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The Latest News from the de Havilland Moth Club of North America
28th January 2018
Not Moths, but our member Larry Harmacinski, a 1929 Gipsy Moth owner and
Airbus 321 driver will be flying part of the route.
Check out the flight's superb website here. Yours truly works at Paine Field so plans to be in at the finish on 18th May.
5th January 2018
Today we extend a warm welcome to the WB615 Group, a group of pilots in
the UK who fly the Chipmunk WB615, now civil registered as G-BXIA.
WB615 was first delivered to Number 14 Reserve Flying School, Hamble, Hampshire in October 1950. Three years later in March 1953 she moved to Number 9 Maintenance Unit (RAF Cosford)
and then in July of 1955 to Number 5 Flight Training School at RAF Oakington near Cambridge. She was subsequently transferred to Number 20 Maintenance Unit at RAF Aston Down in Gloucestershire
and then to Number 5 Maintenance Unit at nearby RAF Kemble before re-entering full flying service with the Army Air Corps at Middle Wallop in February 1965. There she stayed in military service
until her de-mob on 8th May 1997. She was the last Chipmunk to be collected from Middle Wallop and was purchased and operated by Dales Aviation, based at Blackpool. Now in her 67th year of flying,
she has been purchased by WB615 Group who intend to maintain her to the same exacting standards as she’s enjoyed so far, for many more years to come.
The Group has a fine website for their aircraft which you can visit here.
13th April 2017
Further to the report on 9th April below, Paul Allen's Mosquito was out
for engine runs and taxi trials on Tuesday.
Watch this Youtube video of the occasion.
10th April 2017
The April Newsletter was distributed by e-mail to everyone this morning.
If you think you should have received a copy, but did not,
then this may be because about 30 e-mail addresses are currently bouncing. Contact us if you didn't receive your copy.
9th April 2017
At Paine Field, WA, Paul Allen's Mosquito is about to make its maiden post-restoration
flight in the USA.
Initially finished in RNZAF colours for its first flight in New Zealand, TV959 has now been finished in the markings of Mosquito FB IV, NS838/UP-J “Wag’s War Wagon”
of No. 605 ‘County of Warwick’ Squadron (RAF), flown by Flt Lt Alan D. Wagner and FO E. T. Orringe, March 1944. Nine-kill ace Alan Wagner and his navigator
FO ‘Pip’ Orringe were flying this aircraft, which bore the name ‘Wag’s War Wagon’ on an intruder over Germany on the night of 5th March 1944 when,
near a well-lit airfield at Gardelegen, they shot down a Fw 190. Minutes later, they also destroyed two ME 410s, one of which blew up and scorched the Mosquito.
Wagner then used his remaining ammunition on another Me410, but it could only be claimed as damaged.
‘NS838’ is almost ready for ground runs and is expected to fly by the end of the month.
A real rarity in the USA, DH89A G-AHXW is seen here arriving at Paine Field on Friday 31st March after its ferry flight from Yolo county airport near Sacramento, CA. (Liz Matzelle)
8th April 2017
John Sessions as acquired Dragon Rapide G-AHXW (ex-RAF NR683, US serial
N683DH) from the estate of the late Bud Field who dies in February 2010.
The aircraft is scheduled to be flown up to Campbell River on Vancouver Island for work which will include wing internal inspection, leading edge tidying up,
fabric and re-finish in British European Airways, its first commercial operator.
17th December 2016
The December 2016 Newsletter was distributed by e-mail to all members today.
All of our monthly Newsletters are also accessible in the Members' Area of this website.
If you are not yet a member, feel free to download our November issue which is a good example
of this regular Club publication. If you would like to join us, you can download the 2017 Membership Form here.
The Club is open to all de Havilland owners, pilots and enthusiasts worldwide.
11th September 2016 The
Club held it first fly-in for many years yesterday. Only two Tigers
(and a Taylorcraft) turned up, but about a dozen members gathered
on a gorgeous autumn day at Harvey Field in Washington State. Several people were given their first ever flight in a Tiger Moth and the smiles on their faces
after they landed made the day very worthwhile. All agreed to meet again next year, when we expect to see more Moths and members in attendance.
A full report will be included in the September Newsletter.
6th June 2016 On
the Sunday before last, around fifty Chipmunks gathered at Old Warden in
England to celebrate the 70th Anniversary of the first flight of the prototype
from Downsview on 6th June 1946. Click on the image above to watch this superb video which really captures the spirit of the day.
23rd April 2016 Today
we welcome Liz Matzelle of Seattle to the Club.
Liz has just acquired this Australian-built 1941 Tiger, A17-370 from Canada. It last flew in 1973 and is in remarkably original and unrestored condition.
Liz has started a thread on our Forum where she will be posting project updates. She has also started a blog here.
16th March 2016
The March Newsletter was circulated by e-mail to members today. If
you didn't receive yours, it may be becuase our e-mail address records
are out of date.
Contact the Club if you think you should have received a copy but didn't. Also, the March Newsletter, together with all of our Newsletters may be found in the Members' Area
of this website. Contact us if you need the username and password.
