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Pierre Gillard reviews “Aviation in Canada: The CAE Story” & CAE Turns 70

CAE dust jacket Pierre Gillard, that inveterate Quebec, Canada and Global aviation researcher, writer, photographer, bibliophile, blogger and educator, reviews Aviation in Canada:The CAE Story. Here, author Larry Milberry gives you a “free translation”, but you also can enjoy the original below.

The CAE Story is a book that no true aficionado of Canada’s great aviation heritage will care to miss. Of his 40 or so titles since 1979, Milberry considers this his best to date. Check out Pierre’s review and see what you think. Download the order form – it’s easy to latch on to your own copy of this beautifully-produced book!

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What’s new in books with the seemingly tireless Larry Milberry? This time he has tackled the history of Canada’s renowned flight simulator manufacturer – CAE Inc. “Aviation in Canada: The CAE Story” follows his 2-volume history covering the Noorduyn Norseman – another great Quebec-based aviation company.

The story begins at St. Hubert, where CAE set up in a hangar along Ch. de la Savane, maintaining and refurbishing surplus military electronic equipment. Next, CAE got involved installing LORAN transmission towers in the Canadian north. Other diversification followed, getting into television, etc. Meanwhile, with the RCAF re-equipping with the Avro CF-100, a new CAE factory opened in St. Laurent to accommodate the company’s entry into flight simulation. This is the project that brought CAE to the world stage.

The author carefully outlines CAE’s many early flight simulation projects, whether military or civil, beginning with the CF-100. Along the way he doesn’t forget the human side of CAE. This was accomplished by doing many interviews … putting together CAE’s “inside” story via personnel anecdotes. The book also covers some lesser known history, including CAE in the medical technology field, in nuclear power stations, even doing aircraft maintenance in Winnipeg.

Even if one or the other contract is missing in its enormously detailed enumeration of flight simulation projects, this book goes beyond the expectations that one can have for this type of work. Like the entire work of Larry Milberry, “Aviation in Canada: The CAE Story” is a must and will certainly become a world reference in the history of flight simulators.

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Prefer Pierre’s original French language review? Here it is:

Infatigable, Larry Milberry s’est lancé dans la rédaction de l’historique du célèbre fabricant de simulateurs de vol CAE. Après les deux ouvrages de référence consacrés au Noorduyn Norseman, voici donc un autre sujet diffusé dans la série « Aviation in Canada » relatif à une entreprise établie au Québec. L’histoire de la compagnie débute à l’aéroport de Saint-Hubert où CAE occupe un hangar situé le long du chemin de la Savane pour y effectuer de la maintenance et du reconditionnement d’appareils électroniques issus de surplus militaires. La compagnie prend ensuite de l’expansion, notamment, en étant associée au développement de tours de transmissions destinées au système de navigation LORAN dans le nord-canadien. Puis les activités commencent à se diversifier dans d’autres secteurs industriels comme la télévision, par exemple, et, simultanément, CAE s’établit dans de nouvelles installations situées à Ville-Saint-Laurent à Montréal. 

Avec l’acquisition de l’Avro CF100 par l’Aviation royale canadienne débute réellement le développement de l’expertise de CAE dans le milieu des simulateurs de vol. C’est assurément cette activité qui rendra la compagnie célèbre dans le monde entier. L’auteur détaille donc méticuleusement la chronologie des différents projets de simulation, qu’ils soient civils ou militaires. Mais il n’oublie pas en chemin le volet humain de l’aventure de CAE grâce à de nombreuses entrevues et récits de membres du personnel qui viennent rehausser le texte d’histoires vécues et d’anecdotes. Il détaille aussi les nombreuses autres activités, souvent un peu moins connues, de la compagnie que ce soit dans le secteur médical, les centrales nucléaires ou la maintenance d’aéronefs à Winnipeg, par exemple. Même s’il manque l’un ou l’autre contrat dans l’immense énumération détaillée de l’ensemble des projets de simulateurs de vol, ce livre va au-delà des attentes que l’on peut avoir pour ce genre d’ouvrage. Tout comme l’ensemble de l’œuvre de Larry Milberry, “The CAE Story” est un incontournable et deviendra, très certainement, une référence mondiale en ce qui concerne l’histoire des simulateurs de vol.

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Need more? To see the wonderful level of aviation history that Pierre is producing, take a look (right now … why not, eh?) at his fantastic blog, Passion Aviation.

