Retired aviation engineer Don Bradshaw has found a home where he can continue his restoration of a rare Messerschmitt fighter designed and developed by Nazi Germany during the Second World War. It is currently housed at the Saskatchewan Aviation Museum and Learning Centre in Saskatoon, and available for viewing.
First reported by eFlight two years ago, the Bf 109G-6 saw its first combat missions in 1937 during the Spanish Civil War. The aircraft continued in active service in the Luftwaffe and allied forces until the end of the Second World War. Considered to be one of the most advanced fighters in its day, it was powered by a Daimler-Benz DB 605A-1 liquid-cooled inverted V-12 engine. Maximum speed was 398 mph, and maximum cruise speed was 365 mph at 20,000 feet. Service ceiling was 39,000 feet.
“I believe there’s only two that are flying in the world right now,” Bradshaw told CTV News Saskatoon. “There’s probably 50 to 100 museums that have them on display, but they are very scarce.”
Originally built as the Me 109 and later named Be 109, it was reportedly the most produced fighter aircraft in the world.
“This one is such a rare aircraft to be in the shape that it is and what it’s going to be, I think it’s going to be a great draw for Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and our museum,” said museum director Dale Tiedeman.
This year marks the seventh anniversary of the project’s birth. Noted American aircraft collector Kermit Weeks has provided support for the project.
Image credit: CTV News Saskatoon