The Fokker Spin was the first airplane built by Dutch aviation pioneer Anthony Fokker. The many bracing wires used to strengthen the aircraft made it resemble a giant spider, hence its name Spin (Dutch for “spider”), and Spinne in German.
Fokker built the Spin in 1910 while he was a student in Germany, assisted by Jacob Goedecker and a business partner, Franz von Daum, who procured the engine. The aircraft started out as an experimental design to provide Fokker with a means to explore his interest in flying. The first Spin was destroyed when Von Daum flew it into a tree, but the engine was still salvageable and was used to build the second version. This was built soon afterwards and was used by Fokker to teach himself to fly and to obtain his pilot license. This aircraft was also irreparably damaged by Von Daum
The M.1 was a two-seat monoplane built in small numbers as the M.3. It was first flown in 1911 and by 1913 had been transferred to military flying schools. The M.2 was a true military version of the Spin. The airplane had a 75 kW (100 hp) Argus or Mercedes engine and was capable of 97 km/h (60 mph). The ten M.2s ordered for 299,880 Marks included 10 Daimler trucks to move the aircraft with the Army, per plans of the German General Staff at the time. The M.2 was a much refined aircraft with a streamlined fuselage, first flown in 1912. The M.4 was developed from the M.3, and included a nose wheel. It did not gain further sales.
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The fuselage simply consists of two wooden beams with cross members on which the pilot is seated and on which an Argus four-cylinder water-cooled engine is mounted in the front. The radiators are placed on the side of the fuselage. The wings and tail consist of two steel tubes with bamboo ribs. The landing gear is also constructed of steel tubing. The whole structure is held together with steel wire. Later versions have a more streamlined fuselage.
Fokker was a Dutch aircraft manufacturer named after its founder, Anthony Fokker. The company operated under several different names, starting out in 1912 in Schwerin, Germany, moving to the Netherlands in 1919. During its most successful period in the 1920s and 1930s, it dominated the civil aviation market. Fokker went into bankruptcy in 1996, and its operations were sold to competitors.
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