Hansa-Brandenburg KDW

1st Flight 1916

The Hansa-Brandenburg KDW was a German single engine, single seat, fighter floatplane of World War I.

The KDW was adapted from the Hansa-Brandenburg D.I landplane to provide coastal defence over the North Sea.

The KDW was produced in Austria-Hungary under license by Phönix.

58 were built in five production batches.

The first batch entered combat in late 1916.

The wings extended well beyond the outboard ends of the star struts, and it was found that this unbraced part of the upper wing flexed when the ailerons were actuated, reducing their effectiveness.

Starting with the second batch a light steel-tube vee brace was added outboard of the star struts to stiffen the outer upper wing.

The first three batches were equipped with the 150 hp (110 kW) Benz Bz.III engine.

The last two batches, 35 aircraft in total, were equipped with the 160 hp (120 kW) Maybach Mb.III engine.

The first four batches were armed with one fixed Spandau machine gun, mounted on the starboard side of the nose.

The final batch of 20 aircraft, delivered between October 1917 and February 1918, were armed with twin Spandau machine guns on either side of the cockpit.

Production was slow, so that many were obsolete almost as soon as they reached their units.

They were difficult to fly because of the aforementioned poor directional stability.

Recovery from a spin was a matter of luck.

Another reason it was unpopular with pilots was that, until the final batch, the armament was positioned out of their reach, making it impossible to clear stoppages while airborne.

Specifications

Crew

1

Length

8 m (26 ft 3 in)

Wingspan

9.25 m (30 ft 4 in)

Height

3.35 m (11 ft 0 in)

Gross weight

1,040 kg (2,293 lb)

Powerplant

1 × Benz Bz.III 6-cyl, water cooled inline piston engine, 112 kW (150 hp)

Performance

Maximum speed

172 km/h (107 mph, 93 kn)

Endurance

2 hrs 30 mins

Service ceiling

4,000 m (13,000 ft)

Armament

Guns

1 or 2 × fixed forward-firing 7.92 mm (0.312 in) machine guns

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