PFM Logo Fokker Triplane Model T Curtiss Canuck

October 16, 2004 Project Update

This update brings the project information current as of the October 9 work weekend. Although the update pages for this project haven't shown much activity, we have been working on the D.VII. It's just that it's been reported in the Fokker Dr.I page, since we were doing more work on that machine.

The main change that has happened with this project is that we've decided to use a Gypsy Queen engine instead of the Ranger. The Gypsy Queen will be an excellent change. It is larger, heavier and offers more power than the Ranger. It is similar in size to the Mercedes and we probably will be able to have the exhaust stack exit the aircraft on the correct side. In the meantime, the engine cowling panels have been removed to serve as templates for a customer airframe. Roger is nearly done working out the new engine mounts and has completed many of the parts required. One challenge remains, where to mount the oil cooler that the motor requires?

The engine leaves enough room on the lower firewall for a substantial oil tank (Roger estimates 5 - 7 gallons!)... which is good, except that the oil pumps on the engine will be on top at the rear. The oil plumbing inside the cowlings will be lengthy, wherever the oil cooler ends up being installed! Javier Arango flies a Gypsy Queen D.VII and he says it takes a little bit of time for the oil pressure to come up... this is an issue we'll have to look at correcting.

The primary engine compartment heat exit is on the bottom edge of the firewall. Some fancy ducting may be necessary to deflect engine and oil cooler heat away from the cylinders and oil tank. Still a few bugs to eradicate. Roger and crew have also been working on a mold to allow new nose bowls to be made. The Gypsy Queen has different requirements for intake and cooling air.