Yesterday, June 28th, 2018 Air Leasing Ltd. successfully test flew Hispano HA-1112-M1L Buchon C.4K-105 for the first time following their overhaul of the airframe at Sywell Aerodrome in England. She looks beautiful in her new markings which represent Bf 109 ‘White 9’ as flown by Uffz Edmund Roβmann while he was serving with the Luftwaffe’s III./JG52 during September, 1941. ‘White 9’ is the third Buchon which Air Leasing Ltd. has resurrected over the past year (on behalf of Anglia Aircraft Restorations Ltd.), the others being another M1L variant, C.4K-99, in April, 2018 and the unique HA-1112-M4L two-seat trainer C.4K-112 in November, 2017.
C.4K-105 is one of sixteen Buchons which once belonged to Wilson “Connie” Edwards; in fact almost half of the surviving examples owe their continued existence to this legend of the warbird community. Edwards acquired them as payment for his flying services filming the 1969 epic war movie The Battle of Britain, and stored the majority of these aircraft disassembled in a hangar on his ranch in Big Springs, Texas. He sold a few of them over the years, parting with the last six examples during 2015. ‘White 9’ is one of these last six. She was essentially in time-capsule condition, virtually untouched since being dismantled in the late 1960s, and was still wearing her movie warpaint when she entered restoration with Air Leasing Ltd. in 2017. It says a lot about her state of preservation that it took only a year or so to get the aircraft flying again. Thursday’s test flight was surely her first time in the air, under her own power, in nearly fifty years! Bravo to all concerned, and may she fly safely for many years to come!
For those interested in learning more about the incredible aviation adventures of Wilson “Connie” Edwards, our sister publication, Warbird Digest, published a remarkable, first-person account of some of his many exploits in Issue #78 which came out earlier this year. Back issues (either print or digital) are available HERE for just US$12.99 (print) or US$5.99 (digital).