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RAAF A34 De Havilland DH.84 Dragon

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DH.84A Dragon
Photo via Gina Wilson

     
 

De Havilland DH.84 Dragon Image Gallery

 
   

A Brief History of the De Havilland Dragon DH.84 in RAAF Service

by Paul McGuiness
(with many thanks to Geoff Goodall)

 

 
 

In 1941 the British War Cabinet advised the Australian wartime Aircraft Production Commission that they could no longer deliver additional Anson and Oxford aircraft and recommended that Australia look to providing their own production to fulfill the RAAF twin engined aircraft requirement. Acting on this recommendation the Australian War Cabinet placed an order with De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd at Mascot Airport on 3rd September 1941 for 50 DH.84 Dragon twin engined general purpose aircraft at a cost of £6,000 per aircraft.  At the same time an order for 125 Gipsy Major Mk 1 Series 2 engines was placed with General Motors Holden. This initial order was re-evaluated in the light of the world situation and it was decided that it would be prudent to order additional aircraft and engines. Accordingly another 87 Dragons and extra engines were ordered on 21st January 1942, giving a total contract value of £716,538 for the delivery of 137 aircraft, 255 engines and nominated essential spares.

 

Dragon production could not begin for some time because De Havilland were fully committed to produce 1,035 Tiger Moth ab initio trainers for both the RAF and RAAF furthermore, General Motors Holden (GMH) needed a significant lead time to produce the contracted 255 engines. From January to August 1942 De Havilland arranged for the necessary jigs and drawings to be shipped from the parent company in England and General Motors Holden set up a production line and began to produce the Gipsy Major engines. By late August 1942 the end of De Havilland Tiger Moth production was rapidly approaching and sufficient engines had been produced by GMH to equip new production aircraft.

 

De Havilland craftsmen began production of the first Australian made Dragon in August 1942 in the storage area of the Grace Brothers department store on Broadway in Sydney CBD.  The partially completed aircraft (A34-13) was moved to the De Havilland factory at Mascot and completed on 25th September 1942. The aircraft was test flown at Mascot on 29th September 1942 then painted in camouflaged upper surfaces and pale fuselage sides and undersurfaces.  A34-13 was joined by A34-14 and were the first Australian Dragons accepted by the RAAF and both were delivered from Mascot to No 2 Aircraft Depot at RAAF Base Richmond, Sydney on 12th October 1942. The rest of the Australian production followed at a rate of one or two a week, delivered to No.2 Aircraft Depot at Richmond or No.2 Aircraft Park, Bankstown. The contracted total of 137aircraft was not realised as the last 50 aircraft were cancelled in April 1943 when the RAAF did not need any more Dragons given the availability of more modern types such as Hudsons and Dakotas. The 87th and final Australian made Dragon was completed in June 1943 but the De Havilland Mascot works continued to perform major overhauls and rebuilds of RAAF Dragons for the rest of the war and well beyond.

 

The RAAF operated a total of 98 Dragons during the war consisting of 11 aircraft impressed from civil airlines and 87 new build machines. A total of 43 were lost due to accidents and enemy action and of the 55 aircraft that survived WWII three were allocated to civil agencies in 1943/44 and the other 52 were sold to civilian owners by the Commonwealth Disposal Commission between February 1945 and June 1946. The Dragon was a simple aircraft to fly and operate but it was woefully underpowered and many crashes occurred when one of the engines failed because the aircraft would not remain aloft on one engine with any sort of load. However, the aircraft could lift its own weight in cargo/passengers; was very economical to run; was readily available and was reasonably cheap, all of which made it very attractive to post war civil operators.

 

 
     
 
RAAF Serial C/N

Individual Aircraft History

A34-1 6081

Pre-RAAF History

1934          Built by De Havilland Aircraft as a Dragon II at the Hatfield Factory in Hertfordshire UK.

13Jul34      British CofA issued VH-URX: Sold to De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Sydney NSW who were acting as agents for MacRobertson Miller Aviation (MMA) Co Ltd. Perth WA. De Havilland arranged for the purchase, shipment and importation of the aircraft.

Jul34         Along with VH-URW and VH-URY, dismantled and crated for shipment to Fremantle, Western Australia by DeHavilland.

18Jul34      Loaded aboard the 14,362 ton Aberdeen & Commonwealth Line vessel SS Largs Bay at London Docks and shipped to Australia.

17Aug34     Arrived at F Shed, Victoria Quay in Fremantle and taken to Maylands airport Perth for assembly and testing by MMA.

11Sep34     Registered as VH-URX to MMA at Maylands Aerodrome, Perth WA   Named The Gascoyne. Colour scheme was dark royal blue fuselage with silver wings and tail.

12Sep34     First flight in Australia.

23Oct34    While parked at Ord River Station a willy-willy storm blew the aircraft down the gradient of the field to collide with stockyards. The aircraft ended up on its back and suffered severe damage. Horrie Miller (MMA) flew to Ord River and spent four weeks repairing the aircraft.

1934-38     Flew all over WA carrying freight and passengers and other tasks as required.

Sep38        Ferried from Perth to Adelaide by Cyril Kleinig. Based at Parafield airport and flew the MMA network in SA for the next two years.

02Dec39    Impressed by Australian Government for RAAF via Impressment Requisition Number 12516 for the sum of 1,800 pounds.

Dec39        Allocated to No 1 Flying Training School (1FTS) at RAAF Base Point Cook VIC.

27Dec39    Ferried from Parafield to 1FTS by Captain James Woods.

03Jan40    Brought on charge as A34-1 with fitted engines 5315 & 8231.

08Jan40    Struck off civil register.

 

RAAF History

26Jan40    Issued to Advanced Training Flight at 1FTS.

25Apr40    Issued to No 1 Signals School at Point Cook.

07Aug40    Allocated to Butler Air Transport Co (BAT) at Mascot Airport Sydney for modifications.

09Aug40    Received by BAT.

Sep-Oct40 Overhauled by BAT at a cost of 1,240 pounds. Total hours 4,196.

07Nov40    Allocated to and received by No 4 Elementary Flying Training School (4EFTS) at Mascot airport Sydney.

28Nov40    Allocated to and received by No 3 Elementary Flying Training School (3EFTS) at Essendon airport Melbourne.

30Nov40    Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) at Essendon airport for modifications.

18Dec40     Allocated to No 1 Air Observers School (1AOS) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW. To be fitted with radios by No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Laverton before issue to 1AOS.

22Dec40    Received by 1AD for modifications.

20Feb41     Allocated to No 2 Air Observers School (2AOS) at RAAF Station Mt Gambier SA.

23Feb41     Double engine change - 5315 & 8231 replaced by 5330 & 5334.

26Feb41     Received by 2AOS.

10May41     Received by 1AD for 180 hourly inspection.

15May41     Engine 5334 replaced by 82090.

05Jun41     Received by 2AOS after inspection.

26Jun41     Port engine failed immediately after takeoff causing a forced landing in a field one mile N of Mt Gambier airfield at 0840hrs.  Pilot A407229 SGT LW Evans and passengers A406608 LAC WJ Allen, A406617 LAC NF Gray, A18397 AC1 EC Stuyvesant and O431320 PLTOFF J.J Kennelly were all uninjured. Moderate damage to aircraft undercarriage.

01Feb42     Allocated to ANA at Essendon airport for transport/air ambulance conversion.

09Feb42    Received by ANA.

24Feb42    Received by 1AD for post conversion checks and weighing.

25Feb42    Allocated to No 35 (T) Squadron at RAAF Pearce WA.

09Mar42    Received by 35Sqn.

11Apr42     On a flight from Maylands to Waroonah WA both engines failed due to contaminated fuel. Forced landing made beside the main highway and fuel was hand filtered before flight resumed the following day. Pilot A406439 FSGT F.H. Dyke and four passengers were uninjured.

20May42    While taxying out to take-off from Albany airport WA the aircraft swung violently to stbd. Despite application of brakes and engine power the swing could not be stopped and the stbd wing struck an obstruction adjacent to the taxiway. Damage was inflicted on the stbd main rear spar and the aircraft skin. Pilot A406439 FSGT F.H. Dyke, WOAG O400884 PLTOFF R.V. Umphelby and Army passengers SGT Murray and PVT White were uninjured. Aircraft repaired at Albany and departed two days later.

28May42    Immediately after take-off from Albany airport the stbd engine failed.  A circuit completed on one engine and the aircraft was landed safely. Engine failure was caused by water contamination of the fuel due to a faulty filter. Pilot A406439 FSGT F.H. Dyke and WOAG O400884 PLTOFF R.V. Umphelby were uninjured.

14Jun42     Stbd engine again failed, this time with full load and over the ocean. Aircraft could not maintain height and was forced to ditch off Cliff Head 18 miles from Dongara WA. Aircraft overturned and came to rest inverted in 4ft of water. Pilot O386 FLTLT P.C. Burdeu, WOAG O400884 PLTOFF R.V. Umphelby and passengers O39 GRPCPT Ernest Gipps Knox-Knight OBE, WGCDR Towers and FLGOFF Clifford all escaped with only minor injuries.

18Jun42     Items salvage by Salvage Section Pearce included both engines, some airframe components and most of the cockpit instruments.

14Aug42     Allocated to Technical Workshops RAAF Pearce for conversion of wreckage.

Sep42        Struck off charge and authorised for write-off.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-1

A34-2 6088

Pre-RAAF History

Apr34        Ordered by Butler Air Transport Co of Cootamundra NSW,

25May34    De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd UK requested the Australian Civil Aviation Branch (CAB) to supply registration for a ‘Dragon Moth’ on order for Butler Air Transport Co Cootamundra NSW. CAB allocated VH-URU.

01Sep34     Built by De Havilland Aircraft as a Dragon II at the Hatfield Factory in Hertfordshire UK.

01Sep34     1st Flight.

04Sep34    British CofA issued to VH-URU with De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Sydney NSW.

Sep34        Aircraft disassembled, crated and prepared for shipment by De Havilland UK.

28Sep        Loaded onboard the 8,063 ton Commonwealth & Dominion Line vessel SS Port Darwin at London Docks for shipment to Australia.

29Oct34    Arrived in Sydney and transported to Mascot for assembly and testing by De Havilland.

07Nov34    Test flight after assembly.

08Nov34    Registration Application from Butler Air Transport (BAT) Co, Cootamundra NSW. To be used for “passenger and mail carrying on the Cootamundra-Charleville route”.

09Nov34    Registered as VH-URU.

20Nov34    The Governor General HRH Lord Gowrie christened the aircraft ‘Charleville’.

1935          Early inland flights led to fuel vapour locks due to the very high temperatures being experienced. A BAT engineer, Mr Thomas Williams, developed and implemented a solution that was applied to many Dragons.

27Nov37    On a mail flight to Charleville the stbd carburetor failed causing a forced landing at Goolburra Station QLD.  Pilot Ron Brett cleaned the carburetor and continued the flight some hours later.

07Dec37    Oil failure in port engine caused a forced landing at Mangalore VIC.

25Oct39    Stbd engine failure resulted in a forced landing at Maitland NSW.

03Nov39    Impressed by Australian Government for RAAF via Impressment Requisition Number 12514 for the sum of 1,700 pounds. Total airframe hours was 3,221.

10Jan40     Ferried to Point Cook by Arthur Butler.

11Jan40     Struck off civil register.

11Jan40     Brought on charge as A34-2.

 

RAAF History

11Jan40     Allocated to 1FTS Observers School at Point Cook.

26Jan40    Issued to Advanced Training Flight at 1FTS.

30Mar40    While parked a wing gust caused the aircraft to lift and the wing tip hit the ground. Minor damage, repaired at unit.

05May40    Allocated to Ansett Airways at Essendon airport for modifications.

11Jul40      Received by Ansett.

25Sep40    Allocated to No 1 Air Observers School (1AOS) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW. To be fitted with radio by No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Laverton before issue to 1AOS.

07Oct40    Received by 1AOS.

11Nov40     Approximately two miles SW of Cootamundra at 1130 hrs witnesses saw the aircraft start a climbing turn, stall and enter a spin. The aircraft then hit the ground and burst into flames killing the pilot and four of the five passengers on board. Those killed on impact were pilot O676 PLTOFF James Frederick Hearne (20) single of Bathurst NSW and passengers A24119 LAC John Duff Cameron (26) single of Annandale Sydney NSW, A400197 LAC James Clifford Stanley 24) single of Stoney Creek VIC, A404113 LAC Robert Montgomery (26) single of Edinburgh Scotland and A404202 LAC Ernest Arthur Piercy (20) single of Bundaberg QLD. The other passenger A402016 LAC John Head (25) single of Scone NSW was alive when he was thrown from the aircraft on impact but with grievous injuries to the head and legs and severe burns, LAC Head did not survive his injuries and died in Cootamundra Hospital at 1545hrs.

 

PLTOFF Hearne is buried in Bathurst General Cemetery RC Plot C Row 8 Grave 3.

LAC Cameron is buried in Toowoomba Cemetery RC Plot 2 Block 1 Allotment 60 Grave R261.

LAC Montgomery is buried in Williamstown Cemetery Melbourne Presbyterian Plot G Lane 24.5 Grave 5.

LAC Stanley is buried in Barrabool Cemetery Geelong C of E Plot Old Section.

LAC Piercy is buried in Cootamundra General Cemetery C of E Plot AA Grave 222.

LAC Head is buried in Cootamundra General Cemetery Presbyterian Plot AA Row C Grave 5.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-2

A34-3 6097

Pre RAAF History

Oct34        Built by De Havilland Aircraft as a Dragon II at the Hatfield Factory in Hertfordshire UK.

Oct34        1st Flight.

04Sep34    British CofA issued to G-ADDJ, registered to Railway Air Services Ltd London UK named City of Plymouth.

Mar37        Sold to De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Sydney NSW who were acting as agents for Aircrafts Pty Ltd, Archerfield, QLD Australia. De Havilland arranged for the purchase, shipment and importation of the aircraft.

Apr37        Aircraft disassembled and prepared for shipment to Australia.

19Apr37     Crated aircraft loaded aboard the 7,983ton Commonwealth & Dominion Line vessel SS Port Alma at London Docks

17May37    Arrived at New Farm Wharf Brisbane.

20May37    Transported to Archerfield for assembly and testing by Aircrafts Pty Ltd.

26May37    Registration application from Aircrafts Pty Ltd, Archerfield, QLD.

19Jun37     Weighed and inspected by Civil Aviation Branch (CAB) at Archerfield after assembly.

21Jun37     Registered as VH-UZZ.

1937          Aircraft renamed as Riada. (The owners surname spelled backwards).

29Oct37    Engine failure caused forced landing at Archerfield. Pilot B.W. Munro uninjured.

21Mar38    Aborted take-off at Byron Bay NSW when fabric detached by heavy rain.

02Apr38    While parked at Archerfield the prop wash from a Douglas DC-2 aircraft caused the aircraft to roll into the side of a hangar. The Dragon also struck and damaged a QLD Aero Club aircraft.

12May38    On a scheduled flight from Brisbane to Kingaroy an engine failure caused a forced landing at Murgon QLD. Pilot RW Hillier and one passenger uninjured.

O5Dec39    Impressed by Australian Government for RAAF via Impressment Requisition Number 12515 for the sum of 1,800 pounds. Total airframe hours was 3,027.

10Jan40     Ferried to Point Cook.

11Jan40     Struck off civil register.

 

RAAF History

11Jan40     Brought on charge as A34-3.

26Jan40    Allocated to and issued to Communications Flight (CF) at RAAF Laverton VIC.

12Aug40     Allocated to No 1 Air Observers School (1AOS) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW.

20Sep40    Received by 1AOS.

20Sep40    Struck two Anson aircraft while taxying. Port & stbd lower wing tips, port airscrew and, fabric under nose section damaged.

27Sep40    Allocated to No 3 Elementary Flying Training School (3EFTS) at Essendon airport Melbourne.

18Oct40     Allocated to No 4 Elementary Flying Training School (4EFTS) at Mascot airport Sydney.

21Oct40     To be transported by road to Butler Air Transport (BAT) for repair and modification.

11Nov40     Received by BAT.

04Feb41     Allocated to 3EFTS for issue to a civilian contractor for fitment of Sperry instruments and modification to the W/T wiring.

20Feb41     Issued to BAT for collection.

20Feb41     BAT telegram to DCA: Flying Officer Hillier took possession of A34-3 today and flew it away without BAT permission or required AID clearance.  DCA investigated: letter from BAT Operations Manager described Hillier sitting in the cockpit smoking a pipe for some time then to his surprise Hillier started the engines and his two ground crew jumped on board and he taxied off and departed.

21Feb41     Arrived at Essendon Airport.

05Mar43    Allocated to No 1 Air Observers School (1AOS) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW. To be fitted with radio by No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Laverton before issue to 1AOS.

07Mar41    Received by 1AD at RAAF Laverton and fitted with W/T.

24Mar41    Available for collection.

01Apr41     Allocated to No 2 Air Observers School (2AOS) at RAAF Station Mt Gambier SA.

16Apr41     Received by 2AOS.

09Jan42    Stbd engine failed causing a forced landing in a field near Grassdale, VIC at 0936hrs.  Pilot A407824 SGT BD Jarrett and passengers A416792 LAC KA Scheller, A416810 LAC JR Vowles, and A24547 AC1 RC Sillett were all uninjured. Minor damage to aircraft undercarriage.

06Feb42    Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) at Essendon airport for transport/air ambulance conversion.

10Feb42     Received by ANA.

22Feb42    Arrived RAAF Base Pearce after ferry flight from 1AD. Pilot FLGOFF RR Winter.

04Mar42    Allocated to No 35 (T) Squadron at RAAF Pearce WA.

07Mar42    Departed Pearce for Port Hedland WA. Collected four RAF aircrew from a Catalina sank during the Japanese air raid at Broome on 03Mar42. Pilot FLGOFF RR Winter.

08Mar42    Allocated to 34 (T) Sqn at Daly Waters NT.

11Mar42     Transported urgent medical supplies to Broome for personnel wounded on 03March.

13Mar42    Painted with radio call sign VH-CRL allocated by Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces. Departed Pearce for 1AD Laverton.

19Mar42    Arrived 1AD Ferry Flight.

06Apr42    Received by 34Sqn.

03May42    Allocated to 33 (T) Squadron at RAAF Townsville, QLD. To be overhauled before receipt.

08May42    Departed Daly Waters for No 1 Elementary Flying Training School (1EFTS) at Parafield SA.

14May42    Allocated to Ansett Airways at Essendon airfield Melbourne for overhaul.

03Jun42    Ferried from Parafield to Essendon.

01Sep42     Allocation to 33Sqn cancelled. Reallocated to No 36 (T) Squadron at Essendon Airport.

04Sep42    Received by 36Sqn.

13Oct42     Crash landed at Musgrave Station, Cape York QLD. Aircraft severely damaged.

20Oct42    Allocated to No 12 Repair & Salvage Unit (12RSU) at RAAF Garbutt for recovery and repair.

30Oct42    Received by 12RSU.  Ground crew sent to Musgrave Station to effect temporary repairs.

21Dec42     Recovered to RAAF Garbutt.

20Jul43     Allocated to No 13 Aircraft Repair Depot (13ARD) at RAAF Breddan QLD for completion.

25Jul43     Received by 13ARD.

11Oct43     Request approval for conversion of airframe to components. Engines repairable.

18Dec43     Approval to convert airframe to components.

29Jun45    Aircraft remains sold to Airlines (WA) Ltd Perth. It is assumed the remains were used as a spares source as no rebuild was done.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-3

A34-4 6062

Pre RAAF History

30Jan34    Built by De Havilland Aircraft as the first production Dragon II at the Stag Lane Aerodrome Factory in Edgeware, London UK.

31Jan34     British CofA issued to G-ACMO: Jersey Airways Ltd Glasgow-Renfrew UK. Named St Queen’s Bay.

Jul35         Sold to Northern and Scottish Airways Ltd, Glasgow-Renfrew UK.

12Aug37     Transferred to Scottish Airways Ltd which was formed by the merger of North & Scottish Airways Ltd and Highland Airways Ltd.

Mar38        Sold to Arthur Russel Penfold, Brisbane Qld and imported to Australia.

Mar38        Mr Penfold requested registration VH-ARP but CAB issued VH-ABK.

22Jun38    Inspected by CAB after assembly at Archerfield, Brisbane QLD.

Jun38        Registration application from South Queensland Airways Pty Ltd, Archerfield Aerodrome, Brisbane Qld.

27Oct38    Registered as VH-ABK named City of Toowoomba.

1938-40     Flew regular scheduled passenger flights between Brisbane and Toowoomba QLD.

05Apr39    Collided with a refuelling tanker at Archerfield airfield. Moderate damage. No injuries to Pilot A. Bashford or the four passengers.

02May40    Sold to Thomas H. McDonald, Cairns Qld with a purchase price of £2750. Sale not finalized when McDonald became aware of imminent impressment by the RAAF.

25Jun40    Impressed by Australian Government for RAAF via Impressment Requisition Number 12525. Aircraft to be delivered to No 3 Elementary Flying Training School (3EFTS) at Essendon Airport Melbourne.

01Jul40      Notice of Impressment received by South Queensland Airways Pty Ltd, who promptly wrote a strong protest to Arthur Fadden, Minister for Supply and Development.

04Jul40     Ferried from Archerfield to Essendon via Cootamundra by FLTLT RC Brett 1AD Ferry Flight.

05Jul40     Brought on charge as A34-4.

 

RAAF History

06Jul40     Issued to Ansett Airways at Essendon for modifications.

02Sep40    Allocated to No 1 Air Observers School (1AOS) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW. To be fitted with radio by No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Laverton before issue to 1AOS.

20Oct40    Received by 1AD for W/T modifications then issued to No 1AOS.

04Feb41   Stbd engine failure caused a forced landing in a field two miles N of Cootamundra at 0630hrs.  Pilot O280791 PLTOFF H.B. Dawkins was uninjured. Minor damage to aircraft undercarriage.

19Feb41     Allocated to No2 Air Observers School (2AOS) at RAAF Station Mt Gambier SA.

26Feb41     Received by 2AOS.

06Mar42    Awaiting chair frames and stretcher mounts.

07Feb42    Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) at Essendon airport for transport/air ambulance conversion.

20Feb42    Received by ANA.

01Apr42     Allocated to No33 (T) Squadron at RAAF Townsville QLD.

02Apr42    Received by 1AD for post conversion checks.

16Apr42     Allocation to 33Sqn cancelled.

17Apr42     Allocated to No35 (T) Squadron at Maylands airport Perth WA.

26Apr42    Departed 1AD for ferry flight to 35Sqn pilot O386 FLTLT P.C. Burdeu and three crew. Planned route was Laverton-Parafield-Ceduna-Forrest-Kalgoorlie-Maylands and expected to take three days.

30Apr42    Received by 35Sqn.

04May42    Received by 1AD for modifications to W/T.

11May42     Received by 35Sqn.

25Jun42    Damaged beyond unit repair capability during a landing accident at Maylands airport WA.

08Oct42    Remained unserviceable at 35Sqn until allocated to MacRobertson Miller Aviation (MMA) at Maylands for complete overhaul.

22Jan43    Overhaul stopped until new mainplane arrives from eastern states.

06May43    Received by 35Sqn after repairs completed.

07May43    Loaned to MMA for three months while the MMA Lockheed 10 was being repaired after it crashed at Port Hedland. Loan was charged at a rate of eight pounds per day.

16May43    Issued to MMA.

18May43    Registration application: RAAF, Melbourne/ operated by MMA, Perth.

21May43    Registered VH-ABK. Operated by MMA on civil airline services, civil registration painted over RAAF camouflage

24Aug43    Brought back on RAAF Charge.

01Sep43     Allocated to 35Sqn.

02Sep43    Received by 35Sqn.

22Sep43    Allocated for exclusive use of Allied Works Council Perth WA.

06Nov43    Allocated to No 7 Communications Flight (7CF) at RAAF Base Pearce WA.

10Nov43     Received by 7CF.

27Mar44    Allocated to MMA for survey and inspection.

29Mar44    Received by MMA. Survey report recommended conversion to components.

12Sep44     Approved for conversion.

 

Post RAAF History

1976          The remains of VH-ABK were acquired by an established aircraft restorer Mr John Sinclair of Brisbane QLD, who planned a long-term Dragon restoration project.

1992          Mr Sinclair purchased a collection of DH.84 parts gathered over many years by retired Qantas Captain John Alsop of Dural, Sydney NSW.  The collection included airframe parts, a total of 27 wings, a set of inner stub planes, undercarriage assemblies, wing struts etc.

Jan95        Mr Peter Challinor of Mothcair Aviation Services Murwillumbah, NSW began a production line of four new-build Dragon fuselages in purpose built jigs. One of the four was VH-ABK (A34-4), which was completed in late 1996.

1996-2003  Under restoration to fly at Mr Sinclair’s Brisbane home.

2015          Restoration continues in Sinclair's home workshop: fuselage almost complete, painted dark blue with UK registration G-ACMO and "Jersey Airways Ltd" on nose. Registration reserved VH-UQY

A34-5 6112

Pre RAAF History

1936          Built by De Havilland Aircraft as a Dragon II at the Hatfield Factory in Hertfordshire UK. 14Aug36 1st Flight.

1936          Registered as G-AEMK.

16Aug36     Purchased by Col. Carlos Pastor Krauel, representing Spanish Republican forces.

19Aug36     HM Government banned the export of aircraft to Spain.

01Sep36     Sold to Union Founders Trust Ltd Croydon London.  UK Certificate of Registration 7252.

15Sep36     Sold to Commercial Air Hire Ltd Croydon London.

16Jan37     Sold to Mr Joseph Herman, Bengasse 3 Vienna Austria.

Jan37        Sold to Mutual Finance Ltd Croydon London

Feb37        Sold to Union Founders Trust Ltd Croydon London.

15Mar38    Sold to Air Travel & Survey (AT&S) Pty Ltd Sydney NSW Australia.

15Mar38    Civil Aviation Branch (Australia) allocated registration VH-AAO.

11Sep38     VH-AAO departed Croydon Airport on a ferry flight to Sydney Australia piloted by the directors of AT&S, the brothers Denzel and Andrew MacArthur-Onslow.  The flight involved staging through 12 countries and took 40 days to complete When the aircraft landed at Berka aerodrome in Benghazi the brothers were arrested as British spies and goaled until they were cleared and released to go on their way.

19Oct38     Arrived Darwin at 1230hrs.

03Dec38    Australian Registration application by Air Travel & Surveys (AT&S) Pty Ltd, Sydney c/- A. W. Macarthur-Onslow.

Jul39         CofA Inspection performed by Macquarie Grove Flying & Glider School, Camden airport NSW.

15Feb40     Registered as VH-AAO to AT&S. CofA issued.

06Jul40     Impressed by Australian Government for RAAF via Impressment Requisition Number 12595. Aircraft to be delivered to No 4 Elementary Flying Training School (4EFTS) at Mascot Airport Sydney. The survey camera was also impressed and was to be sent to Survey Flight, Canberra.

15Jul40      Brought on charge as A34-5. DCA noted that “When taken over the aircraft had extra equipment fitted including an automatic pilot, the value of which was assessed at £660. It also had special camera equipment assessed at £50. Assessed at time of impressment as £2,540 as cost to RAAF” Total airframe time was 887 hours.

 

RAAF History

15Jul40      Issued to Butler Air Transport (BAT) for modifications.

20Jul40     Struck off Civilian register.

18ep40       Serviceable at BAT.

01Oct40     Allocated to Survey Flight (SF) at RAAF Station Canberra.

18Oct40     Received by SF.

25Oct40    Tyre blew out after heavy landing at Canberra. The aircraft received significant damage to the undercarriage and stub wings in the ensuing ground loop. FLTLT L. Law was uninjured.

30Oct40    DCA report in response to RAAF complaints of delays with BAT stated: Overhaul by BAT completed 27.9.40 and RAAF advised. RAAF pilot arrived to collect A34-5 from BAT 4.10.40 but delayed because AID had not inspected and released the aircraft. Defects identified by AID and rectified by 10.10.40. BAT attempted to hand aircraft over to RAAF 11.10.40 but Stores & Equipment Section refused to take delivery due no schedule had been done. BAT despatched a storeman to Richmond on 15.10.40 to have a new schedule prepared. Aircraft taken over by RAAF and housed at Mascot until 18.10.40 when a pilot arrived from Canberra to take delivery.

15Feb41     Detached to Mildura VIC to carry out the 1st Dragon survey flight. Photographed 500 sq mi on direction of the Air Board.

30May41    Detached to Rockhampton for an indefinite period to carry out photographic survey tasks.

17Feb42     Returned to Canberra for servicing.

1942          Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call sign VHCSB, which was painted on the aircraft.

22Feb42    Departed to RAAF Base Pearce for more survey work.

25Mar42    Departed Pearce for Laverton at completion of survey.

27Mar42    Arrived Laverton for 180 hour inspection and survey work in support of the Government’s Victorian and Tasmanian Survey Program.

29Apr42    Returned to SF at Canberra. Carried out survey of Cessnock NSW.

13May42    Departed for Queensland survey work around Rockhampton and Townsville.

13Aug42     Returned to SF at Canberra at completion of QLD task.

31Aug42     Aircraft issued to No 2 Air Ambulance Unit.

11Dec42     Allocated to No 36 (T) Squadron at RAAF Townsville, QLD.

11Dec42     Allocation cancelled. Reallocated to No 34 (T) Squadron at Parafield SA.

24Jan43    Received by 34Sqn.

27Jan43    Allocated to Guinea Airways at Parafield SA.

28Jan43    Received by Guinea Airways where it remained in their hangar and was overhauled.

08Jul43     DCA memo: “this aircraft has been given practically a complete overhaul. The work has been done by DAP under AID supervision and is of an extensive nature.” Airframe total time 2,217 hours, still has same engines as when impressed. It is still fitted with autopilot. Estimated cost would be £3,500 including autopilot or £3,000 without autopilot fitted.

24Jul43     Purchased by Mr Butler for Butler Air Transport Co. Ferried to Sydney as VH-AAO.

29Jul43     Registration application: Butler Air Transport Co, Mascot Sydney NSW.

30Jul43     Restored to Register as VH-AAO: Commonwealth of Australia, operated by Butler Air Transport (BAT), Sydney. RAAF roundel and serial removed but camouflage paint scheme retained.

22Oct43    The Minister of Defence approved the sale of the aircraft to BAT.

 

Post RAAF History

08Feb44    Engine failure caused a forced landing at Moruya, NSW. Captain IJ Hosie and seven passengers were uninjured. Investigation revealed a faulty magneto in the stbd engine.

25Apr44    Rough running stbd engine resulted in a forced landing near Bega, NSW.  Captain IJ Hosie.

26Apr44    Same engine, same problem, this time forced landing at Albion Park NSW. Captain IJ Hosie.

09Apr47    On a scheduled Bourke-Coonamble-Dubbo flight the stbd engine failed soon after take-off from Coonamble. Aircraft was unable to maintain height and force landed in a paddock at Yuma Station. Pilot James Corlette and four passengers were uninjured.

