Breguet 14

Aircraft Profile
 

Key Facts

Main Role:
Two-Seat Bomber/Reconnaissance Aircraft
Configuration:
Tractor biplane
Country:
France
Current Status:
Out of Service, Out of Production

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Replica Breguet 14 B.2 F-AZBP
flies at La Ferte Alais. (photo, Thierry Deutsch)

Development

When Louis Breguet began the design of his Type 14 in 1916 he was totally unaware of the success that his aircraft was to achieve. The prototype of the big cumbersome two-seater, powered by a 220 hp Renault engine with a large frontal radiator was flown by Breguet himself on 21 November 1916 at Villacoublay. An unusual feature of the aircraft was the wide use of Duralumin in the fuselage. An initial batch of 580 Br 14.A2 reconnaissance models were ordered in April 1917 and at this point in time the prototype Br 14.B2 was built and delivered, this being the bomber version. The Br 14 was much in demand during the last years of the 1914-18 war, which resulted in the production of 5,500 before the war ended, this including both types. The B2 version differed from the A2 in having a lower wing of increased span with full span flaps and a glazed side panel to the observers cockpit, as well as Michelin bomb racks. Both versions were armed with a forward firing Vickers gun for the pilot and twin Lewis guns for the observer. Some A2s had a Lewis gun mounted on the top wing in place of the Vickers and a downward firing Lewis for protection from below and for trench strafing (the first recorded gunship). The B2 could also carry thirty-two 8 kg bombs although the A2 only carried 4 small bombs. The Breguet 14 was supplied to seventy-one French escadrilles on the Western Front, five escadrilles in Serbia, three in Greece, six in Morocco and eight in Macedonia as well as two Belgian escadrilles. Poland used them in the Kiev Offensive during the Polish-Bolshevik war in 1920. Two hundred and twenty-nine A2s, forty-seven B2s and one hundred E2 trainers were supplied to the American Expeditionary Force (A.E.F.) in 1918. The aircraft were widely used for both day and night bombing in the last year of the war.

During its life time the Breguet Br 14 was fitted with various engines including the 300 hp Renault 12 Fcx (one version with the Rateau supercharger), a 370 hp Lorraine-Dietrich, a 400 hp Fiat A-12 bis and a 400 hp Liberty 12. The construction of the aircraft was contracted to Michelin, Renault, SIDAM, Schmitt, Bellanger, Latecoere, Darracq and Farman. Variants included the 14 B1 single seat bomber, 14 S ambulance, 14 T/Toe civil versions and one 14 H central float seaplane.

After the war, ex-military aircraft were converted to carry mail, while others were adapted to the passenger role possibly being the first French airliner. Some conversions had a 2 seat cabin behind the pilot, termed The Limosine, while others sported a 4 seat glazed compartment in a position between the wings and flown from the rear cockpit. Most of the conversions were undertaken by the Societe Industrielle d’Aviation Latecoere and were used by the French postal service and mail service in Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina. The French postal system stretched to most European countries as well as French protectorates in Africa. One of the pilots being Jean Mermoz who later came to fame with his Trans-Southern Atlantic flights only in more up to date Latercoere types.

During its long post-war career in the French Aviation Militaire the Breguet 14 was used by at least 10 foreign air forces including those in South America and the Far East.

The Breguet 14 could easily be compared with the latter day Douglas DC-3 with regard to its various uses but not its longevity. More than 8,000 were built before production ended in 1926 and the type was still in use by French forces up until 1932.

Variants

Side view of replica Br 14 B.2 F-AZBP.
(photo, Vanhulle Jan)
Br 14 A.2 c/n 2016 at the Musée de l’Air,
Le Bourget. (photo, Mick Bajcar)

