Sunday, April 17, 2011

Britain - 1916 RAF R.E.8

The Virtues of Simplicity

RAF RE.8 - 1916
RAF RE.8 - 1916

Today's post is not flashy. Sometimes it is a good thing it makes you focus on details and form that make a particular aircraft distinctive. The R.E.8. has a swayback look and large air intake that is easy to remember.

During World War I, the R.E.8 was the most widely used British two-seat biplane on the Western Front. A descendant of the R.E.7, it was initially developed for reconnaissance work but also saw service as a bomber and ground attack aircraft. Nicknamed "Harry Tate," it provided a stable platform for photographic missions but suffered from poor maneuverability, leaving it vulnerable to attack by enemy fighters.

The Royal Aircraft Factory Reconnaissance Experimental 8 (R.E.8) was a lumbering British two-seat biplane reconnaissance and bomber aircraft of the First World War. Intended as a replacement for the vulnerable B.E.2, the R.E.8 was much more difficult to fly, and was regarded with great suspicion at first in the Royal Flying Corps.


  1. From Wikipedia Royal Aircraft Factory R.E.8, ""
  2. Bruce, J.M. "The R.E.8: Historic Military Aircraft: No. 8". Flight. 15 October 1954, pp. 575-581.
  3. Cheesman, E.F. (ed.) "Reconnaissance & Bomber Aircraft of the 1914-1918 War. Letchworth, UK: Harleyford, 1962.
  4. Gerdessen, F. "Estonian Air Power 1918-1945". Air Enthusiast No 18, April -July 1982, pp. 61-76. ISSN 0143-5450.
  5. Mason, Francis K. "The British Bomber since 1914". London:Putnam, 1994. ISBN 0-85177-861-5.
  6. Munson, Kenneth. "Bombers, Patrol and Reconnaissance Aircraft 1914-1919". London: Blandford, 1968. ISBN 0-71370-484-5.
  7. Taylor, John W.R. "Royal Aircraft Factory R.E.8." Combat Aircraft of the World from 1909 to the present. New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1969. ISBN 0-425-03633-2.

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