Vintage Transports, photos by Friends & Guests

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On a regular basis people sent me photos, to share their enthusiasm for vintage airliners or to illustrate a question. These photos have been lingering in a scrapbook or a discarded box somewhere and/or probably wouldn't find their way to Online-use or publication.
To prevent them from getting lost, with permission of the sender, I would like to share them on this page.
Photos already online (personal websites, airliners.net, jetphotos.net, etc) are not meant to be included here.

BT67 C-GJKB of Kenn Borek Jason Pineau (a.k.a. JSpitfire) trudged through the arctic February (2009) night at Yellowknife and managed an excellent shot of this Basler Turbo BT-67, recently (14Oct08) acquired Kenn Borek Air.

C-GJKB is c/n 13383 and Jason writes on his Flickr.com page: "I always enjoy trying to find out the history behind these old planes. It looks like Borek got this one in October 2008, and she has already spent a couple months in Antarctica. Before that she was with the Mali Air Force. Looks like she served with the Canadian Air Force at one time as well."
I can add the tailnumbers, in reverse order: 12933 - TZ391 - N167BT - N103BF.  
Jason als has a growing selection on Airliners.net

Basler BT-67 on Wikipedia

Frits Klinkhamer sent me some photo negatives and slides from his conscription period in Surinam, 1973 - 1974. He did not have the fascination for classic aeroplanes yet, but as a keen photographer he did photograph these..
Propliners at Georgetown More HERE...

DC-3 KLM at Renfrew
Keith McCloskey sent me this image in Feb.2009 and asked for help in identification. He wrote:
"Here is a picture of a KLM DC-3, which was given to the secretary of 602 Squadron, here in the UK,
at a lecture he gave on the old Glasgow airport at Renfrew.

The picture was taken at Renfrew and on the back is marked "A very rare photograph". That is all we know about it. Is there anything about the aircraft that would make it rare? I was wondering if it was the "Ibis" shot down by the Germans with Leslie Howard on board..?"

Iain McKay offered helpful information:
"The photo was taken not at Renfrew, but Prestwick, around 1960 when KLM DC-3 freight flights were fairly common. The concrete fenceposts at the public enclosure are a dead giveaway."

Micky West offered:
"Think its PH-DAA
www.airliners.net
That colour scheme ran from about 1960-1965.....maybe the 'rare' photo is a PJ- registered one being ferried to the West Indies? Wild guess!
Surprisingly PH-DAA survived with Aerocarto in the next KLM colour scheme, with horizontal stripes until 1968; just Google PH- DAA, PH-DAB, PH-DAR for Ralf Manteufel and Gunther Grondstein's shots."

George Armstrong dig sdeep in his memory:
"This is my era, 55'-till closure of Renfrew Airport in 1966, then to Abbotsinch, now Glasgow International, where I pounded the Beat for 30 years.
KLM DC-3's were not common at Renfrew, but mostly Convairs operated services to & from Amsterdam. Saw in these early years only 3 KLM DC-3's, they were on Football charters: PH-DAA (which crashed a few years later), PH-DAB (was sold to Australian Aircraft Sales) and PH -DAR.
It could be that the DC-3's were being sold off at that time. From the colour scheme I would think it was from this era.
Looks like a Kodak Brownie camera that was used to take that photo: large grain, no definition, minute negative."

On the theory of the above picture being PH-ALI 'Ibis', Mick West writes:
"There is no connection with the mystery photo, since the 'Ibis' was shot down over the Bay of Biscay 20 years earlier (the  event most people associate the KLM/BOAC WWII flights with). KLM had started an Amsterdam-Portugal DC-3 service in 1940 (direct overwater to Oporto, then Lisbon as France and Spain would not permit KLM to overfly) to connect with the Pan Am Boeing 314 at Lisbon; it ran twice weekly for about 5 weeks until Holland was invaded by the Germans in May 1940. The last DC-3 was stranded at Lisbon and had to return to the UK, where it was eventually used on the KLM/BOAC service from the UK to Lisbon..."
An enjoyable and informative book on the subject was written by Ad van Ommen, but afaik only published in Dutch: "Sluipvluchten naar Lissabon" (subtitled 'Nederlandse Vliegers en hun Dakota's'). Ad started his flying career in 1948 with KLM, flew on the DC-3, DC-4, Convair 340, DC-6, Lockheed L.188, DC-7, DC-8 and DC-10.


