Blackburn B-54 / Y.A.5, B-88


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Blackburn B-54

The first prototype, two-seat B-54 with the Rolls-Royce Griffon 56 piston engine and counterrotating propellers flew on 20 September, 1949. The second prototype with a crew of three flew on 3 May 1950. The third prototype was a turboprop-powered B-88 flown on 19 July 1950.

No series production followed because the Fairey Gannet was selected.

Blackburn B-54A three-view drawing of Blackburn B-54 (597 x 460)

 ENGINE1 x Armstrong Siddeley Double Mamba, 2200kW
  Take-off weight5938 kg13091 lb
  Wingspan13.46 m44 ft 2 in
  Length13.0 m43 ft 8 in
  Height5.11 m17 ft 9 in
  Max. speed515 km/h320 mph

sven, 07.01.2017 20:33

Chain drive? I dont think so. Contra props were no novelty in 1949,It had a reduction gearbox gearbox. As for the distinctive sound , yes contra props with the Griffon or the turbine would have been distinctive.


Mike Cole-Hamilton, e-mail, 06.01.2017 00:42

Loyalties apart (I flew the AEW3, AS4 and T5 Gannets in the 60's) I think the AS and T5 were better lookers. NOBODY could accuse the AEW3 of being a good looker, but it was endearing and a pleasure to fly. Re. the chain drive, I am astounded!


Trevor Webb, e-mail, 20.12.2013 13:10

The designations of this type is very confusing. The first protype was designated B-54 and YA5. This had the RR Griffin engine as did the second prototype also known as the YA7 but retaining the B-54 designation. The third protype with the Double Mambas was designated both the B-88 and YB1.


bombardier, e-mail, 03.12.2011 21:27

At least it looks nicer than the Gannet.


John Sutton, e-mail, 13.10.2010 14:20

If I remember this aircraft had a chain drive to the propellers and it made an extraordinary noise when flying. One flew over our school playing fields at Uppingham, Rutland in the early 1950's and I always remember the sound.


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