View Full Version : Warbird replicas and the CAA

8th Oct 2002, 12:46
There's a thread running on the flyPast forum about the recent engine runs of the new FlugWerk FW190 replicas. One of the points which has come up is askeing whether these aircraft would be able to participate in displays in the UK, and what type of certification the CAA would need to issue. Does anyone here have any idea on that at all?

Many thanks in advance.

Genghis the Engineer
8th Oct 2002, 14:23
Yes they can, the rules are in CAP 403 for all display authorisations. But, they're basically on the same legal pegging as a Turbulent, which is also on a homebuilt permit to fly. (For that matter, all the authentic warbirds are on permits to fly as well).

Basic permit limitations are day-VMC, sight of surface, not over built up areas. None of this impacts much on display flying.

Pilot would be limited to the most restrictive of his DA and the aircraft's permit limitations. Rough guess, this will probably be 100 knots, 100ft, 3.8g or thereabouts.


8th Oct 2002, 14:48
Thanks Genghis. Would the CAA have any other requirements before one of these could fly in UK airspace, design support, that sort of thing?

Genghis the Engineer
8th Oct 2002, 16:35
I'm assuming you're talking about putting a G-registration on it. For that you need to go through either CAA or PFA (I'd go PFA if you have a choice) who'll need proof that it's basically a safe aeroplane. The way to do that is something called a compliance report, which will (probably) be against some combination of previous operating experience, JAR-VLA and/or JAR-23.

I say probably, because a comittee (which I sit on, as do various others including the PFA's Chief Engineer) is currently trying to re-write the rulebook, because too many people have complained (rightly) that the rules were too unclear.

If, say, it was D or F registered, you'd need a special exemption from the CAA to bring it over and fly some airshows. You'd probably get it, but you'd probably need to sit down with somebody from the Applications and Certifications Section at Gatwick to agree exactly what was needed.


8th Oct 2002, 16:40
Genghis, thanks very much. It was really just to satisfy my idle curiosity. Cheers again.

9th Oct 2002, 15:34
Methinks the engine of a full size FW190 replica might be too big for the PFA to cover.

Genghis the Engineer
9th Oct 2002, 21:11
If it had the same power to weight certainly. From memory, I think PFA is limited to 250hp / 2000 lbf, which would cover most replicas I've met since they're largely lightweight (lacking armour and weapons systems) and usually non-aerobatic. They certainly have existing FW190 and SE5a replicas, either of which I'd love to get my hands on given a chance.


henry crun
10th Oct 2002, 02:55
Am I missing something here ? it appeared to me that BeauMan's original query referred to the full size replicas which I understand are under construction.

If that is the case Genghis I find it hard to see how they are going to get the weight and power even remotely close to the
250hp/2000lb limits you mention.
The first A model FW 190 weighed 3850 kg (8487lbs) and was powered by a 1550hp radial.

How much would that engine alone, or a modern equivalant, weigh ?

Genghis the Engineer
18th Oct 2002, 18:59
Full size generally means same external dimensions, rather than same internal structure - after all, you don't need to dogfight Spitfires, carry huge amounts of weaponry, or protect the pilot from 30mm shells.

If you used a representative engine, you'd need the rest of it to be representative, otherwise the aircraft would be so far out of fwd CG as to be unflyable.

In general, the successful and affordable replicas have similar external lines, cockpit layout, but not very much else. Use of authentic engines / mass distributions usually only happens with aircraft like the replica SE5. Making a Spitfire, FW190, Bf109, etc. replica the norm is either full-size or about 75%, using a 4g structure, electrically (rather than hydraulically) retracting gear, and a reasonably modern air-cooled engine such as the 200hp Jabiru that's used in the Australian Spitfire replica.

To put all this in perspective, Geoffrey Quill's book Spitfire points out that the difference in weight between the Mk.1 Spit and Mk.47 Seafire was equivalent to 32 airline passengers and their luggage. Most of that weight is armament, armour, and the power and fuel to carry it all - this isn't a requirement of a replica where a comfortable 100kn cruise, +2/-4g manoeuvre envelope and no weaponry or armour are generally sufficient to make an impressive and displayable aeroplane.

I spotted 75% Bf109 replica from Germany in the current issue of "World Directory of Leisure Aviation", to be certified as a microlight (MTOW 300kg / ZFW 210kg). Given a year or so to clear the decks, getting UK certification on that would be quite a tempting project. Mind you, being a Brit, and particularly that Genghis Sr. was an Engineer at Supermarine, I'd rather do a Spit.

