In all honesty, this isn't 100% sci-fi, but this still seems the best SE site to ask.
I remember a book (may have been a collection of shorts, or a novel, but it was all about the same group of boys). I would've read it in the late 70's or early 80's, but I think it was from and set in the mid/late 60's; I remember a comment about one of the characters' father being a Linotype operator.
At any rate, they run around town, all the townsfolk think they're hooligans. Somewhere along the way, they buy a midget submarine that they want to refurbish, as well as causing a massive UFO scare in their town.
Like I said, I didn't see any other SE sites that covered general fiction, and their stunts were “science-ey”, so I thought it might be worth a try here.