VH-ABG. Short S-23C Empire Flying Boat. c/n S.838.

 

This aircraft was the fifthteenth Empire boat completed and flown by Short Bros at Rochester, Kent

Order placed by Imperial Airways, London - September 02, 1935

It was completed as a S-23 Empire Class boat with 920 h.p. Bristol Pegasus Xc engines

The standard fuel capacity was 650 gallons

It had an all-up weight of 40,500 lbs (18,380 kg) which was later increased to 53,000 lbs (24,200 kg)

The cruising speed was 164 m.p.h. with a standard range of 760 miles / 1,245 km

Entered onto the British Aircraft Register (CofR 7670) as GAETV - March 01, 1937

First flown as G-AETV - June 17, 1937

Certificate of Aitrworthiness (CofA) Issued - June 17, 1937

Delivered to Imperial Airways, London - June 17, 1937

The aircraft was named 'Coriolanus'

Operated inaugural Sydney - Dili (Portuguese Timor) service (Captain B. Hussey) - January 16, 1941

Evacuated personel from Tjilatjap to Broome (Captain O. Denny) - February 28, 1942

Aircraft was isolated in the eastern sector of Horseshoe Route - February 1942

Ownership transferred to Qantas Empire Airways in exchange for VH-ABF - August 1942

VH-ABF 'Cooee' had been isolated in western sector when Horseshoe Route was cut - February 1942

Entered onto Australian Aircraft Register as VH-ABG (CofR 783) - August 12, 1942

Operated inaugural daily Townsville - Cairns - Port Moresby service - September 1942

Recovered downed B-17 survivors off eastern Papuan coast (Captain B. Hussey) - January 06, 1943

It was the first Qantas aircraft to re-enter Singapore after its liberation - October 08, 1945

Operated inaugural Sydney - Brisbane - Noumea - Fiji service - November 19, 1945

Operated its final revenue service Noumea - Sydney (Captain J. Lower) - December 20, 1947

Officially withdrawn from service at Sydney (Rose Bay) - December 23, 1947

Cancelled from Australian Aircraft Register - January 08, 1948

Broken up at Sydney (Rose Bay - 1948

This aircraft had the distinction of being the last Empire Boat in service anywhere in the world

It had flown over 18,500 hours and 2,500,000 miles when withdrawn from service

 

G-AETV. Imperial Airways London - 'Coriolanus' in the standard livery at Rochester, June 1937.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 2545-241.)

G-AETV. Imperial Airways London - 'Coriolanus' in the standard livery at Southampton Dock, February 1939.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 2545-363.)

VH-ABG. Qantas Empire Airways - 'Coriolanus' in the standard livery at Rathmoines, date unknown.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 2545-813.)

VH-ABG. Qantas Empire Airways - 'Coriolanus' in the standard livery at Rathmines, date unknown.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 2545-814.)

VH-ABG. Qantas Empire Airways - 'Coriolanus' in the standard livery at an unknown location, date unknown.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 2545-243.)

VH-ABG. Qantas Empire Airways - 'Coriolanus' in the standard livery at Sydney Rose Bay, January 08, 1948.

Mr R. Banks supervises the beaching of the aircraft for the last time.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 2545-244.)

VH-ABG. Qantas Empire Airways - 'Coriolanus' in the standard livery at Sydney Rose Bay, January 08, 1948.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 2545-396.)

VH-ABG. Qantas Empire Airways - 'Coriolanus' in the standard livery at Sydney Rose Bay, January 08, 1948.

The aircraft is prepared for its official decommissioning ceremony.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 2545-364.)

VH-ABG. Qantas Empire Airways - 'Coriolanus' in the standard livery at Sydney Rose Bay, January 08, 1948.

The aircraft's logbooks and nameplate are accepted by Mr W. Hudson Fysh from Captain W. Crowther.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 2545-245.)

VH-ABG. Qantas Empire Airways - 'Coriolanus' nameplate at Sydney Rose Bay, January 08, 1948.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 2545-365.)