Whilst on the subject of Dutch aviation history, I also added photos from the 1930s to this page:

Amsterdam IAP Schiphol - the Ol'Days..

DC-6 N90MA
Pekka Kauppi of Finland purchased of what remains of Douglas DC-6 N90MA (c/n 43128), which was scrapped at Chandler Memorial (Arizona,USA) except for the cockpit... We see it here (27Jan09) at the end of its transport, from the Arizona desert heat all the way to the cold winter of Finland. Well done Pekka bravo!
Update in April 2009

Photos of N90MA on AIRLINERS.Net

In May 2008 I was myself at Chandler Gila River Memorial Airport, to see a remnant of stored propliners. See here MY REPORT. Maybe other 'shoppers' are able to buy & preserve the remaining propliners..?

Hermen Goud sent me this image of Fairchild C-119 N3560 (c/n 10957), reading on my C-119s at Battle Mountain webpage how this Flying Boxcar crashed on 10Jun78..
N3560 C-119G Tanker 140 This photo was taken in May 1976, operating as Tanker 140 for Hawkins & Powers, at Tucson Int'l Airport..
That fateful day in June 1978, N3560 had a runaway propeller on no. 2 engine shortly after departing Greybull, for a test flight. A belly landing was carried out and the subsequent damage made it a write off.
In 1979 parts of the aircraft were reported to survive at Greybull,WY but I have no sightings after that date.

The photographer is unknown, Hermen found this slide in a batch of 300 slides he once received from Benjamin 'Ben' Knowles. Now that name rang a bell with me!
Ben Knowles, Jr. was a retired USAF Master Sergeant from Tucson, Arizona with whom I exchanged military aircraft slides and B&W negatives during 1975 - 1982. So that was in the pre-internet days, writing letters (mostly a few words added to the material that was enclosed in the letter) and we never met. Hermen told me Ben passed away in 2008. He must have reached a respectable age.
See my tribute page to Benjamin 'Ben' Knowles.

Hermens website is www.aviaslide.eu

A visit to the hot ramps of Sharjah isn't as easy to arrange anymore, but Steve Kinder has a history here and revisited this dusty World Capital of the Antonov propellor skytrucks in Dec.2008. Here is a taste of what was recorded-
Antonov aircraft at Sharjah
  • An-12BK EK-12803 (01347803) Air Highnesses
  • An-12BP EY-403 (00347107) Asia Airways
  • An-12BP EK-11830 (4342210) South Airlines
  • An-24 ST-AWZ (773108080) Alok Air

  • The Scramble website now offers a Soviet Transport database too, CHECK IT OUT!!

    Hans Wiesman was there when former Thai Air Force aircraft were lowered into the sea, in an attempt to restore some of the reef that saw such destruction by the Tsunami in December 2004.
    Aircraft which were lowered into the water were-
    DC-3s Reef Squadron Thailand 2008 S-58T's:-
    H4k-10/05
    H4K-23/07
    H4k-27/07
    H4k-42/09
    H4k-58/12
    H4k-63/19

    C-47's:-
    L2-36/14
    L2-37/14
    L2-47/18
    L2-50/19

    Details the website by Steve Darke www.thai-aviation.net
    Website of Hans Wiesman www.avionart.nl
    DC-3 as Thai Reef
    DC-3 as Thai Reef

    Hawker 748 on take off Here is a photo sent to me by A.J. "BB" Burger from South Africa. The HS.748 (ZS-TPW?) is seen on take off, at some unknown date (2004?), from the Comores Islands; note the one-way-only strip!!

    Philip Gibbs, of SCCR Aviation (South African Air Charter, operating from George, Western Cape, South Africa), wrote me in Jan.2009.
    HS748 SCCR "Here is a photo that was taken at a remote strip by the name of Beaufort West. We diverted there because of fog in George. It is a gravel strip, used mainly by light aircraft. Imagine their surprise when we dropped in there at 06h00. The biggest aircraft there by far...!"

