Saturday, January 31, 2009

Qantas B737-838

Here are three pictures of a Qantas Boeing 737-838 leaving Wellington last weekend. VH-VXD would have been heading back across the Tasman Sea to Australia.

Boeing B737-838, VH-VXD, Qantas Airways LtdBoeing B737-838, VH-VXD, Qantas Airways LtdBoeing B737-838, VH-VXD, Qantas Airways Ltd

Airbus A380 Cockpit - Interactive Panorama

I don't often post links to other people's content, but I could not resist this one! It's an interactive panorama view of the Airbus A380 cockpit. Wow! You can zoom in and out and view any part of the cockpit including behind the crew seats.

The aircraft itself appears to be F-WWEA.


Sunday, January 25, 2009

More on the USAF C37A

I have just received another picture of the United States Air Force C37A [aka, military version of the Gulfstream V] from a "spotter in training" [thanks Ging!] today :-). This picture was taken as the aircraft vacated runway 16 at Whiskey 2.


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Visit to Omaka: Omaka aircraft

Here are a few of the aircraft that I spotted at Omaka. There were quite a few others that I didn't get to photograph, but such is life. What you'll notice from all of the photographs is the complete lack of cloud. On the other hand, it was quite hot [26 deg celsius, perhaps higher where we were], so the sunscreen was applied quite liberally. What a fantastic day!

- ZK-VNE is a Cessna 182Q, registered to Southshore Marine Holdings in Christchurch.
- ZK-JCI is a Cessna 172N, and registered to what looks to be a family trust with an Australian address. It doesn't look like it has moved for a while either...
- ZK-PJB is a Cessna U206G, registered to Te Kouka Limited of a Dannevirke address.
- ZK-POR is a Porterfield 35-70 [a new type for me], registered to a Spring Creek address [where ever that is...]. It may have a new owner by now as it was to be auctioned today.
- ZK-PAM is a Cessna 172K, registered to Marlborough Aero Club.
- ZK-WNR is a Tecnam P2002 Sierra, also registered to Marlborough Aero Club.
- ZK-TZT is a Gippsland GA8, registered to Izard Pacific Aviation Ltd of Springhill [north of Auckland]. This aircraft used to be part of the Sounds Air fleet and was used as part payment for a new Cessna Caravan - what it is still doing down here, I do not know.
- ZK-??? is a Nanchang of an unknown registration.

Cessna 182Q, ZK-VNE, Southshore Marine HoldingsCessna 172N, ZK-JCICessna U206G, ZK-PJB, Te Kouka LtdPorterfield 35-70, ZK-PORCessna 172K, ZK-PAM, Marlborough Aero ClubTecnam P2002 Sierra, ZK-WNR, Marlborough Aero ClubGippsland GA8, ZK-TZT, Izard Pacific Aviation LtdNanchang

Visit to Omaka: There and back, North American Harvard

I had the pleasure of another trip to Omaka airfield in the heart of the Marlborough region today. For once, I was the SLF*, so David got to do the flying. David did a good job of getting us there and back safely ["thanks!"]. It was a fantastic day for a flight - not too much turbulance, awesome visibility and fantastic scenary!

Another good thing was finally meeting Craig of Marlborough Aviation Scene fame. We've left messages and exchanged emails from time to time, so it was good to finally meet.

Like last time, there was a visit to the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre based at Omaka aerodrome. I have to say that the second visit was just as good as the first one. There's always something new to be seen and learned - well worth the NZD$20 [around USD$10, more or less] entry. The museum is full of World War One era aircraft - many original as well as replica, including a wide range of aircraft built or refurbished by The Vintage Aviator [who are based in Wellington]. Check out their website - it is incredible what these genius' are doing!

While there we saw what looked to be an immaculate North American Harvard landing and parking. I was able to get up nice and close [along with other people who were there at an auction] to get some pictures.

The following pictures are that immaculate Harvard - my next post will include the some of the other aircraft I spotted around the place. BTW - I'm not sure of the registration, so if anyone can drop me a comment, that would be appreciated.

North American Harvard 3*North American Harvard 3*North American Harvard 3*North American Harvard 3*

*SLF - Self Loading Freight, AKA Passenger

United States Air Force C37A [Gulfstream V] visitor

I arrived out at the Aero Club earlier today for the planned trip to Omaka [more details in the next post] and spotted this USAF aircraft parked on the RNZAF Air Movements Base apron.

I believe that this is a C37a [based on the Gulfstream V]. I manage to get a few pictures, but none of the departure around 11:15am, as I had just left as a passenger in a Piper PA28-181 Archer. I may be able to score some pictures of the arrival which I'll post later when/if received.

USAF C37A / Gulfstream VUSAF C37A / Gulfstream V

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Royal New Zealand Air Force Boeing B757-200

After the disappointment of not seeing one of these aircraft at the recent airshow, I did get to see this example after it landing at Wellington on Monday. This aircraft is back from the USA after a major refit with upper deck cargo doors, upgraded engines and avionics and more. Details are on the Air Force website.

I think you can imagine just how impressive this aircraft would be if displayed at an airshow!

Boeing B757-200, NZ7571, Royal New Zealand AirforceBoeing B757-200, NZ7571, Royal New Zealand Airforce

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Now back to normal

I'm now back to the usual series of posts after the Wings Over Wairarapa airshow.

To start off again, here's a picture of a nice Cessna C185C, registered to a Stephenson's Pharmacy Ltd of a Whitianga address. The registration, ZK-JHS, is named after the owner of the aircraft.

Cessna C185C, ZK-JHS

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Wings Over Wairarapa # 15: The End

Finally we come to the end of the show.

Over the past few days, these posts have generated a number of comments, so here's what I think.

