Martin P5M Marlin
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Martin P5M Marlin

With the US Navy requiring a new patrol flying-boat, Martin decided to develop the successful PBM Mariner, the resulting Martin Model 237 design combining the wing and upper hull of the Mariner with the new lower hull structure. The close relationship between the two types is emphasised by the fact that a PBM-5 Mariner served as the prototype XP5M-1 which, when ordered into production, was given the name Marlin. The modified hull of the XP5M-1 incorporated radar-directed nose and tail turrets, as well as a power-operated dorsal turret, and power was provided by two 2424kW Wright R-3350 radial engines. This prototype flew for the first time on 30 May 1948, but it was not until two years later that the P5M-1 was ordered into production, the first of these series aircraft being flown on 22 June 1951. Initial deliveries, to US Navy Squadron VP-44, began on 23 April 1952 and the type remained in service until the mid-1960s. In addition to those operated by the US Navy, 10 of the later P5M-2 version were supplied to France under the American MAP for use by the Aeronavale.

Martin P5M Marlin

 ENGINE2 x Wright R-3350-32WA Turbo-Compound, 2573kW
    Take-off weight38555 kg85000 lb
    Empty weight22900 kg50486 lb
    Wingspan36.02 m118 ft 2 in
    Length30.66 m101 ft 7 in
    Wing area130.62 m21405.98 sq ft
    Max. speed404 km/h251 mph
    Ceiling7300 m23950 ft
    Range3300 km2051 miles
 ARMAMENT3600kg of weapons

Martin P5M Marlin

Comments1-20 21-40 41-60 61-80 81-100 101-120 121-140 141-160 161-180
Rick Dombrowski, 26.03.2015

I was assigned as the PC on QE-7 at Sangley Point, R.P. Worked in the Mech Shop when not flying. Had some interesting events on several patrols and worked with a great crew to get the job done. LT Bob Westlake was PPC, Ltjg Stebbins and Ltjg Stroup were 2P and 3P; Dominese was Radar, Hiser was Radio, Masterson was Structures/Hydraulics, Saterfield was Electric and Wilson was the other AT. This crew flew the P5M-1, BuNo 126501, which we had the priviledge to fly back to San Diego, turn in the A/C, go thru updated equipment training and fly a new P5M-2 back to Sangley Point. I personally accomplished this twice with flying another P5M-1 to San Diego to do the same swap and fly another new P5M-2 back to Sangley Point. The last transpac was under the expert guidance of LT Keith Wilkinson . Seaplane flying was unique and a demanding aspect of patrol duties. Our Crew 4 was personally involved with the rescue of a NorthWest Orient DC-6B that was forced to ditch between Guam and the Philippines; a tribute to that aircrew's talent in getting the plane down in an open sea landing and recovering the lion's share of the survivors from the downed aircraft. It was a distinct pleasure to serve with men such as these of VP-40.

richard chamberlain, 17.03.2015

chamberlain I was on the P5M that had to land at sea because the starboard engine caught fire.We used both extingishers,it was still burning.we were given a cardboard write up by Martin. I am ret.AO 1.Spelling(extinguishers)

Robert (Bob) Hummel, 14.03.2015

I was with VP45 in Coco Solo, Panama in '54 when we received our first P5M-1, Number 12. I was the electronics tech and third radioman on that crew, until I left the Squadron in May for VR1 in Pax River. Enjoyed my time as a crew member.

Harold Marchant, 12.03.2015

How would I contact a person who wrote a comment about the Martin P5M. We shared an apartment at North Island. He says, drop me a line. Where would I find his address?

Harold Marchant

Frank Notarnicola, 25.02.2015

I flew as a P5M-1 2nd Mech 1958-59 in
ATU501/VT29 Corpus Christi, TX. Loved the P Boats. Next assignment was USS Pine Island AV12 San Diego / WestPAC. While on Pine Island 1961/62 picked up crew of VP40 Sangley Pt that went down in Philppine Sea. Had engine fire landed on water to extinguish Fire. Picked up crew and lifted plane on deck at night on the high seas. First time ever night time pick up at sea. Anyone out there part of rescued aircrew or Piney Maru remember this event?

Gerald Lillie, 23.01.2015

Flew in the P5M's as radioman and electrical panel operator. ATU 501 in Corpus Christi,TX, 1957. VP-31 in North Island,CA, 1962 to 1965. Retired as ATC in 1973.

Ronald D.Peters, 19.01.2015

I was in VP 31 from the fall of 1962 until summer of 1963. I worked in the tool crib in the seaplane hanger. My boss took me along on a training flight on a PB5M I remember they used a boat to detach and attach the wheels. It was quite exciting for a farm boy from SD just turned 18.

bill klawon' ao1,ret, 10.01.2015

Ordnanceman vp48,vp50 (sg-3),vp31. '59-'65.good times in
Iwakuni with those crazy crew 3 AT's.

Ron Jerger, 03.01.2015

Flew for over two years as a crew member in VP-48. I was an AO3. My Job besides an ordence man was to cook and grab the rope eye upon approaching the ramp. I love it and seems like only yesterday some times.

