Wilson Global Explorer

This is the forum for photo's, plans, drawings and all details of those flying boats that were discussed, proposed , planned and reached prototype stage, yet never - for whatever reason - went into series production.

Wilson Global Explorer

Postby dogsbody » Tue Jul 12, 2016 5:13 am

I just heard about this one. Anyone else ever heard of it?

https://youtu.be/QAevm_3u59M


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilson_Global_Explorer



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Re: Wilson Global Explorer

Postby DavidLegg » Tue Jul 12, 2016 4:26 pm

Hi Chris - when I looked at those two links I thought the seaplane looked familiar and then, when I read in the Wikipedia link that it ended up in France, it all clicked! It is stored at the excellent hydravion museum at Biscarrosse and I saw it again as recently as May this year when we were down there in our Catalina. It is in the storage/restoration shed alongside the main aircraft display hangar.
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Re: Wilson Global Explorer

Postby dogsbody » Tue Jul 12, 2016 7:48 pm

Thanks, David.


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Re: Wilson Global Explorer

Postby DavidLegg » Tue Jul 12, 2016 7:58 pm

Chris - here it is when I saw it on a previous occasion in 2014 but I do not believe much, if anything, has changed since. Certainly looked the same in May this year from memory.

Image
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Re: Wilson Global Explorer

Postby longshot » Sat Jul 16, 2016 10:04 pm

The fuselage seems to be made from welded steel tube ...clad in thin fibrelass and glazed panels? The steel looks quite badly corroded, maybe unrestorable? Interesting and unique project?
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Re: Wilson Global Explorer

Postby Adventureguy » Sun Jul 24, 2016 3:56 pm

What is in the right of the photo partially under a cover? It looks like something with stepped floats that swing outward and backward, and perhaps equally interesting.
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Re: Wilson Global Explorer

Postby DavidLegg » Tue Jul 26, 2016 8:31 pm

Adventureguy wrote:What is in the right of the photo partially under a cover? It looks like something with stepped floats that swing outward and backward, and perhaps equally interesting.

I don't think that is a stepped float but a stepped hull of a small seaplane, possibly a microlight. Next time I am down there I'll make enquiries.
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Re: Wilson Global Explorer

Postby WhyMe » Tue Jul 26, 2016 11:01 pm

Might it be some sort of an airboat? The yellow propeller cage with rudders makes me think so.
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Re: Wilson Global Explorer

Postby DavidLegg » Mon Oct 10, 2016 5:36 pm

An update of sorts. I was down in Biscarrosse again this September (with Catalina G-PBYA) and managed to find time to pay a quick repeat visit to the flying boat museum. I took a photo of a display model of the Wilson Global Explorer (excuse the reflections) and a couple more of the frame as it is now. I also enquired about the yellow machine with floats and fan that is stored alongside and which is mentioned in above postings. I can confirm that it is a 'surface skimmer', not a seaplane and was a prototype built by design engineer M. Legrand who was working for Latecoere. The owner gave it to the museum but didn't gave the authorization to operate it on the lake. There are big plans for a new museum on the old Latecoere factory site just to the south of the existing museum and it would be great if it comes to fruition but, regardless, it is a great museum and very well worth a visit.

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Re: Wilson Global Explorer

Postby dogsbody » Tue Oct 11, 2016 3:03 pm

Thanks, David.


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