Breguet BUC / BLC
|FIGHTER||Virtual Aircraft Museum / France / Breguet|
Evolved indirectly from the BU3 two-seat twin-boom pusher biplane of late 1914 as a smaller and lighter development of its bomber derivative, the BUM (B=Breguet, U=Salmson engine and M=Michelin-built), the BUC (the letter "C" signifying Chasse) was intended primarily as a bomber escort. It had a similar 200hp Salmson (Canton-Unne) 14-cylinder radial engine and carried a 37mm Hotchkiss cannon on a flexible mounting in the forward cockpit of the fuselage nacelle. Modest production of the BUC was undertaken for the Aviation Militaire, and, with the installation of a 220hp Renault 12Fb 12-cylinder water-cooled engine in place of the Salmson, prototype trials were performed in June 1915, a few additional aircraft being built under the designation BLC. The performance of both the BUC and BLC versions of the Breguet de Chasse was unspectacular and, with fewer than 20 delivered, they were declared obsolete by the Aviation Militaire before the end of 1916. During that year, a further 17 essentially similar aircraft were supplied to the Royal Naval Air Service, these differing from the BUC/BLC primarily in having the 225hp Sunbeam Mohawk 12-cylinder engine, armament being a single 7.7mm Lewis machine gun (which was an alternative weapon to the Hotchkiss on French machines). The RNAS was disappointed with the performance of the Breguet de Chasse, which proved unsuitable for employment in the fighting role, and the service withdrew the type from its first-line inventory in June 1916.
W.Green, D.Swanborough "The Complete Book of Fighters", 2000