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Destroyer Boyky
Project 7 / Gnevny Class

The Gnevny class were a group of 29 destroyers built for the Soviet Navy in the late 1930s. They are sometimes known as the Gremyashchiy class and the official Soviet designation was Project 7. These ships fought in World War II.

The Gnevnys had an overall length of 112.8 meters, a beam of 10.2 meters, and a draft of 4.8 meters at deep load. The ships were significantly overweight, almost 200 metric tons heavier than designed, displacing 1612 metric tons at standard load and 2039 metric tons at deep load. Their crew numbered 197 officers and sailors in peacetime and 236 in wartime.

The ships were powered by two geared steam turbine sets, each driving a single three-bladed 3.18-meter propeller using steam provided by three water-tube boilers. The turbines, rated at 48,000 shp (36,000 kW), were intended to give the ships a speed of 37 knots.

The Gnevny-class ships mounted four 130-millimeter B-13 guns in two pairs of superfiring single mounts fore and aft of the superstructure. Each gun was provided with 150 rounds. The manually operated mounts had an elevation range between -5° to +45° and had a rate of fire of 6-10 rounds per minute. They fired a 33.4-kilogram shell at a muzzle velocity of 870 m/s, which gave them a range of 25,597 meters. Anti-aircraft defense was provided by two 55-caliber 76.2-millimeter 34-K AA guns and two 46-caliber 45-millimeter 21-K AA guns, all in single mounts as well as a pair of 12.7-millimeter DK or DShK machine guns. The ships were equipped with six 533 mm torpedo tubes in two rotating triple mounts amidships; each tube was provided with a reload. The ships could also carry a maximum of either 60 or 95 mines and 25 depth charges.

Destroyer Boyky laid down on 17 April 1936 at the Shipyard named after 61 kommunara, Nikolaev (yard No.321), launched on 29 October 1936, commissioned on 09 March 1939 and was assigned to the Black Sea Fleet.

When the Germans invaded the Soviet Union on 22 June 1941, the ship was assigned to the 2nd Destroyer Division. On 23-24 June Boyky laid defensive mines off Sevastopol. On 9 July, the 2nd Destroyer Division, including the destroyer leader Kharkov, Boyky and her sister ships Bodry, Bezuprechny and Besposhchadny made an unsuccessful attempt to interdict Axis shipping near Fidonisi. On 14-17 August, Boyky escorted the incomplete ships being evacuated from the shipyards at Nikolayev. Together with the light cruisers Chervona Ukraina and Komintern and the destroyers Nezamozhnik and Shaumyan, Boyky and Besposhchadny bombarded Axis positions west of Odessa on 1-2 September. That month, Boyky began ferrying troops and supplies to encircled Odessa as well as providing naval gunfire support. On 7 September, Boyky and the destroyer Sposobny escorted the Commander of the Black Sea Fleet, Vice Admiral Filipp Oktyabrsky, aboard the destroyer leader Kharkov to Odessa. While they were present, all three ships bombarded Romanian troops. On 16-21 September the destroyer helped to escort transports ferrying the 157th Rifle Division to Odessa. She landed a company of naval infantry behind Romanian lines at Grigorievka on 21 September and provided fire support for them the following day.

Boyky helped to escort the ships evacuating the 157th Rifle Division from Odessa to Sevastopol on 3-6 October. She escorted the damaged submarine Shch-212 to Sevastopol on 27 October. The ship was assigned to the fire support group defending Sevastopol on 31 October and then helped to evacuate cut-off Soviet troops from pockets along the Black Sea coast to Sevastopol in early November. When not bombarding Axis positions, Boyky ferried reinforcements and supplies to Sevastopol. The ship was refitted in Poti, Georgia, from 17 November to 1 December. On 29-30 December, she escorted reinforcements during the Battle of the Kerch Peninsula. During 1941, Boyky fired a total of 1,227 main-gun shells, laid 106 mines and transported 4,883 troops.

Together with the destroyer Soobrazitelny, she escorted a pair of merchantmen to the Bosporus on 3-5 January 1942. The following night, the destroyer escorted the battleship Parizhskaya Kommuna as she bombarded targets near Stary Krym while contributing shells of her own. During the night of 6/7 January, Boyky landed 450 men west of Feodosia. While escorting the transport SS Serov from Novorossiysk to Poti, the ship collided with the merchantman and was forced to return to port. She was repaired at Tuapse from 16 January to 11 February, although she was further damaged by a storm on 22 January. Boyky resumed ferrying supplies to Sevastopol and often bombarded Axis troops in the Crimea. Partial records of her main-gun ammunition expenditures have survived: 134 rounds on 22 and 26 February and 118 rounds on 5, 14, 15 and 26 April. Her last supply mission to Sevastopol was on 23 May before the ship spent the next several months under repair.

Soobrazitelny and Boyky bombarded the port of Yalta with 97 shells on the night of 2/3 October. The destroyer helped to ferry troops to reinforce the defenders of Tuapse on 24-28 October. A month later, Besposhchadny and Boyky were tasked to attack Axis shipping off the Bulgarian coast and to bombard the port of Mangalia, Romania. They failed to locate any ships and mistook coastal rocks for a convoy in heavy fog on 1 December, firing 141 shells from their main guns and six torpedoes at them. On the night of 20/21 December Kharkov and Boyky bombarded Yalta with 168 shells; on their way home they encountered German motor torpedo boats, but neither side was damaged in a desultory action. In preparation for amphibious landings west of Novorossiysk on the night of 3/4 February 1943, Boyky, Besposhchadny and Soobrazitelny and the cruiser Voroshilov bombarded German positions during the night of 30/31 January; during the actual landings, Boyky bombarded Anapa as a diversion. The ship was awarded the Order of the Red Banner on 27 February. On the night of 30 April/1 May, Boyky and Besposhchadny shelled Axis positions on the Kerch Peninsula. Two weeks later, Kharkov and Boyky fired 235 shells between them from their 130 mm guns at Anapa harbor. Boyky, Besposhchadny and Sposobny made an unsuccessful attempt on 30 September to intercept German transports evacuating troops and equipment from the Kuban Bridgehead. The loss of Kharkov, Sponsoby and Besposhchadny to German dive bombers on 6 October prompted an infuriated Stalin to issue an order forbidding the use of ships destroyer-sized and larger without his express permission and Boyky saw no further action during the war.

The ship was modernized from 1948 to 27 December 1951; Boyky was excluded from the Navy List on 17 February 1956 and redesignated as test ship OS-18.

11.03.1958 was decommissioned and scrapped.

Displacement (tons):
Full load:2039
Dimensions (m):
Speed (knots):38,3
Range: 2640 nmi (20 knots)
Autonomy (days):10
Propulsion:2 geared steam turbines, 48,000 shp (36,000 kW), 3 water-tube boilers, 2 shafts

4x1 130-mm guns
2x1 76,2-mm AA guns
2x1 45-mm AA guns
2x1 12,7-mm AA machineguns
2x3 533 mm torpedo tubes
60-95 mines
25 depth charges

Complement:197 (15 officers, 44 warrant officers)


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