Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Help! Info anybody?

Can anyone help?

I'm trying to find out some history of a "trophy" [I'm assuming it is a trophy - maybe it's just a household decoration?]. I received this as a Christmas present. I don't know much about it, but I'm guessing this item has some sort of interesting history... and there's bound to be someone on the interwebs that can shed some light on this.

I don't have much to go on - just the photos I took this evening. There are no markings of any type that would indicate a manufacturer or recipient/ owner. It is metallic, except the base which is wooden. The aircraft screws onto the pole [as shown], but detaches easily [ie: it was not glued]. It looks to be a few decades old and was purchased from a "hospice shop" [second-hand shop], so quite possibly from as part of an estate.

I can supply more photos if needed.

Any help/ info would be much appreciated! You can leave a comment on facebook/ blog or email me direct at history (at) flying.geek.nz



Today's flying and ZK-WAC refurbishment almost complete

I had a quick, but fun, flight today. I took three people up around the Hutt Valley as far north as Trentham racecourse and back again. It was only 0.6 hours [36 minutes], but a nice flight anyway. Cost sharing, it must be said, also helps to make it easier on the wallet :-)

Photos from today include WAC's Piper PA38-112 Tomahawk, ZK-WAC. The aircraft is back flying after many, many months out of the air. It only has the internal plastics and a few other minor things to do before it is complete which is good.

Pictures are of the exterior and the new Aspen Avionics Evolution display which has been installed. Once everything is complete, this will be a flash looking aircraft. Last up is an Air Ambulance flight, a Piper PA31 Navajo, ZK-MJF, registered to Taranaki Air Ambulance Trust.

It would be nice...

Yesterday's interesting visitors were a couple of helicopters and a Cessna. these aircraft were travelling [more of less] together, taking some visitors and their gear to Nelson. People in the helos and gear in the Cessna [well, the helos had some gear also, but you get the picture].

The Cessna is a Cessna 185A, ZK-MIT, registered to Remote Adventures of a Takaka address. The helicopters were both Eurocopter AS350BA's, ZK-IOR and ZK-HEX, and registered to Reid Helicopters of a Nelson address. Nice :-)

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Wellington Aero Club's new website is live

Just a quick note to say that Wellington Aero Club's new website is live and looking good!

The info is presented a lot nicer and they now have an online purchase option for trial flights, so keep this in mind if you're looking for a great new year gift for someone who has everything (except a pilot licence)!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Merry Christmas!

May you have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! 

Many thanks for your visits, information and support over the past 12 months and I hope to see you around in 2015. There may be a slight reduction in posts until the new year, but if I see anything interesting I'll put it up as soon as I am able.

I hope you have a safe, relaxing and enjoyable Christmas break, where ever you are around the world!

(yes, this is my best attempt at "artwork"!) :-)

Clipart images are from:

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Air2There Caravan

Today's visiting aircraft was an Air2There Cessna 208B Grand Caravan, ZK-MYH. This was parked up outside the Aero Club for a short time, due to weather in Paraparaumu [NZPP]. It wasn't long before it was off on the short IFR leg back to NZPP.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Air ambulances and a random chopper

In this post I have 2 fixed wing and 1 rotary wing air ambulances and another helicopter which I know absolutely nothing much about :-)

Top to bottom are:

Beech C90A Kingair, ZK-ZZA, registered to Skyline Aviation of a Napier address
Fairchild SA227-AC Metroliner, ZK-NSS, registered to Airwork Flight Operations of Auckland, but operated as the Life Flight Air Ambulance
Agusta A109E, ZK-ITR, registered to Helilink, but operated as the Taranaki Community Helicopter Rescue
Eurocopter AS350B2, ZK-IMJ, registered to Precision Helicopters of a Urenui [Taranaki] address


Today's flying consisted of being a passenger while Grant, another Club pilot, did a few circuits in WAC's Cessna 172N, ZK-FLT. It's actually quite nice to be able to sit back and relax, take a few photos, while someone else does all the hard work ;-)

Photos are of the circuit area, including a couple where I had the window open, to what if it make much difference. This brief experiment showed a tendency to shake a lot more in the slipstream :-) but there was better light, so the images did come out a little brighter.

Anyway, here we go.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

More night flying - up to Paraparaumu

Last Tuesday evening I undertook another dual night training flight. While I have my basic night rating, there's this requirement to do specific cross-country training [and at least 3 hours of it!] to be able to fly longer distances at night. 

This is OK from a navigation perspective, but it seems overkill to me. Oh well, I'll get it sorted and then the rating will be unrestricted. In any case, it is a good idea to know how to navigate to and land at another aerodrome in case where you take off from is closed due to weather or accident. It will also be handy if I get caught out one evening - it may allow me to return home with the last bit in darkness which would be good.

The entire flight, including a touch and go at Paraparaumu was 1 hour, so only 2 more hours of cross country training to do. I'm not sure when this will be done [except that it's highly likely to be next year], but it'll probably involve a flight from Wellington to Palmerston North.

Taking photos at night from a moving plane is hard, but our passenger, Amy, did manage this ok one from left hand downwind for runway 34 at Paraparaumu. You can just see the runway lighting in the dark patch below most of the town lights.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Looks like the nice weather has arrived!

After a lot of wind, some rain and low cloud over the past few weeks [interspersed with some good days, to be fair...], today has turned out to be absolutely awesome.

Weather comprising of little wind, blue skies and warmer temperatures than have been seen in a long time were very welcome.

