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Womenfly2

Sopwith Triplane vs Fokker Dr.1......

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Here is an interesting statement by Dan San Abbott over on the AeroDrome forum about these two planes. Would you like to read more ....

 

Recently I visited Chuck Wentworth at Paso Robles to view Javier Arango's new Fok.D.VI. While there I had a conversation with Chuck about the relative performance of the sopwith Tripe and the Fokker DR.I. He said he has flown both machines in Javier's collection and the Sopwith Tripe with it's 6 ailerons cannot turn as well or as fast as the Fokker Triplane with two ailerons. The difference is the Sopwith Tripe has short span, wide ailerons, while the Fokker DR.I has long narrow aileron which are more effective. He further said the Fokker D.VII and the Fok.E.V also have long narrow ailerons and said they were equally effective. The long narrow ailerons produce an excellent role rate which is about twice as fast as the short and wide ailerons.

Chuck compared the Fokker D.VII with the S.E.5a and stated that with Fokker D.VII you could make aileron turns, but with the S.E.5a the ailerons would only produce a yaw until you applied the rudder.

 

He said, "If I was going to war, and I had to choose between the Sopwith Tripe and the Fokker Triplane, without a doubt, I would choose the Fokker Triplane! It is twice the airplane, than the Sopwith Tripe!"

 

While we were talking, I kept thinking of exlinkon.gifWerner Voss taking 6 S.E.5a machines from 56 Squadron.

 

The ceiling of the Sopwith Tripe was 20500 feet, the ceiling of the Fokker DR.I was, 7000 m,(22960 ft.)

 

Blue skies,

Dan-San

 

Enjoy,

WF2

Edited by Womenfly2

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Thanks for sharing, WomenFly2

From the sim experience, I would say the same. But then, the Dr.1 came later than the Tripe.

And in those days, development of better planes was very fast - withing two or three months.

I would rather like to hear a comparison between the Dr.1 and the Camel; of a pilot, who flew

them both. Cause they were rather the opponents at more or less the same time.

Wasn't the Tripe then out of date already?

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Gotta agree with Olham (did I say that????).

 

These were two completely different generations of planes.

 

The Sop Tripe first appeared in November 1916 and was withdrawn from service in the fall of 1917 to be replaced by the Camel. It was flown only by the RNAS, never by the RFC (which went with the Pup instead) and only 152 were built. Wonderful fighter (for its time) and wonderful to fly in the sim (if you play with the trim to keep the nose from heading for outer space :warning2: ).

 

The DR1 first appeared in August 1917 and also lasted in service only about a year to be replaced by the DVII. It suffered a bad reputation for catastrophic structural failures and also was produced only in relatively small numbers: 320. The DR1 was a contemporary of the Camel and SE5a.

 

So, yes, I agree that if I were going to war I would choose the DR1 over the Tripe, too. But it's a silly point because wouldn't you pick an F22 over an F16?

 

ttt

Edited by tttiger

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Good input guy's. I found it interesting regarding the comparison of the two planes. Knowing that each one had its own 15-minutes of glory, the outcome of these two planes dogfighting each other would have been interesting.

 

Its fascinating that 6-ailerons vs 2, more it better theory, would be a detriment to a planes performance. Anytime one has to add more control input the amount of drag increases lowering airspeed do to frontal surface area in relation to the slipstream.

 

Q: Do you think if the Sopwith Triplane vs the Fokker Dr.1 were both in service at the same time, that it may have effected the outcome of the air domination?

 

Cheers,

WF2

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No, I don't think so, cause the Germans were outnumbered, standing against Great Britain, France, America and Australia.

But I think, that the Dr.1 would have done better than the Tripe, and the latter would have been withdrawn/replaced soon.

 

Make more of your always interesting contributions, if you can, WomenFly2. Cheers. Olham

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Re: air domination.

During Black September 1918 the Germans inflicted the heaviest losses ever to the Allied air forces and during Bloody April 1917 the RFC had its highest percentage of losses. At no point during these two months did they stop the Allies from achieving their goals. During Bloody April RFC sent inexperienced crews flying inferior planes on Contact patrols, Deep Offensive Patrols, Recon and Bomb missions and the Jastas shot them down. So they sent more and kept sending more until they got their photos or contacts. Not once during Black September did the Germans stop or even halt allied operations. I think the book Bloody April ... Black September by Franks et al sums up the situation for the German Air Force quite nicely.

 

It's also important to note that the RFC pilots at the time thought they were giving as good as they got. Their claims were all over the place which is entirely understandable given the circumstances.

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In a report dated in June of 1917 Manfred von Richthofen wrote the following:

 

" . . . the Sopwith Triplane is the best aircraft the enemy possesses. It climbs better, is more manoeuvrable and does not lose altitude in a bank, is faster and can dive straight down."

 

From the book Fokker Dr.I Triplane: A World War I Legend.

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Guest British_eh

Just a note about the DR1:

 

The wing failures were early in it's production, and sorted out, not to be a problem after. When you consider that the DR1 was used for a year, in the rapidly evolutionary development of aircraft, that is a pretty good record. In fact they were used later primarily as a defensive plane, as through out the War, they remained one of the best climbing and maneuverable aircraft. As noted elsewhere, I have not read reports that they were difficult to fly and required hands on the stick at all times. In fact they were one of the easier craft to pilot, and had few accidents, from actual flight issues. They did however prove to be a handful on landing, similar to the Camel on take off.

