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Sopwith Camel and Lockheed F-117A Nighthawk Manuals

16 February 2016

Haynes gets off to a flying start with launch of new Sopwith Camel and Lockheed F-117A Nighthawk Manuals in 2016

Haynes is getting off to a flying start in 2016 with the launch of two unique military aviation titles - the Sopwith Camel Manual and the Lockheed F-117A Nighthawk Manual.

Long-capturing the imagination of many aviation fans, the Sopwith Camel was not only flown by fictional fighter pilot Biggles, but in real-life was a single-seat biplane which first made its appearance in the First World War around 100 years ago.

Difficult to fly but offering unrivalled manoeuvrability, it was one of the most successful RNAS/RFC/RAF ‘scouts’ (the period term for a fighter) of the war. The concentrated firepower from its twin synchronised machine guns packed a serious punch and was responsible for downing 1,294 enemy aircraft. Later in the war the Camel also served as a ground-attack aircraft and it remained in front-line service until the Armistice.

With privileged access to Camel rebuilds and flying replicas in the UK, France and New Zealand, author Jarrod Cotter has been given an unprecedented look under the skin of this most iconic of fighters. He also looks at the trials and tribulations of operating First World War-vintage biplanes and uncovers what Camel pilots and engineers thought about the aircraft, and what it was like to maintain and fly. Also featured is an interview with film director Sir Peter Jackson, who talks about his own Sopwith Camel in New Zealand. The Sopwith Camel Manual is brought alive with a comprehensive selection of more than 280 photographs and technical drawings.

Meanwhile, at a time when the secrets of the Cold War are finally being declassified, the Lockheed F-117A Nighthawk Manual highlights to readers how much military aviation has evolved since the First World War by exploring one of the most secret ‘Black Projects’ ever conceived.

Written by acclaimed world expert on stealth aircraft technology and ‘Black Projects’ Paul Crickmore, the so-called ‘Stealth Fighter’ was acknowledged to the world in November 1988, despite having been in service with the USAF for five years.

A product of the legendary Lockheed Skunk Works, located in Burbank, California, the F-117 Nighthawk was the first operational aircraft to be designed on the basis of predictive stealth modelling. It was developed and built specifically to attack high value military targets, which invariably would be extremely well defended.

Flown sub-sonically, at medium altitude without any means of self-defence, such missions would have been suicidal for the Nighthawk’s pilots were it not for the various stealth technologies that it incorporated. As such it represents one of just a handful of truly transformational developments that have occurred in the history of military aviation.

Although popularly known as the ‘Stealth Fighter’, this interdictor’s surgical strike capability was demonstrated to the world in dramatic fashion during the 1991 Gulf War. As a result of its unprecedented combat success, the world’s media elevated the aircraft to almost mythical status which, although played down by both Lockheed and the US Air Force, did come in useful when the United States was required to undertake ‘coercive diplomacy’.

About the authors

The Sopwith Camel Manual
Jarrod Cotter is a freelance aviation author and former editor of Aeroplane Monthly magazine. He is co-author of the Haynes Avro Lancaster and P-51 Mustang Manuals and author of the Bristol Blenheim Manual. He lives in Lincolnshire.

The Lockheed F-117A Nighthawk Manual
Paul F. Crickmore is a world authority on stealth aircraft technology and ‘Black Projects’. He is co-author with Steve Davies of the Haynes Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird Manual. He lives in Suffolk.


Sopwith Camel ManualThe Sopwith Camel Manual is priced at £25.00 and available from The book number is H5795. The ISBN is 9780857337955. It is published on 7 January 2016.


Lockheed F-117A Nighthawk ManualThe Lockheed F-117A Nighthawk Manual is priced at £25.00 and available from The book number is H5512. The ISBN is 9780857335128. It is published on 7 January 2016.


To request a review copy or high-res images contact McCann PR

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Max Hammond at McCann PR on +44(0)117 921 8143 or
Eleanor James at McCann PR on +44(0)117 921 8135 or
or email Haynes PR

Haynes Manuals is the world's leading publisher of illustrated workshop car and motorcycle manuals, as well as producing manuals on a wide range of DIY, leisure and lifestyle subjects. These will continue to include motoring and motorsport related subjects. Sparkford, Yeovil, Somerset BA22 7JJ. Telephone: 01963 440635 Fax: 01963 440001 E-mail: