would have gained an obvious advantage over the Sevastopol type battleship, had they met in battle. But in fact, the British battleship did not have high-quality armor-piercing shells, so, surprisingly, the Gangut duel against some Monarch or Tanderer would be almost equal.
A warship is the most complex alloy of armor, cannon, projectile, etc., and so on. Therefore, for a correct comparison, it is necessary to take into account the mass of available factors, without reducing the analysis to the maximum thickness of the armor belt and the caliber of the main caliber implements. Nobody argues with the fact that the booking of Sevastopol type battleships left much to be desired. But the weakness of his armor does not make him the worst battleship of the world, which is often what we are trying to imagine.
A small remark - most sources shout about the insufficient protection of Russian battleships. And how many authors will find, crying, say, about the weakness of the armor protection of American “battleships”? I have not seen one.
Consider, for example, the American "Wyoming".
"In theory, it is believed that the ship's armor should provide protection against the guns of its main caliber - in this case, the project is balanced according to the" attack-defense "criterion. The developers believed that the 280-mm and 229-mm armor of the 601 project is sufficient protection against fire 305-mm guns at the expected combat distances, so at the time of development, "Wyoming" was really a harmonious and balanced design and also one of the strongest in the world ”(“ United States Battleships, ”Mandel and Skoptsov).
Under the influence of the shooting of “Experimental Ship No. 4” 225-mm armor belt + 50-mm armored partition wall / bevel of Russian dreadnoughts, giving in aggregate 275 mm of armor and more (the bevel is angled) publicly declared insignificant protection. But the armor of the American "Wyoming", laid down later, "Sevastopol", is considered to be quite balanced. At the same time, the Wyoming defense consisted of armor plates, which at one edge had a thickness of 280 mm, and at the second - 229 mm, i.e., the armor plate was made oblique. These armor plates were put on each other, so in the middle of the armor belt its thickness really reached 280 mm, but went down to the edges (upper and lower) to 229 mm. But, unlike battleships of the “Sevastopol” type, the armor belt was the only defense - there were no armored partitions or bevels behind this armor at the Yankee battleship.
Total: 275 mm aggregate armor of the Russian ship - this is almost complete lack of protection. And 229-280 mm American armor - a harmonious and balanced project?
Formally, the Wyoming had the same artillery as the Russian Dreadnought, a dozen 305-mm guns. At the same time, they seemed to be better protected - the front plate of the American towers reached 305 mm, the side walls, however, were, like our towers, 203 mm, but the barbet had 254 mm thickness against our 150 mm. It seems to be the superiority of the American ship. But this is if you do not notice the nuances. And they are - the design of the American towers was very unsuccessful, there was only one lift of projectiles and charges for the two tower guns. In each tower of the German Ostflasland, for example, there were four such lifts - for shells and for the charges to each gun separately, on Russian ships shells and charges were fed to each gun by their lift. Accordingly, the supply of fire-fighting equipment from the cellars of the American Dreadnought was very slow and to ensure an acceptable rate of fire, the Americans were forced ... to place part of the ammunition assembly directly in the tower. In each of them, in the aft niche, 26 shells were stored. The armor of the towers was not bad, but not invulnerable, so you can say, the Americans were simply asking for the fate of the British battle cruisers in Jutland. And we are again confronted, it would seem, with a paradox - the armor of the Americans seems to be thicker, but unsuccessful design solutions make their ships even more vulnerable than ours.
When we take the reference book, seeing twelve 305-mm Wyoming cannons and 280 mm thickness of its armor-belt against twelve 305-mm trunks of Sevastopol and 225 mm of armor-belt, we unconditionally give the palm to the American ship. But one has only to look at how it will become clear that in fact the American battleship does not have too many chances against the Russian ship.
It will not make it difficult for me to give a detailed analysis of possible collisions of the battleship Sevastopol with French and Italian dreadnoughts (I don’t even remember a sin about Japanese Kawati, but I’m not sure about any exotics like Spanish dreadnoughts) the word is that Sevastopol could fight on equal terms with any of them, otherwise it would even have some advantage. But the exception is still there. The German dreadnoughts of the Koenig and Kaiser series are the only ships that, perhaps, surpassed the Russian battleships in the combination of the power of armor and projectile.
