Книги

Putnam
C.Barnes
Bristol Aircraft since 1910
108

C.Barnes - Bristol Aircraft since 1910 /Putnam/

The Bristol Boxkite

  The Bristol biplane of 1910, familiarly but inaccurately dubbed 'the Boxkite', was an unashamed copy of the Henri Farman, using the same dimensions and scantlings, but introducing the more refined metal fittings, such as steel clips and cast aluminium strut sockets, of Zodiac practice. The quality of French-built Farmans was somewhat variable, but the Bristol biplane, though similar in general appearance, was equivalent to or better than the best that France had produced at that time. Indeed when the solicitors for Farman Freres proposed to sue the 'Bristol' Directors for infringement of patents, the Directors immediately entered a defence claiming substantial improvements, and no court proceedings ensued. The first two Boxkites were constructed at Filton to drawings made by George Challenger in June 1910, immediately after the abandonment of the Zodiac. They differed from all later Boxkites in having rear elevators with straight trailing edges and in having two, instead of one, intermediate vertical struts between each pair of upper and lower front booms. No. 7 was at first fitted with a 50 h.p. Gregoire four-cylinder engine and No.8 with a 50 h.p. eight-cylinder E.N.V., both being watercooled. A further point of difference was that No.8 had double-surfaced wings whereas No. 7 had a single fabric covering with pockets enclosing the ribs; the latter was standard Farman practice and was adopted on all later Bristol Boxkites, mainly to save weight. The Gregoire was unreliable and deficient in power, so Emile Stern's success in obtaining one of the first 50 h.p. Gnome rotaries released for export was particularly valuable. Fitted with this engine, No.7 was taken to Larkhill on 29 July 1910, assembled overnight, and flown the next day to a height of 150 ft. at the first attempt by Edmond, to the astonishment of beholders who had taken up prone positions on the ground in order to detect the first glimmer of daylight between the grass and the wheels.
  With the efficiency of the design thus spectacularly confirmed, the two Boxkites were crated and dispatched to Lanark, where a six-day aviation meeting opened on 6 August at the race course. Only No.7 took part in any events, which Edmond completed without incident but with only one award, the second prize for the slowest lap, in which his speed was 45 m.p.h. Meanwhile, more Boxkites were laid down at Filton and Nos. 7 and 8 were allocated as initial equipment of the flying schools at Brooklands and Larkhill, respectively; No.8 retained the Lanark competition number 19 on its rudders for some months. As new aircraft were completed, the schools' complement was doubled, Larkhill receiving No. 9 in September and Brooklands No. 11 in November. Captain Dickson flew No.9 in the army autumn manceuvres in September and Lt. Loraine accompanied him on No.8, which had been equipped with a Thorne-Baker wireless transmitter. Nos. 10 and 12 were specially prepared for the Missions to Australia and India, respectively, the latter being the first to have upper wing extensions. The next two, Nos. 12A and 14 (No. 13 being unacceptable to any pilot of that date!) were flown from Durdham Down in the first public demonstration of the Company's activities; when these ended No. 12A was lent to Oscar Morison, who flew it in various demonstrations and competitions; No. 14 went on to Larkhill as a school aircraft, releasing No.9 for duty as the spare for the Indian Mission. Two further new Boxkites, Nos. 15 and 16, went to Brooklands, whence No. 11 was brought back for overhaul and packing as the spare for the Australian Mission. No. 16 was fitted with extended wings and a 60 h.p. E.N.V. water-cooled engine; the latter made it technically an 'All British' aeroplane for competition purposes, and thus it became the mount on which Howard Pixton, with Charles Briginshaw as mechanic, won the Manville Prize of ?500 for the highest aggregate time flown on nine specified days in 1911.
  Both the Australian and Indian Missions arrived at their destinations in December, and on 6 January 1911 Jullerot demonstrated No. 12 before a Vice-regal party and a large crowd of spectators at the Calcutta Maidan. Invited to participate in the Deccan cavalry manceuvres, Jul1erot made several flights from Aurangabad, from 16 January onwards, carrying Capt. Sefton Brancker as army observer, and later took part in the Northern Manceuvres at Karghpur. Here conditions were very severe and both No. 12 and No.9 came to grief on the rock-strewn terrain, with a ground temperature of 100°F, but many flights were made and repairs kept pace with damage. When all the spares were used up, No. 9 was cannibalised to keep No. 12 flying and the latter survived to return to Larkhill as a school machine, being flown by many notable pupils, including Robert Smith-Barry, who was charged ?15 in October 1911 for repairs after a heavy landing on it.
  In Australia, Hammond began flying on No. 10 at Perth late in December, going on to Melbourne, where 32 flights, many with passengers, were made. The Mission then moved to Sydney, whence Hammond went home to New Zealand leaving Macdonald as sole pilot. By 19 May 1911,72 flights totaling 765 miles had been completed without having had to replace a single bqlt or wire on No. 10. The spare machine, No. 11, still in its packing case, was sold to W. E. Hart, of Penrith, N.S.W., together with the unused spares, when the Mission left to return to England. Although this was the only direct sale made by both Missions, the Boxkite had by now begun to attract foreign buyers. The outcome of negotiations with the Russian Attache in Paris, William Rebikoff, was the first Government contract in the world for British aeroplanes, signed on 15 November 1910 for the supply of eight improved Boxkites having enlarged tanks and three rudders, which were called the Military model. The first three of these, Nos. 17, 18 and 19, were at first flown with 50 h.p. Gnomes, although 70 h.p. Gnomes had been specified for delivery in April 1911, when they were to become available. Meanwhile, No. 16, brought up to Military standard with three rudders but retaining its E.N.V. engine, was lent to Claude Grahame-White for an attempt to win the prize of ?4,000 offered by Baron de Forest for a flight from England to the most distant point along the Continental coast. No. 16 was damaged by a storm while waiting to take off from Swingate Downs, Dover, but was repaired in time for a second attempt on 18 December 1910, when Grahame-White was caught by a down-gust at the cliff-edge and crashed. No. 17, which was at Brooklands, was at once dispatched as a replacement, but caught fire soon after arrival at Dover, and Grahame-White then retired from the contest on his doctor's advice. Lt. Loraine had also entered the competition, flying No.8, but this too was badly damaged in the storm; No. 16 was eventually rebuilt and flown again at Brooklands. In April Nos. 18 and 19 were shipped to St. Petersburg together with Nos. 20 to 25 inclusive, after installation of 70 h.p. Gnome engines, but were later exchanged for two new machines, Nos. 26 and 30, in July 1911. No. 18 was damaged in transit back to Filton and written off, but No. 19 survived at Larkhill until May 1913, when it was dismantled and reconstructed as No. 134, which in turn was crashed at the Brooklands school in November 1913.
  Still no contract came from the British War Office, and the next two Boxkites, Nos. 27 and 28, were standard school machines bought by the Belgian pilot Joseph Christiaens, who chose them for his flying displays in Malaya and South Africa. He took delivery of them on 19 January 1911, and after successful flights at Singapore on No. 27 went on to Cape Town and Pretoria, where he sold No. 28 to John Weston, who became the Company's agent in South Africa. A further school machine, No. 29, was sent to Brooklands in February 1911 and then two special exhibition models were built, having 70 h.p. Gnome engines, enclosed nacelles and increased span. The first, No. 31, was exhibited at Olympia in March 1911, and the second, No. 32, at St. Petersburg in April. The latter was inspected by the Czar and so impressed his military advisers that a gold medal and certificate of merit were awarded to the Company; and No. 32 was purchased in addition to the eight already ordered.
  The War Office at last placed a contract, on 14 March 1911, for four Military Boxkites with 50 h.p. Gnomes as described in a specification submitted on 20 October 1910. Meanwhile Oscar Morison had damaged No. l2A while giving exhibition flights at Brighton, and No. 34 was taken from the production line to replace it. The first two War Office machines, Nos. 37 and 38, were delivered at Larkhill on 18 and 25 May, respectively, but then the War Office asked for the other two to be supplied with 60 h.p. Renault engines for comparison. This required a redesign of the engine mounting and carlingue, which resulted in a substantial nacelle structure in front of the pilot. No. 39, thus modified, was delivered at Larkhill on 9 July, by which time four more had been ordered, two with 50 h.p. Gnomes and two as spare airframes without engines. The latter (Nos. 40 and 41) were dispatched on 31 July, the second Renault machine (No. 42) on 2 August and the remaining Gnome machines (Nos. 48 and 49) during the subsequent fortnight. Nos. 43 and 47 were standard school Boxkites, the first being supplied to Larkhill while the second was taken to France by Versepuy when he returned in September 1911; he demonstrated it at Issy-les-Moulineaux and Vichy, where his mechanic was George Little; subsequently he sold it to the Bulgarian Government, to be flown by Lt. Loultchieff.
  By this time the Boxkite production line had become well established and continued, mainly to supply wastage at the various schools, until 1914. In the standard models the wing extensions were retained but the third rudder was deleted. Strict interchangeability of components was maintained, and many later school machines incorporated serviceable parts from earlier aircraft. The 50 h.p. Gnome remained as the standard power unit except for No. 60 and No. 139, which had 70 h.p. Gnomes. The latter machine was supplied to R.N.A.S. Eastchurch in April 1913, receiving Naval serial no. 35, and was standard except for the engine, but No. 60 was similar to Nos. 31 and 32 with an enclosed nacelle, also incorporating longitudinal tanks and a push-pull handwheel control instead of the simple control-stick; this was demonstrated at Cuatros Vientos by Busteed in November 1911 and purchased soon afterwards by the Spanish Government, who ordered a similar spare airframe (No. 79) in which they fitted one of their own 70 h.p. Gnomes. Including rebuilds which received new sequence numbers, the total number of Boxkites built was 76, all at Filton except for the final six (Nos. 394-399), which were the first aeroplanes constructed at the Tramways Company's Brislington works. Although underpowered and out-dated at the end of their career, they survived mishandling often to the point of demolition, but the pupils emerged more or less unscathed and the mechanics performed daily miracles of reconstruction, so that school machines were constantly reappearing Phoenix-like from their own wreckage. Apart from the nine exported to Russia, three were sold to South Africa, two each to Australia, Germany and Spain, and one each to Bulgaria, India, Rumania and Sweden.
  In addition to the Boxkite proper, there were two variants, both for competition work. The first of these was No. 44, which had wings of much reduced span and a small single-seat nacelle. This was for Maurice Tetard in the Circuit de l'Europe (racing no. 3) and was first flown on 30 May 1911; in the race it developed engine trouble and Tetard retired at Rheims, half-way through the first stage. The other was No. 69 and was a redesign in November 1911 by Gabriel Voisin using standard wings, but with the gap reduced and the front elevator and booms deleted; a single large tail plane and a single rudder replaced the normal biplane tail unit. It was sent to Larkhill for tests in February 1912. No photograph of this machine has survived and it was apparently soon rebuilt as a standard school Boxkite, in which form it was crashed at Larkhill by Major Forman on 3 November 1912.


SPECIFICATION AND DATA

  Type: Bristol Biplane (Boxkite)
  Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton and Brislington, Bristol
  Power Plant:
   One 50 hp Gregoire
   One 50/60 hp E.N.V.
   One 50 hp Gnome
   One 60 hp Renault
   One 70 hp Gnome

Model Standard Extended Racer Voisin
   (Military) No. 44 No. 69
Span 34 ft 6 in 47 ft 8 in or 35 ft 32 ft 8 in
   46 ft 6 in
Length 38 ft 6 in 38 ft 6 in 38 ft 30 ft 9 in
Height 11 ft 10 in 11 ft 10 in 11 ft 10 in 9 ft 6 in
Wing Area 457 sq ft 517 sq ft 350 sq ft 420 sq ft
Empty Weight 800 lb 900 lb 800 lb 800 lb
All-up Weight 1,050 lb 1,150 lb 1,000 lb 1,000 lb
Speed 40 mph 40 mph 50 mph 50 mph
Accommodation 2 2 1 2
Production 15 61 1 1
Sequence Nos. 7-11 12A 12 15-32 44 69
   14 34 43 37-42 47
   49 55 62 48 60 67
   63 65 66 79 93 99
   119 124-129
   133-139 179
   180 203
   204 207
   222 226
   231 347
   394-399
Boxkite No.8 (50 hp E.N.V.) at Larkhill in November 1910.
Edmond on Boxkite No.7 at Larkhill on 30 July 1910.
Edmond flying Boxkite No.7 at Lanark in August 1910.
Larkhill Flying School photographed from a Boxkite by Stanley White in 1911.
Henri Jullerot and Stanley White at Durdham Down, 14 November 1910.
Pioneers in the field: Edmond in Boxkite No.8 at Lanark in August 1910, with (l. to r.) Crisp, Frank Coles, Lesue Macdonald, Collyns Pizey, G. H. Challenger, Bendall and Briginshaw.
Bristol Standard Biplane (Boxkite)
The Bristol Glider

  The Bristol Glider was a biplane designed by George Challenger for presentation by Sir George White to the Bristol and West of England Aero Club, of which Sir George was elected President in October 1910; this was a thriving organisation boasting over 75 members. The Glider was designed to carry two persons and was intended to take an engine of 30 h.p. at a later stage. It was sturdily constructed, with double-surfaced mainplanes and tailplane; ailerons were fitted to the upper wing only and the forward and aft elevators were coupled. Two very small rudders were mounted between the upper and lower tail-booms forward of the aft elevator and a conventional control system was used. The Glider was first flown at the Club's flying ground near Keynsham, Somerset, on 17 December 1910, with Challenger at the controls; it was hand-towed down a slope by ropes attached to the lower wing-tips, and a two-wheeled dolly was used for uphill retrieval. On 27 February 1911 it was damaged and was repaired by the Company for the nominal cost of l2s. 6d., but on 4 September 1911 it was more severely crashed and the repairs then cost ?30. No engine was ever installed, but the Glider appears to have survived at least until 1912 ; as it was constructed to Sir George's private order, it had no Bristol sequence number.

   SPECIFICATION AND DATA
Type: Glider
Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol
Power Plant: Nil (provision for 30 hp later)
Span: 32 ft 4 in
Length: 33 ft 10 in
Height: 6 ft 8 in
The glider built for the Bristol & West of England Aero Club, October 1910.
The Bristol Racing Biplane (1911)

  The Bristol biplane No. 33 (dubbed 'The Racer'), a single-seater designed by Grandseigne and Versepuy under the supervision of George Challenger in the winter of 1910-11, was an attempt to combine a monoplane's performance with a biplane's structural advantages. It had double-surfaced wings of unequal span, the upper being inversely tapered. The wings, built round single steel-tube spars, were designed to warp for lateral control and to be readily folded for storage. A large fixed tailplane carried divided elevators, with an unbalanced rudder mounted above with no fin. The fuselage was rectangular in section, of composite steel-tube and wood construction and fabric-covered throughout its length. The engine, a 50 h.p. Gnome mounted on double bearers, was enclosed in an aluminium cowl. The sturdy twin-skid steel-tube chassis was attached to the lower longerons, carrying two wheels on a rubber-sprung cross-axle stabilised by telescopic struts attached to the upper longerons. The main skids extended back to act as brakes when landing, a flexible tail skid being also fitted. The Racer deserved better success than to be wrecked by overturning on its first attempted flight at Larkhill in April 1911, soon after being shown on the Bristol stand at Olympia.

   SPECIFICATION AND DATA
Type: Racing Biplane (1911)
Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol
Power Plant: One 50 hp Gnome
Span: 27 ft
Length: 25 ft
Wing Area: 210 sq ft
Empty Weight: 570lb
All-up Weight: 750lb
Speed: 55 mph (estimated)
Accommodation: Pilot only
Production: 1 only
Sequence No.: 33
Bristol-Grandseigne No.33 racing biplane, March 1911.
The Bristol Boxkite

  The Bristol biplane of 1910, familiarly but inaccurately dubbed 'the Boxkite', was an unashamed copy of the Henri Farman, using the same dimensions and scantlings, but introducing the more refined metal fittings, such as steel clips and cast aluminium strut sockets, of Zodiac practice. The quality of French-built Farmans was somewhat variable, but the Bristol biplane, though similar in general appearance, was equivalent to or better than the best that France had produced at that time. Indeed when the solicitors for Farman Freres proposed to sue the 'Bristol' Directors for infringement of patents, the Directors immediately entered a defence claiming substantial improvements, and no court proceedings ensued. The first two Boxkites were constructed at Filton to drawings made by George Challenger in June 1910, immediately after the abandonment of the Zodiac. They differed from all later Boxkites in having rear elevators with straight trailing edges and in having two, instead of one, intermediate vertical struts between each pair of upper and lower front booms. No. 7 was at first fitted with a 50 h.p. Gregoire four-cylinder engine and No.8 with a 50 h.p. eight-cylinder E.N.V., both being watercooled. A further point of difference was that No.8 had double-surfaced wings whereas No. 7 had a single fabric covering with pockets enclosing the ribs; the latter was standard Farman practice and was adopted on all later Bristol Boxkites, mainly to save weight. The Gregoire was unreliable and deficient in power, so Emile Stern's success in obtaining one of the first 50 h.p. Gnome rotaries released for export was particularly valuable. Fitted with this engine, No.7 was taken to Larkhill on 29 July 1910, assembled overnight, and flown the next day to a height of 150 ft. at the first attempt by Edmond, to the astonishment of beholders who had taken up prone positions on the ground in order to detect the first glimmer of daylight between the grass and the wheels.
  With the efficiency of the design thus spectacularly confirmed, the two Boxkites were crated and dispatched to Lanark, where a six-day aviation meeting opened on 6 August at the race course. Only No.7 took part in any events, which Edmond completed without incident but with only one award, the second prize for the slowest lap, in which his speed was 45 m.p.h. Meanwhile, more Boxkites were laid down at Filton and Nos. 7 and 8 were allocated as initial equipment of the flying schools at Brooklands and Larkhill, respectively; No.8 retained the Lanark competition number 19 on its rudders for some months. As new aircraft were completed, the schools' complement was doubled, Larkhill receiving No. 9 in September and Brooklands No. 11 in November. Captain Dickson flew No.9 in the army autumn manceuvres in September and Lt. Loraine accompanied him on No.8, which had been equipped with a Thorne-Baker wireless transmitter. Nos. 10 and 12 were specially prepared for the Missions to Australia and India, respectively, the latter being the first to have upper wing extensions. The next two, Nos. 12A and 14 (No. 13 being unacceptable to any pilot of that date!) were flown from Durdham Down in the first public demonstration of the Company's activities; when these ended No. 12A was lent to Oscar Morison, who flew it in various demonstrations and competitions; No. 14 went on to Larkhill as a school aircraft, releasing No.9 for duty as the spare for the Indian Mission. Two further new Boxkites, Nos. 15 and 16, went to Brooklands, whence No. 11 was brought back for overhaul and packing as the spare for the Australian Mission. No. 16 was fitted with extended wings and a 60 h.p. E.N.V. water-cooled engine; the latter made it technically an 'All British' aeroplane for competition purposes, and thus it became the mount on which Howard Pixton, with Charles Briginshaw as mechanic, won the Manville Prize of ?500 for the highest aggregate time flown on nine specified days in 1911.
  Both the Australian and Indian Missions arrived at their destinations in December, and on 6 January 1911 Jullerot demonstrated No. 12 before a Vice-regal party and a large crowd of spectators at the Calcutta Maidan. Invited to participate in the Deccan cavalry manceuvres, Jul1erot made several flights from Aurangabad, from 16 January onwards, carrying Capt. Sefton Brancker as army observer, and later took part in the Northern Manceuvres at Karghpur. Here conditions were very severe and both No. 12 and No.9 came to grief on the rock-strewn terrain, with a ground temperature of 100°F, but many flights were made and repairs kept pace with damage. When all the spares were used up, No. 9 was cannibalised to keep No. 12 flying and the latter survived to return to Larkhill as a school machine, being flown by many notable pupils, including Robert Smith-Barry, who was charged ?15 in October 1911 for repairs after a heavy landing on it.
  In Australia, Hammond began flying on No. 10 at Perth late in December, going on to Melbourne, where 32 flights, many with passengers, were made. The Mission then moved to Sydney, whence Hammond went home to New Zealand leaving Macdonald as sole pilot. By 19 May 1911,72 flights totaling 765 miles had been completed without having had to replace a single bqlt or wire on No. 10. The spare machine, No. 11, still in its packing case, was sold to W. E. Hart, of Penrith, N.S.W., together with the unused spares, when the Mission left to return to England. Although this was the only direct sale made by both Missions, the Boxkite had by now begun to attract foreign buyers. The outcome of negotiations with the Russian Attache in Paris, William Rebikoff, was the first Government contract in the world for British aeroplanes, signed on 15 November 1910 for the supply of eight improved Boxkites having enlarged tanks and three rudders, which were called the Military model. The first three of these, Nos. 17, 18 and 19, were at first flown with 50 h.p. Gnomes, although 70 h.p. Gnomes had been specified for delivery in April 1911, when they were to become available. Meanwhile, No. 16, brought up to Military standard with three rudders but retaining its E.N.V. engine, was lent to Claude Grahame-White for an attempt to win the prize of ?4,000 offered by Baron de Forest for a flight from England to the most distant point along the Continental coast. No. 16 was damaged by a storm while waiting to take off from Swingate Downs, Dover, but was repaired in time for a second attempt on 18 December 1910, when Grahame-White was caught by a down-gust at the cliff-edge and crashed. No. 17, which was at Brooklands, was at once dispatched as a replacement, but caught fire soon after arrival at Dover, and Grahame-White then retired from the contest on his doctor's advice. Lt. Loraine had also entered the competition, flying No.8, but this too was badly damaged in the storm; No. 16 was eventually rebuilt and flown again at Brooklands. In April Nos. 18 and 19 were shipped to St. Petersburg together with Nos. 20 to 25 inclusive, after installation of 70 h.p. Gnome engines, but were later exchanged for two new machines, Nos. 26 and 30, in July 1911. No. 18 was damaged in transit back to Filton and written off, but No. 19 survived at Larkhill until May 1913, when it was dismantled and reconstructed as No. 134, which in turn was crashed at the Brooklands school in November 1913.
  Still no contract came from the British War Office, and the next two Boxkites, Nos. 27 and 28, were standard school machines bought by the Belgian pilot Joseph Christiaens, who chose them for his flying displays in Malaya and South Africa. He took delivery of them on 19 January 1911, and after successful flights at Singapore on No. 27 went on to Cape Town and Pretoria, where he sold No. 28 to John Weston, who became the Company's agent in South Africa. A further school machine, No. 29, was sent to Brooklands in February 1911 and then two special exhibition models were built, having 70 h.p. Gnome engines, enclosed nacelles and increased span. The first, No. 31, was exhibited at Olympia in March 1911, and the second, No. 32, at St. Petersburg in April. The latter was inspected by the Czar and so impressed his military advisers that a gold medal and certificate of merit were awarded to the Company; and No. 32 was purchased in addition to the eight already ordered.
  The War Office at last placed a contract, on 14 March 1911, for four Military Boxkites with 50 h.p. Gnomes as described in a specification submitted on 20 October 1910. Meanwhile Oscar Morison had damaged No. l2A while giving exhibition flights at Brighton, and No. 34 was taken from the production line to replace it. The first two War Office machines, Nos. 37 and 38, were delivered at Larkhill on 18 and 25 May, respectively, but then the War Office asked for the other two to be supplied with 60 h.p. Renault engines for comparison. This required a redesign of the engine mounting and carlingue, which resulted in a substantial nacelle structure in front of the pilot. No. 39, thus modified, was delivered at Larkhill on 9 July, by which time four more had been ordered, two with 50 h.p. Gnomes and two as spare airframes without engines. The latter (Nos. 40 and 41) were dispatched on 31 July, the second Renault machine (No. 42) on 2 August and the remaining Gnome machines (Nos. 48 and 49) during the subsequent fortnight. Nos. 43 and 47 were standard school Boxkites, the first being supplied to Larkhill while the second was taken to France by Versepuy when he returned in September 1911; he demonstrated it at Issy-les-Moulineaux and Vichy, where his mechanic was George Little; subsequently he sold it to the Bulgarian Government, to be flown by Lt. Loultchieff.
  By this time the Boxkite production line had become well established and continued, mainly to supply wastage at the various schools, until 1914. In the standard models the wing extensions were retained but the third rudder was deleted. Strict interchangeability of components was maintained, and many later school machines incorporated serviceable parts from earlier aircraft. The 50 h.p. Gnome remained as the standard power unit except for No. 60 and No. 139, which had 70 h.p. Gnomes. The latter machine was supplied to R.N.A.S. Eastchurch in April 1913, receiving Naval serial no. 35, and was standard except for the engine, but No. 60 was similar to Nos. 31 and 32 with an enclosed nacelle, also incorporating longitudinal tanks and a push-pull handwheel control instead of the simple control-stick; this was demonstrated at Cuatros Vientos by Busteed in November 1911 and purchased soon afterwards by the Spanish Government, who ordered a similar spare airframe (No. 79) in which they fitted one of their own 70 h.p. Gnomes. Including rebuilds which received new sequence numbers, the total number of Boxkites built was 76, all at Filton except for the final six (Nos. 394-399), which were the first aeroplanes constructed at the Tramways Company's Brislington works. Although underpowered and out-dated at the end of their career, they survived mishandling often to the point of demolition, but the pupils emerged more or less unscathed and the mechanics performed daily miracles of reconstruction, so that school machines were constantly reappearing Phoenix-like from their own wreckage. Apart from the nine exported to Russia, three were sold to South Africa, two each to Australia, Germany and Spain, and one each to Bulgaria, India, Rumania and Sweden.
  In addition to the Boxkite proper, there were two variants, both for competition work. The first of these was No. 44, which had wings of much reduced span and a small single-seat nacelle. This was for Maurice Tetard in the Circuit de l'Europe (racing no. 3) and was first flown on 30 May 1911; in the race it developed engine trouble and Tetard retired at Rheims, half-way through the first stage. The other was No. 69 and was a redesign in November 1911 by Gabriel Voisin using standard wings, but with the gap reduced and the front elevator and booms deleted; a single large tail plane and a single rudder replaced the normal biplane tail unit. It was sent to Larkhill for tests in February 1912. No photograph of this machine has survived and it was apparently soon rebuilt as a standard school Boxkite, in which form it was crashed at Larkhill by Major Forman on 3 November 1912.


