Still a recordbreaker

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Dec 29, 2006
Dave, My earlier note of caution was prompted by the thought that the gross tonnage of a merchant vessel is not necessarily a reliable method for comparing ships of broadly similar size - especially those built at different times. I assume that, in the case of the ‘Olympic’ class, a large proportion of the hull space would have been filled with boilers, coal bunkers etc, whereas the machinery spaces on the Canberra would have been much smaller. Would this not have had an impact of their relative GTs? However, if the Canberra had a smaller displacement, this (coupled with her slightly shorter overall length) would imply that she was indeed a good deal smaller than the Titanic.

Dave Gittins

Mar 16, 2000
Stanley, GT includes engine room, bunkers and so forth. It's the Net Tonnage that's reduced by deducting them from GT. As you can see on the site, Canberra's NT was much smaller than her GT, so she must have had a good deal of unprofitable space.
Jul 9, 2000
Easley South Carolina
>>But if “the German monsters which were already being built even as the Titanic got underway” were later adapted for oil-burning, the Titanic would have remained the largest purely coal-burner <<

Since there have been some very substantial coal burners built for commercial service in recent times (They have an automatic feed system which supplys pulverized coal to the boilers) even that doesn't apply. There are few things more ephemeral then record holders. Titanic broke nearly all of them in terms of size, but not for long.
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