L.Opdyke French Aeroplanes Before the Great War (Schiffer)
Deleted by request of (c)Schiffer Publishing
M.Goodall, A.Tagg British Aircraft before the Great War (Schiffer)
Deleted by request of (c)Schiffer Publishing
O.Thetford British Naval Aircraft since 1912 (Putnam)
This was a development of the earlier Bleriot XI. Served with the RFC and RNAS (Nos. 1538-1549) during 1914-15.
Flight, March 14, 1914.
WHAT THERE WILL BE TO SEE AT OLYMPIA.
Bleriot (L. Bleriot). (60.)
M. BLERIOT will have a most comprehensive exhibit, no less than four machines being shown, as well as sand yachts.
The "Total Visibility" type of machine is somewhat similar in construction and arrangement to the well-known No. XI type, but the wings have been slightly raised so as to enable the pilot to make his observations underneath the wings. The advantage to be gained from the adoption of this construction in a scouting aeroplane will be readily understood.
Flight, March 21, 1914.
THE OLYMPIA EXHIBITION.
BLERIOT L. (BLERIOT). (69).
NEATLY displayed on the largest stand at the Show are the Bleriot monoplanes - a tandem two-seater of the well-known type, a hydro-monoplane, and a single-seater military monoplane.
Total Visibility Type Monoplane. - This is probably the most interesting of these machines. The most characteristic feature is the disposition of the wings, which have been raised some distance above the fuselage, to provide an unrestricted view in all directions. The height of the wings above the fuselage is such, that the rear spar, which is situated immediately in front of the pilot, is on level with his eyes, so that there is only the thickness of the plane to obscure his view, and this can easily be overcome by either stooping slightly in order to look under the plane or by stretching slightly in order to look over it. For scouting purposes this arrangement would seem to be ideal, and we understand that the French Army has purchased several of this model, which was only adopted as a standard type following the success of the first experimental machine in the hands of French officers. One gathers that there is no appreciable difference between flying one of these machines and one of the standard monoplanes with the wings placed further down, so that with all the good qualities of the standard Bleriot and the added advantages of total visibility, this machine should be a valuable addition to the list of military machines in this country, where they will be built as soon as the factory at Brooklands is ready.
Except for the raising of the main planes this machine is similar to the already well-known No. XI type. The engine - an 80 h.p. Gnome - is mounted between double bearings in the nose of the fuselage. Between the engine and the pilot's seat inside the fuselage are the two cylindrical petrol and oil tanks, whilst an additional supply of petrol is carried in another tank behind the pilot's seat. Petrol is forced from this main tank to the service tank in front by means of a hand-operated pressure pump on the right-hand side of the pilot's seat. Control is by means of a single vertical lever mounted on a longitudinal rocking shaft which carries at its rear end a sprocket from which a chain passes to another sprocket on the lower end of the bottom pylon. The warping wires pass round a pulley on the same shaft as the pylon sprocket and it will thus be seen that the "cloche" has been discarded. This applies to all the machines exhibited and we gather, to all future machines.
The main planes are mounted on four short struts resting on the upper longerons of the fuselage as shown in one of the accompanying sketches. Owing to the raised wings the angle on the lift wires is particularly good, as is also the angle on the upper bracing wires which are secured to a cabane of the usual type.
The tail planes are similar to those of earlier machines and they are protected against contact with the ground by a Malacca cane skid.
Flight, July 17, 1914.
A NEW TWO-SEATER TYPE BLERIOT.
AMONG the machines exhibited by the Bleriot firm at the last Olympia Aero Show was, it will be remembered, a single-seater with the wings mounted a slight distance above the fuselage, so that the rear spar came practically on a level with the eyes of the pilot. The object of this arrangement, as explained at the time of the Show, is to give the pilot an unobstructed view in all directions. This type of machine has proved so successful after thorough tests that M. Bleriot decided to bring out a two-seater of the same type, and the accompanying photograph gives a good idea of its general arrangement. As in the ordinary Bleriot two-seater, pilot's and passenger's seats are arranged tandem fashion, the pilot occupying the rear seat. The observer's seat is placed immediately above the centre of gravity thus making it possible to fly the machine minus a passenger without any adjustments of the tail plane. Should it not be desired to carry a passenger, an auxiliary tank can be fitted in its place thereby increasing the range of flight of the machine. The centre portion of the wings has been cut away in order to provide an unrestricted view in an upward direction for the observer. This machine can be fitted with a 9-cylinder 90 h.p. Rhone engine or with a 100 h.p. monosoupape Gnome.
As it has been chiefly designed for military purposes, the question of dismantling has been carefully studied. The landing chassis can be lowered in ten seconds, thus letting the machine as a whole down close to the ground to facilitate removing or fitting the wings without the use of any trestles. The top pylon is hinged, and by undoing a single wing-nut the pylon can be brought down close to the fuselage without interfering with any of the wires or cables supporting the wings, so that no readjustment has to be made in erecting the wings again. As it is fitted with spring hinge-clips the rudder can be removed instantaneously, a safety lock preventing the clip from coming undone.
The width of the chassis of the new two-seater, is slightly greater than that of the standard type, being, in fact, exactly the same as the diameter of the propeller, so that there is no necessity for removing the latter for packing - a valuable feature in a military machine, which may have to be frequently transported on a lorry.