Sopwith Snipe 41.44" N159

Skill Level: Advanced

More than 550 parts

Sopwith Snipe

Scale: 1/9
Prop: 12x6
Channels: R/E/A/T
Wheels: Balsa Ply w Neo Tires
Wingspan: 41.44"
Airfoil Type: flat bottomed

Wing Area: 479 sq in, Early Variant or 495 sq in, Late Variant

Cowl: built up balsa and plywood with interlocking bayonet ring mount


Designer: M.K. Bengtson
Weight: ~28 oz
Spinner: N/A
Prototype By: Frank Jaerschky
Power System: AXI 2217/20
Sopwith Snipe Prototype
Sopwith Snipe Prototype
Sopwith Snipe Prototype
Sopwith Snipe Prototype


Instruction Manual

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Designed for the AXI 2217/20 Direct Drive brushless motor but any planetary drive power system with a maximum diameter of ~1 1/8" with equivalent power should work as well.

  • One Piece Design
  • Flat bottomed airfoils
  • Optional layout for ailerons and tail for Early or Late variants
  • Pull-Pull rudder and ailerons
  • Dummy engine that doubles as a motor mount
  • Sub ribs
  • Cowl design has a camera bayonet mount style attachment mechanism for fast and seamless mounting and removal


In service, the Snipe performance was exemplary. One of the most amazing dogfights of the war occurred in a Snipe on 27 October 1918. Major W.G. Barker, a Canadian, was on patrol in a Snipe numbered E8102 with a group of Camels of 201 Sqdn. Flying over the Foret de Mormal, Barker shot down an enemy two seater. Barker was then wounded in the leg by ground fire. As he spun down trying to regain control of the aircraft, he found himself in the middle of a formation of fifteen Fokkers (presumably DVII's). He attacked them and getting to with in thirty feet of one, shot it down. However, he was wounded again and fainted. Regaining consciousness, he was attacked by the rest of the formation. He then shot another Fokker down only to be wounded again, shattering his elbow. Fainting again and once more regaining control of his spinning aircraft, he noticed smoke coming from his aircraft. Believing that a fire had started, he tried to ram a Fokker but instead shot it down at close range. As he tried to escape, eight Fokkers blocked his dive. In spite of not having the use of his legs and one arm, he evaded the fighters and brought his aircraft down to ground level and then flew it until he crashed near a balloon winch. He was rescued and was given the last Victoria Cross of the war for a gallant deed in the air.