Bleriot-SPAD 91-7


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Bleriot-SPAD 91-7

Despite the "Jockey" being abandoned, Andre Herbemont persisted with the development of the Type 91 series fighters and, in October 1930, designed a new version. This, while retaining a fuselage similar to that of the Type 91-4, employed an entirely new wing arrangement of inverted sesquiplane configuration. Ailerons were fitted to the lower wing only, this having a span of 8.65m compared with the 7.00m of the upper wing. Designated Bleriot SPAD 91-7 and powered by a 500hp Hispano-Suiza 12Mc 12-cylinder Vee water-cooled engine, the new model was flown for the first time on 23 December 1931. On 2 June 1932, it established a 500km closed-circuit record of 308.78km/h. It was subsequently fitted with a supercharged Hispano- Suiza 12Xbrs engine as the Type 91-8, a variable-pitch Ratier propeller being adopted and a max speed of 360 km/h being reportedly achieved. The prototype was first flown in its Type 91-8 form on 20 August 1932, and in the following December was leased to Hispano-Suiza as a test-bed for the company's engine-mounted 20mm cannon, which was duly fitted, together with a large-diameter Levasseur fixed-pitch propeller, the designation then being changed to Type 91-9.

Bleriot-SPAD 91-7A three-view drawing (1672 x 1182)

  Take-off weight1458 kg3214 lb
  Empty weight1093 kg2410 lb
  Wingspan8.65 m28 ft 5 in
  Length6.30 m21 ft 8 in
  Height2.87 m9 ft 5 in
  Wing area17.80 m2191.60 sq ft
  Max. speed295 km/h183 mph

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