Requirement Specification:
Manufacturers Designation: Br XIV

Development History:
Breguet AV Type XIV First prototype, with 220 hp Renault engine.
Br 14 A.2 Standard production reconnaissance version, with Renault 12Fe engine of 300 hp. Camera and radio equipment fitted.
Br 14 A.2 1918+ improved production reconnaissance version, with horn-balanced ailerons and increased span lower wings.
Br 14 A.2 24(16?) aircraft built with Renault 12FeR engine with Rateau supercharger. 1924.
Br 14 AP.2 Planned escort fighter version of Br 14 A.2 with Liberty engine. No production.
Br 14 B.1 Long-range single-seat bomber conversion of B.2, with fuel tank in observers cockpit. Few built.
Br 14 B.2 Standard production bomber version, with Renault 12Fe engine of 300 hp. Longer span lower wing than A.2, with flaps on lower wing, glazed side panels to observers cockpit, air brakes, Michelin bomb racks.
Br 14 B.2 1918+ improved production bomber version, with horn-balanced ailerons and reduced span lower wings, revised wing tip shape, flaps deleted.
Br 14 BN.2 2-seater night bomber version.
Br 14 E.2 Production dual controls trainer version. Unarmed. (also written as Br 14 Et.2)
Br 14 H Floatplane version – some with large central float and small outrigger floats, some with twin floats.
Br 14 S Ambulance version with room for 2 stretcher cases in rear fuselage. 1917
Br 14 Interim civil conversion of 14 A.2 by Latecoere with pilot in front seat and enclosed cabin for 2? passengers in rear cockpit.
Br 14T Postwar civil conversion with cabin for 2 passengers and pilot in rear cockpit. Fuel in streamlined tanks under top wing.
Br 14T.2 Salon Further civil conversion with cabin for 3 passengers and pilot in rear cockpit. 1919. Fuel tanks under top wing.
Br 14T bis Improved civilianised version with deeper cabin with 4 windows and 4 portholes. 1921. Fuel tanks under top wing. Some fitted with floats for colonial use.
Br 14 T bis Sanitaire Ambulance version of civilianised transport. Some fitted with floats for colonial use. 1920s
Br 14 TOE Colonial policing version.
Br 14/400 Export version for China with 400 hp Lorraine-Dietrich 12 Da engine.
Br 16 B.2 Enlarged version of Br 14 B.2 with longer span 3-bay wings, revised fin shape, 1213 lb (550 kg) bomb load, Renault 12Fe engine. June 1918.
Br 16 BN.2 Night bomber version of Br 16 with landing lights on lower wing. Standard production version.
Br 17 C.2 2-seat escort fighter version with scaled-down airframe, revised fin & rudder shape, 400 hp Renault 12K1 engine, 2 forward firing Vickers guns. Mid 1918.
Br 18T Civilian cabin conversion of 16 BN.2 – similar to 14T. Few built.
Nakajima B-6 Japanese licence-built version of Br 14 B.2 bomber. 360 hp RR Eagle engine. 1 only.

History

Key Dates:
June 1916    Start of design work on Type AV
21 November 1916    Maiden flight of Breguet AV first prototype
spring 1917    Breguet 14 B.2 first flight
12 April 1917    Breguet 14 B.2 prototype delivered for service testing
6 March 1917    First production order for 150 Breguet 14 A.2 aircraft
summer 1917    First production delivery of 14 A.2 to French AM
1918    Revised wing and aileron designs introduced
January 1919    Breguet 14 used in double flight across the Mediterranean
1919    First flight of 14 T.2 civil conversion
1921    Breguet 14T bis civil conversion first flight
3 Nov 1922-8 Jan 1923    Long range flight from Paris to Morocco and back in a Breguet 14
1926    Last French-produced Breguet 14 delivered
1928    Last Breguet 14 A.2 withdrawn from French military service
1930    Last Breguet 14 B.2 withdrawn from French military service
1932    Breguet 14 withdrawn from the training role in French military service
1937    Breguet 14 withdrawn from Thai Air Force service

Fiat-engined Breguet 14 T with Avro 504
G-EAJU in the background. (photo, via author)

Operators

Military Operators

Belgium – Air Force (40 aircraft)
Brazil – Air Force (30 aircraft)
China – Air Force (70 aircraft + some Br 16)
Czechoslovakia – Air Force (10 Br 14 + some Br 16)
Denmark – Air Force (4 aircraft)
El Salvador – Air Force (1 aircraft)
Finland – Air Force (38 aircraft)
France – Air Force (operated Br 14, Br 16 and Br 17)
France – Navy (some Br 14 H)
Greece – Air Force (40+ aircraft)
Iran (Persia) – Air Force (2 aircraft)
Italy – Air Force (a few aircraft)
Japan – Army Air Force (1 Br 14 B.2, NOT the Nakajima B-6)
Lithuania – Air Force (2 aircraft)
Manchuria – Air Force (some aircraft)
Poland – Air Force (158 aircraft)
Portugal – Air Force (29 Br 14 + 1 Br 16)
Romania – Air Force (20 aircraft)
Spain – Air Force (90+ aircraft)
Sweden – Air Force (1 aircraft)
Thailand (Siam) – Air Force (30+ aircraft)
Turkey – Air Force (32+ aircraft)
Uruguay – Air Force (9 aircraft)
USA – Army Air Service (600+ aircraft)
USSR – Air Force (6 French Br 14 captured)
Yugoslavia (Serbia) – Air Force (60+ aircraft)

