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United Kingdom
Name: HMS C27
Builder: Vickers, Barrow
Laid down: 4 June 1908
Launched: 22 April 1909
Commissioned: 14 August 1909
Fate: Scuttled, 5 April 1918, salvaged and scrapped August 1953
General characteristics
Class and type: C-class submarine
  • 290 long tons (290 t) surfaced
  • 320 long tons (330 t) submerged
Length: 142 ft 3 in (43.4 m)
Beam: 13 ft 7 in (4.1 m)
Draught: 11 ft 6 in (3.5 m)
Installed power:
  • 600 bhp (450 kW) petrol
  • 300 hp (220 kW) electric
  • 13 kn (24 km/h; 15 mph) surfaced
  • 8 kn (15 km/h; 9.2 mph) submerged
Range: 910 nmi (1,690 km; 1,050 mi) at 12 kn (22 km/h; 14 mph) on the surface
Test depth: 100 feet (30.5 m)
Complement: 2 officers and 14 ratings
Armament: 2 × 18 in (450 mm) bow torpedo tubes

HMS C27 was one of 38 C-class submarines built for the Royal Navy in the first decade of the 20th century.

Design and description[edit]

The C-class boats of the 1907–08 and subsequent Naval Programmes were modified to improve their speed, both above and below the surface. The submarine had a length of 142 feet 3 inches (43.4 m) overall, a beam of 13 feet 7 inches (4.1 m) and a mean draft of 11 feet 6 inches (3.5 m). They displaced 290 long tons (290 t) on the surface and 320 long tons (330 t) submerged. The C-class submarines had a crew of two officers and fourteen ratings.[1]

For surface running, the boats were powered by a single 12-cylinder[2] 600-brake-horsepower (447 kW) Vickers petrol engine that drove one propeller shaft. When submerged the propeller was driven by a 300-horsepower (224 kW) electric motor.[1] They could reach 13 knots (24 km/h; 15 mph) on the surface and 8 knots (15 km/h; 9.2 mph) underwater. On the surface, the C class had a range of 910 nautical miles (1,690 km; 1,050 mi) at 12 knots (22 km/h; 14 mph).[3]

The boats were armed with two 18-inch (45 cm) torpedo tubes in the bow. They could carry a pair of reload torpedoes, but generally did not as they would have to remove an equal weight of fuel in compensation.[4]

Construction and career[edit]

HMS C27 was built by Vickers, Barrow. She was laid down on 4 June 1908 and was commissioned on 14 August 1909. HMS C27 along with the trawler Princess Louise (ex-Princess Marie Jose) sank U-23 in the Fair Isle Channel between Orkney and Shetland on 20 July 1915 using the U-boat trap tactic. The tactic was to use a decoy trawler to tow a submarine. When a U-boat was sighted, the tow line and communication line was slipped and the submarine would attack the U-boat. The tactic was partly successful, but was abandoned after the loss of two C class submarines. In both cases, all the crew were lost.

HMS C27 was involved in the Baltic operations from 1915 to 1918. The boat was scuttled on 5 April 1918 outside Helsinki (Helsingfors) south of the Harmaja Light (Gråhara) to avoid seizure by advancing German forces. HMS C27 was salvaged for breaking up in Finland in August 1953.


  1. ^ a b Gardiner & Gray, p. 87
  2. ^ Harrison, Chapter 25
  3. ^ Harrison, Chapters 3
  4. ^ Harrison, Chapter 27


External links[edit]