Visit Us Museum Shop Junior Aviator Contact Us
Special Exhibitions Upcoming Displays New Acquisitions
Special Exhibition Heritage Gallery Training Hangar Technology Hangar Hangar 180 External Displays Flying Displays Restoration Projects Behind the Scenes
General Events Aircraft Historical 360° Hangar Views
RAAF Badge RAAF Bases RAAF Units Personnel Records RAAF Aircraft
Volunteers Friends

A70 Martin Mariner

From the days of World War I, the Glenn L. Martin Company of America supplied a long line of military aircraft to the Army Air Corps and the US Navy. In the mid-1930s, Martin built the four-engined Model 130 'Clipper' flying-boats for Pan-American Airways and these civilian aircraft pioneered many long-range Pacific flights.

In 1937, Martin produced a quarter-scale flying model of a new twin-engined patrol bomber (PB) and a prototype of this experimental flying-boat was completed in February 1939, as the XPBM-1. Twenty production PBM-1s were delivered to the US Navy in 1940-42 and these early models had retractable wing-tip floats. A PBM-2 project was cancelled, but further World War II production included 50 PBM-3Rs, 272 PBM-3Cs, 201 PBM-3Ds, 156 PBM-3Ss and 589 PBM-5s. The flying-boat also served with the Royal Air Force as the Martin Mariner, and a four-engined derivative was produced as the Martin Mars. Post-war, 36 PBM-5A amphibian Mariners were built and the aircraft continued in service until the end of the Korean War, when it was superseded by the Martin P5M Marlin.

Late in 1943, 12 Martin Mariners (PBM-3R versions) were lend-leased to the RAAF and were allotted the serial numbers A70-1/12. These transport flying boats were delivered without armament or search radar, and were modified for personnel and freight tasks. They provided long-range support for the RAAF during the island hopping campaigns against the Japanese. The Mariners operated in conjunction with the Sunderlands of No 40 Squadron, and they superseded the Empire Flying Boats and Dorniers in No 41 Squadron.

In 1946, the Mariners still in service were placed in Category D storage, and were eventually taken off strength in 1948.



Long-range transport flying boat. All-metal hull.


Two 1700 hp Wright Cyclone R-2600-12.


Span 35.97 m (118 ft); length 23.52 m (77 ft 2 in); height 8.38 m (27 ft 6 in).


Empty 12 860 kg (28 325 lb); loaded 21 772 kg (48 000 lb).


Max speed 330 km/h (178 kt); Cruising speed 265 km/h (143 kt); Initial climb 244 m (800 ft)/min; Service ceiling 5151 m (16,900 ft); Range 4825 km (2600 nm). Back to top

Back to Series 2

Back to RAAF Aircraft