Friday, 8 January 2021

The Avro Manchester


Type:                          Heavy bomber


Engines:                    2 x 1760hp Rolls-Royce Vulture


Wingspan:                 90ft 1in


Length:                      68ft 10in


Height:                       19ft 6in


Weight:                      Empty             29,440lb


                                    Loaded           50,000lb


Armament                  8 x 0.303 machine guns in nose, dorsal and tail turrets


Bombload;                 10,350lb of bombs


Max speed:               265mph


Ceiling:                      19,200ft


Range:                       1,630miles


Production:               201



The Manchester was a classic example of an aircraft that looked magnificent on the design board, but proved to be a failure in action. With a heavy bombload the aircraft should have been a useful weapon of war while the gun turret on the top of the aircraft should have provided additional defence, as should the rear turret, which carried four machine guns in place of the usual two. However the sturdy, well designed fuselage and wings were let down by the engines. These proved to be dangerously unreliable and prone to bursting into flames at high revs. Directional instability forced Avro to add a third central tail fin to later production aircraft, and to make the t(f)ailplanes larger. Only a few months after entering combat, the Manchester was withdrawn from service.




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