F.Manson British Bomber Since 1914 (Putnam)
Mann, Egerton Type B
The motor car manufacturer Mann, Egerton & Co Ltd of Norwich had been one of the first companies to offer its services to build aircraft for the Admiralty after the outbreak of war in 1914, and had received a contract to produce twelve Short Type 184s in the spring of 1915. Later that year the Admiralty encouraged such sub-contractors to embark on designs of their own, believing that experience gained in building aeroplanes of other companies' design would bring fresh opinions on how best to improve the aircraft themselves as well as, for instance, simplifying their production. (It has already been recorded that the Armstrong, Whitworth F.K.3 was produced for the War Office as a development of the Factory's B.E.2C, structurally simplified in order to speed production.)
So it was with Mann, Egerton who, in collaboration with both Short Bros and the Admiralty, prepared the design (the Type B) of a modified version of the Type 184 seaplane, intended to make for simpler production as well as improved performance and handling. The new wings were of two-bay configuration with reduced lower wing span and much increased upper wing extensions, the large overhang being liberally wire-braced using tall kingposts; indeed the entire wing form was similar to that of the Short Bomber, production of which followed on after the Type B at Norwich. The float undercarriage, fuselage and tail unit were constructed with standard Type 184 components, but the 225hp Sunbeam engine was located several inches higher than in the Short aircraft, resulting in the upper fuselage line sloping downwards behind the radiator towards the pilot's cockpit. The outrigger floats were moved inboard beneath the lower wing tips (although it is difficult to understand what purpose they now served, being located so close to the main float gear).
The bomb load remained the same as that of the Type 184, although it is unlikely that the Mann, Egerton Type B was ever required to carry a torpedo. A production order for ten Type Bs was completed at Norwich during 1916, and these entered service with the RNAS alongside the standard Type 184s. No suggestion, however, has been found that the Service appreciated any marked improvement in the modified seaplanes and, apart from the company's indigenous H.1 and H.2 single-seat fighters and the Short Bombers (referred to above), Mann, Egerton reverted to subcontracted production of other companies' designs (including the French Spad S.VII, and the Airco D.H.9, D.H.9A and D.H.10).
Type: Single-engine, two-seat, two-bay biplane patrol bomber seaplane.
Manufacturer: Mann, Egerton & Co Ltd, Prince of Wales Road, Norwich, Norfolk.
Powerplant: One 225hp Sunbeam water-cooled engine driving two-blade propeller.
Dimensions: Span, 70ft 0in; length, 40ft 7in.
Armament: One 0.303in Lewis machine gun in rear cockpit; provision to carry light bombs under the wings.
Production: Ten aircraft, Nos 9085-9094.
O.Thetford British Naval Aircraft since 1912 (Putnam)
MANN EGERTON TYPE B
This seaplane was a modified version of the Short 184, previously built by Mann, Egerton of Norwich to Admiralty contracts. Mann, Egerton built 10 of their own Type B (Nos.9085 to 9094 inclusive) and they were delivered to the RNAS in 1916, seeing service at Calshot. The Type B No. 90S5 is illustrated. The engine was a 225 hp Sunbeam.
H.King Armament of British Aircraft (Putnam)
Type B. This was a seaplane of 1916, using Short 184 components and armed with one free Lewis gun (dorsal) and bombs under the fuselage.