R.A.F. B.E.12a

From Wings of Linen
R.A.F. B.E.12a
Role Fighter
Manufacturer R.A.F.
Introduction Nov 1916[1]-Apr 1917 [2]
Primary user U.K. (RFC/RAF)
Number built ~100[3], 468 combined [note 1]
Developed from R.A.F. B.E.2e
Wingspan 12.4 m (40 ft 9 in) [5]
Engine 140hp RAF 4a 12-cylinder vee
Armament fixed, sync. Vickers and/or
(sometimes)1-2 Lewis[note 2]
Ammo 250 (Vickers) + ≥3 drums of 47 or 97 rounds (Lewis)[6]
Crew 1
Max Speed 160 km/h (100 mph) [4][5]
Climb 910 m (3,000 ft) in 5:00[4][3][5]
1,800 m (6,000 ft) in 11:20[4][3][5]
3,000 m (10,000 ft) in 24:15[4][3]
Service Ceiling 3,500 m (11,500 ft)[3]

Just as the BE.2c had not miraculously transformed into a nimble fighter in the guise of the BE.12, the BE.2e fared no better as the R.A.F. B.E.12a. The increase in horsepower and removal of the observer certainly helped, but the 12a was at its heart a docile, stable flyer. For a short period in the summer of 1917, one unit in France used the BE.12a, but they did serve in quieter theaters, such as Macedonia and Palestine. In the Home Defense role a BE.12a shot down one Zeppelin, L.48, on 16/17 June 1917 with the aid of an F.E.2b and DH.2. [7][8]

One BE12a squadron served in France (№ 101); six on Home Defense; five in Palestine; and three mixed squadrons in Macedonia. About 100 serial numbers were allocated to BE12a production.[9]

For more information, see Wikipedia:Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.12.

Timeline [note 3]

Game Data

Wings of Glory

Unofficial Stats
Availability Maneuver Damage Dmg Points Max Alt. Climb
16Q3-17Q1 K B or B/B 14 9 5

Blue Max/Canvas Eagles

Aircraft Chart

Miniatures and Models

1:144 Scale

1:285/6mm/1:288 Scale


Orthographic Drawings


  1. Combined BE.12 and BE.12a total. 130 to France; 67 to the Middle East; 101 to Home Defense; 170 to training.[4]
  2. Usually a synchronized, fixed Vickers; sometimes supplemented with 1-2 top-wing Lewis or a rear-firing pilot-operated Lewis of dubious utility.
  3. British usage numbers are approximate, derived from the squadron histories.[1]
  1. 1.0 1.1 Philpott'13, pp.379-444.
  2. Bruce'97, p.14.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Bruce'97, p.40.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Bruce'69, p.386.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Lamberton, pp.214-215.
  6. Kelly, p.230.
  7. Bruce'69, p.382.
  8. Bruce'97, p.25.
  9. Bruce'97, p.41.
  • J.M. Bruce. British Aeroplanes 1914-18. Great Britain: Funk & Wagnalls, 1957, 1969. ISBN 0370000382
  • J.M. Bruce. Windsock Datafile 66: RAF BE12/a/b. Great Britain: Albatros Productions Ltd., 1997. ISBN 0-948414-98-7
  • Kevin Kelly, "Belts and Drums: A Survey of First World War Aircraft Ammunition Totals". Over the Front, Vol. 5, No. 3, Autumn 1990. Walsworth Publishing Co, Inc. and The League of World War I Aviation Historians.
  • W.M. Lamberton and E.F. Cheesman, Fighter Aircraft of the 1914-1918 War. Great Britain: Harleyford Publications Limited, 1960.
  • Ian Philpott, The Birth of the Royal Air Force. Great Britain: Pen & Sword Books Limited, 2013. ISBN 978-1-78159-333-2