There's a website at http://www.supermarineaircraft.com/ which makes the point passably well.


18th Oct 2002, 19:36
These aren't 100 knot replicas. These will carry Focke-Wulf factory continuation serial numbers. These are actual FW 190s, new build. Ideal for rich men to kill themselves in a spectacular way!


One, I believe will have an original engine, the others will have Russian ones of comparable power and weight.

This is enough to make the CAA turn in its grave.


henry crun
18th Oct 2002, 21:00
It is noteworthy that the weight saved by cutting out all the war equipment is only 450 kgs.

Genghis the Engineer
19th Oct 2002, 08:16
I can't see why it should worry the CAA more than a real one !


Kermit 180
22nd Oct 2002, 05:57
I think this is a great thing to happen in the warbird world. Original (and therefore historic) airframes need not be risked, as replicas can take their place (although I do love an original). Replicas that reproduce the original in faithful copies, are a brilliant concept.

The Bf109 caught my attention, although I see you need to have a DB601 to stick in it yourself :(

Oh well, off to buy a Lotto ticket now, one of those FW190's would make my millenium. ;)



22nd Oct 2002, 18:36

Given that most, if not all high performance vintage aircraft (P51s, Spitfires, Blenheim, F7F etc) currently on the UK register are operated on CAA rather than PFA permits, it is a fair bet any FW 190 replica would qualify for the former.

Genghis the Engineer
22nd Oct 2002, 19:37
The problem is however, that to build a genuinely authentic replica now is actually going to be considerably more expensive than to restore or buy a real one. So, you'd have to be very dedicated and very rich to go this route.

To build something that looks and sounds the same, and has similar handling, but using modern materials and techniques is not unaffordable. To have it internally identical is going to be a nightmare.

Looking at the website for the "authentic" FW190 kit, it's US$535,000 and then you still have to build it.

Looking at the website for the "unauthentic but looks great" Spitfire kit, it's OZ$96,000, which a back-of-envelope sum tells me is about an eighth of the cost of the FW190 kit.

More to the point, a reasonably normal person, albeit with a few years of saving could afford the non-authentic replica. The authentic replica is in the millionaire bracket only.

And then, of-course, you have to pay the running costs........


Genghis the Engineer
24th Oct 2002, 14:36
Or for those wanting a real bargain, a colleague and I just spent our tea-break drooling over:-




24th Oct 2002, 16:44
I wonder if the Ju-87 has dive brakes :D

The 109 does look better than the Stuka which has fairly dodgy canopy proportions. As my German is scheisse can anybody glean some details from the site please, things like cost, engine type, cruise, VNE etc.

Ta in advance.

24th Oct 2002, 22:56
Well, although it had me drooling for a little while, there's not much info to glean from that site. What I could find is that for 19900 Euros you'll get a kit that includes all the parts but no engine, electrics, avionics or prop. Engine is anything between a Rotax 582 (65 HP) and a Rotax 912 (80 HP). You'll be able to carry 55 liters of fuel and MTOW is 300 kg. It will take you about 500-600 hours to complete and after that you'll be able to fly it for about 30-40 Euros per hour.

This kit will build you an airplane certified as an Ultralight. If you don't like that there's another kit which will get you a shorter span version (6.8 m) which is stressed to +6/-4 (+4/-2 for the UL) and which can be registered as a homebuilt. Vne is set at 220 km/h, but with the 80HP Rotax it will do about 240 km/h straight and level! Empty weight is around 185-200 kg depending on engine type.

That's all i could find for now, any takers yet? :D

Genghis the Engineer
25th Oct 2002, 18:14
A 582 will set you back about 3k, a 912 about 6k, about 2/3 that for a second hand engine. If it were I, I'd go for a 912 if the aircraft can take the weight, or a Jabiru 2.2 litre if it couldn't, which is about 10kg lighter. (The Australian Spit uses a beefed up one of these generating about 200hp).

Instruments and electrics for a homebuilt are likely to cost around 1,000 unless you go overboard.

So, you're looking at about 20k plus about 600 hrs work.

In an idle moment I went looking and spotted a cheap Spitfire out there as well, at http://www.loehle.com/SpitfireKit.htm although being American, the certification through PFA could be harder than a German aircraft. A little more money at $32k. I suspect from the lack of pictures on the website of one flying, that they're probably still building the first one mind you, and I'm not hugely impressed by Loehle's Mustang's proportions.


Aint got no money, but if anybody is planning such a project - I've the skills to get it certified in the UK in exchange for a share.