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Supermarine Sea Lion

Страна: Великобритания

Год: 1919

Supermarine - N.1B Baby - 1918 - Великобритания<– –>Swann - monoplane/biplane - 1909 - Великобритания


A.Jackson British Civil Aircraft since 1919 vol.3 (Putnam)


Supermarine Sea Lion I

  Single seat, wooden racing flying-boat, powered by one 450 h.p. Napier Lion driving a pusher airscrew, built at Woolston for the 1919 Schneider Trophy Race. One aircraft only: G-EALP, no c/n. piloted in the race, which was declared void through fog, 10.9.19 by Cdr. B. D. Hobbs. Struck flotsam and holed the hull when taking off from Swanage Bay after a precautionary landing and sank on alighting off Bournemouth Pier. Hull loaned to the Science Museum, South Kensington, 1921.
  Span, 35 ft. 0 in. Length, 24 ft. 0 in. A.U.W., 2,900 lb. Max. speed, 147 m.p.h.


Supermarine Sea Lion II

  Originally the single seat Sea King II amphibian scout powered by one 300 h.p. Hispano-Suiza, built at Woolston 1921. One aircraft only: G-EBAH, c/n 1154, registered to the manufacturers 16.12.21, first flown by H. C. Biard 3.22. Rebuilt as flying-boat with 450 h.p. Napier Lion, wings of reduced area and renamed Sea Lion II. Winner of the Schneider Trophy contest at Naples 10-12.8.22 piloted by H. C. Biard, who averaged 145-7 m.p.h. over the course of 200-2 nautical miles.
  Span, 32 ft. 0 in. Length, 24 ft. 9 in. Tare wt., 2,115 1b. A.U.W., 2,850 lb.


Supermarine Sea Lion III

  The Sea Lion II G-EBAH, rebuilt with two bay wings and increased rudder area for the 1923 Schneider Trophy Race at Cowes. Piloted by H. C. Biard, it averaged 151-16 m.p.h. to come third. Transferred to the R.A.F. 4.12.23 as N170.
  Span, 32 ft. 0 in. Length, 27 ft. 6 in. Tare wt., 2,400 lb. A.U.W., 3,275 lb. Max. speed, 155 m.p.h. Cruise, 125 m.p.h.


D.James Schneider Trophy Aircraft 1913-1931 (Putnam)


