A few weeks ago I had to pop out the Kaipara Flats airfield at the time that the local model aircraft club was holding a big flyin and Christmas BBQ. There were quite a few models there and a lot of flying was going on as it was a really nice day. There was one really impressive large scale model there that took my fancy as it reminded me a bit of the Milholland Legal Eagle ZK-LLX that I have recently posted about:
Thursday, 31 December 2020
Wednesday, 30 December 2020
Snapped in the circuit at Christchurch by Tony McFarlin on 29-12-2020 was the Beechcraft B58 Baron ZK-KJV (c/n TH 1384).
Tuesday, 29 December 2020
Monday, 28 December 2020
I travelled up to Whangarei today, by car as the wind was forecast to be too strong for the Jodel. And so it turned out to be, managing quite a stiff crosswind to both of the runways.
The Mercury Bay Aero Club displayed their 2 Vans RV12-UL aircraft, ZK-MBA2 and MBB3. The latter was only recently completed and registered in November 2020.
Providing a spirited display was the Ardmore based Extra EA300 ZK-XLX which was imported from South Africa and registered in October 2020
Over from Matamata was DHC1 Chipmunk Mk22 ZK-SKH which was imported from the UK in 2002 and has been with its current owner since 2011.
And hidden in the depths of one of the hangars was locally based Super Cub 95 ZK-BSK which hasnt often been photographed in recent years. It has been Whitianga based since 2000.
Saturday, 26 December 2020
In April 2020 I had almost "finished" my series of Sport Aircraft of New Zealand that I started with Druine Turbulents of New Zealand way back in April 2010. But then as was bound to happen, another new type of sport aircraft was registered being an example of the interestingly named Milholland Legal Eagle.
Leonard Milholland of Brookshire TX designed his Legal Eagle Part 103 FAR basic ultralight in the 1990s and it first flew in 1998. When it came out with an empty weight 10 pounds under the 254 pound limit he declared "this eagle is legal!" and the name stuck. You can see an interview with Leonard Milholland at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RbM0PkhH5Xc Further developments saw the introduction of the Legal Eagle XL for heavier pilots (which still qualifies under Part 103), and the Double Eagle two seater. Leonard Milholland also sells plans for Better Half VW engines which utilise his own design of 2 cylinders with a full crankcase.
Construction is of a welded 4130 steel tube fuselage with fabric covered wooden wings. The specifications for the Legal Eagle XL are: wingspan 26 feet 3 inches (8.00 metres), wing area 120.3 square feet, length 16 feet 1 inch (4.9 metres). Empty weight 245 pounds dry (112 Kg) and in NZ the MAUW is 573 pounds (260 Kg). In the US many Legal Eagles are powered by the Better Half VW which produces around 30 HP, and this gives a cruise speed of around 60 mph. It is said to fly like a slow Cub which is a pretty good recommendation.
Friday, 25 December 2020
Wednesday, 23 December 2020
Just in time to be a wonderful Christmas present for some lucky person, Spitfire LF Mk XVI ZK-NLJ/TB252 test flew from Ardmore on 18/12/20 flown by John Lamont:
Tuesday, 22 December 2020
Over at Airwork was the Kawasaki BK117B-2 ZK-IFO which was registered to Auckland based Helilink in October 2020. This was imported from Papua New Guinea.
And former all red HeliPro AS355F1 ZK-HYN2 has been repainted a very bright blue and was acquired by Auckland based WSV Racing in October 2020. This was imported from Japan back in 2002.
Parked on the Ardmore Flying School ramp was Diamond DA40F ZK-JME which was imported from the US and registered to J M Elder of Rotorua in September 2020.
Monday, 21 December 2020
The Aerospatiale AS 350 B2's ZK-HNB2 (c/n 2279) and ZK-HWG2 (c/n 2816) of Heli Support International Ltd flew up from Wanaka to the Port of Lyttelton today via the east coast and out around Banks Peninsula to land on the 'Cruise Berth' close to the Italian icebreaker RV Laura Basi which is due to sail for Terra Nova Bay, Antarctica, tomorrow.
