Sunday 31 July 2016

Rangiora gems

During a couple of hours leave this afternoon I dashed out to Rangiora and braved the cooling breeze and captured these shots.
All three have featured on these pages previously.
Cessna U206F ZK-DXC (c/n U20602986) is slowly coming back to life in the hands of Michael Scotter. The wings and tail units have already been completed and there is just this one piece left to complete.
The ex Canterbury Gliding Club AeroPro EuroFox 3K ZK-TUG2 (38213) has found a new home on a seaside airfield on the east coast.
On the left of the pic are some parts for the 206 ZK-DXC.
The Aerodesign/Skystar Pulsar XL ZK-RUS (c/n 325/MAANZ/510) finally has its registration clearly marked on its fuselage side. Ownership has recently changed to Cristopher Lawry of Loburn.

Ragwing Aircraft of New Zealand (5) - Storch Single Seat

The Ragwing Storch was Roger Mann's nineteenth aircraft design (the website shows that his designs go up to 26!).  However, I don't think many of them have been built in large numbers.

The aircraft is designed as a 75% replica of the wartime German Fieseler Fi 156 Storch, and apparently it performs as well or better than the original in STOL performance with a quoted stalling speed of 15 mph!

It seems as if the Storch can be built as a single seater, or as a 2 seater with tandem or side by side seating , and it first flew in August 1997.  Its length is 22 feet (6.71 metres) and its wingspan is 32 feet (9.75 metres).  Empty weight is around 500 pounds (226 Kg) and MAUW is 1,200 pounds (544 Kg) which are the weights for a 2 seat aircraft.  Engines can be from 70 HP up to 110 HP with 70 HP giving a cruise speed of around 75 mph.

Our only Ragwing Storch ZK-RWB is registered as a single seat Class 1 microlight.

ZK-RWB (c/n RW 19) was built by Wayne Wilson of Christchurch and was registered to him on 2/7/04.  Its first flight was 2 days later, at Rangiora, on 4/7/04.  It was originally fitted with a Subaru EA 81 engine with a 2.2:1 reduction gear driving an Ivoprop 3 bladed propellor as in these photos from Wayne Wilson, taken at Rangiora.

On 8/3/10 ZK-RWB was purchased by Ivan Campbell of Loburn Abbey, not far from Rangiora.  Ivan re-engined the aircraft was a Rotec R 2800 radial engine of 110 HP as in this photo taken at Loburn Abbey on 27/1/12..

Towards the end of the war - in 1944 when France was liberated, production of the Fieseler Storch at the Morane Saulnier factory was continued at rhe request of the French Armee de l'Áir for their use.  After the stock of in-line German Argus engines was exhausted, the Morane Saulnier Storchs were engined with various radial engines, so the aircraft is still representative of the appearance of a wartime Storch.

The Campbell's have also carried out a lot of detail work on ZK-RWB which can be seen by comparing the above photos.  It now has more accurate cockpit glazing and is fitted with slats, as well as having a complete repaint.

Friday 29 July 2016

Ragwing Aircraft of New Zealand (4) - Roger Mann Ragwing Special PT2S

I was previously unaware that we have had one of these aircraft in New Zealand as it was a bit obscure and was inactive for most of its life at Dargaville.

Roger Mann's eighth aircraft design was the Aero Special PT2S with the PT2S standing for Pilot Trainer 2 Seater (actually when you think about it a pilot trainer has to be a 2 seater?).  It was a side by side 2 seater taildragger design with a strut braced high wing.  Its length is 17 feet (5.19 metres) and wingspan is 30 feet (9.14 metres).  Empty weight is around 460 pound (209 Kg) and MAUW is 900 pounds (408 Kg).  Engines can range from the 50 HP Rotax 503 up to 75 HP engines.

Our only Ragwing Special PT2S was ZK-DBC2 (c/n 2003 BC-1) which was built by Brydon Crawford of Tangiteroria, near Dargaville and is photo'd above by Brydon fully assembled and before covering.  ZK-DBC2 was fitted with a 75 HP HAPI engine and it was first registered on 26/9/03.

ZK-DBC2 was completed and assembled at Dargaville where it test flew on 3/4/04  However I believe that it did not fly very successfully.  Its registration was cancelled on 23/4/09.  It is photo'd above by Jean 210 in the back of a hangar at Dargaville in May 2011 where it had languished for some years.

Some time in 2012 the aircraft was purchased by Alan Falconer of Te Kawa in the Waikato and he transported it back to Te Kawa as seen in this photo from the Dargaville Aero Club Windsock magazine from Winter 2012 (thanks to Jean 201 for the reference and Greg Van Der Hulst for the photo)..

