From: "Walter E. Shepherd" <email@example.com> Organization: The Aerospace Corporation Date: 12 Apr 96 02:11:25 Followups: 1 2 3 4 5 6
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I have this unexplained love affair with flying boats... they were before my time, but I'd give my right arm to retrace the route of the China Clipper in a reasonable facsimile to a Martin 134. I've devoured most books on the subject and believe that the really great ones (Martin 134 and Boeing 314's) are all long gone. Strangely, I have overlooked the obvious... Empire Airways of the UK... until last nite on Discovery Channel. They broadcast a flight retracing the Route of the Empire Flying Boats from Cairo, down the Nile and along the East African coast to South Africa. Unfortunately they did it in a PBY Catalina (don't get me wrong... I admire the PBY... I used to work where they came off the line... I think they are the prettiest ugly airplane ever built... but that old war horse is just that). It is also unfortunate that that route is laced with civil wars... I'm not that desperate for a ride. Anyway I've two questions: 1. Are there any UK passenger flying boats still in airworthy condition? If so, where? 2. Has anyone ever attempted to build a replica flying boat for the purpose of revenue making specialty cruises? If so, what happened? Thanks to all who care about airplanes.