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HMS Cachalot (N83)
Name: HMS Cachalot
Builder: Scotts, Greenock
Laid down: 12 May 1936
Launched: 2 December 1937
Commissioned: 15 August 1938
Fate: sunk 30 July 1941
General characteristics
Displacement: 1,810 tons surfaced
2,157 tons submerged
Length: 293 ft (89 m)
Beam: 25 ft 6 in (7.77 m)
Draught: 16 ft 10 in (5.13 m)
Propulsion: 2 shaft, Diesel (3300 hp) plus electric (1630 hp)
Speed: 15.5 knots surfaced
8.75 knots submerged
Complement: 59
Armament: 6 x 21 in torpedo tubes (bow)
12 torpedoes
1 x 4 inch deck gun
50 mines

HMS Cachalot (N83) was one of the six ship class of Grampus-class mine-laying submarine of the Royal Navy. She was built at Scotts, Greenock and launched 2 December 1937. She served in World War II in home waters and the Mediterranean. She was rammed and sunk by the Italian torpedo boat Generale Achille Papa on 30 July 1941.


In August, 1940, Cachalot torpedoed and sank the German submarine U-51 in the Bay of Biscay and in September the German auxiliary minesweeper M 1604 / Österreich hit a mine laid by Cachalot and sank.[1] She was assigned to operate in the Mediterranean in 1941.


Cachalot left Malta on 26 July, bound for Alexandria and instructions to look out for an escorted tanker heading for Benghazi. At 2 o’clock on the morning of 30 July a destroyer was spotted heading towards Cachalot, forcing the submarine to dive. On returning to the surface the submarine was attacked by the Italian destroyer. Cachalot attempted to dive again but the upper hatch jammed, and the Italian destroyer rammed her. The crew scuttled the ship as they abandoned her and all personnel except for a Maltese steward were picked up by the Italians.[2]


  1. HMS Cachalot,
  2. Submarine losses 1904 to present day, RN Submarine Museum, Gosport

External links[]

Coordinates: 32°49′N 20°11′E / 32.817°N 20.183°E / 32.817; 20.183

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