Nieuport 24

Nieuport 24 Aircraft of World War 1

In the summer of 1917, when the Nieuport 24 and 24bis began coming off the production line, many French fighter squadrons were replacing their Nieuport 17s with SPAD S.VIIs but some French units retained Nieuports into 1918 when they were effectively obsolete, although the type was preferred by some, especially the famous Charles Nungesser.

The type’s most notable accomplishment occurred when Nieuports of N152 were responsible for downing two Zeppelins, L49 and L50 during the night of 19–20 October 1917.

France’s allies operated them, including the Russians and the British. The Russians would continue to operate their Nieuports throughout the Russian Civil War, and even received 20 French-built Nieuport 24s after the Czar’s abdication.

Production of additional examples was undertaken by Dux, who had license-built previous Nieuports. Production was undertaken both before and after the Soviet victory. The Soviets would rename Dux to GAZ No 1 (Государственный авиационный завод № 1 or State Aviation Plant No. 1) and production continued until at least 1923.[6] Examples remained in service until at least 1925.

In the summer of 1917, the RFC still regarded deliveries of Nieuport scouts as a top priority although the 24 and 24bis were regarded as interim types pending Nieuport 27 deliveries.

Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5 deliveries began shortly afterward, but a low production rate forced the British to use their Nieuport scouts operationally well into 1918.[8]

The Japanese bought several pattern aircraft and from 1921 to 1923 built 102, with work started by the Army Supply Depot at Tokorozawa until taken over by Nakajima.

These were later designated as the Ko 3, however, the Japanese did not distinguish between the 24 and the 27, initially calling both the Ni 24.

Most of their Nieuport 24s were fitted with the 80 hp (60 kW) Le Rhône 9C.

The Japanese operated them until 1926, much longer than they did their SPAD S.XIIIs, which were retired in 1922.

The Americans bought large numbers of Nieuport advanced trainers for their flying schools in France in November 1917, which either included 227 Nieuport 24s and 16 Nieuport 24bis or 121 Nieuport 24s and 140 Nieuport 24bis, depending on which source you believe, illustrating the difficulty in dealing with surviving source documents which often didn’t distinguish between the 24, 24bis and the 27.

The Soviet’s donated a Nieuport 24 and other types in 1921 to Afghanistan’s King Amanullah Khan. It still existed in 1924 when the Afghan Military Air Arm was formed.

The Airco DH-2

The Airco DH.2 of World War 1

The Airco DH.2 was a single-seat biplane “pusher” aircraft which operated as a fighter during the First World War. 

It was the second pusher design by aeronautical engineer Geoffrey de Havilland for Airco, based on his earlier DH.1 two-seater.

The design of DH.2 was greatly influenced by the technologies available at the time, as Britain had not yet developed a synchronisation gear to match the German system, this had compelled British fighters to adopt the pushed configuration, such as the DH.2 and the F.E.2b. 

Development of the type had begun before the emergence of the German’s Fokker Eindecker monoplane fighter; these two aircraft became fierce adversaries following the DH.2’s introduction. During July 1915, the prototype DH.2 performed its maiden flight; it was lost during the following month on the Western Front.

Introduced to frontline service in February 1916, the DH.2 became the first effectively armed British single-seat fighter. 

Its availability enabled Royal Flying Corps (RFC) pilots to counter the “Fokker Scourge” that had given the Germans the advantage in the skies during late 1915. It carried the burden of fighting and escort duties for almost two years, while numerous pilots became flying aces using the type. 

It became outclassed by newer German fighters, contributing to the DH.2’s withdrawal from first line service in France after RFC units were completely re-equipped with newer fighters, including the Airco DH.5, during June 1917.