Highlights? The Yak 52 displays had to be right up there and along with the Corsair, the MX2 and RNZAF displays, that's my top 4.

Lowlights? No Spitfire [ended up on it's belly 2 days beforehand], no RNZAF B757 or P3K Orion [not sure why...]

Was it worth going? Yes, absolutely! Despite a few aircraft not flying or turning up, it was still well worth the [bumpy but] easy flight and fairly inexpensive entry to the show. There was still plenty to keep me occupied, including a few other displays I haven't mentioned yet.

Would I like a better camera? Ha ha! Yes, definately, but that will have to wait for now :-)

Anyway, here's a few final pictures - a couple that I missed off the other posts, and a few extras that didn't seem to fit in elsewhere. Enjoy the pictures, and thanks for coming to visit.

I'd especially like to thank the good people at Indy Transponder for highlighting my posts on their site [and it's not the first time, thanks!]. Indy Transponder is a great place to get an aggregated view of aviation news from around the world and links back to the source sites.

Wings Over Wairarapa # 14: Microlights

Masterton has a healthy range of homebuilt and microlight aircraft. While the airshow did not appear to be designed for showing off these aircraft, I did get a few photos of these types. There were also a couple of gyrocopters and various other "lighties" on display, but I was too busy photographing on the flightline and resting in the shade to get the others :-).

Good websites for looking in to the New Zealand microlight and homebuilt aircraft scene are the Sport Aircraft Association and the Recreational Aircraft Association of New Zealand.

Top to bottom are:

Jodel D.11, ZK-EER
Tecnam P96 Golf, ZK-TSC
Alpi Aviation Pioneer 300, ZK-CJN
Taylor Monoplane U/L, ZK-FNR

Jodel D.11, ZK-EERTecnam P96 Golf, ZK-TSCAlpi Aviation Pioneer 300, ZK-CJNTaylor Monoplane U/L, ZK-FNR

Wings Over Wairarapa # 13: World War One

An eagerly anticipated part of the airshow were the planned displays of various World War One aircraft. Masterton [and Omaka, across Cooks Strait] is a home to these rare aircraft, newly built to original standards, with original construction techniques - right down to replica machine guns and authentic paint schemes.

One issue with these ancient types is the need to be particularly careful about which days they fly. I'm guessing that the reason many of them did not fly was due to the wind picking up duirng the day. Bummer, although if you want to see some of these aircraft in action you can check out some earlier Remembrance Day posts from November 2008 here.

What did get up however were a couple of German types, and the Nieuport XI was pushed around a bit. There were a wide range of others on display, but I didn't get around to photographing them all. I understand that most/all of these aircraft have been reproduced by the genius' at The Vintage Aviatior.

Top to bottom are:

Pfalz DIII
Fokker D.VIII
Pfalz DIII and Fokker D.VIII in formation
Nieuport XI

Pfalz DIIIFokker D.VIIIPfalz DIII / Fokker D.VIII formation flightNieuport XI

Wings Over Wairarapa # 12: de Havilland Canada DHC-1 Chipmunk

Although not flying in the display, there were three De Havilland Canada DHC-1 Chipmunks on display, as per the following pictures.

It would appear that the first two are operated by Old Stick and Rudder. The third is registered to a Palmerston North address, but I'm not sure where it is flown.

De Havilland Canada DHC-1 ChipmunkDe Havilland Canada DHC-1 ChipmunkDe Havilland Canada DHC-1 Chipmunk

Wings Over Wairarapa # 11: Curtis P-40E Kittyhawk, North American P51-D Mustang & Goodyear FG-1D Corsair

While each of these aircraft deserve their own post, they are all so closely related due to service in various theatres of World War 2 and their combined displays at the airshow. In addition, each of these types were operated by the Royal New Zealand Air Force [RNZAF] at various times.

The Goodyear FG-1D Corsair is a stunner and is instantly recognisable due to it's 'bent' or 'gull' wing [designed to reduce the undercarriage leg length while retaining prop clearance]. At any airshow, this will be one of my favourites, even beyond the Mustang or the Hurricane [not shown at this airshow]. Perhaps I might change my mind when I finally get to see a Spitfire being displayed, but I suspect it will be a rather close call. To me, the aircraft looks like it was designed by a big angry man wanting to do some damage to someone... I guess it looks right then!

Another very recognisable aircraft is the North American P51-D Mustang. An aircraft that performs as well as its reputation [and that's a hard ask!] and an airshow favourite for generations, the Mustang never fails to impress. At the risk of upsetting some, while the aircraft was always good, it perhaps only became great when they installed an English Rolls Royce Merlin V12 [the same power plant as the mighty Spitfire].

Perhaps with less instant recognition than some, I am always impressed with the Curtis P-40E Kittyhawk. While out-classed by the others, it still exudes confidence as a reliable and capable performer. When Kittyhawks were replaced by Corsairs as New Zealand's front-line fighter, many of them were returned to New Zealand as advanced trainers.

Both the Corsair and Kittyhawk are operated by the Old Stick and Rudder Company, and I think that the Mustang is operated by New Zealand Warbirds. Check out their websites for more details.

Anyway, here are a few photos of these aircraft with the Corsair followed by the Mustang then the Kittyhawk... plus a picture with a "stray" Harvard [taken during a mock airfield attack] :-)

Goodyear FG-1D CorsairGoodyear FG-1D CorsairGoodyear FG-1D CorsairGoodyear FG-1D CorsairNorth American P51-D MustangNorth American P51-D MustangCurtis P-40E KittyhawkCurtis P-40E KittyhawkCurtis P-40E KittyhawkCurtis P-40E Kittyhawk / North American P51-E Mustang / North American Harvard 3*