A group of retired members of the gliding club at Hilversum airfield, mentioned under the tab Syndicate, discussed in 1984 building an ESG (Grunau 9) around a pair of available spars. But why building a primary for short hops instead of a proper sailplane. Bob Persyns boy dream had always been a Minimoa, so the decision was made to built a replica of the original Minimoa PH-80. The start is a proper set of drawings and unfortunately the factory drawings were destroid during the war. There was a set of Swiss drawings available in the VGC archive, however of bad quality and Bob started to reproduce the drawings, a three years job. In 1988 he could finally start with the production of ribs and frames. In the meantime the fund raising started with a first sponsoring and during the weekly meetings, breadrolls and "krentebollen" supplied which created a steady flow of small cash. After a year the formers and ribs took shape and Bob and fellows started with the fuselage skeleton. The club claimed their workshop back and another place had to be found and they could move to the nearby Airforce Museum. The construction was progressing slowly because of another change of location, this time to the abandoned supermarket of the American Forces in Soesterberg.
Here was space enough to place the jig for the 8 meter long main spars. The spars could be finished and assembling the ribs on the spar was started. Bob and his co-builders are about 15 years further with the job, the fuselage is taking shape, the rudder is finished, the tail plane is almost finished and the last hand is almost laid on the ailerons. One of the club members produced most of the metal parts for the fittings and could be taken to an official aircraft welding shop for assembling. At this crucial moment they had to move again from their workshop in the supermarket All the components were moved to the club workshop again, but not for long. The club was planning to renew their workshops and a new solution had to be found. Still at the club workshop a test match of wing spars and fuselage could be achieved before the workshop construction started. It is 2005 and we have met the director of SZ Jezow, the famous Edmund Schneider factory in Grunau. In this historic place they did an outstanding restoration job on my 1939 Grunau Baby and they were contacted again if finalizing the Minimoa could be done. Bring it over and we see, was their simple answer to a not so simple job seemed later. All Minimoa parts were put on a K13 trailer and transported to “Jezow” (Grunau) and they were brought up the famous stairs to the workshop.
Sceptic faces appeared about this complicated job, but Mr. Minarski thought that this job could be done in about two years. Happy with the forecast we went home, not knowing that we had to travel
many more times to and from Poland. So far the project took already some twenty years. The wing parts were taken to Bielsko Biala, known from the “SZD Junior” factory, because of available
manpower. Progress was slow due to various reasons. Other historic projects, such as a Spalinger, Olympia, T21 and a Fauvel were given priority despite many visits, mails and telephone calls.
Another set back was a major computer crash, with all their data lost. Finally in 2009 it was the Minimoa's turn. The job was plagued by discrepancies and missing details in the set of drawings
and we had to do a lot of homework to answer their questions. For the courageous guys still building I have opened this website. If you have any questions may be I can be of assistance. I am also
repairing at the moment the original digital drawings.
At this stage of building we had to decide to install a spoiler system instead of the better performing Schempp Hirth airbrakes because no installation drawings could be found. The final stage was nearing summer 2011, we thought it wise to stay in Poland for a longer period and solve forthcoming problems on the spot. The colour scheme chosen was that of the original 1936 sales brochure. Pearl white RAL 1013 and Signal red RAL 3001. End of September 2011 the Minimoa is ready for final assembly and weighing. During weighing we decided to remove the rudder balance weight, this to obtain a better CofG and consequently accepting a speed limit of 175 km/h , which is quit high for this lady. When the Minimoa was ready for the test flight we were informed by the insurance company of the factory that this test flight was not covered under their standard insurance and we had to pay a sky-high premium of several thousands of euro’s for only this one test flight. We will do that at home. Rest me to thank Henryk Minarski and the team of SZ “Jezow” for a beautiful Minimoa and the enormous warm hospitality I was offered.
Coming home we received an enormous welcome at the gliding club in Hilversum and on November the fifth 2011 we had the official presentation with a lot of VHZ and VGC people present. Local newspapers wrote articles and the local radio- and television stations mentioned it with interviews in their programmes. We are waiting now for the official papers to make the maiden flight, which will be reported by than.
This Minimoa is equal to the 1936 version 3 production, with wing fuselage fairings going round top and bottom surfaces of wing roots, with a landing wheel, spoiler type airbrakes on top of the wing and original type canopy.
The rudder balance weight was removed during weighing in order to obtain a more favourable C. of G. and consequently limiting the maximum speed to 175 km/h.
After extensive search for drawings of the installation of Schempp-Hirth airbrakes for the Minimoa none were found. Decided was to install the original spoiler system.