Products/Fokker D VII


Fokker D VII

During the First World War, the Dutchman Anthony Fokker was building aeroplanes in Germany. First, his factory was located at the Johannisthal airfield, near Berlin. In 1913 he moved to Schwerin. A lot of different types were designed and build there, among which were the famous 'Eindecker' series, and the Dr.I triplane. At the end of 1917, Fokker was out the picture as supplier for fighter aircraft. This is the time where the story of the D.VII starts.

Building of the prototype of what was to become the Fokker D.VII started in December, 1917 in the Fokker factory at Schwerin. At that time, Reinhold Platz was working as designer. The designation for this type was V.11, which stands for Versuchsmachine no. 11 (Experimental aircraft No. 11) [LIST OF V-TYPES]. This V.11 had a number of novelties that included a car-type radiator in front of the engine and cantilever wings with no external bracing wires, which made for a very clean appearance.

At the end of January, 1918, the first competition for D class machines was held at Adlershof. In this competition, German pilots from the front flew in new types, to test them, and choose which one would be produced for the front. In this first competition the V.11 came out as the ultimate winner, and was designated D.VII.[LIST OF COMPETING AIRCRAFT]

Anthony Fokker tells in his autobiography that he flew the V.11 before the contest started. He noticed that it wasn't flying too well, and it needed to be changed. So, working all weekend day and night, Fokker and some mechanics lengthened the fuselage and enlarged the vertical fin. Flying it again, Fokker noticed that it was very sensitive on the controls, but further it was flying wonderful.

Fokker was awarded large contracts for the D.VII. Because the Fokker factory at Schwerin did not have the capacity to build large numbers of the plane, Fokker's rival Albatros had to manufacture the D.VII under license. Eventually they were built by the Albatros factories at Johannisthal and the Ostdeutsche Albatros Werke at Schneidemühl. Fokker received a 5% fee from Albatros for every D.VII they build.

Anthony Fokker

Fokker as a post service plane

Fokker in civil mission

Fokker with canons

Fokker D VII with military signs