28th February 2016 Ah - de Havilland! Click on the image to play.
28th February 2016
Sad news from over the pond. It has been decided by the Moth Club
that they will end their annual Moth Rally at Woburn Abbey.
The effort to run the Rally by a small organising team operating all year round is considerable. The financial stakes are becoming huge
and income is dependent on public attendance which has not been great. Finally, the weather plays a very big part both in aeroplane and public attendance.
Whereas Moth Rallies of old were mostly blessed with fine weather and light winds, more recently the weather has been changeable to say the least.
The Club lost whole days in 2013 and 2014. 2015 saw a return to the more traditional ‘Woburn Weather’ and the Club had a good time celebrating the 30th event of its kind,
the 40th anniversary of the de Havilland Moth Club and the 90th anniversary of the first flight of the first Moth. We now feel it is time to stop.
For the future the plan is to organise something, somewhere, on a much less ambitious scale and investigation of the prospect is already under way.
It addition the Club may well see the return of a Charity Flying event now that the rules have been reassessed.
5th February 2016
With the passing of Watt Martin, his Moth collection has been dispersed.
DH60M CF-AAJ has been acquired by Mike Maniatis and registered in the States
Mike also acquired DH60G CF-AQF and is busy fitting new deckings to the wooden fuselage in his workshop. We look forward to her coming together and joining Mike's expanding fleet.
31st January 2016
Today we welcome Brian Russell to the Club with is very smart DHC-1B-2
CF-FHY which Brian keeps at
Lancaster, Ontario. (CLA6). Brian reports that "FHY belonged to a dear friend of mine (Reagh Simpson) for over 45 years
and I took over her stewardship about a year ago."
22nd November 2015
I cannot believe it has been so long since the website home page was updated!
It has been a hectic year for me as I transitioned to Boeing and the the 777x.
As a pennance, here is one of the most evocative Tiger photos I have ever seen. It shows one of the Tiger Moths
at the Aero Club du Bearn in the south of France in the fifties on tugging duties. That's the Pyrenees mountains at the very top of the image.
This photo came to light as a result of research into my Tiger N82KF that was operated by the club at the time, so this may very well be N82KF
in its previous life as F-BHIN. The full story of this Tiger may be found at www.N5490.org.
Watch out for more frequent updates coming up!
1st December 2014
Welcome to new member Boyd Grandy who hails from Arcadia, California and
owns this Canadian Chipmunk N9041Y.
This Chippy sports a 210 hp Continental IO-36K up front, with McCauley constant speed prop and Jean Paul Huneault engine mount.
It also has metalized wings with wing lockers and was originally in the RCAF as SN 18076.
Boyd has some questions regairdng Canadian-built Chipmunks which I have posted in the Crew Room if anyone can help.
17th October 2014
She flies! Up in Calgary, Alberta, Clark Seaborn has completed the
restoration of DH60M CF-ADU.
This photo was taken on her maiden post-restoration flight last Sunday, and all went well.
CF-ADU (c/n 1314) was built at Stag Lane in England in 1929 and shipped to de Havilland Canada. It then spent its flying career in and around
Calgary before being withdrawn from use in 1935 - the last time it flew before last weekend!
Hearty congratulations Clark!
22nd August 2014
First, apologies for the lack of updates recently - it has been a hectic
summer! Let me start to redress things by first extending a very
to two new members who have joined us in August. First is Larry Loretto with his Hornet Moth - see the story for 2nd October 2013 below.
Second is Ben Cox with his 1931 DH80A Puss Moth N223EC, alias CF-AVA, seen here on a recent tour of British Columbia, adding 60 hours to the logbook.
Ben lives in England but keeps his Puss Moth in Spokane, WA. This is a Canadian-built Puss Moth with c/n 223, the previous owners
being Skeeter and Doris Carlson - hence the registration. (Actually, the Canadian Puss Moths were assembled by De Havilland Canada at Downsview from what were British supplied dis-assembled units,
so this aircraft could actually be said to have been built at Stag Lane. There were a total of 25 Puss Moths assembled by de Havilland Canada in this manner.)
N223EC was originally
owned by the Consolidated Mining & Smelting Co (COMICO) of Canada Ltd.
of Trail, B.C. and had been stored in an open shed in Mission, B.C. for
Skeeter found it in 1959 in poor shape. Kids had played in it, walked on the wings, and all the instruments were missing. He found a door and the rear seat buried nearby in the snow!
A l-o-n-g restoration was started, and in 1969 he completed the job. It is painted in the original colors as when COMICO owned it - Insignia Red and Consolidated Blue.
Skeeter changed the engine from the original Gipsy III to a Gipsy 1C for which parts are easier to find. Skeeter last flew it in 1984, after which it was stored at Ox Meadows, Spokane.
In 2012, it was acquired by Ben and taken by road to Felts Field, Spokane for restoration. As can be seen, the result is stunning!
4th March 2014
Today we welcome the Brandon Commonwealth
Air Training Plan Museum to our membership.
