Technical Facts about Titanic

Downloadable Titanic deck plans including:

Boat Deck  A Deck B Deck (or Poop & Forecastle Decks) C Deck (or Shelter Deck)
1st Class Promenade Veranda & Palm Court 1st & 2nd Class Promenades 3rd Class Entrance and Smoke room (Aft)
2nd Class Promenade 1st Class Smoking Room 2nd Class Lounge 3rd class General room and Promenade (Aft)
Officers Promenade 1st Class Entrance (Fore and Aft) 2nd Class Restaurant 2nd Class Entrance and Library
Life Boat Access 1st Class Reading and Writing Room Sitting Rooms 1st Class Staterooms (Amidships)
Officers Quarters - Wheelhouse/Bridge 1st Class Lounge 2nd Class Passenger Cabins Maids and Valets Lounge - Barber shop
D Deck  (or Saloon Deck)    E Deck (or Upper Deck)  F Deck  (or Middle Deck) G Deck  (or Lower Deck)
3rd Class Entrance 3rd Class Cabins Squash and Racquet Courts Kitchen Coolers and Food Storage
2nd and 3rd Class cabins 2nd Class Cabins Swimming Bath (Pool) 3rd Class Cabins
1st class Reception Room and Dining Room (The Jacobean Room) 2nd Class Barbershop - Crew Cabins 3rd Class Cabins Cargo
2nd Class Dining Saloon 2nd Class Barbershop 3rd Class Dining room & Cabins 1st Class Baggage
Orlop Deck
Refrigerated Cargo
General Cargo - Fresh Water Tanks
Engine rooms - Dynamos
Coal Bunkers


Click HERE------->  [IMAGE]  to view and/or download a detailed cutaway profile image showing Titanic's, restaurants, staterooms, swimming bath, squash court, cargo holds, propulsion system, and much more in a 1052 x 480 size - * Please Note * This image (and the one below) is intended for private and/or educational use. If you wish to use it publicly (i.e.- on a website) or commercially, please e-mail the webmaster for permission. (Unfortunately, this image has appeared on various merchandise for sale as well as many other websites without permission. Please ask first!)




The order to proceed with Titanic's construction was officially given on April 30, 1907. Building began in the Spring of 1909, and her keel was laid on March 31st in the Harland and Wolff shipyards in Belfast, Ireland. Her yard number was 401, her build number was 131428, and the hull number was 390904. She was one of the "Olympic Class" liners and built as a schooner rigged vessel.

Three thousand men labored for 2 years to complete the largest man made moving object in the world. Each of  Titanic's engines were the size of a 3 story house. She weighed 66,000 tons and was equivalent in length to four city blocks. Her height from bridge to keel was equal to a ten story building. Two workers lost their lives in construction accidents during Titanic's building, which was actually a good safety record compared to many others in this era. These were days before any occupational safety and heath acts. Despite persistent myth and legend, a worker was not sealed up inside Titanic's hull during the building.  

The agreement between the White Star Line and Harland and Wolff stated "she will be built barring no expense." Her total cost in 1912 accumulated to approximately 7.5 million dollars. (About $400 million to build today.)



(Below) How Big was Titanic? Titanic was slightly larger than the WWII Aircraft Carrier, USS Saratoga.

On May 31, 1911, Titanic was launched into the Irish Sea from slip number 3 of the Thompson dry-dock at Queens shipyard for the final fitting. After lubricating her launch ramp with railroad grease and 23 tons of tallow and soft soap, the detonators were fired and Titanic was in the water 62 seconds later. To complete her superstructure and interior, a 200-ton floating crane was purchased. Fitted to Titanic's superstructure, were 4 funnels, 22 feet in diameter that rose 62 feet above the casings. Rising 50 feet above these funnels were the aerial wires for her wireless radio supported by two 70 foot masts positioned at the bow and stern of the ship.

1,200 tons of rivets were needed to construct Titanic's hull, a total of 3 million rivets. These were days before arc welding and the rivets held a series of 1" thick iron plates to comprise the outer hull. As large as a house, her 101 ton rudder was forged into 6 separate pieces. 20 draft horses were required to pull just one of  Titanic's 15 ton anchors through Belfast to the shipyard on a wagon.


One of Titanic's giant anchors is towed by wagon through Belfast to the Harland and Wolff shipyard

When completed, Titanic was 882' 8" long (268 meters) and 92' 0" wide. Her draft (required water depth) was 59.5 feet She had 8 steel decks and a cellular double bottom. She was fitted with 2 bilge keels amidships, 295.75 feet long that projected 25 inches from the sides of the hull that also served the purpose of preventing a rolling motion at sea.

