Wi A P O Iv S F o r


The first British experiments took place in 1912 and involved the firing of a standard Vickers .303" infantry machine gun from an FE2. This was followed up by the Admiralty, eventually leading in May 1914 to tests of specially designed pusher seaplanes from Shorts (S81 Gun-carrier) and Sopwith (No. 127), equipped with a lV2pdr (37mm) Vickers Type B gun.

This was not the naval automatic Pom-pom, although it seems that it used the same 37 X 123R ammunition, firing a 680g projectile at 365 m/s. It had a semi-automatic breech which would eject the fired cartridge case but required the next round to be loaded by hand. While both the planes and the crew survived the firing tests, it was clear that the 50kg weight and the low rate of fire were too limiting for practical purposes, and the similarly armed Vickers No.l4B project never materialised.

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