Led by Jill Oakes, this Tiger Moth was restored by the museum to flying condition. This photo was taken when the aircraft was first rolled out
and shows ther core restoration team of Jill Oakes, Henry and Betty Riege and Ted Hector.
(Photo Rick Riewe)
29th January 2014
It was our intention to organize a fly-in for the newly-reconstituted club
in 2013, but for various reasons, it was not quite possible.
However, if it is at all possible, I’d like to organize a DH fly-in in the Pacific Northwest this year – over the Labor Day weekend this year
(Saturday 30th August to Monday 1st September).
Harvey Field has been proposed
as a suitable venue. Located about 25 miles northeast of Seattle,
Harvey is home to a large collection of antique aircraft and has a parallel
The historic town of Snohomish is within walking distance, with plenty of accommodation and dining options. Harvey Field also has an excellent steakhouse and bar facilities.
If you would like to attend,
PLEASE let us know, and also
please help in any way you can to get the word out to other DH owners so
that a provisional entry list can be assembled.
If we receive sufficient interest, then we will go firm on the weekend as early in the year as we can.
Also, we plan to hold another
Moth Forum at Oshkosh this year, and we desperately need a speaker to anchor
the forum. If you would like to spout off on any DH-related topic,
please get in touch. And of course, we would be interested in hearing any other suggestions for DH gatherings or participation across the country in the coming months. Over to you!
11th November 2013
Dave Phillips has been at it again. Here we see him water skiing
his Tiger in New Zealand last Sunday.
Click on the image above to watch the video.
7th November 2013
In Vancouver, Canada and now in the final days of a decades-long restoration,
Bob Jens' Mosquito restoration is approaching first flight.
In November 2008, Bob placed a contract with Victoria Air Maintenance Ltd. to have VR796 (CF-HML, now CF-HMJ) returned to airworthiness.
This will double the number of airworthy Mosquitos worldwide. Bob Jens has decided to finish his Mosquito as WWII’s most accomplished bomber,
the famous ‘F for Freddie’. More news will be posted shortly. (Photo Mel Johnstone via Richard de Boer)
6th November 2013 The November Newsletter was distributed by e-mail today. A copy may be found in the Members' Area.
3rd November 2013
Today we extend a warm welcome to the Club to Clark Seaborn of Calgary,
Clark is restoring CF-ADU using parts from Canadian-assembled Moth CF-ADM which crashed in 1935.
Clark hopes to have her flying next year after a 7-year rebuild. What a superb project!
2nd October 2013 Hearty
congratulations to Larry
Loretto who has recently acquired DH87B Hornet Moth C-FEEJ from George
Neal, seen here at Embrun, Ontario,
just east of Ottawa on August 25th. That other familiar-looking nose belongs to Otto Dietrich's Tiger CF-DHA.
Originally G-AEET and impressed into wartime service as X9319, this Hornet Moth was stuck off charge by the RAF during a major inspection in 1941,
but rescued by DH's who rebuilt it for their own use, whereupon it reverted to its civil registration G-AEET. After the war, it saw service with the London Aeroplane Club
at Panshanger, near Hatfield, where it was damaged the following year and reduced to spares, but was resurrected for the second time in its life and rebuilt to fly again in 1952.
Between 1955 and 1969, it passed through a number of hands, operating at Stapleford Tawney, Luton, RAF West Raynham and Ludham.
It was then exported in June 1969 to George Neal, the celebrated de Havilland Canada test pilot and operated from Downsview, Ontario.
It’s C of A lapsed in 1972, but the old girl was re-born a third time, flying again in 1982. For the past five years, the Hornet has been associated with the
Canadian Air and Space Museum, Toronto. We wish Larry many happy years to come flying his historic Hornet Moth.
Thanks to Otto for providing this photo.
1st October 2013 The October Newsletter was distributed by e-mail today and a copy has been placed in the Members' Area of the website.
6th September 2013 A couple of reports on Woburn are emerging online - here and here.
18th August 2013
Sunday at Woburn. In the front cockpit of Stuart Mackay's Tiger G-AZZZ
is Henry, aged 8, the future Duke of Bedford about to launch off
on his first light aircraft flight. His Mum said that he has been spoiled flying in airliners so it was good to get him in a real aeroplane!
18th August 2013
Twins at Woburn. After a five year break, the Moth Club gathered
at Woburn once again this weekend.
Larry Harmacinski reports, ,"The weather was rather windy but despite that and some persistent clouds, there were a reported 51 airplanes that flew in.
I would guess at least 40 of those were DH's. G-AEDU was looking glorious. The racing Moth G-AAXG was really impressive to see
and was featured in the short film Full Throttle by Kidston." More to report shortly.
15th August 2013
Today I received this wonderful letter
from Will Clark,
World War Two Tiger Moth trainee, Hurricane pilot and Honorary Member of
Read his letter here. Will's generous donation brings us a big step closer to being able to launch the new Club magazine and I am now very confident that the first issue
can be sent to the printers within the next few weeks. Needless to say, Donald Broom will very shortly be invited to join us as another Honorary Member.