Supermarine Sea Lion I

  The old Pemberton Billing Co. and its Supermarine Works at Woolston, near Southampton, were bought by Hubert Scott-Paine in 1916 when Noel Pemberton Billing became a Member of Parliament. It was renamed Supermarine Aviation Works and in 1918 designed and built the Baby, to Air Board specification N.1B, which was one of the very few single-seat fighter flying-boats to be produced during the First World War. The Baby was a biplane with a wing span of 30ft 6 in (9-29 m) and, powered by a 200 hp Hispano-Suiza engine, had a maximum speed of 116 mph (186-6 km/h). Two prototypes, N59-60, were built and flown, but the Baby did not go into quantity production because military requirements changed.
  When the Schneider Trophy contests were re-established in 1919 and the first postwar venue was to be Bournemouth, Scott-Paine decided that because of its proximity to the Supermarine factory his company would enter the lists. Since time was short, he obtained one of the Babies, whose forward hull had been modified to reduce spray while on the water as part of a programme to produce a civil Baby to be known as the Sea King. The Hispano-Suiza engine was replaced by a 450 hp Napier Lion twelve-cylinder broad-arrow engine driving a two-blade wooden pusher propeller. Although the redesign of this aircraft was to produce a purely racing machine, it was fully equipped with a bilge pump, sea anchor and mooring equipment. The hull, of Linton Hope design, was of similar construction to that used in the Blackburn Pellet. The single-bay mainplanes and centre section were built up around two spruce spars and wooden ribs which were fabric covered. The four mainplanes were built separately and were rigged without stagger but with dihedral from the flat centre section. Large balanced ailerons were carried on all four mainplanes. The interplane struts were sloped out toward the tops to support the longer-span upper mainplane. Deep, narrow, stabilizing floats were carried beneath the lower mainplanes. The tailplane was mounted on top of the fin and was braced on each side by a pair of steel-tube struts to the hull. A horn-balanced rudder, extended downward to act as a water rudder, was carried on the fin which was covered with wood sheeting. The remainder of the tail unit was of wood and fabric construction. The engine was mounted on four steel-tube struts carrying two ash engine-bearers and supported the upper centre section on four more struts. An oval-shaped radiator was mounted in front of the engine and was enclosed in an aluminium nacelle. The redesign work was entrusted to the young Reginald J. Mitchell, who in later years was to become renowned as the designer of a series of Supermarine racing floatplanes for the Schneider contests and of the Spitfire.
  The use of the Lion engine prompted the name Sea Lion for this little racer which received the civil registration G-EALP. The eliminating trials to select the British team were scheduled for 3 September, and while the Sopwith, Fairey, and Avro companies had flown their aircraft by the day before the trial, the Sea Lion’s first flight was delayed by the non-delivery of the propeller - due to a strike at the manufacturers. However, it arrived in time for engine running to begin at 8 p.m. in the evening before the trials; but torrential rain prevented these taking place. On 5 September Sqn Ldr Basil Hobbs, the Supermarine pilot, made the initial flight. Flight trials continued with all four British aircraft, the final decision to include the Sea Lion in place of the Avro entrant being delayed until 9 September when a new propeller gave the Sea Lion an additional five or six miles per hour.
  The events of the contest day are recorded elsewhere in this book, but afterwards the Sea Lion was dismantled and its hull was loaned to the Science Museum in London for an exhibition in 1921. Sadly it was broken up some years later when the Museum no longer required it.


  Single-seat racing biplane flying-boat. Wood and metal construction. Pilot in open cockpit.
  One 450 hp Napier Lion IA twelve-cylinder water-cooled normally-aspirated geared broad-arrow engine driving a 7 ft 10 in (2-38 m) diameter two-blade fixed-pitch wooden propeller.
  Span 35 ft (10-66 m); length 26 ft 4 in (8 02 m); height 11 ft 8 in (3-55 m); wing area 380 sq ft (35-3 sq m).
  Empty weight 2,000lb (907kg); loaded weight 2,900lb (1,315kg); wing loading 7-63 Ib/sq ft (37-22 kg/sq m).
  Maximum speed 147 mph (236-57 km/h).
  Production - one Sea Lion I built by conversion of Baby by Supermarine Aviation Works, Woolston, Southampton, in 1919.
  Colour - believed to have been dark blue hull and tailplane support struts, with remainder pale blue, grey or silver; engine nacelle natural aluminium; Supermarine in large white capital letters on hull sides forward of mainplanes with small Sea Lion above, white civil registration letters G-EALP on hull sides aft of mainplanes; white contest number 5 on fin.



