Military Review

Submarines type "AG" ("American Holland")

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The outbreak of World War I was the reason for the slowdown in the implementation of the Russian shipbuilding program and forced to review existing plans. Ministry of the Sea for replenishment fleet I had to take vigorous measures to speed up the work and the placement of additional. orders at foreign and domestic enterprises. In addition, attempts were made to buy ready-made ships abroad.

The proposal made by the Noblessner Shipbuilding Company (Revel) 22 on June 1915 to the Marine Minister Admiral IG Grigorovich turned out to be very timely. It was about the proposal of the American company "Electric Boat Company" to supply for the fleet of Russia 3 or 5 submarines of the Holland system (the price of each submarine 900 or 885 thousand dollars, respectively, surface displacement 355 tons) by next summer. The American side was taken to build these vessels in Vancouver at its shipyard and deliver them to Vladivostok in a disassembled form. Final assembly and delivery in Russia was to be carried out by the Noblessner plant. Specialists of the Naval General Staff got acquainted with the submitted documentation, the positive reviews of the British about the submarines of this type they had and concluded that it was necessary to conduct this transaction. Due to their characteristics, it was assumed that these submarines could operate independently in the Baltic Sea, and after the war they would be used as training submarines. Before concluding a contract, it was necessary to agree on a price reduction, as well as to obtain guarantees from Noblessner that the assembly of these submarines would not delay the readiness of Bars-type submarines that were being built at the time at the plant. But since there were doubts about the latter, the maritime ministry decided to reserve the right to transfer the assembly to one of the state-owned enterprises of Petrograd, if necessary.





Vice-Admiral V. Kanin, Commander of the Baltic Fleet, spoke most sharply on this point in his address from September 18 of 1915 to Vice-Admiral Rusin A.I., Head of MGSH. He asked to take measures in order not to entrust the assembly of submarines to the Noblessner plant, which was already unable to cope with orders received earlier, and also that "it is very important to get rid of the monopoly of Nobel, Lessner and Bubnovs." According to the results of the competition, the Baltiysky Zavod was selected from 6 plants, offering the most optimal time and cost of order execution.

Another 18.08.1915, Major General LA Kovessky, head of the general affairs department, directors of the Noblessner plant, MS Plotnikov. and Karpov N.A. signed a supply contract for 5 Holland-class submarines. Construction in Vancouver, insurance and delivery to Vladivostok were estimated at 3 712 500 dollars (each submarine at 742 500 dollars) or 7 239 375 rubles, and the cost of assembly in Russia, taking into account all types of supplies - 1 340 250 rubles.

The delivery of the first three submarines was planned in 9 months (counting from 17.07.1915), the rest - in 10 months. Each of the submarines was of the type "602-F" and had the following tactical and technical elements according to the specification:
- surface displacement 355,7 tons;
- underwater displacement 467 tons;
- length 45,8 meters;
- the width of the 4,81 meter;
- deepening of the 3,76 meter (on the 49 frame);
- the height of the freeboard 1,47 meter (to the superstructure deck);
- working depth of immersion 45,7 meters (estimated maximum depth of immersion 61 meter);
- submerged transverse metacentric height was 270 mm;
- in the surface position, the transverse metacentric height was 170 mm,
- stock buoyancy percentage 22

The single-hull structure, which has a circular cross-section, went up from the general horizontal line in the forward tip. This design should improve the seaworthiness during the surface course. The shape of the stern is elliptical.

Inside the steel case (eight pojaiv plating in the extremities had a thickness of 9,5 mm, in the middle part - 11,1 mm), divided by three transverse bulkheads into 4 compartments, were placed the main and auxiliary mechanisms, battery, weapons, fuel, water and all ballast tanks, the other equipment. For a ship set of steel sheet strip thickness 470 mm.

