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Go Back   The Aerodrome Forum > WWI Aviation > Aircraft > Replica Aircraft

Replica Aircraft Topics related to the construction of WWI replica aircraft

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Old 14 June 2003, 09:19 AM   #1
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Hello, i am interessed in building a full-size réplica (i am finishing a Piper L4) but i need to know what you think about the quality and the real possibility to build an airplane with the set of plans sold by WW1 aero inc. and replicrafts (i love Fokker D VII and Sopwith pup). Thanks for all.
Old 15 June 2003, 09:06 PM   #2
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Me personally, I would hold out for as original material as possible. WW1 aero seems to offer a wide selection of copies taken from original documents, and at very reasonable rates . I've seen some of Krieger's (replicraft) work, and appears to me to be very good data based upon original documents. The latter maybe the best/only way to get enough information for your chosen subject and may be perfectly acceptable. However, there is nothing quite like getting your hands on the real deal! And besides, you don't have to take anyone else's opinion of what is/isn't correct.
Old 7 July 2003, 01:11 PM   #3
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How do, Y'all- thought I'd take some time to actually send my first post. Personally, I'm looking for copies of original plans of the Albatross series from D III to D Va... yea, I got high hopes. I am a competant woodright/cabinetmaker/gunsmith, so I figure that fuselage should be right up my alley. Any leads out there?
Gregory F. (I HATE castor oil!!!) Howard
Old 8 July 2003, 03:50 AM   #4
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Welcome to the forum!
Original Albatros drawings are a bit scarce, but not impossible. Secondary sources seem to be a bit better, but can't vouch for their accuracy.
Heinz Linner offers Austrian D III originals (some redrawn?) for about $300. DV stuff from Robert Waugh is good enough to build from, just as it appears in NASM publication, however there is some discrepancy between views that , IMHO, needs to be nailed down. There are few others, but can't recall them at this time. If interested, I'll dig out addresses etc.
If I could find an alternative affordable engine, I would get started on a DIII, YESTERDAY!
Old 9 July 2003, 09:44 AM   #5
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How do, Charlie
Yes, some addys to work with would be fine- been headscratching the engine problem- seems to me that contact with a founderer and engine designer would be critical. I envision a straight-four crankcase cast to specifications to accept four Lycoming jugs, plus custom crankcase and camshaft. This way, parts ain't such a problem. You could push the same idea with a 'dub engine, but here I ain't to sure 'bout the HP and RPM situation- I suspect you'ld have to go with Porshe big end hardware and/or a step-down at the prop. The idea is four jugs poking up (most folks don't count these things), air cooled (put the 'radiator' where you want) and lightweight. I was thinking in terms of a 7/8 scale bird, so's a four-banger could be found that would have the poop to pull the beast. By 'streatching' the crankcase you would have something that would even have a similar profile (from a distance). Might lose some weight-to-HP ratio, but not enough to ground the project.
What engines do you know of that would work here?
Gregory F. Howard
Old 10 July 2003, 06:18 AM   #6
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How do, Y'all
Bear in mind, that the idea of cranking out a custom engine to accept existing parts might sound a little ambitious, but there are skills I have in master-making that allow me this privilage- and to that the fact that holding such a master and knowing those who have cut the shafts puts me in a good positon once the formula is worked out. I am envisioning an engine that will allow 7/8 Albatross and Fokker D-VII craft to have an upright air-cooled four-banger. Perhaps this might tilt the scale at airshows, so's those cheeky 7/8 Neiuports have a worthy advesary. The fusalage of the Albatross is what I find to my advantage- I have a little experiance bending plywood and woodwrighting impossible items- this hull looks right up my ally.
BTW, I have noticed the tendancy of hull progression with the Albatross series of long gores of ply on the D-II and D-III to patchwork quilt on the D-Va- is this a structural advantage or is this wartime economics? Certainly one gets more use out of ply if one cuts smaller pieces- it does seem to me that the earlier models have the stronger frame. Also, if I do a D-III, I will certainly use the D-Va strut supports on the lower wing, authenticity be damned! I would like to survive flying this thing...I am fussy about such matters. :
Anywho, figgured I'd explain a little 'bout my ambitions, so's y'all can see where I headed with this- ("where is we 'a' going, an' why is we in thisyear handbasket?!?")
Gregory F. Howard
Old 10 July 2003, 01:11 PM   #7
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An alternative to fuse. constuction would be build it like a Pietenpol (spelling?) IE Box style with wood, use wood for the oval shape of the cross sections as on the origional. Then use foam blocks, glued to the wood box fuse and cut them to size with a hot wire to the Alb./Pfalz fuse. shape. (Smooth and oval) Cover with a SUPER thin wood venier or fiberglass. Sand and paint. Fiberglass would work for most color schemes, except the clear varnished wood on some Albatros aircraft. A clever painter could replicate wood painted on the smooth fiberglass surface. THis technique is used on the WAR replica W.W. II aircraft. What do you think of this IDEA? My alt. EMAIL is [email protected]

