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This set of TWO CaquotType R Observation Balloons is available in either 1:1250 or 1:1200 scale. They arrive caged together to guard against loss and damage. Cutting the cage releases the two models , each with an observation basket connected by a sprue to the underside of the envelope. Please see the illustration in the carousel above for notes on mounting the model. Each model is just 22.6 mm long by 9.2mm wide in 1:1250 scale and 23.5mm by 9.6mm in 1:1200.
Developed in 1916 by Albert Caquot, this design had major advantages over the Parseval-Sigsfeld "Drachenballon"( kite balloon) then in use with most of the warring nations and by 1918 it had replaced virtually all of them. The U.S. alone for example, produced over a thousand and the same basic design was used again for barrage balloons during WW2. They were used for the traditional tasks of artillery direction and battleground surveillance on land and at sea they became extremely important in the role of submarine spotting where height enabled the submerged u-boats to be more easily seen.
The Type R was the largest of four sizes that had become standard by the end of the Great War : Type P at 750m3, Type P2 at 820m3 , Type M2 at 930m3 and Type R at 1,000m3. The operational altitude was normally between 300 and 1250 m depending on conditions and a pilot observer could see as far as 65km. Towards the end of the war it was also used (along with M2s) in the anti-aircraft balloon curtain barrages of Paris and London as German heavier-than-air bombers became more and more effective.