About This File
FS2004 ATC Mod Spad S.VII. C1. Voice pack modifications for the Societe Pour L'Aviation et ses Derives Spad SVII. C1. SPAD was a French aircraft manufacturer producing aircraft between 1911 and 1921. Its SPAD S.XIII biplane was the most popular French fighter airplane during World War I. The SPAD S.VII was the first of a series of extremely successful biplane fighter aircraft produced by SPAD during the First World War. Like its successors, the S.VII was renowned as a sturdy and rugged aircraft with good climbing and diving characteristics. It was also a stable gun platform, although pilots used to the more manoeuvrable Nieuport fighters found it heavy on the controls. It was flown by a number of the famous aces, such as France's Georges Guynemer, Italy's Francesco Baracca and Australia's Alexander Pentland. Very early in the development of the S.VII, the British RFC and RNAS had shown an interest in the new fighter. An initial order for 30 aircraft was made but difficulties in production were such that the delivery rate was low, production being hardly enough for the French needs alone. As the RFC encountered increasing opposition over the Front, measures were taken to set up production of the S.VII in Britain. Bleriot and SPAD Aircraft Works and Mann, Egerton and Co. Ltd. were supplied with plans and sample aircraft and ordered to initiate production as soon as possible. The first British built S.VII was flown and tested during April 1917, and the first plane was reported to have a performance equal that of French models. There were however differences between the French and british built machines. The British were worried about the armament of the S.VII: most German fighters were now carrying two guns and various experiments were made to fit an extra machine gun on the S. VII. One aircraft was fitted with an extra Lewis machine gun on the top wing and tested at Martlesham Heath in May 1917, while front line units also made field modifications with mounts as used on the S. E. 5. The drop in performance was considered so drastic that this installation never became standard practice, and most SPAD S.VIIs continued to fly with a single Vickers. To be imported using EditVoicePack (EDITVP31.ZIP). By Mike Stallwood.