USS L-7 (SS-46)

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USS L-7 in port, ca. 1917
Name: USS L-7
Builder: Craig Shipbuilding Company, Long Beach, California
Laid down: 2 June 1914
Launched: 28 September 1916
Commissioned: 7 December 1917
Decommissioned: 15 November 1922
Fate: Sold for scrapping, 21 December 1925
General characteristics
Type: L class submarine
Displacement: 456 long tons (463 t) surfaced
524 long tons (532 t) submerged
Length: 165 in (4.2 m)
Beam: 14 ft 9 in (4.50 m)
Draft: 13 ft 3 in (4.04 m)
Propulsion: Diesel-electric
Speed: 14 knots (26 km/h; 16 mph) surfaced
10.5 knots (19.4 km/h; 12.1 mph) submerged
Complement: 28 officers and men
Armament: • 4 × 18 in (457 mm) torpedo tubes, 8 torpedoes
• 1 × 3"/23 caliber deck gun

USS L-7 (SS-46) was an L-class submarine of the United States Navy. Her keel was laid down on 2 June 1914 by Craig Shipbuilding Company in Long Beach, California.

The L-boats designed by Lake Torpedo Boat (L-5 through L-8) were built to slightly different specifications from the other L-boats, which were designed by Electric Boat, and are sometimes considered a separate L-5 class.

L-7 was launched on 28 September 1916 sponsored by Mrs. William B. Forgarty, and commissioned on 7 December 1917 with Lieutenant P. M. Bates in command.

Service history[edit]

After shakedown, L-7 departed the West Coast on 20 April 1918, arriving Charleston, South Carolina, on 10 June. Patrolling off Charleston until 15 October, the submarine finally steamed for the waters of Europe to battle the U-boats. Arriving Ponta Delgada, Azores, early in November, she joined Submarine Division 6 for anti-submarine warfare operations. However, the Armistice with Germany of 11 November 1918 ended World War I, and L-7 sailed for home on 19 November.

Following stops at Caribbean Sea and Central American ports, the submarine arrived San Pedro, California, on 14 February 1919, completing one of the best long distance seagoing performances of America's youthful submarine force. From 1919 to 1922, she remained on the West Coast, experimenting with new torpedoes and undersea detection equipment. After a period of commission in ordinary early in 1922, L-7 was returned to full commission on 1 July and sailed for Hampton Roads, Virginia, the same month. She decommissioned there on 15 November 1922 and was sold on 21 December 1925 to M. Samuel and Sons for scrapping.


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