The Armstrong-Whitworth F.K.10 was a two-seat quadruplane built for fighting and bombing. Like its predecessor, the F.K.9, it was a poor performer with serious design flaws. Of the fifty aircraft ordered by the Royal Naval Air Service, only eight were delivered.
Confusingly, aircraft of original design produced by the J S White company bore the appellation Wight, to link them with the location of the works at Cowes on the Isle of Wight. The last of some eight types developed under the direction of Howard T Wright as chief designer was the only Wight aircraft in the fighter category.
This was a quadruplane of most unusual layout, in which the fuselage filled the gap between the two middle wings, with the upper and lower mainplanes carried above and below it on struts. At first, single wide-chord struts were used for the cabane and for the single wing bays between the upper, mid-upper and mid-lower wings, all of which had ailerons. The bottom wing, of shorter span, was carried on pairs of struts under the fuselage, and from the mid lower wing. The main wheels were carried on single struts each side and were notched into the bottom wing, with which the axle was in line. Construction was of wood, with mixed fabric and plywood covering.
As first flown the wheels were recessed into the bottom wing and a large tailskid was needed to prevent the trailing edge scraping the ground. This was replaced by a more conventional arrangement.
The engine was a 110hp Clerget 9Z nine-cylinder rotary, but there is no record of the planned armament. Early flight testing, in mid-1916, led to a complete redesign and rebuild, by Howard T Wright and his team, with a fuselage of increased cross-section area and changed profile in side elevation, an enlarged tail unit and a new set of wings of varying chord. The original broad-chord struts gave way to pairs of narrow struts throughout and the undercarriage was lengthened.
Possibly first tested at Martlesham Heath in February 1917, the Quadruplane acquired a third set of wings, with span progressively decreasing from top to bottom and ailerons on the two upper sets only. Further tests in July 1917 were unsatisfactory and the Quadruplane was written off in February 1918.
The wing section was an original and very inefficient design by designer Howard Wright. There w camber at the leading and trailing edges but a flat middle section. The Quadruplane's wingspan was less than the fuselage length, which by the time it appeared was the reverse of the established practice.
In 1916 V.F.Saveljev and Vladislav Zalevskij built this experimental 2-seat reconnaisence aircraft. It used fuselage from the “Morane-G” and single strut Quadruplane wing box tilted forward. The Quadruplane was powered by an 80hp engine when it was flown on April 15, 1916. According to the testpilot Ungmejster, “The aircraft is very responsive and may compete with the 165hp Albatros, But it needs a 100hp Monosaupape engine.” Later this engine was fitted with minor modifications, and aircraft performed numerous flights.