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Friedrichshafen FF29 / FF33

Страна: Германия

Год: 1914

Two-seat reconnaissance patrol twin float seaplane

Friedrichshafen - FF21 - 1914 - Германия<– –>Friedrichshafen - FF31 - 1914 - Германия


В.Обухович, А.Никифоров Самолеты Первой Мировой войны


Осенью 1914 г. совершил первый полет опытный гидросамолет FF 33. Он был создан на базе двухместного патрульного гидросамолета FF 29 и отличался более мощным двигателем Мерседес D.II (120 л. с.) и усовершенствованным трехопорным поплавковым шасси с хвостовым поплавком. На первых шести машинах вооружение не устанавливалось, а место пилота находилось в задней кабине.
  Самолет оказался очень удачным и строился во многих модификациях и сериях. Так, FF 33b был оснащен рядным двигателем Майбах и двухреданными основными поплавками. Место пилота было оборудовано в передней кабине. Стрелок был вооружен подвижным турельным пулеметом. Всего было выпущено 5 самолетов.
  На варианте FF 33e устанавливались двигатели Бенц Bz.III (150 л. с.) или Майбах III. Оборудование самолета было дополнено радиопередатчиком. Шасси стало двухпоплавковым, а вместо хвостового поплавка в конструкцию был включен подфюзеляжный киль. Всего было изготовлено 190 машин этой модификации. Самолет применялся для разведки прибрежных районов с береговых гидродромов и как корабельный разведчик. Именно FF 33e был на борту вспомогательного крейсера "Волк", полтора года топившего транспортные суда в Тихом и Индийском океанах.
  FF 33j имел улучшенную аэродинамику и был оснащен радиостанцией. В этой серии в 1917 г. был выпущен и учебно-тренировочный самолет FF 33s с двойным управлением (20 машин).
  Второй серией самолетов FF 33 стали вооруженные патрульные модификации, предназначенные для борьбы с морской авиацией противника. Эти машины имели уменьшенный размах крыльев и укороченный фюзеляж, вооружались турельным пулеметом.
  FF 33f использовался как разведчик-истребитель. Всего было изготовлено 5 самолетов с двигателем Бенц Bz.III. Вариант FF 33h имел улучшенную аэродинамику, усиленную коробку крыльев и оснащался двигателем Бенц Bz.III. Этот самолет предназначался для применения в качестве двухместного истребителя. Было произведено 50 экземпляров.
  FF 33l представлял собой вооруженный разведчик с уменьшенными размерами планера, двигателем Бенц Bz.III и улучшенными летными характеристиками. Всего было выпущено 130 самолетов. Одна машина была изготовлена с колесным шасси.


Технические данные Фридрихсхафен FF 33e
Двигатель 1 x Бенц Bz.III (150 л. с.)
Размеры;
  размах х длина х высота 16,75 х 10,45 х 3,73
Площадь крыльев 52,7 м2
Вес:
  пустого 1008 кг
  взлетный 1635 кг
Максимальная скорость 119 км/ч
Время набора высоты 1000 м 17,5 мин
Потолок 2500 м
Дальность 450 км
Продолжительность полета 6 ч
Экипаж 2 чел.


O.Thetford, P.Gray German Aircraft of the First World War (Putnam)


Friedrichshafen FF 29
  Built in small quantity from November 1914, the FF 29 and FF 29a (powered with 120 h.p. Mercedes D II engine) were used for coastal patrol and sometimes carried a small bomb load. No other armament was carried. The FF 29a had modified tail surfaces and floats.


Friedrichshafen 33 Variants

  The FF 33s were undoubtedly the most multifarious of the early German patrol seaplanes. Nevertheless, their many variants could be basically divided into two categories. The 33/33b, 33e, 33j and 33s, which were mostly unarmed reconnaissance patrol seaplanes carrying a small load of bombs, were all of three-bay wing format. The 33f, 33h and 331, on the other hand, were fighters of two-bay wing layout, intended for armed patrols and on occasion for escort to reconnaissance patrol machines.