20Dec47    The aircraft was parked at Coonamble airport when a violent wind storm bore down on the airport. The aircraft was tied down with ropes and chains but despite those precautions the aircraft was picked up by the storm, lifted over trees around the airfield and deposited over a mile away into the Castlereagh River. Aircraft was totally destroyed. The event was reported (with photographs) in the Sydney Morning Herald on 23Dec47.

A34-6 6082

Pre RAAF History

1934          Built by De Havilland Aircraft as a Dragon II at the Hatfield Factory in Hertfordshire UK.

12Jul34      1st Flight.

13Jul34      British CofA issued VH-URY: Sold to De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Sydney NSW who were acting as agents for MacRobertson Miller Aviation (MMA) Co Ltd. Perth WA. De Havilland arranged for the purchase, shipment and importation of the aircraft.

Jul34         Along with VH-URW and VH-URX, dismantled and crated for shipment to Fremantle, Western Australia by DeHavilland.

18Jul34      Loaded aboard the 14,362 ton Aberdeen & Commonwealth Line vessel SS Largs Bay at London Docks.

17Aug34     Arrived at F Shed, Victoria Quay in Fremantle and taken to Maylands airport Perth for assembly and testing by MMA.

06Sep34    Test flown after assembly, painted dark royal blue fuselage with silver wings and tail.

07Sep34    Registration application: MMA, Maylands Aerodrome, Perth WA

11Sep34     Registered as VH-URU. Fitted with eight passenger seats and named ‘Murchison’.

07Nov34    Soon after takeoff the port engine failed and the aircraft crash landed in trees and stumps near the Halls Creek airport in East Kimberley, WA. Pilot George McCausland and passenger James Collopy were uninjured but the aircraft suffered extensive damage.

Nov-Dec34 Mr Horrie Miller flew up to Halls Creek and repaired the aircraft by himself over a four week period. Miller camped at the remote site and worked in stifling heat.

05Apr35    Struck a fence while taxying at Port Hedland WA. Pilot H.J. Branch.

29Oct35    Engine failed on takeoff from Maylands resulted in the aircraft rolling into a ditch. Pilot George McCausland was uninjured.

21Nov36     Fuel vapour lock resulted in a forced landing on rocky terrain near Ord River Station WA. Port wing and port engine mounts were damaged but the pilot Cecil R Clarke was uninjured.

13Aug38     Sold to Airlines (WA) Pty Ltd Perth WA. Name changed to RMA Murchison.

1938-39     Flown by Airlines on their scheduled routes throughout WA.

06Jul40     Impressed by Australian Government for RAAF via Impressment Requisition Number 12537. Total airframe time was 4,066 hours.

15Jul40      Brought on RAAF Charge as A34-6. Allocated to Guinea Airways at Parafield SA for mods.

16Jul40      Flew it’s last flight for Airways (WA) Ltd.

18Jul40      Delivered to No 1 elementary Flying Training School (1EFTS) at Parafield SA by the MD of Airlines (WA) Mr Charles Snook.

22Jul40     Struck off the civil register.

 

RAAF History

23Jul40     Received by Guinea Airways for overhaul.

04Oct40    Overhaul delayed, awaiting spares. Estimated completion date Dec-Jan.

31Oct40     Mr Snook [MD of Airlines WA] flew to Melbourne and made an impassioned plea for his aircraft to be returned or he could not maintain the stipulated WA outback services. His plea was unsuccessful as DCA arranged for a DH.90 Dragonfly to be issued to Airlines (WA).

29Apr41     Allocated to No 3EFTS at Essendon airport Melbourne for onward issue to Australian National Airways (ANA) at Essendon for engine overhaul and instrument modifications.

10May41     Arrived 3EFTS after ferry flight from Parafield.

12May41     Received by ANA for mods.

23May41    Allocated to No 2 Air Observers School at RAAF Station Mt Gambier SA.

01Jul41      Received by 1AD for post modification checks.

07Jul41      Received by 2AOS.

31Jul41    Stbd engine failed causing a forced landing in a field 25 miles NW of Mt Gambier at 1630hrs.  The aircraft hit a boundary fence during the landing causing damage to the port lower mainplane. Pilot O270521 FLTLT W.J. Mitchell and passengers A205938 CPL NC Hooper, A4519 LAC WR Martin and A17704 AC1 IF Mace were uninjured. Minor damage to aircraft undercarriage.

20Aug41     Struck a truck after landing that caused the aircraft to veer off the runway and strike a tree causing severe damage to the aircraft.

Aug41        Request allocation for complete overhaul. Request denied until further notice.

1941-42      Aircraft stored at 2AOS until Jan43.

25Jan43    Rebuild begun at 2AOS.

20May43    Rebuilt aircraft allocated to Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) for use by the Flying Doctor Service (FDS) in Cloncurry Qld.

25May43    Issued to DCA at Essendon airport Melbourne and ferried to Brisbane.

05Jun43    Registration application: Qantas Empire Airways Ltd, Archerfield Qld/ Operated for Flying Doctor Service of Australia (Queensland Section).   To be converted to ambulance

14Jun43     Registered as VH-URY. Named ‘John Flynn’.

21Jun43     Removed from RAAF Charge.

 

Post RAAF History

20Aug43    Delivered to FDS at Cloncurry, QLD

04Oct43    Swung violently to port on touchdown causing the undercarriage to collapse and inflict sever damage to the aircraft. Solo pilot Captain I. Flynn of Qantas Empire Airlines was uninjured. Repaired at Cloncurry.

22Jul49     Sold to Trans Australian Airlines, Brisbane QLD (TAA).

Mar50        Engaged only on medical type work.

19Apr50     Engine failure soon after takeoff lead to a crash land which inflicted severe damage to the aircraft. TAA Pilots Anderson and Young both received minor abrasions and shock.

22Mar51    CofA renewed following a period of lengthy rebuild. Photographed at Eagle farm airport Brisbane in full TAA livery with ‘Flying Doctor Service of Australia’ and ‘John Flynn’ painted on the aircraft.

22Oct53    The aircraft flew to Cheviot Hills Station, 280km west of Townsville with a crew of three to pick up an infant patient and her mother. The aircraft then took off for the trip to Charters Towers but soon after the stbd engine failed and the aircraft nose-dived into the ground. The pilot Martin Garrett (26) from Brisbane; Dr James O’Leary (25) and his wife Kathleen O’Leary (22) both of Dublin Ireland were killed in the crash. Passengers Mrs Lethbridge and her child survived the accident.

A34-7 6037

Pre RAAF History

1933          Built by De Havilland Aircraft as a production Dragon I at the Stag Lane Aerodrome Factory in Edgeware, London UK.

03Jul33     British CofA issued as VH-URD: De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Sydney NSW

04Jul33     Sold to Tasmanian Aerial Services Pty Ltd Launceston TAS through their agent De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Sydney NSW. De Havilland arranged for the purchase, shipment and importation of the aircraft. Aircraft disassembled and prepared for shipment to Australia.

12Jul33      Loaded on the 8,653 ton Commonwealth & Dominion Line vessel SS Port Hardy at London docks.

21Aug33     Arrived No 10 Wharf, Piermont Sydney

22Aug33    Transported to Mascot airport Sydney for Assembly and testing by De Havilland.

29Aug33    Registered VH-URD to Tasmanian Aerial Services Pty Ltd Launceston TAS.

30Aug33    Ferried from Sydney to Essendon by Major De Havilland. Aircraft named ‘Miss Launceston’.

02Sep33    Flown from Essendon at 1050 hrs by Captain V.C. Holyman with photographer J.T. Harrison and engineer J.B. Carew. Arrived Launceston 1355hrs.

04Sep33    1st scheduled commercial service Essendon-Flinders Island-Launceston.

01Oct34     Change of owner to Holymans Airways Pty Ltd Launceston TAS.

05May35    Low rain and cloud caused the pilot to land on the golf course at Wonthaggi VIC.

01Nov36     Change of owner to Australian National Airways Pty Ltd Melbourne. Renamed “Yoorana”.

23Jan37    Based out of Parafield airport SA.

19Jan40     While on a charter flight for Australian Aerial Medical Services from Broken Hill to Sydney the aircraft encountered extreme weather conditions that forced the pilot to turn back for Bathurst. Aircraft forced landed in a field near Raglan 25km from Bathurst. Pilot Howard R Morris received minor injuries while passengers Dr JG Woods and J. Lang were uninjured. The aircraft was heavily damaged and the wreck taken to Essendon by road for rebuild.

26Aug40    Impressed into RAAF Service.

30Aug40    Struck -off civil register.

 

RAAF History

31Aug40     Brought onto RAAF Charge as A34-7.

02Sep40    Allocated to No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Laverton for WT modifications then issue to No 1Air Observers School (1AOS) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW.

21Oct40     Serviceable at 1AD awaiting wireless equipment.

14Dec40     Received by 1AOS.

01Apr41     Allocated to 2AOS at RAAF Station Mt Gambier SA.

10Apr41     Received by 2AOS.

14Oct41   Stbd engine failed causing a forced landing in a field near Casterton VIC at 1410hrs.  Aircraft struck a boundary fence during landing causing damage to the lower port mainplane and both propellers. Pilot A408039 SGT BM Elliott and passengers A416415 LAC IF Coward, A413493 LAC GH Haddy and A29145 AC1 R. Pearce were uninjured.

09Nov41     Undergoing major repairs at 2AOS.

18Feb42     Still undergoing major repair at 2AOS.

10Mar42    Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport for transport/air ambulance modifications.

23Mar42    Received by ANA.

16Apr42     Allocated to No 33 (T) Squadron at RAAF Townsville QLD

19Apr42     Received by 1AD for post modification checks and weighing.

23Apr42    Received by 33Sqn.

13Oct42     Damaged in landing accident at Townsville.

27Oct42    Allocated to Aircrafts Pty Ltd (APL) at Archerfield aerodrome Brisbane for repairs.

04Dec42    Repairs commenced.

17Aug43     Allocated to and received by 3AD at RAAF Amberley QLD.

19Aug43     Allocated to No 1 Wireless Air Gunners School (1WAGS) at Ballarat VIC.

30Aug43    Received by 1WAGS. To be used only for pilot conversion to DH84.

20Mar44    Under consideration for sale to civil aviation.

13Sep44     To be held at 1WAGS Store until further notice.

05Oct44    Issued to Department of Civil Aviation for disposal by Commonwealth Disposals Commission.

04Feb45    Sold by CDC for £3,100 to Aircrafts Pty Ltd Archerfield Brisbane QLD.

 

Post RAAF History

02Oct44    Registered as VH-URD to Aircrafts Pty Ltd (APL) Archerfield Brisbane QLD.

24Jan45    Forced landing at Kingaroy QLD after engine failure. Pilot E. Frank and eight passengers uninjured.

04Feb45    DCA write to APL stating the purchase from CDC is now approved effective that date for price of £3,100.  It had initially been operated at a rental rate while waiting final approval of sale to APL.

20Mar45    Minor damage to stbd undercarriage while taxying at Kingaroy.

09May45    While on a scheduled flight from Brisbane to Maryborough the stbd engine failed causing a forced landing on Maroochydore beach in front of the Surf Life Saving Club. The pilot [R.B. Mitchell] rectified a faulty spark plug and flew off the beach before the rising tide reached the aircraft.

04Jun47    Forced landing due to weather at near Gladstone, QLD. On takeoff the following day the aircraft struck an obstruction damaging the undercarriage and lower wing surfaces.

18Aug48     Sold to Catholic Mission of the Divine Word, Wewak, New Guinea c/o Bishop Arkfeld.

03Mar50    Sold to Qantas Empire Airways Ltd, Lae, New Guinea

04Mar51    When landing at Inonda airfield Northern Province PNG the aircraft swung into a ditch beside the runway causing minor damage. Solo pilot FG Balogie uninjured.

24Dec51     While on finals approach to Menyamya field in Morobe province PNG severe turbulence blew the aircraft into the Tauri River valley where it impacted trees and crashed. Solo pilot Richard J Davis was slightly injured and the aircraft was destroyed.

Feb52        DCA were advised by Qantas the aircraft would not be rebuilt.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-7

A34-8 6065

Pre RAAF History

1933          Built by De Havilland Aircraft as a production Dragon II at the Stag Lane Aerodrome Factory in Edgeware, London UK.

1934          Shipped to India

28May34    British CofA issued as VT-AES: Indian National Airways Ltd, Dum Dum, Calcutta, West Bengal. Named Sapphire.

01Apr40     Qantas requested DCA permission to purchase VT-AES and fly to Australia. Aircraft struck off Indian register and sold to Qantas.

04Apr40    Departed Calcutta for Brisbane flown by Qantas Captain Orme Denny.

19Apr40     Arrived Archerfield, Brisbane.

Jun40         DCA allocated VH-UZF for the aircraft.

19Jul40      Registration application: Qantas Empire Airways Ltd, Brisbane QLD. To be based in Cloncurry QLD for use on the Brisbane-Mount Isa service.

02Aug40    Impressed by Australian Government for RAAF. Impressment Requisition No 8165. To be delivered to the CO 4 Elementary Flying Training School, Mascot.  To be overhauled for RAAF by Butler Air Transport (BAT) at Mascot and to be painted as A34-8.

 

RAAF History

16Aug40     Brought on RAAF Charge as A34-8.

26Sep40    Issued to BAT.

02Oct40    Aircraft test flown by BAT pilot CA Butler after incorporation of mods and instruments.

17Oct40     Awaiting collection at BAT.

15Nov40     Allocated to No 1 Air Observers School (1AOS) at RAAF station Cootamundra NSW.

20Nov40    Allocated to and received by No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Laverton for post modification checks and weighing.

29Jan41     Ready for collection at 1AD.

03Feb41     Received by 1AOS.

19Feb41     Allocated to 2AOS at RAAF Station Mt Gambier SA.

02Mar41    Received at 1AD enroute to 2AOS for mods.

11Mar41     Received by 2AOS.

17Apr41     Collided with a truck while taxying at Mt Gambier. Port lower mainplane and spar heavily damaged. Repairable at Unit.

06Feb42    Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport for transport/air ambulance modifications.

20Feb42    Received by ANA.

26Mar42    Received by 1AD for post modification checks and weighing.

29Mar42    Allocated to No 33 (T) Squadron at RAAF Townsville QLD

30Mar42    Received by 33Sqn.

03Jun42     Evacuated personnel from Wau and Aura PNG.

08Jun42     Engine failure resulted in a forced landing on Yule Island, Central Province PNG. Both lower mainplanes and undercarriage damaged. Aircraft recovered to Townsville.

03Jul42     Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot aerodrome for survey and/or repair.

Jul42         Received by De Havilland – recommend for conversion.

11Sep42     Written-off, converted to components.

A34-9 6045

Pre RAAF History

Aug-Oct33 Built by De Havilland Aircraft as a production Dragon II at the Stag Lane Aerodrome Factory in Edgeware, London UK.  Special modifications included a strengthened undercarriage and oversize tyres, a wind driven generator mounted on a wing root to provide power for Marconi radio and radio direction finding equipment. Other instrumentation included directional gyro and a larger than normal compass. A chemical toilet was provided and to improve sound-proofing thicker glazing was fitted in the main cabin.

25Aug33    Telegram from De Havilland’s in England to Australian Civil Aviation Branch (CAB) requesting registration markings for the a Dragon for Western Mining Corporation (WMC) Ltd Perth WA so that it could be painted on the aircraft while in the factory.  CAB allocate VH-URF.

03Oct33    British CofA issued in name of Western Mining Corporation Ltd, Perth WA. Aircraft was christened in a ceremony at Stag Lane the wife of WMC Director Mrs W. Robinson.

13Oct33     Prepared for sea transportation, placed into eight wooden packing crates and loaded onto the 14,000 ton Commonwealth Line Steamer SS Largs Bay at London Docks.

25Nov33    Arrived in Fremantle, unloaded and immediately taken to Maylands airport Perth. URF & URG assembled at Maylands.

27Nov33    Registration application: Western Mining Corp Ltd, Perth WA.   Named Gay Prospector

Dec33        Painted in allover silver scheme. Aircraft was based at Kalgoorlie WA while conducting a photographic survey of the Eastern Goldfields covering 80,000 square miles in search of new ore bodies. The aerial operation was under the command of Captain Charles W. Snook of Perth, who had sailed to England to arrange the purchase of the Dragon and installation of a Williamson Eagle IV survey camera and specialist navigational equipment. The aircraft was fitted with six seats.

06Dec33    Test flown at Maylands.

15Dec33     Registered as VH-URF.

19Dec33     Departed Maylands accompanied by VH-URG for ferry flight to Kalgoorlie.

1933-34     Carried survey work and acted as a general cargo/passenger aircraft for WMC.

20Nov34    Sold to MacRobertson Miller Aviation (MMA) Co Ltd, Perth. Renamed The Kimberley. Purchased by MMA to replace their Dragons damaged on their newly commenced Northwest run. Fitted for 7 passengers, retained WMC pale cream colour scheme, later re-doped all silver.

20Sep36    On a scheduled flight from Perth to Geraldton aircraft was forced to land due to a fuel problem 12 miles south of Dongara WA. Pilot C. Clarke and six passengers were uninjured.

25Nov36    Forced landed near Watheroo, WA due to engine problems. Solo pilot C. Clarke uninjured.

01Aug38     Renamed Dunbar Hooper II by the Minister for the Interior Hon John McEwan at a ceremony in Wyndham to celebrate the Wyndham-Daly Waters service.

01May39    Flown to Maylands for overhaul by MMA.

05Oct39    Returned to Wyndham after overhaul.

10Apr40     Impressment order issued by Australian Government for RAAF service.

06Jul40     Director General of DCA advises Impressment deferred.

01Nov40     RAAF direct MMA to deliver the aircraft to Maylands by December 1940.

11Dec40     MMA request further deferment owing to forced landing of VH-UVN.

15Dec40     RAAF agree to MMA request.

21Apr41     VH-UVN repaired. VH-URF now ready for impressment.

05May41    Impressed for RAAF under Impressment Requisition No.8188. Delivered to CO of No 3 Elementary Flying Training School (3EFTS) at Essendon Airport, Melbourne by Mr Horrie Miller.

 

RAAF History

05May41    Brought on RAAF Charge as A34-9.

05May41    Allocated to and received by Australian National Airways (ANA) at Essendon Airport for modifications and overhaul.

04Jul41      Received by No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Laverton for post overhaul checks and fitment of W/T equipment.

02Aug41     Allocated to No 2 Air Observers School (2AOS) at RAAF Station Mt Gambier SA.

18Aug41     Received by 2AOS.

14Jan42     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) at Essendon Airport Melbourne for transport/air ambulance modifications.

18Jan42     Received by ANA.

09Feb42    Received by 1AD for post modification checks and weighing.

14Feb42     Allocated to No 34 (T) Squadron at RAAF Base Darwin NT.

25Feb42    Received by 34Sqn.

03Mar42    Arrived at Wyndham WA at 1000hrs carrying evacuees from Darwin on their way to Perth. Immediately after touchdown the aircraft was attacked by four Japanese Naval Mitsubishi A6M2 Zero fighters from the 23rd Koku Sentai based at Koepang, Timor. The passengers and crew escaped from the aircraft which continued on down the runway now ablaze from the strafing. The aircraft eventually came to a stop where it burnt out.  Pilot FLTLT Warwick and passengers received minor cuts, abrasions and shock.

16Apr42     Struck off charge.

A34-10 6025

Pre RAAF History

1933          Built by De Havilland Aircraft as a production Dragon I at the Stag Lane Aerodrome Factory in Edgeware, London UK.  Additional items included navigation lights and a new Reid & Sigrist Turn Indicator instrument. The aircraft was painted in gloss red and blue and fitted with red leather upholstery.

02Jun33    1st Flight at Stag Lane.

12Jun33     Registered G-ACGG Flt Lt E. H. Fielden at the Royal Flight, Hendon Aerodrome, London UK. Operated as a private aircraft for HRH The Prince of Wales, who later became King Edward VIII.

01Feb35     Sold to Richard O. Shuttleworth, Old Warden Park, Biggleswade, Bedfordshire UK.

30Jul35     Sold to Charles J. Donade, Farnam, Surrey UK.

10Apr36     Sold to Leonard H. Stace, Heston aerodrome, Hounslow, London UK.

01Nov37     Sold to W. R. Carpenter & Co Ltd, Sydney NSW.

22Nov37    De Havilland’s UK cabled CAB requesting Australian registration for G-ACGG.

29Dec37    Crated and loaded aboard the 8,764 ton Port Line vessel SS Port Huon, shipped to Australia.

01Feb38     Arrived at No 10 Wharf, Piermont Sydney.

02Feb38    Transported to De Havilland Aircraft Mascot airport Sydney for assembly and testing.

01Feb38     Allotted registration VH-AAC.

07Feb38    Test flight after assembly.

11Feb38     Registration application from W. R. Carpenter & Co & Mandated Airlines Ltd Lae PNG.

18Feb38     Registered as VH-AAC and named Alice. Departed Sydney on ferry flight to PNG.

19Feb38     Damaged in forced landing at Cairns. Delivery flight delayed until repairs affected.

02Mar38    Arrived 1410hrs at Salamaua airport, Morobe Province PNG.

04Nov40    Change of ownership to Mandated Airlines Ltd Lae PNG.

07Feb41     Department of Air advise DCA of the need for a further three Dragons to be impressed to offset the loss of three DH.86 aircraft being sent to the Middle East.

11Deb41     DCA advises Dept of Air that three Dragons including VH-AAC have been selected for impressment and should be delivered to Essendon for modification and overhaul: VH-AAC to be delivered to Ansett Airways for this work.

24Feb42    Department of Air advised Mandated Airlines that VH-AAC has been impressed and is to be delivered to CO No 3Elementary Flying Training School at Essendon Airport, Melbourne.

 

RAAF History

17Apr41     Impressed into RAAF Service and brought on charge as A34-10.

17Apr41     Issued to Australian National Airways (ANA) at Essendon Airport for modifications and overhaul.

01Aug41     Issued to No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Laverton for post overhaul checks.

01Aug41     Allocated to No 2 Air Observers School (2AOS) at RAAF Station Mt Gambier SA.

19Aug41     Received by 2AOS.

20Nov41     Allocated to De Havilland for sampling purposes.

11Dec41     Departed for Essendon.

14Dec41     Received by De Havilland.

05Nov43    Allocated to School of Photography (SPH) at RAAF Station Canberra ACT.

22Nov43    Received by No 2 Air Park (2AP) at Bankstown Airport.

01Jan44     Received by SPH.

03Jan44   After climbing to 600ft the stbd engine failed causing a forced landing in a field six miles SW of Canberra aerodrome at 0845hrs.  Aircraft struck a boundary fence during landing causing damage to the lower stbd mainplane and stbd airscrew. Pilot FLGOFF S. Knapman and passengers A22492 SGT V. Gadsby, A71080 LAC FH Rogerson, A62409 LAC AB Stafford and A135020 AC1 WH Nicholson were uninjured.

23Feb44    A34-10 under consideration for disposal to Civil Aviation Dept.

21Jun44     Approval given to issue aircraft to DCA for sale to Civil Aviation

01Jul44      Issued to DCA for release to civil airline.

 

Post RAAF History

07Aug44    Temporary CofA issued as VH-AAC to Aircrafts Pty Ltd, Archerfield Qld.

22Aug44    Registration application Aircrafts Pty Ltd, Archerfield Qld.

29Aug44    Restored to register as VH-AAC.

11Sep44     On a scheduled flight from Maryborough to Archerfield the stbd propeller detached in flight. Aircraft forced landed at Forest Glen seven miles south of Nambour and was severely damaged. Pilot JA Davidson and six passengers received minor cuts, abrasions and shock.

05Jun48    Sold to Taylors Air Transport Ltd, Lae, PNG.

01Mar49    Sold to Guinea Air Traders Ltd, Lae, PNG.

10Jun49     CofA suspended at Wewak PNG by a DCA inspector due to advanced dry rot in the rear fuselage structure. DCA approved a one=off ferry to Australia after temporary repairs at Wewak.

19Jan50     Overhaul and repairs completed at Archerfield QLD.

23May50    Sold to Wewak Air Transport, Wewak, PNG.

01Nov50     Sold to Mandated Airlines (MAL) Ltd, Lae, PNG.

29Jan51     Crashed on landing at Slate Creek, Morobe Province PNG. Pilot Tom Lumme and one passenger were uninjured. MAL engineers dismantled the aircraft and transported it to Lae for repairs.

18Oct51     Sold as spares to Territory Airlines, Goroka, PNG.

16Jun54     Struck of register.

A34-11 6104

Pre-RAAF History

Oct34        Built by De Havilland Aircraft as a Dragon II at the Hatfield Factory in Hertfordshire UK.

Oct34        1st Flight.

1936          Purchased by W. R. Carpenter & Co, Salamaua, New Guinea

Mar36        Shipped to Papua New Guinea.

08Apr36    Test flown at Salamaua after assembly.

17Apr36     Registered as VH-UTX and named ‘Hope’.

06Oct36    Change of ownership to Mandated Airlines Ltd (MAL) at Wau (a subsidiary company of W.R. Carpenter & Co Ltd)

May38       Underwent overhaul and CofA inspection.

May39       Underwent overhaul and CofA inspection.

18Jul49      Retired for overhaul and inspection.

07Feb41     DepAir advises DCA of the need to impress a further three Dragons to offset the loss of three DH.86s being sent to Middle East.

11Feb41      Director General of Civil Aviation replies that VH-UTX has been selected for impressment and should be delivered to ANA at Essendon for modification.

24Feb41     Impressment Requisition No.8197 issued for VH-UTX. MAL advised that the aircraft is to be delivered to No.3 EFTS at Essendon.

25Feb41     W. R. Carpenter & Co Ltd acknowledge receipt of the Impressment and complain about the effect on their PNG operations.

03Mar41    Impressed by Australian Government. Impressment Requisition No.8196.    

25Mar41    Brought on RAAF Charge as A34-11.

 

RAAF History

25Mar41    Issued to Ansett Airways at Essendon airport for modifications.

07Apr41     Inspected at Ansett by DCA inspector who was not impressed with the state of the aircraft. The MAL chief engineering was subsequently reprimanded by DCA.

29May41    Ready for collection at Ansett. Allocated to No 2 Air Observers School (2AOS) at RAAF Station Mt Gambier SA.

05Jun41     Received by No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Laverton for fitment of W/T equipment.

23Jun41     Received by 2AOS.

23Jan42    Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) at Essendon Airport Melbourne for transport/air ambulance modifications.

18Jan42     Received by ANA.

12Feb42     Received by 1AD for post modification checks and weighing.

12Feb42     Allocated to No 34 (T) Squadron at RAAF Base Darwin NT.

25Feb42    Received by 34Sqn. Radio call sign “VHCSC” painted on the aircraft.

13Apr42     Allocated to No 1 Elementary Flying Training School (1EFTS) at Parafield SA.

17Apr42     Received by 1EFTS.

29Apr42    Allocated to ANA at Essendon for modifications.

17Jul42      Allocated to No 36 (T) Squadron at Essendon airport.

24Jul42     Received by 36Sqn.

17Nov42     Flew from Parafield to Alice Springs via Maree and Oodnadatta refuelled and departed for return to Parafield.  Prevailing conditions compelled the aircraft to return to Alice Springs and when landing the aircraft stalled just before touchdown resulting in a heavy landing that collapsed the port undercarriage. Pilot O406606 PLTOFF Ron Yates and crewman LAC Alvin Colley were uninjured.

23Nov42    36Sqn request No 1 Repair & Salvage Unit (1RSU) effect repairs if field repairs prove to be impractical.

05Dec42    1RSU allocated to repair the aircraft at Alice Springs.

11Feb43     Allocated to No 34 (T) Squadron at Parafield SA.

13Feb43     Received by 34Sqn.

15Feb43     While parked at Oodnadatta airfield the aircraft was destroyed when a 140kmh gale hit the area.   There were no injuries.

26Mar43    Approved for write-off.

A34-12 6102
2001

Note:        The Serial A34-12 was originally allocated to VH-UVB [c/n 6102] but not taken up as the aircraft (UVB) was destroyed in a Japanese air raid on Salamua airfield on 21Jan42.

Note:         Originally A34-1 to A34-12 were allocated to impressed aircraft and the first local production Dragon was allocated A34-13. However as A34-12 was not impressed, the serial was allocated to a later production aircraft and construction numbers adjusted.

 

Feb 1943    Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

21Feb43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park at Bankstown Airport, Sydney

25Feb43    Allocated to No 33 (T) Sqn after fitment of altitude control equipment.

07Mar43    Received by 33 Sqn at RAAF Base Townsville, QLD

11Mar43     Received by No 12 Repair & Salvage Unit at Macrossan, QLD.

28Mar43    Returned to 33 Sqn.

25Mar43    Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS), Port Moresby PNG.

28Oct43    Received by 1RCS.

30Oct43    Allocated to No 9 Communications Unit (9CU), Port Moresby, PNG.

04Nov43    Received by No 9CU.

09Dec43    Swung off runway when landing in strong cross-wind at Berry Strip, Port Moresby. Aircraft struck an earthen bank on the edge of the field. Damaged beyond unit repair capability. Pilot 400995 FLGOFF Stanley Campbell Morrison and Army passengers CAPT J. Handberry and PTE Ferrie (AIF) were shaken but uninjured. Aircraft had a total of 342 hrs.

13Dec43     Received by No 15 Aircraft Repair Depot at Port Moresby.

04Feb44    Recommended for conversion.

30May44    Approved for conversion

A34-13 2002

RAAF History

08Aug42    Manufacture began by De Havilland craftsmen at the Grace Brothers building Broadway, Sydney.

25Sep42    Manufacture completed by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd at Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW. This aircraft was the 1st Australian built Dragon.

29Sep42    First flight of an Australian built Dragon at Mascot airport.

12Oct42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

15Oct42     Acceptance finalized and ready for issue.

24Oct42    Allocated to No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Base Laverton, VIC.

25Oct42    Received by 1AD.

19Mar43    Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA), Essendon Airport, VIC for transport/air ambulance modifications.

05Apr43    Received by ANA.

06May43    Received by 1AD for post modifications checks and tests.

12May43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Flight (6CF) at Batchelor Field, NT. Fitted with altitude control equipment.

30May43    Received by 6CF.

01Aug44     Request for complete overhaul. Aircraft has logged 700 flight hours.

03Aug44    Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot Airport, Sydney for overhaul.

11Aug44     Received by De Havilland.

24Jul45     Received by 2AD for post overhaul checks.

25Jul45     Issued to Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Bas Evans Head, NSW for storage.

26Jul45     Received by CMU Evans Head.

25Sep45    Retained for service use - not to be inspected by prospective buyers.

16May46    Approved for disposal at 7,500 AU Pounds.

24May46    Sold by CDC to Department of Health, Canberra ACT for 50 AU Pounds (note above entry!)

24Jun46    Issued to Dept of Health for use by the proposed NT Medical Service, Darwin

25Jun46    Ferried from Evans Head to Mascot for configuration as an air ambulance by De Havilland.

 

Post RAAF History:

14Aug46     Request for registration by Commonwealth Department of Health, Canberra operated by NT Medical Service (NTMS), Darwin NT

19Aug46     Registered as VH-ASK by Dep of Civil Aviation. C of A issued at Mascot.

05Sep46    Arrived Darwin after ferry flight from Sydney, flown by Capt Jack Slade.

