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Vickers Vespa

Army Co-Oporation Aircraft

Vickers Vespa

Army Co-Oporation Aircraft

OVERVIEW
SPECIFICATIONS
ARMAMENT
VARIANTS
HISTORY
MEDIA
OVERVIEW



Passed on by the British Royal Air Force, the Vickers Vespa was ordered by the governments of Bolivia and Ireland and operated until 1940.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: United Kingdom
YEAR: 1928
MANUFACTURER(S): Vickers Limited - UK
PRODUCTION: 15
OPERATORS: Bolivia; Ireland; United Kingdom (evaluated)
SPECIFICATIONS



Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the Vickers Vespa model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
CREW: 2
LENGTH: 32.97 feet (10.05 meters)
WIDTH: 50.03 feet (15.25 meters)
HEIGHT: 10.50 feet (3.2 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 2,888 pounds (1,310 kilograms)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 4,409 pounds (2,000 kilograms)
ENGINE: 1 x Armstrong Siddeley Jaguar VIC 14-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine developing 490 horsepower.
SPEED (MAX): 140 miles-per-hour (225 kilometers-per-hour; 121 knots)
RANGE: 581 miles (935 kilometers; 505 nautical miles)
CEILING: 25,919 feet (7,900 meters; 4.91 miles)
RATE-OF-CLIMB: 935 feet-per-minute (285 meters-per-minute)




ARMAMENT



Typical:
1 x 0.303 caliber (7.7mm) Vickers machine gun in fixed, forward-firing position.
1 x 0.303 caliber (7.7mm) Lewis machine gun on trainable Scarff round mounting in rear cockpit.
VARIANTS



Series Model Variants
• Vespa - Base Series Name
• Type 113 "Vespa I" - Prototype; Bristol Jupiter IV or Jupiter VI engine.
• Type 119 "Vespa II" - Vespa I with metal wings
• Type 149 "Vespa III" - Bolivian export model; all-metal construction; Jupiter VI engine of 455 horsepower; six examples.
• Type 193 "Vespa IV" - Irish export model; Armstrong Siddeley Jaguar VIC engine of 490 horsepower; four examples.
• Type 208 "Vespa V" - Irish export model; aerodynamic Townend ring around cylinders; four examples.
• Type 210 "Vespa VI" - Chinese demonstrator model developed from first prototype airframe; not adopted.
• Type 250 "Vespa VII" - High-altitude performer built from Vespa VI demonstrator.


HISTORY



Detailing the development and operational history of the Vickers Vespa Army Co-Oporation Aircraft.  Entry last updated on 2/1/2017. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The Vickers "Vespa" biplane aircraft served from 1928 until 1940 and was intended for the "Army Cooperation" role. It was of British origin but primarily operated by the Irish Air Corps and the Bolivian Air Force (the Royal Air Force passed on this Vickers product). Several notable variants emerged though total production numbered just 15 units. In Bolivian service, they fought during the "Chaco War" (1932-1935).

Army Cooperation aircraft are lightweight designs intended for lightweight roles such as observation, artillery-spotting and liaison. They are reasonably powerful for their given role and intended for short-field / rough-field operation. Such aircraft are typically low-cost commitments and inherently rugged in their construction. The Vickers Vespa fit many of these qualities when it was first flown in 1925.

The Vespa emerged from Vickers Ltd by way of a private venture initiative targeting Specification 30/24 for the Royal Air Force (RAF). Specification 30/24 sought a two-seat reconnaissance-minded Army Cooperation platform and several other contenders were also in play for the contract- de Havilland arrived with their "Hyena" and Short Brothers pushed their "Chamois" (none of these saw adoption). "Vespa I" (company Type 113) marked the first available Vickers prototype and sported many characteristics of the period - biplane wing arrangement, open-air cockpit and fixed tail-dragger undercarriage. It was powered by a Bristol Jupiter IV series radial piston engine. Later, the Jupiter VI radial was installed.

Flying for the first time during September 1925, engine issues marred its evaluation with the RAF in June of 1926. After reconstruction of the damaged prototype (incorporating more modern attributes such as metal wings), the "Vespa II" (company Type 119) was born. While RAF authorities passed on the Vespa II, the aircraft was ordered by the Bolivian government as the "Vespa III" (company Type 149). This time, the product was an all-metal aircraft (fuselage included) and a Jupiter Vi engine of 455 horsepower output was fitted. Six of the mark were ordered and used in the Chaco Air War as long range bombers and reconnaissance platforms.

The Irish Air Corps took on a stock of four "Vespa IV" (company Type 193) aircraft in 1929 and these arrived with Armstrong Siddeley Jaguar VIC engines of 490 horsepower. Another four were ordered in 1930 as the "Vespa V" (company Type 208) and these differed by having a "Townend" ring set around the engine compartment (the ring was a tight cowling fitted over the exposed cylinders and used as an aerodynamic measure).

Beyond these military-minded marks, there existed the "Vespa VI" (company Type 210) for demonstration to the Chinese government (it was not adopted) and the "Vespa VII" (company Type 250) intended for high-altitude work (carrying a Bristol Pegasus S series engine). The Vespa VII was rebuilt from the Vespa VI Chinese demonstrator which, itself, was the a rebuilt version of the first Vespa prototype.

All Vespa aircraft were out of service - or reaching their useful existences - by the time of World War 2 (1939-1945).




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.

Image of collection of graph types

Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 150mph
Lo: 75mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (140mph).

    Graph average of 112.5 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
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  PAR
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  NYC
Graph showcases the Vickers Vespa's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
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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
15
15

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

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


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Supported Arsenal
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