  The Reconnaissance FFs. Stemming from the FF 33, all variants were of basically similar airframe construction, with differing engine, equipment installations, flotation gear and wingspan, as will be outlined later. The initial FF 33 appeared at the end of 1914 and was a quite orthodox fabric-covered wooden structure in which the pilot sat in the aft cockpit. Like the earlier FF 29, it was powered with a 120 h.p. Mercedes D II engine, and in general differed little except for modification of the float shape. The fuselage was a simple slab-sided braced box-girder structure of spruce longerons and spacers tapering to a vertical knife-edge, and with a slightly rounded top decking. A small amount of sweepback was incorporated in the wings, which were based on two main spars with wooden ribs, the trailing edges of which were linked with a wire member which imparted a scalloped effect to the profile. The ailerons, of inverse taper, were of steel-tube construction, likewise the tail assembly, and of these control surfaces only the rudder was balanced. However, only six aircraft of this type were supplied to the German Navy.
  In the F F 33b, which followed, the positions of the crew were reversed, with the pilot now sitting in the forward position. In the rear cockpit the observer was equipped with a manually operated machine-gun for defence purposes. A more powerful engine, the 160 h.p. Maybach, was fitted and the radiators were sited on the fuselage sides adjacent to the front cockpit. The floats were of two-step design, with flat bottoms forward and vee section aft. As far as is known, only five of this type were built.
  The next variant was the FF 33e, which was still generally similar to its predecessors but differed most noticeably in the float arrangement, the main floats being considerably lengthened and the tail float abandoned. In its place a long underfill was substituted, and this became a characteristic of practically all subsequent Friedrichshafen aircraft. This modification of the float system resulted in the most seaworthy machine to date. Another variation from the earlier machines was the installation of the 150 h.p. Benz Bz. III engine, the reliability of which was superlative for long "over water" patrols. With this engine the radiator system was again revised, the cooler now being located against the leading edge of the top wing. The FF 33e was the first of the series to be equipped with radio-telegraphy equipment, but at this stage only a transmitter was fitted. No defensive armament was installed, as development of protection escort machines was proceeding simultaneously. Some 188 FF 33es were constructed from March 1915 onwards, the final batch supplied from September 1917 to January 1918 being equipped solely as school machines and fitted with dual control.
  A further refinement in the series came with the FF 33j, the most noticeable feature of which was the cleaning up of the nose-entry and the addition of a spinner to the propeller hub. A headrest for both pilot and observer was fitted, and altogether a much more pleasing appearance resulted. Both transmitting and receiving radio equipment was now installed, which made for an all-round improvement in communications. Furthermore, tools, spare parts and sea anchors were carried to facilitate repair in case of forced alighting; also full navigation equipment and signalling gear was installed.
  Doubtless the most famous of all the FF seaplanes was the 33e "841" Wolfchen carried by the German auxiliary cruiser Wolf, whose depredations from November 1916 to February 1918 extended as far as the Indian and Pacific Oceans. Wolfchen was hoisted overboard on a derrick and tackle and proceeded to scout ahead of the cruiser, sending by radio to her parent ship such intelligence as became available. In all, some fifty-six flights were carried out during this period, and between each considerable maintenance was often necessary. This represented a commendable achievement on the part of all concerned, particularly as the aircraft had to be protected as much as possible against the effects of exposure and tropical climates.
  Translated extracts from the Wolfchen log exemplify accomplishment:
  "Pacific Ocean. 2nd June 1917. Orders. Merchant steamer which has been sighted to North of Raoul Island to be stopped and brought to Wolf."
  The ship had suddenly appeared while Wolf was hove-to close to the island, engaged on engine repairs and trimming bunkers. Wolfchen started at 15.30 hours and flew north. On reaching the steamer the FF 33e descended to within 200 feet and dropped the following message in English:
  "Steer south to German cruiser and do not use wireless. If not obeyed you will be bombed."
  The second time the seaplane flew over the steamer it dropped a bomb only 20 yards from her bows. At once she changed course and steered for Wolf, escorted by Wolfchen. After this threat she did not use her wireless. It was the New Zealand ship Wairuna of 3,900 tons, bound for San Francisco from Auckland. The ship and her cargo were worth many hundred thousand pounds.
  "Pacific Ocean. 16th June 1917. Orders. Hold up four-masted schooner sighted in the west and bring to Wolf''
  Wolfchen started at 15.50 hours and flew west. It spiralled down from 500 to 250 feet. Its first two attempts to drop a message on the deck failed owing to the drift of the vessel. Both fell some distance to leeward. At the seaplane's third approach a bomb was dropped from 250 feet close by the bows. The ship at once hauled in sail and displayed the United States flag. Wolfchen ordered the vessel to steer south-east and intimated that she would be bombed if she did not follow. She at once turned in the given direction, and with Wolfchen circling overhead, was led to Wolf. It was the American schooner Winslow of 567 tons, with a cargo of coal, provisions, petrol and timber, from San Francisco. Unfortunately the petrol was useless for aircraft. Owing to bad weather, Wolfchen was again dismantled and stored away on the afternoon of 17th June 1917.
  "Indian Ocean. 25th September 1917. Orders. Investigate patch of smoke which has been sighted and report on vessel, course and distance."
  It proved to be the Japanese ship Hitachi Maru of 6,900 tons. The Wolfchen received a further order to support Wolf in holding up the vessel and to bomb her if she committed any hostile act. At the first shot from Wolf the ship turned to starboard intent upon escape. Thereupon a bomb was dropped about 30 yards ahead of her; about the same time the cruiser again fired, so that Wolfchen was led to believe that the ship was resisting. Wolfchen therefore flew up again and dropped another bomb from about 700 ft., which fell close by the port side. The explosion blew two men overboard and the steamer then hove to. Wolfchen then ceased bombing, but continued to circle round until the prize crew had gone on board.
  The seaplane then alighted close by the vessel and discovered that the nuts on the propeller had loosened, and, in consequence of the lash on the prop-shaft, the engine could not throw true against the cranks.
  The final variant of the reconnaissance FF 33 machines was the 33s, which was simply a 33j equipped with dual control for use solely as a school aircraft.

