New amphibians rely on historic designs

loeningcoa1

loeningcoa1It was recently reported that an aging fleet of seaplanes is prompting several companies to come forward with new or renewed seaplane designs.

Aircraft mentioned include Viking Air’s new-production Twin Otter, the reborn Grumman Goose by Antilles Seaplanes, and the new design Dornier Seastar amphibian. The Viking website (VikingAir.com) refers to the new-build Twin Otter as “combining the best of history and design with modern technology.”

Historic indeed, as this leads one to ruminate on the many amphibious designs during the golden age of the 1920s and 1930s.

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New amphibians rely on historic designs

IN THE BEGINNING: The Curtiss Crane of 1924 was built on the concept of an earlier Elias conversion of the Curtiss MF flying boat.

IN THE BEGINNING: The Curtiss Crane of 1924 was built on the concept of an earlier Elias conversion of the Curtiss MF flying boat.

IN THE BEGINNING: The Curtiss Crane of 1924 was built on the concept of an earlier Elias conversion of the Curtiss MF flying boat. Photo courtesy Museum of Flight.

EARLY SUCCESS: The Loening COA1 was the second prototype of this amphibian for the Army. This photo was probably taken at McCook Field near Dayton, Ohio.
EARLY SUCCESS: The Loening COA1 was the second prototype of this amphibian for the Army. This photo was probably taken at McCook Field near Dayton, Ohio. Photo courtesy Museum of Flight.

By DENNIS PARKS

It was recently reported that an aging fleet of seaplanes is prompting several companies to come forward with new or renewed seaplane designs.

Aircraft mentioned include Viking Air’s new-production Twin Otter, the reborn Grumman Goose by Antilles Seaplanes, and the new design Dornier Seastar amphibian.

[Read more...]