Sunday 31 October 2021

A Spectacular "New" Stearman at Ardmore

The New Zealand Warbirds has recently posted photos of Russell Jenkins' spectacularly rebuilt and re-finished Stearman A75N1 ZK-RJS2 (c/n 75-647) at Ardmore after it was test flown last Wednesday (27/10/21 I think) by Frank Parker.

Russell's Stearman looks really smart in its period civilian colour scheme, and here Russell poses by his "new" aircraft.

Just lovely in the sun.

And the Continental W 670 radial engine is equally immaculate.

It wears a period style Flying A Aero-Type Gasoline logo.

But this aircraft has actually been in New Zealand since around the year 2000 as N9163R when I understand it was imported by Len Cowper (who also imported our first Stearman back in 1982).

Here is N9163R at Masterton on 28/1/01, where you can see it had a huge front windscreen which formed part of a sliding canopy, as evidenced by the canopy rails along the fuselage.

And here it is photo'd at Ardmore in 2003 by Flyernzl.

On 9/8/04 it was registered as ZK-RRR to the well known radio and TV broadcaster, the late Paul Holmes, however I think he owned it prior to this as he had a well publicised forced landing in the aircraft in January 2004 at Ngamatea Station about 60 km from Hastings, and the aircraft was damaged.

The above photo was taken by John Cowpland at Bridge Pa aerodrome at Hastings on 26/12/04, and is from the Setford News Photo Agency files.  Thanks very much to Ross Setford for the use of these 2 photos.

John Cowpland was also around Bridge Pa aerodrome on 31/12/04 when Paul Holmes again crashed his Stearman, this time on take off and with considerable damage resulting.  

It was in this state that Russell Jenkins acquired the wreck and began his epic 11 year and 3 month restoration which culminated in the successful first flight of his ZK-RJS2 (no doubt for Russell Jenkins' Stearman).  Congratulations Russell!

November Question Time

 What aircraft type do we have here ?

If you know the type then you will be able to tell me the registration from the colour !

Thursday 28 October 2021

Tecnam P 2008s of New Zealand (3) - NZ Airline Academy Aircraft

I have previously posted about our Tecnam P 2008s back in August 2019 when there were seventeen examples that were registered here.  

Links to my previous posts are:  and:

Those posts are mainly up to date but ZK-MSA went to the Gore Aero Club on 15/8/20 and ZK-ZZD went to A J Caldwell of Edendale on 19/11/20.  In the second post I mentioned a new Tecnam agent at that time, and things have since moved on with the new New Zealand Tecnam agent being Neil Ross of FlyTecnam NZ ( ), based at Gore.  Neil has bought in several new Tecnam models and more are coming.

In the meantime the number of P 2008s that have been registered here has risen to twenty one aircraft and three of them have been re-registered (and there is another one that will be registered soon).  All of the recent P 2008s to have been registered the New Zealand Airline Academy Ltd at Oamaru, who now have eight of them on line.  The most recent six have been P 2008JC models which are registered as GA aircraft with a MAUW of 650 Kg, and they are detailed here:

ZK-MBN2 (c/n 069) was originally registered to John Nicholl's of Maunganui on 13/3/13.  It was registered to the NZ Airline Academy on 26/6/18.  It is photo'd above at Rangiora on 2/5/19.

On 19/6/19 it was re-registered as ZK-LBI as photo'd above at Rangiora on 28/6/19.  

ZK-TLT (c/n 123) was registered to Tecnam Australasia Ltd of Papakura on 2/11/17.  It was registered to the NZ Airline Academy on 12/12/18.  It is photo'd above at Rangiora on 23/5/19.

On 19/6/19 it was re-registered as ZK-DDY2 as photo'd above at Rangiora on 28/6/19.  

Then for a reason that I do not know, the NZ Airline Academy registered their third P 2008 (a JC model) as ZK-MBN3 (c/n 1146) on 15/7/19 (having re-registered their earlier P 2008 ZK-MBN2 as ZK-LBI as above).  It is photo'd above at Tauranga prior to delivery, on 24/7/19.

And it is photo'd here with its tail logo applied at Rangiora on 28/7/21.

And for the same reason that I do not know, the NZ Airline Academy registered their fourth P 2008 (a JC model) as ZK-TLT3 (c/n 1146) on 15/7/19 (having re-registered their earlier P 2008 ZK-TLT as ZK-DDY2 as above).  It is photo'd above at Tauranga prior to delivery, also on 24/7/19.

And it is photo'd here with its tail logo applied at Rangiora also on 28/7/21.

ZK-TJT (c/n 1162) was registered to the NZ Airline Academy on 4/3/20 and it is photo'd above at Tauranga prior to delivery on 13/3/20.

