Motor Torpedo Boat History

The BPB Co was started by the enigmatic Hubert Scott-Paine who not only owned and named the Supermarine Aviations Works Ltd. (of Supermarine Spitfire fame), but also started the Canadian Power Boat Company in Montreal.  The CPB Co.  constructed MTBs for Britain and the USA. 

Scott-Paine took a BPB Co. boat, PV 70, to the United States as an example for the Elco company to build American MTBs which were also known as PT (Patrol Torpedo) boats in that country due to their pennant numbers.

The British Power Boat 71’ 6” vessel was originally designed as a Motor Gun Boat, but the early boats were later converted into Motor Torpedo Boats.  All were launched between 1942 and 1945.  Of the ninety-five boats built during the war, four were transferred to the Netherlands and another ten to the Royal Canadian Navy, forming the 29th Canadian MTB Flotilla. 

Twenty-one boats were lost during World War Two.  Below are listed the specifications of the boats as MGBs and as MTBs.

Displacement:  37 - 46 tons standard
Dimensions:     71’ 9” x 20’ 7” x 4’ 2.5”
Machinery:       3-shaft Packard petrol 
                         engines, 3,600 - 4,050 bhp
Speed:             38 - 40kts
Petrol:              2,740 gal.
Armament:       2x18” TT (bow)
                        1 x 6pdr/7cwt Mk II 
                                  or
                        1 x2 pdr pompom

                        2 to 4 x 20mm
                        4 x .303” MG
                        2 DC
Complement:   12 to 17

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