SPECIFICATION AND DATA

  Type: Bristol Biplane (Boxkite)
  Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton and Brislington, Bristol
  Power Plant:
   One 50 hp Gregoire
   One 50/60 hp E.N.V.
   One 50 hp Gnome
   One 60 hp Renault
   One 70 hp Gnome

Model Standard Extended Racer Voisin
   (Military) No. 44 No. 69
Span 34 ft 6 in 47 ft 8 in or 35 ft 32 ft 8 in
   46 ft 6 in
Length 38 ft 6 in 38 ft 6 in 38 ft 30 ft 9 in
Height 11 ft 10 in 11 ft 10 in 11 ft 10 in 9 ft 6 in
Wing Area 457 sq ft 517 sq ft 350 sq ft 420 sq ft
Empty Weight 800 lb 900 lb 800 lb 800 lb
All-up Weight 1,050 lb 1,150 lb 1,000 lb 1,000 lb
Speed 40 mph 40 mph 50 mph 50 mph
Accommodation 2 2 1 2
Production 15 61 1 1
Sequence Nos. 7-11 12A 12 15-32 44 69
   14 34 43 37-42 47
   49 55 62 48 60 67
   63 65 66 79 93 99
   119 124-129
   133-139 179
   180 203
   204 207
   222 226
   231 347
   394-399
Claude Grahame-White on No. 16 at Dover, 18 December 1910.
Jullerot on No. 39 (60 hp Renault) at Larkhill, July 1911.
Flying instruction, 1911: Solo on a Boxkite at Brooklands;
The Bristol Monoplane (1911)

  The first Bristol monoplane was designed by George Challenger and Archibald Low in January 1911 and was a single-seater incorporating both Bleriot and Antoinette features, having the warping wing of the former and the slim, triangular-section fuselage of the latter. The 50 h.p. Gnome engine was mounted in a steel frame, and the undercarriage was a simple arrangement of two wheels and a central skid anticipating that of the famous Avro 504 biplane. Two of these monoplanes (Nos. 35 and 36) were constructed in February 1911, and the first was sent to Larkhill for preliminary testing before returning to Filton to be prepared for the Olympia Exhibition in March. It attracted great interest there and the second monoplane was similarly shown at St. Petersburg from 23 to 30 April. When flight tests of No. 35 were attempted by Versepuy at Larkhill, the monoplane failed to take-off and was damaged, and no attempt was made to repair it, in view of Pierre Prier's impending arrival as a monoplane designer.

   SPECIFICATION AND DATA
Type: Tractor Monoplane (1911)
Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol
Power Plant: One 50 hp Gnome
Span: 33 ft 6 in
Length: 31 ft 6 in
Wing Area: 215 sq ft
Empty Weight: 580lb
All-up Weight: 760lb
Speed: 55 mph (estimated)
Accommodation: Pilot only
Production: 2
Sequence Nos.: 35,36
Monoplane No. 35, March 1911.
The Bristol-Prier Monoplanes

  Pierre Prier was an experienced Bleriot pilot and a qualified engineer, who made the first non-stop flight from London to Paris on 12 April, 1911, while he was chief-instructor of the Bleriot school at Hendon. He was keen to design aeroplanes to his own ideas and found the opportunity to do so when invited to join the British and Colonial Aeroplane Company's staff in June. He at once undertook the design of a fast single-seat monoplane to compete in the annual Gordon Bennett Cup race, at Eastchurch on 1 July, when it was to be flown by Graham Gilmour. In spite of all efforts, this monoplane, Type P-1, No. 46, could not be completed in time for the race, but two more (Nos. 56 and 57), of almost identical design but with overhung engine mountings, were put in hand for the Circuit of Britain competition, in which they were to be flown, respectively, by Prier himself and Oscar Morison. Unfortunately Prier crashed No. 56 on the morning of the race and meanwhile Morison injured his eye, so the Prier monoplane's debut had again to be postponed. The P-1 had a 50 h.p. Gnome engine and Bleriot-type warping wings; its undercarriage had sprung skids, and the tail unit comprised a balanced rudder and a single balanced elevator without any fixed surfaces. The designed top speed of 70 m.p.h. was achieved without difficulty, and the next development was to produce a useful two-seater version. The first of these, No. 58, was the prototype of a successful series of military and training monoplanes, which were produced in some numbers during 1912 and followed the Boxkite into service in military flying schools in Spain, Italy and Germany as well as at Larkhill, Brooklands and the Central Flying School. The single-seat version was also developed as a low-powered runabout for advanced solo pupils, for which purpose it was fitted with a three-cylinder Anzani radial engine of 35 h.p. Nos. 46 and 57 were the first to be so converted, and one new single-seater, No. 68, was built to the same standard. It was intended to install a 40 h.p. Clement Bayard flat-twin engine in No. 57 at a later date, but this engine shed its airscrew while being run on test, causing severe head injuries to Herbert Thomas which nearly proved fatal. No. 56 retained its Gnome engine, and was acquired, after repairs, by James Valentine, who flew it on a cross-country flight to qualify for one of the first Superior Certificates granted by the Royal Aero Club. In November 1911 he fitted it with a 40 h.p. Isaacson radial engine for entry in the British Michelin Cup no. 2 competition, which was restricted to all-British aircraft and pilots.
  Prier and Valentine flew the two-seater, No. 58, extensively during September and October 1911 and satisfied the Directors that it was suitable for quantity production with a good prospect in foreign markets. A batch of six, Nos. 71-76, was laid down and the first was specially finished for exhibition at the Paris Salon de l'Aeronautique in December 1911, where it was the sole British representative. All steel parts were burnished and 'blued' to resist rust, aluminium panels were polished to mirror finish and the decking round the cockpits and the wing tread-plates were panelled in plywood. The seats were suspended on wires and, like the cockpit rims, were upholstered in pigskin. A cellulose acetate window was fitted in the sloping front bulkhead to give the passenger a downward view and a sketching board, map case and stowages for binoculars and vacuum flask were also provided. Each cockpit had a Clift compass and the cowling was extended well over the engine to prevent oil being thrown back. A speed of 65 m.p.h. was guaranteed and the price quoted was Fr. 23,750 (about ?950). No. 71 was dispatched from Filton to Paris on 10 December 1911 and No. 72 was shipped to Cuatros Vientos for demonstration to the Spanish Army on 19 December. No. 73 had been sent incomplete to Larkhill in November as a replacement for No. 58 which had crashed on 30 October and No. 74 was rushed out to Issy-les-Moulineaux on 22 December, just before the Filton works closed for Christmas. So when the Paris Salon opened, visitors who had been impressed by the appearance of No. 71 were further delighted by seeing Valentine flying No. 74 round the Eiffel Tower. Valentine was in constant demand for further demonstrations, and on 2 January 1912 made a spectacular arrival with a passenger at St. Cyr in appalling weather just before dusk. A few days later, flying with Capt. Agostini of the Italian Army as passenger, Valentine found his landing baulked by troops, after a long glide with engine off. Unable to restart, he had to swerve through the top of a tree to find a clear space for landing, but, although a branch was carried away, only minor damage resulted. Capt. Agostini was so impressed by this evidence of sturdy construction that an order for two monoplanes arrived from the Italian Government before the end of the week.
  Howard Pixton, who had gone to Madrid to demonstrate No. 72, was faced with a more formidable task than Valentine, for Cuatros Vientos is 3,000 ft. above sea level and the Spanish army tests included landing on and taking-off from a freshly ploughed field. The only other competitor, a German, declared this feat to be impossible, and Pixton, too, was worried about the loss of power at this altitude. Then Busteed arrived on Boxkite No. 60 and made short work of the ploughed field test and subsequently both machines were demonstrated to King Alfonso and his staff; the Spanish Government then adopted Bristol aeroplanes as standard equipment for its School of Military Aviation, both aircraft were purchased and two more Prier monoplanes and a further Boxkite were ordered.
  When the Spanish trials ended Pixton was summoned to Doberitz, near Berlin, to demonstrate No. 74, which had been shipped to Germany when Valentine returned from Paris. Pixton flew the machine several times before German staff officers at Doberitz and once before the Kaiser at Potsdam. Once when Pixton was challenged by a Rumpler pilot to fly in very gusty conditions he easily out-manoeuvred his rival, but misjudged his height and touched down at high speed, bounced high and then landed safely. Frank Coles, Pixton's mechanic, remarked that this was a test of the undercarriage and was able to warn Pixton before he had time to apologise for an error of judgment, but later a German pilot tried to do the same and came to grief. These demonstrations marked the formation of the Deutsche Bristol-Werke and its associated flying school at Halberstadt, to which No. 74 was handed over on 30 March 1912.
  Meanwhile, on 11 January, the War Office had ordered a Prier monoplane for the Army Air Battalion, and on 17 February Lt. Reynolds took delivery of No. 75 at Larkhill. It was generally similar to No. 71 but had a strengthened rudder post and a cane tail skid with an aluminium shoe on the end. Like all Prier monoplanes, it was fitted with a Rubery Owen quick-release catch which could be attached to a rope and picket before starting and released from the cockpit, thus dispensing with wheel chocks and the helpers who were always liable to damage the floating elevator. The last of the initial batch, No. 76, was a two-seater like the others, but was equipped for alternative use as a long-range single-seater, with a combined auxiliary fuel and oil tank to fit the front seat and a waterproof cover for the front cockpit. No. 76 was delivered to the Italian Government on 4 April, and a similar machine from the second production batch, No. 84, followed on 1 June.
  The second batch of Prier monoplanes (Nos. 81-98) comprised both single-seaters and two-seaters, and several of the latter were an improved model introduced by Capt. Dickson, having a fixed tailplane and a hinged elevator and the fuselage lengthened by 30 in. The first of this Prier-Dickson type was No. 82, which was sent to Larkhill on 27 July 1912 and proved very successful. No. 81 was a single-seater with Anzani engine similar to No. 68 and was sent to Spain in April, together with No. 83, a two-seater similar to No. 72. No. 83 crashed before acceptance by the Spanish authorities, and No. 82 was then sent to Spain as a replacement, but not before the advantages of the revised fuselage and tail had been noted by the Royal Flying Corps at Larkhill. Consequently, when No. 75 needed repairs in June, it was modified to the new standard and redelivered as a Prier-Dickson, bearing its new military number 256. Almost at once it crashed, but was again repaired at Filton and returned to service on 23 July 1912. Only two more 'short' Prier two-seaters were built, No. 90 which went to Italy in September and No. 94 (largely a rebuild of No. 71) which was demonstrated by Pixton at Bucharest in May and then returned to Brooklands as a trainer, being finally crashed by Lindsay Campbell on 10 August 1912. No. 85 was a Prier-Dickson for the German Government and was delivered on 4 June; Nos. 86 and 88 were similar machines with 70h.p. Gnomes for the Turkish Government and were dispatched in July to Constantinople, where Coles erected and Pixton tested them. No. 87 was delivered to the Bulgarian Government at Sofia on 16 September; it was flown in the Balkan War and once carried Hubert Wilkins (later famous as a polar explorer) as a passenger to take films for a London newspaper. No. 89 was the third two-seater for Italy, shipped on 14 August, while No. 91 was the second machine for the Royal Flying Corps, who took delivery on 23 August 1912, allotting it serial 261. The remainder of the second batch were Anzani-engined single-seaters generally similar to No. 81; Nos. 95 and 96 were sent to Italy in May 1912 and were returned to Filton, intact but well worn, as late as January 1914. No. 97 was built for the Larkhill school in May 1912, but was wrecked a month later, when No. 98 was built as its replacement; the latter had a fixed tailplane, as did the final Prier single-seater, No. 102, which went to Larkhill in November as an additional school machine.
  After Prier left the Company in 1912, Coanda perpetuated the long-fuselage model for school duties, and three more were built before December 1912. Of these, No. 130 crashed on a test flight, being rebuilt as No. 155 and retained at Larkhill school. No. 156 was sold to the Deutsche Bristol-Werke school at Halberstadt. Coanda also introduced a side-by-side variant of the Prier-Dickson, of which three were built, No. 107 for the Halberstadt school in June, with No. 109 following as a spare airframe in December, while No. 108 was delivered to the Larkhill school in October and was crashed by Major Hewetson on 18 July 1913. The side-by-side variant was described in one of the Company's catalogues as the 'Sociable' model, the tandem two-seater being called the 'Military' and the single-seater the 'Popular', but these appellations failed to gain currency. Thirty-four Prier monoplanes were built in all between July 1911 and December 1912.


   SPECIFICATION AND DATA
Type: Prier Monoplanes
Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol
Power Plants: One 50 hp Gnome (P-1 and 2-seaters)
   One 70 hp Gnome (2-seater long-body)
   One 35 hp Anzani (single-seaters only)
   One 40 hp Isaacson (single-seaters only)
   One 40 hp Clement-Bayard (single-seaters only)


Model P-1 single seat two seat two seat two-seat
   school short body long body side-by-side
Span 30 ft 2in 30 ft 2 in 32 ft 9 in 34 ft 35 ft 6 in
Length 24 ft 6in 24 ft 6in 24 ft 6in 26 ft 26 ft
Height 9 ft 9 in 9 ft 9 in 9 ft 9 in 9 ft 9 in 9 ft 9 in
Wing Area 166 sq ft 166 sq ft 185 sq ft 200 sq ft 200 sq ft
Empty Weight 640 lb 620 lb 650 lb 660 lb 660 lb
All-up Weight 820 lb 780 lb 1,000 lb 1,080 lb 1,080 lb
Speed 68 mph 58 mph 65 mph 65 mph 65 mph
Accomodation 1 1 2 2 2
Production 3 7 11 10 3
Sequence Nos. 46 56 57 68 81 95- 58 71-76 82 85-89 107-109
   98 102 83 84 90 91 130
   94 155 156
Pierre Prier with P-1, No. 46, at Larkhill, July 1911.
Sir George White inspects No. 56 at Larkhill, August 1911.
No. 56 re-engined with 40 hp Isaacson for James Valentine, 1911.
Warren Merriam with pupil in No. 73 at Larkhill, 1912.
Prier-Dickson No. 75 (256) at Farnborough in March 1913.
Single-seater No. 81, sold to Spain in March 1912.
Flying instruction, 1911: Dual on a Prier monoplane at Larkhill.
Bristol Prier P-1
The Bristol Biplane Type T

  The racing Boxkite No. 44, flown by Tetard in the Circuit de l'Europe, has already been described. Contemporary with it was a single-seat biplane designed by George Challenger for Maurice Tabuteau. It was not a Boxkite variant, although it incorporated details based on Boxkite experience and also owed much to the practical advice of Capt. Dickson, for which reason it was often called the Challenger-Dickson biplane. The first of the type, No. 45, had long upswept skids similar to those of the Farman Longhorn, but was a more compact design. The engine, a 70 h.p. Gnome, was mounted at the back of a rectangular nacelle containing fuel and oil tanks arranged longitudinally behind the cockpit. A push-pull handwheel control was installed, as in the Zodiac, and the forward elevator was carried at the apex of the front booms and the chassis skids. A single tailplane, with the rear elevator hinged to it, had a pair of narrow chord balanced rudders mounted close together below, in the slipstream. The T -type biplane, its official designation, was intended for cross-country racing and Tabuteau was one of nine entrants who completed the Circuit de l'Europe course out of the 38 starters. The route of 1,025 miles was from Paris via Liege, Spa, Liege, Venlo, Utrecht, Breda, Brussels, Roubaix, Calais, Dover, Shoreham, Hendon, Dover, Calais back to Paris.
  The vantage points which attracted most spectators were Calais and Dover, where there was the prospect of witnessing a mass crossing of the Channel for the first time, only seven crossings, including Bleriot's first in 1909, having been previously accomplished. The 11 pilots who arrived at Dover did in fact all cross within 45 minutes of each other. Tabuteau lost his way to Hendon and landed at Northwood to ask his way; for such an emergency he carried a placard inscribed: "Hold back the aeroplane. Do not let it go only when I am in and raise the hands. Do not frighten if the motor makes noise and smoke and wind and above all do not let it go."
  Four more T-type biplanes (Nos. 51-54) were built for entry in the Circuit of Britain race, for which the Daily Mail offered prize money totaling ?10,000. They were to have been flown, respectively, by Graham Gilmour, Collyns Pizey, Gordon England and Howard Pixton, with Tabuteau also competing on No. 45. However, Tabuteau was unable to take part and Gilmour had had his aviator's certificate suspended by the Royal Aero Club for alleged dangerous flying over Henley Regatta on 7 July, so only Pizey, England and Pixton started. The new biplanes differed slightly from No. 45, having modified nacelles with normal control sticks and the rudders were set as far apart as possible, out of the middle of the slipstream. Nos. 52 and 53 had 70 h.p. Gnome engines, but No. 54 had a 60 h.p. Renault. The team was unlucky, for England had engine trouble and could not take-off, Pizey broke his undercarriage in landing near Melton Mowbray and Pixton was slightly injured in landing near Harrogate. After the race, Gilmour's machine, No. 51, was fitted with a 50 h.p. Gnome and sold on 22 July to Gerald Napier, a newly qualified pilot trained at the Brooklands school. On 1 August he made several practice flights, with somewhat erratic landings, and then he took-off again with a passenger, although the machine was only a single-seater. He stalled on a gliding turn and crashed, being killed, but his passenger was thrown clear and received only minor injuries. No further flying was done with T -type biplanes after this, although one of them was handed over to Gordon England for experimental work and he converted it into a tractor biplane with a 60 h.p. E.N.V. engine. This machine, No. 59, was called the Challenger England and was delivered to Larkhill in November 1911. It was not very successful, and is notable chiefly because it had a fuel system comprising main tanks in the fuselage from which fuel was transferred by air pressure to a small gravity tank under the upper wing, thus preventing air bubbles from reaching the carburettor as so often happened with a direct feed from a pressurised tank. No. 59 was flown from time to time by advanced pupils (including Robert Smith-Barry) at Larkhill and, on 19 May 1912, was taxied into a crowd of spectators and overturned, one person being killed; after this it was dismantled. One further T-type biplane, No. 78, was never completed, but was to have had a 100 h.p. Gnome.

   SPECIFICATION AND DATA
Type: Biplane Type T
Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol
Power Plants: One 70 hp Gnome
   One 60 hp Renault
   One 100 hp Gnome
Span: 35 ft
Length: 24ft 6in
Wing Area: 350 sq ft
Empty Weight: 800lb
All-up Weight: 1,000lb
Speed: 58 mph
Accommodation: Pilot only
Production: 6
Sequence Nos. 45 51-5478

   SPECIFICATION AND DATA
Type: Challenger-England
Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol
Power Plant: One 50/60 hp E.N.V.
Span: 35 ft
Length: 23 ft
Wing Area: 350 sq ft
Accommodation: Pilot only
Production: One only
Sequence No.: 59
Maurice Tabuteau starting from Vincennes on No. 45 in Circuit de l'Europe Race, June 1911.
Collyns Pizey on T-type biplane in Circuit of Britain Race, July 1911.
Challenger-England No. 59 at Larkhill, December 1911.
The Bristol-Burney Flying Boats

  Coanda's biplane, No. 120, was not the first Bristol seaplane, for over a year earlier there had begun a very interesting series of experiments, which continued in a great secrecy almost up to the outbreak of war in 1914. In October 1911 Howard Pixton undertook a series of overwater flights from Hayling Island in a Boxkite (No. 29) fitted with flotation bags under the wings, with Lt. Charles Dennistoun Burney, R.N., son of Admiral Sir Cecil Burney, as his passenger. Lt. Burney was very enthusiastic about the possibility of operating naval aircraft with the Fleet independently of shore bases and had studied the pioneer work of Forlanini and Guidoni on the use of hydrofoils for lifting motor boats above rough water to reduce drag at high speeds. On his father's advice, he approached Sir George White privately with several ideas which he wished to patent jointly with the Company, so as to ensure their adequate exploitation.
  Burney's specification for a naval aeroplane comprised the following novel features: a buoyant hull; hydrofoils for take-off from rough water; wings which could be folded for stowage of the aircraft on an ordinary boat deck and unfolded while taxying; separate air and water propellers, the latter to be driven for taxying by either one of two independent engines, both of which would be used together for flight. Further proposals envisaged inflatable wings and fuselage and 'means of varying the area of pneumatic planes by furling'. As all these very original ideas would require a great deal of research into materials and methods, he suggested, to start with, that the G.E.l biplane, No. 64, then being built, should be equipped with a water undercarriage consisting of three 'hydropeds' or legs carrying a cascade of hydrofoil vanes. Five torpedo-shaped pneumatic floats under the fuselage and wing would support the aircraft while at rest, but were not intended to act as running surfaces.
  The Directors were interested in this project and, having been assured of Admiralty support, set up a secret design office, called 'X Department' to develop it. 'X Department' was entirely detached from the main drawing office at Filton House and began work just after Christmas 1911, consisting only of Frank Barnwell and one assistant, Clifford Tinson, who joined him in the first week of January 1912. Frank Barnwell, who had been apprenticed to the Fairfield Shipbuilding Company on Clydeside, had helped his elder brother Harold to build and fly the first successful Scottish aeroplane, which in 1911 had won the Law prize of ?50. After this success, the brothers carne south to Brooklands, where Harold joined Vickers as a test pilot, while Frank was on the point of going in with A. V. Roe when he received a much more exciting offer from Sir George White to take charge of the new secret design office at Filton.
  Burney proposed to equip his first biplane, designated X.l, with a 60-80 h.p. E.N.V. engine driving both air and water propellers through clutches, with bevel gears and shafts running inside the hydroped legs. The countershaft carrying both clutches was to be mounted between the cylinder banks above the engine, which drove it through a chain. Barnwell examined Burney's scheme carefully and concluded that success would only be attained with a larger and cleaner design; he proposed a monoplane with a boat hull and buoyant wing-tips. Experiments were done on the stiffness of a long cylindrical pneumatic tube, and a wing was designed using eight such tubes side by side spanwise within lightweight ribs which maintained the aerofoil profile. But the rubber-proofed fabric, which was the only material then available, was too heavy when made up to the required strength and so the idea of a pneumatic wing was rejected.
  Barnwell's layout for a monoplane flying boat with hydropeds was approved for construction and was designated X.2, having sequence No. 92. The hull was planked with thin mahogany veneer covered with sailcloth and varnished. The wings, of three-spar design, had warp control and were rigged at a pronounced dihedral angle; they were finished with a waterproof varnish to provide lateral buoyancy. Dual controls were installed in the cockpit amidships, and the engine, an 80 h.p. Canton-Unne watercooled radial was mounted in the nose, driving both air and water propellers through two Hele-Shaw clutches. The airscrew was a conventional two-bladed tractor, while the two water propellers were mounted at the lower ends of the two forward hydropeds.
  On 9 May 1912, X.2 was put on board the lighter Sarah at Avonmouth and taken with great secrecy to Dale, on Milford Haven. Flotation tests were not at first satisfactory, but eventually the leaks were stopped and taxying trials began. Propelled by its water screws, the boat got away quickly, but after about 50 yd. the streamline fairings of the hydroped tubes were torn off by water friction. Static tests with the airscrew clutched-in showed some vibration in the front bearing carrying the primary chain drive from the crankshaft, and this had to be remedied. Towing tests behind a Naval torpedo boat were fairly satisfactory, but the craft was unstable at moderate speeds. Underwater stability was eventually obtained by reducing the area of some of the hydrofoils and adding water rudders and a controllable water elevator on the aft hydroped. Although these were adequate for towed stability, it was found impossible to prevent the craft heeling over when the water screws were clutched in, due to unequal torque reactions. It was necessary also to fit wingtip floats because of the yaw caused by the drag of whichever wing was in the water.
  In September stronger streamline casings were fitted to the hydropeds, and it was decided to rely on towing for the preliminary air test. Tests under power had been delayed because the engine stalled when both water and air propellers were engaged, so the engine was removed and 500 lb. of ballast substituted for it.On 21 September 1912, X.2 was towed by the torpedo boat into a 12-knot wind, and at 30 knots airspeed rose clear of the water in a climbing attitude. Burney's colleague George Bentley Dacre was in the cockpit reading instruments, but the controls were preset for level flight and locked, so he had no means of correcting the nose-high attitude, but the aircraft would certainly have regained a level path if the towing party had not been too prompt in slipping the tow, with the result that the craft stalled, sideslipped and crashed, fortunately without injury to Dacre.
  The Admiralty agreed to continue helping with man-power and dockyard facilities, but it was decided that X.2 was not worth a major repair, so in March 1913 a second flying boat, X.3, was put in hand at Filton, incorporating many improvements. This craft, No. 159, was larger than X.2 in both beam and wing area. The hull framework was made at Filton and sent to Cowes for Saunders to cover it with their Consuta sewn plywood, and the completed aircraft was shipped to Dale in the Sarah in August. One major change in X.3 was that the water screws were contra-rotating and mounted back-to-back, being driven by a single shaft running in a separate vertical tube located midway between the front hydropeds, so that the thrust-line was central and torque reaction was cancelled out. The wings were rigidly braced and lateral control was by inverse-tapered warping ailerons; only a single set of controls was installed in the side-by-side cockpit. At first it was proposed to power X.3 by two 70 h.p. Renault engines, but the Admiralty offered to lend a 200 h.p. Canton-Unne radial, and this was accepted. Preliminary taxying tests were done with an 80 h.p. Gnome, dummy outriggers being substituted for the wings to carry the wing-tip floats. The latter carried small hydrofoils, and the main hydropeds were fitted with controllable water rudders and a water elevator. Stability under tow was very good and taxying performance satisfactory, although the nose dipped when the airscrew was clutched in. To counteract this tendency, Barnwell devised a supplementary front elevator just aft of the airscrew, its control being co-ordinated with the clutch operation so as to lift the nose while the airscrew drive was being taken up. The wings and the 200 h.p. engine were then installed, and the aircraft was ready for flight testing by Busteed in June 1914, when it was urlfortunately grounded on a hidden sandbank, necessitating major repairs. The Company then asked the Admiralty for more substantial backing in order to continue the trials, but this was refused and, after a visit to Dale by Sir George White on 8 July 1914, the programme was discontinued and X.3 was brought back to Filton, where it remained in store until 1920, when it was scrapped.
  Barnwell was well aware of the deficiences of bevel gears and long shafts, and in a letter to Stanley White in December 1913 he sketched out a much simpler hydrovane flying boat having chain-driven outboard airscrews powered by a central engine; the airscrews were arranged to swing up for taxying and take-off, and to a lower position giving an optimum thrust-line for flight; no water screws were necessary and all gearing and torque shafts were eliminated. Although not developed in 1914, this layout was briefly revived by Barnwell in 1921 in his Type 66 project, which featured retractable hydrovanes and a Napier Lion engine, but this was never built. So ended a series of experiments which, though unsuccessful so far as their primary objects were concerned, led to Burney's invention and development of the Paravane mine-sweeping device in 1915.