Over the robust hull (89 - 18 frame), a waterproof superstructure was installed with a deck covering, passing into the ridge at the stern. Inside were folding horizontal bow rudders, spiers for lifting underwater (weight about 864 kg, diameter of steel anchor cable 15,8 mm) and surface (weight 336 kg, anchor chain with millimeters 19 caliber), gas outlet of diesel engines, silencer, signal buoy with phone and so on. In the bow there was a device for cutting networks (length 5,55 m), and on an elevated bridge and superstructure above the central post (frames 47,5 - 52,5) there were galvanized steel racks with bronze rails. Signals and lights were to be placed on two masts with a height of 12,2 m, space was reserved for the installation of the underwater alarm device, gyro and radio telegraph (power 1 kW).

Each of a pair of 8-cylinder diesel engines at 375 rpm can develop the power of the 240 hp. (manufacturer - the company "New London", Groton), which allowed the submarine to develop in the surface position the speed to 13 nodes. Two-stage compressors were mounted on the shaft with the engines (working pressure 176 kg / cm2).

The underwater stroke was provided by two electric motors (they are dynamos), which developed into an overload (1140 A) according to 310 hp. for one hour, and in normal mode - by 160 hp (575 A, 220 B), which corresponded to the speed of submerged 10,5 and 5 nodes. Surface range (1,98 ton oil and 16 fuel, 5 ton oil) at 11 knots speed - 2400 miles, 13 knots speed - 1750 miles.

All electrical equipment, including auxiliary drives, lighting, 4 portable electric heating pads of 300 W each, galley and intercoms were designed for 120 B. For their power supply, the batteries were closed, consisting of 120 elements (total capacity 720 kW / h, charging time 3 hours). The battery was placed in two waterproof pits, equipped with hand pumps, which serve to remove leaking acid. From above, tightness was ensured by a wooden deck panel consisting of slats, rubber and canvas. The diving system, more reliable and perfect than the Bars submarines, consisted of 8 gravity-filled ballast tanks with a total capacity of 86,52 tons, equipped with large kingstones and air release valves. Immersed normal tank filling - 78,3 tons. The main feed and nasal tanks were connected through a boxed keel, the rest were connected to an auxiliary drainage pipeline. Since the ballast tanks were located inside a robust hull, water could be pumped from any depth using a pump. Blowing tanks with compressed air (pressure 7 kg / cm2) through a junction box located in the central post could only be made up to the depth of 51,8 meter. The auxiliary mechanisms included: the main centrifugal bilge-ballast (7,64 performance m3 / hour) and the main piston (0,76 performance m3 / hour) pump, 2 manual and 3 auxiliary pump.

Both 127-millimeter periscopes had different lengths: the first aft, installed in the central post - 6,4 meters, and the second, located in the conning tower, and made of non-magnetic material - 3,96 meters. Due to the presence of the lower and upper hatches, the cabin could be used as a rescue chamber. All compartments were supplied with the same hatches. Compressed air (pressure 176 kg / cm2) was stored in steel seamless cylinders. A 4 bronze 450-millimeter whitehead minecraft of the 1910 model of the year with mines and as many spares were located in the nose of the submarine. Outside the devices were closed cast rotating cap having two holes for firing. Moreover, this design allows you to shoot only two mines (one after the other, from the upper right and lower left vehicles and vice versa).

The mine department also served as a room for officers (three collapsible suspended beds). The rest places of the rest of the crew were in the area of ​​the aft and bow batteries (at the same time 34 people could rest in the hammocks of 16 sailors).

The Noblessner firm, to oversee the sending of submarines, commissioned engineer Lomnitsky BS to the United States, and they transported three steamers, the Gishen Maru, the Koan Maru, and the Montigl, and the cargo of the latter in the port of Kobe was unexpectedly removed. and from there the submarine was delivered by steamer of the Voluntary Fleet "Tula". Unloading and dispatching parts of submarines resembled under the direction of Lieutenant M.V. Then he and Lieutenant Karaburji DS were appointed to monitor the assembly, and at the end of the assembly - the first commanders of the two submarines.