Supermarine Sea Lion II

  Expedience and economy were ever the watchwords of British aircraft manufacturers in the years between the wars and, clearly, were observed by Hubert Scott-Paine at Supermarine when producing aeroplanes for the Schneider contests. Following the use of the N.1B Baby hull in the Sea Lion I, when the decision was made to build an entrant for the 1922 contest the company used an existing airframe on which to base it. During 1919 two civil sporting amphibian versions of the Baby, named Sea King I, had been built but neither had been sold. One of these became the Sea Lion I; in 1921 the second was developed as the Sea King II, an amphibian fighting scout with a single .303-in Lewis machine-gun and provision for light bombs, but when it, too, failed to win orders it was modified to become the Sea Lion II G-EBAH.
  The Sea King hull, constructed of circular-section wooden frames with wood skinning, was retained. The bow was modified, which shortened the Sea King hull to 24 ft 9 in (7-54 m) in its Sea Lion II form. A built-on wooden planing bottom and steps, which were divided into watertight compartments, were added. The upper surface was single-skin planking and the whole structure was covered with fabric and doped. The manually-operated wheeled undercarriage and all military equipment and fittings were removed. The Sea King’s mainplanes structure was retained, with four vertical interplane struts replacing the splayed-out struts of the Sea Lion I. The Sea King’s wing area was reduced by introducing a narrower chord in the mainplanes, and their span is believed to have been increased by 1ft 6in (45cm) to reach 32ft (9-75m). The mainplanes, built as four separate sections, were attached to the upper and lower centre sections. They were built up around two spruce spars with wooden ribs, all wire braced and fabric covered. In place of the earlier 300 hp Hispano-Suiza engine, a 450 hp Lion II, loaned by Napier, was installed, which drove a four-blade wooden pusher propeller of about 8 ft 6 in (2-59 m) diameter. To offset the increased torque and maintain stability, the fin area above the tailplane was enlarged by forward curvature of the leading edge. Because the engine was mounted high between the wings and produced a high thrust-line resulting in a pitching moment, the tailplane had a reverse camber to counteract this. Fuel was supplied to the engine by a high-pressure air system with all fuel lines being kept short and run as clear of the hull as possible.
  The earlier Sea King II had not only proved itself capable of aerobatics - Henri Biard, Supermarine’s test pilot had rolled and spun the aircraft - but it had also been very stable at all speeds. These characteristics were inherited by the Sea Lion II which was a very tractable aeroplane.
  The 1922 Schneider contest was scheduled to take place in Naples during the latter part of August, but the Italians decided to advance the date by some ten days. Unfortunately, the Sea Lion II was still incomplete when news of the change was received by the Royal Aero Club, and so the work was pressed ahead with all speed. When the day came for preliminary engine running the Lion started almost immediately and it was decided to make a preliminary test flight. With Biard aboard, the Sea Lion II got airborne very easily after a short take-off run - but suddenly, when it was some 200 ft over rows of luffing cranes and the masts of ships in Southampton Docks, the Lion engine stopped. Biard managed to pick out a stretch of clear water and glided down to alight safely. The Sea Lion was towed back to Woolston where a fault in the fuel system was diagnosed and corrected. But a precious day was used up.
  The following evening Biard again flew the Sea Lion and, finding all was going well, opened the throttle wide to achieve a speed in excess of 150mph, faster than any British flying-boat had then flown. There followed several days while final modifications were made to the airframe and flying time was built up, then the Sea Lion was dismantled and crated for its journey by sea to Naples.
  With the Sea Lion re-assembled, Biard and the Supermarine team launched a cloak-and-dagger operation, first to find out the strength of the French and Italian opposition, and then to conceal from their prying eyes and stop watches the capabilities of the British flying-boat. Accordingly, Biard confined his full-throttle runs to an area well clear of Naples Bay, and made sure that his practice circuits always included some cautious turns around the pylons. This plan worked so well that the Italians publicly proclaimed the inferiority of the Sea Lion when compared with the Macchi M.17 and Savoia S.51. But there was almost disaster, when he flew too close to Vesuvius in an attempt to look down into its crater, and a strong thermal suddenly lifted the Sea Lion some 2,000ft above its original flight path.
  In the contest Biard’s tactical flying, plus the Sea Lion’s speed, brought the Trophy to Britain; additionally they established world closed-circuit speed, duration and distance records, the first to be recognized for seaplanes.
  Soon after its return to the Supermarine factory, the Sea Lion II G-EBAH was bought by the Air Ministry for development flying work, but it has not been established whether it was moved to Felixstowe; it was not, however, removed from the Civil Aircraft Register.
  There was also a plan to fly G-EBAH in the 1922 King’s Cup air race. That a flying-boat should take part in a race flown entirely over land was a tribute to the reliability of the Lion engine. A report in Flight of 7 September records that 'at the moment of going to press we learn this machine will not start'. There were no other references to the Sea Lion in reports of the race.


