Focke-Wulf Fw 200 Condor in Soviet service from 1946 to the 50s
We have already reported several times about the Condor. A new model in scale 1:71, built by Stanislaw Peil, Hanover, which he handed over to our collection, gives us reason to report about a little known post-war career of the famous aircraft.
This is an interesting story that begins with the capture of Fw 200 during and after the war.
At the end of 1944, the Luftwaffe had some Condor bombers converted into airliners for DLH (Deutsche Lufthansa) at Siebelwerke in Leipzig-Schkeuditz. One of them remained in Spain in 1945. Due to constant bombing raids there were probably only vey few built.
When the Red Army took over after the end of the war, in 1945/46 at least tree aircraft were converted to cargo planes. The Soviet Union used them then in the far north at the Arctic Sea with the Polarnajs Awiazija.
Pictures of the Fw 200 Condor at the Soviet polar aviators in the 40s (wikipedia.org).
The three planes (there is also the possibility of a 4th one) had the following identifiers: CCCP -H-400, CCCP H-401 and CCCP H-500 (ex TA + AM). The "500" was the last plane, it was lost in Jakutsk in 1950.
The first loss was the CCCP H-400 in April 1946, when two of the very temperature-sensitive Bramo Fafnir engines failed. The pilot Titow had to make an emergency landing on a large ice floe, the plane was no longer airworthy (see photo). All 21 passengers were rescued after 16 days by a Lisinow Li-2 (licenced Douglas DC-3) which landed there.
The Fw 200 CCCP H-400 1946 after an emergency landing in the Arctic Ocean on an ice floe
The H-401 flew until 1950 mainly in the ice reconnaissance. What happened to her afterwards is not known.
The CCCP H-500, our model, joined the Polar Air Force in 1948. It had been prepared for its deployment in the aircraft factory no. 23 in Moscow. Among other things it supplied research stations in the far north. In 1950 there was a maintenance accident in which an oil cooler was destroyed. The Bramo Fafnir engines are said to have been replaced by Russian Schwetzow Ash-62IR engines (other sources say that this Condor had been flying with these engines since 1948). The aircraft was then damaged beyond repair in April 1950 in Jakutsk in a landing accident , thus ending the chapter of the Fw 200 in Soviet aviation.
The CCCP H-500 as a model in 1:72 in the museum. The painting was obviously different than the H-401