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Maya-class gunboat
Japanese Gunboat Maya.jpg
Japanese gunboat Maya off Kure in 1892
Class overview
Name: Maya-class gunboat
Operators:  Imperial Japanese Navy
Built: 1886-1888
In commission: 1888-1911
Completed: 4
Lost: 1
Scrapped: 3
General characteristics
Type: gunboat
Displacement: 614 long tons (624 t)
Length: 47.0 m (154.2 ft)
Beam: 8.2 m (26 ft 11 in)
Draught: 2.95 m (9 ft 8 in)
Installed power: 950 ihp (710 kW)
Propulsion: 2 × horizontally mounted reciprocating steam engine
2 boilers, 2 × screws
Sail plan: Schooner-rigged
Speed: 10.25 kn (18.98 km/h; 11.80 mph)
Capacity: 60 t (66 short tons) coal
Complement: 104
Armament: 1x 210 mm (8 in) Krupp L/22 breech-loading gun
1x Krupp 120 mm (4.7 in) L/22 breech-loading gun
2x quadruple 1-inch Nordenfelt guns

The Maya class (摩耶型砲艦 Maya-gata hōkan?) was a four-ship class of gunboats of the early Imperial Japanese Navy.[1]

Design and description

The Maya vessels were Japan’s first iron-hulled gunboats, although only Maya and Chōkai had true iron hulls. Atago had a composite hull construction, whereas Akagi has a steel hull. All four vessels had auxiliary schooner-rigged sails. The Maya-class ships had an overall length of 47.0 metres (154.2 ft), a beam of 8.2 metres (26.9 ft), and a normal draught of 2.95 metres (9.7 ft). They displaced 614 long tons (624 t) at normal load.[2] The crew numbered about 104 officers and enlisted men.[2]

Propulsion was by a coal-fired horizontal double-expansion reciprocating steam engine with two cylindrical boilers driving a double screw. The engines were rated at 614 indicated horsepower (458 kW), and designed to reach a top speed of 10.25 knots (18.98 km/h; 11.80 mph).[2]

The Maya-class ships were initially intended to be armed with one Krupp 210 mm (8 in) Krupp L/22 breech-loading gun, and one Krupp 120 mm (4.7 in) L/22 breech-loading gun, with two quadruple 1-inch Nordenfelt guns as secondary armament.[2] However, each ship later modified to carry different armament in 1906.

Two of the three vessels (Maya and Akagi) were built by the private-contractor, Onohama Shipyards in Kobe (a predecessor of Hitachi Zosen Corporation), and one (Chōkai ) was by built by the private-contractor Ishikawajima-Hirano Shipyards. Atago was built by the government’s Yokosuka Naval Arsenal

All four ships served in the First Sino-Japanese War of 1894-1895. In 1898, the ships were reclassified as second-class gunboats. Atago was lost in combat during the Russo-Japanese War in 1904. Maya and Chōkai were removed from the navy list in 1908 and were subsequently broken up in 1913. Akagi was removed from the navy list in 1911,[3] but survived under civilian ownership until 1953.[3]


Ship Builder Laid down Launched Completed Fate
Maya Onohama Shipyards, Kobe 5 May 1885 [3] 18 August 1886[3] 20 January 1888[3] Struck 1908, Demilitarized 1911
Broken up, 1932
Chōkai Ishikawajima-Hirano Shipyards, Tokyo December 1885[3] 20 September 1887[3] 27 December 1888[3] Struck 1908, ,
Broken up, 1912
Atago Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Yokosuka July 1886 [3] June 1887[3] 2 March 1889[3] Sunk in combat 4 November 1904
Akagi Onohama Shipyards, Kobe June 1886 [3] August 1888[3] 20 August 1890[3] Struck 1911, Demilitarized 1912
Broken up, 1953


  • Chesneau, Roger; Kolesnik, Eugene M., eds (1979). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1860–1905. Greenwich, UK: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-8317-0302-4. 
  • Evans, David; Peattie, Mark R. (1997). Kaigun: Strategy, Tactics, and Technology in the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1887–1941. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-192-7. 
  • Jentschura, Hansgeorg; Jung, Dieter; Mickel, Peter (1977). Warships of the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1869–1945. Annapolis, Maryland: United States Naval Institute. ISBN 0-87021-893-X. 

External links


  1. Jentsura, Hansgeorg (1976). Warships of the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1869-1945. Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-893-X.  page 115
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Chesneau, All the World’s Fighting Ships, p. 236.
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 3.13 Nishida, Ships of the Imperial Japanese Navy

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