Category Archives: Projects


Fairey 0.21/44 (Unicraft Models, Resin)

TYPE: Carrier-borne torpedo-bomber, strike fighter. Project

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot and navigator

POWER PLANT: Two twin-coupled Rolls-Royce “Merlin” RM.14.SM, rated at 2,200 hp

PERFORMANCE: 360 mph at 15,000 ft

COMMENT: In autumn 1944 the Fairey Corporation was asked to assess the feasibility of adapting its original tandem, twin engine research studies to a new naval strike platform as a replacement of the troublesome Fairey “Spearfish”. The new aircraft was planned for use aboard the new 46,000 t “Malta”-class aircraft carriers then under development and as power units two tandem-coupled engines were proposed: The Rolls-Royce “Tandem Merlin” (Project A) or alternatively the Rolls-Royce “Twin Griffon” (Project B). Either design was intended to be a single-seat aircraft, although there was the possibility for adding a rear compartment for a navigator.
During March 1945, Fairey redesigned the “Project A’s” overall specifications. The plane would still employ the Rolls-Royce “Merlin” twin-coupled power plant, but the new version was streamlined and compacted. The aircraft was a cantilever, mid-wing monoplane, with an all-metal, monocoque fuselage, the centre wing section was built integral with the fuselage and the outer wing panels could be hydraulically folded for carrier operations. It had an internal weapons bay to hold a torpedo, retractable ASV Mk. XV surface search radar mounted behind the bomb bay, contra-rotating propellers, and a stronger outward retracting conventional landing gear with a tailwheel.  The cockpit was positioned high above the engine and offered an excellent view for the pilot, the navigators position was behind the cockpit in a separate copula operating a remote-controlled Frazer-Nash FN 95 barbette holding two 12,7 mm M2 Browning machine guns.
With the end of WW II and the upcoming turbojet- and turboprop-engines as well as the cancellation of all orders for new “Malta”-class aircraft carriers the Fairey design was abandoned. Nevertheless, in the post-war period this design influenced the development of the successful carrier-born anti-submarine aircraft Fairey “Gannet” (Ref.: Unicraft, 24).

Blackburn B.44 (Unicraft, Resin)

TYPE: Flying-boat fighter and fighter bomber. Project


POWER PLANT: One Napier Sabre II, rated at 2.020 hp, driving two three-bladed contra-rotating propellers


COMMENT: After Japan’s initial successes in the Pacific Area of Action, the need for a fighter aircraft capable of operating from austere island sites, with minimal infrastructure, was regarded as a high priority. So the British Air Ministry’s Specification N2./42 called for a retractable hull flying-boat fighter. The Blackburn Aircraft Company designed a water based fighter that utilized as much as possible of the structure of the Blackburn Firebrand torpedo striker fighter, just beginning flight tests at that time. A novelty was the retractable hull. The fuselage of the aircraft was to be split in two with the lower float-like half extending and retracting hydraulically. This resulted in an excellent streamline form with the main hull, and simultaneously provided adequate clearance between airscrews and water. The B.44 was well suited for the Pacific war. However, the project was cancelled because British Naval policy was only to use aircraft carriers with wheeled fighters (Ref.: 23 ).