During the works
[dropcap]T[/dropcap]oday 19 march 2011, I decided to go to the Brussels Air Museum. Going with the train from Namur to Brussels-Schuman, I found the Brussels station under works (not so evident to find the exit); I found the environs of the Berlaimont (EEC) under works (not so evident to see the station entry); the Arcrade of the Cinquantenaire under works and, of course, the museum itself… under works!
There are always works in Brussels. It’s not without a good reason than “architect” is an insult in Brussels dialect (true story!!!)…
The museum is rearranged since the last time I visited the place. Some aircrafts changed of emplacement. The first Belgian F-16 is still on the centre of the hall, in evidence on a giant Belgian cockade. His first neighbourg is the new received Mirage F1.
Some aircrafts are actually removed from the museum, like the SV-4 nr 64 but also the Saab Draken… And, as the Tank Museum is also under works, some tanks are placed in the Air Museum!
The mezzanine is actually accessible for the WWI aircrafts. The other part where there are some WWII aircrafts (Bf108), modern helicopters (Alouette, Agusta) and modern aircrafts (Dornier 27, Piper Cub) cannot be visited.
I had the opportunity to visit the workbench (the Brussels Air Museum is one of the rare museum where visitors are welcome at the workbench) and saw the works on the LVG fuselage and engine (the wings of the LGV are in restoration on the mezzanine, near the Halberstadt).
I have just to regret that the two Spitfires are not placed in evidence. Due to the history of that fantastic aircraft, justice is not renered. Also placed in a corner is a little aircraft charged of history: a white-painted SV-4B (pre-war production, with open canopy). With this aircraft, Mike Donnet and Léon Divoy escaped from Belgium in 1941 to join England.
As always, I take a look to the Sopwith Strutter: on the photo you can see a visitor examinating the propeller… There is a reason: you can see that that propeller was repaired: the pilot shooted his own propeller due to a desynchronization with the machinegun! The propeller was repaired, but you can see that reparation…
The light was good enough to take a lot of photos without flash. Hope you’ll enjoy this virtual visit!