CAE Turns 70

One of Canada’s greatest aerospace industry success stories, CAE, continues to boom as it celebrates 70 years since founded by K.R. Patrick in 1947. Production, diversification and employment are company hallmarks as CAE enters its 8th decade. Its January 12 press release gives an idea about what’s going on.

CAE has announced that it has signed two long-term training services contracts with the U.S. Army and the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) with a combined value of more than CAD$1 billion, including options.

The contract with the U.S. Army is for rotary-wing flight training classroom, simulator, and live flying instructor support services for one year with eight one-year options until 2026. The training is delivered at the U.S. Army’s Aviation Center of Excellence (USAACE) at Fort Rucker, Ala.

The contract with the RCAF is a modification and extension to 2023 of the NATO Flying Training in Canada (NFTC) program where CAE provides ground-school classroom and simulator training, and supports the live flying training of military pilots in Moose Jaw, Sask., and Cold Lake, Alta.

In addition, CAE will also add new capabilities and perform a range of upgrades and updates to the overall NFTC training system and aircraft over the next several years. The modified operating period of the NFTC contract includes a one-year option to extend the contract through 2024.

“We are honoured the Royal Canadian Air Force has extended its contract with CAE, and that the U.S. Army has selected CAE once again as its training partner to support the instruction required for its new helicopter pilots, which follows our contract to provide fixed-wing flight training to Army aviators,” said Gene Colabatistto, CAE’s group president, defence and security. “These contracts are testimony of CAE’s successful strategy to focus on long-term training services that leverage our training systems integration expertise and help our defence customers enhance safety, efficiency and readiness.”

Suggestions for CAE in celebrating its glorious 70th anniversary, and for its upcoming 75th:
1) Nominate K.R. Patrick for membership in Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame. It’s a real oversight how Patrick remains largely unrecognized by Canada’s aerospace industry and, so far, has been missed out for CAHF membership.
2) Salvage CAE’s prototype CF-100 flight simulator. This priceless treasure remains in storage at the Canada Museum of Science and Technology in Ottawa. It’s still in original condition, needing  just a good dusting and touch-up. It would be a wonderful permanent display at CAE, perhaps in the main lobby in St. Laurent. What an emblem representing CAE’s pioneering days, its creative spirit and its success going into the 21st Century.
3) Why not go a step further? Think about saving the next CAE old-generation commercial flight simulator that comes up for scrapping. The 737 flight simulator in Vancouver comes to mind — isn’t it the very 737 “sim” built by CAE for Eastern Provincial Airlines of Halifax back in the 1970s? Few such artifacts still exist, so CAE shouldn’t miss out. Such a historic aerospace treasure would be a tribute to today’s company and its fantastic pioneers. What a glamorous example of technological art it would make in CAE’s main facility, at the Canadian Aviation and Space Museum in Ottawa, or in one of our leading aerospace educational institutions. There sure are great possibilities for CAE in celebrating its glorious past, while forging into the future.
Additional info about the CAE/Moose Jaw and Cold Lake agreement (January 13):

CAE provides ground-school classroom and simulator training, and supports the live flying training of military pilots in Moose Jaw and Cold Lake. In addition, CAE will also add new capabilities and perform a range of upgrades and updates to the overall NFTC training system and aircraft over the next several years, the firm noted in a news release. The modified operating period of the NFTC contract includes a one-year option for government to extend the contract through 2024 if it wants.

“Since acquiring the NFTC program in October 2015, CAE has worked closely with the Royal Canadian Air Force on a range of initiatives to help improve the quality and efficiency of training,” Joe Armstrong, Vice President and General Manager, CAE Canada, said in a statement.  “As the training systems integrator on the NFTC program, we will now continue to make enhancements and improvements that will sustain NATO Flying Training in Canada well into the next decade.”

In addition to modifying the operating period and extending the NFTC contract through 2023, CAE will also add new capabilities and perform a range of upgrades and updates to the overall NFTC training system and aircraft over the next several years, the firm noted. According to CAE, the new capabilities as well as upgrades and updates include: upgrades to the two existing CT-155 Hawk flight training devices (FTDs); upgrades to the three existing CT-156 Harvard FTDs; minor upgrades, ongoing maintenance and obsolescence management for the fleet of CT-155 Hawk aircraft; minor upgrades, ongoing maintenance and obsolescence management for the fleet of CT-156 Harvard aircraft.

