Wings Over the Water
Naval aviation required unique solutions to the problem of launching and landing. Carrier launched aircraft were in their infancy. Most of the ships used to deploy aircraft were tenders which winched float planes and flying boats into and out of the water. Flying boats allowed aircraft to operate away from the tender and move on the water as if it was a boat.
Flying boats were some of the largest aircraft of the first half of the 20th century, dwarfed in size only by bombers developed during World War II. Their advantage lay in using water for take-offs and landings instead of expensive land-based runways. Several examples of flying boats could be transported and launched by the usage of specially designed separate wheeled carriages.
American Flying Boat - 1918
The Curtiss NC (Navy Curtiss, nicknamed "Nancy boat" or "Nancy") was a flying boat built by Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company and used by the United States Navy from 1918 through the early 1920s. Ten of these aircraft were built, the most famous of which is the NC-4, the first airplane to make a transatlantic flight. The NC-4 is preserved in the National Museum of Naval Aviation, at NAS Pensacola, Florida.
Austrian Flying Boat - 1918
The first Brandenburg flying-boat was the 3-seat flying boat developed by Ernst Heinkel from a Lohner design and built in small numbers for the German and Austro-Hungarian Navies in 1915. In 1916 Heinkel produced an original design for a single-seat wooden-hulled fighter flying-boat, which he named CC after Camillo Castiglioni, financial controller of the Brandenburg company. The CC was characterized by 'starstrut' interplane bracing like that used for the D.II.
British Flying Boat - 1918
The Felixstowe F.5 was a British First World War flying boat designed by Lieutenant Commander John Cyril Porte RN of the Seaplane Experimental Station, Felixstowe.
The Felixstowe F5 was intended to combine the good qualities of the F2 and F3, with the prototype first flying in May 1918. The prototype showed superior qualities to its predecessors but the production version was modified to make extensive use of components from the F.3, in order to ease production, giving lower performance than either the F.2a or F.3.
German Flying Boat - 1918
The Hansa-Brandenburg W.20 was a German submarine-launched reconnaissance flying boat of the World War I era, Ernst Heinkel designed and Hansa-Brandenburg began construction sometime late 1917, early 1918.Only three W.20s were built.Due to the need to be stored in a water tight container which could be mounted on the deck of a submarine the W.20 was a small single-seat biplane flying boat that was designed to be assembled and dismantled quickly. It had a slender hull on which was mounted a biplane wing and a conventional braced tailplane.
Italian Flying Boat - 1917
The Macchi M.5 was an Italian single-seat fighter flying boat designed and built by Macchi-Nieuport at Varese. It was extremely manoeuvrable and agile and matched the land-based aircraft it had to fight.
The production aircraft was designated the M.5 and like the prototypes were powered by a single Isotta-Fraschini V.4B engine in pusher configuration. Deliveries soon commenced in the summer of 1917 to the Aviazone per la Regia Marina (Italian Navy Aviation). Late production aircraft had a more powerful Isotta-Fraschini V.6 engine and redesigned wingtip floats, they were designated M.5 mod. Macchi produced 200 aircraft and another 44 were built by Societa Aeronautica Italiana.
Russian Flying Boat - 1915
Grigorovich M-5 (alternative designation Shch M-5, sometimes also Shchetinin M-5) was a successful Russian World War I-era two-bay unequal-span biplane flying boat with a single step hull, designed by Grigorovich. It was the first mass production flying boat built in Russia.
The aircraft designer Dmitry Pavlovich Grigorovich completed his first flying boat (the model M-1) in late 1913, and produced a series of prototypes, gradually improving the design, until the M-5 appeared in the spring of 1915, which was to be his first aircraft to enter series production, with at least 100 being produced, primarily to replace foreign built aircraft, including Curtiss Model K and FBA flying boats.