2,400 kg flying upside down? A piece of cake for the BO 105. It’s the only helicopter fit for aerobatics to this day, with many more tricks up its sleeve. It was in 1963 that the MBB Company began toying with the idea of building a helicopter in the 2 tonne class. It was based on a fascinating idea that would revolutionise rotor systems and create a brand new type of aircraft.
In 1966 the first tests with a hingeless rotor system began successfully. As innovative materials were key, titanium was used for the main rotor and rotor blades were fitted with glassreinforced plastic. These blades are practically made for eternity and their extreme flexibility allowed the construction of a hinge-less rotor system. It was easier to maintain, kept vibration to a minimum and offered previously unknown manoeuvrability.
As the first light helicopter in the world, the BO 105 was fitted with two engines, dual hydraulics as well as dual electric supply. These innovations paved the way for aerobatics. The BO 105 is still the only helicopter that can perform the same manoeuvres as conventional planes. The maiden flight took place in February 1967, and two years later, the first BO 105 models were delivered to the German army.
By 1997, 1,425 models had been built and in 2001, production ceased. Today the BO 105 serves in 35 countries in civilian, military and paramilitary capacities. She is particularly suited to rescue missions and offshore duties. The two models that made it to the Flying Bulls in 2005 were built in 1974 and previously served as police helicopters.