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> Soimul & Vulturul 1882, Romanian Royal Navy
Victorian
Posted: October 31, 2006 05:54 pm
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Soldat
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In the romanian magazine "Yacht magazin" number 23/june-july 2004, as illustrating a paper written by ms. Carmen Atanasiu from the Maritime Museum Constantza, called "Romanian harbours on the Danube at the turn-of-the century", at page 15 you can see a very interesting image. The image comes from the museum collection, and the ship seen there is definitely a spar torpedoboat. It can only be either "Soimul" or "Vulturul", both built 1882 in England. Since I do not know of any more precise image of these ships, this is an unique opportunity to know how these ships really looked! They look very similar with the New Zealand "Defenders"!! I tried to upload the image here:

http://img206.imageshack.us/my.php?image=soimulonlyqz6.png

If this doesn't work, if you don't have acces to the romanian magazine and want to see the picture, just drop me a line!

This post has been edited by Victorian on November 02, 2006 08:07 pm
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Victorian
Posted: November 03, 2006 08:08 am
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Soldat
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Please note the photo is a typical spar torpedoboat, and the surroundings are clearly romanian (the harbour can be positively identified as being Corabia on the Danube) so it can only be either Soimul or Vulturul. It is worth observing that these ships had two funnels, one each side; this was done to accomodate the spar slide in the middle of the deck.

At the National Archives in Bucharest I saw the original 1881 offers from Yarrow and Thornycroft. The Yarrow offer consists in some quite unclear photos and several 1879 and 1880 cut-outs from "The Times" and "The Engineer" concerning Yarrow torpedoboats.

The Thornycroft offer consists in several large scale blueprints, (one third of an inch to a foot, or 1:32) of four different torpedoboats, as follows: (the dimensions were originally given in feet and inches but I made the metric conversion)

Drawing number 1209: First class torpedo boat;
25,15 m L x 3.04 m B x 1.22 m D
top speed 18 knots.
Has one spar, two steam impulse torpedo tubes and one Nordenfelt machine gun;
Price: 6.000 £
[A single funnel at the port side]

Drawing number 1128: The boat seen by the two Romanian officers (col. Dumitrescu Maican & capt. Izvoranu) in the shipyard while asking for the offer.
19.74 m L x 2.032 m B x 0.92 m D
top speed 16 ½ knots.
One spar torpedo;
Price: 2.700 £
[A single funnel at the port side]

Drawing number 1174: Second class torpedo boat built for the Government of the Argentine Republic;
no dimensions,
one spar torpedo;
Price: 3.000 £
[A single funnel at the port side]

Drawing nr. 1041 A: Second class torpedo boat, the latest development;
Prepared for the French and British Governments
19.20 m L x 2.28 m B x 1.01 m D
top speed 17 knots;
Has two steam impulse torpedo tubes;
Price: 3.200 £
[Two symetrical funnels, one each side]

The "Defenders" built one year later (1883) for New Zealand look absolutely similar, although they had no torpedo tubes but just one spar torpedo, just like the romanian "Soimul" and "Vulturul".
I must assume both being built upon a variant of Drawing nr. 1041, possibly nr. 1041 B. But what if instead "Soimul" and "Vulturul" are built by Yarrow? I have found no document in the archives to positively say finally the Thornycroft offer was chosen for the romanian boats, although it may seem illogical to have two Thornicroft boats while all the rest are built by Yarrow.

This is indeed true even for our famous "Randunica", of which I have found several notes in the archives which positively say she was built by Yarrow!


This post has been edited by Victorian on November 14, 2006 07:55 pm
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Victorian
Posted: January 04, 2007 02:14 pm
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Soldat
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Finally, it is absolutely sure that "Soimul" and "Vulturul" were built by Yarrow!
See answer by Andreas von Mach on "Yard numbers, part I" here on the forum.
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