6 March 2012, 01:01 AM
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Indy, Home of the 500 race
Martin, From what I posted in the Rudder Article, you will see where the first three D.VII's are actually Fokker prototypes from the fighter competition brought up to production standard. The three prototypes are;
Speculation, as to which one was 227/18, 228/18, or 229/18 is difficult to say. Certainly you could simply assign the order of numbers to the order of the prototype numbers;
227/18 = V.11/II
228/18 = V.18
229/18 = V.21
I think this likely, but it is a guess. There are only two photos (left and right side taken at the same time), of the one ultra early D.VII with all patee crosses, and on the wings they are on square white fields, but no visible serial numbers on the fuselage or ones having ever been applied. This may support the idea this aircraft is indeed one of the prototypes brought up to standard by Fokker, but lacking serial numbers as those would have only appeared on serial production aircraft. Perhaps serial numbers were later applied to this aircraft.
Again, speculating, one would think 227/18 was used for the structure testing for type acceptance to destruction at Adlershof. So you probably shouldn't build that one.
Achim built a full scale example of the "ultra-early" D.VII as depicted in the photos. We discussed this back and forth and I believe we agreed werk number 2310, (229/18), would be the best guess for this aircraft and that is what he went with.
Read my Rudder Article and you will see one of the first photos shows a weird shaped rudder and it carries the werk number 2310, from V.21, on it, which is the foundation for my thread discussion...that this was the first rudder incarnation that was on the aircraft and very late or post fighter trials, the standard D.VII type was fitted to the V.21, and this early rudder was re-utilized on Fokker prototype V.23.
It is a fun footnote to the D.VII development and if one were to do a rendering of the fighter trials, you would need to have the funny rudder on the V.21. To recap, V.11/II had a comma rudder like the Dr.I, V.18 had a altered comma shape with a vertical fin like on a Fokker D.I, and lastly, V.21 originally had the strange shaped rudder as shown on the V.23, (most likely with a form fitting vertical fin), in my thread. It's interesting to see this rudder development on the prototypes all participating at the same trials, and as I mentioned, it is very likely the final form was not developed until after the trials.
Make a V.21 as it originally was at the fighter trials and you will have something very unique!
P.S. The right side photo of the ultra-early prototype/D.VII was not in circulation until a few years back when Peter Grosz found it in a German period book on aircraft, and let me copy it at his home and disseminate it. Hard to believe these images keep coming forth.