Anigrand 1/72 Fokker V.8
Fokker V.8 was a five-winged aircraft built by Fokker for the German air force during World War I.
After the initial success of the Fokker Dr.I triplane, Anthony Fokker proposed a quintuplane, reasoning that if three wings were good, five would be even better. Reinhold Platz, chief engineer for Fokker, was at first shocked by the idea: further thought only strengthened this reaction. Nevertheless the aircraft was built. Using some parts of the V.6, Platz designed a machine with three wings at the extreme front of the aircraft and a pair of wings midway along the fuselage, the mid-fuselage biplane wings placed where their leading edges were virtually even with the aft end of the cockpit coaming. Balanced control surfaces were fitted to the upper wings, those at the front acting as conventional ailerons and those in the rear working with the elevators.
The pilot was seated just ahead of the biplane wings. Like the V.6, it was powered by a 120 hp (90 kW) water-cooled Mercedes engine. Fokker, who was his own test pilot, made two brief flights, after which it was abandoned. The Fokker V.8 was powered by a 119 kW (160 hp) Mercedes engine.
Platz regarded the aircraft as such a monstrosity that later on he would only speak of it reluctantly, and disliked its design being attributed to him.
There are around thirty resin parts to this simple kit, cast in cream resin, with sharp edges and details. There are visible bubbles on the most parts. A resin slightly cloudy windscreen is included. The fuselage is one piece, as are four of the wings. The decal sheet has 8 cross-pattee in various sizes. Four decal sheets were included in the box.
Instructions comprise three photographs of a completed model from various angles, with parts callouts. There is a plan and profile drawing showing colour scheme and decal placement, and a short history.
The parts were removed from the casting blocks, and cleaned of flash, then all given a wash. The wings were all bent in plan, and needed a lot of hot water to get straighter. I didn't manage to get any of them perfect, who knows, maybe it did have crescent wings.
I started by adding the two wings behind the cockpit, there was a trench cast into the one piece fuselage for each of them. The trenches needed a little filing to square them up. These joints needed some filling and smoothing. Then I added the wing struts.
Next step was to add the forward triplane structure. First the centre wing haves which slotted into crevices in the fuselage. Then the lower wing which was a real juggling act, being mounted on two 'N' struts which are also the undercarriage legs. It took several tries to get this together.
The upper wing was relatively straight forward, just being balanced on the outer wing struts. Hold on, looks like something missing here. A look at the one photograph I could find shows some structure in there. No sign of anything in the parts or on the photo instructions, but the profile showed something. I built a cabane from Evergreen rod, basing the structure on the V9, which was a prototype for the D.VI fighter.
Just the last few parts now, a seat and control stick in the cockpit, the tail surfaces, an exhaust pipe, and the remaining undercarriage parts.
|COLORS & MARKINGS|
I gave the model a good wash then an overall coat of Tamiya white primer, then fixed a few more leading edge bubbles with superglue. Another coat of white primer, then detail painting of the struts, engine and undercarriage.
The decals were slow to soften, shiny, and a little thick, but went on and conformed OK with Mr Mark setter and softer. I then gave it an overall spray with matt varnish.
Added the propeller and windscreen to finish.
A relatively easy construction of a seriously strange aircraft. It needed very little filling other than a lot of bubble repair and the usually troublesome wing roots. The model looks a little wobbly and out of square, which probably adds to the charm. I had a lot of fun building this kit, the only difficult bit was getting the lower front wing in place.
An ambitious kit-basher could probably build one if they were prepared to sacrifice a D.VII kit and two Dr.1s.
Recommended for anybody, a good start to multi-wing resin kits.
Thijs Postma, “Fokker, Aircraft Builders to the World”, Janes, London, 1980
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