And here it is the next day with its tail logo applied, on 14/3/20 at Rangiora.

ZK-TKT (c/n 1163) was registered to the NZ Airline Academy on 4/3/20 and it is photo'd above at Tauranga prior to delivery on 13/3/20.

And here it is the next day with its tail logo applied, on 14/3/20 at Rangiora.

ZK-TOT2 (c/n 1184) was registered to the NZ Airline Academy on 4/6/20 and it is photo'd above on delivery through Paraparaumu on 13/6/20.

And it is photo'd here with its tail logo applied at Oamaru on 21/4/21.

ZK-TPT (c/n 1185) was registered to the NZ Airline Academy on 4/6/20 and it is also photo'd above on delivery through Paraparaumu on 13/6/20.

And it is photo'd here with its tail logo applied, at Oamaru on 2/12/20.

Wednesday 27 October 2021

Cessna T210N ZK-ETP

Pauanui based Cessna T210N Centurion II ZK-ETP has now emerged in a smart new paint scheme.  Originally imported new back in 1981 it has been with its current owners, Doug & Zoe Batten,  since 2018.


Tuesday 26 October 2021


Bill Mannix captured the scene at the GCH Aviation Rescue Helicopter Base at Nelson Airport his morning.

Nearest on the left is the Beechcraft C90A King Air ZK-FDN2 with the Kawasaki  BK117 B2 ZK-IMN and the  Aerospatiale AS 350 BA Squirrel ZK-HQT2 partially hidden by the Beechcraft B200C Super King Air ZK-FDR2 which was up from Christchurch on a patient transfer.

A piece of Nelson Airport history is about to be demolished.
This large number 3 hangar was built for the RNZAF and completed in July of 1941.
A new Crash Fire facility is to take its place.

Cessna A185F ZK-TWZ

Cessna A185F ZK-TWZ (c/n 18502289) was registered in New Zealand on 17/12/20.  This is what NZ Aviation News said about it at the time: 

Cessna 185’s are still a popular import with the latest listing being ZK-TWZ for Simon Williamson of Glenbrook Station (2010) Ltd out of Omarama. This is an A185F Skywagon model built as N3395S back in 1983 for delivery to the General Conference Corporation of Washington, DC. It was then listed to Merrill Nelson of Singapore in 1977 and then went on down to Australia to become VH-AIA3 from 16 January 1989 with Angus Von Douglas at Mareeba, Queensland. From 20 June 2013 it was with Kieran Brown of Buderim, Queensland and lastly to Glenbrook Station (2010) Ltd from 8 June 2020 and was operated by Steven Death of East Albury, NSW. It was ferried across – flying the Lord Howe Island to Christchurch leg on 13 November 2020. It replaces the older Cessna 185C ZK-SMW (Simon’s initials) as used by Simon since 2003.

Tim Gorman photo'd it about to depart Palmerston North yesterday 25/10/21.

Thanks for the photo Tim.

Monday 25 October 2021

Heading for home.

 The Auster J1 Autocrat ZK-ASL c/n 2150 escorted the four Tiger Moths from Pukaki to Omarama and then to Rangitata Island on Saturday the 23rd.
It departed for its home base at Forest Field later on Saturday.

Below is a view over the nose  - on track for home.

Sunday 24 October 2021

Rangitata Island landings.

 The four De Havilland DH82A Tiger Moths made it into Rangitata Island yesterday afternoon from Methven, Pukaka and Omarama accompanied by their support crew in ZK-OPM and several other DH aficionados in Auster ZK-ASL, Minicab ZK-RJK and Vans RV3 ZK-WHO.





                                                 The Rangitata Island based Tiger Moth ZK-BRL.

Saturday 23 October 2021


A return visit to Rangiora today was rewarded with the ICP Savannah S ZK-SVK outside for a quick wash.    This was registered in January 2021 to a Rangiora owner.


Friday 22 October 2021

Some Canterbury Robinsons

A stunning Canterbury day brought out some Robinson helicopters that have had little or no coverage on this blog, starting with R22 Beta ZK-HCF2 at Christchurch.   This was imported new in 1990 and has been with its current Greymouth owner since November 2020.

Doing training flights at Rangiora was R22 Beta II ZK-HOZ3.  This was imported from the US in 2004 and was acquired by its current owner,  Macsil Deer Farms of Christchurch just this month.

Also at Rangiora was R44 II ZK-IJT of Hurunui Helicopters, Amberley.   This was imported new in 2003 as ZK-IMP,  and has been with its current owner since June 2019.


Thursday 21 October 2021

Oamaru and beyond

A visit to Oamaru Airport today found a quiet NZ Airline Academy but outside was the latest addition to their otherwise all Tecnam fleet,  Cessna A152 Aerobat ZK-TXT.   This was imported from Australia in late 2020.

