These differed from preceding B.E.1 and B.E.2 in possessing a revised fuel system, in which the streamlined gravity tank below the centre section of the wing was moved to a position behind the engine. [note 1]. As early as 1915, the B.E.2c entered service as a pioneer night fighter, being used in attempts to intercept and destroy the German airship raiders. It was initially used as a front-line reconnaissance aircraft and light bomber; modified as a single-seater it proved effective as a night fighter, destroying several German airships. At the outbreak of war these early B.E.2s formed part of the equipment of the first three squadrons of the RFC to be sent to France. Vznik. Developed at the Royal Aircraft Factory, the grapnel consisted of a two-inch long hollow steel shaft packed with an explosive charge and fitted with a sharp four-sided nose and metal plates that acted as fins; this would have been attached to a winch-mounted cable and carried by a single B.E.2. Later aircraft added decking between the pilot's and observer's seats. Certainly, it had a worse climb than the B.E.2c and, strangely, reverted to the outmoded back-to-front seating design, hence seriously restricting the use that the observer could make of the defensive MG. B.E.1., originally captioned 'The Silent Army Aeroplane'. , From 1917 onwards, the B.E.2 was generally withdrawn from both the front line and night fighter use. Many B.E.2c and B.E.2d aircraft still under construction when the new model entered production were completed with B.E.2e wings - to rationalise the supply of spare parts these aircraft were officially designated as the "B.E.2f" and "B.E.2g". Most B.E.2ds were used as trainers, but a few supplied to Belgium were used operationally. , About 3,500 B.E.2s were built by over 20 different manufacturers. 8416, of the RNAS, powered by a 90-hp Curtiss OX-5 engine, on the ground, c.1916. Otherwise identical to the "c" variant it had full controls in the front cockpit.  The aircraft was not flown again until 27 December, modified by the substitution of a Claudel carburettor in place of the original Wolseley, which allowed no throttle control. The B.E.2f restoration utilises an original RAF1A V8 powerplant, and made its debut at the Classic Fighters Omaka airshow in April, 2009. Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2 in Combat Posted on June 2, 2017 The Albatros Scout cruised high over the front line, its young pilot eagerly scanning the drab, churned-up earth beneath, searching for the tell-tale flicker of movement that would betray the presence of an Allied reconnaissance aircraft.  Following its first public appearance in early January 1912, aviation publication Flight commented that: "everything one could see of the machine was of singular interest".. This topic is categorised under: Aircraft » Propeller » Royal aircraft Factory B.E.2 The Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2 (Blériot Experimental) was a British single-engine two-seat biplane in service with the Royal Flying Corpsduring World War I. It was built around the new 150 hp (112 kW) Hispano-Suiza 8aV8 engine that, while providing excellent performance, was initially under-developed and unreliable. On 19 May 1917 six pilots, newly arrived in France and still to be allocated to a squadron, were each given a new B.E.2e to ferry between RFC depots at St Omer and Candas. The main fuel tank remained under the observer's seat. English: The Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2 models a-f included a range of early British military reconnaissance aircraft up to and including World War I. It had been planned that by this time B.E.2s in front-line service would have been replaced by newer aircraft, such as the Royal Aircraft Factory R.E.8 and Armstrong Whitworth F.K.8, but delivery of these types was initially slower than hoped. The wings were of unequal span: upper wingspan was 36 ft 71⁄2 in and lower 34 ft111⁄2 in A B.E.2a in France, 1915 - note "pre-roundel" markings. The B.E.2 was one of the first aircraft designed by what was then called the Royal Balloon Factory (renamed the Royal Aircraft Factory in 1912) under the direction of Mervyn O'Gorman. On the night of 2–3 September 1916, a single B.E.2c was credited with the downing of SL 11, the first German airship to be shot down over Britain after over a year of night raids. development. softbound book (1992) 50 pages ***like new condition*** be.1 prototype. A B.E.2c at the Imperial War Museum in London.  The layout of these aircraft came to be seen as conventional, but when it first appeared this was not the case. In this awkward position, his view was poor, and the degree to which he could handle a camera (or, later, a gun) was hampered by the struts and wires supporting the centre section of the top wing. The tailplane was again a new unit - being smaller than that of the B.E.2c and d - and the larger, quadrant shaped vertical fin of the late B.E.2c became standard. The main undercarriage consisted of a pair of skids each carried on an inverted V-strut at their rear and a single raked strut at the front: an axle carrying the wheels was bound to the skids by bungee cords and restrained by radius rods. was degraded by any additional weight, and in any case the carriage of this weaponry proved of questionable effectiveness. Much modified B.E.2d in Belgian service, with Hispano engine, synchronised Vickers gun, improvised gun mounts and gravity tank originally located under top wing removed. Early production B.E.2a: note lack of decking between cockpits and the unequal span wings. 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