Military Wiki
B.I and B.II
Left side view of DFW B.I Tannenberg, one of a small number of "named" DFW B.I aircraft in World War I
Role Reconnaissance / Army co-operation
Manufacturer Deutsche Flugzeugwerke
Designer Walter Oelerich
Introduction 1914
Retired 1915
Primary user Luftstreitkräfte

The DFW B.I (factory designation MD 14), was one of the earliest German aircraft to see service during World War I, and one of the numerous "B-class" unarmed, two-seat observation biplanes of the German military in 1914, but with a distinctive appearance that easily separated it from any other aircraft of its class.[1] Though a biplane, its wing planform was inspired by that of the earlier Rumpler Taube monoplane, or possibly one of Igo Etrich's own follow-ons to the Taube, the "Sperling" monoplane, which led to the DFW aircraft being named the Fliegende Banane ("Flying Banana") by its pilots. It was also one of the few single engined, "three-bay" interwing strut design biplanes (like the original design of the Albatros B.I) to see service in World War I.

The B.II was generally similar, but was intended principally as a trainer aircraft. Some of these machines were fitted with the more powerful Mercedes D.II engine.

Specifications (DFW B.I)[]

Data from German Aircraft of the first World War[2]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 2
  • Length: 8.4 m (27 ft 7 in)
  • Wingspan: 14 m (45 ft 11 in)
  • Height: 3 m (9 ft 10 in)
  • Wing area: 40 m2 (430 sq ft)
  • Empty weight: 650 kg (1,433 lb)
  • Gross weight: 1,015 kg (2,238 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Mercedes D.I 6-cyl. water-cooled in-line piston engine, 75 kW (100 hp)


  • Maximum speed: 120 km/h (75 mph; 65 kn)
  • Range: 600 km (373 mi; 324 nmi)
  • Service ceiling: 3,000 m (9,843 ft)

See also[]


  1. Wagner, Ray and Nowarra, Heinz. German Combat Planes: A Comprehensive Survey and History of the Development of German Military Aircraft from 1914 to 1945. New York: Doubleday, 1971.
  2. Gray, Peter; Owen Thetford (1970). German Aircraft of the first World War (2nd ed.). London: Putnam & Company Ltd.. 

External links[]

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