Condor-class gunvessel

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HMS Condor
Class overview
Name: Condor-class gunvessels
Operators:  Royal Navy
Built: 1876–1877
In commission: 1877–1923
Completed: 4
General characteristics
Displacement: 774 tons
Length: 157 ft (48 m)
Beam: 29 ft 6 in (8.99 m)
Draught: 12 ft (3.7 m)[1]
Installed power: Designed 750 ihp (560 kW)
  • Three Boilers
  • 2-cylinder horizontal compound-expansion steam engine
  • Single screw (Laird vessels had feathering blades)[1]
Sail plan: Barque-rigged
Speed: 11.5 kn (21.3 km/h) under power
Complement: 100[1]
  • One 7-in (4½-ton) muzzle-loading rifle
  • Two 64-pounder (64cwt) muzzle-loading rifles
  • Except Flamingo:
  • One 7-in (4½-ton) muzzle-loading rifle
  • One 64-pounder (64cwt) muzzle-loading rifles
  • Two 20-pounder Breech-Loaders
  • Flamingo and Griffon rearmed in 1884:
  • 7-in MLR replaced with two 5-in Vavasseur breech loaders

The Condor-class gunvessel was a class of four Royal Navy composite gunvessels of 3 guns, built between 1876 and 1877.[2] They were all hulked or sold before 1893, giving them an active life of less than 15 years.



Designed by Nathaniel Barnaby,[1] the Royal Navy Director of Naval Construction, the hull was of composite construction; that is, iron keel, frames, stem and stern posts with wooden planking.


They were fitted with three boilers, a 2-cylinder horizontal compound expansion steam engine and a single screw. Griffon and Falcon were engined by Laird Brothers and had a feathering propeller. Flamingo and Condor were engined by John Elder & Co, and all ships had a designed 750 indicated horsepower (560 kW), developing about 11.5 knots (21.3 km/h) under power.[1]

Sail plan[edit]

The class was rigged with three masts, with square rig on the fore- and main-masts, making them barque-rigged vessels.[1]


The ships of the class were fitted with a 7-in (4½-ton) muzzle-loading rifle and two 64-pounder (64cwt) muzzle-loading rifles, except for Flamingo, which had two 20-pounder breech-loaders in place of one of the 64-pounder muzzle-loading rifles. In 1884 Flamingo and Griffon were rearmed with two 5-in Vavasseur breech loaders replacing the 7-in muzzle-loading rifle.[1]

HMS Griffon


Name Ship Builder Launched Fate
Flamingo Devonport Dockyard 13 December 1876 Hulk 1893. Sold to Plymouth Port Sanitary Authority on 25 May 1923. Sold on 4 May 1931 for breaking
Griffon Laird Brothers, Birkenhead 16 December 1876 Sold to the Board of Trade as a hulk on 28 September 1891 and renamed Richmond
Condor Devonport Dockyard 28 December 1876 Sold to George Cohen in August 1889
Falcon Laird Brothers, Birkenhead 4 January 1877 Hulk in 1890. Sold to E W Payne & Company on 25 June 1920


External links[edit]