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Author Topic: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer  (Read 59336 times)

tonyH

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #25 on: June 18, 2009, 12:26:09 AM »

Hi Colin,

As you say, it's odd but there's no TT and the area under the bow is clear (the reload torpedoes were stored in cylinders on deck!), nor is there any sign on the builders plan for any link to the anchors. Most of the closer photos are taken from the blunt end - so that's no use - and there are no signs of any fittings - not even a shackle or two, on the pole.

Tony
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tobyker

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #26 on: June 18, 2009, 12:58:41 AM »

I don't suppose it's possible that the French retained the option of the "spar torpedo" as late as that? I've only heard of these (a bomb on the end of a (very) long stick) in connection with the Confederate Davids - I think when used then it was questionable whether they did more damage to the Confederate heroes or the g-d Yankees.
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tonyH

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #27 on: June 18, 2009, 09:55:07 AM »

Very doubtful inthis case. The spar is not long enough to stop the bow being blown off and there doesn't seem to be any way of extending it.

Tony
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #28 on: June 18, 2009, 06:58:51 PM »

Tony sent me his plans which I've now hopefully converted to images which can be posted on here - see below. The spar is clearly made of wood and appears to be fixed length. It is possible that the "boxing glove" on the end is a canvas cover of some sort.

This is quite a puzzle really, I have spent some time Googling without any result. maybe it's just an anachronism!

Colin
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tonyH

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #29 on: June 18, 2009, 10:48:16 PM »

Thanks Colin,

Now the 'Brains Trust' can see the beastie!

Tony
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Jimmy James

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #30 on: June 19, 2009, 11:37:49 PM »

Tony :-)) :-))
Received the plans OK and am awaiting a reply from the maritime museum ( an old friend works there ) But as a matter of interest 3 British Torpedo Gun Boats had the same rig with short heavy spar's or bowsprits  The Circe 1892--The Seagull 1889 ---and the Speedwell 1889 ---The Japanese T/B ( first class torpedo boats) of 1903 had two classes the Hayabusa (11 Ships) and the Aotaka (11 ships)  the Turks had Sultan Hisar & The Sivri Hisar + 3 French type of the Duranadal Class --- The Russians 15 of the Baltic, Louk & Grosovoi Classes ALL WITH BOWSPRITS.. also the French Branless class had the same Prop Rudder and Bowsprit rig  So it looks as if the bowsprit wasn't just a French thing ....
quite a few of the Austrian ships also had bowsprits but some of these on the larger ships were used for rigging anti torpedo nets ...
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tonyH

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #31 on: June 20, 2009, 02:23:18 PM »

Another possibility of course.

The padding is roughly the same diameter as a torpedo tube - so, if the navigation was exact you could visualise the 'finger in the barrel' situation ala Deputy Dawg etc. on a larger scale.

Nah!

Tony
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RickF

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #32 on: June 21, 2009, 09:54:48 AM »

I think the "bowsprit" thing on Sharpshooter torpedo-gunboats (Seagull/ Speedwell) was part of the minesweeping apparatus fitted after their conversion in 1909. It doesn't appear on any photos I have of the class in the gunboat role.

Rick
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Jimmy James

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #33 on: June 21, 2009, 09:00:34 PM »

ALL hands
 One reply I've had said that he thought that on the V/l's with a single bow mounted tube it may have been used as an Ad-Hoc torpedo gun sight ???? I can understand that it could possable have been used this way in certain circumstances but don't believe this is what it was original designed for --- but--- think the mine sweeping needs to be looked into as some of the French, Russian & Japanese boats were also converted  for mine sweeping The trouble is being an Ex G.I. and not a T.I. I only know the bare BASICs of this sort of thing and that knowledge is almost 50 years out of Date---- or 60 year too late.
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #34 on: June 21, 2009, 10:21:38 PM »

Yes, I wondered if it was a sighting aid for firing the torpedoes too. You would need to accurately know the ship's heading to work out when to fire the torpedoes. But the sprit was carried by shipe with and without bow tubes. There must have been some rudimentary fire control system in use at the time.

Colin
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tonyH

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #35 on: June 21, 2009, 10:48:16 PM »

Arquebuse carried 2 tubes, both aimable (turnable), one aft and one amidships with deck reloads. Arc of fire was approx 270 degrees for the stern tube and roughly 90 degrees on either side for the amidships one. No bow tube. Maximum forward firing was 45 degrees off straight ahead for both tubes.

