I have a particular love for historical aircraft and military equipment from the 20th century. I enjoy studying and learning about how they all work and why the people who manned and piloted them liked (or didn’t like) the machinery they where in charge of. Here is one of my favorite aircraft from the Great War (or WWI).
The SPAD S.13 was a single seat fighter biplane of World War I. It was probably France’s best fighter of the war. With two .303 Vickers machine guns that were synchronized with the propeller (so as not to shoot it of!), it was strong and fast. Like many aircraft of that era, it had a wooden structure covered in fabric, except for the forward section of the body (fuselage), which was covered with a thin layer of metal.
The first S.13 flew in April of the year 1917, and entered service in May of that year. The S.13 outmatched earlier versions of the SPAD with better features such as more power, a slightly larger wing-span, and a better armament. At sea level it had a maximum speed of 220 km/h (138 mph). It had a range of 402 km (250 miles) and an operational ceiling of 5,400 m (17,717 ft). It had one 164 kW (220 hp) Hispano-Suiza 8Be eight cylinder water-cooled Vee engine. Its wing-span was 8 m (26.3 ft); and it was 6.2 m (20.33 ft) long.
It was widely used by France, as well as America, England, Italy, and others. It is among my favorite fighter planes, and probably the one I like most of World War I fighter planes.
Production of this aircraft totaled 8,472 fighters. The SPAD S.XIII was a superb fighter aircraft for it’s time.
Here is a picture that my 4 year old brother drew 🙂