Fokker D.VII

The Fokker D.VII was one of the best fighter aircraft of the First World War and eclipsed both Allied and German aircraft. This aircraft type was even so feared among the victorious powers that the complete delivery of the machines was included as a condition for the truce.


Development and construction:

When, at the end of 1917, the French SPAD S.XIII and the British S.E.5 appeared on the western front, the German aircraft were in severe distress. As a result, the German army command called upon the aircraft manufacturers to develop a new fighter aircraft, which could compete with that of the Allies.

For the company Fokker Flugzeugwerke both the chief designer Reinhold Platz and Antony Fokker worked on the design of the aircraft. The prototype was finally presented at the end of January 1918 at the competition in Berlin-Adlershof and won this over the other 30 aircraft prototypes. Also a recommendation of Manfred von Richthofen after a test flight convinced the German Army Command for the award of the order for the production of the aircraft.

Most of the machines had a Mercedes D IIIa
Engine with 180 hp installed. However, some aircraft had the BMW IIIa 226 hp high-altitude engine, which was not as powerful as the Mercedes engine up to a height of 3,200 meters, but was also the strongest engine used in World War I. Because of the designer Max Friz, who developed the altitude engine, received the Fokker aircraft that had installed this engine the name Fokker D.VIIF.


Fokker D.VII


Fokker D.VII


Fokker D.VII


Fokker D.VIIF




Use in the First World War:

From April 1918, the first aircraft of the type Fokker D.VII were on the Western Front in use and were able to build a reputation as a dangerous opponent within a very short time. Thanks to their excellent climbing abilities and maneuverability, the German pilots managed to shoot down dozens of enemy aircraft in the few months leading up to the end of the war. One of the most famous pilots of a Fokker D.VII was Ernst Udet.

The fact that the Fokker D.VII was particularly feared by the Allies was shown by the provisions of the Compiègne cease-fire, when this plane was the only one mentioned by name, which was to be completely delivered by Germany. After the war, especially the US used these aircraft for several years in the United States Army Air Service. The Air Force of the Netherlands, Lithuania, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, the Soviet Union and Denmark also used these aircraft after the war, which were further built by Fokker in the Netherlands.


Fokker D.VII of the United States Army Air Service of 1920




Technical specifications:

Designation: Fokker D.VII
Country: German Empire
Typ: Fighter plane
Length: 6,95 meters
Span: 8,9 meters
Height: 2,75 meters
Mass: 684kg empty
Crew: Max. 1
Engine: Liquid-cooled six-cylinder inline engine Mercedes D IIIa
180 hp or BMW IIIa 226 hp
Maximum speed: 189 km/h or 205 km/h
Reach: 350 kilometers
Armament: 2 x synchronized machine guns 7,92 mm LMG 08/15






You can find the right literature here:


Fokker Dr I Aces of World War 1 (Aircraft of the Aces)

Fokker Dr I Aces of World War 1 (Aircraft of the Aces) Paperback – Bargain Price, August 25, 2001

Undoubtedly the most famous fighter type to see service on either side during World War 1, the Fokker Dr I was a revelation when it entered service on the western front in 1917. Manfred von Richthofen’s JG 1 ‘circus’ was the first Jasta to completely re-equip with the new fighter, and in the skilled hands of its numerous aces the Dr I proved a formidable opponent. The Dr I remained in service on the Western Front until replaced by the superior Fokker D VII in May 1918. Just weeks prior to that, however, Germany’s leading ace, the great ‘Red Baron’, had been killed at the controls of a Dr I.

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Friedrichshafen Aircraft of WWI: A Centennial Perspective on Great War Airplanes (Great War Aviation) (Volume 21)

Friedrichshafen Aircraft of WWI: A Centennial Perspective on Great War Airplanes (Great War Aviation) (Volume 21) Paperback – February 16, 2016

This book describes and illustrates the development of Friedrichshafen aircraft of WWI with text, 540 photos, 18 in color, 37 color profiles, production quantities and serial numbers of aircraft, and aircraft dimensions and performance specifications. In addition, there are 26 official SVK drawings and 11 aircraft are illustrated in scale drawings to 1/48 (4) or 1/72 (7) scales. The book has 312 pages and is of interest to aviation historians, enthusiasts, and modelers alike.

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German and Austro-Hungarian Aircraft Manufacturers 1908-1918

German and Austro-Hungarian Aircraft Manufacturers 1908-1918 Paperback – December 15, 2010

Much has been written about the British aircraft of the First World War, but little has surfaced about the aircraft of the Axis powers, Germany and Austria. Here, Terry C. Treadwell tells the story of the aircraft from companies such as Fokker, builder of the famous triplane, as fl own by Baron von Richthofen's Flying Circus, AEG, Albatros, Junkers and Hansa. From reconnaissance aircraft to state-of-the-art bombers that could reach London, this is the definitive guide to aircraft of the Axis powers during the First World War. The aircraft are explained in detail and a history of each company is provided, making this an excellent source book for aircraft enthusiasts, model makers and those interested in the air war over the trenches of France and Belgium, as well as further afield in the Italian campaign.

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The Zeppelin in Combat: A History of the German Naval Airship Division

The Zeppelin in Combat: A History of the German Naval Airship Division Hardcover – January 9, 1997

The standard reference now revised and expanded. Dr. Robinson has opened up his vast photo archives to enhance this new edition of his classic work. Much of the new photographic material is published here for the first time.

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