Sunday, 29 June 2008


Pic taken at Christchurch 08-10-1995
A bit of grotty weather web site browsing found that the ex Mt Cook HS748 ZK-MCB/2 has found another home.
Try looking (if you have a lot of time to spare) at
To find the MCB ref; click on "Photos by friends & guests" then click on page 13 and drill your way down until you find a pic of it in its new identity of S2-AAX.

It started life as G-BGMO (c/n 1767) on 09-03-1779 and went to Trinidad as 9V-TGI, then off to Antigua as V2-LDB in December of 1985 on lease. It returned briefly to its Trinidad registration before returning to the UK as G-BGMO on 08-04-1986. It served with EuroAir, British Airways and Jersey European Airways and arrived in NZ on 04-12-1993. On the 10th of December it became ZK-MCB/2 (MCB/1 was an Islander c/n C336), and was named "Te Anau". Its last service for Mt Cook was on 31-12-1995 with it departing Christchurch for Norfolk Island & Brisbane on 09-02-1996. It took up its old G-BGMO registration again with Emerald Airways. After a period of storage it was cancelled on 18-03-2008 and is now S2-AAX with Bismillah Airlines in Bangladesh.

Saturday, 28 June 2008

What is this ?

First noted at Rangiora in about July 2004 is this unknown helicopter type.

Air-96 is on the panel below the engine.
Reputed to have done about 1000 hours cattle mustering in Australia.
From what I observed it did not seem to have the grunt to lift off its trolley on a cool Rangiora day - let alone from a hot Aussie outback paddock !.
Engine on arrival was a Rotax 618 of around 70hp and a Rabe exhaust.
I believe it has been re-engined since but appears to have gone off the scene.

Anybody any clues as to what it is ?

Stewart Kerr Stuker

Among the April ownership changes was the Stewart Kerr Stuker. In case you have wondered what it looks like - here it is.
Looks not unlike a basic Rans S-9 Chaos.
First listed to Stewart Kerr on 13-05-1997.
A move to Andrew Gilmour at Taieri on 06-08-2003.
To Noel Wilson of Reefton from 08-04-2007 and now further North to Palmerston North for Robin Baker from 22-04-2008.

Friday, 27 June 2008

Twin engine training.

On 19th of March 2005 I managed to avoid being detected by the Oamaru Airport security system to get a couple of shots of the North Otago Aero Clubs twin engine trainer.

Thursday, 26 June 2008

Works of Art #7

Hmm !
Work of art - Maybe.
Robbie R22 Beta (c/n 1671) whilst with Christchurch Helicopters.
In this scheme briefly around October 2005 as part of the Christchurch Airports bird deterrent exercise.
Noted several times off the northern end of the runway at very low level with a shooter aboard.

Question time #11 winner

From the right hand seat, looking over the nose of a Pilatus PC6 Porter heading towards the Upper Tasman Glacier.
Cannot comment on what lurks below that protrusion.
I think the Tasman Hut is at the top of that bluff just above that hump on the cowl.
Well done Rodney.

Wednesday, 25 June 2008

Question time #11

What am I looking at here then ?

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Recent register changes

A couple of interesting changes to the register recently.
Westland Scout AH/1 ZK-HVD/2 (c/n F.9704) of Heli-Logging was revoked on 16-04-2008. First registered in NZ on 21-10-1999 to Metro Air in Christchurch and first flown here on 07-11-1999. It moved over to the Ford Family Trust on 09-08-2001. This is the last of six such machines on our register.
Both pics at Wanaka airshow 2004.

The Westland Wessex HC Mk2 ZK-HBE/3 (c/n WA196) also from Heli-Logging, was listed to The Wessex Trust c/- Mark Ford on 11-06-2008. This ex RAF helicopter joined the NZ register with Wessex Air Ltd (Metro Air) on 11-12-2001 before relisting to Helilogging on 21-02-2003.

Its close cousin Wessex ZK-HBF/3 (c/n WA533) was revoked on 16-04-2008.

