|Tipu Sultan. |
|HMS Trincomalee Copper Bottom.savyboat.com|
|.Tipu sultan radhikaranjanmarxist.blogspot.co|
The British hated Tipu Sultan for the simple reason, they could not expand their domain far beyond the south to the tip of Peninsular India. He was a powerful ruler to reckon with. Being dubious, they worked out several plans to get rid of him for good. Tipu Sultan had a powerful navy to coordinate with the military. In 1786, following his father's foot step, he built a powerful navy consisting of 20 battleships of 72 cannons and 20 frigates of 62 cannons. A separate Board of Admiralty was established in September 1786 and massive dockyards at Jamalabad, Wajidabad and Majidabad were constructed on the west coast to build 40 warships and a number of transport ships to strengthen the naval power. After the conquest of the Malabar Coast, Hyder Ali and Tipu got possession of the famous ports and the ship-building yards of Malabar region. In 1790 Tipu appointed Kamaluddin as his Mir Bahar. He created a separate board of admiralty made of 11 commanders in service of a Mir Yam. A Mir Yam had 30 admirals under his command and each one of them had two ships.
|Tiger Head Finial, from Tipu Sultan's ...www.ibnlive.com|
Being a maverick and believer in innovations, Tipu was very keen to try something useful that was not tried before. Tipu was the one who introduced a special kind of ocean going ship that had a fairly long life. What was special about his ships? By the year 1789, most of Tipu Sultan's ships had copper-bottoms, an idea that increased the longevity of the ships, was introduced to Tipu by French Admiral Suffren.
|Tipu Sultan's Mausoleum, Mysore .www.cosmopolitancurrymania.com|
Copper sheathing is the practice of protecting the under-water hull of a ship or boat from the corrosive effects of salt water and befouling through the use of copper plates affixed to the outside of the hull. It was pioneered and developed by the Royal Navy during the 18th century. The problem of rusting in the bottom of the ship had been a major problem in those days because Ships' hulls were under continuous attack by ship worm and various marine weeds, all of which had some adverse effect on the ship, affecting speed and handling in the case of the weeds. The most common methods of dealing with these problems were through the use of wood, and sometimes lead, sheathing which was useful but it reacted badly with the bolts. Use of a mix of whale oil, rosin and brimstone was also common. The use of copper sheathing to solve rusting, etc was first suggested in 1708 by Charles Perry.
During the reign of Hyder Ali, a naval fleet was created, some including good ports and ship building yards. Tipu employed 10,000 men to take care of his Navy and it operations. The conquest of the Malabar Coast by Hyder Ali and Tipu and possession of the famous ports and the ship-building yards gave a fillip to ship building for navy.
Earlier, Hyder Ali is reported to have had a large fleet of watercraft built at Honavar in 1763 which were destroyed by the British in 1768. According to Portuguese records Hyder Ali planned to build the most powerful fleet in Asia by 1778. In the early period in 1765 Mysore navy owned 30 war ships and many transport ships. Many of them were operated by Europeans. Unfortunately, in 1780 British forces led by Admiral Edward Hughes inflicted heavy damages on them. Powerful navy gave the Mysore ruler extra safety for his country and subjects,