Supermarine Sea Eagle
|Sea Eagle G-EBFK|
|Role||Biplane, airliner flying boat|
|Designer||R. J. Mitchell|
|First flight||June 1923|
|Introduction||25 September 1923|
|Primary user||British Marine Air Navigation Co Ltd|
The Supermarine Sea Eagle was a British, passenger–carrying, amphibious flying boat. It was designed and built by the Supermarine Aviation Works for its subsidiary, the British Marine Air Navigation Co Ltd, to be used on their cross-channel route between Southampton, the Channel Islands and France.
Three aircraft were constructed, G-EBFK, G-EBGR and G-EBGS and the regular service between Southampton and Guernsey began on 25 September 1923 (the planned service to France was never implemented). This was the world's first scheduled passenger air service by flying boat. However, G-EBFK crashed on 21 May 1924; in January 1927, G-EBGS was lost when it was rammed by a ship in the harbor of St Peter Port, Guernsey. The third aircraft continued on the route until 1928 when it was replaced by a Short S.8 Calcutta.
The wooden hull of the surviving Sea Eagle, G-EBGR, was retained by Vickers until 1949, when they presented it to the British Overseas Airways Corporation; BOAC burnt it in 1954 because of a lack of storage space.
The Supermarine Sheldrake used the hull of the Sea Eagle and the wings of the Seagull with a tractor engine installation. A single example was built. The Supermarine Scarab was a military flying-boat, based on the Sea Eagle and Sheldrake but with a pusher engine. Twelve were built for the Spanish Naval Air Service for use in the bomber/reconnaissance role. It was fitted with a .303 in (7.7 mm) Lewis gun and a bomb load of 1,000 lb 454 kg.
Data from Supermarine Aircraft since 1914 
- Crew: 2 (pilot and mechanic)
- Capacity: 6 passengers
- Length: 37 ft 4 in (11.37 metres)
- Wingspan: 46 ft [Note 1] (14.02 m)
- Height: 15 ft 11 in (4.85 m)
- Wing area: 620 ft² (57.6 m²)
- Empty weight: 3,950 lb (1,791 kg)
- Loaded weight: 6,050 lb (2,744 kg)
- Powerplant: 1 × Rolls-Royce Eagle IX in pusher configuration, 360 hp (268 kW)
- Maximum speed: 93 mph (81 kn, 150 km/h)
- Range: 230 mi (200 nmi, 370 km)
- Climb to 5,000 ft (1,525m): 19 min
- 21 ft 1 in (6.42 m) folded
- London 2003, p. 72.
- London 2003, p. 73.
- London 2003, p. 257.
- Andrews and Morgan 1987, p.52..
- Andrews C.F. and Morgan, E.B. Supermarine Aircraft since 1914. London:Putnam, 1987. ISBN 0-85177-800-3.
- Jackson, A.J. British Civil Aircraft 1919-1972:Volume III. London:Putnam, 1988. ISBN 0-85177-818-6.
- London, Peter. British Flying Boats. Sutton Publishers Ltd. 2003. ISBN 0-7509-2695-3
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