Flight, January 1921
THE VICKERS "V.I.M." SCHOOL MACHINE
360 H.P. Rolls-Royce "Eagle" Engine
DURING the last two years or so the question of tuition has, it appears, been allowed to fall into the background. Yet this phase of the training of personnel is
one of very great importance, whether viewed from the standpoint of military aviation, or in regard to commercial aviation of the future. That the question has not altogether been overlooked is, however, proved by the fact that at least one firm has quite recently produced a machine specially designed for school work. We refer to the new Vickers "V.I.M.,"a photograph of which was published in FLIGHT recently. This machine, it will be seen from the accompanying illustrations, is of the "pusher" type, a type which has not been built during recent years, and the revival of which, for instructional purposes, is therefore of special interest.
Although the new Vickers "V.I.M." is designed for school work, this is not the only, nor perhaps the main, reason for designing her as a pusher. The object kept in mind was, we understand, that the new machine was to form a steppingstone, as it were, to the Vickers "Vimy." The cockpits, etc., have therefore been arranged to reproduce, as far as possible, "Vimy" conditions, all necessary instruments and controls being provided for both pupil and instructor. Needless to say, a system of dual controls similar to that of the "Vimy" has been installed. Normally the pupil occupies the front cockpit, the instructor sitting close behind him in a separate cockpit.
Generally speaking, the new Vickers "V.I.M." resembles the old Vickers "Gun 'Bus" which did such a great amount of useful work during the earlier stages of the War. The power plant is, however, much more powerful than that of the earlier machine, being a 360 h.p. Rolls-Royce "Eagle," so that in this respect also the "V.I.M." approximates to the "Vimy." The advantage of this will be obvious. The pilot learns to know and to handle the single "Eagle" of the school machine before being faced with the extra complication arising out of the use of two engines in the larger machine. The fact that he has learned on a machine equipped with an engine of the same type reduces his difficulties to becoming used to twin-engine control, and avoids the trouble of having to deal with two unfamiliar engines.
The following is a brief specification of the "V.I.M.'' :-
Machine empty with water 2,950 lbs.
Petrol (39 gallons) 281 lbs.
Oil (6 gallons) 54 lbs.
Pilot and pupil 360 lbs.
Total weight 3,645 lbs.
Overall length 32 ft. 4 ins.
Overall height 12 ft. 4 ins.
Overall span 47 ft. 8 ins.
Chord of main planes 5 ft. 6 ins.
Incidence of main planes, 4 1/2 degs.; Dihedral, 4 degs.
Area of main planes 488 sq. ft.
Loading per sq. ft., 7.5 lbs.; per h.p. (360), 10.4 lbs.
Full speed near ground 100 m.p.h.
Time to 6,000 ft 8.25 mins.
Full speed at 6,000 ft 97 m.p.h.
Service ceiling 13,000 ft.
Endurance at 2,000 ft. at 80 m.p.h. 2 3/4 hours.
Landing speed 45 m.p.h.