Built By: Vickers (Barrow)
Build Group: K Group 1
Fate: Scrapped October 1921.

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K3 was the first-of-class, laid down by His Majesty the King in May 1915 and completed at Vickers within 15 months of being ordered. As a result of her trials, additional fans were fitted in the turbine room to combat the very high temperature generated by the steam turbines.

While commanded by Herbert Shove, an eccentric who usually carried two white rats in the pockets of his uniform, K3 went out of control in the Pentland Firth and struck bottom at 266 feet. In what were regarded as shallow waters K3 with an unerring eye for disaster, had picked the one spot where there was a large hole in the seabed. Fortunately it was the K Class hoodoo's day off and despite the tremendous pressure to which her hull was subjected Shove got her back to the surface none the worse for her escapade.

The Light-cruiser HMS Blonde was heading K1, K3, K4 and K7 in line ahead off the Danish coast when she was forced to turn sharply to port to avoid three cruisers, that crossed her bows from starboard to port. The abrupt change of course took the submarines by surprise and K1 and K4 collided. K1 had lost way due to salt-water, instead of fuel, coming through the sprayers and extinguishing the boilers. K3 passed close on the port side. K4, following K3, suddenly observed the red light of K1, and, although taking avoiding action, struck K1 a glancing blow abreast the conning tower. Water poured into the control room. Within minutes, chlorine gas was being released from the batteries. Blonde was signalled that K1 was sinking, and the cruiser closed, lowering two cutters. The rescue boats made five trips and transferred all 56 members of the crew to Blonde. A discussion was then held as to whether K1 could be saved, and it was decided to sink her.


21-05-1915 : Laid Down
20-05-1916 : Launched
22-09-1916 : Completed


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