3d History

Gato - American World War Two submarine

Goto Class Submarine was the mainstay of the American submarine fleet during World War Two.

The Gato class submarines were built during the second World War and, along with the Balao and Tench classes, represented the majority of all the submarines used by the United States Navy during the war.

The first boat in the class was USS Gato (SS-212) named after a species of small catshark. Her keel was laid down on October 5th 1940 and launched on August 21st 1941. She was commissioned on December 31st 1941 shortly after the Japanese strike at Pearl harbour. After a shake down she commenced her first war patrol on April 20th 1942 during which she patrolled the approaches to Midway at the time of  the Japanese attack on the island.

The Gato class submarine was fast; it had been designed to be part of an American task force and had to be able to keep up with the surface vessels. They had to be large enough to carry fuel and provisions for maintaining war patrols across the huge expanse of the Pacific Ocean for as long as two months at a time.

Crew 6 officers + 54 enlisted men


2 propellers driven by diesel or electric motors

  Surfaced: - 4 x diesel engines
  Submerged: - 4 x electric motors powered by batteries
Beam: 8.31m (27ft 3in)


95m (311ft 8in)


5.2m (17ft)


Surfaced - 1,549tonnes (1,525tons)  

  Submerged - 2,463tonnes  (2,424 tons)

Max speed:

Surfaced - 39 kph (21 knots)

  Submerged - 17 kph (9 knots)


20,000km (11,00 nautical miles)

Depth: 90m (300ft)
Armament: 10 x 533mm (21 in ) torpedo tubes (6 forward + 4 aft)
  24 torpedoes
  1 x 4in / 50 calibre deck gun
  2 x AA machine guns


As the war progressed each Gato was fitted with the latest technology, including larger deck guns , electric torpedoes and radar. The Tench class was an improved version of the Gato class, but was very similar apart from minor differences.

The Balao class was developed from the Gato class. It had a thicker pressure hull that allowed it to dive up to 120m (400 ft), 30m (100 ft) more than the Gato class.


A Gato cruises on the surface to re-charge its batteries.

A Gato cruises on the surface.

Gato's had a distinguished war career, accounting for three Japanese submarines and several aircraft carriers. The US Submarine service used it's submarines, many of which were Gatos', to establish a blockade around Japan; effectively denying Japanese industry access to vital raw materials such as oil and rubber. This was a tremendous achievement and played an important part in the defeat of Japan.

Stealth - Silently stalking her target, a Gato eases through the depths.

Silent Service - stealth and patience two essential qualities of a submarine attack.


SS-212 USS-Gato
SS-213 USS-Greenling
SS-214 USS-Grouper
SS-215 USS-Growler
SS-216 USS-Grunion
SS-217 USS-Guardfish
SS-218 USS-Albacore
SS-219 USS-Amberjack
SS-220 USS-Barb
SS-221 USS-Blackfish
SS-222 USS-Bluefish
SS-223 USS-Bonefish
SS-224 USS-Cod
SS-225 USS-Cero
SS-226 USS-Corvina
SS-227 USS-Darter
SS-228 USS-Drum
SS-229 USS-Flying Fish
SS-230 USS-Finback
SS-231 USS-Haddock
SS-232 USS-Halibut
SS-233 USS-Herring
SS-234 USS-Kingfish
SS-235 USS-Shad
SS-236 USS-Silversides
SS-237 USS-Trigger
SS-238 USS-Wahoo
SS-239 USS-Whale
SS-240 USS-Angler
SS-241 USS-Bashaw
SS-242 USS-Bluegill
SS-243 USS-Bream
SS-244 USS-Cavalla
SS-245 USS-Cobia
SS-246 USS-Croaker
SS-247 USS-Dace
SS-248 USS-Dorado
SS-249 USS-Flasher
SS-250 USS-Flier
SS-251 USS-Flounder
SS-252 USS-Gabilan
SS-253 USS-Gunnel
SS-254 USS-Gurnard
SS-255 USS-Haddo
SS-256 USS-Hake
SS-257 USS-Harder
SS-258 USS-Hoe
SS-259 USS-Jack
SS-260 USS-Lapon
SS-261 USS-Mingo
SS-262 USS-Muskallunge
SS-263 USS-Paddle
SS-264 USS-Pargo
SS-265 USS-Peto
SS-266 USS-Pogy
SS-267 USS-Pompon
SS-268 USS-Puffer
SS-269 USS-Rasher
SS-270 USS-Raton
SS-271 USS-Ray
SS-272 USS-Redfin
SS-273 USS-Robalo
SS-274 USS-Rock
SS-275 USS-Runner
SS-276 USS-Sawfish
SS-277 USS-Scamp
SS-278 USS-Scorpion
SS-279 USS-Snook
SS-280 USS-Steelhead
SS-281 USS-Sunfish
SS-282 USS-Tunny
SS-283 USS-Tinosa
SS-284 USS-Tullibee


