The Breda Ba.27 was an Italian proposal, and eventual modification, of the original American Travel Air "Type R" racer of the late-1920s (the Inter-War years). The first three of five Type R racer aircraft were built under such secrecy that they earned the nickname of "Mystery Ship" from local press in Wichita, Kansas. Capable of reaching speeds of 235 miles-per-hour, the high-performance monoplane design certainly impressed as a record-setter in both speed and range at a time when military designs all but dominated competition racing.
The fifth of the lot was commissioned directly by the Italian government after the Type R was showcased on tour across Europe. The completed form was taken down in Wichita, transported by ship across the Atlantic, and reassembled in Italy, serving to form the basis for the Ba.27 to follow.
The Ba.27 retained the single-seat, open-air cockpit of the original as well as the low-set, braced monoplane wings. Steel tube construction made up the internals while a light corrugated alloy metal was used for skinning the aircraft. Wood was implemented at the wing mainplanes as well as the tailplanes to complete the design resulting in a mixed-construction aircraft consistent with the period. Fixed, spatted wheeled main undercarriage legs provided the "tail-dragger" appearance when ground-running. The local Alfa Romeo "Mercurius" air-cooled radial piston engine was selected to drive power to the two-bladed propeller unit at the nose, the engine outputting 540 horsepower at full throttle.
The Italians constructed a total of fourteen Ba.27 airframes beginning with two Ba.27 aircraft representing prototypes. A further twelve made up the Ba.27 "Metallico" and featured slight improvements to help win critics over as the initial prototypes did not impress Regia Aeronautica authorities. This lead to an extensive reworking of the aircraft that included refined aerodynamic qualities throughout, a relocated (further back) cockpit, and smooth sheet metal skinning. Even so, in this guise, the aircraft was not adopted for serial production and operational-level service for local forces.
In testing, the revised Metallico managed speeds of 236 miles-per-hour, ranged out to 466 miles, and sported a service ceiling of 29,530 feet. Rate-of-climb was 2,180 feet-per-minute. Structurally, it registered a length of 25.1 feet, a wingspan of 35.4 feet, and a height of 11.1 feet. Empty weight was 2,910lb against a gross weight of 4,078lb.
As a fighter, the aircraft was set to carry 2 x 12.7mm Breda-SAFAT air-cooled Heavy Machine Guns (HMGs) in fixed, forward-firing mountings.
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(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
✓Air-to-Air Combat, Fighter
General ability to actively engage other aircraft of similar form and function, typically through guns, missiles, and/or aerial rockets.
✓X-Plane (Developmental, Prototype, Technology Demonstrator)
Aircraft developed for the role of prototyping, technology demonstration, or research / data collection.
Can accelerate to higher speeds than average aircraft of its time.
EXTENDED RANGE PERFORMANCE
Capability to travel considerable distances through onboard fuel stores.
Manual process of allowing its pilot and / or crew to exit in the event of an airborne emergency.
25.2 ft (7.67 m)
35.4 ft (10.80 m)
11.2 ft (3.40 m)
2,910 lb (1,320 kg)
4,079 lb (1,850 kg)
+1,168 lb (+530 kg)
(Showcased structural values pertain to the Breda Ba.27 (Metallico) production variant)
monoplane / low-mounted / straight
Design utilizes a single primary wing mainplane; this represent the most popular mainplane arrangement.
Mainplanes are low-mounted along the sides of the fuselage.
The planform involves use of basic, straight mainplane members.
(Structural descriptors pertain to the Breda Ba.27 (Metallico) production variant)
1 x Alfa Romeo Mercurius air-cooled, radial piston engine developing 540 horsepower driving a two-bladed propeller at the nose.
(Showcased performance specifications pertain to the Breda Ba.27 (Metallico) production variant. Performance specifications showcased above are subject to environmental factors as well as aircraft configuration. Estimates are made when Real Data not available. Compare this aircraft entry against any other in our database or View aircraft by powerplant type)
2 x 12.7mm Breda-SAFAT air-cooled Heavy Machine Guns (HMGs) in fixed, forward-firing mountings.
(Not all ordnance types may be represented in the showcase above)
Hardpoint Mountings: 0
Ba.27 - Base Series Designation.
Ribbon graphics not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective aerial campaigns / operations / aviation periods.
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