by: Stephen T. Lawson [ ]
The S.S.W D.III was a development of their earlier D.IIc prototype. The D.III was an equal-span sesquiplane powered by a 160 hp (119 kW) Siemens-Halske Sh.III conter rotary engine. Idflieg placed an order for 20 aircraft in December 1917, followed by a second order of 30 aircraft in February 1918.
Approximately 41 D.IIIs were delivered to frontline units between April and May 1918. Most aircraft were supplied to Jagdgeschwader II, (Jastas 12, 13 15 &19.) whose pilots were enthusiastic about the new aircraft's handling and rate of climb. (This version is covered by the Loon Models set LO32006.) 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.III aircraft with the Fokker D.VII. 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 airflow and ballanced ailerons. A further 30 new production D.III airframes incorporated these modifications. Total production amounted to 80 aircraft.
Loon Models is a subsidiary to Roll Models.com. Loon Models has manufactured resin 1:32 ''Master Series'' Correction / Conversion / Detail (LO32006) and its sister set LO32007 are resin parts applicable to Roden's 1:32 Siemens Schuckert D.III. Set LO32006 backdates the kit to the earliest production issues first release for front line operations and testing to JG II in 1918. All parts clean up with minimal effort.
Siemens Schuckert D.III early conversion includes 20 pieces of good quality resin. They are;
2 @ Early full-cowlings (1 being an extra)
6 @ Engine braces (2 being extras)
1 @ Engine forward support ring
1 @ Unvented spinner
4 @ Early wingtips.
4 @ Ailerons
1 @ Early horizontal tail unit
1 @ Early version rudder
The instructions are two sided half page of text. There are not any decals with this kit.
Eisernes Kreuz und Balkan Kreuz by H.Nowarra, Hoffman Pub. p.120, 1968.
German Army Air Service in WWI, Osprey, Vintage Warbirds #2, Photos 102-105, 1985.
German Fighter Units - June 1917-1918 by A.Imrie, Osprey Pub. 1978.
Lafayette Foundation Archive, Denver CO. USA.
Over the Front Vol. 2, #4, p.376, 1986.
Over the Front Vol.14, #3, p.280 1999.
Over the Front Vol.14, #4, p.368-370, 1999.
Over the Front Vol.15, #4, p.370, 2000.
Pictorial History of the German Army Air Service by A.Imrie, Ian Allan Pub. p.173, 1971.
Siemens Schuckert D.I/ III/ IV by Harry Woodman, Scale Models, Pp.348-352, July 1981.
Siemens Schuckert D.III & IV by P.L.Gray, Profile Pub. #86, 1966.
Spandau Machine Gun by David Watts, 1998 WWI Aero.
SSW D.III by Dick Bennett, WWI Aero #123, Feb. 1989.Pp.8-25.
SSW D.III Cockpits & Instruments by Roy Meyers, WWI Aero #123, Feb. 1989, Pp.72-75.
SSW D.III - D.IV by P.M.Grosz, Albatros Pub. Ltd. Windsock Datafile #29, 1991 & 98.
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