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Description[]

The Fairey Fulmar was a two-seat reconaissance fighter, developed from the P.4/34 light bomber, in order to meet the Admiralty's urgent need for a modern shipboard fighter. The Fulmar prototype was first flown on 4 January 1940 at Ringway and served as the first production aircraft. Fairey's Fulmar was the Fleet Air Arm's first carrier-based fighter with the same weight and firepower of the RAF's Hurricane and Spitfire. In fact, the Fulmar was developed for the FAA after being being rejected by the RAF, although it was also employed in limited numbers by the RAF, in particular with 273 squadron (eg X8743) in 1942 in China Bay, where some aircraft were lost to enemy action.

With its lack of speed, and the Admiralty's need for a truly modern carrier-based fighter, the Fulmar began being replaced by the Supermarine Seafire by 1943. However, it contined to be useful, being sent to 768, 767 and other squadrons to assist conversion of pilots to Barracudas eg DR664 at Lee on Solent by 810 squadron in April 1943 to May 1943.

Versions[]

  • Mk I Initial production model
  • Mk II prototype Single Mk I conversion
  • Mk II 1300hp Merlin XXX engine; tropicalised, some as night-fighter version

Specifications[]

  • Aircraft Type: Fairey Fulmar
  • Mark: -
  • Primary Role: Carrie-borne Fighter
  • First Flight: 13.1.37
  • Date operating with FAA squadrons: 6/40 - 8/2/45.
  • Manufacturer: Fairey aviation, built at Heaton Chapel and flown at Ringway
  • Engine: One 1300 hp Rolls-Royce Merlin 30 engine
  • Dimensions: Wing Span 46.4 ft (14.14 m), Length 40.2 ft (12.24 m), Height 10.66 ft (3.25 m)
  • Wing Area: 342 sq ft (31.77 sq m)
  • Weight: Empty 7,015 lb (3182 kg), Max 10,201 lb (4627 kg)
  • Performance: Speed 273 mph (440 km/h), Ceiling 27,230 ft (8,300 m), Range 780 miles (1,255 km)
  • Armament: Eight 0.303in (7.7 mm) machine guns in wings, (Some Mk II had a quartet of 0.5 in (12.7 mm) machine guns), plus two 250 lb (113 kg) bombs
  • Crew: 2
  • Squadrons: 700, 726, 731, 733, 739, 740, 746, 748, 756, 757, 759, 760, 761, 762, 766, 767, 768, 769, 772, 775, 778, 779, 780, 781, 782, 784, 787, 787Z, 788, 789, 790, 792, 793, 794, 795, 798, 800, 803, 804, 805, 806, 807, 808, 809, 815, 822, 827, 835, 879, 881, 884, 886, 887, 889, 893, 897.

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