Best Seaplanes/Flying Boats of WW2

May 2019
253
Earth
Inspired by US Grant's thread Best Fighter Aircraft of WW2.

I'm green as spring when it comes to aircraft, so I'd be curious to hear the experts opinions on what they think some of the best seaplane designs were during WW2, and why they think so.
 
Oct 2015
956
Virginia
Consolidated PBY Catalina.
Over 3,300 built by the US, Canada (who called them Cansos) and the Soviet Union. Used for maritime patrol, anti-submarine warfare and air-sea rescue by the US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the USSR et al.
Sighted the Bismarck and the Japanese fleet in the Indian Ocean and at Midway; rescued many downed aviators ("Dumbo") and shipwrecked sailors-including survivors of the Indianapolis; sank 40 U-boats and even torpedoed a Japanese tanker at Midway; harassed Japanese shipping and bases at night as "Black Cats".
Good range, reliable, came in both flying boat and amphibious versions.

Consolidated's PB2Y Coronado was more expensive to build and had shorter range. Martin's PBM Mariner was a more sophisticated design and had better performance but was available late and in smaller numbers.
(still haven't figured out how to attach a picture!#+#!)
 
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May 2019
213
Northern and Western hemispheres
Consolidated PBY Catalina.
Over 3,300 built by the US, Canada (who called them Cansos) and the Soviet Union. Used for maritime patrol, anti-submarine warfare and air-sea rescue by the US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the USSR et al.
Sighted the Bismarck and the Japanese fleet in the Indian Ocean and at Midway; rescued many downed aviators ("Dumbo") and shipwrecked sailors-including survivors of the Indianapolis; sank 40 U-boats and even torpedoed a Japanese tanker at Midway; harassed Japanese shipping and bases at night as "Black Cats".
Good range, reliable, came in both flying boat and amphibious versions.

Consolidated's PB2Y Coronado was more expensive to build and had shorter range. Martin's PBM Mariner was a more sophisticated design and had better performance but was available late and in smaller numbers.
(still haven't figured out how to attach a picture!#+#!)
The Mariner was used by the Navy in early 1940s and scored its 1st u-boat kill in mid 1942.
 
Dec 2014
457
Wales
This includes the famous story of the Sunderland from 461 R.A.A.F attacked by 8 Ju88s simultaneously over the bay of Biscay that not only survived, but managed to shoot down 3 enemy aircraft, as well as damaging at least two more (there is some evidence apparently they too may have later crashed).

Apparently the German nickname for them was "Fliegendes Stachelschwein" (Flying Porcupine)
 
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Belgarion

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,776
Australia
I'm torn between Sunderland and Catalina. Both great aircraft. The Catalinas were also operated by QANTAS in a joint operation with the RAAF to provide passenger and cargo services between Western Australia, Ceylon and Karachi during the war, thus initiating The Secret Order of the Double Sunrise. The Double Sunrise - Wikipedia
 
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MG1962a

Ad Honorem
Mar 2019
2,207
Kansas
I'm torn between Sunderland and Catalina. Both great aircraft. The Catalinas were also operated by QANTAS in a joint operation with the RAAF to provide passenger and cargo services between Western Australia, Ceylon and Karachi during the war, thus initiating The Secret Order of the Double Sunrise. The Double Sunrise - Wikipedia
Yeah it really comes down to personal choice. Both planes were brilliant, and performed their roles well above and beyond expectations.
 

pugsville

Ad Honorem
Oct 2010
9,791
Yeah it really comes down to personal choice. Both planes were brilliant, and performed their roles well above and beyond expectations.
Yup I would go with these two though i did read some Ivan Southall when I was young and may be factor in sentiment about the Sunderland.
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