Monday, 9 December 2019

Rangitata airlift.

Just a couple more of the numerous aircraft and helicopters that took part in the transfer of during the closure of State Highway 1 at the Rangitata River.
 Both photos taken today by Tony McFarlin.
 The Bell 206B Jet Ranger III ZK-IOI (c/n 3060) of Helicopters South Canterbury 2015 Ltd.
And the Gippsland GA-8 Airvan ZK-SLW (c/n GA8-08-136) From Southern Lakes Aviation Ltd of Queenstown.

Hamilton and Te Kowhai on 2-12-2019

I finished my road trip on Monday one week ago, by driving from Te Kuiti back home to Warkworth.  Of course this required driving past a few airports as follows:

At Hamilton the PZL Gawron is moving closer to New Zealand certification with its Hungarian registration removed.

John Currie's Jodel D 11 ZK-EJN was having some maintenance carried out.  I believe it is based at Rotorua but I haven't seen it for a long time.

And a new AS 350B2 Squirrel ZK-HRK3 (c/n 3835) was being assembled.  It is ex N916EM and was registered to  Rotor Flight NZ Ltd of Clevedon on 9/10/19.

Across at Pacific Aerospace their new E 350 Expedition utility aircraft looked to be structurally complete with its engine and propeller installed.

Then at Te Kowhai the Ardmore based Cherokee 140 ZK-DNE was the only unusual aircraft parked out.  Although it always seems to be there, it has not been covered on the blog in its black scheme.  Not the prettiest plane IMHO.

Around Auckland

 A trip around the airfields and heliports of Auckland over the last 2 days revealed a few aircraft of interest including at Ardmore Glenorchy Air's GA8 Airvan ZK-LOR in the company's new fleet colour scheme.

They are due to add a brand new Cessna T206H Stationair HD ZK-JTK to their fleet this month and in April 2020 a new Cessna 208B Grand Caravan EX ZK-MMZ.

Another addition to the Air Auckland fleet is Cessna 172N ZK-EJU

And down at Mechanics Bay was the Helicopter Me   (North Shore Helicopters) AS350B2 ZK-HBQ5 which was imported back in November 2018 from the USA.

Sunday, 8 December 2019

Feilding on 1-12-2019

Heading home one week ago I called in to Feilding Aerodrome which was quite busy with the Feilding Flying Club holding their Christmas event.

Craig Grant had both of his aircraft out of their hangar for a nice photographic opportunity.  His TL 2000 Sting ZK-STG2 has been repainted in this crisp new factory based colour scheme.

Also out was his Jabiru J 160UL ZK-CCG2.

Next door in Peter Flintoff's immaculate hangar were his Jabiru J 230UL ZK-SLR,

and his Aviat A1C Husky ZK-NWY2 which was joined by a really accurate one quarter scale model that Peter told me he has just spent 2 years building.  They looked great together!

Rangitata River crossing airlift continues.

With the closing of State Highway 1 at the Rangitata River Air Safari and Services (NZ) Ltd are providing flights from Timaru to Christchurch or return.
Simon Brown has captured their Cessna 208 Grand Caravan ZK-SRX (c/n 208B5285) and their GAF N24A Nomad ZK-NMD2 (c/n N24A-60) at Timaru earlier this morning

Also being utilised is the Timaru based Bell 206B JetRanger ZK-ISM (c/n 3667) of Southern Wide Helicopters

Saturday, 7 December 2019

Northern Aviators Club Christmas BBQ at Kaipara Flats 7-12-2019 (1)

The Northern Aviators Club kicked off their summer flyin programme today at Kaipara Flats today with around 20 aircraft arriving for the Christmas BBQ.  A few others were deterred by the weather in the Coromandel area and the forecast of afternoon thunderstorms.  However said thunderstorms did not eventuate until mid afternoon, by which time all of the visiting aircraft had departed.

Rusty Russell offered me a flight in his MTO3 Eagle gyrocopter ZK-RBG to capture an aerial view of the flyin:  Thanks very much Rusty.

Rolling on Runway 25

Gyrocopter shadow among the cows.

 The visiting aircraft with Bruce Lynch's new hangar under construction bottom right.

And in further airfield developments, earthworks have started on the 8 hangar/house lots on the Southern side of the runway.

A wider view of the airfield.
While we in the circuit Roger Coleclough joined and landed in his Searey ZK-SRY and we got a nice view from overhead.

Air Auckland

Two of the Ardmore based Air Auckland fleet came into Pauanui today to operate a series of charter flights out to Slipper Island just offshore.

These comprised the latest addition to their fleet,  Cessna T206H ZK-DZH2, which was imported from Australia and registered in November 2019.   This carries both the company's and Chinese titling.

And Cessna 172N ZK-MDV which also now carries dual English and Chinese titling.

Savannah S ZK-CDZ and others.

Yesterday 6 December 2019 the ICP Savannah S ZK-CDZ2 (c/n 16-06-54-0478) had its CAA survey carried out and its Permit to Fly issued at the Westwind Aviation facility at Forest Field.
Test flying will be carried out by Tony Den Haan.
See the earlier post on ZK-CDZ2  here.
Other news from Forest Field is that two more factory built ICP Savannah's are now on the way to NZ.
Below we see one of them prior to being dismantled and placed into its container.

