Beardmore W.B.III


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Beardmore W.B.III

The W.B.Ill single-seat shipboard fighter was an extensively modified variant of the Sopwith Pup with manually-folding mainplanes and folding main undercarriage members. The prototype (a modified Pup) was officially accepted on 7 February 1917, and 100 production W.B.Ills were ordered under the official designation S.B.3. Armament comprised a single 7.7mm Lewis gun which fired upwards through a cut-out in the upper wing centre section, and the W.B.Ill could be fitted with either the seven-cylinder Clerget or ninecylinder Le Rhone 9C rotary, both of 80hp. The first 13 production W.B.Ills had folding undercarriages similar to the prototype and were known as S.B.3Fs, but subsequent W.B.Ills had jettisonable undercarriages (S.B.3D) and flotation equipment. The S.B.3D version saw some service aboard British carriers, one was used in an unsuccessful attempt to fly from the forecastle of the battle cruiser HMS Renown and several were supplied to Japan.

Beardmore W.B.IIIA three-view drawing (1278 x 956)

  Take-off weight585 kg1290 lb
  Empty weight404 kg891 lb
  Wingspan7.62 m25 ft 0 in
  Length6.16 m20 ft 3 in
  Height2.46 m8 ft 1 in
  Wing area22.57 m2242.94 sq ft
  Max. speed166 km/h103 mph

Charles E. Mac Kay, e-mail, 20.09.2011 00:24

The letter S stands for Sopwith B stands for Beardmore, they were all WBIII /S.B.F F for folding. The Lewis on the upper wing was horizontal and did not fire through the upper wing gap. The last thirty were delivered as spares. It could never get over 80 mph.


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