The third Wessex ZK-HVK/2 (c/n WA178) was a HC Mk5C model. It was lost in an accident on 11-02-2001 in the Little Pokororo Valley.

There are several (up to seven) other airframes in country but they have not reached the civil register.

Sunday, 22 June 2008

A winner for Question time #10

Yes !
Grey Beard wins the elusive (fictional) chocolate fish.

The aircraft is indeed the Beechcraft 65-B80 Queen Air ZK-CIA/2 which is enduring gentle decay at Bridge Pa airfield, Hastings.
This aircraft flew into Auckland as N640K on 27-12-1988 to become ZK-CIA/2 for Chathams Air and served for some ten years before being parked up at Hastings.

In memorium #2

On Paraumu Airfield Control Tower hill.
Between the Aviation Museum and the Air to There office.

Saturday, 21 June 2008

Question time #10

Another easy, what and where ?

Friday, 20 June 2008

Winner for Question Time #9

nzompilot got the answer first time (with a little help from a Blue Bus technical error).
The above shot shows ZK-CAW at McDonalds in Taupo.

ZK-CAW (18923) started life with the USAAF serialled 42-100460 and joined the civil ranks as VH-ANM with Australian National Airways in February 1947. Its final Australian operator was Airlines of NSW from February 1961.
It was modified to "Viewmaster" status (Lengthened cabin windows) before arriving in NZ on 23-10-1961 to become ZK-CAW with South Pacific Airways of NZ Ltd and was named "George Bolt".
It joined NZNAC in March 1966 and was leased to Fiji Airways as VQ-FAI, returning to NZNAC in August 1969.
It the briefly served with Mount CookAirlines and then South Seas Airways before it went to Fieldair in May of 1971 in the agricultural role..
Its last flight was on 29-10-1984 bringing its total airframe time to 56,282 hours
By November 1990 it was at McDonalds.

Nice to see the B170 stuph on your blog.

Unidentified Hughes 369

Can anyone identifty this unmarked mechanical mouse that arrived in a flurry at the Taupo Airfield fuel pumps on 03-03-2008 ?

Question time #9

What is the aircraft registration; where is it ??

In memorium

Photo taken 03-03-2008.
This memorial for two well know aviators is sited at the Centennial Park airfield of the Taupo Gliding Club.

Thursday, 19 June 2008

Oh ! The things we do.

A really neat spot for rock collectors.

Mt Brewster in January 2007. Up above the Haast Pass Road.
Swine of a job, but I suppose somebody had to do it.

Photos by Shane.
Mode of transport was Hughes 369D ZK-HSR/2 (116-0024D) of Back Country Helicopters. This once operated as ZK-HPX 1980 - 1988 before a move offshore to PNG. It returned in 1992 for Harvey Hutton.
Since this shot it was damaged on 13-07-2007.

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Ardmore 17Jun

Colin Hunter visited Ardmore today and snapped a couple of recent entrants to the ZK register.

L-29 ZK-SSS (395192) is one of two registered to Pacific Airways of Auckland back in March this year. It arrived at Ardmore on Friday 13Jun possible from New Plymouth where it was noted arriving from points unknown on 27May. The second aircraft registered to Pacific Airways is ZK-SSU and these two made the type's population up to 4 aircraft with a ZK-JRF registered to Christchurch interests and ZK-VAU based at New Plymouth.

Eurocopter EC120 ZK-IFZ (1113) was registered on 03Jun to Rotor Flite and was imported from Japan where it flew as JA33MK.

