Fokker E III Eindecker (reproduction)

The Fokker Eindecker was a German World War I monoplane single-seat fighter aircraft designed by German engineer Anthony Fokker. Developed in April 1915, the Eindecker was the first German fighter aircraft fitted with a synchronizer gear; this enabled the pilot to fire a machine gun through the arc of the propeller without striking the blades. The Eindecker granted the German Air Service a degree of air superiority from July 1915 until early 1916, with the Eindecker pilots became the first German aces of WWI.

The Fokker E-III Eindecker was nimble and deadly, and was commonly known by the Allied forces as the “Fokker Scourge.” Flying singly, German pilots on the British and French Fronts, created havoc among the slow and poorly armed Allied airplanes. The E-III Eindecker continued to maintain the legend of the Fokker invincibility, until the spring of 1916, when the French Nieuport II and the British DH-2 regained supremacy of the air. By the summer of 1916, the Fokker was feared no more.

The memory of the Museum’s first E-III, lost in the 1978 fire, prompted volunteer craftsmen to undertake the task of replacing this historic aircraft. The project was started in October 1992, with the objective of building a flyable reproduction E-III that was as close to the original plane as possible. After five years of dedicated work by many Museum volunteers led by Bob Greenaway, the project was completed and presented to the public on August 26, 1997.

San Diego Air & Space Museum

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