Government Agencies

None

Civilian Operators

Argentina – Latecoere  
Belgium – SNETA  
Brazil – Latecoere  
France – CMA & Latecoere  
Sweden – Red Cross  
Thailand (Siam) – ?  
Uruguay – Latecoere  
USA – 1 Br 14 civil registered  

Not Guatemala Air Force as some sources state.

Farman-built Breguet 14 T of Cie Des
Messageries Aeriennes. (photo, via author)

Specifications

Breguet 14 A.2
Role: Two-seat reconnaissance aircraft
Crew: Two
Dimensions: Length 29 ft 1.25 in (8.87 m); Height 10 ft 10 in (3.30 m) tail down over propeller arc; Wing Span 47 ft 1.25 in (14.36 m) with original ailerons or 48 ft 9 in (14.86 m) with balanced ailerons; Wing Area 511.30 sq ft (47.50 sq m) with original ailerons or 529.60 sq ft (49.20 sq m) with balanced ailerons
Engine(s): One liquid-cooled, 12-cylinder vee, Renault 12Fe of 300 hp (224 kW).
Weights: Empty Equipped 2,227 lb (1010 kg); Maximum Take-off 3,386 lb (1536 kg)
Performance: Maximum level speed 114 mph (184 kph) at 6,560 ft (2,000 m); Time to 10,000 ft (3,048 m) 12 min 10 sec; Service ceiling 19,690 ft (6,000 m); Endurance 3 hr 0 min.
Armament: One forward firing .303 in (7.7 mm) Vickers machine-gun in port forward fuselage side; twin 0.303 (7.7 mm) Lewis guns on ring mounting in rear cockpit; up to 88 lb (40 kg) of bombs under lower wings. Some aircraft with over-wing Lewis gun in place of forward-firing Vickers installation.
Breguet 14 B.2
Role: Two-seat light bomber
Crew: Two
Dimensions: Length 29 ft 1.25 in (8.87 m); Height 10 ft 10 in (3.30 m) tail down over propeller arc; Wing Span 47 ft 1.25 in (14.36 m) with original ailerons or 48 ft 9 in (14.86 m) with balanced ailerons; Wing Area 540.40 sq ft (50.20 sq m) with original ailerons or 522.00 sq ft (48.50 sq m) with balanced ailerons
Engine(s): One liquid-cooled, 12-cylinder vee, Renault 12Fcx of 300 hp (224 kW).
Weights: Empty Equipped 2,283 lb (1 kg); Maximum Take-off 3,892 lb (1765 kg)
Performance: Maximum level speed 110 mph (177 kph) at 6,500 ft (2000 m); Time to 10,000 ft (3,048 m) 16 min 30 sec; Service ceiling 19,030 ft (5,800 m); Range 560 miles (900 km); Endurance 2 hr 45 min.
Armament: One forward firing .303 in (7.7 mm) Vickers machine-gun in port forward fuselage side; twin 0.303 (7.7 mm) Lewis guns on ring mounting in rear cockpit; up to 660 lb (300 kg) of bombs under lower wings. Some aircraft with additional downward-firing Lewis gun.
Breguet 14.T bis F-ADBM c/n 1912.
(photo, via author)

Production

Design Centre

Head of Design Team: Louis Breguet, with Marcel Vullierme [note the spelling] as cheif engineer/assistant designer
Design Office: Societe des Avions Louis Breguet, Vélizy-Villacoublay, France.

