Aircraft Photo ?

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Aircraft Photo ?

Postby Mivalanchi » 24 Feb 2009, 11:55

Found this postcard among the heirlooms. I think the aircraft is a Blackburn type, and maybe the pilot could be related?
I dont know where or when pic was taken. Any suggestions?

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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby rospaul » 24 Feb 2009, 12:49

Like you Miv' I find these old photographs fascinating.

I had an Uncle who as a young man used to fly from a field on the Gaywood Hall Est, it's now part of Gayton Rd Cemetery, could this be the location of your photo ? I know this field was used for Carnivals and Flying displays well into the 1920s.

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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby EWW » 24 Feb 2009, 17:39

Sandringham estate held air shows over many years, could be there. Certainly looks like
a Blackburn, same type of cowling. Old Warden airfield near Bedford still has one flying
I think. They fly vintage planes of all types there during the year and the planes that
were used in the film "Those Magnificant Men and their Flying Machines" are housed
there. This link is to a couple of pics I posted of Sandringham.

viewtopic.php?f=21&t=1485&p=6542&hilit=+air+show#p6542
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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby Alastair » 24 Feb 2009, 19:18

Is that the initials SM on the cowl logo?
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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby rospaul » 24 Feb 2009, 20:05

:smt119 .... Could be .... :?:

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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby Alastair » 24 Feb 2009, 21:11

Midwing, metal framed, rotary engine monoplane.. probably 1910-1916 give or take 3 or 4 years either side, and I'd say almost certainly pre-1914.. . I'd like to see an enlargement of the initials on the cowel if possible. The Blackburn at the Shuttleworth is a one off, and I'm struggling at the moment to find pictures of a Blackburn type identical to this one.

Wiki provides the following list..


Blackburn First Monoplane (1909) - single-engine, single-seat high-wing monoplane aircraft - not this one!
Blackburn Second Monoplane (1911) - single-engine midwing monoplane aircraft
Blackburn Mercury (1911) - single-engine, two-seat midwing monoplane training aircraft
Blackburn Type B (1912) - single-engine, two-seat midwing monoplane training aircraft. A development of the Blackburn Mercury
Blackburn Type D (1912) - single-engine single seat mid-winged monoplane
Blackburn Type E (1912) - single-engine, midwing metal-framed monoplanes, one single seater one twin
Blackburn Type I (1913) - single engine 1/2 seat mid-wing monoplane built both as land- and seaplane
Blackburn Type L (1914) - single engine two seat biplane seaplane - not this one!
Blackburn Twin Blackburn (1915) - twin-fuselage, two-engine, two-seat anti-Zeppelin seaplane - not this one!
AD Scout (1915) - Admiralty designed single-engine, single-seat pusher anti-Zeppelin aircraft. Built by Blackburn and by Hewlett & Blondeau - not this one!
Blackburn Triplane (1916) - Blackburn designed triplane version of Scout - not this one!
Blackburn White Falcon (1916) - single engine two seat mid-wing monoplane
Blackburn General Purpose (1916) - twin engine three seat seaplane biplane anti-submarine patrol bomber - not this one!
Blackburn Kangaroo R.T.1 (1918) - twin-engine, three-seat biplane reconnaissance/torpedo bomber - not this one!
Blackburn N.1B (1918) - single-engine single seat biplane flying boat escort bomber (started; not finished; never flew) - not this one!
Blackburn Blackburd (1918) single-engine, single-seat biplane torpedo bomber - not this one!
Blackburd Sidecar (1919) single engine two seat mid wing monoplane ultra light: may not have flown
Blackburn Swift T.1 (1920) - single-engine, single-seat floatplane torpedo bomber - not this one!


Most of the pre-1920 designs can be discarded easily.. which only leaves a few.. many of these being single-example types. If that is "SM" on the cowel taht might give a lead either on an alternative manufacturer.. or the engine manufacturer (which would also help narrow down the type).

There are a lot of people present in the picture, and possibley a marquee visible under the wing on the left.


The airshow photos would appear to significantly later - it looks like a de Havilland Tiger Moth from the '30s onwards, a type still popular today. Unfortunately the serial markings are just obscured.
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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby Mivalanchi » 24 Feb 2009, 21:37

It could be a prototype? as the wheels have spokes, and most of the other photos I have seen have hub cap covers.
When I said could be related, I meant it may be a younger Blackburn, as some of the photos of an 'older looking' Blackburn I have seen on the web look facially similar?

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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby Alastair » 24 Feb 2009, 22:20

Let's try and narrow it down by taking the earlier types in turn..

Blackburn First Monoplane (1909) - single-engine, single-seat high-wing monoplane aircraft - not this one as the picture is clearly mid-winged
Blackburn Second Monoplane (1911) - single-engine midwing monoplane aircraft - doesn't look like this one, the dihedral looks to be too flat and this type has a much more primitive look
Blackburn Mercury (1911) - single-engine, two-seat midwing monoplane training aircraft - all the photos I can find show double-wheel undercarriage, but there were several variations on this type
Blackburn Type B (1912) - single-engine, two-seat midwing monoplane training aircraft. A development of the Blackburn Mercury - I can't find any pictures of this one but as a derivitave of the Mercury it seems unlikely as the Mercury had radically different undercarraige to the aircraft in the picture
Blackburn Type D (1912) - single-engine single seat mid-winged monoplane - - the undercarriage configuration is wrong based on available photos
Blackburn Type E (1912) - single-engine, midwing metal-framed monoplanes, one single seater one twin - not this one as the undercarriage configuration and the engine type are wrong.
Blackburn Type I (1913) - single engine 1/2 seat mid-wing monoplane built both as land- and seaplane - the undercarriage configuration is wrong based on photos and plans
Blackburn White Falcon (1916) - single engine two seat mid-wing monoplane - the available photographs show a 4-bladed prop



I don't think this is a Blackburn, it looks like a continental design to me, either French or Italian, maybe German. The obvious SM reference would be Savoia-Marchetti, but that name wasn't adopted until 1922 and judging by the fashions that is too late - and they produced floatplanes/seaplanes. This is proving an interesting mystery..
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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby Alastair » 24 Feb 2009, 22:23

Kick myself

Missing the obvious.. MS = Morane-Saulnier, a French manufacturer.

The Search resumes..
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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby teddybear1959 » 24 Feb 2009, 23:40

Indeed you are right Alastair.

http://www.ctie.monash.edu.au/hargrave/ ... lnier.html

Possibly a Type G?

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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby Alastair » 25 Feb 2009, 00:03

teddybear1959 wrote:Indeed you are right Alastair.

http://www.ctie.monash.edu.au/hargrave/ ... lnier.html

Possibly a Type G?

Teddy
:wink:

Looks right, and the type was manufactured under licence by Grahame-White in Hendon.
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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby old-git » 10 Mar 2009, 03:19

I hope someone can help with this 2" photo in the family collection, I've no idea where it was shot, pity the chap is walking in front of the registration mark and I can't make out the name on the front of the plane. Anyone know the make/model? 1930's?

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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby Alastair » 10 Mar 2009, 10:34

I think we can see enough of the registration letters..

Looks like G-ABS or G-ABS$, so it's British registered (standard format is $-$$$ or $-$$$, where the first letter is the national code).. Google hasn't turned up anything on the registration straight away, so I'll have a search.. keep me amused whilst I have my coffee and an interesting warm-up for the grey matter this morning..

Tri-motor (inline engines, I like the way the upper and lower engines are vertically reversed to maximise prop clearance), biplane, rough field landing.. looks like a small passenger or mail type. I'm thinking De Haviland, but only because the engine cowlings look like they've been lifted straight off a Moth.
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Re: Aircraft Photo ?

Postby EWW » 10 Mar 2009, 10:40

I am of the same thought as you Al, De-Haviland, but I have not found it yet.
ABS used to be the reg for Aviation Business Systems that was allocated to
passenger carrying aircraft at one time.
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