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D-EGFH PŁtzer Elster B c/n 043 - Nordholz - Flugplatz Diepholz-DŁmmerland in Germany - 12 May 2019 D-HOPP at ETND

The PŁtzer Elster B is a high-wing, side-by-side seated, light aircraft built by Alfons PŁtzer K.G. in Bonn, Germany. The Alfons PŁtzer K.G. started operations in 1953, building sailplanes with the side-by-side two-seat Doppelraab glider, designed by Fritz Raab, as their most importend model. In 1955, as result of the Paris Accords, West Germany was allowed to built powered aircraft again and Alfons PŁtzer K.G. i Bonn decided to fit the Doppelraab glider with an engine. The prototye of their Motorraab (D-EBAC c/n V.1) which was little more than a Doppelraab with a fixed tri-cycle undercarriage and a 32 hp Volkswagen engine fitted in the nose flew in 1955. Two futher Motorraabs were constructed, the second aircraft (D-EHOG c/n 03) having a 52 hp Porsche 678/3 engine and, using this engine Putzer proceeded to develop the Motorraab into the prototype Putzer Elster. This Elster A (D-EJOB c/n 001) was an all-wood aircraft with a strut-brace high wing and a deepened version of the Motorraab fuselage was flown first in 1957. The airaft was further modified and a 95 hp Continental C90-12F four-cylinder air-cooled engine was installed. This version was placed in production as the Elster B and was selected by the Federal German Government. Twenty-five aircraft were ordered for use by the Federal German Luftwaffe's sporting flying groups. Production deliveries commencing in 1960 and all twenty-five Elster B aircraft were delivered to the Sportflug clubs in 1967. A further development of the Elster was the Elster C a version of the basic design specifically intended for glider-towing; powered by a 150 hp Lycoming O-320 engine. The Elster accommodates pilot and passenger side-by-side with dual-controls, and features a plywood monocoque fuselage and single-spar wings of wooden construction braced by metal struts. The twenty-five aircraft ordered for use by the Federal German Luftwaffe's sporting flying groups were flown under civilian registrations, registered with Bundesrepublik Deutschland as owner. Until the 70s the aircraft flew without a radio. In 1971, militairy serials (9701-9721) were applied for the remaining twenty-one Elster B aircraft used by the Federal German Luftwaffe's sporting flying groups. In 1978, the maintenance contract with PŁtzer expired and the Luftwaffe aircraft were sold. A total of 44 Elsters (c/n 002 to 045) were constructed between 1957 and 1967, 32 of these were the standard Elster B and 12 the Elster C Model.

The 1967-built PŁtzer Elster B s/n 043 was one of twenty-five aircraft ordered for use by the Federal German Luftwaffe's sporting flying groups. After delivery the Elster B was registered D-ELBD in the German civil aviation register with Bundesrepublik Deutschland as registered owner. In 1971, the aircraft received the military serial 97+20. After the Elster B '97+20' was sold, it was restored to the German civil register as D-EGFH. On 12 May 2019, during the Fly-in at Flugplatz Diepholz-DŁmmerland (ETND), PŁtzer Elster B D-EGFH was seen in its present colors with 'Nordholz' titles on the nose and 'Elster-B werknr.043' titles an the tail.

page last updated: 26-06-2019
Copyright © Jack Wolbrink, Emmen, the Netherlands

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