Friends of The Helicopter Museum

Arrival of MBB Bo.105M, 81+00

Eurocopter have donated a MBB Bö.105M, 81+00, built by Messerchmitt-Bolköw-Blohm in 1984, to The Helicopter Museum. The machine arrived on 4th May 2007 (left), having travelled by road from Donauworth, in Germany, where more than 1500 Bö.105s were built between 1970 and 1997.

Originally developed for civil use by police forces and air ambulance operators, the Bö.105 went on to capture much of the light attack helicopter market in Western Europe. The Bö.105M was designed to meet a need for a liaison and observation (VBH) helicopter with the Heeresflieger (German Army Air Corps). One hundred of this VBH version were ordered. Serial 81+00 was the last to be completed and delivered in 1984. It was withdrawn from use in October 2002, after service with the 25th Air Corps Regiment, based at Laupheim, and returned to Eurocopter at Donauworth where, in 2004, it was registered as D-HZYR. 

Most of the Heeresflieger's remaining eighty- two Bö.105Ms were retired by the end of 2005 and are being replaced, in the German army's liaison and observation role, by disarmed anti-tank Bö.105Ps, which generally have accumulated fewer flying hours and are themselves being replaced, in the anti-tank and combat support role, by the Eurocopter Tiger assault helicopter.
Another Bo.105M, 80+93, was displayed at Weston Helidays in 2002.
Chairman of Trustees, Elfan Ap Rees, who accepted the Bo.105, at Donauworth, on 19th April 2007, said "We are very grateful to Eurocopter for their continuing support for The Museum, represented by this generous donation. The Bö.105 was and still is the world's only fully aerobatic helicopter, a tribute to its pioneering "rigid" rotor head, manufactured in titanium and requiring neither the flapping nor drag hinges of its contemporaries. It was a 'first' in many ways and a fitting addition to our world-wide collection".

The final Bo.105 was delivered on 1st May 2009. Over 1400 were built for 198 customers in 52 countries.

In mid-May 2007 Bo.105M, 81+00, went on show to visitors in the main Display Hangar. The four main rotor blades were installed later.
Refurbishment of the two Allison 250-C20B turboshaft engines was sponsored by H & S Aviation Limited of Portsmouth and they were installed on 12th February 2009. Blade fitting followed.
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