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Great Britain's flagGreat Britain's RAF aircraft marking

Great Britain's Bristol Buckingham B.1 bomber
Bristol Buckingham C.1 transport

Photos

  • Bristol Buckingham Mk I
  • Bristol Buckmaster T Mk I

 

Design

The Bristol Buckingham was designed to replace the Bristol Blenheim.

The Buckingham was supposed to enter service in 1942 but production didn't start until 1944 due to difficulties with the Centaurus engines.

Also the Mosquito was able to take the same payload and perform better so it was given the priority.

Prototype

The Buckingham prototypes were first flown on February 4, 1943. The first prototype wasn't armed. The second prototype was armed.

The 3rd and 4th prototypes had larger fins.

Postwar

The Buckmaster T.1 prototype flew on October 27, 1944.

Production

An order of 400 Buckinghams were ordered.

  • Prototypes: 4
  • Buckingham: 119
  • Buckmasters: 111
  • Production: 1942

Postwar

The last Buckmaster was delivered in 1946.

Variants

  • Buckingham B.1: The first 54 produced were bombers. Was not used in combat.
  • Buckingham C.1: The next 65 produced were transports. Turrets were removed. A few B.1s were converted to C.1s.
  • Buckmaster T.1: Postwar trainer. Had dual controls. There was no dorsal turret or gondola. The trainee pilot was on the port side.

Usage

The Buckingham C.1 transports were primarily used on the flights to Malta and Egypt.

Postwar

When the Buckingham's production was cancelled there was still components in the factory to build 100 more aircraft. These were later made into the Buckmaster T.1 trainers.

The trainers were used by the Royal Air Force (RAF) until 1956.

Specifications

  Bristol Buckingham
Type Medium range high speed bomber
Crew 4
Engine (Type) 2: Bristol Centaurus VII or XI
Cylinders Radial 18
HP 2,520 each
Propeller blades 4 each
Dimensions  
Span 71' 10"
21.89 m
Length 46' 10"
14.27 m
Height 17' 6"
5.33 m
Weight  
Empty 24,040 lb
10,905 kg
Loaded 38,050 lb
17,260 kg
  Bristol Buckingham B.1
Type Day bomber, Medium bomber
Crew 4
Pilot, Navigator/Bombardier, Radio Operator, Gunner
Engine (Type) 2: Bristol Centaurus VII
OR 2: Bristol Centaurus XI
Cylinders Radial 18
Cooling Air
Propeller blades Four blade Rotol constant speed
Dimensions  
Span 71' 10"
21.9 m
Length 46' 10"
14.3 m
Height 17' 6"
5.3 m
Wing area 708 sq ft
65.7 sq m
Weight  
Empty 24,042 lb
10,905 kg
Loaded 37,034 lb
16,779 kg
Maximum Loaded 38,050 lb
17,259 kg
Performance  
Speed at 12,000' /
3,660 m
330 mph
528 kph
Climb 1,700' per minute
520 m per minute
Service ceiling 25,000'
7,625 m
Range 2,240 miles
3,585 km
Armament  
Nose 4: 0.303" MG
Ventral gondola 2: 0.303" MG
Dorsal turret 4: 0.303" MG
Bomb 4,000 lb
1,814 kg, 1,820 kg
  Bristol Buckingham C.1
Type Transport
Crew 3
Passengers 4
Performance  
Speed @ 12,000' /
3,658 m
336 mph
541 kph
Cruising speed 294 mph
473 kph
Climb 2,000'/minute
610 m/minute
Service ceiling 25,000'
7,620 m
Range 2,360 miles
3,798 km
Maximum range 3,180 miles
5,117 km
  Bristol Buckmaster
Type Trainer
Crew 3
Pilot, trainee, radio operator
Engine (Type) 2: Bristol Centaurus 57
Cylinders Radial 18
Cooling Air
Propeller blades 4 blade Rotol constant speed
Dimensions  
Span 72' 4"
22 m
Length 46' 5"
14.2 m
Height 17' 5"
5.3 m
Weight  
Empty 24,627 lb
11,180 kg
Loaded 33,700 lb
15,286 kg
Performance  
Speed at 12,000' /
3,660 m
352 mph
563 kph
Climb 2,245' per minute
684 m per minute
Service ceiling 30,000'
9,150 m

Sources:

  1. Aircraft of WWII, Stewart Wilson, 1998
  2. Jane's Fighting Aircraft of World War II, 1989
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site