Air International 1979-04
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J.Bruce - The First British Armoured Brigade (3)
A view of the first prototype Salamander, E5429, photographed at Brooklands on 1 May 1918.
Capt H B Robin Rowell in the cockpit of E5429 at Brooklands shortly before taking off for France on 9 May 1918. The Naval officer at right is Lt Denis Allen.
The third prototype Salamander, E5431, photographed at Martlesham Heath, where it had arrived for official trials on 24 June 1918. Note the double control levers on the ailerons and the corresponding double inter-aileron wires.
Salamander F6533 photographed at McCook Field in the USA.
The first Salamander built by the Air Navigation Co, F7801, here seen at Brooklands. It had plain upper ailerons and the early production fin and rudder and was painted in the standard Salamander camouflage scheme. Note the absence of rudder stripes and fuselage roundels.
Production Salamander F6524 photographed at Villacoublay while undergoing evaluation by the Section Technique de l’Aeronautique. Like F6533, it has plain upper ailerons, small fin and original rudder.
Two views of E5431 painted in the experimental camouflage scheme mentioned in the text; this formed the subject of an official description in Confidential Information Memorandum No 733 dated 3 September 1918. Four colours were used; Dark Purple Earth, Green, Light Green-Grey and Light Earth; and the outline of each area was picked out by a black line varying in width from 2 in to 4 in (51 mm to 102 mm). The upper-wing roundels were of different diameters, presumably to confuse the aim of attacking aircraft.
Glendower-built Salamander J5913, said to be at Minchinhampton. The aircraft wears the camouflage scheme first tried on E5431 but has no roundel on the upper wing visible in this photograph.
Final form of the production Salamander, with balanced upper ailerons and enlarged fin and rudder, exemplified by F6602. These photographs are dated 25 January 1919.
Final form of the production Salamander, with balanced upper ailerons and enlarged fin and rudder, exemplified by F6602. These photographs are dated 25 January 1919.
A camouflaged production Salamander photographed at Heliopolis, Egypt, in 1922. It is carrying four 20-lb (9,1-kg) Cooper bombs in the rack under the fuselage.
The armoured portion of the first Sopwith Salamander, E5429, under construction. The double rear wall can be seen.
The forward fuselage of a production Salamander. Apart from the staggered guns the design of the armour plate differs in detail.
Salamanders in production in the Addle stone works of the Air Navigation Company.
Sopwith Salamander
H5892, first of the two Sopwith Buffaloes, seen at Brooklands in its original form with rocking pillar mounting for the observer’s Lewis gun.
Buffalo H5892 at Brooklands in November 1918 with Scarff ring mounting on its rear cockpit.
Buffalo H5892 at Bickendorf in 1919 with Scarff ring mounting on its rear cockpit.
View of the second Sopwith Buffalo, H5893, photographed at Martlesham Heath.
View of the second Sopwith Buffalo, H5893, photographed at Martlesham Heath.
The Vickers F.B.26A Vampire II which, as related in the text, was completed too late to be evaluated before the war ended.