By Mr. T. Nordenfelt.
[From United Service Gazette.]
The principal raison d’être of a submarine boat is the suddenness of its attack, and if the attack by torpedoes fired from a submarine boat is more effective than that fired from a surface boat, while the crew is less exposed in the submarine boat, it should find its place amongst the armaments of nations.
[Mr. Nordenfelt then enumerates the various submarine boats that have been invented since Bushnell's attempt to blow up the Eagle in 1776.]
The idea seems throughout to have been admitted that submarine boats, if successful, would become most valuable and comparatively inexpensive weapons for port defense; but none of the boats so far had given satisfaction, and I now beg to give my views as to the reason of their failure.
1. They were always built too small and too weak. The longest of previous submarine boats was 45 feet, or about half as long as my boats. Their small dimensions and weak plates made them useless in bad weather and dangerous for submersion, especially if touching the bottom or if coming in contact with any vessel.