-H.M.S. Hood Technical Specifications & Armament Information-
Mk I 15" Main Guns
Updated 06-May-2014

Basic performance/technical information on the 15 inch main guns carried by the battle cruiser H.M.S. Hood.

Chainbar divider
The main guns of H.M.S. Hood

Gun Type: Mk I
Number of Guns: 8 total (2 per turret x 4 turrets)
Calibre: 15"/ 38.1 cm
Barrel Length: 42 cal (630") / 16520.2 mm
Gun Length (Overall): 650.4" / 16502 mm
Barrel Rifling: 76 grooves, right handed twist
Charge Type: Cordite MD45
Full Charge Weight: 428 lbs /194.1 kg
Reduced Charge Weight: 321 lbs / 145.6 kg
Shell Weight/Mass: 1920 lbs / 870.9 kg
Chamber Gas Pressure: 19.5 tons psi / 305 MPa
Muzzle Velocity: 2462 fs / 750 ms
Rate of Fire: 2 rounds every 30 seconds (4 rounds per minute per turret)
Max. Range (New Barrel): 30,180 yds / 27,596.6 m (at 30° elev.)
Elevation Angle- Max. / Min.: 30° / -05°
Mount: Type II
Fire Control: A variety of inputs could be used- The primary directors were the 15 ft/4.6 m rangefinder above the Spotting Top and the 30 ft/9.1 m rangefinder atop the Conning Tower. Additionally, each turret/gun house was fitted with a 30 ft/9.1 m rangefinder and open director sites. Secondary control was normally carried out through "B" turret's sites. Should the need for divided fire arise, "B" turret would control the front two turrets, and "X" the aft two turrets. Should each turret need to fire independently, each could rely upon its own rangefinder and sites. All sites were augmented by various types of auxiliary fire control equipment to include tripod type directors and Evershed bearing transmitters. In 1941, this was further augmented by the incorporation of a Type 284 gunnery radar (range @10 nm/18.5 km). The Spotting Top 15 ft/4.6 m rangefinder was removed when the radar was added. Additionally, a Type 279M radar was fitted that could also provide surface ranging if necessary (range @ 9nm/16.6 km). Inputs from these devices could be fed into Mk V Dreyer fire control tables in the 15" transmitting stations for coordinated fire control.Click here to learn more about Hood's fire control systems.
Comments: Hood was the only such ship ever equipped with Type I guns on a Type II mounting. You can learn more about these weapons by reading ADM186/248- Hood's 15" Mounting Handbook.
Photos: Click to enlarge-

Hood veteran Jim Taylor posing next to a 15 inch shell
15" shell
15 inch cordite cartridge (left)
15" cordite cartridge (red)
Hood Veteran Jim Taylor posing next to a 15 inch breach
15" breach
Details of the 15 inch breach
15" breach details
Details of the 15 inch breach
15" breach details
Details of the 15 inch breach
15" breach details