Morane Saulnier MS230 / MS236
Single engine two-seat aerobatic trainer and communications aircraft
In the early thirties the Belgian Militair Vliegwezen/Aéronautique Militaire was in need of an aircraft for advanced pilot training which excelled in aerobatics. For this purpose, 5 or 6 (according to the sources) French Morane Saulnier MS.230 trainers were acquired in 1931. Having been quite satisfied with this machine the Belgian Government ordered 19 more Morane’s which were powered by an Armstrong Siddeley Lynx 4c engine of 215 HP (slightly less than the 230 HP Salmson 9ABb engine of the MS.230). These aircraft were identified as MS.236 and were constructed by Sabca in Belgium. The engine change was introduced for the sake of commonality as the 215 HP Lynx was already powering such AéM aircraft types as the SV22, SV26, RSV 22/215, Avro 626 Prefect, while the Avro 504N used the very similar but less powerful Lynx of 160 HP. Most Morane’s were used by the Ecole de Pilotage at Wevelgem (Penguin) but at the eve of World War II many of the Morane MS.236 (the MS.230 was already withdrawn from use from 1937 onwards) served as Squadron communications aircraft.
According to the origine of the sources it is believed that the Belgian Aéronautique Militaire also received from 3 to 7 Morane Saulnier MS.130 EC.2. Unfortunately up to now no official documents or pictures have been found to confirm this statement. (D. Brackx)