WW1 Planes
WWl PLANES
An encyclopediae of 1914-18 aircraft types

flag WW1 FRENCH PLANES


The aviation pioneer

Morane-Saulnier Parasol A pioneer of aviation, France was the first major nation to have operational squadrons (1912), under the command of the army. It was then reconnaissance devices short range (flight time of half an hour at most), derived from Blériot XI, the one that allowed Louis Blériot to cross the channel in 1911. French planes were then legion during the Balkan war, and bought or built under license all over the world. If Clerget was a renowned engine manufacturer, such as Le Rhône, the Gnome-Rhone rotating star engines soon became legendary and were built under license in very large quantities in the Allied camp.
In 1914, France began with the largest air force of belligerents. The Nieuport 11 and Morane LA became the standard fighters in 1915, after more than a year of clashes between observation aircraft. The Nieuport 11 was even during this year 1915, the main allied fighter, operating under French colors, but also the RFC (future RAF), Italian, Russian, Belgian, Dutch... Main engine, France also ensured the biggest production aeronautics of the moment. In 1917, SPAD with its model VII allowed the Allied hunt to rebound against the excellent devices deployed by the axis. Its range was complete, including bombers (Farman, Caudron, Voisin), until Breguet 14, versatile and indestructible. It was in November 1918 with the largest air fleet in the world, as much potential for the

Caudron G.III


Breguet 14

Blériot XI

Bleriot XI observation based near Ghent, Sept. 1914. Derived from the original Blériot crossing of the sleeve in 1911 and further improved, Bleriot XI Clerget engine was the main endowment of the observation units of the army. Unarmed, having a low autonomy of flight, the guidance was done by warping of the wings. Victim of the German Halberstadt monoplans, at the end of 1914, they were removed from the active units in favor of more efficient machines, and he passed to the instruction.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 10.8 m, Length 8.64 m, Height 3.3 m
Weight: empty: - Kgs. In charge: 240 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 Clerget of 50 hp
Performance: Vmax: 120 Km / h to 1000 m, ceiling 2 000 m, RA 60 Km.
Armament: none.

Breguet 14

Being one of the first aircraft of Louis Breguet, the model 14, which made its first flight in 1916, quickly made its mark thanks to its qualities the main light bomber and observation aircraft of the air force. It was produced in total at XXX units, and also equiped the Belgian and Italian aviation. Many were reconverted into passenger planes in 1919.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 10.8 m, Length 8.64 m, Height 3.3 m
Weight: empty: - Kgs. In load: 2896 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 BMW 560 of 860 hp
Performance: Vmax: 560 km / h to 4300 m, ceiling 11 000 m, RA 1200 Km.
Armament: 1 MG17 of 8 mm, 4 bombs 50 kgs.

Caudron G.III


G.III front of the Meuse, February 1915.
Coming into service in mid-1915, the Caudron G.III became the most widespread of allied observation devices. Biputre, robust, and two-seater (but not armed), the G.III had sufficient autonomy to perform its mission properly and a low wing load due to a very large wing. Slow, he was also an easy prey for hunting and as a result was gradually withdrawn from the front line for schooling in 1916, notably replaced by his successor, G.VI.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 10.8 m, Length 8.64 m, Height 3.3 m
Weight: empty: - Kgs. In load: 2896 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 BMW 560 of 860 hp
Performance: Vmax: 560 km / h to 4300 m, ceiling 11 000 m, RA 1200 Km.
Armament: 4 bombs 10 kgs, or 8 rockets LePrieur contre-ballons.

Caudron G.VI


G.VI at Verdun, February 1917.

Replacing the G.III, the G.VI was in all points superior, with its full fuselage, its machine gun rear defense, its speed and its ability to ship some light bombs.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 10.8 m, Length 8.64 m, Height 3.3 m
Weight: empty: - Kgs. In load: 2896 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 BMW 560 of 860 hp
Performance: Vmax: 560 km / h to 4300 m, ceiling 11 000 m, RA 1200 Km.
Armament: 1 MG17 of 8 mm, 4 bombs 50 kgs.

Farman F.VII


F.VII on the front of the Meuse, March 1916.

Nicknamed "the rhino" or "Longhorn" by the English who also used it, the Farman F.VII was one of the first allied bombers, released in November 1914, it was widely produced. However, its performance and configuration allowed only high-risk missions. The gunner was not defending back then, but in the forward position, the pilot behind did not have an optimal field of vision. F.VII after a production of xxxx copies, were retired from service in 1916 for more recent versions and went to school.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 10.8 m, Length 8.64 m, Height 3.3 m
Weight: empty: - Kgs. In load: 2896 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 BMW 560 of 860 hp
Performance: Vmax: 560 km / h to 4300 m, ceiling 11 000 m, RA 1200 Km.
Armament: 1 Darne machine gun of 7.7 mm, 8 bombs 10 kgs.