    Phil Gibbs is the one on the right.

    SCCR Aviation

    ZS-DBL The registration of the one where we are standing in front is ZS-DBL. These aircraft (the other one is ZS-DBM) are operated by Stars Away Aviation based out of Cape Town.
    I fly as a first officer for them on the 748. My own charter company has only single engines and light twins (the biggest is a Piper Chieftain) to service the tourist industry in the area and the neighboring countries if required. We have a part 135 licence so am limited in weight.
    The date of the diversion was 13Jan09 according to my logbook. We were routing from Bloemfontein to George but the entire south coast was blanketed in fog. Our diversions are normally port Elizabeth or Cape Town, but Beaufort West is a lot closer so we went in there. Out in the middle of nowhere but has a nice bed and breakfast on the airfield serving good coffee. just the thing for 06h00 after a full nights flying.....
    Beaufort West airfield, aerial

    N25646 Santa Monica
    N25646 Trans Texas Air Jim Long wrote me in january 2009, solving a question I had been struggling with since May 2008..
    He wrote: " Hello, I came across your website the other day..
    I wanted to update the information for the DC-3 that is sitting in an area on the south side of the airport at the Charles M. Schulz, Sonoma County Airport, Santa Rosa, CA known as the Gun Club.
    The DC-3 is N25646.
    The data plate on the LH aft side of the aircraft says it is a DC-3A, s/n 2234. On the LH side of the aircraft up high are faint letters that spelled out: Trans Texas Air.
    I used to live on the west side of the airport until a few years ago when the TSA said the mobile home I was living in had to be removed from the property. Even though the home had been there 35 years prior...
    There is an Experimental Aircraft Association chapter 124 on this site as well.
    These photos were taken on Sunday, January 4th, 2009.
    A few years ago this aircraft flew in. It was parked and from time to time someone works on it.
    Sincerely,
    James Long
    Santa Rosa, CA

    Richard Nash sent me this photo of beautifully restored VR-HDA, taken during Nov.2008 in Hong Kong
    VR-HDA Cathay
    VR-HDA is a fake tailnumber, the most recent identity for this C-47A (c/n 9525) was RP-C1101.
    It was flown out of the Philippines in Feb.2006, restored and put on display in front of the Cathay Pacific Admin. buildings.

    N51006 Hars Connie at Pima
    Roy sent me this image, of Lockheed EC-121H N51006, which has been purchased by the Historical Aircraft Restoration Society (HARS, from Australia) and has found a temporary home here at the Pima Air Museumeum, Tucson,AZ.

    From the excellent website on 'Connie's' www.conniesurvivors.com
    "EC-121H N51006 (53-535) was moved in June 2008 from the Allied scrap yard to the storage/restoration area at the Pima Air and Space Museum.
    Due to the unpleasant and uncooperative folks at the scrap yard, photographing this aircraft has eluded me for many years.
    The aircraft is owned by HARS and is destined to be shipped to Australia some time in the future. With the permission of the HARS and museum folks I was able to finally photograph the aircraft. While it has been picked pretty much clean to support other restoration efforts, there was enough of it left to be considered a "survivor" and Ben Fisher, a Pima docent, has promised to keep me current with the status of the aircraft."
    UPDATE: on the news page of above website photos were shown (31aug11) of 53-0535 being broken up; parts to be used by the owners for their flying Super Connie VH-EAG and their C-121G still at Marana, the HARS' N105CF, which is undergoing restoration.

    HU-16B of Chalk's
    Roy wrote me in Nov.2008 upon sending this image:
    " One of the many HU-16 I saw last October at Maran-Pinal Park (KMZJ)."
    N118FB has c/n 452.

    Chalk's International Airlines, formerly Chalk's Ocean Airways, was an airline based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA. It operated scheduled seaplane services to the Bahamas. Its main base was Miami Seaplane Base (MPB) until 2001, with a hub at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. On 30Sep07 the United States Department of Transportation revoked the flying charter for the airline.
    [Source WIKIPEDIA]

    My trip through the USA Southwest brought me many stored propliners..

