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AirCo DH.4

Light Day Bomber Biplane Aircraft

AirCo DH.4

Light Day Bomber Biplane Aircraft

OVERVIEW
SPECIFICATIONS
ARMAMENT
VARIANTS
HISTORY
MEDIA
OVERVIEW



The Airco DH.4 was produced in nearly 6,300 examples for the Allies and served as a successful day bomber during World War 1.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: United Kingdom
YEAR: 1917
STATUS: Retired, Out-of-Service
MANUFACTURER(S): Aircraft Manufacturing Company Ltd (AirCo) / de Havilland - United Kingdom / Dayton-Wright; Fisher Body - USA
PRODUCTION: 6,295
OPERATORS: Australia; Belgium; Canada; Chile; Cuba; Greece; Iran; Mexico; Nicaragua; New Zealand; South Africa; Spain; United Kingdom; United States
SPECIFICATIONS



Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the AirCo DH.4 (Eagle VIII) model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
CREW: 2
LENGTH: 30.68 feet (9.35 meters)
WIDTH: 42.39 feet (12.92 meters)
HEIGHT: 10.99 feet (3.35 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 2,392 pounds (1,085 kilograms)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 3,479 pounds (1,578 kilograms)
ENGINE: 1 x Rolls-Royce Eagle VIII inline engine developing 375 horsepower driving a two-bladed propeller unit at the nose.
SPEED (MAX): 143 miles-per-hour (230 kilometers-per-hour; 124 knots)
RANGE: 478 miles (770 kilometers; 416 nautical miles)
CEILING: 21,998 feet (6,705 meters; 4.17 miles)
RATE-OF-CLIMB: 1,000 feet-per-minute (305 meters-per-minute)




ARMAMENT



STANDARD:
1 OR 2 x 7.62mm Vickers machine guns (fixed, forward-firing).
2 x 7.62mm Lewis machine guns on trainable mount in rear cockpit.

OPTIONAL:
Maximum External Bomb Load of 460lb.
VARIANTS



Series Model Variants
• DH.4 - Base Series Designationl produced in UK and US.
• DH.4A - Civil Passenger Model; seating for two in glazed cabin aft of pilot.
• DH.4B - US Air Service model; fitted with Liberty engine; pilot's seat relocated aft of fuel tank and adjacent to rear cockpit.
• DH.4 B-1 - Increased Fuel Capacity to 110 US gallons.
• DH.4 B-2 - Trainer Variant
• DH.4 B-3 - Increased Fuel Capacity to 135 US gallons.
• DH.4 B-4 - Civilian Variant
• DH.4 B-5 - Experimental Civilian Variant with enclosed cabin area.
• DH.4BD - Crop-dusting model based on the DH.4B.
• DH.4BG - Specialized variant fitting smoke generators.
• DH.4BK - Specialized night flying model.
• DH.4BM - Communications Variant; single-seat.
• DH.4BM-1 - Dual-control DH.4BM model
• DH.4BM-2 - Dual-control DH.4BM model
• DH.4BP - Experimental Photo-Reconnaissance Platform.
• DH.4BP-1 - Survey Platform
• DH.4BS - Developmental Platform fitting a Liberty (supercharged) engine.
• DH.4BT - Dual control trainer variant
• DH.4BW - Developmental Platform fitting a Wright H engine.
• DH.4C - Fitting a Packard engine of 300 horsepower.
• DH.4L - Civilian Model
• DH.4M - Rebuilt DH.4s utilizing steel tubing for fuselage.
• DH.4Amb - Airborne Ambulance
• DH.4M-1 (Boeing Model 16) - Post-War Production models; all-new fuselage.
• DH.4M-1T - Dual control trainer version of the DH.4M production models.
• DH.4M-1K - Target Tug Conversion Models
• O2B-1 - US Navy designation of DH.4M-1 models.
• O2B-2 - US Navy designation of night-flying/cross-country conversion models.
• DH.4M-2 - Atlantic-produced post-war models
• LWF J-2 ("Twin DH") - Developmental two-engine, long-range model; fitted with 2 x Hall-Scott-Liberty 6 series engines of 200 horsepower each; 30 examples produced.
• DH.4R - Racer Model; single seat; fitted with Napier Lion engine of 450 horsepower.
• XCO-7 (Boeing Model 42) - Observation Platform by Boeing with new wings, revised tail fin and split landing gear arrangement.



HISTORY



Detailing the development and operational history of the AirCo DH.4 Light Day Bomber Biplane Aircraft.  Entry last updated on 10/23/2018. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
With production numbering over 6,000 total units, the AirCo / de Havilland DH.4 was another one of Geoffrey de Havilland's successful aircraft designs of World War 2 (his legacy would later and forever be solidified through the World War 2-era de Havilland DH.98 "Mosquito" fighter-bomber series). The DH.4 was fielded en mass and proved itself a very viable combat platform so much so that the DH.9 - the planned successor to the DH.4 - never unseated the original DH.4 model series. As such, the Dh.4 enjoyed a lasting aerial legacy, achieving success in war time as a principle frontline daytime bomber of the Allies in World War 1 and, in peacetime, serving roles of aerial surveying and crop dusting well into the 1930s.

