12-05-2016, 02:23 AM
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: 49°18'55" N 000°00'19" W
Ten engines … the SARO Princess
This time, it is a flying boat.
In 1946, the British Ministry of Supply asked Saunders Roe to build a flying boat able to accommodate 100 passengers on two decks in the comfort and the luxury of a transatlantic liner, it was intended for non-stop transatlantic service by BOAC.
It was really a big aircraft, a wingspan of 66,9 m, a length of 42 m, max take off weight 156,5 t.
Its expected range was 5200 nm with a full load and it was powered by ten (10 !) gas turbines.
Everything was huge in this aircraft, including the flight engineers panel, two F/E were required to operate the aircraft.
On a B 747-100, the F/E panel was something impressive with an electrically powered seat sliding forward and backward to reach every control, switch, circuit breaker or the throttles, but on the Princess it was twice as long, requiring two full-time F/E.
Powered by ten Bristol Proteus gas turbines, each of them was supposed to produce 3500 shp, if fact, they were limited to 2500 shp, the engines were in the development phase.
Three aircraft were ordered and built.
the first prototype was the only to fly, it made 47 flights and accumulated a flying time of 97 h 50 mn.
All the contra prop gearbox temperatures were "in the red" during the first flight.
Proteus engines lacking power.
Problems with the engines and the propeller gearboxes.
A few engine shutdowns.
It was reported severe engine problems with salt water getting into the inner engines during take off and landing.
BOAC withdrew support when the airline ceased flying boat operations in 1950.
All these problems led to the decision to end development.
The aircraft reached 30 000 feet during flight 40, which in 1953, was quite remarkable.
By comparison the cruising altitude of the Constellation in those days was 18 000 feet.
The G-ALUN made its last flight on the 27th of May 1954.
This is a resin model made by Cloudbreak Models.
Propellers, engine exhausts and beaching gear are white metal.
The model is very nice and very accurate, it captures the shape of the real aircraft very well, congratulations to the pattern maker.
Assembling the different parts doesn't pose any problem.
Pitot tubes and VHF antenna were added.
Just for fun (?), propellers were sanded and polished with a cotton swab in a Dremel rotary tool and the deicers were painted on the forty blades.
The decals offer a option for the "airline livery", I preferred the Prototype livery.
You can also display the model on a very nice beaching gear and if you wish, you have in the box a separate pair of outer wings with floats down.
Available from Helmet 200 in kit form for £ 78, can be bought all finished.
Too good to be missed.