Short Type 827

The Short Type 827 was a British, two-seater seaplane, which was used for reconnaissance and later also for bombing raids in the First World War.


Development and design:

The basic construction of the Short Type 827 was derived from the already used Short Type 166, but the dimensions were smaller to accommodate the newly developed V-8 high-performance engine from Sunbeam.

The fuselage was placed on the lower wing, which was equipped with two large floats underneath. Two smaller floats were located at the wing tips and at the tail of the aircraft.

First a 155 HP Sunbeam engine was used as drive, in a later version, also called Short Type 830, a 200 HP engine was used.

Furthermore 10 airplanes were built, which were a mixture of the Short Type 166 and the Short Type 830. The wings and the fuselage of the 166 as well as the cross wings and the cockpit of the 830 were used. The planes were powered by a 140 HP Salmson-Canton-Unné engine. These airplanes were called Short Type 830s, but were not further developed.

In the middle of 1914 the first test flights began, after the beginning of the First World War the delivery to the Royal Naval Air Service began which wanted to use the airplanes for the reconnaissance at sea and for bomb attacks. For this purpose, brackets were attached under the lower wing so that the aircraft could carry two 25 kilogram bombs.


Short Type 827




Use in the First World War:

From June 1915 the Short Type 827 were used for coastal protection and flew reconnaissance missions on the British coast. When German battle cruisers fired at the cities of Lowestoft and Yarmouth, the planes tried to bomb the ships.

To support the sinking of the British ships in the Rufijidelta lying German small cruiser SMS Königsberg three Short Type 827 aircraft were brought on site. The plan was to improve the accuracy of the British guns by means of reconnaissance flights and thus be able to hit the German ship. However, the aircraft arrived too late and were sent a short time later to Mesopotamia. In order to bomb the positions of the Ottoman troops there, the floats of two of the three aircraft were dismantled and replaced by wheels.

At the end of 1915, four aircraft were handed over to the Belgian army, which brought the aircraft near the town of Albertville, near the German colony of East Africa. From there, attacks on German troops and the German ship SMS Goetzen in Lake Tanganyika were flown.

Most of the 108 aircraft built remained in service until the end of the war.


A Short Type 827 in use in East Africa


A Short Type 827 loaded with cameras for a reconnaissance flight


A Short Type 827 in service of the Australian Air Force




Technical data:

Designation: Short Type 827
Country: Great Britain
Type: Reconnaissance plane, Bomber
Length: 10,74 meters
Span: 16,43 meters
Height: 4,11 meters
Weight: 1.225 kg empty
Crew: Max. 2
Engine: A water-cooled V8 engine from Sunbeam with 150 hp (110 kW)
Maximum speed: 100 km/h
Range: Max. 3 hours and 30 minutes
Arming: 1 x 7,7 mm Lewis machine gun and up to 50 kilograms of bombs






You can find the right literature here:


The First Air War, 1914-1918

The First Air War, 1914-1918 Hardcover – December 1, 1990

In this concise study, Kennett tells the complete story of World War I's air battles, from Eastern to Western front, from the skies of Europe and its seas to those of the Middle East and Africa.

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Aircraft of World War I 1914-1918 (Essential Identification Guide)

Aircraft of World War I 1914-1918 (Essential Identification Guide) 2nd Edition

Illustrated with detailed artworks of combat aircraft and their markings, Aircraft of World War I: The Essential Aircraft Identification Guide is a comprehensive study of the aircraft that fought in the Great War of 1914–18. Arranged chronologically by theatre of war and campaign, this book offers a complete organizational breakdown of the units on all the fronts, including the Eastern and Italian Fronts. Each campaign includes a compact history of the role and impact of aircraft on the course of the conflict, as well as orders of battle, lists of commanders and campaign aces such as Manfred von Richtofen, Eddie Rickenbacker, Albert Ball and many more. Every type of aircraft is featured, including the numerous variations and types of well- known models, such as the Fokker Dr.I, the Sopwith Camel and the SPAD SVII, through to lesser-known aircraft, such as the Rumpler C.1, and the Amstrong Whitworth FK8. Each aircraft profile is accompanied by exhaustive specifications, as well as details of individual and unit markings. Packed with more than 200 color profiles of every major type of combat aircraft from the era, Aircraft of World War I 1914–1918 is an essential reference guide for modellers, military historians and aircraft enthusiasts.

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World War One Aircraft Carrier Pioneer: The Story and Diaries of Captain JM McCleery RNAS/RAF

World War One Aircraft Carrier Pioneer: The Story and Diaries of Captain JM McCleery RNAS/RAF Hardcover – June 13, 2011

Jack McCleery was born in Belfast in 1898, the son of a mill owning family. He joined the RNAS in 1916 as a Probationary Flight Officer. During the next ten months he completed his training at Crystal Palace, Eastchurch, Cranwell, Frieston, Calshot and Isle of Grain, flying more than a dozen landplanes, seaplanes and flying boats, gaining his wings as a Flight Sub-Lieutenant. In July 1917 he was posted to the newly commissioning aircraft carrier HMS Furious, which would be based at Scapa Flow and Rosyth. He served in this ship until February 1919, flying Short 184 seaplanes and then Sopwith 1½ Strutters off the deck. He also flew a large number of other types during this time from shore stations at Turnhouse, East Fortune and Donibristle.

He served with important and well-known naval airmen including Dunning, Rutland (of Jutland) and Bell Davies VC. He witnessed Dunning’s first successful landing on a carrier flying a Sopwith Pup in 1917 and his tragic death a few days later. He also witnessed the Tondern raid in 1918, the world’s first carrier strike mission. He took part in more than a dozen sweeps into the North Sea by elements of the Grand Fleet and Battle Cruiser Fleet. He carried out reconnaissance missions off the coast of Denmark, landing in the sea to be picked up by waiting destroyers. He witnessed the surrender of the High Seas Fleet. Promoted to Captain, he acted as temporary CO of F Squadron for a time postwar.

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A World War 1 Adventure: The Life and Times of RNAS Bomber Pilot Donald E. Harkness

A World War 1 Adventure: The Life and Times of RNAS Bomber Pilot Donald E. Harkness Paperback – June 25, 2014

A deeply personal and revealing eyewitness narrative of one airman's life as a bomber pilot in England 's RNAS (Royal Naval Air Service) in WWI. It is a true story, an adventure, and a war memoir carefully constructed from Captain Donald E. Harkness's unpublished diaries, letters, sketches and photographs - only recently uncovered nearly a century later - that documented his remarkable experiences and military adventures over England, France and Belgium. The first book written by a highly decorated WWI flyer from New Zealand that captures the "behind the scenes" life of RNAS pilots, as well as the surprises, terrors, traumas, humor, and sheer excitement of an aerial form of combat never before experienced by anyone, anywhere - and only eleven short years after the Wright Brothers historic flight at Kitty Hawk. With a talent for writing, Don begins an epic journey at a major turning point in history when the world is poised at the dawn of flight, and bracing itself for unknown dangers of unprecedented sophistication and savagery. Don's journal reveals unique insights and vivid imagery of another time and experience, to wit: - the terror and devastation of a Zeppelin bombing raid in London - the training regimen of early flying schools, and their serious & comic episodes - the wonder, awe, and poetry of flying aloft in the majestic heavens - vivid bombing raids, plus the raid that earned him the DSC - his crash-landing and capture - working with the underground to help downed pilots evade capture - London's unrestrained exuberance on Armistice Day; . . . and much, much more.

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