The DH.4 was designed to meet a War Office specification for a lightweight daytime bomber. Though primarily appearing with the AirCo name, the DH.4 was produced by a variety of sub-contractors throughout England (1,449 total aircraft) and in the United States. U.S. production alone accounted for 4,846 aircraft. British-produced aircraft were fitted with the Rolls-Royce Eagle engine (Eagle III 250hp early and Eagle VIII 375 hp later) whilst American models primarily featured the more powerful Liberty 12 series of 400 horsepower and operated under the United States Army Air Service (USAAS) banner. Despite the use of the Liberty engine, the American model did not feature any notable performance gains when compared to its British counterpart in action - in fact it actually suffered some.

The DH.4 series carried its crew of two in tandem with the pilot placed ahead and the gunner/observer in the rear. The positions were quite separated which hindered communication between the two despite even a "speaking tube" being implemented. The DH.9 series would remedy this by placing the pilot and rear gunner cockpits close to together. The pilot managed one or two x 7.7mm Vickers machine guns in fixed, forward-facing mountings while the rear cockpit was fitted with 2 x 7.62mm Lewis machine guns on a trainable Scarff ring mounting. The DH.4 was cleared to carry up to 460lb of external ordnance (2 x 230lb bombs or 4 x 112lb bombs).

First flight of the DH.4 was recorded during August of 1916 and the aircraft went into service in January of the following year with the British. The DH.4 was taken on by the Americans upon their entry into the war in 1917 with the series being used operationally in 1918. Fisher Body and Dayton-Wright accounted for most of the stateside production of DH.4s. U.S. use went beyond that of the Army Air Service for the DH.4 was also taken on in number by its Navy and Marine Corps showcasing the versatility in its design.

The primary British Air Service (Royal Flying Corps) variant became the standard DH.4 day bomber. In the post-war years, the biplane proved popular in civilian circles where many were modified for various roles. The DH.4A featured a two-passenger cabin aft of the pilot in a glazed over position. The DH.4R was a single-seat racing mount outfitted with the Napier Lion engine of 450 horsepower.

The U.S. took the de Havilland design even further and manufactured a slew of variants from the standard DH.4 day bomber. This included revised models, civilian marks, experimental types, reconnaissance platforms, various engine installations, dual-control trainers, long-range models, etc... The final U.S. Army DH.4s were not retired until 1932.

Australia and Belgium both operated the series in civilian markings. Military operators went on to include Canada, Chile, Cuba, Greece, Iran, Mexico, Nicaragua, New Zealand, South Africa, the Soviet Union, Spain, and Turkey. The Soviets managed a locally-produced copy from the Polikarpov brand during the post-war years.

The DH.4 was a related offshoot of the DH.4 and appeared in 1917 with 4,091 ultimately built. These also found widespread use the world over.




MEDIA







General Assessment (BETA)
Firepower  
Performance  
Survivability  
Versatility  
Impact  


Values are derrived from a variety of categories related to the design, overall function, and historical influence of this aircraft in aviation history.
MF Power Rating (BETA)
92
The MF Power Rating takes into account over sixty individual factors related to this aircraft entry. The rating is out of 100 total possible points.
Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 150mph
Lo: 75mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (143mph).

    Graph average of 112.5 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
NYC
 
  LDN
LDN
 
  PAR
PAR
 
  BER
BER
 
  MSK
MSK
 
  TKY
TKY
 
  SYD
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  LAX
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  NYC
Graph showcases the AirCo DH.4 (Eagle VIII)'s operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
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
6295
6295

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

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


Altitude Visualization
Small airplane graphic
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
Supported Arsenal
Graphical image of an aircraft medium machine gun
Graphical image of an aircraft conventional drop bomb munition
Commitments / Honors
Military lapel ribbon for Operation Allied Force
Military lapel ribbon for the Arab-Israeli War
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Britain
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Midway
Military lapel ribbon for the Berlin Airlift
Military lapel ribbon for the Chaco War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cuban Missile Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for pioneering aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the French-Indochina War
Military lapel ribbon for the Golden Age of Flight
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon for the Indo-Pak Wars
Military lapel ribbon for the Iran-Iraq War
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1982 Lebanon War
Military lapel ribbon for the Malayan Emergency
Military lapel ribbon representing modern aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the attack on Pearl Harbor
Military lapel ribbon for the Six Day War
Military lapel ribbon for the Soviet-Afghan War
Military lapel ribbon for the Spanish Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for the Suez Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for Warsaw Pact of the Cold War-era
Military lapel ribbon for the WASP (WW2)
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2
Military lapel ribbon for the Yom Kippur War
Military lapel ribbon for experimental x-plane aircraft
* Ribbons not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective campaigns/operations.