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World War One: Fokker D.VII

The Fokker D.VII was introduced in 1918 and quickly developed a reputation as one of the finest single-seat fighters of the war. So much so that the aircraft type was mentioned specifically in the Armistise agreements - Germany had to surrender all aircraft of the type to the Allies. This confiscation of the aircraft led the D.VII to be used all over the world by different countries after the war. Examples were still in use by Switzerland, The Netherlands and Lithuania into the late 1930's

 

By the end of the war 775 aircraft of this type were in service with over 46 Jagdstafflen (fighter squadrons), this being more than twice the total number of Fokker Dr.1 Triplanes that had been built.

D>VIIDespite the requirement to hand over all the aircraft to the Allies, some German pilots flew their aircraft back to Germany, while Anthony Fokker smuggled six trains with sixty wagons each full of aeroplanes and tools to Holland - among these were 120 Fokker D.VII's.

The aircraft first saw combat in early May 1918, and was initially powered by a 180hp Mercedes engine. These were eventually replaced with 200Hp Mercedes engines and then the 'overcompressed' 185hp BMW IIIIa engines which gave the aircraft a much improved performance envelope. This replica aircraft currently sports a 200hp Gypsy Queen engine.

Jasta 10 was the first unit to receive the aircraft, while Jasta 11 received theirs only a few short few weeks after Manfred von Richthofen had been killed in his Fokker Dr.1.

This aircraft is painted in the colours of Lt Johann Janzen of Jasta 6.

 


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