Biplane

Supermarine Southampton

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Supermarine Southampton

Supermarine Southampton Biplane History
Designed by Reginald J. Mitchell and built by Supermarine Aviation Works, the Supermarine Southampton was developed from the Supermarine Swan. During the interwar period this twin engine biplane was one of the successful flying boats. The MkI biplanes were built with a wooden hull and wooden wings, however the later MkII version was built with a duraluminium hull and wooden wings. Both wings were fitted above the fuselage, and the engines were mounted on pylons between the upper and lower wings. Later models were fitted with metal wings as well as metal hulls. Eighty Three Supermarine Southampton biplanes were built in total, plus the three engine prototype Southampton X.

The Supermarine Southampton Biplane Operations
The maiden flight of the production aircraft took place on March 10, 1925, with distribution to the Royal Air Force commencing in the middle of 1925, and entering RAF service with 480 flight at RAF Calshot in August the same year. Initially used for coastal reconnaissance, the Supermarine Southampton gained fame for it’s long distance flights, effectively used to ‘fly the flag’. Perhaps the most significant of these flights was carried out between 1927 and 1928 by four of these aircraft. They flew 27,000 miles (43,500km) from Felixstowe to Singapore via the Mediterranean and India.

Other operators of the Supermarine Southampton biplane included: Argentine Naval Aviation, the Royal Australian Air Force, the Royal Danish Navy, the Imperial Japanese Navy, the Turkish Air Force, Japan Air Transport and Imperial Airways.

A single fuselage of this biplane is on display at the Royal Air Force Museum in London.

Various scale models, model kits and plans of this aircraft have been available in the market place.

Supermarine Southampton II Biplane Specifications:

Supermarine Southampton Crew:
5
Supermarine Southampton Length:
49ft 8½in (15.15m)
Supermarine Southampton Wingspan:
75ft 0in (22.86m)
Supermarine Southampton Height:
17ft 6in (5.34m)
Supermarine Southampton Wing area:
1,448ft² (134.5 m²)
Supermarine Southampton Empty weight:
9,697lb (4,180kg)
Supermarine Southampton Loaded weight:
15,200lb (7,680kg)
Supermarine Southampton Engine:
Twin Napier Lion VA inline W-block, 500 hp (373 kW) each
Supermarine Southampton Maximum speed:
95mph (153 km/h)
Supermarine Southampton Range:
544 mi (876 km)
Supermarine Southampton Service Ceiling:
5,950ft (1,814m)

Supermarine Southampton II Biplane Armament:

Bombs:
1,100lbs

Guns:
3 × .303 in (7.7 mm) Lewis guns
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