Jerry Yagen's Me-109 sitting on its gear with a static DB-601 test fit to the engine bearers to allow cowlings and other fittings to be adjusted while waiting for the flight engine which is on its way to Germany as these words are read. (photo by Matthias Dorst via Jerry Yagen)

Jerry Yagen’s Buchon/Me-109 sitting on its gear with a static DB 605 test fit to the engine bearers to allow cowlings and other fittings to be adjusted while waiting for the flight engine which is on its way to Germany as these words are read. (photo by Matthias Dorst)

Meier Motors, nestled on the fringes of the Black Forest in the small town of Eschbach, Germany has fast become one of the world’s premier warbird maintenance and restoration facilities. There is a radiant quality to their work, which is clearly evident in everything they handle, whether it be a Vought F4U-5N Corsair, Hawker Sea Fury T.Mk.20 or any of the more than two dozen other vintage military aircraft they have dealt with. Meier Motors has developed significant expertise with the Messerschmitt Bf-109 as well. They are currently restoring four separate examples of the breed (albeit three of them are based upon the Spanish-built Hispano Buchon variant). The original Bf-109 is a very rare Emil-model, which actually flew with the Condor Legion in the Spanish Civil War. Another client has contracted Meier Motors to convert a Buchon into a two-seater with dual controls. It will also have a Daimler-Benz DB 605 engine in place of the Buchon’s more typical Rolls Royce Merlin. Once finished, the two-seater will be available for flight instruction, giving modern pilots the benefit of hands-on training with the Bf-109 breed’s notoriously tricky take off and landing characteristics. This comes none-to-soon given the history of the type both in service and on the air show circuit.

Jerry Yagen's Me-109 sitting on its gear with a static DB 605 test fit to the engine bearers to allow cowlings and other fittings to be adjusted while waiting for the flight engine which is on its way to Germany as these words are read. (photo by Matthias Dorst via Jerry Yagen)

Jerry Yagen’s Me-109 sitting on its gear with a static DB 605 test fit to the engine bearers to allow cowlings and other fittings to be adjusted while waiting for the flight engine which is on its way to Germany as these words are read. (photo by Matthias Dorst )

Probably the first of Meier Motors current crop of “Messerschmitts” to fly will be Buchon C.4K-64 owned by Jerry Yagen. Yagen obtained the fighter in a trade with the National Museum of the US Air Force about a decade ago, and has slowly had the aircraft rebuilt to a similar configuration as a Bf-109G-4, complete with a Daimler-Benz DB 605 powerplant. The aircraft is well on the way to completion. It is currently on its gear in Meier Motors’ hangar sporting a non-airworthy engine to allow the cowlings and other fittings to be custom fitted while awaiting the arrival of the airworthy engine. Mike Nixon’s Vintage V-12s in Tehachapi, California has finished overhauling the new engine, and it is currently on its way to Germany for installation. Jerry Yagen is hopeful that he will have the ‘Bf-109’ flying alongside his replica Me-262 for Warbirds Over the Beach to be held at his Military Aviation Museum in Pungo, Virginia next May.

With much thanks to Jerry Yagen for his help with this article and Matthias Dorst for his wonderful photographs!

For more images please see the following… 

6 Comments

  1. Zak Kandrachoff says:

    amazing work! Now keep that coming on. Bf-109G5, so it actually will have the guns bulges?

  2. I read in the “Battle of Britain” movie souvenir book that when they were repainting some of the Buchons, original German markings were located. Like Switzerland, Spain was not averse to adding interned aircraft to their fleet. Shame Jerry didn’t get one of these, bringing it back to stock.

  3. Steve Chalker says:

    Tony, this one was a Spanish built Buchon, never had any German markings. But that gives us a clean slate to put the markings we want one it. (I am a volunteer at the museum)

  4. I think I can fly er!

  5. Looking good and well done to all the staff at Meier Motors for bringing one of Jerry’s visions to life.

  6. When they get it finished and in the air, maybe they should have a Spitfire and a P51 in the flyby right behind it! LOL

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