Japanese battleship Yashima

Japanese battleship Yashima.jpg
Yashima in 1897
Ordered:1894 Naval Programme
Builder:Armstrong Whitworth, Elswick
Yard number:625
Laid down:6 December 1894
Launched:28 February 1896
Completed:9 September 1897
Fate:Sank 15 May 1904 after striking two mines
General characteristics
Class and type:Fuji-class pre-dreadnought battleship
Displacement:12,230 long tons (12,430 t) (normal)
Length:412 ft (125.6 m)
Beam:73 ft 6 in (22.4 m)
Draught:26 ft 3 in (8.0 m)
Installed power:
Propulsion:2 shafts, 2 triple-expansion steam engines
Speed:18 knots (33 km/h; 21 mph)
Range:4,000 nmi (7,400 km; 4,600 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph)

Yashima (八島, Yashima) was a Fuji-class pre-dreadnought battleship built for the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) in the 1890s. As Japan lacked the industrial capacity to build such warships, the ship was designed and built in the United Kingdom. She participated in the early stages of the Russo-Japanese War of 1904–1905, including the Battle of Port Arthur on the second day of the war. She was involved in subsequent operations until she struck two mines off Port Arthur in May 1904. She did not sink immediately, but capsized while under tow a number of hours later. The Japanese were able to keep her loss a secret from the Russians for over a year so they did not try to take advantage of her loss.


Yashima was 412 feet (125.6 m) long overall and had a beam of 73 feet 6 inches (22.4 m) and a full-load draught of 26 feet 3 inches (8.0 m). She normally displaced 12,230 long tons (12,430 t) and had a crew of 650 officers and enlisted men.[1] Unlike her sister ship Fuji, she was fitted as an admiral's flagship.[2]

The ship was powered by two vertical triple-expansion steam engines using steam generated by ten cylindrical boilers. The engines were rated at 13,500 indicated horsepower (10,100 kW), using forced draught, and designed to reach a top speed of 18.25 knots (33.80 km/h; 21.00 mph). Yashima, however, reached a top speed of 19.46 knots (36.04 km/h; 22.39 mph) from 14,075 ihp (10,496 kW) on her sea trials.[3] She carried a maximum of 1,200 tonnes (1,200 long tons) of coal which allowed her to steam for 4,000 nautical miles (7,400 km; 4,600 mi) at a speed of 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph).[4][Note 1]

Yashima's main battery consisted of four 12-inch (305 mm) guns mounted in two twin gun turrets, one each fore and aft of the superstructure. The secondary battery consisted of ten 6-inch (152 mm) quick-firing guns, four mounted in casemates on the sides of the hull and six mounted on the upper deck, protected by gun shields.[6] A number of smaller guns were carried for defence against torpedo boats. These included fourteen 47-millimetre (1.9 in) 3-pounder guns and ten 2.5-pounder Hotchkiss guns of the same calibre.[Note 2] She was also armed with five 18-inch torpedo tubes. Yashima's waterline armour belt consisted of Harvey armour and was 14–18 inches (356–457 mm) thick. The armour of her gun turrets was six inches thick and her deck was 2.5 inches (64 mm) thick.[1]

In 1901, the ship exchanged 16 of her 47 mm guns for an equal number of QF 12 pounder 12 cwt[Note 3] guns. This raised the number of crewmen to 652 and later to 741.[4]

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