Tuesday, 28 February 2017

TG Gyros

Hairy Mole Rat has been clicking away at Tauranga and offers these two pics of Gyros taken Monday the 27th.
The ELA Aviation ELA-08-R-115 ZK-LMO (c/n 05102920724) has been with Sybe Haakma of Te Aroha since 13-08-2010.
And yet to join the register is ZK-RAC3.

Monday, 27 February 2017

Trio from Ardmore on Sunday

Bluebus trying new provider.
Magnaman has kindly sent in these three shots taken at Ardmore on Sunday the 26th.

The Piper J3C-65 Cub ZK-YLO (c/n 19046) has been listed with Ardmore Aviation Services ltd of Ardmore since 28-01-2016. It was previously N98808 and N923BC.
YLO has been previously mentioned HERE
Another aircraft listed with Ardmore Aviation Services Ltd is this Cessna 180K Skywagon ZK-SLM (c/n 53016). It joined our register on 28-11-2013 having previously served as N2620K followed by a spell in the UK as G-DAPH.
This has been mentioned previously HERE
Piper PA-28R-200 Cherokee Arrow ZK-EBA (c/n 28R-7535101) has also been noted before.

Friday, 24 February 2017

Buzzard Airlines at Tauranga 11-2-2017

At the end of the day I popped in to the airport at Tauranga and spied the Buzzard Airlines hangar open and the staff enjoying a quiet one as the sun went down.  They were happy for me to take a couple of photos.  Buzzard Airlines operates the tandem parachuting operation at Tauranga, and has a growing fleet:

Cessna 172M Super Hawk ZK-DPM (c/n 17263202) is the jump ship.  The guys having a quiet one told me that a super hawk was just about a buzzard so maybe that is where the name comes from.  It was originally registered in August 1974 but crashed at lake Waikaremoana (where we were heading for) in February 1983 and was cancelled in April 1983.  However it wads rebuilt and re-registered in November 1974.

The company runabout is the Europa Tri Gear ZK-POG (c/n 584).  This was originally G-WEEM but did not fly in the UK, and was imported into New Zealand by Nigel Harrison and first registered here on 16/11/06, first flying on 1/1/07.  John Martin aka Buzzard Airlines has operated the aircraft since 1/10/12.

And also marked up as Buzzard Airlines (behind the rear cockpit) Hatz CB 2 biplane ZK-PEC (c/n 245) sports a buzzard in the roundel.

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Classic Flyers Odds and Sods 11-2-2017

On a nice Saturday afternoon I was able to photograph a few of the pretty varied collection of aircraft that they have outside (not that these were all of them):

The Fairey Swordfish mock-up is part of a children's play area.  This is the ex MOTAT example that was built by Fleet Air Arm veterans many years ago.

The remains of of DH 104 Devon ZK-UCO (ex NZ1812) sit rather forlornly beside one of the hangars.

Sud SA316C Alouette III ZK-HYA2 is now more complete and is outside.

Vans RV 3 ZK-RVE is still hanging around in one of the museum hangars.

And Air Chathams DC 3 ZK-AWP was providing flights from the Classic Flyers apron.

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Beaver ZK-SBV

Extract from the Nelson Mail
Sixty-year-old plane ready to roar back to life in Nelson skies
Mark Stagg with the de Havilland Beaver aircraft he is restoring at his business, Argus Helicopters at Motueka Airport.
A classic aircraft with a "very distinctive sound" is being brought back to life to boost tourism in the region.
Argus Helicopters director Mark Stagg is overseeing the "rebirthing" of a 60-year-old De Havilland Beaver aircraft at the company's hangar at Motueka. He is being assisted by several Nelson-based companies.
Stagg sourced and hand-picked the aircraft from Sydney, and organised its importation to New Zealand on behalf of the client, Sam and Wayne Brown of Air Charter Karamea.
Mark Stagg at the controls of the de Havilland Beaver aircraft being restored to transport tourists in the Nelson region.
After the extensive upgrade and refurbishment is completed over the winter months, the plane will spend its new life – among other tasks – flying passengers in and around the Kahurangi and Abel Tasman National Parks.
Included in the long list of work planned is a rebuild of the engine and propeller, a full repaint and a rework of the interior, an extension of the cabin and the updating of radio equipment.
Built in Canada in 1955, the aircraft went to Australia in 1988.
"It's been on skis, its been on floats, it's done everything," Stagg said.
Air Charter Karamea is based at Nelson Airport, focusing on walker and mountain-biker transport to Kahurangi National Park.
The Beaver was a popular plane in the 50s and 60s in New Zealand carrying out tourist and agricultural top dressing work.
Stagg said while his staff were used to working on helicopter projects, working on the classic aircraft was something they looked forward to.
"It was just like a classic car project really, you look underneath the visual stuff to the bones of it and then bring it back to life," Stagg said.
The Beaver would also make appearances at airshows such as Warbirds over Wanaka.
"There are a lot of people who have a special place for the old Beaver, a lot of enthusiasts for whom there's nothing like the sights and sounds of seeing one," he said.
"It does make a very distinctive sound and having one operation commercially around here is going to be a real asset."
Local businesses will play a big hand in the refurbishment, with Creative Colours leading the paintwork, Generation Global doing the interior, and the electronic systems work being carried out by Nelson Avionics.

By the time the aircraft is finished at the end of this year, Stagg said the aircraft would be valued at over $750,000.

This is c/n 783 originally built in Canada in 1955 and registered as CF-HXX with a change to C-FHXX.
It moved to Australia and became VH-SYS in March of 1994.


