Military Wiki
Role Fighter/Reconnaissance
Manufacturer Bristol Aeroplane Company
Designer Wilfred Reid
First flight May 1923
Status Prototype only
Number built 4

The Bristol Bloodhound was a British two-seat reconnaissance/fighter aircraft designed and built by the Bristol Aeroplane Company as a possible replacement for the Bristol F.2 Fighter for the Royal Air Force. It was unsuccessful, only four prototypes being built.

Development and design

After the failure of the two-seat version of the Bristol Bullfinch, the requirement remained for an aircraft for the Royal Air Force to replace the Bristol F.2 Fighter. The Air Ministry therefore issued Specification 3/22 in 1922 for a two-seat fighter powered by a supercharged engine. Bristol's chief designer, Wilfred Reid (who had replaced Frank Barnwell when Barnwell emigrated to Australia), designed the Bristol Type 84 Bloodhound to meet this requirement, with Bristol deciding to build a prototype as a private venture.[1]

The Bloodhound was a two-seat biplane with swept two-bay wings, powered by a Bristol Jupiter IV radial engine. It first flew at the end of May 1923.[1] It was redesigned with a lengthened fuselage and revised wings when Frank Barnwell returned from Australia to resume his role as the chief designer. The Air Ministry placed an order for three Bloodhounds to a revised specification (22/22), of which one was of all-metal construction and the other two were fitted with wooden wings,[2] the first of these flying on 4 February 1925. After evaluation by the Aeroplane and Armament Experimental Establishment at RAF Martlesham Heath and Farnborough, it was clear that the Bloodhound was not adequate for the role of replacing the F.2. The other aircraft being evaluated against the specification to replace the F.2 in the reconnaissance role, the Hawker Duiker, Armstrong Whitworth Wolf and de Havilland D.H.42 Dormouse, were also found lacking.

The first prototype was fitted with a new Jupiter V engine, and received a civil certificate of airworthiness before being flown in the 1925 King's Cup Race. It was then fitted with a Jupiter VI engine and long-range fuel tanks as an engine testbed,[3] proving the reliability of the Jupiter for Imperial Airways [1] before finally being scrapped in 1931.


 United Kingdom

Specifications (Bloodhound)

Data from The British Fighter since 1912 [2]

General characteristics

  • Crew: Two
  • Length: 26 ft 6 in (8.08 m)
  • Wingspan: 40 ft 2 in (12.25 m)
  • Height: 10 ft 8 in (3.25 m)
  • Wing area: 494 ft² (45.9 m²)
  • Empty weight: 2,515 lb (1,143 kg)
  • Loaded weight: 4,236 lb (1,925 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Bristol Jupiter IV radial engine, 425 hp (317 kW)


  • Maximum speed: 113 kn (130 mph, 209 km/h) at sea level
  • Service ceiling: 22,000 ft (6,700 m)
  • Wing loading: 8.57 lb/ft² (41.9 kg/m²)
  • Power/mass: 0.10 hp/lb (0.16 kW/kg)
  • Endurance: 3 hours


Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Barnes, C.H. (1964). Bristol Aircraft Since 1910 (First Edition ed.). London: Putnam. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 Mason, Francis K (1992). The British Fighter since 1912. Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-55750-082-7. 
  3. Jackson, A.J. (1974). British Civil Aircraft since 1919 Volume 1. London: Putnam. ISBN 0-370-10006-9. 

External links

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