Saturday, December 17, 2016

Amateur Built Supermarine Spitfire Mk.26 VH-DLH to conduct test flights at Maryborough Airport

While information is limited at the time of posting, and we hope to learn more shortly, it appears there will be a World War II era, 80% replica Spitfire temporarily based at Maryborough Airport while a number of test flights are conducted over the next week or so.

Powered by an Isuzu 3.5 V6 petrol engine (6VE1), identical to the units fitted under the bonnet of Holden Rodeo utilities for a number of years in the 1990's, Amateur Built Supermarine Spitfire Mk.26 VH-DLH was assembled by a farmer who lives near Maryborough, and completed it's maiden flight when the aircraft was flown from the farmers property to Maryborough Airport.

Of interest, VH-DLH is painted in the same colours and markings as the farmer's WWII namesake, John Kellman.

For readers who may be interested to learn more about replica Spitfire kits that are produced by Supermarine Aircraft for completion by amateur builders, and technical detail about the available aircraft, you will find the following link of interest :   

All photo's contributed by David Geck of Maryborough Aviation Services.

Thursday, December 08, 2016

Air Queensland commences flying training and private aircraft hire at Bundaberg

With the recent closure of Hinkler Flying School, and flying training no longer provided by Bundaberg Aero Club, Queensland based flying training school and charter company - Air Queensland - have decided to expand their operations at Redcliffe and Caloundra to include Bundaberg in an effort to provide local student pilots, and licensed pilots, an avenue to continue flying at the rum city.

In conjunction with the Bundaberg Aero Club, Air Queensland is now providing flying training (incl. RA-Aus) and private aircraft hire at Bundaberg Airport, however, aniticipate to ramp-up local operations in January 2017, which will include moving into the Bundaberg Aero Club building, and relocating additional aircraft to the city.

While finer detail is still being determined, and more information will be released in due time, it is expected Air Queensland will provide the 'flying' element, and Bundaberg Aero Club manage the 'social' aspect, of the joint venture.

Of interest, Air Queensland operates a variety of RA-Aus and VH registered single and twin-engine aircraft including (but not limited too) Sling, Tecnam, Jabiru, Cessna and Piper aircraft.

To learn more about Air Queensland, feel free to visit their website at :

Additionally, more information about flying training and private aircraft hire at Bundaberg can be obtained by either forwarding an email to : or ringing Trevor Fisch on (07) 4156 1075.

Photo's of Tecnam P92 24-8228 contributed by Micah S. 

Sunday, December 04, 2016

Royal Australian Air Force Boeing 737-700 (BBJ) A36-002 visits Bundaberg

Presumably while conducting a crew training flight on Saturday, 03 December 2016, Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Boeing 737-700 (BBJ) A36-002 made a fuel stop at Bundaberg before continuing onwards.

Departing from No.34 Squadron at RAAF Base Fairbairn, Canberra, A36-002 visited Coffs Harbour before flying further north to Bundaberg. Upon taking onboard over 5400 litres of Jet A1 fuel, A36-002 departed back to Canberra via Tamworth.

It is understood sistership A36-001 flew an indentical crew training flight on Friday, December 02.

In this post, you will note a couple of photo's have been captured and presented differently as local planespotter, Micah S, took an opportunity to trial a number of different settings on the camera.        

All photo's contributed by Micah S.

Saturday, December 03, 2016

American Aeronca Champion 7FC VH-LIA, John Rasmussen, Callide Dawson Flying Group

The following transcript was written by the owner of this much loved and cherished aircraft, John Rasmussen, and Air Queensland.blogspot would like to sincerely thank John for his time and effort for bringing us the informative yet entertaining reading about a beautifully restored and presented aeroplane.

I was visiting my brother and his family in the province of Alberta, Canada, in 1994. My brother left D.K. (Danish Kingdom) in 1956. I also called in at Gary Hillman’s Hangar at Penhold – Red Deer Industrial Airport – where I spotted this beautifully restored 1956 Aeronca Champion 7FC - Tritraveller (American Champion Aircraft Corp - serial no 118).

She was sitting there – spic and span – on the clean and heated hangar floor, with 2 ft of snow outside. I asked Gary if I might be allowed to sit in the front (tandem seats) of this registered C-FLIA, and do some dreaming ?

A little while later, Gary came over and spoke through the port sliding window:  “She’s for sale, you know”

I then discovered that this delightful airplane - we are still in Canada - belonged to an elderly gentleman by the name of John Wittwer, Gary’s father-in-law and former crop sprayer (lingo also Canadian) pilot from way back flying Stinsons and Ag-Cats.
I called in on this-true-gentleman at Stettler where he also had an immaculate Piper Super Cub sitting in his shed – very low hours, but not for sale.

John got excited when I showed interest in the old Champ, and he told me a few stories about her. She had hit a snow bank in Calgary one winter, and he had replaced the port wooden wing spar, fitted new fabric all over and finished off with a complete paint job.

We made a deal, where he actually offered to knock Can$1000 off the price, Can $18000.

He conceded that it would be an expense for me to ship it to Brisbane, Australia.

John himself did the packing of the aircraft into the container which I had organized through a shipping firm in Sydney. The trip went by rail across the Rocky Mountains (British Columbia) to Vancouver, then by Container Ship down through the Panama Canal to England – and onwards via the Suez Canal to Australia.

At Hawker Pacific who put it together again and ‘Australianized’ the old girl, I remember the Chief Engineer’s comment:

“Whoever packed this aircraft into the container must have loved her dearly, it was exceptionally, carefully done“.

I was endorsed on now VH-LIA at Gordon Jenkinson’s Sunland Aviation, Archerfield, and almost (feeling) taller than the cockpit allowed, I got in and flew her home to Smoky Creek Airfield, now in ERSA / ALA as YSMK. The date was August 21st 1995.

The Champ is powered by a Continental C90–16F engine, developing 95hp and driving a McCauley IB90 / CM7345 propeller. I use LL100 Av-Gas, adding a light dose of Penrite upper cylinder lube (40mm per 20L) and thereby overcame an earlier, slight, problem with a sticking exhaust valve.

The engine is fully approved for using MoGas (Petersen Aviation Inc, Calgary), I gave that type of fuel away.

She cruises - flight planning - at 78-80 kts and takes-off / lands at her maximum 658 kg. She is hard to stall, even at 42 kts / one person – power off.

I am still in touch with John Wittwer in Stettler, Alberta. I visited him in 2011 and he is now approaching the age of 90.