Any pilot who trained on, or flew de Havilland types operationally during the War is entitled to Honorary Membership of our Club.
15th August 2013
Is the Mosquito the greatest warplane of all? This is a question
that is answered in the affimative in a remarkable TV programme
entitled 'The Plane that Saved Britain' going out on Channel 4 in the UK tonight. Read the write-up and watch an exerpt from the programme here.
And sincere thanks to Gerry Yagen for making Arthur Williams' dream of flight come true. The programme presenter, Williams is a Royal Marines veteran
and 2007 car crash survivor who is now paralysed from the waist down. What I didn't know was that the Luftwaffe were so eager to destroy Mosquitos
that its fighter pilots were allowed to claim two “kills” for each one they were able to shoot down - which wasn't many.
15th August 2013
We have three members visiting Woburn this weekend from the USA - past
Chairman Gerry Schwam and his wife Ronnie, Dave Watson and
Larry Harmacinski and his wide Ilse who visited Richard Seeley at Turweston in England today to witness two post-restoration flights of Morane Moth G-AANV
prior to it receiving its new Permit to Fly - just in time for Woburn.
15th August 2013 On
22nd January (see below) we welcomed Brian Dunlop and his Chipmunk to the
Club. Brian now reports that the aircraft has flown
(see above) for the first time in almost 13 years. On acquiring the aircraft, Brian discovered that little or no maintenance had been carried out over the years,
and no AD's had been complied with. So it was back to square one to do the job properly. The result looks super, Brian!
9th August 2013
The August issue of the Club Newsletter was circulated to members today,
and may also be found in the Members' Area of the website.
If you are a member of the Club, but did not receive your copy via e-mail, please contact the Club.
8th August 2013 While I'm in photograph posting mode, here's a super shot of new member Robert Wiggins' TigerN6892/T7148 resting in the Texas sunshine.
8th August 2013
As mentioned earlier, after a five year break, Woburn is back! For
all de Havilland owners and enthusiasts in the UK and further afield,
Woburn is not to be missed. Full details may be found here.
8th August 2013
Meanwhile, up in Ontario, Canada, Michael Dennett, Andy Scott and Danny
Garyfalakis (whose first name initials are M, A and D)
are in the final stages of completing the restoration of CF-MAD/T5414. See more image of their fine work here.
The above photo shows CF-MAD in excellent company and Danny rightfully pleased with progress.
8th August 2013 Back
in January we reported that US Air pilot Larry Harmacinski had joined the
Club. Larry acquired his Moth N919DH from Tom Buffaloe,
who in turn had acquired it from past Club Chairman Gerry Schwam. The Moth now resides in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Here we see Larry with his loved one - and his wife!
2nd August 2013
Harry Schoning visited Club HQ in Seattle last week to drop off a considerable
stock of Tiger Moth parts and spares.
His trailer and truck were loaded down with goodies that are now available to members, with 10% of the revenue from sales going to the Club.
So if you have a need for parts, contact the Club as we may well be able to help.
3rd June 2013
The International Moth Rally at WOBURN ABBEY is back!
The date is the weekend of 17th/18th August. Full details can be found and tickets can be booked in advance and at the new Woburn website.
3rd June 2013 A quick
membership update. Right now, we have 39 members that have signed
up for 2013. This compares to 145 members on the 2012 membership
I have e-mailed everyone for whom I have e-mail addresses (about half of the 145 members), but two thirds of these e-mails bounced because the addresses were out of date!
So this week, I'm writing by snail mail to everyone not yet signed up, inviting them to join us as we re-vamp the club. We need a membership of at least 100 before we can
publish the new Magazine - which is all ready to go to press!
In other news, I'm particularly
keen to hear from anyone in the Northwest who would like to come along
to Harvey Field over the Labor Day weekend for a Moth gathering.
Privisional details may be found here. Let's see if we can re-establish Woburn West!
30th April 2013
We extend a warm welcome to Rod Blievers in Eumundi, Queensland who owns
this beautifully restored Chipmunk WG 478 (alias VH-MMS).
WG 478 started her Service life at 11 RFS Perth on 30th October 1951. Its last operational tour was at Gatow, Berlin, on the Station Flight where it led the flypast for the
Disbandment Parade of the Berlin Garrison in 1994. It was then stored at 27 MU Shawbury until sold 27th July 1995. It was shipped in an incomplete state
to Australia in 1996 and purchased by Rod for restoration. Registered VH-MMS, it became the subject of a six year restoration and first flew again on 1st March 2003
in the colours of 2 RFS Church Fenton where it operated in 1970.
9th April 2013 First
- apologies for the lack of updates in March - work got in the way!
Here's Harry Schoning's latest project. Harry reports:
"I've been out of contact
for the past 9 days on a 5,200 mile round trip doing "airplane stuff".
As you can see by the above picture, I have a new project.
Seems that way back in 1979 some chap brought 18010 into the USA and converted it to a Super Chipmunk with an IO-540 monster engine to do shows and such.