Battleships like "Koenig" - these are the twelve-inch ships with which Sevastopol would have to be so hard. At distances in the 70 KBT 350 mm armor belt of the “twilight Teutonic genius”, the Russian armor-piercing model 1911 could, in principle, be able to break through. But with great difficulty, with angles of about 90 degrees. At smaller angles, breaking through the main armor belt was possible, but the projectile would not pass inside the ship, but would burst in the slab, shoveling internal compartments with shrapnel. However, the three-inch bevels of the German battleship and 80-mm barbety (it was this thickness that they had behind the main armor belt) remained practically unkillable. It would have been easier for the Russian shells at the level of the upper armor-piercing piercing the 170-mm board, they had some chance of making a hole in the 140-mm barbety of the German battleships. But taking into account the designs of the enemy towers, even in this case, there is almost no chance of a cellar exploding.
At the same time, the German 70 armor-piercing shells had the opportunity to penetrate the 225-mm armor belt of Russian ships - even if not every shell, even if two to the third. But this very third projectile was quite high-quality armor-piercing - after breaking through the main armor belt, it could not explode or collapse, and with all the power it had left it would blow up into an 50-mm armored partition or bevel.
Experiments that were conducted by our sailors in the 1920 year showed that to reliably block the splinters of large-caliber artillery, it is not 50-mm, but 75-mm armor that is needed. In this case, if the projectile exploded not on the armor, but in 1-1,5 meters from it, it will withstand all the fragments not only of the twelve-inch, but even of the four-inch projectile. But if the projectile exploded when hit in such armor, a gap is formed, and fragments of the projectile and armor penetrate inside. The study of damage to the English battlecruisers suggests that on the 70 KBT the German 305-mm guns still have some chances to break through the 225-mm armor and jerk on the 50 mm bulkhead, or even pass through it, but the chances of that our shells will be able to inflict decisive damage to the German battleships at this distance are almost illusory.
On the 55-65, the KBBT battleships of the “Sevastopol” type would have turned out to be in a completely unprofitable position - there their armor was penetrated fairly well with German projectiles, but our German armor - almost not. True, if our battleships could get close to the cable on 50, then ...
I must say that the Russian admirals and designers were seriously concerned about the booking systems of future battleships. To this end, during the time of the First World War, special compartments were created that were armored in various ways, and the thickness of the plates that mimic the main armor belt reached 370 mm. It was not possible to test various defense ideas - a revolution occurred, but, surprisingly, the case was not abandoned halfway through, and in 1920, already under Soviet rule, the above compartments were tested by domestic 12- and 14-inch shells. Here is a description of the action of the Russian 305-mm armor-piercing projectile from a distance of approximately 45-50 KBT.
“Shot No. 19 (shooting 2 July 1920 g.), At compartment No. 2 and plate No. 3 (370mm, far right), 12“ armored-piercing non-loaded projectile of the 1911 model, reduced to the standard weight of 471 kg, factory POC, 1914 batch No. of 528, SchD-0,5 brand powder charge, 7, 1916 production batch, for 8 "/ 45 guns with weight 40 kg and impact speed 620 m / s (according to various data corresponds to 45-50 distance in kbt. - Note auth.). Subject to testing were the 12 armor-piercing ability of the “1911 model artillery piercing projectile”, and the resistance of 370-mm side armor and 50-mm lower deck bevel behind it. The impact point from the right edge of 43 cm, from the bottom edge of 137, see. The shell struck through the side with armor with a shirt, 50-mm lower deck bevel, bilge bulkhead (6 mm), 25-mm base sheet of the compartment and went into the earthen filling of the foundation. No shell fragments were found ("The Last Giants of the Imperial Navy", Vinogradov).
In other words, the Russian projectile punched not only 420 mm of armor (in fact, even more, since the 50-mm bevel was at an angle) but also 31 mm of iron and did not collapse at all. Even the thickest armor of the Germanic Dreadnoughts will not save from such a blow.
The conclusion from this is this. At a distance of about 80 kb and higher, our battleships could fight Germans without receiving (but without doing) critical damage, although in general there were a dozen or so barrels spitting 470,9-kg projectiles with lower speed (and a greater angle of incidence on such distances than the Germans' flat-fired guns) will have an advantage over 8-10 barrels of the battleships König and Kaiser. At a distance in 60-75 kbt, the Germans will have an advantage, but starting from 50 kbt and less everything is in the hands of the Lord, for there is already German, that Russian armor will be pierced through. True, one can argue that 50 kbt as a battlefield for dreadnoughts is a completely frivolous distance, but I want to remind you that in Jutland it happened to fight with kbt 45.