  The Fighter Patrol FFs. The principal visible difference between the reconnaissance and fighter FFs was in the reduction of overall dimensions and the introduction of two-bay wing format to improve manoeuvrability. The 150 h.p. Benz engine still remained the standard power unit.
  First of these two-seat fighter patrol types was the 33f, introduced in October 1915 and probably the first German naval lighting scout. Armament was a manually operated Parabellum gun for the observer. However, no more than five of these machines had been supplied when the type was superseded by the FF 33h. In this model the nose-entry was improved. Some had a radiator of aerofoil section built into the centre-section of the top wing. The ailerons and floats were also redesigned, all with a view to reducing head resistance. Modification to the float chassis included the introduction of steel-tube load struts between the floats instead of only cables as previously. Some inboard bay bracing cables were duplicated as a precaution against breakage should the gunner decide to shoot between the prop disc and the struts (as he was expected to do if necessary!) and sever one of the wires. Coming into service in January 1916, the 33hrs continued to operate until eventually some forty-five were in service.
  In September 1916 the FF 33l was introduced, and production finally totalled some 135 aircraft. The fuselage length and wingspan were still further reduced, a spinner was fitted to the propeller and, finally, the aircraft achieved a reasonably happy compromise between performance and manoeuvrability - a prerequisite that plagues the design of all naval aeroplanes. For a somewhat cumbersome machine the 33l possessed marked agility, and this enabled the pilot to make use of the fixed forward gun which was now added to the armament. Its degree of seaworthiness was reasonably good, and take-off and landing from open sea in winds up to force 3 could be accomplished. On some machines the forward gun was deleted and a radio transmitter carried in its stead. By and large, the FF 33ls were able to afford a good degree of protection for their unarmed reconnaissance brethren on long patrols over the North Sea.

TECHNICAL DATA
  Description:
   Two-seat reconnaissance patrol twin float seaplane (33e).
   Two-seat fighter patrol escort twin float seaplane (331).
  Manufacturers: Flugzeugbau Friedrichshafen G.m.b.H. Manzell and Warnemunde.
  Power Plant: One 150 h.p. Benz Bz III 6 cylinder in-line water-cooled engine.
  Dimensions: Span, 16.75 m. (54 ft. 11 1/2 in.), 33e; 13.3 m. (43 ft. 7 5/8 in.), 33l. Length, 10.45 m. (34 ft. 3 1/2 in.), 33e; 8.825 m. (28 ft. 11 1/2 in.), 33l. Height, 3.725 m. (12 ft. 2 5/8 in.), 33c; 3.95 m. (12 ft. 10 1/2 in.), 33l. Wing area, 52.7 sq.m. (569.2 sq.ft.), 33c; 40.54 sq.m. (437.8 sq.ft.), 33l.
  Weights: Empty, 1,008 kg. (2,217.6 lb.), 33e; 916 kg. (2,021.8 lb.), 33l. Loaded, 1,635 kg. (3,636.6 lb.), 33e; 1,373 kg. (3,020.6 lb.), 33l.
  Performance: Maximum speed, 119 km.hr. (74.5 m.p.h.), 33e; 136 km.hr. (85 m.p.h.), 33l. Initial climb, 1,000 m. (3,280 ft.) in 17.5 min., 33e; in 8 min., 33l. Duration, approximately 5-6 hr., both types.
  Armament:
   33e - None. (Some aircraft fitted with rear gun.)
   33l - One fixed Spandau machine-gun forward and one manually operated Parabellum machine-gun in rear cockpit.