A few years ago Dr. John Burson and I acquired two British Chipmunks from a chap in California who had them in his hangar for 35 years, and we intended to rebuild them.
There is an unusual amount of work to rebuild a British Chipmunk and then we came upon a Canadian machine for me to rebuild - a bit easier as the parts are more reliably available over here.
I sold the two projects to a chap in Lithuania and two weeks ago we packed them into a 40 foot container and off they went.
The following Saturday I started out on my marathon drive, pulling my 16 foot trailer. On one stop I was invited to spend the night at Ike Inn's home in Tulsa, OK,
and he gave me a tour of his hangars. About 5 Canadian Chipmunks and 3 on rebuild and bush planes and a Mk 2 Harvard and a Mustang and on and on.
Chipmunk heaven. There are 11 flying Chipmunks on the field! Next, I drove to a suburb of Chicago, Barrington, to pick up the rest of the Chipmunk parts that John Burson
inherited when he bought 18056 from the Bill Rose Estate. That started to load me down. I had, in the back of the pick-up, a rebuilt, zero time engine I had, and was bringing it to Carrollton, GA
(about 50 miles from Atlanta) for one of John Burson's Chipmunk, and spent one night with John and his wife, Barbara. Next day, after repacking all the engine stuff, I was off to a town near Waco -
Clifton, where I was to pick up the Chipmunk in the above picture and the IO-540 and prop. I was away by 11:30 the next day as I had great help in packing the aircraft and wings, etc.,
on to my trailer. The troops really knew what they were doing and it was really a great job. I got as far as Pecos that day. A few years ago while flying a British Chipmunk from Carrollton to CA.,
I was over Pecos at 10,500 ft and the #1 cylinder quit working - so, down I went. Mike Carns and I eventually got it out and back to CA. Anyhow, I drove 15 hours
and made it home by 7 p.m. in time for wine and cheese time. I shall be leaving again soon and again out of contact, however, when I get to my computer it is overflowing with emails.
Anyhow, Troops, CF-BNF, Canada's first ever indigenous Tiger Moth is finished and now I'll be trying to sell it - see 16th January below.
This next project - 18010, will also be for sale when finished so if you know of anyone interested - let me know."
24th February 2013
In the autumn of 1937, de Havillands produced their General Information
Booklet No. 4, detailing the company's activities and products.
The 64 pages of this booklet have been scanned in high resolution and uploaded to the Members' Area of the website. This copy belonged to my father.
Does anyone have a copy of any other booklet in this series?
22nd February 2013
On this day in 1925 Captains Geoffrey de Havilland and Hubert Broad each
flew the prototype DH.60, G-EBKT from Stag Lane Aerodrome.
It was a Sunday afternoon. There had been feverish activity in the Works during the preceding week and that effort was not to be allowed to go to waste.
A second airframe was well on the way to completion at the same time. Knowing that the government was still undecided on the equipment suitable for
its embryonic and state subsidised flying club movement, the de Havilland Aircraft Company's Technical Director, C.C. Walker, had written to the Air Ministry
on 19 February 1925 suggesting that they might purchase this second aircraft, G-EBKU, and, if confirmed within seven days the company
"could definitely guarantee to complete this machine and have it ready for flight, complete with engine, by 1 March!"
It took until 11 March for the Air Ministry's Director of Contracts to reject the offer, partly on account of the fact that no funds were available within the current financial year,
but the Department of Technical Development (DTD) showed interest and suggested that, if the engine passed its Type Test and the aeroplane qualified for a C of A,
they were prepared to offer test facilities at Martlesham Heath. "In this suggestion, if so, when replying will you please state what value you will place on the machine
for the purpose of compensation in the event of loss during the test."
On their own initiative all the subsidised flying clubs that were to become functional after August 1925 ordered DH.60 Moths although the Air Ministry continued with its quest
for the 'ideal' light aeroplane by organising further trials. The DH.60 proved her worth and eventually even the Air Ministry itself became a repeat customer.
Thanks to Stuart Mackay for this update.
Here is a high resolution copy of the above image.
18th February 2013 Mosquito KA114 has flown for the last time in New Zealand and is now being de-rigged for packing and shipping to Virginia Beach, USA.
11th February 2013
More very good news. Woburn is back this year! For various
reasons, the de Havilland Moth Club has not visited Woburn Abbey since
but arrangements have been made with the club's president Henrietta, Duchess of Bedford, and Woburn 2013 will be held over the weekend of
Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th August 2013. This great news calls for a dHFC contingent to head across the pond to be part of what will
undoubtedly be a splendid weekend. The Press Release from the dHMC can be downloaded here.
11th February 2013
Today we welcome Bob Murphy to the Club. Bob owns this very nice
DH82a C-GNGS, c/n DHA 262
which is based in Toronto.