And I also want to note an important nuance. At a distance in 60-70 kbt, the commander of the German Kaiser will seek to fight out of ten twelve-inch guns, not eight. To do this, he will have to put his battleship practically on the traverse and on parallel courses to the Russian Dreadnought (otherwise one of the middle towers will not be able to fight). But, having set his own armored belt under 90 degrees to the guns of the Russian battleship, he will automatically put the Sevastopol guns in the best conditions, and his armor will still be vulnerable ... And to change course - yes, Kaiser will get an obvious defense gain, but 8 guns against 12 with a heavier projectile ...
Someone may say that I play along with Russian dreadnoughts. I want to remind you of the battles of the German “Goeben” against the battleships of the Russian Black Sea fleet. In theory, at distances of the order of 60, the KBGB “Goeben” could have shot Russian ships in a dash, and those would not have had a chance to inflict decisive damage on it. In fact, we have the fact that the two attempts of the German ship to fight with the Russian battleships ended in the swift flight of the Geben.
Therefore, I am still inclined to think of Sevastopol-type battleships about equal to the “Kaiser”, but inferior to “Koenig”. However, it should be noted that even the Kaisers were laid down after Sevastopol, the Kaiser battleships being the third German type of dreadnought (the first was Nassau, the second was Helgoland), and the Germans had gained a certain base and experience, and Sevastopol is the first among Russians. Well, while Nassau and Helgolands met with the Baltic Dreadnoughts in battle, it was absolutely contraindicated ...
And here the reader may again object: “What is the difference when the ship was laid down? It is important that when it went into service, it is therefore necessary to compare not with those battleships that were laid simultaneously, but with those that at the same time joined the ranks of other maritime powers ... "
Of course, the battleships of the “Sevastopol” type were built for long 5,5 years. And here we have another myth, of which there are so many around our linear firstborn:
Russian industry and cursed Tsarism were decidedly uncompetitive with advanced European industry, perhaps the worst dreadnoughts of the world had been building for more than five years ...
Well, how "worst" were the battleships of the "Sevastopol" type, we seem to have already figured out. As for the level of domestic producers, let me say the following.
Russian industry, focused on the construction of squadron battleships, which were almost half the size of new battleships, carried the old artillery and two-gun towers instead of three-guns, steam engines instead of turbines, etc., and other, fell into prostration after the Russian-Japanese war. There was almost no new orders, the pace of naval construction plummeted, and therefore the factories had to make massive reductions in workers, but even without that they quickly fell into a pre-bankrupt state. Nevertheless, when suddenly it was necessary to proceed with the construction of ships never seen before, the domestic industry performed its task with the utmost worthiness. Workshops for the production of machines and mechanisms, tower workshops and so on — all this had to be rebuilt to create new mechanisms never seen before.
But the fact is that in order to build something as big as a battleship, three things are needed - money, money, and more money. And it was with the money of our shipbuilders that the hitch went out. Unlike in Germany, where the Maritime Law obliged the state budget to finance a certain number of battleships annually, financing the construction of battleships of the Sevastopol type is an extremely sad spectacle. The battleships with fanfare laid in June 1909 of the year - but really they were started to be built only in September-October of the same year! And they financed the construction site so that even a year and a half after the official bookmark (1 January 1911 of the year), 12% of their total cost was allocated to the construction of the battleships!
What does it mean? The battleship is a complex engineering structure. Almost simultaneously with the beginning of the construction of the building on the building berth, you need to start making turbines, boilers and artillery - otherwise, by the time the body is ready to “accept” all of the above, there will simply be no cannons, no turbines, or boilers! And our domestic budget financiers failed almost two years. In essence, it is possible to speak of any consistent financing for the construction of the first Russian dreadnoughts only after a law was adopted on the appropriation of funds for the completion of battleships, i.e. 19 May 1911 Propulsion The type "Sevastopol" really built too long. But this is not the fault of the domestic industry, but of the Ministry of Finance, who were unable to promptly raise funds for such construction.
I would also like to warn those who prefer to compare the times of building ships by the dates of their laying / commissioning. The fact is that the date of the official bookmark usually does not correlate in any way with the actual date of commencement of the construction of the ship. The beautiful legend about the “Dreadnought” British “Dreadnought” built “for a year and one day” has long been debunked - although a year and a day passed between its official bookmark and commissioning, but construction work began long before the official bookmark. The same applies to the German ships - in the works of Muzhenikov you can find information that the "preparatory work" began several months before the official bookmark. And when our industrialists were given money on time, the same “Empress Maria” turned out to be completely built in less than 3 of the year.
