Tuesday 31 May 2022

Kawasaki BK117B-2 ZK-HDK (6)

Overflying Pauanui today was the BK117B-2 ZK-HDK6 which was imported by Airwork (NZ) Ltd from PNG back in 2020 and has now completed its refurbishment programme.   It arrived in an orange and white scheme but has retained the orange only the fins.

In a previous life it was ZK-HLU2 from 1995 to 2002 also with Airwork,  apart from 2 years with Helicopters Otago between 1999 and 2001.


Monday 30 May 2022

ICP Savannah S ZK-MRJ at Waihi Beach

I had not seen a photo of this Savannah previously, after it had been built by its original Wanganui owner, but recently it has had a change of ownership and is now based at the Waihi Beach airstrip and where it was photo'd recently by John Anderson:

ZK-MRJ (c/n 18-02-54-0591) was first registered to Mr J Plimmer of Wanganui on 18/8/20.  On 11/5/22 ownership changed to R P Swanney of Waihi Beach and it is photo'd in the hangar there.

Thanks for the photo John

Sunday 29 May 2022

Omaka Cessna 180/185 Fly In

A selection of the attendees at the excellent NZ Cessna 180/185 Club fly-in at Omaka this weekend are as follows,  starting with the A185F ZK-CDM2 which was imported from Vanuatu in 2019.  Initially all white it has now been painted in a smart new scheme and has been with its current Blenheim owner since earlier this year.

The 2nd usage of the registation ZK-DPF on a Cessna 185, the current example is an A185E model imported from the US in 2018 by its Christchurch owner, being registered after refurbishment in 2021. 

One of 3 Cessna 180's imported from Uruguay back in 2006 180C ZK-KRD has taken longer to get back in the air, being registered to its Otorohanga owner in 2021.   The other  ex Uruguay 180's are ZK-MDL and ZK-WGT.

The former Mt Cook skiplane A185F ZK-MCR was originally imported new in 1985 and has been completely refurbished for its current Mercer based owner.

And a 180 that despite being around since 1959 has somehow missed being blogged here is ZK-BMS which was ex USA used import and has been with its current Queenstown owner since 2000.


Friday 27 May 2022

You really should be here.

 Looking down on the gathering at Omaka late this afternoon.
The occasion is the 70th anniversary of the Cessna 180.
By my count there are 76 Cessna 180 and 185's in this line  up.
The front row are all Cessna 180's.

A couple more arrived after this photo was taken and I suspect some more arrivals tomorrow.
Thanks to Advanced  Group for this image.

A couple of helicopters

Noted at Nelson today was the locally based MBB Bo105CBS-4 ZK-IAA2.   Imported from the USA in 2018 for the AMH Trust this hasnt appeared on this blog before.    The registration letters are indistinctly on the boom.

Over at Omaka for the Cessna 180/185 fly-in was Schweizer 269C-1 ZK-HMC2 which was imported new back in 2007, and is currently owned by Waikaia Plains Station which is east of Lumsden.


Tecnam P 2008 JCs ZK-TBT/2 and ZK-TCT at Tauranga 26-5-2022

The Hairy Mole Rat also caught the latest two Tecnam P 2008 JCs outside in the sun at Tauranga, and these are from Solo Wings:

ZK-TBT2 (c/n 1236) was registered to the NZ Airline Academy Ltd of Oamaru on 27/4/22.

And ZK-TCT (c/n 1237) was also registered to them on the same day, 27/4/22.

These aircraft are registered under a GA certificate as Aeroplanes.  They will replace the NZAAs earlier Tecnam P 2008s ZK-DDY2 and ZK-LBI which are for sale on Trade Me. NZAAs fleet of P 2008 JCs stands at eight (plus the two noted for sale which are not JC models).

Thanks for the photos HMR - over to you Jordan!

Thursday 26 May 2022

Aero Designs Pulsar ZK-PBP at Tauranga Today 26-5-2022

As the nice weekend High builds in, it was time for Solo Wings to push out some sport aircraft that they have been working on (actually I am not sure this is an aircraft worked on by Solo Wings):

ZK-PBP (c/n 364) is an Aero Designs Pulsat XP UL that was imported into New Zealand quite some time ago from the US where its previous registration was N995BP.  I was registered here back on 19/10/20 to M J Saunders of Paeroa.  I believe he is Max Saunders of extensive sport flying experience from down the Kapiti Coast, (and who built the Flitzer ZK-FZR).