SPECIFICATION AND DATA
  Type: Burney Flying Boats
  Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol

Model X1 X2 X3
Power Plant 60 hp E.N.V. 80 hp Canton-Unne 200 hp Canton-Unne
Span 34 ft 55 ft 9 in 57 ft 10 in
Length 30 ft 30 ft 8 in 36 ft 8 in
Wing Area 325 sq ft 480 sq ft 500 sq ft
Accommodation 2 2 2
Production nil 1 1
Sequence Nos. - 92 159
Lt. C. D. Burney, R.N., with model of proposed X.1 hydroped biplane.
Henri Coanda, Frank Barnwell and Lt. C. D. Burney with X.2 at Filton, 1912.
X.2 taxying under power from water-screws at Dale, September 1912.
X.3 aground in Milford Haven after taxying into sand-bank in June 1914.
The Bristol-Coanda Monoplanes

  Henri Coanda, son of Gen. Coanda the Rumanian War Minister, had trained as an engineer in France and was an artist of merit as well. He. Had studied under Eiffel, whose wind-tunnel at Auteuil was the first to be built in Europe. At the Paris Salon of 1910, Coanda exhibited a novel biplane whose engine drove, not an airscrew, but a small-diameter ducted fan. It is uncertain whether this biplane ever flew, as has been claimed, but Coanda deserves due credit for originating this form of propulsion unit. Another of Coanda's projects was a tandem-wing monoplane with a submerged engine driving an airscrew mounted half-way along a streamlined circular-section fuselage.
  Coanda joined the Company's staff in January 1912, and his first product at Filton was an orthodox tandem two-seater monoplane (No. 77), derived from the Prier-Dickson. The wings were structurally Similar to Prier's, having two tubular steel spars filled with wood, on to which the ribs were threaded and located by clips so that they were free to rotate round the spars for warping. In Prier's design the front spars were always longer, than the rear, giving a forward rake to the tip, but this somewhat restricted the range of warping movement available. Coanda's wings had their tips raked the opposite way, with the rear spar longer than the front, which resulted in a longer flexible trailing edge. The wings were braced above and below to steel tube pylons, the control pulleys being enclosed in streamline fairings at the apex of each pylon. The 50 h.p. Gnome engine was surrounded by a circular cowling, which prevented oil from being thrown back to the cockpits. The undercarriage had steel-tube skids of the type originated by Grandseigne, and the cockpits were furnished with wicker seats and had non-inflammable celluloid windows in the fuselage sides. No. 77 was sent to Larkhill on 27 March 1912 and remained there for testing for some weeks. A second monoplane, No. 80, was similar but had side-by-side seats with dual controls. It was built in May 1912 and remained in continuous use as a school machine at Brooklands and Larkhill until crashed by Merriam and Gipps on 26 January 1914. Both these models were offered as suitable for training purposes and eventually five more of the tandem version and six more of the side-by-side version were built, all with 50 h.p. Gnomes, during 1913. Of the tandem version, No. 132 went to Italy and Nos. 185, 186, 188 and 189 to Rumania; and of the side-by-side version, Nos. 110 and 165 went to Italy and Nos. 164, 166 and 176 to Rumania, while the last, No. 177, was retained at Larkhill and was finally converted into the one and only side-by-side Coanda biplane No. 218.
  On 15 May 1912 the War Office announced conditions for the Military Aeroplane Competition, and it was found that the competing aircraft had to be designed and built by 15 July! It was, of course, impossible to produce a new design specially to meet the conditions in only two months, and in any case the prize money, limited to ?5,000 to anyone entrant, hardly justified an all-out effort of this kind. However, Coanda had already made good progress with a new design for a military monoplane and two of these were entered, together with the two G.E.2 biplanes, in the competition. The rules laid great emphasis on suitability for reconnaissance and ease of maintenance and transport. Dual controls were required, together with a good view downwards and good stability, and the pilot was expected to start his engine and operate from unprepared fields without assistance. The aircraft had to be tendered at Larkhill packed in a rail transport crate not longer than 32 ft. and had to be capable of being towed on its own wheels or trolley in an army column. The flying tests were stringent and included duration, speed, altitude and climb minima, together with landing on various surfaces and quick take-off from a harrowed field. At least one flight had to be made in a wind averaging 25m.p.h. Coanda's two competition monoplanes, Nos. 105 and 106, were both equipped with the new 80 h.p. Gnome engine. Great attention had been paid to drag reduction and the usual pyramids of cabane struts were replaced by a pair of vertical steel pylons on the fuselage centre-line carefully faired with wood. The passenger's cockpit was between these pylons and the pilot's just behind, so that from a distance the machine appeared to have a crew of four. The wings were of the same type as on No. 77 and their cables had quick release clips for easy dismantling. The cockpit sides had celluloid windows and the trailing edges were cut back at the wing roots to improve the pilot's view. Like all Coanda monoplanes they had a semicircular fixed tailplane and a one-piece elevator, with a balanced rudder above. Busteed experienced directional instability on No. 105 with the original rudder, and a smaller Prier-type rudder was tried in conjunction with a fixed fin, but this was no better and the trouble was finally cured by a balanced rudder of revised outline. Nos. 105 and 106 (competition numbers 14 and 15) were flown by Busteed and Valentine, respectively. Valentine, attempting the duration test of3 hours in 15 had engine failure while approaching a flock of sheep and struck a fence in attempting to avoid them. The damage was soon repaired, but Valentine withdrew from the trials and Pixton was allowed to take his place.
  Both Busteed and Pixton did well in the ensuring tests and eventually shared third place with the British Deperdussin in the final assessment and were awarded ?500 each. Pixton excelled in the rough weather test, with Capt. Patrick Hamilton, R.F.C., as passenger, when he took-off and remained up for over 15 min. in violent gusts whose recorded speed varied from 17 to 44 m.p.h. Pixton also headed the list in the range test with 420 miles, while Busteed was third in the high speed test with 73 m.p.h., only 2 m.p.h. less than the best. Neither succeeded in taking-off from a harrowed field and Coanda quickly appreciated that the wing-loading was somewhat too high; all subsequent monoplanes of the type had larger wings and the details were carefully redesigned to save weight. These improvements cou1d have been made before the competition began, had more time been available. Both Nos. 105 and 106 were bought by the War Office and received military serials 263 and 262 respectively. Training was begun on them in preparation for the autumn manoeuvres, and on 10 September Edward Hotchkiss, by then a second-Lt. in the Special Reserve, with Lt. C. A. Bettington, R.F.C., as passenger left Larkhill to fly to Hardwick, near Cambndge, on 263. They intended to land at the Port Meadow, Oxford, and while gliding down from 2,000 ft. above Wolvercote Hotchkiss lost control; the descent became a steep dive and the starboard wing fabric tore off, both men being killed instantly. It appeared that the quick-release clip of one of the flying wires had become detached, but, as this was not the first of several similar accidents, the War Office somewhat summarily banned the flying of all monoplanes by pilots of the Military Wing, R.F.C.; no such ban was imposed on Naval pilots by the Admiralty and indeed the War Office ban was lifted five months later, but it ended the Company's hopes of supplying Coanda monoplanes in quantity to the Royal Flying Corps. Foreign interest in the design remained, however, and enquiries were received from Italy and Rumania for the improved model with span increased from 40 ft. to 42 ft. 9 m., which became standardised for production.
  A single experimental variant, which was not a success, emerged in September 1912 alongside the first of the production batch. This was No. 111, nicknamed The Elephant. It was intended to compete with the strongly built Etrich and D.F.W. monoplanes favoured by the German Army and had a welded steel-tube landing gear with a central skid; the shock absorbers were telescopic struts containing coil springs and the half-axles could be moved by a tiller-bar for ground steering. The engine was the 70 h.p. Daimler-Mercedes from the unlucky G.E.2 biplane, and the machine was sent to Larkhill for testing with two sets of wings, one set being of normal profile, while the other had a very pronounced camber based on the aerofoil section known as the 'Phillips Entry'. It was seriously overweight and failed to fly successfully with either set of wings, so was never sent to Deutsche Bristol-Werke as had been intended.
  The first production Coanda military monoplane, No. 118, had extra fuel and oil tanks and an enlarged rudder and was taken to Bucharest in September by Prince Cantacuzene, head of the Rumanian military aviation mission which had come to Larkhill to study' Bristol' methods and products. Pixton demonstrated this monoplane in the Rumanian army manoeuvres with great success. Two others, Nos. 121 and 122, were built for the Italian government, and No. 122 was dispatched to Turin on 13 November, but No. 121 remained at Larkhill and was destined to have a remarkable career. The fourth production monoplane in the batch was No. 123, which was Prince Cantacuzene's personal mount, but he crashed it while taxying, and after being rebuilt as No. 142, it became a static test airframe. The next of the series, No. 131, was specially finished for the Paris Salon of 1912, with a streamlined chassis with filleted strut junctions. It so impressed the Italian authorities that they purchased it in preference to No. 121 and ordered 12 more for urgent delivery. Rumania also ordered ten, and both countries had sent officers to Larkhill for instruction in December. No. 131 was dispatched to Turin on 6 December 1912, together with school monoplane No. 132, as initial equipment for the Italian military aviation school.
  Enthusiasm for the Coanda monoplane increased as experience was gained, and the Company appeared to have overcome the set-back caused by the War Office ban. A new production batch of 12 monoplanes was laid down, numbered 143 to 154 inclusive, the first two being retained at Larkhill for test and demonstration, and No. 145, which had a modified chassis, being sent to Spain on 23 December after a marathon effort to dispatch it before the Christmas holiday. No. 146, the first of four for Rumania, was not ready until February 1913, having been held up while Coanda rechecked the stress calculations and performed static tests with sand-bags on the inverted airframe of No. 142, at the request of Prince Cantacuzene. Satisfied with the results, all was ready for acceptance flight testing to begin as soon as the weather permitted, and on 5 March 1913 Gordon England's younger brother Geoffrey undertook a 1 hour duration test on No. 146 although the wind was still too strong for the altitude test. After flying for 39 min., the machine was struck by a violent gust which caused the port wing to collapse and Geoffrey England was killed. Prior to this accident the Coanda monoplane had been selected for purchase by the Italian National Subscription, which had raised nearly ?800,000 to buy aeroplanes for the army and had ordered 36 more of the type to be built in Italy by Italian labour. The Company had been asked to grant a manufacturing licence to an established firm in Italy, and Caproni & Faccanoni, of Vizzola Ticino, had been recommended as the most reliable of the three or four constructors of that time. A condition for granting the licence was that the first few Italian-built machines should be test-flown by Bristol pilots, and the formal agreement setting up the Societa Italiana Bristol Aeroplani was signed on 31 December 1912 by Henry White Smith, who, with Capt. Dickson, had supervised the Caproni factory arrangements. These included the supply from Filton of a complete skeleton monoplane (No. 154) as a pattern and the loan of a picked party of Filton erectors to teach their Italian colleagues 'Bristol' methods in addition to the normal provision of drawings and data.
  Delivery tests of Nos. 122, 131 and 132 were undertaken by Sidney Sippe, who had just joined the Bristol staff, and in December Pixton went to Turin on his return from Rumania and put No. 131 through its paces, breaking records for climb and speed with full load. He then went to Madrid and during the trials of No. 145 at Cuatros Vientos repeated his Turin performance. He also took up as passengers the Infante of Spain and his uncle, Prince Leopold of Battenburg. Meanwhile Sippe remained in Italy to await assembly of the first two Caproni-built monoplanes. These were generally satisfactory in workmanship, but the warp control was found to be immovable and on examination it was found that the ribs had been bolted to the spars, thus destroying the flexibility of the wing which was an essential feature of the design. In January a new flying school, based on Larkhill practice, was opened at Malpensa and Collyns Pizey went out to begin instruction. He stayed until April when new Italian military aircraft trials were to be held between Turin and Milan, for which two Caproni-Bristols had been entered. The events were ruined by incessant rain, turning the flying ground into a sea ofmud and the Caproni-Bristols proved unequal to the task. As a result the Italian Government cancelled the Bristol contract and after a prolonged dispute which lasted until January 1918 the Caproni-Bristol licence was cancelled.
  After the loss of No. 146, delivery of the remainder of the Rumanian monoplanes was held in abeyance, but a specially finished Coanda monoplane, No. 153, was exhibited at Olympia in February, featuring wheel brakes and armoured glass fuselage windows. Together with Nos. 150 and 151 it was sent to the Deutsche Bristol-Werke in April 1913, but Nos. 151 and 153 were returned to Filton in August. No. 152 was held as a replacement for No. 146 on the Rumanian contract, and the final example, No. 196, was one of the Caproni-Bristols shipped to Filton in August 1913 for conversion into a biplane. The Rumanian monoplanes were fitted with strengthened wings, but this detracted seriously from their performance and eventually a happy compromise was found in the conversion of the whole batch into biplanes, which proved very successful indeed.

SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA
  Type: Coanda Monoplanes
  Manufacturers:
   The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co., Ltd., Filton, Bristol
   Deutsche Bristol-Werke, Halberstadt, Germany
   Caproni & Faccanoni, Vizzola Tieino, Varese, Italy

Model School Side by side Competition Daimler Military
Power plant 50 hp Gnome 50 hp Gnome 80 hp Gnome 70 hp Daimler 80 hp Gnome
Span 40 ft 41 ft 3 in 40 ft 39 ft 4 in 42 ft 9 in
Length 27 ft 27 ft 28 ft 3 in 30 ft 9 in 29 ft 2 in
Height 7 ft 7 ft 7 ft 7 ft 7 ft
Wing Area 275 sq ft 275 sq ft 242 sq ft 260 sq ft 280 sq ft
Empty Weight 770 lb 770 lb 1,000 lb 1,200 lb 1,050 lb
All-up Weight 1,100 lb 1,100 lb 1,710 lb 1,850 lb 1,775 lb
Speed 65 mph 65 mph 73 mph 60 mph 71 mph
Accommodation 2 2 2 2 2
Production 6 7 2 1 21
Sequence Nos. 77 132 80 110 164- 105 106 111 118 121-
   185 186 166 176 177 123 131
   188 189 142-154
   (196+one in
   Italy)

Coanda School monoplane No.132 at Filton in November 1912.
Busteed in Coanda No. 106, competing at Larkhill in August 1912.
Coanda Military monoplane No. 150 flying at Halberstadt in 1913.
Capt. Bertram Dickson as passenger, with Mr. C. H. Pixton as pilot, about to set out for a flight on one of the 80-h.p. Bristol monoplanes at Turin during the tests by the Italian Government before taking over the Bristol monoplanes on order. This is the first aeroplane trip made by Capt. Dickson in Italy since his well-remembered accident at Milan when he had the terrible collision in the air with Thomas, another aviator.
Bristol Coanda W.O. monoplane
The Bristol Gordon England Biplanes

  Eric Gordon England gained his Royal Aero Club aviator's certificate (no. 68) on 25 August 1911 at the Bristol flying school at Brooklands. Previously he had helped Jose Weiss in gliding experiments at Amberley in Sussex, and before joining the Bristol school he had had some experience of flying a Hanriot monoplane at Brooklands. Soon after gaining his certificate he joined the Company as a staff pilot and almost his first assignment was to fly a T-type biplane in the Circuit of Britain race. Later the same year he made several demonstration tours on a Boxkite with Graham Gilmour in Dorset and Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.
  He soon showed promise as a designer, and his conversion of T -type biplane into a tractor machine, No. 59, has already been described. His second venture, the G.E.1 biplane (No. 64), was entirely original and much more successful. The design was begun as early as August 1911 m an attempt to provide a sturdy military two-seater with wings which could be quickly detached to facilitate transport m an army column. Most of the structure was of spruce and the front of the fuselage was plywood-covered. Side-by-side seating with dual hand-wheel control was provided and a Bosch self-starting trembler coil and battery were installed. A sturdy undercarriage with a central skid gave good taxying qualities on rough ground and protected the large slow-running airscrew, which was driven at half-engine speed through a chain by a neatly installed 50 h.p. Clerget upright four-cylinder watercoo1ed engine, with a frontal radiator and hinged bonnet like a car. The wings were of equal span and the tail surfaces were long and tapered. It was an advanced and logical design, but the engine was hardly powerful enough to do it justice. After tests during May and June it was fitted with a large balanced rudder to improve stability, and on 19 June 1912 it was sold to the Deutsche Bristol-Werke, who, however, found it unsuitable for school use and returned it on 21 September 1912 to Filton, where it was scrapped.
  The G.E.1 was at one point taken as the basis for Lt. C. D. Burney's hydrovane seaplane, and the X.1 derived from it is described later.

SPECIFICATION AND DATA
  Type: Gordon England Biplanes
  Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane' Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol

Power Plant 50 hp Clerget
Span 33 ft 8 in
Length 29 ft
Wing Area 320 sq ft
Speed 65 mph
Accommodation 2
Production 1
Sequence Nos. 64
G.E.1 No. 64 in its original form at Larkhill, March 1912.
Bristol G.E.1
The G.E.1 was at one point taken as the basis for Lt. C. D. Burney's hydrovane seaplane, and the X.1 derived from it is described later. Although underpowered, it was considered to be worth developing and an improved design, G.E.2, was put in hand for the Military Aeroplane Competition of August 1912. Two G.E.2 biplanes were built, No. 103 having a 100 h.p. double-row Gnome engine direct-coupled to the airscrew, while No. 104 had a 70 h.p. watercoo1ed Daimler-Mercedes engine with a two-to-one chain drive and nose radiator as in No. 64. No. 104 also had an Eisemann dual-ignition set for self-starting and was the only entry in the competition to be efficiently silenced, as required by the rules. Both aircraft were similar in construction to No. 64, but had round-tipped wings with increased gap and the fuselage was raised above the lower wing to improve airscrew clearance.
  The G.E.2 biplanes (competition numbers 12 and 13) were to be flown, respectively, by Gordon England himself and Howard Pixton. The Daimler engine failed to develop full power and the unlucky number 13 had to be withdrawn early in the trials, but soon afterwards England damaged number 12 in a heavy landing and had to retire also. Just before this accident, England had a somewhat hair-raising experience. He had flown for 90 min., without much use of the controls, for the machine was remarkably stable, but found when he came in to land that the elevator movement was very restricted. He landed safely by using the engine switch, which was arranged to cut the ignition of one row of cylinders at a time, so providing some measure of engine-speed control. It transpired that England's mechanic, Temple Robins, had been making adjustments in the cockpit and had tied the elevator cables together to prevent their movement in the wind, and that England had been in a hurry to fly and had omitted the customary check for control freedom.

SPECIFICATION AND DATA
  Type: Gordon England Biplanes
  Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane' Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol

Power Plant 70 hp Daimler 100 hp Gnome
Span 40 ft 40 ft
Length 31 ft 31 ft
Wing Area 400 sq ft 400 sq ft
Empty Weight 1,100 lb 1,080 lb
All-up Weight 2,000 lb 1,980 lb
Speed 62 mph 68 mph
Accommodation 2 2
Production 1 1
Sequence Nos. 104 103
G.E.2 No. 103 (Gnome) flying at Larkhill in August 1912.
Bristol GE2 biplane Works No.104 with Daimler engine at Larkhill.
Gordon England's final Bristol design, the G.E.3, was a large long-range biplane to a Turkish Government specification, with two seats in tandem and an 80 h.p. Gnome engine. The fuselage was faired to a circular section and large brass fuel and oil tanks were fitted in the fairings between the cockpits, giving a duration of 3 hours. The tanks were pressurised by a wind-driven air pump under the fuselage and delivered fuel to a gravity tank in the decking between the cockpits. The wings were similar to those of G.E.2 and readily detachable for road transport.
  Two G.E.3 biplanes were built, Nos. 112 and 113, but when flown the wing spars were found to bow upwards between the struts. The design was then abandoned, because by this time the Italian blockade of Turkish ports prevented delivery. Gordon England left the Company shortly afterwards to join James Radley in a seaplane project and subsequently became a well-known figure m the motor-car and petroleum industries.

SPECIFICATION AND DATA
  Type: Gordon England Biplanes
  Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane' Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol

Power Plant 80 hp Gnome
Span 39 ft
Length 28 ft 5 in
Wing Area 387 sq ft
Empty Weight 1,096 lb
All-up Weight 1,996 lb
Speed 65 mph
Accommodation 2
Production 2
Sequence Nos. 112 113
G.E.3 No. 113 at Pilton in November 1912; note kingpost bracing to stiffen rear spars.
The Bristol-Coanda Two-seat Biplanes

  When the flying of monoplanes by pilots of the Military Wing, Royal Flying Corps, was banned in September 1912, the loss of the potential War Office market for the Coanda monoplane was partly mitigated by the award of a contract to build the officially designed B.E.2 biplane, which, although ineligible for the Military Aeroplane Competition, had performed rather better than the actual prizewinners. The fact that a biplane could match the monoplane's performance without sacrificing its advantages of strength and stiffness led Coanda to draft a Bristol biplane design, and by November enquiries for a long-range two-seater had come from both Spain and Germany. Coanda preferred the well-tried 80 h.p. Gnome engine, but the enquirers insisted on engines already in use in their own fleets; consequently the Spanish specified the 70 h.p. Renault because it was standardised for their Maurice Farmans, while the Deutsche Bristol-Werke were under government pressure to use the 90 h.p. Daimler-Mercedes. In November 1912, therefore, Coanda began the design of a two-seater biplane suitable for either the Renault or the Daimler-Mercedes. Early in 1913 a Spanish purchasing mission, led by Col. Pedro Vives-y-Vych, visited Filton and Larkhill, and five Renault-engined biplanes were ordered. Designated B.R.70 (later shortened to B.R.7) these were built alongside the first four B.E.2's, and the first B.R.7, No. 157, was finished in time to be shown at Olympia in February 1913, together with Coanda monoplane No. 153. No. 157 was flown at Larkhill in March, but was overloaded with wings of the normal section used on monoplanes. A more cambered profile had been specified for the Daimler-engined biplane, which was being built at Halberstadt, and a set of wings of this shape was tried out on the B.R.7 in April with better results, but still not good enough to meet the contract, so the Spanish government declined to accept delivery. Only seven B.R.7's were built and the second one, No. 158, was tried out with a four-bladed airscrew, without improvement, and a special two-blader with very pointed tips was also made to Coanda's design. On 26 May 1913, Pizey, with his mechanic Fellows as passenger, was flying No. 158 when the carburettor caught fire. He was able to land promptly and both occupants jumped out immediately after touching down, but the B.R.7 was totally destroyed in a few minutes. After this No. 157 remained at Larkhill as an advanced trainer, but the rest of the batch, Nos. 160-163, were rarely flown, although No. 163 was tested with a plain two-wheeled Vee landing gear. A final B.R.7, No. 178, was built in December 1913 with increased span, but never left Filton works.
  In Germany, the Daimler-engined biplane underwent considerable modification and finally emerged with extended upper wings having large inversely tapered ailerons, also a supplementary rudder below the stern which nearly doubled the vertical surface area of the tail. This was test-flown by Henri Jullerot in July and August during his term as instructor-in-charge at the Halberstadt school.

Model B.R.7 Daimler
Power Plant 70 hp 90 hp
   Renault Daimler
Span 38 ft 57 ft
Length 27 ft 5 in 27 ft 5 in
Wing Area 440 sq ft 570 sq ft
Empty Weight 946 lb 1200 lb
All-up Weight 1826 lb 2100 lb
Speed 63 mph 65 mph
Duration 5 hours 5 hours
Accommodation 2 2
Production 7 1
Sequence Nos. 157, 158 (1 in
   160-163 Germany)
   178
Pixton flying B.R.7 No. 157 at Larkhill, 1913.
In January 1913 Coanda designed a central-float seaplane, which resembled in some ways the G.E.3 and may have owed something to it, for the fuselage was faired to a circular section and mounted midway between the wings; the fuel tanks and system were also arranged in the same way as in Gordon England's design. On completion, this seaplane, No. 120, was sent to Cowes and was fitted with a wide central float built of mahogany designed by Oscar Gnosspelius, who had pioneered the design of hydroplanes on Lake Windermere and had produced similar floats for seaplanes. Stability afloat was ensured by two small torpedo-shaped floats under the wing-tips; there was no tail-float, but two water rudders were fitted at the rear of the main float. The two tandem cockpits had dual handwheel controls and there was a gap between the upper wing-roots above the front cockpits. The 80 h.p. Gnome was installed in a close-fitting aluminium cowling and had a starting handle in the cockpit, with an interconnected hand-starting magneto. A standard Coanda rudder and tailplane were fitted, but an extra rectangular rudder was later added under the tail to offset the keel surface of the main float. In the early buoyancy tests, the Gnosspelius float was satisfactory, but after being moored out for some days it soaked up an excessive weight of water and at his first attempt Busteed was unable to take-off. He therefore arranged with S.E. Saunders and Co. of Cowes to build a specially light float, using their patent wire-sewn plywood; this float was attached to the seaplane during the first week in April, and on the 15th Busteed succeeded in taking-off. His troubles had only just begun, however, for the Gnome engine was too closely cowled and quickly overheated. Losing power rapidly, Busteed had to alight abruptly and the impact was too much for the lightweight float, which burst open, throwing the pilot into the Solent. He was a strong swimmer, but was near exhaustion before being seen and rescued half an hour later by a dredger.
  No. 120, although begun as a private venture, had been purchased, subject to acceptance trials, by the Admiralty and was to have carried the R.N.A.S. number 15. The Admiralty had also ordered a landplane derived from the Coanda monoplane; this was a fairly straightforward conversion of No. 121, which had returned to Filton in February 1913 for overhaul after service at the Larkhill school since the previous October. It thus became the prototype of the Gnome-engined biplane known as the T.B.8, and in July and August at Larkhill soon showed that it had a much better performance than the B.R.7. It was next converted into a twin-float seaplane, for which purpose No. 120's original Gnosspelius float was divided down the centre line and made into a pair of narrower floats. In this form, with a steerable tail float and extra fin area added, No. 121 was sent to Dale on Milford Haven on 20 September 1913. It was flown through all its tests satisfactorily by Busteed and his assistant G. B. Dacre, until rough weather made further flying impossible. It was then returned to Filton in December, stripped, overhauled and rebuilt with a new fuselage as No. 205 and delivered to Calshot as the agreed substitute for No. 120, receiving the latter's intended serial 15. It had a tendency to fly nose down and in April 1914 it was again rebuilt at Filton with new floats, staggered wings with ailerons and a revised fin; in this form it was flown at the Spithead naval review in July 1914. Before agreeing to accept No. 205, it seems that the Admiralty had asked for a larger seaplane, and drawings have survived of a project called B.C.2, showing a tandem two-seater with a fuel system similar to No. l20's, and a circular monocoque fuselage, with a 200 h.p. eight-cylinder watercooled Clerget engine, for which Coanda designed an ingenious two-speed reduction gear, with internal clutches for changing speed, in place of the chain gear formerly employed. The design is dated between April and June 1913, after which it seems to have been discontinued.