09Sep46    First NTAMS medical flight, from Darwin to Millingimbi Mission to collect a seriously ill aboriginal man, Captain Jack Slade and Sister Shaw, round trip 5 hrs 50 mins.

 24Nov46   While parked in the doorless DCA hangar, strong winds caused VH–ASK to collide with DH83 (VH-UTF), minor damage to both.

21Feb47     Forced landing on Casaurina Beach Darwin. No damage, later flown off the beach.

26Jun47    Forced landing at Darwin following engine failure on take-off.

Mar52        Operations and crewing of NTMS aircraft taken over by TAA (Trans Australia Airlines).

04Jan54    Retired from NTMS operations. Sold to JG & G Schultz ‘Glentor Downs’ Prairie QLD.

19Feb58     Registered as VH-SNB.

1959          Change of address to: Lawrence Engineering & Sales, Hangar 55 Camden airport NSW.

1960          Used to drop parachutists at airshows in NSW.

15Sep62     Change of Ownership to Reverend Les G Nixon Sydney NSW who purchased the aircraft for 1,200 pounds. Aircraft was used by ‘Australia’s Outback Patrol’, a Christian Community service organization. Over the next five years the aircraft was used to transport evangelists all over Australia.

In particular, Nixon made seven circumnavigations of Australia that lasted approximately three months each and followed a fixed route of Longreach, Mt. Isa, Darwin, Derby, Carnarvon, Perth, Albany, Esperance, Eucla, Ceduna, Adelaide, Moorabin and Bankstown then back to Longreach after a servicing in Sydney. Additionally, several Bass Strait crossings were made to perform evangelistic missions.

25Oct67    Struck off the register at owner’s request. Accumulated airframe hours was 4,150.

1967-73     Stored in a hangar at Camden aerodrome, NSW.

1973          Sold to Maurice J. Whittington c/o Hendon Aeroplane Company, Sydney.

1974          Sold to Sir William J. D. Roberts, Strathallan Aircraft Collection, Auchterader, Scotland.

Apr74        Shipped from Australia and delivered to Strathallan Aircraft Collection.

1974-81      Stored at the Strathallan estate still in boxes.

14Jul81      Sold to Royal Scottish Museum as Lot 89 at the Christies of London auction of the Strathallan museum aircraft collection. Purchase price £7000.

1982-2015  On display as VH-SNB  Royal Scottish Museum of Flight, East Fortune Airfield, East Lothian Scotland.

 Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-13

A34-14 2003

1942          Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

12Oct42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

12Oct42     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Flight (1RCF) at Port Moresby. PNG.

21Oct42     Received by No 12 Repair & Salvage Unit at Garbutt, QLD for temporary loan.

25Oct42    Received by 1RCF.

20Nov42    Moved to Vailala 500km NW of Port Moresby for independent operations under the command of O271547 FLTLT A.A.N. Pentland.

28Nov42    Returned to Port Moresby at cessation of detachment.

 15Dec42    Took part in SAR Search for USAAF C47 reported missing since Nov15 near Mt Brown. Pilot 599 FLGOFF GT Major with SGT Mackay – no sighting of the C47.

17Jan43     Port engine failed on take-off from Popondetta No 1 strip, Oro Province PNG.  Extensive damage to port airscrew, engine, fwd fuselage and undercarriage. Pilot SGT Jarrett and Army passengers Lt Stewart, SGT McKenna and Pte Rafe were all uninjured.

18Jan43     Allocated to No 15 Repair & Salvage Unit (15RSU) Port Moresby, PNG

20Jan43    Salvaged by 15RSU, recommended for conversion.

11Feb43     Approved for conversion.

A34-15 2004

1942          Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

25Oct42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

29Oct42    Allocated to No 33 (T) Sqn at RAAF Base Townsville, QLD.

05Nov42    Awaiting acceptance test flight.

23Nov42    Received by 33 Sqn.

18Jun43     At 1345hrs on take-off from Terapo Strip, 200 mi NW of Port Moresby the aircraft swung violently and crashed into light jungle beside the strip. The aircraft suffered extensive damage to undercarriage, fuselage, tail unit and lower mainplanes. Pilot 407313 FLGOFF GA Atkinson and Army passengers MAJGEN CS Steele ARA; BRIG WA Tope USAAC and BRIG WCD Veale ARA were all uninjured.

22Jun43    Allocated to No 15 Aircraft Repair Depot (15ARD) Port Moresby, PNG

24Jun43    Received by 15ARD.

04Feb44    Recommended for conversion.

24May44    Issued to 15ARD Technical Salvage section.

30May44    Approved for conversion.

A34-16 2005

1942          Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

28Oct42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

29Oct42    Allocated to No 33 (T) Sqn at RAAF Base Townsville, QLD.

05Nov42    Awaiting test flight at 2AD.

14Nov42     Received by 33 Sqn.

01Jun43     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA), Essendon Airport for overhaul & 240 hour inspection.

19Jun43     Received by ANA. To be modified as a transport/air ambulance aircraft.

18Aug43     Allocated to 33 Sqn.

23Aug43    Received by No 1 Aircraft Depot, RAAF Laverton for checks and tests.

01Sep43     Received by 33 Sqn.

25Oct43    Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Flight (1RCF) at Port Moresby. PNG.

28Oct43    Received by 1RCF.

30Oct43    Allocated to No 9 Communications Unit (9CU), Port Moresby, PNG.

04Nov43    Received by No 9CU.

24Mar44    Allocated to No 15 Aircraft Repair Depot (15ARD) Port Moresby, PNG for survey and inspection.  15ARD to submit a recommendation as to whether further tropical use was possible or should the a/c be returned to Australia.

06Apr44    Received by 15ARD. Recommended conversion.

06May44    Approved for conversion.

14Jun44     Issued to Technical Salvage Unit at 15ARD and converted.

A34-17 2006

RAAF History:

Oct42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

30Oct42    First flight at Mascot.

05Nov42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

06Nov42    Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Flight 1RCF at Port Moresby. PNG.

23Nov42    Received by 1RCF

04Dec42    At 1115hrs on take-off from Wards Strip the stbd brake unit malfunctioned causing the aircraft to veer to the right. The pilot corrected with full left rudder and proceeded with the take-off. However, the aircraft would not maintain flight and crashed into the monsoon drainage ditch at the SE end of the runway.  The pilot O599 FLGOFF C.T. Major was uninjured.

05Dec42    Issued to No 15 Repair & Salvage Unit (15RSU) Port Moresby for repair.

07Dec42    Allocated to De Havilland, Mascot for repair.

21Dec42     Awaiting shipment to Sydney.

14Feb43     Received by De Havilland.

14Oct43     Allocated to 35 (T) Sqn at RAAF Station Pearce, WA.

27Oct43    Received by No 2 Air Park, Bankstown Airport. Fitted with AT10-AR14 W/T Equipment.

03Nov43    Received by 35 Sqn.

06Nov43    Allocated to No 7 Communications Unit (7CU) at RAAF Station Pearce.

10Nov43     Received by 7CU.

21Feb44     Heavily damaged by wind storm at Broome airfield. Tail, port wing & rear fuselage damaged beyond unit repair capability.

25Feb44    Allocated to No 17 Repair & Salvage Unit (17RSU) at Cunderdin Airport, WA.

13Mar44    Salvage crew recovered the aircraft back to 17RSU

16Mar44    Allocated to 7CU.

30Mar44    Received by 7CU.

09May44    Struck guy wires of a radio mast while dropping mail at Minderoo WA. Pilot A406177 WOFF AJ Goldsmith was uninjured.

06Jun44    Held unserviceable because of the above accident.

11Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Station Forest Hills, NSW.

16Sep44     Received by 5AD and placed in storage at 5AD Storage Section, RAAF Station Cootamundra, NSW.

01Aug45     Survey report for Commonwealth Disposals Commission. Total hours 434.

19Sep45     Report submitted to CDC, aircraft placed on 1st CDC List

24Jan46    Aircraft sold to WR Carpenter Pty Ltd, 16 O’Connell St Sydney for $800.

05Feb46    Issued to purchaser. Aircraft ferried to Mascot from Cootamundra.

 

Post RAAF History:

16Mar46    Registration application from Mandated Airlines (MAL) Ltd, Lae New Guinea.

29Apr46    Registered as VH-AOS. C of A issues at Mascot.

Jun46        Flown to Lae.

29Jan47    Aircraft disappeared while on a freight flight from Lae to Kerowagi, Chimbu Province PNG. Large aerial search carried out including two RAAF Catalinas from Port Moresby.

01Feb47     Wreckage located by the crew of Dragon VH-ARJ at 10,500ft elevation on a ridge line of Mt Kerigomna.

04Feb47    Ground party reached the crash site and recovered the body of MAL pilot Jan D. Tapsell.

01May47    Struck off the register.

A34-18 2007

Oct42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

30Oct42    First flight at Mascot.

10Nov42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

11Nov42     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby. PNG.

05Dec42    Departed Richmond on ferry flight to Port Moresby, pilot SGT Moloney arrived 06Dec.

07Dec42    Test flown by O271547 FLTLT A.A.N Pentland, who declared the aircraft engines were totally unfit for service and grounded the aircraft until repairs were done.

05Jan43    Detached to operate from Dobodura strip. FLGOFF Davies in command.

14Feb43     Failed to rotate on take-off from Gurney strip Milne Bay.  Extensive damage to undercarriage and lower surfaces after running out of runway. Pilot O406524 PLTOFF R.P. Farris was uninjured.

16Feb43     Allocated to No 10 Repair & Salvage Unit (10RSU) at Macrossan, QLD for repairs.

16Feb43     Reallocated to 1RCS on completion of repairs.

06Mar43    Allocated to De Havilland at Bankstown Airport for repair.

12May43    Received by De Havilland.

07Sep43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park, Bankstown Airport for post-repair checks.

10Sep43     Allocated to No 6 Communications Flight (6CF) at Batchelor Field, NT. AT10/AR14 W/T fitted.

04Oct43    Received by 6CF.

22Oct43    Extensively damaged by severe tropical storm. Pilot A41432 FSGT GN Way was uninjured.

01Nov43     Received by No 14 Aircraft Repair Depot at Gorrie, NT. Recommended for conversion.

22Nov43    Approved for conversion. Aircraft hours were 214.30

A34-19 2008

1942          Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

11Nov42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

14Nov42     Allocated to 35 (T) Sqn at RAAF Base Pearce, WA. Aircraft to be camouflaged.

19Nov42     Departed 2AD for ferry flight to 35Sqn. Route was Richmond-Essendon-Parafield-Ceduna-Forrest-Kalgoorlie-Maylands.

23Nov42    Received by 35 Sqn.

29Jan43    Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport for air ambulance modifications.

15Feb43     Received by ANA.

28Feb43    Received by No 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton for checks.

10Mar43    Allocated to No 3 Communications Flight (3CF) RAAF Laverton.

14Mar43    Received by 3CF.

26May43    Allocated to No 2 Air Ambulance Unit (2AAU) at RAAF Station Canberra.

03Jun43    Received by 2AAU.

17Sep43     On a flight from Mascot, NSW to Kingaroy, QLD the pilot decided to turn back to Toogoolawh airfield and land because of poor weather and the onset of darkness. Flying low over the airfield to check it out the pilot failed to notice a dead tree. The aircraft struck the tree at approximately 1830hrs and crashed; both aircrew were thrown clear of the aircraft on impact with the ground. The pilot O3929 FLGOFF Arthur Francis Thorley (35) married of Milson’s Point NSW was killed and 2nd pilot A32596 FSGT FJ Newton was severely injured.

FLGOFF Thorley is buried in Taabinga Cemetery, Kingaroy QLD. Plot A Row A Grave 14.

21Sep43     Allocated to No 3 Aircraft Depot (3AD) RAAF Amberley for inspection and reporting

24Sep43    Aircraft wreckage recovered by 11RSU salvage crew. Recommended for conversion.

23Oct43    Approved for conversion to components.

A34-20 2009

1942          Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

16Nov42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

19Nov42     Allocated to No 1 Communications Flight (1CF) at RAAF Base Laverton, VIC.

30Nov42    Received by 1CF.

26Mar43    Stbd compression strut collapsed on landing.

04Jun43    Held unserviceable awaiting compression strut.

30Jun43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Flight (6CF) at Batchelor Field, NT.

05Jul43     Issued to No 1 Aircraft Depot for fitment of AT10/AR14 W/T equipment.

11Aug43     Received by 6CF.

25Aug43    On a flight from Millingimbi to Batchelor the port engine failed at approximately 0930hrs. The pilot attempted a forced landing on a clearing near Marrakai Homestead 96 km ESE of Darwin; the aircraft could not maintain height and hit a tree short of the clearing which caused the aircraft to crash. The pilot O415390 FLGOFF FG Anderson was severely injured; passengers A131016 AC1 Frederick Leslie Mapstone and US Army Padre JL Stretch were slightly injured. All three were admitted to No 1 Medical Receiving Unit in Darwin.

27Aug43    Allocated to No 4 Repair & Salvage Unit (4RSU) at Pell Field NT for inspection and reporting.

29Aug43    Received by 4RSU.

01Sep43     Recommend conversion because of damage to aircraft.

14Sep43     Approved for conversion.

A34-21 2010

RAAF History:

Oct42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

14Nov42     First flight at Mascot.        

16Nov42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

21Nov42     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport for air ambulance modifications.

26Nov42    Received by ANA.

12Dec42     Allocated to No 2 Air Ambulance Unit (2AAU) at RAAF Station Canberra.

13Dec42     Received 1AD RAAF Laverton for post modification checks.

17Dec42     Received by 2AAU.

02Mar43    Ferried to Kingaroy via Archerfield aifield by O2324 FLTLT B.S. Hill and crew to operate with 2AAU Detachment Kingaroy.

01Mar44    Ferried to Horn Island QLD by A408237 FSGT A.F. Denton and crew to form a 2AAU Detachment.

30Apr44    Horn Island detachment closed, aircraft returned to Townsville by FSGT Denton and crew.

12May44    Received by 2AAU HQ at Kingaroy, QLD.

07Sep44    Ferried to Archerfield by O283620 FLTLT G.L. Karutz when 2AAU HQ at Kingaroy closed on this day and moved to Archerfield Airfield, Brisbane.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) RAAF Forest Hills, NSW for under cover storage.

16Nov44     Received by 5AD and stored at 5AD Storage Section, RAAF Station Cootamundra, NSW.

09Sep45    Aircraft selected for disposal. Survey report submitted to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC).

25Sep45    Aircraft ‘frozen’ until disposed of.

24Jan46    Aircraft sold by CDC to W.R. Carpenter Pty Ltd O’Connell St Sydney for 400 pounds [$800].  CDC Sale Advice G (VIC) 210 dated 21st January 1946 refers.

30Jan46    Dispatched to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

14Mar46    Registration application from Mandated Airlines (MAL) Ltd, Lae New Guinea.

15Mar46    Registered as VH-AOP. C of A issued at Mascot after overhaul by De Havilland Aircraft.

Mar46       Test flown after overhaul by R.A. Gray (De Havilland Test Pilot).

Mar46       Flown to Lae, piloted by A.J. Collins, via Brisbane, Townsville, Horne Island and Port Moresby.

May46       Operating with MAL.

05Oct50    Undercarriage and lower wings damaged in a landing accident at Angoram Airfield, East Sepik Province PNG. Pilot R.H. Cuthbertson was uninjured.  Repaired in-situ.

09Aug54    Brakes failed on take-off from Hayfield airport, Maprik, East Sepik PNG. The aircraft ran into a deep ditch and burst into flame. Pilot Jim Davis and seven passengers escaped with minor injuries before the aircraft was destroyed by the fire.

10Feb55     Struck off the register.

A34-22 2011

RAAF History:

Oct42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

18Nov42     First flight at Mascot.        

22Nov42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

21Nov42     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport for air ambulance modifications.

26Nov42    Received by ANA.

12Dec42     Allocated to No 2 Air Ambulance Unit (2AAU) at RAAF Station Canberra.

18Dec42     Received 1AD RAAF Laverton for post modification checks.

19Dec42     Received by 2AAU.

05Jan43    Ferried to Archerfield airfield Brisbane by O400803 FLGOFF L.J. Ingham and crew to operate with 2AAU Detachment Brisbane.

22Feb43    Ferried from Archerfield to Port Moresby by O411994 FLGOFF S.A. Colbert and crew to form an Air Ambulance Detachment. Arrived in Port Moresby on 28Feb43.

16Oct43     Ferried to Kingaroy by O408882 FSGT F.E Smallhorn for repairs and servicing.

01Nov43     Ferried to Gurney Field, Milne Bay by FSGT Smallhorn and crew.

18Aug44     Milne Bay detachment closed down, returned to Kingaroy via Horn Island and Townsville by WOFF Henderson and CPL A. Nevin.

07Sep44    Ferried to Archerfield by O411994 FLTLT S.A. Colbert when 2AAU HQ at Kingaroy closed on this day and moved to Archerfield Airfield, Brisbane.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) RAAF Forest Hills, NSW for under cover storage.

16Nov44     Received by 5AD and placed in storage at 5AD Storage Section, RAAF Station Cootamundra, NSW.

09Sep45    Aircraft selected for disposal. Survey report submitted to Commonwealth Disposal Commission.

25Sep45    Aircraft ‘frozen’ until disposed of.

24Jan46    Aircraft sold by CDC to W.R. Carpenter Pty Ltd 16 O’Connell St Sydney for 400 pounds [$800]. CDC Sale Advice G (VIC) 210 dated 21st January 1946 refers.

30Jan46    Despatched to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

14Mar46    Registration application from Mandated Airlines (MAL) Ltd, Lae New Guinea.

15Mar46    Registered as VH-AOQ. C of A issued at Mascot after overhaul by De Havilland Aircraft.

Mar46       Test flown after overhaul by R.A. Gray (De Havilland Test Pilot).

Mar46        Flown to Lae, piloted by John Rose, via Brisbane, Townsville, Horne Island and Port Moresby.

May46        Operating with MAL.

12Oct49     Damaged when landing at Kainantu airport, Eastern Highlands, PNG. Pilot E.C Smith uninjured.

26Jun59     New ownership: New Guinea Co Ltd Rabual PNG.

12Sep60     Struck off register.

1961           Burnt for DCA fire practice at an undisclosed location.

A34-23 2012

RAAF History:

Oct42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

22Nov42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

24Nov42    Allocated to 34 (T) Sqn Manbullo Field NT.

29Nov42    Received by 34Sqn.

01Dec42     Forced landing five miles North of Draper, NT.

13Dec42     Allocated to No 6 Communications Flight (6CF) Batchelor Field NT.

13Dec42     Received by 6CF.

Jan1943     Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call sign VHCSF, painted on the aircraft.

30May43    Flown by FLTLT Clyde Fenton (6CF CO) to Goulburn Island to inspect wreckage of A34-51.

07Jun43    Port airscrew detached in flight. Recovered safely to base. Pilot FLTLT Crawford and four passengers uninjured.

05Sep43    Forced landing Goulburn Island. Aircraft partially submerged in sea water for two days.

11Sep43     Allocated to No 14 Aircraft Repair Depot (14ARD) Gorrie, NT for repair and treatment for salt water immersion. Aircraft showed extensive damage from the immersion.

13Sep43     Received by 14ARD.

09Dec43    Allocated to 6CF.

17Dec43     Received by 6CF.

12Apr44     Flew to Melville Island to search for Anson MG530 which had made a forced landing on the coast of the island two days earlier. The Anson was located and the crew rescued by a launch.

01Jun44     Allocated to De Havilland Essendon airport for inspection and report.

28Jun44    Received by De Havilland.

28Jan45    Received by 2AD for checks.

31Jan45     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) RAAF Forest Hills, NSW for under cover storage.

12Feb45     Received by 5AD and placed in storage at 5AD Store at RAAF Station Cootamundra, NSW.

14Aug45     Allocated to 6CU.

24Sep45    Received by 6CU. To be retained in post war service.

01Feb46     Allocated to HQ RAAF Darwin.

05Feb46    Received HQ Darwin.

21Mar46    At 1030hrs the aircraft swung  and crashed on take-offcausing extensive damage.  Recommend for conversion.

17Apr46     Allocated to No 12 Aircraft Repair Depot (12ARD) Darwin for conversion.

 

Post RAAF History:

16May45    To be offered to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC).

29May45    Sold by CDC to Department of Health, Canberra ACT for 25 pounds [$50].

26Jun46    Issued to buyer.  Aircraft used as a parts source for Dragons of NT Aerial Medical Service.

A34-24 2013

Oct42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

22Nov42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

28Nov42    Allocated to No 5 Communications Unit (5CU) at RAAF Townsville.

18Dec42     Received by 5CU.

02Jan43    Allocated to No 12 Repair & Salvage Unit (12RSU) at Breddan airfield, QLD for repairs.

07Jan43    Received by 5CU.

07Mar43    Reported missing at 1645hrs on a routine flight from Cairns to Mareeba with the pilot, one crewman and three passengers onboard.  Over the next three days search aircraft could not find any sign of the wreckage in the thick jungle. Meanwhile, 11th Brigade had dispatched a large 200-man ground search party on March 8 and they located the wreck site on 10th March two miles above Cascade Falls at the upper end of Redlynch Valley to the West of Cairns. The search party only found three bodies in the wreckage, so a new search was launched for the missing men. On the morning of 11th March searchers found a severely injured NX483 Lt. Col Phillip Heathcote George Cardale and later that same day found an equally seriously injured A412876 AC1 Ronald Henry Appleby near Freshwater Creek. Those killed were: pilot A405796 SGT Lindsay James Sutherland McColl (22) single of Goondiwindi QLD; passengers NX378 Brigadier John Wilson Crawford (44) married of Moore Park NSW; and, NX145684 Lt Arthur William Morris (21) single of Hay, NSW.

 

SGT McColl is buried in the Cairns War Cemetery on 15 March 1943 Plot A. Row A. Grave 17.

Brigadier Crawford is buried in the Cairns War Cemetery on 15 March 1943 Sect WG. Row MES. Plot 39138

Lt Morris is buried in the Cairns War Cemetery on 15 March 1943 Sect WG. Row MES. Plot 39139

 

25Mar43    Allocated to 12 Repair & Salvage Unit (12RSU) at RAAF Breddan.

02Apr43    Wreckage received by 12RSU and converted to components. Aircraft had accumulated 209.15 hrs.

A34-25 2014

Oct42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

26Nov42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

28Nov42    Allocated to USA Horse Purchasing Board (USHPB) Stuart, Townsville QLD.

03Dec42    Completed acceptance tests at 2AD.

31Dec42     Allocation to USHPB cancelled.

31Dec42     Allocated to No 3 Communications Unit (3CU) Mascot, Sydney for exclusive use by USHPB.

04Jan43    Received by 3CU.

15Jan43     Received by 12 Repair & Salvage Unit (12RSU) at RAAF Breddan.

17Jan43     Received by 3CU.

20Feb43    Received by 12RSU.

05Apr43    Received by 3CU.

22Apr43    Received by 12RSU.

29Apr43    Received by 3CU.

13May43    Allocated for temporary duty with No 5 CU at RAAF Townsville until June 12 1943. Duty is actually with HQ staff of USASOS (United States Army Service of Supply HQ) stationed just north of Garbutt Airfield.

06Jun43    Received by 5CU.

06Dec43    Aircraft reported missing on a flight transporting radar equipment from Garbutt to No 313 Radar Unit, Mornington Island when it failed to arrive for a planned refueling stop at No 29 OBU, Augustus Downs, Qld. Pilot O402552 FLGOFF Ronald Gilbert Thomas (22) single of Newcastle, NSW and crewman A8719 CPL Terence Joseph Hutchinson Fitter IIe (25) married of Brisbane were reported missing presumed killed. Air search by Beaufort and Catalina aircraft until 14 Dec43, no sightings were made. Search called off.

14Dec43     Approved for write off.  Aircraft had accumulated 353.10 total hours.

21May50    Queensland Police Constable Watson stationed at Croydon, QLD 560 km West of Cairns informed RAAF Authorities an aircraft wreck had been found near Croydon with the remains of two bodies in the wreckage. Various other items were forwarded to RAAF for identification and these items proved conclusively that wreckage found was that of A34-25.

 

FLGOFF Thomas was buried on August 3rd 1950 in the Townsville War Cemetery Joint Grave B.C 13/14.

CPL Hutchinson was buried on August 3rd 1950 in the Townsville War Cemetery Joint Grave B.C 13/14.

A34-26 2015

Nov42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

26Nov42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown Airport, NSW and bought on charge.

04Dec42    Allocated to No 36 (T) Sqn at RAAF Townsville, QLD

04Dec42    Allocation cancelled, reallocated to No 34 (T) Sqn at Manbulloo field NT.

08Dec42    Completed acceptance tests at 2AD.

16Dec42     Received by 34 Sqn. Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call sign VHCSG was painted on the aircraft.

15Feb43     Crashed 1530hrs at Oodnadatta airfield soon after lift-off. Undercarriage torn off, rest of the aircraft extensively damaged. Pilot A408327 SGT AF Denton and crewman A52625 LAS GV Roberts suffered minor bruising, lacerations and shock.

31Mar43    Allocated to Guinea Airways Pty Ltd, Parafield SA for repairs.

01Apr43     Received by Guinea Airways.

09Jun43    Repair authority issued to Guinea Airways.

08Jul43     Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field, NT.

03Nov43    Authorised for release without incorporation of Dragon Orders (modifications) 12 and 14.

15Nov43     Authorised for release without incorporation of Dragon Orders (modifications) 01 and 19.

14Dec43     Received by 6CU.

30Dec43    Flown by 6CU CO Sqn Ldr Fenton departed Batchelor at first light for Cape Wessel carrying 900 lbs of cargo, consisting of fresh foods, canteen supplies and mail. Navy charts were used to try and time his arrival at low tide to expose as much beach as possible for use as a landing strip. On arrival Fenton found the beach covered by high tide, so he landed at a rough landing area previously deemed unsuitable. After the cargo was off-loaded by military personnel, he departed for Millingimbi to refuel, but with fuel getting low made a precautionary landing on a beach at Howard Island. Nosed over when wheels sank in soft patch, fortunately causing no damage to the aircraft. Over the next 4 hours, Fenton, assisted by native boys, pulled the tail down using ropes from emergency parachute and cleared sand away to make a taxy path. Departed for Elcho Island Mission where he spent the night. Next morning Fenton added minimum required fuel from the local Mission (which only had motor spirit) to get him to RAAF Millingimbi where he refueled with aviation fuel and returned to Batchelor.

14Jan44     Landed on the beach at Maret Island, 100 mile west of Drysdale Mission, in Indian Ocean. Pilot found the sand was too soft to takeoff and notified 6CU of his predicament.

15Jan44     Walrus X9515 with FLGOFF Lobwein; LAC Murgatroyd; and two airframe fitters departed Batchelor at first light to rescue the crew of A34-26. X9515 landed on the leeward side of the island and the crew transferred to the beach by natives in canoes. A34-26 was stripped of the instrument panel, magnetos and other selected parts, then tied down and guarded by locals until a salvage party arrived. With the extra weight of the Dragon crew on board, the Walrus had a difficult water takeoff taking over one mile to get airborne. Aircraft then returned to Drysdale for the night.

19Jan44     6CU CO SQNLDR Clyde Fenton accompanied by 6CU Engineering Officer FLGOFF Moorfield and a fitter, departed Darwin for Maret Island on board 41 Squadron Dornier Do 24 flying board A49-5 flown by FLGOFF Wright.  After a four hour flight A49-5 landed and anchored 300 yards off the beach at Maret Island. Natives paddled one small dugout canoe to get the Dornier crew ashore, they then took 14 more trips to get the heavy rolls of cyclone fencing wire ashore.

20Jan44    The recovery team camped on the beach overnight, sheltering inside the Dragon during a violent storm at midnight. A34-26 had its instrument panel and other removed parts refitted and fencing wire laid to provide a firm take-off surface. Petrol was drained and enough left in the tanks for the one hour flight to Drysdale Mission also, the tyres were deflated to improve their traction in the sand.

Fenton took off but the Dragon was extremely nose-heavy due lack of load and full back-pressure was needed on the control column. Fenton lashed the control column back to the pilot's seat using ropes from a mosquito net and completed the flight to Drysdale Mission. At Drysdale the tyres were fully inflated, fuel and ballast loaded and the aircraft returned to Batchelor.

13Apr44     SQNLDR Clyde Fenton accompanied by engineer FLGOFF Moorfield and an aircraft fitter, departed Batchelor for Melville Island to retrieve Anson MG520, which had made a forced beach landing three days earlier. A34-26 landed on a nearby beach at low tide and then flown to Gove by Flt Lt Mitchell (Anson pilot). MG520 was given temporary repairs, fuel was added and pushed to edge of the beach. At low tide the engines were started, one bent propeller tip vibrated but not excessively. Aircraft taxied on to beach on the steel matting and successfully took off for Gove. Remainder of the rescue party were transported to Gove by launch.

22Oct44    Northern Area Engineering Officer recommended the aircraft for conversion as the aircraft was beyond economical repair.

22Oct44    Allocated to No 8 Central Recovery Depot Darwin, NT for conversion.

1944          Converted to components.

A34-27 2016

Nov42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

30Nov42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) at RAAF Base Richmond, NSW and bought on charge.

03Dec42    Completed acceptance tests at 2AD.

16Dec42     Received by No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Manbulloo Field, NT.

27Feb43    Moved with 6CU to Batchelor Field, NT.

31May43    Allocated to No 14 Aircraft Repair Depot (14ARD) at Gorrie, NT for 240 hourly service.

01Jun43     Received by 14ARD.

19Jun43     Allocated to 6CU.

23Jun43    Received by 6CU.

13Sep43     Allocated to No 7 Repair & Salvage Unit (7RSU) at Pell, NT for 240 hourly service.

15Sep43     Received by 7RSU.

25Sep43    Request allocation to Depot or Contractor for complete overhaul.

08Oct43    Allocated to De Havilland Aircraft at Mascot Airport, Sydney for overhaul.

03Jan44    Received by De Havilland.

07Apr44    Received by 2AP for post overhaul checks.

08Jan44    Allocated to 6CU.

12Jan44     Received by 6CU.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) RAAF Base Forest Hills, NSW.

02Dec44    Taking off from Darwin airport and shortly before coming airborne, the aircraft swerved violently to stbd when the stbd wheel seized. The pilot immediately closed the port throttle and applied full port brake and rudder. The aircraft however continued to ground loop and crashed. Aircraft extensively damaged. Pilot A422450 WOFF FC Debenham and crewman A117212 CPL JC Crick were shaken but uninjured.

06Dec44    Allocated to No 8 Central Recovery Depot (8RCD) Darwin, NT for survey report.

19Mar45    Approved for conversion. Aircraft had accumulated 1310.35 hrs.

A34-28 2017

RAAF History:

Nov42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

07Nov42    First flight at Mascot.

30Nov42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

03Dec42    Completed acceptance tests at 2AP.

04Dec42    Allocated to No 5 Communications Unit (5CU) at RAAF Garbutt, QLD.

18Dec42     Received by 5CU. Ferried from Bankstown to Garbutt via Coffs Harbour-Archerfield-Rockhampton.

24Dec42    Damaged stbd compression leg when taxying in boggy ground at Hughenden airfield, QLD.

