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JRM-3 Mars—Martin’s work horse flying boat

28 October 2016

 

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Martin JRM-3 Mars tied up at a buoy—image Courtesy Coulson Flying Tankers

Coulson Flying Tankers has had owner ship of the remaining two (originally six were produced by Martin) Mars aircraft—the Hawaii Mars and the Philippine Mars. The JRM-3 Mars is the largest flying boat design produced by a U.S. manufacturer and was needed to prosecute the war against Japan in World War II as it was thought it would stretch into 1946 or 1947 at the time. Flying boats offered logistics delivery (troops or cargo) to nearly anywhere in the Pacific Theater of Operations with its innumerable isles and atolls. Today, this brace of fine aircraft are working flying boats, being employed to combat forest fires delivering water mixed with gel (which is carried on board to provide 30 drops). Flying three hours per mission and able to scoop water every 15 minutes should a lake be nearby) these Mars aircraft can be remarkably effective placing enormous amounts of water where needed with speed and no requirement for access roads. Water loading is done by landing the aircraft on water but keeping it on the step—as the pilot lowers the two scoops from the hull the copilot adjusts the throttles to keep the aircraft on its step as more than a ton of water comes aboard per second—for a half-minute while two flight engineers monitor engines as well as other systems.

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Coulson crewman lends scale to the large nature of the appropriately named Mars—image Courtesy Coulson Flying Tankers

Martin JRM-3 Mars stats as provided by Coulson Flying Tankers—image Courtesy Coulson Flying Tankers

Martin JRM-3 Mars stats as provided by Coulson Flying Tankers—image Courtesy Coulson Flying Tankers

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Martin JRM-3 Mars tied up at a buoy—image Courtesy Coulson Flying Tankers

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Martin JRM-3 Mars during a fast taxi—image Courtesy Coulson Flying Tankers

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The view of the bows and hull of the Coulson Flying Tankers Hawaii Mars—image Courtesy Coulson Flying Tankers

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. theflyingyorkshireman permalink
    28 October 2016 14:05

    What a magnificent aeroplane! (Reminiscent of the 1939 PAA Boeing 314 Clipper flying boat, but with many improvements, no doubt.) – And manufactured by the same Baltimore company that gave us the 1935 Martin M-130 China Clipper…

    • travelforaircraft permalink*
      30 October 2016 01:52

      Indeed 🙂

  2. Bruce Kay permalink
    29 October 2016 10:37

    WOW! Joe, a really great find! Thanks for another flying boat photo shoot.

    • travelforaircraft permalink*
      30 October 2016 01:52

      Thanks Bruce. Pretty cool aren’t they 🙂

  3. 31 October 2016 06:20

    Somebody correct me if I am wrong, but aren’t that airplane’s controls all pulley and cable? No hydraulic boost? If so, it must be like wrestling a bear to fly.

    • travelforaircraft permalink*
      31 October 2016 21:03

      I would think so too. Enough pulleys and such though…

  4. Lurch permalink
    4 November 2016 13:14

    There has been a multi-part article on these same planes in recent issues of “Air Classics”.

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