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NavSource Online: Submarine Photo Archive


Patches contributed by Mike Smolinski

Barbel (SS-580)

Radio Call Sign: November - Alpha - Alpha - Delta

Barbel Class Submarine: Laid down, 18 May 1956, at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, NH.; Launched, 19 July 1958; Commissioned, USS Barbel (SS-580), 17 January 1959; Decommissioned, 4 December 1989; Struck from the Naval Register, 17 January 1990; Final Disposition, sunk as a target, 30 January 2001, at 032 19' 08.0" North, 121 36' 16.0" West, depth: 1972 fathoms.

Specifications: Displacement, Surface 2,140 t., Submerged: 2,639 t.; Length 218' 1" ; Beam 29'; Draft 29' 3"; Speed, Surfaced 15 kts, Submerged (snorkel) 12 kts, (battery) 21 kts; Maximum Operating Depth, 712 ft.; Complement 8 Officers 75 Enlisted; Armament, six 21" torpedo tubes (bow), 18 torpedo capacity including 6 loaded Sensors 2 periscopes, active sonar, passive sonar, radar, ECM; Propulsion, Surface Propulsion 3 Fairbanks-Morse 38d(8 1/8)x10 diesel engines Designed SHP continuous: 3150 Designed RPM: 1 propeller; Fuel capacity: 112,000 gallons Cruising Distance: 19,000 miles without refueling Submerged Propulsion (Snorkel) Designed SHP: 2400 Designed RPM: 52 Submerged Propulsion (Battery) 2 General Electric motors Designed SHP: 4800 Designed RPM: 198 Maximum safe astern RPM: 110 Endurance at full speed: 0.5 hours Endurance at 3 knots: 102.0 hours
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Barbel 177kMock-up of engine room from frames 69 to 81 showing one of Barbel's (SS-580) Fairbanks engines at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard on 2 November 1955. U.S. Navy Photograph # 3101-11-55, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 130kMock-up of engine control room from frames 81 to 79 upper level of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard on 2 November 1955. U.S. Navy Photograph # 3102-11-55, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 135kMock-up of bulkhead at frame 69 looking aft of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard on 2 November 1955. U.S. Navy Photograph # 3115-11-55, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 150kMock-up of bulkhead at frame 81 looking forward of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard on 2 November 1955. U.S. Navy Photograph # 3116-11-55, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 154kMock-up of exterior engine piping and mufflers of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard on 2 November 1955. U.S. Navy Photograph # 3121-11-55, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 133k Stern view of starboard side mock-up of maneuvering/motor and engine room of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in January 1956. U.S. Navy Photograph # 91-1-56, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 131k Stern view of mock-up port side of maneuvering / motor and engine room of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in January 1956. U.S. Navy Photograph # 92-1-56, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 206k Forward view of port side mock-up of maneuvering / motor and engine room of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in January 1956. U.S. Navy Photograph # 93-1-56, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 196k Forward view of starboard port side mock-up of maneuvering / motor and engine room of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in January 1956. U.S. Navy Photograph # 94-1-56, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 196k Mock-up of the Sonar Plot area of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in June 1956. U.S. Navy Photograph # 1691(L)-6-56, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 184k Mock-up of the Fire Control area of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in June 1956. U.S. Navy Photograph # 1693(L)-6-56, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 185kMock-up of the Navigation Center area of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in June 1956. U.S. Navy Photograph # 1694(L)-6-56, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 214kMock-up of the Sonar Control area of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in June 1956. U.S. Navy Photograph # 1695(L)-6-56, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 260kMock-up of the engineer & pilot control consoles in control center of Barbel (SS-580) at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in June 1956. U.S. Navy Photograph # 1773(L)-6-56, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 539k Panel sketches. U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com
