News : HMHS Britannic - The Forgotten Sister BlackHawk Mines Corp Zimbio My BlackHawk Mines Music
Posted by shintsuyen 4 days ago (http://www.zimbio.com) http://www.titanicandco.com/britannic.html The Olympic and Titanic have been built. The HMHS (His Majesty's Hospital Ship) Britannic was the third " wonder ship" to be built. Originally, the ship was to be named " Gigantic ", but due to the loss of the Titanic, her name was changed to Britannic. The White Star Line knew if they were to keep ahead in the race across the Atlantic the new liner would have to be more magnificent than her older sisters.
Due to the sinking of the Titanic, large scale alterations would have to be made to her design. She could not sink in under 3 hours. She must carry enough lifeboats to accommodate every passenger and crew member.
Britannic was being constructed in 1913. Her structure ran 852 feet (longer than the Olympic). She was fitted with a double skin hull. It ran for the full length of the boiler and engine room compartments. An extra bulkhead was added to make 17 compartments and five of them were extended to the Bridge deck some 40 foot above the waterline. These modifications should in theory prevent her from sinking in under three hours.
The boiler room and engine rooms were more or less identical to the Olympic except that Britannic turbine engines could generate18,000 horse power. The engines were not built by John Brown & Co as in the case for Olympic but were built by Harland & Wolff.
Her stern would differ from the Olympics because the aft shelter deck was enclosed so that the third class passengers could enjoy a covered area of exterior deck. The third class smoking room was placed above their general room giving the impression that the stern was much bigger.
Another striking difference was the layout of the lifeboats. She was designed to carry 48 open lifeboats. Forty-six of them would be 34 foot long (making them the largest lifeboats ever placed on a ship before). Two of the 46 would be motor propelled and would carry wireless sets for communications. The other two were 26 foot cutters placed at both sides of the bridge.
Essentially, the interior of the ship would not differ from the Olympic and Titanic. The builders added extra delights throughout the ship for every class. The second class were given a gymnasium and many of her private room were fitted with private bathrooms.
On the 26th February 1914 the Britannic was ready for launching. The weather was grim but the officials plodded on. At 11.10 a.m. a rocket signalled the commencement of the ceremony and the workforce removed the blocks keeping the hull from slipping into the water. At 11.15 with the help of 20 tonnes of tallow, train oil and soft soap she moved down the slipway. She took 81 seconds to stand afloat in the water.
Following the successful launch she was towed to the Abercon Basin to start her fitting. She was pulled by the tugs " Herculaneum ", " Huskisson ", " Hornby ", "Alexandra " and the " Hercules ".
The British press were in favour of the ship and described her as " a twentieth Century ship in every sense of the word " and " the highest achievement of her day in the practise of ship building and marine engineering ".
Hundreds of workmen commenced the task of fitting her out. Electricians, plumbers and carpenters all played a crucial part. To the White Star Line, progress was too slow and poor. On the 2nd July 1914 they announced that Britannic would not be ready for her maiden voyage until early spring 1915. Amongst the reason for delay was finance. Harland and Wolff was owed £585,000 from the IMM which would have made all the difference to the progress if the money could have been used on the ship. The financial problem was so great that Britannic was not completed but left for nearly a whole year.