Ansaldo A.1 Balilla
Though the prototype for the Ansaldo A.1 Balilla flew in late 1917, there followed a series of adjustments, each of which required another pass through formal testing. By July 1918 the focus was on promotional photographs with famous aces, though 1600 Balillas had been ordered back in January. The first planes reached 91ª Squadriglia on 28 June 1918. Pilots found them difficult to handle and concluded they were not ready for front-line use. There followed one plane here and one plane there, and attrition was high enough to match distribution to the point that only a single Balilla was on 70ª Squadriglia strength at the Armistice. Thirteen A.1s had been delivered in the first half of 1918 and 153 in the rest of the year.
|First flight||Nov 1917 |
|Introduction||28 June 1918 |
|Primary users|| Italy|
|Number built||108 |
|Wingspan||7.605 m (24 ft 11.4 in) - 7.68 m (25 ft 2 in) - 7.95 m (26 ft 1 in) [note 1]|
|Engine||220hp S.P.A. 6A inline|
|Armament||2×fixed, sync. Vickers|
|Max Speed||215 km/h (134 mph)  to 220 km/h (137 mph)|
|Climb||1,000 m (3,280 ft) in 2:20|
2,000 m (6,560 ft)in 4:40-5:30
3,000 m (9,840 ft) in 7:30-8:00
|Service Ceiling||5,000 m (16,400 ft) to 5,400 m (17,700 ft) |
|Absolute Ceiling||5,800 m (19,000 ft) -7,900 m (26,000 ft)|
|Endurance||1:30 to 2:15 |
A.1s were purchased by Poland after the war but delays and distribution problems continually arose and order volumes continually dropped. Latvia, the Soviet Union, and others experimented with the Balilla but the planes rarely lasted long, even in a training capacity. 
For more information, see Wikipedia:Ansaldo A.1 Balilla.
|Availability||Maneuver||Damage||Dmg Points||Max Alt.||Climb|
Miniatures and Models
- Alegi states that original Ansaldo planes had a wingspan of 7.605 m (24 ft 11.4 in) but Castoldi, ISA, and Polish planes had a wingspan of 7.68 m (25 ft 2 in).
- Angelucci, p.61.
- Alegi, p.1.
- Angelucci, p.51.
- Lamberton, pp.220-221.
- Alegi, p.37.
- Munson, p.48.
- Enzo Angelucci, ed. The Rand McNally Encyclopedia of Military Aircraft, 1914-1980. New York: The Military Press, 1983 edition. ISBN 0-517-41021-4.
- Gregory Alegi, Windsock Datafile 88: Ansaldo A.1 Balilla, Great Britain: Albatros Publications, Ltd., 2001. ISBN 1-902207-39-4
- W.M. Lamberton and E.F. Cheesman, Fighter Aircraft of the 1914-1918 War. Great Britain: Harleyford Publications Limited, 1960.
- Kenneth Munson, Fighters 1914-19, Attack and Training Aircraft. New York: MacMillan Publishing Co., Inc., 1976. ISBN 0713707607