The assembly of all submarines, which was likened to a bookmark, began on 2 on April 1916 of the year from the keel beam exhibition. However, the shortage of manpower on schedule has violated - were forced to enter the order of construction of submarines. All 5 ships, on the proposal of Vice-Admiral Kanin V.A., Commander of the Baltic Fleet, 8 June were credited to the lists of vessels of the submarine fleet under the letter-numeric designations "AG-11" - "AG-15" ("American Dutch"). The work was supervised by the engineers of the company headed by Viller, while the specialists of the Baltic Plant fully assisted them. However, in reality, “the actual assembly” did not correspond to the meaning of these words, since during the work it turned out that the previously agreed installation and fitting of parts of the hull and equipment in the United States were not carried out. A large number of metal sheets were “not drilled”, and many holes were not cut. Therefore, on-site, fitting, cutting, bending of "only prepared" parts were performed. In addition, all the "unfulfilled" were corrected. At the same time Kopiev M.V. noted that "... in America, they took all measures to ensure that things arrived in the order most suitable for quick assembly."




Submarines were lowered into the water with a crane. Preliminary and official tests, which were conducted in Revel, Bjorket and Revel under the supervision of Foster V. Americans. and Gilmore RB, ended successfully. The capacity of the batteries was greater, and the estimated cruising range at 11 and 13 speeds increased to 2580 and 2200 miles, respectively. Only the submarine "AG-14" at 328 rpm. developed the speed of 12,5 nodes, which, however, the selection committee headed by Rear Admiral PP Levitsky not embarrassed. Against the background of the results of the other submarines, this case was associated with the mismatch of the pitch of the propellers.

During the construction and immediately after the submarines were handed over to the treasury, each of them was supplemented with a protective enclosure of horizontal bow rudders, one 47 mm caliber gun, steam heating, and two portable fans. Noblessner plant (with 14.10.1916 Petrovskaya Shipyard Joint-Stock Shipbuilding Company) was to eliminate the comments of the commission and the malfunction in the winter period. In particular, it was recommended to find measures to eliminate the facts of the boating of the boat with the whole hull after firing a torpedo shot, replace the American lags with Forbes British systems, which were more reliable, and improve unsatisfactory habitability.

All 5 submarines entered the fourth division based on a specially equipped transport "Oland" (formerly the German steamer "Irma"). These submarines in the campaign 1917, directly with the enemy did not come across; only once did the submarine "AG-11" in the Gulf of Bothnia find 9 large enemy steamers that accompanied a convoy of Swedish destroyers, but they strictly adhered to the territorial waters of Sweden. A month earlier (June 8), the submarine "AG-15" sank at the time of entering the practical dive in Lom Bay. The cause of the disaster was the fact that Kok Bogdanov did not close the hatch in the third compartment.

The boat that came up from the mine-breaker Ilmen, picked up the submarine commander, Lieutenant M. Maksimovich, the helmsman and boatswain. The courage and professional training was shown by five crew members led by Lieutenant Matyevich-Matsievich KL, a senior officer. Having spent around the 1 hours in the flooded compartment No. 10, they were able to release a mine with a note, and then, raising the pressure, they opened the hatch and jumped out of the wreck. In this case, the senior officer left the submarine last. The remaining 18 crew members could not be saved. The submarine "AG-15", lifted by the rescue vessel "Volkhov" 16 June, after a short repair again returned to service.



The submarine "AG-13" 8 July 1917, received the number "AG-16". The submarine "AG-14" did not return from a military campaign in September (commander - senior lieutenant von Essen AN, son of admiral von Essen N.O. former commander of the Baltic Fleet). The fate of the remaining submarines was tragic - in order to avoid the capture of 3 troops on April 1918 in Germany, all 4 submarines along with Oland transport had to be blown up in the Gange harbor of the Hanko Peninsula. This difficult decision was made due to the impossibility of their withdrawal into the sea in conditions of severe ice conditions in the absence of an icebreaker.