Farman F.40


F.40 deployed against "Sausages" in Belgium, November 1917.

The newest member of the Farman Bomber family, the F.40 was faster and more maneuverable, but kept its front firing position. Its bomb load was modest, but many of these devices were used as a heavy fighter and against the German observation balloons, the "sausages".

Dimensions: Wingspan: 10.8 m, Length 8.64 m, Height 3.3 m
Weight: empty: - Kgs. In load: 2896 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 BMW 560 of 860 hp
Performance: Vmax: 560 km / h to 4300 m, ceiling 11 000 m, RA 1200 Km.
Weaponry: 1 Darne machine gun of 7.7 mm, 10 bombs 10 kgs, or 10 rockets the Prior.

Hanriot HD1


HD.1 Belgian deployed in Poelkapelle in 1918.

Solid and easy to handle, the HD.1 hanriot was a new version of the Nieuport XXVIII, more stocky and light, and therefore faster. Excellent, he gave back to the Belgians and French a superiority that the rotary engines had lost against the "Hispanists" online SPAD. About 300 copies were made the day before the signing of the armistice.
FRENCH AIRCRAFT OF THE FIRST WORLD WAR FRENCH AIRCRAFT OF THE FIRST WORLD WAR © IWM (Q 66290)
Dimensions: Wingspan: 10.8 m, Length 8.64 m, Height 3.3 m
Weight: empty: - Kgs. In charge: 396 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 Gnome-Rhône of 120 hp
Performance: Vmax: 560 km / h to 4300 m, ceiling 11 000 m, RA 1200 Km.
Armament: 1 MG17 of 8 mm, 4 bombs 50 kgs.

Morane 21


Morane 21 carried under an airship, March 1916.

This aircraft, which made its first flight in June 1916 became one of the most prolific observation aircraft of the French army. He was the successor to Morane LA's renowned fighter/recce aircraft. Thanks to its parasol wing, the observer had a clear field. A rear defending machine gun was fitted in 1917.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 10.8 m, Length 8.64 m, Height 3.3 m
Weight: empty: - Kgs. In load: 2896 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 BMW 560 of 860 hp
Performance: Vmax: 560 km / h to 4300 m, ceiling 11 000 m, RA 1200 Km.
Armament: 1 Lewis machine gun of 7.7 mm.

Nieuport X


N.X deployed in June 1915.

This small ultra-light fighter, designed on the ground like an observation plane armed by Gustave Delage, sesquiplan (double upper plane) and V-shaped spacers, became with its rotary engine The Rhone the main allied fighter, used by the British , Belgians, Italians, Russians. Because of its tiny size, it was nicknamed by the British "Baby Nieuport". In the absence of sufficiently reliable machine guns, a Lewis implanted on the upper wing was used, forcing the pilot to stand up (and hold the neck between the knees) to use his weapon.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 10.8 m, Length 8.64 m, Height 3.3 m
Weight: empty: - Kgs. In charge: 396 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 Gnome-Rhône of 120 hp
Performance: Vmax: 560 km / h to 4300 m, ceiling 11 000 m, RA 1200 Km.
Armament: 1 Lewis machine gun of 7.7 mm.

Nieuport XI/XII


N.XI of tarascon deployed to Verdun in 1916, 12 authenticated victories.

N.XI "Zigomar" of Tarascon. N.62, 12 victories in 1916.

Succeeding the tiny Nieuport "baby", the Nieuport XI was (like the XII, its improved version) the most prolific of the French hunters during the year 1916. Very handy and provided with a very reliable engine, the Rotary Rhone XX, it was produced quickly in a large number of copies, and widely used abroad, for lack of local productions. He had some recurve spoiler faults that penalized him and the low power of his engine did not allow to take advantage of the lift of his upper plane combined with the low drag of his lower plane.

He was considered the best allied fighter this year, but soon the Germans with their Albatros D.III and Fokker D.I, D.II, LFG Roland dominated him for lack of machine guns synchonized. The colorful "circus" of Richtofen pushed Nieuport to design a more modern apparatus and the British to design the Sopwith Pup.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 10.8 m, Length 8.64 m, Height 3.3 m
Weight: empty: - Kgs. In charge: 396 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 Gnome-Rhône of 120 hp
Performance: Vmax: 560 km / h to 4300 m, ceiling 11 000 m, RA 1200 Km.
Armament: 1 Lewis machine gun of 7.7 mm.

Nieuport XVII/XXVII


N.XVII René Fonck in 1918.

N.XXVII of the RFC deployed to Beaulieu in 1917.

