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Gotha WD.1/WD.2

Страна: Германия

Год: 1914

Gotha - LD.3/LD.4 - 1914 - Германия<– –>Gotha - G.I (Gotha-Ursinus) - 1915 - Германия


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


Gotha WD 1
  Although a pre-war design, five WD 1 and 1a aircraft saw service during the early months of the war, on coastal patrol duties. In April 1914 a WD 1 flew from Warnemunde seaplane station to Denmark. Engine, 100 h.p. Gnome. Span, 14.1 m. (46 ft. 34 in.). Length, 10.3 m. (33 ft. 9 5/8 in.). Area, 50 sq.m. (540 sq.ft.). Weights: Empty, 900 kg. (1,980 lb.). Loaded, 1,220 kg. (2,684 lb.). Speed, 90 km.hr. (61.75 m.p.h.). Ceiling, 2,500 m. (8,200 ft.).


Gotha WD 2
  Altogether eleven Gotha WD 2s were supplied to the Navy during 1915 and used on reconnaissance and patrol duties. The type was also supplied to Turkey, this version having a machine-gun mounted on top of the centre-section, which the observer stood up to operate. Engine, 150 h.p. Benz III. Span, 15.6 m. (51 ft. 2 1/4 in.). Length, 10.5 m. (34 ft. 5 1/2 in.). Area, 56 sq.m. (605 sq.ft.). Weights: Empty, 1,065 kg. (2,343 lb.). Loaded, 1,630 kg. (3,586 lb.). Speed, 112 km.hr. (70 m.p.h.). Ceiling, 3,000 m. (9,840 ft.). Armament, none.


J. Herris Gotha Aircraft of WWI (A Centennial Perspective on Great War Airplanes 6)


Gotha WD1

  The first Gotha WD1 was a private venture completed in February 1914 and powered by a 14-cylinder, 100 hp Gnome rotary. The second WD1 powered by a 100 hp Mercedes D.I was built for the Ostseeflug Warnemunde 1914. This aircraft, competition number 20, was purchased by the Navy on 8 August 1914 and assigned Marine Number 59.
  On 14 December 1914 the Navy purchased five Gotha WD1 seaplanes, Marine Numbers 285-289. Powered by a 100 hp Mercedes, these were delivered between 17 February and 24 March 1915. The WD1 suffered from poor aileron control and long take-off runs.
  Despite being unarmed and low-powered, three WD1 seaplanes, Marine Numbers 286, 287, and 289, were sent to the German Wasserfliegerabteilung in Turkey, arriving in July 1915. These seaplanes were used for reconnaissance and light bombing of Allied forces on Imbros and the Gallipoli peninsula. These seaplanes also conducted anti-submarine patrols over the Sea of Marmara and attacked British submarines on several occasions. In October 1915 three armed Gotha WD2 seaplanes were added to the German unit. On 29 Nov. 1915 both #287 and #289 were lost in separate incidents due to mechanical failure.

Gotha WD1 Specifications
Engine: 100 hp Mercedes D.I
Wing: Span Upper 14.10 m
Span Lower 13.63 m
Area 50 m2
General: Length 10.32 m
Height 4.00 m
Empty Weight 800 kg
Loaded Weight 1220 kg
Maximum Speed: 90 km/h
Climb: 1000m 24.5 min
Service Ceiling 2500 m
Range: 540 km


Gotha WD2

  Powered by a 150 hp Rapp engine, the Gotha WD2 was built for the Ostseeflug Warnemunde 1914. This aircraft, competition number 19a, was confiscated by the Navy at the beginning of the war and assigned Marine Number 61. Damaged several times during flight testing, it was repaired and finally accepted on 10 December 1914.
  A second WD2, also entered in the Ostseeflug Warnemunde 1914, was competition number 19. Powered by a 150 hp Benz Bz.III, this WD2 was accepted by the Navy on 5 August 1914 and assigned Marine Number 60.
  The first WD2 production series, five floatplanes with Marine Numbers 236-240 and powered by the 160 hp Mercedes D.III, was ordered in July 1914 and delivered between December 1914 and April 1915. The second WD2 production series, again of five aircraft, was given Marine Numbers 254-258. This series was ordered in March 1915, and the last aircraft was delivered that December. On 3 July 1915, accompanied by an Albatros floatplane, WD2 #257 from Zeebrugge bombed the Landguard Point signals station near Harwich without effect.
  Two 160 hp Mercedes-powered WD2 aircraft were built as Marine Numbers 424-425; these were fitted with temporary wheels and a tailskid attached to each float for overland flights to Turkey because shipments through Romania were banned. These delivery flights took place in early 1916. These WD2s were fitted with a machine gun turret above the upper wing, giving the gunner a 360° field of fire.
  Six WD2s were ordered for Turkey on 6 January 1916 and delivered in May-July 1916; these were powered by the 160 hp Mercedes D.III. Because these were ordered for Turkey no Marine Numbers were assigned. Five similar floatplanes were delivered to the German Navy in February-March 1916. Because the Navy criticized the WD2 floatplanes for poor seaworthiness, many WD2s were sent to the Dardanelles where the weather and sea conditions were less demanding.
  The last two WD2s were ordered by Turkey on 29 April 1916 and delivered in August; no Marine Numbers were assigned. These were modified by having a conventional gun ring for the observer, split radiators mounted on the center-section struts, and a large gravity tank mounted away from the engine. Turkish sources label these machines as WD13s.


