|FIGHTER||Virtual Aircraft Museum / United Kingdom / Gloster|
In July 1924, Gloucestershire Aircraft began work on an improved Grebe single-seat fighter to Specification 37/23 and intended to be powered by the 398hp Bristol Jupiter IV nine-cylinder radial engine. Of wooden construction with fabric skinning and retaining the then-standard armament of two synchronised 7.7mm Vickers guns, and to receive the appellation of Gamecock, the prototype was delivered to Martlesham Heath on 20 February 1925. In the following September, an initial order was placed on behalf of the RAF for 30 Gamecock Is powered by the 425hp Jupiter VI. In the event, a further 60 Gamecock Is were built for the RAF (1925-27), one of these (unofficially known as the Gamecock III) at one time flying with a lengthened fuselage, new and enlarged fm-and-rudder assembly and narrow-chord ailerons. A developed version, the Gamecock II, with a steel-tube upper wing centre section, narrow-chord ailerons and a larger rudder, appeared in 1928. This was adopted by Finland, two pattern aircraft and a manufacturing licence being acquired. Fifteen Gamecock IIs were built for the Finnish air arm 1929-30 by the State Aircraft Factory (Valtion Lentokonenetehdas), these having the lengthened fuselage tested earlier in the UK by the so-called Gamecock III and being powered initially by the 420hp Gnome-Rhone Jupiter (IV) 9Ab or 9Ak and later by the 480hp Jupiter (IV) 9Ag. The last Gamecock Is were withdrawn from first-line RAF service mid-1931, Gamecock IIs remaining first-line Finnish equipment until 1935.