Thursday, 12 June 2008

I remember when

I remember when the Department of Civil Aviation operated two Douglas DC-3's on airways calibration duties based at Paraparaumu (In what is now the Helipro hangar)
If you were in the know, it was possible to cadge a ride for the day (or longer) on what were classed as Famil Flights.
You had to pick your day with care as the continual turning combined with other meteorological phenomena could lead to periods of unwellness.
Here we are at Invercargill on 23rd April 1968 in ZK-AUJ c/n 26651/15206.
It was delivered to the RNZAF on 30-12-1944 and became NZ3530.
It joined the ZK register on 18-04-1952 with CAA, then relisted to DCA and finally to MOT CAD Division after departmental reorganisations.
It was sold in 1973 having been replaced by Fokker F27's.
It departed Auckland on 20-06-1973 and spent about six weeks in Australia before moving to Cambodia to become XW-TFJ.
I heard that it "escaped" from the Pol Pot clutches and flew into Don Muang in April of 1975 for storage and was broken up in the mid 80's.
The original B & W photograph was re-photographed with my digital camera and appears above unedited.

Dark corners.

Walking past a hangar at Rangiora yesterday I spotted the AS350BA upgraded Squirrel ZK-HKW/4 , c/n 1360 , tucked away in the dark corner. Ive seen it around hundreds of times before so I continued my snoop around. Wasn't until I spoke to one of the other aircraft owners that he mentioned that they had a "new" helicopter based on the field. On the way back to the vehicle I had a closer look at the olde familiar HKW and found that there were two guys down from Taupo installing spray equipment on her and that it now operates under a different name; not that of Amuri Helicopters - to whom it was registered on 05-02-2008 - but Way To GO Heliservices.
A bit of a lesson there I guess.
This Squirrell is now 27 years old, but is not long off a prolonged major rebuild at Christchurch Helicopters. (A back of the hangar spare time job).
Incidently it flew as ZK-HDV/2 with Southern Lakes/Helicopter Line and Northland Emergency Services between late 1990 and June 1993 before going to Australia to become VH-HBK.
It returned to NZ in June 2002 for CHCH Helicopters as HKW.

Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Grumman American AA-5 Traveller ZK-XRE

The Grumman American AA-5 Traveller ZK-XRE , c/n AA5 0282 , joined the register on Monday the 9th.

This was first registered as VH-ETT in early 1973 and arrived at Rangiora earlier this year still owned by Robyn Edwards and previously based at Lesmurdie, West Australia.

A HUG in the back paddock

Our family patriarch (on the other side) had his 70th birthday during the weekend.
The surprise for the day was his arrival into the back paddock and then rides for those interested over a snow covered Christchurch & Port Hills.
ZK-HUG/2 is a AS350BA , c/n 2038 , from Garden City Helicopters.

What ! another Robinson helicopter .

Noted at Garden City Helicopters in Christchurch on Monday the 9th was this relatively new Robinson R44 Raven II ZK-INP , c/n 11524 .
It was listed to Barrington Charters Ltd of Queenstown on 12-04-2007.
It carries the web site address on its tail boon.

Thursday, 5 June 2008

Filling in; & Shipping out.

Kawasaki BK117 A-4 ZK-HJK , c/n 1020 , at the Garden City Christchurch heliport, filling in for the Westpac Trust BK117 ZK-HJC which is down for routine servicing.

On the western side of the airport was the Hughes 369HS ZK-HLM being packed into a container for shipment to Australia by Heli Maintenaince.
This helicopter is now 32 years old (nearly as old as me) and reduces the number of registered 500C's in NZ to around 25.
Its c/n of 63-0488S tells us that it was constructed in June (the 6th month ) of 1973 (the 3 being the year) and is the 488th "S" model built.
It was originally a James Aviation import and arrived in August 1980. Its most recent operator was Aviation West out of Double Hills Station in the Upper Rakaia.
It has been replaced at Double Hills by the Hughes 369D ZK-HYY ex Garden of Eden Helicopters - which is now minus all its Star Wars art work. (see pics in Blogs of late February).
Garden of Eden will be receiving a new NOTAR in about a months time - So we can expect the above HYY to become something else so that Barry can retain his HYY letters; and we can look forward to another interesting paint scheme.
The above pic taken on 05-04-08 at Garden City H/C.

More on the Cub

Further to the earlier post, herewith some more on G-KIRK (pictured in the Warbirds Hanger @ Ardmore Apr 04).