William U Yates, 22.12.2014

W U Yates contact at

William U Yates, 21.12.2014

I am fascinated by the first couple entries; I was a AEMAN when I reported to VP-47 in January 1959 at Alameda. Went to Iwakuni and worked in EBU, I am called an AD in the cruise book. I will scan and email pictures if anyone wants a page.

George j spencer, 03.11.2014

I was enlisted from 1958 thru 1962' served in the vp 47 seaplane squadron, went to Iwakuni, Japan. After airframes school in 1958, in Memphis Tennessee.
Am interested in contacting any airmen who served in my squadron with me. I served under a great leader ; commander Gorman, CO.
I worked on the hydraulics, and airframes on the p5m seaplanes.
Anyone remember ?. please contact me at my e-mail address, god bless you each and everyone who served in defense of our great USA. Spence !!!

Commander Gorman

Ralph Doudna, 21.08.2014

My first duty assignment upon graduating from ATAN school was VP-47 Alameda from Mid 1959 to mid 1962. Checked into the squadron as an ATAA and left for ATIB school as an AT2. Made my first flight as a tail observer shortly after checking in to the squadron. The command pilot was CDR Gorman XO. I can still recall that flight. The squadron deployed to Iwakuni, Japan 1959-1960 and was relieved by VP-50 one month late due to an unfortunate and costly training accident they had experienced while at Whidbey Is. We returned to Alameda and the squadron was reassigned to Whidbey Is. I eventually was assigned to flight crew and flew with crew 4. About the only flight gear enlisted received in those days was a flight jacket helmet and gloves. PPC was LCDR Wilson, Pilots were Lt's Dorsey Brown, Dick VanGermit, Skip Rawlins, Monte Killingsworth, Ltjg Link, Enlisted were, Erine Hill, David Payne, Jim Bateman, Maurice Sherman, Ron Keys, Paul Newbury, Jim Davis, Ken Hanway and Carlton Harris, not all these members were in crew four at the same time. My time and numerous hours both on the ground and in the air with crew four will forever be some of my fondest memories. They were a great group to serve with and We all did a lot of growing up under each others guidance. Flying in the old P5M-1 and -2 was a challenge and experience I would not trade for anything and there is no way of relating those times to someone who has not experienced it. We were deployed to Alaska with the USS Curtuck in 1962 and were ridding the buoy in Old Woman Bay, which required 3 enlisted and 1 pilot to control the aircraft incase the aircraft broke away from the buoy, Ltjg Link wondered what a PDC sounded like when it went off so he had Sherman throw one off the port wing and nothing happened, thinking it was a dud we threw another off the stbd wing nothing happened until about 2 in the morning when the tide came in and the water depth exceeded 50 ft, Those things went off a few seconds apart and our curiosity was forever satisfied . I would also like acknowledge Tommy Thompson the Marin Rep who more than once rolled up the sleeves of his white shirt and helped troubleshoot and repair a difficult problem. Retired out of the Navy as an CPO in 1994 and would like to thank all those who contributed to my career along the way.

Robert Hauser, 28.06.2014

I took 2 PBM's to Sangley point.I was an AD2 and flight engineer. The first crashed on take off at Swatow China rescuing a Navy P2V. We lost both Navy and Coast Guard. The second crashed during a rescue of a seaman on a Japanese freighter. This was in 1952-1953.

gerald smith, 20.06.2014

formerly vp 50 57 to 62. best times of my 21 years service. still have contact with part of my crew members and ordnance shop personnel.
like to make contact with other P boat crewmwmbers

john clark at-2, 21.03.2014

Air Crewman VP-42 Sept, 1956 -August 1957 MAD operator, then eventually 1st radio. Memories rekindled watching the P3 and P8 in the search for Malaysia 370. I wonder how much better the MAD gear must be 60 years later...
Nice ride.

Dan Creverling, 27.02.2014

Served with VP-50 from June 1959 - Feb 1962,later retired after 22 years. VP-50 represented the best memories of my career.

Tom Sacher, 17.01.2014

Great reading many of the comments, I too served in VP-49, 61'to 63' AE 2, Plane Capitan of LP-5. What a great bunch of guys I served with. The US Navy was a great place to grow up. The P5M was quite aircraft. didn't like Cuba much especialy the time we put a hole in the hull landing at night. But God was with us and we are here to talk about it. Drop a line if you served with me, God Bless America!!!

Jesse Salazar, 20.12.2013

I served in VP-42 from 1960 to 1963 & as a kid just out of high school I had a great crew who taught me all about this aircraft. Being a kid from Nebraska they liked me because I wasn't afraid to work. My first flight in my life was in a P5M & I met some great guys from all over the USA.

Walt Stevens, 10.12.2013

i interred VP 42 as the "boot ensign" in Sept. '57. I was assigned to be "registered Pubs" officer. I got into hot water with the skipper after failing to be able to account for a page from one of the publications. We never did recover the page.
So my Naval career was ended there and then. All for the best, I guess. I had a long and wonderful career with American Airlines Retired in 1996. Drop me a line.

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