Quester I

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Quester I is the name of a 45-foot submarine built in 1967 by Jerry Bianco,[1] a shipyard worker in Brooklyn, New York USA. Bianco built the submarine, from salvaged metal, with the goal of either raising, or salvaging valuables from, the wreck of the Italian passenger liner SS Andrea Doria, which sank off Nantucket Sound in 1956 after being hit broadside by another liner.[2][3]

Launch attempt[edit]

In 1967, after three years of part-time construction efforts, Bianco prepared to launch the submarine. While lowering it down with a crane, the vessel tipped sideways and become stuck in the mud. Bianco tried to recover the vessel, but was unable to raise sufficient funds for the effort. However, one source[4] claims that the vessel was eventually unstuck and was sailed up and down the bay before sinking at its mooring in the bay.[5] Another story explains that the launch failure was due to the crane operator's disregarding the builder's directions; since only partial ballast had been placed inside the submarine (to save money), it was unstable, and thus was to be held in position by the crane while the ballast would be properly repositioned. Placing it completely into the water, the unstable craft rolled onto its side. This story states that "Bianco later refilled the ballast and tethered the sub, but his backers’ enthusiasm waned, and he could never return to the project. Eventually some of the sub’s parts were stolen, and it got loose from its moorings in 1981."[2]


At present (as of 2016) the vessel is either largely or partly visible (depending on the tide) above the Coney Island Creek's water. It was painted bright yellow at launch; it now has a sheen of orange rust. The cap, which always remains unsubmerged, retains more of its bright yellow color, from the zinc chromate paint used in its construction.[4]


  1. ^ Jerry Bianco was still alive in 1999, when he was interviewed concerning his submarine project: [1] However, efforts to locate him in November 2007 (for a similar interview) were unsuccessful: [2]
  2. ^ a b Kevin Walsh, Mike Olshan C: “The Yellow Submarine of Coney Island Creek,” Forgotten New York, September 16, 2006.
  3. ^ [3] "It was Wednesday, July 25th 1956. At 11:10 p.m. on a dark and foggy night, two great ocean liners, T/N Andrea Doria and MV Stockholm, collided near Nantucket, Massachusetts . . " Due to a protracted rescue effort, only 46 deaths occurred while 1160 persons survived the sinking.
  4. ^ a b [4] Moynihan, Colin, In Coney Island Creek, Hulk of a Yellow Submarine Sticks Out, The New York Times (9 November 2007)
  5. ^ "The unfortunate start made it hard for Mr. Bianco to raise money for his recovery project, even though the Quester was eventually righted and cruised through nearby waters . . "

External links[edit]

  • [5] The Abandoned Submarine in Coney Island Creek, Yahoo Voices
  • [6] Young, Lauren, A Graphic Guide to All the Weird Things in New York City's Waterways, Atlas Obscura (20 July 2016)
  • [7] Moynihan, Colin In Coney Island Creek, Hulk of a Yellow Submarine Sticks Out, The New York Times (9 November 2007)

Coordinates: 40°34′54″N 73°59′40″W / 40.5817°N 73.9944°W / 40.5817; -73.9944