Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 146,754 pages of information and 232,400 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Short S.27

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Short S27. Exhibit at the Fleet Air Arm Museum.

Note: This is a sub-section of Short Brothers.

The Short S.27 and its derivative, the Short Improved S.27 (sometimes called the Short-Sommer biplane), were a series of early British aircraft built by Short Brothers. They were used by the Royal Navy and its first air arm, the Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS) for training the Royal Navy’s first pilots as well as for early naval aviation experiments. An Improved S.27 was used by C.R. Samson to make the first successful take-off from a moving ship on 9 May 1912.

In May 1910 Shorts started construction of four examples of an aircraft designed by Horace Short based on the successful Farman III pusher configuration biplane. Four examples were built, being given the airframe numbers S.26, S.27, S.28 and S.30.

S.26 was built for Francis McClean and had a 40 hp (30 kW) Green engine, this engine also being used for S.28, built for J.T.C. Moore-Brabazon. S.27 was built for Cecil Grace and had a 60 hp (45 kW) E.N.V. type F engine. S.29 was built as a reserve airframe. Since Grace flew his machine at a large number of aviation events, the design became generally known as the Short S.27.

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