  Single-seat racing biplane flying-boat. Wood and metal construction. Pilot in open cockpit.
  One 450 hp Napier Lion II twelve-cylinder water-cooled normally-aspirated geared broad-arrow engine driving an 8 ft 6 in (2-59 m) diameter four-blade fixed-pitch wooden pusher propeller. Fuel: 55 gal (250 litres).
  Span 32 ft (9-75m); length 24ft 9in (7-54m); height 12ft (3-65m) approx; wing area 384 sq ft (35 -67 sq m).
  Empty weight 2,115lb (959kg); loaded weight 2.850lb (1,292kg); wing loading 7-42 Ib/sqft (36-22 kg/sq m).
  Maximum speed 160mph (257-49 km/h).
  Production - one Sea Lion II (G-EBAH) converted from Sea King II by Supermarine Aviation Works, Southampton, in 1922.
  Colour - believed to have been overall blue hull, interplane and tailplane support struts; cream or white mainplanes and tailplane; white registration G-EBAH on rear hull sides and national letter G on rudder, black contest number 14 on white panel on hull sides aft of cockpit



Supermarine Sea Lion III

  For the 1923 Schneider contest the Air Ministry decided that the old Sea Lion II G-EBAH should participate again. Reginald Mitchell at Supermarine rapidly produced drawings to initiate a general modification programme aimed at cleaning up the hull and increasing its fineness ratio. As a result the hull length was increased by 2 ft 9 in (83 cm). A new planing bottom was attached to the hull and the bow section refined; in addition the wing span was reduced by 4 ft (1-21 m), and the area of the fin and rudder was increased by making them taller.
  During the flight-test programme the shoe-shaped floats were removed and oval-section stabilizing floats, with pairs of small hydrovanes at their forward end, were mounted on short struts and wire braced to the underside of the lower mainplanes near the tips. For the first time on a Sea Lion, a small glass windscreen was mounted in front of the open cockpit.
  Power for the Sea Lion III came from a 525 hp Napier Lion III which drove a four-blade wooden pusher propeller. The engine, in its aluminium nacelle with a circular-section radiator housed in a long-chord tubular cowling, was supported on a pair of N-struts; the fuel lines were carried up inside a streamlined radiator support strut from the hull fuel tank to the engine.
  A strange feature of this cleaning-up process was that the engine starting handle was permanently fixed to the power unit and protruded from the port side of the nacelle; moreover, the tailplane had no less than eight wire-braced support struts, and the original combined water-rudder/tailskid was retained.
  In the contest, although Biard and the Sea Lion III returned a speed some 12 mph faster than that at which they had won the previous year’s event, they were outclassed by the Curtiss CR-3s and could only take third place.
  During the first few weeks following the contest, Biard flew the Sea Lion III on some further flight trials; then during the first week of December it was taken on RAF charge, serialled N170 and moved to Felixstowe.


  Single-seat racing biplane flying-boat. Wood and metal construction. Pilot in open cockpit.
  One 525 hp Napier Lion III twelve-cylinder water-cooled normally-aspirated geared broad-arrow engine driving an 8 ft 8 in (2-64 m) diameter four-blade fixed-pitch wooden pusher propeller. Fuel: 60 gal (272 litres).
  Span 28ft (8-53m); length 28ft (8-53m); wing area 360sq ft (33-44sq m).
  Empty weight 2,400 lb (1,088 kg); loaded weight 3,275 lb (1,485 kg); wing loading 9-09 lb/ sq ft (44-4 kg/sq m).
  Maximum speed 175 mph (281-61 km/h); alighting speed 55 mph (88-51 km/h).
  Production - one Sea Lion III (G-EBAH) converted from Sea Lion II by Supermarine Aviation Works, Woolston, Southampton, in 1923.
  Colour - believed overall blue hull, silver mainplanes and tail unit, natural aluminium engine nacelle. Black registration letters G-EBAH on white panel on hull sides, and contest number 7 on white panel on nose aft of cockpit and on rudder. A sealion’s ‘face’ was painted in white on the noses of the hull and the two stabilizing floats as was the name Sea Lion III on the hull sides beneath the cockpit.


