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The Dixmude, Zeppelin build number LZ114 is available here in 1/1250th and 1/1200 scales.
LZ114 was the last Zeppelin intended for action in the First World War and was to be L72, a sister ship to the German naval L70 and L71. But at the time of the signing of the Armistice in November 1918 she had not yet received her military equipment and the Germans maintained that she was therefore still the property of the private Zeppelin company. Nevertheless, she was taken by France along with Army airship LZ113 (which was an R-Type and actually build N° LZ83,) and the passenger 'ship Nordstern as part of war reparations.
LZ114 did not arrive in France until 11 July 1920 when she was named Dixmude and initially used for just a few short trial flights. The gas cells that the Germans had provided were hopelessly porous and much other work needed doing to get her truly airworthy. Her fate continually hung in the balance and it was not until almost two years later, in the spring of 1922, that the French government finally granted funds for extensive refurbishment including the provision of a small passenger cabin. She was finally back in service, albeit not with the best quality of equipment and fittings, in the summer of 1923.
The French had been given a bare minimum of information about the ship but her commander during her operational life, Lieutenant de vaisseau Jean du Plessis de Grenedan, was determined to demonstrate the benefits of the extraordinary range and endurance of the big rigid. He took a scratch crew and worked hard to assess the working requirements of the airship and to understand it's complexities. He came to appreciate that she was indeed by design, a lightly built "height climber" and needed particular care in low altitude flying. But after the three years of agitation and expenditure he knew that he was now in a fight for the very survival of the French rigid airship programme.
Du Plessis embarked on a series of spectacular voyages to win the attention of the public and the continued support of the government. There was a 50 hour return flight to North Africa. And then a flight touching the Sahara Desert and Paris that won France the world endurance record at that time of 118 hours and 41 minutes. More successes followed but on 21 December 1923 disaster struck. Forced by bad weather to turn back from a journey deep into Algeria, Dixmude was apparently struck by lightning just off the coast of Sicily. The ensuing enormous explosion blasted the ship and the 50 people on board to fragments and the fireball lit the heavens and the earth for miles around. Only the recognisable body of the gallant young commander and one other identifiable corpse were ever found.
Jean du Plessis died a martyr to the airship cause: he was truly one of the “greats” in the annals of rigid airship promotion and deserves far more recognition outside of France than he has ever received.