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Pulp Seaplanes

Page history last edited by Michael 6 years, 6 months ago

back to the Index, or the Air Transport page.


Barnes BF-6A Stormer


high-wing amphibian fighter, pilot + radio operator/copilot, both carried in a pressurized cabin; two Barnes V-12 supercharged diesels (1500 HP each) on coaxial shafts, driving counter-rotating props; top speed nearly 300 mph, range probably under 300 miles, ceiling 30,000'; wing span 47' 8", length 35' 10" (with floats retracted); armament two .50 cal machine guns, and 37mm automatic cannon firing through propellor shaft (copilot loads 5 round clips into the 37mm gun). Retractable floats and wheels, radio and radio-direction-finder; first example constructed in 1933, several examples of this fictional aircraft soon show up in the hands of mercenaries and criminals; probably cost over $50,000 to build.


Barnes BT-4


monoplane amphibian; two Barnes V-12 supercharged diesels (1500 HP each); crew 10 (2 pilots, fighter pilot, 4 gunners, steward/loader, navigator/radio operator/bombardier, and an engineer), cruise 160 mph, max 180 mph, ceiling 11,000', range 2000 miles; span 143', length 124', weight 15 tons. Landing gear consists of a pair of amphibious floats equipped with dual wheels. The fuselage measures 20 ft. across at its widest point and contains a hangar for a parasite fighter, an all-electric galley, sleeping quarters for the crew, toilets and a shower. Landing gear consists of a pair of amphibious floats equipped with dual wheels. Rifle-caliber machine guns are mounted in the nose, tail and ventral gun positions; the top turret mounts a 37mm automatic cannon (the COW gun, fed by 5 round clips). Small bomb bays can dispense "several" 50 lb. bombs, and larger bomb racks (or extra fuel tanks) can be fitted into the hangar bay (in place of the 2000 lb. "Eaglet" fighter). This fictional aircraft cost in excess of $500,000.


Barnes Eaglet


high-wing monoplane amphibian fighter, pilot in enclosed (and very cramped) cockpit; engine Pratt & Whitney Twin Wasp radial of 830 HP; wingspan about 28', length 23' 6" with floats retracted, weight about 2000 lbs.; variable-pitch propellor, retractable floats with semi-enclosed wheels, folding wings, armament unknown but probably 1 or 2 rifle-caliber machine guns; this small fictional aircraft is used as a "parasite fighter" for the Barnes BT-4, and for other Barnes aircraft. Probably cost about $30,000 to build.


C.A.M.S. 37/12


biplane amphibian; one Lorraine 12Ed V12 engine of 450 HP; 3 crew (pilot, bow gunner, radio operator/dorsal gunner); cruise 100 mph, max 115 mph, ceiling 13,500', range 1900 miles; span 47.5', length 37', weight empty 2 tons, maximum T/O weight 3.6 tons. The C.A.M.S. 37 is a fairly ordinary French naval aircraft of the mid-Twenties, with wings and hull of wood; this particular version is a one-off prototype from the early Thirties. There are many other variants, most are not amphibians, some for commercial usage, etc. Armament: open bow position with two Lewis MG, open dorsal position with two Lewis MG, and up to 1000 lbs. of bombs or torpedoes carried under the wings.


Consolidated PBY-1 Catalina


monoplane flying boat, crew is 3 pilots, flight engineer, navigator, radio operator, bombardier (also serves as nose gunner) and two waist gunners. Engines are two Pratt & Whitney XR-1830-58 Twin Wasp radials, 825 HP each. Cruise speed is 130 mph, top speed is 183 mph, ceiling is 23,600', range is about 3,000 miles on 1750 gallons of fuel. Wingspan 104', length 63' 10", empty weight 17,564 lbs., maximum takeoff weight 20,671 lbs (this increases a lot for later versions). The U.S. Navy's latest patrol and bombing seaplane, first delivered in September 1936 (although a couple of prototypes were around in 1935). Armament consists of a .30 cal machinegun in a nose turret, another in the "under the tail" tunnel position, and two .50 cal machineguns in the waist. Bombs up to 1000 lbs each could be carried, along with torpedoes and depth charges, all totalling not more than 4000 lbs. Cost, not including weapons and radios, $90,000. Technically, if you buy one of these from Consolidated-Vultee, you're buying a "Model 28" airplane.