Manufacture

Société Anonyme des Ateliers d’Aviation Louis Breguet
(Vélizy per Chaville, Seine et Oise, France.)
Br 14 production 1917-1926.
Br 16 production 1919-1923 (200+ a/c total, mostly by sub-contractors).
Br 17 production 1919-1922 (less than 100 a/c).
Société Anonyme Darracq
(33 quai du Général Galliéni, Suresnes, France.)
Br 14 production spring 1918-late 1918. First order 25 April 1917. Production in association with Michelin.
Société Henri et Maurice Farman
(149 à 169 rue de Silly, Billancourt, Seine, France.)
Br 14 production 1917-1918. First order 8 June 1917.
Paul Schmitt
(39 route de la Révolte, Levallois Perret, Paris, Seine, France.)
Br 14 production 1917-1918. First order 18 June 1917.
Société Anonyme des Automobiles Bellanger Fréres
(1 á 35 route de la Révolte, Neuilly-sur-Seine, France.)
Br 14 production 1918. First order 9 December 1917. Production in association with Hanriot.
S.I.D.A.M.
(?, France.)
Br 14 production 1918. First order 9 December 1917.
Société d’Emboutissage et de Constructions Mécaniques (S.E.C.M.)
(171 boulevard du Havre, Colombes, Paris, France. Later became Amiot.)
Br 14 production 1917-1918.
Br 16 production 1919-1923.
Société des Automobiles L. Renault
(Billancourt, Seine, France.)
Br 14 production 1917-1918.
Les Ateliers d’Aviation Lioré et Olivier
(Levallois-Perret, Paris, France.)
Br 16 production 1919-1923.
S.I.M.B. Bernard-Ferbois
(La Courneuve, Siene-Saint-Denis, France.)
Br 16 production 1919-1923.
Forges et Ateliers de Construction Latecoére
(Toulouse-Montaudron, France.)
Br 14T conversions 1919-1921.
Br 14T bis conversions 1921-1923. Nearly 100 conversions.
Nakajima
(Ojima, Ota, Gunma Prefecture, Japan.)
one (only) Br 14 B.2 licence-built as Nakajima B-6 in April 1922.

Note: Some sources mention licenced production from 1920 by Spain of the Breguet 14 B.2 with a Liberty engine. Although a licence may have been acquired, there doesn’t seem to have been any aircraft actually built. CASA was not created until March 1923 and did not build any.

Some Br 14 aircraft were also reportedly assembled from spares by the French military workshops in Indo-China.

Total Produced: 8590+ Br 14 a/c, (incl. 5300 aircraft 1917-Dec 1918 by 6 companies and 2500 Br 14 A.2/B.2 1919-1926 by 20 companies).

Production List

To be added.

More Information

Books

‘Breguet 14 (Windsock Datafile Special)’
by Alan D. Toelle
Published by Albatros Publications, 2003 ISBN: 1 902207 61 0 1
* 84-page detailed profile of the Breguet 14.

‘Samolot Breguet 14 (TBiU No.197)’
by Tomasz J Kowalski
Published by Wydawnictwo Bellona, 2002 ISBN: 83 11 09461 6
* Polish text profile.

‘The Breguet 14: Profile No.157’
by J.M. Bruce & J. Noel
Published by Profile Publications Ltd, 1967 ISBN: n/a
* Concise well illustrated history of the Breguet 14.

‘Latecoere: Les Avions et Hydravions (Docavia No.34)’
by Jean Cuny
Published by Editions Lariviere, 1992 ISBN: 2 907051 01 6
* French text history of the aircraft company.

‘Mermoz: L’Esprit de l’Aeropostale’
by Jean-Paul Ollivier
Published by Selection de Readers Digest, Feb 2002 ISBN: 2 7098 1315 7
* French text biography of the pioneering pilot.

‘Reconnaissance and Bomber Aircraft of the 1914-1918 War’
by W M Lamberton
Published by Harleyford Publications Ltd, 1962 ISBN: n/a
* Includes a section on the Breguet 14.

Magazines:

Windsock International Vol.6 No.1 Jan/Feb 1990 & Vol.7 No.5 Sept/Oct 1991
Scale Models August 1970
Aeroplane Monthly August 1988
Le Trait d’Union No.154 March/April 1994
Icare No.194: L’exploration des lignes d’Amérique du Sud

Links

wikipedia: Breguet 14
(concise profile)

Breguet 14
(close-up photos of museum example)

Bréguet 14 A2 In Finnish Service 1919 – 1927
(detailed article on Finnish use)

Breguet Type 14 Maintenance and Rigging Manual
(CD-ROM of official technical manual for sale)

Breguet 14
(short profile)

Shop

Flight Simulator Models:
To be added.

Scale Models:
To be added.

Scale Drawings:
See Scale Models article above.

Videos:

To be added.

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