This aircraft was designed by Edmund Schneider as a single seat medium performance sailplane. Originally designated as the Grunau 3b but later named the Grunau 4. However, it was a new design with fully enclosed cockpit. The main point of difference to earlier Schneider Grunau designs was the tapered wings with the Gottingen 549 aerofoil. This design feature gave the Grunau 4 a better speed range compared to the Grunau Baby 2b or the Grunau 3.
The prototype flew on 6 December 1953 and it went to the Waikerie Gliding Club. A second was delivered to the Dubbo Gliding Club in October of the next year and a third (the Australian Gliding Museum’s exhibit) built for the Adelaide Soaring Club in 1959 (registered as VH-GLX on 21 October 1959). Another was built by Josef Brabec from a Schneider supplied kit from 1954 to 1956.
The log book indicates that the glider recorded 2362 flying hours over approximately 40 years of active service. There are many long flights recorded. The registration was cancelled on 30 July 2014 as a result of a decision by the Museum to withdraw the glider from service.
The exhibit represents the final development of the "Grunau" single seat type by Edmund Schneider Ltd in Australia. Viewed together with the Grunau Baby gliders in the ATO Collection (Two Grunau Baby 2, and a Grunau Baby 3A), the changes to this glider type over a 30 year period can be recognized.
Single seat wooden sailplane with fabric covering. Fully enclosed cockpit. The aircraft is white with Linden Green on the wing tips, tailplane and underside of the fuselage and also on the central wing cover.
Inscriptions & markings
Identification Plate in cockpit showing that glider is serial number 37 built by Edmund Schneider Ltd in 1959