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Today in History

The first "pusher" to enter service during World War I was the Vickers Fighting Biplane 5. A two-seater, it was the first aircraft specifically designed as a fighter for the Royal Flying Corps. The first F.B.5 to reach France was delivered to 2 Squadron in February 1915 and 11 Squadron was equipped with F.B.5s in July 1915. Also known as the Vickers "Gunbus," it was armed with a moveable, forward-firing machine gun but it was vulnerable to attack from the rear. The F.B.5 was soon replaced by more advanced single-seat fighter aircraft like the Airco D.H.2.
Vickers F.B.5 Specifications
Country: Great Britain
Manufacturer: Vickers
Type: Fighter
Introduced: 1914
Number Built: More than 250
Engine: Gnôme Monosoupape, 9-cylinder, air cooled rotary, 100 hp
Wing Span: 36 ft 6 in (11.13 m)
Length: 27 ft 2 in (8.28 m)
Height: 11 ft 6 in (3.51 m)
Empty Weight:  
Gross Weight: 2,050 lb (930 kg)
Max Speed: 70 mph (113 km/h) at 5,000 ft (1,524 m)
Ceiling: 9,000 ft (2,743 m)
Endurance: 4½ hours
Crew: 2
Armament: 1-2 machine guns
Vickers F.B.5 Units
Royal Flying Corps: 2, 5, 7, 11, 16, 18
Vickers F.B.5 Aces (1)
1 England Powell, Frederick James 8
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