|Role||Single-seat biplane fighter|
|Primary users||French Air Force|
Imperial Japanese Army,
Corpo Aeronautico Militare
|Number built||1571 ca.|
The Nieuport-Delage NiD.29 was a French single-seat biplane fighter (C.I category) designed and built by Nieuport-Delage for the French Air Force.
The prototype NiD.29 was an equal-span biplane with ailerons on both upper and lower wings. It had a fixed tailskid landing gear, a nose-mounted engine and a single open cockpit for the pilot. The prototype NiD 29 was evaluated by the French Service Aeronautique de l'Armee in July 1918 and a pre-production batch was ordered on 21 August 1918. It was powered by a 220 kW (300 hp) Hispano-Suiza 8Fb piston engine, it performed well in test but could not achieve the required ceiling. The second prototype was modified with an increased wingspan and on exceeding the required ceiling it was ordered into production in 1920, becoming the fastest service fighter in the world at that time. Production aircraft did not have ailerons on the upper wing and the lower wing ailerons were increased in span, but reduced in chord.
The first mass production deliveries were made in 1922 to the French Air Force and the type was popular although it did have a tendency to enter a flat spin. The French military bought 250 aircraft which were built by Nieuport and seven other companies. The NiD 29 was to become an important fighter in the 1920s with purchases of 30 by Spain (including 10 Spanish licence built aircraft), 108 by Belgium (87 licensed built by SABCA). The Italian Regia Aeronautica bought 175 aircraft including 95 built by Macchi as the Macchi-Nieuport 29 and 80 built by Caproni. Sweden bought nine aircraft and designated them J 2. The Japanese company Nakajima bought a pattern aircraft and built 608 for the Imperial Japanese Army as the Ko-4.
Racing versions of the aircraft were developed and they gained eight world speed records and won the 1920 Gordon Bennett Trophy and the 1922 Coupe Deutsch de la Meurthe competition.
Three NiD 29s were modified for reserve Captain Joseph Sadi-Lecointe in November 1925 and used on seventy sorties against insurgents in Morocco using bomb racks with six 10 kg bombs. Spanish aircraft were also involved in similar operations in North Africa.
A single example survives at the Musée de l'Air et de l'Espace in Paris although it is not presently on display.
Data from The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Aircraft