Barbel 527k Panel sketches. U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com
Barbel 102kBarbel (SS-580) as modified with sail planes. The bow sonars are SQS-4 above and BQR-2 below the torpedo tubes. The sonar room was the middle deck space just abaft the mast shown, below the control room/attack center. The small space just abaft the attack center was the Supplementary Radio room (ELINT space); the radio center was abaft it.
Masts, fore to aft, are: No.1 & 2 periscopes;BRD-6/ECM mast; BPS-12 radar; BLR-1 ECM (with VLF loop alongside, shown as dashed line); and snorkel induction and exhaust.
Note the concentration of batteries amidships, typical of three deck submarines. The structure above the engines is the muffler.
Not visible in these drawings is the line of air-emitter piping, port and starboard, close to the keel, providing an acoustic shield around the hull.
Photo & text courtesy of U.S. Submarines Since 1945, An Illustrated Design History by Norman Friedman & James L. Christley. Naval Institute Press.
Blueback 163k Blueback (SS-581) profile. USN photo courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com.
Barbel 369k Barbel (SS-580) lies bow first towards the camera, 19 July 1958 at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. I believe the ways to the left of her was where the Thresher (SSN-593) was being built on 28 May 1958. U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com
Barbel 240kBarbel (SS-580) meets the waters on 19 July 1958 . U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com
Barbel 173k Launching of the Barbel (SS-580), 19 July 1958 at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. USN photo.
Barbel 137kNewspaper clippings of the Barbel's (SS-580) launching & commissioning, 17 January 1959. U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Ron Reeves, HTC, USNR (ret.)
Barbel 230kFront cover of the Barbel's (SS-580) Commissioning Program, 17 January 1959. U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Ron Reeves, HTC, USNR (ret.)
Barbel 141k Barbel (SS-580) meets Seattle, 31 May 1962. U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com
Barbel 296k Barbel (SS-580) is almost completely surrounded in foam. U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com
Barbel 66kLCDR John T. Regan, former Commanding Officer of Barbel (SS-580) is seen with his wife Jeannine C. Regan at Mare Island after the Change of Command where is was relived by LCDR A. Van Saun for the ship at Mare Island on 6 August 1976. U.S. Navy Photograph # 138820-8-76, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Barbel 1.73kPDF of Change of Command program, History & CO's of the Barbel (SS-580). U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Darryl L. Baker. & Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com
Barbel 178k Barbel (SS-580) poses for a modern day Tai Sing Loo photo. U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com
Barbel 182kBarbel (SS-580) is escorted by a patrol boat returning from a deployment, June 1980. U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com
Barbel 209kCustomary laurels are removed from the Barbel (SS-580) returning from a deployment, June 1980. U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com
Barbel 170k A submerged Barbel (SS-580). U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com
Darter & Barbel 156kBarbel (SS-580) and Darter (SS-576), alongside at Subic Bay, November 1984. Photo by Dave Johnston.
Darter, Barbel & Queenfish215kBarbel (SS-580) and Darter (SS-576), at Sub base Pearl Harbor, June 1985. The Topside Watch on the Darter is TMSN(SS) Russ Dzielak and TMSA Jeff Buzzard. Directly astern of the duo is the Queenfish (SSN-651). Photo by Dave Johnston.
Ballast Point, San Diego48kAn Oil on Masonite painting by the artist John Charles Roach, entitled "Ballast Point, San Diego", depicts sub base with subs and tenders at the pier in San Diego during mid 1986. The tenders were possibly the: McKee (AS-42) for Subron 7:
Dixon (AS-37) for Subron 3:
Among the subs were the:
Dolphin (AGSS-555):
Gudgeon (SS-567):
Albacore (AGSS-569):
Barbel (SS-580):
Blueback (SS-581):
Permit (SSN-594):
Plunger (SSN-595):
Pollack (SSN-603)
Haddo (SSN-604):
Guardfish (SSN-612):
Haddock (SSN-621):
Sturgeon (SSN-637):
Gurnard (SSN-662) :
Hawkbill (SSN-666):