As the prime contractor for the NFTC program, CAE pointed out that it operates the NFTC base facilities, delivers the ground-school classroom and simulator training, and supports the live flying training on a fleet of Beechcraft T-6 (CT-156 Harvard) and BAE Systems Hawk (CT-155 Hawk) aircraft. The NFTC program combines basic, advanced, and lead-in fighter training as part of the comprehensive military pilot training program, the firm noted.

 

Also … see this feature item in Skies magazine:

CAE plans upgrades to NFTC and jet training fleets … Posted on January 19, 2017

 

 

CANAV Anniversary Highlight: The Canadair Sabre

Canadair Sabre dust jacketThirty-five years ago I stepped into the deep end of the pool without a life jacket by founding CANAV Books and publishing The Avro CF-100. Happily, things worked out. Overnight the book became a best-selling Canadian hardcover with 6000 copies sold in Year 1. When McGraw Hill-Ryerson followed up with a small reprint, the CF-100 topped 7500 in print before fading. Buoyed by such numbers, CANAV turned out The Canadair North Star (1982), The De Havilland Canada Story (1983), Sixty Years (1984), then Austin Airways and Helicopters: The British Columbia Story (1985). Happily, the world still was full keen, liberally-educated, book-minded people, so Canadian publishers were not afraid to keep producing good books. So, “What next for CANAV?” became the question, and that soon was resolved.

RCAF Sabre at Downsview c. 1960

I photographed this lovely RCAF Sabre when it stopped into Downsview one sunny day c1960. 23404 is listed in my Sabre notes as having crashed on September 9, 1963.

This is the announcement I mailed out in 1985, once I decided to do the Sabre book.

This is the announcement I mailed out in 1985, once I decided to do the Sabre book.

As a kid in the late 1950s I used to cycle 15 miles each way to meet some pals and hang out along the fences at Downsview to watch the Sabres flown by Toronto’s RCAF weekend warriors. There seemed to be no more exotic jet fighter back then, and to this day Sabre’s aesthetic looks still impress. Gradually, I met many who had flown or worked on Sabres, and started filling notebooks with interviews, and gathering other Sabre “stuff”. Then, while I was down at Canadair doing North Star research in the early 1980s, Ron Pickler and Ian Geddes showed me a big pile of rare Sabre production info. This was too much to resist, so I really got to work, and before long had the basis for a solid general history of the Canadian-built Sabre. In August 1986 the book was launched in a flurry of great fun in Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal. RCAF Sabre people, bibliophiles, modellers, all sorts of in-depth people keen on the Sabre flocked to our launches, starting in Toronto on August 19. Toronto was smashing, crowded with leading Sabre people and other fans. Shoulder to shoulder that evening were such Kings of the Sabre as RCAF pilots Denny Denouden, Ken Hagerty, Paul Hayes, Dean Kelly, Scotty McKay, Bernie Reid, Ernie Saunders and Jerry Tobin.

No trouble moving a few copies at the book launch 30 years ago. At the left here is Chuck Kemp (430 Sqn 1960-63), Gerhard Joos (Luftwaffe F-84F), Spitfire veteran Raymond Munro (dark tie), photographer/artist Bob Finlayson, modeller Derek Pennington, author Larry Milberry with daughter Stephanie, and Max Nerriere (Orenda).

No trouble moving a few copies at the book launch 30 years ago. At the left here is Chuck Kemp (430 Sqn 1960-63), Gerhard Joos (Luftwaffe F-84F), Spitfire veteran Raymond Munro (dark tie), photographer/artist Bob Finlayson, modeller Derek Pennington, author Larry Milberry with daughter Stephanie, and Max Nerriere (Orenda).

The Canadair Sabre book won immediate praise from the old-guard reviewers. Air Combat simply called it, “The aviation literary event of the year”. France’s leading aviation monthly, Air Fan, added a delicious compliment: “Ici encore, les anecdotes savoureuses fourmillent. Ce sont celles-ci qui rendent les livres de Milberry différents des publications anglo-saxonnes ou américaines, qui sont généralement moins humaines”. So … Air Fan picked up on my two chief objectives in doing any book – to tell the human side of the history as carefully as the airplane side. The inimitable Air International commented: “There seems scant prospect of a better history.” Greece’s aviation monthly, Ptisi, added that the book was “a real oasis for F-86 fans”. No publisher or author could have had his book better received.