Club members loading Harry's spares on railroad trucks for shipment to Club HQ
9th February 2013
We are delighted to announce that the Club has arranged with Harry Schoning
to manage the sale of his
considerable Tiger Moth spares holding. The holding will be shipped to Club HQ in Seattle in the next few weeks, a complete inventory taken
and a full listing will be uploaded to this website. In the meantime, if you have any needs for Tiger spares, please contact us.
7th February 2013 The
'Out Of Africa' 1929 DH60GMW Moth (c/n 86) (see 15th January below) sold
Bonhams auction in Paris today. The hammer fell on Lot 535 for a breathtaking €201,250 ($269,663).
No news yet as to the identity of the winning bidder. This is easily a record price paid for any Moth to date.
(I was also very taken by the preceding Lot 524 - a 1931 8 litre Bentley. Well, one can dream...)
3rd February 2013
Here's a DH rarity - the all-wood fuselage of a de Havilland Queen Bee.
The aircraft is being restored by the Port Townsend Aero Museum
as a youth project and the fuselage has been replaced with a Tiger Moth frame for ease of restoration. The wooden fuselage seen here was collected by yours truly
yesterday to be used as patterns for future wooden Moth fuselage production.
30th January 2013
An engine change the hard way.
This Otter belonged to Gateway Aviation of Yellowknife NWT, and this photo was taken in either late February or early March of 1979 at Rae Lakes NWT,
about 150 miles north west of Yellowknife. Temperatures were between -25c and -35c. The R1340 geared engines used on the DHC-3 Otter had a nasty habit
of causing trouble at the most inconvenient times. A great many have been converted to PT6 turbine power for reasons of reliability and safety.
The gent on the ladder effecting the change is new member Peter Verbree. I am a Canadian licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer with 38 years' experience.
Peter currently works for Transport Canada as a Civil Aviation Safety Inspector - Airworthiness, and has had a lot of experience dealing with various de Havilland products.
He served his apprenticeship with an organization that served the coast of Labrador exclusively with DHC-2 and DHC-3 floatplanes, operated 5 Beavers and 10 Otters.
There were no airstrips there in those days. In his day to day work now, he still has close connection to DHC products (DHC-1 through DHC-8-400)
during his oversight activities. Peter hopes he will be able to find a reasonably priced project to keep his hands dirty on.
He tells us that regulatory paperwork is just not doing it some days. We understand.
29th January 2013
Today we welcome Richard Oliver to 2013 membership.
Here we see him in his Tiger N54556 being stalked by Gerry Schwam in N82GS before it was passed on to a new custodian.
27th January 2013
We are extremely pleased to annouce that James Forrest 'Lou' Luma, DFC,
DFC (US) becomes our latest Honorary Member.
Lou trained on Tigers at 18 EFTS Ladner, Vancouver and went on to become the only American Mosquito ace,
with five victories to his name. His first - an Me 410, has been depicted by Roy Grinnell in his dramatic painting 'First Sting'.
Lou lives in Seattle and his son works with me at Universal Avionics.
Each of our Honorary members will have a page on this website dedicated to them. The first - for Bill Clark - was uploaded today.
What the ...?
27th January 2013
Welcome to Gary Lust who signs up for 2013 membership today.
am delighted to hear that you are taking over the DH Moth Club. Having
been in that position in the late '70's, I know well the commitment of
time and energy
involved and wish you great success. I know you will enjoy the new relationships and contacts with the members.
I have flown and owned a number of vintage aircraft, but my favorite has always been the Tiger Moth.
In 1993 I was hopping rides
out of the Amana, IA airport, located near the Iowa River, when we were
hit by the Great Flood.
As the flood water encroached upon the grass airport the functional length diminished. Thinking that surely the rains would stop
and not willing to give up a lucrative 4th of July weekend we continued to operate on a 400 ft central unflooded portion of the runway
and thereby lost our last opportunity to move the airplane, as it rained 5 inches that night. Little did we think that it would crest
weeks later at 5 feet above runway elevation. As the water invaded the hangar we were using we jacked up the airplane
until the low ceiling limited that option. When the water commenced to lap at the fuselage we made the desperate decision
to float the ship to the nearest road for takeoff. We refer to this caper as the “Float of the Phoenix”.
Shortly thereafter I became
involved full time with a flying business in Idaho and had no time for
Moth matters until our recent retirement,
when we moved back to the Iowa farm where the Moth was in the barn playing host to a family of mice, who had feasted on both spars of the right lower wing.
Restoration is proceeding, wings and tail are covered, and fuselage is going back together. As they say I should have it finished a week from Tuesday."
26th January 2013
Welcome to new member Greg Ross who owns 1943 Tiger Moth N755NL, c/n 86247,
Based at Owosso, MI this is the ex-Alan Lapidus Tiger that he and Gerry Schwam famously collected from Vancouver in 1984,
across the Rockies to New York. The 3,000 mile flight took 26 stops, 35 flying hours, 36 quarts of oil and 270 gallons of fuel.
Today we also welcome Gary Lust (Tiger N41DH), Sid Tucker (Tiger and Chipmunk) to 2013 membership. Peter Mettam has also
renewed his membership. A Senior Aircraftsman in the RAF in 1950, he worked on Tigers, Mosquitos, Canberras and Meteors.
