48-001   Ansaldo  A.1  Balilla  







The fighter airplane build by Societa Giavonni Ansaldo factory based on earlier concept utilized in SVA constructions. Prototype first flown by the end of 1917 was designed by Giuseppe Brezzi with the help of ace Luigi Olivari. All do it looked pretty , airplane was heavy and sluggish, with defective engine. All those bad characteristics pushed airplane to schools and second line units. It flew combat missions in 70 and 91 ( Aces unit ) Squadriglia during 1918.

After the end of WW I main country using Balillas was Poland, who bought 35 airplanes and build another 60 under Italian supervision in Plage&Laskiewicz factory located in city of Lublin.

At first, it was used in 7 Eskadra Mysliwska ( fighter unit ) later in 18 Eskarda Mysliwska and fought in Polish-Bolshevik war. Even so it was not a great airplane, American volunteers flying in Polish Air Force liked it a lot. After the war airplanes were moved to 121 and 122 Eskadra of First Air Regiment, later to 11 Fighter Regiment in Lida and many training units. Balillas served in front line units until 1926-27. Beside Italy and Poland, airplane was used in Soviet Union (30 pcs.), Latvia, Central and South America. One airplane was modified for Pulitzer Trophy Race where it took third place.

Production: Italy - 166 pcs., Poland - 60-70 pcs.

Armament: 2 x Vickers 7,7mm (0.303 cal), synchronized, fixed on the fuselage.

Engine: inline, 6 cylinders, liquid-cooled, made by SPA (Societa Piemontese Automobili), type SPA-6A, power 162kW (220KM)



Sizes and weights:


Total Length :

22.441 ft

6.840 m


Greatest height :

8.301 ft

2.530 m


Wingspan :

25.197 ft

7.680 m


Wing area :

228.197 sqft

21.200 qm


Max take off weight :

1951.4 lbs

885.0 kg


Weight empty :

1378.1 lbs

625.0 kg


Performance data:

Max. speed :

119 kts

220 km/h


Service ceiling :

16404 ft

5000 m


Wing load :

8.61 lbs/ft2

42.00 kg/qm


Range :

324 nm

600 km




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