Light Cruiser RN Ancona (1929)

Would you like to see Ancona (1929) implemented into the Italian Bluewater tree?
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How should Ancona (1929) be implemented?
  • Tech Tree Ship
  • Premium Ship
  • Event Ship
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  • Squadron-Ship
  • I said no in the first question

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What BR should Ancona (1929) be implemented at?
  • 3.0
  • 3.3
  • 3.7
  • 4.0
  • 4.3
  • 4.7
  • 5.0
  • I said no in the first question

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(Photo Caption: The Light Cruiser Ancona following her 1929 refit, note the Macchi M.7ter on the deck)

This is a suggestion for the Italian Light Cruiser Ancona as of her 1929 refit. The Cruiser Ancona began her life as a cruiser under the flag of the Kaiserliche Marine by the name of SMS Graudenz in 1914 and was the lead ship of the Graudenz-class Light Cruisers. Following the conclusion of the First World War and the various Post-War Treaties governing the size of the German Military, the ship was transferred to the Italian Regia Marina as part of war repatriations where she would serve until her scrapping in 1936. I feel like this ship would make for a very unique and interesting addition to the Italian Bluewater tree owing to not just her unique history but also her decently impressive specifications.



Following the end of the First World War, the victorious Allied powers (apart from a few countries) began the task of enforcing the terms of the Treaty of Versailles. Under the treaty, the defeated Kaiserliche Marine was disbanded and many of its warships were made available to the various powers as war repatriations. Among these ships presented to the various powers were the Light cruisers of the Graudenz-class, the lead ship (SMS Graudenz) of which was transferred to the Regia Marine and renamed Ancona, while her sister was transferred to the French Navy and renamed Strasbourg. Following the ship’s transfer to Italy, the Cruiser Ancona was formally commissioned into the Regia Marina and reclassified as a Scout Cruiser. Over the next several years the ship would undergo several refits during her career that enhanced the ship’s characteristics. Despite this, however, even these refits would not be enough to keep the ship in service as her material condition had greatly deteriorated even before her transfer, and by 1932 the ship was showing her true age. Due to this the ship would be decommissioned promptly in 1932 but would not immediately be scrapped as it was deemed that she could be a valuable source of spare parts for the other Ex-German Cruisers in service. In 1936 however, a conversion into a Colonial Patrol vessel was considered as well as a conversion into a heavy escort ship, however, both were canceled due to high costs. Following this, the Ancona would ultimately be sold for scrap in 1937.




(Photo Caption: The Light Cruiser Ancona immediately following her commissioning into the Regia Marine)

Following the end of the First World War and the treaties that would follow, many of the vessels of the former Kaiserliche Marine were temporarily incorporated into the new Reichsmarine while the diplomats ironed out the various treaties governing war repatriations. One of these vessels was the lead ship of the Graudenz-class Light cruisers SMS Graudenz herself. In 1920 many of these ships were ordered to be stricken from the German Naval Vessel Register and made available to the victorious Allied nations as part of Post-War repatriations. Thus on 10 March 1920 the former SMS Graudenz would be struck from the German Naval Vessel Register and ordered to sail to Cherbourg where upon arrival she was stripped of her German name and given the new temporary name “E”. Following this and under the agreed upon terms, the Ex-Graudenz would be transferred to the Italian Regia Marina on 1 June 1920.

Following this transfer to the Regia Marina, she was renamed Ancona, after the famed Italian City of Ancona as per Italian naming traditions. Upon her arrival in Italy the ship was heavily inspected and in 1921 was ordered to be drydocked for a full refit that would see the ship undergo various changes and upgrades to make the ship better suited for Italian service. Special attention was specifically paid to upgrading and modifying her powerplant. These upgrades and modifications consisted of converting six of the coal-fired boilers to mixed-firing, and four to oil-fired which would operate at a pressure of 16 kg/cm^2. Fuel storage was also changed from 1,280 tons of coal at full load to 900 tons (750 tons at normal load) and oil fuel bunkerage from 375 tons to 1,520 tons at full load (590 tons at normal load).

The Ancona’s main armament arrangement was also modified with her aft Superfiring 149mm/43 naval gun being moved to a position amidships immediately aft of the third funnel. This refit would last from 1921 until 1925 when the ship was formally commissioned into the Regia Marina as a Scout Cruiser rather than a Light Cruiser on 1 March 1925. Following her commissioning she was named Flagship of the Regia Marina’s Light Cruiser division under Admiral Roberto Monaco di Longano, a position she served until November of that year. During this time the ship would primarily partake in various executive functions including representing Italy at the ceremony commemorating the centenary of the death of Santorre di Santarosa in March of 1925. She would also visit the Greek islands of Navarino, Falero, and Thessaloniki before returning home to Taranto on 18 March 1925.

