The PBY-7AT — A 21st-Century air yacht

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The “PBY-7AT” amphibian aircraft concept is based on the proven design of the classic rugged PBY Catalina flying-boat. A PBY airframe would be entirely stripped, redesigned and rebuilt for exploration, bush-flying and circumnavigation. The end result would be a complete rebirth of the aircraft, bringing this classic flying-boat up to 21st century standards.

This conversion project is based on 1) the fact that “SuperCat” and “Bird Innovator” variants of the PBY aircraft have historically proved to be successful and viable conversions of the type to high-power engines and 2) the fact that the Basler BT-67 conversion to this type of turboprop was successfully achieved in the past (The DC-3/C-47 and the PBY-5A being originally equipped with the same Twin Wasp family of engines).

pby-7AT concept
PBY-7AT with observation blisters

Among others, the following modifications are planned:

- 2x Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-67R with Hartzell 5 Blade Aluminum propellers.
- 75-Inch fuselage extension (10%, 1,9 m.) forward of pylon.
- Complete cockpit retrofit with Garmin G1000.
- Row44 worldwide broadband internet.
- Single-pilot certified.
- Improved STOL performance. VFR/IFR/Known Ice certification.
- Improved low-level, low-speed handling and maneuverability with BLCs.
- Redesigned wing enhancing aerodynamic and structural performance. Composite control surfaces.
- Landing gear refit/optimization for bush/rough terrain.
- “Tall-tail” redesign if applicable (cf. PBY-6A/PBN1 Nomad).
- Excellent sound-proofing and insulation of the cabin to cope with extreme weather conditions.
- No pressurization.
- Redesigned hull for better performance on water (V-hull "Clipper" bow, redesigned steps, etc.)(cf. PBN1 Nomad).
- Addition of the rear observation blisters if absent.
- Addition of the “airstairs” access door if absent. Bulkheads overhaul.
- “yacht” cabin, with berths, galley, toilet/shower, workstations etc., fit for long-range travel exploration (cf. Bird Innovator).
- Standard Airworthiness Certificate: Certified for 9 passengers (11 counting pilot & copilot).
- Increased fuel tank capacity. Auxiliary wing tanks mounts. Transcontinental ferry range: 2,500 nm.
- “zero accumulated fatigue damage” certification if poss. (cf. Basler BT-67)

PBY-7AT vs. PBY-5A
size comparison PBY-5A (28-5ACF Landseaire) vs. PBY-7AT (top)

Possible interior layout:

PBY-7AT interior
possible interior layout of a PBY-7AT

The 10% extension of the fuselage forward of the pylon allows for the creation of a new compartment behind the cockpit where the communications suite and workstation can be installed (on the starboard side), while the port side see the addition of a crew door and a head. The next compartment is large enough to accommodate a galley on the starboard side and a bathroom with full-size shower on the port side. Alternatively, the berths and galley could be switched around. Or the galley could be placed under a blister, as was done on N101CS. The possibilities are endless.


Length: 21.4 m.
Wingspan: 31.7 m.
Height: 6.15 m.
Wing area: 1,400 ft2

Power plants: Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-67R
Propellers: Hartzell 5 Blade Aluminum propellers
Endurance: 18 h.

Empty weight: 12 t.
MTOW: 23 t.
Useful load: 2 t.
Range @MTOW: 2,200 nm
Ferry range: 2,500 nm
Fuel capacity: 2.000 gal.

Service ceiling: 18,000 ft.

Max speed: 194 kt.
Cruise speed: 180 kt.

Take-off distance land: 840 m.
Take-off distance water: 815 m.
Landing distance land: 675 m.
Landing distance water: 665 m.

Avionics: Garmin G1000

Single-pilot, IFR, Known Ice Certified

The PBY-7AT is a rugged, go-anywhere aircraft with a proven track record dating back all the way to 1935 and the first flight of the XPBY-1. Go in style to the farthest points of the Earth and back without breaking a sweat. Whether you want a Round-the-World tour, or island-hopping in the Caribbean, or even arctic escapades... The world is at your fingertips with this fantastic machine!

The PBY-7AT conversion has been quoted in both price and estimated time to completion (although final specifications remain to be determined).
Feel free to contact me for more information.