The American Sikorsky S-42 is regarded as the first truly American seaplane and was based on the earlier Sikorsky S-40. It was described as the ""most beautiful aircraft of its time.""
Igor Sikorsky and Charles Lindbergh, both consultants of Pan American Airways consultant at that time, laid out plans for a new and larger flying boat. During the inaugural flight of the S-40 on November 19, 1931, the two visionaries began preliminary sketches on the back of a menu in the S-40s lounge. The Pan American President, Juan Trippe, had a similar vision of an aircraft that could span oceans. The new design provided for an increased lifting capacity, permitting to carry fuel for a 2,500 mile nonstop flight against a 30 mile-an-hour, at a cruising speed far in excess of the average operating speed of any flying boat at that time.
The S-42s maiden flight was on March 30, 1934 and was also known as the Flying Clipper and the Pan Am Clipper. On October 10, 1931, the first S-40 was delivered to Pan Am and was flown to the Anacostia Naval Air Station at Washington D.C., christened by Mrs. Herbert Hoover.
Theres a total of ten S-42s built and manufactured by the Vought-Sikorsky Aircraft Division of the United Aircraft Corporation in Stratford, Connecticut.
S-42 has crew capacity for four. It has a maximum speed of 188 mph and a range of 1,930 miles.
All Sikorsky S-42s were either scrapped or destroyed in accidents.
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