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Sopwith Camel Replica

Sopwith Camel Replica

1× Clerget 9B 9-cylinder rotary engine
130 hp (97kW)
5.71m (18ft 9in)
2.59m (8ft 6in)
8.53 m (28ft 0in)
660kg (1,455lb)
Max Speed
185 km/h (100kts)
6,400m (21,000ft)
480 km (260nm)

Description of Aircraft

The Sopwith Camel prototype first flew in December 1916. It was armed with two .303 in (7.7 mm) Vickers machine guns mounted in front of the cockpit, firing forward through the propeller disc. A fairing surrounding the gun installation created a hump that led to the aircraft acquiring the name Camel. The Camel entered squadron service in June 1917.

Approximately 5,500 Camels were produced. Unlike the preceding Pup and Triplane, the Camel was not considered pleasant to fly. Nevertheless, its agility in combat made the Sopwith Camel one of the best remembered Allied aircraft of World War I. To its pilots, it was referred to as providing a choice among a ‘wooden cross, red cross and Victoria Cross’. Together with the S.E.5a, the Camel helped to wrest aerial superiority away from the German Albatross scouts. The Camel was credited with shooting down 1,294 enemy aircraft, more than any other Allied scout aircraft.

By mid-1918, the Camel was approaching obsolescence as a fighter, limited by its slow speed and comparatively poor performance over 12,000 feet. It found a new lease of life as a ground-attack aircraft and infantry support weapon, especially after the German Offensive of March 1918. The Camel remained in service until the Armistice (11 November 1918). The aircraft served with the Australian Flying Corp in 4 Squadron, 5 Squadron, 6 Squadron and 8 Squadron.

The Sopwith Camel replica project was a collaboration of Fighter World volunteers John Stephens, John Hannan and Roger Foster who were assisted by Graham Haynes. The construction was completed in November 2017 after many years of painstaking work. Fighter World is eternally grateful for their contribution.

View Other Aircraft Displays

Exhibited in two hangars, visitors can walk-around, touch and look into the cockpits of such famous aircraft as the Mirage III, the Avon Sabre, the Gloster Meteor, the first Vampire jet built in Australia, the mighty F-111C and the F/A-18A Hornet. Also on display is a World War 1 Sopwith Camel replica, WWII Spitfire replicas, a PC-9A(F) Foward Air Control aircraft, Winjeel trainer and much more.

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