  N.B. Data is general. Nearly all production machines had detail differences rom batch to batch.


А.Александров, Г.Петров Крылатые пленники России


В морской авиации также использовался класс Ц. 20 сентября 1916 г. у берега о-ва Руно, что в Рижском заливе, после вынужденной посадки, случившейся при возвращении с разведывательного полета к Моонзунду и Аренсбургу, в руки русских пилотов попал германский двухпоплавковый биплан "Фридрихсхафен ФФ. 33", модель Фау-8 образца 1916 г. (Friedrichshafen FF 33h, "h" - восьмая буква немецкого алфавита), с мотором "Бенц" 160 л. с. Аппарат потребовал лишь малого ремонта, а затем перелетел в Ревель, где его отрегулировали и зачислили в списки флотской авиации под кодовым номером АБ-1 ("Альбатрос" с "Бенцем"-первый). Новая карьера продлилась недолго: в апреле 1917 г. самолет передали заводу В. А. Лебедева для последующего копирования. Однако заказ на 175 подобных гидроаэропланов не был выполнен, к тому же к осени 1917 г. конструкцию уже считали устаревшей. Сфотографированный во дворике завода Лебедева на Комендантском аэродроме Петрограда (46, а), фюзеляж "Фридрихсхафена" предстает перед нами с закрашенными бортовыми и хвостовыми крестами и номером, с демонтированными крыльями, поплавками и стойками. В его задней кабине оставлена пулеметная турель (46, б), под который заметна шнуровка обшивки и ступенька для подъема и спуска наблюдателя. Некто в шляпе демонстрирует, как легок хвост самолета (46, в), при этом на обеих частях стабилизатора и на рулях глубины видны, по крайней мере, на оригинале, германские морские номера аппарата - 698. На заднем плане заметна часть вывески "Общество воздухоплавания В. А. Лебедева". Что касается компании "Флюгцойгбау Фридрихсхафен", то она была основана в 1913 г.; в конце следующего года появилась модель ФФ.29, спроектированная инженером Теодором Кобером (Flugzeugbau Friedrichshafen GmbH; Theodor Kober) и давшая затем рождение серии аппаратов марки ФФ.33, чья восьмая модификация реализовалась в 45 машинах (производилась с марта 1916 г.).


Журнал Flight


Flight, October 16, 1919.


SOME FRIEDRICHSHAFEN "MILESTONES"

  PROBABLY no other German aircraft firm can show such a series of seaplanes as that produced by the Friedrichshafen Aircraft Works (Flugzeugbau Friedrichshafen) during the War, and for this reason a brief reference to the various types, illustrated by photographs, may not be without interest to readers of FLIGHT. The illustrations have been published in Flugsport, and the following is a translation of the descriptive matter accompanying the photographs :-
  "The Friedrichshafen Aircraft Works is the oldest German firm which has devoted its energies almost exclusively to the production of seaplanes. The firm was founded in 1912 and has produced a great number of seaplane types, under the efficient leadership of its founder and managing director, Dipl. Ing. Theodor Kober, who has been ably supported by his associates, in close co-operation with the Naval authorities and with various scientific institutions. The main sphere of activity of the firm was the construction, testing, and quantity production of seaworthy single-engined seaplanes of the types used by the German Navy for reconnaissance flights over the North Sea and the Baltic. That the firm was successful in this is proved by the fact that they have been able to supply practically all the requirements of the German Navy, and that a number of other firms have built their machines under licence. Among these may be mentioned the Luftfahrzeug Gesellschaft, the Sablatnig Aircraft Works, the Gothaer Waggonfabrik and the Warnemunde Aircraft Works. As the seaworthiness of a machine depends not only on the right shape of float, but also upon the strength of the floats and undercarriage, on the correct amount of buoyancy and on controllability when alighting, it will be seen what an abundance of experience has to be collected in order to fulfil the specifications for a seaworthy seaplane. A large proportion of the experiments was formed by tests on floats, of which over 100 types were produced. The F.F. machines, which have been well proved during the War, are all of the twin-float type, although before the War single-float machines and flying boats were also tried.
  "One object of the experiments was, among other things, to determine the number and placing of steps which best suited the different types of machines for starting and landing, and what float shape gave the best results for taxying. At the same time the floats should combine small air resistance and great rigidity with small weight, while the most suitable, strongest, and lightest construction of float details also required much work and very many experiments. The following are the most important types of seaplanes produced by the Friedrichshafen Aircraft Works :-

"The F.F. 29
  is a bomber with a 120 h.p. Mercedes engine (Fig. 1). The main floats are comparatively short, and a tail float is therefore fitted under the stern of the fuselage. The radiator is placed above the engine, and the exhaust pipes are passed under the lower plane. The pilot occupies the rear seat, while the observer sits in front, where are also the bomb releases. The petrol gravity tank is hung on the cabane struts.

