Flying Boat World Tour

41EGHI Southampton26685 NM200h59mins

Immediately after my first circumnavigation, the question came from observers and simpilots alike: When will the next one start? Which plane will you fly? I rejected all inquiries as I had only just gotten back. Over the next few months I mainly moved larger planes in short hops across Europe. A320, MD-81, MD-11, Fokker70, B737 and B747 were part of my permanent fleet and 3 hours was a long flight already.

After what must have been the 100th approach to EDDF, my gaze wandered over the world map of the first circumnavigation and I noticed the areas that I had left out. Australia, South America, Africa, all continents that I hadn’t seen on my tour. I wanted to go here, what could be more obvious than to combine this with a second world tour?

I quickly started planning the route, but soon realized that this time I would need a larger plane to cover the longer distances. So my first candidate, the Piper Cheyenne, was dropped. The same was true for the KingAir. But I definitely didn’t want to fly a jet, it had to be a prop. HS748, C130 and also DC6B were considered and I had almost settled for the DC6B ‘FlyingRedBull’ when I came across the Boeing 314. My mother had read Ken Follet’s book ‘Night Over Water’ and raved about the big flying boat. And when my mother raves about technical things, that means something.

So I bought the B314 from Pilot’s and was immediately impressed. A 4-prop airplane in its simplest form, the engine control comparable to the DC6B, no navigation instruments (apart from a compass and a sextant) and a rudimentary autopilot. A real pilot plane.

Since the B314 package from Pilot’s also includes a number of the old flying boat ports as scenery, these are of course preferred destinations on the world tour. Furthermore everything that offers enough water, including large and small harbors. Some of the planned highlights of the tour: Gibraltar, Skiathos, Suez Canal, Hawaii, Kingston, San Francisco and the countless sea airports in North America and Canada.

This circumnavigation of the world started on November 21, 2008 and was flown with 3 simulators (FS2004, FSX and MSFS) and 4 aircraft (Boeing 314, PBY Catalina, Icon A5 and Grumman Goose).

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