Societa Italiana Ernesto Breda (Breda) provided the Italian Air Force, the "Regia Aeronautica", with its standard biplane trainer - the "Ba.25" - in the early part of the 1930s. The type was highly-conventional in design and layout and proved successful enough that 763 units were ultimately produced from the period spanning 1931 until 1938. Three prototypes proved the design sound following a first-flight in 1931 and service entry followed in 1932, eventually counting global operators ranging from Afghanistan and Austria to Paraguay and Spain.
Structurally, the aircraft carried the typical Inter-War appearance complete with over-under biplane mainplanes, fixed "tail-dragger" undercarriage, and open-air cockpits. The mainplanes were given single bays and braced through parallel struts and cabling while being fitted ahead of the cockpit. The undercarriage featured twin main legs that were wheeled and unspatted while the tail was supported by a simple spring-loaded skid for ground-running. The cockpits were in tandem arrangement with the instructor in the rear and the student pilot in the front. Ahead of the pair was mounted the radial engine which, coupled with the biplane wings, naturally reduced forward vision - a common restriction of the biplane design.
The Ba.25 had a length of 25.6 feet, a span of 32.8 feet, and a height of 9.3 feet. Empty weight was 1,738lb with a gross weight reaching 5,044lb. Power from its Alfa Romeo D2 9-cylinder, air-cooled radial piston engine reached 240 horsepower driving a two-bladed propeller unit at the nose. Maximum achievable speed was 127 miles-per-hour while cruising was closer to 121 mph. Range was out to 310 miles while its service ceiling maxed at 24,600 feet. Rate-of-climb was a serviceable 565 feet-per-minute.
In its initial form, the Ba.25 was drawn up as a single-seater before the prototype was changed to accommodate a second cockpit and crewman. After flight-testing, the Regia Aeronautica secured an order for 100 of the biplanes for training purposes and these were all delivered prior to, or around, 1935. They proved popular enough that the service contracted for additional airframes which were delivered before the end of the decade - just prior to the fighting of World War 2 (1939-1945) - giving the Regia Aeronautica some 719 units before the end of 1938. The Ba.25 was used throughout the ensuing conflict though limited to its given basic trainer role, flying for both sides after the Italian surrender of September 1943. Their final days were had in 1945 which fell in line with the last year of the fighting.
The initial version was designated simply as "Ba.25". The "Ba.25/Lynx" incorporated the Alfa Romeo "Lynx" engine of 200 horsepower. The "Ba.25/D.2" followed with an Alfa Romeo D2 engine of 240 horsepower and the "Ba.25/Mezzo-Asso" installed the Isotta-Fraschini Asso 200 series engine of 220 horsepower.
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Afghanistan; Austria; Bolivia; China (Taiwan); Ecuador; Ethiopia; Hungary; Kingdom of Italy; Norway; Paraguay; Spain
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
✓Maritime / Navy
Land-based or shipborne capability for operating over-water in various maritime-related roles while supported by allied naval surface elements.
Developed ability to be used as a dedicated trainer for student pilots (typically under the supervision of an instructor).
Used in the aerial training role to cover basics of flight, general handling, take-off/landing actions, and related.
Addition of more mainplanes to enhance inherent agility, providing a tactical edge in tight engagements.
Inherent ability of airframe to take considerable damage.
Can reach and operate at higher altitudes than average aircraft of its time.
Ability to operate over ocean in addition to surviving the special rigors of the maritime environment.
Manual process of allowing its pilot and / or crew to exit in the event of an airborne emergency.
25.6 ft (7.80 m)
32.7 ft (9.98 m)
9.3 ft (2.83 m)
1,742 lb (790 kg)
5,049 lb (2,290 kg)
+3,307 lb (+1,500 kg)
(Showcased structural values pertain to the Ba.25/D.2 production variant)
biplane / over-under / straight
Design utilizes a dual-plane wing arrangement in which one mainplane member is seated above the other; biplanes enhance agility at the expense of added drag.
Dual mainplane configuration seating the members in an over-under fashion and poisitoned at different points along the fuselage.
The planform involves use of basic, straight mainplane members.
(Structural descriptors pertain to the Ba.25/D.2 production variant)
1 x Alfa Romeo D.2 9-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine developing 240 horsepower driving two-bladed propeller at the nose.
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