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2000 Closed threads from 2000 (read only)

 
 
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Old 20 June 2000, 07:45 AM   #1
Mark
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Was this plane truly a step forward for German aviation, or was it the best available new plane that could be mass produced at a time when German materials were at the point of exhaustion?

How did its performance compare with, say the BMW-powered D-VII?

Morrow's book states that while the SSW D-IV was preferred over the D-VIII by many pilots, the fact that the Fokker was both easier and cheaper to produce led to its emphasis over the SSW. What about the castor oil unavailability cited for the demise of the SSW? Given that the D-VIII was also a rotary-engined plane, wouldn't the same oil shortage apply to it?

excuse the rambling but a few additional questions arose when writing the first one :>)
 
Old 20 June 2000, 10:43 AM   #2
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The Fokker was easier to fly than the SSW, but apparently not quite as nimble - although it was certainly maneuverable. Check out the "Best Fighter" thread from a few days ago. I submitted more info on the D.VIII, including a bit about castor oil.
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Old 21 June 2000, 05:59 AM   #3
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G'day mate,
there was not only a shortage of castor oil for rotary engines in Germany, but they were also having massive headaches with the Seimens-Halske contra-rotating engine. They did not perform as well as, say, the Le Rhone or Bentley. The SH spent, on average, more time in being repaired than up in the air. We have one here in Sydney, and I have inspected it and seen the inner guts of the beast. It's no wonder to me why the damn things were out of comission so often....they are so complicated.
The SSW aircraft had a better performance than the Fokker D.VIII but it's engine let it down on so many occasions.
Hope this helps....and guys, if you disagree, try
not to shoot me too full of holes!
Les
 
Old 21 June 2000, 07:28 AM   #4
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Thanks Les, your response is a logical explanation as to why the D-VIII was chosen over a superior plane; the SSW's S-H engine was more trouble than it was worth.

What about the original question. Was the DVIII a better plane than the BMW-driven D-VII, or would it have been used as a low level fighter while keeping the D-VII or its parasol replacement for higher altitude fighting?
 
Old 21 June 2000, 09:20 AM   #5
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It is my understanding that, while the Siemens-Halske Sh.III was still a high-maintenance powerplant, the severe problems experienced in Spring 1918 with the SSW D.III were largely solved by the time the D.IV was introduced.

The SSW was harder to fly, yet more maneuverable than the Fokker parasol. It was slower, yet its rate of climb did not diminish with altitude, thanks to its engine.

Both were a little better than the D.VIIF - but this machine was faster than both and its engine better at altitude than the D.VIII.

Three superlative fighters were forthcoming when hostilities ceased: Rumpler D.I, Pfalz D.XV, and another Fokker parasol (V.29?)

All were BMW-powered. Rotaries weren't practicable for Germany; the blockade and resulting lack of high-grade castor oil ensured that. But there was also a Siemens parasol, with a 200 HP version of the Sh.III which was due to replace the D.IV; its top speed was 137 mph.
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Old 23 June 2000, 06:44 AM   #6
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IIRC, the original plan was to power the E5/DVIII with a 160hp Oberursel(?) rotary. This plan fell down for various reasons and the D.VIII subsequently inherited the old 110hp Oberursel.

Do I have this correct?

Byron
 
 

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