Thanks very much for the photo HMR.

Wednesday 25 May 2022

Otago into Canterbury

Noted parked up at a very windy Queenstown this morning was the latest addition to the Glenorchy Air fleet, Cessna 208B Grand Caravan EX ZK-PPR.   This is a brand new aircraft imported back in March.  

Over at Wanaka,  Alpine Helicopters had most of their fleet outside including Hughes 369D ZK-HOT8.  This was originally imported from the US back in 1985 as ZK-HUW moving onto HOT in December 2020 upon acquisition by Alpine.

Further up the road at Pukaki airfield the Oamaru based HeliVentures have a sub base with MD520N ZK-IET2 in residence.   This was originally imported from Canada as ZK-HEN3 in 2011, moving onto IET in 2018.   IET has recently been repainted in the company's fleet colours.


Tuesday 24 May 2022

Around Auckland

A wander around the airfields and heliports of Auckland today offered much of interest including at Ardmore the Vans RV3 ZK-XRD in a smart new paint scheme.   This was originally imported from the USA in 2009 and was acquired by its current Auckland owner in early 2021.

Over at AKL International was the latest addition to the Airwork Flight Operations freighter fleet, Boeing 737-4Y0 ZK-FXM2.    Built back in 1992 for THY Turkish Airlines it was converted to a freighter in 2013 and was operated in Europe until being purchased by Airwork.   It arrived on its delivery flight from Brisbane on 8 April.

At the HeleTranz base in Albany was the latest addition to the company's fleet,  AS350B3 ZK-HYZ4.  This was imported from the UK and registered just this month.

And a surprise outside at North Shore airfield was the Bell OH-58A Kiowa ZK-HPW3 which last appeared on this blog some 10 years ago.   It is registered to an Auckland owner and was imported from the US back in 1997.


Monday 23 May 2022

A Trio of Venoms

As we have a great photo of John Luff's Venom ZK-VNM3 as our header photo at present, I thought I would delve into why this is the third use of the registration ZK-VNM.

In fact all of the ZK-VNMs have been DH 112 Venoms that were built for the Swiss Air Force, as follows:

The first ZK-VNM (c/n 844) was a FB 60 model built for the Swiss Air Force in 1956 and with whom it wore the serial J-1634.  It arrived in Auckland in October 1985 but it was damaged in transit.  It was repaired and registered as ZK-VNM to Trevor T Bland on 9/1/87 with a first flight in New Zealand on 29/8/87.  It is photo'd above at Warbirds Over Wanaka in 1990, thanks for the use of the photo Gerard.  It was painted as WE434 which was a Venom that was leased from the RAF Far East Air Force and operated by 14 Squadron RNZAF in Malaysia in the 1950s.  On 16/10/90 ownership changed to Flightwatch Services of Howick (Grant Biel), but on 17/11/91 it lost power on takeoff from Ardmore and was damaged beyond repair.  It was cancelled from the register on 16/11/92.  I reckon it must have been our first warbird jet aircraft on the New Zealand civil register - can someone correct me if I am wrong?

