C.Barnes Bristol Aircraft since 1910 (Putnam)
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
M.Goodall, A.Tagg British Aircraft before the Great War (Schiffer)
Deleted by request of (c)Schiffer Publishing
P.Lewis British Aircraft 1809-1914 (Putnam)
Bristol Grandseigne Racer
Once the Boxkite was firmly established, the next type to be produced by the British and Colonial Aeroplane Company was considered, the choice falling upon a single-seat biplane for racing. In the design work, G. H. Challenger was assisted by Mons. R. Grandseigne, after whom the machine was known. The ubiquitous 50 h.p. seven-cylinder Gnome rotary was selected as the power plant, and the aeroplane which was evolved to house it demonstrated its designers' grasp, at an early stage in their vocation, of the value of an uncluttered, streamlined airframe.
Designed and built at the beginning of 1911 under works number 33, the Grandseigne was one of the earliest British tractor biplanes and, as such, was of advanced conception for its day. Weldless steel tubing, combined with wood, formed the fuselage structure, which was totally enclosed with fabric. Metal cowling panels covered the engine bay, which was left open at the front, and the undercarriage was a sturdy unit of steel tubing equipped with twin skids. The vertical tail surfaces comprised a rudder only, while the tailplane and divided elevators were of unusually large area. The single-bay wings used warping for lateral control, and received main spars of weldless steel tubing. Double surface covering was used, and the planes were supported on single centre-section and interplane struts, the overhang at the tips being similarly braced with thin tubing. The fuel was carried in tanks mounted in the open in front of the cockpit.
After being displayed on the Company's stand at the 1911 Olympia Aero Show, the Racer was taken to the flying school at Larkhill, but was crashed by Mons. Grandseigne on its first flight in April, 1911, and was never able to show its paces in a race.
Description: Single-seat tractor racing biplane. Steel tubing/wooden structure, fabric covered.
Manufacturers: The British and Colonial Aeroplane Co. Ltd., Filton, Bristol.
Power Plant: 50 h.p. Gnome.
Dimensions: Span, 27 ft. Length, 25 ft. Wing area, 210 sq. ft.
Weights: Empty, 570 lb. Price: ?1,000.