He learned to fly Tigers at Fairoaks, Surrey in 1955, emigrating to the USA in 1956 to work as an aerodynamicist at Lockheed, GA.
Now 83, Peter has been a member of this club since 1974 with it was still the AAA Moth Club under Chairman Ralph Wefel.
25th January 2013 This
morning we welcome Rick Ksander of Peterborough, Ontario and another Chipmunk
to our club - this one somewhat radical!
C-GVME is a 1952 UK-built T.10 used by the Burmese Air Force until 1979 when it was auctioned off and exported to the US.
At that time is was fitted with a Lycoming 0-450 engine. In 2012, Rick imported it to Canada and fitted it with a R3600 radial engine,
wooden propeller, new Dynon glass panels and an exterior auxiliary fuel tank. Welcome, Rick.
24th January 2013
This stunning Beaver portrait was posted by the pilot, Kelly Mahon, on
our Crew Room forum this evening.
It is far too good not to be shared here. The Crew Room is now fully operational, so please feel free to register, use and enjoy this club resource.
24th January 2013
Welcome to Kelly Mahon of Spokane, WA who joins the club today with his
recently-acquired Lycoming Chipmunk N17XX.
Kelly has been involved with Chipmunks for twenty years, with a little Tiger and Gipsy Moth mixed in. He also has 1,800 hours in a Beaver.
The Chippy is snowed in right now, but he can't wait to get going in the spring. Welcome, Kelly.
22nd January 2013
Today we welcome new member Brian Dunlop and his Chipmunk to the club.
Brian's machine is a UK-built T10, ex-Royal Navy
from the Officer Cadet Air Experience Flight at Plymouth, Roborough, UK. It was sold off in 1994, shipped to Canada in 1995 and sat for several years.
It was then put together and sold in Montana to an owner who flew it very little before 'donating' it for a very large sum to a local Aviation Historical Foundation.
It sat in a dark hangar in Helena, Montana for twelve years and Brian found out about it, inspected it, and made an offer.
Not accepted, but it then came up for a bid and he bid again to be the only bidder and after some tooing and froing he got it last October.
It is WP801 and Navy 911 from its previous life and Brian has changed the registration from N9715C to N801WP.
It is completely standard, just as sold off, with only Cleveland brakes fitted - a sound Chipmunk modification.
We also welcome Joseph Deaton, Thomas Peterson, Larry Harmancinski and the Port Townsend Aero Museum to the club today.
20th January 2013
Latest members to renew membership for 2013 are Kurt and Sue Hofschneider
of Clark, NJ.
Kurt, Sue and their much-traveled N39DH starred in this now-poignant 1991 air-to air shot before they and Paul Jordan generously
donated N39DH to the US Air Force Museum at Dayton, Ohio in 1999. Wouldn't it be wonderful to re-create this spectacular scene
with another Tiger at the official opening of the Freedom Tower later this year? Any takers?
Bill in the restored Hurricane IIc that he helped to restore at Rochester, Kent over the period 1986-88, just before its handover to the museum at RAF Manston.
20th January 2013
Today we welcome our second Honorary Member to the Club. Bill Clark
was nearly 19 in the summer of 1939
when he spent many hours watching over the hedge at Gravesend, Kent as the Tigers of 20 ERFTS flew their circuits and bumps,
dreaming of the day that he could take his place in the air. In June 1940 that dream became reality as he commenced his RAF training.
He trained on the Tiger Moths at 7 EFTS, Desford, a few miles west of Leicester. He fought in the desert,
was shot down in his 274 Sqn Hurricane over Libya on 28th January 1942 and spent the rest of the war
in various German prisoner of war camps, ending up in Stalagluft III until it was liberated.
Bill recorded his wartime memoirs in his book, 'One of the Many who Followed The Few'. It is an extraordinarily detailed,
meticulously-written and compelling 230-page account of Bill's wartime RAF flying career. Bill writes,
"Dear Ian, Congratulations on being Chairman of the De Havilland Flying Club. May I wish it and you every success for the future; a very worthy enterprise.
Oh, that I were a young man again and could participate in this venture to the full. I shall just have to dream the dreams of a very old man.
Thank you for extending your generous offer of Honorary Membership of the Club and I will be honoured to accept."
See more in our Crew Room.
18th January 2013 We're
delighted to announce our new Honorary Member program.
Honorary membership of the dHFC is open to any pilot who trained on Tiger Moths during the war.
Our first Honorary Member
is John Fysh of New South Wales.
John tells us that he learned to fly on the Tigers of 8 EFTS Narrandera, NSW. "The war wound down before I got any further.
My father was a pilot and flew a number of de Havilland aeroplanes. My first flight I remember was with him as pilot in a Gipsy Moth at Longreach,
Queensland in 1929. I sat in the rear cockpit on somebody's lap! Later he was endorsed on DH 50's, DH 60's, Fox Moth, Puss Moth and Dragonfly.