ZK-VNM2 (c/n 448) was a Mk 4 model that was built in 1957 and served with the Swiss Air Force as J-1799.  After being withdrawn it was registered as G-BLIC to Aces High Ltd of Duxford, UK on 13/7/84.  After a year its UK registration was cancelled 7/6/85 after which it went to the US as N502DM for Consolidated Aviation Enterprises of East Middleburg, Vermont on 13/6/85.  It was operated by Warplanes Inc and after several more US owners its US registration was cancelled on 8/11/92 for export to New Zealand.  It was registered here as ZK-VNM2 to Rural Aviation (1963) Ltd of Auckland (Qwilton Biel) on 17/12/92.  Its first flight in New Zealand was on 23/1/93 at Ardmore after which it spent many years parked in the back of the Rural Aviation hangar at Ardmore until it was restored to flight in 2010 .  On 18/1/10 ownership transferred to Wanganui Sea and Air Charters (2006) Ltd (John Luff) and it underwent refurbishment at Ardmore for most of 2010, culminating in another test flight on 23/10/10.  It is photo'd above while test flying out of Ardmore in October 2010 courtesy of MRC Aviation, thanks Mike.   Sadly it did not last long after this as it was damaged on landing for the 2011 Wings Over Wairarapa airshow at Masterton on 21/1/11.   It was cancelled on 31/8/11 and it went to Brett Emeny, but is now on display at the Classic Fighters Museum at Tauranga Airport.
Which brings us to our third DH 112 Venom to be registered as ZK-VNM.  ZK-VNM3 (c/n 840) is a FB 50 model that was manufactured by the Federal Aircraft Factory at Emmen in Switzerland in 1956 (one of 250 Venoms they built under license) and it was taken on strength by the Swiss Air Force as J-1630.  After being retired in the mid 1980s it underwent a 4 year restoration by Halos AG at lausanne before entering the Swiss civil register as HB-RVA and test flying at Altenrhein on 22/6/88.  On 6/8/02 ownership changed to Pegus AG and it was operated by the Swiss Flying Museum until its cancellation from the Swiss civil register on 24/11/11.  It was noted at Ardmore in March 2012 and on 10/10/12 it was registered to Wanganui Sea and Air Charters (2006) Ltd, still John Luff.  Its first flight in New Zealand was on 11/11/12 at Ardmore and since then it has been based at Wanganui and been displayed widely at airshows around New Zealand.  It is photo'd above at Ardmore on 23/8/12 and as can be seen it is painted in the same colours as the first ZK-VNM, that of WE 434, a Venom that was leased from the RAF Far East Air Force and operated by 14 Squadron RNZAF in Malaysia in the 1950s.  Thanks again for the photo Mike.

And thanks also to Blue Bus for the above histories of these interesting aircraft.

Saturday 21 May 2022

Zephyr Airworks Mule ZK-UZB

Following Blue Bus's post on the Zephyr Airworks Mule ZK-UZA, I realised that we had not covered its stable mate ZK-UZB in a blog post (we did feature it as a heading photo but you can't search for that).  So herewith ZK-UZB:

ZK-UZB (c/n 004) was registered to Wisk NZ LLC on 209'18.  I photo'd it at Tekapo on 9/9/19 when it was undergoing test flying - here being towed out from behind the bunker that kept prying eyes at bay.

And after start up it took to the skies.  I recall that it was quite stable but it was surprisingly noisy (not from the electric engines but from the propellors).  It was cancelled on 20/9/21 as withdrawn.  I guess their work in New Zealand has finished.

Wisk Aero is a joint venture between Boeing and the Kitty Hawk Corporation which was formed in 2019.  I see that Wisk Aero has recently partnered with the City of Long Beach to provide an Advanced Air Mobility programme (That is an eVTOL taxi service) within the next 2 years.

Friday 20 May 2022

Zephyr Airworks Mule ZK-UZA

Noted last month at the RNZAF Air Force Museum of New Zealand at Wigram was the Zephyr Airworks Mule SPA ZK-UZA 
c/n 002. 
First listed as N302XZ to Kitty Hawk Corporation of Mountain View, California from 02-08-2017.
It came to NZ and became ZK-UZA with Zephyr Airworks LLC of Wellington on 03-10-2017, with a change to Wisk New Zealand LLC from 12-10-2020.
It was withdrawn and cancelled on 13-04-2021.
An early post on this aircraft can be see at :-


Wednesday 18 May 2022

Fletcher FU24 ZK-BII

 Fletcher FU24-950M ZK-BII c/n 36 first flew back on 20-12-1955.
It was spotted today at Hastings by Des Smith.
Note the small letter "i" hidden in the registration letters on the fin.
It has been with Don Hart of Skyfarmers and based near Methven since mid 1991.

Cessna 172S ZK-NAY

Noted at Ardmore this week was the former Nelson Aviation College Cessna 172S ZK-NAY2,  now minus all the College's scripting and emblem.   It was imported from Australia in 2019.


