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Bristol
Type 146

A single-seat, eight gun all-metal fighter prototype, which failed to enter production.
Bristol 146 K5119 rear port The Bristol 146 K5119 at Filton in February 1938
 
The Bristol Type 146 was the Bristol Aeroplane Company’s offering against Specification F.5/34 which called for a single seat, eight-gun fighter.
 
The type was a low-wing monoplane using a Bristol Mercury engine and was of all-metal construction with a monocoque fuselage, the pilot sitting well forward under a sliding canopy. Four Browning machine guns were provided in each wing, firing outside the arc of the propeller.
 
The design benefited from the lessons learned from the earlier Bristol Type 133 (described separately) which had been lost in an accident immediately prior to its planned evaluation at Martlesham Heath.  The intended powerplant was an 830 hp Perseus engine although the prototype was initially flown with an 840 hp Mercury IX.
 
The sole example of the Bristol Type 146 (K5119) was first flown on 11th February 1938, having taken a relatively low priority due to the demands on Bristol Aeroplane Company for production of the Bristol Blenheim.
 
Furthermore, the appearance of the Merlin-powered Hurricane and Spitfire and their evident promise, made it clear that these types would form the backbone of the RAF’s fighter force.
 
In the event, none of the contenders created against Specification F.5/34 received a production contract.
 
Following service trials at Martlesham Heath in 1938, the aircraft was damaged in a landing accident at the Empire Air Day hosted at Filton and was scrapped later that year.
 
Bristol 146 K5119 side The Type 146 was Bristol's entry against Specification F.5/34 for an eight gun fighter.

Specification

Powerplant One 840 hp Bristol Mercury IX 
Span 39 ft 0 in
Maximum Weight 4,600 lb
Capacity and armament Pilot only; eight wing-mounted forward firing Browning machine guns 
Maximum Speed 287 mph

Variants

Single example only, K5119.

Survivors

Nil; sole example scrapped after a landing accident in 1938.

Other information