I understand that Alan Falconer is still rebuilding the aircraft and as can be seen from this photo by Greg Van Der Hulst he has installed a raised turtle deck that is reckoned to improve the flying characteristics of the aircraft.  So we may see this aircraft registered again, but it will not be as ZK-DBC because ZK-DBC3 has recently been allocated to a Zenair CH 701.

Thursday 28 July 2016

I spy at NZCH today.

A couple of shots I captured today at Christchurch International.
 Returning from another mission is Christchurch Helicopters Guimbal Cabri G2 ZK-HLU4 (c/n 1101).
Pacific Jets Cessna Citation CJ4 ZK-OCB (c/n 525C-0112) is on the visitors park.

Both have featured previously in these pages.

Wednesday 27 July 2016

Topdressing Action from Maungaturoto This Afternoon 27-7-2016

Heading back from Dargaville late this afternoon around 5 pm, the wind had dropped and the local Maungaturoto Fletcher 950 ZK-DEQ was out dropping some fertiliser, so I stopped for a couple of loads.


 Take off down the slope...

 The 400 HP Fletcher has a really grunty sound...

 Climb out...

 Back again landing up the slope with a tailwind...

 And loading again for the next drop.

ZK-DEQ is owned by M Hargreaves Ltd of SH 12, Maungaturoto, and here is said State Highway 12.

John Oakes

John Oakes

Gone too soon.

John passed away on Saturday with a farewell service being held in Oamaru this afternoon.

See :-

Monday 25 July 2016

Cessna 172A ZK-WPO

Back on the 10th of July the Wanganui Aero Club held a breakfast ly in at the Flat Hills Strip.
One of the attendees was the Cessna 172A ZK-WPO.
This Cessna 172A was a product of 1960 out of the Cessna plant at Wichita, Kansas and was allocated the US registration of N9832T and the construction number of 47632 on the production line.
This was shipped out to Australia where it became VH-WPC in March of 1960 - the personalised registration of the Whitney Pastoral Co of Carooa, NSW.
They traded up to a Cessna 182 in 1966 and kept their VH-WPC registration - changing the 172 to VH-WPO through Hazair Sales and Services Pty Ltd at Orange in NSW.
It quickly sold to K and M Motors Pty Ltd at Fairy Meadows, NSW but was back with Hazair in 1967 before being on sold to  R J and H M Lynch at Echuca in Victoria in 1968. 
It then had a brief spell with the Civil Flying Service Pty Ltd at Cheltenham Victoria until shifting to Nukarni in WA with G L Brown in 1970.
And we see it below as VH-WPO in November of 1970 - thanks to Geoff Goodhall.
Its last Australian owner was C Brown of Applecross, West Australia from January 1994.
Next thing we know it flys into Auckland from Norfolk Island on 03-06-1994 - Its Australian registration being cancelled on 05-07-1994 and it became ZK-WPO on the following day for A R Miers of Palmerston North.
It is pictured below at Wanaka on 14-04-2006.
It was re-listed to ZK-WPO Ltd (same owner) on 01-09-1999 and then to the Greenhill Partnership of Feilding on 27-05-2015.
A recent ownership change to Jason and Sarah Griffin of Palmerston North took effect from 09-06-2016 and it is seen above on the Flat Hills strip on 10-07-2016 - thanks to Jason.

Sunday 24 July 2016

RagWing Aircraft of New Zealand (3) - Ragwing Aero Specials

The RagWing Aero Special was Roger Mann's second aircraft design and was designed to be an ultralight look a like of the Pitts Special.  And ultralight it really is with and empty weight of around 276 pounds (126 Kg) and a MAUW of 550 pounds (249 Kg) althought his is increased to 299 Kg under New Zealand microlight regulations.  Engines can range in power from 35 to 65 HP which gives a cruise speed of around 70 mph.  It is also a very small aircraft with a length of 14 feet 8 inches (4.47 metres) and a wingspan of 18 feet (5.49 metres).

We have had two RagWing Aero Specials in New Zealand, both built in the Christchurch area which seems to have been a bit of a hotbed for RagWing aircraft.

ZK-MIK (c/n RWS070) was built by Mike Kindon of Rangiora and was first registered to him on 23/1/96.  It first flew in March 1996.  It was sold to Wayne Affleck of Invercargill on 14/12/96 and then to Bob Syron of Auckland on 1/1/02.  Bob Syron has an airstrip at the Whangarei Heads but kept his aircraft at Dargaville where the above photo was taken in 2002.

ZK-POP (c/n RWS086) was built by Barry H Gurdler and Bevin H Chamberlain of Christchurch and was first registered to them on 23/2/05, with ownership changing to solely Bevin Chamberlain on 27/7/05.  The aircraft started out with a Polikarpov style cowling as photo'd above at Rangiora on 8/5/05.

