Renard Stampe & Vertongen RSV 26/180 Mark III
Single engine, two seat night-flying trainer.
In 1929, after having previously acquired eleven R.S.V. 26/180 trainers (which see), the Aéronautique Militaire Belge placed an order for 14 more aircraft of this type. The machines subject of this order were specialised night-flying trainers and therefore equiped with a blind-flying hood over the forward pilot seat. Although ancestry to the initial RSV 26/180 is clearly evident, the additional aircraft had been extensively improved by Chief Engineer George W. Ivanov. Readily noticeable is the Morane Saulnier style wide main undercarriage, a Hispano 180hp motor with its new radiator behind the engine, besides the already mentioned blind flying hood and new central "N" struts. The extend of modifications to the 19 aircraft of this additional order justified the specific designation R.S.V. 26/180 Mark III, while they were attributed the registrations V-12 to V-30 - including 5 more aircraft ordered in 1930(2) and 1931(3). These additional aircraft were destined to receive the then new AéM standard power plant the 215 hp radial Armstrong Siddeley Lynx in order to compete for an AéM requirement for a new basic trainer. However, Stampe and Vertongen’s hopes for a large additional order of the basic trainer version of the RSV 26/180 quickly faded away, when the AéM selected the Avro 504N as its elementary trainer in 1932. Only one example of the Lynx powered R.S.V. 26 was flown, being designated S.V. 26/215 or S.V. 26 Lynx. According to Renard specialist André Hauet some of the 14 initial production R.S.V. 26/180 Mark III’s were reworked aircraft of the initial 11 R.S.V. 26/180 series. The MK.III’s soldiered on until early 1936 when they were replaced by the S.V. 5 (ordered in 1935). Ten R.S.V. 26/180 Mk.III were sold to civil operators and continued flying until World War II. In the late thirties at least two MK.III’s were noted with a scrap dealer at the Chausée de Dinant, 81A at Anhée, while another MK.III was noted being used as by the German occupiers as a decoy on a fake airfield near Tielt . (Daniel Brackx)
More individual aircraft will be added in the future.