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NavSource Online: Submarine Photo Archive


Patch contributed by Mike Smolinski

Roncador (SS-301) (AGSS-301) (IXSS-301)

Radio Call Sign: November - Xray - Whiskey - Zulu

Balao Class Submarine: Laid down, 21 April 1943, at Cramp Shipbuilding Corp., Philadelphia, PA.; Launched, 14 May 1944; Commissioned USS Roncador (SS-301), 27 March 1945; Decommissioned 7 August 1946, at San Francisco, CA.; Laid up in the Pacific Reserve Fleet; Placed in service as a Naval Reserve Training Vessel, in February 1960, in the 11th Naval District; Redesignated Auxiliary Research Submarine (AGSS-301), 1 December 1962; Placed out of service, and struck from the Naval Register, 1 December 1971 and redesignated Miscellaneous Unclassified Submarine (IXSS-301); Final Disposition: She laid at the Mole Pier at LBNSY, and was to be a Museum boat at Ports 'O Call in San Pedro, but the deal fell through. Sold to Nicolai Joffe of Beverly Hills, CA on 2-1-73, and was scrapped in San Pedro.Conning tower was placed in the Navy Museum, Washington, DC prior to being scrapped. Her fairwater is at NSB Pt. Loma, San Diego.
Partial data submitted by Ron Reeves, HTC, USNR (ret.)