Unsurprisingly the barn door cowling was abandoned for a more conventional cowling, although it did fly with the Polikarpov cowling.  The above photo is also at Rangiora on 10/5/08.

And again on 26/12/15.  It has a Popeye motif on the tail and its c/n No 0086 on the rear fuselage.  It can also be seen that it has a VW engine.

Finally a shot showing the sunburst scheme on the wings and tailplane (this is an early photo with the Polikarpov cowling).  I believe it is hangared at Rangiora and is for sale.

Saturday 23 July 2016

Cessna 150H ZK-CXI and ZK-EFC.

The Cessna 150H c/n 15068215 was one of a batch destined for Rex Aviation at Bankstown in 1969. All had US and Australian registrations penciled against then  - but I suspect they were never worn on the aircraft from this group that came to NZ.
This airframe was duly allocated ZK-CXI for Rex Aviation (NZ) Ltd on 21-01-1970 and arrived at Auckland by sea on 10-02-1970.
Its first flight was at Ardmore on 04-05-1970 and it was delivered to the Rex Flying School Ltd at Ardmore. It also served at the other branches of this Flying School.
Below we see it at Paraparaumu on a wet 17-01-1971 with 'Paraparaumu' script on its fuselage side.
These were the days of the CAA Calibration  Flight DC-3's, with their Friendships about to arrive, and their Cessna 182's and the Navajo all being based here.
 Below - Also at Paraparaumu but on 21-02-1971.
And below - as seen at Hood Masterton in 1971 from Allan Wooller.
 The Rex Flying School became the Dalhoff and King Flying School Ltd at Ardmore and CXI was listed with them from 24-05-1976.
On 12-11-1976 Wellington Aero Club took it over followed by a move to O M Lund of Wellington at the end of March 1978.
An Allan Wooller pic below shows her at Wellington in 1978.
Winton was its next stop for CXI when it joined the Oreti Air Syndicate from 22-04-1980 which changed to the Smith, Neave, Udy, Vickery and Jones Syndicate from 18-11-1980.
From Mid December of 1982 it was with R F Emslie and D J Lundy of Feilding and Palmerston North.
Below we see it at Fielding on 22-07-1986.
Next in line, from 22-08-1988, the P A Munro and A J O'Rielly Syndicate of Feilding feature until it struck a fence on take off from Apiti on 28-07-1989, with its registration being cancelled on 12-12-1990.
Skyfix Aviation of Masterton sorted it out and it was re-registered to them on 24-05-1991 and then transferred back to Paul Munro of Feilding on 24-07-1991.
It is seen below at Ardmore on 19-03-2000.
Ken Morris and Darryn Morgan of Counties Aviation Ltd of Pukekohe took it over from 29-04-2002 until selling it on to Euroflight International Ltd at Mount Maunganui on 23-01-2006.
Euroflight re-registered it as ZK-EFC2 on 07-02-2006
Mohammad Asaduzzaman of Te Puke became the listed owner from 11-11-2009 and we see it below back on its old hard stand at Tauranga on 22-07-2016 thanks to Grayson Ottaway.
It now carries the script 'Charlie'.

Thursday 21 July 2016

RagWing Aircraft of New Zealand (2) - Pietenpol EXP

The RagWing Pietenpol was Roger Mann's first aircraft design and first flew in 1994.  It is also known as the RW 1 Ultrapiet.  It is an approximate 75% scale single seat version of the Pietenpol Aircamper that was designed under the US FAR 103 rules for ultralights.

The Pietenpol EXP is 15 feet (4.59 metres) in length and has a wingspan of 25 feet 6 inches (7.77 metres).  Empty weight is around 254 pounds (115 Kg) and MAUW is 550 pounds (249 Kg), although this is raised to 299 Kg in New Zealand.  Engines can range from 25 HP 2 up to 50 HP.  With 35 HP the cruise is around 55 mph so it is a very light and pretty slow microlight.

We have had one RagWing Pietenpol EXP in New Zealand:

ZK-RWA (c/n RW334) was built by Wayne Wilson of Christchurch and was registered to Lilian I Wilson on 19/10/95.  It first flew on 4/7/98.  It was originally powered by a Kawasaki 340 engine but has since been re-powered with a 50 HP Rotax 503.  It is still current and was photo'd above at Rangiora, where it is based,  on 8/1/14.


Registered to Southern Lakes Helicopters of Te Anau in early May this year is this Kawasaki BK117-C1 ZK-IMX. It was imported via Ardmore's Oceania Aviation and arrived as JA6793. A photo of ZK-IMX in its original Japanese scheme can be found HERE.

