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Fokker D.VII
Fokker built, early




S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: Kit #415 - Fokker D.VII (Fokker early build)
Scale: 1/48
Contents and Media: Six sprues of light grey plastic and three sheets of decal
Price: USD$17.97 from Squadron.com
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Accurate, well-researched, superb attention to detail.
Disadvantages: Lower wing moulding scallop blemishes.
Recommendation: Highly Recommended


Reviewed by Robert Baumgartner

Roden's 1/48 scale Fokker D.VII (early Fokker build)  is available online from Squadron.com




With the release of Roden’s 1/72 scale range of this famous fighter, it was always hoped that something similar might be around the corner in a larger scale. Well… it has arrived.

This is the first of many D.VII kits, each with their own differences to represent Fokker, Albatros and OAW-built machines. 

Upon opening the box, it is immediately obvious that this kit is a step above what we have seen previously from this manufacturer.

Inside there are six sprues of light grey plastic and three sheets of decal. 


Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

As with it’s smaller predecessor, Roden supply both the Mercedes and BMW engines that powered the D.VII. These engines are well detailed and are designed to be exposed within the confines of the forward fuselage. This really opens up some diorama potential! 

To allow for the different nose configurations, the fuselage halves have been designed in two pieces. This permits the saving of tooling costs when alternate radiators and engine cowls are produced to accommodate future versions. Those supplied in this kit are for the early Fokker manufactured types.  

As mentioned previously, an exposed engine is an option so Roden supply the necessary framework in this area. Remember to omit some of this if installing the covers as these items already have the detail moulded to their insides. Failure to do so will result in parts that won’t fit. Be careful to make sure that the engine does not sit too low as this is easy to do if the kit is rushed. Test fitting is also needed to make sure the nose assembly is square so that it makes a neat fit with the rest of the fuselage. I found that I had to enlarge the semi-circular holes on the upper decking to allow full clearance for the engine when getting the two fuselage assemblies to mate properly. 

The cockpit area is quite comprehensive and shows the amount of research that Roden have done in this area. We are provided with a lovely rendition of the control column, complete with separate throttle levers (as seen on OAW types), Fokker type instrument panel, compass, fuel pressure pump and a cross member that fits perfectly. The usual floor, rudder bar, and seat are also seen as is a rear fabric screen and fuel tank. The only obvious omissions are the second “throttle” and ignition control handle mounted inside the port fuselage. Note that even the tachometer and fuel gauge are provided. 

The fuselage halves are nicely done with the tubular structure being moulded on the inside. Don’t panic too much about the ejection pin marks on the interior surfaces as these are hidden once the assembly is complete. 

The top and bottom wings both come in two halves split horizontally. As expected with a Roden wing, the rib detail is wonderfully subtle as is the representation of the leading edge ply sheathing. Naturally we also see that the upper wing has the correct underside taper to the tips. Care must be taken to match up these halves, as the trailing edge scalloping on the bottom wing is quite vague in places. In fact a little building up with filler is necessary. 

A real bonus is the way Roden have done the separate ailerons for the wings. One again care is needed with assembly, in this case with the cleaning up of the parts otherwise you will end up having to open up the hinge slots to allow a proper fit. Cleverly the control horns fit into slots in the ailerons to provide a very secure attachment. 

Stacking pads are present on the top wing but are surprisingly absent on the lower ones. This is easily fixed with some plastic rod.  

More animation can be added to the final product thanks to the separate elevators and rudder. Again these are well detailed and the presence of protruding hinges allows for a snug fit. 

Three different types of propeller are provided as well as an assortment of wheel covers and axial wings. All this proves that Roden are striving for the utmost in accuracy with this series and are to be applauded for giving the modeler every opportunity for perfection. 

The spares box will never argue with this. 

The kit was compared to the ultimate reference source for the Fokker D.VII and this was the Anthology series published by Albatros Productions. The major outlines matched superbly so you know you have a competent kit from which to start your adventure.



Marking Options


Roden supply three decal sheets, two of which contain the upper and lower surface five-colour lozenge. Four options are catered for, each chosen to reflect the early Fokker built D.VII.


Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

The schemes are varied with each one providing a different degree of difficulty to cater for the modeler’s skill level:


1)      Fokker D.VII, Jasta 27, 1918

Flown by Hermann Goering.

This is probably the way 278/18 was coloured when Goering scored his 19th and 21st victories. Note that amongst the fuselage streaking, there will be traces of the clear-doped linen that will be trying to show through. 

2)      Fokker D.VII, Jasta 26, 1918

Flown by Oblt. Bruno Loerzer.

An addition that modelers can make here is to add the black/white streamers that trailed from the rear of the wing struts.  

3)      Fokker D.VII, Jasta 15, 1918

Flown by Ltn.d R Hugo Schäfer.

A photo of the port side of this aircraft shows that there were additional cooling slits on the forward engine cowling that the modeler may want to add. 

4)      Fokker D.VII, Jasta 15, 1918

Flown by Hptm. Rudolf Berthold.

There is a part of the fuselage, forward of the cockpit, which the instructions state as being solidly painted in olive. In actuality, this part of the airframe should have the colour streaked onto the clear-doped linen.





Previously if you wanted to model a particular machine, chances were that you would have to modify the engine cowls and carve a different shaped radiator.

For most modellers this will now be a thing of the past.  

The amount of detail contained in this kit will require the builder to take their time with both clean up and assembly. This model will be a classic case of “patience is its own reward”. 

With Roden embarking on a family of these fighters, just sit back and wait for your version to come along. Or better get, collect the lot!

Highly Recommended

Thanks to Squadron.com for the review sample.

Review and Images Copyright © 2003 by Robert Baumgartner
Page Created 11 December, 2003
Last updated 11 December, 2003

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