YB-36, B-29 and a Buchón: Strange companions.

A Hispano Aviación HA-1112 M1L in its authentic Ejército del Aire (Spanish AF) colors sharing tarmac space with some of Strategic Air Command (SAC) huge irons at the old Air Force Museum (Wright-Patterson AFB) in the late 1960’s.  One of them is the second Peacemaker built, YB-36 (42-13571) -rebuilt as a RB-36E. This prototype was he original Peacemaker selected for display at the old Air Force Museum premises. For not disclosed reason, it was actually not moved to the new museum premises. Even worst, 42-13571 was scrapped…with a bulldozer. Sinful to say the very least. The sad remains still linger on Walter Soplata’s farm. The one now displayed in the new museum was flown to the site of the new museum in 1959 and was the last flight of a B-36.

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Erickson Aircraft Collection’s “Bf 109G-10”: Enough?

Few, if any, aircraft designs can treasure the assortment of engines the Bf 109 have carried through its various iterations:
– RR Kestrel in the first V1 prototype.
– Junkers Jumo 210 in the first series.
– DB 600 for the “pre-Emil”.
DB 601 and DB 605 for the main wartime variants.
– P&W Twin Wasp.
– BMW 801. Used, like the Twin Wasp, to test the possible radial conversion.
– RR Merlin in the Spanish Buchones.
– Junkers Jumo 211 in the awful Avia 199.
– Hispano-Suiza HS-89 for the early Spanish-built Messers.
– and last, but not the least, the Allison V-1710.

The Erickson Aircraft Collection’s airworthy “Bf 109G-10” seems at first sight to be the real deal or at least a DB-engined Buchón. Well, in fact it is indeed a Buchón, but in order to convert it to more closely resemble Bf 109G without the expense of a the original German engine they came to a brilliant idea. They decided to use an ubiquitous Allison V-1710 engine instead. To make this upright V12 engine looks like a inverted V12 both the engine mount and exhaust system have been specially designed so the cowlings almost mimic that of a late Bf 109G model. The result is quite convincing…and sure cheaper.

Never enough to me.

Dassault Mirage IIIEE & Aeroplano Olivert-Brunet: Caged.

The two very different aircraft exposed inside the Principe Felipe Science Museum (City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia). With the biplane named after him Juan Olivert Serra undertook the first motorised flight in Spain in Sep 5. 1909 (Paterna, Valencia). The other name carrier by this pioneer biplane was the one of its designer: Gaspar Brunet Viadera.
The Mirage IIIEE (C.11-7/111-4) has a long experience in this matters. Severely burned years ago, without loss of life thankfully, this Mirage was cosmetically repaired and placed on a pylon, close to an old Sabre (this one) in a prominent place at the Manises Air Base. After the Manises AB closure it “flew” to its actual placement. Poor little things…., not a fan of Calatrava’s “cloned things”.

By the way, this just “out of the oven” awful photo is mine. Be merciful.

Cristòfol Juandó’s aircraft: El Geni Mecànic.


The very “Jules Verne-sque” central nacelle of the Juandó’s “Multíptero” or “Flugilarillo seen here in his “El Genio Mecánico” factory, Modolell de Sant Gervasi street (Barcelona). The inventor is the one pointing.

The little known Catalan inventor and industrialist Cristòfol Juandó i Rafecas (1848-1917) also took a chance with the nascent aviation fever of the turn of the century. He even created a company, the “Compañía Universal de Navegación Aérea”, to promote his project. Sadly, little has survived of his efforts of 1901-02. About his aircraft, Juandó described it bizarrely as a “..sort of rotative wing equipped with blades which open and close at the right moments…”. The intended engine was a 24 hp 4-cylinder Buchet. Some sources say he did build a full-sized aircraft, but without given further data. Anyway, lacking the financial resources necessary, Juandó tried to interest the always lethargic Spanish government. He persevered unsuccessfully in that endeavour until the early 1910’s and after that obscurity.

This add gives us a certain idea, or not, of what was going on in Juandó’s brainchild. It looked like small size model of the real thing. Unairworthy at first sight(?).