29Dec42    Received by No 12 Repair & Salvage Unit (12RSU) at Breddan airfield, QLD for repairs.

05Jan43    Allocated to and received by 5CU.

08Jan43    Stbd compression strut damaged when landing at Charters Towers, QLD.

12Jan43     Received by 12RSU for repairs.

30Jan43    Allocated to and received by 5CU.

06Apr43    Lost port propeller in flight. Forced landed at Cooktown, QLD. No damage. Pilot A420790 SGT TB Watts and passengers WGCDR Reed, FLTLT McDonald and LACs Joyce and Porteous were all uninjured.

03Sep43    Detached for duty between Horn Island and Merauke PNG.

10Sep43     Taxying accident at Horne Island, upper & lower mainplanes extensively damaged.

12Sep43     Allocated to No 1 Repair & Salvage Unit (1RSU) at Higgins Field, QLD for repairs.

13Sep43     Received by 1RSU.

23Nov43    Allocated to 5CU.

01Dec43     Received by 5CU.

29Feb44    Allocated to De Havilland Mascot Airport, NSW for complete overhaul.

06Mar44    Received by De Havilland.

14Sep44     Received by 2AP for post overhaul checks.

15Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Forest Hills, NSW for storage.

18Sep44     Received by 5AD and stored at Care & Maintenance Unit, RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW.

19Sep45     Survey report submitted to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommending disposal.

24Sep45    Sold for £750 [$1500] to Reverend T. Jones, The Bush Church Aid Society (BCAS) of Australia & Tasmania.

O4Oct45    Issued to Reverend Jones.

 

Post RAAF History:

09Oct45    Allotted registration VH-AGI.

11Oct45     Registration application: Bush Church Aid Society for Australia and Tasmania c/o Rev T. E. Jones, Sydney NSW. Application signed by Mr. A. E. Chadwick, Chief Pilot. To be based Ceduna SA.

15Mar45    Registered as VH-AGI.

18Mar45    Ferry flight to Ceduna SA flown by De Havilland test pilot RA Gray. Route was Mascot-Wagga-Seymour-Essendon- Nhill-Parafield-Whyalla-Ceduna with a flying time of 16 hours.

1946-58     Based at Ceduna and performed aerial ambulance and clinic work with BCAS, which operated hospitals at Ceduna and Tarcoola. Titles painted on the forward fuselage were:

Church of England            Bush Church Aid Society, George Street, Sydney

Australia for Christ           Aerial Medical Service

31May58    Sold to Surfers Paradise Air Taxis, Brisbane Qld.  Used for charter and joyrides.

23Sep58    Sold to Lombard (Australia) Ltd, a finance company in Sydney NSW.  

24Oct59    Stored in the open at Bankstown airfield. Struck off the register.

Dec59        Reregistered to Eddie Burke Car Sales Cooma NSW. Operated as a charter aircraft out of Merimbula NSW flown by pilot Macarthur Job, trading as South Eastern Air Transport.

27Feb60    Change of ownership to South Eastern Air Transport, Merimbula NSW.

11May61     Repossessed and ferried back to Bankstown.

22Aug61     Sold to H. W. Baldwin & T. Beverley-Smith, of Sydney NSW.

01Oct61     From pilot Macarthur Job ‘Some months later a chap name Baldwin and his business partner bought VH-AGI, but not long afterwards they ran into extreme turbulence while flying down the coast in high westerly wind conditions. He was flying down to Merimbula with a load of passengers to pick up some radio gear for it from me. It was a clear hot day with a strong gusty westerly winds, and he got caught in savage rotor turbulence in the lee of the Great Dividing Range. The turbulence was severe enough to crack some of the plywood fuselage skinning, and he feared the aircraft was going to break up in flight.

In some consternation they attempted an emergency landing on the Batemans Bay golf course. The undercarriage was damaged when they hit a bunker, and for weeks afterwards the aeroplane sat forlornly on the golf course fairway.  Finally they came down from Sydney by road and took everything away everything that could possibly be removed from the basic fuselage and centre section. So that was the inglorious end of dear old AGI. My last sight of it was the gutted fuselage sitting in someone’s back yard in Batemans Bay in 1963 for small boys to play in. I think it was eventually burnt.”

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-28

A34-29 2018

Nov42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

06Dec42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

07Dec42    Allocated to No 33 (T) Sqn at RAAF Garbutt, QLD Aircraft to be camouflaged.

08Dec42    Completed acceptance tests at 2AP.

09Jan43    Received by 33 Sqn.

25Dec42    Moved with 33 Sqn to Port Moresby, PNG

18Jun43     Allocated to No 15 Aircraft Repair Deport (15ARD) at Port Moresby for 240 hourly service.

21Jun43     Received by 15ARD.

27Jun43    Received by 33 Sqn.

11Sep43     Partial undercarriage failure after landing at Terapo Strip, PNG caused the aircraft to swing off the strip into a large drain. Aircraft was extensively damaged beyond Unit repair capability. Pilot A415436 FSGT H. mutton and crewmen A15367 CPL Goulder fitter IIA and A35623 LAC Dunstan fitter IIE were uninjured.

14Sep43     Allocated to 15ARD for repairs.

21Sep43     Salvage crew sent from 15ARD to Terapo.

30Sep43    Aircraft recovered to Port Moresby. Survey report recommended conversion.

12Jan44     Approved for conversion.

21Jan44     Converted to components.

A34-30 2019

RAAF History:

Nov42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

08Dec42    First flight at Mascot.

14Dec42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Dec42     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) at Essendon airport, Melbourne

20Dec42    Received by ANA for air ambulance modifications

23Dec42    Allocated to No 2 Air Ambulance Unit (2AAU) at RAAF Station Canberra, ACT.

29Dec42    Received by No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Laverton, VIC for acceptance checks.

31Dec42     Received by 2AAU.

05Jan43    Ferried to Archerfield airfield Brisbane by O408622 FLGOFF R.M. Buchanan and crew to operate with 2AAU Detachment Brisbane.

05Jan43    Ferried from Archerfield to Townsville by O408622 FLGOFF R.M. Buchanan and crew to operate with 2AAU Detachment Townsville.

11Mar43     Taking off from a gravel runway heavy with rain at Cairns, QLD the aircraft failed to build up enough speed to clear trees at the end of the runway. The pilot put the aircraft back on the runway and applied full brakes but it was not enough to stop so the pilot elected to execute a ground loop. Aircraft was extensively damaged. Pilot O408622FLGOFF R.M Buchanan and passengers FLGOFF G.H Camens; A15981 SGT KD Green; A420929 LAC EM Farrell; and, A20978 LAC RG Bonser all received minor cuts and abrasions.

25Mar43    Received by No 12 Repair & Salvage Unit (12RSU) at Macrossan field, QLD for repairs.

23Jul43     Allocated to 2AAU.

05Aug43    Received by 2AAU Detachment at Townsville.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Forest Hills, NSW for storage.

16Nov44     Received by 5AD and stored at Care & Maintenance detachment, RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW.

25Sep45    HQ Directive - Retained for RAAF use aircraft not to be inspected by prospective buyers.

16May46    Approved for disposal @ 7,600 pounds.

27May46    Sold through CDC for £50 to Queensland Ambulance Transport Brigade, Brisbane Qld.

11Jun46     Flown from Cootamundra to Brisbane by Captain Munro of the QATB.

 

Post RAAF History

29Jan47    Registration application from Qantas Empire Airways, to be based in PNG.

26Mar47    CofA inspection by DCA at Archerfield and registered as VH-AON.

27Mar47    Departed for Lae, PNG on delivery flight. Arrived 01Apr47.

10Apr47     After a freight flight from Lae under Captain Frank S. Furness the aircraft ran off the end of the runway after the port engine failed during attempted missed approach in wet and windy conditions at Kianantu airfield Eastern Highlands Province PNG. Undercarriage collapsed causing serious damage to nose, prop, and lower port wing.  

10Jul47      Repairs completed. Now fitted with five passengers.

10Apr48     CofA renewed at Archerfield.

22Mar49    Struck an object during low vis conditions at Goroka, PNG. Port mainplane and aileron damaged.

30Jul51      Ferried from Lae to Brisbane for CofA renewal.

18Sep52     Sold to Territory Airlines Ltd (TAL), Goroka, New Guinea c/o Mr J. Gray.

01Dec58     Departed Port Moresby for ferry to Archerfield.

06Dec58    200 litre drum fitted as an extra fuel tank.

1959          Leased to an unknown operator and based in Queensland.

10Aug60     Sold to H. J. & E. Z. Hughes, “Bundah”, Talwood Qld

12Jan61     Leased to Robert G. Carswell, Darwin NT. To replace his DH.89 VH-AAG.

23Jan61     Test flown Archerfield by ‘Ossie’ Osgood, pilot for Carswell.

28Jan61     Departed Archerfield on ferry flight to Darwin by Osgood. Fuel stops at Roma, Charleville, Longreach, Winton, Mount Isa, Brunette Downs. Arrived Darwin 29.1.61

Feb61        Extract from Mr Osgood’s log book ‘flew buffalo meat runs on 16 days this month’.

01Jun63     Sold to Aircraft Engine Overhauls & Service, Moorabbin Airport Vic. Operated by associate company Air Surveys Australia, Moorabbin.  Manager of both companies was Harry J. Wallace, part-owner of Flinders Island Airlines. Air Surveys Australia used AON on a photographic survey of the standard gauge railway line between Melbourne and Albury during the 1960s. Carried nose art “Puff”.

12Aug72     Withdrawn from use.

1973          Sold to Joe G. Drage, Wodonga Vic. 

21Feb75     Flown Wodonga-Berwick by Macarthur Job to attend the AHSA 50th Anniversary of the DH.60 airshow. Finished all silver, Puff and Dragon artwork on nose. AON flew displays at airshow, along with DH.89 Rapides VH-IAN & BGP.

24Jun81     Withdrawn from use.

27Jan85    Flown from Wodonga to Wangaratta with other vintage aircraft from the Drage Historic Aircraft Museum. Displayed in new Drage Airworld collection hangar at Wangaratta Airport.  Airworld was supported by the City of Wangaratta, who later took over the operation.

17Aug87     Restored to Register: City of Wangaratta, Wangaratta Vic

30Jan02    Airworld closed due falling visitor numbers and costs.

02Sep03    Advertised for sale as part of Wangaratta Airworld collection: asking $150K

12Jan04     Sold to Harvey D. McBain, Nelson Vic for an undisclosed amount.

2015          Current.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-30

A34-31 2020

RAAF History:

Nov42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

10Dec42     First flight at Mascot.

14Dec42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Dec42     Allocated to No 36 (T) Sqn at RAAF Garbutt, QLD.

15Dec42     Allocation cancelled, reallocated to No 34 (T) Sqn at Manbulloo, NT.

16Dec42     Received by 34 Sqn.

24Dec42    Crash landed at Tennant Creek, QLD causing extensive damage. Crew escaped uninjured.

24Dec42    Allocated to No 1 Repair & Salvage Unit (1RSU) at Manbulloo, NT.

29Dec42    1RSU crew dispatched to recover aircraft.

05Jan43    Received by 1RSU for repair.

30Jan43    Allocated to 34 Sqn at Parafield, SA.

01Feb43     Received by 34 Sqn. Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call sign VHCSH & was painted on the aircraft.

26Feb43    Engine failure at 400ft after take-off required a straight ahead crash landing one mile from the Oodnadatta airfield. At 1430hrs the aircraft crash landed and struck a ditch which destroyed the undercarriage and caused other damage. Pilot A411689 SGT CN Farrel and crewman A53054 LAC S. Proctor received bruising and abrasions.

28Feb43    Aircraft recovered by 34 Sqn staff back to Parafield by road transport.

Mar-Jun43 Undercarriage replaced and aircraft repaired.

05Jun43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field, NT.

22Jun43    Received by 6CU.

08Oct43    Forced landing due to oil leak in port engine. Oil leak temporarily repaired and recovered to Base.

18Nov43     An exceptional day of operations. Flown Batchelor to North Goulburn Island by SQNLDR Clyde Fenton, with FLGOFF Moorfield and one crewman, carrying fresh meat, vegetables, butter, beer, goods and mail for No.309 Radar Station. Landed in small clearing in tall timber close to the unit in order to get fresh food transferred with minimum delay. Fenton wrote in the Unit History. "…faced with take-off felt like a rat in a trap. Great jubilation among troops at arrival of fresh food supplies, first in history of station. Passengers left behind plus all remaining cargo - even cross-country kit stripped to lighten aircraft. No wind, air hot and thin. Taxied to end, tail pulled back into timber to obtain every available yard of run, brakes kept on, engines revved up. Brakes released, tail rose into flying position in first few yards. Machine airborne after 300 yards but had to climb 50 foot trees, Cleared them with few inches to spare in semi-stalled condition. Pilot's morale complete stalled."

The passengers walked to an airstrip clearing 2 miles away. Fenton flew to South Island to pick up beer supplies left there previously when the unit's launch broke down, loaded into the Dragon by native carriers. Engine failed during run-up prior to takeoff, repaired by Fenton assisted by a missionary using blacksmith tools. Flew back to North Goulburn Island to collect the men and cargo.  "Another hair-raising takeoff. Thirty degree climbing turn to avoid tall trees. Lower wing tip only just made it - Moorfield says because the tree ducked. However all in a good cause. Troops received first consignment of fresh foods since station established, also a great swag of beer to wash it down." Fenton then flew to South Island to drop off two personnel then returned to Batchelor in failing light.

05May44    Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot Airport for complete overhaul.

13Jul44      Received by De Havilland.

11Apr45     Received by 2AD for post overhaul checks.

11Apr45     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Forest Hills, NSW for storage.

18Apr45     Received by 5AD and stored at Care & Maintenance detachment, RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW.

14Aug45     Allocated to 6CU at Batchelor Field, NT.

24Sep45    Received by 6CU.

25Sep45    Selected for post-War use by the RAAF.

01Feb46     Allocated to HQ Store at RAAF Darwin.

05Mar46    Received by HQ Store.

16May46    Offered for disposal by the Air Board to the Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC).

17May46    Purchased for 50 pounds by Department of Health for use by the proposed Northern Territory Aerial Medical Service, Darwin. NTAMS Chief Pilot Jack Slade selected A34-13 & A34-31 because he had flown them with 6CU and both had low hours after major overhauls. A damaged airframe A34-23 located at Darwin was also purchased for parts for 25 pounds.

05Jun46    Collected by purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

11Jul46      Allocated registration VH-ASL.

14Aug46     Departed Darwin on ferry to Sydney flown by NTAMS chief pilot Jack Slade for CofA conversion and configuration as air ambulance by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd.

23Oct46    Registration application: Director-General of Health, Canberra ACT. Signed by J.W. Connell (De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd) and Jack Slade (Dept of Health). Identity quoted as "20".

22Nov46    Registered VH-ASL Department of Health, Canberra. Operated as Northern Territory Medical Service (NTAMS), Darwin

04Dec46    First NTAMS medical flight: Darwin to Roper Bar to collect a policeman's 2 year old son who had contracted highly contagious diphtheria. The last two hours of the return flight to Darwin were flown at night. Captain was Jack Slade.

05Dec46    Second NTAMS medical flight: Darwin to Groote Eylandt for a child who had almost drowned. Return trip flying time 13.5 hours. Captain Jack Slade.

08Dec46    Darwin-Roper Bar with Sister Matthews who took cultures from those who had been in contact with the policeman's son. An 8 year old girl exhibited symptoms of diphtheria and was evacuated to Darwin but proved to be a false alarm.

26Dec46    Departed Darwin for "Jindare" Station out of Pine Creek NT to evacuate a critically ill 3 month old child. The property had no airstrip nor radio or telephone contact and was cut off from Pine Creek by flooding rivers. Captain Jack Slade's report: "There is no airstrip at this station, but in view of the urgency of the call and lack of alternative transport, an attempt was made to land in a small clearing.  A sudden lull in the wind caused the aircraft to overshoot into light timber and considerable damage was done to the airframe." Jack Slade and Sister Hill were not injured but the patient died an hour after their arrival. Slade and Hill were retrieved the following day by a truck when river flood levels dropped.

Jan47        Wreck of VH-ASL was trucked out to Darwin. Shipped to Sydney for repair.

04Jul47     CofA renewed Mascot after repair by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd

16Apr48     Landed on beach at Gunn Point when roads to Darwin were impassable

01Jul48      Flown to Brisbane for CofA renewal at Archerfield.

23Dec48    Flown Darwin-Katherine-Pine Creek-Darwin by Clyde Fenton, who had not formally renewed his civil pilot license following RAAF service in WW2.  Prosecuted by DCA, fined £50: reduced to £2 on appeal, the fine was paid by a member of the public in the court.

07May50    Major damage during a landing accident at Brunette Downs Station NT. Aircraft shipped to Eagle Farm airport for repair by Qantas.

20Feb51     CofA renewed after repairs completed.

02Jul51      Deployed to Alice Springs for six week periods at 7 Mile Strip pilot Mr Harry Moss.

12Feb52     Ferried from Alice Springs to Brisbane by NTAMS pilot Harry Moss for CofA renewal.  TAA took over operation and crewing of the NTMS aircraft effective March 1952, so the overhaul was carried out by TAA at Eagle Farm airport.

27Jul55     Retired by NTAMS.

29Mar56    Sold to Australian Aircraft Sales, 40 Darlinghurst Road, Kings Cross, Sydney NSW.

29Aug56    Sold to Lionel A. Wall, Townsville Qld

19Nov56     Reregistered VH-SJW Lionel A. Wall, Townsville Qld

21Apr57     Struck fence post while taxying at Tolworth Station Qld.   DCA Accident report: Whilst taxying back to takeoff position the aircraft collided with a fence post. Carelessness on the part of the pilot in taxying too close to obstructions. Charter flight, no injuries.

16Aug57     Crashed and burned at Mount Douglas 13 miles North East of Bullawallah near Charters Towers, Qld.  Pilot killed. DCA accident report: "The aircraft crashed in timbered country soon after takeoff. Cause could not be determined".

20Feb58    Struck off register.

A34-32 2021

Nov42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

14Dec42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

15Dec42     Allocated to 33 (T) Sqn at RAAF Garbutt, QLD.

24Dec42    Received by 33 Sqn.

26Dec42    Moved with 33 Sqn to Port Moresby, PNG.

12Jul43      Flew to Terapo Strip to rescue pilot of crashed A34-43 and take him to Berry Strip, PNG

22Jul43     Damage to port compression leg when taking off from Terapo Strip. Returned safely to Base. Pilot O412182 FLGOFF KA Ramsay and passengers P224 WOFF Mann (ANGAU) and  TX12251 SGT Wheelton (NGF) were all uninjured.

25Oct43    Allocated to No 1 Repair & Salvage Unit (RSU) at Port Moresby.

28Oct43    Received by 1RSU.

30Oct43    Allocated to No 9 Communications Unit (9CU) at Port Moresby.

17Jan44     Swung off the runway when landing at Bulldog Strip, Gulf Province, PNG. Undercarriage collapsed and aircraft extensively damaged. Pilot A41536 FSGT H Mutton received minor cuts and abrasions.

19Jan44     Allocated to No 15 Aircraft Repair Depot (ARD) at Port Moresby.

20Jan44    Issued to 15ARD. Request conversion in-situ.

14Feb44     Approved for conversion in-situ. Total accumulated hours were 460.25

A34-33 2022

01Dec42     Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW

13Dec42     First flight at Mascot.

14Dec42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

17Dec42     Allocated to No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) RAAF Laverton for air drop modifications.

17Dec42     Allocated to No 1 Paratroop Training Unit (1PTU) RAAF Laverton after modifications completed.

20Dec42    Received by 1AD.

28Dec42    Received by 1PTU.

01Jan43     Allocated to 1AD for further modifications.

20Jan43    Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call sign VHCRM, which was painted on the aircraft.

22Mar43    Allocated to No 4 Communications Unit (4CU) at Archerfield, Brisbane.

06Apr44    Received by 4CU.

18Aug44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Forest Hills, NSW for storage.

29Aug44    Received by 5AD and stored at Care & Maintenance detachment, RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW.

19Sep45     Survey report recommended disposal by Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC).

25Sep45    Aircraft ‘frozen’ until disposal action taken.

22Jan46    Sold by CDC for £50 [$100] to Mr. K. Virtue, 5 Green St, Yeerongpilly Qld.

09Jan46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

21Nov46     Registration application: Keith A. Virtue, Brisbane Qld Application submitted by Aircrafts Pty Ltd, Archerfield. C/N quoted as “DG22” changed to 2022 & A34-33.

22May47    Weighed at Archerfield for CofA.

23May47    CofA issued, fitted with eight passenger seats. Registered as VH-ALL.

18Jul47      Sold to Zinc Corp Ltd, Sydney NSW to be based at Broken Hill NSW.

01Sep47     Damaged while landing at Palentine Mission Station, 150 miles south of Halls Creek WA. Repaired by MacRobertson Miller Airways engineers from Broome.

30Sep47    Ferried to Broome after repairs then on to Broken Hill.

10Sep48     Sold to Silver City Airways (Australia) Pty Ltd, Broken Hill NSW

03Sep49    CofA expired at Broken Hill. SCAW advised DCA that CofA would not be renewed as the aircraft was for sale and would be stored in Silver City Airways hangar at Broken Hill until sold.

22Apr50    Sold to Trans Australia Airlines, Brisbane Qld. Named John Flynn. Departed Broken Hill at 1530hrs on delivery to Brisbane, flown by Captain J. Chapman, TAA Operations Manager arrived Eagle Farm 1830hrs.

06May50    Weighed at Eagle Farm for CofA. Total airframe hours 1282.

1950-51      Operated by TAA on charter to Flying Doctor Service of Australia (Queensland Section) Inc.

06Feb51     Carried Doctor Dr. Alan Vickers to Windorah for an urgent medical case. While the doctor was attending to his patient, Straney commenced a shuttle between Windorah and Moothandilla Station carrying fruit and vegetables because Windorah had been cut off by flood waters for 6 weeks. After several trips, both engines failed on takeoff at Moothandilla and aircraft crashed into trees at the end of the runway. TAA Captain Fred Straney unhurt. Aircraft was severely damaged.

27Mar51    Struck off register.

A34-34 2023

01Dec42     Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

15Dec42     First flight at Mascot.

16Dec42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

17Dec42     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport, VIC for transport/air ambulance conversion.

17Dec42     Allocated to No 2 Air Ambulance Unit (2AAU) at RAAF Station Canberra after modification.

20Dec42    Received by ANA.

28Dec42    Modifications completed by ANA.

29Dec42    Received by No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Base Laverton for acceptance checks.

01Jan43     Received by 2AAU at RAAF Canberra.

05Jan43    Ferried to RAAF Townsville via Archerfield by O408616 FLGOFF J.A. Archer and crew to operate with 2AAU Detachment Townsville. Returned to Canberra on 31Jan.

12Feb43     Ferried to Archerfield by O408616 FLGOFF J.A. Archer and crew to operate with 2AAU Detachment Brisbane.

22Feb43    Ferried from Archerfield to Port Moresby by O408616 FLGOFF J.A. Archer and crew to form an Air Ambulance Detachment. Arrived in Port Moresby on 28Feb43.

04Oct43    Request allocation for complete overhaul because the aircraft is badly deteriorated following seven months use in extreme tropical conditions. Ferried to Kingaroy by O411994 FLGOFF S.A. Colbert and crew.

07Oct43    Allocated to De Havilland Pty ltd Mascot airport, Sydney for complete overhaul.

10Oct43     Ferried to Mascot via Ballina and Newcastle by A405636 FSGT R.W. Miller for repairs.

18Oct43     Received by De Havilland.

02Jan44    Received 2AP for post servicing checks.

06Jan44    Allocated to 2AAU.

07Jan44    Received by 2AAU.

03Feb44    Allocated to De Havilland for inspection and any necessary repairs.

05Feb44    Received by De Havilland.

09Mar44    Anticipate serviceable 21 March. This aircraft to be ferried to Goodenough Island immediately.

06Apr44    Received by 2AAU.

12Apr44     Received by 2AAU Detachment at Townsville.

09Oct44    Ferried to 2AAU HQ at Archerfield via Bowen by WOFF Jones and crew.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Forest Hills, NSW for storage.

16Nov44     Received by 5AD and stored at Care & Maintenance detachment, RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW.

08Jan45    Survey report, Total time 623hrs, fair condition. Intended for 20Feb45 Air Disposal List.

19Sep45     Survey report recommended disposal by Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC).

25Sep45    Aircraft ‘frozen’ until disposal action taken.

10Oct45     Sold for £670 [$1350] to Queensland Ambulance Transport Brigade (QATB), Brisbane.

10Oct45     Letter to DCA from Australian National Airways advising that they have inspected A34-34 for the QATB and propose sending it to De Havilland Aircraft at Mascot to carry out the CofA overhaul.

17Oct45     Issued to QATB.

 

Post RAAF History

27Nov45    Weighed at Mascot for CofA issue.

28Nov45    Registered VH-AMB to QATB Cairns Centre, Qld. Fitted as an Ambulance with two stretchers.

25Sep46    Accident at Georgetown QLD.

13Mar47    ANA DH.89 Rapide VH-UVT made a forced landing on Oak Beach, 23 miles north of Cairns Qld, and tipped onto its nose. QATB Dragon VH-AMB was despatched from Cairns and found UVT on the beach still on its nose. The Rapide was pushed into trees alongside the beach where fuel system was removed and returned to Cairns for inspection. A week later UVT was flown off the beach to Cairns.

23Feb49    Crashed into tree on takeoff from Palmerville Qld. Written off, no injuries.

07Apr49    Struck off the register.

Dragon A34-34

A34-35 2024

RAAF History:

02Dec42    Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

17Dec42     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

17Dec42     Allocated for temporary duty with No 1 Communications Unit (1CU) at RAAF Laverton, VIC.

20Dec42    Received by 1CU.

25Jan43    Temporary duty with 1CU extended until 03Feb43.

30Jun43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor field, NT.

05Jul43     Issued to No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) RAAF Laverton for servicing prior to issue to 6CU.

16Jul43      Aircraft to depart with equipment awaiting air freight.

02Aug43    Received by 6CU.

14Dec43     Heavy landing at Port Keats, NT caused severe damage to undercarriage, wings and engines.

01Jun44     Allocated to De Havilland Aircraft Mascot airport NSW for inspection and reporting.

04Aug44    Received by De Havilland.

11May45     Received by No 2 Aircraft Depot (2AD) RAAF Richmond, NSW.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Forest Hills, NSW for storage.

14May45    Received by 5AD and stored at Care & Maintenance detachment, RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW.

19Sep45     Survey report recommended disposal by Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC).

25Sep45    Aircraft ‘frozen’ until disposal action taken.

08Oct45    Sold for £750 to Bridgewater Amplivox Sound System, Sydney.

22Nov45    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

05Dec45    Registration application from Shark Patrol Service Co, Sydney NSW.

18Dec45     Modified to carry four loud speakers. Test flown at Mascot.

07Feb46    Registered as VH-AFK. Fitted with three passenger seats and jettisonable loudspeakers.

02Aug46    Fuel pumps modified [mandatory].

04Feb47    Sold to New England Aerial Ambulance and Freight Service, Sydney NSW.

01Jun47     Sold to Taylors Air Transport Ltd. Lae PNG c/o M. A. Taylor.

08Jun47    VH-AFK & AHY departed Sydney on delivery flight to Lae PNG for Mr Taylor to commence his charter business. Pilot Ralph Elphinstone remembers: "There we were in the two Dragons. Joe Taylor and myself in one, Ross Kerrick in the other, two mechanics, and a traffic clerk, all our spares, suitcases, everything to run an airline. Just arrived up in Lae unannounced one day and started flying the next."

06Sep48    A port engine failure resulted in a crash 10 miles south of Bena Bena, Eastern Highlands Province PNG. Aircraft completely wrecked but no injuries. Milton "Joe" Taylor recalls: "VH-AFK was wrecked in a forced landing 10 miles south of Bena Bena. Pilot Johnny Keene lost an engine and, instead of carrying on, decided to land in the long kunai grass.  We pulled the wreckage to pieces and brought it back to Lae in a DC-3 but the aircraft was not rebuilt."

A34-36 2025

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

22Dec42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

22Dec42    Allocated to Rescue and Communications Squadron (RCS) Port Moresby, PNG.

29Dec42    Received by RCS. Issued to 1RCS Detachment at Gurney Strip at Milne Bay, PNG

014Jan43   When landing at Berry Strip the port oleo leg fractured. Pilot FSGT Davies uninjured.

31Mar43    Swung off strip when landing at Goodenough Island and struck rocks.  Port undercarriage collapsed severely damaging port wing, port airscrew and fuselage. Pilot A401898 FSGT GS King, passengers FLGOFF Kent, LAC Porter, LAC Butterie and LAC Penhurst were all uninjured.

01Apr43     Allocated to No 10 Repair & Salvage Unit (10RSU) at Milne Bay.

02Apr43    Received by 10RSU.

07Jul43     Shipped to Sydney on the requisitioned freighter SS Wanaka.

08Jul43     Allocated to De Havilland Aircraft Mascot airport Sydney for complete overhaul.

24Sep43    Received by De Havilland.

08Mar44    Received by 2AP for post overhaul checks.

09Mar44    Allocated to No 5 Communications Unit (5CU) at RAAF Garbutt, QLD.

12Mar44    Received by 5CU.

13May44    Port engine failed at 1005hrs immediately after takeoff requiring the pilot to make a forced landing into a swamp 400 yards North of Higgins Strip, QLD. When the wheels touched down the aircraft dug in and overturned, extensively damaged. Pilot A405840 FSGT TA Clarke and passengers A123787 CPL WK Spence; A73855 LAC AA Townsend; and, A5845 LAC DH Kennedy all received minor cuts and abrasions.

15May44    Allocated to No 1 Repair & Salvage Unit (1RSU) at Breddan airfield, QLD.

16May44    Received by 1RSU. Recommended for conversion.

12Jun44     Approved for conversion.

17Jul44      Allocated to No 13 Aircraft Repair Depot for conversion.       

A34-37 2026

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

26Dec42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

26Dec42    Allocated to Paratroop Training Unit (PTU) at RAAF Base Laverton, VIC.

27Dec42    Issued to PTU.

15Jan43     Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) for Parachute Training modifications.

15Jan43     Reallocated to PTU.

26Jan43    Received by 7AD.

29May43   Received by PTU after modifications completed.

14Oct43    The aircraft was conducting a survey reconnaissance flight in connection with the 1st Australian Paratroop Battalion training programme near Lime Burners Creek, Port Stephens NSW with a pilot and four paratrooper passengers. Witnesses saw the aircraft enter a spin and crash into a Forestry Reserve four miles north of Lime Burners Creek. Pilot A432005 SGT Ian Eustace Hollingdale 36 Sqn RAAF (20) single of Rose Bay, Sydney was killed; passenger VX44388 MAJ Ivan Lockhart Smith 1st Australian Paratroop Battalion ARA (28) single of Caulfield, VIC was killed; VX29955 LT Denzil Leslie Govett 1st Australian Paratroop Battalion ARA (29) married of Caulfield VIC was killed; NX4501 SGT Richard Elliott Moran 1st Australian Paratroop Battalion ARA was seriously injured; and, A72382 LAC William Edward Barlow No 1 PTU was seriously injured.

