In September 1910, the first of a series of powerful German battlecruisers entered into service, which would jeopardize the supremacy of the British fleet in the years to come. It was the SMS Von der Tann a 21,000 tons battlecruiser armed with eight 280mm guns and a 27 knot top speed that became an experimental vessel used as a base for the following battlecruisers of the Kaiserliche Marine. The German Navy needed to counteract the new British battlecruisers of the Indefatigable class, so protection was a very careful aspect providing the ship with a 250mm armored belt, turrets with up to 230mm armour, a coning tower with 250mm armour and antisubmarine bulkheads with up to 180mm armour. The active life of Von der Tann was really brilliant, participating in almost all the important actions of WWI. Of course it was in Jutland, where she sank the British Indefatigable battlecruiser, (against which she was created), and although it suffered major breakdowns, she continued fighting until the end of the action. Its end was the same as that of many ships of the High Seas Fleet, was interned in Scapa Flow where she was sunk by her crew on June 21, 1919.

VON DER TANN gallery and more info


Información adicional

Ficha Completa
Country of origin



Blohm & Voss


Battlecruiser (CB)

Entered service




Displacement, (full load)

21,700 tonnes

Dimensions (length x beam x draught)

171.70 x 26.60 x 9.20 meters

Armour, (maximum)

Steel, Belt: 250mm – Bulkhead: 180mm – Upper deck: 20mm – Armoured deck: 50mm
Steel. Barbettes: 230mm – Main turrets: 230mm – Command tower: 250mm


18 x Schulz-Thornycroft boilers – 4 x Parsons steam geared turbines

Power, (total)

43,600 shp

Shafts - Screws

4 shafts – 4 screws


24.8 knots (46 km/h)


2,936 tonnes of coal


4,400 n. miles (8,140 km), at 14 knots


660 x 280mm shells + 1,500 x 150mm shells + 3,200 x 88mm shells + 11 torpedoes

Main guns

8 x 280mm SK L/45 in twin turrets

Secondary guns

10 x 150 mm SK L/45 + 16 x 88 mm SK L/45


4 x 450mm torpedo tubes (submerged)