The drawings are annotated 'as built' (en francais of course) so unlikely to be modifications.
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tobyker

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #36 on: June 22, 2009, 12:09:59 AM »

I suppose in a French destroyer, an aimable tube could be used for friendly fire?
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tonyH

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #37 on: June 22, 2009, 10:34:02 AM »

Nom d'un chien!

I suppose your excuse is that it was past midnight when you came up with that one - nice one!

Tony
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Jimmy James

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #38 on: June 22, 2009, 09:15:22 PM »

 :-))
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Jimmy James

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #39 on: June 22, 2009, 09:23:26 PM »

TonyH.
Recived this form Liza Verity National Maratrime Mesuim
Hope this will help in some small way
Jimmy
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From: Bob Todd
Sent: 22 June 2009 12:02
To: Liza Verity
Subject: RE: Bow sprits on WW1 torpedo boats


Liza
 
For the French boats I think he will have to try French sources.  From about 1888 to 1906 some 500 French torpedo boats of various classes had this small wooden spar stuck over the bow but I have no idea what its intended purpose was or how useful it was.   
 
Some British torpedo gunboats were temporarily fitted with a running bowsprit to take a jib or staysail when they were undertaking long voyages but this was not a permanent fitting.  Only the SPANKER retained one for any length of time and hers was removed c.1901.   Later on, from about 1909, ten of the torpedo gunboats were fitted with minesweeping gear aft but in 1913 two of these ships, SEAGULL and SPEEDWELL, were fitted with a steel frame projecting over the bow for various types of experimental minesweeping gear to be tried out.   These frames were removed in 1914-1915.
 
Bob



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
From: Liza Verity
Sent: 22 June 2009 11:16
To: Bob Todd
Subject: FW: Bow sprits on WW1 torpedo boats


Bob
 
Can you help?
 

Liza Verity FRSA, Information Specialist

National Maritime Museum

Greenwich

London

SE10 9NF

T 020 8312 6712

 

www.nmm.ac.uk

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Jimmy James

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #40 on: June 22, 2009, 09:56:01 PM »

 :} :-)) >>:-(sorry about the spelling on the last message, my 18 mounth old granddaughter gave the keyboard something to drink it didn't like
Jimmy
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tonyH

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #41 on: June 23, 2009, 09:42:27 PM »

JJ, Thanks again. Computers have a habit of mis-spieling with me too!

So, the mystery deepens!

What were they for?

I'm going to get a PM off to Roger (in France) to see whether he has any contact ideas or whether there is a forum over there that may have ideas on the subject. There must have been some logic behind the poles but...

Tony

PS I thought Bob Todd was on the Benny Hill Show.
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Arrow5

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #42 on: June 23, 2009, 09:57:01 PM »

There is a French Naval Officer here on Mayhem, try a PM to A1Xtian. A knowledgable man on nautical things and a good command of English. :-)
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tonyH

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #43 on: June 23, 2009, 09:59:51 PM »

Thanks Arrow, I'll do that now. I've also sent one to Rubnat (Phil) in France, so the net widens.
Tony
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Arrow5

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #44 on: June 23, 2009, 10:02:16 PM »

Correction Christian`s handle on Mayhem is in fact Xtian29. :embarrassed:
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tonyH

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #45 on: June 23, 2009, 10:03:53 PM »

Ta, I'd got worried that there was another mystery!

Tony
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Arrow5

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #46 on: June 23, 2009, 10:32:43 PM »

Tony, I should warn you that Christian may be at sea. Just in case you dont get an immeadiate answer.
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tonyH

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #47 on: June 24, 2009, 12:01:09 PM »

Hi Arrow,

We've had a first response from France (Rubnat) and it implies that it was a weapon, used like a lance!
Research continues.

Tony
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Arrow5

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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #48 on: June 24, 2009, 04:50:40 PM »

Hmmm, think it has lost something in the translation.   Lance to penetrate ?  A ram , bit flimsy ?
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Re: Fat pointy thing! - Arquebuse class French destroyer
« Reply #49 on: June 24, 2009, 04:59:39 PM »

I have been in the UK for six days so only just caught up.

Now that I am home (and rapidly refilling the wine holder !) I will get on to it. However Xitan may be a good source as suggested as he is very knowledgable.

Roger in France
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