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IZMAIL battlecruisers


Name No Yard No Builder Laid down Launched Comp Fate
Измаил [Izmail]     Baltic Works, St. Petersburg 19.12.1913 22.6.1915 --- suspended 14.12.1917
Бородино [Borodino]     Admiralty Works, St. Petersburg 19.12.1913 1.7.1915 --- suspended 24.10.1917
Кинбурн [Kinburn]     Baltic Works, St. Petersburg 19.12.1913 30.10.1915 --- suspended 24.10.1917
Наварин [Navarin]     Admiralty Works, St. Petersburg 19.12.1913 9.11.1915 --- suspended 24.10.1917

Technical data

Displacement normal, t


Displacement full, t38000
Length, m

221.9 pp 228.6 oa

Breadth, m


Draught, m

10.2 max 8.81 normal

No of shafts



4 Parsons steam turbines, 25 Yarrow boilers

Power, h. p.


Max speed, kts


Fuel, t

coal 1950 + oil 1575

Endurance, nm(kts)3830(16)
Armour, mm

belt: 238 - 100, turrets: 300, barbettes: 300 - 148, decks: 75 - 25, CT: 400 - 110


4 x 3 - 356/50, 24 x 1 - 130/53, 8 x 1 - 75/48 Canet AA, 4 x 1 - 63/36 Obukhov Wks AA, 6 - 450 TT (sub, beam)



Standard scale images


Project history

Authorised under the 1912 Programme for deployment with the Baltic Fleet. The preliminary characteristics provided for 28kt battlecruisers armed with 9 356mm guns in triple turrets. The increased main armament calibre stemmed from rumours about the same move in the German Navy. In 1912 the fourth triple turret was added and speed reduced by 1.5kts to the same as the German battlecruisers. At that rime emphasis was laid on standardisation of silhouette with the Gangut class dreadnoughts. The latter's flush deck hull had to be abandoned in favour of the raised forecastle for higher speed. Although designated battlecruisers the new ships were better armoured than the Gangut class, but were still inferior to the contemporary German battlecruisers. The designers did not avoid repeating the Gangut class error of placing 130mm casemates directly below the heavy turrets.

Unfortunately for themselves, the Russians tried to expedite construction of the Borodino class by ordering turbines abroad, those of Navarin from Vulkan, Germany and those of Kinburn from Parsons, England. After August 1914 they had to be re-ordered from the Franco-Russian Works as had been done originally for the remaining pair. The shortage of materials and labour problems forced the Russians to concentrate on construction of Izmail only after June 1915, while the others were given lower priority. Development and introduction of 1356mm/52 Model 1912 guns in the Obukhov Works caused numerous problems despite Vickers' assistance. Later during the First World War proposals were made to replace them with the well-proven 305mm/52 apparently because of delays in completing the 356mm pieces. At the beginning of 1917 construction of the less advanced trio was suspended while Izmail was scheduled for completion at the beginning of 1918. Because of the Bolshevik Revolution, work on Izmail practically stopped and she was laid up. Her three sisters were sold to Germany in 1922 while concrete plans about completion and modernisation of Izmail were considered (completion as an aircraft carrier was proposed also) in the late 1920s but were not carried out.

Ship protection

The 238mm belt was 151m long and 5.3m high, ship ends were protected by 125mm belt. Upper belt (130mm casemate) had 100mm thickness over citadel, fore part (to 34m from the stem) was 75mm. Fwd 4 130mm guns were protected by 100mm armour. Upper deck over the battery had 38mm thickness. Medium deck was 63mm at the flat and had 75mm slopes. Barbettes had 300mm protection over the upper deck and 150mm under it. Turrets had 300mm faces and rears, 200mm sides and 150mm roofs. CT had 400mm sides and 250mm roof.