From Bluebus, JA6793 was built as a B-1 model and registered in Japan November 1996 for the Okayama City Fire Air Corps at Konan with whom it was given the name "Momotaro" who is a popular hero of Japanese folklore - often translated as "Peach Boy". It is the second helicopter in NZ to wear the ZK-IMX marks - the first was adorned on a Schweizer 269C with Ardmore Helicopters between late 2007 and early 2014. 

The helicopter arrived at a local truck painting firm at Washdyke outskirts of Timaru 20 July and appears to have already received some preliminary work.

Wednesday 20 July 2016

Roger Mann/Ragwing Aircraft of New Zealand (1) - Roger Mann Ragabond

Roger Mann founded RagWing Aircraft in 1987 and he produced its first design, the RW 1 Ultra Piet in 1991 (we have had one of these in New Zealand but more of that later).  The company produced numerous designs, of which most were of wood and fabric construction.  Its eleventh design was the RW 11 Ragabond which first flew in 1996.  It is an all wood and fabric side by side two seater that is modelled loosely on the Piper Vagabond.  We have had one Ragabond in New Zealand being the blue and yellow ZK-MGS which is aptly named 'Budgie".

The Ragabond is 18 feet (5.49 metres) in length and has a wingspan of 28 feet (8.53 metres).  Its wing area is 123 square feet.  Empty weight is around 420 pounds (191 Kg) and MAUW is 1,000 pounds (454 Kg).  Engines can range from the 50 HP 2 stroke Rotax 503 up to 70 HP.  With the Rotax 503 cruise is around 80 mph.

ZK-MGS (c/n 001) was registered to Gary and Margaret Skilton (hence the registration), of Warkworth on 28/3/02.  It is powered by a 64 HP Rotax 582.  On 15/9/04 it was sold to BR and JS Eaton of Kaitangata (who also built the Searey ZK-YAY), and then on 2/5/06 ownership transferred to Duncan S and JC Fraser of Harwarden.

It is now based at Forest Field where Dave Paull captured the above take-off photo on 6/10/13.

Monday 18 July 2016

Progressive Aerodyne Searey ZK-SRY at North Shore

Continuing with my theme of progressive Aerodyne Seareys.  Back on a lovely day in April, I was at North Shore airfield when the locally based Searey ZK-SRY took flight.  The following photos show some different views of the Searey.

On climb out with the wheels up and cockpit doors open.

On approach.


And further along the landing roll.

That's all for Seareys for the time being.  It would be great to get some water shots sometime.

Sunday 17 July 2016

Progressive Aerodyne Seareys in New Zealand - US Registered Examples

As I alluded to in my previous post on Seareys of New Zealand, we have had at least four American registered examples operating in our waters, as follows:

I think all of these aircraft have been associated with the owners of the superyacht SuRi, and all have been owned by Jemasa Inc of Los Angeles.

N609MK at Nelson in December 2010.  It suffered damage in Pelorous Sound on 2/01/11 when the cockpit filled with water during while taxying on the step.

Searey N415RK was also operated off the superyacht SuRi and is photo'd above at North Shore in January 2014.  I posted previously on this Searey at

The photo below shows the SuRi with some of its toys including a Searey on the rear deck, and you can see that they also carry a helicopter.  The SuRi seems to come to New Zealand for the summer most years.

There is a You Tube video of the SuRi's Searey operating off the ship in Indonesian waters at:

N415TA is photo'd at Ardmore in January 2015.  I think it might still be hangared at Ardmore.  Thyanks to our suster blog MRC Aviation for the photo.

N219SR is a late model aircraft that was imported into New Zealand in late 2015.  It is operated by the same owners as the SuRi and it was imported to operate from their international golf course at Mangawhai that caters for the tourist market.

And this photo shows off the Searey's wing shape which has a tapered leading edge.  The above photos were taken at Tauranga in January 2016.

Dominator ZK-REQ

On a dull Sunday afternoon Trevor Shadbolt of GoGyro Ltd goes aviating from Rangiora.
About to start up is the Auto Flight Dominator II ZK-REQ (c/n 012).
It has a date of manufacture of 06-11-2007 and was registered to David Campbell-Morrison of Waitakere City.
On 20-07-2010 it was transferred to Tony Turner of Whitianga and then on 22-02-2015 it was listed to GoGyro - then of Nelson but now of Pegasus - a newish northern Christchurch satellite suburb.
Back in the mid 80's Trevor was a member of the Delta Victor Syndicate with the Slingsby T51 Dart 15 glider and later operated the quickie ZK-MAC and also now has the AutoGyro Calidus ZK-RCZ2  under the GoGyro name.