Pintado (SSN-672):
Drum (SSN-677):
William H. Bates (SSN-680):
La Jolla (SSN-701):
Portsmouth (SSN-707) &
Salt Lake City (SSN-716).
Ballast Point, San Diego
John Charles Roach 1986.5
Oil on Masonite , 1986, courtesy of the USNHC, # 88-163-CR.
Text contributed by OMC J. Reid Pallady USNR-RET & QM2(SS) David Johnston, USNR.
Barbel 96k Coolies stoke Barbel's (SS-580) engines; circa mid to late 80's.
Photo courtesy of Mike Robinson, USN, Retired.
Barbel 100k Barbel's (SS-580) calorie powered galley; circa mid to late 80's.
Photo courtesy of Mike Robinson, USN, Retired.
Barbel 72k It is possible to be on eternal patrol if you don't know where you are; circa mid to late 80's.
Photo courtesy of Mike Robinson, USN, Retired.
Barbel 111k Cleaning the airlock; circa mid to late 80's.
Photo courtesy of Mike Robinson, USN, Retired.
Barbel 187k The tug Nogalesen (YTB-777) assists the Barbel (SS-580) as she approaches the pier at Polaris Point, Guam in April, 1987. Photo by Dave Johnston.
Barbel 395k At Dry Dock No.2 which begin to fill with water, the workers are manually turning the swivels to increase the flow. On the Barbel (SS-580), crew members stand at the railing of the attack submarine as the dry dock in which it is positioned is filled with water to refloat the vessel following repairs. The Barbel is completing a Docking Selected Restrictive Availability (DSRA) at Saebo Heavy Industries on 6 October 1988.
Official U.S. Navy Photograph # DN-ST-90-11773, by PH1 Brian R. Lee, from the Department of Defense Still Media Collection, courtesy of dodmedia.osd.mil.
Barbel 441k Crew members stand at the railing of the attack submarine Barbel (SS-580) as the dry dock in which it is positioned is filled with water to refloat the vessel following repairs. The Barbel is completing a Docking Selected Restrictive Availability (DSRA) at Saebo Heavy Industries on 6 October 1988.
Official U.S. Navy Photograph # DN-ST-90-11774, by PH1 Brian R. Lee, from the Department of Defense Still Media Collection, courtesy of dodmedia.osd.mil.
Barbel 292k Crew members man the rails aboard the attack submarine Barbel (SS-580) on 24 October 1988 on her last day in active service, on 24 October 1988.
US Naval Historical Center.
Barbel 133k Port side view of the Barbel (SS-580) underway in this undated photo.
U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Wendell Royce McLaughlin Jr.
Barbel 62kNewspaper clipping of the accidental loss of three of Barbel's (SS-580) crew on 1 May 1989 off Kyushu, Japan, a wave washes three sailors from the deck of the boat as it conducts surface operations. Two of the sailors drown and the third is rescued. Photograph courtesy of Ron Reeves, HTC, USNR (ret.)
Tolling The Boats 669k Active duty and veteran submariners stand together at the 29th annual "Tolling The Boats" Memorial Service held at the World War II National Submarine Memorial-West, Naval Weapons Station Seal Beach, Calif. 29 May 2006. The ceremony honored members of the Silent Service who gave their lives during World War II and the Cold War for their country and the cause of freedom.
On 1 May 1989 off Kyushu, Japan, a wave washes three sailors from the deck of the Barbel (SS-580) as it conducts surface operations. Two of the sailors drown and the third is rescued.
U.S. Navy Photograph # N-1159B-052 by Journalist 1st Class Brian Brannon, courtesy of navy.news.mil.
Partial text courtesy of navysite.de.
Barbel 100k Barbel (SS-580) posing as a mock-up of the Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine the Alabama (SSBN-731) for the Disney film Crimson Tide. Fitted with a plywood sail built over the hole in the deck, the Barbel assumes a new mission as a backdrop for the film's pier-side shots. Photo taken from Warship Boneyards, by Kit and Carolyn Bonner & submitted by Robert Hurst.
Barbel 110k Barbel (SS-580) as she lies like a dead whale against a pier owned by Southwest Marine in San Pedro, California, in October 1999. Photo taken from Warship Boneyards, by Kit and Carolyn Bonner & submitted by Robert Hurst.

There is no DANFS History currently available for Barbel (SS-580) at the Haze Gray & Underway Web Site, the main archive for the DANFS Online Project.
Crew Contact And Reunion Information
U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation
Fleet Reserve Association

Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
SubmarineSailors.com - USS Barbel SS-580
HISTORIC SUBMARINE DOCUMENTARY AND TRAINING FILMS
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