 

MAJ Smith is buried in the Sandgate War Cemetery, Newcastle NSW.  Plot E. Row C. Grave 4

SGT Hollingdale is buried in the Sandgate War Cemetery, Newcastle NSW.  Plot E. Row C. Grave 5.

LT Govett is buried in the Sandgate War Cemetery, Newcastle NSW.  Plot E. Row C. Grave 6

 

18Oct43     Allocated to De Havilland Mascot for survey and report.

30Oct43    Received by De Havilland. Surveyed and recommended for conversion.

12Nov43     Received by 2AD for conversion. Total hours 128.12

A34-38 2027

RAAF History:

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

27Dec42    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

28Dec42    Completed at 2AP.

30Dec42    Allocated to 34 (T) Sqn at RAAF Station Darwin, NT.

06Jan43    Received by 34 Sqn.

11Jan43     Tail wheel unit collapsed on landing at Tennant Creek, NT at 1500hrs which caused the aircraft to swing off the runway and hit a large rock. Lower stbd wing heavily damaged. Pilot A412437 SGT RH Haxton and crewman A20229 LAC JE Allen were uninjured.

20Jan43    Allocated to No 1 Repair & Salvage Unit at Manbullo field, NT.

22Jan43    Received by 1RSU.

11Mar43     Allocated to 34 Sqn.

28Mar43    Received by 34 Sqn.

1943          Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call-sign VHCSJ, which was painted on the aircraft.

20Apr43    Issued to Australian National Airways (ANA) at Essendon airport VIC for overhaul.

30Apr43    Received by ANA.

26May43    Allocated to No 3 Communications Flight (3CF) at Mascot Airport Sydney.

14Jun43     Received by 3CF to replace A34-19.

01Aug38     Allocated to Radio Installation & Maintenance Unit (RIMU) at Batchelor Field NT for temporary duty.

23Aug43    Received by RIMU.

24Sep43    Temporary duty to RIMU extended until Nov43.

22Nov43    Received by 3CF.

10Jul44      Allocated to No 14 Aircraft Repair Depot at Gorrie NT.

20Jul44     Received by 14ARD for 80 hourly servicing.

31Jul44      Allocated to 14ARD for modifications.

08Aug44    Wireless and Navigation equipment removed at 14ARD.

23Aug44    Allocated to No 6 Communications Flight (6CF) at Batchelor field NT.

26Aug44    Received by 6CF.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot Store (5AD) at RAAF Station Cootamundra, NSW

28Jan45    Received by 5AD and stored as Category B.

19Sep45     Survey report submitted to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) for disposal.

25Sep45    Aircraft frozen until disposed of by CDC.

15Mar46    Sold by CDC to Messrs. R. J. Knight & A. J. McCarthy, 9 Jordan Terrace Brisbane for 480 pounds.

09Apr46    Issued to R. J. Knight & A. J. McCarthy.

24Mar46    Ferried from Cootamundra to Mackay by KMH Air Service.

 

Post RAAF History:

06Dec46    Registration application: KMH Air Service, Mackay Qld.

27May47    Sold to Qantas Empire Airways (QEA).

28May47    Registration application: Qantas Empire Airways, Lae, New Guinea. To be a freighter in PNG.

28May47    Registered as VH-BAF.

14Jul47      QEA Captain Ross K. Crabbe was enroute from Lae to Wau with cases of supplies and two Australian passengers when he became trapped in a narrowing valley with low cloud base near the head of the Wampit River near Zenag, Morobe Province PNG.  Unable to get out of the valley Crabb deliberately ‘pancaked’ the aircraft into the spreading top branches of a huge tree and was hurled out of the cockpit and down to a ravine 36 metres below, injuring his back. The Dragon remained wedged in the top of the tree and his calls to the passengers were unanswered. A group of native hunters heard the crash and reported it to a nearby Government station. Two medical assistants were led to the scene, climbed the tree in the dark and administered morphine to the injured passengers and stayed with them for the night. The next day a doctor and rescue team arrived and the passengers were lowered in baskets and taken to Zenag. One seriously injured passenger was flown to Sydney by QEA DC-3 for plastic surgery for facial injuries.

31Jul47      Engines and parts were salvaged and the aircraft then written-off.

07Nov47    Struck off register.

A34-39 2028

RAAF History:

08Dec42    Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

24Dec42    1st Flight at Mascot.

04Jan43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

1943          Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call-sign VHCRO, which was painted on the aircraft.

06Jan43    Allocated to Paratroop Training Unit (PTU) at RAAF Base Laverton, VIC.

15Jan43     Received by 1PTU.

26Jan43    Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal NSW.

29Jan43    Received by 7AD and modifications incorporated.

09Mar43    Allocated to 1PTU.

23Mar43    Received by 1PTU.

25Nov43    Allocated to No 2 Communications Unit (2CU) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga, NSW.

29Nov43    Received by 2CU.

13Mar44    Allocated to No 7 Service Flying Training School (7SFTS) at RAAF Station Deniliquin NSW.

03Apr44    Received by 7SFTS.

15May44    New seating fitted.

30Aug44    Allocated to No 14 Aircraft Repair Depot (14ARD) at Gorrie Airfield NT.

09Sep44    Received by 14ARD for inspection and modifications.

11Sep44     Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Airfield NT.

10Oct44     Received by 6CU.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga, NSW.

12Nov44     Allocation cancelled.

14Aug45     Allocated to Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Base Evans Head, NSW.

19Seo45     Survey report requests cancellation of CMU and recommends disposal thru CDC.

11Oct45     Request denied, allocation to stand.

11Dec45     Received by CMU Evans Head.

10Jan46     Aircraft frozen until disposal action taken.

12Feb46     Sold to WR Carpenter Ltd of O’Connell St Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. CDC Sales Advice No G (VIC) 260 dated 08Feb1946.

08Apr46    Aircraft removed by purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

05Jul46     Registration application by W. R. Carpenter & Co for Mandated Airlines Ltd, Lae PNG.

29Jul46     Registered as VH-ARI to Mandated Airlines Ltd, Lae PNG.

31Jul46      Ferried from Sydney to Lae by MAL Manager Arthur Collins.

30Aug46    Flown Lae-Wewak by MAL Captain Richard Burt to make a series of charter flights from Wewak to Maprik and Angoram in the East Sepik Province of PNG.

31Aug46     Shortly after takeoff from Wewak the stbd engine failed causing a forced landing. According to Captain Richard Burt "I had drained both fuel tanks for water prior to take-off, but apparently there was still water in one. I had 5 passengers on board. I took off without trouble, but the instant we were off the starboard engine began misfiring, and it lost power fast. Because of the country I commenced a left turn, into the live engine, to try to reach the beach, but I couldn't make it.  I put her down on a bit of a clearing in a sacsac swamp. The starboard wing bit a coconut palm and we slewed right around. I banged my head somewhere and got a cut scalp. The passengers were alright though. She burst into flames - was a write-off." The aircraft was destroyed and Captain Burt and his five passengers escaped without serious injury. 

30Sep46    Struck off register. Total time 780 hrs since manufacture.

A34-40 2029

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Dec42        1st Flight at Mascot.

03Jan43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

04Jan43    Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport, VIC for transport/air ambulance conversion.

12Jan43     Received by ANA.

13Jan43     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communication Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby, PNG after conversion.

24Jan43    Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

26Jan43    Received by No 1 Aircraft Depot at RAAF Laverton enroute to 1RCS for upgrades.

16Feb43     Received by 1RCS.

16Jun43     Departed Gurney Field, Milne Bay PNG at 0800 with a pilot and four passengers. At 0810 was caught in strong downcurrent near a ridge line approximately six miles NE of Gurney Field. The aircraft clipped trees on top of the ridge then crashed 50 yards away on the side of the ridge. The pilot O405961 FLGOFF William Robert Edward ALEXANDER (23) married of Brisbane QLD was killed and COL R. Lee US Army Engineer Corps was also killed.  The passengers COL Andrew Thompson MacLean – 5th Australian Division; MAJ Whitcombe – US Army Engineer Corp; and, MSGT William Randolph GEORGE 565th Sig Battalion all received non-lethal injuries.

07Aug43    Aircraft wreckage recovered by No 15 Aircraft Repair Depot staff from at Port Moresby.

26Aug43    Wreckage converted to components, except engines which were recovered serviceable.  Total 203.45 hrs.

 

FLGOFF Alexander was buried in the Milne Bay War Cemetery on 18 June 1943.

FLGOFF Alexander has since been reinterred at the Port Moresby Bomana War Cemetery, Grave A3 B.24

A34-41 2030

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Dec42        1st Flight at Mascot.

10Jan43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Jan43     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport, VIC for transport/air ambulance conversion.

12Jan43     Received by ANA.

Jan43        Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call-sign VHCSJ, which was painted on the aircraft.

07Feb43    Allocated to No 33 Transport Squadron at Port Moresby, PNG.

22Feb43    Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

28Feb43    Received by 33Sqn.

03Jul43     On landing at 30 Mile Strip PNG the aircraft veered to stbd and left the runway, tall kunai grass prevented the aircraft from regaining flying speed when the pilot applied full throttle. The stbd wheel struck a concealed trench which caused a crash resulting in severe damage to the aircraft. The pilot O413642 FLGOFF C.L. McCool received minor cuts and abrasions.

05Jul43     Allocated to No 15 Aircraft Repair Depot (15ARD) for salvage and repair.

11Jul43      Received by 15ARD.

18May44    After complete survey requested approval for conversion. Deterioration resultant from tropical service made the aircraft uneconomical to repair.

24May44    Issued to the Technical Salvage Section of 15ARD.

04Aug43    Approved for conversion to components. Total aircraft hours 219.25

A34-42 2031

RAAF History:

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Dec42        1st Flight at Mascot.

09Jan43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

10Jan43     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport, VIC for transport/air ambulance conversion.

13Jan43     Received by ANA.

29Jan43    Allocated to No 35 Transport Squadron at Maylands Airport, Perth WA.

01Feb43     Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

06Feb43    Received by 35Sqn.

15Mar43    Damaged by high winds at Maylands. Tail unit 5%; lower port mainplane 10%; rudder, elevators and ailerons all heavily damaged.

27Apr43    Landing accident at Potshot field Exmouth, WA. Near the end of the landing run the aircraft swung violently to port, full rudder and braking failed to check the swing and the aircraft ran off the strip into the surrounding low scrub.  Damage to the aircraft was extensive.  Pilot A16940 SGT R.J. Pass was uninjured.

06May43    Allocated to No 17 Repair & Salvage Unit (17RSU) at RAAF Station Cunderdin WA for repairs.

21May43    Received by 17RSU.

06Jun43    Allocated to 35Sqn.

11Jun43     Received by 35Sqn.

02Nov43    Allocated to No 7 Communications Unit (7CU) at RAAF Base Pearce, WA.

10Nov43     Received by 7CU.

24Apr44    Allocated for exclusive use by the Allied War Council, Perth.

22Aug44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga, NSW.

04Oct44    Received by 5AD and placed in Category D storage.

19Sep45     Survey report recommended disposal by CDC.

25Sep45    Aircraft frozen until disposal action taken.

26Feb46    Sold for 50 pounds to the Royal Queensland Aero Club, Brisbane Airport QLD.

09Apr46    Collected by Royal Queensland Aero Club.

 

Post RAAF History

03Sep46    Registration application by Qantas Empire Airways Ltd, Brisbane Qld.  

01Nov46     Registered as VH-AYM. To be based in Queensland and operated on behalf of the Flying Doctor Service of Australia (Queensland Section) Inc. Aircraft named Norman Bourke.

24Nov48    A fire broke out in the port engine while performing engine start-up at Canobie Station, 140km north of Cloncurry Qld. The fire could not be extinguished and the pilot [Peter Buchanan] and 4 passengers were forced to evacuate. The aircraft was totally destroyed by the fire.

11Jan49     Struck off register.

A34-43 2032

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Dec42        1st Flight at Mascot.

10Jan43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

11Jan43     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport, VIC for transport/air ambulance conversion. To proceed via 1 Aircraft Depot at RAAF Laverton for weighing purposes.

21Jan43     Received by ANA.

29Jan43    Allocated to No 33 Transport Squadron at Port Moresby, PNG.

02Feb43    Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

09Feb43    Received by 33Sqn.

07May43    Problems with elevator control stiffness prompted the pilot to return to Berry Strip soon after takeoff.

On the 2nd touchdown attempt the controls jammed resulting in the aircraft drifting off the runway. The port undercarriage struck a ditch which bent the oleo compression strut. Crew of O412182 FLGOFF K.A. Ramsay (pilot) and O414232 PLTOFF J.K. Bagshaw were shaken but uninjured. Aircraft repaired at Unit.

12Jul43      Serious landing accident at Terapo Strip PNG.  Aircraft developed a swing to stbd after landing and corrective action applied using a combination of rudder, throttle and brakes. The swing was almost corrected when the stbd wheel hit a deep drain which pulled the other wheel into the drain resulting in the undercarriage being torn off. Damage also inflicted on the mainplane and breaking both airscrews. Pilot A415444 SGT S. Reading was uninjured and calmly handed over the wreck to a 15ARD salvage crew who already at the strip recovering a Tiger Moth.

15Jul43      Allocated to No 15 Aircraft Repair Depot (15ARD) for salvage and repair.

18Jul43      Received by 15ARD.

18May44    After complete survey requested approval for conversion. Deterioration resultant from tropical service made the aircraft uneconomical to repair.

24May44    Issued to the Technical Salvage Section of 15ARD.

04Aug44    Approved for conversion to components. Total airframe hours – 151.15

A34-44 2033

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Dec42        1st Flight at Mascot.

15Jan43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

17Jan43     Allocated and issued to No 34 Transport Squadron at Parafield aerodrome SA.

21Jan43     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport, VIC for transport/air ambulance conversion.

Jan43        Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call sign VHCSK, which was painted on the aircraft.

31Jan43     Received by ANA.

12Feb43     Allocated to Flying Doctor Service at Broken Hill NSW for a three month loan.

14Feb43     Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

28Mar43    Received by 34Sqn and issued to Flying Doctor Service.

16Apr43     Aircraft to be returned to 2AP.

11May43     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communication Squadron (1RCS) Port Moresby, PNG.

24May43    Received by 1RCS

25Jul43     Detached to operate from Berry Strip. Pilot was unable to gain height after lifting off at 65Knots and tried to land but crashed back onto the runway where the undercarriage collapsed and the aircraft spun around on its belly. The accident investigation stated the cause was “inability of aircraft to cope with Papuan conditions at this loading owing to insufficient power” (788lb freight, auxiliary fuel tanks full). Pilot A33403 SGT R.J.N Turner was uninjured. Total aircraft hours were 229.1

26Jul43     Allocated to No 15 Aircraft Repair Depot (15ARD) Port Moresby for salvage and repair.

28Jul43     Received by 15ARD. Survey showed extensive damage to nearly all the aircraft and recommend conversion to components.

12Jan45     Approved for conversion.

21Jan45     Issued to 15ARD Salvage Section for conversion.

A34-45 2034

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Dec42        1st Flight at Mascot.

Jan43        Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call sign VHCSL, which was painted on the aircraft.

17Jan43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

18Jan43     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport, VIC for transport/air ambulance conversion.

21Jan43     Received by ANA.

09Feb43    Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

10Feb43     Allocated No 34 Transport Squadron at Parafield aerodrome SA.

15Feb43     Received by 34Sqn.

22Mar43    Allocated to Guinea Airways but allocation cancelled the following day.

01Apr43     At 1040 hrs on a routine flight the stbd engine shed its airscrew. The aircraft would not maintain height and forced landed on a hillside close to a road 35 miles N of Tennant Creek, NT. After landing the aircraft caught fire and was destroyed. Pilot O415390 PLTOFF F.G. Anderson and passengers O3620 FLGOFF C.L. Karutz and SGT McNamara were uninjured. The aircraft had a total of 253 flight hours.

07Apr43    No 1 Repair & Salvage Unit (1RSU) at Manbullo NT were tasked to recover the wreckage.

10Ap43      Wreckage recovered.

05May43    Converted to components where possible by 1RSU.

A34-46 2035

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Dec42        1st Flight at Mascot.

17Jan43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

18Jan43     Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport, VIC for transport/air ambulance conversion.

31Jan43    Received by ANA.

19Feb43     Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

19Feb43     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby, PNG to replace Anson AX266. To be fitted with Altitude Control equipment by 1AD before issue to 1RCS.

08Apr43    Received by 1RCS.

13Apr43     On the ferry flight from 1AD to 1RCS the aircraft crashed on Hope Island Coomera QLD causing damage to the undercarriage and lower wing. Ground crew from RAAF Base Amberley recovered the aircraft.

15Apr43     Allocated to No 3 Aircraft Depot (3AD) at RAAF Amberley for repairs.

16Apr43     Received by 3AD and repaired.

20Apr43    Allocated to 1RCS.

22Apr43    Received by 1RCS.

25Jul43     Engine failure on takeoff at 1335hrs caused the aircraft to veer to starboard and strike a tree beside Wedau Strip PNG. Pilot O411172 FLGOFF Maurice Henry New and passengers A19595 CPL Walter Thomas Burns and Senior Forces Chaplain Bishop E.W. Strong received minor cuts and abrasions. The aircraft was almost totally destroyed in the accident.

27Jul43     Allocated to No 10 Repair & Salvage Unit at Port Moresby for survey and salvage.

29Jul43     Received by 10RSU. Survey recommended conversion.

18Aug43     Approval given for conversion to components.

A34-47 2036

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Jan43        1st Flight at Mascot.

17Jan43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

18Jan43     Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call sign VHCSN, which was painted on the aircraft.

20Jan43    Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Essendon Airport, VIC for transport/air ambulance conversion.

31Jan43     Received by ANA.

13Feb43     Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

16Feb43     Allocated to No 33 (T) Squadron Port Moresby, PNG.

16Feb43     Received by No 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Base Laverton for weighing purposes.

17Feb43     Allocation to 33Sqn cancelled. Reallocated to No 34 (T) Squadron at Parafield, SA.

17Apr43     On the 1st leg of the ferry flight to 34Sqn from Mascot airport Sydney to RAAF Base Forest Hill NSW the aircraft failed to arrive at its destination. No evidence has ever been found to show where the aircraft crashed. For a full history of what is known about the flight and subsequent searches visit http://missingdragon.tripod.com/

Pilot A412236 SGT Douglas Brian DOYLE (24) married of Murrurundi NSW, co-pilot A420615 SGT Francis Joseph DOYLE (19) single of Wagga Wagga NSW and passengers O409154 FLGOFF Geoffrey Hugh LESTER (20) single of Mansfield VIC, O-013899 1stLt Cecil Joseph Umstead USMCR (22) married of Kensington, Maryland USA and, O14229 1stLt Horace Albert Teague USMCR (20) of Baltimore, Maryland USA were declared missing presumed killed. The 1943 Court of Enquiry found that severe engine vibrations hab been reported five times and on the previous day SGT Doyle had reported Magneto problems on both engines. On the morning of the flight SGT Doyle had requested a check of both engine magnetos, control wires and propellor bolts. The Aircraft had no radio and no parachutes were carried.

SGT Douglas Doyle is commemorated on Panel 6 of the Sydney Memorial

SGT Francis Doyle is commemorated on Panel 6 of the Sydney Memorial

FLGOFF Lester is commemorated on Panel 5 of the Sydney Memorial

1stLt Umstead is commemorated in the Manila American Cemetery and Memorial, Fort Bonifacio, Manila PI

1stLt Teague is commemorated in the Manila American Cemetery and Memorial, Fort Bonifacio, Manila PI

A brass plate inscribed with the five airmen’s details was placed on a sandstone plinth in January 2000 at the front of St John’s Church, Menangle Road, Camden NSW.

A34-48 2037

Dec42        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Jan43        1st Flight at Mascot.

17Jan43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

19Jan43     Directorate of Air Transport, Allied Air Forces allocated radio call sign VHCSM, which was painted on the aircraft.

23Jan43    Allocated to No 34 (T) Squadron at Parafield, SA.

25Jan43    Received by 34Sqn.

26Jan43    Landed short of the runway at Parafield airport 1215hrs. Stbd undercarriage sank into soft ground causing moderate damage. Pilot A408237 SGT AF Denton and passenger AC1 SN Barber were uninjured. 

11Mar43     On a routine flight the aircraft was observed to stall at a low height and crash approximately one mile E of Parafield aerodrome at 0715hrs. Pilot O413741 PLTOFF Milton Hubert CONKEY (29) single of Cootamundra NSW and passenger A54621 LAC Bernard James HOVEY (29) married of Creswick, VIC were killed.

PLTOFF Conkey is buried in Centennial Park Cemetery Springbank, Adelaide SA Plot B Row B Grave 4.

LAC Hovey is buried in Centennial Park Cemetery Springbank, Adelaide SA Plot B Row B Grave 6.

04Apr43    Wreckage recovered to Parafield and approval given for conversion to components.

A34-49 2038

Jan43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Jan43        1st Flight at Mascot.

29Jan43    Allocated to No 3 Communications Unit (3CU) at Mascot airport, Sydney for use by GOC 1st Army.

31Jan43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

31Jan43     Allocation to 3CU cancelled.

01Feb43     Allocated to No 4 Communications Unit (4CU) at RAAF Station Archerfield, Brisbane for Army use.

02Mar43    On a flight from Archerfield to Toowoomba the aircraft was flying in a valley when cloud was encountered and the pilot tried to turn back but failed to clear trees on the valley slope.  The aircraft clipped the trees then bellied in and burst into flames near Redwood Park at 0720hrs. The pilot A423500 SGT A.A. Pearson and passenger A77305 AC1 A. Hunt both escaped the wreckage with minor injuries but the aircraft was destroyed. Total flight time was 32hrs 10min.

03Mar43    Allocated to No 3 Aircraft Depot at RAAF Base Amberley QLD for salvage.

05Mar43     Aircraft wreckage recovered to 3AD and converted to components where possible.

A34-50 2039

RAAF History:

Jan43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Jan43        1st Flight at Mascot.

29Jan43    Allocated to No 3 Communications Unit (3CU) at Mascot airport, Sydney for use by GOC 5th Division AIF.

31Jan43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

31Jan43     Allocation to 3CU cancelled.

01Feb43     Allocated to No 4 Communications Unit (4CU) at RAAF Station Archerfield, Brisbane for use by GOC 1st Army.

11Feb43     Allocation to 4CU cancelled, reallocated to 5CU for use by GOC 3rd Division.

14Feb43     Received by 5CU at RAAF Garbutt, Townsville.

18Mar43    Allocated to No 12 Repair & Salvage Unit at RAAF Breddan QLD for repairs.

22Mar43    Received by 12RSU.

08Apr43    Received by 5CU after repairs completed.

24Feb44    Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot, Sydney for major servicing.

26Apr44    Received by De Havilland.

07Nov44    Received by 2AP for post servicing checks.

14Nov44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW.

15Nov44     Received by 5AD and placed in covered storage.

01Jan45     Allocated to 3CU at Mascot, Sydney to replace A71-11 for one month.

04Jan45    Received by 3CU.

31Jan45     Allocation to 3CU extended for two months.

07Mar45    Request allocation for servicing. Aircraft flown 284.10 hours since allocation.

10Mar45    Allocated to No 2 Repair & Salvage Unit (2RSU) at Mt Druitt NSW.

12Mar45    Received by 2RSU for servicing.

05May45    Received by 3CU after servicing.

18Jul45      Allocated to 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit for storage.

10Sep45     Received by 5ADCMU. To be retained in Service not to be inspected by buyers.

16May46    Approved for disposal at 2,600 pounds.

27May46    Sold to Flying Doctor Service Perth, WA for 50 pounds (note above entry!).

26Jun46    Collected by purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

Jun46        To be ferried to WA following civilian conversion at Mascot, Sydney by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd.

05Ju46      Registration application by Flying Doctor Service of Australia (WA Section) Inc, Perth WA.

26Jul46     Allocated registration VH-ASN.

27Jul46     Departed Mascot Airport, Sydney on ferry flight to Perth, no CofA issued. Refuelled at Cootamundra, Narromine, Mildura, Renmark, Port Pirie, Ceduna, Forrest, Kalgoorlie. Pilot Dr. Harold G. Dicks of the FDS.

29Jul46     Arrived Guilford Aerodrome Perth WA. Camouflage to be removed and converted to an aerial ambulance configuration. Stored at Port Hedland following conversion.

03Jan47    Numerous parts were removed from –ASN to effect repairs to VH-AGJ.

12Oct49     Fuel tank removed for fitment to –AGJ by Aero Service Ltd Maylands Airport Perth.

1951          FDS Dragon -AGJ purchased from FDS by D. J. Craig, Carnarvon WA, along with the remains of -ASN which were stored at Maylands. He intended building a Dragon from, the two aircraft.

29Jan52    Registration application: D. J. Craig, "Marron" Station, Carnarvon WA.

08Apr52    Test flown at Maylands after CofA rebuild by Aero Services Ltd.

09Apr52    Registered as VH-ASX to D. J. Craig, "Marron" Station, Carnarvon WA.

May52       Advertised for sale in Aircraft Magazine.

12Sep53     Sold to Territory Airlines Ltd (TAL) Goroka, PNG.

15Sep53     Departed Maylands on delivery flight to New Guinea. Route taken was Adelaide, Broken Hill, Sydney, Queensland coast, Horn Island to Goroka. Pilot Ray Harris later said "ASX was the worst Dragon I have flown. The pilots and myself always called her "The Reluctant""

01Oct53     Arrived Goroka, Eastern Highlands province of PNG.

14Sep54     Sold to Mandated Airlines Ltd, Lae, New Guinea for use as sparesfor their Dragon fleet.

01Nov56     Struck-off register.

 
A34-51 2040

Jan43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Jan43        1st Flight at Mascot.

29Jan43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

04Feb43    Allocated to Australian National Airways (ANA) Mascot Airport, Sydney for air ambulance conversion.

10Feb43     Allocation to ANA Mascot cancelled. Allocated to ANA Essendon Airport, Melbourne for air ambulance conversion.

11Feb43     Received by ANA at Essendon Airport.

23Feb43    Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

25Feb43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field, NT.

28Feb43    Received by 6CU.

29May43    At approximately 1230hrs on a return flight from Goulbourn Island the aircraft flew low to investigate a lugger hidden up a tidal creek. While circling around for a better look the pilot misjudged the height and struck a tree which caused the aircraft to crash. The lugger was crewed by Dutch servicemen who had escaped from the NEI. The Dutchmen rescued the survivors of the crash and also made radio contact with Darwin to report the crash. Pilot O401837 FLGOFF John SLADE was seriously injured and passenger FLGOFF FH Porter was uninjured. Passenger O256518 FLGOFF Leslie John Keith Olney (35) married of Hartwell VIC was killed in the crash.

FLGOFF Olney was initially buried on Goulbourn Island on 30 May 1943 by Reverend Fuato Taito and was later reinterred in the Adelaide River War Cemetery Grave CA 1.

30May43    6CU CO FLTLT Clyde Fenton flew Dragon A34-23 to the crash site and landed on a nearby beach to gain access to the site.

01Jun43     Allocated to No 4 Repair & Salvage Unit (4RSU) at Pell Field NT for recovery and survey.

02Jun43    Aircraft wreckage recovered and recommended for conversion.

19Jun43     Approved for conversion. Total airframe time - 293.55 hours.

A34-52 2041

Jan43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Jan43        1st Flight at Mascot.

02Feb43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

04Feb43    Allocated to ANA Essendon Airport, Melbourne for transport/air ambulance conversion.

15Feb43     Received by ANA at Essendon Airport.

25Feb43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field, NT.

28Feb43    Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

03Apr43    Received by 6CU.

15Oct43     Aircraft ground looped at Gorrie Field NT when landing in strong crosswinds. Pilot FSGT Bull was uninjured but the aircraft was extensively damaged.

17Oct43     Allocated to No14 Aircraft Repair Depot (14ARD) at Gorrie Field for repair.

19Oct43     Received by 14ARD.

25Nov43    Allocated to 6CU.

27Nov43    Received by 6CU.s

07Dec43    Engine failure caused forced landing at Port Keats NT – no damage.

05Jan44    Allocated to No 5 Communications Unit (5CU) at RAAF Garbutt, QLD for exclusive use by the Allied Works Council, Townsville.

17Jan44     Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot Airport, Sydney for complete overhaul.

09Feb44    On the ferry flight from 5CU to Mascot the aircraft became unserviceable at No 5 Elementary Flying School at RAAF Station Narromine NSW.

03Mar44    Temporary repairs effected and the aircraft ferried to Mascot.

02Aug44    Received by 2AP for post servicing checks.

03Aug44    Allocated to 14ARD.

09Aug44    Received by 14ARD.

25Aug44    Allocated to 6CU.

26Aug44    Received by 6CU       

03Sep44    Whilst on a return flight from Bathurst Island at approximately 1600hrs the port engine failed causing the aircraft to ditch into the sea off Mindil Beach, Darwin. The pilot O261462 SQNLDR CC Fenton and passengers SQNLDR Crawford, CAPT W. Seelen and LAC CH Land all received minor injuries but survived the ditching.

04Sep44    Allocated to No 4 Repair & Salvage Unit for recovery and survey report.  Recommended that engines be salvaged as soon as possible.

05Sep44    Survey showed that aircraft was beyond economical repair.

07Sep44    Allocated to No 8 Central Recovery Depot (8CRD) at Darwin NT.

11Sep44     Received by 8CRD and airframe converted to components. Total hours 712.50

A34-53 2042

RAAF History:

07Jan43    Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

20Jan43    1st Flight at Mascot.

04Feb43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

12Feb43     Allocated to ANA Essendon Airport, Melbourne for transport/air ambulance conversion.

15Feb43     Received by ANA at Essendon Airport.

10Mar43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field, NT.

21Mar43    Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

22Mar43    Allocation to 6CU cancelled.

23Mar43    Allocated to No 2 Air Ambulance Unit at RAAF Station Kingaroy QLD.

24Mar43    Received by 2AAU.

03Apr43    Ferried to Townsville by O400803 FLGOFF L.J. Ingham and crew for duty with the 2AAU Detachment Townsville.

11Oct43     Ferried to Kingaroy by O414391 FLGOFF T.P. Dalling for modifications.

26Oct43    Returned to Goodenough Island Detachment by FLGOFF Dalling.

01Mar44    Request allocation for 240 hourly servicing. Fabric and woodwork deteriorating because of tropical conditions.

06Mar44    HQ 5 Maintenance Group suggest the aircraft be flown to Kingaroy and 2AAU carry out the overhaul.

02Apr44    Ferried from Gurney Field Milne Bay to Kingaroy by O414391 FLGOFF T.P. Dalling and crew. Arrived Kingaroy on 06Apr44.

10Apr44     Ferried to Mascot by FSGT Flood to De Havilland Aircraft for survey and repair.

12Apr44     Received by De Havilland.

01May44    Received by 2AAU Detachment at Townsville.

12Aug44     Received by 2AAU at Kingaroy, QLD.

07Sep44    Ferried to Archerfield by A405636 WOFF R.W. Miller when 2AAU HQ at Kingaroy closed on this day and moved to Archerfield Airfield, Brisbane.

