Air Pictorial 1956-08
Photos by request
R.A.F.'s MYSTERY CLIPPER. Better known by its P.A.A. (China) name of F-91 Baby Clipper, the Fairchild XA-942A of 1934 was an all-metal eight-seat amphibian powered by either a Wright Cyclone or (in this case) an 800-h.p. P. & W . Hornet S3E-G radial. Hal G. Martin, who took this unique photo, has been able to fill in some of the missing detail of the R.A.F.'s sole XA-942A. Painted green and white, ex-NC15952 was purchased by the British American Ambulance Corps. and named "Wings of Mercy" - and was originally intended for Channel Spitfire rescues. Max. speed 215 m.p.h., cruise 167 m.p.h . ; a.u.w. 9.700 lb.; span 56 ft.; length 47 ft . P.A.A. never took delivery of the (3rd) Baby Clipper.
THE 1934 IRISH SWOOP - Painted cream and green, with the racing number 29 and Eire registration EI-AAZ. the "one-off" Bellanca Model 28-70 Swoop was a non-starter In the England-Australia air race. Shipped back to New York and repaired, the Swoop (c/n. 901) was flown back to the factory and cracked-up on landing. It was rebuilt and became Mollison's "Dorothy" G-AEPC after his Atlantic flight.
STAR PERFORMER - In the Christian-Jaques air-sea drama "Race for life" the aircraft which has puzzled some readers is a Dassault M.D.315 Flamant (Flamingo) specially painted in Royal Norwegian Air Force colours. A total of 318 Flamants has been built since 1947; the three types being the M.D.311 aircrew trainer, the M.D.312 and the M.D.315 general-purpose transports seating six. Illustrated is a French Air Force M.D.311.
SO MUCH OF EVERYTHING. Two variations on a four-engined bomber theme are provided by the 1919 Bleriot types 73 (left) and 74 (right), both of which were called the Mammouth (Mammoth). Apart from their impressive size and weight - span 98 ft. 6 in ., loaded 28.000 lb. - the Mammouths were notable for their incredible complexity of strut arrangement. An ultra-modern touch is the load-spreading bogie main undercarriage. Both the 73 and the 74 were powered by four 300-h.p. Hispano-Suizas which permitted a maximum speed of approximately 83 m.p.h. Duration was 5 hours. The length was 72 ft. 2 in. and wing area 4,066 sq . ft . Type 75 was a transport development.
RECOGNITION TEASER - Not the Tugan Gannet but the equally rarely-illustrated Wackett Codock of April 1934, built by the short-lived Cockatoo Island Dockyard & Engineering Co., Pty. W /Cdr. L. J. Wackett is better known for his wartime Boomerang fighter and primary Wackett Trainer. Intended as a five-seat light transport, the Codock prototype, VH-URP was powered by two 150-h.p. Napier Javelin inlines. The design was not proceeded with and W/Cdr. Wackett left to join Tugan Aircraft/General Aircraft, Pty., Ltd., where he produced the twin Gipsy Six-powered Gannet.