Grunau Baby 2
I was very lucky in getting hold of this great glider the Grunau Baby another german vintage glider to add to my collection, this glider came from the Dave Horton hanger with as usual revamped with new covering and plenty of scale detail including new decals and down to some small detail like a working compass. This one is based on one that was built from 1933 The wing span is 4.4 mtr, with a weight of kg8, John flew this glider at Binham in August where we spent a great week glider flying, where John took the Grunau Baby up and was in the air for near 2 hours on the first flight going from one thermal to the next one, this glider was built from a plan quite a few years ago and looks to be built to a very good standard. Now for a bit of history on the Grunau Baby.
The Schneider Grunau Baby (named for the town where Schneider's factory was located - now Jeżów Sudeckiin Poland) was a single-seat sailplane first built in Germany in 1931, with some 6,000 examples constructed in some 20 countries.First flown in 1931, the Grunau Baby became the most popular glider of all time. Thousands were constructed in Western Europe between 1931 and 1945 and during World War Two, factory records showing that 4,104 rolled from workshops in Germany and the occupied contr ies. After the war, thousands
more were built in Czechoslovakia, Spain, Sweden, Great Britain, and Australia. The Baby 2 was nearly a perfect club sailplane It was relatively easy to build from plans, it flew well, and the aircraft was strong enough to handle mild aerobatics and the occasional hard landing. When the Baby first appeared, it was accepted wisdom that the pilot should feel as much unimpeded airflow as possible, the better to sense rising and falling currents of air, temperature changes and the like. It was designed by Edmund Schneider as a smaller version of his ESG 31 of the previous year, incorporating a new elliptical wing design based on work done by Akaflieg Darmstadt. The intention was to create an aircraft suitable both for training and for cross-country soaring. Typical for its day, it was a high-wing braced monoplane with a fuselage of hexagonal cross-section and an open cockpit. The Baby was an instant success, and was enthusiastically promoted by gliding champion WolfHirth. An extensive rgedesin
followed in 1932 following the fatal crash of an unrelated Schneider design, resulting in the Baby II This version and the definitive Baby IIb that followed it were adopted as a standard sailplane trainer for the German Air Sports Association (later theNational Socialist Flyers Corps). Baby 3 and baby 4 were built with closed cocpits fitted. The first thing you will notice about a glider as distinct from any other airplane is the length and narrowness of the wings. This is because a glider depends entirely on its wings which have to act on the greatest p
ossible airflow to stay airborne. Aspect ratio is the technical term used to describe how long and slender a wing is from tip to tip and, for a rectangular-shaped wing, this is expressed as the ratio of the span and chord. The first thing you will notice about a glider as distinct from any other airplane is the length and narrowness of the wings. This is because a glider depends entirely on its wings which have to act on the greatest possible airflow to stay airborne. Aspect ratio is the technical term used to describe how long and slender a wing is from tip to tip and, for a rectangular-shaped wing, this is expressed as the ratio of the span and chord.I could put all the pictures on here But I picked the best ones that showed it of best. The detail I think is quite amazing, and cant wait till next week to put the Grunau baby in to the air if the condition allows at the last event of the year whch is the large model Flying at the NLMFC.
This site has a great background for taking pictures of models
After a good few years flying the Grunau baby she is now ready for some tlc as the Grunau did a lot off flying she also gathered some wear and a round the skid area and the pilot has flown his last flight. So in a few weeks I will repair the skid step by step and the pilots name to be removed, and some cockpit details to be added ,including a new pilot and some more cockpit details that will include leather padding.The pilot will be coming from Perfect - Pilots This is a company owned by Wendy a very helpful lady, and will go that little extra to create the scale look that is required, the pilot that wendy is doing for me is one called Hanna Reitsch.
Hanna Reitsch (29 March 1912 – 24 August 1979) was a German aviator and the only woman awarded the Iron Cross First Class and the LuftwaffePilot/Observer Badge in Gold with Diamonds during World War II. She set over forty aviation altitude and endurance records during her career, both before and after World War II, and several of her international gliding records still stand in 2012. In the 1960s she founded a gliding school in Ghana, where she worked for Kwame Nkrumah
I thought it would be different having a women pilot because everyone has a man pilot, but to be fair I was looking at putting a man pilot in my self ,but after talking the John it was put to me that the one person that fits the seat was Hanna Reitsch.
I think the likeness is very good there are a few more pictures from Wendy's website
And of course there will be many pictures of Hanna once I have her, Wendy has said making the pilot will take a round 5 weeks, which falls well with the small make over on the Grunua baby ready again for flying. As the real picture Hanna has a harness, I asked Wendy is there a flying harness for this era style of pilot, and with the next e-mail the reply was yes, so now the pilot is complete. hanna will be a half body 1/3 scale, with a brown leather flying jacket white scarf and flying harness, and the final detail I am making a iron cross for her to wear.
I will enjoy doing this because I have never gone so deep in trying to imulate the person and glider, this can only make this hobby of ours more enjoyable.
So if you are looking for a pilot please give Perfect - Pilots a look or give Wendy a call and discuss your requirments she will be glad to answer and questions. My pilot came today and I'm very happy with her, what can I say plenty of e-mails keeping me up to date with the build, pay through paypal. Had a e-mail from post office at 5.45 this morning to say they have it with them and it will be delivered shortly, and 7.30am knock at the door geated by a smiling postman with my pilot. Thats what I call a good service.
The detail is amazing, at the moment the safety straps are not fitted at the moment, I'm going to make it up shortly to give the full effect,I will now have to get on with the refurb now to see Hanna in the Grunua. Sunday was a good day in the workshop got a lot done for the repairs and re vamp to the Grunau baby and also to try My new pilot in the cockpit.
Here the skid mounting block broke through after the occasional miss gudged landings throught the past few years,once the skid removed and a good size hole cut out. This then allowed me to fit a piece of hard wood against the original hull former, then some balsa sheeting on the inside of the hole with a 6mm over lap for the new sheet to cover the hole
The sheet was then fitted with pva and tacked with zap glue to hole while the pva goes off, Then the brushed litho plate and the balsa coated with contact glue. I removed the old head rest and replaced it with a new leather one, which is more scale after looking through the internet at all I could find on this subject, this was easier to make then what I thought. I really didn't want to stich the cusion, so I thought of other ways of doing it. Then it come to me zap super glue, so I cut a piece of 1/32 ply to shape, then stuck some black foam to the ply, and last of all cut a piece of soft black leather and then folded it over the sponge and stuck it to the ply. Then stuck the head rest to the postion its in now shown in the picture. The top edge of the side of the cockpit is now re-painted red over the old pilots name, which was the owner before me.
The picture on the left does not have any leather padding on the both sides of the cockpit, The picture on the left does not have any leather padding on the both sides of the cockpit, the second picture is showning the side padding.