With thanks to Andy Heap and Lord Nelson for forwarding this item from the NELSON MAIL.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Tidco Powerchute ZK-FET at Waihi Beach

I was pleased to see the hangar at Waihi Beach airstrip open as we drove by on 10/2/17.  It had always been locked up when I had called by previously.  Dave Evans kindly stopped his mowing of the strip and showed me what was inside.  And there was an unassuming piece of kit in the corner that I might have otherwise overlooked but it turned out to be the Tidco Powerchute ZK-FET.

ZK-FET (c/n GONDOLA TID 01) flies under a parachute and I would love to see how it gets into the air.  Dave told me that the owner flies it quite regularly at dawn, before any wind gets up.

I cannot find out anything about this craft - can anyone provide any further details?

Monday, 20 February 2017


Cessna 180K c/n 53022 was built as N2641K and became VH-SAA3 on 02-07-1979.
On 30-04-1998 it was re-registered as VH-IMC5 and then on 09-10-2007 it was registered to W R Mailer of Riddells Creek, Victoria and using his initials became VH-WRM4.
It was ferried from Scone to Lord Howe Island on 15-01-2017 and then on to Kerikeri on the 16th.
It was spied crossing down to the Mainland on the 17th bound for Timaru.
Its Australian registration was cancelled on 02-02-2017.
 I caught up with it outside the AVTEK facility at Timaru on February 6th (above) still in full VH markings and carrying the Narromine Aero Club patch on its fin.
It was allocated the ZK-DBAregistration on 08-02-2017 for Skyfarmers Aviation Ltd of Methven.
 I caught up with it again on the 16th and it was still on the same tie downs but now minus its propeller.
 Later the same day it was maneuvered into the AVTEK hangar and work began on removing its Australian civil markings.
 Then below - I caught at lunch time on the 17th with the VH markings partially removed.

Volcanic Air Safaris DHC 3 Otter ZK-VAS at Rotorua

Last Wednesday 15/2/17 at Lake Rotorua was the first time I had seen Volcanic Air's Otter ZK-VAS (c/n 35) flying, and it was quite active during the afternoon.  I guess it is helped by tourists from cruise ships at Tauranga who bus through to Rotorua.  When we were in Tauranga there was a different cruise ship berthed every day.  It has a quite distinctive engine sound that seems like it is clattering along.  Here are some photos from the last flight of the day:

Embarking the 10 passengers...

then a pushback from the jetty by the pilot...

Start up and taxying out...

Beginning its take off run out in the lake...

Slowly getting up on the step...

and airborne.

followed by a gentle turn and slow climb out.

Then half an hour or so later, clattering back over the town for the last landing of the day at 5 39 pm.

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Fire fighting fixed wings at NZCH

Below we have a few photographs taken at or near to Christchurch International Airport showing the fixed wing fire fighting aircraft.
Two views of the PAC Cresco ZK-LTB.
Below we have the PAC Cresco ZK-LTS.
Then two views of Otago Airspread Ltd's Cresco ZK-OAS.

Three of the Air Farmers Air Tractor ZK-SKF.

Photographs supplied.

A blast to the past -ZK-BXO Returns.

You may have noticed that the Auster B.8 Agricola ZK-BXO has returned to the register after
Hallett Griffin of Kairanga re-imported it from the UK.
It has been added it to his most diverse and historic aerial applicator collection.
This aircraft has been mentioned previously on this blog HERE
The above image was captured at Paraparaumu on 24-01-1971.
The following five shots were all taken at the Murphy Road strip on 14-02-1973.

 Other aircraft in Hallett's collection include the De Havilland DHC-2 Beaver ZK-AZB, the Zlin 37T ZK-PJO, the Edgar Percival EP9 ZK-PWZ, the Transland AG-2 (ex N8330H and CX-AYC) and the Travel Air 3000 (ex N8192).
In his day job Hallett operates the  Fletcher FU24-950M ZK-CZA, the Walter powered Grumman G-164B AgCat ZK-WTA and the Cresco ZK-PWT.
His FU24-954 ZK-EUD is at Napier on conversion to a Crusader.
The come and go Cresco ZK-TPW is currently with Rural Air Work at Waipukurau.

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Taupo's Floatplanes and a Helicopter

About a week before I was in Rotorua photographing the Lake Rotorua floatplanes, I was passing through Taupo by bus on 7/2/17 returning from Taumarunui and photo'd the two resident Lake Taupo floatplanes:

Both floatplanes are registered to Taupo's Floatplane Ltd.

Cessna U206G ZK-EFI (c/n U206023525) has been in New Zealand since 24/3/83.

and Cessna U206G ZK-FPO (c/n U20605775) has been here since 27/6/88.

Then at Wairakei was Robinson R 44 ZK-HFG4 (c/n 10522).of Heli Adventure Flights Ltd of Taupo.  It has had 10 owners since being first registered on 3/12/04.  The photo is not the best but was taken from the bus while travelling past at 100 kph (I did crop it a bit).

Friday, 17 February 2017

Aerosparx over Wellington

The Aerosparx display team are here to perform at the Wings over Waiarapa this weekend. Their craft of choice is the Grob G109b motor glider. They have been modified to perform aerobatics with smoke, lights and pyrotechnics. The aircraft are piloted by Guy Westgate and Tim Dews.
Wellingtonians were treated to a superb low level display over the harbour.

G-OFIX (s/n 6394) & G-OSPX (s/n 6414)