No. 9604. Morane-Saulnier M.S.760A Paris I (24 c/n 24) French Air Force
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Morane-Saulnier M.S.760A Paris I

01/31/2010. Remarks by Johan Visschedijk: "Raymond Saulnier launched in 1952 the development of a jet fighter-trainer to the needs of the French AF. Chief designer René Gathier and his team designed the side-by-side two-seat twin-jet aircraft around two small 838 lb (380 kg) s.t Turboméca Marboré turbojets. Designated M.S.755 Fleuret (Foil) and registered F-ZWRS (c/n 01), it was first flown by company test pilot Jean Cliquet at Melun-Villaroche on January 29, 1953. Despite excellent flying qualities, and demonstrations to the French and military forces abroad, the M.S.755 received no orders.

The aircraft was developed into the four-seat M.S.760 Fleuret II, the world's first executive jet aircraft, powered by two 882 lb (400 kg) s.t Marboré II turbojets. Registered as F-WVGO (c/n 01) it was first flown by Jean Cliquet and test flight engineer Remi Raymond on July 29, 1954. The Fleuret II was renamed Paris by Raymond Saulnier a few months later. After receiving its CofA the registration was changed to F-BVGO.

In 1955 Beech Aircraft at Wichita, Kansas, USA gained exclusive distributorship and promoted the M.S.760 as a business and executive transport. F-BVGO was loaned and in three months the aircraft flew 724 demonstration flights from 38 airports on a nation-wide tour, and compiled an excellent service and performance record. However, it took till 1958 before the first aircraft was sold in the USA, while the type received its US Type Certificate on July 3 of that year.

Two more prototypes (c/n 02 and 03) were produced, the first flew only on March 28, 1957. The first production aircraft, designated M.S.760A Paris I, flew February 27, 1958, and 108 more were produced, while another 36 were produced under license by FMA in Argentina.

In 1960 the original M.S.760 Paris prototype F-BVGO was re-engined with two 1,058 lb (480 kg) s.t Marboré VI turbojets, and redesignated M.S.760B Paris II, the aircraft was first flown December 12, followed by nine more examples.

The final version was the six-seat M.S.760C Paris III, with wings of greater span, and the prototype (sole example), was first flown on February 28, 1964, registered as F-WLKL (c/n 01), after certification it was reregistered F-BLKL.

The pictured aircraft was later coded 330-DB and is preserved at the Ailes Anciennes Toulouse."

Created January 31, 2010