"The F.F. 33,
  which is shown in Fig. 3, was fitted with a 120 h.p. Mercedes engine. It was a bomber of very similar design to the type F.F. 29, except for the floats, which were of considerably different shape.

"The F.F. 33B
  was designed for reconnaissance and had a 160 h.p. Maybach engine (Fig. 4). It was similar to the 29 and 33 types in general design, but the pilot sat in front, the observer occupying the rear seat where was mounted on a gun ring a machine gun by means of which he could fend off attacks. The radiator is in two halves, mounted on each side of the fuselage. While the floats of the F.F. 31 were provided with a Vee bottom nose, those of the F.F. 33B had a Vee bottom at the heel, and were flat-bottomed in front.

"The F.F. 33E,
  shown in Figs. 5 and 6, was used for bombing and reconnaissance, with and without wireless. In general arrangement it is similar to the 29 and 33 types. While the first machine of this type still retained the tail float (see inset Fig. 5) later machines were found not to require this on account of the long main floats with which they were fitted. The radiator was mounted on the leading edge of the top plane. Generally speaking, the fuselage, wing bracing, wings and ailerons were designed to give good aerodynamic efficiency.

"The F.F. 33F,
  shown in Fig. 7, was a development of the 33. It was, however, designed as a fighter, and was probably the first to be successfully employed by the German Navy in various theatres of war. The wing area was considerably reduced, which resulted in greater manoeuvrability. The pilot sat in front, and the observer, who was provided with a machine gun mounted on a gun ring, occupied the rear seat. In addition to the substitution of the smaller wings, with only two pairs of struts on each side, this machine was altered later on by being fitted with a shorter and better stream line fuselage.

"The F.F. 33H,
  which is shown in Figs. 8 and 9, was a development of the 33F. The fuselage, which was much shorter, was provided with a fin below as well as above, and the ailerons were redesigned to give smaller resistance. The radiator was built in flush with the top plane, which also contained the petrol gravity tank. The floats were also redesigned to give smaller air resistance. A great improvement in this machine was the incorporation of horizontal struts between the floats instead of cable, so that it was possible for the gunner to fire forward, between the inner pair of inter-plane struts and the propeller tips, since any damage accidentally done to the wing bracing in the inner bay was of minor importance as the load would be taken by the float tubes.

"The F.F. 33J.
  "This type was fitted with a 150 h.p. Benz engine, and was used as a reconnaissance machine, fitted with wireless. It has been extremely successful, and has given excellent results during the War. The 33 J (Figs. 10 and 11) is a direct descendant of the 33E. It is particularly seaworthy, is easy to fly, and very reliable, even for long-duration work. This machine is the first seaplane to be used successfully on all the seas of the world, and was used as a ship's 'plane on the Wolf. The main specification of the F.F. 33J is as follows: Weight, empty and without water, 2,300 lbs.; load, 1,185 lbs., total weight, 3,485 lbs.; length overall, 34 ft.; span, 55 ft.; float capacity, 61 cu. ft.; speed, 71-77.5 m.p.h. according to load; speed when taking off, 50 m.p.h.; climb to 4,950 ft. in 25 mins.; duration, 5 hours. This type is, so to speak, unbeaten in any theatre of war, as it was purely for military reasons that the 33J was supplanted by machines of 200 h.p. Owing to its proved capabilities the type was retained as a practice and school machine, in which form it was known as

"the F.F. 33S.
  "During the last years of the War practically all the German seaplane pilots were trained on this type (Fig. 12), and nothing more need, therefore, be said about its utility as a practice and school machine.

"The F.F. 33L.
  "This machine, which is shown in Figs. 13 and 14, is a further development of the 33H. It is fitted with 150 h.p. Benz or Mercedes engines. It formed a very happy compromise between the demands for seaworthiness and for performance. In accordance with its use as a fighter the 33L possesses great manoeuvrability, and is very seaworthy in any sea up to a rougness degree of 3. It is easy and comfortable to fly. Its main characteristics are: Weight, empty and without water, 2,070 lbs.; load, 1,045 lbs.; total weight, 3,115 lbs.; length overall, 30 ft.; span, 43 ft. 6 ins.; float capacity, 49 cu. ft.; horizontal speed, 80 to 86 m.p.h.; climb, 6,600 ft. in 30 mins; duration, 3 1/2 hours. This machine was equipped with one movable and one fixed machine gun, or one movable gun and a wireless outfit.