The good quality and safe delivery of submarines of the "AG" type caused the Maritime Ministry (again, at the initiative of the Noblessner plant) to conclude 3 contracts (14.09.1916, 25.10.1916 and 08.02.1917) for the supply of 12 of similar submarines totaling 28 872 thousand. rubles (excluding the cost of assembly). The first 6 submarines, due to minor structural differences, were of the type "602-L" and "602 - GF" (the boats were intended for the Black Sea Fleet), the others, belonging to the type "602 - R", were to be divided between the Arctic Ocean and Baltic Sea flotilla. fleet.

Black Sea submarines, separated by 3 in each batch, transported the Arabien, Strida, Hazel Dollar, Harold Dollar and Unkai Maru steamers. The unloading in Vladivostok and dispatch was observed by a mechanical engineer, captain of the first rank, Ivanov PK and Lieutenant N.N. Maksimovich. The assembly was also entrusted to the Baltic Plant, and the Black Sea submarines were to be assembled in its Nikolaevsky branch (hereinafter the Remsud plant). In Arkhangelsk from Petrograd, it was planned to deliver 3 submarines by inland waterways on barges. Under favorable conditions, the first three Black Sea submarines were to be commissioned in June, the second - in the autumn of 1917, and the boats for the Baltic and the North - in November and September, respectively.

The hulls of the last 6 submarines (3 of them were to receive the names “AG-16” - “AG-18”) were fully ready in September, but their sending was delayed. The fact is that the difficult economic and political situation in Russia, in the opinion of the Americans, did not contribute to quick delivery and assembly. In addition, in this situation, it was no longer profitable for Americans to do work for rubles. It was supposed to terminate the contract and return the money received. The US side, in the event of concluding a new contract with payment in dollars, was taken to send 6 cases in November, and batteries and mechanisms in February and March 1918. The plans outlined in the prevailing situation turned out to be unfeasible and the Supreme Naval Board 29 November canceled the contract; subsequently completed submarines under the names "H-4" - "H-9" became part of the US Navy.




Three submarines 21 of August 1917 of the year delivered for assembly to Nikolaev were credited to fleet lists under the designations "AG-21" - "AG-23", and three others later - "AG-24" - "AG-26". To manage the work, the company sent Johnston as chief engineer, Gilmore R. B. - mechanical engineer and Graves T.A. - electrical engineer. The observation from the Russian side was carried out by engineer Shaposhnikov S.S.

The first of the Black Sea boats was commissioned in the 1918 year by the “AG-21”, which on April 26 of the year 1919 was undermined and flooded by English invaders at the Chersonesus lighthouse fleeing from Sevastopol. Nikolaev during the civil war passed from hand to hand, and each of the parties occupying the city attempted to complete the remaining 5 submarines. Therefore, the tables contain the earliest dates of commencement of work that were found in archival documents.




Work on the already launched submarine "AG-22" to 15 in May 1919 year was at the final stage. On June 24 was scheduled to begin production tests. The overall readiness of the submarine "AG-23" was 60 percent, the hull parts of the other submarines were on the stocks. The submarine "AG-22" which entered service was among the ships withdrawn from Sevastopol by Wrangel 14 on November 1920 of the year to Bizerte.

The surviving submarines were completed in the conditions of devastation, lack of parts, equipment and devices. So, on all submarines in the central post, only one Italian periscope was installed with a length of 5,1 meters. On the AG-26 submarine, two 120-strong diesel engines manufactured by the American factory New London were temporarily installed, previously repaired (the regular engines at the beginning of the 1917 of the year were taken for the Krab underwater minelayer). .





