Bulgarian Air Force Serial Numbering Systems
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Bulgaria
Air Force


Aircraft Serial Numbering:

1912-1915
It appears that Bulgarian aircraft used during the First and Second Balkan Wars did not carry any serial numbers. Many aircraft carried no markings at all, while some carried the national colours only.

1915-1919
During the First World War, Bulgarian military aircraft were exclusively of German origin (apart from a handful of captured enemy aircraft) and these retained their original serial numbers allocated by the Imperial German Military Aviation Service, eg: C.2362/16 for an Albatros C.III.

1925-1937
During the late 1920s and early 1930s, Bulgarian military aircraft operated clandestinely, and therefore carried civil registrations - B-Bxxx from 1923 and LZ-xxx from 1931.

1937-1968
In 1937 the Bulgarian Air Force began to operate openly. From June 1937, a new aircraft serial numbering system was introduced. This consisted of an aircraft Type Number (7000 onwards) plus an Individual Number allocated to each airframe was it was delivered (from 1). The serial was displayed within the outline of a triangle on the tail fin - with the Individual Number at the top and the Type Number positioned along the base, separated by a horzontal line.

The known type numbers are:

Military Register Number Aircraft Type Role Service Entry
7013 Avia B.122 Trainer 1940
7021 Focke-Wulf Fw 44 Trainer 1938
7022 Kaproni Bulgarski KB-4 Trainer 1938
7024 Kaproni Bulgarski KB-6 Transport 1940
7026 Arado Ar 65 Fighter 1937
7032 Kaproni Bulgarski KB-5 Trainer 1939
7034 LAZ-7 Trainer 1948
7037 Avia B-534 Fighter 1939
7041 Bucker Bu 131 Trainer 1938
7042 Arado Ar 96 Trainer 1940
7047 Messerchmitt Bf 109E Fighter 1940
7050 Messerchmitt Bf 108 Transport 1940
7051 DAR-9 Trainer 1940
7052? Junkers Ju 87 Bomber 1942
7056 DAR-3 Trainer 1929
7057 Avia B-135 Fighter 1943
7067 Heinkel He 51 Fighter 1938
7071 Bucker Bu 181 Trainer 1944
7076 Kaproni Bulgarski KB-11 Recce 1940
7077 Dewoitine D.520 Fighter 1943
7086 DAR-10 & DAR-11F Bomber 1941
7087 Yak-9 Fighter 1945
7096 Arado Ar 196 Seaplane 1943
7097 Bf 109G Fighter 1944
7107 Yak-23 Fighter 1951
7117 MiG-15/15bis Fighter 1953
7137 MiG-17PF Fighter 1955
7138 Lim-5P Fighter 1959
7139 PZL P.43 Bomber 1938
7151 MiG-15UTI Trainer 1951
7200 MiG-19S Fighter 1958
7201 MiG-19P Fighter 1959
7202 Mi-4 Helicopter 1957
7205 MiG-19PM Fighter 1960
7206 Il-28 Bomber 1955
7207 MiG-17/17F Fighter 1961
7209 Aero L-29 Trainer 1964
7266? MiG-21U Trainer 1968
7274 MiG-21F-13 Fighter 1963
7276? MiG-21PF Fighter 1964
7294 MiG-21PFM Fighter 1967
? Aero A.304 Transport 1940
? Aero MB.200 Bomber 1940
? Avia B.71 Bomber 1940
? DAR-8 Transport 1937
? Dornier Do 11 Bomber 1937
? Dornier Do 17 Bomber 1940
? Fieseler Fi 156 Transport 1941
? Focker-Wulf Fw 56 Trainer 1938
? Focker-Wulf Fw 58 Trainer 1939
? Focker-Wulf Fw 189 Recce 1943
? Heinkel He 42 Seaplane 1938
? Heinkel He 45 Fighter 1937
? Heinkel He 60 Seaplane 1942
? Heinkel He 72 Trainer 1938
? Heinkel He 111 Transport 1944
? Ilyushin Il-2 Bomber 1945
? Junkers Ju 52 Transport 1938
? Kaproni Bulgarski KB-2A Trainer 1937
? Kaproni Bulgarski KB-3 Trainer 1937
? Letov S.328 Recce 1939
? Petlyakov Pe-2 Bomber 1946
? PWS.26 Trainer 1939
? PZL P.24 Fighter 1938

1968-Present
After 1968, the triangle system changed. The type-number was reduced to only two digits and moved to the upper part of the triangle, with the bottom part taken up by the aircraft's construction number or manufacturers serial. There is normally only space for five or six characters within the triangle base, so the construction number is usually tuncated to the 'last five' significant figures.

The known type numbers are:

Military Register Number Aircraft Type Role Service Entry
69 MiG-21UM Trainer 1974


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First Created: 17 September 2002 - Last Revised: 29 July 2005
Copyright © 2002 John Hayles.     e-mail: john@aeroflight.co.uk