    C-46 N1822M
    Martin Prince Jr sent me this photo, taken at Bethel,Alaska on 08Nov08, he wrote:
    "I'm glad I went to the airport during sunset this evening! Turbo Otter N361TT took off to the north this evening (see Martin's webpage on this website), I'll go find out what they are doing here tomorrow at some point. Everts is out here hauling fuel with the Curtiss C-46 Commando to the villages that are low on supplies from a early freeze up."

    I had come across N1822M myself in 1995, see HERE..

    Dirk Septer faced the cold and sent me this 'frozen image'..
    CF-CUE Buffalo

    C-47A CF-CUE (c/n 12983), Buffalo's new DC-3 paintjob (ex Transport Canada)... It was restored by Buffalo Airways in 2007 or 2008.
    Photo taken 0n 02Nov08 at Yellowknife,NWT.

    In 2006 I went to Yellowknife and made a 2 page report about the propliners here... PAGE 1 & PAGE 2.

    Copyright photo: Julie le Bolzer

    Hans Wiesman, always in search of DC-3 wrecks, got to this wreck in the Yukon..
    Yukon DC-3
    I have a detailed reported on this 'high-and-dry' aircraft HERE..

    Hans added the following text to this event:
    "After 4 days of waiting for the sky to break open, we were lucky that day to see the skies clearing at the airport by midday and we decided to fly. Once over the Ruby Mountains, there was more foggy cloud than anticipated, but we had those golden moments of sunlight piercing through the clouds.
    With the 3 of us, we were totally stunned by the view of that plane, laying out there almost intact against that rather steep hill, scattered with boulders. It still boggles my mind, how that plane could have landed there, without any major impact-inflicted damage on the fuselage or wings or tail.
    As one would expect a trail or wake of debris behind the plane, caused by a slide over the hill, there was no such sign at all, Simply, the C-47 cannot have made such slide, as only 9-10 feet behind the RH wing , there is a huge high boulder, that would surely have sheared off that wing, if a (near) slide over the hill would have been made and the plane would have made a nasty turn on such hit... This is all not the case, so how did that C-47 come down there, in all its surviving glory??
    I must presume, that during the recorded dead stick gliding approach of the plane to that snow covered hill ( it was january 1950), the pilot must have had some last minute view of the situation and fiercly pulled up the nose in that horror sight of a near terrain collission. In that action, could it have been possible that the plane pitched up , and finally lost momentum and speed, maybe stalled over the LH wing, but very close by to the near parallel ground uphill, so that the aircraft simply settled on that ground, without much of an impact and damage?? Or is this too much of a Hollywood type scenario to be ever true???
    The LH wing shows signs of a large crack over the full width, seemingly not caused by a sliding motion over the hill, so could that have been inflicted by a wing stall, as the plane came to the end of its speed and dropped the left hand wing, that touched ground first and broke off in the event from the fuselage???
    If anybody knows more about this enigma or has better clues to explain the limited damage of the C-47, please contact Ruud or me at www.avionart.com. This is my website that also gives some more info of the DC-3 related Interior Art/ Objects Collection and my further exploits as the Dakota Hunter.
    No matter what happened, it surely was a most lucky crash landing, as all 10 men crew stepped out alive and left the plane and were all rescued.
    I found inside the wreck a leather winter boot and a sort of a logbook, the skin of the plane looks as new, in mirror polished state, remarkably well preserved in the almost 60 years that it lies out there, but at over 6000 feet altitude, even in summer, it was freezingly cold."

    What I have learned about this crash was that while circling the area the crew found themselves unable to clear this ridge.. While climbing in an attempt to avoid crashing into the mountain the aircraft stalled into a thick and soft layer of snow. When warmer tempratures gradually thawed the snow the C-47 settled quietly onto the rocks. The mountainside is not steep and thus it remained more or less in the same position it 'landed' in (-Webmaster).