Many Sabre pilots joined us for the launch, Ralph Heard (left) and Ken “Hagis McPuke” Hagerty (center) included. By this time Ralph was flying helicopters for Ontario Hydro. Hagis was pretty well retired. Cancer since deprived us of these wonderful Canadians. On the right is the great Moe Servos, retired from Air Canada and enjoying the joys of flying his classic Beech 17 Staggerwing. Moe later died in a traffic accident.

Many Sabre pilots joined us for the launch, Ralph Heard (left) and Ken “Hagis McPuke” Hagerty (center) included. By this time Ralph was flying helicopters for Ontario Hydro. Hagis was pretty well retired. Cancer since deprived us of these wonderful Canadians. On the right is the great Moe Servos, retired from Air Canada and enjoying the joys of flying his classic Beech 17 Staggerwing. Moe later died in a traffic accident.

The Bryant Press of Toronto was my printer/binder for this project. All such old-time Canadian book manufacturers long since have faded, forced out by changing technology and management styles. They could or would not adapt. Those were the days when big, mainline Canadian book publishers would do a first-run of any major hardcover trade book of 3500 to 5000 copies. If required, a reprint could be ordered, but the big publishers never really were risk takers – there could be no more conservative an industry back then. For CANAV, however, in the 1980s it always was a balls-to-the-wall effort, when a new book was in the offing, so I ordered a first printing of 10,000. Bryant thought I was nuts, but put its seasoned pressmen on the job. That August they delivered 10,422 copies of The Canadair Sabre. With each book at 3.27 lb that gave me a job weighing in at about 17 tons. What made a fellow think he could ever sell 17 tons of Sabre books still is a bit of a mystery, but I was encouraged by advance sales in the hundreds.

Revered wartime Spitfire pilot, Dean Kelly (left), was one of the first to do a Sabre solo demo airshow, while on 441 Sqn. Dean (as they say) could make your eyes water with his amazing display. Here he is with John L. “Denny” Den Ouden (410 Sqn), well-known on squadron and with the wild and crazy Overseas Ferry Unit. Denny later practiced law in Niagara Falls and built up a spectacular 5000-volume aviation library. Both of these fine aviators have departed.

Revered wartime Spitfire pilot, Dean Kelly (left), was one of the first to do a Sabre solo demo airshow, while on 441 Sqn. Dean (as they say) could make your eyes water with his amazing display. Here he is with John L. “Denny” Den Ouden (410 Sqn), well-known on squadron and with the wild and crazy Overseas Ferry Unit. Denny later practiced law in Niagara Falls and built up a spectacular 5000-volume aviation library. Both of these fine aviators have departed.

How time flies, right. This summer is the 30th anniversary of The Canadair Sabre. This hefty hardcover remains the premier tribute to all those who flew or supported the Sabre in the RCAF (I estimate about 6000 pilots, so roughly 60,000 people in all trades over about 18 years). The book also honours the thousands at Canadair and Orenda, and the many other air forces that used Canadian-built Sabres from the USAF (which operated 60 of them in Korea) to the RAF, West Germans, Italians, Greeks, Turks on to the Colombians, Hondurans, Pakistanis and South Africans. This classic title has hundreds of photos and an appendix with a full production list of the 1815 Canadair Sabres.

If you still don’t have The Canadair Sabre, here’s your chance to fix that. Usually CDN$40.00 but … my last 300 copies now available at $30.00 + $12.00 shipping for Canada + $2.10 tax, so (Canada) all-in $44.10. USA and overseas all-in CDN$54.00. Mail your cheque to CANAV Books, 51 Balsam Ave., Toronto M4E 3B6 or pay by PayPal to larry@canavbooks.com or order on-line (see canavbooks.wordpress.com). I’m autographing all these last copies.

All the best as usual … Larry

Caption Air reservists attending the book launch included Jim Foy, Denny Den Ouden, Mike Valenti, Ron Richardson and Gord Mansell. All but Mike (from the Otter era) had flown Sabre 5s from Downsview.

Caption Air reservists attending the book launch included Jim Foy, Denny Den Ouden, Mike Valenti, Ron Richardson and Gord Mansell. All but Mike (from the Otter era) had flown Sabre 5s from Downsview.

