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Today in History

Due to its size, the ungainly Martinsyde G.100 biplane was commonly called the "Elephant." Introduced in 1916, it proved to be a competent ground attack aircraft when used to bomb enemy targets but was a poor performer in a dogfight. It was followed by the Martinsyde G.102 which was equipped with a more powerful engine.

"Although the Martinsyde Elephant saw service in several theatres of the war, it was soon taken out of service in France owing to a high casualty rate. Attacked by enemy fighters they were so clumsy and un-manoeuvrable they could not get away. Having no gunner they could not defend their tails. They were sitting ducks, Albatros fodder." Cecil Lewis
1 South Africa Douglas Bell
2 Scotland John Gilmour
Australian Flying Corps : 1
Royal Flying Corps: 23, 27, 67, 72

Martinsyde G.100 Specifications
Country: Great Britain
Manufacturer: Martinsyde
Type: Fighter/Bomber
First Introduced: 1916
Number Built: About 300 (G.100 and G.102)
Engine(s): Beardmore 120 hp (G.100)
Beardmore 160 hp (G.102)
Wing Span: 38 ft 0 in [11.6 m]
Length: 26 ft 6 in
Height: 9 ft 8 in
Empty Weight: 1,793 lbs [813 kg]
Gross Weight: 2,424 lbs [1,100 kg]
Max Speed: 104 mph at 3,000 ft [167 km/h]
Ceiling: 16,400 ft [4,270 m]
Endurance: 4 hr 30 min
Crew: 1
Armament: Up to 260 lbs of bombs in underwing racks and 2 fixed machine guns: a forward firing Lewis gun mounted on the top wing with a second Lewis gun mounted to the side of the fuselage, firing to the rear of the aircraft
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