And from the Auckland based Advanced Flight's fleet of black Airbus helicopters came EC130B4 ZK-IBX2 which was imported new in 2008.
Following my post on the new Cresco ZK-SUZ I checked the Pacific Aerospace Facebook page and they had added more posts including a photo of its first flight on 4/12 20:
First lift off.
PAL say that this new Cresco has several updates including improved cockpit sealing and it uses more XL 750 components. And they also say that there are likely to be more Crescos in 2021.
Continuing the theme of Pacific Aerospace, I came across an interesting video on their website so I took a screenshot:https://nzcivair.blogspot.com/2019/12/a-couple-of-crescos.html ).
Sunday, 20 December 2020
Pacific Aerospace 750XL with the constructors number 159 was registered as ZK-KAX on 12-08-2009 and first flew from Hamilton on 03-09-2009 and gained its CofA on the 9th.
ZK-KAX was cancelled on 02-05-2011 to become P2-BWF with Central Aviation Services Pty Ltd of Mt Hagen, PNG from 25-05-2011 and it ferried out via Kaitaia for Norfolk Island on 05-06-2011.
After its time in PNG it was ferried back to NZ reaching Hamilton from Kerikeri on 03-02-2020 and was registered as ZK-DVE2 on 17-02-2020 to Infinite Ski Planes Ltd for deliver to Motueka on the 22nd.
And below as seen today at Motueka thanks to Lord Nelson.
Arriving after a charter flight was the A109S Grand ZK-HBH6 which has been with the company since importation from Australia in 2015. An additional large hangar has now been completed on the company's site to house a number of privately owned Airbus helicopters.
Further up the road at North Shore airfield Steve Taylor was working to complete his very smart Vans RV12iS ZK-TSP to gain CAA clearance for a first flight.
Above is the Cessna 650 Citation N162JM c/n 650-0163 parked Aero Club side. Previously Wellington based but now with a new owner in Christchurch.
Tauranga is a hotbed for new sport aircraft and another new one was photo'd by Warwick Hamilton last Tuesday 15/12/20:
Friday, 18 December 2020
The Zlin Aviation Shock Cub is a specially developed STOL aircraft based on the Savage Cub. Their website describes it in very flowery language at: https://www.zlinaero.com/prodotti.php?id=17&lang=2 The New Zealand agents for Zlin Aviation are Sports Aircraft New Zeakland Ltd of Wellsford (Tim Harrison) and the company imported ZK-OIL2 after many delays culminating with a projected delay with unloading at Auckland so Tim elected to send the container on to Tauranga for unloading and assembly.
However despite the rhetoric on the website it is a very capable STOL aircraft and has acquitted itself well at the mecca of STOL, Valdez in Alaska. The main differences from the Savage Cub are in the undercarriage which is a totally new design with long travel shock absorbers and big tyres, and the all new wing which is claimed to have a "hyper STOL profile", and has double slotted flaps. An optional extra are fixed carbon-fibre slats and ZK-OIL2 is fitted with these, as can be seen. The performance focuses on STOL with a claimed minimum flight speed (one up) of 18 mph! and again with one up the best landing roll at Valdez 2019 was 12 metres!2 (c/n 371) was registered to JD Simpson of Karamea on 7/12/20 and it is photo'd above by Warwick Hamilton at Tauranga on 15/12/20. I understand that it is powered by a Rotax 915 engine.
Thursday, 17 December 2020
Wednesday, 16 December 2020
Up from Masterton is the 1973 model Piper PA32-300 ZK-WGO of Stuart Aviation, also being an import from Australia back in 1994.
The second Extra 300 to be registered here (and the only one still here after ZK-XRA was exported to Canada in January 2018), came from South Africa where it was registered ZS-TIY. Dave Homewood photo'd it at the recent NZ Warbirds Open Day at Ardmore back on 6/12/20: