A.E.G. Dr.I

The A.E.G. Dr.I was an unsuccessful design for a triplane, based on the equally unsuccessful A.E.G. D.I.

A.E.G. Dr.I from the rear, 1917
A.E.G. Dr.I from the rear, 1917
In the summer of 1917 the Germans captured an intact Sopwith Triplane, and on 27 July issued a circular inviting aircraft designers to examine the aircraft. One result of this was a rash of German triplanes, most of which were unsuccessful. A.E.G. was better known for its single engined two-man reconnaissance aircraft and twin engined bombers, but during 1917 the company had also produced the A.E.G. D.I, a single bay fighter that was ordered in small numbers before being cancelled after two out of three prototypes crashed.

The company decided to use the D.I as the basis for its own triplane fighter. The Dr.I thus had the same welded steel tube fuselage and fabric covering as the D.I, and used the same Daimler D.IIIa engine in an ungainly mounting, with part of the engine exposed above the fuselage. It was given a new set of triplane wings, with the lower wing level with the base of the fuselage, the middle wing just below the top of the fuselage and the upper wing above the fuselage. The upper wing was notably larger than the lower two wings. The wingspan was three feet wider than on the D.I, but loaded weight only increased by around 70lbs.

The Dr.I was completed by October 1917. Tests revealed that it had poor handling characteristics and poor performance, with a much lower speed than the D.I, and development of the type was abandoned.

Engine: Daimler D IIIa six cylinder water cooled engine
Power: 160hp
Crew: 1
Span: 30ft 10in
Length: 20ft 0 1/8in
Empty weight: 1,565lb
Loaded weight: 2,138lb
Max speed: 106mph

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (18 February 2016), A.E.G. Dr.I , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_AEG_DrI.html

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