Aircraft Type Index

WW1 Fighter Planes Index



Vickers FB-5 WW1 Fighter

The Vickers F.B.5 (Fighting Biplane 5) or Gunbus was designed prior to the outbreak of WW1 and became the Royal Flying Corps first purpose designed fighter aircraft when it equipped No.5 Squadron RFC (later to become the RAF), they were deployed to France during late July 1915. The Vickers F.B.5 remained in frontline service with the RFC until replaced by the Vickers F.B.9 "Streamline Gunbus" in 1916 after the improved performance of the latest German aircraft allowed them to gain relatively easy access to the F.B.5's vulnerable rear.

Vickers FB-5 Fighter Plane


A total of 224 Vickers F.B.5's were produced, most were used by the British Royal Flying Corps and the French Aéronautique Militaire but a small number served with Denmark's armed forces.

Vickers F.B.5 Specifications:

  • Crew: Pilot and gunner
  • Length: 27 ft 2 in (8.28 m)
  • Wingspan: 36 ft 6 in (11.13 m)
  • Height: 11 ft 6 in (3.51 m)
  • Empty weight: lb (kg)
  • Loaded weight: 2,050 lb (930 kg)
  • Engine: Single 100 hp (75 kW) Gnome Monosoupape 9-cylinder rotary engine
  • Maximum speed: 70 mph at 5,000 ft (113 km/h)
  • Service ceiling: 9,000 ft (2,743 m)

Vickers F.B.5 Armament:

  • Single .303 in (7.7 mm) Lewis machinegun in early machines, twin Lewis guns in late examples

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