Consolidated Commodore 16 Type 1 


monoplane flying boat, 3 crew (pilots in open cockpits) + 25 passengers; two P&W Hornet radial engines (575 HP each); cruise speed 108 mph, top speed 128 mph, ceiling 10,000', range 1,000 miles; span 100', length 61' 6", empty weight 10,550 lbs., maximum weight 17,600 lbs.. The latest thing in commercial flying boats; the Type 2 carries 32 passengers and less cargo; also in use by the U.S. Navy as the PY-1 patrol plane (with an enclosed cockpit), whose larger fuel tank allows a range of 2,400 miles. This plane is the direct ancestor of the famous PBY 'Catalina.' Cost $125,000.


Consolidated P2Y-3 Ranger


sesquiplane flying boat based on the Commodore design, two Wright R-1820-90 Cyclone radial engines (750 HP each); 2 pilots, navigator/radio operator, engineer; top speed 139 mph, ceiling 16,000', range 1200 miles; span 100', length 62', weight 10 tons. The latest patrol plane of the US Navy, it can carry 2000 lbs of bombs; or, by adding fuel tanks instead of bombs, the range can be increased to about 2000 miles. Cost about $100,000.


Dornier Do-J 6 Ton Wal


monoplane flying boat, two Napier Lion engines (450 HP each); 2 pilots + 8 to 10 passengers; cruise 100 mph, ceiling 11,500', range 4,000 miles; span 74', length 57', weight 6 tons. The original 'Wal' was introduced 1922, and two of that model were used by Roald Amundsen during his attempt to reach the North Pole. Later models have flown the first crossing of the South Atlantic in 1926, and flew from Europe to Chicago non-stop in August 1930 (the first east to west crossing of the Atlantic by a flying boat). The cabin is a bit cramped (think moden executive jet). This is a very popular flying boat: hundreds have been built by Dornier, CMASA, CASA, and Aviolanda. It has been successfully launched from ships by catapult, and is being used in this fashion for mail service to South America from Europe. Cost, about $30,000 for a long-range version.


Dornier Do-X1b


monoplane flying boat, twelve Rolls-Royce 'R' type engines (water-cooled, 2500 HP V-12s, with Farman gear-driven two-stage centrifugal superchargers) burn a total of 600 gallons of gas per hour; 10 crew + 13 passengers (the original passenger version carried 169 persons in a record-setting test flight), interior divided into three decks, with lounge, saloon, shower baths, kitchen, and 'Pullman' style berths for the passengers on the main deck; cruise 175 mph, max 200 mph, ceiling 12,000', range 1500 miles; length 131.5', span 158', weight 30 tons empty, 52 tons loaded (including about 15 tons of aviation gasoline) -- the world's largest airplane. The original model was built spring 1929; this model (available after 1931) costs about $1,000,000 ($400,000 plus the cost of engines -- Curtiss Conquerors cost about $8,000 each, Rolls-Royce 'R' engines are $26,000 each!). An auxiliary engine is used to provide electrical power and heat while at anchor. See the Super Dornier-X page for more information on this aircraft for a grand hero or villain; Alexi Vishnaveshki took delivery of one in the fall of 1930, and has it flown to America (with much press attention).


Dornier Do-18


monoplane flying boat, 2 pilots + 10 passengers (civil) or 4 crew (recon); two Junkers "Jumo 205" (560 HP each) V-12 diesels; cruise speed 124 mph, top speed 155 mph, ceiling 14,000', range 2,800 to 5,200 miles depending on type; span 77', length 63', weight 11 tons. Military versions are fitted with a couple of 13mm MG151 machine guns in flexible mounts (one in the nose and one midships) and can carry two 50 kg bombs but no passengers. Cost, about $50,000 for a long-range version or military recon version; available (historically) from 1935.


