KipAero announces their authentic reproduction Sopwith 1½ Strutter will be returning to EAA AirVenture – this time fully covered and operational. Fitted with a new production Gnome Monosoupape rotary engine, this Great War two-seater fighter will be on exhibit in the Main Aircraft area, Booth #310.
Kip Aero’s Sopwith 1½ Strutter is available in kit form or pre-assembled based on the vintage aero enthusiast requirements. Other models available are the Sopwith Pup, Triplane, and Camel with pricing and kit details available on our website, http://www.KipAero.com.
This Sopwith 1½ Strutter represents a plane from Sopwith Aviation’s first production batch of Strutters, which was clear dope over natural unbleached linen, with tricolor roundels and stabilizer.
These early Strutters were delivered to the Royal Naval Air Service (R.N.A.S.) Wing No. 5 at Coudekerque, France in April 1916 incorporating revolutionary technology at the time.
- First flying machine to incorporate air brakes giving the pilot ability to land in small fields.
- First Allied flying machine to incorporate a synchronizer permitting a machine gun to fire through the propeller arc.
- At the time, it was one of the most powerful machines in the air powered by a Clerget 110hp rotary engine.
In addition, KipAero has chosen markings to represent Strutter #9420 flown by Flight Sub-Lt. Donald E. Harkness, a New Zealander serving in the R.N.A.S. Although there are no known photographs of this particular aeroplane, it was reported that he painted a Kiwi (New Zealand’s national bird) on both sides. Harkness was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for valuable services rendered for bombing German Zeppelin sheds in Brussels (with his Sopwith 1½ Strutter).
Pilot, Kip Lankenau, states “The unique markings on our Sopwith 1½ Strutter are to acknowledge those Kiwi pilots who served the British Empire during the Great War, as well as our engine partner, Classic Aero Machining Services of Blenheim, New Zealand.”
As a division of Kip Motor Company, KipAero was formed to focus on the expanding line of products and services for the vintage aircraft market. From early magneto and distributor caps to authentic WWI airplanes – in kit form or fully assembled – KipAero specializes in authentic reproductions for the original experience.