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Beardmore W.B.V

Страна: Великобритания

Год: 1918


Beardmore - W.B.IV - 1917 - Великобритания<– –>Beardmore - W.B.VI - 1918 - Великобритания

P.Lewis The British Fighter since 1912 (Putnam)

The Beardmore W.B.V single-seat fighter biplane also used the 200 h.p. Hispano-Suiza but was built specifically to make use of the 37 mm. Puteaux shell-gun which fired its rounds through the centre of the propeller shaft. In other respects the machine was of normal two-bay tractor layout but misapprehension concerning the safety of the pilot with the Puteaux in action led to the heavy gun’s replacement by one forwards-firing Vickers and upwards-firing Lewis gun. Interest in the W.B.V finally petered out and development stopped.

F.Mason The British Fighter since 1912 (Putnam)

Beardmore W.B.V

   Designed and built at the same time as the W.B.IV, which it resembled more than superficially, the Beardmore W.B.V shipborne single-seat fighter also approximated to the naval requirements set out in Admiralty Specification N.1A, but additionally made provision to mount a French 37mm quick-firing Canon Puteaux - called for in an Appendix to the Specification.
   In the W.B.V the 200hp Hispano-Suiza engine was located conventionally in the nose of the aircraft with the barrel of the cannon lying in the vee between the cylinder banks; the gun’s muzzle projected forward into the hollow propeller shaft, and the breech extended aft into the pilot’s cockpit forward of the control column.
   Increased wing chord and slightly greater fin area in the tail was provided, but the large nose buoyancy chamber of the W.B.IV was omitted, the latter being to some extent offset by the provision of inflatable flotation bags which, when not inflated, lay flush along the underside of the lower wing leading edge. Folding wings and jettisonable undercarriage were included, as on the W.B.IV.
   Once more three prototypes, N41 - N43, were ordered and at least two were completed. However, during flight trials by RNAS pilots, it was considered extremely dangerous to attempt to load the Puteaux gun behind the control column while in flight - possibly in combat conditions. The naval pilots are said to have refused to expose themselves to such obvious risks, and the shell-firing gun was removed, being replaced by a Vickers and Lewis gun, as on the W.B.IV. Now bereft of its raison d’etre there was clearly no need to pursue further trials, and the W.B.V’s further development was halted. Its marginally improved performance had, after all, only been achieved by deleting the large nose buoyancy chamber.

   Type: Single-engine, single-seat two-bay shipborne fighting scout biplane.
   Manufacturer: William Beardmore & Co Ltd., Dalmuir, Dunbartonshire.
   Admiralty Specification: N.1A and Appendix.
   Powerplant: One 200hp Hispano-Suiza liquid-cooled engine driving two-blade propeller.
   Construction: As Beardmore W.B.IV but without nose buoyancy chamber; engine mounted conventionally in the nose.
   Dimensions: Span, 35ft 10in; length, 26ft 7in; height, 11ft 10in; wing area, 394 sq ft.
   Weights: Tare, 1,860lb; all-up, 2,500lb.
   Performance: Max speed, 112 mph at sea level; climb to 5,000 ft, 6 min; service ceiling, 14,000 ft; endurance, 2 1/2 hr.
   Armament: Initially armed with single 37mm Canon Puteaux firing through the propeller shaft; after removal it was replaced by a fixed 0.303in Vickers gun in the nose and a Lewis gun mounted to fire upwards through a cutout in the upper wing centre section.
   Prototypes: Three (N41-N43), of which N41 and N42 are known to have been completed (in 1917). No production.

W.Green, G.Swanborough The Complete Book of Fighters


   Developed in parallel with the W.B.IV, but of more conventional design, the W.B.V single-seat shipboard fighter was intended to carry a 37-mm Puteaux cannon between the cylinder blocks of its 200 hp Hispano-Suiza eight-cylinder water-cooled engine. It featured folding wings, a jettisonable undercarriage and inflatable flotation bags beneath the underside of the leading edge of the lower wing. Three prototypes of the W.B.V were ordered, the first of these flying on 3 December 1917, but the engine-mounted cannon was quickly removed and a more conventional armament mounted, this comprising a synchronised 0.303-in (7,7- mm) Vickers gun and a 0.303-in (7,7-mm) Lewis gun on a tripod ahead of the cockpit. The second prototype W.B.V was completed and flown in 1918, but further development was abandoned before the end of World War I.

