British Chariot (Mark I)

The British Human Torpedo

Length: 22 ft 3 in (6.8 m)
Breadth:
2 ft 9 in (0.8 m)
Height:
4 ft 0 in (1.2 m) at shield
Speed:
2.5 kt (5 km/h)
Weight:
3,500 lb (1,588 kg) with warhead
Depth: 90 ft (27 m)
Range:
5 hours (mileage dependent on sea currents)
Armament:
600 lb Torpex. Battery-operated detonation system
Crew:
2
Number Manufactured:
34

3 Body Sections

1. Main cylindrical centre section 3/32 inch thick steel stiffened by rings and bounded forward and aft by domed bulkheads.
2. Explosive head connected in early craft by securing bolt running through its axis. Later craft fitted with four wedge-shaped clips at joint with body.
3. Tail section bolted to centre body by 36 bolts. Hydroplanes and Rudder.
4. Superstructure built of wood and plywood.

Controls

Joystick-operated steering, pump control switches, main motor control (On, Off Reverse and 4-speed positions).

Instruments

Depth gauge, trim tank pressure gauge, High Pressure air gauge, clock, ammeter, clinometer.

Internal

2 air bottles, 2 x Mawdsley pump motors, electric motor 2 hp (1.5 kW) 960 rpm. 60 volt 4 pole. Batteries Type TFM27 60 volt lead acid 30 cells – 5 hours at 80 F (26.7 C). (210 ampere hours).

Painted with a metal primer then covered with olive green Bitumastic manufactured by Wailes Dove Bitumastic Ltd.

Modifications

Chariots No. XXVII to LX
Ammeters omitted
Connection straps to battery brackets fitted.
40 amp motor and 10 amp pump fuses fitted
Chariots No. LXII to LXXIV
Paired twin core supply leads
Strap at battery crate fitted

Built by Stothert and Pitt (Crane Makers) at Bath

Gallery