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Should large flying boats, like the Saunders-Roe Princess, Dornier Do-X, Kawanishi H8K, Martin Mars, Hughes Hercules, etc., be listed in Airliners in the Aircraft section, or do they deserve a category all of their own?

 

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They really deserve their own category.

 

Flying boats met a number of factors that plagued all commercial aviation in the inter-war period. The first was safety of overwater flights. If trouble came a callin', at least a flying boat could be set down on the ocean and remain a lifeboat for its occupants. Not so a landplane. They competed with the large fleet of passenger liners for comfort and in-transit service. They had the advantage of crossing the oceans at five to six times the speed of the average passenger liner.

 

In the same period, cruise speeds were often around 150 kts for both flying boats and landplanes. Passenger loads for landplanes were below 20 while the big flying boats were designed for up to 100. So the flying boats moved more people, who were more confident of their safety over wide watery wastes. They played a significant role in fostering transcontinental air transport. Hand had it not been for the massive amount of airfield construction associated with aerial activity in WWII, making landing places closer together for landplanes, as well as improvements in design and powerplants, we might still be seeing these majestic aircraft arriving at our coastal cities.

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And flying boats/seapalnes are not all airliners. The Martin Mars, Canadair CL-215 and 415, and the Russian Beriev Be-200 are fire bombers. Some are military, some are civillian, but they all have the characteristic of a boat hull fuselage.

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A majestic machine no matter where they go. Would be a great market for us aviators who would like cruising holidays. Any billionaires who want to start a new venture out there?

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4 hours ago, ClintonB said:

A majestic machine no matter where they go. Would be a great market for us aviators who would like cruising holidays. Any billionaires who want to start a new venture out there?

At an unpressurised max cruising hight of about 10K ft you could have the windows open to reduce the chance of CV-19 transmission.

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