Max speed, 112 mph (180 km/h) at sea level, 103 mph (166 km/h) at 10,000 ft (3 050 m).
Time to 5,000 ft (1525 m), 6.0 min.
Endurance, 2.5 hrs.
Empty weight, 1,860 lb (844 kg).
Loaded weight, 2,500 lb (1134 kg).
Span, 35 ft 10 in (10,92 m).
Length, 26 ft 7 in (8,10 m).
Height, 11 ft 10 in (3,61 m).
Wing area, 394 sqft (36,60 m2).

J.Bruce British Aeroplanes 1914-1918 (Putnam)

Beardmore W.B.V

  CONTEMPORARY with the Beardmore W.B.IV was the W.B.V, which was also a single-seat fighter built for the R.N.A.S. In appearance and design it was more conventional than the W.B.IV.
  The wings were of equal chord, and the upper mainplanes appeared to be identical to those of the W.B.IV. The wings could be folded. The pilot sat under the upper centre-section; and the plywood- covered fuselage was of conventional appearance. The tail-unit resembled that of the W.B.IV. The same rudder was used, but both upper and lower fins were extended forward a short distance. The undercarriage was very similar to that of the W.B.IV, and could be jettisoned. Emergency flotation gear was provided in the form of inflatable air bags which lay along the underside of the leading edge of the lower wing.
  As required by the Admiralty specification, the W.B.V was designed round a 37 mm Canon Puteaux, a large-calibre quick-firing gun which was mounted in the vee of the cylinder banks of the 200 h.p. Hispano-Suiza engine. The muzzle of this gun passed through the hollow airscrew shaft, and the breech projected backwards into the cockpit. In order to load and fire the gun, the unfortunate pilot had to be brought close up to the breech, and his position was thoroughly dangerous.
  The gun was heartily disliked by the R.N.A.S. pilots, and it was said that they refused to fire it when the W.B.V was flying. The Canon Puteaux was removed and replaced by a fixed Vickers machinegun and an upward-firing Lewis gun. With the removal of the quick-firing gun, however, the W.B.V apparently lost its raison d'etre for it was not developed further.

  Manufacturers: William Beardmore & Co., Ltd., Dalmuir, Dumbartonshire.
  Power: 200 h.p. Hispano-Suiza.
  Dimensions: Span: 35 ft 10 in. Length: 26 ft 7 in. Height: 11 ft 10 in. Chord: 6 ft 3 in. Gap: 4 ft 9 in. Span of tail: 11 ft 9 in. Airscrew diameter: 9 ft.
  Areas: Wings: 394 sq ft. Ailerons: each 18-8 sq ft, total 37-6 sq ft. Fin: 8 sq ft. Rudder: 12 sq ft.
  Weights: Empty: 1,860 lb. Military load: 160 lb. Pilot: 180 lb. Fuel and oil: 300 lb. Weight loaded: 2,500 lb.
  Performance: Maximum speed at ground level: 112 m.p.h.; at 10,000 ft: 103 m.p.h. Climb to 5,000 ft: 6 min;
to 10,000 ft: 17 min. Endurance: 2 1/2 hours.
  Tankage: Petrol: 37 gallons.
  Armament: Originally one 37 mm Puteaux quick-firing gun firing through the hollow airscrew shaft. This was replaced by one fixed, synchronised Vickers gun mounted centrally on top of the fuselage, and one Lewis gun firing upwards through an aperture in the centre-section.
  Production: Three W.B.Vs were ordered and at least two of them were built.
  Serial Numbers: N.41-N.43.

H.King Armament of British Aircraft (Putnam)

W.B. V. This contemporary of the W.B. IV had an armament of even greater - indeed exceptional interest, though the airframe engine layout was conventional. It was specifically designed for the French Hispano-Suiza canon Puteaux installation, of the type that became generically known as moteur canon. Although a 37-mm gun was actually installed in the first W.B. V, it found no acceptance among pilots, who were as cramped by its presence in the cockpit as they were disconcerted by the possibility of malfunctioning. French pilots using a similar installation in SPADs were said to become bemused by the explosive fumes. A fixed Vickers gun was therefore substituted, this being mounted on top of the fuselage with the breech casing faired. As secondary armament there was a free Lewis gun on a pylon mounting ahead of the cockpit and firing through an aperture in the centre-section.

