High quality Cartograf decals included for 5 colour schemes;
The Albatros B.II is perhaps unique amongst aircraft of the First World War in that production commenced in 1913, continued throughout the war and after the Armistice. The Albatros B.II was initially known simply as the Albatros DD (Doppledecker) and was developed in parallel with the DDK which appeared the same except it was slightly longer and fitted with longer 3 bay wings (and would eventually become known as the Albatros B.1). Like other German B type aircraft it was powered by 100hp to 120hp engines manufactured by Daimler-Mercedes, Argus and Benz with the pilot positioned in the rear cockpit with a steering wheel control column and the passenger in the front seat.
The Albatros B.II went through numerous minor and major changes during it"s relatively long lifespan and manufacture by 7 different companies but managed to emerge 6 years later appearing essentially the same. The box section fuselage was constructed from spruce & ash longerons and frames covered with 3-ply wood. The unequal span wings were fabric covered as were the steel tube framed ailerons and tailplane. Interplane, cabane and undercarriage struts were of steel tube construction. Very early aircraft featured a smaller fin with a rounded rudder and a Scheitelküler "Brow Radiator" mounted above the engine which almost completely obstructed the view forward. Early production Albatros B.II, as featured in this model, had a larger fin with a triangular rudder and Hazet radiators fixed to each side of the fuselage. Conservation of steel would lead to the development of the Albatros B.IIa which replaced the sole steel tube frame in the fuselage with wood and eventually the steel tube interplane and undercarriage struts would also be replaced by wooden items. Later developments included replacing the side mounted Hazet radiators with a single Windhoff item mounted in front of the leading edge of the top wings, replacing the control wheel with a stick type control column (necessitating the re-routing of the aileron & elevator control cables), dual controls for pilot training, moving the tail skid forward, adding additional struts under the tailplane, numerous exhaust styles and various positions & shapes of gravity fuel tank; almost all of which could be found retrofitted to earlier production aircraft as needed along with various interchangeable B.1 & C.1 components.
Unarmed B type aircraft like the Albatros B.II were initially utilized for reconnaissance but shortly after hostilities began airmen started carrying small bombs and personal firearms. Eventually many were fitted with bomb racks and various captured machine guns on improvised mountings. With the advent of purpose built armed and more powerful C type aircraft from mid 1915 (the Albatros C.1 was essentially a slightly redesigned Albatros B.II powered by a 150hp or 160hp engine with the gunner in the rear cockpit) the unarmed and underpowered B type aircraft were slowly relegated to training duties. Any history of this important aircraft here is of necessity very brief, therefore we encourage you to seek out the references mentioned below for a more thorough understanding.
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