Model Hydro 120 T.B.8H
Power Plant 80 hp 80 hp
   Gnome Gnome
Span 38 ft 8 in 37 ft 8 in
Length 27 ft 10 in 30 ft 6 in
Wing Area 436 sq ft 450 sq ft
Duration 4 hours
Accommodation 2 2
Production 1 1
Sequence Nos. 120 205
Busteed and party with No. 120 at Cowes, April 1913, showing original float.
Busteed taxying No. 121 at Dale in September 1913.
Harry Busteed on T.B.8 seaplane at Dale in September 1913.
The Admiralty's order for a landplane was fulfilled by converting monoplane No. 144 to a T.B.8. This was first flown as a biplane on 12 August 1913 and was delivered to Eastchurch as number 43 on 7 October 1913. After a crash it was rebuilt with a two-wheeled Vee landing gear as No. 225, and redelivered to the R.N.A.S. in this form in April 1914, still with its original number 43.
  The remarkable success of the T.B.8 quickly eclipsed the remaining Coanda monoplanes, and ten of the latter delivered earlier in the year to Italy, Germany and Rumania were brought back at the end of 1913 for conversion to biplanes. One of them was the special Olympia show model, No. 153, which underwent a record number of metamorphoses. It had gone to Halberstadt, together with Nos. 150 and 151, in April and in August Nos. 151 and 153 were returned to Filton and converted to biplanes. No. 151, equipped with a simple form of bomb rack, was sent to Rumania in October, but No. 153 was taken to Spain by Sippe, where it beat all comers in trials at Cuatros Vientos, and in particular took-off from the ploughed field, always a favourite test with the Spaniards, in 60 yd. from axle-deep mud. Even these severe conditions had no effect on No. 153, which returned to Filton intact in February 1914 and was overhauled for another lease of life as No. 227. Its later career included tests with an 80 h.p. Clerget rotary engine at the Royal Aircraft Factory; modification to take a 100 h.p. Monosoupape Gnome engine, in which form it was sent to compete at Vienna in June 1914; finally it was purchased by the Admiralty (917) in October 1914 and ended its days at Eastchurch as a trainer.
  The first two T.B.8's built from scratch as biplanes were Nos. 197 and 198, completed in November 1913. No. 198 was specially finished for the Paris Salon de l'Aeronautique and was the sole British exhibit there. It had a number of improvements over the earlier monoplane conversions, notably a simpler landing gear with shorter skids and a separate tail skid, also a new aerofoil section characterised by a flattening of the upper surface between the spars. This had been developed by Coanda, who had also designed a new type of airscrew with tapered wide-chord blades, a complete change from the square-tipped Lang type. At one stage it was proposed to fit double rudders to both the B.R.7 and the T.B.8, as on the German Daimler-engined biplane, but this modification was never carried out in practice. No. 198 had single controls in the aft cockpit only, the forward cockpit being equipped with a prismatic bomb-sight and a bomb release trigger which operated a revolving carrier for 12 small bombs mounted below the cockpit floor. Each bomb weighed 10 lb. and contained 2 lb. of T.N.T.; the trigger released the lowest bomb and then revolved the carrier to bring the next into the release position; it also fused the bombs, which had to fall about 100 ft. before a wind-mill arming vane rendered them live.
  The French military authorities were attracted by the workmanlike appearance of No. 198 and would have bought it outright, but their terms of reference limited them to the purchase of French-built aircraft. They urged the Company to arrange for Bristol aeroplanes to be built in France, and a few weeks later a licence was granted to the Societe Anonyme des Ateliers d'Aviation Louis Breguet, with factories at Velizy near Paris and at Douai.
  After returning from the Paris Salon on 9 January 1914, No. 198 was equipped with a two-wheeled undercarriage and purchased by the Admiralty as number 153, being delivered to Eastchurch on 19 March 1914. Meanwhile No. 197, which had been tested with an 80 h.p. Gnome engine at Larkhill in January and February, was fitted with an 80 h.p. Le Rhone engine and sent to the Breguet works at Velizy on 4 March for demonstration to the French army. Flown by Sidney Sippe, it climbed to 3,000 ft. in 7t min. with a useful load of 715 lb. and attained 74 m.p.h. It was damaged at the end of the demonstration, but repaired at Filton in July 1914 and eventually delivered to the Admiralty as number 916 on 17 September 1914. Satisfied with the T.B.8's performance, the French government approved it for manufacture by Breguet, and the Company supplied their licensee with the same range of data and manufacturing aids as in the case of Caproni & Faccanoni, including a complete sample skeleton airframe, No. 228, delivered to Douai in May 1914. In this month also was delivered the only T.B.8 ever sold to a private owner; this was No. 143, originally built in January 1913 as a Coanda monoplane, converted to a biplane in October 1913, modified to increase the wing stagger in January 1914, overhauled and equipped with an 80 h.p. Clerget rotary engine in May 1914 and finally purchased by Mr. R. P. Creagh, a graduate of the Brooklands school, on 3 July 1914 for ?700. Mr. Creagh hoped to convert it to a seaplane like No. 205, but was frustrated by the outbreak of war in August.
  The Admiralty also invited tenders for two larger Bristol seaplanes, but specified the use of the 200 h.p. Canton-Dnne radial engine, and R.N.A.S. numbers 147 and 148 were reserved for them. Several layouts were investigated, but neither a price nor a satisfactory design could be agreed and in June 1914 the Company asked to be allowed to decline the order. A feature of this design, carried over from the earlier B.C.2 project, was a clutch-controlled two-speed airscrew reduction gear to permit maximum engine revolutions for take-off and direct drive for cruising.
  As already stated, the six Coanda monoplanes originally built for Rumania early in 1913 were all delivered later that year as T.B.8 conversions. They comprised Nos. 118, 147, 148, 149, 151 and 152, and Prince Cantacuzene was sufficiently satisfied with their performance to place an order for a much improved derivative, for which he provided a new 75 h.p. Monosoupape Gnome engine. This biplane, No. 223, designated G.B.75, was a complete redesign with only a superficial resemblance to the T.B.8, incorporating many features due to Frank Barnwell. The fuselage was faired above and below and the streamline shape was continued forward by a large hemispherical spinner and cowl enclosing the engine, to which cooling air was admitted by louvers in the spinner. Warping wings were fitted and the tail unit had a fixed vertical fin. Equipment included an electric intercommunication system for the crew. The G.B.75 was first flown at Larkhill on 7 April 1914, but the spinner gave trouble and was removed, and the wings were rigged with increased stagger to compensate for nose-heaviness. It was flown again on 28 April and offered for delivery to Bucharest on 15 June, but never dispatched, the order being cancelled a fortnight later. The reason for this is obscure, but may be related to a single general arrangement drawing which has survived of a biplane with a single cockpit containing two staggered seats, and is dated 27 May 1914. There are also records of requests by Prince Cantacuzene to deliver a new biplane, which could not be done during the war, and it is probable that this is a reference to Type RB, which may have been substituted for the G.B.75. At all events, Type RB was never built, and the G.B.75 was delivered with a standard 80 h.p. Gnome to the R.F.C. at Farnborough on 2 August 1914, receiving number 610.
  After the outbreak of war, 12 improved T.B.8's, Nos. 331-342, were built, with ailerons instead of warp control; initially they were intended for the R.F.C., but were all diverted in October 1914 to the RN.A.S. at Gosport and Eastchurch, receiving numbers 1216-1227. Three T.B.8's went to France with the Eastchurch Squadron and one bombed German batteries at Middelkerke on 25 November 1914. When No.1 Squadron RN.A.S. went to France from Gosport on 26 February 1915, one T.B.8 was still on its strength; but in general, apart from a period of coastal patrol duty by four T.B.8's of No. 1 Squadron detached from Gosport and based on Newcastle-on-Tyne in the winter of 1914-15, the type's war service was confined to training duties. It proved sufficiently valuable in this role for 24 more to be ordered by the Admiralty in August 1915. These were built at Brislington and delivered between 24 September 1915 and 24 February 1916. The first eight, Nos. 870-877 (8442-8449), were fitted with 50 h.p. Gnomes and went to Chingford and Redcar. The next 13, Nos. 878-890 (8450-8453 and 8562-8570), had 60 h.p. Le Rhones, and were issued to Barrow-in-Furness, Killingholme and Kingsnorth as well as Chingford and Redcar. The last three, Nos. 891-893 (8571-3), were delivered as airframes to the White City stores depot.

SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA
  Type: Coanda Two-Seat Biplanes
  Manufacturers:
   The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton and Brislington, Bristol
   Deutsche Bristol-Werke, Halberstadt, Germany
   Societe Anonyme des Ateliers d'Aviation Louis Breguet, Velizy and Douai, France

Model T.B.8 G.B.75
Power Plant 80 hp Gnome 75 hp
   80 hp Le Rhone Mono-
   100 hp Mono-
   Gnome
   50 hp Gnome
   60 hp Le Rhone
Span 37 ft 8 in 37 ft 8 in
Length 29 ft 3 in
Wing Area 450 sq ft 420 sq ft
Empty Weight 970 lb 970 lb
All-up Weight 1665 lb 1650 lb
Speed 65-75 mph 80 mph
Duration 5 hours 5 hours
Accommodation 2 2
Production 53 1
Sequence Nos. 118, 121, 143 223
   144, 147-153
   196-198,218
   225, 227, 228
   331-342
   870-893
Pixton and Jullerot in No. 121 at Larkhill, July 1913; note bomb held by mechanic.
The Bristol Scouts A-D, S.S.A., G.B.1 and S.2A

  Apart from improved replicas of the Anzani-engined Prier monoplanes, Coanda designed only one single-seat monoplane; this was the S.B.5, No. 183, a smaller version of the military monoplane, for the Italian government. When the Caproni-Bristol contract fell through in November 1913, the unfinished fuselage was still in the works awaiting disposal. There was a growing interest in single-seater biplanes for high-speed reconnaissance and Barnwell was given permission to convert the S.B.5 into a scout biplane, as 'X Department' was not fully occupied. The drawings were sketched in a manifold book under the reference' SN.183', although the result, when completed, received the new No. 206.
  The 'Baby Biplane', or Scout, was very simple in outline and economical in manufacture. The single-bay wings of 22 ft. span were similar to those designed by Coanda for the P.B.8 and had the same ailerons and stagger. A two-wheeled Vee chassis was fitted and the tailplane, elevators and balanced rudder were made from light steel tubing. A reconditioned 80 h.p. Gnome engine (Actually No. 1916, salvaged from hydro-biplane No. 120) was installed in a close cowling open at the bottom and the machine when finished weighed only 950 lb. complete with pilot and 3 hours' fuel.
  No. 206 was sent to Larkhill on 23 February 1914, and Busteed, who had had a considerable hand in the design, was delighted with it; after a very few flights to familiarise himself with so lively a mount he attained 95 m.p.h. The little biplane was then sent to the Olympia Aero Show, together with the G.B.75 two-seater. When the Show opened on 16 March, No. 206 was the smallest biplane there, but without doubt the most sensational.
  After the Show was over, the Scout went back to Larkhill, and at the end of April returned to Filton to be fitted with a new set of wings of slightly greater area, which increased the span to 24 ft. 7 in. These reduced the landing speed and improved handling without affecting the maximum speed. At the same time the engine cowling was modified to an annular shape, allowing more airflow through the central opening. On 14 May 1914 Busteed put the modified Scout through an A.I.D. performance test at Farnborough and recorded a speed range of 97.5 m.p.h. to 40 m.p.h.; he then flew to Brooklands, where he gave a spectacular demonstration and in a handicap race was beaten only by seconds by Harold Barnwell in the 100 h.p. Gnome-engined Sopwith Tabloid.
  The Scout was entered for the Aerial Derby round London on 23 May, but the race was postponed until 6 June, and on that day visibility was so bad that Sippe was not allowed to fly the Scout. However, another competitor, Lord Carbery, who owned a Morane monoplane, was so impressed by the Scout that he asked to buy it, and was allowed to because two more of the type, Nos. 229 and 230, were being built. Carbery paid ?400 for the airframe without engine and installed the 80 h.p. Le Rhone from his Morane. He took delivery at Hendon on 17 June, having already entered it for two cross-country races, the first being London-Manchester and back on 20 June. During practice flying, Carbery reached a true speed of over 100 m.p.h., but on the day the weather was very rough and having averaged 89 m.p.h. to the compulsory landing point at Castle Bromwich, Carbery landed across wind and tipped up on his nose, breaking the port lower wing and the chassis. Repairs at Filton were completed by 7 July, just in time for the second race, from London to Paris and back. In this event Carbery was scratch man and on the day of the race his engine was not giving full power. Nevertheless, he would not give up, and although he had to circle Hendon three times to gain height with 5 hours' fuel on board, and the weather was foggy into the bargain, he reached Buc safely. Unfortunately the mechanics who refuelled the Scout at Buc, during the compulsory 2 hours' stop, only filled one tank and Carbery did not check both tanks before taking-off on the return flight. Consequently he had only just crossed the French coast near Hardelot when his engine began to fail; he operated the fuel changeover cock, only to find the second tank empty also. He just had time to glide down on to the Channel beside a convenient tramp steamer; the water was calm and he was rescued without even getting his feet wet, but in salving the aircraft the fuselage was broken and all but the engine and mountings fell back into the sea.
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  Nos. 229 and 230 differed from No. 206 only in detail, notably the wing bracing and engine cowling, and were designated Scout B to distinguish them from the prototype, which became Scout A in retrospect. Barnwell sketched out a version of the Scout with a Statax engine, a small diameter swash-plate design which showed initial promise but was never properly developed. He also designed a racing single-seater, the G.B.l, for the 1914 Gordon Bennett race. This was discussed by the Directors on 26 June, but they decided not to built it. It was to have had a 100 h.p. Mono-Gnome engine mounted between horizontal bearers, as in the Sopwith Tabloid, and a tapered fixed fin.
  The two Scout Bs had not been flown when war broke out on 4 August 1914, but they were at once requisitioned by the War Office and delivered to Farnborough on 21 and 23 August, respectively. They were then sent to France, where their high speed and rate of climb won the approval of discerning pilots, who nicknamed them 'Bristol Bullets'. They were allotted R.F.C. numbers 633 and 648 and were flown by Lt. Cholmondeley and Major J. F. A. Higgins, of Nos. 3 and 5 Squadrons, respectively. The former armed his Scout with two rifles, on either side of the cockpit and offset from the line of flight so as to miss the airscrew.
  Although committed to ordering Royal Aircraft Factory designs, for which large contracts had been placed when war was imminent, the War Office was sufficiently impressed by its new Bristol, Martinsyde and Sopwith Scouts to place small production contracts for them, and the Company received an order for 12 of a further improved version, Scout C, on 5 November 1914. The Admiralty wanted them too and ordered 24 Scouts on 7 December, but this led to a dispute between the two Services, who both demanded priority in delivery. A compromise was reached whereby the first Scout C, No. 450 (1243) was completed urgently and delivered to the Admiralty on 16 February 1915. It was followed by Nos. 451-462 (1602-1613), delivered to the War Office between 23 April and 13 June 1915, followed by 17 more for the Admiralty, Nos. 463-479 (1244-1260) between 3 June and 18 July 1915. Meanwhile the War Office had placed a second contract for 75 Scout Cs on 16 March and the first six of these, Nos. 480-485 (4662-4667) were delivered between 10 and 29 July, followed by the remaining six, Nos. 486-491 (1261-1266), for the Admiralty between 29 July and 24 August 1915. All these Scouts were fitted with 80 h.p. Gnome engines. Manufacture of the Scout C was undertaken at Brislington because the Filton factory was fully committed to B.E.2c production. The next 32 for the War Office, Nos. 492-523 (46684699), were completed between 9 August and 12 November 1915, all after the first four being fitted with 80 h.p. Le Rhone engines after delivery because of a growing shortage of Gnomes. The Admiralty, however, insisted on having Gnomes because of their greater reliability, particularly for over-water flying, and had ordered 50 more on 6 June 1915; the first of the batch, No. 524 (3013), was delivered on 5 September, but the shortage of Gnome engines caused progressive delay until early in the New Year, and the 37th machine, No. 560 (3049), was delayed until 9 February 1916. However, it was followed quickly by the remaining 13, Nos. 771-783 (3050-3062), between 11 February and 25 March.
  Meanwhile, the remaining 37 Scouts for the War Office, Nos. 784-820 (5291-5327), with Le Rhones, had gone ahead smoothly and were dispatched between 13 November 1915 and 18 February 1916. This completed the production of the Scout C, of which 161 in all were produced, 74 for the Admiralty and 87 for the War Office; 65 of the latter had 80 h.p. Le Rhone engines and all the others had 80 h.p. Gnomes. At least one R.N.A.S. Scout (3035) was tested with an 80 h.p. Clerget.
  Bristol Scouts were dispersed among many R.F.C. squadrons, but never formed the sole equipment of any squadron. They were not armed when issued and much ingenuity was displayed by individual units and pilots in adapting them to an offensive role. How effective they could be was demonstrated on 25 July 1915 by Capt. Lanoe G. Hawker of No. 6 Squadron, who on an evening patrol forced down three enemy two-seaters all armed with machine-guns, although he himself had only a single-shot Martini carbine mounted at an angle on the starboard side; for which feat he was awarded the Victoria Cross. Other weapons, similarly mounted to miss the airscrew, included the larger 0.45 in. Martini carbine firing incendiary bullets, the Lewis gun and even a breech-loading duck-gun firing chain-shot. The fowling-piece was useless, but good use was made of Lewis guns.
  Most Naval Scouts were unarmed, but carried canisters of Ranken darts, designed to set fire to Zeppelin airships. Each Scout had two containers on the cockpit floor, each holding 24 darts, which could be released three at a time. Some Naval Scouts had a Lewis gun mounted above the centre-section, and a few had one mounted parallel to the top longeron and firing through the airscrew disc, sometimes but not always synchronised by a Scarff-Dibovski interrupter gear. The long duration and rapid rate of ascent of the Zeppelins made them particularly difficult to attack, except with small fast Scouts which had insufficient range to intercept them. In an attempt to overcome the range problem several Isle of Man steamers had been converted into seaplane carriers, and one, H.M.S. Vindex, was equipped with a flying-off deck forward. On 3 November 1915 the first take-off from this deck was made by Flight-Lt. H. F. Towler in a Scout C (1255), and thereafter two Scouts were carried by Vindex on anti-Zeppelin patrols. Another of the Vindex Scouts (3028) was loaned to Squadron Commander John Porte at Felixstowe for an experiment in which it was successfully launched from a large three-engined Porte Baby flying boat, flown by Porte himself. The Scout was carried on the upper wing of the flying boat, and its pilot, Flight-Lt. M. J. Day of Vindex, switched on his engine and climbed away when the composite aircraft had reached a height of 1,000 ft. above Harwich Harbour, landing safely soon afterwards at Martlesham Heath. This experiment took place on 17 May 1916, but was not repeated because Flight-Lt. Day was killed in France soon afterwards and newer aircraft able to tackle Zeppelins more effectively were coming into service by that date.
  During the period of Scout C production at Brislington few modifications had been made to Barnwell's design, and meanwhile Barnwell had joined the R.F.C. and Tinson had gone to the Admiralty Air Department. The principal change necessary was a rearrangement of the tanks so as to bring the oil tank forward from its original position behind the cockpit; here it had insufficient head to maintain oil supply while taxying, particularly with the Le Rhone engine, whose oil pump was less effective than the Gnome's. In August 1915, however, Barnwell was released from active service to resume duty at Filton as Chief Designer, and he quickly took action to remedy some of the shortcomings of the existing Scout C, as reported by both Services. Some requests, such as the Admiralty's for a fixed fin and a rudder area of 5 sq. ft. he rejected. (There is a note in his handwriting in reply to the Admiralty overseer, Lt. Ronald Kemp, saying, 'We have already given them a rudder of 5.13 sq. ft. do they want a negative fin area?') But he took steps to improve detail design and performance, substituting streamline Rafwires for stranded cable and ensuring better interchangeability and reliability of quick-wearing parts. Provision was made for a synchronised Vickers gun, and tank design was improved to overcome fue11eaks caused by vibration. Loss of fuel from this cause forced Flight-Lt. Freeman of Vindex to break off an engagement with Zeppelin L.l7 after hitting it with his Ranken darts; he had to ditch his Scout, but was rescued by a Belgian ship and interned in Holland for a few days before being repatriated as a 'shipwrecked mariner'.
  The revised design, Scout D, completed in November 1915, matched a new War Office contract awarded on 3 August for 50 Scouts, Nos. 1044-1093 (5554-5603). These were delivered without engines between 14 February and 3 June 1916 and retained the same wing rigging and aileron area as the Scout C, but an alternative wing design was already approved for a smaller aileron combined with increased dihedral; in this type the wing-tip skids were moved outboard from below the interplane struts. The production drawings confirm that both types of wing were manufactured for the Scout D and that aileron size is not a criterion m recognising a Scout C from a Scout D. Two sizes of rudder were designed for Scout D, the larger being fitted in conjunction with long ailerons, the so-called 'medium' in conjunction with short ailerons; both the Scout D rudders were larger than the Scout C type in height and chord, but differed from each other only by 2 1/2 inches in height. A repeat contract for 30 Scout Ds Nos. 1094-1123 (7028-7057), was placed by the War Office on 18 October 1915, and these were equipped with standardised gun mountings and the modified wings; they were delivered without engines between 7 June and 15 July 1916, and followed by a further 50, Nos. 1381-1430 (A1742-A1791), delivered between 22 July and 27 September 1916. Meanwhile the Admiralty ordered 50 with the 100 h.p. Monosoupape-Gnome, Nos. 1124-1173 (8951-9000), on 9 November 1915; their delivery was spread over the period 18 April to 5.August 1916 and they had a modified cut-away centre section with a mounting for a movable Lewis gun. The cowling for the Monosoupape engine was larger in diameter than for the 80 h.p. engines and had a bulge on the starboard side to improve exhaust scavenging. A final production batch of 30 Scout Ds, Nos. 1837-1866 (N5390-N5419), covered by an Admiralty contract on 1 November 1916, was delivered between 2 November and 16 December 1916, but by this time the Company had begun production of the F.2A two-seater fighter at Brislington and declined an Admiralty invitation in March 1917 to tender for a further 40 Scouts. The first ten of the final batch had 100 h.p. Monosoupape-Gnomes, but the remainder reverted to 80 h.p. Gnomes and went to RN.A.S. flying schools. The R.F.C. also expressed interest in a more potent version of the Scout D, and three, 5554, 5555 and 5556, were modified to take the 110 h.p. Clerget, which like the Monosoupape, required a larger diameter cowling. In March 1916 Barnwell designed hemispherical spinners to suit each engine, and 5555 was fitted with the largest and provided data for the Clerget installation proposed for the M.1A monoplane. The other spinners were also tested, as well as a Morane spinner, which was flown extensively on a Scout D with a 110 h.p. Le Rhone by Lt. Frank Courtney at Farnborough. A conical spinner tested on 5556 suffered badly from distortion and vibration and no spinners were approved for production aircraft. The number of Scout Ds produced was 210, 130 for the R.F.C. and 80 for the R.N.A.S., so that the total of all Scouts A to D was 374, a not inconsiderable progeny from a project which started as a carbon-copy stop-gap.
  Scouts C and D found their way to most theatres of war in small numbers and saw service with the R.F.C. on the Western Front, in Palestine with Nos. 14, 111 and 67 (Australian) Squadrons, in Mesopotamia with Nos. 30 and 63 Squadrons and in Macedonia with No. 47 Squadron. With the R.N.A.S. they were flown by No.2 Wing from Mudros, Thasos and Imbros in the Dardanelles campaign, from H.M.S. Vindex in the North Sea, and from coastal stations at home. Both services employed them extensively for training and communications, and 8976 went to the Australian Central Flying School at Point Cook; another, rebuilt by No.1 (Southern) Aeroplane Repair Depot, R.F.C., as B763 was sent to McCook Field, Dayton, Ohio, where it was tested by the U.S. Army Engineering Division as Project no. P32.
  Only one Scout D, No. 1060 (5570), delivered new on 18 March 1916, survived the war to enter private ownership as G-EAGR in the British Civil Register. It was first owned by Major J. A. McKelvie, who sold it in 1926 to Squadron Leader Champion de Crespigny, who sold it a year later to Flight-Lt. A. M. Wray; it was stored for a time at Hedon, Hull, awaiting renewal of its certificate of airworthiness, which was refused because no approved fireproof bulkhead was fitted, and it was finally scrapped in 1930. In 1919 a Spanish private pilot, Juan Pombo, wished to order a new Scout D but the Company declined to build a single new specimen and could not recommend any of those still in store at that date as being fit for reconditioning.


SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA
Type: Scouts A-D, S.S.A.
Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton and Brislington, Bristol

Type Scout A Scout B Scout C Scout D S.S.A.
Power Plant 80 hp 80 hp 80 hp 80 hp 80 hp
   Gnome or Gnome Gnome, Gnome, Clerget or
   Le Rhone Le Rhone Le Rhone or Gnome
   Clerget Clerget,
   100 hp
   Mono-Gnome,
   110 hp Clerget
   or Le Rhone
Span 22 ft 24 ft 7 in 24 ft 7 in 24 ft 7 in 27 ft 4 in
   24 ft 7 in
Length 19 ft 9 in 20 ft 8 in 20 ft 8 in 20 ft 8 in 19 ft 9 in
Height 8 ft 6 in 8 ft 6 in 8 ft 6 in 8 ft 6 in
Wing Area 161 sq ft 198 sq ft 198 sq ft 198 sq ft 200 sq ft
   198 sq ft
Empty Weight 617 lb 750 lb 760 lb 760 lb 913 lb
   750 lb 925 lb
All-up Weight 957 lb 1,100 lb 1,200 lb 1,250 lb 1,200 lb
   1,100 lb 1,440 lb
Max. Speed 95 mph 100 mph 93 mph 100 mph 106 mph
   100 mph 110 mph
Initial Rate of
Climb 800 ft/min 1,000 ft/min 1,000 ft/min 1,100 ft/min
Duration 3 hours 2 1/2 hours 2 1/2 hours 2 1/2 hours 3 hours
   5 hours 2 hours
Accommodation 1 1 1 1 1
Production 1 2 161 210 1
Sequence Nos. 206 229,230 219
Original Scout, No. 206, at Larkhill, February 1914; Busteed in cockpit, Barnwell holding up tail.
Scout A modified; Carbery starting from Hendon in London-Manchester Race, July 1914.
First production Scout C at Eastchurch in March 1915.
Scout D of R.N.A.S. (100 hp Mono-Gnome) with large ailerons, large rudder and cut-out for Lewis gun; Cranwell 1916.
B.E.2d and Scout D biplanes ready for dispatch from Filton in 1916.
Scout D of R.F.C. with 110 hp Clerget, spinner and large ailerons.
One further Bristol-Coanda two-seater biplane was built and was Coanda's only pusher biplane design. This was No. 199, the P.B.8, which was intended to serve as a Boxkite replacement at the Brooklands school. Although the design was begun in November 1913, construction proceeded on very low priority, and the complete machine was not delivered to Brooklands till July 1914. Hardly had it arrived when its 80 h.p. Gnome engine was requisitioned by the War Office and so it never flew. The P.B.8 was relatively small, with wings of equal span having upper and lower ailerons. The overall length was equal to the span and the tail booms were parallel in plan view at a fairly close pitch, the lower booms being continuous with the chassis skids. Initially the nacelle nose shape was a horizontal knife-edge, but as finally built this was changed to a vertical knife-edge. The crew occupied a common cockpit, and access to the aft seat was not easy because of the low clearance under the upper wing. A much more satisfactory trainer was No. 218, the only side-by-side version of the T.B.8, which was rebuilt in April 1914 from monoplane No. 177. It had ailerons and a separate tail skid, as on the G.B.75, and was used at Larkhill.

Model P.B.8
Power Plant 80 hp
   Gnome
Span 27 ft 6 in
Length 27 ft 6 in
Accommodation 2
Production 1
Sequence Nos. 199
The Bristol Scouts A-D, S.S.A., G.B.1 and S.2A

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  Concurrently with No. 206, Coanda had been engaged on a different single-seater biplane project at the request of the French· government. This was No. 219, the S.S.A. (Single Seat Armoured) biplane, whose principal feature was the bullet-proof construction of the whole of the front fuselage and cockpit as a single monocoque unit of sheet steel, colloquially known as 'The Bath', enclosing the engine and fuel and oil tanks as well as the pilot's seat, the latter being formed by the shaped contour of the rear bulkhead. The 80 h.p. Clerget rotary engine was enclosed in a sheet cowling with a large steel spinner in front; the spinner was perforated to allow cooling air to enter, but contained a central cone which prevented direct entry of bullets from ahead. The wings were staggered and set very far forward to counteract nose-heaviness, the lower wings being attached to a framework which left a gap between the wing roots and the fuselage. The chassis was of the two-wheeled type, with two skids extended aft so that no tail skid was necessary. The wheels were arranged to castor for cross-wind landing, this being a Bleriot feature esteemed by French pilots. The rear fuselage was very slender and carried a large balanced rudder and Scout-type tailplane and elevators.
  When finished, No. 219 was flown at Larkhill by Sippe on 8 May 1914, with a temporary aluminium cowling because of vibration in the steel spinner. A week later the S.S.A. was fitted with a larger rudder before going to Farnborough, but was damaged in a heavy landing. After repairs Busteed flew it again at Filton on 25 June, but an undercarriage bracing wire failed on landing, and he was catapulted out of the cockpit injuring his knees and shoulder. The S.S.A. was badly damaged, but the French authorities agreed to take delivery of it for rebuilding in the Breguet works at Douai, whither it was consigned on 3 July 1914. The S.S.A. was unarmed and was not further developed at Filton, but may be considered a forerunner of the armoured trench fighter exemplified by the Sopwith Salamander of 1918. The very similar RB two-seater, described earlier, may also have been intended as an armoured machine, and was exactly contemporary with the S.S.A.
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SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA
Type: Scouts A-D, S.S.A.
Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton and Brislington, Bristol

Type Scout A Scout B Scout C Scout D S.S.A.
Power Plant 80 hp 80 hp 80 hp 80 hp 80 hp
   Gnome or Gnome Gnome, Gnome, Clerget or
   Le Rhone Le Rhone Le Rhone or Gnome
   Clerget Clerget,
   100 hp
   Mono-Gnome,
   110 hp Clerget
   or Le Rhone
Span 22 ft 24 ft 7 in 24 ft 7 in 24 ft 7 in 27 ft 4 in
   24 ft 7 in
Length 19 ft 9 in 20 ft 8 in 20 ft 8 in 20 ft 8 in 19 ft 9 in
Height 8 ft 6 in 8 ft 6 in 8 ft 6 in 8 ft 6 in
Wing Area 161 sq ft 198 sq ft 198 sq ft 198 sq ft 200 sq ft
   198 sq ft
Empty Weight 617 lb 750 lb 760 lb 760 lb 913 lb
   750 lb 925 lb
All-up Weight 957 lb 1,100 lb 1,200 lb 1,250 lb 1,200 lb
   1,100 lb 1,440 lb
Max. Speed 95 mph 100 mph 93 mph 100 mph 106 mph
   100 mph 110 mph
Initial Rate of
Climb 800 ft/min 1,000 ft/min 1,000 ft/min 1,100 ft/min
Duration 3 hours 2 1/2 hours 2 1/2 hours 2 1/2 hours 3 hours
   5 hours 2 hours
Accommodation 1 1 1 1 1
Production 1 2 161 210 1
Sequence Nos. 206 229,230 219
The Bristol Fighter F.2A and F.2B

  By March 1916 the Company had contracts for over 600 R.E. two-seaters of various types, and had delivered over 400; a further 550 B.E.2d and B.E.2e were to be produced before production of official designs ended in 1917. The shortcomings of the B.E. series and the requirements of the War Office for new designs were well known to Capt. Barnwell, and he held no high opinion of the R.E.5, the Royal Aircraft Factory's designated successor to the B.E.2e, so he set about producing a similar biplane having none of its defects. The result was the R.2A, which was laid out in March 1916 as a light two-seater powered by a 120 h.p. Beardmore engine, with the pilot in the front cockpit, with a synchronised Lewis gun on the starboard upper longeron, and an observer close to him in the rear cockpit, which contained dual controls, wireless, camera and message-launching tube. The observer could fold his seat and stand up to fire a single Lewis gun carried on a rotating ring mounting. To improve the observer's field of fire, the fuselage tapered to a very small cross-section aft, and more than a third of the fin and rudder area was below tailplane level. For the same reason, the fuselage was mounted high between the staggered wings, so that the observer could fire over the pilot's head at quite low elevations. The upper wing was thus placed so as to minimise the pilot's blind spot. The design was promising though underpowered, and it was hoped that a 150 h.p. Hispano-Suiza engine might be released later, so in May 1916 a modified design, R.2B, was sketched round this engine. This had wings of unequal span with a partial Warren girder lift bracing intended to simplify rigging in the field. Then in July Barnwell was offered one of the new 190 h.p. Rolls-Royce engines as well as the Hispano-Suiza, and he immediately redesigned the R.2A to suit both engines. He was not content to adapt what he had already drawn, but started afresh from the Rolls-Royce installation diagram, designing a new cowling and fuselage to accommodate all the R.2A's equipment in perfect harmony with the new fuel and oil tanks required; at the same time he incorporated the latest improvements in armament.
  He sent Frise on a fortnight's course on the Vickers gun at Hythe, with instructions to find out all about it. Frise returned with the information and a complete Vickers gun as well. Various positions for it were tried, but in the end Barnwell decided that only a mounting on the centre line would be satisfactory, with the cocking handle immediately in front of the pilot, so that jams could be readily cleared. This involved making a tunnel through the upper fuel tank, but this complication had the advantage of keeping the gun in the warm air behind the engine, free from stoppages from frozen oil. The tail unit was redesigned and the top of the fuselage cambered to a horizontal knife-edge stern, thus reducing still more the observer's blind area. The rear cockpit arrangement was also revised, and the observer's tip-up seat was mounted to slide fore-and-aft so that he could sit facing either way. This gave him a better look-out while using his wireless and placed him within arm's reach of the pilot to give him instant warning of attack by a thump on the shoulder. An important innovation was the adjustable tailplane, whose incidence could be varied to give stable' hands-off' flying over a wide range of speeds. The dual control was removed, but a small emergency lever could be plugged into a socket for elevator control, and there were hand-grips on the rudder cables, which enabled the observer to minimise the effect of a crash landing with a dead or unconscious pilot. The new design was renamed F.2A to mark its ability as a fighter, and 'Bristol Fighter' was the name universally bestowed on it from the start. The Company was instructed to proceed at once with two prototypes, one with the Rolls-Royce engine and the other with the Hispano-Suiza. On 28 August 1916 a contract was awarded for the two prototypes and 50 production aircraft.
  Work commenced on the two prototypes during July, and the first, No. 1379 (A3303), was ready for flight on 9 September 1916; the second, No. 1380 (A3304), followed on 25 October. The first flight was eagerly awaited by everyone in the factory, and there was dismay when Capt. Hooper reported that he was unable to climb higher than 6,000 ft. Rigging was checked but small alterations of incidence and stagger had no effect, and finally Capt. Barnwell sent for his brother Harold, Vickers' chief test pilot, who in turn reported a maximum altitude of 6,000 ft., although he felt certain he had climbed very much higher. Then the penny dropped, the altimeter was changed and the fault was found. In fact, the F.2A had climbed to 10,000 ft. in 15 min. A3303 was flown to Upavon on 21 September, and in its official trials exceeded its estimated performance by a handsome margin. Originally, the Rolls-Royce installation had two separate radiators mounted vertically on either side of the fuselage just ahead of the wings. This arrangement obscured the pilot's view for landing, and a new circular radiator was designed to fit into the nose, equipped with shutters in front; a similar radiator, but with shutters behind, was installed on the second prototype. As further Hispano-Suiza engines were not immediately available, Rolls-Royce engines were standardised for production aircraft, and in November the contract was amended to call for 200 more of an improved model, the F.2B. In accordance with A.I.D. recommendations the gap in the lower wing was filled by a lower centre section, and the upper longerons forward of the pilot's cockpit were sloped down so as to improve the view. All production Bristol Fighters had raked wing tips instead of the B.E. shape chosen for the two prototypes. Production aircraft numbered 1431-1480 (A3305-A3359) for the 50 F.2A's and 2069-2268 (A7101-A7300) for the 200 F.2B's were assembled at Brislington, because Filton works were full of B.E.'s and deliveries began on 20 December 1916; six left the factory before the year ended, and the fiftieth was dispatched on 23 March 1917.
  The second prototype, A3304, was modified to incorporate the F.2B's lower centreplane and sloping longerons, and these were approved for production; deliveries of the 200 F.2B's began on 13 April, but before this the first squadron of F.2A's had gone into action over Arras. Deliveries of Bristol Fighters had begun early in the year to experimental stations, where they were intensively flown in mock battle by pilots with front line experience. Their reports were enthusiastic, and two squadrons were formed and trained for the spring offensive of 1917. The first squadron, No. 48, received F.2A's in February and arrived in France on 8 March, but was held back from action in order to achieve the maximum surprise effect. Early in April the squadron was based at Bellevue, near Arras, under the command of Major A. Vere Bettington. As a result of numerous applications from experienced pilots and observers, weary of the odds against them and eager to fly the Bristol Fighter, No. 48 Squadron contained the cream of the R.F.C. and numbered more than one V.C. amongst its crews. All were convinced that the Bristol Fighter would prove fast and manreuvrable enough to outfly the notorious Albatros D.III's used in formations or 'circuses' by Baron von Richthofen to establish local air superiority.
  On 5 April 1917 the first offensive reconnaissance over Arras was made by six F.2A's led by Capt. Leefe Robinson, V.C. They were met near Douai by Richthofen with five Albatros and attempted to fight back in the orthodox two-seater manner, with the pilots manreuvring to give their gunners a good field of fire, but four Fighters were shot down, two by Richthofen personally, and Leefe Robinson was taken prisoner. Six days later, four Fighters were attacked by four Albatros and shot down two of the latter without loss, but later in the patrol one had to return to Bellevue with a jammed gun and the other three were shot down by four more Albatros. On 16 April six more of No. 48 Squadron's machines patrolled over Douai for over half an hour without meeting any enemy, which beguiled the formation leader into straying too far downwind, so that five ran out of fuel while still over the enemy lines. All but one were burned by their crews to avoid capture, and this sequence of losses was a disastrous debut for the new Fighter, from which so much had been expected. Some of the pilots then began to fly the Fighters as if they were single-seaters, using the front gun for the main attack and the observer's only as secondary rear cover. Immediate and striking success resulted from this change of tactics, and on 30 April a patrol of six F.2A's fought their way home from Douai without loss. The tip was passed on to the second Bristol Fighter Squadron, No. 11, which had just re-equipped after flying Vickers Gunbus pushers.
  No. 11 Squadron went into the line in May and for some weeks performed photographic reconnaissance without interference from the enemy. On 20 June 1917, the first attack by an Albatros was made on one of No. 11's Fighters, flown by Lt. A. E. McKeever with Sergt. Powell as observer, McKeever held his fire until his attacker crossed his sights at close range, when a short burst from the front gun proved decisive. He repeated the performance the next day and within a week had scored four victories. In September he met eight enemy fighters, shot down one and disabled five others, for which he was awarded the Military Cross. By the end of October he had destroyed 20 enemy aircraft and had won a bar to his M.C. On 30 November, returning from a long patrol into enemy territory, he was attacked by seven Albatros and two two-seaters. He shot down one of the latter and in the melee that followed three of the single-seaters were destroyed, two by Powell with the rear gun. This final demonstration of prowess not only gained McKeever a D.S.O., but proved the magnificent fighting ability of the Bristol Fighter, when handled by a determined crew, and similar feats by many other pilots soon avenged the early casualties suffered by No. 48 Squadron.
  Both Nos. 48 and 11 Squadrons had received F.2B's as soon as they became available, and the production contract was twice revised until by July the quantity on order was 602. Capt. Hammond tested the first F.2B, A7101, on 10 April 1917, three days before its despatch to the Acceptance Park. Of this batch, the first 150 were fitted with the 190 h.p. Rolls-Royce engine, now named Falcon I, and 50 with the 220 h.p. Falcon II. Later the first 275 h.p. Falcon III was installed in A7177, and this engine was standardised for future production, as long as supplies lasted. With the extra performance the Falcon III provided, the Bristol Fighter was one of the really great aeroplanes of 1917 and 1918. In a letter to Capt. Louis Strange after his posting to the Central Flying School, Major Vere Bettington, C.O. of No. 48 Squadron, wrote from France on 13 May 1917:
   "Regarding the Bristol, she is a topping fighting two-seater, the best here; not excepting the D.H. as she is much handier than that and communication between pilot and passenger in the Bristol is splendid whereas D.H.4 is not.... She is faster than the Hun two-seater but cannot touch the latest Albatros Scout for speed. Where she does score tremendously is in her power to dive, in this she is alone among English or Allied machines. Many Huns who have dived on the tail of one, missed and gone on diving, have been dived after, overtaken and destroyed. They are dived plumb vertically for thousands of feet until the noise is like that of a million sabres cleaving the air. The indicated speed on a Clift or Ogilvie Indicator is then generally 60 to 90 m.p.h. the second time round the dial. The indicator reads normally to 130 m.p.h. then a space so probably the speed is considerably over 230 m.p.h.... She loops well ... she will do a fine spinning nose dive (if held in but will come out soon if left alone).... She stands an enormous amount of punishment in the way of being shot about and several have been very hard hit and come home, to be written off charge as beyond repair.... The Norman sight for the Lewis seems to be awfully good; observers have done well with it and many a Boche diving on the tail of a Bristol possibly mistaking it for a wretched Quirk (B.E.) has been badly stung; up to now observers have got about as many Huns as the pilots have done with their front guns."
  Production of the F.2B at Filton began with Nos. 2269-2518 (B1101-B1350), which were delivered between 18 July 1917 and 18 February 1918, while Brislington continued with Nos. 2851-2950 (C4801-C4900) delivered concurrently between 17 October 1917 and 2 March 1918. The B.E.2e line at Filton ended at last, and in July 1917 the War Office adopted the Bristol Fighter for the re-equipment of all fighter-reconnaissance squadrons; a second production line began at Filton with a contract for 500 placed on 4 September covering Nos. 2951-3450 (C4601-C4800) and (C751-C1050) delivered between 30 November 1917 and 28 May 1918. This was increased in October by a further 300 shared by both factories, Nos. 3451-3750 (C7801-C8100), which were delivered between 29 March and 11 July 1918. But the Bristol factories were already working to their limit and still more drastic steps were needed to accelerate production, large contracts being let from November onwards to firms outside the aircraft industry; these firms included Angus Sanderson and Armstrong-Whitworth, both of Newcastle-on-Tyne; Austin Motors and Harris & Sheldon of Birmingham; the Gloucestershire Aircraft Co. of Cheltenham; Marshall and Sons of Gainsborough; National Aircraft Factory No.3 (managed by Cunard) at Aintree; and the Standard Motor Co. of Coventry. Each of these undertakings received orders for between 100 and 500 airframes, the total number being nearly 2,000.
  Soon it was obvious that Rolls-Royce Falcons could not be produced fast enough for all the Bristol Fighters ordered, and the first alternative sought was the Hispano-Suiza, of which the 200 h.p. geared version was being produced by the French motor industry and in England also by Wolseley Motors. As the power was less than that of the Falcon III, Fighters with the latter engine were reserved for fighter-reconnaissance squadrons and those with alternative engines were to be issued to corps-reconnaissance units. As there would still not be enough Hispano-Suizas to meet the whole programme, because of the concurrent adoption of the S.E.5a Scout which used only this engine, a second alternative engine, the 200 h.p. Sunbeam Arab, was chosen; at Filton, Arabs were specified for 300 Fighters, C751-C1050. Unfortunately all these engines had been rushed into production before being fully developed and suffered severely from 'teething troubles'. Wolseley-built Hispanos averaged only 4 hours' life before crankshaft failure; Brasier-built Hispanos were no better, and although those built by Mayen were more reliable, all these were taken for the S.E.5a programme. Only 80 out of a promised 1,800 Sunbeam Arabs had been accepted by the end of 1917, because of severe vibration, and even these gave endless trouble when installed. It was then hoped to use a larger Hispano-Suiza of 300 h.p. which, having direct drive, was immune from reduction gear trouble, and the Sunbeam Arab installation was modified to accommodate it, but this too was delayed in production.
  The effect of these cumulative troubles and delays was to postpone the changeover from R.E.8's to Bristol Fighters from April 1918 till September, and large numbers of F.2B airframes delivered early in the year remained in storage and did not reach France in time to take any active part in the fighting, apart from Bristol-built Rolls-Royce machines. At the Armistice, the Royal Air Force had on charge about 900 of the latter and 720 with other engines, out of a total of 1,349 from Filton, 853 from Brislington and 1,600 from other contractors.
  When supplies of both types of Hispano-Suiza failed, it was decided to substitute the Siddeley Puma of 240 h.p., but as this was a six-cylinder vertical engine it was difficult to install, and in particular the front gun had to be moved from its successful central position. Even the Puma was delayed in delivery, due to foundry difficulties. In the summer of 1918 the direct-drive 300 h. p. Hispano-Suiza at last became available, and this proved to be entirely reliable, but deliveries had hardly commenced before the war ended. It was the original Falcon-engined version which never failed in production and proved invincible in action. It equipped six squadrons in France, one in Italy, two in Palestine and five for home defence. The Arab-engined version also rendered valuable service with five long-range corps-reconnaissance flights in France.
  In the great German offensive of March 1918, the Bristol Fighter squadrons in France took a major part in strafing the advancing enemy infantry, flying almost at ground level with guns blazing and blasting enemy batteries with 20 lb. Cooper and 112 lb. Hale bombs in support of the hard-pressed Third and Fifth Armies. Nothing came amiss to the Bristol Fighter. In the arid wastes of the Palestine desert, No. 67 (Australian) Squadron gained superiority over the enemy air forces in October 1917 with the arrival of five F.2B's, for the first time since the campaign began. The Australian pilot Capt. Ross Smith and his observer Lt. E. A. Mustar flew the same Bristol Fighter, B1229, throughout the campaign, during which time they destroyed 17 enemy aircraft between them and twice rescued the crews of other stranded machines.
  On the home front daylight raids by Gotha bombers caused heavy civilian casualties and at first met little opposition, but on 7 July 1917 an attempt was made by Home Defence units to intercept the raiders. The only aircraft to get within range was a Bristol Fighter, and later the type was chosen to reequip three H.D. squadrons; they were equipped with a sight set to face forward at an elevation of 45 degrees from the pilot's eye. The rear gunner fired over the pilot's head at the same elevation while the pilot aimed the aircraft, and at 100 m.p.h. the trajectory remained straight for 800 yards. Rolls-Royce-engined fighters equipped the Home Defence squadrons and were painted matt dull green, with all white stripes and rings in the insignia obscured.
  Although the Falcon installation varied only in minor detail during the entire period of production, there were several changes in external appearance when alternative engines were used. The 200 h.p. Hispano-Suiza employed a nearly circular radiator slightly taller than wide, and its oil tank was mounted externally beneath the cowling. The Sunbeam Arab at first had a similar radiator of larger area and more nearly rectangular, but the simple tubular engine mounting was found to be too flexible for this very rough-running engine and a deep braced girder had to be substituted making the bottom line of the cowling square and horizontal; this mounting was combined with an S.E.5a radiator for a time, but had to be increased in area for the 300 h.p. Hispano-Suiza, raising the top cowling to pent-roof shape. Finally an improved mounting and radiator was designed to accommodate either the Sunbeam Arab or the 300 h.p. Hispano-Suiza, and this pattern was standardized for 1918 production. The Puma installation, designed at Farnborough, resembled that of the D.H.9, with a similar underslung radiator. Some late Falcon installations had enlarged radiators with a squarer shape, and a few Fighters had the aircooled R.A.F.4d engine; most of these were flown for test purposes at Farnborough.
  When the United States entered the war in 1917 the Bristol Fighter was among the British types proposed for large-scale production in America; 2000 were ordered first from the Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Corporation of Buffalo, N.Y., and later from a group of other firms to be supervised by the Engineering Division of the Bureau of Aircraft Production at McCook Field, Dayton, Ohio; all were originally to be fitted with the 300 h.p. Hispano-Suiza, licence-built by the Wright-Martin Corporation. These plans met with approval from the Company, and several of the Filton staff went to America to supervise the arrangements, taking with them two sample airframes. To their dismay, they found that the engine actually chosen was the 400 h.p. Liberty 12, which was too heavy and badly installed. Capt. Barnwell predicted trouble but was overruled; when the first Curtiss-built F.2B flew and crashed he was proved correct, but the U.S. Army blamed the aircraft rather than the power plant, and only 27 of the contract were built, the rest being cancelled. Technical opinion at McCook Field was less biased and the two Filton-built aircraft were flown, one (P 30) with a 300 h.p. HispanoSuiza and the other (P 37) with a 290 h.p. Liberty 8. P 37 crashed before any performance tests could be made, but on 18 November 1918 P 30 was flown by Major Schroeder to a height of 29,000 ft. above Dayton, an unofficial world's altitude record for which homologation was never sought. A Hispano-Suiza-engined F.2B variant with semi-monocoque veneer fuselage was built at McCook Field with the designation XB-1A (P 90) in July 1919, and 40 more were produced for the U.S. Army by Dayton-Wright in 1920.
  Although production of Bristol Fighters by outside contractors ceased on 26 November 1918, the Company was allowed to continue deliveries of all machines contracted for and started at that date, and production at Filton continued until September 1919, by which time a total number of 4,747 Bristol Fighters had been completed, 2,081 at Filton, 1,045 at Brislington and 1,621 by other contractors. Contracts placed with the Company from March to September 1918 covered Nos. 3754-4253 (E2151-E2650) and Nos. 42575424 (F4271-F4970 and H1240-H1707). Of the last batch, 153 aircraft (H1240-H1389, H1399-1400 and H1407) were completed with Arabs and the final 18 (H1690-H1707) with Pumas; all the rest had Falcons. (Apparently only four F.2B's were included in Imperial Gifts to Dominion Air Forces in 1919: D7869 (later G-CYDP) and F4336 (later G-CYBC) to Canada, and H1557 and H1558 to New Zealand. H1248 (G-A UEB) was purchased ex-Disposals with a 300 h.p. Hispano-Suiza in 1920) The last three Rolls-Royce machines, H1687-9, were specially fitted with long-range tanks and dual controls, without armament. In addition 56 were taken over for completion from the Standard Motor Co., Nos. 5659-5714 (E5253-E5308), and delivered with Pumas.
  When the Royal Air Force became re-established on a peacetime footing, the Bristol Fighter was adopted as the standard Army Co-operation type, and in December 1919 a new machine, No. 5893 (J6586), was tested with a wide range of desert equipment and a tropical cooling system for use in India and Iraq. This was followed by 214 similar new machines, Nos. 5894-6107 (J6587-J6800), and these together with successive batches of Fighters reconditioned in accordance with specification No. 21/21, totalling 415 machines during the next five years, were issued to the overseas squadrons of the R.A.F., which maintained law and order in Iraq, Baluchistan and the North-West Frontier of India. At home they equipped the four Army Co-operation Squadrons, well known for their message-hook technique as demonstrated annually at Hendon, also No. 24 (Communications) Squadron and the Royal Aircraft Establishment; amongst the R.A.E. stud was one with square-tipped metal wings of biconvex section, incorporating leading edge condensers for evaporative cooling experiments. All the reconditioned aircraft received new sequence numbers, but normally retained their original serials, although in 1925 a batch of 84 built from spares, Nos. 6721-6804, became J7617-J7699. After this batch a further 144 were reconditioned in 1926, and during that year one machine, H1420, was specially modified to a revised layout and exhaustively tested at the School of Army Co-operation, Old Sarum. This variant, which was structurally redesigned throughout for higher loads, was designated Bristol Type 96 and officially named Bristol Fighter Mark III, and 50 new aircraft, Nos. 7040-7089 (J8242-J8291), were delivered between 16 October and 23 December 1926. The final production batch consisted of 30 similar machines, but with dual controls instead of armament; these, Nos. 6988-7017 (J8429-J8458), were completed between January and June 1927 and included J8430 specially furnished as a personal transport for H.R.H. the Prince of Wales, for whom it was flown and maintained by No. 24 Squadron. The 3576th and last new Bristol Fighter to be built at Bristol for the Air Ministry was No. 7122, one of two Mark III's delivered to the R.N.Z.A.F., in July 1927, together with a dual-control trainer, No. 7120. All the Mark III's of the R.A.F. were converted in 1928 into Mark IV's with a still higher gross weight, strengthened longerons and landing gear, Handley Page auto-slots and enlarged fin and horn-balanced rudder. The prototype of the Mark IV was H1417, which initially had slot-and-aileron controls on a square-tipped upper wing.
  Bristol Fighters Mark IV were issued to the Oxford and Cambridge University Air Squadrons in July 1928 until finally superseded in 1931, when a few were released for sale and came on to the Civil Register. Apart from Royal Air Force service, Bristol Fighters were supplied in small quantities to many foreign air forces, including Belgium, Greece, Mexico, Norway, Peru and Spain, as well as to Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the Irish Free State. A large proportion of these were sold in 1920-23 from war disposal stocks and were fitted with 300 h.p. Hispano-Suizas; in Belgium, S.A.B.C.A. acquired a manufacturing licence after 16, Nos. 6223-6238, with Frise ailerons and oleo landing gear, had been purchased new. Twelve similar new Fighters, Nos. 6510-6521, were supplied to Spain between July and October 1924, and ten more with further revised control surfaces and oleo landing gear, Nos. 7222-7231, went to Mexico in 1927. The grand total of all Bristol Fighters built, excluding the Jupiter-engined variant described later, was 5,252. The last Bristol Fighters in service, those of the R.N.Z.A.F., were scrapped in 1938, No. 7121 having crashed during air-firing practice at a range near Christchurch in February 1936. Only two Bristol Fighters now survive and are being preserved for posterity. One is E2581, still in its 1918 camouflage, in the Imperial War Museum, London; the other is D8096, maintained in airworthy condition and flown on suitable occasions by the Shuttleworth Trust, at Old Warden, Beds.

SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA
  Types: R.2A, R.2B, F.2A and F.2B
  Manufacturers:
   The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton and Brislington, Bristol
   The Bristol Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol;
   Angus Sanderson & Co. Ltd., Newcastle-on-Tyne;
   Sir W. G. Armstrong, Whitworth & Co. Ltd., Gosforth and Elswick, Newcastle-on-Tyne;
   Austin Motors Ltd., Longbridge, Birmingham;
   Cunard Steamship Co. Ltd., National Aircraft Factory No.3, Aintree, Lancs.
   Gloucestershire Aircraft Co. Ltd., Sunningend, Cheltenham;
   Harris & Sheldon, Ltd., Stafford Street, Birmingham;
   Marshall & Sons, Ltd., Gainsborough, Lincs.
   Standard Motor Car Co. Ltd., Coventry;
   Curtiss Aeroplane & Motor Corporation, Buffalo, N.Y., U.S.A.;
   Dayton-Wright Airplane Co., Dayton, Ohio, U.S.A.
   Engineering Division, Bureau of Aircraft Production, McCook Field, Dayton, Ohio, U.S.A.
  Power Plants:
   (R.2A) One 120 hp Beardmore;
   (R.2B) One 150 hp Hispano-Suiza;
   (F 2A)
   One 190 hp Rolls-Royce Falcon I
   One 150 hp Hispano-Suiza
   (F.2B)
   One 190 hp Rolls-Royce Falcon I
   One 220 hp Rolls-Royce Falcon II
   One 275 hp Rolls-Royce Falcon III
   One 200 h.p. Hispano-Suiza
   One 200 hp Sunbeam Arab
   One 200 hp R.A.F.4d
   One 180 hp Wolseley Viper
   One 230 hp Siddeley Puma
   One 300 hp Hispano-Suiza
   (USA O-1)
   One 400 hp Liberty 12
   One 290 hp Liberty 8
  Span:
   (R.2A) 40 ft 8 in
   (R.2B) 39 ft
   (F.2A & F.2B) 39 ft 3 in
  Length:
   (R.2A) 26 ft 3 in
   (R.2B) 25 ft 5 in
   (F.2A & F 2B)
   Falcon 25 ft 10 in
   Arab & Hispano 24 ft 10 in
   Puma 26 ft
   (USA O-1)
   Liberty 12 26 ft 2 in
   Liberty 8 25 ft 5 in
  Height: 9 ft 6 in
  Wing Area:
   (R.2A) 430 sq ft
   (R.2B) 320 sq ft
   (F.2A) 389 sq ft
   (F.2B) 405 sq ft
  Maximum Speed:
   (F.2A: Falcon I) 110 mph
   (F.2A: Hispano) 102 mph
   (F.2B: Falcon III) 125 mph
   (F.2B: Arab) 115 mph
   (F.2B: Hispano 200) 115 mph
   (F.2B: Puma) 116 mph
   (F.2B: Hispano 300) 120 mph
   (Mark II & III) 112 mph
   (Mark IV) 110 mph
   (USA 0-1) 138 mph
  Service Ceiling: 20,000 ft
  Endurance: 3 hours
  Accommodation: 2

Weights:

Type Engine Empty Weight All-up Weight
F.2A Falcon I 1,700 lb 2,700 lb
   Hispano 1,500 lb 2,500 lb
F.2B Falcon III 1,930 lb 2,800 lb
   Arab 1,890 lb 2,800 lb
   Hispano 200 1,740 lb 2,700 lb
   R.A.F.4d 2,000 lb 2,800 lb
   Puma 1,920 lb 2,810 lb
   Hispano 300 2,070 lb 3,000 lb
Mark II Falcon III 2,095 lb 3,160 lb
Mark III Falcon III 2,150 lb 3,250 lb
Mark IV Falcon III 2,200 lb 3,350 lb
USA O-1 Liberty 12 - 2,940 lb
First prototype F.2A A3303 with original side radiators at Filton in September 1916.
A3303 at Upavon with nose radiator fitted and lower wing-root end-plates removed.
Second F.2A A3304 at Filton in December 1916, with longerons and lower centre section modified to F.2B standard.
F.2B C906 with Arab and S.E.5a radiator at Filton in April 1918.
The Shuttleworth Trust's veteran F.2B flying at Filton in July, 1961.
F.2B Mk IV F4587 converted from Mk II in May 1928; this aeroplane was flown in the 1937 R.A.F. Display at Hendon and registered G-AFHJ in 1938, but was destroyed during the war.
Veteran F.2B F4891 on show at Filton in September 1919.
Filton-built F.2B P30 with the first American 300 hp Hispano-Suiza, at McCook Field, Dayton, Ohio, in 1918.
F.2B Mk II J6790 with desert wheels and oleo undercarriage for service trials; Filton 1920.
F.2B Mk II J6721 of the R.A.E., with steel biconvex (R.A.F. 34) wings and evaporative cooling; Farnborough, January 1930.
F.2B Mk III J8251 at Filton in October 1926.
Rigging a 300 hp Hispano-Suiza engined Bristol Fighter for Spain, Filron 1924.
Bristol Fighter F.2B Mk.II
The Bristol M.1A, M.1B and M.lC Monoplane Scouts

  In the spring of 1916 the Royal Flying Corps was woefully short of properly-armed fighting Scouts, and the pusher-type two-seaters which bore the brunt of the fighting were no match for the Fokker monoplanes with their two or three synchronised machine guns firing through the airscrew. British gun interrupter gears had not been reliable until the hydraulic Constantinesco-Colley gear was invented, and, as soon as this device had been put into production, aircraft firms were urged to submit designs using Vickers guns firing through the airscrew disc. The officially-designed B.E.12 was a makeshift attempt to turn the outworn B.E.2c into a single-seat fighter, and its success was so limited that in June 1916 Sir Douglas Haig had condemned its continued use on the Western Front. The demand for better fighting machines became acute as casualties among pilots and observers mounted, and soon after the Battle of the Somme began, on 1 July 1916, the first prototype of a new single-seater designed by Capt. Barnwell had been built. This was the M.1A, No. 1374, a monoplane incorporating all the experience gained with the Scout D and refined aerodynamically to the limit of practicability.
  In March a few Scout Ds had been equipped with hemispherical spinners, and a marked reduction of drag had been gained thereby. Comparative tests between Scout 5555 with this spinner and Scout 5556 with an equivalent pointed spinner had revealed structural instability in the latter which made it unusable because of vibration, whereas the domed spinner gave no trouble. Both Scouts were equipped with the 110 h.p. Clerget, and this engine, with a similar spinner and cowling, was taken as the basis of Barnwell's new monoplane. The fuselage was conventional in structure, but the wire-braced four-longeron girder was faired throughout its length to a circular section. The monoplane wings, raked at the tips, were attached to the top longerons, wire-braced below to the bottom longerons and above to a cabane formed from two hoops of streamline section tubing. The undercarriage was a simple Vee type carrying two wheels on a rubber-sprung cross-axle. The pilot's cockpit was located under the cabane which thus gave protection in the event of overturning in a forced landing. The empennage was conventional, with a fixed fin of generous area.
  The M.1A, a private venture, was first flown at Filton on 14 July 1916 by Fred P. Raynham, the foremost free-lance test pilot of his day. In his hands the little monoplane, as yet unarmed, achieved the astounding speed of 132 m.p.h. and he even flew it under Clifton Suspension Bridge! In October the M.1A was purchased by the War Office for evaluation by the A.I.D. and four more of similar type were ordered. These had a Vickers gun on the port wing root, a cut-out panel in the starboard wing root and a revised cabane consisting of four straight struts arranged in a pyramid, and were called M.1B. The M.1A, revised to the new standard, was delivered to the Central Flying School as A5138 on 29 November 1916 and was followed by No. 1481 (A5139) on 15 December and No. 1482 (A5140) on 19 January 1917. All three had 110 h.p. Clerget rotaries, but the third M.lB, No. 1483 (A5141), was fitted with a 130 h.p. Clerget when dispatched on 8 February. A further engine change was made in the last M.lB, No. 1484 (A5142), which left Filton with a Bentley A.R.l rotary of 150 h.p. on 22 March 1917. It was hoped that a large production order would follow the official trials, in view of the great advance in performance, but to the Company's (and many R.F.C. pilots') intense disappointment, the landing speed of 49 m.p.h. was considered too high for operation from small airfields on the Western Front. The pilot's view was also criticised, but Capt. Barnwell himself flew one of the monoplanes at Upavon and found no difficulty in landing, although he was well known to be a somewhat erratic pilot.
  Eventually a production order was given, on 3 August 1917, for only 125 aircraft, Nos. 2719-2843 (C4901-C5025), delivered between 19 September 1917 and 25 February 1918, and these were relegated to Middle East squadrons as replacements for the Scout D. The production version, M.1C, was fitted with the 110 h.p. Le Rhone engine and had its single Vickers gun centrally mounted so that the windscreen was divided by the sight, which had a padded surrounding frame, with the cocking handle ready to hand, making stoppages very easy to clear; cut-outs were made in both wing-roots to improve the downward view. This location for the gun had been tried out experimentally on the fourth M.lB, and the Sopwith-Kauper interrupter gear was normally employed, because C.C. gears were in short supply.
  Only five squadrons were partly equipped with M.1C for active service, although a fair number of the monoplanes were issued without guns to flying schools at home, where they were highly esteemed as senior officers' personal mounts. Nos. 17 and 47 Squadrons, based on Salonika, operated against the Turks and Bulgars in January 1918 with one flight of each equipped with M.1C's, and these two flights were merged in April to form No, 150 Squadron. No. 111 Squadron in Palestine flew a few monoplanes for a time, and in March 1918 No. 72 Squadron went to Basra with one flight of monoplanes, which later operated from Mirjana in support of the Third Army Corps. In 1917 six M.1C's were sent to the Chilean government in part payment for two warships built for Chile, but commandeered by the Admiralty before completion. One was flown by Lt. Godoy from Santiago to Mendoza, Argentina, and back on 12 December 1918; this was the first flight across the Andes and entailed climbing to over 13,000 ft. to clear the Uspullata Pass. On 4 April 1919 this exploit was repeated by Lt. Cortinez, but without official permission; on being reprimanded after arriving at Mendoza, he flew back again and found himself a popular hero.
  These two flights after the Armistice drew attention to the M.1C's capabilities, and the Company bought back from the Aircraft Disposal Board four of them for reconditioning and resale. One of them was an M.1B, and this machine, G-EAVP, was modified as a flying test-bed for the three-cylinder Bristol Lucifer radial engine, under the new designation M.1D, which is separately described later in this book. Of the other three, one was sold in America, one, formerly G-EAVO, in Spain to Senor Juan Pombo in 1921 and one, G-EASR, remained at Filton. Two other M.lC's were bought from the Disposal Board by private owners in 1919; one was C4964, registered G-EAER, and flown in the 1919 Aerial Derby by Major C. H. Chichester Smith; the other was C5001, purchased at Waddon in July 1919 by an Australian pilot, Capt. Harry Butler, A.F.C., who in partnership with H. A. Kauper (formerly Harry Hawker's assistant), flew it in the neighbourhood of Adelaide from a field at Minlaton, S.A., as G-AUCH, winning the first Australian Aerial Derby on 8 September 1920. Harry Butler died in July 1923 from injuries received in a crash in another aeroplane and his M.1C was then stored until it was bought in 1930 by H. Miller, who replaced the Le Rhone engine by a Gipsy II engine in 1931; with this combination, now VH-UQI, he won the Adelaide Aerial Derby in 1931 and 1932 and also competed in the Victorian Aerial Derby in 1932, but had to retire with engine trouble. After some years' further flying with the Commercial Aviation Co., the machine was flown from Adelaide to Perth in 1938, and was then stored in the roof of a hangar at Guildford Airport. It was rediscovered there in 1956 by C. B. Tilbrook, who raised a fund to build an exhibition hall to house it permanently at Minlaton as the Harry Butler Memorial. Painted red and bearing the name Puck, VH-UQI is now the only surviving M.1C, although until 1960 the mouldering remains of Lt. Godoy's monoplane still existed at Santiago de Chile.

SPECIFICATION AND DATA

Type: M.1A, M.1B and M.1C
Manufacturers: The Bristol & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol
Power Plants: One 110 hp Clerget (M.1A & M.1B)
   One 110 hp Le Rhone (M.1C)
   One 130 hp Clerget (M.1B)
   One 150 hp A.R.1 (M.1B)
Span: 30 ft 9 in
Length: 20 ft 4 in
Height: 7 ft 10 in
Wing Area: 145 sq ft
Empty Weight: 900 lb
All-up Weight: 1,350 lb
Max. Speed: (M.1A) 132 mph
   (M.1B) 125 mph
   (M.1C) 130 mph
Service Ceiling:(M.1A) 17,000 ft
   (M.1B) 15,000 ft
   (M.1C) 20,000 ft
Endurance: (M.1A) 2 3/4 hours
   (M.1C) 1 3/4 hours
Accommodation: Pilot only
Production: 1 M.1A, 4 M.1B, 125 M.1C
Sequence Nos.: 1374, 1481-1484, 2719-2843 (rebuilt: 5885-5887)
M.1A as first flown by F. P. Raynham at Filton in June 1916.
Second M.1B A5140 at Filton in December 1916.
Fourth M.1B A5142 modified to M.1C standard with central gun; Orfordness, April 1917.
M.1C's of No. 72 Sqn in Mesopotamia in 1917.
Harry Butler and H. A. Kauper with M.1C C5001 bought from the Aircraft Disposals Board at Waddon in July 1919.
G-EASR at Filton in 1924.
Larry Carter with M-AFAA (formerly G-EAVO) at Croydon in November 1921.
Harry Butler's M.1C re-engined in 1931 with Gipsy II, restored in 1957 and now preserved at Minlaton, S.A.
F. P. Raynham in M.IA after first flight at Filton, June 1916.
Bristol M.1C
One other Bristol biplane, the S.2A, deserves notice here, although it was a two-seater. It was derived from the Scout D and was designed to meet an Admiralty specification for a two-seater fighter. Powered by a 110 h.p. Clerget rotary engine installed between horizontal bearers as proposed for the G.B.l, it had the same tail surfaces as Scout D but less rake at the wing tips. Two seats were installed side by side in the single cockpit. The design was rejected by the Admiralty, who preferred the Sopwith 1 1/2 Strutter, but the War Office were interested in it as a potential advanced trainer and ordered two prototypes on 10 March 1916. These, Nos. 1377 and 1378 (7836 and 7837), were built and flown in May and June 1916, being delivered to the Central Flying School at Upavon on 11 June and 30 July, respectively. One of them was later flown at Gosport, where it had been fitted with a 100 h.p. Monosoupape-Gnome in a modified cowling. Its performance was quite good in spite of its girth, which earned it the nickname 'Tubby' at Filton as well as other appropriate epithets at the C.F.S.


SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA
Type: S.2A
Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton and Brislington, Bristol

Type S.2A
Power Plant 110 hp Clerget,
   100 hp Mono-Gnome
Span 28 ft 2 in
Length 21 ft 3 in
Height 10 ft
All-up Weight 1,400 lb
Max. Speed 95 mph
Duration 3 hours
Accommodation 2
Production 2
Sequence Nos. 1377,1378
First S.2A 7836 at Filton in June 1916.
The Bristol T.T.A. and F.3A

  When Frank Barnwell returned to Filton in August 1915 he sought a technical assistant to work with him on new projects. He interviewed Leslie G. Frise, who had just graduated from Bristol University, and persuaded him to resign his R.N.A.S. commission to join the Company; together in September 1915 they laid out the preliminary design of a twin-engined local defence two-seater to a War Office requirement. Four R.A.F.4a engines of 150 h.p. were promised for two aircraft, and the aim was to design a compact biplane with a fuselage of the minimum size that would accommodate a pilot and gunner, giving the latter a maximum field of fire. Although both the crew could not be given equally good fields of vision, the pilot's location aft of the trailing edge gave a good view forward and downward. The gunner in the nose had an unobstructed field of fire in the forward hemisphere for two free-mounted Lewis guns and had five spare drums of ammunition, also a vertical camera. The pilot had a single Lewis gun firing aft, with three spare drums. Dual controls were fitted for emergency use only, with pedals in the front cockpit because the nose was too narrow for a normal rudder bar. The wings were of equal span and designed to fold back. Two sets of ailerons were designed, those actually constructed being of high aspect ratio. The tail unit comprised a single balanced rudder and flat tailplane of Scout D shape. The engine nacelles were midway between the wings and their rear fairings enclosed the oil and gravity fuel tanks. Below each nacelle was a small two-wheeled chassis of low drag, while the fuselage was protected by a fixed skid under the nose and a sprung tail-skid. The biplane, designated T.T. (Twin Tractor), promised to fulfil all the requirements, and was smaller than the F.E.4 designed at Farnborough to do the same job, which had a span of 75 ft.
  After tendering, the Company was informed that all R.A.F.4a engines were earmarked for the B.E.12 and R.E.8 programmes, and that 160 h.p. or 120 h.p. Beardmores would be issued instead. At length the smaller engines materialised, and in January 1916 the amended design was finished as T.T.A., two prototypes being ordered on 15 February 1916 at a price, less engines, of ?2,000 each. These identical aircraft, Nos. 1375 and 1376 (7750 and 7751), were test flown and accepted on 26 April and 27 May, respectively, by Capt. Hooper, Commanding Officer of the R.F.C. Acceptance Park at Filton. The first T.T.A. was flown to Upavon on 11 May for trials by A.LD. pilots and achieved a top speed of 87 m.p.h., and an initial rate of climb of nearly 400 ft. per minute, which was better than the F.E.4's performance in spite of the reduced power available, but the design was adversely criticised on other grounds and not recommended for squadron service.
  Concurrently with the building of the T.TA.'s the Admiralty released to the War Office a few 250 h.p. Rolls-Royce engines for experimental use, and the Company was invited to tender for an escort and anti-Zeppelin fighter using this power unit. Many firms submitted designs and Armstrong Whitworth, Bristol, Sopwith and Vickers all received orders for two prototypes each. The Bristol design, F.3A, was ordered on 16 May 1916 and sequence Nos. 1485 and 1486 were reserved, the corresponding R.F.C. serials being A612 and A613. The F.3A utilised many of the TTA.'s components, including wings, tail unit and rear fuselage with pilot's cockpit, but the contract was cancelled soon after being awarded, so it was never built. The landing gear was unorthodox and consisted of one T TA. chassis unit, suitably strengthened, under the fuselage with a small-wheeled outrigger under each wing-tip. Two gunners' nacelles were provided above the top wing, with a forward and a rearward gun in each, mounted on telescopic pillars swinging through 90 degrees to fire on the beam. Probably it was intended to install the Davis gun if this had developed satisfactorily. Duration of seven hours for night-fighting against Zeppelins was specified, but the project was abandoned as soon as reliable gun-synchronising gear became available.

SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA
  Types: T.T.A. and F.3A.
  Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol

  Type T.T.A. F.3A
Power Plant Two 120 hp Beardmore One 250 hp Rolls-Royce
Span 53 ft 6 in 53 ft 6 in
Length 39 ft 2 in 36 ft 5 in
Height 12 ft 6 in 12 ft 11 in
Wing Area 817 sq ft 817 sq ft
Empty Weight 3,820 lb 3,400 lb
All-up Weight 5,100 lb 5,300 lb
Maximum Speed 87 mph -
Accommodation 2 3
Production 2 nil (2 cancelled)
Sequence Nos. 1375, 1376 (1485 1486)
Second T.T.A. 7751 at Filton in May 1916.
Bristol T.T.A.
The Bristol M.R.1 Metal Biplane

  Some of the earliest pioneers of flying, including the Wright Brothers and Louis Bleriot, had been makers and riders of bicycles before their first attempts at aviation, and the materials and methods of bicycle construction were well known to aircraft builders from the beginning. Thin-walled carbon-steel seamless tubing, brazed or soldered into machined sockets, bolted together and braced with piano-wire, must have seemed the logical aircraft structure to military engineers desiring to attain serviceability in such aircraft as they considered to be practicable. Many attempts were made to design aeroplanes along these lines, such as the official R.E.5 and R.E.7, but always the weight was excessive, and if very thin-walled tubes were chosen, they would not stand up to manhandling on the ground because they buckled too easily. When the first useful aluminium alloys were produced, having a strength-weight ratio better than mild steel, they were found to be very easily corroded and impossible to braze or solder. Vickers Ltd. were among the first in the field with their all-metal monoplanes based on the patents of Robert Esnault-Pelterie, and in 1911 Sir George White had commissioned in France a monoplane of steel-tube construction designed by Gabriel Voisin, but it was far too heavy to fly.
  The Company's interest in metal construction continued, and in July 1914 they undertook the detail design and construction of four all-metal derivatives of the B.E.2c, called the B.E.10. The aerodynamic design of this two-seater biplane was by a syndicate of Farnborough designers led by H. P. Folland and included such refinements as full-span trailing edge flaps to reduce landing speed. After the outbreak of war, the urgent need for quantity production of the B.E.2c at Filton caused the B.E.10 to be abandoned early in 1915, when the few components and details already manufactured were delivered to the Royal Aircraft Factory for mechanical testing.
  During the ensuing 12 months, aircraft production all over the country expanded enormously and the authorities foresaw the risk, if war continued, of a severe shortage of timber suitable for aircraft manufacture; already stocks of Grade A silver spruce were declining and Grade B was being substituted wherever safety allowed. In July 1916 Capt. Barnwell drafted the revised layout of the R.2A reconnaissance biplane to match the 190 h.p. Rolls-Royce engine, thereby creating the Bristol Fighter. The need for a reconnaissance two-seater still remained for use where enemy air support was not paramount, and, as such fronts were mainly in a tropical climate, there seemed to be a strong case for adopting metal construction.
  With the shortcomings of the B.E.10 design in mind, he approached the problem logically and drew on his early training on the Fairfield shipyard. He believed that duralumin sheet could be used in a monocoque structure if properly protected by a good quality marine varnish and adopted this method for the fuselage of the M.R.1, as the metal biplane was designated. The fuselage was built up in four sections bolted together; the front section was a semi-monocoque open channel with channel-section struts at each frame bracing the top longitudinals to the centre of the bottom frame member. This carried the engine bulkhead and bearers at its forward end and the tanks and centre section struts above and below. The next section aft was similar and contained the pilot's cockpit, with a Vickers gun and ammunition box above. The third section was a self-contained parallel-sided monocoque unit carrying the observer's seat with a Scarff gun mounting above, and the tapered monococque rear fuselage boom was bolted to the back of this section; the design was so arranged that the observer's cockpit section could be left out altogether and the aircraft then became a single-seater to which wings of smaller area could be attached. This versatility would have been a valuable investment in a machine for which a long storage life was envisaged, but in fact the contract awarded on 2 November 1916 was for only two prototypes for evaluation and mechanical test.
  As Barnwell and Frise were under extreme pressure to get the Bristol Fighter into quantity production, the detail design of the M.R.1 was handed over to W. T. Reid, who faithfully translated Barnwell's ideas into metal, using relatively small amounts of mild steel. The duralumin monocoque fuselage was one of the first examples of double-skin construction, the smooth outer skin being riveted to a longitudinally corrugated inner skin. The original wing structure was a direct adaptation from wood to duralumin, using duplicated plates on edge to form the spars, but this was found to be much too flexible on test and in the end wing design and construction were sub-contracted to The Steel Wing Company of Gloucester, who had developed a method of using rolled high-tensile steel strip and had already produced successful sample steel wings for the B.E.2d and Avro 504. Two other methods, using both steel and duralumin, the subject of patents by the Krieger Electric Car Syndicate and a Mr. Mayrow, respectively, were also tested.
  By mid-1917 the first M.R.1, No. 2067 (A5177), was complete except for the wings, which were making slow progress at Gloucester, and it was decided to build a set of conventional wooden wings (with upper ailerons only) so as not to delay flight tests. The latter were entirely successful and A5177 was handed over to the Air Board on 23 October 1917, its contract price of ?2,000 having been reduced to ?1,600 on account of the wooden wings. The second M.R.1, No. 2068 (A5178), was delayed until late in 1918 before receiving its metal wings, but was then successfully flown, a Wolseley Viper engine of 180 h.p. being fitted instead of the 140 h.p. French Hispano-Suiza of the first machine. After the Armistice A5178 was piloted frequently by Capt. Barnwell, and eventually it was accepted to delivery to the Royal Aircraft Establishment; it was flown to Farnborough by Capt. Barnwell personally on 19 April 1919, but on arrival he collided with a pine tree near the North Gate of the R.A.E. and crashed on the aerodrome, bringing down the top of the tree with the aeroplane. He was shaken, but otherwise unhurt; the M.R.1, however, was considerably damaged and no attempt was made to repair it. Meanwhile, A5177 (renumbered A58623) was being structurally tested and much valuable information on metal construction was gleaned from it. For its day, the M.R.1 was a considerable technical achievement, its disposable load amounting to more than 40% of its all-up weight. Moreover, it had been constructed almost entirely without using specialised tools and equipment, and the necessity of developing these for quantity production was perhaps the most valuable of the lessons learned.

SPECIFICATION AND DATA
Type: M.R.1
Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Brislington, Bristol
Power Plants: One 140 hp Hispano-Suiza
   One 180 hp Wolseley Viper
Span: 42 ft 2 in
Length: 27 ft
Height: 10 ft 3 in
Wing Area: 458 sq ft
Empty Weight: 1,700 lb
All-up Weight: 2,810 lb
Max. Speed: 110 mph
Endurance: 5 hours
Accommodation: 2
Production: 2
Sequence Nos.: 2067,2068
Bristol M.R.1 with temporaty wooden wings (ailerons on top wing only) before fitst flight; Filton, October 1917.
Bristol M.R.1
The Bristol Braemar, Pullman and Tramp

  In the summer of 1917 dismay at the success of the Gotha raids on London led to an urgent demand for retaliatory bombing on German industrial targets and in October the 41st Wing R.F.C., or Independent Air Force, was formed for this purpose. Very large aircraft were needed for the long-range heavy bombing of Berlin itself, if necessary, and both the Handley Page and Bristol firms submitted suitable designs. Capt. Barnwell drafted his first layout, called B.1, in October 1917. It was a triplane with internal stowage of six 250 lb. bombs and a central engine-room for four engines in a fuselage of good streamline shape. The engines were geared in pairs to shafting so as to drive one large four-bladed tractor airscrew on each side of the fuselage. The B.1 had a four-wheeled landing gear with wheel brakes, a castoring tail wheel and folding wings and was to carry a crew of six, comprising two pilots, a wireless operator, an engineer and two gunners (one also acting as bomb-aimer) over a range of 1,000 miles.
  This layout was passed to W. T. Reid for detailing and emerged as a less ambitious design having four engines disposed in tandem pairs on the centre wing. The fuselage had flat sides to facilitate construction, with spruce compression members locally reinforced with plywood and braced by swaged tie-rods. The design was accepted by the Air Board, a contract for three prototypes, Nos. 3751-3753 (C4296-C4298), being awarded on 26 February 1918. The Company had earlier investigated the possible production of large flying-boats for the Air Board, and had this project gone forward new hangars of adequate size would have been built. As things were, the only way of erecting the prototype bombers under cover was to occupy one bay of the Acceptance Park hangars; this was wide enough for the length of the bomber but not its full span. Consequently the bombers had to be assembled one at a time and slewed out sideways on trolleys running on rails out of the hangar door.
  The first prototype, named Braemar Mark I, was completed in August 1918 with four 230 h.p. Siddeley Puma engines, substituted because the intended 360 h.p. Rolls-Royce Eagles were not available. F. P. Raynham made a successful first flight on 13 August and flew it to Martlesham Heath for acceptance trials on 13 September, having achieved the very creditable top speed of 106 m.p.h. at a gross weight of 16,200 lb. At Martlesham it was flown during October by Major R. H. Carr and Capt. G. Gathergood, who found the performance and handling generally satisfactory, but criticised the pilot's controls and view and complained of fuselage vibration during taxying. The method of bracing the top and bottom wings to the centre wing was thought to be responsible for tie-rod breakages, which occurred frequently in the outer bays. From Martlesham the Braemar I was sent to Farnborough, where it ended its days in 1920.
  Most of the features criticised at Martlesham were improved in the second prototype, Braemar Mark II, for which 400 h.p. Liberty engines were available; it was first flown by Cyril Uwins on 18 February 1919 and its speed and climb with full load were better than predicted. On 17 April it was flown to Martlesham Heath, where it remained at least until February 1920. As late as November 1921 there was a proposal to fit a torpedo rack under the Braemar II's fuselage, but about this date it was wrecked when it swung during takeoff run and collided with a hangar at Martlesham Heath. In April 1919 the Air Board had agreed that the Company should finish the third prototype as a civil transport for 14 passengers, but Barnwell would not permit it to be flown with its enlarged fuselage until a model had been tested in a wind-tunnel.
  The third Braemar, renamed Pullman, flew early in May 1920 and created a sensation at the International Aero Show at Olympia in July. It was the largest aeroplane ever seen inside Olympia and its interior decorations were greatly admired. After the show it went to Martlesham Heath, where it was purchased on 7 September, but no attempt was made to operate it as a passenger transport and it was finally dismantled. Although the enclosed crew cabin gave the pilots an unsurpassed view, it was not liked by service pilots, who made a point of carrying fireman's axes so as to be able to escape quickly in an emergency. The Pullman carried its original serial C4298 throughout its life, although it had been entered temporarily on the Civil Register as G-EASP from 14 April to 13 May 1920. The Pullman was not entered for the Air Ministry Civil Aircraft Competition in August 1920 because its landing speed was too high.
  While the Braemars were under test by the R.A.F. several ambitious projects for civil transports derived from them were proposed, and in February 1919 Capt. Barnwell had discussed the use of flying boats as ancillaries to ocean liners with the Royal Mail Steam Packet Co., who had pressed strongly for a steam turbine power unit if feasible. It was hoped that the Air Ministry might support such a project and the Company intended to start with a civil transport derived from the Braemar, but with a central engine-room. This would be powered at first with four petrol engines designed as a unit which could be replaced later by a steam turbine power plant of equivalent power. As a first step, W. T. Reid laid out a Pullman for 50 passengers, powered by four 500 h.p. Siddeley Tiger engines. Enquiries were made into the feasibility of a steam plant comprising a pair of 1,500 h.p. turbines, and it was proposed at one stage to use the Braemar I as a steam turbine test-bed. Fraser and Chalmers of Erith undertook to design a turbine of the Ljungstrom type, and the Bonecourt Waste Heat Company offered to design a high pressure flash boiler, but their quotation was considered too high. In May, Reid reduced the number of passenger seats to 40 and recommended that a similar flying boat should be designed by Major Vernon, who had joined the drawing office staff from Felixstowe, where he had been assistant to Major Rennie, John Porte's chief designer. In July the 40-passenger project was dropped because the Air Ministry would not support it, but discussions continued on a smaller test-bed triplane. Eventually a contract was awarded for the design and construction oftwo prototypes, equivocally described as 'spares carriers', powered by four Siddeley Pumas in a central engine room, with gear-boxes and transmission shafts supplied by Siddeley-Deasy. The contract price for each of these triplanes, named Tramp, was ?23,000, of which ?7,500 was Siddeley's price for a set of four engines and transmission gears. A flying boat of similar size with a Porte type hull, the Tramp Boat, was laid out by Major Vernon. It was found difficult to scale down the steam turbines to a maximum output of 750 h.p. each, which was all the Tramp could safely accommodate, and the condenser and boiler posed still more severe problems; in the end the difficulties of making a reliable lightweight high-pressure closed-circuit system proved insuperable.
  The two Tramps, Nos. 5871 and 5872 (J6912 and J6913), were not completed until the end of 1921, and even then neither of them ever flew, because the transmission system, particularly the clutches, gave continual trouble. Work on them at Filton was stopped in February 1922 when both of them were transported to Farnborough for development and experiment by the R.A.E. as ground rigs. Quite a large 'greenhouse' grew up round J6913, which remained in use for a year, during which a working party from Filton carried out further modifications to the flight deck and engine controls.
  Had it been feasible to produce a safe, reliable and economic steam plant within the permissible weight limits, flying boat passengers in the 1920's might have enjoyed the speed, silence and comfort so vividly pictured by Squadron Commander Hallam, a former Felixstowe pilot, in the last chapter of The Spider Web, which he wrote under the pseudonym 'PIX'. That ideal was not to be realised for 25 years, when the Saro Princess took the air powered by Bristol Proteus gas-turbines, and by then the flying boat was already extinct as a commercial proposition.

SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA
  Types: Braemar, Pullman and Tramp
  Manufacturers:
   The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol
   The Bristol Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol

Type Braemar I Braemar II Pullman Pullman 40 Tramp
Power Plant Four Four Four Four Four
   230 hp 400 hp 400 hp 500 hp 230 hp
   Siddeley Liberty 12 Liberty 12 Siddeley Siddeley
   Puma Tiger Puma
Span 81 ft 8 in 81 ft 8 in 81 ft 8 in 122 ft 96 ft
Length 51 ft 6 in 51 ft 6 in 52 ft 76 ft 6 in 60 ft
Height 20 ft 20 ft 20 ft 32 ft 6 in 20 ft
Wing Area 1,905 sq ft 1,905 sq ft 1,905 sq ft - 2,284 sq ft
Empty Weight 10,650 lb 10,650 lb 11,000 lb - 12,809 lb
All-up Weight 16,500 lb 18,000 lb 17,750 lb - 18,795 lb
Max. Speed 106 mph 125 mph 135 mph - -
Absolute Ceiling 14,000 ft 17,000 ft 15,000 ft - -
Accommodation 4 4 2 crew 3 crew 3
   14 passengers 40 passengers
Production 1 1 1 nil 2
Sequence Nos. 3751 3752 3753 nil 5871 5872
The Pullman at Martlesham Heath in August 1920.
First of the two Tramps at Filton in January 1922, ready for ground running.
Bristol Pullman 14
Bristol Tramp
The Bristol Scouts E and F

  In the autumn of 1916, before the Bristol Fighter had been issued to the Royal Flying Corps squadrons in France, desperate efforts were being made to produce single-seater fighting Scouts capable of outflying their German opponents, in the struggle to gain local air superiority over the artillery lines. A limit had almost been reached in the power available from rotary engines and attention turned to various alternative designs, both in-line and radial. Typical of the former was the Hispano-Suiza, but its reliability was poor and supplies of serviceable engines so limited that they were reserved for the officially-designed S.E.5a Scout, the first prototype of which flew in December 1916.
  Designers looked hopefully around for other engines, and Capt. Barnwell was informed of a proposal by Harry R. Ricardo and Frank B. Halford for a ten-cylinder two-row watercooled radial of 200 h.p., the 'Cruciform'. This engine gained no official support and was not built even as a prototype, but nevertheless Barnwell designed round it two alternative single-seater schemes, one a tractor biplane and the other a pusher. The latter, drawn by W. T. Reid on 25 January 1917, remained a preliminary layout only, and showed a conventional equal-span two-bay biplane with the pilot's cockpit in a nacelle mounted high up, as in the contemporary Vickers F.B.26; armament comprised two Lewis guns. The tractor design, drawn by Barnwell himself, was dated two days earlier and showed a neat single-bay biplane combining the aerodynamic refinement of the M.1C with the compact layout of the Scout D. The wings had rounded raked tips as in the monoplane and four small strut-linked ailerons of equal area. The fuselage was a wire-braced structure aft, but a Warren girder forward of the cockpit. The undercarriage was a simple Vee type with rubber-sprung cross-axle, and the engine was installed with a annular radiator forward, to which air was admitted through a large diameter annular spinner surrounding a cone at the centre; this arrangement foreshadowed the low-drag cowling developed 30 years later by Napiers for the Hawker Tempest. Armament consisted of a single synchronized Vickers gun recessed into the top of the fuselage ahead of the pilot and a Lewis gun on the top centre section which could be elevated through 45 degrees from its lowest position, which was arranged just to clear the airscrew.
  A fair amount of design work was done on the tractor project, Scout E, during February and March 1917, and sequence number 2844 was reserved for a prototype; but then it became apparent that the Cruciform engine would not be built, and early in May the Company was promised a few 200 h.p. Hispano-Suiza engines and a contract for six prototypes of a modified design. Barnwell at once revised Scout E to suit the Hispano-Suiza and changed the wing arrangement to one of unequal span with ailerons only on the top wing; at the same time the Lewis gun was deleted and two synchronized Vickers guns were arranged side-by-side in place of the single one. The revised project was named Scout F and retained the rear fuselage and tail unit of Scout E almost unchanged, but the deeper front end necessitated a new, shorter undercarriage. When the contract was issued on 4 June it specified the Sunbeam Arab engine, because of the shortage of Hispano-Suizas, and this was accommodated without much difficulty, but the cooling system gave some trouble and the header tank had to be raised to a position where it made a slight bulge in the top of the cowling. The radiator layout of Scout F matched that of Scout E in neatness and imagination, for it comprised a rectangular block mounted in an under-belly tunnel fairing, with two independent shutters, which could be set to various angles to maintain optimum water temperature. This permitted a low-drag nose design with a conical spinner over the airscrew boss. A good many revisions were made in cockpit details, flying controls and gun installation while construction of the prototype proceeded, and the design was not completed until November 1917, by which time the first few Sunbeam Arabs had begun to demonstrate the incurability of their vibration trouble. It was therefore decided to complete only the first two Scouts F, Nos. 2845 and 2846 (B3989 and B3990), with Arabs and to seek a better alternative engine for the others.
  The first Scout F was flown in March 1918 and had a remarkably fine performance, reaching 138 m.p.h. at sea level and 128 m.p.h. at 10,000 ft. The second Scout F was flown at the Central Flying School by all the most experienced fighter pilots of the day, amongst them Major Oliver Stewart, who rated it as a better aerobatic machine than the S.E.5a; but it was condemned by its engine and no attempt seems to have been made to revert to the Hispano-Suiza version. By this time, however, a new and promising small-diameter radial engine had arrived; this was the Cosmos Mercury of 315 h.p. designed originally for an Admiralty application by A. H. R. Fedden and L. F. G. Butler of Brazil Straker and Co. Ltd. of Fishponds, Bristol, who had been awarded a contract for 200 production engines of the type. Seeking a suitable aeroplane in which to install the Mercury engine for flight testing, Fedden approached Barnwell, who was looking for a substitute for the Sunbeam Arab and was predisposed in favour of a radial since his study for Scout E. The upshot of this meeting was the modification of the third Scout F, No. 2847 (B3991), to take the Mercury, which was installed in a low-drag cowling with only the cylinder heads and exhaust stubs exposed.
  Known as Scout F.l, B3991 was flown for the first time at Filton on 6 September 1918 and on 26 October it became the first Bristol prototype to be flown by the Company's new test pilot, Cyril F. Uwins, who had joined the staff the day before. Although the Armistice put an end to any hope of production of the Scout F.1, it was very successful in its trials and in December 1918 was delivered to Farnborough. There, in April 1919, it put up unofficial records by climbing to 10,000 ft. in 5·4 min. and to 20,000 ft. in 16·25 min.; its maximum speed at sea level was 145 m.p.h. After these trials no further development took place because the Cosmos Mercury contract had been cancelled; the fourth Scout F, No. 2848 (B3992), was completed as a spare airframe, but the last two aircraft of the order were still unfinished in April 1919; the question did arise of completing one of them with a Hispano-Suiza for offer to Senor Juan Pombo instead of the Scout D he had asked for, but he accepted the alternative offer of an M.1C, as recorded earlier. The mainplanes of B3992 were the subject of static strength tests at the RA.E. in 1919, and as late as March 1921 Capt. Barnwell suggested adapting this airframe as a flying test-bed for a new Curtiss engine, but this proposal was not approved.

SPECIFICATION AND DATA
Type: Scout F
Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol
Power Plants: One 200 hp Sunbeam Arab
   One 315 hp Cosmos Mercury
Span: 29 ft 7 in
Length: (Arab) 20 ft 10 in
   (Mercury) 20 ft
Height: 8 ft 4 in
Wing Area: 260 sq ft
Empty Weight: 1,440 lb
All-up Weight: (Arab) 2,200 lb
   (Mercury) 2,260 lb
Max. Speed: (Arab) 138 mph
   (Mercury) 145 mph
Climb to 10,000 ft: (Arab) 9t min
   (Mercury) 5 1/2 min
Accommodation: Pilot only
Production: 4
Sequence Nos.: 2845-2848
First Scout F B3989 with Arab at Filton in January 1918.
The Bristol Babe

  In February 1919, before Badger X was designed, Capt. Barnwell proposed a small single-seater for sale to private owners, including ex-service pilots who wanted to continue flying cheaply after demobilisation. Barnwell. was always enthusiastic about the possibility of a genuine 'owner-driver's' aeroplane; the theme recurred throughout his career and regrettably cost him his life in 1938. He was impressed by the performance of the very small biplanes, called 'Kittens', built during the war at the Isle of Grain, which had flown well with two-cylinder A.B.C. Gnat engines of only 30 h.p.
  Barnwell's Bobby, or Babe as it was renamed, was a biplane with a plywood-skinned fuselage and one-piece wings having a span of only 19 ft. 8 in. The intended engine was a five-cylinder air-cooled radial A.B.C. Gadfly of 60 h.p. designed by Granville Bradshaw. At first the Directors would not sanction any work on the Babe, but on 21 April 1919 they authorized the design and construction of two prototypes, and two Gadfly engines were ordered. Soon afterwards A.B.C. Motors Ltd. discontinued aero-engine manufacture in order to concentrate on motor-cycles. No other engine of equivalent power was available, although in June a 40 h.p. flat-twin engine, the Ounce, was promised later in the year by Siddeley, and a third Babe was put in hand as a test-bed for it.
  Meanwhile the first two Babes (Nos. 5865 and 5866) were nearing completion, and Barnwell recalled that in 1911, when he had first come to Brooklands from Scotland, he had helped A. V. Roe to install a small 45 h.p. Viale radial engine in an Avro biplane, before he decided to join the British and Colonial Company. He had helped to design a mounting for it, and paid half the purchase price to the Viale agent, Maurice Ducrocq; for Roe, like so many of the early pioneers, was then living from hand to mouth. The same engine was transferred in 1912 to an enclosed Avro monoplane, but this crashed after only a few weeks' flying at Brooklands, the damaged Viale engine being taken to Manchester for storage, where it had remained during the war. Barnwell brought it to Filton, the cracked bearer was welded and a new Zenith carburettor fitted; given a fairly heavy airscrew to keep it turning at small throttle openings, the Viale ran well for periods of up to half an hour, after which it overheated and lost power.
  This was good enough for the first flight of No. 5866 on 28 November 1919, when Uwins, who intended only to do preliminary taxying, was forced to take-off in order to avoid over-running a flock of sheep on Filton airfield. Uwins reported the Babe to be easy enough for an experienced pilot to fly, though rather unstable for a beginner. Development continued and the third Babe (No. 5875), with an incomplete Siddeley Ounce installed, was exhibited at the Paris Salon in December 1919, with a selling price of ?400 ex works.
  The Viale engine was not reliable enough for sale in the Babe, even if production replicas could have been built, and the first two Babes had to wait for more suitable engines before they could be put on the market. During the Paris Salon the Gnome et Le Rhone firm had offered an ultra-light 60 h.p. rotary engine and six of these were ordered. Fred Mayer, the Company's chief engine fitter, went to Gennevilliers to witness the acceptance tests and saw the engines running well at moderate speeds, but vibrating badly when run up above 45 h.p. He refused to take delivery, but after some argument he agreed to bring back two specially modified and tuned engines for the prototype Babes. With the Le Rhone engine the Babes were designated Mark III and both were flown and registered, No. 5866 as G-EAQD on 18 December 1919 and No. 5865 as G-EASQ on 14 April 1920. The Babe Mark II with Ounce engine was not registered and never flew.
  In May 1920 Barnwell designed new wings having the ailerons on the bottom wing instead of the top; these were not manufactured but in August he designed a thick-section cantilever monoplane wing, which was assembled to G-EASQ. The Babe monoplane was not flown because of uncertainty about downwash effects on the elevators behind a thick wing, about which little was then known; its registration was cancelled in February 1921, G-EAQD's having already lapsed in December 1920. The Viale engine, which remained Barnwell's personal property, was stored until 1959, when it was rediscovered at a garage at Alveston, Glos., restored to exhibition finish by Bristol-Siddeley Engines Limited and presented to the Royal Aeronautical Society. In 1963 it was placed in the Science Museum, London.

SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA

  Type: Babe
  Manufacturers:The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., and the Bristol Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol
  Power Plants:
   One 45 hp Viale
   One 40 hp Siddeley Ounce
   One 60 hp Le Rhone
  Span: 19 ft 8in
  Length: 14 ft 11 in
  Height: 5 ft 9in
  Wing Area: 108 sq ft
  Empty Weight: 460 lb
  All-up Weight: (Viale) 683 lb (Le Rhone) 840 lb
  Speed: (Viale) 85 mph (Le Rhone) 107 mph
  Ceiling: (Viale) 10,000 ft (Le Rhone) 15,000 ft
  Accommodation: Pilot only
  Production: 3
  Sequence Nos.: 5865, 5866, 5875.
Babe Mk I with the 35 hp Viale engine of 1911 vintage used for early flying in November 1919.
All three Babes together; left, George Clephane with Mk II; right, Tom Bond and Ernie Knight (in cockpit) with the Babe monoplane; second Mk III biplane behind; at Patchway in 1924.
The Bristol Bullet

  The Bullet was designed by Capt. Barnwell, at the instigation of Roy Fedden, with the twofold purpose of providing a test-bed for the Cosmos Jupiter engine on which the effects of high-speed manreuvres could be studied, and of bringing the Company's name into the public eye in international races. It was one of the fastest aeroplanes of its day, its top speed being little short of 160 m.p.h. It was a single-seater biplane of great strength and exquisite finish; the wing and tailplane spars were all duplicated to permit the use of thin low-drag aerofoils without sacrificing stiffness. The fuselage was a conventional four-longeron tie-rod-braced girder faired to a circular cross-section to blend with the radial engine, which was cowled similarly to that of the fourth Badger (J6492); the latter had just begun flight tests when the Bullet design was finalised in August 1919. In order to keep the landing speed below 50 m.p.h., Barnwell chose a wing area of295 sq. ft.; the wings were of nearly equal span, but the upper was greater in chord than the lower; ailerons were fitted only to the upper wing, and the wing roots were joined to each other and to the cabane struts on the aircraft centre line. Only one Bullet, No. 5869, was built. It was exhibited at the Paris Salon in December 1919, but the Cosmos Jupiter engine was a partial mock-up, with no pistons or crankshaft and only a dummy wooden crankcase with a plain airscrew shaft through it; no complete engine could be spared for exhibition at that date.
  No flight engine was in fact available for it until June 1920, when it was registered G-EATS; by this time an improved cowling had been developed for the Badger, having raised shoulders between the cylinder heads; a similar cowling was installed on the Bullet, which first appeared in the Aerial Derby on 24 July 1920, flown by Uwins. Although he achieved the third fastest time round the course, his average speed of 129 m.p.h. was disappointing and Barnwell decided that fuselage drag could be reduced if the engine were almost submerged. This required a larger diameter forward, but wind tunnel tests confirmed the improvement, and a large hemispherical spinner was designed to match the revised cowling. When flown again the improvement was less than expected and the wing area was then reduced to 180 sq. ft., since other racing biplanes were being handled safely at a wing loading of 12 lb. per sq. ft. The ailerons were relocated on the lower wing, where control circuit friction was less, and the lower wing was given a pronounced dihedral angle. The new wings, being reduced in both span and chord, needed a correspondingly smaller gap, and this brought the upper wing roots near enough to the fuselage to permit the cabane to be reduced to a pair of short single struts on the centre-line. The tailplane area was reduced to match the new wings and the revised design was completed in February 1921.
  By this time it was urgently necessary to step up the hours of flight testing of the Jupiter engine, now a Bristol product, in order to obtain Air Ministry approval as soon as possible. The Bullet shared this task with the fourth Badger and rarely left the neighbourhood of Filton, except for the 1921 Aerial Derby, in which Uwins flew it round the course in the second fastest time; he finished fourth at an average speed of 141 m.p.h., being outpaced only by the Napier Lion-engined Gloster Mars I. Minor refinements were made during the next 12 months, but the biggest improvement came from simply leaving off the spinner when it was flown in the 1922 Aerial Derby by Rollo de Raga Raig, who gained second place at an average speed of 145 m.p.h. In January 1923 the cowling was further improved and a long-stroke oleo undercarriage was fitted to cater for landing with maximum fuel in the King's Cup Race. The Bullet was expected to exceed 175 m.p.h. with an up-rated Jupiter IV and was entered in both the 1923 Aerial Derby and King's Cup Races, but its intended pilot, Leslie Foot, was killed six weeks earlier in the Grosvenor Cup Race and the Company then withdrew from racing for two years. After Foot's death the Bullet was stored for a time, being finally scrapped in 1924, although its registration was not cancelled until April 1925.