Jane's All The World Aircraft 1919

This machine was also designed as a ship single-seater fighter, and was of very much the same overall dimensions as the W.B.IV.
   Instead of placing the engine over the C.G. and driving the propeller by a shaft passing between the pilot's legs, and designing the fuselage to provide the necessary buoyancy for flotation after alighting on the sea, the. conventional engine in front arrangement was adopted, and the necessary buoyancy bad to be provided by external air bags.
Type of machine Biplane.
Name or type No. of machine W.B.V.
Purpose for which intended Ship's Scout.
Span 35 ft. 10 In.
Gap 4 ft. 9 in.
Overall length 26 ft. 7 in.
Maximum height 11 ft. 10 in.
Chord 6 ft. 3 In.
Total surface of wings,
   including ailerons 394 sq. ft.
Span of tail 11 ft. 9 in.
Total area of tail 50.5 sq.ft.
Area of elevators 24 sq. ft.
Area of rudder 12 sq.ft.
Area of fin 8 sq. ft.
Area of each aileron 18.8 sq. ft. each,
   total area 37.6 sq. ft. total.
Maximum cross section of body 11.5 sq. ft.
Horizontal area of body 46.5 sq. ft.
Vertical area of body 58 sq. ft.
Engine type and h.p. Hispano-Suiza 200 h.p
Airscrew, diam. and revs. 9 ft., 1,500 r.p.m.
Weight of machine empty 1,860 lbs.
Load per sq. ft. 6.33 lbs.
Weight per h.p. 12.5 lbs.
Tank capacity in hours 2.5 hours.
Tank capacity in gallons 37 gallons.
   Speed low down 112 m.p.h.
   Speed at 10,000 feet 103 m.p.h
   Landing speed 45 m.p.h.
   To 5.000 feet In minutes 6 minutes.
   To 10,000 feet in minutes 17 minutes.
Disposable load apart from fuel 340 lb
Total weight of machine loaded 2,500 lb

C.Owers Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 (A Centennial Perspective on Great War Airplanes 69)

The W.B.V

  The W.B.V was a more conventional fighter design with the engine and pilot in the conventional positions. The aircraft was designed to take a French 37-mm Canon Puteaux as an anti-Zeppelin destroyer. The cannon fired its rounds through the hollow airscrew shaft. Three prototypes were ordered under Contract No. A.S.11542 (BR.68) with serials N41 to N43.
  Reports on the construction of the machine noted that around July a visit was made by the Technical Department to Beardmore with regard to the attachment to wings to fuselage of W.B.5 (B.A.G. Scout). The same report noted that with regard to the W.B.IV and W.B.V progress was very slow and it was decided to suspend work on the W.B.IV and to instruct the firm to concentrate on the W.B.V. The progress on the W.B.V was reported as still slow, but assurance has been given that great efforts will be made to get W.B. V out in six weeks. The erection of the machine was in hand and a 1170 rev. 200 Hispano engine is now being sent to this firm. Another report noted that This machine is practically complete but is held up for radiator. This is expected and the machine will probably be ready by November 19th. The aircraft was reported as complete but waiting for a modified carburettor before trials. The weight of this machine light is 1,868 lbs. Ample flotation is provided by the wing bags and fuselage bags and also by the petrol tank. The fuselage is practically watertight up to the propeller hub.
  The W.B.V was despatched to Grain on 28 November 1917. The first flights will be undertaken by the firms pilot. The following tests will be carried out: -
  (a) Type test with wing air bags in position with and without chassis.
  (b) Type test with wing air bags off.
  (c) Test of length to get off and speed to get off.
  The first recorded flight was made at the Isle of Grain on 3 December.
  The W.B.V looked like a conversion of the W.B.IV to a conventional machine, as Janes 1919 commented, it was of very much the same overall dimensions as the WB.IV. Like the W.B.IV the fuselage was covered with plywood. The pilot now sat under the centre section where he had a limited view overhead. Radiators were carried on each side of the fuselage in line with the front interplane struts. The wings could be folded. The wings were now of equal chord and no stagger was employed. Flotation gear now consisted of air bags on the underside of the lower wings. Again, the undercarriage was jettisonable.
  Pilots did not like the machine as the cannon’s breach was located such that the pilot was right at its rear end in order to load and fire the gun. The cockpit was cramped and in the event of a malfunction of the cannon, the pilot was in a very dangerous position. The aircraft’s designer, G. Tilghman-Richards, considered the It was a horrible design as the pilot had to be placed right up against the rear end of the breech to load and fire the gun, and in case anything went wrong with the gun breech. It was delivered to the R.N.A.S. and I was told pilots just refused to pull the trigger. The cannon was removed and a fixed synchronised Vickers gun installed instead. This was mounted on top of the fuselage. A pylon mount for a Lewis gun was ahead of the cockpit enabling the pilot to fire through the centre wing cut-out.
  N41 was flown at Grain and was damaged beyond repair on 4 January 1918, the pilot, Sub Lt Pinder, being injured. The second prototype N42 was completed and flew at the makers on 20 February 1918. With the removal of the cannon, interest in the W.B.V ceased and no development of this machine was undertaken, it apparently being abandoned around April 1918.

