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Fokker Dr.I (Dreidecker)

Triplane Fighter Aircraft

Fokker Dr.I (Dreidecker)

Triplane Fighter Aircraft

OVERVIEW
SPECIFICATIONS
ARMAMENT
VARIANTS
HISTORY
MEDIA
OVERVIEW



With a three-wing arrangement inducing substantial drag, the Fokker Dr.I was slower than her contemporaries but made up for this in maneuverability and rate-of-climb against fighters of the period.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: Imperial Germany
YEAR: 1917
MANUFACTURER(S): Fokker Flugzeug-Werke GmbH - Germany
PRODUCTION: 320
OPERATORS: Imperial Germany
SPECIFICATIONS



Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the Fokker Dr.I (Dreidecker) model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
CREW: 1
LENGTH: 18.93 feet (5.77 meters)
WIDTH: 23.62 feet (7.2 meters)
HEIGHT: 9.68 feet (2.95 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 895 pounds (406 kilograms)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 1,290 pounds (585 kilograms)
ENGINE: 1 x Oberursel U.R. II air-cooled rotary engine developing 110 horsepower.
SPEED (MAX): 103 miles-per-hour (165 kilometers-per-hour; 89 knots)
RANGE: 186 miles (300 kilometers; 162 nautical miles)
CEILING: 19,997 feet (6,095 meters; 3.79 miles)
RATE-OF-CLIMB: 1,090 feet-per-minute (332 meters-per-minute)




ARMAMENT



STANDARD:
2 x 7.92mm Spandau LMG 08/15 machine guns synchronized to fire through the spinning propeller blades.
VARIANTS



Series Model Variants
• V.3 - Prototype Model Designation
• V.4 - Prototype Production Model
• V.5 - Prototype Model fitted with Goebel Goe.III series engine.
• V.6 - Prototype Model fitted with Mercedes D.II series engine.
• V.7 - Prototype Model fitted with Siemens-Halske Sh.III series engine.
• V.10 - Prototype Model fitted with Oberusel Ur.III series engine.
• Dr.I - Production Series Designation


HISTORY



Detailing the development and operational history of the Fokker Dr.I (Dreidecker) Triplane Fighter Aircraft.  Entry last updated on 8/8/2017. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The Fokker Dr.I ("Dr" for "Dreidecker" meaning "triplane") series is most closely associated with Manfred von Richthofen (aka "the Red Baron") as the triplane aircraft was his chosen mount in the final months of his life, accounting for his last 20 kills. Designed to match the Sopwith Triplane and appearing by October of 1917, the Dr.I was a capable aircraft made more so by the pilots that flew her than the unique three-wing design. In the end, the system was limited in production quantity and saw a career spanning just the final year of the conflict, which by 1918, was being used as a defensive system over Germany.

Obviously the most identifying feature of the type was the three wing design made popular by the Sopwith Triplane - and proved itself a worthy design overall. Though inducing drag (which in turn caused a decrease in overall speed) the arrangement made for a highly maneuverable aircraft, quick to turn, and offered up a tremendous rate of climb while delivering in a steady dive. Overall the design was typical, featuring the pilot sitting in an open cockpit seated just behind the large wing structures. The undercarriage was fixed and dominated by two large wheels with a tail skid at the rear. Armament consisted of twin Spandau machine guns of 7.92mm caliber firing forward through the synchronized propeller system. The Dr.I was also one of the last aircraft types to feature a rotary piston engine in the Oberursel Ur.II 9-cylinder series.




Fokker Dr.I (Dreidecker) (Cont'd)

Triplane Fighter Aircraft

Fokker Dr.I (Dreidecker) (Cont'd)

Triplane Fighter Aircraft



The initial 100 Dr.I's on order were delivered to Richthofen's fighter squadron in October of 1917 after combat evaluation. By the end of that month, it soon became apparent that there was trouble in the assembly of the wings to the point that some Fokker Dr.I's had broken up in mid-flight resulting in several fatal crashes. This, of course, forced the entire type to be grounded upon further review by an authorized crash commission. The resulting verdict was found to be in the construction of the wings. With adjustments made along the production lines at Fokker, the Dr.I was given the green light back into the air by end of November with all Dr.I wings checked and repaired/replaced if necessary. This setback no doubt attributed to the low production numbers overall, numbering just some 320 examples by the time the lines closed in May of 1918. By then, the fine machine was highly outclassed by her rivals and gradually disappeared into aviation history.




MEDIA









Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

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Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 120mph
Lo: 60mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (103mph).

    Graph average of 90 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
NYC
 
  LDN
LDN
 
  PAR
PAR
 
  BER
BER
 
  MSK
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  TKY
TKY
 
  SYD
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  LAX
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  NYC
Graph showcases the Fokker Dr.I (Dreidecker)'s operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
320
320

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


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Supported Roles
A2A
Interception
UAV
Ground Attack
CAS
Training
ASW
Anti-Ship
AEW
MEDEVAC
EW
Maritime/Navy
SAR
Aerial Tanker
Utility/Transport
VIP
Passenger
Business
Recon
SPECOPS
X-Plane/Development
A2A=Air-to-Air; UAV=Unmanned; CAS=Close Support; ASW=Anti-Submarine; AEW=Airborne Early Warning; MEDEVAC=Medical Evac; EW=Electronic Warfare; SAR=Search-Rescue
Supported Arsenal
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