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Focke-Achgelis

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Focke, Achgelis & Co GmbH
Legal form Limited liability company
Foundation 27. April 1937
Resolution Spring 1944
Reason for dissolution Takeover by Weser-Flugzeugbau GmbH on RLM instructions
Seat Hoykenkamp (today Ganderkesee) near Delmenhorst
Industry Helicopter manufacturer

Henrich Focke (right) with Hitler (left)

Gerd Achgelis, 1933

A total of approx. 200 units of the Fa 330 “Bachstelze” gyrocopter were produced.

The Focke, Achgelis & Co GmbH, short Focke-Achgelis , was a helicopter manufacturer of the armament industry in Hoykenkamp (today Ganderkesee) near Delmenhorst.

History

On 27 April 1937 Henrich Focke founded the company in Hoykenkamp near Bremen together with the German Aerobatic Champion, Gerd Achgelis. Here he found suitable production facilities in an old iron foundry and a former margarine factory. The task of the company was to further develop the Fw 61 helicopter. The main focus was on the development and testing of prototypes, for which construction licenses could then be issued. The company had an engine plant in Varel and a production facility in Berlin-Spandau at the Brandenburgische Motorenwerke (Bramo, from 1939 BMW-Flugmotorenwerke Brandenburg) and later a branch plant in Laupheim near Ulm. The Fw 61 was tested in Hoykenkamp and at the Delmenhorst air base, which was converted into a kind of “flying laboratory”.

In August 1939, a new helicopter left the factory, the prototype of the Fa 223. At the beginning of 1942, this transport helicopter was ready for series production; by the end of the war, the Focke-Achgelis group had produced 20 of them in the Delmenhorst, Berlin and Laupheim factories. At the outbreak of war in 1939, the group had ten Fa 224 “Libelle” helicopters under construction. They were to be used for helicopter training, among other things. After the beginning of the war, the work was stopped and the parts were scrapped in 1940. Also in 1939, the Focke-Achgelis company designed and built three samples of the Fa 266 “Hornisse”, in whose civilian version Lufthansa was interested. This program was also stopped and the three machines were scrapped. In contrast, the U-boat war in the Atlantic and the Indian Ocean brought new sales opportunities. On behalf of the Reichsluftfahrtministerium (RLM), Focke-Achgelis designed and built the Fa 330 “Bachstelze” gyrocopter for use on submarines from the beginning of 1942.

After the Hoykenkamp plant had been largely destroyed by a bombing raid on July 4, 1942, Focke-Achgelis moved helicopter development and assembly to Laupheim and Ochsenhausen, where production could begin in January 1943. The series production of the Fa 330 “Bachstelze” nevertheless remained in the Delmenhorst factory from spring 1943, because the gyrocopters were so light that they could be carried into the cellar in the event of an air raid. The factory produced over 100 of this type. As a result of a shift in priorities in favour of the Me 163, Focke-Achgelis had to hand over workplaces and personnel to the Messerschmitt development team. Repairs and the production of spare parts for the Me 163s stationed at the Zwischenahn airbase near Rostrup were also carried out here.

Weser-Flugzeugbau took over Focke-Achgelis in spring 1944 on RLM orders, which employed 419 workers at the time.

Aircraft production at Focke-Achgelis

Focke-Achgelis also produced Fw 190, Fw 200 and the dive bomber Ju 87 under license, but the main business remained the development and construction of helicopters.

Production list

Designation Name Use Number of pieces
Fa 61 Experimental helicopter 2
Fa 223 Dragon Helicopter 40
Fa 224 Dragonfly Helicopter The construction of 10 copies was abandoned.
Fa 225 Experimental portable screwdriver 1
Fa 266 Hornet civil helicopter 3
Fa 269 Wooden dummy – –
Fa 283 Project – –
Fa 284 Prototype 1
Fa 330 Pied Wagtail Gyrocopter about 200
Fa 336 Prototype 1

Web links

Commons: Focke-Achgelis– Collection of images, videos and audio files

Literature

  • From Zeppelin to Airbus, Aviation in Northwest Germany. Delius Klasing Verlag, ISBN 978-3-7688-1966-4.