 

Regards,

 

British_eh

 

Main craft in OFF - DR1 :biggrin:

 

 

Gotta agree with Olham (did I say that????).

 

These were two completely different generations of planes.

 

The Sop Tripe first appeared in November 1916 and was withdrawn from service in the fall of 1917 to be replaced by the Camel. It was flown only by the RNAS, never by the RFC (which went with the Pup instead) and only 152 were built. Wonderful fighter (for its time) and wonderful to fly in the sim (if you play with the trim to keep the nose from heading for outer space :warning2: ).

 

The DR1 first appeared in August 1917 and also lasted in service only about a year to be replaced by the DVII. It suffered a bad reputation for catastrophic structural failures and also was produced only in relatively small numbers: 320. The DR1 was a contemporary of the Camel and SE5a.

 

So, yes, I agree that if I were going to war I would choose the DR1 over the Tripe, too. But it's a silly point because wouldn't you pick an F22 over an F16?

 

ttt

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In a report dated in June of 1917 Manfred von Richthofen wrote the following:

 

" . . . the Sopwith Triplane is the best aircraft the enemy possesses. It climbs better, is more manoeuvrable and does not lose altitude in a bank, is faster and can dive straight down."

 

From the book Fokker Dr.I Triplane: A World War I Legend.

 

At the time MvR stated this, there was no Dr.1 ... correct? He was seeking a Triplane design of the own.

 

WF2

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I'm sure I read somewhere the Dr.1, (and further less successful tri-plane prototypes) was/were developed in response to the Sopwith's exceptional rate of climb and agility when it was first brought into service. (Wasn't there some reference to it's 'climbing like a monkey?' - Sorry, I might be confused with something else)

 

By the time Fokker had developed their Dr.1, everything else had moved forward too - armament, engine power, structural issues etc. It was a better triplane, but still blighted by similar structural weaknesses, and unhappy compromise between flat out speed and excessive drag caused by all the struts and wires.

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British-eh: Sri, I suppose I should have finished my thought. True, as you said, the structural weaknesses in the DR1 were corrected. But, from everything I've read, the plane's reputation never recovered and few pilots trusted it.

 

Actually, WF2's question is an interesting "what if?" if you're into that sort of thing.

 

The Sop Tripe actually was one of the fastest (faster than the Camel, which used the same engine and on a par with the SE5a) British fighters of the war. It couldn't dive with the late war planes, though, without coming apart.

 

The DR1 was the slowest late war German fighter.

 

The Tripe could always break off and run, the DR1 didn't have that luxury.

 

On the flip side, the RNAS mechanics considered the Tripe a maintenance nightmare. It wasn't designed to be repair friendly.

 

So, what if they had met in combat?

 

That's the problem with "what if" questions: We'll never really know.

 

:drag:

 

ttt

Edited by tttiger

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Guest British_eh

[quote name=tttiger' date='Mar 11 2009, 05:30 PM' post='258414'

 

The DR1 was the slowest late war German fighter.

 

The Tripe could always break off and run, the DR1 didn't have that luxury.

 

On the flip side, the RNAS mechanics considered the Tripe a maintenance nightmare. It wasn't designed to be repair friendly.

 

So, what if they had met in combat?

 

That's the problem with "what if" questions: We'll never really know.

 

:drag: ttt

 

 

 

I'm sorry olde chap, but I stand to correct you. You see, they have met, and on several occasions, and interestingly the Tripe has lost on both occasions. Now you say , how can that be? Well the magic of the 21 Century has allowed this epic battle to be brought to modern times through the magic of OFF P3- Quci Combat! LOL.

 

Cheers,

 

British_eh

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Some stuff written here is wrong or distorted; so I looked up some sources.

 

Sopwith Triplane

introd. November 1916; produced: 152; top speed: 188 km/h; climb at low alt: 5 m/sec

Fokker Dr.1

Introduced: August 1917; produced: 320; top speed: 165 km/h; 5,5 m/sec

 

The early structural problems of the Dr.1 were solved, when the plane re-entered service in December 1917.

There was NO wiring on it for wing stabilisation - just the vertival struts.

 

When you think about the fact, that the Tripe was replaced by the Camel, and that the Dr.1 could out-turn the Camel,

I know, which plane I would choose. (But still: it's like comparing the Albatros D III with the Sopwith Camel - senseless; due to different dev. time)

 

If I could pick time and plane to survive and collect kills in WW1, in OFF's offer of types, this would be my choices (first and second):

Britain: Camel, S.E.

Germany: D VII, Dr.1

France/US: SPAD XIII, SPAD VII

 

And if some of you ask me now, why I always fly the Albatros - love cannot be explained (Lol!)

Edited by Olham

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Development isn't always linear. The Pfalz DIII was a step back from the Albatros series yet was introduced after the appearance of both the SE5 and the Camel. The Albatros DIII at least had a few months when it was the best fighting machine at the front.

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