I flew with him on his last flight as a pilot in 1940, before the war claimed the club's Puss Moth. We both had a flight in a DH Comet
at Hatfield in 1950 piloted by 'Catseyes' Cunningham."
More of John's fascinating story will be included in the Spring magazine. Welcome John!
See more in our Crew Room.
17th January 2013
Today we welcome Otto Dietrich to the club. Otto, who works for Bombardier
Aerospace - the modern incarnation of
de Havilland Canada - owns this Canadian-built Tiger, converted to 82a open-cockpit configuration.
Welcome to the club, Otto.
16th January 2013
Here's another DH82c - CF-BNF (DHC327) - that Harry Schoning rolled out
into the Palm Desert, California sunshine earlier today.
This is how it might have looked in 1939, as it was rolled out from the de Havilland hangar in Toronto, as the first of the Canadian Tiger Moths - the "C".
It was used by de Havillands for testing various things related to the improvement of the type and remained with the company for the duration of the war, being sold off in 1946.
CF-BNF was the only "C" never to have served in the RCAF during WW 2 in the Commonwealth Air Training Plan. It was used for testing the Menasco engine
when the USAAF had ordered 25 "C"s for training. These aircraft were not taken by the USA and were retained by the RCAF, however,
because the Menasco engine had only 125 HP, so was unsuitable for serious training. The Menasco Moths were relegated to radio/instrument training.
Eventually, all Menasco Moths were refitted with Gipsy 1C engines and returned to the line. From its entry into the civilian flying field it had many owners,
eventually coming to the USA to the hangar of Dr. John Burson, of Carrollton, Georgia, where it was flown often, along with Dr. Burson's other Canadian Tiger Moths
until an engine malfunction caused an unplanned landing off-field. Air Vice Marshal Ron Dick and his son were flying it at the time and because of AVM Dick's
vast aviation experience, no one was injured. However, the aircraft suffered damage and was transported to California to Harry's hangar at Palm Springs Airport.
Over the past few years he has been able to finish rebuilding this historic aircraft to its original condition. The aircraft has a few non-original modifications
because of safety concerns: a 24 volt starter and air driven generator, 24 volt battery system and a radio/transponder. All "C" models have brakes.
The engine is totally rebuilt to "0" time, though not the original engine installed when the malfunction occurred.
Harry tells us that this historic Tiger will be offered for sale in the spring.
Contact Harry for further details.
16th January 2013
Here's a news story to warm the heart. Gordon
Jones was a wartime instructor on Tiger Moths at 5 EFTS High River
and turned 90 on 12th January. Gordon still flies his beloved Tiger C-FCIX. Watch this recent CBC News report on Gordon.
His biography - WINGS OVER HIGH RIVER - Conversations with A. Gordon Jones - is available here.
And more here.
Gordon plans to continue flying “until they tell me I can’t.”
UPDATE 21st January 2013 - Gordon is now an Honorary Member of the de Havilland Flying Club.
15th January 2013
Member Ed Katzen is selling his 1940 Tiger Moth c/n 83152, TTAF 3383, SMOH
professional restoration completed 2006, original instruments, brakes and tailwheel, Exp/Exh airworthiness, sold with fresh condition inspection.
Royal Australian Air Force history as T5483. Located Westhampton, NY. Asking $70,000.
Contact Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (917) 807-5947 for further details.
15th January 2013
The 'Out Of Africa' 1929 DH60GMW Moth (c/n 86) is going under the hammer
at the Bonhams sale at the Grand Palais in Paris on February 6th.
Piloted by Robert Redford’s character Denys Finch Hatton in the film, it is expected to fetch around £120,000 (or about $192,350).
The Moth was restored by Cliff Lovell in the UK the early 80's and after several ownership changes, it has resided in the Netherlands since January 1996.
Built by the Moth Aircraft Corporation of Lowell, Mass., it was originally registered NC585M and was restored in the USA
by this club's founding father Jack Bucher in the early sixties. So wouldn't it be wonderful to see it back in American skies once more...
View the full sales details here.
KA114 in good company over Auckland
10th January 2013
Currently the world's only flying de Havilland Mosquito, KA114, is coming
home to the USA shortly. Details here.
If you haven't seen her flying yet, check out these inspiring videos of her flying low level here and beating up Auckland, New Zealand here.
Hats off to owner Gerry Yagen, the engineers at Avspecs Ltd. and to pilot Dave Philips.
(Here's Dave flying a Tiger Moth - obviously out of control, doesn't know what he's doing, lucky to be alive...!)
5th January 2013
Welcome to the new de Havilland Flying Club website. The de Havilland
Flying Club is the new name for what was the DH Moth and Chipmunk Club.
This website is designed to provide a new means of communication between de Havilland Flying Club members.
Members should use their new username and password to access the Members' Area
which will soon include a wealth of useful club information, including a members' list
and registry of all known de Havilland types extant in the USA and Canada.
The Members' Area also includes downloadable copies of the Club magazine.
Click here to return to the top of the page
The de Havilland
Moth Club of North America - lest we forget