The success of the Sabre book counted heavily on the talents and patience of graphics man and editorial guru Robin Brass. I met Robin in the early 1970s, when he was a sponsoring editor at McGraw Hill-Ryerson. I then was trying to sell the idea for a general Canadian aviation book to succeed Frank Ellis’ 1954 Canada’s Flying Heritage. Through Robin, the idea was accepted by MHR, appearing in 1979 as Aviation in Canada, which eventually sold out five printings. Robin soon left MHR to go freelance. As such he became the production brains behind the first wave of CANAV titles. Here (right) he chats at the book launch with Ralph Clint, the project’s indispensible proof reader, fact checker, and line drawing/map making perfectionist. Left is our great mutual pal and darkroom practitioner, Bob Finlayson. Bob and Ralph since have left us. Robin recently guided the Ontario Regiment through the complex task of producing Fidelis et Paratus: The History of the Ontario Regiment, 1866-2016.

The success of the Sabre book counted heavily on the talents and patience of graphics man and editorial guru Robin Brass. I met Robin in the early 1970s, when he was a sponsoring editor at McGraw Hill-Ryerson. I then was trying to sell the idea for a general Canadian aviation book to succeed Frank Ellis’ 1954 Canada’s Flying Heritage. Through Robin, the idea was accepted by MHR, appearing in 1979 as Aviation in Canada, which eventually sold out five printings. Robin soon left MHR to go freelance. As such he became the production brains behind the first wave of CANAV titles. Here (right) he chats at the book launch with Ralph Clint, the project’s indispensible proof reader, fact checker, and line drawing/map making perfectionist. Left is our great mutual pal and darkroom practitioner, Bob Finlayson. Bob and Ralph since have left us. Robin recently guided the Ontario Regiment through the complex task of producing Fidelis et Paratus: The History of the Ontario Regiment, 1866-2016.

Some younger fans at the book launch: Simon and Stephanie Milberry, Zoe Brass, Kate Milberry, Jane Werniuk and Matt Milberry.

Some younger fans at the book launch: Simon and Stephanie Milberry, Zoe Brass, Kate Milberry, Jane Werniuk and Matt Milberry.

So many contributed to the Sabre project. Here I am with Gerhard Joos, who researched the basic material for Ch.11 “The German Sabre Story”. As a young postwar aviator, Gerhard flew the F-84F in the newly re-formed Luftwaffe, but his unfulfilled dream had been to fly the Canadair Sabre. Later, he flew with Condor Airlines and to this day is keen about all things aviation. Yes, those were the days when a fellow would drop everything and fly an ocean to attend a book launch. For our North Star launch at the same hotel people flew in from the UK, Bermuda and California, while Canadair showed up from Montreal with a Learjet full of old timers. By comparison, these days people barely will cross the street to attend a book event. Times and priorities change, eh.

So many contributed to the Sabre project. Here I am with Gerhard Joos, who researched the basic material for Ch.11 “The German Sabre Story”. As a young postwar aviator, Gerhard flew the F-84F in the newly re-formed Luftwaffe, but his unfulfilled dream had been to fly the Canadair Sabre. Later, he flew with Condor Airlines and to this day is keen about all things aviation. Yes, those were the days when a fellow would drop everything and fly an ocean to attend a book launch. For our North Star launch at the same hotel people flew in from the UK, Bermuda and California, while Canadair showed up from Montreal with a Learjet full of old timers. By comparison, these days people barely will cross the street to attend a book event. Times and priorities change, eh.

The late Spitfire history aficionado, Robert Bracken, and John Biehler look over a spread in the Sabre book. Robert was one of the solid types at researching RCAF and CAN/RAF Spitfire personalities. His wonderful 2-volume work Spitfire: The Canadians (illustrated by the incomparable Ron Lowry) belongs in every collector’s library.

The late Spitfire history aficionado, Robert Bracken, and John Biehler look over a spread in the Sabre book. Robert was one of the solid types at researching RCAF and CAN/RAF Spitfire personalities. His wonderful 2-volume work Spitfire: The Canadians (illustrated by the incomparable Ron Lowry) belongs in every collector’s library.

The late Spitfire history aficionado, Robert Bracken, and John Biehler look over a spread in the Sabre book. Robert was one of the solid types at researching RCAF and CAN/RAF Spitfire personalities. His wonderful 2-volume work Spitfire: The Canadians (illustrated by the incomparable Ron Lowry) belongs in every collector’s library.

The late Spitfire history aficionado, Robert Bracken, and John Biehler look over a spread in the Sabre book. Robert was one of the solid types at researching RCAF and CAN/RAF Spitfire personalities. His wonderful 2-volume work Spitfire: The Canadians (illustrated by the incomparable Ron Lowry) belongs in every collector’s library.

