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Naval Aviation Sets Seaplane Record 1928Waring Hills May 03, 2011
Launching from Philadelphia at the Naval Aircraft Factory, a PN-12 seaplane (P for mission – Patrol, N for manufacturer – Naval Aircraft Factory) piloted by LT’s Arthur Gavin and Zeus Soucek, flew from 03 May until 05 May for a total of 36 hours and 1 minute, setting the world duration record for Class C seaplanes.
The PN-12 was a seaplane developed from the Felixstowe F5L flying boat of the First World War by the Naval Aircraft Factory at Philadelphia. Characteristics
- Crew: Five
- Length: 49 ft 2 in (14.99 m)
- Wingspan: 72 ft 10 in (22.21 m)
- Height: 16 ft 9 in (5.11 m)
- Wing area: 1,217 ft² (113.1 m²)
- Airfoil: USA 27
- Empty weight: 7,699 lb (3,500 kg)
- Loaded weight: 14,122 lb (6,419 kg)
- Power plant: 2× Wright R-1750 D Cyclone 9-cylinder single row radial engine, 525 hp (392 kW) each
- Maximum speed: 99 knots (114 mph, 184 km/h) at sea level
- Range: 1,139 nm (1,310 mi, 2,109 km)
- Service ceiling: 10,900 ft (3,300 m)
- Wing loading: 11.6 lb/ft² (56.8 kg/m²)
- Power/mass: 0.074 hp/lb (0.12 kW/kg)
- Climb to 5,000 ft (1,520 m): 16 min
- Single .30 in (7.62 mm) calibre machine guns in bow and amidships cockpits
- Four 230 lb (105 kg) bombs underwing
LT Gavin would later command the USS Ranger in 1944 and retire from the Navy as a Rear Admiral in 1952.
LT Zeus Soucek would resign from the Navy in 1929, but his older brother Apollo, who was a famous naval aviator and test pilot in his own right, was a Vice Admiral when he retired in 1955 . The Naval Air Station Oceana airfield was named for him, Apollo Soucek Airfield, in 1957.
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One thought on “Naval Aviation Sets Seaplane Record 1928”
My late Uncle Arthur Gavin commanded the carrier US Ranger in both the Battle North Africa (Casa Blance port) and in 1945 Gavin again, a second time, commanded the USS Ranger in the Pacific Theater. That is so kind of record in and of itself!
George L Singleton, Colonel, USAF, Retired