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SOPWITH CAMEL

The most successful British fighter of WWI (1,294 “kills”), the Sopwith Camel was also one of the most heavily produced.The most successful British fighter of WWI (1,294 “kills”), the Sopwith Camel was also one of the most heavily produced. With over 5000 examples completed, the design was considered the standard of comparison at the end of the War. The airplane gained its nickname from a fairing that was placed over the rear section of the dual machine guns. This fairing gave the airplane a decided humpback appearance, and the resulting name “Camel” became so common that the RFC adopted it as part of the airplane’s official designation. The Camel was a challenge to fly, and this problem led to a few examples being converted to two-place trainers. Sopwith Camels were used for many types of research, both during and after the War, and are credited with both carrier- and airship-based fighter operational testing. One shipboard Camel even shot down a German Zeppelin.

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