As Albatros DVa – G WAHT arrives in UK, Jean Michel Munn Compares it to the SE5a (1-4)
Both saw service about the same time, the SE5a was a clean sheet design whilst the DV was at the end of a long line of adaptation of what was earlier a very successful type. The latter is often an advantage but in the case of the DV, it inherited all the poor ergonomics, structural weaknesses and control deficiencies of its predecessor whist gaining … well err pretty much nothing! The only marked improvements over its predecessor were in the aesthetics, which are of little advantage in a fighting machine! We have no photos of our new Albatros until it comes out of the box next week.
There were in fact minor improvements to the DV’s field of view with the rounded fuselage and lowered upper wing and the cleaner fuselage perhaps made her faster and accelerate more quickly. The SE5A is undoubtedly superior in every way. She is easier to fly and handle on the ground and in that crucial transition between the two. She climbs faster and higher, she has greater endurance/range than the DV, she is faster, more manoeuvrable and yet stable. The largely unknown result of the latter is that it not only relieves the pilot’s workload considerably, but crucially, it allows the aircraft to remain controllable and return home following the loss of one of the principle controls.