Up the road at the Helicopters South Canterbury base at Waitohi was AS350BA ZK-HMG3 which was acquired this month from Prosser Heli Ag of Fairlie.    It was imported from the US back in 2015.


Tuesday Tecnam Trio at Kaipara Flats

Being a nice day for flying, John Crone called from North Shore on Tuesday to say that he would come up to Kaipara Flats for an afternoon coffee and also that Ian Anderson and Francois Buys would fly up from Parakai.  So I went out to the airfield and put the jug on.

As I have been posting the histories of all of our Tecnam aircraft recently, I thought I would grab a photo of all the three Tecnams - Ian's Mk II Sierra ZK-EVE, John's Sierra RG ZK-TZS and the West Auckland Airport Company's Echo ZK-CDL2 flown by Francois.  We had a very pleasant socially distanced coffee, it was good to see you guys.

Wednesday 20 October 2021

Rangiora surprises today.

 A very nice addition to the Rangiora based aircraft fleet is the ex Omaka based Trevor Collins Fairchild 24 C8C ZK-ABE3 c/n 2605.
This arrived in from the States in late 2007 and following a lengthy major rebuild flew from Omaka on 01-05-2017.
It arrived from Omaka on the 10th.

Also dropping in was the Auster J4 Archer ZK-AXC c/n 2080 as listed with Byron Kelly from up Springs Junction way.
See previous posts here

The Fairchild is of 1934 vintage whilst the Auster is from 1946.

Couple more from Wanaka

Further visits to Wanaka Airport today noted a lot of activity including the Maule MX7-180A ZK-BMG2 which is locally owned and was imported from the US in 2018.

And receiving attention at Tailwind was Hughes 369HS ZK-HBY3 owned by the nearby Mt Burke Station.   This was originally imported from the US in 1994 as ZK-HMJ2, then ZK-HJD3 before becoming HBY.


The Pyka Egret

The answer to the recent Question Time is PYKA EGRET  

And the chocolate fish should go to Alex Hewson who was involved in the NZ portion of the project.

There were two airframes involved in NZ which were certified for operations under the Civil Aviation Rules Part 102 covering UAV operations. 

The NZ operation was classed as successful although somewhat curtailed by Covid.

This airframe has been donated to the Museum.

For more information check out :-
Also Mr GOOGLE has several other interesting links on this and other Pyka projects.

Alex has generously declined the chocolate fish so I have dealt with it.

Tecnam P 2004 Bravos of New Zealand (2) - 2006 and 2007 Aircraft

A further five Tecnam Bravos were imported during 2006 and 2007.  In order of their dates of registration they were:

ZK-LLY (c/n 039) was registered on 1/2/06 to Dr G M Rogers of Wanaka.  On 28/2/14 ownership changed to the Middle Districts Sport Flying Club of Feilding and it was ferried North on 12/3/14.  They changed their namre to the Feilding Flying Club on 11/8/14, and it is photo'd in their ownership at the 2017 RAANZ flyin at Rangiora on 1/4/17.

Also registered on the same day, 1/2/06 was ZK-OWE (c/n 038) for R A Owens of Christchurch.  It is photo'd above at Masterton on 22/2/06, possibly on its delivery flight South.  ZK-OWE became our shortest lived Tecnam when it crashed at Wanaka on 25/2/06 and was rolled up into a ball, making for a life of only 3 weeks!  It was cancelled from the register on 4/8/06.  We are fortunate to have a photo of it - thanks Dave.

ZK-DDL2 (c/n 051) was registered on 3/4/06 o Diamond Plant and Equipment Ltd of Kaiapoi.  On 18/11/06 it went to Minaret Enterprises Ltd of Wanaka and then on 22/6/07 back to Diamond Plant and Equipment Ltd.  On 26/7/09 ownership changes to M A Green of Timaru and then on 19/4/11 it went to the Glassford Partnership of Oxford.  It is photo'd above at the 2007 SAANZ flyin at Ashburton, on 4/2/07.  Most recently ownership has changed to D L Ainslie of Arrowtown, on 26/11/19.

ZK-RRG (c/n 061) was registered on 21/9/06 to R Goord of Amberly, and I believe it is still owned by him.  It is photo'd above at Rangiora on 2/10/11.

And the final P 2004 Bravo to be registered here was ZK-JTB (c/n 094) which was registered to M J (John) McCaul of Christchurch on 21/6/07.  It is still current with him at Rangiora where the above photo was taken on 4/11/07.

That ends the histories of Tecnam P 2004 Bravos of New Zealand.  I doubt if we will see any more of them registered here as production stopped quite a few years ago.