Hispano Aviación HA-1112

Dear reader, in this text we will try to remember the fabulous history of Messerschmitt Bf 109s made in Spain, which gave rise to two models of aircraft such as HA-1109 and HA-1112, with its consequent subvariants.

Thanks to the tenacity and the need of the Spanish Government to have combat aircraft, it was possible to maintain on the first line until 1965 an airplane whose origin was 30 years earlier.
It is a recognized fact that the Messerschmitt Bf 109 fighter was one of the first modern fighters, in addition to having the honor of being the fighter built in greatest number in all history (reaching almost 35000 units without counting their Spanish derivatives). Its good flight performance gave it the opportunity to fight in the skies of Europe during World War 2 (WW2) being the spearhead of the German fighter for several years (in conjunction with the Focke Wulf Fw 190) thanks to the continuous updates that kept it in production until the end of the war (being one of the aircraft that more air victories accumulated during its operational use getting to be a dangerous rival for the Spitfire and Hurricane during the Battle of Britain in the Bf 109 E version, or the whip of the Soviet skies with the Bf 109 F, or being a worthy rival against aircraft as powerful as the Mustangs and Thunderbolt with the versions Bf 109 G and Bf 109 K) and subsequently continued in service until well into the 50s in countries like Romania (until Moscow decided to avoid the presence of fighters of German origin in the Romanian air force), Switzerland or Finland. Another important fact was the reuse of airframes of the Bf 109 that had been built during WW2 by Germany and that were becoming scrap in countless scrapyards throughout Germany; to this group belong the Czechoslovak Bf 109s (S 99). But three new aircraft based in the Bf 109 were manufactured in Spain that enlarged the Bf 109 life about 20 years. They will be as we can see throughout these pages, the Bf 109 Spaniards who continued in active service until 1965 coexisting with the 2nd and the 3rd jet generation first aircraft.

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Beginning the story from the start, it is mandatory to remember that the Bf 109first prototype, the Bf 109 V1 flew in May 1935, powered by a Rolls Royce Krestel engine. Its creator was Willy Messerschmitt in collaboration with Walter Rethel, a design engineer from the Plow factory. Before starting to deep inside our text, it is important to remember that the Bf 109s were originally manufactured by Willy Messerschmitt at the Bayerische Flufzeugwerke, so these superb fighters were officially baptized with the abbreviation Bf until 1938, which began to be called acronyms Me. The change of initials was motivated by the great prestige of the German engineer who had created the aircraft. In this text, we will refer to Bf 109 or Me 109, as Bf 109 since the aircraft arrived in Spain in 1936 when still Willy Messerschmitt was not yet the owner of the Bayerische Flugzeugwerke.
The new German fighter came after the request of the German Air Ministry (RLM) of a high-performance modern fighter to replace the Luftwafe German fighters fleet as the Heinkel He 51 and Arado Ar 68. This design arose after a contest held by the RLM and it did not take time to the Bayerische Flugzeugwerke to start making improved versions of the Bf 109. Among its first versions, the Bf 109B, C and D models stood out, which would soon be used in combat.
The flights of the first prototypes of Bf 109; the V1, V2 and V3, were made between May 1935 and May 1936. Just a couple of months later the Spanish Civil War (SCW) broke out in Spain, and the similar ideology of the rebel side with the German government led to Germany’s decision to try in authentic combat conditions the new Luftwaffe jewel. Thus, at the end of 1936, three of the ten built prototypes were sent to Spain experimentally (among them the model Bf 109 V4, with Jumo 210 A engine of 610 HP, two machine guns Rheinmetall MG-17 in the wings of 7, 9 mm and a 20 mm MG/FFM cannon, which fired through the propeller hub); to those who would join during the first months of the following year the airplanes of the series B (Bf 109 B). The German support to the rebellious side in the Spanish Civil War was very important in all aspects, but with regard to air warfare, materialized in the so-called “Legion Condor”. Specifically, in the “Condor Legion” Jagdgruppe 88 that was where the Bf 109s were deployed, forming the first operational squadrons with the production Bf 109B.

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