Profile Publications No. 137 The Bristol Beaufighter I & II

Two views o f Fairey-built Beaufighter IC A 19-2 in 1943 with Australian installation o f Wright Cyclone GR2600-A5Bs in long nacelles for proposed production variants, Beaufighter VIII and IX. In March, 1943, the aircraft achieved world-wide fame when Damien Parer filmed the Battle of the Bismarck overSea the shoulder of pilot F/Lt. “Torchy” Uren. Another kind of “victory” was claimed by No. 30 Squadron at Goodenough Island on 2nd November, 1943, when A 19-54 won the second of two unofficial races against a Boston of No. 22 Squadron. Most wartime R.A.A.F. Beaufighters were camou­flaged, but at least two, A 19-2 (which was experi­mentally fitted with Wright Cyclones) and A 19-10, had a natural metal finish. The writer acknowledges his indebtedness to the researches oj C.H. (Chris) Barnes, author o f Bristol Aircraft Since 1910 (Putnam). ©Philip J.R. Moyes, 1966. PRO DUCT ION Beaufighter I. Prototypes R2052-5 (4 a/c). Mk. IF. Filton-built. R2056. R2057, R2059. R2060, R2063-R2101. R2120- R2159, R2180-R2209, R2240-R2269. V8219-V9233. V8246-V8289, V8307-V8356. V8370-V8385 (total 268 a/c). Note: R2152 and R2269 converted to Mk.IC. Fairey-built. T4623-T4647 (25 a/c). Weston-built. X7540-X7589, X7610-X7649, X7670-X7719. X7740- X7849, X7870-X7879 (total 260 a/c). Mk. IC. Filton-built. T3228-T3272, T3290-T3333. T3348-T3355 (total 97 a/c). Note: T3251-T3269 (19 a/c) to Australia for R.A.A.F. under A-19 designation. Fairey-built. Aircraft offset from production for Royal Australian Air Force are indicated by their renumbering in R.A.A.F.’s A19 series. T4648-T4670, T4700-T4734, T4751-T4800, T4823-T4846, T4862-T4899, T4915-T4919, T4920-T4931 became A19 - 1 to A19-12 T4932-T4942, T4943-T4947 became A19-13 to A19-17 T4970- T4978 became A19-18 to A19-26 T4979-T4990, T4991-T5004 becamc A19-41 to A19-49 T5070-T5074 became A19-50 to A19-54 T5076 became A19-55 T5077 became A19-61 T5078-T5080, T5081 became A19-56 T5082 became A19-64 T5083 and T5084 became A19-57 and A19-58 TS085, T5086 became A19-71 T5087 and T5088, T5089 became A19-62 T5090 became A19-59 T5091 became A19-60 T5092 became A19-72 T5093 became A19-66 T5094 became A19-65 T5095 became A19-67 T5096, T5097 became A19-68 T5098 became A19-70 T5099 became A19-69 (total 300 a/c, including 57 for R.A.A.F.). Mk. II. Filton-built. Prototypes R2058, R2061, R2062 (3 a/c). Mk. IIF. Filton-built. R2270-R2284, R2300-R2349, R2370-R2404, R2430- R2479, T3009-T3055, T3070-T3107, T3137-T3183, T3210-T3227, T3356-T3389, T3410-T3447 (total 447 a/c). Note: R2274, R2306 delivered as Mk.V. Total Quantities (Summary) Mark IF 268 Filton (including 2 converted toM k.IC)-f 25 Faireys -f 260 Weston+ 4 prototypes 557 Mark IC 97 Filton +300 Fairc' 397 Mark IIF 447 Filton (including 2 converted to Mk. V)+ 3 prototypes 450 Total 1,404 SPECIFIC A T ION Type: Two-seat long range day and night fighter. VV/ngs: Mid-wing cantilever all-metal monoplane. In three sections. Centre-section bolted to fuselage, outer sections set at 5 degrees dihedral. Structure consists of two spars having single sheet webs and extruding flanges, former ribs and stressed-skin covering. Split hydraulically-operated flaps between fuselage and ailerons. Metal framed ailerons with fabric covering. Fuselage: All-metal monocoque in three sections. Structure of ‘Z ’-section frames and ‘L’-section stringers, the whole covered with metal skin. Tail Unit: Cantilever monoplane type. Tailplane and fin were separate structures with flush-riveted metal skin, except that tips of tailplane were of wood. Rudder and elevators had metal frames and fabric covering. Controllable trim-tabs in elevators and rudder. Undercarriage: Retractable type. Each independent unit was hydraulically- raised backwards into engine nacelle and hinged doors closed the aperture. Wheels carried