Polish Aviation Museum

31-864 Kraków,
al. Jana Pawła II 39
phone: (12) 640 99 60,
(12) 642 40 70
e-mail: info@muzeumlotnictwa.pl

a cultural institution of the Malopolska Region

Małopolska – Kraków Region

Mecenas Muzeum

Kraków Airport

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Patroni Medialni

Skrzydlata Polska

Glider: SZD-19-2A Zefir 2A

SZD-19-2A Zefir 2A
high performance glider

  • Technical data

Span 17.0 m (55 ft 9 in)
Length 7.2 m (23 ft 7 in)
Wing area 14.0 sq m (150.7 sq ft)
Empty weight 330 kg (728 lb)
Take-off weight 415 kg (915 lb)
Glide ratio 34.5 at 95 kph (59 mph, 51 kt) optimum speed
Sink rate 0.72 mps (2,36 fps) at 87 kph (54 mph, 47 kt) economy speed
Minimum speed 71 kph (44 mph, 38 kt)
Max. diving speed 220 km/h (138 mph, 119 kt)


A single-seat, high performance glider of an open class, built in the high wing configuration of wooden construction with some parts made of glass-fibre.

The design of the Zefir (zephyr), which would have replaced the SZD-8 Jaskółka and competed in the World Glider Championships in 1958, was led from 1957 by engineer Bogumił Szuba. It was the first glider in the history of world technology that was equipped with hydraulically powered flaps. The glider first flew in December 1958 (therefore missing the championships). The glider was difficult to fly, too complex in service and hydraulic installation delayed the activation of flaps.

Because of the experience gained during test flights, the whole fuselage and stabilisers were reconstructed and the all-metal wing with hydraulic flap activation was replaced by a simple and trouble-free wooden wing. Efforts were made to reduce weight. Two further prototypes were built named the Zefir 2, which were flown in March 1960. Soon after this, Polish pilots flying the Zefirs achieved first successes – it was at the World Championships in Köln, Germany, with Edward Makula placing second and Jerzy Popiel taking third place.

In the light of vast experience gained, the next variant designated the Zefir 2A appeared with new stabilisers and landing gear. It was flown in January 1962 and up until 1964 twenty gliders were produced – mostly for export. During the 1963 World Championships in Argentina, Edward Makula and Jerzy Popiel flying the Zefir 2A came first and second. Edward Makula made a flight over a distance of 717.5 km, which won him the prestigious Lilienthal Gliding Medal.

The Zefir 2A had very good flight characteristics. Several records were established on these gliders - among many, the open flight record on the 714 km distance and the 102 km/h speed over a triangular course of 100 km. In 1965 the drag parachute system was modified in a batch of Zefirs, the upgraded gliders being designated the Zefir 2B.

The displayed Zefir 2A example registered as SP-2371 was handed over to the Museum by the Wrocław Aero Club in 1989.



Dofinansowano ze środków Ministra Kultury i Dziedzictwa Narodowego
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