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Sikorsky-Vought  S-44 Flying Boat
    Igor I. Sikorsky's VS-44A was a large transport aircraft with a wingspan of 124 feet, an overall length of about 80 feet and a gross weight of 57,500 pounds. It was powered by four Pratt & Whitney Twin-Wasp radial engines that produced a combined 4,800 horsepower for take-off and a cruise speed of about 210 miles per hour. The nonstop range, depending on load and the quantity of fuel, was approximately 4,000 miles, which was unmatched performance for the time. In the summer of 1940 American Export Airline ordered three at a total cost of $2,100,000. These aircraft were dubbed the "Flying Aces" by AEA . Its advertising boasted minimum vibration, maximum sound-proofing, individual sofas, full length beds, roomy dressing rooms, full galley for serving hot meals, snack bar service, attractive lounge and smoking room, proper heating and ventilation and more square foot area per passenger.  No other contemporary aircraft had these luxuries. AEA signed a contract with the Naval Air Transport Service to operate a wartime trans-Atlantic route in January, 1942. On May 26 the Excalibur made the maiden nonstop flight from New York to Foynes, Ireland and on June 20 regular round trip service began. The Flying Aces proved to be the world's longest range airliners and set record after record. They were the only aircraft capable of flying nonstop across the North and South Atlantic at full payload in excess of 3,100 miles. 
     The Excambian is the only example remaining today. In 1950 a group from Baltimore rebuilt the Excambian to carry freight to Amazon River natives. Their plan failed which stranded the Excambian in Ancon Harbor near Lima, Peru. In 1957 Avalon Air Transport ferried the aircraft to California where she shuttled thousands of tourists between Long Beach, California and nearby Catalina Island.  It is now owned by the Naval Aviation Museum at Pensacola, Florida, but is on permanent loan to the New England Air Museum.

S-44 Flying Boat - American Export Lines
Standard Series.  1/100th scale.  15" wingspan x 9.5" long.
  No. AAS3D-ST.  Only $119.95


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