Farman-IV, F-4, Farman Trainer, Farman

Farman-IV flying (40k) and on the ground (50k) from "History of aircraft construction in the USSR" by V.B.Shavrov, Vol.1 p.142;

he most widely used and popular 'Farman' in Russia during 1909-1916. Hundreds of Russian aviators made their first flight on Farman-IV.
Only few Farman-IV's were purchased in France. But many hundreds were built at various workshops and factories, ranging from homebuilts to large batches from 'Dux' and other serious manufacturers. As a result total number of built aircraft and its modifications are unaccountable. Most of them were powered by 50hp Gnome engine.
Description provided by prof.N.A.Rynin: 3-strut biplane with tail frame. Engine is mounted on the lower wing, driving pusher propeller. Ailerons had only lower control cables and were hanging down while aircraft is in rest. Aircraft is built of wooden elements, connected by very basic joints and enforced by bracing wires.
Wing was covered with fabric only from below. As a result wing had 'not an airfoil but something unimaginable', as pilots giggled. But it was fine, thanks to very small wing load.
The most common modification of F-4 included two-side fabric cover on the wing and ribs with more advanced airfoil. Those basic improvements, first performed by Russian aviators, allowed pilot M.A.Gaber-Vlynskij to set several ceiling records (April 13, 1913) :
  • pilot with 5 passengers - 1120m
  • pilot with 4 passengers - 1350m
  • pilot alone - 3000m
    Some Russian Farman-IV's were built of bamboo instead of pine. During winter season wheels were replaced by skis.
    Aircraft was not used for military purposes.
  • Farman-IV by 'Dux' factory had substantially increased wingspan, single rudder, landing skis were much longer (like on Farman-III). Wing airfoil was not revised, but cover was on both sides. This aircraft was built in series under supervision of engineer V.V.Bartoshevich.
  • 'Farman' by French aviator Christians (?) was presented on the First Petersburg Aviation Week in 1910. It differed by additional small wheels on forward-extended skis. Aircraft was purchased by the Military Department as a trainer for Gatchina Aviation School. Speed was 57km/h.
  • 'Farman-IV' with 60hp liquid-cooled ENV engine was flown in the School of Turkestan Aviation Society by Shavrov, officer of the Central Headquarters. It was the first aircraft built by 'Dux' factory.
  • Few were built in 1910 with 55hp l.c. Renault engine.
  • 'Novgorod The Great' - built at Novgorod section of the Russian Aeroclub. Had 2-side wing and tailplane/elevator cover, lower wing had smaller than usual size.
  • 'Farman-IV' by A.K.Tikhomirov was built in Moscow, 1912. Trainer with switchable second set of controls.
  • 'Farman-IV' of Odessa Naval Battalion was built in April 1911. Upper wing was larger than lower one and supported by upper kingpost. One of Odessa Farmans was flown by aviator S.Utochkin (1876-1916).
  • 'Farman-IV' by B.S.Maslennikov was built in 1911 for flight Petersburg-Moscow. Differed by pinpointed nose shell, covering controls and pilot's legs.
  • 'Farman-Aviata' was built in Warsaw by Aviata Enterprise. 60hp Argus engine provided speed up to 80km/h. Struts were replaced by upper kingposts, landing skis extended forward, lower wing is smaller than usual. Few were accepted by Military Department. Note that at the time Poland was part of Russia.
  • 'Farman-IV' by A.V.Shiukov had pilot's seat moved 1.5 forward. Front elevator was removed. Performance was not harmed.
  • German built 'Farman-Albatros' with minor changes in upper wing design served in Gatchina Aviator School near St.Petersburg.
  • 'Farman-Bristol' aka 'Farman-V'
  • 'Farman Militer' was almost identical to Farman-IV. Few obtained by Russia in 1911.
  • "History of aircraft construction in the USSR" by V.B.Shavrov, Vol.1 p.140-143;
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  • Farman MF.4
  • Technical data
    Type Farman-IV
    Function Trainer
    Year 1909
    Crew 2
    Engines 1*50hp Gnome
    Length 12.5m
    Wingspan 10.5m
    Wing area 41.0m2
    Empty weight 400kg
    Loaded weight 580kg
    Wing load 14.0kg/m2
    Power load 11.5kg/hp
    Speed at 0m 60km/h
    Modified November 26, 1997
    by Alexandre Savine;
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