Keep me posted, especially on the ENGINE. The WWI areodrome magazine, the Cole Palen memorial issue (Black COver) had a GREAT artical on WWI replica engines for ALB, PFALZ and D-VII aircraft. Used a Chevy straight Six (Jeep would work also), with a gear reduced prop. The key is TORQUE not just HP,so you can spin a full sized or 7/8 scale prop, not little "girly prop"! ha ha
Old 10 July 2003, 01:15 PM   #8
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If you have the skills for engine fabrication, then just make a six banger. If wieght is a problem, then we can fix (faux) cylinders for cosmetics. Air cooling would be great but the Pietenpol purists use the Model A engine with Liquid Cooling every day!

Keep us posted, this is the issue that keeps many a good project grounded.
Old 10 July 2003, 07:42 PM   #9
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I can do the master for the block, an' I do know a thing or two 'bout engineering, but there's a world of trouble once you go to six cylinders- instead of two cranks up and two cranks down, now you got two each at 120 degrees x three. Most founderers cant do you the blank and many machine shops won't attempt it. Doubtless I will go reduction as the centerline of the crankshaft will be well abouve the line of the prop if the jugs are to get any cooling. These are shorter throw than the Mercedes jugs (less torque as well- another reason to reduce). Air cooling will be less weight, need less HP and fuel- I'll bet 125 HP on proper reduction will do what I need for this.
As fer the 'mask on a box' hull, I've seen those, and they work well- I am willing to do the work on the hull in wood. After several boats, two bull fiddles and about 2/3rds a mile of cabinetry, I rekkon I can do it. I don't count custom gunstocks...lestways I quit counting after 1981.
The apperance of the motor in this thing needs to be SOMEWHAT closer to the origional than a VW engine in the cowl of a Nieuport- that is my criteria for the moment
I did think 'bout useing a water-cooled straight six w/reduction, but there's the weight bugaboo plus that damn radiator. If I did go that route, I would look into the Ford 200 ci punch-out of the 170. If not feasable, I would use the 300 ci truck engine, as that beast has some torque. I would also use the 'dog ears' type radiators like v. Rictoffen (sp ???) had on his D-III rather than have a scalding bath awaiting me on the upper wing. I'm funny 'bout these things...I don't like pain that much.
BTW, there's a craft painter's tool at any Wally World that allows amatures to create faux woodgrain almost by accident. It would be perfect for the effect you are describing on the 'masked' hull.
Gregory F. (one more crank on the rubber band ought to do it...) Howard
Old 12 July 2003, 08:52 AM   #10
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Yea, it's me again :...
Did some sketch scratchin' on the variouse profiles of the Albatross serise to be found on the web- What I came up with might be elementary to some but news to others. The oviloid cross-section of the bird comes across as a heigth = 1.5 x width from tail to mid-cockpit- then from there is the aformentioned formula tapered to a circle right up to the forward end. The earlier models tend to use more legnth in the side panels than the later versions- I suspect war economy rather than better technique. Cain't build much without knowing about what I'm going to stuff into it, so I might amuse myself with a 1/4 scale hull out of mahog venier just to get a feel for the technique. The truth of the matter remains that I might just settle for the 2/3 E III that Aerodrome puts out, as there's a proven product that I can play with whilst I figgure out the intricacies of the Albatross. My greatest ambition is to terrorise the Allied trenches of WWI re-enactors untill the Dawn Patroll chases me off. Great fun- flying a MG nest untill yer outnumbered and bookin' fer the hills. In the meantime, I will continue to work out an inline situation that will put more D-III's,D-Va's and D-VII's in the air.
BTW, is it my imagination, or is the Dr.I the most over-rated death-trap that ever flew? I read somewhere in my research that near 50% of the pilot deaths involving this bird was the result of attempting to land. Short wingspan coupled with kill-switch throttle controll made landings a rather violent affair, even by 1917 standards.
Just thought I'd ask...
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