Friday, May 30, 2008

Trans International DC8 Sydney 1976

There I was sitting atop a shipping container near the Adastra hangar when this TIA DC-8 Super 63 thundered past my lens. It's runway 25. This was the most interesting part of Sydney Airport in many ways, with a great view of the short runway plus the old Lincoln fuselage to look at across the swamp (used for firefighting practice).

JAT 707 76_836

JAT 707 76_836
Originally uploaded by gtveloce
It may be my fading memory at fault but I seem to recall one JAT proving flight into Sydney where the tower asked the 707's captain to confirm altitude. The conversation was along the lines of "you are too low" and "you are below the glideslope". The approach was from the west over Bankstown and indeed the pilot had mistaken Bankstown Airport for Sydney. Or so the story goes! (No harm done, they found runway 07 eventually.)

That same DC2 at Bankstown

Now I could be wrong but this is the same DC-2 as the one posted earlier in a backyard in Narellan, late 1970s. This shot is dated about 1972 (pardon the dust). I believe this was Sid Marshall's place - it abutted Bankstown Airport and was full of interesting airframes, and if memory serves me well even an old Sydney bus. Sid ran an airline from Bankstown and then a museum. Eventually the Aussie Dept of Civilian Aviation (or whatever they called themselves back then) decided to give museums the boot, to free up hangar space for flyable aircraft. Thus ended the good old days of poking around musty hangars looking at Spitfires and Mk 1 Electras.

Another look at that DC2 at Narellan

Another view of that DC-2.

DC2 ex-Sid Marshall at Narellan

It was trucked here from Sid's backyard at Bankstown, but I don't know what happened next. I think the idea was to move the Camden Museum of Aviation to Narellan but I'm not sure if that actually happened. Anyway, it's a DC-2. IT's probably about 1978 or so. I could be wrong!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Sandringham wingtip 1975_330

OK, last wingtip shot for today....

Sandringham wingtip 1975_347

Yes, it's that wingtip again...

Sandringham wingtip repair 1975_329

Crashed your flying boat on a Pacific Island? Need to get back to base and repair it? Well that happened a few times, once that I personally remember to Ansett Airlines' Short Sandringham VH-BRC "Beachcomber". It was damaged by a storm that tore it from its moorings whilst overnighting at Lord Howe Island on June 9, 1974.

"Beachcomber" ironically ended on the beach with a damaged starboard wing, the float torn off and wingtip and leading edge crumpled. Temporary repairs were made on site and the 'boat was ferried back to Sydney for permanent repairs at Rose Bay on or about July 3, 1974.

The damaged wingtip was removed, as you can see in this and subsequent pics. Beachcomber was repaired and test flown from Rose Bay on August 29, 1974 and operated the final flying boat passenger service to Lord Howe on September 10 that year. A permanent short field runway had been built by then and land-based wheeled aircraft (how unromantic!) took over the service.

Special thanks to my friend the late James Davidson and his father, a flight engineer on the 2 Ansett 'boats in the 1970s for access to the Ansett base - and to 'BRC and sister ship 'BRF ('Islander') way back when.

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