TBM Tip (Thanks for the heads up Jim!): The secret to the Fokker is to get the Top Wing Incidence to -1.5 degrees and the CG at 4.5" from the leading edge of the top wing. See Jim's flying video to the right!
The brainchild of Reinhold Platz, the designer of the famed Fokker Dr.I, the Fokker D.VII traced its roots back an experimental set of aircraft known as the V-series. Electing to use a thick cantilever wing to increase lift, Platz created an aircraft that was more stable than many of its predecessors. Initially dubbed the V.11, the D.VII first took flight in January 1918, powered by a 180-hp Mercedes D.IIIa engine. With the loss of German air superiority in late 1917, the Luftstreitkräfte called for new fighter designs to be tested the following spring.
Among the prototypes that Fokker submitted to the competition was the D.VII. Convening at Adlershof, the competition panel was the first to include top pilots from the front. Among those to test fly the D.VII prototype was the famed "Red Baron," Manfred von Richthofen. Though pleased with the aircraft's agility, he found that it lacked stability in a dive. Rushing to correct this issue, Anthony Fokker altered Platz' design by adding a fixed, vertical fin in front of the vertical stabilizer and lengthening the fuselage.
With these modifications in place, von Richthofen began a second round of test flights. Highly pleased with the modified aircraft's performance, he endorsed the design. As Germany's top ace, von Richthofen's recommendation effectively decided the competition. Ironically, he would be killed in action prior to the D.VII entering service. In the wake of the Adlershof competition, Fokker immediately received an order for 400 units and the aircraft was officially designated the Fokker D.VII. As Fokker's plants could not meet the government's needs, the aircraft was also produced under contract by AEG and Albatros.
Entering service in May 1918, the D.VII first saw action with Jasta 10. Like most new aircraft, several problems quickly emerged at the front including heat from the engine igniting phosphorous ammunition, as well as fabric shredding and rib failures. Despite these issues, the D.VII quickly proved itself superior to existing German fighters. The D.VII's climbing ability and stability allowed it to routinely defeat all but the best Allied fighters. This led to a brief resurgence in German air superiority known as the Second Fokker Scourge.
While early production aircraft were powered by the Mercedes D.IIIa, follow-on D.VIIs were equipped with the high-compression 200 hp Mercedes D.IIIaü. As the aircraft appeared at the front, a new crop of aces, such as Franz Büchner, Erich Löwenhardt, and Hermann Göring, quickly emerged as pilots mastered the D.VII's controls. The D.VII remained Germany's frontline fighter for the remainder of the war. So respected was the aircraft, that the Allies required the Germans to turn over all remaining D.VIIs as part of the Treaty of Versailles.
These aircraft were distributed among the Allies and many were used for testing. Other D.VIIs returned to active duty and saw service in the air forces of the Dutch, Swiss, Belgians, and Poles. In this last case, D.VIIs saw active combat during the Polish-Soviet War (1919-1921). During World War I, approximately 1,700 D.VII were built with Albatros producing the most.
Source:About.com Military History
All wood construction.
Pre-Covered in real iron on film.
Fiberglass cowl already painted.
All hardware is included.
Easy to fly.
Removable wings and hatch
High quality Carbon Fiber wing tubes included