    Another place, another transport, another day...
    Fokker F.27 VH-WAN
    This photo of Fokker F.27 VH-WAN (c/n 10315) was made by Bert van Drunick on 31Oct08 and forwarded via Fred Niven and Michael Clayton to me.
    This is former Ansett F.27 on its way to the Queensland Aviation Museum, at Calounda, on the southern end of the Sunshine Coast in Australia.

    Ralph Pettersen wrote me in Oct.2008:
    "I was browsing your website the other day and came across the email from Stephen Cos about a DC-4 sitting on a trailer at Cleveland, Ohio and the follow-up email from Antti with additional photos.
    I believe I photographed this same aircraft at the small general aviation airport in Los Banos, CA in September 1990. I’ve attached photos that I took that day.
    I’ve always wondered what happened to the fuselage and what it was used for..."
    Mystery DC-4

    Nomads
    This Lockheed L.188 Electra of Nomads Travel Club is probably N836E. Alan took this photo at Washington Dulles International Airport (KIAD). N836E on Airliners.net.

    Lots and lots about the L.188 Electra: www.geocities.com/superelectra

    TAN Carga
    Lockheed L-188C(F) Electra HR-TAN of TAN Carga; TAN stands for TAN Carga - Transportes Aereos Nacionales. Taken at Miami (KMIA) at some unknown date.
    HR-TAN at Airliners.net

    On 21Mar1990 this airplane met its doom: 'The Electra approached Tegucigalpa runway 01 in poor weather (low cloud base, rain) and flew into the southern slopes of the Cerro Hula 2500 feet below the 7000 feet Minimum Safe Altitude at that point on the approach path.' (Source: Aviation Safety Network)

    Two interesting pages on Wikipedia: List of Lockheed Aircraft & L.188 Electra

    Alan also contributed jet airliner ('Old Jets') photos, see Vintage Jet Airliners, photos by Friends & Guests

    Martin Prince Jr sent me these photos from the frosty North of Alaska...
    The information on the deHavilland DHC-3 Turbine Otter is from Karl E. Hayes' monograph on this fabulous bushplane.
    N929KT Turbo Otter Otter c/n 461 is shown in the DHC records as delivered to the Tanzanian Air Force on 4th May 1966 with serial 9108. In fact, although painted in full Tanzanian Air Force colours, it never entered service but was retained in Canada for training purposes.

    Otter 461 was one of three of the eight Otters which remained in Canada, going to Camp Borden where it was used as a ground instructional airframe for the training of Tanzanian Air Force personnel.
    By December 1969 it had arrived at the Mountain View depot, Ontario and was packed into a crate ready to be shipped to Tanzania, but that did not happen and the Otter went instead to DHC at Downsview for disposal.
    The Otter was sold to Athabaska Airways Ltd of La Ronge, Saskatchewan, who had the pleasure of taking the almost unflown Otter out of its crate at La Ronge and re-assembling it. It received its Certificate of Airworthiness on 11th February 1971 and was registered CF-ZKW to Athabaska Airways Ltd on 15th February '71. It flew for Athabaska Airways for 20 years, alongside C-FAZW (451), one of the other former Tanzanian Air Force Otters.
    ZKW was sold to Contact Charters (374496 Alberta Ltd) of Fort McMurray, Alberta in April 1992, and sold on to Deh Cho Air Ltd of Fort Liard, Northwest Territories in February 1994.

    This DHC-3 Otter and pilot Borrelli were the subject of a criminal investigation arising out of activities during the summer of 1995, as explained in the following extract from the Alberta Game Warden Officer's Notebook: "Deh Cho Air, for whom Borrelli is Chief Pilot, received a maximum fine for transporting wildlife, namely moose, which had been unlawfully killed contrary to the Wildlife Act, after Renewable Resources Officers were tipped off about Borrelli's activities. Officers seized a cow moose and hide from the Deh Cho Air Otter aircraft after sources revealed that the moose being transported had been shot from the floats of the taxying aircraft while it was swimming across a lake. Borrelli was charged with hunting from a vehicle and received a $1,000 fine after pleading guilty. Deh Cho Air also pleaded guilt to transporting unlawfully killed wildlife and received a $1,000 fine for their involvement"...

