BAP "Independencia", Peruvian Navy battlecruiser (AU)

Dilandu

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In 1922, Royal Australian Navy was quite dissatisfied to learn that they must get rid of their only battlecruiser, HMAS "Australia". Not exactly because the ship was very valuable (by this time it was outdated), but mainly because Australia did not have breaking capabilities to scrap it, and the only way to dispose of battlecruiser was to scuttle it. Considering significant investments put into the ship, Australian sailors weren't exactly happy about not getting anything back.
462579_original.png


At the same time, Peruvian delegation was in Great Britain, evaluating the "Gorgon" monitor for possible purchase as coastal defense ship. When Australian naval representatives learned about that, they immediately put all efforts into persuading Peruvians, that slightly used battlecruiser would be much better investment. Of course, Peru could not pay a lot, but even a bit would be better than scuttling ship for free.

And in 1923, the dealt (which was made to look a bit retroactively, to create impression that the actual agreement was BEFORE Washington Naval Treaty was signed - to avoid possible legal problems) was finished, and Peru rather unexpectedly found themselves as owners of BAP "Independencia", old, but still formidable capital ship. While definitely of outdated design, it was still more than enough to put Peru back in the ranks of great South American naval powers, along with Brazil, Argentina and Chile.

In 1929-1930, the ship was given a major refit on British shipyard:
  • Anti-torpedo bulges were installed, increasing displacement up to 24.000 tons
  • Powerplant was completely replaced with a new one, similar to RN's County-class cruisers; 32 old Babcoc-Wilcox boilers were replaced with 8 new Admirality-type ones, Parson turbines replaced with geared ones. The 45% increase of propulsion power (up to 80.000 hp.) allowed to retain 26-knot max speed
  • Upper armor deck between A and X turrets was strengthened by additional 2-inch armor plating
  • All secondaries were removed, and eight 4-inch QF Mark V in high-angle Mark III mounts were installed
  • Eight single-barrel Mark II Pom-Pom AA guns were installed
  • A S.II.L type catapult on the roof of Q turret, a crane and a hangar for two seaplanes in rear superstructure were added

462742_original.png


The rebuild battlecruiser returned to Peruvian service in early 1930s.
 

Archibald

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History is packed full with events that look impossible at first glance yet they happened.

I have an idea somewhat similar to yours in a corner of my head. Since the day I learned that Audacious (Ark and Eagle) and Clemenceaus shared the same BS-5 steam cats... circa 1953-56 one french naval engineer must have hanged out in Great Britain to get a licence for these BS-5 cats. Now whatif the guy had heard of the 1956 Medium Fleet carrier, 45 000 tons, and merged it with PA58 Verdun ?
 

Dilandu

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History is packed full with events that look impossible at first glance yet they happened.
Yep) I admit, I took liberties with "Independencia" major refit; Peru hardly could pay for such extensive works in 1930s. But, well, the backstory was mostly written just as addition to the picture.
Great job!
Thank you!
 

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Overall, very good. My only quibble would be the 4" guns in high angle mounts. If it gets a refit latter in the 30s, closer to the outbreak of WWII, then those guns make sense. But a late 20s/early 30s refit would probably see something more like the 4.5" gun in a low angle mount for anti-destroyer work with one or two 4" in a high angle mount for AA work
 

Dilandu

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Overall, very good
Thank you)

My only quibble would be the 4" guns in high angle mounts. If it gets a refit latter in the 30s, closer to the outbreak of WWII, then those guns make sense. But a late 20s/early 30s refit would probably see something more like the 4.5" gun in a low angle mount for anti-destroyer work with one or two 4" in a high angle mount for AA work
Hm, a possibility. Must admit, the most logical in 1920s would probably be to retain part of original anti-torpedo guns (say, 8-10), and install four HA guns in addition. On the other hands, the refit is pretty extensive by itself - especially the change of powerplant and addition to armored deck - and so it's logical to upgrade the anti-air armament also...
 

Dilandu

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P.S. Basically in the scale of refit I oriented at "Latorre" refit in 1929-1930s; she also received bulges, Parsons geared turbines, ect. I decide against increasing main gun angle (it would require much efforts for little gain - 12-inch/45 guns just aren't long-range enough), but instead added deck armor.
 

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In 1922, Royal Australian Navy was quite dissatisfied to learn that they must get rid of their only battlecruiser, HMAS "Australia". Not exactly because the ship was very valuable (by this time it was outdated), but mainly because Australia did not have breaking capabilities to scrap it, and the only way to dispose of battlecruiser was to scuttle it. Considering significant investments put into the ship, Australian sailors weren't exactly happy about not getting anything back.
462579_original.png


At the same time, Peruvian delegation was in Great Britain, evaluating the "Gorgon" monitor for possible purchase as coastal defense ship. When Australian naval representatives learned about that, they immediately put all efforts into persuading Peruvians, that slightly used battlecruiser would be much better investment. Of course, Peru could not pay a lot, but even a bit would be better than scuttling ship for free.

And in 1923, the dealt (which was made to look a bit retroactively, to create impression that the actual agreement was BEFORE Washington Naval Treaty was signed - to avoid possible legal problems) was finished, and Peru rather unexpectedly found themselves as owners of BAP "Independencia", old, but still formidable capital ship. While definitely of outdated design, it was still more than enough to put Peru back in the ranks of great South American naval powers, along with Brazil, Argentina and Chile.

In 1929-1930, the ship was given a major refit on British shipyard:
  • Anti-torpedo bulges were installed, increasing displacement up to 24.000 tons
  • Powerplant was completely replaced with a new one, similar to RN's County-class cruisers; 32 old Babcoc-Wilcox boilers were replaced with 8 new Admirality-type ones, Parson turbines replaced with geared ones. The 45% increase of propulsion power (up to 80.000 hp.) allowed to retain 26-knot max speed
  • Upper armor deck between A and X turrets was strengthened by additional 2-inch armor plating
  • All secondaries were removed, and eight 4-inch QF Mark V in high-angle Mark III mounts were installed
  • Eight single-barrel Mark II Pom-Pom AA guns were installed
  • A S.II.L type catapult on the roof of Q turret, a crane and a hangar for two seaplanes in rear superstructure were added

462742_original.png


The rebuild battlecruiser returned to Peruvian service in early 1930s.

In fact the Peruvians knew how to make a little of new with the old.
 

Hood

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Its not the craziest AU story I've read and actually makes enough sense to have happened, plus its an interesting scenario, not often does Peru get mentioned in our musings. The drawings are good too.
 

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