|Aircraft :: Stirling|
Updated: 5 Aug 04
Full Official Name: Short Stirling
Manufacturer: Short Brothers
Role: Heavy Bomber
In service: late 1940
Withdrawn: 1944 from bombing
Operated by: (Sqns with Lincolnshire connection only)
Its split bomb bay, which could not accommodate the 4000lb blast bombs of later standard, helped push it out of bomber service.
Air Ministry restricted the maximum wingspan to 100 feet at the time of design so aircraft could fit inside the then-standard hangar. Few bombers saw the inside of a hangar, however, being dispersed around the airfield perimeter tracks. The Stirling was strong but lacked speed and height, two of the three primary characteristics of Air Power (along with reach). It suffered from a multitude of fuel tanks and unreliable, tall undercarriage necessitated by large flaps (consequence of the wingspan limitation).
Max speed 270 mph at 14 500 ft. Max alt 17 000 ft
With a combat load of 3500 lbs the combat radius was 2010 miles.
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