    Otter ZKW continued in service with Deh Cho Air until an accident at Trout Lake, Northwest Territories on 26th September 1997. The pilot was conducting his approach over the lake towards the mouth of a river where the dock was situated. The aircraft contacted the water surface prematurely, bounced and struck a sandbar that extended across the flight path. The right float separated from the aircraft and the left float collapsed upwards and struck the wing. The Otter cartwheeled and sank nose first in six feet of water. The pilot and passengers evacuated the aircraft and clung to the right float until rescued by a boat. Thus ended Deh Cho Air's Otter operations
    .
    The Otter was noted at the facility of Kal Air Repair at Vernon, BC in September 1999, still in its damaged condition but under rebuild.
    It was sold to Pantechnicon Aviation Inc of Minden, Nevada and registered to its new owners in April 2000 as N271PA. It was rebuilt as a Vazar turbo Otter. Pantechnicon Aviation are a leasing company whose other three turbine Otters (159, 270 and 409) are leased to Pro Mech Air of Ketchikan, Alaska.
    N271PA was advertised for sale in 'Trade-A-Plane' magazine in May 2002, with total airframe hours of 14,214 and thirty hours since new on its PT-6A turbine engine. It was on EDO 7490 amphibious floats and had large sight-seeing windows and an eleven place interior. As the advertisement proclaimed: "Aircraft has just completed a very extensive multi-year airframe overhaul by Kal Air, with the new engine conversion done at the same time. Numerous skins and other parts were replaced as needed, all wiring and cables were replaced, new instruments installed and aircraft is indistinguishable from new. Floats have been completely overhauled as well. Aircraft hangared in Minden, Nevada. Price $950,000 or long-term lease to qualified operator".
    The Otter was noted at Clear Lake, California during September 2002.
    On 11th March 2003, N271PA was registered to Rust Air Inc, Anchorage, Alaska.
    The Otter was back at Vernon, BC the following month, en route from Minden to Anchorage. At Vernon the Otter was painted into the colours of K2 Aviation, a division of Rust Air, and had Baron Stol modifications incorporated.
    It was also re-registered N929KT.
    It then continued on to Alaska, to its new base at Talkeetna, where K2 Aviation are based.
    The company specialises in flying climbers and tourists to the Mount McKinley region of Alaska. It joined turbo Otter N727KT (419) as well as a number of Beavers and Cessnas.
    An incident was recorded on 21st April 2004. N929KT had departed Mount McKinley Mountain House and was landing on Runway 18 at Talkeetna when it nosed over and struck the propeller on the runway. It was repaired and returned to service.

    The above photo was taken by Martin Prince Jr. at Anchorage-Lake Hood. N929KT is seen in winter plumage on 25Oct08.

    N5315G deHavilland DHC-2 Beaver N5315G (c/n 980); also taken by Martin Prince Jr. at Lake Hood on 25Oct08.
    Here is its history:
    • Delivered 25/09/56
    • 55-4596 USAF
    • N5315G Civil Air Patrol Inc., Maxwell AFB., Mongomery, AL
    • ttl 6,690.9 (Sept 1995)
    • Based Alaska

