The Collings Foundation is offering Unusual Attitude / Upset Recovery Training and Type Ratings in one of World War II’s most historically important and iconic jet aircraft – the Messerschmitt Me 262.
The Messerschmitt Me 262 was the world’s first operational jet-powered fighter aircraft and while widely regarded as a last ditch effort at a super weapon, the plane had been in development for some time before the war began but was kept out of operational service due to a lack of adequate jet engines, a problem only partially solved when the plane entered combat in mid-1944 with engines that had an average operational lifespan of just 12 hours, with an up to 25 hour service life attainable by only the most experienced jet pilots.
On March 18, 1945, 37 Me 262s of the Luftwaffe’s Jagdgeschwader 7 intercepted an Allied force of 1,221 bombers and 632 escorting fighters. They managed to shoot down 12 bombers and one fighter with the loss of just three Me 262s. Despite its development setbacks and arrival too late to alter the course of the war, the combat performance of the Me 262 signaled the beginning of the end for propeller driven combat aircraft. After the war the various Allied powers snatched up every one of the planes they could locate and the influence of this revolutionary design can still be seen in contemporary aircraft. Swept wings, automatic slats and modular construction are all characteristics pioneered by this extraordinary warbird.
A very limited run of reproduction Me262 aircraft was fabricated with exacting standards and nut and bolt analysis of an original Me 262 trainer. Presently there are only three of these Me 262 replicas flying: two in the United States and one in Germany. Thankfully all are powered by General Electric J85 engines and feature additional safety features, such as upgraded brakes and strengthened landing gear. The planes quality and faithfulness to the original is such that the reproductions have met with the approval of the Messerschmitt Foundation in Germany and as such carry werk numbers that pick up where the last wartime produced Me 262 left off, a continuous airframe serial number run with a 50-year production break.
The Collings Foundation’s Me 262 “White 1” first flew on December 20, 2002 and FAA Phase 1 flight test requirements were completed in 2012. The Foundation has made the surprising move of making this rare and iconic warbird available for Unusual Attitude / Upset Recovery Flight Training as well as Type Rating for qualified pilots.
Unusual Attitude / Upset Training Flight
Includes an approximate 40-minute flight in the Me 262 “White 1.”
Minimum Requirements: Pilots license and current medical certificate.
Description: Start with introduction of aircraft performance and limitations, cockpit layout, configuration, drills, in-flight and ground egress, then sortie brief. Continue to preflight inspection, engine start and take off.
While in flight, trainee will experience a variety of flight maneuvers. These include high-speed performance characteristics, constant altitude turns and recoveries.
Me 262 Type Rating
Cost: Billed at $3000 per flight hour plus fuel.
Type rating based on nine flights, but can be accomplished in less, dependent on pilot competency.
Requirements: Must posses at least a United States Private Pilot certificate with Multi Engine Land Rating, 3rd class medical certificate, have logged a minimum of 1,000 hours pilot flight time including 500 hours as PIC in aircraft category (multi engine).
Description: Minimum 4 dual flights, covering all activities through flight training. Student must demonstrate the ability to perform basic flight operations, emergency procedures, and the proficiency necessary to complete maneuvers required to meet the ATP/AEA/PTS. Successful completion of the course prepares the student for the FAA AEA/Type Rating check ride. Check ride can be scheduled with advanced notice.
Unusual Attitude / Upset Training flights can be offered at most airports where the Me 262 is scheduled to appear. Type rating training is offered at the Foundation’s Houston facility located at Ellington Field or at scheduled locations.
Inquire with the Wings of Freedom Tour crew or call the Foundation headquarters at 800-568-8924 with questions or to make reservations.