Boulton Paul P.79

The Boulton Paul P.79 was a design for a bomber that was produced to the same specification that resulted in the Armstrong Whitworth Whitley.

Boulton Paul Overstrand gun turret
Boulton Paul
Overstrand
gun turret

The P.79 was produced in response to Specification B.3/34. It was a low-wing monoplane that resembled the Douglas B-23 Dragon. The fuselage was wider at the bottom than the top. It would have been powered by two Bristol Perseus sleeve valve engines, have a wing span of 97ft and a length of 61ft 3in. The wings had an equal chord central section, and tapered outer panels, narrowing to a rounded tip. The engines were mounted in mid-wing nacelles, which jutted some way forward of the leading edge. The main wheels retracted forwards into the nacelles. The pilot's windscreen sloped inwards at the base, something also seen on the Boeing 247. Behind the pilot was a navigator's position that could also be turned into a second pilot's position for training use.

It would have been armed with four machine guns carried in three powered turrets - single gun turret in the nose and dorsal positions and two guns in the tail turret. A mock-up was built of the rear turret. Two versions of the nose were offered - one with a full length glazed turret, similar to the one used in the Overstrand, and the other with a smaller half-glazed turret. The bombs would have been carried in two fully enclosed bomb bays, on each side of the wind spars. Four bombs could be carried in each bay, on a rotating bomb carrier.

The design was submitted in 1934 in response to Specification B.3/34, and again for Specification B.1/35. In both cases other aircraft won the contest - the Armstrong Whitworth Whitley and Vickers Warwick respectively.

Engines: Two Bristol Perseus sleeve value engines
Crew: 5?
Span: 97ft
Length: 61ft 3in
All-up weight: 19,000lb
Armament: Four machine guns - two in tail turret, one in dorsal turret, one in nose

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (7 November 2016), Boulton Paul P.79 , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_boulton_paul_P79.html

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