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Beardmore WB.III

The Beardmore WB.III was a British carrier based fighter biplane of World War I.

It was a development of the Sopwith Pup that Beardmore was then building under licence, but was specially adapted for shipboard use.

It featured a redesigned wing cellule with no stagger and an extra set of struts inboard, facilitating folding for stowage, a modified fuselage that carried emergency floatation gear, and main undercarriage that could be folded for stowage on the WB.IIIF.

Later examples, designated WB.IIID could jettison their undercarriage for safer water landings.

As many as one hundred were built, with small numbers deployed on various Royal Navy warships including the carriers HMS Furious, HMS Argus and seaplane tenders Nairana and Pegasus.

Performance was less than the Sopwith Pup on which it had been based and it was largely superseded by the Sopwith 2F1 Ships Camel.



20 ft 3 in (6.17 m)


25 ft (7.6 m)


8 ft 1 in (2.46 m)

Wing area

243 sq ft (22.6 m2)

Empty weight

890 lb (404 kg)

Gross weight

1,290 lb (585 kg)


1 × Le Rhône 9C 9-cylinder air cooled rotary piston engine, 80 hp (60 kW)


2 bladed fixed pitch propeller


Maximum speed

103 mph (166 km/h, 90 kn)


2 hours 45 minutes

Service ceiling

12,400 ft (3,800 m)

Rate of climb

534 ft/min (2.71 m/s)



1 × fixed, forward firing .303 in Lewis gun.



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