Boeing 314

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Boeing 314 Clipper
Boeing 314 Clipper
Role Civil air transport
Crew 10
First Flight June 7, 1938
Manufacturer Boeing
Dimensions
Length 106 ft 32.3 m
Wingspan 152 ft 46.3 m
Weights
Gross 84,000 lb 38,100 kg
Capacity 74 passengers
Powerplant
Engines Four Wright Twin Cyclone radial piston engines
Power 6,400 hp 4,772 kW
Performance
Cruising speed 184 mph 296 km/h
Maximum speed 199 mph 320
Range 3,500 miles 5,600 km
Service ceiling 19,600 ft 5,975 m

The Boeing 314 Clipper was a long-range flying boat produced by Boeing from 1938 to 1941. It was one of the largest aircraft of the era. Twelve were built for Pan American World Airways (three of which were diverted to BOAC under the Lend-Lease Act), which used their fleet for flights across the Atlantic Ocean and Pacific Ocean.

Pan Am's Clippers were built for luxury, a necessity given the long duration of transoceanic flights. The seats could be converted into 40 bunks for overnight travel. The aircraft had a lounge/dining area, and galleys were staffed with chefs from four-star hotels. Men and women were provided with separate dressing rooms. Although the transatlantic flights were only operated for three months in 1939, their standard of luxury has arguably not been matched by heavier-than-air transport since then: they were a form of travel for the super-rich, at $675 return from New York to Southampton (about $7,000 USD in year 2000 dollars ).

The Clipper fleet was impressed into service during World War II, and the aircraft were used for ferrying personnel and equipment to the European and Pacific fronts. In 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt traveled to the Casablanca Conference in a Boeing 314. Winston Churchill also flew on the aircraft several times, adding to its fame during the war era.

After the war, several Clippers were returned to Pan Am, but the type had been made obsolete by new long-range land planes such as the Douglas DC-4 and Lockheed Constellation, and by the wartime construction of a network of landing strips that gave access to nearly the entire world. The 314 was removed from scheduled service in 1946 and grounded permanently in 1950.

The most distinguishing feature of the 314 is its triple tail, which Boeing designed after finding that single and double tails did not afford the aircraft enough stability to fly safely.

The Boeing 314 "Pan Am Clipper" is featured in the novel Night Over Water, written by British author Ken Follett.


Boeing 314 Aircraft Operated by Pan American World Airways

Number Type Name Date Info
NC18601 Boeing 314 Honolulu Clipper 1939-1945 Sank by US Navy
NC18602 Boeing 314 California Clipper 1939-1950 Later renamed Pacific Clipper Sold to World Airways. Scrapped 1950.
NC18603 Boeing 314 Yankee Clipper 1939-1943 Started Transatlantic mail service. Crashed February 22, 1943 in Lisbon, Portugal.
NC18604 Boeing 314 Atlantic Clipper 1939-1946 Salvaged for parts.
NC18605 Boeing 314 Dixie Clipper 1939-1950 Started transatlantic passenger service. Sold to World Airways. Scrapped 1950.
NC18606 Boeing 314 American Clipper 1939-1946 Sold to World Airways. Scrapped 1950.
NC18609 Boeing 314A Pacific Clipper 1941-1946 Sold to Universal Airlines. Damaged by storm and salvaged for parts.
NC18611 Boeing 314A Anzac Clipper 1941-1951 Sold to Universal Airlines 1946, American International Airways 1947, World Airways 1948. Sold privately 1951, destroyed at Baltimore, Maryland 1951.
NC18612 Boeing 314A Capetown Clipper 1941-1946 Sold to: U.S. Navy - 1942, Sold to: American International Airways - 1947, Sunk at sea by the U.S. Coast Guard on October 14, 1947

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