Early in 1917 Albatros began with a drag-reduced devel-opment of the D III fighter, featuring a deeper oval-section fuselage, a head rest (often removed as it interfered with the pilot’s rearward view), and reduc-tion of the gap between the top of the fuselage and the upper wing. Also included were a revised of the rudder, different aileron-control system, and a larger spinner. Materials of the fuselage itself continued to be of the fabric-covered plywood variety but the integral improvements in performance, handling and the dual-synchronized machine guns all allowed the D.V to be pushed into the production lines.
The D.III's revised wing and tailplane to the new fuselage and fin just transferred the structural problems to the new type. These were not corrected until the strengthened D.Va model.
The new D V entered service in May 1917 and was soon joined by the slightly different D Va. More than 1,000 examples of the two similar variants were in service during May 1918 over the Western, Italian and Palestinian fronts. No fewer than 1512 D.V and Va models served on the Western Front, plus many others in Macedonia, Pales-tine and northern Italy.
Despite its aerodynamic re-finement over the D III, the DV was no real match for the best of Allied fighters. Losses to Allied fighters were heavy, and the type also suffered a heavy accident rate as the lower wing had an alarming tendency to break away in highly stressed maneuvers.
Principal versions were the D V (basic version) and D Va (derivative with the upper wing and aileron control system of the D III).
Principal users were Austria-Hungary, Germany, and Turkey.
Replica: Redfern Albatros D.Va
Engine: 1 x Mercedes IIIa engine, 180-200-hp (134-149-kW).
Length: 24 ft 0.5 in (7.5m)
Wingspan: 29 ft 8.25 in (9.05m)
Height: 8 ft 10.25 in (2.67m)
Wing area: 228.2 sq ft (21.20 sq.m)
Empty weight: 1,515 lb (687 kg)
Maximum Take-Off Weight: 2,059lbs (934kg)
Maximum Speed: 116mph (186kmh; 100kts) @ 3280 ft/1000 m
Climb to 3,280 ft (1,000 m): 4 min
Service Ceiling: 18,698ft (5,699m)
Endurance: 2 hr.
Armament: two 7.92-mm (0.312-in) machine guns.