WW1 Bombers

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Mar 10, 2007
Surf City USA
This is my first post so I hope this is the right place for this topic. A while back I saw the movie "Flyboys" about WW1 fighter pilots. During the bombing raids I did not notice any bombs being carried under the wings of the planes. Was this just a movie error or did planes of this vintage have bomb bays as did later aircraft in WWII? It had been my opinion that all bombs during WW1 were either dropped from the cockpit or were attached under the wings.
oopps EDIT, wrong first 4 engine bomber link for the Brits

Handley Page V/1500

We also have a few relics of the even larger, 38m (126ft) span, Handley Page V/1500. This Rolls-Royce Eagle powered, long-range bomber of 1918 was the first British bomber with four engines, but was short-lived.

At the time of the Armistice, three V/1500s were operational, with No.166 Squadron at Bircham Newton in Norfolk, and were standing by to bomb Berlin, from the United Kingdom. This was possible due to their 2,092km (1,300 mile) range, and this just 15 years after the Wright Brothers first managed a few hundred feet! As ever, War had proved a great incentive for aeronautical development.

The last RAF V/1500 served at Martlesham Heath until mid 1921

or this beast

The S-6 with a 100 hp Argus engine flew in November 1911. In 1912, Igor Sikorsky became Chief Engineer for the aircraft factory of the Russian Baltic Railroad Car Factory in Petrograd. His S-6-B won a small order from the Russian Army, and the factory governing society approved construction of a large, four-engined airplane. With a wingspan of 89 ft. and a gross weight around 9,000 lb., Mr. Sikorsky's S-21 was simply The Grand. When it first flew on May 13, 1913, Igor Sikorsky became the world's first four-engine pilot. The bigger S-22 was dubbed the II'ya Muromets and in December 1913 began flying passengers. A bomber version flew in 1914 and went to war with the Imperial Russian Air Force in 1915.


The Il'ya Muromets aircraft was the worlds first four-engine bomber and was used to form the worlds first dedicated strategic bombing unit. The plane was named after a hero from Russian mythology Ilya Muromets.[1]

Sikorsky Ilya Muromets - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Our History
So there were no bombers with bomb bays in WWI?? All bombs were carried under the wings? This raises the next question about who invented the bomb bay door and on which aircraft was it first used? Probably too much to cover here.
I do know that some WWI aircraft had a hole that could be opened and a cradle from which a bomb could be released. I suppose a lot of this depends on the individual pilot. The pilot could have made the alteration to the aircraft which could be construed as bomb-bay doors. But I don't really think it was a widespread design feature by all means.
Germany big bombers (WWI)



Forum Eerste Wereldoorlog :: Bekijk onderwerp - Grootste vliegtuig uit WOI crashte te Poelkapelle
The Vickers Vimy was one of the more successful bombers of WW1 and reliable enough to make the first trans Atlantic crossing by a plane
This weekend a replica is flying at the Biggin Hill airshow


  • vimy.jpg
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Handley Page 0/400

Hi 'NightFlightAs',

Do you have more on the 0/400 photo? If you view the "original image" you can just make out two American flags on the noseand I'm wondering if it's the Langley, one of eight(?) 0/400s produced by the Standard Aircraft Corporation in New Jersey. Anyone know if it was one of the three used in Mitchell's air-power demonstrations?...


"By noon, Ostfriesland had settled two more feet by the stern and one foot by the bow. At this point, 2,000 lb bombs were loaded and a flight of three Handley-Page O/400 and eight NBS-1 bombers led by Capt. Walter Lawson dropped six in quick succession, aiming for the water near the ship. There were no direct hits but three of the bombs landed close enough to rip hull plates as well as cause the ship to roll over. The ship sank in 21 minutes, with a seventh bomb dropped on the foam rising up from the sinking ship. Nearby the site, observing, were various foreign and domestic officials aboard the USS Henderson. One man present was a representative of the Japanese navy: Captain Osami Nagano. Nagano was quoted in a local paper as saying there was "much to be learned here." Years later, Nagano helped plan the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor."

The end of the Langley?...


Hi, Graeme!

Unfortunately I am not the expert on aircraft of allies in WWI. My hobby Russian and foreign pilots on all fronts WWI and Civil war in Russia.

I give references to those resources that has given search on Yahoo web search:




Handley Page 0/400

Handley Page 0/100 and 0/400

ADF Aircraft Serial Numbers

Handley Page Type O - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


The Aircraft of the Australian Flying Corps 1914 -1919

First World War (WWI) Planes -- Great War Flying Museum

British Airways Museum Collection - 1920 - 1930 Images

Scratchbuilding a 1/48 Handley Page 0/400
So what were the common bomb-bay methods used during WW1? Can anyone tell me that? Healz.
So what were the common bomb-bay methods used during WW1? Can anyone tell me that? Healz.

At allies precisely I do not know, and at Russian...

...Sikorsky has improved the car tactically - instead of one heavy bomb the plane began to bear cartridges about 8 100 kg or 14 50 kg bombs. It the first has applied system of cassette bombing allowed to strike the massed blows to congestions of armies, tanks, artillery positions...

In 1916 has appeared "IM-P1", bearing an automatic gun, a large-caliber defensive machine gun, 16 bombs, everyone in weight on 50кг, 6 rockets of calibre 127мм, for bombing began to apply cartridges with the vertical suspension bracket, equipped with an electrotripper device, and two dynamo-jet of a gun Kurchevsky, - to steam of heavy bombers was on force to stop approach of the opponent or to clear away a way to the armies...
This raises the next question about who invented the bomb bay door and on which aircraft was it first used?

More than likely "djd" is no longer with us any more, but his original question has been driving me nuts! Google isn't helping, but I've come to the conclusion that the Zeppelin Staaken RVI of 1917 (see photos above) must be a likely contender for the title. It had nine bomb bays with doors, each holding two 220lb bombs. The release mechanism was situated in the nose cockpit.
Some Handley-Page, Avro and Sopwith bombers, had internal compartments for bomb storage, either vertically or horizontally mounted, (but I don't know if they had doors), but as Joe has pointed out, the vast majority were externally mounted.

Good to have you here NightFlight....Not anuff stuff on ww1 around here ..Some thing I'm starting to get into...And the Russian info is something we need around here too...

Now there was a bomber that had like three smaller plane that were on the wings of the bomber...Like a flying aircraft carrier..I "think" it was Russian..

You Russians realy had some wild and innovative planes at that time ..
And how to you this creation?

"Huge К-7 Russian designer Konstantin Kalinin. The plane with take-off weight of 38 tons lifted in air nearby 130 persons or 10 tons of aerial bombs. And it in the early thirties! Defensive arms of this giant about 12 fire nests (were supposed to finish 8 guns of calibre of 20 mm and 8 machine guns of calibre of 7,62 mm). For delivery of marksmen to two tail machine guns even the special electrocart moving on cables in a tail beam has been designed. In sense of defence the plane practically had no «dead zones», and any point raked at least three arrow that raised reliability of its protection - and it for nine years before occurrence legendary American «a flying fortress» Boeing B-17."






Now there we go .. Now thats a BIG plane ..I've often wondered were the Russians would be if Stalin had not got in power .. They were realy on a roll in the 20's and 30's...More Mr Night Flght..

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