SPECIFICATION AND DATA

  Type: Bullet
  Manufacturers: The Bristol Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol
  Power Plant: One 450 hp Bristol Jupiter II
  Span: (early) 31 ft 2 in; (late) 22 ft 4 in
  Length: 24 ft 1 in
  Height: (early) 9 ft 8 in; (late) 8 ft 10 in
  Wing Area: (early) 295 sq ft; (late) 180 sq ft
  Empty Weight: 1,800lb
  All-up Weight: 2,300lb
  Max. Speed: (early) 155 mph; (late) 170 mph
  Accommodation: Pilot only
  Production: One only
  Sequence No.: 5869
The Bristol Bullet G-EATS in the original form in which Capt C. F. Uwins flew it on 24 July, 1920, in the Aerial Derby at Filton.
The Bullet in its final form at Croydon in September 1922.
Bristol Bullet
The Bristol F .2C and Badger

  The designation F.2C was first applied in February 1917 to a proposed variant of the Falcon-engined Bristol F.2B Fighter having improved landing gear, tail unit and engine installation. As these affected interchangeability and jigs had already been designed for large production, this variant was abandoned in March 1917 and the designation was revived in October for a new two-seater fighter-reconnaissance biplane designed for rapid production. It was severe in outline with unstaggered two-bay wings of equal span and small gap, and the pilot and observer were placed close together and high up so as to have the best possible view for fighting. The pilot's seat was below the centre section, which had a circular hole in it for the pilot's head. Armament comprised a pair of synchronised Vickers guns forward of the pilot firing through the airscrew and two separate pillar-mounted Lewis guns for the observer, one forward and one aft.
  The engine proposed was a nine-cylinder Salmson water-cooled radial of 260 h.p. with tall rectangular radiators on each side of the flat-flanked fuselage in line with the pilot's position. At the end of November it was evident that the Salmson engine would not be available and the design was revised, with wings of reduced area, to suit the Bentley B.R.2 rotary of 230 h.p. Neither of these layouts met with official approval because the engines selected were not powerful enough to permit overloads to be carried without performance penalties.
  Barnwell realised that at least 300 h.p. was required to meet the specification, and in April 1918 he submitted a new design based on the 320 h.p. A.B.C. Dragonfly air-cooled radial. This was a single-bay staggered biplane of unequal span and clean appearance, having many features derived from the Scout F. A fuselage mock-up was built and the layout of guns, camera, wireless and other equipment was agreed with specialist R.A.F. officers. Detail design went ahead, but no prototypes were ordered until September. By this time the Dragonfly engine had shown itself to be no more reliable than the Sunbeam Arab and was achieving an average life of only 17 hours before crankshaft failure occurred.
  Meanwhile Fedden and Butler of Brazil Straker had designed a new nine-cylinder radial engine of 400 h.p. called the Cosmos Jupiter. The contract for three prototypes of the F.2C, officially named Badger, allowed the second machine to be fitted with a Jupiter for comparison with the other two which were to have Dragonflies. Six weeks later the war ended and all production contracts were terminated, but experimental contracts were kept in being and the first two Badgers, Nos. 4254 and 4255 (F3495 and F3496), were completed. The first, with a Dragonfly, suffered engine failure from an airlock in the fuel system on its first take-off on 4 February and Uwins made a crash landing in which the landing gear and engine mounting were destroyed. It was repaired with a more pointed cowling and a larger rudder, and delivered to the Air Board on 15 February 1919. The Jupiter engine was late completing its bench tests, and the second Badger did not fly until 24 May 1919. Barnwell shared Fedden's faith in the Jupiter as a promising civil aero-engine and gave him every assistance in installing it in the Badger, which was flown without armament, with the rear cockpit partly enclosed. No engine trouble occurred in the early flight tests, but the lateral control of the Badger was not satisfactory and so the third prototype, No. 4256 (F3497) was cancelled before delivery. The second Badger was formally purchased by the Air Board on 5 September, after having had a Dragonfly engine substituted for the Jupiter, with full armament and equipment installed; a fixed fin, added to improve handling with the heavier Jupiter engine and airscrew, was retained. When the Badger had been designed and before construction was completed, Barnwell had sent a 1/10th scale model for test in the N.P.L. wind-tunnel, to confirm the aerodynamic design; he was therefore concerned that the tunnel tests had given no warning of the lateral control deficiencies which appeared in full-scale flying. He had already emphasised the importance of the Company's having its own wind-tunnel and in March he and Frise designed a simple rectangular fuselage of spruce and plywood in which was installed a 240 h.p. Siddeley Puma engine bought very cheaply from the Disposal Board. To this were attached a spare set of Badger wings, tail surfaces and landing gear, and the result was a single-seat laboratory biplane whose flying qualities could be directly compared with wind-tunnel tests on a model. Known at first as the Badger Experimental, soon shortened to Badger X, this machine, No. 5658, cost only ?250 to build and was the first Bristol aeroplane to be entered on the British Civil Register, with the mark K110, which was revised to G-EABU on 30 May 1919. By that date it had already been written off, for, although Uwins made a successful first flight on 13 May, Barnwell himself nosed it over on 22 May and had to be released by onlookers from the safety harness in which he hung, helpless and cursing, upside down. He was uninjured and the aeroplane was not beyond economic repair, but the Directors decided not to go to the expense of doing so in a machine which could not easily be developed into a commercial two-seater. Barnwell himself had hoped to use the Badger X as a runabout and it was nicknamed 'Barnwell's Week-ender', though whether this referred to its proposed use or the extreme shortness of its design time is not certain.
  The Air Board were sufficiently impressed with the Jupiter's performance to order a fourth Badger equipped to full military standard. This was No. 5657(J6492) and was named Badger II. As at first built it had the same rudder as F3496, but this was replaced by a horn-balanced unit in conjunction with redesigned wings featuring large-area ailerons with 'park-bench' balances designed by Frise. Unknown to him, an exactly similar device had just been patented by A. V. Roe and Co. Ltd., who wrote to the Company pointing out the infringement; the matter was settled amicably and Frise then sought an alternative method of aerodynamic balancing, which later became world-famous as the Frise aileron, for which royalties were paid for fifteen years by many other manufacturers, including A. V. Roe and Co. The Badger II was formally purchased by the Air Council on 11 March 1920 and loaned to the Company thereafter for development testing of the Jupiter engine, of which the Company acquired the whole design and manufacturing organisation in July 1920. Several different engine cowlings were tested on the Badger II, the last being a polygonal type designed for the Handley Page 0/10 installation in July 1921.

SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA
  Type: F.2C and Badger
  Manufacturers: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol

Type F.2C F.2C Badger I Badger II Badger X
Power Plant 260 hp 230 hp 320 hp 400 hp 230 hp
   Salmson B.R.2 A.B.C. Cosmos Siddeley
   Dragonfly Ia Jupiter I Puma
Span 36 ft 5 in 31 ft 5 in 36 ft 9 in 36 ft 9 in 34 ft 2 in
Length 23 ft 8 in 23 ft 7 in 23 ft 8 in 23 ft 8 in 24 ft
Height 6 ft 8 ft 9 in 9 ft 1 in 9 ft 1 in 9 ft
Wing Area 408 sq ft 348 sq ft 357 sq ft 357 sq ft 340 sq ft
Empty Weight - - 1,950 lb 1,950 lb -
All-up Weight - - 3,150 lb 3,150 lb -
Max. Speed - - 135 mph 142 mph -
Service Ceiling - - 19,000 ft 20,600 ft -
Accommodation 2 2 2 2 Pilot only
Production nil nil 3 1 1
Sequence Nos. nil nil 4294-4296 5657 5658
Badger II J6492 with Cosmos Jupiter I and park-bench aileron balances, at Filton in March 1920.
Badger II with Jupiter II and polygonal cowl in 1921.
Badger X at Filton in May 1919.
The Bristol Tourer

  In January 1919 a request was made by Sir Frederick Sykes, Controller of Civil Aviation, for three of the Bristol Fighters still in production to be delivered as unarmed communications two-seaters, with extra tankage for 5 hours' duration and dual controls. Another of the same batch was fitted with a hinged coupe cover over the passenger's seat, specially furnished to provide maximum comfort; the cockpit enclosure gave a useful reduction in drag, resulting in a top speed of 128 m.p.h. In this aeroplane, H1460, Uwins flew Herbert Thomas from Filton to Hounslow on 1 May 1919 to meet General Seely in London; on that day civil aviation became lawful in the United Kingdom for the first time since August 1914. The Bristol Coupe, as H1460 was called, was purchased by the Air Board on 19 May 1919.
  Three days later, Barnwell crashed the Badger X, which had been intended both as a laboratory machine and as his personal runabout; it was not repaired and Barnwell installed the Puma engine from it in a Fighter airframe converted to civil standards, in the same way as the three Falcon-engined dual-control Fighters, H1687 to H1689, which were delivered in July 1919. The Puma-engined version, No. 5867, was registered as G-EAIZ on 7 August and received a certificate of airworthiness on 16 September 1919. It was used at first as a Puma test-bed and soon became so popular as a general Company hack that it was named the Tourer, and a second Tourer, No. 5868, was built and registered as G-EANR on 23 September. This was exhibited at the Paris Salon in December 1919 with a four-bladed airscrew. Barnwell had never liked the underslung cooling system designed by the R.A.E. for the Puma-engined Bristol Fighter, and preferred a nose radiator high up, where pump and thermal siphon effects were complementary, with vertical shutters for temperature control. The pilot's view for landing was unaffected and the system could be kept working even if the pump failed; moreover, the damage in a forced landing was less extensive and easier to repair. Both these considerations were of prime importance for world-wide operation over undeveloped terrain.
  For its peacetime design programme, the Company aimed at producing a two- or three-seat biplane suitable for such applications, and Barnwell had begun to design one with a three-cylinder Cosmos Lucifer engine of 100 h.p., at first known as the Rancher and later renamed the Colonial. This design had made little progress by July 1919, when an enquiry came in for a version of the Tourer to carry two passengers. Barnwell designed a simple modification of the Tourer with a wide rear cockpit seating two passengers side-by-side; a coupe top was an alternative to the open cockpit. This was so simple to produce that the Colonial was abandoned and both two-seat and three-seat Tourers went into production for demonstration and sale in the U.S.A., where the Company's New York agent had reported a promising market, including enquiries for seaplanes. He had already sold No. 5868 (G-EANR) which was shipped to New York in May.
  Two open three-seaters, Nos. 5873 and 5874, were put in hand as twin-float seaplanes with interchangeable wheeled chassis, together with five open three-seaters (Nos. 5876-5880) and one two-seater (No. 5881). The New York agent then asked for a three-seater Coupe, so the first of these, No. 5891, not yet completed, was substituted for No. 5876 and the rest of the batch (Nos. 5877-5881) were shipped to New York at the end of May. For the American market, Tourers were finished in dark battleship grey with pale blue undersurfaces, with the word 'Bristol' in longhand style painted on the fuselage sides. One of them, probably 5868, was sold to Joseph F. Thorne, who used it to fly bullion to the coast from his silver mines in Nicaragua, but the fate of the others is unknown. The three-seater COUPE No. 5891, was exhibited at Olympia in July 1920, before being shipped to New York in August. Meanwhile No. 5876, the first of the batch, was purchased by the Instone Air Line on 3 June 1920, with the registration G-EART. G-EAIZ and a new two-seater, No. 5892 (G-EAVU), had been successfully demonstrated in Belgium and Norway, so 15 more Tourers, comprising six open and six coupe three-seaters and three open two-seaters, Nos. 6108-6122, were laid down in anticipation of an expanding market. But only initial deposits had been paid on the Tourers ordered in America, and when difficulties arose over import duties the New York agency was closed down, so no more machines were shipped. The two seaplanes were amongst those cancelled, but later an order was received from Siberia and work on them continued. The first seaplane was flown from Avonmouth on 15 October 1920, when Uwins took-off from calm water in 400 yds. with two passengers and 40 lb. of ballast. The floats, designed by Major Vernon, were built of mahogany with a single step and six watertight compartments in each; they weighed 200 lb. each, and, since they were 19 ft. 6 in. long, no tail float was required. The Siberian order for the two seaplanes was cancelled before delivery, and they were then offered to Canada but apparently not sold there. However, a final two-seater Tourer, No. 6123, was shipped to Canada in May 1921 for the Newfoundland Air Survey Company; it took part in the gold rush to Stag Bay, Labrador, later that year and was flown on skis.
  The beginning of 1921 found the Company with 14 unsold Tourers on hand, only one of the two-seaters, No. 6122, having been bought, in December 1920, by a private owner, Alan S. Butler, and registered G-EAWB. In this he left Croydon on 2 April 1921 to tour southern Europe and returned in June having had no mishaps of any kind. He entered it in the Aerial Derby on 16 July and completed the course in the fourth fastest time at an average speed of 106 m.p.h., thereby winning the third prize of ?50 in the Handicap Race. These exploits so convinced Alan Butler of the value of private flying that he joined forces with Geoffrey de Havilland and was for many years Chairman of the de Havilland Aircraft Company.
  Meanwhile, in April 1921, a Spanish customer, Senor Bayo, ordered two three-seaters, one closed and one open, through the Company's agents at Bilbao. These, Nos. 6114 (G-EAWQ) and 6112 (G-EAWR), re-registered M-AAEA and M-AEAA, were flown out to Spain by Andrew Forson and Major Hereward de Havilland, respectively, at the end of April. The only authorised route of entry into Spain was via San Sebastian, whose airfield, Lasarte, was surrounded by mountains. Forson arrived safely in the Coupe, cleared Customs and then took-off into a cloud-bank; minutes later he crashed into a mountainside near Anzuola and was killed. Major de Havilland delivered the open Tourer to Madrid without incident, but found he had to give flying lessons to Senor Bayo, so the Company's dual-control demonstrator G-EAVU, which had taken the place ofG-EAIZ in November 1920, went to Madrid until September 1921, when it was replaced by No. 6121 (MAFFA) together with two more open three-seaters (6109, M-AAAF and 6110, M-AFFF). The remaining two-seater, No. 6120 (G-EAXA), was retained as a demonstrator to replace G-EAVU, which was scrapped after its return from Madrid. The remaining eight three-seaters were all sold in Australia; the first (6117, G-AUCA) was supplied in June 1921 to Colonel Brinsmead, Controller of Civil Aviation, who toured over 9,000 miles in it while surveying new air routes; six more were bought in September 1921 by Major Norman Brearley, who had secured the Federal Government's air mail contract for a weekly service between Geraldton and Perth. The six Tourers, all with coupe tops (Nos. 6108,6111,6115,6116, 6118 and 6119), registered G-AUDF to G-AUDK, respectively, were shipped to Fremantle in time to start the service on 4 December 1921, but G-AUDI crashed the next day, killing its pilot and mechanic; after an enquiry, the service restarted and thereafter achieved 97% regularity. Five Tourers were not enough to maintain the service, and the last remaining Tourer airframe, No. 6113, supplied as a spare, is believed to have been combined with the wreck of G-AUCA (crashed in March 1923) to produce G-AUDX, which continued flying until September 1930. Another of the Western Australian Airways fleet, G-AUDH, which crashed in July 1924, was rebuilt as G-AUDZ and survived until February 1931. A famous 'Tourer', G-AUEB, was converted from a 300 h.p. Hispano-Suiza Fighter (H1248) and flown in 1922 and 1923 by Hudson Fysh and other pilots of Queensland and Northern Territories Aerial Services; later it became one of the first Flying Doctor ambulances in Northern Territories, and its career ended in the goldfields at Wau, New Guinea, in April 1928. The Tourers of Western Australian Airways had flown over 200,000 miles by September 1923 and nearly 485,000 miles by June 1926, when they were replaced in regular service by D.H.50's; during this period they had logged 6,400 flying hours and had carried more than 3,000 passengers and 400,000 letters and parcels, including valuable consignments of pearls from the north-west coast fisheries. Two of the retired Tourers were bought by a syndicate of W.A.A. pilots and No. 6119 (G-AUDK) was flown 2,300 miles from Perth to Sydney, carrying the first trans-Australian woman passenger, Mrs. J. W. Marshall; then it was flown round the entire continent, a distance of 7,500 miles, in 10 days and 5 hours, by Charles Kingsford Smith and Charles DIm, in June 1927. An attempt a year later to fly the same Tourer to England was less successful, for three days after leaving Camooweal on 9 September 1928, Keith Anderson and his passenger, Hitchcock, crashed at Pine Creek, N.T., the aircraft being totally wrecked. None of the Australian Tourers escaped crash demolition in the end; but, for so worthy a scion of the Fighter breed, this was a more fitting fate in a pioneering country than to decay in a hangar, unwanted, unfuelled, and unswung.

SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA

  Type: Tourer
  Manufacturer: The British & Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., and The Bristol Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol

Type Coupe 2-Seater 3-Seater Coupe 3-Seater Open Seaplane
Power Plant 275 hp 230 hp Siddeley Puma
   Rolls-Royce
   Falcon III
Span 39 ft 3 in 39 ft 5 in 39 ft 5 in 39 ft 5 in 39 ft 5 in
Length 25 ft 10 in 26 ft 1 in 26 ft 1 in 26 ft 1 in 29 ft 6 in
Height 9 ft 6 in 10 ft 10 ft 10 ft 11 ft 5 in
Wing Area 405 sq ft 407 sq ft 407 sq ft 407 sq ft 407 sq ft
Empty Weight 1,900 lb 1,700 lb 1,900 lb 1,900 lb 2,100 lb
All-up Weight 2,800 lb 2,800 lb 3,000 lb 3,000 lb 3,000 lb
Max. Speed 128 mph 120 mph 120 mph 117 mph 110 mph
Absolute Ceiling 24,000 ft 22,000 ft 20,000 ft 20,000 ft 17,000 ft
Accommodation 2 2 3 3 3
Production 1 12 10 8 2
Sequence Nos. 5178 5867 5868 5891 6108 5876-5880 5873 5874
   5881 5892 6111 6113 6109 6110
   6120-6123 -6119 6112
   6239-6242
Second of the three F.2B's built with long-range tanks and dual controls in July 1919.
G-EAIZ, the first Puma-engined Tourer, at Filton in September 1919.
No. 5891, the first Coupe Three-seater at Filton in August 1920 before dispatch to New York.
No. 5873 on tow off Avonmouth in October 1920; note the metal airscrew.
No. 6112, the first open Three-seater for Spain, ferried by Maj. H. de Havilland in April 1922.
B.E.2d and Scout D biplanes ready for dispatch from Filton in 1916.
The Bristol Fighter F.2A and F.2B

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  When the United States entered the war in 1917 the Bristol Fighter was among the British types proposed for large-scale production in America; 2000 were ordered first from the Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Corporation of Buffalo, N.Y., and later from a group of other firms to be supervised by the Engineering Division of the Bureau of Aircraft Production at McCook Field, Dayton, Ohio; all were originally to be fitted with the 300 h.p. Hispano-Suiza, licence-built by the Wright-Martin Corporation. These plans met with approval from the Company, and several of the Filton staff went to America to supervise the arrangements, taking with them two sample airframes. To their dismay, they found that the engine actually chosen was the 400 h.p. Liberty 12, which was too heavy and badly installed. Capt. Barnwell predicted trouble but was overruled; when the first Curtiss-built F.2B flew and crashed he was proved correct, but the U.S. Army blamed the aircraft rather than the power plant, and only 27 of the contract were built, the rest being cancelled. Technical opinion at McCook Field was less biased and the two Filton-built aircraft were flown, one (P 30) with a 300 h.p. HispanoSuiza and the other (P 37) with a 290 h.p. Liberty 8. P 37 crashed before any performance tests could be made, but on 18 November 1918 P 30 was flown by Major Schroeder to a height of 29,000 ft. above Dayton, an unofficial world's altitude record for which homologation was never sought. A Hispano-Suiza-engined F.2B variant with semi-monocoque veneer fuselage was built at McCook Field with the designation XB-1A (P 90) in July 1919, and 40 more were produced for the U.S. Army by Dayton-Wright in 1920.
XB-1A of U.S. Army Air Corps built by Dayton-Wright in 1921.
The Bristol Zodiac

  The Societe Zodiac of Paris was formed in the late nineteenth century to make balloons, and in due course extended its activities to include small dirigible airships. By 1907 the brothers Gabriel and Charles Voisin had developed their 'boxkite' type of biplane to the point where, on 13 January 1908, Henri Farman was able to fly one round a closed course of 1 kilometre, thereby winning the prize of 50,000 francs offered for this feat by Ernest Archdeacon and Henri Deutsch de la Meurthe. This achievement brought the Voisins into the ranks of the leading aeroplane designers of the day, and the Societe Zodiac extended its interests to include manufacture of biplanes and monoplanes designed by Gabriel Voisin. These had been placed on the market by the end of 1909, and were offered with a guarantee of flight. Sir George White, having consulted Emile Stern on the choice of a suitable aeroplane to begin manufacturing at Filton, was advised to consider the Zodiac models and in due course arranged to acquire the British manufacturing rights for them. Meanwhile, Henri Farman, having introduced improvements in a new Voisin biplane which he had ordered but never received, set up his own workshop and brought out replicas of the Farman III, which set the pattern for simplicity and performance for some years to come. Farman and his brothers were not much concerned with high-grade finish, although their materials were sound and their methods of construction safe enough for competition flying. Gabriel Voisin, having lost a good customer in Henri Farman, was anxious to advertise the superior workmanship of his products, and so the Zodiac biplane, though of outmoded design, was strongly recommended to Sir George White and chosen because of the excellence of its finish. Having decided that the newly formed British and Colonial Aeroplane Company should take a stand at the Aero Show at Olympia in March 1910, the Directors speedly authorised the importation of a Zodiac biplane, to be exhibited as a sample of the type to be built by the firm, and this was delivered in crates to Filton just in time to be prepared for the Exhibition. This preparation was no mere formality, for it was found that the 50 h.p. four-cylinder upright Darracq engine, purchased with the biplane, had no mounting lugs or other means of attachment to the airframe, so Charles Briginshaw, the fitter deputed to install the engine, had to make clamps to fit round the crankcase.
  Like most of the Voisin biplanes, the Zodiac had a single elevator in front and a biplane tail carried on four booms, the engine being mounted on the lower wing and driving a propeller behind the trailing edge. A single vertical rudder was provided between the tailplanes, and vertical surfaces were also fixed to the outer pairs of interplane struts; these were intended to resist any tendency to sideslip in a turn, but had been discarded by the Farmans and others after Wilbur Wright had demonstrated the safe and natural technique of banking on turns. The camber of the mainplanes and tailplanes was unusually flat, but both upper and lower surfaces were fabric-covered. Ailerons were fitted to the lower wing only and were linked to the rudder, which was controlled by rotating a handwheel which also moved fore-and-aft to control the elevator. Ailerons had not been a feature of earlier Voisin designs but were among the improvements introduced by Henri Farman. The undercarriage comprised a pair of skids each pivoted at the rear end to an inverted pyramid of steel tubes attached under the wing; a pair of wheels was mounted behind the pivot-point so that, when landing, the front of the skid was pulled down against a rubber shock absorber into contact with the ground. Two small castoring wheels supported the tail. Unfortunately the excellent workmanship was not matched by aerodynamic knowledge, and many of the refinements served only to increase weight without any corresponding gain in lift.
  After the Aero Show, the Zodiac was returned to Filton to be tuned for flight tests for which a Belgian pilot, Arthur Duray, had been engaged. Tests should have begun on 30 April, but the biplane was then still at Filton; meanwhile, Duray met with an accident in France and another pilot had to be sought. The Zodiac arrived at Brooklands on 10 May and was forthwith erected in the 'Bristol' shed by Sydney Smith and his assistants Leslie Macdonald, Charles Briginshaw and Henri Labouchere. From the first it proved to be very underpowered and all efforts to coax it off the ground failed. New wings with increased camber were assembled and eventually, on 28 May, it made a single brief hop in the hands of Edmond, who had taken Duray's place. Edmond thought little of its prospects and, after a final attempt to fly it on 15 June, when the landing gear was damaged, he persuaded Sydney Smith to abandon it in favour of the successful Henri Farman. The five Bristol-Zodiacs already started at Filton were scrapped and the Zodiac licence was cancelled soon afterwards.

   SPECIFICATION AND DATA
Type: Zodiac 52B
Manufacturers: The British and Colonial Aeroplane Co., Ltd., Filton, Bristol, under licence from Societe Zodiac, Paris
Power Plant: One 50 hp Darracq
Span: 33 ft 3 in
Length: 39 ft 3 in
Height: 10ft 2in
Wing Area: 525 sq ft
Empty Weight: 1,000 lb
Speed: 35 mph
Accommodation: Pilot and Passenger
Production: 1 assembled, 5 abandoned
Sequence Nos: 1 to 6 inclusive
The Zodiac biplane at Olympia in March 1910.