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Scheibe Sperling SF-23


Inspired by a thread in a German Aviation Forum [1] I started to occupy myself with the Scheibe Sperling in January 2017 and did some research about this aicraft. In fact I know it from the entry in the 1961 Flugzeuge der Welt, the German issue of the Observer's Book of Aircraft but somehow had forgotten about it since my early days as aviation enthusiast. Looking the entry in this book up again and seeing the title picture immediately created  pleasent feelings. Therefore I choose it as the title picture.

Luckily I found pictures from the still active Sperling D-EBYZ which seems to carry the original factory color scheme as shown in the b&w title picture. For my taste the best of all liveries of the Sperling I have seen so far. Pure 1950' and 60's nostalgy.

According to my philosophy behind this website I generally will not quote any technical specifications. These will be found in the sources I quote in the respective Notes sections. Same applies, though a bit less restricting, to historical data and variants.  Sometimes there is some ambiguity comparing sources as in the case of the Scheibe Sperling. Therefore I will compile some basic informations and try to confirm these.


Scheibe Flugzeugbau G.m.b.H. Dachau, Germany.

Some Sperlings were produced in licence by Motorenfabrik
Otto Wimmer in Sulzbach am Inn, Germany.[8], [7].


Principal versions are listed below. This information is based on [3],[5a], [10], and [11]

Prototype   65 h.p. Continental No flaps
2nd Prototype   95 h.p. Continental ?? No flaps  ??
SF 23 A   95 h.p. Continental No flaps
SF 23 A-1   95 h.p. Continental  
SF 23 B 100 h.p. Continental  
SF 23 C 115 h.p. Lycoming Cowling changed

Historical Data

First flight prototype (D-EBIN) 8. August 1955 [8], [4]. [5a]

Series production started in 1958.[8].
Production ended 1963 [8] (or 1962 according to [4]).

In total 31 SF23 Sperlings built, including the two  prototypes [8].

Production lists can be found in [5] [6] [7].


There were two Sperlings registered in Great Britain G-BCHX (see picture 4, right) and G-BEDU [5].

An article on the Scheibe Sperling is found in Fliegermagazin a German aviation magazine [11]. In this article  an aeorbatic pilot explains the rather demanding stall behaviour of the Sperling with otherwise has pleasant flight qualities.

The Scheibe Sperling D-EBYZ which is currently operated by Flugsportgruppe im DLR (aero sports section) Oberpfaffenhofen (pictures 2 and 3) was originally owned and operated by DLR the national aeronautics and space research centre of the Federal Republic of Germany in their early post war years.


Books, magazines, and websites dealing with the Scheibe Sperling are included in the Notes section.

Picture 1, above
: Scheibe SF-23 A. D-ELAR. 2nd prototype, s/n 2002. (Scheibe Flugzeugbau)

Picture 2 :  Scheibe Sperling D-EBYZ, s/n 2017. Variant SF-23 A without flaps. Built 11.1959. The second oldest Sperling still flying [12]. Obviously the original factory livery but possibly refurbished.  (FSG im DLR Oberpfaffenhofen [14])

Picture 3: Same aircraft. This view shows trim of gear strut fairings and wingtips. Click image for an enlarged view. (Joachim Lippl)

Picture 4: Scheibe Sperling SF-23A G-BCHX c/n 2013. Leicester (EGBG), UK - England. PFA Rally 1979.
(Keith Sowter)

Picture 5: Scheibe SF-23A Sperling D-EKYP c/n 2008. Egelsbach (EDFE).  Germany, 02/05/1981. Still in the German register according to [15]. (Keith Sowter)
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