No flying for me today, but it looks like a short dual night cross-country to Paraparaumu and back on Tuesday night is in order. It'll be my first night cross-country so that should be interesting, and I need this to [eventually] get my unrestricted night rating ticked off. The weather is supposed to fantastic through to at least Tuesday and maybe Wednesday. I'm not sure there will be any photos [I'll be busy!], but we'll see.

I have no photos from today, but just imagine bright sunshine and lots of happy Wellington Aero Club aviators!

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Airbus' and trophies

Today's weather was rubbish [which is quite normal for this time of the year, I suppose!], but to finish it off, we did have the Wellington Aero Club's annual Christmas dinner and prize giving. For the first time, the event was held at the local Spruce Goose cafe - good food and great views over the Southern 

More details of prizes and a few photos will be on the Club's Facebook page, but here are three photos from the day.

First up is an Air NZ operated Airbus A320-232, ZK-OJR departing, then a Jetstar Airbus A320-232, VH-VFJ arriving, then finally a table full of trophies.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Lifeflight Air Ambulance

What follows are my first pictures of the Life Flight Air Ambulance, a British Aerospace Jetstream J32, ZK-LFW, since the Vincent Aviation receivership. The aircraft has recently had some additional decals applied, saying "Life Flight - Saves time. Saves lives" since I last saw it.

According to the CAA website, the aircraft is still operated by Vincent Aviation (in receivership), but in reality the crews are supplied by a company called Air Freight.

Big, noisy and wet!

Wellington Aero Club is based at Wellington International Airport. As such, the airport is required to provide fire/ rescue services and as part of that, the airport has a couple of brand new fire trucks. One of these was brought over the the Aero Club today, for members and families to take a look over.

Without going into all the details, these Rosenbauer fire trucks are made in Austria, designed especially for airport fire fighting, exported around the world, and Wellington has two of them! 0-80 km/hr in 30 seconds is quite impressive for a vehicle of this size [9.5 tons of water, plus foam, dry powder, hoses, pumps and other bits of kit, plus the truck and engine itself!]

Scott, the fire fighter who brought the truck over for us to look at, showed and talked us through much of the equipment on board. We were allow to look through the cab, before he gave us a demo of their ability to spread a lot of water around in a very short time. Many thanks to Scott for doing this for us!

Anyway, here are a few photos. They are all fairly self-explanatory... and yes, one of these is me sitting in the cab, wishing that I was allowed to press a few buttons!

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Boeing and Airbus

Today's pictures are of a rapidly disappearing type, the Boeing 737-319, ZK-NGI. It won't be long until all of Air New Zealand's B737's are sold off or scrapped. Following that is a Jetstar operated Airbus A320-232, VH-VGA.

Apart from this, it was a bit windy today, so a little quiet on the GA-front with just a few flights, Tomorrow's weather is not great, so probably not so many aircraft photos tomorrow either. Having said that, all going well, I do hope to have something interesting to show you tomorrow. :-)

Monday, November 24, 2014

Not For Operational Use!

During a general tidy-up at the Aero Club a couple of weekends back, we discovered this old [out of date!] page called "Ground To Air Emergency Visual Signalling Code", published by the "Civil Aviation Administration".

Before anyone asks, this is well out of date, but good for a laugh! I especially like the symbol for "Require Firearms and Ammunition"!!! I still can't quite understand what use that might be in civil aviation... ? :-)

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Different colours, different grass

I went flying again today, with a couple of other Wellington Aero Club members. We headed up to Otaki airstrip, which is a nice grass airstrip just south of Otaki township. It is plenty long enough - even with the displaced thresholds, the landing distance is 730 meters with a very gentle slope.

I hope to have some photos in the next few days from a passenger. When these arrive, I'll put them up in another post.

From the photos I did manage to get today are a couple of Airbus A320's, with slightly different colours.

First up is a Jetstar Airbus A320-232, VH-VGF. The livery on this one is quite different to the standard Jetstar livery. The two photos show both sides of the aircraft.

Last up is an Air NZ Airbus A320-232, ZK-OAB. It looks as though the nose has been replaced, but no black paint job as yet. As has been suggested by others, a nice red nose in time for Christmas could be a good idea!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Another windy day... hopefully better tomorrow

It has been another windy day in Wellington with up to 50 knot gusts at times, so no light aircraft flying today... I am booked in for a flight tomorrow, so we'll see what that is like.

Photos today are just three. First up is a Gulfstream G650, ZK-KFB, which is registered to ExecuJet, but is better known as Peter Jackson's plane.

Next up is a Sounds Air Cessna 208, ZK-PDM and last is an Air Nelson/ Air NZ Bombardier DHC-8-311, ZK-NEG. Both of these are departing into the strong, gusty winds.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

China's President Xi Jinping departs Wellington...

... on an Air China operated Boeing 737-89L, registered B-5342.

As it turns out, I have seen this aircraft at Wellington previously. In June 2010, then Vice-President Xi Jinping visited Wellington.

Anyway, here are three of the 50-odd photos I took this evening. Unfortunately, these are about the best of the lot. You can probably tell that there is a lot of glare this evening...

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

RNZAF Boeing 757-200

I happened to be out at the airport this evening on Aero Club business and arrived in time to see the arrival of this Boeing 757-200, NZ7571, operated by the Royal new Zealand Air Force [RNZAF].

For my overseas readers, the B757 is one of two operated by the RNZAF and is the largest aircraft that they operate. It is also the largest aircraft type to regularly operate into Wellington.