Focke-Wulf Fw 44

The Focke-Wulf Fw 44 is a 1930s German two-seat biplane known as the Stieglitz ("Goldfinch"). It was produced by the Focke-Wulf company as a pilot training and sport flying aircraft. It was also eventually built under license in several other countries.

Fw 44 Stieglitz
A Focke-Wulf Fw 44J in 2008
Role Biplane trainer
National origin Germany
Manufacturer Focke-Wulf
First flight Late summer 1932[1]

Design and development

The Fw 44 was designed as a biplane with conventional layout and straight, untapered wings. Its two open cockpits were arranged in tandem, and both cockpits were equipped with flight controls and instruments. The Fw 44 had fixed tailwheel landing gear. It employed ailerons on both upper and lower wings. It did not use flaps. It was flown with a Siemens-Halske Sh 14 radial engine.

The first prototype flew in 1932.[1] After many tests and modifications to increase the plane's durability and aerodynamics, the final Fw 44 proved to have excellent airworthiness.

A second version of the Fw 44 was the Fw 44B, which had an Argus As 8 four-cylinder inverted inline air-cooled engine of 90 kW (120 hp).[1] The cowling for this engine gave the plane a more slender, aerodynamic nose.

20 Fw 44s purchased by China were modified for combat missions, and participated in the early stage of the Second Sino-Japanese War until all were lost in action.

The last series version was the Fw 44J, which was sold or built under license in several countries around the world. It was equipped with a seven-cylinder Siemens-Halske Sh 14 radial engine.


Fw 44B
Fw 44C
Main production version with minor equipment changes, powered by a seven-cylinder Siemens-Halske Sh 14a radial piston engine.
Fw 44D
Fw 44E
Fw 44F
Fw 44J
Final production model, powered by a seven-cylinder Siemens-Halske Sh 14a radial piston engine.



The aircraft was produced under license in 1937–1942 period[2]


– license production



Data from Flugzeug Typenbuch 1941[6]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 2
  • Length: 7.3 m (23 ft 11 in)
  • Wingspan: 9 m (29 ft 6 in)
  • Height: 2.7 m (8 ft 10 in)
  • Wing area: 20 m2 (220 sq ft)
  • Empty weight: 565 kg (1,246 lb)
  • Gross weight: 870 kg (1,918 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Bramo Sh 14A-4 7-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine 150 PS (148 hp; 110 kW)
  • Propellers: 2-bladed Starrschraube, 2.25 m (7 ft 5 in) diameter fixed-pitch RH rotation wooden propeller


  • Maximum speed: 185 km/h (115 mph, 100 kn)
  • Cruise speed: 172 km/h (107 mph, 93 kn)
  • Landing speed: 74 km/h (46 mph; 40 kn)
  • Range: 675 km (419 mi, 364 nmi)
  • Endurance: 4 hours 24 minutes
  • Service ceiling: 3,900 m (12,800 ft)
  • Rate of climb: 3.4 m/s (670 ft/min)
  • Time to altitude:
  • 1,000 m (3,281 ft) in 5 minutes 30 seconds
  • 3,000 m (9,843 ft) in 23 minutes 36 seconds
  • Wing loading: 43.5 kg/m2 (8.9 lb/sq ft)
  • Power/mass: 0.1724 PS/kg (0.0771 hp/lb; 0.1268 kW/kg)
  • Fuel consumption: .20 l/km (0.071 imp gal/mi)
  • Oil consumption: .01 l/km (0.0035 imp gal/mi)
  • Take-off distance: 140 m (459 ft)
  • Landing distance: 140 m (459 ft)


  • Holmes, Tony (2005). Jane's Vintage Aircraft Recognition Guide. London: Harper Collins. ISBN 0-00-719292-4.

Further reading

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