before 2 weeks | EMIL EGGER AG

The Hawker Hunter aeroplane is safely back at the Hunter association Obersimmental

Special transport of the Papyrus Hunter from Altenrhein to St. Stephan

Until a few years ago, the former Hunter fighter aircraft of the Swiss Air Force were among the highlights at airshows in Switzerland. So was the Papyrus Hunter. The jet has been looked after and maintained by the Hunter association Obersimmental for many years. Unfortunately, the increasingly strict regulations became its downfall. In autumn 2023, the Papyrus was flown over to Altenrhein for its annual inspection. It was no longer allowed to take off from there.
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In January, the board decided to have the Papyrus transported by road back to the shelter in St. Stephan. Hawker Hunter Aviation Ltd from England agreed to help with the dismantling, transport and assembly.

After intensive discussions and careful planning, EMIL EGGER received the order to dismantle the Papyrus Hunter in Thal together with the mechanics, transport it to St. Stephen’s and reassemble it there. Choosing the right vehicles for this complex transport was a challenge, particularly due to the special requirements for the aircraft’s wings and fuselage.

Vehicles and equipment:

  • An articulated lorry with a low-bed trailer and extended loading area for the fuselage
  • A lorry-mounted crane with trailer for the transport accessories (assembly stands)
  • A trailer combination for the Hunter accessories
  • An articulated lorry with semi-trailer for the wings
  • An escort vehicle for transporting the fuselage

The transport began on 8 May 2024 with four lorries in Thal. On site, the team dismantled the Papyrus Hunter with the help of a lorry crane and the wings were safely loaded according to the instructions of the English specialists. The fuselage was carefully lifted onto the low-bed trailer using a lifting beam and securely fastened.

After a holiday-related stopover in Härkingen and Hasle near Burgdorf, the convoy continued its journey on 10 May 2024. Accompanied by a former pilot of the Papyrus Hunter and an escort vehicle due to the extra width, the team mastered the challenging route from Spiez via Zweisimmen to St. Stephan.

Arriving at the airfield in St. Stephan, the team was greeted by a large reception committee. The members of the Obersimmental Hunter Club were relieved to see the Papyrus Hunter undamaged. In the hangar, the fuselage and wings were unloaded and assembled with the utmost care.

Special challenges:

  • Transporting the fuselage on a low-bed trailer with 6 metre extensions
  • Special authorisations due to excess height and width
  • Adaptation of construction sites on the route from Spiez
  • Tight space conditions in the hangar in St. Stephan

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