Avia BH-3 & BH-4

 

1st Flight 1921

The Avia BH-3 was a fighter plane built in Czechoslovakia in 1921.

Conceptually a descendant of the BH-1 sports plane, it was a braced, low-wing monoplane of conventional configuration and tailskid undercarriage.

Following favorable trials in June 1921, ten examples were ordered by the Czechoslovakian Air Force.

These were delivered in 1923 under the military designation B.3.

The type proved temperamental in service and was soon relegated to training duties, where it served until 1927.

BH-4

The Avia BH-4 was a prototype fighter aircraft built in Czechoslovakia in 1922.

It was a development of the BH-3 fitted with a Hispano-Suiza 8 engine in an attempt to improve the aircraft’s performance.

To accommodate the new powerplant, the forward fuselage was considerably redesigned, and the structure in general and undercarriage in particular were strengthened.

Performance was found to be only marginally better than the BH-3, and development was quickly abandoned.

Specifications

BH-4

Crew: one pilot

Length: 7.00 m (23 ft 0 in)

Wingspan: 10.20 m (33 ft 5 in)

Height: 3.10 m (10 ft 2 in)

Wing area: 15.8 m2 (170 sq ft)

Empty weight: 778 kg (1,715 lb)

Gross weight: 1,025 kg (2,260 lb)

Powerplant: 1 × BMW IIIa inline , 138 kW (185 hp)

Performance

Maximum speed: 225 km/h (140 mph, 121 kn) at sealevel; 240 km/h (150 mph; 130 kn) at 2,000 m (6,600 ft)

Range: 500 km (300 mi, 260 nmi)

Service ceiling: 7,800 m (25,600 ft)

Rate of climb: 7.9 m/s (1,560 ft/min)

Armament

2 × fixed, forward-firing .303 Vickers machine guns.

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