Caproni Ca.133


Caproni Ca.133

Infobox Aircraft
name=Caproni Ca.133
type=Transport/Light bomber
manufacturer=Caproni


caption=
designer=
first flight=1934
introduced=1935
retired=1948
status=
primary user=Regia Aeronautica
more users=Ala Littoria
produced =
number built =
unit cost =
variants with their own articles =

The Caproni Ca.133 was a three-engine transport/bomber aircraft used by the Italian Regia Aeronautica from the Second Italo-Abyssinian War until World War II.

Originally developed as a civilian airliner and successor to the Caproni Ca.101, the Ca.133 prototype first flew in December 1934, and production began in 1935. The military versions of the aircraft were used as transports and light bombers and saw action on all fronts.

Design

The Ca.133, like its predecessor the Ca.101, was a robust and inexpensive aircraft, designed to be easily maintained in difficult conditions and economical to operate. Its performance suffered accordingly, even by 1930's standards.

The aircraft was powered by three engines, one in the nose, and one under each wing mounted in nacelles supported by steel tubes. It was of mixed construction, with a fuselage of steel tubes covered in plywood and fabric. The wing was mounted high, roughly elliptical, and made of wood and steel. The undercarriage was spatted and fixed.

Armament consisted of four Vickers machine guns; one dorsal, one ventral, and two lateral. Two small internal bomb bays were able to hold up to 500 kg, and larger ordnance could be mounted externally.

Operational service

econd Italo-Abyssinian War (1935–1936)

The Ca.133 was well-suited for colonial use, and it became the most successful of all Italian colonial aircraft.

The more advanced Savoia-Marchetti SM.81s were too valuable to be used in 'low level wars' and were also more costly. The war was thus fought mainly with the Ca.101, Ca.111 and Ca.133.

Around 100 Ca.133s took part in the conflict, and as well as 'normal' bombing and strafing, they were often equipped with mustard gas and Phosgene chemical bombs. These weapons were forbidden by the Geneva Protocol of 1925, but in this war (and in Libya) the Italians ignored the convention.

The Ca.133s were also used as transports to support the army, as well as reconnaissance aircraft.

Without any air opposition, and flak almost exclusively based on small calibre arms, air power was a decisive factor in Italy's final victory, culminating in the capture of Addis Ababa in early 1936. Even so, COIN (COunter INsurrection) operations continued until the start of World War II.

panish Civil War (1936–1939)

While in Ethiopia they were widely used, in Spain the Ca.133 was found to be too slow, and highly vulnerable to enemy I-15 and I-16 aircraft, and to heavy anti-aircraft fire.

World War II (1939-1945)

The Ca.133 was used mostly as a light transport aircraft in mainland Italy, supporting fighter and bomber squadrons by carrying supplies, personnel and spare parts. It was also used as an air ambulance in the Ca.133S (Sanitary) variant. Over 250 Ca.133s were in service in September 1939, when the war broke out. Some survived until the Armistice in 1943.

Post-war

A handful were retained for civilian service with the airline Ala Littoria. Some were exported to Austria.

The last Ca.133 was phased out by the Aeronautica Militare in 1947, and the last Ca.148 flew until 1956 with the Italian Aeroclub.

Variants

;Ca.133: Bomber and transport;Ca.133S: Medical transport;Ca.133T: Troop transport;Ca.148: Stretched 8-seat civil/military transport

Operators

Military Operators

;AUT
*"Kommando Luftstreitkräfte" received five aircraft.
**Fliegerregiment 1
**Fliegerregiment 2;flag|Italy|1861 (Wartime)
*Regia Aeronautica;flag|Italy|RSI
*"Aeronautica Nazionale Repubblicana";UK (Wartime)
*Royal Air Force
**No. 117 Squadron RAF;ITA (Postwar)
*Aeronautica Militare
**Air Staff Liaison Flight

Civil Operators

;flag|Italy|1861
*Ala Littoria received twelve aircraft.

pecifications (Ca.133)

aircraft specifications
plane or copter?=plane
jet or prop?=prop

ref=World Encyclopedia of Civil Aircraft [cite book
last=Angelucci
first=Enzo
title=World Encyclopedia of Civil Aircraft
year=1982
publisher=Crown Publishers
location=New York
language=
id=ISBN 0-517-54724-4
]

crew=5 for bomber, 2 for transport
length main=15.36 m
length alt=59 ft 4.75 in
span main=21.34
span alt=69 ft 8 in
height main=4.0 m
height alt=13 ft 2 in
area main=65 m²
area alt=700 ft²
empty weight main=4,000 kg
empty weight alt=8,800 lb
loaded weight main=6,525 kg
loaded weight alt=14,390 lb
max takeoff weight main=
max takeoff weight alt=
engine (prop)=Piaggio Stella VII.C 16
type of prop=air-cooled radial engines
number of props=3
power main=460 hp
power alt=340 kW
max speed main=230 km/h
max speed alt=120 knots, 140 mph
cruise speed main=200 km/h
cruise speed alt=110 knots, 120 mph
range main=1,350 km
range alt=729 nm, 840 mi
ceiling main=5,500 m
ceiling alt=18,000 ft
climb rate main=
climb rate alt=
loading main=100 kg/m²
loading alt=21 lb/ft²
power/mass main=210 W/kg
power/mass alt=130 hp/lb
guns=4 × 7.7 mm (0.303 in) Breda-SAFAT machine guns
bombs=500 kg (1,100 lb)

References

*"Ca.133 reconnaissance table", Storia militare magazine n.83. it icon

External links

* [http://www.century-of-flight.net/Aviation%20history/coming%20of%20age/Caproni%20Ca.133.htm Century-of-flight.net]
* [http://www.ams.vr.it/Progetto_Caproni/Caproni_Plane/Ca-133/Ca-133.htm Caproni Ca.133] it icon
* [http://www.aerei-italiani.net/SchedeT/aereoca133.htm aerei-italiani.net] it icon
* [http://www.airwar.ru/enc/bww2/ca133.html airwar.ru] ru icon
* [http://www.histaviation.com/Caproni_Ca_133.html Examples exported]

ee also

aircontent

related=
* Caproni Ca.101

similar aircraft=

sequence=
* ← Ca.130 - Ca.131 - Ca.132 - Ca.133 - Ca.134 - Ca.135 - Ca.140 →

* ← Ca.140 - Ca.142 - Ca.146 - Ca.148 - Ca.150 - Ca.153 - Ca.154 →

see also=

lists=
* List of aircraft of Italy, World War II
* List of airliners
* List of bomber aircraft


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