    From the authority on the DHC-2, Neil Aird's website DHC-2.com

    Martin Prince Jr has dedicated webpages on this website: PAGE 1 + PAGE 2

    Bas Nossent wrote me in 21.Oct.2008:
    "On my journey last week through Texas and New Mexico I ran into this A-26 Invader with an 'On Mark Marksman'- conversion.
    It is situated at the Santa Teresa airport, just north west of El Paso. Engines are stuck and all fabric is gone. All the plexiglass needs to be replaced and probably much more. The cockpit had a 'For Sale'-sugn showing.
    According to the local people it has been sitting there for at least 10 years in the exact same spot. Other info says it has seen some action in 2002.
    These images were taken on 11Oct08."
    N26AB Invader
    Bas added the following info he found on the internet (http://napoleon130.tripod.com/id224.html):
    Year built: 1944
    Serial Number: 27805
    Mode S Code: 50476246
    Engine Manufacturer and Model: P & W R-2800 SERIES
    Serial #: 44-34526
    Construction #: 27805
    Civil Registration: N9178Z - N827W - N551EH - N400V - N7977 - N26AB
    Model(s): A-26B / B-26B / On Mark Marksman
    Name: Intimate Invader (!)
    Status: For Sale
    Last info: 2002
    History:
    Registered as N9178Z by ???, in 19??.
    A.M. Wheaton Glass Corp, 19??; registered as N827W.
    E.T.S. Hokin Corp, San Francisco, CA, 1961-1966. Registered as N551EH.
    Converted to On Mark Marksman, Van Nuys, circa 1962.
    CWC Air Inc, Flushing, MI, 1969. Registered as N400V.
    Certified Check & Title Corp, Wilkesboro, NY, 1970. Registered as N7977.
    Twin Cities Aviation, Inc, Edina, MN, 1972.
    Dennis M. Sherman, West Palm Beach, FL, 1976-1978. Registered as N26AB. Flew in quasi USAF scheme, named 'Intimate Invader'.
    Oklahoma Aircraft Sales, Yukon, OK, Apr. 1981-1986.
    Continental Jet Inc, Clarksville, TN, Mar. 1987.
    Charles Bella, El Paso, TX, Chaparral, NM, 1988-2002.
    Open Storage at Santa Teresa, NM, 1990-2002. Still marked as 'Intimate Invader'.
    A-26 Invader
    N26AB Invader for sale
    The "On Mark Marksman" was an American high-speed civil executive aircraft converted from surplus Douglas A-26 Invader airframes by On Mark Engineering. Its antecedents were the "On Mark Executive" and the "On Mark Marketeer". [WIKIPEDIA]
    This website may be of interest in a general sort of way on the subject of vintage propliners converted for 'the happy few': http://earlycorporateaircraft.com/

    Rich Hulina wrote me this in Dec.2008: "Norseman CF-FOX is in Sioux Lookout for maintenance.. Operating normally out of Webequie and FOX is supposed to be on wheel skis at some point this winter!"
    At the same time I was reading a very enjoyable book (Success on the Step: Flying with Kenmore Air by C.Marin Faure) which featured a profile on the Noorduyn Norseman.. So I decided to use Rich's images and the text as a sort of tribute to this sturdy bushplane!
    Btw, Rich Hulina is a bush pilot himself, the boss of Slate Falls Airways and an accomplished (aviation) photographer! See also my visit to Sioux Lookout.

    Norseman CF-FOX

    The Norseman had been the brainchild of Robert Noorduyn, a Dutch-born engineer who rose to become the manager of Anthony Fokker’s 'Atlantic Aircraft Corporation' in the United States. The Fokker Universal, single-engined, high winged airplane, became quite popular among Canadian pilots during the early 1930s and its sales convinced Noorduyn there was a market for a rugged plane designed specifically for the northern bush country.
    He tinkered with various design ideas for several years before moving to Montreal in 1934 and forming Noorduyn Aircraft Ltd. One year later, on Nov. 14th, the prototype Norseman took to the air for the first time.Norseman CF-FOX
    'Bob' Noorduyn passed away in 2008.

    Noorduyn’s design criteria had been rigid. The plane had to be equally at home on floats or skis. Noting that many of the lakes Canadian bush pilots were called upon to serve were small, Noorduyn fitted his plane with flaps, which permitted a touchdown speed of 55 miles per hour. A floatplane cannot have too many doors, but most planes of the era had only one or two. The Norseman had four: one on each side of the cockpit and a larger one on each side of the main cabin. The 2 cabin doors were detachable to make it easier to load bulky fuel drums and machinery. The cabin was insulated with aluminum foil and there were air scoops for ventilation in the summer and a cockpit-controlled heater for use during the winter. The air scoops were effective enough, but it wasn’t long before Norseman’s heater acquired the nickname 'the Northwind' because pilots liked to say 'that’s all we get ot of it.'’
    The engine cowl and fuselage panels forward of the cockpit were aluminum, while the cabin, wings, and tail surfaces were fabric-covered.
    Norseman CF-FOX by Rich Hulina
    The prototype was powered by a nine-cylinder, 420-horsepower Wright R-975 Whirlwind. The Mark II production model used a 450-hp Whirlwind, but performance was improved dramatically in 1936 with the introduction of the Mark IV which sported a 600hp Pratt and Whitney R-1340.
    A fully loaded Norseman weighed 6.450 pounds, which after subtracting the plane’s empty weight yielded a very respectable useful load of 2.775 pounds. Fitting a pair of floast to the plane reduced the useful load by about 300 pounds; the floats are not nearly as heavy as they look.. The airplane’s cruisespeed was also reduced by the installation of floats. One hundred miles per hour was about all a pilot could expect to see on the airspeed indicator.