Saturday 14 May 2022

A couple of Vans RV7s

Amongst the visitors to Pauanui this morning before the rain set in were a couple of Vans RV7s,  being our latest RV7 registrant up from Tauranga,  RV7A ZK-MEL3 which was imported from the US earlier this year.

And the tailwheel RV7 ZK-WOS2 which was imported from Australia in 2019 for a Napier owner,  moving onto its current Whitianga owner in late 2021.

 The RV7 is our most popular Vans model with 31 currently registered.

Bombardier Global Express N372BC

 Bombardier BD-700-1A10 Global Express N372BC c/n 9413 has been noted parked at Hamilton and Auckland and more recently at Nelson Airport next to the Crash Fire unit since 23-04-2022.

Photo at Nelson from Bill Mannix.It started life as C-GGFJ, then to M-GLOB and G-GLOB and then to N372BC with Air BC in October of 2021.

It then disappeared into the books of the Bank of Utah from 25-10-2021 and appears to be blocked from the 'flight radar' platforms.

Question time.

 A photograph taken by Des Smith alongside State Highway 2 near Napier back on the 12th shows the Fairchild Hiller FH1100 ZK-HKN c/n 158 which has been with Sowersby Engineering Ltd since July of 1993.
No problems with that !
The question is :-

Can anyone identify the red helicopter on the left of the photo ?

Rangiora on Friday the 13th.

A beautiful still cool morning at Rangiora had Don Payne out in his recently restored Pterodactyl Ascender ZK-EZC c/n MAANZ/087.
Don has an airstrip on his property within the Christchurch Control Zone and has fitted ZK-EZC with a VHF radio and a ADSB.

Also out and about was the Zenair CH701 SP ZK-ZMX c/n 7-9741 of Jamie Bertie.

And parked out to allow others to exit the hangar was the Zenair CH701 STOL ZK-TIA c/n 7-4514 of Chris Anderson.

Ravensdown Aerowork had their Company 'hack' Cessna A185E ZK-LJG c/n 185-1009 down from Whanganui with a team working on their Cresco in the background. 
In an earlier lifetime this was ZK-COH, a ski plane with The Mount Cook Group.

And another shot of the CRAC Tecnam Echo MkII P92 ZK-RGE c/n 1657.

Friday 13 May 2022

And Another Jet

I had to make a trip down to Ardmore today for an replacement Dzus fastener for my Jodel's cowling.  Thanks to Warren Denholm for rummaging around a box of fasteners to come up with one that was suitable.  As always there was interesting aircraft restoration going on inside Avspecs, and outside was the CAC CA-27 Avon Sabre A94-922:

This aircraft was associated with Jerry Yagen and I wonder if it is going to have some work done on it?  (In the background is a quite different single seat aircraft).

A couple of new Tecnams and a Jet

A brief visit to Tauranga Airport today found our latest 2 Tecnam imports being P2008JCs ZK-TBT2 and ZK-TCT on assembly for Oamaru based NZ Airline Academy.

They are destined to replace P2008s ZK-DDY2 and ZK-LBI, which are both for sale on Trade Me.

Outside Classic Flyers was the Cessna A37B ZK-JTL which has been registered to Jet Trainers Ltd, Ardmore since 1992.


Thursday 12 May 2022

Something Really Different at Kaipara Flats Today 12-5-2022

After several years of inactivity in hangars at Kaipara Flats airfield, Kevin Mills' Aero Gare Sea Hawk ZK-SEA completed a new Annual Inspection today and it was outside running and checking out a new prop that produced better static RPMs.

It was a spectacular day for flying in the North today, so after the Annual was signed off in the late afternoon Kevin took it out for a flight in perfect conditions and lovely late afternoon sun:

Annual completed.

After a thorough pre-flight inspection Kevin taxied out.

and into the very low late afternoon sun.

After a couple of high speed taxy runs he was off!

Climb out with the undercarriage up.

A very distinctive silhouette.

Looking good on approach.

And in for a nice landing.  Kevin flew several circuits and the Sea Hawk looked real good!