The Treaty put strict limits on both the tonnage and construction of capital ships and aircraft carriers, and also contained limits on the size of individual ships.
The tonnage limits defined in Articles IV and VII (tabulated) gave a strength ratio of approximately 5:5:3:2:2 between Britain, the USA, Japan, Italy and France.
The qualitative limits on each type of ship were as follows;
- Capital ships (battleships and battlecruisers) were limited to 35,000 tons standard displacement and guns of no larger than 16-inch calibre. (Articles V and VI)
- Aircraft carriers were limited to 27,000 tons and could carry no more than 10 heavy guns, of a maximum calibre of 8 inches. However, each signatory was allowed to use two existing capital ship hulls for aircraft carriers, with a displacement limit of 33,000 tons each. (Articles IX and X)
- All other warships were limited to a maximum displacement of 10,000 tons and a maximum gun calibre of 8 inches. (Articles XI and XII)