brothers are credited with
making the first Powered Flight at Kill
Devil Hills, North Carolina, 17th
December 1903. The outbreak of WWI
in1914, saw the development of Aircraft
improve dramatically, in a race to
build Fighters superior to that of the
Designers experimented a number of
designs throughout the War such as:
single wing (Monoplane), double wing
(Biplane), and triple wing (Triplane),
to try and improve on straight line
speed, climb, dive and turn.
WWI Pilots were instructed to attack
from the rear, and not to fire until
about 100 yards from the target.
World War One was sparked off by the
assassination of the heir to the
Austro/Hungarian throne ‘Archduke
Franz Ferdinand’ in Sarajevo on
the 28th June 1914. It was believed the
Serbian Nationalist Secret Society the
‘Black Hand’ had planned
the assassination. With Serbia refusing
to hand over the conspirators,
Austro/Hungary declared war on Serbia
28th July 1914.
Austro/Hungary found backing from
Germany as the War escalated. Serbia in
turn received backing from Russia,
France, UK, Japan, Italy and from 1917,
As the First World War came to end
11th November 1918, over 9,000,000
people had lost their lives. The
Countries to suffer the most Losses
were Germany and their Allies over
3,500,000, Russia 1,700,000, France
1,300,000, the British Empire
1,000,000, and the USA 116,000.
Scout 1914, British, 94 mph,
The Bristol Scout was a single seat,
rotary-engine Biplane that was one of
the first UK built Fighter Aircraft of
the First World War. This Aircraft was
originally built as a sporting Aircraft
for the rich and famous.
The British used the Bristol Scout
to try out a number of weapons such as
rifles, machine guns, and fixed machine
Eindecker 1915, German, 87 mph,
The Eindecker was the first purpose
built German Fighter Aircraft, also,
the first to be fitted with interrupter
gear, so the pilot could fire a machine
gun through the propellers without
hitting the blades.
The Eindecker gave the German's
almost complete air supremacy from July
1915 until early 1916, a time in which
Allied Pilots regarded themselves as
Fokker Fodder. This was Baron Manfred
von Richthoven (Red Barons) first
Fighter. Armed with 1 x Parabellum MG14
early 1916, British, 93 mph,
The DH.2 was the first purpose built
British single seat Fighter, allowing
the British Pilots to take on the
Fokker Aircraft the Germans had been
using since late 1915.
This little pusher soon proved
itself more than a match for the Fokker
Eindecker, used extensively during the
Battle of the Somme. Armed with 1 x
.303 in (7.7 mm) Lewis machine gun
using 47-round drum magazines.
D.II 1916, German, 90 mph,
The Halberstadt D.II was in service
at the time Allied Airforces had air
superiority, in early 1916. This
Aircraft was replaced by the superior
Albatros Fighters by the autumn of that
While waiting on his Albatros D.III
being repaired, Manfred von Richthofen
flew a Halberstadt D.II, between the
11th March and 25th March 1917, being
credited with six kills. Armed with 1 x
forward-firing Spandau LMG 08 machine
D.II 1916, German, 110 mph,
D.IIs were the first specialized
Fighter squadron in the German air
service. Famous Pilots included Oswald
Boelcke and Manfred von Richthofen.
With its high speed and heavy
armament, the D.II regained air
superiority for the German air service.
Manfred von Richthofen shot down most
of his confirmed kills in an Albatros
D.II. Armed with 2 x forward-firing
7.92 mm LMG 08/15 machine guns.
1916, British, 106 mph, Biplane
The first Pups were sent to the
Western Front in October 1916, for No.
8 Squadron, soon prooving successful
with 20 enemy Aircraft destroyed over
the Somme battlefield by the end of
The Pup had much less horsepower and
armament than the German Albatros D.II,
but was more maneuverable. By the
spring 1917, this Aircraft had become
inafective against the latest German
Fighters. Armed with 1 x .303 in (7.7
mm) Vickers machine gun.
D.III 1917, German, 109 mph,
In April 1917, Germany gained air
superiority again with the introduction
of the Albatros D III. The withdrawal
of Russia from the War at that time
also freed many more German Pilots for
the Western Front.
Baron Manfred von Richthoven downed
21 Allied Aircraft in a DIII in April
1917 alone. Armed with 2 x 7.92 mm LMG
08/15 machine guns.
Triplane early 1917, British,
117 mph, Triplane
This Triplane was built for the
Royal Naval Air Service with an
exceptional rate of climb, giving it a
good advantage over the Albatros D.III,
though it was slower in a dive.
The Germans built around 34
different prototype Triplanes in an
attempt to mach this Aircraft. The
Canadian Pilot Raymond Collishaw scored
33 kills in this Aircraft, becomming
the top Triplane Ace. Armed with one
synchronized Vickers machine gun.
1917, German, 116 mph, Biplane
The D.V was the last of the Albatros
Aircraft with Manfred von Richthofen
said to be highly critical of its
In a July 1917 letter, he described
the aircraft as "so obsolete and so
inferior to the English, that one can't
do anything with this Aircraft." Armed
with 2 x forward-firing 7.92 mm LMG
08/15 machine guns.
Factory S.E.5 1917, British, 138
The first of these Aircraft entered
the War before the Sopwith Camel, with
a greater overall performance, but
problems with its Hispano-Suiza engine
lead to a shortage of S.E.5s until well
into 1918. Many of the top Allied aces
flew the S.E.5, including Billy Bishop,
Cecil Lewis, Edward Mannock, and James
Legendary British ace Albert Ball
claimed 17 of his 44 kills flying this
Aircraft. Armed with 1 x 0.303 in (7.7
mm) forward-firing Vickers machine gun
with Constantinesco interrupter gear,
and 1 x .303 in (7.7 mm) Lewis gun on
on the upper wing.
Camel 1917, British, 115 mph,
This Aircraft entered service in
June 1917, with Major William Barker
using it to become the most successful
Pilot in the history of the RAF. All
his victories were with this
He shot down 46 aircraft and
balloons from September 1917 to
September 1918 in 404 hours of flying.
Armed with 2× 0.303 in (7.7 mm)
Vickers machine guns.
late 1917, German, 115 mph,
The Dr.I was used extensivley in the
spring of 1918, known as the Aircraft
in which Manfred von Richthofen
acheived his last 20 victories, 80 in
total, and in which he was killed 21st
The Dr.I was considerably slower
than Allied Fighters in level flight
and in a dive, but had better
maneuverable. Armed with 2 x 7.92 mm
"Spandau" LMG 08/15 machine guns.
1918, German, 116 mph, Biplane
The D.VII soon proved superior to
existing Allied Fighters of that time,
leading to another period of German air
superiority. The Armistice ending the
War forced Germany to surrender all
their D.VIIs to the Allies.
Manfred von Richthofen died only
days before the D.VIIs reached his
unit, so never flew it in combat. Armed
with 2 x 7.92 mm LMG 08/15 "Spandau"