Журнал Flight


Flight, September 4, 1919.

THE JACQUES SCHNEIDER CUP RACE

The Machines

The Supermarine Flying-boat

  As it incorporates several new features, the flying-boat built by the Supermarine Aviation Co. is, up to the present, more or less of a "dark horse," and its makers do not wish any information published before the race. The machine is not, however, a freak built entirely for speed at any cost, and the makers are prepared to take it out in any sea that is likely to be encountered in that part of the world at this time of the year. It is a flying-boat more or less on the lines of previous Supermarine flying-boat scouts, and is fitted with a 450 h.p. Napier "Lion" engine. It is of interest to mention that this machine is capable of the evolutions of the small land scouts, such as looping, rolling, spinning, etc. It will be interesting to see how the seaworthy and necessarily heavier flying-boat will compare with the lighter-built float seaplanes.

Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
The Supermarine contender in the 1919 Schneider Trophy event - the Sea Lion I G-EALP flown by Sqn Ldr B. D. Hobbs.
A.Jackson - British Civil Aircraft since 1919 vol.3 /Putnam/
Supermarine Sea Lion I
D.James - Schneider Trophy Aircraft 1913-1931 /Putnam/
The Supermarine launch Tiddlywinks takes in tow the Sea Lion I, G-EALP, as it is launched from the company’s slipway at Woolston. The uncowled Napier Lion engine, laminated mahogany propeller, and spray dams at the base of the inboard interplane struts, are seen clearly.
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
The Schneider Cup Entrants. - Two views of the Supermarine Flying Boat, 450 h.p. Napier Lion engine.
D.James - Schneider Trophy Aircraft 1913-1931 /Putnam/
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
THE START FOR THE SCHNEIDER CUP RACE: 2. The Supermarine flying-boat.
Журнал - Flight за 1919 г.
ABOVE THE STARTING POINT FOR THE SCHNEIDER CUP: Bournemouth pier snapped from a Supermarine flying-boat on the morning of the race. To the right of the pier, sitting on the beach, may be seen the Fairey biplane. At one o'clock the public were carried off the pier, and then re-admitted upon payment of a special fee.
D.James - Schneider Trophy Aircraft 1913-1931 /Putnam/
This view of the Supermarine Sea Lion II in which Henri Biard won the contest in 1922 shows clearly the hull form.
A.Jackson - British Civil Aircraft since 1919 vol.3 /Putnam/
Supermarine Sea Lion II
P.Lewis - British Racing and Record-breaking Aircraft /Putnam/
The Supermarine Sea Lion III G-EBAH flown into third place at 151.16 mph in the 1923 Schneider Trophy contest by Capt H. C. Biard.
D.James - Schneider Trophy Aircraft 1913-1931 /Putnam/
Henri Biard taxies the Supermarine Sea Lion III G-EBAH past the moored Blackburn Pellet during practice flying. A feature of this Sea Lion variant was the large fin and rudder area above the tailplane.
D.James - Schneider Trophy Aircraft 1913-1931 /Putnam/
This close-up view of the Sea Lion III G-EBAH shows details of the long radiator air intake, the engine mounting struts, and fixed starting handle. What appears to be an additional ‘lash-up’ pitot head is carried on the starboard outer interplane struts.
A.Jackson - British Civil Aircraft since 1919 vol.3 /Putnam/
Supermarine Sea Lion III
D.James - Schneider Trophy Aircraft 1913-1931 /Putnam/
This painting by Leslie Carr shows the Supermarine Sea Lion II passing a balloon marking the 1922 course.
D.James - Schneider Trophy Aircraft 1913-1931 /Putnam/
Supermarine Sea Lion II