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NavSource Online: Submarine Photo Archive

R-26 (SS-103)

Radio Call Sign: November - India - Mike - Delta

R-21 Class Submarine: Laid down, 26 April 1917, at Lake Torpedo Boat Co., Bridgeport, CT.; Launched, 18 June 1919; Commissioned, USS R-26, 23 October 1919; Redesignated USS R-26 (SS-103), 17 July 1920; Decommissioned, 12 June 1925, at Philadelphia Navy Yard, Philadelphia, PA.; Laid up in the Reserve Fleet at League Island, PA.; Struck from the Naval Register, 9 May 1930; Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 30 July 1930.

Specifications: Displacement, Surfaced: 510 t., Submerged: 583 t.; Length 175' ; Beam 16' 8"; Draft 13' 11"; Speed, surfaced 14 kts, submerged 11 kts; Depth Limit, 200'; Complement 2 Officers, 27 Enlisted; Armament, four 18" torpedo tubes forward, 8 torpedoes, one 3"/50 deck gun; Propulsion, diesel electric engines, Busch Sulzer Brothers Diesel Engine Co., diesel engines, HP 1,000, Fuel Capacity, 17,922 gals., Diehl Manufacture Co., electric motors, HP 800, Battery Cells 120, twin propellers.
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Lake's R boats 88k Lake's R-boats R-21-27 / (SS-98/104), were the last of his designs to be built in any numbers. He abandoned amidships diving planes in this class, but his characteristics stern remained. The horizontal tube aft is an access tube connecting the motor room to the tiller room aft. Drawing by Jim Christley, text courtesy of U.S. Submarines Through 1945, An Illustrated Design History by Norman Friedman. Naval Institute Press.
380k Launching of the R-26 (SS-103) at Lake Torpedo Boat Co., Bridgeport, Conn. on 18 June 1919. She was sponsored by Mrs. J. Walter Barnett. Photo courtesy of mikescoversales
R-24 134k PDF entitled "How the Diesel engine came to America." Photo courtesy of
R-26 386k R-26 (SS-103) bow view, a month after launching at the Lake Torpedo Boat Company Dock Yard, Bridgeport, CT. 10 July 1919. USN photo # 19-N-2568, from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), courtesy of Daniel Dunham.
R-23,25, 26 & 27 222k Bow view of R-boats before commissioning. R-23 (SS-100), R-25 (SS-102) & R-26 (SS-103) were all commissioned on the same day, 23 October 1919. R-27 (SS-104) was commissioned on 3 September 1919.
Pictured from left to right:
R-27 &
R-23 at Lake Torpedo Boat Co. Yard, Bridgeport CT., 10 July 1919.
Note: The "H" painted on the hulls of these boats was the Lake yard hull number designation. EB had similar things. These yards built more than subs and each hull was numbered in sequence.
USN photo # 19-N-2585, from the National Archives and Records Administration
(NARA), courtesy of Pete Sundstrom.
Partial text courtesy of Ric Hedman.
R-26 786k R-26 (SS-103) getting ready to submerge at the Philadelphia Navy Yard, 22, September 1923.
Among the decommissioned ships nested to the right that are identifiable, is the San Francisco (C-5) (first from left) & the Solace (AH-2) (second on left) and four destroyers. The destroyer second from right is Drayton (DD-23).
USN photo # 19-N-10578 courtesy of Robert Hurst.
R-26 171k R-26 (SS-103) getting ready to submerge at the Philadelphia Navy Yard, 22, September 1923. USN photo # 19-N-10578A, from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), courtesy of Daniel Dunham.
Solo 387k US Submarine base at Coco Solo, Panama 1923.
The R-26 (SS-103) is in the background with the white tarp over her fore deck.
The Submarine Chaser in the background is SC 285.
The O-3 (SS-64) & O-7 (SS-68) are in front of the R-26. The O-9 (SS-70) is next closest to the camera. The two boats in the foreground are the O-5 (SS-66) and a mystery "O" boat.
The O-5 reported to Coco Solo in January of 1923 and she sank 18 October 1923 with the loss of 2 lives.
Text courtesy of Ric Hedman.
Photo from the private collection of Ric Hedman.
O-258k Jason (AC-12) at Coco Solo, Panama Canal Zone, circa 1924. Several submarines are in the foreground, including (from left to right):
S-19 (SS-124);
O-9 (SS-70);
R-26 (SS-103) -- probably--; and
O-2 (SS-63).
Courtesy of Chief Boatswain's Mate George Behrens, USN (Retired), 1974. USN photo NH 102780, courtesy of USNHC.

View the R-26 (SS-103)
DANFS history entry located on the Haze Gray & Underway Web Site.
Crew Contact And Reunion Information
U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation
Fleet Reserve Association

Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
PigBoats.COM TM A Historic Look at Submarines

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