Flight, October 23, 1919.

SOME FRIEDRICHSHAFEN "MILESTONES"

<...>
  "As a result of the very extensive experience of seaplane construction for War purposes, the Friedrichshafen aircraft works on Lake Constance and its branch factory at Warnemunde are in a position to, and are making every effort to, take up the construction of seaplanes for commercial purposes. As the firm has up till now chiefly devoted its energies to the construction of seaworthy seaplanes, it will be seen that it is in a better position than many other firms to construct seaworthy commercial and sporting seaplanes of all types. Especially suitable for this purpose would be the types which have proved themselves during the war, such as F.F. 49C, 33J(S), 33L, 41A, and 64. The type F.F. 49C is, it will be seen from the particulars given above, especially suitable for commercial work. The useful load of 1,430 lbs. may be divided up in different ways, according to the purpose for which the machine is intended, between crew, fuel passengers and mail. For instance, with sufficient fuel for 3 1/2 hours over 600 lbs. of useful load could be carried. For passenger carrying it would be easy to provide seating accommodation, either open or closed, enabling the machine to carry two or possibly three passengers in addition to the pilot.
  "Seaworthiness means safety. Safety is one of the chief considerations for a commercial aeroplane. Since the seaworthiness of this type has never, in spite of the greatest efforts, been beaten by the machines of any other firm, it would appear that also in post-war competition it will be one of the most suitable types and difficult to beat. Much the same may be said about the lower-powered machines FF. 33J, F.F. 33S and F.F. 64. Especially would the latter machine offer great advantages for commercial work to ship-owners for carrying on board as a ship's 'plane. For instance, it would be possible without going into port, or in other words without any appreciable loss of time, to put ashore or to take on board single passengers or mail. Or, before arriving at the port of destination an officer could be sent ashore in the machine with the ship's papers, thus not only saving time but possibly also making a considerable profit on goods carried through being first in. Also the passenger who is in a hurry can be sent on ahead in the machine, thus shortening his time of crossing by as much as 10 hours. On the other hand, the machine can fetch mail from ashore so that the mail can be on board the ship several hours before she reaches port. The machine can be employed to assist in navigation on approaching the coast in bad weather, and it can also be utilised for flying ahead of the ship, spotting for floating mines. In case of accident it may possibly be used for obtaining assistance quickly. Also from the land, the machine can be used with advantage. For instance, a merchant could be flown out to meet the incoming ship, which is carrying an agent, so that all the business could be transacted by the time the ship arrived in port, thus beating the competitors who have remained ashore. For use by salvage companies it would be possible to use the seaplane for taking an engineer to the place of the stranding in the shortest possible time, where he could photograph the stranded ship and even, if the sea is not too rough, alight and go on board the wrecked ship, so that the salvage contract could be completed before a competitor could arrive by steamer in the ordinary way. F.F. 33L is very suitable for practice flying for young pilots, and would make a good sporting machine. It is light and very comfortable to fly and requires little storage space, while being easy to dismantle and erect. All of which are qualities that make it specially suitable as a sporting machine for the private owner.
  "If it is a question of carrying relatively great loads at lower speeds, a machine similar to the type F.F. 41A or to the type F.F. 33, with two 260 h.p. Mercedes engines, would be suitable."