22Sep44    Ferried to 2AAU Detachment Townsville to replace A34-30.

05Oct44    Inspected by No 13 ARD Staff who recommended a complete overhaul at Archerfield.

09Oct44    Ferried to 2AAU HQ at Archerfield via Bowen by O411268 PLTOFF KA Akhurst and crew.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

14Dec44     Received by 5AD and placed in storage.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

24Jan46    Sold by CDC to WR Carpenter Pty Ltd O’Connell St Sydney for 400 pounds. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 210 dated 21Jan46. RAAF markings to be removed before issue.

05Feb46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

11Mar46     Registered as VH-AOR to WR Carpenter Pty Ltd Sydney NSW.

May46       Sold to Mr Reginald L Farquharson, Brisbane QLD.

25Jun46    Registration application from Mr Reginald L Farquharson.

30Aug46    Registered as VH-AOR.

1946-47     Operated by Farquharson Bros Brisbane for tourist flights from Archerfield

26Aug47    Sold to Qantas Empire Airways (QEA) Sydney NSW to be based in PNG.

13Oct47     Ferried from Brisbane to PNG.

01Mar48    Deterioration due to tropical exposure reported by DCA Inspector.

11Aug50     Landing accident at Wabag airfield, Enga Province of PNG, damage to nose and undercarriage. QEA captain R. Christenson uninjured.

09Mar53    Sold to Air Express Co, Archerfield A. L. McLachlan, Manager.

16Jul54      Sold to Flying Doctor Service of Australia, Brisbane Qld.

16Aug54     Sold to Mr Stanley J. Porter, Tingalpa Qld.

24Oct54    Took off at 1810hrs from Stan Porter’s farm strip at Tingalpa, QLD.  Stan (41) has his sons Keith (13) & Des (10) on board. The flight plan was to scatter a deceased neighbour’s ashes over the neighbour’s property. Five minutes after takeoff the Dragon struck a tree and crashed into Bulimba Creek. Stan and Keith were killed instantly, and the aircraft settled in a nose down attitude. Des was in a rear passenger seat and water level in the cabin was rising. He was unable to reach the Qantas modified cabin door, which was a standard Qantas modification further to rear than standard door. As water reached his head two residents who saw the crash reached the scene and hacked into the fuselage with an axe and Des was pulled from the wreck.

04May55    Struck-off register.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-53

A34-54 2043

RAAF History:

Jan43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Jan43        1st Flight at Mascot.

04Feb43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

12Feb43     Allocated to ANA Essendon Airport, Melbourne for transport/air ambulance conversion.

15Feb43     Received by ANA at Essendon Airport.

21Mar43    Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

22Mar43    Allocated to No 2 Air Ambulance Unit at RAAF Station Kingaroy QLD.

25Mar43    Received by 2AAU.

03Apr43    Ferried to Townsville by O404361 FLGOFF C.D. Nicholls and crew for duty with the 2AAU Detachment Townsville.

12May44    Received by 2AAU HQ at Kingaroy, QLD for Air Ambulance duties.

07Sep44    Ferried to Archerfield by when 2AAU HQ at Kingaroy closed on this day and moved to Archerfield Airfield, Brisbane for Air Ambulance duties.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

16Nov44     Received by 5AD and placed in storage.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

12Feb46     Sold by CDC to Royal Aero Club of NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 261 dated 08February 1946 refers.

09Apr46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

11Mar46     Allocated registration VH-API.

1946          Sold to Captain Costa of Portuguese Government Air Force, Portuguese Timor.

11Jun46     RAAF Care & Maintenance Unit, Tamworth Operations Record Book 11.6.46:

“Captain Costa and another pilot of the Portuguese Government Air Force arrived this morning from Mascot in DH.84 A34-54.  They tested A34-54 and Tiger Moth A17-43 which has also been purchased by the Portuguese Government and later both machines were flown to Williamtown enroute to Sydney.”        

14Dec46     Registered as CR-ABT to Transportes Aereos de Timor.

No further information.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-54

A34-55 2044

RAAF History:

Jan43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Jan43        1st Flight at Mascot.

07Feb43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

12Feb43     Allocated to ANA Essendon Airport, Melbourne for transport/air ambulance conversion.

15Feb43     Received by ANA at Essendon Airport.

12Mar43    Allocated to No 35 (Transport) Squadron at Maylands Airport, Perth WA for use by GOC 3rd Australian Army Corps.

21Mar43    Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

28Mar43    Received 35Sqn.

06Nov43    Allocated to No 7 Communications Unit (7CU) at Maylands, Perth.

10Nov43     Received by 7CU.

22Aug44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

19Sep44     Received by 5AD and placed in storage.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

26Feb46    Sold by CDC to Aircrafts Pty Ltd at Archerfield aerodrome QLD for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 291 dated 20February 1946 refers.

04Mar46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

14Sep48     Registration application by Aircrafts Pty Ltd, Archerfield Aerodrome, Brisbane Qld. To be used as a freighter

28Sep48    Registered as VH-BJH

18Oct48     Sold to Taylors Air Transport Ltd, Lae PNG.

23Oct48    Ferried to Lae – arrived 27Oct48. Piloted by Mr Jack Stammer.

01Mar49    Sold to Guinea Air Traders Ltd, Lae PNG.

01Sep49     Ferried to Archerfield QLD for CofA renewal by Carswell & Dagleish.

06Aug51     Withdrawn from use. Stored unserviceable with Carswell & Dagleish at Archerfield.

02Dec54    Sold to Mr A. Earle, Dalby Qld.

05Sep56    Sold to C. R. Laver, Mackay Qld c/o Mackay Air Charter Service.

13Sep60     Withdrawn from service and struck-off register.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-55

A34-56 2045

RAAF History:

04Feb43    Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

06Feb43    1st Flight at Mascot.

11Feb43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

12Feb43     Allocated to ANA Essendon Airport, Melbourne for transport/air ambulance conversion.

16Feb43     Received by ANA at Essendon Airport.

28Mar43    Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

31Mar43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field, NT.

09Apr43    Received by 6CU.

16Dec43     Allocated to No 2 Air Ambulance Unit (2AAU) at Kingaroy Airfield QLD.

24Jan44    Allocation cancelled.

03Feb44    Request allocation for complete overhaul.

08Feb44    Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot airport, Sydney for overhaul.

26Apr44    Received by De Havilland.

20Oct44    Received by 2AP for post overhaul checks.

14Nov44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

15Nov44     Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW..

14Aug45     Allocated to No 14 Aircraft Repair Depot (14ARD) at Gorrie Field NT.

17Aug45     Allocation cancelled.

21Aug45     Allocated to 12ARD at Darwin NT. Allocation cancelled at some date.

16May46    Approved for disposal at 7,600 pounds!

27May46    Sold by CDC for 750 pounds to Flying Doctor Service Sydney NSW. CDC Sales Advice G (Vic) 493 dated 27 May 1946 refers.

26Jun46    Issued to purchaser from 5ADCMU Wagga.

 

Post RAAF History

11Jul46      Allocated registration VH-ASO.

22Oct46    Registration application Flying Doctor Service of Australia (NSW Section), Broken Hill NSW.
To be based Broken Hill.

10Mar47    Registered as VH-ASO.

15Sep48     DCA wrote to FDS requiring a change of registration for VH-ASO because of possible communication confusion with “SOS”. Marking may be changed at the next CofA overhaul.

19Nov48     Reregistered as VH-FDA.

01Jun49     Ferried to Bankstown for CofA renewal by De Havilland Aircraft.

05Oct49    On a flight from Broken Hill, pilot V. Cover overshot the airstrip on landing at Westwood Downs Station NSW, struck a dray which minor damage to starboard wing. Repaired on site and flown out.

31Dec49     After landing at Pine View Station, 180km North of Broken Hill, the port brakes failed while taxying in strong winds. The aircraft was blown off course and the pilot A. J. Polkinghorne could not prevent the port propeller from striking a tree stump.

10Sep52     Advertised for sale in Aircraft Magazine.

01Jun53     Sold to Adastra Airways Pty Ltd, Mascot NSW.

27Oct54    Withdrawn from use and struck-off register.

07Aug56    Registered as VH-AGC with Adastra Airways Pty Ltd, Mascot NSW.  Purchased by Adastra for photographic survey contracts. By 1958 it was parked in the Adastra hangar at Mascot and rarely flown because of its poor performance. However maintained in immaculate condition by the company engineering chief who had worked for De Havilland Aircraft.

02Sep58    Sold to R. S. & S. R. McDonald, “Muirdart” Station, Clermont Qld.

03Sep58    Ferried from Mascot to Camden.

20Jul62     Withdrawn from use.

28Nov63    Restored to Register as VH-AGC: Queensland Airplanters Pty Ltd, Bundaberg Qld.

09Dec65    Sold to Newcastle Sport Parachute Club, West Maitland NSW.

01Dec68     . During takeoff in slight downwind at West Maitland-Rutherford, became airborne prematurely and commenced a swing to the right which the pilot could not control. He abandoned the takeoff and the aircraft ground-looped into trees. Both undercarriage legs were torn off. Pilot and six parachutists unhurt. 

Unknown     Wreck purchased by Bill Miller, Geelong Vic.

Unknown     Wreck purchased by Keith Hatfield, Berwick Vic

Unknown     Wreck purchased by Jim O’Connell, Melbourne Vic. And rebuilt at Point Cook, VIC.

14Mar76    Ground engine run after complete restoration. Painted all over grey with thin red cheatlines.

12Apr76     Restored to Register VH-AGC: James O’Connell, Melbourne Vic. Based at Point Cook.

1976-79     Regularly seen at Air Shows and Meets at Point Cook, Wodonga, Sunbury VIC.

13Dec79     Crashed on takeoff Point Cook Vic. Destroyed by fire. Owner Jim O’Connell killed.

Pilot Macarthur Job recalled:

“Jim O’Connell appointed me “honorary chief pilot” of his Dragon VH-AGC based at Point Cook, which he had so painstakingly restored to mint condition over several years. I flew VH-AGC on various outings and displays, including the AHSA’s first National Conference at Wodonga in 1976 (notable passengers included Air Commodore A. H. Wheeler of the Shuttleworth Trust, Group Captain Clive Caldwell and racing driver Alf Barrett). I also gave endorsements to several would-be Dragon pilots, including VH-AGC’s proud owner.

Tragically, he later killed himself in it one hot day of violently gusting northerly winds, when he was two years out of flying practice.”

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-56

A34-57 2046

RAAF History:

03Feb43    Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

05Feb43    1st Flight at Mascot.

11Feb43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

12Feb43     Allocated to ANA Essendon Airport, Melbourne for transport/air ambulance conversion.

16Feb43     Received by ANA at Essendon Airport.

05Apr43    Received by 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton VIC for weight and post conversion checks.

06Apr43    Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Flight (1RCF) at Port Moresby PNG.

15Apr43     Received by No 12 Repair & Salvage Unit (12RSU) at Macrossan QLD for modifications.

16May43    Received by 1RCF following modification.

05Nov43    The 1RCF Detachment on Goodenough Island was disbanded on this day and the aircraft became part of No 8 Communications Unit (8CU) at Goodenough Island.

09Nov43    Allocated to 9CU.

25Nov43    The 1RCF Detachment at Port Moresby was disbanded on this day and the aircraft became part of No 9 Communications Unit (9CU) at Port Moresby.

08Dec43    Allocated to No15 Aircraft Repair Depot (15ARD) at Port Moresby for overhaul.

14Dec43     Received by 15ARD.

02Jan44    Allocated to 9CU.

06Feb44    Received by 9CU.

04Mar44    Allocated to No 2 Air Ambulance Unit at Kingaroy Airfield, QLDfor use by their Detachment at Gurney Field, Milne Bay PNG.

27Mar44    9CU advised the aircraft was no longer suitable for tropical use due to deterioration.

28Mar44    Allocated to No10 RSU at Milne Bay PNG for temporary repairs.

30Mar44    Received by 10RSU.

02Apr44    Received by 2AAU Detachment Gurney Field. Despatched same day for Kingaroy.

05Apr44    Received by 2AAU at Kingaroy.

20Apr44    Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot Airport for complete overhaul.

22Apr44    Received by De Havilland.

21Dec44     Received by 2AP for post overhaul checks.

22Dec44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

26Dec44    Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW..

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

24Sep45    Sold by CDC to Flying Doctor Service Perth WA for 750 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 118 dated 20 September 1945 refers.

11Oct45     Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

Oct45        Civil conversion at Mascot by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, fitted with stretchers and red crosses painted on the aircraft.

11Oct45     Registration application: Flying Doctor Service of Australia (WA Section) Inc. Perth WA.

15Oct45     Registered as VH-AGJ.

18Oct45     Ferried to Ceduna (SA) via Narrandera, Mildura and Parafield.

19Oct45     Ferried Ceduna, Forrest and Kalgoorlie.

20Oct45    Ferried Kalgoorlie, Pearce and Maylands total ferry flight time was 24hrs 5 mins.

12Jan46     Seriously damaged by a wind storm at Marble Bar WA while stationary.

1946          Transported to Port Hedland for repair.

Sep46        Repaired by MacRobertson Miller Airways engineers from Perth.

27Oct46    Test flown by MMA pilot Cyril Kleinig after repairs completed.

03Jan47    Hit fence during takeoff Port Hedland Four Mile aerodrome, resulting in serious damage. Pilot was Captain George J. Meadows, aircraft engineer Len Taplin of Pt Hedland a nursing sister and two aboriginals.

1947          Repaired at Port Hedland using many parts from VH-ASN including fin, rudder, parts of wings, propellers.

05Nov47    DCA Approval for ferry flight by H.C. Miller from Roy Hill to Maylands.

30Nov47    Force landing nine miles west of Roy Hill. No damage, FDS pilot Alan Thompson uninjured.

08Dec47    CofA renewal at Maylands airport.

18Jan48     Ferried from Maylands to Port Hedland by Dr Harold Dicks.

01Sep49     FDS report to DCA: AGJ has been u/s several times and current FDS doctor at Port Hedland refuses to fly in the Dragon due engine troubles and refuses to allow his patients to fly in it.

12Oct49     Fitted with fuel tank from VH-ASN.

Apr50        DCA Perth received several reports of AGJ’s poor flying characteristics, particularly longitudinal control. An unconfirmed report stated that the aircraft had rolled inverted and control was only recovered at low altitude.

14Jun51     Withdrawn from use and struck off register.

1951          Sold to Douglas J. Craig, "Marron" Station, Carnarvon WA. AGJ was included in the sale of FDS stored Dragon VH-ASN.

May52       Advertisement in Aircraft magazine placed by Aero Service Pty Ltd, Maylands: Dragon just completed CofA, semi freighter but fitted 3 chairs. Freight door. Sale includes a spare Dragon less engines and cowlings. (AGJ).

Sep53        Ray Harris of Territory AirLines arrived in Perth to inspect ASX. Purchased it with AGJ as spare. Total cost of both was £1,500.

15Sep53     Sold to Territory Airlines Ltd, Goroka, PNG. Ray Harris recollects that AGJ was "in very dilapidated state but with quite a few repairable parts". AGJ's fuselage was cut at back of the pilot's cabin and behind the rear bulkhead, and the undercarriage, cowlings and elevators were packed inside the fuselage section. Shipped from Perth to Lae then taken to Goroka.

1953-55     Aircraft used as a spares source to support the TAL fleet.

A34-58 2047

Feb43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Feb43        1st Flight at Mascot.

02Mar43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

03Mar43    Allocated to No 5 Operational Training Unit (5OTU) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW.

04Mar43    Received by 5OTU.

15Mar43    Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot Airport Sydney.

19Mar43    Received by De Havilland for modifications.

06Apr43    Received by 5OTU following modifications.

04Nov43    Engine failure caused a forced landing six miles W of Tocumwal at 1245hrs. Pilot A414383 FSGT GA Bigg and crewmen A421409 FSGT DG Sparke and A425609 FSGT AW Fox were uninjured.

15Dec43     Allocated to No 4 Communications Unit (4CU) at Archerfield Airport QLD.

21Dec43     Received by 4CU.

20Mar44    Pilot attempted a downwind landing in a 35mph tailwind at Toowoomba airfield QLD. When it became apparent the aircraft would not stop before hitting a stone boundary fence the pilot attempted to go around. The aircraft lifted off but struck trees approximately 300 yards from the runway which caused the aircraft to crash and burst into flames. Pilot O409131 FSGT Jack Hume BIRD (27) married of Shepparton VIC and passengers O1688 SQNLDR James Joseph HENRY (38) married of Haberfield NSW; O261104 SQNLDR Oswald Terrence CANTOR were all killed in the crash. A70460 LAC John Royal Twyford (22) single of West Maitland NSW survived the initial crash but eventually succumbed to his injuries.

FSGT Hume is buried in Toowoomba Cemetery Plot B Row C Grave 5.

SQNLDR Henry is buried in Toowoomba Cemetery Plot A Row C Grave 15.

SQNLDR Cantor is buried in Toowoomba Cemetery Plot A Row D Grave 14.

LAC Twyford is buried in Toowoomba Cemetery Plot A Row C Grave 16.

 

21Mar44    Allocated to No 3 Central Recovery Depot at RAAF Amberley QLD for retrieval and survey.

23Mar44    Recovered by 3CRD. Survey stated aircraft uneconomical to repair, recommend conversion.

19Apr44     Approved for conversion by 3CRD.Total a/c hours was 533.24

A34-59 2048

RAAF History:

Feb43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Feb43        1st Flight at Mascot.

02Mar43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

04Mar43    Allocated to No 5 Operational Training Unit (5OTU) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW.

04Mar43    Received by 5OTU.

15Mar43    Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot Airport Sydney.

19Mar43    Received by De Havilland for modifications.

06Apr43    Received by 5OTU following modifications.

15Dec43     Allocated to No 2 Communications Unit (2CU) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW.

28Dec43    Received by 2CU.

03Feb44    Brake failure while taxying to takeoff position resulted in the aircraft going off the runway and the wing striking a boundary light. Minor damage. Crew of SQNLDR AE Cross and SQNLDR AR Jackson were uninjured.

11Mar44     Allocated to No 5 Elementary Flying School (5EFTS) at RAAF Station Narromine NSW.

14Mar44    Received by 5EFTS.

30Aug44    Allocated to No 14 Aircraft Repair Depot (14ARD) at Gorrie Field NT.

09Sep44    Received by 14ARD.

11Sep44     Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field NT.

14Sep44     Received by 6CU.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

05Dec44    Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW..

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

13Dec45     Sold by CDC to Mr S.D. Marshall, Rockdale Sydney for 300 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 156 dated 11 December 1945 refers.

04Jan46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

02Sep46    Registration application: S. D. Marshall/ Marshall Airways, Mascot Aerodrome, Sydney NSW To be used for ambulance, charter and passenger charter. Fitted for 7 passengers.

27Sep46    Registered as VH-AQU.

28Sep48    Withdrawn from use.

14Apr49     Restored to register.

27Apr49    Ferried from Mascot to Bankstown for storage until sold.

11Jan55     Struck-off register.

19Sep57     Restored to register.

12Aug70     Struck-off register.

01Feb77     Sold to Rob Fox & Partners, Adelaide. Total airframe time 1915 hrs.

14Apr78     Under restoration by Jack Davidson at Bankstown Airport.

14Nov79     Restored to register.  R. J. Fox & Partners, Adelaide. Partnership comprises Bob Fox, Ron Smith, Ian Douglas, Frank Fisher and John Eastgate, an RFDS pilot based at Broken Hill.

17Nov79     Ferried from Bankstown to Adelaide, SA.

1980          Flown at Broken Hill by John Eastgate for scenes in a TV production of Nevil Shute's book A Town Like Alice. Broken Hill Airport was presented as Cairns Airport for the filming.

02Jun80    Change of ownership to R. J. St. John, Adelaide SA  

1981          Flown painted white with pale blue trim scheme with RAAF roundel and fin flash “A34-59/XJ-A”.

12Mar82    Struck-off register.

18Nov83     Restored to register. Flown regularly on the Air Show Circuit.

17Nov84     While on a ferry flight from Strathalbyn SA to Portland Vic an engine began to run roughly and the pilot made a precautionary landing in a paddock at Beachport SA. The surface was very rough and the aircraft bounced heavily then ground-looped causing the right landing gear to collapse.

15May85    Sold to Hawker De Havilland Ltd, Bankstown Airport, Sydney NSW.

02Sep86    Stripped down for complete rebuild at Hawker De Havilland, who were reportedly unsatisfied with standard of previous repairs.

19Nov86     Reregistered as VH-DHX.

12Apr93     Purchased as a complete but dismantled aircraft by Peter, Nick & Greg Challinor at Mothcair Aviation, Murwillumbah NSW.

25Aug94    Register change of ownership N. P. Challinor c/- Mothcair Aviation Services, Murwillumbah NSW. Restoration begun with woodwork renewal at Murwillumbah by Peter Challinor, using one of 4 new-build DH.84 fuselages constructed by Mothcair.

2000          Partially restored Dragon sold to Torquil Norman and shipped to England, where restoration was completed by Cliff Lovell's Hampshire Light Aviation Services. Norman also owns ex-Australian DH.90 Dragonfly G-AEDT and DH.85 Leopard Moth G-ACOJ. Torquil Norman said "The Dragon is a machine I have always loved and regard it as the most important commercial aeroplane of its era. I thought it sad that there wasn't a flying example in Britain, and am thrilled to be able to bring one back."

28Dec00    Struck-off Australian register.

11Jan01      Registered in UK as G-ECAN. Registration requested because it was the closest available to prototype Dragon's registration of G-ACAN in 1932.

29Nov01     Change of ownership: Torquil Patrick Alexander Norman c/- Norman Aeroplane Trust, Chilbolton Hampshire, UK.

28May03    First post-restoration flight Chilbolton airfield, silver with red trim “Railway Air Services Ltd” titles on nose. Pilot for the first flight was Henry Labouchere.

2015          Airworthy and regularly flown.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-59

A34-60 2049

RAAF History:

Feb43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Feb43        1st Flight at Mascot.

05Mar43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

07Mar43    Allocated to No 5 Operational Training Unit (5OTU) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW.

11Mar43     Received by 5OTU.

17Mar43    Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot Airport Sydney.

19Mar43    Received by De Havilland for modifications.

06Apr43    Received by 5OTU following modifications.

23Sep43    Allocated to No 5 Communications Flight (5CF) at RAAF Garbutt QLD for exclusive use by the Allied Works Council, Townsville.

11Oct43     Aircraft to proceed to 5CF via 2AP for fitment of AT10/AR14 W/T Equipment.

17Oct43     Received by 5CF with W/T fitted.

28Aug44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

06Sep44    Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW..

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

20Dec45    Sold by CDC to Mr S.D. Marshall, Rockdale Sydney for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 159 dated 18 December 1945 refers.

04Mar46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

08Oct48    Registration application by Guinea Air Traders Ltd, Lae, Papua New Guinea.

02Nov48    Letter to DCA from Guinea Air Traders Director J. Jamieson advising that they recently purchased a DH.84 Dragon from Marshall Airways for service in New Guinea. It was expected that the overhaul would be completed by 16.11.48. Requested allocation of registration VH-GAU and permission for the ferry flight from Sydney to Lae.

23Nov48    DCA confirmed VH-GAU allocated.

27Jan49    Letter to DCA from Marshall Airways signed by Sid Marshall: “negotiations for the sale were entered into with Guinea/Australian Air Traders who did not complete the purchase of this aircraft from me. I am now arranging to sell the aircraft to the Catholic Mission of Madang.” No transfer of ownership was ever signed by him and GAT had no right to register the aircraft in their name.
The Dragon was in his hangar at Mascot, painted as VH-GAU

03Feb49    Registration application: Catholic Mission of Holy Ghost, Alexishaffen, Madang, PNG.

24Feb49    Registered as VH-BMX.

14Apr49     Change of ownership to William Charles Gatenby, Cairns Qld.

15Apr49     Change of ownership: Guinea Air Traders Ltd, Lae PNG.

07Sep49    Crashed at Yangoru airstrip East Sepik province of PNG.

1949          Aircraft rebuilt.

14Feb50     Crashed at Atemble Mission airstrip, Madang province of PNG.

01Sep50     Wreck purchased by Roman Catholic Mission of the Holy Ghost, Alexishaffen, Madang PNG.

01Feb51     Wreck moved to Mission at Alexishaffen and stored under cover.

06Aug51     Struck-off register, no further information.

A34-61 2050

RAAF History:

Feb43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

01Mar43    1st Flight at Mascot.

08Mar43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

Apr-May43 Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Essendon Airport, Melbourne.

27May43    Allocated to No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) RAAF Laverton for trials of installed modified W/T equipment before use by No 3 Wireless Air Gunners School (3WAGS) at Maryborough Airport QLD.

28May43    Received by 1AD.

14Jun43     Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Tocumwal to further modifications before issue to 3WAGS.

26Jun43    Received by 7AD.

27Jul43     Allocated to 3WAGS.

16Aug43     Received by 3WAGS.

13Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

17Sep44     Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW..

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

24Jan46    Sold by CDC to Mr Howard K Morris Old South Rd, Rose Bay NSW for 570 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 204 dated 18 January 1946 refers.

31Jan46     Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

21Mar46    Registration application: Howard K. Morris, Sydney NSW .

21Mar46    Registered as VH-AOT.

02Feb48    Change of ownership: Sepik River Trading Co, Madang, Papua New Guinea.

28Oct48    CofA renewed at Port Moresby PNG.

01Jan49     Sold to Qantas Empire Airways (QEA) Ltd, Lae, Papua New Guinea.

1952          Leased to Trans Australia Airways Brisbane.

29May53   Sold to Highland Traders, Chimbu, Papua New Guinea c/- William E. Passlow. DCA Register change of ownership from QEA to Riverlea Market Gardens Ltd, Madang, Papua New Guinea.

02Aug55    Chartered for a flight from Madang to a Seventh Day Adventist mission at Togoba in the Western Highlands Province carrying three pastors and a full load of supplies. The aircraft failed to climb after takeoff and struck trees on the side of a high mountain gorge.  The aircraft was destroyed and the pilot W. E. (Bill) Passlow killed.  One passenger was seriously injured and the other two passengers received minor injuries. The ensuing DCA investigation found that the aircraft was overloaded.

One of the injured pastors later said from his Sydney hospital bed:  "Bill Passlow definitely sacrificed his life so that we, his passengers, could live. He could see the crash coming and planned his actions to the last degree. He flew the plane on the port side of the gorge, thus giving security to the passengers strapped on the starboard side. He tried everything he knew. The last thing he said was  "Gentlemen, hang on tightly. We are not going to make it."

A34-62 2051

RAAF History:

Feb43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

07Mar43    1st Flight at Mascot.

21Mar43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

23Mar43    Allocated to No 5 Service Flying Training School (5SFTS) at RAAF Station Uranquinty NSW.

29Mar43    Received by 5SFTS.

30Aug44    Allocated to No 14 Aircraft Repair Depot (14ARD) at Gorrie Field NT.

25Sep44    Allocated to No 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at RAAF Laverton for camouflage.

26Sep44    Received by 1AD.

04Oct44    Received by 14ARD.

05Oct44    Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field NT.

06Oct44    Received by 6CU.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

24Nov44    Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW..

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

15Feb46     Sold by CDC to WR Carpenter Pty Ltd O’Connell St Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 260 dated 12 February 1946 refers.

09Apr46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

12Apr46     Registration application: Mandated Airlines (MAL) Ltd, Lae, Papua New Guinea.

29Apr46    Registered as VH-APL. Under overhaul with De Havilland Pty Ltd Mascot, Sydney.

20May46    Ferried to Lae, PNG.

Feb47        Starboard undercarriage collapsed on landing at Lae, pilot was MAL Manager Arthur Collins. The lower wing had suffered a structural failure due metal fatigue of the round bracing strut between the upper and lower wings. Investigation found that wartime supply difficulties forced De Havilland Aircraft at Mascot to replace the streamlined strut with a strut of round section with a wooden streamlined fairing attached. DCA ordered inspections of the round section struts of all Dragons.

Mar47        DCA reprimanded MAL over the poor condition of Dragons APL and grounded the aircraft pending rectification of faults.

20Aug47    Ferried to Camden NSW for CofA renewal and then returned to PNG.

13Dec49     Ferried to Bankstown for CofA renewal by De Havilland Aircraft. Then returned to PNG.

05Dec50    CofA renewal at Port Moresby PNG.

03Jan51     Received minor damage when the aircraft swung on take-off from Bulolo strip, PNG.

15Dec51     Change of ownership: John A. W. Gray, c/o Territory Airlines (TAL) Lae, PNG.

23Sep52    TAL pilot Noel Peacock was carrying a full load of supplies on a Government charter from Madang to Chimbu. He was experienced with the difficult Chimbu approach, but an updraft and tailwind forced a go-around during which the aircraft crashed into a hill. Pilot was badly injured and brought out to Lae then sent to hospital in Australia.

12Feb53     Aircraft reduced to scrap and struck-off register.

A34-63 2052

Feb43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Mar43        1st Flight at Mascot.

15Mar43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

23Mar43    Allocated to No 7 Service Flying Training School (7SFTS) at Denilliquin NSW.

26Mar43    Received by 7SFTS.

30Aug44    Allocated to No 14 Aircraft Repair Depot (14ARD) at Gorrie Field NT.

09Sep44    Received by 14ARD.

19Sep44     Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field NT for 240 hourly service.

10Oct44     Received by 6CU.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

12Mar45    Aircraft was on a flight from Cape Fourcroy to Batchelor when it landed on Bathurst Island for an emergency refuelling. Aircraft then took off and after one mile at 200ft the stbd engine failed so the pilot performed an emergency landing on a mud bank on the coast of Melville Island. After touch down the aircraft travelled a very short distance before digging into the mud and nosed over then flipped onto its back. Pilot A418115 WOFF RA Henry and passengers SGT Gibson and PFC Gibson of the Army Airway Communication Service Darwin were all uninjured. The other passenger a young Aboriginal orphan from the Bathurst Island Mission named “Aggie” was killed in the crash.

13Mar45    Aircraft completely submerged by a high tide rendering salvage almost impossible. Recommended for write-off.

21Mar45    Approved for write-off.

D.H.84 Dragon A34-63
6 Comm. Unit
 Manbulloo
 c.1944
 via Mike Mirkovic.

A34-64 2053

RAAF History:

12Feb43     Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

11Mar43     1st Flight at Mascot.

16Mar43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

03Apr43    Allocated to No 4 Communications Flight (4CF) at Archerfield Aerodrome Brisbane QLD.

12Apr43     Received by 4CF for use by GOC 6th Australian Army.

18Aug44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

06Sep44    Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW..

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

14Feb46     Sold by CDC to Mr K.A. Virtue Green St Yeerongpilly QLD for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 258 dated 08 February 1946 refers.

09Apr46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

04Jul46     Registration application: Keith A. Virtue, Brisbane Qld.

01Nov46     Registered as VH-AYZ.

01Jan47     Change of ownership to Edward D. Hill, Rosevale Station, Wyandra Qld also Natal Downs Station, Charters Towers Qld.

1947          Damage to undercarriage and wings in an unspecified accident.

03Apr47    CofA renewed after repairs.

10Aug47     Change of ownership to Edward D. Hill, Rosevale Station, Wyandra Qld.

