Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Short SA.6 Sealand

Designed by C.P.T Lipscombe in 1947. The Sealand was a two crew, seven passenger twin engine all –metal amphibian. Powered by two 345hp De Havilland Gipsy queen 70-2 engines, with three-bladed reversible propellers. The prototype G-AVIX first flew from Belfast Lough on the 22nd January 1948.

This fine looking aircraft did however have some problems during its early development. Throttle and yaw, engine cooling and basic water handling problems were ironed out. The first production aircraft G-AKLM on a sales tour in Norway crashed into a mountain on the 15th October 1949 sadly killing the crew of three. After its tricky start orders slowly picked up even after a tour of many countries. Two variants were produced of the total 25 built, the SA.6 Sealand I and the SB.7 Sealand III, an extended version with longer wings, a deeper rudder and a strengthened hull.


Original operators:

Norway x 2 Vestlandske Luftfartselkap
Pakistan (East) x 3 - East Bengal Transport Commission
Yugoslavia x2 - Jugoslovenski Aerotransport

Brunei x1 – Shell
Dutch East Indies/Indonesia x2 - Christian Missionaries
Egypt x1 - private/exec transport
Singapore x1 - Shell
Venezuela x1 - Shell

India x10 - Indian Navy

 Data: Sealand III
 ENGINE 2 x de Havilland Gipsy Queen 70, 254kW
    Take-off weight 4128 kg 9101 lb
    Empty weight 3205 kg 7066 lb
    Wingspan 18.75 m 62 ft 6 in
    Length 12.85 m 42 ft 2 in
    Height 4.57 m 15 ft 0 in
    Wing area 32.79 m2 352.95 sq ft
    Max. speed 298 km/h 185 mph
    Ceiling 6340 m 20800 ft
    Range 958 km 595 miles

Two complete aircraft remain in India and Serbia but not flying sadly :-( One other aircraft is being restored in Northern Ireland.