The French association Réplic’Air recently built a Morane-Saulnier Type G replica which flew across the Mediterranean to commemorate Roland Garros’ first flight across that sea in 1913. The association has just announced that its next project will be far more ambitious.
The goal is to build a Dewoitine D.551, and have it fly by June 2017 at the latest. The aircraft, a derivative of the famous Dewoitine D.520 fighter, never flew as France was defeated before it could be produced.
According to Réplic’Air’s Jérémy Caussade, the project is not in the least unrealistic: “There will be a lot of work as far as the engine is concerned, but the aircraft was of a fairly simple construction. It had been designed to be mass-produced. In addition, there is a great deal of documentation concerning it in the Haute-Garonne department archives, which will be of a great help.”
The great challenge for Réplic’Air will be to find a Hispano-Suiza 12Y51 engine, as current plans do not allow for a modern engine to be used.
More on this topic (in French):