Military Factory logo

Sopwith Snipe

United Kingdom (1918)

Detailing the development and operational history of the Sopwith Snipe Single-Seat Biplane Fighter Aircraft.

 Entry last updated on 11/9/2016; Authored by Staff Writer; Content ©

  Sopwith Snipe  
Picture of Sopwith Snipe Single-Seat Biplane Fighter Aircraft
Picture of Sopwith Snipe Single-Seat Biplane Fighter Aircraft Picture of Sopwith Snipe Single-Seat Biplane Fighter Aircraft

The Sopwith Snipe was an evolved form of the successful war-winning Sopwith Camel design - though not appearing until the final weeks of World War 1.

The Sopwith Snipe took all of the components that had made the Sopwith Camel a legend in the middle years of World War 1 and introduced several new features that made this new design the most formidable Allied fighter. Appearing with just eight weeks left in the conflict, the Sopwith Snipe would nevertheless prove its worth against the very best Fokker designs available. In the end, the Herbert Smith-designed Snipe would continue to serve the Royal Air Force (RAF) in large capacity, surviving well into the inter-war years.

Externally, the Snipe took on the basic design of the Camel with a traditional biplane wing structure, fixed landing gear and single pilot seating. Armament consisted of two 7.7mm synchronized machine guns firing in a fixed-forward position. Where the Snipe stood out above its predecessor was internally, featuring an all-new more powerful engine, integrated oxygen and heating systems allowing the aircraft to fly higher and with a better straight-line speed. Power for the Snipe was derived from a Bentley B.R.2 rotary piston engine, delivering some 230 horsepower.

The Sopwith Snipe would go on to become the Thomas Sopwith firms last production aircraft by conflicts end. Nearly 500 examples would be produced and would serve in some capacity up until 1927.
Picture of the Sopwith Snipe Single-Seat Biplane Fighter Aircraft
Picture of the Sopwith Snipe Single-Seat Biplane Fighter Aircraft

Any available statistics for the Sopwith Snipe Single-Seat Biplane Fighter Aircraft are showcased in the areas immediately below. Categories include basic specifications covering country-of-origin, operational status, manufacture(s) and total quantitative production. Other qualities showcased are related to structural values (namely dimensions), installed power and standard day performance figures, installed or proposed armament and mission equipment (if any), global users (from A-to-Z) and series model variants (if any).
Sopwith 7F.1 Specifications
National Flag Graphic
United Kingdom
Year: 1918
Type: Single-Seat Biplane Fighter Aircraft
Manufacturer(s): Sopwith Aviation Company - United Kingdom
Production: 497
Supported Mission Types
Ground Attack
Close-Air Support
Airborne Early Warning
Electronic Warfare
Aerial Tanker
Passenger Industry
VIP Travel
Business Travel
Special Forces
Crew: 1
Length: 19.75 ft (6.02 m)
Width: 30.09 ft (9.17 m)
Height: 8.76 ft (2.67 m)
Empty Weight: 1,323 lb (600 kg)
MTOW: 2,028 lb (920 kg)

Installed Power
1 x Bentley B.R.2 rotary piston engine developing 230 horsepower.

Standard Day Performance
Maximum Speed: 121 mph (195 kph; 105 kts)
Maximum Range: 364 mi (585 km; 316 nm)
Service Ceiling: 19,521 ft (5,950 m; 3.70 mi)
Rate-of-Climb: 1,300 ft/min (396 m/min)

2 x 7.7mm Vickers fixed, forward-firing machine guns synchronized to fire through the spinning propeller blades.

4 x 25lb bombs underwing

Operators List
Australia; Brazil; Canada; Soviet Union; United Kingdom

Series Model Variants
• Snipe - Base Series Designation

Images Gallery