From November 2004

04Nov04 G-KIRK Piper J3C-65 Cub. Maurice J. Kirk (c/n 12490). Kerikeri to Norfolk Island, to Lord Howe Island on 6th, from ?? to Coolangatta on 8th, from Caloundra to Rockhampton on 9th, at Darwin on 12th (then required an engine change before test flight on 24 April 2005), to Dili-Comoro (East Timor) on 25 April, to Borneo and Balikpapan (Indonesia) on 27th, to Lawas (Malaysia) and Labuan (Malaysia) on 28th, to Kota Kinabalu (Malaysia) on 3 May, to Puerto Princesa (Philippines) on 6th, to Manila on 7th, to Laoag (Philippines) and Kaohsiung (Taiwan) on 11th, to Taipei on 13th, to Cheju Island (South Korea) and Yang Yang on 17th. Pilot re-enacted first solo east-west crossing of Tasman Sea by Sir Francis Chichester in 1931.

Cessna 185 ZK-JHS

Whitianga based Cessna 185C ZK-JHS was spotted at Ardmore this week sporting the addition of a ZK prefix (in different colours) following its stint in Australia which saw it arrive at Kerikeri from Norfolk Island on 02May08.

Spitfire ZK-WDQ

Doug Brooker's Spitfire ZK-WDQ is now making regular flights from Ardmore and it was great to capture it earlier in the week following a 30minute local flight.

Eurocopter ZK-HKX - out with the old, in with the new(er)

Advanced Flight took delivery of their latest Eurocopter EC130, ZK-HKX/2 (c/n 4376) and it was registered on 29May08. This machine replaces one of the same type with the same registration and c/n 3815 which was deregistered as exported on 15Apr08.

ZK-HKX/2 (with temporary rego) departing Eurocopter's Ardmore facility

ZK-HKX/1 back in December 2005.

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Question time #8

What, Why and When is it mainly used ?

OK ; its not a civil aircraft ; but it is in civilian hands.

Monday, 2 June 2008

Question time #7 Answer

You have been looking at a section of the instrument panel of the Travel Air 4000 N688K . c/n 1323 belonging to Des Lines at Swannanoa, North Canterbury.

Its been in country for about five years now and has hopes of becoming ZK-TVL.

There is at least four others in country. Anybody seen them lately ?

I know there is N8192 . c/n 894 , with Hallett Griffin at Kairanga. What about the others ?

The "Flying Vet"

I imagine by now you will all have read the latest copy of Pacific Wings Magazine from cover to cover.
On page 19 there is a five liner about the "Flying Vet" Maurice John Kirk.
Just to refresh you memory.
Maurice Kirk has been on a World trip for some time in his Piper J3C-65 Cub G-KIRK "Liberty Girl"
John was flying around NZ during 2004 and was at the Wanaka Show.
There is a web site : Try a google on G-KIRK and try to navigate your way around.
There are some good pics of the aircraft at various NZ spots. The shots inside the cockpit give some idea of the Maurices attention to detail !
These three shots were taken by Swampy Crompton (the Met man) at Hokitika during the 2004 air race.

Maurice has a small collection of aircraft back home including a MS885, Auster 6A, DH2 replica, Taylorcraft BL-65, Pietenpol Chaffinch, A TEAM Himax and now doesn't have the Cub after its ditching. He has advertised most of the above to raise more funds to purchase another aircraft to complete the World trip.

Learn the rest of the story from the web site.

Sunday, 1 June 2008

Shot from behind

Todays action shot at Helipro's pad at Christchurch.
Left to right.
ZK-HYU/2. R22 . c/n 3286.
ZK-IXG. R44. c/n 10751. Still listed to Pikea Helicopter Safaris.
ZK-HLY/2. R44. c/n 1115.
ZK-HFY/2. R22. c/n 0785.
ZK-HVS/3. R22 . c/n 2849.
ZK-HWU/2. R22. c/n 1407.
Out of shot to the right was winch equiped BK117 A-3 ZK-HYE/3 . c/n 1008 which recently replaced BK117 ZK-HYZ/3.
HYE pic taken on 29-05-08.