[Walter 109-509.A-2E?]

The illustration here, is a picture taken from "Mechanix Illustrated", published in the United States in the later 1940s after the war. It shows a Walter motor which is used as an illustration for a piece on rocket motor technology from Germany. In its own right, there's nothing remarkable in it, as UK magazine "The Aeroplane" had shown pictures of Walter motors from RAE Farnborough in 1945 / 1946 issues. However, looking back at the pictures from the Natter assembly line, this motor matches very closely one of them - a basic HWK 109-509.A-1 with the combustion chamber support tube fitted to the top of the combustion chamber pipe inlet outer cover; what I have called an "HWK 109-509.A-2E"

Is this a Natter motor which was brought back to the US from Germany? Obviously I think that it is. The fact is that the support tube seems genuinely fitted correctly, and in this position it would not be suitable for the Messerschmitt Me.163. Compare it with the pictures of the motors on the Natter assembly line - it appears very similar.


Looking carefully at the pictures of the Walter motor from the Champlin Fighter Museum in Arizona, something very interesting can be seen. At the top of the cover for the combustion chamber inlet pipes, there is an attachment point for the combustion chamber support tube, just as it would appear if this motor was the one in the picture above.

[Champlin Museum Walter Motor]

Is it a mistake, for instance is the cover on upside down, and the attachment point is actually on the underside? The simple answer is "no". The cover has two inspection holes, one on either side, and on every motor, these holes are not set exactly in the horizontal plane, they are set slightly towards the top - just as they appear here. No, it's not upside down, the support attachment is genuinely at the top.

Another piece of evidence that the cover is correctly fitted, is that there is a small circular hole above the inspection opening. This is the point where the "Brandwarnung" or fire warning detector is fitted, to warn the pilot of an engine fire. Quite standard, quite accurate.



What does this mean? At this distance, unless some documentation can be unearthed, it is difficult to be certain. However, my best guess, is that the motor parts on display in the Champlin Fighter Museum may well be a Walter motor which was designed to be fitted in one of the Bachem Natters captured by American troops.

The logical extension of this argument, is that the Champlin motor is the same as the one pictured in the Mechanix Illustrated magazine. It is probably not possible to be certain, but maybe all the pictures on this page are of the same motor, which would be a very interesting timeline, and one of the few times that one can possibly locate a surviving war trophy.

Web Master Shamus Reddin   [SR Logo]
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