Douglas Dolphin


monoplane amphibian, two Pratt & Whitney R-1340 Wasp radial engines (450 HP each); 2 pilots + 6 passengers; cruise speed 135 mph, top speed 156 mph, ceiling 17,000', range 720 miles; span 60', length 44', weight empty 3.5 tons, max 4.5 tons. A popular "executive" aircraft, introduced 1931. Cost $43,000.


Grumman Duck


see here


Grumman Goose


see here


Hall XP2H


biplane flying boat, engines are four V-12 Curtiss Conquerors of 650 HP each; 2 pilots, flight engineer, navigator/bombardier, radio operator, gunner; cruise speed 120 mph, max speed 140 mph, range 4250 miles, ceiling 11.000', span 112', length 65' 6", weight empty 21,000 lbs, max takeoff weight 43,000 lbs. Armament five .30 Browning MG in various positions, plus up to 2000 lbs of bombs, depth charges, or two Mk 13 torpedoes (yes, these weigh 3,000 lbs each ...). Prototype only, first flown in 1935 as an example for the US Navy.


Heinkel He-59


two-float seaplane, pilot (in open cockpit) + 3-5 crew; span 77' 10", length 57' 2"; two BMW VI 660 HP V12 engines; empty weight 13,700 lbs, maximum weight 19,800 lbs; top speed 134 mph, range (with maximum fuel load) 1100 miles; fitted with three 7.92mm MG for bow, dorsal, and ventral gunners, plus up to 2200 lbs of bombs or a torpedo. 6 troops can be carried in the fuselage, if no bombs are carried. First delivered to the clandestine German air force in August of 1932, and used for bombing, ground attack, rescue, transport, and other missions. Reliable and tough.


Intercontinental Air Liner


flying wing seaplane, 155 crew + 606 passengers; 20 engines of 1900 HP each, plus 6 spares; cruising speed 100 mph, top speed 150 mph, range 7500 miles, ceiling 10,000'; span 528', empty weight 662,600 lbs, maximum weight 1,275,300 lbs.. Designed in 1929, and first flown in 1932, cost $9,000,000; two have been built, and two more are under constuction. These aircraft fly from Chicago to Plymouth, England in 42 hours, and each makes three crossings every week (thus departures are offered every day but Sunday); the fare is $300. The aircraft are refuelled while in flight as they crosses the Atlantic coast over Newfoundland. More information on these gigantic aircraft (proposed but not actually built) here.


Keystone PK-1


biplane flying boat, two Wright Cyclone radial engines (575 HP each); 2 pilots + 3 other crew (in naval patrol service); cruise 100 mph, max 120 mph, ceiling 12,000', range 1,250 miles; span 73', length 49', weight 7 tons. The interior has space for a couple of hammocks, but can only be called 'cramped.' Cost about $28,000.


Kalinin K-7B Nadezhda Krupskaya 


monoplane amphibian. Crew 16+ in transport version, passengers 128+. Engines 20 supercharged AM34FRN liquid-cooled V12 of 1200 HP each; 72,000 gallons of fuel carried. Empty weight at least 300,000 lbs, takeoff weight at least 800,000 lbs. Wingspan 328', length 174'. Top speed 145 mph, cruise speed 112 mph, ceiling 13,100', range 5000 miles (enough to fly Moscow to Mombasa non-stop). Four externally-carried 7,000 gallon droppable fuel tanks can extend the range to 7000 miles; and air-to-air refuelling from a specialized tanker version can extend the range even further. There are transport, air tanker and armed versions; armament includes autocannons and machine guns, bomb load of at least 42,000 lbs., parasite fighters, air-droppable amphibious submersible tanks (up to 8.4 tons weight), half a dozen Na-12 Kolossus walking tanks, man-ape paratroops, the unshakeable resolve of the Soviet masses ...  IMPORTANT NOTE:  the actual Kalinin K-7 aircraft is much smaller than this fantasy aircraft.


