Airco DH.14 Okapi

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Airco DH.14 Okapi
Airco DH.14 Okapi
Type: Bomber , mail plane
Design country:

United KingdomUnited Kingdom United Kingdom


Aircraft Manufacturing Company

First flight:


Number of pieces:


The Airco DH.14 Okapi was a single-engine, two-seat biplane produced by the British aircraft manufacturer Aircraft Manufacturing Company (Airco).

The DH.14 was developed by Geoffrey de Havilland , the chief designer at the time. The machine was supposed to replace the DH.4 and DH.9 in its role as a bomber in the British Air Force , but did not reach series production.


The DH.14 - also known as the Okapi - was a slightly enlarged variant of the DH.9 with a Rolls-Royce Condor engine and was intended to replace this, like the DH.4, in its role as a bomber.

The first two copies were made towards the end of the First World War , but were initially not completed because the Royal Air Force showed no great interest in this aircraft due to a lack of demand due to the end of the war.

The third copy was made at Airco in Hendon in a design as a mail plane with the designation DH.14A and was more ready to fly than its two predecessors. The aircraft, powered by a Napier Lion engine , was given the civil registration G-EAPY and was purchased by the private citizen F. S. Cotton, who wanted to win the £ 10,000 prize awarded by the Australian government for the maiden flight from England to Australia. But in the end he did not succeed because the pilots and brothers Ross and Keith Smith and their crew with a Vickers Vimy got ahead of him in December 1919. Cotton made another attempt at a pioneer flight and set out with the DH.14 on the route from London to Cape Town in February 1920. But here, too, Cotton was unlucky - the plane had to make an emergency landing in Messina (Italy), and after repairs and restarting, another emergency landing took place on July 24, 1920 and the company was demolished.

In 1921 de Havilland completed the first two military aircraft built on the Stag Lane Aerodrome; they were then used for test flights. One of the machines crashed on February 10, 1921, after which serial production of the DH.14 was abandoned.

Technical specifications

Parameter Data
crew 2 (pilot, bombardier)
length 10.35 m
span 15.37 m
height 4.27 m
Wing area 40.32 m²
Empty mass 2034 kg
Max. Takeoff mass 3209 kg
Top speed 196 km / h in 10,000 ft (3,048 m)
Rate of climb 122 m / min
Max. Flight duration approx. 5 h
Engines a Rolls-Royce Condor piston engine with 600 hp (441 kW)
Armament 1 rigid forward-firing 7.7 mm Vickers machine gun ,
1 Lewis machine gun in the slewing ring,
6 × 51 kg bombs in two bomb bays in the fuselage

Web links

Commons : De Havilland DH.14 Okapi  - collection of images, videos and audio files