Heinkel He 114


The Heinkel He 114 was a disappointing single engined biplane floatplane designed to replace the Heinkel He 60 as a shipboard reconnaissance aircraft.

The first four prototypes each used a different engine. The V1 had a 960hp Daimler-Benz DB 600, the V2 had a 420hp Junkers Jumo 210, the V3 had a 880hp BMW 132Dc and the V4 had a 960hp BMW 132K. The BMW radial engines would be used on all production aircraft and on the fifth prototype, which had a BMW 132Dc.

The He 114 made its maiden flight in 1936, and proved to be a disappointment, with poor water handling and flying characteristics. A number of attempts were made to fix these problems, but the aircraft was never quite as good as the earlier He 60.


The 114 was a twin-float sesquiplane (a biplane with wings of unequal length), with a very short lower wing that had an elliptical leading edge. N-struts joined the top wing to the fuselage, while angled Y-struts provided the interplane bracing.

Heinkel He 114
on Gneisenau, 1938

The two-man crew were carried in tandem cockpits, with the gunner/ observer in a rear facing position. The two single-step floats were attached to the fuselage by a pair of struts and wire braces. Water rudders were attached to the back of each float. 



Ten pre-production A-0 series aircraft were built, four of which became the V6 to V9 prototypes and were used to develop later models.


Thirty-three A-1 series aircraft were built, based on the V8 prototype. They had broader tail surfaces than the A-0, and were powered by the BMW 132Dc. They were used by training units.


The A-2 was the first operational version of the aircraft. It was powered by the BMW 132K engine, had a stronger rear fuselage and catapult attachment points. It was armed with a fixed forward firing 7.9mm machine gun and a flexibly mounted gun in the observer's position.


The designation B-1 was given to twelve (or fourteen in some sources) A-2s sold to Sweden. More B-1s were ordered by Denmark but hadn't been delivered by the outbreak of the Second World War.


The designation B-2 was given to either six or twelve aircraft sold to Romania.


Fourteen C-1s were built, armed with an extra forward firing MG 17. Some sources state that these aircraft were built as part of the Romania order, but were taken over by the Luftwaffe early in 1941, before being delivered to Romania later in the war. Others suggest that these later Romanian aircraft were actually B-3s.

The designation C-1 was given to twelve aircraft produced for Romania


The designation C-2 was given to four unarmed A-2s built in 1939 for use on German commerce raiders.


The He 114 saw limited service with the Luftwaffe. Before the Second World War it was used by 1./Küstenfliegergruppe 506, partly in an attempt to boost exports, but that unit reverted to the He 60 in 1939.

During the war SAGr 125 and SAGr 126 used the He 114 for reconnaissance in the Mediterranean, and it was also used over the Black Sea by both the Luftwaffe and the Romanians, and by 1./SAGr 125 in the Baltic during 1941.

The He 114 was phased out from 1942, and was replaced by the Arado Ar 196 and the Blohm un Voss Bv 138.

Engine: Two BMW 132K nine-cylinder radial engines
Power: 960hp each
Crew: 2
Wing span: 44ft 7 1/2in
Length: 36ft 4 1/2in
Height: 16ft 10 3/4in
Empty weight: 5,070lb
Fully loaded weight: 7,497lb or 8,091lb
Max Speed: 208mph at 3,280ft
Cruising Speed:
Service Ceiling:16,075ft
Climb to 1000m: 4m 20sec
Range: 572 miles
Armament: One 7.9mm MG 15 on rear firing flexible mount
Bomb-load: Optional external ranks for two SC 50 (110lb) bombs.

Aircraft of the Luftwaffe 1935-1945, Jean-Denis G.G. Lepage. Combines a good background history of the Luftwaffe with a comprehensive examination of its aircraft, from the biplanes of the mid 1930s to the main wartime aircraft and on to the seemingly unending range of experimental designs that wasted so much effort towards the end of the war. A useful general guide that provides an impressively wide range of information on almost every element of the Luftwaffe (Read Full Review)
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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (1 December 2009), Heinkel He 114 , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_heinkel_he_114.html

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