During the next six months, the Ancona would continue to operate in Italian waters and would serve as the flagship of the Prima Divisione Esploratori (First Scout Squadron) under the flag of Vice Admiral Vittorio Mola. However not even a year later in 1926 the ship was once again ordered to return to drydock for further modifications including reverting the change in armament arrangement with the amidship 149mm/43 gun being moved back to its original position and the stern area being repurposed for seaplane operations with a single Macchi M.7ter AR seaplane being fitted. Furthermore, the ship’s armament underwent various changes including the removal of the two German 8.8cm guns which were replaced with three 76mm/40 AA guns, and three 6.5mm machine guns on newly built platforms. In this configuration, the ship would continue to operate and would primarily spend the following two years patrolling Italian waters and sailing up and down the coast of Italy. In 1928 however, the Ancona was once again ordered back to drydock for further modernizations which saw her bow extensively rebuilt to handle the installation of a Magaldi-type catapult to allow the ship to handle even heavier seaplanes. This refit gave the ship a very unique clipper-like appearance and allowed the ship to launch much larger and heavier seaplanes. Following this refit, the ship would also be reclassified as a Light Cruiser and would be placed in a squadron with the Cruiser’s Bari (Ex-Pillau), and Taranto (Ex-Strassburg).

(Photo Caption: The Light Cruiser Ancona in the 1930s following her 1929 refit)

During the 1930s the ship would continue to function in her original role as a Light Cruiser but she would also continue to test the Magaldi-type catapult, which would only be removed in 1931. However, by 1932 the Regia Marina was well aware that Ancona was beginning to show her true age. This coupled with a lack of spare parts made the ship increasingly difficult to operate. With this in mind, the Regia Marine ultimately decided that at that point it was more cost-effective just to decommission Ancona and instead use her as a parts hulk to keep the other Ex-German Cruisers in service. To this end, the ship was decommissioned and laid up in Taranto following her final cruiser in August 1932. However, this would not be the end of the Ancona as she would continue to serve as a parts hulk until 1936 when the Regia Marine regained interest in her and ordered a feasibility study undertaken to recommission the old Cruiser. This study primarily focused on two ideas, either recommissioning her as a dedicated AA Cruiser or as a dedicated Colonial Patrol Light Cruiser, both options, however, turned out to be too costly, and in 1937 Ancona was ultimately sold for scrap after 23 years of service.

(Photo Caption: One of the Proposed Conversions for the RN Ancona, this particular one is the proposed AA escort conversion)

Specifications: RN Ancona as of the 1929 refit


General Specifications:
Displacement 4,912 tons (standard), 6,396 tons (full)
Length: 142.6m (oa) 139m (pp)
Beam: 13.8m
Draft: 5.7m (Normal) 6.8m (Full draft)

Propulsion: 12 x Water tube boilers (6 Mixed-firing and 6 Oil-Firing), 2 x Steam Turbines, and 2 x Screws
Power: 26,000 SHP
Speed 25 knots

15 Officers and 427 men


Primary Armament:
7 x 1 149/43 Guns

Secondary/Anti-Aircraft Armament:
3 x 1 76mm/40 AA Guns
3 x 1 6.5mm Machine Guns

Torpedo Tubes
4 x 1 500mm torpedo tubes (Two fixed and two pivoting)

Minelaying Equipment
120 Mines

Aircraft Equipment
1 x Magaldi Type Catapult
1 x M.7ter AR Seaplane

Horizontal Protection: 60mm
Vertical Protection: 60mm
Gun Shields: 50mm
Conning Tower: 100mm

Additional Photos


(Photo caption: The Crew of the Light Cruiser Ancona ca 1929-1932)

(Photo Caption: RN Ancona visiting Lisbon in 1929)

Text Sources


Bagnasco, Erminio Bagnasco, and Enrico Cernuschi. “La Regia Marina e l’Incrociatore Antiaerei.” Storia Militare, Jan. 1997.
Bargoni, Franco, and Franco Gay. Esploratori Italiani. Ufficio Storico Della Marina Militare, 2019.
Cernuschi, Enrico. “Le Navi Coloniali Italiane.” Storia Militare, Mar. 1997, pp. 25–35.
Giorgerini, Giorgio, and Augosto Nani. Gli Incrociatori Italiani 1861-1975. Ufficio Storico Della Marina Militare, 2017.
Jordan, John, and Stephen Dent. Warship 2017. Conway, an Imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing Plc, 2017.
Jordan, John. Warship 2016. Conway, 2016.
Rastelli, Achille. “Le Navi Degli Sconfitti.” Storia Militare, Apr. 1995, pp. 13–23.
ANCONA – incrociatore (**) - Gruppo di Cultura Navale
Ancona - Marina Militare (
Navi da Guerra | RN Ancona 1913 incrociatore leggero ex SMS Graudenz all’ancora (
RN Ancona as AA cruiser – Battleships & Knights (

Image Sources


ANCONA (2) (
ANCONA – incrociatore (**) - Gruppo di Cultura Navale
Navi da Guerra | RN Ancona 1913 incrociatore leggero ex SMS Graudenz all’ancora (
Navi da Guerra | RN Ancona 1913 incrociatore leggero in navigazione con idrovolante a bordo (
Navi da Guerra | RN Ancona 1913 incrociatore leggero ex SMS Graudenz in visita a Lisbona 1929 (
RN Ancona as AA cruiser – Battleships & Knights (


Look interesting +1

1 Like

I really want some low BR cruisers for Italy as their Destroyers suck.


+1 great research, i want it

This looks really cool!