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Hnlms wassenaar (1856)

The meaning of «hnlms wassenaar (1856)»

HNLMS Wassenaar, was a unique ship built for the Royal Netherlands Navy.

The Admiraal van Wassenaar was part of the 1852 program which started the introduction of screw propelled warships to the Dutch navy. The first phase of the plan consisted of the Wassenaar, two steam corvettes of the Medusa class, and the steam schooner Montrado. The Wassenaar was laid down in Amsterdam on 12 February 1853.[3] When she was commissioned in July 1857, she was the first steam frigate of the Dutch Navy.

The Wassenaar was originally designed and partly built as a sailing frigate. This meant that her dimensions were the same as those of a sailing frigate laid down decades earlier, except that she was about 6.5 m longer. That she was only 6.5 m longer was due to the fact that she was meant to be a frigate with auxiliary power. Therefore, her engine was relatively small, and could be fitted with relatively small adjustments.

The first captain of the Wassenaar would personally arrange his own quarters to include a comfortable sleeping place, a small saloon, and an anteroom or as he called it 'church'. In the anteroom there was place for two quadrilles of eight pairs each. He personally spent a lot of money to lavishly decorate these rooms. He later noted that he did not regret this, as there were often 25-30 ladies in these rooms.[4]

The Wassenaar had machines of 300 nominal horse power made by Fijenoord in Rotterdam. These were to make about 50 turns[5] On the first trial run the Wassenaar attained a speed of over 8 miles. The machinery made 56 turns with a vacuum of 25.5-26 cm, the screw slipping 20%. Of course this trial was not with full load, nor sails, so it was not that precise for the speed she would attain later.[6] On her first trip from Nieuwediep to Plymouth she reached 6.5 knots at full speed, the screw making 52 turns a minute.[7]

As a frigate with auxiliary power the Wassenaar was first and foremost a sailing frigate. She had the sail plan of a Full-rigged ship, allowing her to make over 10 knots under advantageous conditions. Of her first 13 month trip to the Mediterranean (cf below) the mode of travel per day is known. She used sails only on 95 days, steam and sails on 21 days, and steam only on 2 days.[8] In this respect the cost of coal was significant. Her first captain would later note that the Wassenaar could easily consume 1000 guilders a day in coal.[4]

The Dutch navy used smooth bore muzzle loading (SBML) of a uniform caliber of 30 pounds, just like the French and English (32 pound) navies did. The basic policy of these navies was that 1st class frigates mounted heavy 30-pounders on their lower deck, and shorter versions on the upper deck. For the Wassenaar this meant 22 long 30-pdr No 4 on the main gun deck and 12 long 30-pdr No 3 on the upper deck. As shell guns were also required, 8 shell guns 20 cm No 2 were added on the main deck, and 2 shell guns 20 cm No 3 were added on the upper deck. To fight faster steamers a Long 60-pounder guns on pivot and sled was placed on the bow.

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