Interestingly, one of these engines was found on the Martin shipboard base of the Volga Military Flotilla, the other in the laboratory of the Petrograd Technological Institute. The submarine assembly was led by Ya.S. Soldatov, a mechanical engineer, who was a bilge mechanic of the Varyag during the Russo-Japanese War, and later - Major General of the Department of Underwater Navigation of the Main Directorate of Uniform Transport. Military specialists Boryachinsy AI, Ignatov NA, Deylo EM, Vladimirov, Smirnov A.Ya., Serdyuk PI, who later became the chief designer of the submarines of the "M" series, also took part in the works. Xii.

When descending, the submarine "AG-23" stopped, descending from the underwater foundation at 1 / 3 length, and had to be put on the water with the help of a floating crane. This submarine first entered service (22.09.1920) and before the end of the war managed to make several military campaigns. Due to the inadequate depth of the Bug River, the lack of experienced factory personnel and to save fuel, it was decided not to carry out the tests on the underwater course and the working depth of the dive, but to transfer them before coming to Sevastopol. Diesel was tested at 350 rpm for a measured mile near the Didova Hut lighthouse.
A separate submarine division of the Naval Forces of the Black Sea remained the most efficient until submarines of the Decembrist type appeared in the USSR Navy.




Submarines were renamed several times during their service - for example, 01.05.1920 appeared named AG-24 named after Comrade Lunacharsky and AG-23 named after Comrade Trotsky, 21.10.1920 named AG-26 named after Comrade Kamenev. 01.10.1921 from the submarine "AG-23" AG-26 "were renamed accordingly to" PL-16 "-" PL-19 "." AG-23 "31.11.1922 was renamed to" Unauthorized ", 25.06.1923 -" Miner "(No. 12), and" AG-24 "also time - in "Communist" (No. 13). AG-25 "and" AG-26 "25.03 and 15.05.1923 began to be called" Marxist "and" Political Worker ".

These submarines 30.12.1930 joined the submarine "AG-21" (with 03.02.1931 "Metalist"), raised by the 19 EPRON June 1928 of the year. A curious detail was found out: the hull of this boat after 9 had been under water for years and was in better condition than the hull of the same type of submarines remaining in service, as their prefabricated parts were stored outdoors, exposed to the weather.

The submarine AG-21 tested 19.12.1930 speeds of 12,8 nodes at 375 revolutions per minute, but 8 June 1931 of the following year, due to the wrong actions of commander Bebessin, was protared by the destroyer Frunze during torpedo training and sank. More than 20 people died, only 9 was saved. Raised two days later, the submarine was commissioned 01.01.1932.





On the submarine "AG-25" 28 September 1932, the 76,2-mm Kurchevsky cutter gun, which was installed on the site of a recoilless gun of the caliber 47 mm, was tested. A visual observation showed that at an 30 elevation angle, the firing range was about 30 cable. The submarines "AG-23" - "AG-26" and "AG-21" 15 September 1934 of the year was last renamed to "А-1" - "А-4" and "А-5". The submarine "A-2" between 17 December and 31 December 1935, passed in the surface position 1498,7 miles and submerged 100,2 miles, exceeding the autonomous navigation rate by half. During the next repairs, more powerful mechanisms were installed on submarines, 47-mm caliber guns replaced 45-millimeter guns, and the cutting fence was also slightly modified.

All submarines of the "AG" type participated in the battles during the Great Patriotic War, and "A-3" and "A-5" achieved the greatest success, having made 19 and 12 combat campaigns, sinking 3 and 4 enemy ships and vehicles, respectively.

In the Karkinitsky Bay, the submarine A-28 was killed by enemy strikes 1943 of October 3. The submarine "A-5" 6 March March 1945, became the Red Banner. Submariners took part in the supply of besieged Sevastopol, where, due to the impossibility of withdrawal, the submarine "A-1" 26.06.1942 had to be blown up. In April, 1945 was picked up and then scrapped.

The submarines of the "AG" type during the First World War and in the following decade were among the most advanced submarines in their class. The fact that they actively participated in the Second World War, where some of them not only achieved success, but also showed good durability and reliability, speaks eloquently about their good quality of construction and successful construction.

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