    The plane was an immediate succes and not only among Canada’s bush country air carriers. The Royal Canadian Air Force was impresed with the big workhorse and ultimately purchased 79 Mark IV’s.
    The outbreak of World War II threatened to end the Norseman production, at least temporarily, but the rugged plane had come to the attention of the U.S. Army Air Corps. Needing a large-capacity utility transport that could operate from short, unimproved fields, the Air Corps saw the Norseman as a ready-made solution. Of course, the Army wasn’t about to set a precedent by ordering an off-the-shelf airplane and putting it into service as-is... So they asked for additional fueltanks in the belly, a higher gross-weight and enough other modifications to warrant a new designation. Robert Noorduyn wanted to reserve the designation Mark V (‘V’ for Vistory) to use on a model he planned to introduce after the war and so the Air Corps’ Norseman was called the Mark VI. The Army called it the C-64 and bought 749 of them.

    One of the hottest, most rugged fighters in the Air Corps’ inventory was the Republic P-47 "Thunderbolt". It was also the largest fighter in the inventory, so perhaps it was the vague resemblance between two radial-powered, jug-shaped airplanes that caused the pilots assigned to the infinitely slower Norseman to nickname it the "Thunderchicken".. The name stuck and can be heard even today in eastern Canada where a handful of Norsemen are still earning their keep in the northern woods.
    Noorduyn Norseman
    Noorduyn did introduce a Mark V immediately after the war, which was essentially the military Mark VI stripped of its extra equipment, but the market for the 'new' airplane dried up almost instantly when the military on both sides of the border began mass-surplussing the Norseman they’d bought before and during the war. Noorduyn’s financial backers decided the future for the Canadian-built aircraft was bleak at best and in 1946 they sold the manufacturing- and sales rights for the Norseman to Canadian Car and Foundry.
    The new owners continued producing the Mark V for a few years, but the heavy plane with its complicated wooden wing structure just wasn’t competitive. The smaller De Havilland DHC-2 Beaver with its lightweight, monocoque fuselage and all-metal wing could outperform it, while the Beaver’s bigger brother, the still-in-design DHC-3 Otter, would out-haul it...

    Norseman production finally dribbled to a halt after only 55 Mark V’s had been built.

    See my page Photo by Friends & Guests page 22 to see how CF-FOX looks on skis!

    EC-BSQ in memoriam
    Roger Soupart sent me this image of EC-BSQ, taken at Las Palmas in June 2008. He also wrote that on that same date he sent it, 24Dec08, scrapping had commenced of this vintage transport. Sad that no candidates had been around to preserve 'BSQ.

    There is a Dutch connection with this propliner: Trans Estate was the Dutch owner who bought in 1978 this airplane, but never flew it!
    Fernand van de Plas shows c/n 45159 with SABENA in 1950s HERE...

    Photos of EC-BSQ on Airliners.net

    The new page opens with a photo contributed by Ron Mak:
    ET-AGK DC-3
    ET-AGK (C-47A c/n 26465) has been reported to function as an Instructional Airframe at Addis Ababa for Ethiopian Air Lines Training, but that was a while ago..
    Ron took this photo during a trip to Ethiopia in January 1988. More photos from Ron's collection can be viewed on a page dedicated to his Propliner fascination, HERE..

     

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