One interesting note, an engineer in 1912 theorized from reports of water coming in through Titanic's bottom as well as her side, that this may have been caused by Titanic's starboard bilge keel making contact with the iceberg and ramming it up through her double bottom.

More recent studies on iron hull plate samples taken from the wreck site suggest that manufactured iron at the turn of the century may have contained a high sulfur content. It's believed by some that iron containing certain levels of sulfur may become brittle when exposed to cold water. Some naval architects and engineers suggest that this could have contributed to the hull damage when Titanic made contact with the berg.

The latest progress in marine technology was featured onboard Titanic. She was fitted with a Parson's low pressure turbine engine as well as tipple expansion reciprocating steam engines. The reciprocating engines ran at 75 rpm and generated 30,000 horse power. The thought was more power achievement without the use or requirement of additional steam. The turbine engine drove Titanic's center propeller and the reciprocating engines drove her two port and starboard wing propellers. The turbine ran at 165 rpm and generated 16,000 hose power. The wing props were 23' 6" in diameter and the turbine prop was 17' 0". Her top speed was 23-24 knots.

She was fitted with 4 - 400 kilowatt dynamo's or generators that produced 16,000 amps at 100 volts. These dynamos were attached to over 200 miles of electrical wiring. 10,000 light bulbs lit the ship.


One of Titanic's reciprocating engines is still fitted in place standing upright in the stern section.

The ship was fitted with 29 boilers and 159 furnaces. (24 double ended boilers and 5 single ended boilers) Over 8,000 tons of coal filled her coal bunkers. The coal fired furnaces heated water in the boilers to generate steam. The steam (215 psi) was then funneled to the tipple expansion engines. Once the steam entered the engine cylinder it created the necessary power to turn the propellers. If the turbine was not in use, such as reverse orders to the helm or entering or leaving port, lost steam would condense in evaporators and the water would be returned to the boilers. Controlling the amount of steam fed to the engines controlled the speed of the ship. Exhaust was vented through Titanic's first 3 funnels, the fourth was a dummy funnel used for ventilation and storage. Many Titanic enthusiasts enjoy pointing out errors in various Titanic movies and artwork by noticing smoke coming from the 4th funnel.





Titanic was fitted 3,560 life vests (lifejackets) and had 48 ringbouys (lifebuoys) dispersed around the ship. She carried 20 boats total. Fourteen 30' x 9' x 4' lifeboats swung on the new double acting Welin davits with Murray's disengaging gear that could carry 65 persons each, Two 25' x 7' x 3' wooden cutters that could accommodate 40 persons each, and four Englehardt collapsibles 27' x 8' x 3' that would carry 47 persons. It's been calculated that the ship would have needed 48 lifeboats to accommodate all on board.

The ship was further divided into 16 compartments by 15 transverse watertight bulkheads (walls) comprising 1/2 inch thick steel. 12 watertight doors separated the compartments that could be activated manually, by a water detecting float near the deck, or by the flip of a switch on the bridge that would disconnect the electrical current holding the doors open by powerful electromagnets, enabling them to close in about 25 seconds.


Titanic's hungry furnaces consumed 825 tons of coal per day, generating 51,000 horse power. During normal operating speeds, Titanic's steam pressure was set to function at 215 psi. Reciprocating engine revolutions were 77 per minute and her turbine revolutions were 127 per minute. 14,000 gallons of drinking water were used each 24 hours.

Titanic's final fittings were completed on April 2, 1912. Her maiden voyage began with the Southampton departure at 12:15 P.M. on April 10, 1912. (originally scheduled March 20, 1912) Her final port of call was Queenstown, Ireland (now Cobh) with 2,228 passengers and crew headed for White Star Line's Pier 59 in New York City, a destination that would never be reached. Titanic's official port of registry was Liverpool and the ship was actually operated by Ismay, Imrie and Company, a subdivision of the Oceanic Steam Navigation Company, parent company of the White Star Line which was in turn a controlled interest owned by the International Mercantile Marine, an American owned company.




Schematic of Titanic's engine room

was also had a unique fire detection system, a 1912 version of a smoke detector. Near the bridge was the ship's master fire station. A fireman was stationed there 24 hours a day and was never more that 6 feet away from his post. Positioned on the bulkhead of this station was an airtight glass case. Little tubes entered this case from secondary fire stations positioned throughout the ship. A suction system drew air from the stations back into the glass case. A filament of foil was in the case to let the observer know that the suction was activated by vibrating back and forth from the air flow. If smoke were present in a room that contained a secondary fire station inlet tube, it would eventually be sucked up into the glass case and form a little ball of smoke that resembled a ball of wool. The lead fireman would then telephone deckhands at the secondary stations and order them to check for smoke or fire. Hydrants and fire hose were strategically placed throughout the ship.


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