The SAAB 91B three-seat civil and military primary trainer was the
second basic version of the SAAB 91 Safir that flew for the first time on November
20nd 1945. The initial model, the SAAB 91A, was powered by a 145 hp Gipsy Major
X engine. The SAAB 91B, which appeared in 1951, differed primarily in having a 190 hp Lycoming
O-435-A engine. This model was ordered by the Swedish Air Force and was
largely built by "de Schelde" in Dordrecht in the Netherlands, as the SAAB
factories were fully committed at that time. Safir production returned to
Sweden in 1954 and the company announced the Model 91C which had been
modified to include a fourth seat. In 1957, the SAAB 91D with
the smaller 180 hp Lycoming O-360-A1A four-cylinder air-cooled engine followed
and joined the 91C at the production line. Of the SAAB
91B seventy-five were delivered to the Royal Swedish Air Force as the Sk
50B, sixteen were delivered to Ethiopia, and twenty-five to Norway.
When the production ended in 1966 a total of 323 SAAB Safir were built, including 120 built
under licence by "de Schelde" in Dordrecht.
The Swedish Air Force was the main operator of the SAAB 91 Safir. In the period 1947-1992
ninety-nine served with the Swedish Air Force: 10 SAAB 91A designated Tp 91 as liaison aircraft; 75 SAAB 91B
designated Sk 50B as basic trainer and 14 SAAB 91C designated Sk 50C as trainer. After the Sk 50B and Sk 50C
had been replaced by the Scottish Aviation Bulldog as a trainer, they were used by all wings as liaison aircraft
until retirement. The last Sk 50B was retired in 1990, the last Sk 50C in 1992.
On 22 November 1952, SAAB 91B Safir c/n 91.211 entered
service with the Swedish Air Force F 5 wing at Ljungbyhed as Sk 50B
50011. On 27 April 1972, the 50011 was transferred to the the F12 wing.
Before the aircraft was retired from military service
this Sk 50B served also with F 16 wing.On 22 June 1981, the 1952-built SAAB entered the civil register as SE-IIL.
The aircraft was operated by a privat owner in a drabbrown/green camo in
the Swedish Air Force F 5 wing colours, however the aircraft wear in
military service its camo in service with F 12 wing. When the
aircraft was photographed at Groningen Airport Eelde it was on its
return flight to Sweden after it was freshly painted in the UK in the
original yellow 'Swedish Air Force F 5 wing" colours.