Scheibe L-Spatz 55 (Sparrow) Glider


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The Atlantic Canada Aviation Museum’s L-Spatz-55 was built in 1952 at the Scheibe factory in Munich Germany. The approval number is G-63 and the gliders serial number is 530.

The Museum has no record of the gliders history between 1952 and 1972. If you have information about this glider pre-1972, we would love to hear from you. In early 1972 it was purchased by E. Bauer, R. Becker and M. Schaffer of Oppenheim, Germany. The gliders German registration number was D-7047. In 1976 the glider was purchased by some members of the Canadian Armed Forces, stationed at Lahr, West Germany. It was given the Canadian registration C-GBBI, the registration it appears in today.

BBI was flown by the Lahr Soaring Club at CFB Lahr until May 25, 1980. At which time it was damaged by ground looping on landing. The accident twisted the rear fuselage and cracked the left wing.

In 1982, BBI was purchased by Peter Myers and was repaired. Later that year Peter returned to Canada after his posting to Germany ended and he brought the glider home with him. Mr. Myers flew BBI out of the Gore, Nova Scotia until 1983. It was then placed in storage until 1995 when Mr. Myers donated L-Spatz-55 (C-GBBI) to the museum for display.

In 1995, the glider was delivered to the Museum, reassembled and cleaned up by member Pat Smith. Upon completion C-GBBI was then hung from the ceiling of our new lower hanger. Today it can be seen majestically soaring at the museum. Hanging the aircraft really gives viewers a good look at  how large the wing structure of a glider is.

Scheibe L-Spatz 55 (Sparrow) Glider History

Developed from the Spatz-55 glider, the L-Spatz-55 features an enlarged wing to increase performance by 10%. The L-Spatz-55 is a small light weight single place sailplane suitable for training or competition flying. It has the usual Scheibe steel tube fuselage and single wooded spar wing structure. The Aspect Ratio is 19 and the wing area is 11.7 metres square (125.9 sq. ft.)

It was in a sailplane of this type that Baptist Hoffman set a new German free distance record of 678 km. (421 miles) in May of 1957.

Dimensions

  • Span 15.0 m (49 ft. 3 in.)
  • Length 6.25m (20ft. 6 in.)
  • Height 1.20 m (3 ft. 11 in.)

Weights

  • Weight Empty 155kg. (342 lb)
  • Weight Loaded 265 kg. (584 lb.)
  • Weight Usable 210 kg (242 lb.)

Performance

  • Glide Ratio 29:1
  • Stall Speed 50 km/h (31 m.p.h.)
  • Maximum Speed 180 km/h (112 m.p.h.)
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