Taking the succession of the small Nieuport 11, the Nieuport 17 settled the rigidity problem of the single spar of the lower wing, and inaugurated the engine Le Rhône of 113 hp, which gave him the expected performances. However, he kept his Lewis machine gun mounted on the upper wing. He helped to counter, with the Airco DH.2 of the RFC also released in May 1916, the "flail fokker". Quickly the wing gun was doubled or replaced by a hood machine gun. The XXVII version had this "standard" configuration and most of the great allies of 1916 gained their victories on this device.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 8,20 m, Length 5,75 m, Height 2,3 m
Weight: empty: 375 Kgs. In charge: 560 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 Gnome-Rhône of 133 hp
Performances: Vmax: 172 Km / h to 2000 m, ceiling 5300 m, RA 200 Km.
Armament: 1/2 Lewis machine gun 7.7 mm.

Nieuport XXVIII


N.XXVIII of the American squadron "Hat in the ring" in March 1918.

The Nieuport XXVIII was directly extrapolated from the N.XXVII, but it was a break with the previous series, with many differences, starting with the much larger (but still sesquiplan principle) lower plane and H-shaped spacers, a fuselage longer and better profiled, and a new Gnome engine of 160 hp. He finally had "serial" two hood machine guns. The French pilots who obtained it from the end of 1917 complained of the fragility of its superior interlining and its sometimes recalcitrant engines (The Rhone and Gnome Monosoupape were also tested.).

When the volunteers of the American Expeditionary Force arrived in France, they were given these devices in majority, but it was on SPAD XII that they won their victories.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 8,20 m, Length 5,75 m, Height 2,3 m
Weight: empty: 375 Kgs. In charge: 560 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 Gnome-Rhône of 133 hp
Performance: Vmax: 172 km / h to 2000 m, ceiling 5300

Spad VII


S.VII standard with the livery of 1917.

S.VII of the Spa 81.

S.VII C.1 of Marcel Haegelen (Spa 100) in 1917.

S.VII Georges Guynemer.

SPAD, the new name of Deperdussin, designed this fast-moving fighter in Allied aviation. The reason was the combination of the powerful water-cooled Hispano-Suiza Marc Birkgit V8, initially 150 hp and then 220 hp, which gave the aircraft's robustness and profiling excellent performance. He made his initial flight in April 1916 and therefore gradually and rapidly ended the German supremacy on the Northern Front. A squadron among others became legendary: The Spa 3 ("the storks") led by Alfred Heurtaux, including René Dorme, Albert deullin, and George Guynemer. 5000 copies were made until 1918.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 7,80 m, Length 6,15 m, Height 2,12 m
Weight: empty: 510 Kgs. In charge: 740 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 hispano-Suiza 8A of 150 hp
Performance: Vmax: 192 km / h at 2000 m, ceiling 5300 m, RA 220 km.
Armament: 1/2 Lewis machine gun 7.7 mm (the second on the upper wing).

Spad XIII


S.XIII of ace René Fonck in 1917.

S.XII of the RFC in 1918.

Designed on the basis of the S.VII, and appeared in August 1917, the S.XII retained most of it, but traded its old standard engine by the 220 hp V8 A8Ba already seen on the latest versions of the S.VII. He also had reworked wing details and a larger rear wing. Even more powerful, although criticized for his lack of visibility under the upper wing, he also had two synchronized machine guns hood. It was on this aircraft that Guynemer died in Belgium in September 1917, but also that René Fonck acquired the majority of his victories. This aircraft, in addition to equipping the 81 French squadrons active on the North Front, also had many Italian and Belgian squadrons, two squadrons of the RFC and most Aero squadrons Americans. It was on these machines that Rickenbaker and Luke gained their victories and made america aware of the importance of an air force.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 7,80 m, Length 6,15 m, Height 2,12 m
Weight: empty: 565 Kgs. In charge: 820 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 hispano-Suiza 8B of 220 hp
Performance: Vmax: 215 km / h at 2000 m, ceiling 6650 m, RA 200 km.
Armament: 2 x 7.7 mm Lewis machine gun.

Voisin V


Voisin.V heavy hunting in March 1915.

Voisin produced most of the heavy aircraft of the French Air Force, mostly bombers, but some were used as heavy fighters, as is the case for this one, often these aviations had Le Prieur rockets. Equipped with a propulsive engine, with a front post equipped with a Lewis machine gun, it was however not maneuverable enough to accumulate victories.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 7,80 m, Length 6,15 m, Height 2,12 m
Weight: empty: 510 Kgs. In charge: 740 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 hispano-Suiza 8A of 150 hp
Performance: Vmax: 192 km / h at 2000 m, ceiling 5300 m, RA 220 km.
Armament: 1/2 Lewis machine gun 7.7 mm (the second on the upper wing).

Voisin VIII


Voisin.VIII bombing in July 1916.

Dimensions: Wingspan: 7,80 m, Length 6,15 m, Height 2,12 m
Weight: empty: 510 Kgs. In charge: 740 Kgs.
Motorization: 1 hispano-Suiza 8A of 150 hp
Performance: Vmax: 192 km / h at 2000 m, ceiling 5300 m, RA 220 km.
Armament: 1/2 Lewis machine gun 7.7 mm (the second on the upper wing).