Scottish Aviation Bulldog

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Bulldog
Scottish Aviation Bulldog, SK 61C.jpg
Scottish Aviation Bulldog, Swedish Army designation FPL 61C
Role Basic trainer
Manufacturer Beagle Aircraft/Scottish Aviation
First flight 19 May 1969
Introduction 1971
Status Active
Primary users Kenya Air Force
Lebanese Air Force
Armed Forces of Malta
Produced 1969-1976
Number built 320
Developed from Beagle Pup

The Scottish Aviation Bulldog is a British two-seat side-by-side (with optional third seat) training aircraft designed by Beagle Aircraft as the B.125 Bulldog.

The prototype Bulldog first flew on 19 May 1969 at Shoreham Airport. The first order for the type was for 78 from the Swedish Air Board. Before any production aircraft were built, Beagle Aircraft ceased trading and the production rights for the aircraft, with the Swedish order, were taken over by Scottish Aviation (Bulldog) Limited. All subsequent aircraft were built at Prestwick Airport by Scottish Aviation, or in later years, British Aerospace.

Operational history[edit]

Sweden[edit]

The first 58 aircraft (known as the SK 61A and SK 61B) were delivered to the Swedish Air Force in 1971. Twenty more aircraft were delivered to the Swedish Army as FPL 61C in 1972, although these were transferred to the Air Force in 1989 as SK 61C. By 2001 all the Swedish aircraft had been withdrawn from military service. 26 were bought in 2004 by the Hungarian company AVIA-Rent.

United Kingdom[edit]

Manchester University Air Squadron Bulldog at RAF Woodvale in 1983

The largest customer was the Royal Air Force, which placed an order for 130 Bulldogs in 1972, entering service as the Bulldog T.1. It was used extensively by the Royal Air Force as a basic trainer, in particular as the standard aircraft of the University Air Squadrons and, later, Air Experience Flights, providing flying training. The RAF sold off all its remaining Bulldog trainers in 2001 as general aviation light aircraft for a very low price. They were replaced by the Grob Tutor.

Other operators[edit]

Privately owned ex-RAF Bulldog G-BZMD at the Royal International Air Tattoo in 2006

Of the Swedish aircraft, 26 were bought in 2004 by the Hungarian company AVIA-Rent. When the RAF aircraft were sold on the civilian market in the early 2000s, the type's excellent visibility, robustness and aerobatic capability meant that they were enthusiastically taken up. Many examples are operated by private pilots in the United Kingdom, States and elsewhere.[citation needed]

Variants[edit]

The following Bulldog models were produced:[1] [2]

The prototype Bulldog G-AXEH in the National Museum of Flight
Bulldog Series 1
One prototype built by Beagle Aircraft (G-AXEH), one built by Scottish Aviation; now in the collection of the National Museum of Flight at East Fortune, East Lothian.
Bulldog Series 100
  • Model 101: Export model for Sweden. Swedish military designation SK 61 (AF) or FPL 61 (Army). 78 built.
  • Model 102: Export model for Malaysia. 15 built.
  • Model 103: Export model for Kenya. Five built.
  • Model 104: Refurbished second prototype (G-AXIG)
  • Model 121: Two-seat primary trainer aircraft for the Royal Air Force. RAF designation Bulldog T.1. 130 built, five later transferred to the Armed Forces of Malta.
  • Model 122: Export model for Ghana. Six built.
    • Model 122A: Export model for Ghana. Seven built.
  • Model 123: Export model for Nigeria. 37 built.
  • Model 124: Company demonstrator (G-ASAL).
  • Model 125: Export model for Jordan. 13 built.
  • Model 126: Export model for Lebanon. Six built.
  • Model 127: Export model for Kenya. Nine built.
  • Model 128: Export model for Royal Hong Kong Auxiliary Air Force. Two built.
  • Model 129: One aircraft for a civil customer in Venezuela (YV-375-CP).
  • Model 130 : Export model for Botswana. Six built.
Bulldog Series 200 
Four-seat variant with retractable undercarriage. One prototype built (G-BDOG). Also known as the Bullfinch in civilian guise.

Operators[edit]

Privately owned Scottish Aviation Bulldog Series 120, formerly of the Botswana Air Force and in their colours, at an English air rally in 2005.
Former Royal Jordanian Air Force Bulldog now operated by the British Disabled Flying Association on display at Farnborough Airshow 2008
Bulldog of the Maltese Air Force in 2003.

Military operators[edit]

 Kenya
 Lebanon
  • Lebanese Air Force 6 Scottish Aviation Bulldogs received in 1975, Currently 3 Bulldogs remain, 1 shot down during a sortie over hostile territories, and 2 lost in accidents and after which they were grounded and stored. Restored back into active service in 2010 for training purposes.
 Malta
Operators of the Bulldog.

Former Military operators[edit]

 Botswana
 Ghana
 Jordan
 Hong Kong
 Malaysia
 Nigeria
 Sweden
 United Kingdom

Specifications (Bulldog Series 120)[edit]

Data from [3]

General characteristics

Performance

Armament

Note: all armament is optional.
  • 290 kg (640 lb) bomb load

These armaments were never used in RAF service although some weapons training was done on the Bulldog trainers in Sweden. Although hardpoints are available, there is no provision for weapons launch control systems in the Bulldog.

See also[edit]

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
Related lists

References[edit]

  1. ^ Johan Visschedijk (2004-04-26). "History Brief: Scottish Aviation Bulldog". 1000aircraftphotos.com. Retrieved 2008-07-24. 
  2. ^ Keith Halliday (2005-12-06). "Scottish Aviation Bulldog Production List". Airbase. Retrieved 2008-07-24. [dead link]
  3. ^ Taylor 1976, p. 192.

External links[edit]

Media related to Scottish Aviation Bulldog at Wikimedia Commons