Beardmore WB.V Specifications
Source 1 2
Span 35 ft 10 in 35 ft 10 in
Length 26 ft 7 in 26 ft 7 in
Height 11 ft 10 in 11 ft 10 in
Chord Upper 6 ft 3 in -
Chord lower 6 ft 3 in -
Gap 4 ft 9 in -
Span tail 11 ft 9 in -
  Diameter 9 ft -
Areas in ft2
  Wings 394 394
  Ailerons 37.6 -
  Tail 50.5 -
  Elevators 24
  Rudder 12 -
  Fin 8 -
Weights in lbs
  Empty 1,860 1,860
  Disposable load (1) 340 -
  Loaded 2,500 2,500
Capacity in gall 37 -
Endurance 2.5 hours -
Speed in mph
  Ground level 112 112
  at 10,000 ft 103 103
Landing speed 45 45
Climb to
  5,000 ft 6 min. 6 min
  10,000 ft 17 min 17 min
  Endurance in hrs 2.55 2 1/2
Notes: (1) Does not include fuel.
  1. Jane’s 1919 and Aeronautical Engineering supplement to The Aeroplane. 11 June 1919. P. 2324. The Jane’s entries are almost exactly the same as those in The Aeroplane, not surprising as C.G. Grey was the Editor of Jane's.
  2. Performances of British Ship Aeroplanes July 1917 - December 1918. Report M.218 of 7/18.TNA AIR1/708/27/11/02.

C.Owers - Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 /Centennial Perspective/ (69)
Beardmore WB.IV N-41
C.Owers - Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 /Centennial Perspective/ (69)
Beardmore WB.IV N-42
C.Owers - Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 /Centennial Perspective/ (69)
The first W.B.V, N41, with the interplane struts fitted at the inboard ends of the mainplanes to allow the wings to fold.
C.Owers - Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 /Centennial Perspective/ (69)
The first W.B.V, N41 at the Isle of Grain.
C.Owers - Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 /Centennial Perspective/ (69)
The first Beardmore W.B.V, N.41, with wings folded.
C.Owers - Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 /Centennial Perspective/ (69)
N41 with its wings folded. Isle of Grain, 17 December 1917.
F.Mason - The British Fighter since 1912 /Putnam/
The second Beardmore W.B.V, N42, with a single Lewis gun in place of the 37mm cannon.
C.Owers - Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 /Centennial Perspective/ (69)
The second W.B.V, N42, had bracing struts from the stub wings to the upper longerons.
C.Owers - Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 /Centennial Perspective/ (69)
N6748 in the Beardmore works. Note the fuselage of one of the two Beardmore W.B.V ship aeroplane to the right background. N6748 was the second last machine from the batch N6680 to N6749. It was delivered to Killingholme Reserve in the W/E 23 February 1918, and probably was never flown. There appears to be no engine mounted when photographed. There was a lack of engines for the S.B.3D and many were delivered to store engineless.
C.Owers - Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 /Centennial Perspective/ (69)
Beardmore W.B.V
C.Owers - Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 /Centennial Perspective/ (69)
Beardmore W.B.V
C.Owers - Beardmore Aircraft of WW1 /Centennial Perspective/ (69)
Beardmore W.B.V