The German Battleship SMS Posen

The last ship of the first class of German “Dreadnought” battleships was Ersatz Baden/Posen

The keel for Posen was laid on 11 June 1907 at the Germania Dockyard in Kiel and launching followed on 12 December 1908. The President of the Prussian province of Posen, von Waldow, gave the christening speech and the christening was performed by Fürstin (Princess) Johanna von Radolin. Posen was named after the Prussian Province from 1772 to 1919, and today is known as Poznan province in Poland. On 28 April 1910 Posen was transferred from her construction yard to Kiel Imperial Dockyard and on 31 May was commissioned for the first time. The first pre-trials began on 18 July 1910.


Posen was constructed of Siemens-Martin mild steel (ship building steel) with transverse bulkheads and longitudinal frames.
There was a double side and bottom from frame 12 to 16 on the side of the shaft tunnels, from frame 16 to 21 it extended between the keel and longitudinal frame II and from 21 to 99 was between the keel and armoured deck. From frame 99 to frame 108 the double side extended only as far as the lower platform deck. The double bottom extended over 88% of the ship.
Fifteen watertight compartments divided the ship into 16 watertight compartments.
From frame 32 to 67 there was a wing passage bulkhead which extended from the inner bottom to the armoured deck, and from frame 21 to 86 there was a torpedo bulkhead which passed through the inner bottom.



The engine rooms were divided by two longitudinal bulkheads between frames 32 and 41, which reached from the inner bottom to the armoured deck.
Below the armoured deck in the middle of the ship, between frames 41 and 75, was a 1.45m wide middle gangway, in which ran the steering controls, the engine telegraphs, electrical cables, speaking tubes, fire extinguisher lines and compressed air pipes etc. The middle gangway ran through all bulkheads and between frames 63 and 66, where the central command position was located, it was increased in width to 3m.



Between frames 21 and 75 on the armoured deck were the coal provisions upper bunkers, and the reserve bunkers from frame 23 to 41 on the Zwischendeck. Below the armoured deck were the ready use bunkers of the boiler rooms, inside the torpedo bulkheads. Outside the torpedo bulkhead were the protective bunkers.
The ship had the following decks: Stauung or hold, which strictly speaking was not a deck, Lower Platform Deck, Upper Platform Deck, Zwischendeck or Between deck, Armoured Deck, Batterie Deck, Upper Deck and Superstructure Deck. The decks were of steel plate. The exposed part of the Batterie Deck and the Upper Deck were covered with 60 mm thick teak planking, whilst all remaining decks were covered in linoleum.



The upper deck of Posen above the casemates had 25 mm thick armour and the Battery Deck was also 25 mm thick.
The Armoured Deck extended from Frame -5 to the stem. Aft it was 60 mm thick, but 65 mm above the rudder engines and spindle drives. For the length of the citadel, it was 40 mm thick. The sloping armoured deck was 52 mm thick. Before and aft of the citadel the armoured deck generally 37 mm thick.
The upper edge of the side armour was the batterie deck and the lower edge was 1.6m below the CWL. In the area of the citadel the belt had a thickness of 290 mm. The upper part of the belt, the so-called citadel, varied but in general was 250 mm thick, whilst the upper part which continued to the upper deck and contained the casemates, was 160 mm thick. The armour was mounted on a backing of 50 mm thick wood.
The stern armour aft of the citadel was in general 120 mm thick, whilst the bow armour between frame 86 and 108 was 140 mm, and from frame 108 to the stem was 100 mm thick. All armour was manufactured from hardened nickel steel.




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