A brief history of the Boeing Model 1





The Boeing Model 1, also known as the B & W Seaplane, was a single-engine biplane seaplane aircraft and was the first Boeing product. It carried the initials of its designers, William Boeing and Lt. Conrad Westervelt USN.

The B & W was completed in June 1916 at Boeing's boathouse hangar on Lake Union in Seattle, Washington. It was made of wood, with wire bracing, and was linen-covered. It was similar to the Martin trainer aircraft that Boeing owned, but the B & W had better pontoons and a more powerful engine. The first B & W was named Bluebill, and the second was named Mallard. They first flew on 15 June 1916, and in November.


Photo KudzuVine / commons.wikimedia.org

The two B & Ws were offered to the United States Navy. When the Navy did not buy them, they were sold to the New Zealand Flying School and became the company's first international sale. On June 25, 1919, the B&W set a New Zealand altitude record of 6,500 feet. The B & Ws were later used for express and airmail deliveries, making New Zealand's first official airmail flight on December 16, 1919.

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