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France's Bloch M.B. 151 fighter,
Bloch 151 fighter

Design

The Bloch 150 series of fighters were heavily armed, but had an inadequate engine.

Main Armament

It was intended for the Bloch 151 to have two cannons and two machine guns but often they were delivered with four machine guns.

Prototype

The prototype of the Bloch 150 series, the MB 150 would not fly when it was trialed in July 1936. It we redesigned and eventually flew on May 4, 1937.

The prototype of the Bloch 151 first flew on August 18, 1938.

It flew with the Gnome-Rhône 14N-11 (920 HP).

Production

144 of the Bloch 151 were ordered. The MB 151s were produced at the same time as the MB 152s, but eventually the MB 152s were the only ones being produced.

  • MB 150: 1
  • MB 151: 140
  • MB 152: 482
  • MB 153: 1
  • MB 155: 33
  • Total: 657

Variants

  • M.B. 150-01: Prototype that didn't leave the ground on it's maiden flight on July 17, 1936.
  • M.B. 150-01M: Prototype that flew successfully on September 29, 1937.
  • M.B. 151: Production model.
  • MB 152: Production model.

Usage

By the middle of January the Armée de l'Air received 138 Bloch M.B. 151s.

By September 1939 there were 120 MB 151s and MB 152s delivered, but many lacked gun sights and even propellars.

Eventually the MB 151 was declared obsolete and turned into trainers.

Against Italy

A few MB 151s saw action against the Italian invasion in southern France in June 1940, but suffered heavy losses.

Greece

Greece received nine Bloch 151s.

Specifications

  Bloch M.B. 151, Bloch 151
Type Fighter
Crew 1
Engine (Type) Gnome-Rhône 14 N 35 piston
Gnome-Rhône 14N-35
Cylinders Radial 14
Cooling  
Net HP 920
Propeller blades 3
Dimensions  
Span 34' 7"
10.54 m
Length 29' 10", 29' 10.25"
9.1 m
Height 9' 11", 9' 11 1/3"
3.02 m, 3.03 m
Wing area 186.43 ft2
17.32 m2
Weight  
Empty 4,570 lb
2,073 kg
Loaded 6,173 lb
2,800 kg
Performance  
Speed @ 13,120' /
4,000 m
300 mph
483 kph
Speed @ 16,405' /
5,000 m
289 mph
465 kph
Cruising speed  
Climb to 3,280' /
1,000 m
1.95 minutes
Climb to 16,400' /
5,000 m
7 minutes
Service ceiling 32,800'
10,000 m
Range 398 miles
640 km
Armament 2: 20 mm HS 404
2: 7.5 mm MAC 1934 MG
Wings 2: 20 mm
2: 7.5 mm MG
OR 4: 7.5 mm MG

Sources:

  1. Fighting Aircraft of World War II, Editor: Karen Leverington, 1995
  2. The Great Book of Fighters, William Green, Gordon Swanborough, 1994
  3. Aircraft of WWII, Stewart Wilson, 1998
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site