|Virtual Aircraft Museum / United Kingdom / Avro|
Built for the Admiralty early in 1916, the Avro 519 single seat biplane bore a distinct resemblance to the Avro 510 seaplane of two years previously. Few technical details of the Avro 519 survive but it appears to have been fitted with the same wing structure as the 510, redesigned for folding and rigged with decreased gap. An enlarged version of the standard central skid undercarriage replaced the floats and the neat nose radiator was abandoned in favour of an ugly, high drag unit above and behind the engine which blocked the pilot's forward view. A large fin and rudder of the type used on the Avro 504B was also fitted.
The exact purpose of the aircraft is not known but pilot-comfort was evidently of some importance for the flat top of the Avro 510 fuselage gave place to a deep and generous decking. An elongated secondary structure on top of this formed a streamlined headrest.
Four prototypes were built, comprising two Avro 519s for the R.N.A.S. and two Avro 519A two-seaters for the R.F.C. The latter were fitted with a stout Vee strut undercarriage with no skid, and photographs taken by test pilot Capt. F. T. Courtney suggest that all four were delivered to Farnborough for tests during or before May 1916. It is said that neither the R.N.A.S. nor the R.F.C. considered them strong enough for the powerful 150hp engine, and apart from the fact that they were dubbed "The Big Avros" and that their rate of climb was poor, no hint of their career or ultimate fate remains.
A.J.Jackson "Avro Aircraft since 1908", 1965