Latecoere 300


monoplane flying boat, four Hispano-Suiza V-12 engines (650 HP each); two pilots, radio operator, and engineer in the enclosed cockpit; cruise 99 mph, ceiling 15,000', range 3,000 miles; span 145', length 86', weight 25 tons. Designed as a trans-atlantic airmail carrier, this aircraft can accomodate 2204 lbs (a metric ton) of cargo. Entered service 1933; cost probably $100,000 or more.


Loening Amphibian


biplane amphibian, 1 pilot (in open cockpit) + 2 crew/passengers (in enclosed cabin with a 'cockpit' seat for observing, gunnery, and emergency piloting); Pratt & Whitney R-1340B radial engine; max 122 mph, stall 50 mph, ceiling 14,300', range 650 miles; span 45', length 34', weight empty 3400 lbs., 140 gallons fuel & oil 800 lbs., crew 360 lbs., misc./cargo 1000 lbs., max total weight 5560 lbs.; pilot's cockpit fitted with most available instruments, basic flight controls only in rear seat; electrically powered retractable landing gear; wireless set; first versions built 1925, cost $15,000; very sturdy, used in a variety of polar expeditions and ocean surveys, and as Navy patrol craft.


Martin Model 122


biplane flying boat, two Wright Cyclone radial engines (550 HP each); two pilots, radio operator, and flight mechanic are carried in naval service, but the hull could probably accomodate 16-20 passengers; cruise 100 mph, max 123 mph, ceiling 7,200', range 1,450 miles; span 73', length 49', weight 8 tons. Used by the U.S. Navy as the PM-2 patrol plane. The interior is a bit tight -- similar to the Catalina. Cost about $35,000.


Martin Model 130


monoplane flying boat, four Pratt & Whitney R-1830-S2A5G Twin Wasp geared radial engines (830 HP each); two pilots, radio operator, flight engineer, two stewards + 12-32 passengers; cruise 163 mph, max 180 mph, ceiling 17,000', range 3,200 miles; span 130', length 91', weight 26 tons. First flown in 1934, built for Pan American at a cost of $417,000.


Savoia-Marchetti S.55X


monoplane twin-hull flying boat, two Isotta-Fraschini V-18 engines (750 HP each); 2 pilots + 10 passengers (5 in each hull side); cruise 149 mph, ceiling 16,000', range 2400 miles; span 79', length 54', weight 11 tons. Introduced 1933, used by several Mediterranean airlines. The earlier versions of this aircraft (the S.55A and S55P) established flying boat records for altitude and range (2,000 miles with 1.7 tons of cargo). The two hulls each have about as much space as a stretch commuter van; I think there must be a crawlway past the pilots (in the middle) between the hulls. Cost about $35,000.


Short S.8 Calcutta


biplane flying boat, three Bristol Jupiter radial engines (540 HP each); 3 crew + 12 passengers; cruise 97 mph, ceiling 13,500', range 650 miles; span 93', length 66', weight 10 tons. Introduced February 1928; the cabin is fairly spacious, 7' wide with a 7' ceiling. These aircraft are used on the Mediterranean segment of the London-to-Karachi (India) air route opened in 1929. Cost about $55,000.


Short S.17 Kent


biplane flying boat, 3 crew + 15 passengers; four Bristol Jupiter radial engines (555 HP each); cruise 120 mph, top speed 137 mph, range 450 miles; span 113', length 78' 5", maximum weight 32,000 lbs.; introduced in the Spring of 1931 by Imperial Airways for use on the Mediterranean routes (principally Marseilles to Egypt, via Brindisi and Athens), replacing/supplementing the older S.8 Calcuttas.


