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"Intriguing defence technique for river gunboat" Topic


8 Posts

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708 hits since 23 Jan 2013
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Personal logo Arteis Supporting Member of TMP23 Jan 2013 1:02 a.m. PST

I came across this unusual defensive mechanism in a document that included a sketch made by Midshipman Foljambe of the riverboat HMS Pioneer in the 1860s.

Scroll down to the sketch of HMS Pioneer (about halfway through the PDF) and look at the caption for '3'.

PDF link

I've never heard of this before on any other ship.

Cyclops Inactive Member23 Jan 2013 2:59 a.m. PST

Fascinating. Wonder if it was ever used in anger.

Whatisitgood4atwork Supporting Member of TMP23 Jan 2013 3:06 a.m. PST

'Pipe round ship perforated so that boiling water can be pumped by engines on boats attacking ships.'

Great idea if you are worried about a sudden attack by open boats traveling a very short distance – like on a river. Maori were famous for using cover and launching surprise attacks, so possibly a sensible precaution.

Balin Shortstuff23 Jan 2013 6:07 a.m. PST
Frederick Supporting Member of TMP23 Jan 2013 8:52 a.m. PST

Hardly seems sporting!

Have never heard of it, but makes sense if your opposition are attacking you in canoes

Shagnasty23 Jan 2013 9:11 a.m. PST

I believe the Union "Monitor" had a scheme for piping live steam on her decks when the Confederates were planning to board her. They were going to jam her turret with wedges and pour flammables down vents.

Personal logo The Virtual Armchair General Sponsoring Member of TMP23 Jan 2013 10:40 a.m. PST

The idea is older still.

Robert Fulton designed and built the US Navy's first steam powered warhship, the "Nautilus," in 1814, and in addition to a very heavy main battery, it had hoses rigged for playing live steam and/or boiling water on the decks of any enemies it came along side of.

It never saw action before the war's end in early 1815, but she was at least around and had a shot at changing history in a day.

TVAG

Personal logo chicklewis Supporting Member of TMP23 Jan 2013 12:42 p.m. PST

Did you notice that a few pages farther down the webmaster has used an incorrect photo to label "coehorn mortar"?

The entire page is completely fascinating, and I'm not even a stamp collector !

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