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Fokker Dr.I (Legens of Aviation in 3D by Kagero)


JeroenPeters
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Legends of Aviation in 3D #1 (99001)

Fokker Dr.I
(The aces’ aircraft)

 

Publisher: Kagero

Written by: Marek Rys and Tomasz J. Kowalski

 

Available here from Kagero for € 30,00

 

fokkerDr1.jpg

 

After being blown away with the Kagero Fokker D.VII 3D book, here’s one that exceeds my previous enthusiasm. With the Fokker D.VII book being number 2 in this title’s range, I’m surprised I haven’t seen this book before. Maybe it just took longer to finish and publish. What I do know is that this title is 10 euro’s higher in prize than the D.VII title. Has a hard cover, instead of the soft cover D.VII book, a higher page count en some additional goodies.

 

Introduction

With this review looking at this book through the eyes of a large scale modeller, we will absorb the reference material in order to enhance the available kits on the market. This being the Encore models Fokker F.1 and Roden Dr.I kit. A pretty good but basic platform to start detailing. Some after market sets are available for these kits. Photo etch by Part from Poland and Eduard for instance.  But also Cutting Edge resin for the cowling and control surfaces. Great decals are offered by Cutting Edge and EagleCals. Add some Master barrels, HGW harness, Wooden prop and you’re good to go! You might notice I haven’t mentioned the HobbyCraft kit, which I indeed won’t do. I know a lot of ww1 modelers are waiting for Wingnut Wings to treat us to their version of this subject, which I’m sure is only a matter of time.

 

The Fokker Dr.I became most famous by one of it’s pilots: Manfred von Richthofen, who used it to score 19 victories and in which he was subsequently killed in on April 21st 1918. The plane wasquite revolutionairy in design and construction, so it’s fair that this title starts with…

 

How the Legend was Born

Spurred on and inspired by the Sopwith Triplane (that outflew the great german Albatros planes) Fokker started work on the german equivalent in co-operation with Hugo Junkers. The three wings caused the Triplanes to have a higher climb rate, being more manoeuvrable  and not to lose altitude in tight turns. Fokker took their D.V biplane and (in short) added a wing. This chapter covers the prototypes that led to the ultimate Dr.I. Some great photo’s that I haven’t encountered before. Including the 5-wing Fokker V.8.

 

fokkerDr1_B.jpg

 

fokkerDr1_C.jpg

 

fokkerDr1_D.jpg

 

Dreideckers in Combat

Some great background and photo reference from the Jasta’s that flew this plane. I’m glad this book doesn’t linger too long here, since there are already numerous titles that cover operational history in depth. And the same goes for…

 

The Aircraft Construction

Reading this chapter is useful to understand what this book is all about. Getting to understand how this plane goes together and from what materials give you some grasp of the amazing 3D renderings on the following pages.

 

fokkerDr1_E.jpg

 

 

Painting schemes and markings

We all know the controversy surrounding WW1 colors used on aircraft. Unlike WW2 planes almost every Jasta used their own set of colors. These are described in this chapter which creates some order in the seemingly color explosion chaos of the Jasta’s. At page 38 the colour pages make their appearance showing some really cool and weathered color profiles.

 

fokkerDr1_F.jpg

 

The Fokker Dr.I in 3D

At page 38 the real fun starts. A very accurate and detailed 3D model is rendered from all sides. The amount of polygons must be staggering. Especially when the fabric is taken off a few pages further on. Stitchings, turn-buckles, bolts… it’s all there. When painting your model you need to know the construction inside the fuselage and wings in order to create the right shading, and these renderings give you just that… and more.

 

fokkerDr1_G.jpg

 

At page 57 the renderings become close-ups. Spandau guns, fuel filler plywood texture. Jaw dropping stuff. The renderings showing the pulleys inside the wings for the control cables give you an idea of how things operate. The renderings of the Oberursel R.II engine at page 72 are a treat. Ignitions wires and attachment to the fuselage were quite the eye-openers for me. It just goes on and on. The Spandau guns receive some extra attention and show detail that not even LSM Umlaufmotor will be able to re-produce (consider this a challenge!).

 

 

fokkerDr1_H.jpg

 

fokkerDr1_I.jpg

 

fokkerDr1_J.jpg

 

If you need some inspiration for a good scheme. Go down to page 110. Multiple views of the all black Josef Jacobs’ machine are shown. Inspirational stuff.

 

 

fokkerDr1_K.jpg

 

At page 123 Manfred’s red mount is shown, followed by Werner Voss’ Fokker F.1 from Jasta 10.

 

In the front cover of the book you’ll find some 3D glasses and at page 132 you’ll ‘see’ why. 8 full page 3D prints that come to life when viewed through these glasses. You’ll have to see this to believe this. When you’re a WW1 aircraft nutt you’ll go wild. I promise.

 

fokkerDr1_L.jpg

 

Verdict

This book is the holy grail of construction and painting guides if there ever was one on this subject. Too bad Wingnut Wings haven’t felt the urge to dive into this subject yet, but then again: Encore models and Roden have already done a good job at theirs. The 3D renderings are of the highest quality and leave (almost) nothing to the imagination. I can only hope these series are the success they deserve to be so we’ll be treated to even more. Can’t wait to see what’s next…

 

Very very highly recommended and you know what?

I'm just going to rate this book a fat 10 out of 10.

 

 

My sincere thanks to Kagero Publishing for the review sample.

To order direct, go here.

 

Jeroen Peters

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