Specifications: Displacement, Surfaced: 1,526 t., Submerged: 2,424 t.; Length 311' 8"; Beam 27' 3"; Draft 15' 3"; Speed, Surfaced 20.25 kts, Submerged 8.75 kts; Cruising Range, 11,000 miles surfaced at 10kts; Submerged Endurance, 48 hours at 2kts; Operating Depth Limit, 400 ft; Complement 6 Officers 60 Enlisted; Armament, ten 21" torpedo tubes, six forward, four aft, 24 torpedoes, one 5"/25 deck gun, one 40mm gun, two .50 cal. machine guns; Patrol Endurance 75 days; Propulsion, diesel-electric reduction gear with four Fairbanks-Morse main generator diesel engines, 5,400hp, Fuel Capacity 94,000 gal., four Elliot Motor Co., main motors with 2,740 hp, two 126-cell main storage batteries, two propellers.
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Roncador 415k Number 556 adorns the sides of the Roncador (SS-301) shortly before lauching at Cramp Shipbuilding Corp., Philadelphia, PA., 14 May 1944.
The numbers on their side are undoubtedly an internal construction number used by Cramp. Simon Lake also used in-house numbers on his O & R class boats while they were still in his yard.
In the case of Cramp, the use of these numbers appears to be limited. Not all of the launch photos for their boats show the numbers. Being a late comer in the sub construction business, Cramp had tremendous problems in hiring skilled workers. Most of the good ones had already been hired by other firms in the rapidly expanding war economy. Putting these numbers on these boats may have been a way of keeping things from getting mixed up.
This was a very rare occurrence. To my knowledge, none of the other building yards (EB, Ports, MI, Man, or Boston) placed internal hull numbers on the boats during the war. I think it was just easier to use the hull number that was assigned by the Navy.
International News photo courtesy of David Buell. Photo I.d. & text courtesy of John Hart, Ric Hedman, & David Johnston (USNR).
Roncador 20k Roncador (SS-301), port side view, possibly at Cramp Shipbuilding Corp., Philadelphia, PA., circa 1944.
Courtesy of subnet.com
Roncador 249k Plankowners pose for Roncador's (SS-301) precommissioning photo, 20 March, 1945.
Her Commanding officer, Comdr. Earl R. Crawford, is either the 8th or 9th person in the second row.
Photo submitted by Charles R. Hinman, Director of Education & Outreach,
USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park, &
On Eternal Patrol
Roncador 62k Comdr. Earl Russell Crawford was the commanding officer of the Roncador (SS-301) on her commissioning day. Photo from the Lucky Bag yearbook Class of 1936 via Bill Gonyo. Photo added 12/11/09.
Mare Island Reserve Fleet137kReserve fleet at Mare Island, circa January 1946. There are 52 submarines and 4 Sub Tenders in this photo. This photo is a Berthing list identifying the ships in the picture. Photo commemorating 50 years, U. S. Submarine Veterans of WW II 1996 calendar, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Mare Island Reserve Fleet453kPhoto of the Reserve fleet at Mare Island, circa January 1946. There are 52 submarines and 4 Sub Tenders in this photo. Whether coincidental or on purpose, the number of boats in the photo is the same as that which were lost in WW II.
From back to front and left to right, first group of 12 boats:
Sandlance (SS-381)
Tunny (SS-282)
Aspro (SS-309)
Lionfish (SS-298)
Guvania (SS-362)
Sunfish (SS-281)
Macabi (SS-375)
Gurnard (SS-254)
Pampanito (SS-383)
Mingo (SS-261)
Guitarro (SS-363)
Bashaw (SS-241)
From back to front and left to right, second group of 12 boats:
Sealion (SS-315)
Hammerhead (SS-364)
Bream (SS-243)
Seahorse (SS-304)
Tinosa (SS-283)
Pintado (SS-387)
Mapiro (SS-376)
Pipefish (SS-388)
Moray (SS-300)
Batfish (SS-310)
Hackleback (SS-295)
Bluegill (SS-242)
From back to front and left to right, third group of 12 boats:
Hawkbill (SS-366)
Menhaden (SS-377)
Perch (SS-313)
Loggerhead (SS-374)
Barbero (SS-317)
Baya (SS-318)
Hardhead (SS-365)
Spadefish (SS-411)
Springer (SS-414)
Devilfish (SS-292)
Kraken (SS-370)
Dragonet (SS-293)
From back to front and left to right, fourth group of 12 boats:
Lamprey (SS-372)
Piranha (SS-389)
Manta (SS-299)
Pargo (SS-264)
Rancador (SS-301)
Archerfish (SS-311)
Mero (SS-378)
Sawfish (SS-276)
Spot (SS-413)
Lizardfish (SS-373)
Jallao (SS-368)
Icefish (SS-367)
From back to front and left to right, last group of 4 boats:
Steelhead (SS-280)
Puffer (SS-268)
Stickleback (SS-415)
Trepang (SS-412)
From back to front, Submarine Tenders group of 4 ships:
Pelias (AS-14)
Aegir (AS-23)
Euryale (AS-22)
Griffin (AS-13)
Photo commemorating 50 years, U. S. Submarine Veterans of WW II 1996 calendar, courtesy of Darryl Baker
Roncador 132k Roncador (SS-301), port side view, possibly circa post February 1960 when she was taken out of mothballs, placed in reserve, and assigned to Naval Reserve training duty in the 11th Naval District. Redesignated (AGSS-301), in December 1962, she continued that duty, at San Pedro, Calif., until 1 December 1971, at which time she was stricken from the Navy list.
Text courtesy of DANFS. Photo submitted by Charles R. Hinman, Director of Education & Outreach,
USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park, &
On Eternal Patrol
Roncador 70k The center piece is the fairwater, main deck up, complete with scopes and radar antenna of the Roncador (SS-301), at Ballast Point, San Diego, CA.
Photo courtesy of Harvey Noble / ussvi.org.
Roncador 248k Tourists pose for a picture on the conning tower of the World War II submarine ex-Roncador (SS-301), on display in the San Diego area on 14 November 1988. Official U.S. Navy Photograph # DN-ST-89-01440 by PH1 Michael Flynn, from the Department of Defense Still Media Collection, courtesy of dodmedia.osd.mil. & submitted by Bill Gonyo.
Roncador 151k U.S. Navy Cmdr. Scott Swehla, the commanding officer of the Los Angeles class attack submarine Asheville (SSN-758), speaks during the ship's change of command ceremony at the Roncador (SS-301) on Naval Base Point Loma, Calif., 12 July 2007. Cmdr. Brodie Berkhout relieved Swehla as commanding officer during the ceremony. Official U.S. Navy Photograph # N-0946B-004 by MC1 Kristina Brockman , from the Department of Defense Still Media Collection, courtesy of dodmedia.osd.mil. & submitted by Bill Gonyo.

View the Roncador (SS-301)
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
Ep-21 (1) - Victory At Sea ~ Full Fathom Five - HQ

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