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Fairey Flycatcher

Naval Biplane Fighter Aircraft

Fairey Flycatcher

Naval Biplane Fighter Aircraft

OVERVIEW
SPECIFICATIONS
ARMAMENT
VARIANTS
HISTORY
MEDIA
OVERVIEW



Throughout most of the 1920s, the Fairey Flycatcher served as the primary fighter of the British Fleet Air Arm.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: United Kingdom
YEAR: 1923
STATUS: Retired, Out-of-Service
MANUFACTURER(S): Fairey Aviation Company Ltd - UK
PRODUCTION: 196
OPERATORS: United Kingdom
SPECIFICATIONS



Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the Fairey Flycatcher model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
CREW: 1
LENGTH: 22.97 feet (7 meters)
WIDTH: 29.00 feet (8.84 meters)
HEIGHT: 12.01 feet (3.66 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 2,039 pounds (925 kilograms)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 3,527 pounds (1,600 kilograms)
ENGINE: 1 x Armstrong Siddeley Jaguar IV 14-cylinder radial piston engine developing 400 horsepower.
SPEED (MAX): 134 miles-per-hour (215 kilometers-per-hour; 116 knots)
RANGE: 311 miles (500 kilometers; 270 nautical miles)
CEILING: 18,996 feet (5,790 meters; 3.60 miles)
RATE-OF-CLIMB: 1,050 feet-per-minute (320 meters-per-minute)




ARMAMENT



STANDARD:
2 x .303 Vickers machine guns in fixed, forward-firing mounts synchronized to fire through the spinning propeller blades.

OPTIONAL:
4 x 20 lb conventional drop bombs held underwing.
VARIANTS



Series Model Variants
• Flycatcher - Base Series Name
• Flycatcher I (Mk I) - Initial, single-seat production model for FAA.
• Flycatcher II (Mk II) - Proposed all-metal derivative of 1926; prototype form; never adopted.


HISTORY



Detailing the development and operational history of the Fairey Flycatcher Naval Biplane Fighter Aircraft.  Entry last updated on 9/11/2018. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The primary Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm (FAA) fighter aircraft of the 1920s and early 1930s became the Fairey "Flycatcher". This biplane was produced in 196 examples and first flew in 1922. It was introduced for service during 1923 and held an active career until retired in 1934, notable production spanning from 1923 to 1926. The Flycatcher was developed to fulfill Specification N6/22 calling for a carrier-based fighter platform with an interchangeable undercarriage (from wheeled to float). The aircraft - along with the competing Parnall Plover (13 examples) - was used to supplant the outgoing fleet of twenty Nieuport "Nightjar" biplane fighters (based on the Nieuport Nighthawk) introduced as recently as 1922.

When the wood-and-metal Flychatcher prototype emerged from development, it carried an Armstrong Siddeley Jaguar II engine to complete its first flight on November 22nd, 1922. The FAA commissioned for nine of the type to serve as evaluation aircraft alongside the Parnall Plover which was also under consideration. Between the two offerings, the Flycatcher was selected for serial production as it gave the carrier performance that the FAA sought in its next fighter, leaving Plover aircraft manufacture at just thirteen aircraft.

With its Jaguar II radial engine (the Bristol Jupiter IV radial was an alternative engine installation), the Flycatcher could manage speeds of over 130 miles per hour with ranges out to 310 miles. Its listed service ceiling was 19,000 feet and rate-of-climb 1,090 feet per minute - it could reach 10,000 feet in under 10 minutes.

The Flycatcher was first fielded with FAA squadron No. 402 and went on to stock Nos. 403, 406, and 801. In practice, the aircraft were well accepted with their good combination of speed, handling, and armament. Twin .303 Vickers were fitted over the nose and a bomb-carrying provision added 4 x 20 lb drop bombs. Flycatchers experienced light combat service during their flying tenures which included tours near China and the East Indies as well as over the Mediterranean.

The primary Flycatcher production model was Flycatcher Mk I. The Flycatcher Mk II stood as a proposed successor with all-metal construction. While flown as a prototype, it was not adopted by the FAA.




MEDIA









Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

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Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 150mph
Lo: 75mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (134mph).

    Graph average of 112.5 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
NYC
 
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LDN
 
  PAR
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  BER
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  MSK
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  TKY
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  SYD
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  LAX
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  NYC
Graph showcases the Fairey Flycatcher I's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
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Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
196
196

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


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Supported Roles
A2A
Interception
UAV
Ground Attack
CAS
Training
ASW
Anti-Ship
AEW
MEDEVAC
EW
Maritime/Navy
SAR
Aerial Tanker
Utility/Transport
VIP
Passenger
Business
Recon
SPECOPS
X-Plane/Development
A2A=Air-to-Air; UAV=Unmanned; CAS=Close Support; ASW=Anti-Submarine; AEW=Airborne Early Warning; MEDEVAC=Medical Evac; EW=Electronic Warfare; SAR=Search-Rescue