Post by Gavin Conroy on Jun 7, 2010 18:44:07 GMT 12
Hi Baz, I was in ATC for a few years with 27 Sqn Blenheim. Remember those days well and it was possible to do quite a bit of flying with the RNZAF.
Went on two live and work courses at WB with 104 flight and got some time some in the Airtourer then as well as some flying in the 421C Golden Eagles. When I was in the 6th and 7th form I was doing work experience with 104 flight every second Friday afternoon as I knew the COs son and they were happy as long as I wore my ATC uniform, wasn't much fun biking to Woodbourne wearing it though!!! 1763 was the hack at Woodbourne so got several flights (would just ask pilots if a seat was spare) then as well. An A4 pilot introduced me to the world of very low flying and that was great fun indeed!!!
Here are a couple of photos of CYS. I wrote a story on this aircraft for Av News around four years ago and I think it holds some kind of record for the lowest houred aircraft with only 1300 or so back then. Will have a look some time to see how many hours it has flown since then.
Again, Peter (and Shamus!), thank you for such an interesting and informative thread. This and the Victa Airtourer thread have given me a much greater understanding of the history of these lovely little aeroplanes, and the battle to gain a foothold against the tide of Pipers and Cessnas.
Before the thread finishes I hope to have some more info and pictures from Reg Shands records. His daughter is a great friend of ours and she is asking him to look out his files and photos. So when these come along there should be quite a bit on both the Victa and AESL Airtourers. As he is getting on in years it may take a little time but I wait with interest.
I loved my time in Concrete Sparrows, which was almost all of my first 100 hours. A lot of it was spent with another hour-builder, and in those days we never cheated our logbooks so my total time spent sitting in Victas is probably more like 150 hours. Plenty of 7- and 8-hour days. I could tell a few stories from those years....very happy memories.
If ever an aircraft type was just perfect for Wellington, the ol' Sparrow was it. Not so impressive on wet, soft runways though - an episode at Te Kuiti involving a very high "pucker factor" springs to mind!
Interestingly all my Airtourer hours were in 100hp models with the exception of one flight in CMA (115hp) and one in DBE (150hp)
Last Edit: Jun 8, 2010 13:11:58 GMT 12 by thomarse
The next AESL Airtourer 115 was c/n 510 which became ZK-CWC registered to Southern Districts AC, Gore 22Mar1968 and first flown 27th April. Ownership of ZK-CWC passed to the Wanganui AC 16Apr1971, and the aircraft is seen here under their ownership at Wigram 10Sep1978
From 1983 the Airtourer had a succession of private and flying school owners in Cromwell, Christchurch and Frankton until passing to J D Cranstoun, Kirwee 9Apr2007. ZK-CWC was cancelled as withdrawn as from 12Jul2007. Any further information on it's demise?
We have CWC at Classic Flyers. It's currently in storage.