And then we see the two of them plastic wrapped and ready to be containerised.
Labels on the wing tips would indicate these are c/n 694 and 695.
Thanks to Philip Seale of Westwind Aviation for the photos and update.

Air Nelson Q 300s are Now Air New Zealand Q 300s

Well you can't beat Wellington on a good day, and last Saturday sure was a really good day.  Due to family commitments I only managed a short time at the airport later in the afternoon and only took one photo:

That was of the unremarkable Air New Zealand Q 300 ZK-NFA2.  However there is something different about it as it is no longer registered to Air Nelson Ltd but it transferred to Air New Zealand ownership on 18/11/19, along with the rest of the Air Nelson Q 300 fleet.

If you look closely, it no longer has the small script "Operated by Air Nelson Ltd" below the Star Alliance logo.

To prove I am not making this up(!) here is said script on ZK-NEP in January 2015.

Friday, 6 December 2019


A visit to Hastings airfield a few days after Sir Minty (see below) provided some more aircraft of interest including the Helicopters Hawkes Bay Bell 206B sprayer ZK-HBJ3

The only twin in the large Air Hawkes Bay fleet is Diamond DA42 ZK-SHB imported from Australia in 2017

And the latest addition, also from Australia, is Cessna 152 ZK-TOE which was registered in November 2019

Caravan ZK-EAV

The new Cessna 208 Caravan ZK-EAV2 (c/n 20800659) was noted yesterday at Timaru on a training flight from Wellington.
This Caravan arrived in Wellington as N874ET on 24-11-2019 after a ferry flight from Eisenhower Airport at Wichita in Kansas with stops at Colorado Springs, Merced, Honolulu, Samoa and Auckland.
It is now registered to Evander Aviation Ltd of Wellington and replaces the Cessna T206H ZK-JWH.
Simon Brown photographs.
The first ZK-EAV was a NZAI CT4A Airtrainer built for the RAAF in 1975 and which is still currently active on the Australian civil register.

Masterton on 30/11/19

Driving on South through the Wairarapa I arrived at Hood Aerodrome at Masterton late morning.  The claggy weather had cleared and it was a lovely day which made for a lot of aircraft activity:

Kapiti Warbirds Ltd's North American Harvard 3 ZK-END (ex NZ1096) was doing circuits.  This Harvard does not appear to have been posted on the blog previously which is surprising.

While Greg Tetzlaff taxied out in his Honda powered Titan Mustang ZK-MLE.

Anton Dittmer's First Strike Bobcat ZK-RDL was parked up, having tried but failed to make it to Waipukurau on delivery to a new owner, due to the low cloud.

The recently arrived in the Wairarapa Beagle A 109 Airedale ZK-CCW of Clemente Castro Cervino was also parked out having accompanied ZK-RDL in attempting to head North.

The very smart looking Just Super STOL XL ZK-DKL2 (c/n JA-491-05-16) was registered to D B Adgo of Silverstream on 31/7/19, and we have previously posted a photo of it being towed over the Remutakas on its very sophisticated trailer.  It is powered by a Continental Titan X 340 engine of 180 HP.  I was told that has nearly finished its test flying period.  An impressive aircraft!

Also parked out was the ex Austrian Air Force Agusta-Bell AB 206A Jetranger ZK-HMU3.

Back from a local flight was the new ICP Savannah S ZK-SVA (c/n 14-11-54-0360) which was registered to R L Irving of Masterton on 9/10/19.  It was nice to catch up briefly with the local Savannah guys and as they pointed out, the Savannah is becoming a very popular aircraft in New Zealand.

And finally the Harvard ended its session and taxied back in.

Thursday, 5 December 2019

Taupo Helicopters

Theres always a lot of helicopter activity at Taupo and today was no exception with the following being noted amongst the regulars.

The very gold AS350B2 ZK-HHZ4 was imported from Brazil in March 2019 and is now registered to a Taupo private owner

Locally based Inflite have added AS355F1 ZK-IAV to their fleet,  this being reregistered back to IAV from ZK-HGO in October 2019

And Gisborne Helicopters have added AS350B2 ZK-IDI sprayer,  this being formerly operated by the now defunct Queenstown Heli Tours.

A Couple of Crescos

I was pleased to be able to see a couple of Crescos that were new to me on my trip down to Wellington and back.

At Waipukurau the all pink Cresco ZK-TPW (c/n 034) arrived back for fuel.  It is registered to Rural Air Work Ltd of Otane.

Someone on the blog has wondered what the registration letters TPW stand for.  I reckon it is for Turbine Pratt and Whitney.  And as you can see on the current blog header of another Cresco ZK- PWT (c/n 010), I reckon the registration letters PWT are for Pratt and Whitney Turbine.  Both of these Crescos have been re-registered (ZK-TPW from ZK-JOH (and VH-MOS and ZK-SDT before that), and ZK-PWT from ZK-TMN).  I think they were both re-registered by Griffin Ag Air.

And as an aside, I saw ZK-PWT topdressing near Mangatainoka on my was South through the Wairarapa.

Meanwhile, at Feilding on my way back North was the newly registered Cresco ZK-PGE (c/n 016) for Super Air.  This has recently returned from Australia where it was VH-PGE for the Superair Australia, and it has retained their colour scheme.  Prrior to that it was ZK-PNX2.  I understand that it is going to be based at Wanganui.