Short S.19 Singapore III 


biplane flying boat patrol/bomber, 2 pilots, navigator/bombardier, wireless operator, 3 gunners; four Rolls Royce Kestrel engines, 675 HP each; cruise 123 mph, top speed 145 mph, landing speed 65 mph, range 1,000 miles on 1,000 gallons of fuel at 105 mph best cruise, ceiling 15,000'; span 90', length 64' 2", empty weight 10 tons, maximum weight 16 tons. An additional long-range fuel tank can be mounted above the hull, to accommodate 500 gallons of fuel and increase the range to 1,500 miles. Purchased by the RAF beginning in 1934; this plane is fitted with an automatic pilot, galley, repair workshop, two bunks, rubber raft and two spare propellers. Armament:  three Vickers or Lewis guns, up to 1,100 pounds of bombs or depth charges can be carried under the wings.


Sikorsky S-38C


monoplane amphibian, two P&W Wasp radial engines (420 HP each); 2 crew + 10 passengers or 3630 lbs; cruise 110 mph, max speed 125 mph, landing speed 55 mph, climb 1000' per minute, ceiling 16,000', range 600 miles from 216 gallons fuel; span 72', length 40', weight 5 tons. Introduced 1928, cost $55,000. Can maintain level flight on one engine. With only 8 passengers, and an additional 80 gallon fuel tank in the fuselage, range increases to 820 miles.


Sikorsky S-39


amphibian (wheels and boat hull), pilot + 3 passengers; engine Pratt & Whitney Wasp Junior radial of 300 HP; cruise speed 100 mph, top speed 123 mph, range 350 miles, ceiling 16,000'; wing span 52', length 32' 2"; empty weight 2555 lbs., maximum weight 3700 lbs.. Electric or pneumatic starter. Cost $17,500.


Sikorsky S-40


parasol monoplane amphibian, 4 crew + 44 passengers or 10000 lbs. load; four P&W Hornet radials of 575 HP each, top speed 130 mph, cruise 115 mph, landing speed 65 mph, ceiling 13000', range 1000 miles; span 114', length 77', hull length 48', weight ?; introduced 1931, cost $139,000, about the "very best" amphibian available -- being used by PAA in the Pacific.


Sikorsky S-42


monoplane flying boat, four P&W Hornet geared radial engines (700 HP each); 2 pilots, flight engineer, radio operator, 2 stewards + 32 passengers; cruise 160 mph, max 180 mph, ceiling 16,000', range 1,200 miles (3,000 miles with only 3/4 ton of cargo); span 118', length 69', weight 19 tons (a cargo version could carry 5 tons of freight). Introduced 1934, and used initially by Pan American on their Caribbean routes. "A" and "B" models appear in 1936, with increased speed, range, and useful load. Cost about $200,000.


Sikorsky S-43 Baby Clipper


monoplane amphibian, two P&W Hornet geared radial engines (750 HP each); 2 pilots, steward + 19 passengers; retractable landing gear and wing floats; cruise speed 180 mph, top speed 200 mph, stall speed 65 mph, ceiling about 26,000', range 775 miles. Span 86', length 51' 2", weight empty, 10,000 lbs., weight loaded, 17,500 lbs. First flights in 1935. 


Supermarine Southampton


biplane flying boat, two Napier Lion engines; 2 pilots (in open cockpits) + 3-8 crew; cruise 100 mph, ceiling 6,000', range 1,500 miles; span 42', length 28', weight 9 tons. Introduced 1927, in use by various naval forces as a patrol, survey and rescue aircraft. Cost $90,000 complete with beaching gear.


Supermarine Walrus


biplane amphibian, one Bristol Pegasus VI radial engine (775 HP); pilot + 3 crew; top speed 135 mph, ceiling 19,000', range 600 miles; span 46', length 38', weight 3.6 tons. The Royal Navy's latest reconnaissance aircraft, capable of being launched from catapults.

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