Australian F.2B in Palestine, February 1918
September 9, 1916
|Number of pieces:||
The plane was also known colloquially as the Bristol Fighter , Brisfit or Biff . Although designed as a two-seater, the agile F2.B was able to keep up with the single-seater Bristol Scout . After initial difficulties, the solid construction became a great success. It remained in military service until the 1930s and was also used successfully as a civilian version.
It was built by the Bristol Airplane Company . The first model was the Bristol Type 12 F.2A , whose maiden flight took place on September 9, 1916. The second prototype flew on October 25, 1916. The design came from Frank Barnwell's Type 9 R.2A . This was a two-legged biplane with a uniform span, which was equipped with a 120 hp (89 kW) Beardmore engine . The F2.A was powered by a 190 hp (142 kW) Rolls Royce Falcon I in-line engine. The series machines got a revised engine fairing. In addition, the profile of the wings has been changed. The pilot's seat was no longer protected with reinforcement. The machine was armed with a forward-firing 0.303-inch (7.7-mm) Vickers machine gun , the installation of which required a tunnel in the fuel tank in the upper fuselage, and a rotating Lewis machine gun in the observer position. Only 52 F.2A machines were built.
Improvements eventually led to the definitive Bristol Type 22 F.2B , which first flew on September 25, 1916. The first 150 machines had Falcon I or II engines, the rest received 275 hp (205 kW) Falcon III engines. The machine reached 198 km / h with the Falcon III engine. Hispano-Suiza and Sunbeam-Arab engines, however, could not convince. The F.2B was 16 km / h faster than the F.2A and climbed 3 minutes faster to 3000 m. The observer position received a second Lewis MG.
The first F.2A should attack the enemy in formation flight and take them into crossfire . The tactic turned out to be a failure. When the F.2A took part in the Battle of Arras in April 1917 , disaster broke out. Four of the six planes launched were shot down by five Albatros D.III of the Jasta 11 under the leadership of Manfred von Richthofen . The pilot William Leefe Robinson was captured. A fifth machine was badly damaged.
The tactics have been revised; now the planes flew like single-seaters alone. The forward-firing Vickers machine gun, the high speed and the maneuverability increased the successes and the losses decreased.
In September and October 1917, 1600 F.2B machines were ordered; they remained in use until the end of the war. The Royal Air Force had 1,583 machines in service. A total of 5,329 machines were likely built, most of them at Bristol. The other machines were built by Standard Motors , Armstrong Whitworth and Cunard Steamship Company . In addition, other British Empire air forces flew the F.2B, mainly in the Middle East , India and the Republic of China . There they were often used as light bombers .
The F.2B also served in the RNZAF and RAAF as well as in Poland , Belgium , Canada , Ireland , Greece , Mexico , Norway , Peru , Spain and Sweden . In 1932 the last machines were retired from the RAF in India. In New Zealand this did not happen until 1935.
The Bristol MR1 was an all-metal aircraft based on the F.2A and first flew on October 23, 1917; however, it never went into series production.
- Hærens flyvåpen
- Soviet Union Air Force : 2 copies
|Parameter||Data Bristol F.2B Fighter|
|crew||Pilot and observer|
|Wing area||37.62 m²|
|Empty mass||975 kg|
|Takeoff mass||1474 kg|
|Top speed||198 km / h at an altitude of 1525 m|
|Service ceiling||5485 m|
|Engine||1 × 12-cylinder in-line engine Rolls-Royce Falcon , 275 PS (202 kW)|
|Armament||1 x 7.7 mm Vickers MG , 2 x 7.7 mm Lewis MG; 108 kg bombs|
Today there are still three airworthy F.2Bs built by Bristol:
- The oldest aircraft of the trio is the D-7889 of the Historic Aircraft Collection , which was built in 1917/1918. The maiden flight of the restored D-7889 took place on June 6, 2006.
- The D-8084 of the Fighter Collection , which has been airworthy since June 30, 1998.
- The D-8096 , which was flown for the first time by the Shuttleworth Collection in February 1952 and for a long time was the only airworthy F.2B.
- Aero, issue 40, pp. 1118 and 1119
- Scale Aircraft Drawings, pp. 22-26, Air Age, ISBN 0-911295-02-X .
- F.2B from the Shuttleworth Collection
- Flight demonstration
- Original footage of an SE5 Squadron and a Bristol F2 Fighter