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Wingnut D.Vll thoughts...


Clunkmeister
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Hey folks,

This might seem a bit off the wall here, but I’ve actually never built a D.Vll.  I have a bunch in the stash, but generally I’ve tended towards the big twin engine jobs and two seaters. 

The aftermarket support for enhancements for this kit is pretty astronomical, so it’s popularity speaks for itself: it quickly sold out the initial three releases, followed ever quicker by the fourth release, and the fifth release was well on its way to extinction when the Company went bust. 

I’ve heard stories about the cowl being fiddly, and the typical ultra precise fit of parts meaning a small layer of paint can throw it all off, but I’d love to hear it from the horses mouths, so to speak.

I’d love to do one, I know it won’t give me any issues, but hearing other’s experiences with the thing will be interesting.

Let’s talk about it, y’all.

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Maybe everyone is still asleep....  only 6am here....  Only been awake an hour and a half myself.

I think I wrote you on the trouble I had with mine.

I had followed the kit instructions and built the inner frame with seat, MG ammo containers, fuel cell and engine as a solid unit and let dry overnight.  I ensured there was no paint between the parts...  that's the warning commonly given. 

But I made a different error.  The frame wasn't perfectly square.  So, when I dry fitted the lower wing, it was immediately apparent that the forward fuselage was canted off to starboard.  I tried to gently persuade it straight...  but the frame crumbled like an eggshell.  I ruined the entire kit.

All of the wing and landing gear struts attach to that frame, so it's crucial that it's square.  Otherwise, nothing fits.

So, on the second one, I left the engine off, and assembled the frame, seat, MG ammo cans and fuel cell and put it between the fuselage halves while the glue was still wet.  Then I dry fitted the wing, added the engine and cowl pieces before the glue had totally set anywhere.

Much more difficult than your standard left-half and right-half construction.  The bonus is, that you only have to fill the short dorsal seam behind the cockpit.  The aft ventral seam is covered by stitching, and there are no longitudinal seams forward of the cockpit.

 

 

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Interesting, Gazz, and yes, I remember you telling me about this. Ve head some talk of problems getting the cowlings to fit, among other things.  I hate the thought of ruining a kit, but I’ve been there more often than I care to admit.  :D

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3 hours ago, Clunkmeister said:

Interesting, Gazz, and yes, I remember you telling me about this. Ve head some talk of problems getting the cowlings to fit, among other things.  I hate the thought of ruining a kit, but I’ve been there more often than I care to admit.  :D

The cowlings are the easy part.  UNLESS you have the frame wrong!  That's what I'm trying to impart here.  That flimsy, fragile, delicate-as-a-butterfly frame is the entire key to brilliant success, or abject failure with this kit.  That's why I had to resort to fitting everything while wet. 

 

Hell, I don't think the frame assembly is even glued in place on mine.  Once it's in there, it won't move.  I think you can almost slide it out, but don't hold me to that.  Leaving the motor out, and the frame in, dry fit your lower wing.  It won't go anywhere.  Then you can dry fit the engine and the forward-most cowl piece (and radiator) and see if you're sitting pretty or not.

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, biggtim said:

I'm actually sort of intimidated by the WNW (fok) in my stash, especially now that it sells for 200+.

I wonder how many modellers die before they complete half of their WNW stashes.  Really.... It's only a model.  On Facebook I see tons of guys who are waiting to build their first WNW kit once their skills improve enough.  Granted...  I wasted one.  But you guys can profit from my error....

 

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27 minutes ago, Bomber_County said:

Remember one guy who used to inhabit these parts, briefly, was bragging he had 65+ WnW. Never saw One built or even attempted........... I just about got away with alignment issues on my Ships camel, touch and go though......

Once, when he was in a good mood, he had posted stash pics. He had a decent enough stash. But what’s the use if you don’t build them?

I really enjoy the builds. I tend to more of the mega rigging projects, so a D.Vll will be different. 

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7 hours ago, GazzaS said:

On Facebook I see tons of guys who are waiting to build their first WNW kit once their skills improve enough. 

I've built two so far. Ernie pushed me to try building a WNW kit (any biplane actually) and if he hadn't, I probably would never have tried rigging something. So thank you Ernie!!!

I still have a couple in the stash plus the Silverwings Hart to get back to.  I've even bought a Curtis P6 Hawk of my own volition. That has to be my favourite biplane. 

As for collecting, I have maybe two kits in my stash I bought from a collection standpoint. One was accidental. 

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After reading this post, I rushed right down to the SOD to check squareness on my DVII cockpit tubing. I guess I'm lucky (I couldn't be good).

 

I've been on a kick to finish some of these WNW kits since they closed up shop... After I finish the W.29 and Albatross, the DVII is next on the list. The only WNW I've ever finished is the Eindecker.

