20 Sport Pilot. FOR RECREATIONAL PILOTS
Fokker debuts at Avalon
BY ANDREW CARTER
KNOW you will receive plenty of pics and info about the RA-Aus
involvement at the Avalon Air Show, but 19-8593 was probably
the most significant aircraft at the show, given that it was the
only aircraft there of a 100 year old design and is quite literally the
great granddaddy of the modern fighter jet.
The Eindecker had its public debut at the air show com-
memorating the centenary of Anzac.
Designed by Anthony Fokker in 1915, the E.III Ein-
decker was the first aircraft to use an effective syn-
chronisation gearing which allowed a machinegun
to be mounted on the pilot’s plane of sight and fire
through the arc of the propeller. Thus it is known as
the first true fighter aircraft.
It is a wing warper, meaning the entire wing twists
to turn the aircraft, as opposed to using ailerons as
we do today. This was the same method developed and
used by the Wright brothers to control their aircraft.
The Australian Vintage Aviation Society (TAVAS), completed
the full size, 100% accurate reproduction, constructed as per the origi-
nal - and finished as it would have been as if it had come out of the
factory in 1915. The airframe is also made as per the original with
a welded mild steel fuselage. The wings are traditional wooden built
structures. Birch plywood is used for the ribs and spruce for the cap
strips. The spars are Adler pine.
The engine is a reverse engineered copy of the unique 100hp ro-
tary engine which powered this aircraft. In a rotary engine the prop is
fixed and the entire engine turns. It was produced by Classic Aero Ma-
chining Services in NZ and fitted to the airframe last November.
Even the linen to cover the aircraft came from Belgium,
from the same family-run business which made the fab-
ric for these aircraft a century ago.
The aircraft is finished as one that was known
to have been operated at Gallipoli - most probably
against Australian troops. It was operated by the
Turkish Airforce and flown by Hans Joachim Bud-
decke (among others) who is credited with thirteen
victories. He was the third ace, after Max Immel-
mann and Oswald Boelcke, to earn the Blue Max
(Pour le Mérite).
Initially this aircraft operated in German markings. It
wasn’t until around April 1916 at Smyrna Airfield in Turkey, that
the aircraft crosses were overpainted to form the black square with a
white border which became the Ottoman Turk’s insignia.
This aircraft will now be part of the TAVAS flying collection which
consists of a Fokker Triplane, Fokker D.VIII and a Bristol F2B Fighter.
For more information, http://www.tavas.com.au.
as the first
Andrew pointing out the linen bag being fitted over the fuselage
Notice the deflector shield
which diverts air (and oil) away
from under the cockpit floor,
which can be raised to allow
the pilot to see straight down