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The Siemens-Schuckert D.III was a German single-seat fighter
built by Siemens-Schuckert Werke.
The D.III was a development of the earlier
Siemens-Schuckert D.IIc prototype.
The D.III was an equal-span sesquiplane powered by
a 160 hp (119 kW) Siemens-Halske Sh.III bi-rotary
engine. Idflieg placed an order for 20 aircraft in
December 1917, followed by a second order of 30 aircraft in
D.III with cutaway cowling
Approximately 41 D.IIIs were delivered to frontline units
between April and May 1918.
Most aircraft were supplied to Jagdgeschwader II,
whose pilots were enthusiastic about the new aircraft's handling
and rate of climb. After only seven to 10 hours of service,
however, the Sh.III engines started showing serious problems with
overheating and piston seizure.
The problem was later traced to the Voltol mineral oil
that was used to replace the now-scarce castor oil.
Furthermore, the close-fitting engine cowling provided inadequate
cooling to the engine.
In late May 1918, Jagdgeschwader II replaced its D.IIIs
with the older Fokker
The remaining D.III aircraft were returned to the Siemens-Schuckert
factory, where they were retrofitted with new Sh.IIIa engines, an
enlarged rudder, and cutaway cowlings that provided improved
A further 30 new production D.IIIs incorporated these
modifications. Total production amounted to 80 aircraft.
In July 1918, the D.III returned to active service as an
interceptor with home defense squadrons.
By this time, the D.III had been replaced in production by the Siemens-Schuckert D.IV.
- German Empire
- Crew: One
- Length: 18 ft 8½ in (6.70 m)
- Wingspan: 27 ft 7¾ in (8.43 m)
- Height: 9 ft 2¼ in (2.80 m)
- Wing area: 203.44 ft² (18.90 m²)
- Empty weight: 1,177 lb (534 kg)
- Max takeoff weight:
1,598 lb (725 kg)
- Powerplant: 1× Siemens-Halske Sh.III bi-rotary,
160 hp (119 kW)
- ^ a
Green and Swanborough 1994, p. 530.
- ^ a
Gray and Thetford 1962, p. 213.
- ^ a
VanWyngarden 2005, p. 43.
- ^ a
Gray and Thetford 1962, p. 214.
- ^ Gray and Thetford
1962, p. 215.
- ^ VanWyngarden
2005, p. 44.
- Gray, Peter and Owen Thetford. German Aircraft of the First
World War. London: Putnam, 1962. ISBN 0-93385-271-1.
- Green, William and Gordon Swanborough. The Complete Book of
Fighters. London: Salamander Books, 1994. ISBN
- VanWyngarden, Greg. Jagdgeschwader Nr II Geschwader
'Berthold' (Aviation Elite Units No. 19). Oxford: Osprey
Publishing, 2005. ISBN 1-84176-727-1.