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HA-200 Saeta

Hispano Aviacion HA-200 "Saeta" D-IWMS

The Hispano Aviacion HA-200 "Saeta" ("Arrow") is one of the last designs fully developed by Willy Messerschmitt. It had its first flight on August, 12th 1955 in Sevilla.
50 years later I have been invited to do an air-air photo session with the only remaining airworthy HA-200 in Germany. It is part of the impressive collection of the "Messerschmitt Stiftung" and operated by EADS from their site in Manching.

LinkThe reason were some special markings that were applied to the aircraft remembering this anniversary and also a special guest has been invited to take a seat in the back of the "Saeta".
Prof. G. Madelung is the president of the board of trustees of the "Messerschmitt Stiftung" and was part of Willy Messerschmitt's team in Sevilla, that constructed this aircraft more than 50 years ago. Flying in it once again was an unforgettable experience for him, as it was for me as well to see this aircraft from the air.

 

HA-200 Saeta D-IWMS Air-Air

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The history of D-IWMS, c/n 20-73

HA-200DThis HA-200D was build in Sevilla in 1966 and was one of the last 55 aircraft constructed for the Spanish Air Force (Ejército del Aire). In the 2. Escuadron of Ala 46 it has been used mainly as a trainer with the number 462-67 on its fuselage. Still in its red/silver finish the aircraft was transferred to Las Palmas in 1970, but shortly afterwards it was used in the Spanish province "Spanish-Sahara" in Northern Africa, where it also received a new green/brown camouflage.
Link1976 it was transferred to ESC 214 of Ala 21 and got a new number, "214-67". Presumably the "Saeta" was flown there until 1982 when it was stored in Sevilla after 16 years of service. It was not until 12 later when it flew once again, still in camouflage but this time with a civil registration (EC-FVU).
To complete its collection in Manching the aircraft was bought by the Messerschmitt Stiftung in 1995 and transferred to its current homebase Manching, where it touched down on October 23rd, 1995. After a long period of rework and maintenance it took off on April, 29th 1998 for its second "first flight".
Even after 40 years the aircraft is still in an excellent conditions and flown on a regular basis with around 20-30 hours per year.

The "Saeta" on the ground

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Flugzeug Classic Cover StoryI would like to express my thanks to the Messerschmitt Stiftung and EADS for their support, Wolfgang Schirdewahn, chief test pilot EADS, and Horst Philipp for their excellent flying skills and everyone else who helped my during the preparation of this flight.
The complete story was published in Flugzeug Classic 09/2005:

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photos on www.airfighters.com