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I buy mine to build them, maybe not all of them, but that's more about expected lifespan than not wanting to build them. 
Like others, I didn't finish a started Pfalz for years, because of, I will do it when I'm grown up, have the skills, tried others, blah, blah, blah. Last December I decided to finish the Pfalz with rigging, a little wood painting and everything what's needed. Afterwards I was wondering, why I was so scared to finish the Pfalz. It was sometimes tempting, but so  rewarding and I had a lot of fun. These WNW planes are great kits, which make it easy to achieve never expected outcomes.
With that feeling and the firs of my tiny 1/48 SSW's under the belt, _I will build more WWI planes (some from Roden and Micro Mir as well, but the next will be a Hansa Brandenburg and the a Fokker D.VII with the coat of arms of my old hometown Berlin.
I don't fear rigging anymore with the exception of my FE.2b which will have to wait a little longer.

Cheers Rob 

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I honk my biggest hesitation with the DVll is the absolute multitude of schemes out there, and guaranteed, I’ll build a wrong version for the scheme I chose.  

DVlls are sort of like 109s and Spitfires. They are incredibly studied, and there are still one or two original unrestored birds out there. 

So there’s no “hey, nobody’s here to tell me it ain’t right” like I can get away with on a Pfalz DXll or Gotha.

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13 hours ago, GazzaS said:

Really.... It's only a model.  On Facebook I see tons of guys who are waiting to build their first WNW kit once their skills improve enough.

I'm not worried about that part of it, I'm up to the task. I just cant decide how bad I want to build it now. Plus, Ernie is right. I'm only ever going to build one, so which scheme should I do??

There is also the fact that I have too many builds ongoing...

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Really...  they are great kits.  But the decals will only last so long.  I know...I know... Aviatic...blah, blah...  In if you repacked the box wrong...stuffed in some literature, or some other AM...  you can actually warp and break struts...  that's part of why ruining the first kit didn't bother me too much.  The second hand kit I'd bought had a ruined tripod strut.  The tripod strut is the main weight bearer of the upper wing.  But the previous owner had stuffed in a photocopy he'd made of a Windsock Data File.  The end result was that one leg of the tripod strut was broke clean through, and the other two legs of the tripod were seriously warped.

 

I hope you all get all of yours built before....

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I was looking in my stash and I keep coming back to the original Fokker built boxing. 

I see two schemes I like, which, Co- Incidentally (that’s how we say it in Texas, two words, both with a big ol’ drawl) I just happen to have two of that boxing. 

I like Willi Gabriel’s mount, a VERY early production Fokker machine which has the Dr1 style streaky camo, which is also the box art,  and the second is Gotthard Sochsenberg’s mount, a very late production ship with the high mounted guns of a BMW equipped aircraft, but still sporting a Mercedes.  His is the yellow and black chequerboard scheme.

Building one of these will be an adventure.  A little secret.  I’ve always relied on my mono line structural rigging to actually rig the aircraft for me. In other words, just like the real riggers: use rigging tension to keep it all plumb.   I hope it's strong enough to withstand handling without rigging. 

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2 hours ago, Clunkmeister said:

I was looking in my stash and I keep coming back to the original Fokker built boxing. 

I see two schemes I like, which, Co- Incidentally (that’s how we say it in Texas, two words, both with a big ol’ drawl) I just happen to have two of that boxing. 

I like Willi Gabriel’s mount, a VERY early production Fokker machine which has the Dr1 style streaky camo, which is also the box art,  and the second is Gotthard Sochsenberg’s mount, a very late production ship with the high mounted guns of a BMW equipped aircraft, but still sporting a Mercedes.  His is the yellow and black chequerboard scheme.

Building one of these will be an adventure.  A little secret.  I’ve always relied on my mono line structural rigging to actually rig the aircraft for me. In other words, just like the real riggers: use rigging tension to keep it all plumb.   I hope it's strong enough to withstand handling without rigging. 

The only rigging between the wings is the aileron controls.   They don't even have to be super tight as you will be able to see, on some period photos, is a little slack in them.  There are two lines for the LG, six, very short lines for the tail, and four very short lines at the ailerons.   Because the lines were so short for the tail and outer aileron I used EZ line.  There's not much room for heat shrinking there.

 

As far as strength goes....  it' the first biplane model I've ever turned over on it's back without having to worry about the upper wing detaching.

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4 hours ago, Clunkmeister said:

I like Willi Gabriel’s mount, a VERY early production Fokker machine which has the Dr1 style streaky camo

That will be my second D.VII after I built my Lozenge covered one with the Berliner Bär on it, it will be Gabriel's with streaks for variation. I have another boxing, but a decal sheet from Life Decals and Aviattic streaks.
Mine will be build from the Göring issue depicting a later ride of Gabriel with the BMW engine (FOK. DVII 323/18)

4 hours ago, Clunkmeister said:

Building one of these will be an adventure.  A little secret.  I’ve always relied on my mono line structural rigging to actually rig the aircraft for me. In other words, just like the real riggers: use rigging tension to keep it all plumb.   I hope it's strong enough to withstand handling without rigging.

I did the same with my Pfalz build and was astonished how rigid this type of rigging is, definitely a structural update and the type of rigging makes it easy to get the lines pulled taught.

1 hour ago, GazzaS said:

As far as strength goes....  it' the first biplane model I've ever turned over on it's back without having to worry about the upper wing detaching.

I was pleased to see, that I was able to do the flip onto the upper wing with my 1/48 SSW's too. Even without structural rigging, I used only Uschi's elastic, it was stable enough.

Cheers Rob

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