This six-engined giant was intended to carry a wire-guided missile. It's a pity that it so narrowly missed its chance to get into the air. It had undertaken a series of taxiing trials, SSW R VIIIand was preparing for its first flight when a propeller came apart, causing great damage on the left hand side. This was now 1919 and despite thoughts of conversion into a civil transport, it wasn't repaired and the second machine was never finished. With a wingspan of 48m/157ft it was the largest aeroplane built by anyone during the war, and the biggest biplane ever built. What's more, I've seen a current Siemens booklet, Milestones, which asserts that the R VIII did indeed fly. Doubtful, but I'd love to believe it.
The raid on London on January 28, 1918, was carried out by three Gothas and one Giant. The Gotha twin-motor pusher biplane is well known, but the 'Giant', built by various firms, including Zeppelin and Siemens, was almost twice as big as the Gotha and could carry a bomb load six times larger over a much greater range. Depending on the manufacturer, it had anywhere from three to six motors. It was the Giant that caused the damage.
On the January 28th raid the Giant carried 1200 kg of bombs, two of them of the 300 kg type. One of these was dropped, not upon, but next to Messrs. Odhams Printing Works in Long Acre. The resulting explosion was thus directed at the basement, which, since the building had 9" concrete floors, had been used as a shelter. An outbreak of fire caused the death of those imprisoned in the debris.
On the return trip, the Giant ran into barrage balloon cables and actually carried away two of them but managed to land safely.
cheddar cheese said:FLYBOYJ said:
At ATC we get taught how to fly on FS2002...I suppose its useful for navigation techniques before they let us up in a real plane.
cheddar cheese said:Air Training Corps, actually
Yeah I think so...Yeah we get flight training, then they let us up to fly in a Grob Tutor. When im 16, I can train to get my Glider wings! 8)