Aeroplane Monthly 1986-03
Personal album
A flight of four Fairey IIIDs put up by 202 Squadron RAF at Malta circa 1929-30. The four aircraft are N9630, S1078, S1105 and N9568. The aircraft in the foreground later became G-EBKE and in 1924 was modified for Real Daylight Balata Estates in British Guiana for ambulance duties. The IIID was the mainstay of the FAA during the second half of the Twenties, until the type was succeeded by the Fairey IIIF. The IIID was a reliable spotter-reconnaissance land/seaplane and could be flown off carriers, from shore stations and was even catapulted from warships.
Top: Fairey IIID N9568 of 202 Sqn RAF at Malta circa 1929-30. Bottom: Fairey IIID N9753 of 202 Sqn RAF at Malta circa 1929-30.
Two Farman F.168 Goliath seaplanes are the subject of this photos. These 1928 French Navy torpedo bombers were originally ordered as night bombers, but were rejected because of excessive tail vibration. The type was taken over by the Navy who strengthened the tails and kept the type in service until 1937. Powered by two 500 h.p. Gnome-Rhone-built Jupiters, the F.168s were fitted with dual controls.
Blackburn Dart N9539 was part of a batch of 26 Darts requisitioned in 1922. These single-seat carrier-borne torpedo bombers were powered by the 450 h.p. Napier Lion IIB, or the 465 h.p. Lion V engine.
Blackburn Dart N9990 was from a batch of 10 Darts ordered in January 1925. The type became the Fleet Air Arm’s standard torpedo bomber until replaced by the Blackburn Ripon in 1931. Both types were carrier-borne and could be operated on wheeled or float undercarriages.
The trio of Fairey Flycatchers flying over the Mediterranean are N9923, N9954 and N9922, all built in 1924. These single-seat carrier-borne fighters were also operated as seaplanes or amphibians. They were powered by a 400 h.p. Armstrong Siddeley Jaguar III or IV and were armed with two synchronised Vickers guns. There was also provision for four underwing mounted 20lb bombs. The Flycatcher became the standard FAA fighter for 10 yr until succeeded by Hawker Nimrods and Ospreys from 1934.