SS-285 USS-Balao
SS-286 USS-Billfish
SS-287 USS-Bowfin
SS-288 USS-Cabrilla
SS-289 USS-Capelin
SS-290 USS-Cisco
SS-291 USS-Crevalle
SS-292 USS-Devilfish
SS-293 USS-Dragonet
SS-294 USS-Escolar
SS-295 USS-Hackleback
SS-296 USS-Lancefish
SS-297 USS-Ling
SS-298 USS-Lionfish
SS-299 USS-Manta
SS-300 USS-Moray
SS-301 USS-Roncador
SS-302 USS-Sabalo
SS-303 USS-Sablefish
SS-304 USS-Seahorse
SS-305 USS-Skate
SS-306 USS-Tang
SS-307 USS-Tilefish
SS-308 USS-Apogon
SS-309 USS-Aspro
SS-310 USS-Batfish
SS-311 USS-Archerfish
SS-312 USS-Burrfish
SS-313 USS-Perch
SS-314 USS-Shark
SS-315 USS-Sealion
SS-316 USS-Barbel
SS-317 USS-Barbero
SS-318 USS-Baya
SS-319 USS-Becuna
SS-320 USS-Bergall
SS-321 USS-Besugo
SS-322 USS-Blackfin
SS-323 USS-Caiman
SS-324 USS-Blenny
SS-325 USS-Blower
SS-326 USS-Blueback
SS-327 USS-Boarfish
SS-328 USS-Charr
SS-329 USS-Chub
SS-330 USS-Brill
SS-331 USS-Bugara
SS-332 USS-Bullhead
SS-333 USS-Bumper
SS-334 USS-Cabezon
SS-335 USS-Dentuda
SS-336 USS-Capitaine
SS-337 USS-Carbonero
SS-338 USS-Carp
SS-339 USS-Catfish
SS-340 USS-Entemedor
SS-341 USS-Chivo
SS-342 USS-Chopper
SS-343 USS-Clamagore
SS-344 USS-Cobbler
SS-345 USS-Cochino
SS-346 USS-Corporal
SS-347 USS-Cubera
SS-348 USS-Cusk
SS-349 USS-Diodon
SS-350 USS-Dogfish
SS-351 USS-Greenfish
SS-352 USS-Halfbeak
SS-361 USS-Golet
SS-362 USS-Guavina
SS-363 USS-Guitaro
SS-364 USS-Hammerhead
SS-365 USS-Hardhead
SS-366 USS-Hawkbill
SS-367 USS-Icefish
SS-368 USS-Jallao
SS-369 USS-Kete
SS-370 USS-Kraken
SS-371 USS-Lagarto
SS-372 USS-Lamprey
SS-373 USS-Lizardfish
SS-374 USS-Loggerhead
SS-375 USS-Macabi
SS-376 USS-Mapiro
SS-377 USS-Menhaden
SS-378 USS-Mero
SS-381 USS-Sand Lance
SS-382 USS-Picuda
SS-383 USS-Pampanito
SS-384 USS-Parche
SS-385 USS-Bang
SS-386 USS-Pilotfish
SS-387 USS-Piperfish
SS-389 USS-Piranha
SS-390 USS-Plaice
SS-391 USS-Pomfret
SS-392 USS-Sterlet
SS-393 USS-Queenfish
SS-394 USS-Razorback
SS-395 USS-Redfish
SS-396 USS-Ronquil
SS-397 USS-Scabbardfish
SS-398 USS-Segundo
SS-399 USS-Sea Cat
SS-400 USS-Sea Devil
SS-401 USS-Sea Dog
SS-402 USS-Sea Fox
SS-403 USS-Atule
SS-404 USS-Spikefish
SS-405 USS-Sea Owl
SS-406 USS-Sea Poacher
SS-407 USS-Sea Robin
SS-408 USS-Sennet
SS-409 USS-Piper
SS-410 USS-Threadfin
SS-411 USS-Spadefish
SS-412 USS-Trepang
SS-413 USS-Spot
SS-414 USS-Springer
SS-415 USS-Stickleback
SS-416 USS-Tiru


SS-417 USS-Tench
SS-418 USS-Thornback
SS-419 USS-Tigrone
SS-420 USS-Tirante
SS-421 USS-Trutta
SS-422 USS-Toro
SS-423 USS-Torsk
SS-424 USS-Quillback
SS-435 USS-Corsair
SS-436 USS-Unicorn
SS-437 USS-Walrus
SS-464 USS-Chicolar
SS-475 USS-Argonaut
SS-476 USS-Runner
SS-477 USS-Conger
SS-478 USS-Cutlass
SS-479 USS-Diablo
SS-480 USS-Medregal
SS-481 USS-Requin
SS-482 USS-Irex
SS-483 USS-Sea Leopard
SS-484 USS-Odax
SS-485 USS-Sirago
SS-486 USS-Pomodon
SS-487 USS-Remora
SS-488 USS-Sarda
SS-489 USS-Spinax
SS-490 USS-Volador
SS-491 USS-Pompano
SS-492 USS-Grayling
SS-493 USS-Needlefish
SS-494 USS-Sculpin
SS-516 USS-Wahoo
SS-522 USS-Amberjack
SS-523 USS-Grampus
SS-524 USS-Pickerel
SS-525 USS-Grenadier
SS-526 USS-Dorado
SS-527 USS-Comber
SS-528 USS-Sea Panther
SS-529 USS-Tiburon