Military Factory logo
Icon of F-15 Eagle military combat fighter aircraft
Icon of Abrams Main Battle Tank
Icon of AK-47 assault rifle
Icon of navy warships

Boeing 314 Clipper (C-98)

Long-Range Flying Boat Aircraft

The Boeing Model 314 Clipper flying boat saw only 12 such examples produced in two variations.
Authored By: Staff Writer | Edited: 10/23/2017
National Flag Graphic


Year: 1939
Status: Retired, Out-of-Service
Manufacturer(s): Boeing Aircraft Company - USA
Production: 12
Capabilities: Navy/Maritime; Commercial Market;
Crew: 11
Length: 106.07 ft (32.33 m)
Width: 152.10 ft (46.36 m)
Height: 20.41 ft (6.22 m)
Weight (Empty): 48,281 lb (21,900 kg)
Weight (MTOW): 83,776 lb (38,000 kg)
Power: 4 x Wright R-2600-3 radial engines developing 1,600 horsepower each.
Speed: 211 mph (340 kph; 184 kts)
Ceiling: 19,619 feet (5,980 m; 3.72 miles)
Range: 3,664 miles (5,896 km; 3,184 nm)
Operators: United Kingdom; United States
The Boeing Model 314 "Clipper" was a flying boat developed by Boeing Aircraft Company to fulfill a Pan American requirement for a long-range passenger flying boat transport. The system saw only 12 examples produced in two variants and could ferry up to 68 passengers in late 1930's/early 1940's comfort. Clippers served in a military capacity once the war was in full swing for America, gradually returning to civilian flight in the post-war world - naturally outclassed by the new crop of longer-range aircraft no available.

The 314 Clipper followed suit with other flying boat aircraft designs of the time, featuring a monocoque stout fuselage and high-mounted engines on a monoplane wing assembly. The crew sat high atop the flight deck and consisted of 11 personnel that would include stewards. Passenger accommodations were variable in that 68 could be flown through daytime routes whilst seating was limited to 36 passengers on overnight route - the seats could be fully converted to sleeping bunks in this case, dropping the total amount of passenger space in this respect. One highly distinguishable design aspect of the Clipper was in the use of a three-fin tail assembly, utilized when testing of single and double tail fins proved inadequate at providing the airframe with additional control.

Make no mistake, these aircraft were built with a certain clientele in mind. Professional chefs were hired to provide quality meals from the inflight galley. A separate dining area and changing rooms were also fitted into the design. In essence, the Boeing 314 series was the flying boat of choice for the wealthy American during this time. Transatlantic flying had now undergone a rich evolution, offering up an inflight playground for passengers willing to brave the long overseas flights in style.

Two variations of the 314 Clipper existed as the base 314, fitted with 4 x Wright R-2600 Double Cyclone engines at 1,500 horsepower a piece and the 314A, which saw use of the more powerful Wright Double Cyclone 1,600 horsepower engine. Six of each variation were produced for a total of 12 full operational examples. Clippers were in service with distinguishable names from 1939 through 1951 and were represented as the Honolulu Clipper, Cape Town Clipper, Anzac Clipper, Pacific Clipper, American Clipper, Yankee Clipper, California Clipper and the Atlantic Clipper - all operated by Pan Am. The remaining three Clippers were flown with the British Overseas Airways Corporation and represented with the Bristol, Bangor and the Berwick. Unfortunately, no full examples of the Clipper exist today, with the preceding models being either purposely destroyed, dismantled or lost to accident (three such incidents in this case).



Variants / Models

• 314 - Base Production Model Designation; fitted with 4 x Wright R-2600 Double Cyclone 1,500hp engines; 6 such examples produced.
• 314A - Improved 314 Model; fitted with 4 x Wright Dougle Cyclone 1,600hp engines; increased range; increased fuel capacity; redesigned propeller systems; 6 examples produced.
• C-98 - Military Designation
Site Disclaimer  |  Privacy Policy  |  Cookies  |  Site Map Site content ©2003-, All Rights Reserved.

The "Military Factory" name and logo are registered ® U.S. trademarks protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. All written content, illustrations, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and not for reuse/reproduction in any form. Material presented throughout this website is for historical and entertainment value only and should not to be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation. We do not sell any of the items showcased on this site. Please direct all other inquiries to militaryfactory AT

Part of a network of sites that includes GlobalFirepower, a data-driven property used in ranking the top military powers of the world, and, the World Directory of Modern Military Aircraft.

Facebook Logo YouTube Logo