Post by Dave Homewood on Oct 11, 2009 12:26:44 GMT 12
Great photos guys. I wonder what sort of service record they had in NZ - were they well liked, easy to mantain, etc? zhow many rescues were poerformed with them, etc. They're an almost forgotten entity.
Post by Peter Lewis on Jan 16, 2010 2:03:13 GMT 12
Giving this thread a kick along:
Wasp NZ3901 was delivered new, and arrived here in October 1966.
At Hobsonville, July 1967
A few years later it had acquired the '420' markings
and then it appeared as '460', probably when operating as a replacement for NZ3903
NZ3901 suffered engine failure and ditched into Hauraki Gulf, Auckland, while operating from HMNZS Canterbury 7Apr93. Some parts to NZ3909. Remains are stored with D Subritzky of Auckland.
NZ3902 also arrived as a new aircraft and was apparently marked '430' from new, as seen here at Hobsonville July 1967
A later view, also at Hobsonville, now as '420'
After its active service finished in 1988, NZ3902 was given to the RNZN museum, who currently have it on display at MoTAT
NZ3903 was delivered new in late 1971 and carried the '460' markings
It had a short life, as it ditched at sea, Waitemata Harbour, near Bean Rock, 30Nov73, after engine failure @ 400hrs. Salvaged remains taken to Devonport.
NZ3904 had operated with the FAA as XT417 before it was loaned to the RNZN in 1974-75 and again in 1977-79 before becoming a permanent acquisition in September 1979.
NZ3904 was DBR when tarpaulin was sucked into rotor blades at Taupo airport 20Nov92. Stored at Devonport Naval Base in damaged condition.
NZ3905 was another ex-FAA machine, XT787. It served in NZ from 1982 until 1997.
Rstd to UK to Westlands 1997, later G-KAXT, reported under restoration to airworthy.
Wasp XS543 became NZ3906 in 1982
It's apparently uneventful service ended in 1995. In 1998 it was donated to the RNZAF museum at Wigram, where it was hidden in a corner the last time I saw it in 2002
NZ3907 was ex-FAA XT435 and served with the RNZN from 1983. It spent part if not all of its operational life here wearing an orange colour scheme, as seen here at Whenuapai in 1998
After completion of its NZ service, NZ3907 returned to the UK where it has since been operated under private ownership as G-RIMM in FAA colours.
Wasp XT781 was another 1983 arrival, becoming NZ3908. It is seen here at a Dairy Flat airshow in 1994
and at an overseas display
Upon retirement in 1998 NZ3908 returned to the UK where it became a civil aircraft as G-KAWW.
The final active Wasp with the RNZN arrived here as XT782 in 1983 as an intended parts source. In 1994 it was rebuilt to a serviceable standard using components from NZ3901 and NZ3904 to become NZ3909, flying in July 1994.
I don't have a photo of this one, so Richard Hunt's one from AirTeamImages will have to do:
NZ3909 served relatively briefly, returning to UK late 1998 to Westland, to G-KANZ.
Several other Wasp airframes were also sourced by NZ from FAA stocks as airframe spares: XS536(Del.38Sep82) for spares, also XS528 (1985), XS532 (1985), XS566 (20Oct89), XT415, XT428 (1985/6), XT432, XV622 XV634 (1989)
Hopefully the above will generate more memories and photos (particularly of NZ3909)
Not much of the Wasp showing but the group in front must be involved with the Wasps. They are RNZAF not naval. I was keeping this photo for when a thread on groups came up but think it might be more appropriate on this thread. Does anyone know the history of this group?
I was interested to see that two Wasps ditched in the sea near Auckland. I was an eye witness to the one near Bean Rock and saw it happen from about 500 ft. into the sea. If my memory is correct one of the crew was female. A giant orange flotation bag kept it afloat until it was salvaged.
Just adding a bit to the previous post. I was in my upstairs bedroom with a telecom technician who was fixing a fault on the phone when it happened. I said notify the Police that a helicopter had crashed in the sea. He told the telecom guy at the other end of the phone but they did not believe him. I said tell them to contact the Police but just then the guy said 'Oh, their are other calls coming in now so I guess its true" I will check with Don to get an update on his Wasp situation. I know one of his went to Australia.
Post by kiwirotorwrench on Jan 17, 2010 12:08:31 GMT 12
Re the group photo above, my guess is it is a group of ATC cadets at Hobby during the school holidays, judging by the hair length and worse than normal fitting battledress. Tall bloke in back row, second from left end looks a lot like Dave Crail, who was a trainee GSI (along with Simon Ewing-Jarvie) when I was at RACS as a sprog in early 1978. Cheers KC
sure looks like a Dave Crail. Wonder what happened to him.
Unless hes moved recently , hes been living in Blenheim for some time . Could be wrong , but I think hes a builder . Not sure about now , but he used to be fairly active in the local glideing club . -- Quick check of the phone book , still shows a D Crail , pretty sure thats your man .
With reference to the numbers on the doors, they are the Frigate pennant number assigned to each ship the wasps were attached to. They are RN dervied numbers as the RNZN frigates were considered part of a commonwealth naval squadron should any large scale ware break out. There were a set of doors painted with individual numbers and when a particular wasp was deployed to a frigate the doors were changed to suit the number of the ship! Saved a lot of painting!
Post by Dave Homewood on Jan 20, 2010 10:41:36 GMT 12
Interesting photos. Did the Wasps only operate from the Leander class frigates in the early days or were the older frigates that were still in service when these were bought modified for helo landings too?