between two oleo-pneumatic shock- absorber legs and had pneumatically-operated brakes. Tailwheel retracted forwards into fuselage. Powerplant: (Mk. I) Two 1,400 h.p. Bristol Hercules XI fourteen- cylinder sleeve-valve radial air-cooled engines with two-speed superchargers. Three-bladed Rotol constant-speed fully-feathering airscrews with metal blades. (Mk. II) Two 1,250 h.p. Rolls-Royce Merlin X X twelve-cylinder Vee liquid-cooled engines with two-speed superchargers. Three-bladed Rotol constant-specd airscrews with Schwartz wooden blades. Fuel carried in four self-sealing tanks, two (188 Imp. gallons each) in centre-section and one (87 Imp. gallons) in each outer wing-section. Separate oil tank (18 Imp. gallons) for each engine in centre-section with oil cooler in outer section. Electric starters and hand-turning gear. Accommodation: Crew of two with pilot in nose and observer aft of wing. Access to crew positions through hatches in underside of fuselage. These hatches also intended for special emergency exit (for details sec main text). A knock-out panel on starboard side of pilot, a hinged window above pilot and a hinged hood above observer provided further emergency exits. Armament: Four 20 mm. Hispano cannon in fuselage nose with a com­bined rate of fire of 2,400 rounds per minute and a total weight of fire of 600 lb. per minute: and six 0-303-in. Browning machine-guns in wings, each firing at rate of about 1,200 rounds per minute, giving a combined rate of fire of 7,200 rounds per minute and a total weight of fire of 180 lb. per minute. Total combined fire-power (cannon and machine-guns) 780 lb. per minute. Dimensions: Span 57 ft. 10 in. Length (Mk. I) 41 ft. 4 in. (Mk. II) 42 ft. 9 in. Height 15 ft. 10 in. Wing area 503 sq. ft. Weights: Empty 13,800 lb. All-up 21,000 lb. Performance: Mk. I (Mk. IIF with A.I. Mk. IV, RDM2 soot-black finish, in brackets). Max. speed 321 m.p.h. at 15,800 ft. (301 m.p.h. at 20,200 ft. 283 m.p.h. at 15,000 ft.). Stalling speed 83 m.p.h. flaps and undercarriage down. Initial climb 1,960 ft.per minute at 2,000 ft. Climb to 10,000 ft. 5-8 min., to 20,000 ft. 14-1 min. Service ceiling 26,500 ft. Normal range 1,170 miles at 5,000 ft. at 182 m.p.h. (1,040 miles at 10,000 ft. at 177 m.p.h., 1,550 miles (overload fuel)). Endurance 8-5 hr. (5-9—8-8 hr.). E X AMP OLES F BEAU FIGHTER SIN SQUAD RON SERVICE Mk. IF. No. 25 Sqdn. R2069 ZK-A (later ZK-H) No. 29 Sqdn. R2138 RO-L No. 89 Sqdn. V8219 No. 219 Sqdn. R2204 FK-J No. 252 Sqdn. R2153 PN-W No. 600 Sqdn. R2065 No. 604 Sqdn. R2136 NG-N. Mk.IC. No. 143 Sqdn. T3234 No. 236 Sqdn. T4800 ND-C No. 248 Sqdn. T4639 WR-F No. 252 Sqdn. T3309 No. 272 Sqdn. T3315 M. Mk. IIF. No. 25 Sqdn. R2277 No. 125 Sqdn. V8135 No. 255 Sqdn. R2402 YD-G No. 307 (City of Lwow) (Polish) Sqdn. R2459 No. 406 (Lynx) Sqdn. R.C.A.F. R2274 No. 456 Sqdn. R.A.A.F., T3370 No. 488 Sqdn. R.N.Z.A.F. T3373 No. 600 Sqdn. R2273 No. 604 Sqdn. R2270. PRINTED IN ENGLAND ©Profile Publications Ltd., P.O. Box 26, 1a North Street, Leatherhead, Surrey, England by George Falkner &Sons Ltd., for McCorquodale City Printing Division, London. U.S. 2nd Class Mailing Rates applied for. Profile Publications Ltd. is a member of the Norprint Division of the Norcros Group with world distribution network, retaining all rights in all languages. North American Import Agency rights delegated to J.W.C. Aeronautica, 7506 Clybourn Avenue, Sun Valley, California 91352 North American Distributive Agency rights invested the National Aerospace Education Council, 616 Shoreham Building, 806 15th Street N.W., Washington D.C. 20005. Reproduction of, or any part of, this publication is expressly forbidden under the terms of International Copyright Law except as subject to written permission by the Managing Director, Profile Publications Ltd.
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