11Nov49     While taxying at Charleville the aircraft was blown into trees.

22Nov49    Repairs completed.

06May50    CofA renewed by ANA at Eagle Farm Airport Brisbane.

28Oct50    Minor damage on take-off from Kilcummin Station 52km NE of Clermont QLD.

14Nov50     Repaired by ANA at Eagle Farm Airport Brisbane.

24Nov61     Change of ownership: H. W. Baldwin & T. Beverly-Smith, Sydney NSW.

05Nov62    Based at Bankstown, named ‘Rosevale’.

11Apr62     Change of ownership: H. W. Baldwin, Sydney NSW.

20Aug62    Change of ownership: Aerial Work Co, Temora NSW

19Sep63     Change of ownership:  North Queensland Air Transport Co, Mareeba Qld.

22Jun64    Struck-off register.

09Sep67    Broken up for parts at Mareeba airfield.

1974          Collection of Dragon parts ex AYZ from Mareeba owned by Ivan Unwin, Mackay Qld. Parts included rudder, nacelle fittings, 2 fuel tanks, tailwheel assembly and struts.

197?          Two sets of wings marked VH-AYZ collected from Mackay by pilot from RAAF Amberley, then sent to RAAF Richmond on a RAAF C-130 for Ken L. Howard at RAAF Richmond NSW.

1980          Wings sold to John Alsop, Dural near Sydney NSW.

1981          Wings of AYZ stored at Joe Drage’s Historic Aircraft Museum at Wodonga Vic. At that time John Alsop intended to have his Dragon rebuild carried out at nearby Albury Airport, but that did not occur.

1992          John Sinclair of Brisbane QLD purchased the DH.84 parts gathered over many years by a retired Qantas Captain John Alsop of Dural NSW. Included were airframe parts of VH-AYZ, a total of 27 wings, a set of inner stub planes, undercarriage assemblies, wing struts etc.

1992          Challinor brothers of Mothcair Aviation, Murwillumbah NSW acquired half of the Dragon parts collection recently purchased by John Sinclair from John Alsop for Sinclair’s rebuild project of VH-ABK. Parts exchanged in return for a new-build fuselage constructed by Mothcair for Sinclair's Dragon project

 
A34-65 2054

Feb43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Mar43        1st Flight at Mascot.

19Apr43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

Apr-May43 Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Essendon Airport, Melbourne.

03Jun43    Allocated to No 5 Operational Training Unit (5OTU) RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW.

25Jun43    Received by 5OTU.

23Sep43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field NT for exclusive use by the Allied Works Council.

11Oct43     Aircraft to proceed via 2AP for fitment of AT10/AR14 WT Equipment.

19Oct43     Received by 6CU.

24May44    Allocated to De Havilland Mascot Airport for complete overhaul because of the badly deteriorated condition of the aircraft due to the tropical conditions.

29May44    Received by De Havilland.

Jan45        Issued to 2AD at RAAF Richmond for post overhaul checks.

05Jan45    Apparent engine failure forced the pilot to try and stretch his glide to reach a suitable landing site soon after takeoff from RAAF Richmond. The aircraft became unmanageable, went into a spin and crashed near Plumpton Rd, Mount Druitt, Sydney NSW at 1215hrs. Pilot 187809 RAF PLTOFF George Ashurst (30) single of Rotheram, Yorkshire UK; Co-pilot 185353 RAF PLTOFF Kenneth Arthur Henry BIGGS (25) single of Holbury, Hampshire UK and passengers 1313994 RAF WOFF Ian Charles Powell (26) single of Cheltenham, Gloucester UK; A34214 CPL John Bruce Allen BROWN (27) married of Mereweather, Newcastle NSW; and, A65276 LAC Henry Alan TAYLOR (24) married of Clovelly, NSW were all killed in the crash.

 

PLTOFF Ashurst is buried at the Richmond War Cemetery Grave 15C

PLTOFF Biggs is buried at the Richmond War Cemetery Grave 14C

WOFF Powell is buried at the Richmond War Cemetery Grave 16C

CPL Brown is buried at the Richmond War Cemetery Grave 13C

LAC Taylor is buried at the Richmond War Cemetery Grave 16D

 

15Jan45     Allocated to No 2 Central Recovery Depot at RAAF Richmond for retrieval and conversion.

23Jan45    Received by 2CRD for conversion.

A34-66 2055

RAAF History:

16Feb43     Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

16Mar43    1st Flight at Mascot.

28Mar43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

20May43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Essendon Airport, Melbourne.

07Jun43    Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal for modifications.

30Jun43    Received by 7AD.

27Jul43     Allocated to at No 3 Wireless Air Gunners School (3WAGS) at Maryborough Airport, QLD.

09Aug43    Received by 3WAGS.

13Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

17Sep44     Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW..

25Sep45    To be retained in RAAF Service not to be shown to prospective buyers.

16May46    Approved for disposal for 7,600 pounds.

24May46    Sold by Commonwealth Disposal Commission to Namoi-Walgett District Ambulance Service for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 491 dated 24 May 1946 refers.

26Jun46    Issued to purchaser. DCA approved fuel allocation for A34-66 (VH-ASM allocated) to be ferried RAAF Cootamundra-Sydney-Narrabri-Archerfield.

 

Post RAAF History

11Jul46      DCA allocated registration VH-ASM to Narrabri-Namoi-Walgett District Ambulance Service.

02Oct46    Registration application by Queensland Aerial Ambulance & Taxi Services (QAATS) Pty Ltd, Archerfield airfield QLD.  Legal dispute over which ambulance service owned the aircraft. NNWADAS had purchased the aircraft from CDC with donated public funds. Agreement with QAATS who would pay all costs of civil conversion and provide it when needed by NNWADAS.

23Dec46    Interim CofA expires 24Feb47, not to be renewed until ownership dispute settled.

22May47    NNWDAS declared they had transferred all rights and title of VH-BAH to QAATS.

23May47    Registered as VH-BAH to QAATS.

26May48    Sold to Qantas Empire Airways (QEA) Brisbane and used on regular scheduled services.

01Apr49     Change of ownership to Trans Australian Airlines (TAA), Brisbane.   Part of the TAA takeover of QEA Queensland routes.

Jun49        Configured for passengers or dingo bait dropping.

12Oct49     Operated by TAA on regular passenger routes.

May50       Operated on dingo bait dropping flights.

30Jul52     Configured for passengers, ambulance or dingo bait dropping.

19Feb55     Change of ownership to Royal Newcastle Aero Club, Broadmeadow NSW.

01Jul56      The aircraft was engaged in flood relief work operating out of Brewarrina NSW. The aircraft became airborne in a semi-stalled condition after an abnormally long run then stalled and crashed from a height of 75 feet and burned. The pilot, Mick Hart, was pulled clear from the burning aircraft but later died from his injuries. A DCA report stated the cause of the accident was: “Probably due to deterioration in handling characteristics resulting from overloading."

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-66

A34-67 2056

RAAF History:

Feb43         Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Feb43         1st Flight at Mascot.

23Feb43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

24Feb43     Held in storage.

20May43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Essendon Airport, Melbourne.

07Jun43     Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal for modifications.

30Jun43     Received by 7AD.

17Jul43      Allocated to No 1 Wireless Air Gunners School (1WAGS) at Ballarat VIC.

20Jul43     Aircraft ground looped after landing at Tocumwal in strong winds. Undercarriage collapsed causing severe airframe damage. Pilot FLGOFF MO Guthrie and passengers A422796 SGT J. Cardow, SGT Nichols, AC1 McDonald and AC1 Bell all received minor bruises and contusions.

22Jul43     Allocated to 7AD for repair.

10Dec43     Allocated to No 3WAGS at Maryborough Airport, QLD.

15Dec43     Received by 3WAGS.

13Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

17Sep44     Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW..

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

23Nov45    Sold by CDC to Newcastle Aero Club Broadmeadows NSW for 590 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 141 dated 20 November 1945 refers.

11Mar46     DCA allotted registration VH-AOK.

09Apr46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

03Jul46     Registration application: Newcastle Aero Club, Broadmeadow NSW. To be used for twin engine training and general club flying.

04Jul46     Registered as VH-AOK.

22Jul46     Minor damage undercarriage, prop & aileron on landing at Broadmeadow airfield, Newcastle. Structural failure of the undercarriage leg due to a locking pin dislodging during flight.

06Mar47    Sold to Queensland Flying Services, Brisbane.

05Apr50    Sold to Qantas Empire Airways Ltd Sydney NSW to be based in PNG.

15Nov50     Stored in Brisbane.

06Aug51     Struck-off register. AOK held in reserve by Qantas Empire Airways in Brisbane to be given overhaul for renewal of CofA if, and when, the aircraft is required by Qantas for operations in New Guinea.

19Oct51     QEA notify DCA they have no intention to rebuild AOK.

A34-68 2057

RAAF History:

Mar43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

20Mar43    1st Flight at Mascot.

24Mar43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

24Mar43    Held in storage.

20May43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Essendon Airport, Melbourne.

07Jun43     Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal for modifications.

29Jun43     Received by 7AD.

17Jul43      Allocated to No 1 Wireless Air Gunners School (1WAGS) at Ballarat VIC.

02Aug43     Received by 1WAGS.

03Aug43    After completing acceptance check flight the aircraft ran off the runway in a strong crosswind. Undercarriage collapsed causing extensive damage.

16Aug43     Allocated to Victorian Interstate Airways (VIA) at Essendon Airport for repairs.

22Oct43    Awaiting spares at VIA.

11Jul44      Received by 1AD for post repair checks.

02Aug44    Allocated to 1WAGS.

03Aug44    Received by 1WAGS.

13Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

30Oct44    Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW..

08Jan45    Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC). Aircraft held at CMU RAAF Station Cootamundra, NSW; Total time 174 hours; place on 1st CDC Disposal List.

17Feb45     Sold by CDC to Butler Air Transport.

20Feb45    Flown from Cootamundra to Mascot airport Sydney for civil conversion. DCA approved the one time ferry flight after a RAAF airworthiness certification was issued.

 

Note:         This was the 1st Australian built Dragon sold by the CDC and the 1st ex-RAAF civil aircraft registered after the end of WWII.

 

Post RAAF History

05Apr45    Registration application:  Butler Air Transport (BAT) Co, Mascot Aerodrome, Sydney NSW.

29Apr45    Registered as VH-AEF. CofA issued at Mascot for eight passengers.

1945-48     Flown on regular passenger routes by BAT.

17Jun48     Sold to Qantas Empire Airways Ltd Lae PNG.

21Jun48     Ferried from Mascot to Archerfield via Coffs Harbour for complete overhaul.

20Dec51     Ferried Lae to Brisbane for CofA renewal then back to Lae.

14May53    Sold to Fawcett Aviation Pty Ltd, Bankstown NSW.

Jun53        Sold to Cliff Rolfe of Rolvin Airways NZ. Disassembled and shipped to NZ.

09Jul53     1st flight in NZ after reassembly.

14Jul53      Registered in NZ as ZK-AXI to Rolvin Airways Ltd, Palmerston North NZ

17May54    Sold to Nelson Aero Club, Nelson NZ. Used for charter and as aerial ambulance.

01Jul63      Change of ownership to A.J. Bradshaw, Nelson NZ.  Painted red all over with a white nose section and named Puff. Underwent complete refurbishment in 1963-65.

01Jun65     1st flight after complete overhaul.

1965-67     Flew over 500hrs doing aerial mapping for Aerial Surveys Ltd of Nelson.

05Apr67    Sold to E. Cox &J. Bergaman, Auckland Flying School Ltd, Auckland airport NZ.

23Apr67    At 1545 hrs the port engine failed immediately after take-off from Ardmore aerodrome Auckland NZ. The undercarriage struck a fence post that caused the aircraft to violently ground-loop, it then went through another fence and tipped onto its nose. No injuries to the eight parachutists aboard but major damage to the aircraft.

1967-83     Donated to the NZ Museum of Transport and Technology (MOTAT) and stored at Ardmore.

1983          Swapped by MOTAT in return for a restored DH.83 Fox Moth to Mr G. S. "Stan" Smith & Mr G.A. "Gilly" Smith, Dairy Flat

12May83    Trucked out of Ardmore to Dairy Flat 30km north of Auckland for restoration.

03Mar97    Registered to G.S. & G.A. Smith, Smiths Tech-Air NZ Ltd of North Shore airfield Auckland NZ. Named “Taniwha” – a Maori name for a mythical monster not unlike a Dragon.

22Apr97    1st flight after a 14 year restoration. Painted Silver with two tone blue trim, name "Taniwha" on nose.

1997-2015  Current and airworthy.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-68

A34-69 2058

RAAF History:

Mar43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Mar43        1st Flight at Mascot.

24Mar43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

24Mar43    Held in storage.

20May43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Essendon Airport, Melbourne.

07Jun43    Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal for modifications for use in Wireless Air Gunners Schools.

29Jun43    Received by 7AD.

17Jul43      Allocated to 1WAGS at Ballarat VIC.

02Aug43    Received by 1WAGS.

13Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

30Oct44    Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW..

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

23Nov45    Sold by CDC to Mr S.D. Marshall of Villiers St Rockdale, Sydney NSW for 300 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 156 dated 11 December 1945 refers.

07Jan46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

04Mar46    Registration application by S. D. Marshall, Mascot Aerodrome, Sydney NSW.

05Mar46    Registered as VH-AOE.

24Mar46    1st flight after civilian conversion.

14Nov47     Sold to Catholic Mission of Holy Ghost Alexishaffen, PNG. Purchased through Scott Henderson Pty Ltd, Importers & Merchants, Sydney NSW.

10Dec47     Ferried from Sydney to Alexishaffen by Father John Glover.

01Dec48     Returned to Mascot airport Sydney for CofA renewal.

17Feb49     Weather delay at Cairns on return ferry to PNG.

03Mar54    Sold to Madang Air Charters, Madang, Papua New Guinea.

29Oct55    Pilot Dave Robertson ditched in Madang harbour following engine failure after takeoff from Madang airfield on a charter flight with two European passengers and a load of building timber. Turned upside down on ditching, pilot punched a hole in a perspex window of the cabin. Pilot was scratched by jagged perspex but no other injuries. He and the two passengers climbed on to a wing and were quickly picked up by boats. Investigation found engine failure cause was water in the fuel.

30Oct55    The intact Dragon was upside down in the water.  Salvaged by a large boat alongside lifting it with slings, but the airframe collapsed and it was wrecked. Not rebuilt.

1956          Sold to Madang Air Services Ltd, Madang, New Guinea for spares usage.

25Jul57     Struck-off register.

A34-70 2059

RAAF History:

Mar43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Mar43        1st Flight at Mascot.

08Apr43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

30May43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Essendon Airport, Melbourne.

07Jun43    Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal for modifications for use in Wireless Air Gunners Schools.

30Jun43    Received by 7AD.

21Jul43      Allocated to 1WAGS at Ballarat VIC.

02Aug43    Received by 1WAGS.

13Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

30Oct44    Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

25Oct45    Sold by CDC to Mr Keith Virtue, Green St Yeerongpilly QLD for 480 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 91 dated 24 October 1945 refers.

24Nov45    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

04Dec45    Registration application by Mr. Keith Virtue, Brisbane Qld.

04Dec45    Registered as VH-AMN.

31Jul46      Sold to Qantas Empire Airways (QEA) Archerfield airport Brisbane QLD.

22Nov46    Chartered to carry bidders to Commonwealth Disposals Commission sales at Lae, Rabaul and Milne Bay PNG.

01Apr47     Based in PNG.

02Apr49    Sold to Trans Australia Airlines, Brisbane QLD, to be based in Cloncurry QLD.

Jul49         Named Norman Bourke. Same name previously carried by QEA Dragon VH-AYM.

06Apr52    Loaned to NTAMS for seven months and based in Darwin NT.

16Dec52     Returned to TAA at Cloncurry.

19Apr53     Loaned to NTAMS for two months and based at Alice Springs and Darwin.

15Jul53      Returned to TAA at Cloncurry.

14Dec55     Sold to Schutt Airfarmers Pty Ltd, Moorabbin Airport Vic. Modified for agricultural work, strengthened floor. Used to spread superphosphate.

07Dec59    Sold to Bob Couper & Co, Cunderdin WA.

06May60    Sold to Ross International Fisheries Pty Ltd, Perth WA.

01Sep60     CofA renewal at Maylands by WA Aircraft Service Co. Cabin flooring modified and cabin side panelling installed to transport live crayfish.

27Oct60     Application to WA Transport Board by Blaxell & Grummels c/- Kwinana Chemical Co, Perth to commence operating AMN to transport crayfish under contract to Ross International Fisheries Pty Ltd. Due to commence 15.11.60 and crayfish will be transported from various points along the coast between Perth and Geraldton, to Jurien Bay.

12Nov60     Pilot Ian Blaxell lost control due to a strong cross-wind gust causing a severe ground loop which collapsed the undercarriage. Blaxell had only two hours experience on the type and was using a new strip near the town. Aircraft was an insurance write-off. No crayfish had been carried before this accident.

25Jul61      Struck-off register.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-70

A34-71 2060

Mar43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Mar43        1st Flight at Mascot.

08Apr43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

30May43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Essendon Airport, Melbourne.

07Jun43    Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal for modifications for use in Wireless Air Gunners Schools.

29Jun43    Received by 7AD.

27Jul43     Allocated to 1WAGS at RAAF Station Ballarat VIC.

02Aug43    Received by 1WAGS.

3Mar44      Aircraft crashed on landing at Ballarat airport. Undercarriage collapsed causing major damage to the airframe and engines. Pilot A434354 SGT KP Sharkey and crew SGT KF Peters and LACs NG Mills and LF Neldner all suffered minor injuries. Repairable at Unit.

09May44    Unserviceable at 1WAGS awaiting spares.

10Jul44      Serviceable at 1WAGS.

21Jul44      Crash landed on hillside near Kingston 12 miles SW of Daylesford VIC while conducting a cross-country exercise at low level in marginal weather conditions. A437680 Pilot SGT HL Hobday and crew SGT JW Ferry and LACs RW Richardson and MP Schneider all suffered minor cuts and abrasions.  Aircraft had severe damage to undercarriage and lower wing surfaces and, moderate damage to the tail and fuselage.

24Jul44     Request allocation for airframe repair, engines practically undamaged.

21Aug44     Airframe converted to components.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-70

A34-72 2061

RAAF History:

Mar43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

01Apr43     1st Flight at Mascot.

08Apr43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

17Jul43      Allocated to Special Duties & Performance Flight (SDF) at No 1 Aircraft Depot RAAF Laverton for fitment of W/T equipment, modifications and, to perform nose heaviness tests.

20Jul43     Received by 1ADSDF.

21Jul43      Allocated to No 35 (T) Squadron at Maylands airport WA.

24Jul43     Received by 35Sqn.

18Aug43     Allocated to MacRobertson Miller Airways (MMA) for repairs.

19Aug43     Received by MMA.

11Oct43     Received by 35Sqn after repairs.

06Nov43    Allocated to No 7 Communications Flight (7CF) at RAAF Pearce WA.

10Nov43     Received by 7CF.

06Jun44    Allocated to 6CU at Batchelor Field NT.

13Jun44     Aircraft deemed to be unsuitable for tropical service. Allocation to 6CU cancelled.

22Aug44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

16Sep44     Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW. 19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

15Feb46     Sold by CDC to WR Carpenter Pty Ltd O’Connell St Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 261 dated 14 February 1946 refers.

21Feb46     Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

10Mar47    Registration application by Mandated Airlines Ltd (MAL), Lae, Papua New Guinea.

24Mar47    Registered as VH-AKX.

28Mar47    Ferried from Sydney to Lae, PNG.

11May48     Departed Lae for ferry to Sydney for CofA renewal.

12May48    Departed Daru PNG for Horn Island, QLD flown by MAL pilot John W Spiers, an ex-RAF WWII Lancaster pilot. Halfway across Torres Strait he encountered a severe rain storm and turned back to Daru but was forced to seek a landing place when fuel ran out. He saw a small low mudflat island and made a forced landing on Turnagain Island which is covered by water a high tide. The aircraft had no radio so Spiers had no option but to wait for discovery.  

13May48    A six-day search was made by a MAL C-47 with pilots Brian Carpenter and Tom Deegan as far south as the Australian Gulf country.  When returning to Daru from Horn Island on 18 May they spotted the Dragon on the mudflat island with Spiers sitting on the roof of the aircraft.  He had been unable to find food and survived by drinking rainwater. Because the island was mostly under water at high tide and was infested with crocodiles Spiers was forced to stay in the cabin of the Dragon while the sea gradually broke up the aircraft.

19May48    A RAAF Catalina from Port Moresby landed off Turnagain Island, sent a crew member ashore in a rubber dinghy to collect Spiers. However, a storm blew up so the Catalina returned to Moresby leaving the two men on the island. They were later rescued by a pearling lugger sent from Thursday Island.

A34-73 2062

Mar43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Mar43        1st Flight at Mascot.

08Apr43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

30May43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

07Jun43    Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal for modifications for use in Wireless Air Gunners Schools.

29Jun43    Received by 7AD.

27Jul43     Allocated to 3WAGS at Maryborough airport QLD.

13Sep43     Received by 3WAGS.

18Sep43     At approximately 1316hrs the aircraft was taking off on a routine W/T training flight from Maryborough airport in gusty wind conditions when the aircraft stalled at approximately 30ft. The port wing struck the ground causing the aircraft to ground loop. In the ensuing crash the stbd engine and undercarriage were ripped off then the aircraft burst into flames.  The Duty fire crew responded quickly and extinguished the fire before the aircraft was destroyed.  Pilot A7261 FSGT CG Worthington and crew A35733 SGT JJ Ryan, A434980 LAC JW Fletcher and A434978 LAC CJ Dreger all escaped with minor injuries and shock.

19Sep43     90% of the airframe was destroyed and the stbd engine was totally destroyed.

20Sep43    Allocated to No 3 Aircraft Depot (3AD) at RAAF Amberley for conversion.

04Oct43    Airframe converted to components. Port engine salvaged for spares.

A34-74 2063

RAAF History:

Mar43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Mar43        1st Flight at Mascot.

08Apr43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

18May43    Allotted to No 3 Communications Flight at Mascot airport Sydney for special tests under direction of SQNLDR McGilvery. To be returned to 2AP on completion.

21May43    Allotment cancelled, A34-90 allotted in lieu.

01Jun43     Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

07Jun43    Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal for modifications for use in Wireless Air Gunners Schools.

30Jun43    Received by 7AD.

27Jul43     Allocated to 2WAGS at RAAF Station Parkes NSW.

16Aug43     Received by 2WAGS.

30Dec43    Allocated to 3WAGS at Maryborough airfield QLD.

30Aug44    Request allocation for overhaul.

31Aug44     To be held at 3WAGS pending advice re-disposal.

13Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

17Sep44     Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW. 19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

21Feb46     Sold by CDC to WR Carpenter Pty Ltd O’Connell St Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 265 dated 14 February 1946 refers.

04Mar46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

20May47    Registration application by Mandated Airlines Ltd, Lae, Papua New Guinea.

20May47    Registered as VH-BDB.

1948          Ferried to PNG.

12May49    Crashed during crosswind landing at Arona strip in the Eastern Highlands province of PNG. Substantial damage to the aircraft but no injury. Repaired and ferried to Lae for CofA renewal overhaul.

01Jun51     DCA was advised that VH-BDB would not be returned to register.   No further information.

A34-75 2064

RAAF History:

Mar43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Mar43        1st Flight at Mascot.

11Apr43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

30May43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

07Jun43    Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal for modifications for use in Wireless Air Gunners Schools.

29Jun43    Received by 7AD.

27Jul43     Allocated to 2WAGS at RAAF Station Parkes NSW.

30Aug43    Received by 2WAGS.

09Dec43    Engine failure resulted in a forced landing in a paddock two miles S of Condobolin NSW. Pilot A424109 SGT K. Melville and crewmen A432244 LAC R.M. Miller and A420966 LAC G. Morris were all uninjured.  A20821 SGT Colin Stanley WRIGHT received a fractured arm. Aircraft repaired in-situ and flown back to Parkes.

30Dec43    Allocated to 3WAGS at Maryborough airfield QLD.

06Jan44    Received by 3WAGS.

13Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

17Sep44     Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW. 19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

12Feb46     Sold by CDC to Royal Aero Club of NSW at Mascot airport NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 261 dated 10 February 1946 refers.

11Mar46     Allotted registration VH-APJ by DCA.

09Apr46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

01Oct47     Registration application by the Royal Aero Club of NSW, Mascot Aerodrome, Sydney NSW.

28Oct47    Registered as VH-APJ.

1947-57     Flown by the RAC NSW and modified with dual controls and other minor modifications.

12Jun57     Reregistered VH-RSZ Royal Aero Club of NSW.

1Sep58       Reregistered VH-PSZ Royal Aero Club of NSW.

15Sep58     Leased to South Australian Air Taxis Ltd, Adelaide.

03Mar60    Sold to H. W. G. (Warren) Penny, Sydney c/o Independent Air Charter.

10Jun61     While on a flight from Quirindi to Sydney the aircraft crashed at Lochinvar near Maitland NSW following fuel starvation. The aircraft received damage when it landed in a paddock then ran into a dry creek bed. Pilot Joe Palmer was uninjured.

01Sep61     Withdrawn from use and struck-off register.

A34-76 2065

RAAF History:

Mar43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Mar43        1st Flight at Mascot.

15Apr43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

01Jun43     Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

07Jun43    Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal for modifications for use in Wireless Air Gunners Schools.

29Jun43    Received by 7AD.

27Jul43     Allocated to 2WAGS at RAAF Station Parkes NSW.

16Aug43     Received by 2WAGS.

30Dec43    Allocated to 3WAGS at Maryborough airfield QLD.

17Jan44     Received by 3WAGS.

13Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

17Sep44     Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW. 19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

21Feb46     Sold by CDC to WR Carpenter Pty Ltd O’Connell St Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 263 dated 18 February 1946 refers.

09Apr46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

21Fe47       Registered VH-AYB by Mandated Airlines Ltd, Lae, Papua New Guinea.

1947          Ferried to PNG.

20Aug47    Took-off from Lae on a trip to Kokoda with the pilot and two passengers and started to climb out over the Huon Gulf. The stbd engine failed completely followed soon after by the port engine. The pilot turned back for Lae but was never going to make it so he ditched the aircraft near the wrecked WWII Japanese ship Tenyo Maru.  Pilot John Rose and passengers Len McNeil (QEA pilot) and Fred Starr (MAL aircraft engineer) all escaped with a few minor abrasions and were rescued by local fishermen.

30Aug47    Aircraft was hauled to shore but had suffered considerable damage.

Aug47        Withdrawn from use and struck-off register. No further information.

Highlight for Album: Dragon A34-76

A34-77 2066

RAAF History:

15Apr43     Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

15Apr43     1st Flight at Mascot.

16Apr43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

04Jun43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

07Jun43    Allocated to No 7 Aircraft Depot (7AD) at RAAF Station Tocumwal for modifications for use in Wireless Air Gunners Schools.

02Jul43     Received by 7AD.

09Aug43    To be stored until further notice.

23Aug43    Allocated to 1WAGS at RAAF Station Ballarat VIC.

30Aug43    Received by 1WAGS.

13Sep44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

30Oct44    Received by 5AD Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Station Cootamundra NSW. 19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

07Nov45    Sold by CDC to Mr Keith Virtue, Green St Yeerongpilly QLD for 520 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 116 dated 01 November 1945 refers.

30Nov45    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

28Feb46    Registration application by Raymond T. Knight & Ronald J. McCarthy, Mackay Qld trading as KMH Air Services, Mackay.

28Feb46    Registered as VH-AOM. CofA & CofR issued at Mascot.

23Mar46    Ferried to Mackay.

20Jul46     When returning from Proserpine to Mackay with a load of the pilot and six passengers the aircraft ran out of fuel which caused the pilot to attempt an emergency landing. The pilot first tried to land at the Mackay showgrounds but had to abort to avoid children on the field. With dead engines he then tried to land on an adjacent road but a bus pulled in front of him causing another abort and during this abort the port wing struck a power pole causing the aircraft to swing violently and crash into a house. The pilot, Raymond Knight (24) single of Mackay was killed instantly and passenger Jean McCann (21) of Eagle Junction, Brisbane died on the way to hospital.

The other five passengers were all taken to Mackay hospital with serious injuries.

09May47    Wreckage scrapped.

A34-78 2067

RAAF History:

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

20Apr43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

11May43     Allocated to No 5 Communications Flight (5CF) at RAAF Garbutt QLD for use by the Allied Works Council at Townsville, QLD. To be fitted with W/T equipment at 2AP enroute to 5CF.

18May43    Received by 5CF.

28Aug44    Allocated to No 14 Aircraft Repair Depot (14ARD) at Gorrie Filed NT.

20Sep44    Received by 6CU at Batchelor Field NT while enroute to 14ARD.

21Sep44     Allocated to 6CU for checks and inspection. To 14ARD on completion.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

11Nov44     Allocation cancelled.

23Aug45    Allocated to Care & Maintenance Unit at RAAF Base Evans Head NSW for storage.

05Sep45    Received by CMU Evans Head.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

05Oct45    Sold by CDC to Mr N.H. Blackman of Oxley Rd Corrinda QLD for 520 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 77 dated 03 October 1945 refers.

 

Post RAAF History:

23Oct45    DCA requested for approval to ferry A34-78 from Evans Head to Archerfield.

28Oct45    Civil inspection report at Evans Head certified the aircraft fit for ferry flight.

15Nov45     DCA approved ferry flight from Evans Head to Archerfield then Cairns where it will have CofA overhaul carried out.

03Dec45    Registration application: Thomas H. McDonald, Cairns Qld.

23Dec45    Registered VH-AMO

29Jan47    Sold to Catholic Mission of Holy Ghost, Alexishaffen, PNG.

31Dec48     Crashed on landing at Mingende Mission strip in the Chimbu province of PNG. The aircraft burst into flames and the pilot Father John Glover was killed.

16Mar49    Struck-off register.

A34-79 2068

RAAF History:

26Mar43    Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

16Apr43     1st Flight at Mascot.

20Apr43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

09Jun43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

16Jun43     Allocated to No 2 Communications Flight (2CF) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW.

02Jul43     Received by 2CF.

08Nov43    At approximately 1435 hrs on take-off from Wagga the port engine failed at a height of 50ft causing a forced landing in a paddock adjacent to the airfield. The aircraft hit the western wire boundary fence of the paddock causing the aircraft to slew and the stbd mainplanes to hit a tree. Severe damage to the stbd mainplanes and moderate damage to the fuselage. Pilot O403381 FLGOFF J.H. Selway and passengers O401335 FLTT A. Solomon, A32764 SGT C.R. Baker and A76791 LAC F.H. Taylor were all shaken and suffered mild shock.

09Nov43    Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot for repairs.

20Dec43    Received by De Havilland.

19Jun44     Received by 2AP for post repair checks.

19Jun44     Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field NT

14Jul44      Received by 6CU.

14Aug45     Allocated to Care & Maintenance Unit at RAAF Base Evans Head NSW for storage.

05Sep45    Received by CMU Evans Head.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

15Oct45     Sold by CDC to Zinc Corporation, Collins St Melbourne QLD for 750 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 48 dated 11 October 1945 refers.

