Today saw the first test flight of the new Sopwith Scout.
Following the development of the 1½ Strutter, Sopwith Aviation turned their attendtion to developing a single seat scout. Back in 1915, Sopwith has produced a personal aircraft for the company’s test pilot Harry Hawker, a single-seat, tractor biplane powered by a 50 hp Gnome rotary engine. This became known as Hawker’s Runabout. Sopwith then developed a larger more robust military version heavily influenced by this design, though more powerful and controlled laterally with ailerons rather than by wing warping.
The resulting aircraft is a single-bay, single-seat biplane with a fabric-covered, wooden framework and staggered, equal-span wings. The cross-axle type main landing gear are supported by V-struts attached to the lower fuselage longerons. The prototype is powered by the 80 hp (60 kW) Le Rhône 9C rotary engine. Armament is a single 0.303 inch (7.7 mm) Vickers machine gun synchronized with the Sopwith-Kauper synchronizer – one of the first British fighters specifically designed with this feature.