Gotha WD2 Specifications
Engine: 150 hp Benz Bz.III
150 hp Rapp Rp.III 160 hp Mercedes D.III
Wing: Span Upper 16.43 m
Span Lower 15.57 m
Area 58.5 m2
General: Length 10.50 m
Height 4.10 m
Empty Weight 1050 kg
Loaded Weight 1487 kg
Maximum Speed: 96 km/h
Climb: 1000m 12 min
2000m 32 min
Service Ceiling 3200 m
Range: 670 km


Gotha Seaplane Production Summary
Type Ordered Marine Numbers Remarks
WD1 6 59, 285-289 286, 287, and 289 served in Turkey
WD2 22 60-61, 236-240, 254-258, 424-425 424-425 went to Turkey. Turkey ordered 8 more without Marine Numbers

O.Thetford, P.Gray - German Aircraft of the First World War /Putnam/
Five of these two seat Gotha WD-1 reconnaissance floatplanes, No.s 285 to 289, were built for the navy in mid-1914. Fitted with a 100hp Daimler D I, the WD-1 had a top level speed of 56mph at sea level. If this seems low, the climb to 3,200 feet took a tedious 24.5 minutes. However, the WD-1 did appear to have, for its day, a useful range of 335 miles. Seen here is the prototype WD, the 100 hp Gnome powered prototype, first flown in February 1914 and which never seems to have been given a naval serial number.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
The prototype WD1 was powered by a two-row, 100 hp Gnome rotary engine.The WD1 floatplane was a conventional 3-bay biplane; a small float was attached to the rudder.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
The six subsequent WD1 floatplanes were powered by a 100 hp Mercedes D.I engine. This WD1 is almost certainly the second WD1 built by Gotha for the Ostseeflug Warnemunde 1914 competition. It has the Gotha name painted on the fuselage and retains the small float attached to the rudder.This aircraft was later purchased by the Navy.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
OFF! - A German (Gotha) seaplane starting on a reconnaissance flight. Note the long stepped floats which project backwards to a point considerably behind the pilot's seat.
This WD1 was in naval service as indicated by the national insignia and pennants attached to the outer struts. One of the series Marine Numbers 285-289, no float was attached to the rudder. Marine #285 was at Chanak seaplane station in Turkey by December 1915, while #286 was at Kawak.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
The first WD2 floatplane was powered by a 150 hp Rapp engine and was entered in the Ostseeflug Warnemunde 1914 competition, competition #19a. It has the Gotha name painted on the fuselage; this aircraft was later purchased by the Navy and assigned Marine Number 61.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
WD2 Marine Number 236 is seen taxiing for take-off. The float attached to the rudder of the early WD1 aircraft was no longer used on subsequent types. Its 160 hp Mercedes D.III gave it much more power than its WD1 predecessor. At least three WD2 floatplanes were sent to the German Wasserfliegerabteilung in Turkey in October 1915. In addition, at least ten WD2 floatplanes were delivered to Turkish forces.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
WD2 Marine Number 236 is seen in flight.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
This WD2 floatplane on wheels appears different than Marine Number 424; it does not have the gun turret and the exhaust is different. It wears German markings.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
Detailed view of the gun turret installation on a WD2.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
The serial 424 on the rear fuselage of this Gotha WD-2a identifies it as being one of the later production 'small wing' version, differentiated by the 'a' suffix. First flown in July 1914, the WD-2 and WD-2a, of which a total of 27 were built, used either a 100hp Benz Bz III, or a 150hp Rapp. Built for long range reconnaissance, the WD-2a's top level speed was 59.5mph at sea level, while its range was 415 miles, an 80 mile improvement on that of the earlier WD-1.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
WD2 Marine Number 424 (shown here) and 425 were fitted with temporary wheels and tail skids attached to their floats to enable overland flights to Turkey because rail shipments through Romania were banned. These two aircraft were powered by the 160 hp Mercedes D.III engine and had a gun turret for the observer mounted above the upper wing, giving the gunner a 360° field of fire. WD2 #424 was at Chanak when credited with a victory in Jan. 1916 by Flgobmt Wilhelm Schubert (pilot)/Flgmt Werdier (observer), who shot down a Farman that crashed east of Tenedos. Later this aircraft was at Kawak.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
This WD2 floatplane on wheels wears Turkish markings. It lacks the gun turret applied to Marine Number 424 and many other WD2 floatplanes destined for Turkish service. The gun mount for the observer can just be seen.
H.Cowin - Aviation Pioneers /Osprey/
This Gotha WD-2 was one of a small number of floatplanes the German navy handed over to its Turkish allies in 1916. Powered by a 150hp Benz Bz III, this machine carries an early, overwing gun mounting for its front seat observer, requiring him to stand when firing.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
Turkish WD2 floatplane.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
WD2 floatplane in Turkish markings in the Gotha factory pond about 1915. It has the gun turret applied to many WD2 floatplanes destined for Turkish service.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
WD2 in the Gotha factory pond with 28 men on it for a test load.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
WD2 floatplane in Turkish markings taking off. Like many WD2 floatplanes in Turkish service, it has the gun turret.
Журнал - Flight за 1917 г.
A German (Gotha) seaplane over Constantinople.
J.Herris - Gotha Aircraft of WWI /Centennial Perspective/
Turkish WD2 floatplane in flight. It has the gun turret applied to many WD2 floatplanes destined for Turkish service.