"The linear arrangement of the artillery of the main caliber of Russian battleships is stupidity and anachronism."
In fact, neither. For some reason, many believe that the linear-elevated scheme allows you to save on the length of the citadel - they say, the layout is denser. But it is not. If we look at almost any section of the battleships of those times, we will see that they were extremely tightly assembled - barbety and cellars of the towers of the Civil Code, machine and boiler rooms were closely adjacent to each other.
Look Germanic Bayern.
As we can see, the length of the citadel is made up of the length of two towers (in the figure, this is arrows A), the length (more precisely, diameter) of two barbets of towers (arrow B), machine (C), boiler rooms (D) of branches and ... nothing so busy space (E).
And now we are looking at the “Sevastopol” section.
And we are surprised to find that the length of the citadel of the LC “Sevastopol” is all the same two lengths of towers (A), two lengths of brabets (B), length of the machine (C) and two boiler rooms (D) of the compartments, but the space that is not occupied ( E) is significantly less than that of the “Byerne”. Thus, putting the tools into a linearly sublime scheme, we won nothing.
But lost a lot. The point is that with the linear scheme all the 4 towers are located at the upper deck level. But in the linear-elevated scheme, two towers must be raised above the deck approximately to the height of the tower. In other words, the height of the barbets of the two towers is greatly increased. How critical is it? It's easy to calculate. The diameter of the barbet is 9-11 meters, take 10 for clarity. The height to which you want to raise the tower no less than 3 meters, but rather, even higher - I do not have accurate data on the height of the towers, but all the photos show that there are about two human height in the tower.
So, I think, we will not make a big mistake by accepting an increase in the height of the barbet by the 3,5 meter. Which roughly corresponds to the height of the average main armor belt of the Germans. The thickness of the barbet usually also corresponded to the thickness of the main armor belt. So, the circumference is 2 * Pi * Er, that is, 2 * 3,14 * 5 = 31,42 meters! And this is only one barbet, and we have two of them. In other words, by rejecting the linear-elevated scheme in favor of the linear one, we can extend the main armor by about 30 meters, or, without increasing the length of the main armor, increase its thickness - taking into account that the length of the main armor usually does not exceed 120 meters, then, due to the abandonment of the linearly elevated scheme, it would be possible to increase the thickness of the main armor belt by more than weighty 20-25% ...
Of course, the linear-elevated scheme provides the fire of the two towers in the bow and stern, but how critical is it for the battleships? Taking into account the fact that the fire was usually avoided right along the course, the risk of damaging the nose of the ship with muzzle gases was too great. At the same time, due to the insignificant width of the superstructures, the Russian dreadnoughts could fight in full volleys already on the 30-degree course angle, so that although the advantage of the linear-elevated scheme is obvious, it is not so great.
In fact, the main reason for abandoning the linear scheme was the need for developed add-ons on the battleship. There are several reasons for this. The first is that it’s very inconvenient to control a ship from a narrow cabin. It is advisable to have a normal bridge over the entire width of the ship - but the presence of such a bridge (superstructures) dramatically reduces the angles of fire of artillery placed in a linear pattern. The second - with the advent of aviation it was necessary to place numerous air defense batteries on superstructures, and it was no longer possible to confine oneself, as in the good old days, to small armored cuttings in the bow and stern. And the third - an important drawback of the linear scheme was the reduction of deck space. Obviously, the trunks of the higher towers of the Civil Code, hanging over the lower ones, save 10, or even all 15 meters of the deck. In other words, putting 4 towers linearly elevated, you can carve 20-25 meters of additional deck space. And this is a lot.
In general, it is clear why, after the First World War, the linear arrangement of artillery quickly disappeared into oblivion, but before and during the war, such an arrangement fully corresponded to the tasks of the battleships. The only thing that would be worth regretting is that our admirals demanded that all the main caliber 4 towers be placed on the same level - the presence of a forecastle on Sevastopol would be more than appropriate. One can understand the admirals: they feared that the different height of the towers would entail an excessive spread of shells in the volley, but here they were clearly reinsured. If “Sebastopol” had a forecastle, their seaworthiness would be significantly higher.
Speaking of seaworthiness ...
To be continued ...