16Oct45     DCA wrote to Zinc Corp approving ferry flight Evans Head-Moree-Bourke-Wilcannia-Broken Hill.  Pilot ex-RAAF Mr. Woolcock.

25Feb46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

27Jun46    Registration application by Zinc Corp Ltd, Broken Hill NSW.

01Jul46      Registered as VH-AQW.

10Jun47     Flown to Wyndham WA and return.

01Sep48     Change of owner name to Silver City Airways (Australia) Pty Ltd, Broken Hill NSW.

05Jan49    Sold to Qantas Empire Airways Lae PNG.

1949-53     Flown regularly on scheduled flights in PNG.

23Apr53    Sold to Madang Air Charters, Madang, Papua New Guinea.

10Sep56     Change of company name to Madang Air Services Ltd, Madang PNG.

16Dec60     Sold to New Guinea Co Ltd, Rabaul an associate company of Manadated Airlines.

1961          Sold to Territory Airlines (TAL) Goroka, PNG.

19Jun61     Withdrawn from use and struck-off register.  No further information.

A34-80 2069

29Mar43    Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

22Apr43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

07Jun43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

14Jun43     Allocated to No 5 Communications Flight (5CF) at RAAF Garbutt.

16Jun43     Received by 5CF.

11Aug43     Heavy landing at Cooktown caused damage to lower mainplanes. Repaired at Unit.

21Sep43     Pilot became hopelessly lost in bad weather on a flight from Cooktown to Cairns. With fuel running low the pilot attempted to land at the first likely looking landing area which was an apparent strip on the banks of the Batavia River near Wentlock QLD. The selected field however was too narrow and the aircraft struck the surrounding trees before touch down and crashed. The aircraft was extensively damaged and the Pilot O414885 FSGT R.V Brett and passenger A15750 SGT E.A. Goodman both received minor injuries and suffered from shock.

22Sep43    No 1 Repair & Salvage Unit ay Higgins Field, Cape York QLD was tasked to retrieve and survey the aircraft.

22Oct43    Survey stated: Centre-section split, both lower mainplanes heavily damaged. Undercarriage damaged beyond repair. Repair will take at least five weeks after arrival of materials at site. With the oncoming wet season and other stated problems it is strongly recommended for conversion.

Nov43        Aircraft converted in-situ.

22Nov43    Formal approval for conversion. Total airframe time - 134.35 hours.

A34-81 2070

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

26Apr43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

07Jun43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

06Aug43    Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby PNG

23Aug43    Received by 1RCS.

30Oct43    Allocated to No 9 Communications Unit (9CU) at Port Moresby when 1RCS disbanded.

05Nov43    Received by 8CU at Port Moresby for temporary loan.

24Nov43    Received by 9CU.

22Dec43    Soon after take-off from Vivigani Strip, Goodenough Island the stbd engine failed at approximately 200ft causing the aircraft to rapidly lose height and strike trees three miles North of the strip causing the aircraft to crash. Aircraft and engines were extensively damaged and solo pilot O404666 FLGOFF Jack Atherton DAVIS was seriously injured.

27Dec43    Allocated to 26 Repair & Salvage Unit (26RSU) at Goodenough Island PNG for salvage.

28Dec43    Wreckage recovered by 12RSU.

07Jan44     Approved for conversion. Total airframe time 225.22 hours.

 
A34-82 2071

RAAF History:

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

28Apr43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

13Jul43      Allocated to No 5 Communications Unit (5CU) at RAAF Garbutt QLD.

16Jul43      Received by 5CU.

30Nov43    Stbd undercarriage strut collapsed on landing. Pilot and passengers uninjured.

02Dec43    Allocated to No 1 Repair & Salvage Unit (1RSU) Higgins Field, Cape York for repair.

03Dec43    Received by 1RSU.

28Dec43    Allocated to 5CU after repairs.

30Dec43    Received by 5CU.

28Feb44    While on a flight from Iron Range to Cairns the aircraft encountered cloud build up over Princess Charlotte Bay. The pilot throttled back and descended below the cloud layer and when he tried to throttle up again the port engine remained in flight idle. The aircraft would not maintain height on one engine so the pilot headed for the coast and forced landed in low scrub. Examination revealed the throttle control rod had broken. Pilot A417353 FSGT M.J. Edington and passenger A13878 CPL R.C. Billon were uninjured and spent two days waiting for a rescue party.

03Mar44    Allocated to No 13 Aircraft Repair Depot (13ARD) at Breddan, QLD for recovery and repair.

04Mar44    Received by 13ARD.

15May44    Allocated to 5CU to replace A34-60.

16May44    Received by 5CU.

27Jul44     Request allocation for complete overhaul due to deterioration from tropical conditions.

28Jul44     Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot airport Sydney NSW for overhaul.

08Aug44    Received by De Havilland.

27Jun45    Received by 2AD at RAAF Richmond for post overhaul checks.

28Jun45    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

05Jul45     Received by 5AD.

19Sep45     Allocated to 6CU at Batchelor Field NT.

25Sep45    To be retained in service by RAAF, not to be inspected by prospective buyers.

05Nov45    Received by 6CU.

01Feb46     Allocated to HQ RAAF Darwin.

05Mar46    Received by HQ Darwin.

16May46    Approved by the Air Board for disposal by the Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC).

14Jun46     Sold by CDC to the Flying Doctor Service, Williams St, Adelaide SA for 50 pounds.

05Aug46    Collected by purchaser from Darwin.

 

Post RAAF History:

01Sep46     Registration application by Edward J. Connellan, Alice Springs NT.

01Sep46     Registered as VH-AXL.

12Sep46     CofA issued. Forwarded windows on starboard side faired over, replaced by two small port holes.

17Sep46     Crashed on takeoff from Hermannsburg airstrip 130km S of Alice Springs. Connellan Airways pilot Sam Calder could not maintain flight because of the very hot conditions and sank back into trees and scrub at the end of the strip.  Aircraft was trucked back to Alice Springs for a lengthy repair.

1947          CofA renewed after repairs.

09May47    Sold to Qantas Empire Airways Ltd Lae PNG.

17Feb50     Damaged in landing accident at Banz strip Western Highlands province PNG.

04Apr50    Damaged in landing accident at Gusap airport, Morobe province PNG.

21Sep51     At 0730hrs while on a scheduled flight from Lae to Wabag in low visibility the aircraft crashed into a mountain ridge 5km NE of Karanka airstrip. The pilot, Frederick G. Barlogie of Sydney, was killed instantly, there were no passengers on board. The DCA investigation found that the pilot continued the flight under conditions of reduced visibility in severe smoke haze so that flight in sight of ground could only be maintained at a dangerously low altitude.

19Oct51     Struck-off register.

Highlight for Album: Dragon A34-82

A34-83 2072

RAAF History:

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

27Apr43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

16Jun43     Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

13Jul43      Allocated to No 5 Communications Unit (5CU) at RAAF Garbutt QLD.

16Jul43      Received by 5CU.

25Oct44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

02Nov44    Received by 5AD.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

26Feb46    Sold by CDC to Shark Patrol Services, Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 305 dated 22 February 1946 refers.

09Apr46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

05Jul46     Registration application by New England Airways, Mascot Aerodrome, Sydney.

06Jul46     Registered as VH-APP.

06Aug46    Mandatory fuel pump modifications carried out by Airflite Pty Ltd, Mascot.

26Mar47    Sold to Brown & Dureau Ltd, Essendon Aerodrome, Melbourne Vic.

26Nov48    Letter from DCA to Brown & Dureau Ltd advising that a series of registrations conflicted with standard radio call signs, or "Q" Code groups: VH-APP was on the list with proposed change of registration to VH-CPP.

01Sep49     Reregistered as VH-CPP.

07Jan56    Sold to Douglas C. Muir t/a Muir Aviation, later Muir Airlines of NT, Darwin NT.

26Feb58    Emergency landing with port engine shut down at Oenpelli NT. Pilot C. Osgood.

11Apr58     Stbd brake failure landing at Darwin NT.

23Dec58    Brake failure Shady Camp NT. Pilot C. Osgood.

26Feb59    Aircraft severely damaged when it overran the Darwin runway and crashed into the bush. Pilot K. Kevicius uninjured.

22Sep59    Withdrawn from use and struck-off the register.

 

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-83

A34-84 2073

RAAF History:

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

01May43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

16Jun43     Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

13Jul43      Allocated to No 5 Communications Unit (5CU) at RAAF Garbutt QLD.

16Jul43      Received by 5CU.

29Jun44    Allocated to De Havilland at Mascot airport Sydney NSW for overhaul.

07Jul44     Received by De Havilland.

01Mar45    Received by 2AD for post overhaul checks.

08Mar45    Allocated to No 3 Communications Unit (3CU) at Mascot airport Sydney NSW.

29Mar45    Received by 3CU.

03Jun45    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

19Jun45     Received by 5AD.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

08Oct45    Sold by CDC to Bridgewater Sound Systems, Allison St Randwick, Sydney NSW for 750 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 88 dated 06 October 1945 refers.

03Dec45    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History

21May46    Registration application by Shark Patrol Service Co c/- Airflite Pty Ltd, Mascot NSW.

25May46    Registered as VH-AHY.

12Jun47     Sold to Taylors Air Transport Ltd, Lae, Papua New Guinea.

08Jun47    Departed Sydney on delivery flight to Lae for Mr Joe Taylor to commence his charter business. Pilot Ralph Elphinstone remembers: "There we were in the two Dragons. Joe Taylor and myself in one, Ross Kerrick in the other, two mechanics, and a traffic clerk, all our spares, suitcases, everything to run an airline. Just arrived up in Lae unannounced one day and started flying the next."

20May48    Undershot on landing at Slate Creek strip, Morobe province of PNG. Aircraft destroyed.

1948 Disposed of as salvage by Lloyds underwriters London.

A34-85 2074

RAAF History:

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

07May43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

20Jun43    Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

16Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 completed.

25Oct43    Allocation cancelled.

26Oct43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field NT.

03Nov43    Received by 6CU.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

30Nov44    Received by 5AD.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

22Feb46    Sold by CDC to Butler Air Transport Co, Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue.

26Feb46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

26Feb46    Flown to Mascot airport, Sydney.

21Nov46     Registered as VH-AVU to Butler Air Transport Co, Sydney NSW.

11Aug48     Sold to Catholic Mission of Holy Ghost, Alexishaffen, Madang, Papua New Guinea.

1948          Ferried to PNG.

23May51    Withdrawn from use and struck-off register. No further information.

A34-86 2075

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

17May43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

16Jun43     Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 completed.

25Oct43    Allocation cancelled.

26Oct43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field NT.

03Nov43    Received by 6CU.

23Nov43    Stbd outer lower wing struck a vehicle parked on the side of the taxiway at Batchelor Field causing significant damage. Solo pilot FLGOFF R.S. Strange was uninjured.

17Sep44     Non-specified accident at Batchelor Field. Aircraft not airworthy.

12Oct44     Request allocation to De Havilland for complete airframe overhaul.

13Oct44     Allocated to No 2 Central Recovery Deport (2CRD) at RAAF Richmond for survey report.

27Oct44    Transported by road to 2CRD.

14Nov44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

27Nov44    Transported by road to 5AD.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

22Feb46    Sold by CDC to Queensland Ambulance Transport Brigade Brisbane QLD for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 298 dated 20 February 1946 refers.

09Ap46      Issued to purchaser. No further information.

A34-87 2076

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

17May43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

16Jun43     Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 completed.

25Oct43    Allocation cancelled.

26Oct43    Allocated to No 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field NT.

24Nov43    Received by 6CU.

12Oct44     Request allocation to De Havilland for complete airframe overhaul.

13Oct44     Allocated to No 2 Central Recovery Deport (2CRD) at RAAF Richmond for survey report.

09Nov44    Allocation cancelled.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

06Dec44    Received by 5AD.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

21Feb46     Sold by CDC to WR Carpenter O’Connell St Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 297 dated 19 February 1946 refers.

04Mar46    Issued to purchaser.    Reportedly broken up for spares by Mandated Airlines PNG.

A34-88 2077

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

13May43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

16Jun43     Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Modification Order 22 completed.

30Oct43    Allocation cancelled.

30Oct43    Allocated to No 9 Communications Unit (6CU) at Port Morseby.

05Nov43    Allocation cancelled.

15Dec43     Allocated to No 5 Communications Unit (5CU) at RAAF Garbutt QLD

23Dec43    At 1528hrs soon after take-off from Coffs Harbour airport on a ferry flight to 5CU at Townsville the aircraft encountered strong gusty winds when trying to climb over the surrounding hills. A strong downdraught caused the aircraft to strike overhead wires and crash three miles North of the airport. The aircraft was extensively damaged. The pilot FSGT D. Thompson was slightly injured but co-pilot O411633 FLGOFF John Patrick Killalea was seriously injured. Total airframe time 7.55 hours.

29Dec43    Allocated to No 3 Aircraft Depot (3AD) at RAAF Amberley QOD for recovery.

01Jan44     Wreckage recovered to 3AD.

07Jan44    Approved for conversion.

08Feb44    Allocated to 3 Central Recovery Depot at RAAF Amberley for conversion

09Feb44    Received by 3CRD and converted to components

 
A34-89 2078

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

20May43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

16Jun43     Modified W/T Equipment fitted at De Havilland Mascot Airport, Sydney.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 completed.

30Oct43    Allocation cancelled.

16Dec43     Allocated to No 7 Communications Unit (7CU) at RAAF Base Pearce WA.

02Feb44    Received by 7CU.

06Jun44    Allocated to 6CU at Batchelor Field NT.

01Jul44      Received by 6CU.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

03Feb45    At 1230hrs the aircraft departed Batchelor Field on a transport flight to Cape Fourcroy. Soon after take-off at a height of approximately 40ft the aircraft appeared to lurch then tumble to the ground one mile NE of the field.  The aircraft was virtually destroyed in the ensuing crash and the pilot O410393 PLTOFF R.H. Stinton was seriously injured.  The subsequent Court of Enquiry found that the crash was due to pilot error when he stalled when he tried to climb and turn at low level with a fully laden aircraft and low airspeed. 

05Feb45    Allocation to 5AD cancelled.

05Feb45    Allocated to No 8 Central Recovery Depot at Darwin NT for conversion.

27Feb45    Approved for conversion. Total airframe time - 593.30 hours

 
A34-90 2079

RAAF History:

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

Apr43        1st Flight at Mascot.

20May43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

25May43    Allocated to No 33 (T) Squadron at Port Moresby, PNG.

07Jun43    Received by 33Sqn.

25Oct43    Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby PNG.

28Oct43    Received by 1RCS.

30Oct43    Allocated to 9 Communications Unit (9CU) when 1RCS was disbanded.

04Nov43    Received by 9CU.

14Dec43     At 1010hrs the aircraft landed at Bulldog Strip PNG in moderate crosswind conditions and suffered a partial brake failure which resulted in a ground loop. Aircraft then ran into a ditch beside the runway and tipped onto its nose.  Moderate damage to both airscrews and fuselage.  Solo pilot O412191 PLTOFF G.F. Ross was uninjured.

12Jan44     Allocated to No 15 Aircraft Repair Depot (15ARD) at Port Moresby.

17Feb44     Received by 15ARD.

02Apr44    Allocated to 9CU.

04Apr44    Received by 9CU.

19May44    Allocated to 8CU at Goodenough Island, PNG

23May44    Received by 8CU.

22Aug44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

30Aug44    Allocation deferred until 8CU completed a move to Madang, PNG.

21Nov44     Received by 5AD.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

21Feb46     Sold by CDC to WR Carpenter O’Connell St Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 297 dated 19 February 1946 refers.

07Mar46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

26Sep46    Registration application by Inter State Air Services Pty Ltd c/- Airflite Pty Ltd, Mascot Aerodrome, Sydney NSW.

27Sep46    Registered as VH-ASU.

17Nov46     Sold to Arthur B. Browning, Sydney NSW.

01Jun48     Registration application: Qantas Empire Airways Ltd, Sydney NSW.

11Jun48     Restored to register as VH-ASU.

02Apr49    Change of ownership to Trans Australian Airlines (TAA), Brisbane Qld.   ASU acquired as part of TAA taking over QEA Queensland routes effective 1.4.49

12Nov55     Sold to Schutt Airfarmers Pty Ltd, Moorabbin Airport, Melbourne Vic. Modified for agricultural spraying work.

21May59    Sold to Queensland Airplanters Pty Ltd, Childers and later Bundaberg Qld.

13May60    Registered as VH-APJ.

09Oct64    Withdrawn from service and struck-off register.

17Mar68    Wings and other parts stored in a hangar at Hervey Bay QLD.  No further information.

A34-91 2080

RAAF History:

30Apr43    Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

14May43    1st Flight at Mascot.

25May43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 33 (T) Squadron at Port Moresby, PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 incorporated.

30Oct43    Allocation cancelled.

15Dec43     Allocated to 6 Communications Unit (6CU) at Batchelor Field NT.

24Jan44    Received by 6CU.

09Nov44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

10Oct44     Allocation cancelled.

14Aug45     Allocated to Care & Maintenance Unit (CMU) at RAAF Base Evans Head, NSW.

05Oct45    Received by CMU Evans Head.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

12Feb46     Sold by CDC to WR Carpenter O’Connell St Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 260 dated 08 February 1946 refers.

12Mar46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

05Jul46     Registration application from Mandated Airlines Ltd, Lae, Papua New Guinea.

18Jul46      Registered as VH-ARJ.

10Aug46     Ferried to Lae, PNG by MAL pilot Mr Dick Burt.

11Mar47     Grounded by DCA after landing at Lae with lower fuselage fabric in tatters. Reprimand issued to MAL for the state of the aircraft.

03Sep47    CofA renewed at Mascot.

20Feb50    CofA renewed at Bankstown by De Havilland Aircraft.

12Mar50    Inspection at Madang by DCA Surveyor: Wood deterioration and dry rot, fabric sagging, only 1 week after return from CofA renewal at Bankstown by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd.  DCA send list of defects to De Havilland who reply protesting that aircraft was in good condition when it left Bankstown on the ferry flight to New Guinea.

09May53    Damaged in landing at Yangoru strip East Sepik province, PNG.

1957          Reportedly sold to an undisclosed buyer. No further information.

A34-92 2081

RAAF History:

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

01May43    1st Flight at Mascot.

30May43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 33 (T) Squadron at Port Moresby, PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 incorporated.

30Oct43    Allocation cancelled.

02Nov43    Allocated to 5 Communications Unit (5CU) at RAAF Garbutt QLD.

24Jan44    Received by 5CU.

28Aug44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

06Sep44    Received by 5AD.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

15Feb46     Sold by CDC to WR Carpenter O’Connell St Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 260 dated 12 February 1946 refers.

09Apr46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

28Mar47    Registered G-AJKF in UK by Butlin’s Ltd for use at Butlin Holiday Camps.

1947          Sale to UK cancelled.

22Apr48    Sold to Qantas Empire Airways Ltd Sydney NSW.

28Apr48    Registered as VH-BDS.

21Jul48      Ferried to Archerfield for complete overhaul by Qantas. Two 15 gallon auxiliary fuel tanks installed which reduced seating from seven passengers to five.

1948-52     Used on scheduled passenger flights in QLD.

14Nov52     Sold to Eric E. Condon c/- Wagga Flying School, Wagga NSW.

19Aug54     Sold to N. R. Thompson c/- North Australian Aviation Service, Darwin NT.

17Jun59     Sold to South Australian Air Taxis Ltd, Adelaide SA.

1959-62     Flown on daily newspaper contract Adelaide to Port Pirie and Whyalla, and freight charters. When this contract ended, used for parachuting by SA Skydivers Club. All silver with blue registration and cheat line and “SA Air Taxis” on side.

09Nov62    Sold to Rostrevor Building Co, Adelaide SA.

1962-63     Used on a weekly run between Adelaide and Coober Pedy SA carrying fresh meat and perishables, replacing the SA Air Taxis Lockheed 12A VH-TLX, which had been damaged.

19Sep63     Sold to Bob Couper & Co, Cunderdin WA. Registered as VH-AML.

1963-67     Used to support agricultural operations in WA.

01Dec67     Sold to Neville J. Hyder, Busselton WA.

18Sep68     Sold to Harry W. Hockin c/- Western Titanium N.L., Capel WA.

29Oct76    Change of ownership: J. S. Hockin, Perth WA

1984          Restored at Jandakot by Lynton Forster for flying scenes in TV movie Flight Into Hell.  All over silver with large fuselage registration VH-AML in black. Flown from Perth to Broome by Lyn Forster, Mike Hockin and Neville Hyder to take part in filming.

2004          Purchased from the Hockin Family by RAAF Museum, Point Cook Vic
19Sep05     Register change of ownership date to RAAF Museum .

2008-15     On static display at the RAAF Museum in silver scheme, white roof, “A34-92”, Pacific theatre blue & white roundels

 

Dragon A34-92 
Point Cook 
25th March 2000 
Photo Martin Edwards

A34-93 2082

RAAF History:

05May43    Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

21May43    1st Flight at Mascot.

30May43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 completed.

30Oct43    Allocation cancelled. To be held in store until further notice.

26Jan44    Allocated to School of Photography (SPH) at RAAF Canberra ACT.

13Feb44     Received by SPH.

26Jul44     Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

27Aug44    Received by 5AD.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

25Sep45    Sold by CDC to Flying Doctor Service Sydney NSW for 750 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 119 dated 21 September 1945 refers.

04Oct45    Issued to purchaser. Issue Receipt No D289805 Voucher No 1247.

 

Post RAAF History:

11Oct45     DCA Parafield approval for the aircraft to be flown for one month while FDS Dragon URE is in overhaul. Aircraft has been inspected at Broken Hill and approval is recommended. Airframe time 176 hours since new.

12Oct45     Interim CofA issued.

07Dec45    Registered as VH-AGM to Flying Doctor Service (FDS) Broken Hill, NSW

29Jul46     No longer maintained serviceable. Kept as a spares source.

13Sep46     Struck-off register.

A34-94 2083

RAAF History:

May43       Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

22May43    1st Flight at Mascot.

30May43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 1 Rescue & Communications Squadron (1RCS) at Port Moresby PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 completed.

30Oct43    Allocation cancelled. To be held in store until further notice.

05Nov43    Allocated to 9 Communications Unit (9CU) at Port Moresby PNG.

29Nov43    Received by 9CU.

13Dec43     Allocated to and received by No 15 Aircraft Repair Depot (15ARD) at Port Moresby for repair.

18Dec43     Allocated to 9CU.

22Dec43    Received by 9CU.

08Aug44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

05Oct44    Received by 5AD.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

15Feb46     Sold by CDC to WR Carpenter O’Connell St Sydney NSW for 50 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 260 dated 12 February 1946 refers.

09Apr46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

13Jun47     Registration application by Mandated Airlines Ltd (MAL), Lae, PNG.

13Jun47     Registered as VH-BDC.

14Aug47     Crash landed at Angoram strip, East Sepik province of PNG.  Damage to stbd wing, undercarriage and tail wheel.

01Oct48     CofA renewed at Bankstown.

25Apr51     Damaged wings after brake failure caused the aircraft to run off the strip.

24Jan52    Sold to Jack Gray, Lae, New Guinea t/a Territory Airlines Ltd, Goroka.

26Jul52     While on a routine passenger flight the stbd propellor broke away and sliced into the fuselage just aft of the cockpit. Aircraft landed safely at Goroka.

11Jul57      Withdrawn from use and struck-off the register.

A34-95 2084

RAAF History:

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

21May43    1st Flight at Mascot.

11Jun43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 33 (T) Squadron at Port Moresby, PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 incorporated.

30Oct43    Allocation cancelled.

14Jan44     Allocated to No 1 communications Unit (1CU) at Essendon airport Melbourne VIC. For bushfire patrol duties.

16Jan44     Received by 1CU.

29Mar44    Allocated to 9 Communications Unit (9CU) at Port Moresby PNG.

11Apr44     Aircraft to be camouflaged in accordance with AG1 Part3 Section C Instruction 1 Issue 2. Work to be completed before issue to 9CU.

23Apr44    Received by 9CU.

01Jun44     Issued to No 11 Repair & Salvage Unit at Nadzab Airfield for repairs.

31Jul44      Allocated to 9CU. Allocation suspended until repairs finalized.

08Aug44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

19Aug44     Received by 9CU.

21Aug44     Allocated to 10RSU at Milne Bay PNG for repairs. Engines require complete overhaul.

23Aug44    Received by 10RSU.

02Nov44    Aircraft now serviceable. Awaiting ferry crew.

26Nov44    Aircraft received by 5AD for storage.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

20Dec45    Sold by CDC to Newcastle Aero Club, Broadmeadow, NSW for 80 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 165 dated 14 December 1945 refers.

09Apr46    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

15May47    Registration application by the Newcastle Aero Club, Broadmeadow NSW.

03Jul47     Registered as VH-AOL.

10May53    Immediately after take-off from Orange airport NSW the aircraft stalled and crashed at the end of the runway. Pilot James Hazelhurst and four passengers escaped uninjured but the aircraft was destroyed by fire.

01Jul53      Struck-off the register.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-95

A34-96 2085

RAAF History:

Apr43        Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

21May43    1st Flight at Mascot.

11Jun43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 33 (T) Squadron at Port Moresby, PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 incorporated.

30Oct43    Allocation cancelled.

14Jan44     Allocated to No 1 communications Unit (1CU) at Essendon airport Melbourne VIC. For bushfire patrol duties.

16Jan44     Received by 1CU.

04Feb44    Heavy landing resulted in light damage to undercarriage and lower wings. Repaired at Unit.

29Mar44    Allocated to 9CU at Port Moresby, PNG

11Apr44     Aircraft to be camouflaged in accordance with AG1 Part3 Section C Instruction 1 Issue 2. Work to be completed before issue to 9CU.

23Apr44    Received by 9CU.

08Aug44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

13Sep44     Aircraft received by 5AD for storage.

19Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

31Oct45     Sold by CDC to Mr J.L. Reid c/o James Hardy Co Ltd, York St Sydney for 690 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 85 dated 23 October 1945 refers.

06Nov45    Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

06Dec45    Registration application: A. Thyne Reid c/- James Hardie & Co, Sydney NSW c/o “Madingley”, Church Street, Carlingford, Sydney.

12Dec45     Registered as VH-AFH.

03Feb56    Sold to North Australian Aviation Services, Darwin NT.

31Aug58     Aircraft swung on takeoff and ran into a ditch on takeoff from Sliesbeck airstrip NT. Substantial damage to aircraft. DCA accident report: “Loss of control due to pilot inexperience.”

22Sep59    Withdrawn from service and struck-off register.

Highlight for Album: DH84 Dragon A34-96

A34-97 2086

RAAF History:

May43       Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

27May43    1st Flight at Mascot.

17Jun43     Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 33 (T) Squadron at Port Moresby, PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 incorporated.

30Oct43    Allocation cancelled. To be held in store until further notice.

04Mar44    Allocated to No 9 communications Unit (9CU) at Port Moresby, PNG.

01Apr44     Received by 9CU.

08Aug44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

31Oct44     Aircraft received by 5AD for storage.

01Sep45     Survey report to Commonwealth Disposal Commission (CDC) recommended disposal.

03Sep45    Sold by CDC to Aircrafts Pty Ltd at Archerfield Brisbane QLD for 1,000 pounds. RAAF Markings to be removed before issue. CDC Sales Advice No G (Vic) 85 dated 23 October 1945 refers.

17Sep45     Issued to purchaser.

 

Post RAAF History:

10Oct45     Registration application by Aircrafts Pty Ltd, Archerfield Aerodrome, Brisbane Qld.

31Oct45     Registered as VH-AIA.

01Jul47      Sold to Butler Air Transport Pty Ltd, Sydney NSW.

10Jul48      Sold to Qantas Empire Airways Ltd Brisbane QLD. To be based in at Lae, PNG.

1948-53     Flown by QEA on a regular basis.

16Mar53    Sold to Territory Airlines (TAL) Ltd, Goroka, Papua New Guinea.

24Apr55    After a flight from Lae the aircraft’s left wing struck kunai grass just prior to touchdown at Boana causing the aircraft to ground loop. The tail unit of the aircraft broke away and other damage was inflicted on the undercarriage and wings. Pilot Tony Chadim was uninjured.

May55       TAL Chief Engineer Jack Gray decided that VH-AIA could be repaired at the site. The complete tail section of the stored Dragon VH-AAC was carried from Lae as far as possible by truck, then off-loaded and carried to Boana for 3 days by a party of Boana schoolboys, accompanied by Tony Chadim. Jack Gray flew into Boana in his Tiger Moth VH-AQS and within a week had grafted the replacement tail section and repaired the other damage.

Jun55        Laurie Crowley flew his pilot Mat Matus to Boana in the Crowley Airways Curtiss Robin VH-UJE.  Matus then flew VH-AIA out of Boana to Lae, escorted by Tiger Moth VH-AQS and Curtiss Robin VH-UJE.

12Oct56     Sold to Mitchell Aerial Services Pty Ltd, Cairns, Qld.

06Feb61     Sold to Queensland Airplanters Pty Ltd, Childers and later Bundaberg.

02Sep63    Withdrawn from use and struck-off the register.

1963          Destroyed by deliberate burning at Bundaberg airport along with Dragon VH-APJ.

.
A34-98 2087

May43       Manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd, Mascot Airport, Sydney NSW.

28May43    1st Flight at Mascot.

23Jun43    Received by No 2 Aircraft Park (2AP) at Bankstown airport, NSW and bought on charge.

14Jul43      DH84 Technical Order 22 incorporated – Strengthening of cockpit floor.

16Sep43     Allocated to No 33 (T) Squadron at Port Moresby, PNG.

29Sep43    Allocation suspended until Order 22 incorporated.

30Oct43    Allocation cancelled. To be held in store until further notice.

26Jan44    Allocated to No 1 Aircraft Performance Unit at RAAF Laverton VIC for CSR 274 Tests.

05Feb44    Received by 1APU.

19Jun44     Allocated to No 9 communications Unit (9CU) at Port Moresby, PNG.

22Jul44     Received by 9CU.

08Aug44    Allocated to No 5 Aircraft Depot (5AD) at RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW for storage.

26Sep44    When taking off on a scheduled test flight at 1500hrs from Daru strip the stbd engine failed causing the aircraft to crash off the end of the runway.  Pilot O410986 WOFF Colin Ritchie Johnstone and 2nd pilot A411196 WOFF Patrick Mannix Sheahan suffered broken bones, cuts, abrasions and shock. Aircraft was extensively damaged.

Oct44        Approved for write-off.

 
     

The Author of this page is Paul McGuiness (updated by Brendan Cowan and Martin Edwards) 
Previous authors were Darren Crick and Steve Mackenzie

Source: Australian Aviation Magazine, Flightpath Magazine, Geoff Goddall Website, National Archives, Aviation Heritage, CASA Aicraft Records, RAAF Status Cards, RAAF Accident Cards.

Emails: Dean Norman, Daniel Leahy, Tjalling Boelman, Warwick Henry, David Jones, Grahame Higgs, Gordon Birkett, Ivan Prince, Daniel Nixon, Les Nixon, Dick Hutchinson, Alan Macdonald .

Updated 30th December 2016

     

It is our policy to only show historical events, no current operational information will be displayed on this website.
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