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Hughes H-4 Hercules

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In 1942, the U.S. requested a giant flying boat to transport personnel and material over the Atlantic then controlled by German U-boats.  Another requirement was that the aircraft be built with a minimum of "strategic materials".  The Hughes flying boat was built mostly of wood and received the nickname "Spruce Goose".

Other names include Hercules (the official Hughes Aircraft name) and Flying Lumberyard (by its detractors).  

Howard Hughes and Henry Kaiser worked on the huge flying boat from 1942 to 1944 when Kaiser withdrew from the project.  Howard Hughes persevered through 1947 and flew the Hercules once to prove it could fly.

After the flight, Hughes had the Spruce Goose put in storage and kept in airworthy condition until his death in 1976.






Type: Transport
Engines: eight 3,000 hp (2236 kW) Pratt & Whitney R-4360-4A radial piston engines
HK-1: Hughes-Kaiser designation
H-4: Hughes aircraft designation after Kaiser withdrew

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Howard Hughes and the Spruce Goose

24" x 18"



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Kenneth W Shanaberger 2000 - 2010