Originally Posted by MajorTomski
OK, off the top of my head;
1. This fighter was single seat, single engined and twin gunned.
2. It used advanced construction techniques and materials
3. It's designer was active for over 30 years.
I haven't taken a shot in a while. How about the Fokker Eindecker E-4? At the risk of mixing models, it was the first fighter to carry two (or three) forward firing maching guns, and it used a steel tubing chassis. Fokker was only active just under 30 years, though. His first plane was designed in 1910, and he died in 1939. Thanks; Ernie P.
The Eindecker was based on Fokker's unarmed Fokker M.5K scout
(military designation Fokker A.III
) itself following very closely the design of the French Morane-Saulnier H shoulder-wing
monoplane, but using chrome-molybdenum steel
tubing for the basic fuselage structure instead of wooden components. It was fitted with an early version of the Fokker synchronizer mechanism
controlling a single Parabellum MG14
machine gun. Anthony Fokker personally demonstrated the system on 23 May 1915, having towed the prototype aircraft behind his touring car to a military airfield near Berlin.
The Fokker E.IV was the final variant of the Eindecker fighter aircraft
that was operated by Germany
during World War I
Given the Fokker
designation of M.15, the E.IV was essentially a lengthened Fokker E.III
powered by the 119 kW (160 hp) Oberursel
U.III two-row, 14-cylinder rotary engine
, a copy of the Gnome Double Lambda. The more powerful engine was intended to enable the Eindecker to carry two or three 7.92 mm (.312 in) machine guns
, thereby increasing its firepower and providing redundancy if one gun jammed - a common occurrence at the time. However, the E.IV was a troubled design that never achieved the success of its predecessor and was soon out-classed by French
The prototype E.IV was accepted for testing by the German Inspektion der Fliegertruppen
in September 1915. It was fitted with three forward-firing 7.92 mm (.312 in) lMG 08 "Spandau"
machine guns, mounted to fire upwards at 15°. Anthony Fokker
demonstrated the E.IV at Essen
but the complicated triple-synchronization gear
failed and the propeller
was damaged. The removal of the left-side gun is believed to have been pioneered on Oswald Boelcke
's E.IV, believed to have borne IdFlieg serial 123/15, with a simpler double-synchronisation system used on the retained center-line and right side MG 08
Spandau guns. The fitment of dual MG 08 "Spandau" forward-firing, synchronized machine guns became the standard armament for production E.IVs, and indeed for all subsequent German D-type biplane
fighters. The angling of the guns was also abandoned.