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British Industrial History

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Burney and Blackburne: Tomtit

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Tomtit engine. Exhibit at the Shuttleworth Collection.
Tomtit engine. Exhibit at the Shuttleworth Collection.

Note: This is a sub-section of Burney and Blackburne

The Blackburne Tomtit was a 670 cc V-twin aero engine for light aircraft that was designed and produced by Burney and Blackburne Limited.

The Blackburne Tomtit engine was developed from Blackburne's motor-cycle engines. The first one adapted to aircraft use was the best performing engine at the Lympne light aircraft trials of 1923, despite the lack of refinement. The Tomtit was a modified version of the Lympne 696 cc V-twin, marketed specifically for flight.

The Tomtit could run upright or inverted and was the first British engine to fly inverted, in the ANEC I. The inverted configuration was more common, but the Avro 558 used it in the upright arrangement, and the Avro 560 flew with both upright and inverted Tomtits.

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