|SMS KARLSRUHE – SHIP DETAILS|
|Type||Steel, Konigsberg class light cruiser|
|Shipyard||Imperial Dockyard, Kiel|
|Dimensions (LOA)||495.5’x47.0’x21.0’ (IMP) 151.1×14.3×6.4 metres|
|Engines||2 x 31,000 shp steam turbines|
|Armament||8 x 15 cm SK L/45 quick firing guns, 3 x 8.8 cm anti-aircraft guns, 2 x 50 cm torpedo tubes|
|SMS KARLSRUHE – WRECK DETAILS|
|Position||58° 53.345’N, 003° 11.363’W|
|Seabed depth||27 metres|
|Least depth on wreck||13 metres|
|Lying||Lies on starboard side with bow pointing northwest|
|Description||The Karlsruhe lies on its starboard side and is in a dishevelled condition compared to some of the other light cruisers. The wreck has seen extensive salvage works over the decades in areas such as the bridge (which was constructed in part from brass), turbine room, propellors and below deck torpedo tubes. This work, across most sections of the wreck has no doubt contributed to and speeded up the general decay and collapse of the wreck. The photographs in the gallery above record some of the key features that can be seen during a dive on this wreck, the general arrangement of the ship is very similar to that of Dresden and Cöln.
The bow section lets the diver view the two main anchor capstans, with their chains as well as the drive mechanism below deck level. Further back her two 5.9” forward guns have fallen together possibly through collapse of the foredeck area. Behind this is the control tower minus its rangefinder lying on its side. The remains of the bridge which was salvaged for its high scrap value is a bit of a jumble of metal and plates, this is not helped as the also gained access to the torpedo tubes through the port rail here leaving a large breach in the side of the ship. Aft of this area are the boiler rooms and here the general mass of the ships hull is more intact, but there is still the cascade of metal plates and debris from the elevated port rail down towards the seabed.
The salvage work in the turbine room area has almost halved the wreck. Large masses of metal, some recognisable as a manufactured shape others not. Keep a look out for a 5.9” gun at seabed level as you start to gain the mass of the hull again, its almost absorbed into the seabed. The stern section has also been subject to general collapse, features are not so easy to find in relation to deck layout.