O.Thetford, P.Gray - German Aircraft of the First World War /Putnam/
Friedrichshafen FF 29
K.Delve - World War One in the Air /Crowood/
Friedrichshafen developed a superb series of seaplanes during the war. The FF29, as here, was produced from late 1914 for coastal patrol duties.
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 29
O.Thetford, P.Gray - German Aircraft of the First World War /Putnam/
Friedrichshafen FF 29a
A.Imrie - German Naval Air Service /Arms & Armour/
When HMS Maori, engaged in sketching salient features on the Belgian coast, hit a mine off Blankenberghe and sunk on 7 May 1915, her yard-arm and this flag remained above the water. Despite rough seas, Oberleutnant zur See Drekmann (right) landed his Friedrichshafen FF29 209. Then, with his observer, Fahnrich zur See von Bliicher, hanging on to the starboard front interplane strut with an open clasp knife held in his teeth, pirate fashion, Drekmann managed after several attempts to position von Bliicher so that he could cut the flag free. A hazardous take-off followed and the plucky fliers brought their booty back to Zeebrugge. (British destroyers at sea flew either the Red Ensign or the Union Flag from their yard-arms for recognition purposes, but the Germans did not know this and were puzzled as to why a Royal Navy vessel should be flying the 'Red Duster'!)
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 33
H.Cowin - Aviation Pioneers /Osprey/
Even when the German navy found an aeroplane it liked, as in the case of the Friedrichshafen FF 33 two seater, it seemed that it could not resist vacillating over equipment fit. Take the case of the FF 33 which was bought in larger quantities than any other naval aeroplane, here any economy-of-scale effect was largely dissipated, particularly early on, by buying small batches of differing versions. Thus, for those of a real 'rivet counting' persuasion, the contract history of the FF 33 makes superb reading, with the purchase of the first 247 aircraft involving 8 variants and no less than 42 contracts, none being larger than for 10 aeroplanes. For the record, total FF 33 deliveries amounted to 409 machines between December 1914 and October 1917. Shown here is a 33B being beached at Xanthi on the Black Sea in 1916. The 33B was an unarmed reconnaissance version powered by a 160hp Maybach, giving it a top level speed of 68mph at sea level. Only five of this variant were ever ordered.
Журнал - Flight за 1917 г.
HOISTING HER HOME. - Bringing a German seaplane into its hangar by means of a crane.
Журнал - Flight за 1916 г.
LAUNCHING A GERMAN SEAPLANE. - Before the war a good many attempts were made by German constructors at producing a combined wheel and float undercarriage so as to enable machines to start from or alight on either land or sea. In the above photograph, however, the wheels and tackle on top of the floats appear to be detachable to be used probably for running the machine short distances over land, and left behind when she takes the water. The floats, it will be observed, are of the two-stepped type, the first two sections being flat-bottomed, while the portion behind tbe rear step has a Vee bottom. The flags on the lower wing tips are in all probability fitted to a cable, and movable for signalling purposes.
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 33B
A.Imrie - German Naval Air Service /Arms & Armour/
Friedrichshafen FF33E 501 at Travemunde during the winter of 1915/16. The machine has been cleared for flight, indicated by the 'Flugbereit' notice displayed between the floats. Although when delivered this aircraft was a bombing machine, wireless telegraphy appears to have been fitted retrospectively; the windmill-driven generator can be seen fitted to the side of the fuselage near the observer's cockpit.
A.Imrie - German Naval Air Service /Arms & Armour/
Nine Freidrichshafen FF33 about to leave the ramp at Libau on 12 September 1916 to join with aircraft from Windau and Angernsee for a combined operation of some 20 seaplanes against Russian naval forces in the Gulf of Riga. This action saw the first operational use of twin-engined torpedo-carrying seaplanes, but their primary target, the battleship Slava, was not hit. The ship on the left in this picture is the seaplane-carrier SMS Glyndwr.
A.Imrie - German Naval Air Service /Arms & Armour/
Zeebrugge was the largest and most active of the Flanders coastal air stations and the number of aircraft operated by the different units based there sometimes exceeded 50 seaplanes, although the normal establishment was 35 aircraft. Seen here is a train-load of Friedrichshafen FF33s in late 1917, a type that gave excellent service but which was then being replaced by the higher-performance Brandenburg W12.
H.Cowin - Aviation Pioneers /Osprey/
Perhaps the best known Friedrichshafen FF 33 of all was 'Wolfchen', or baby wolf, an FF 33E, serial 841, that served as the over-the-horizon eyes of the notorious German merchant raider, SMS Wolf. At sea for fifteen months, from 30 Novermber 1916, Wolf sank, or captured, 28 allied merchant ships, aided by the scouting efforts of 'Wolfchen's' crew, pilot Lt Strein and observer Oberflugmeister Fabeck, who made 50 sorties during the three ocean cruise. Incidentally, while at sea'Wolfchen' flew with none of the national markings seen in this 6 March 1918 image, these only being restored after the Wolf's homecoming. With 162 examples of the FF 33E built, this was the most common version of all. Basic figures for the FF 33E indicate a top level speed of 78mph at sea level, along with a range of 340 miles.
