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Great Britain's Saunders-Roe Saro London flying boat

Photos

  • Saro London flying boat prototype
  • Saro London Mk I flying boat
  • Saro London Mk I flying boat
  • Saro London Mk II flying boat
  • Saunders Roe Saro London Mk II flying boat
  • Saunders Roe Saro London Mk II flying boat
  • Saro London flying boat
  • Saro London flying-boat
  • Saro London flying boat

Design

The Saro London was made to meet Air Ministry Specification R.24/31.

The Saro London was made to have a metal hull, with a metal frame that had fabric covering the wings and tail.

To increase the range a dorsal fuel tank was installed.

Prototype

The London prototype had two Pegasus III (750 HP) engines and first flew in 1934.

Production

Starting with the eleventh aircraft manufactured the engines that were installed were Pegasus X and the aircraft was designated the Mk II.

  • Saro London:
    • Production: March 1936 - ?
  • Saro London Mk II:

Usage

Units

The London prototype served with the No 209 and No 210 Squadrons between 1934 and 1936 at Felixstowe and Gibraltar.

In 1936 London Mk IIs joined the No 201 (Calshot) and No 204 (Mount Batten) Squadrons.

In 1937 London Mk IIs joined the No 202 (Kalafrana, Malta) and No 228 (Pembroke Dock) Squadrons.

In September 1939 London Mk IIs were still with No 201 (Sullom Voe, Shetland Islands), No 202 (Gibraltar), and No 240 (Ivergordon) Squadrons.

In April 1940 No 201 Squadron and in June 1940 No 240 Squadron had their Londons replaced. In June 1941 No 202 Squadron had their Londons replaced.

Specifications

  Saunders-Roe Saro London Mk II
Type Reconnaissance, Coastal Reconnaissance
Crew 6
Engine (Type) 2: Bristol Pegasus X
Cylinders Radial, Radial 9
Cooling Air
HP 920 each, 960 each
Dimensions  
Span 80'
24.38 m
Length 56' 6", 56' 9.5"
17.31 m
Height 18' 9"
5.71 m
Wing area 1,425 sq ft
132.38 sq m
Weight  
Empty 11,100 lb
5,035 kg
Loaded 22,000 lb
9,979 kg
Performance  
Speed 155 mph
Speed at Sea Level 142 mph
228 kph
Climb 1,180'/minute
360 m/minute
Service ceiling 19,900'
6,065 m
Range 1,740 miles, 1,750 miles
2,800 km
Armament  
Open Bow 1: MG
1: 7.7 mm / 0.303" Lewis MG
Midships 1: MG
1: 7.7 mm / 0.303" Lewis MG
Tail 1: 7.7 mm / 0.303" Lewis MG
Under Wings - Bombs, Mines, or Depth Charges 2,000 lb
907 kg

Sources:

  1. Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook, Ensign L. C. Guthman, 1943
  2. The Encyclopedia of Weapons of World War II, Chris Bishop, 1998
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site