A.Imrie - German Naval Air Service /Arms & Armour/
When SMS Wolf left Kiel on 30 November 1916 on a 15-month voyage, during which she traversed three oceans as a commerce raider, she carried a Friedrichshafen FF33E seaplane on board for scouting purposes. Named 'Wolfchen', the seaplane played an important part in Wolf's marauding activities and carried out over 50 flights in this role. This photograph, taken on 6 March 1918, shows the aircraft redecorated after its triumphant return; during the voyage 'Wolfchen' was operated without the display of any national insignia other than the German War Ensign, which was flown from the innermost starboard rear interplane strut as occasion demanded.
A.Imrie - German Naval Air Service /Arms & Armour/
Crew of 'Wolfchen', Leutnant zur See Stein (left) and Oberflugmeister Fabeck pose in front of their seaplane on 6 March 1918 after their long voyage, during which Wolf sank, mined or captured 28 Allied vessels, and returned home loaded with booty from her victims. For much of the time the aircraft was exposed on deck to tropical heat and heavy rain; extensive renovation was necessary to her fabric-covered surfaces, the mainplanes eventually being re-covered in heavyweight silk overpainted with grey oil paint.
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 33E
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 33E
O.Thetford, P.Gray - German Aircraft of the First World War /Putnam/
Friedrichshafen FF 33e.
Журнал - Flight за 1917 г.
A COLD JOB. - A German seaplane on its return from a flight over the North Sea in winter.
Журнал - Flight за 1917 г.
ON THE ICE. - German seaplanes outside their station. Note the twin-engine seaplane on the left.
H.Cowin - Aviation Pioneers /Osprey/
True or false? If the original caption to this photograph is to be believed, the crew of this Friedrichshafen FF 33H are busy rescuing the crew of a downed enemy floatplane. There are, however, a number of anomalies if that is the case. First, there is a suspicious total lack of wing debris from the 'enemy' craft; and the distinct similarity of the two machines' floats indicates that the whole event was staged at some publicist'sbehest. An armed version of the FF 33E, some 40 FF 33Hs were built, the variant entering service in January 1916. Using the same 150hp Benz Bz III as that of the FF 33E, the FF 33H had a top level speed of 73 mph at sea level, along with a typical patrol endurance of around 5.5 hours.
В.Обухович, А.Никифоров - Самолеты Первой Мировой войны
Журнал - Flight за 1917 г.
The co-operation of German Air-Raiders with Hun U-Boats. - A German pilot going aboard a U-boat from his seaplane.
K.Delve - World War One in the Air /Crowood/
The FF33 was produced in a number of variants and saw extensive use with the German naval air arm lor both reconnaissance and fighting from 1915 onwards. Aircraft of this type were also carried on a number of German ships.
O.Thetford, P.Gray - German Aircraft of the First World War /Putnam/
Friedrichshafen F F 33j (Marine number 1095).
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 33J
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 33J
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 33S
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 33F
O.Thetford, P.Gray - German Aircraft of the First World War /Putnam/
Friedrichshafen FF 33h (Marine number 695).
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 33H
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 33H
O.Thetford, P.Gray - German Aircraft of the First World War /Putnam/
Friedrichshafen FF 33l (Marine number 1001).
O.Thetford, P.Gray - German Aircraft of the First World War /Putnam/
Friedrichshafen FF 33l (Marine number 1578, with modified tail).
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
F.F. 33L
K.Delve - World War One in the Air /Crowood/
Friedrichshafen FF33l; this was the final version of the excellent FF series of seaplanes. With its Benz BzIII engine it had an endurance of almost six hours.
Журнал - Flight за 1918 г.
Launching a German Seaplane from a Mother Ship. In the background a U. boat.
А.Александров, Г.Петров - Крылатые пленники России
(КПР 46а)
А.Александров, Г.Петров - Крылатые пленники России
(КПР 46б)
А.Александров, Г.Петров - Крылатые пленники России
(КПР 46в)
Журнал - Flight за 1917 г.
THE MERCEDES HAS A COLD BATH. - A German seaplane after a rough "landing."
A.Imrie - German Naval Air Service /Arms & Armour/
Friedrichshafen FF33L 1010 being retrieved from the Baltic following an accident on the bombing range of the observers' school at Wiek on the island of Rugen, summer 1918. Powered by a 150hp Benz engine, this aircraft had an unrestricted front-line designation and was known as a CHFT type, meaning that it was equipped with a movable gun for the observer and was fitted with wireless telegraphy transmitting and receiving equipment.
Журнал - Flight за 1918 г.
A picture of a German seaplane which has captured a Russian sailing vessel in the Baltic.
O.Thetford, P.Gray - German Aircraft of the First World War /Putnam/
Friedrichshafen FF 33E
O.Thetford, P.Gray - German Aircraft of the First World War /Putnam/
Friedrichshafen FF 33L