The author looks over some Sabre photos with Max Nerriere, one of the pioneers of the Orenda 14 that powered the Sabre VI. Max later was helped maintain the large fleet of ex-Luftwaffe Sabres that Pakistan clandestinely acquired.

The author looks over some Sabre photos with Max Nerriere, one of the pioneers of the Orenda 14 that powered the Sabre VI. Max later was helped maintain the large fleet of ex-Luftwaffe Sabres that Pakistan clandestinely acquired.

Ray Munro of Oakville with his hero, G/C Z.L. “Lewie” Leigh of Grimsby, Lewie’s lawyer pal, and Canada’s premier aviation historian, Ken Molson of Toronto. Lewie and Ken were always supportive of my efforts, but could be no-nonsense critics. Sabre history was not really Ken’s territory – he was more of a Silver Dart, JN-4 and Fairchild FC type. Four years earlier at the North Star book launch, he gave me his opinion about that book’s art gallery. When I saw him flipping through those pages, I (foolishly) asked what he thought. In his true style, Ken told me unapologetically, “I wouldn’t give you a nickel for the lot of it.”

Ray Munro of Oakville with his hero, G/C Z.L. “Lewie” Leigh of Grimsby, Lewie’s lawyer pal, and Canada’s premier aviation historian, Ken Molson of Toronto. Lewie and Ken were always supportive of my efforts, but could be no-nonsense critics. Sabre history was not really Ken’s territory – he was more of a Silver Dart, JN-4 and Fairchild FC type. Four years earlier at the North Star book launch, he gave me his opinion about that book’s art gallery. When I saw him flipping through those pages, I (foolishly) asked what he thought. In his true style, Ken told me unapologetically, “I wouldn’t give you a nickel for the lot of it.”

Some of the autographs I collected in my Sabre book at our Toronto 1986 book launch.

Some of the autographs I collected in my Sabre book at our Toronto 1986 book launch.

Sabre autograph2

 CANAV was the first book publisher to support Canada’s almost invisible (at the time) aviation art community. Our Sabre cover art by Geoff Bennett was his first published book art. We put up a small show at the Sabre launch – likely the first such in Canada. Other artists on show were Tom Bjarnason, Ross Buckland, Keith Ferris (USA), Ron Lowry and Pete Mossman.

CANAV was the first book publisher to support Canada’s almost invisible (at the time) aviation art community. Our Sabre cover art by Geoff Bennett was his first published book art. We put up a small show at the Sabre launch – likely the first such in Canada. Other artists on show were Tom Bjarnason, Ross Buckland, Keith Ferris (USA), Ron Lowry and Pete Mossman.

The Beech Bonanza at 70 and the Golden Age of Post-WWII Light Planes

The Bonanza also captured Canadian civil aviation headlines and scooped covers. Featured on the May 1948 cover of Canadian Aviation magazine is Lome Airways Beech 35 CF-FKI (serial number D-55) at Toronto Island Airport, while busy flying Miss Canada around the country. After 57 years of service, in 2016 “FKI” was N1599V based at Genoa, NY. (Click on any picture to see it full size.)

With the end of WWII in sight in 1944, the Allied nations started planning to eventually get their economies back into peacetime mode. The aviation industry was enthusiastic, yet, unsure about what the future held. One assumption made by manufactures was that thousands of returning airmen, pumped up by the thrill of flight, were sure to soon be shopping for their personal planes. Accordingly, each company from Beech to Cessna, Grumman, Piper, Republic, Ryan, Stinson, etc., began designing their own version of an attractive, affordable, 2- or 4-seat light plane. Excellent aircraft emerged from the Cessna 170 to the Globe Swift, Grumman Kitten, Piper Pacer, Ryan Navion, Republic Seabee and Stinson 108. However, 3 or 4 years into peacetime there were so many new airplane type that the market was swamped, especially by the industry’s “Big 2” in light planes – Cessna and Piper.

There wasn’t going to be room for every contender, so by 1950 production had petered out for most, as with the Navion (about 1200 built), Seabee (1060) and Swift (1521). Only two Kittens were built. Chief factors explaining what happened were 1) relatively few airman really wanted or could afford a new plane 2) airman were more likely to buy a cheaper war surplus plane, thousands of which flooded the postwar market.

Determined to win a market share was the renowned Wichita manufacturer, Beechcraft, run by Walter and Olive Ann Beech. Beechcraft had made its name in the 1920s-30s, especially with its upscale Model 17 Staggerwing 4/5-seat personal plane, first flown in 1932. With the war, Staggerwing production continued for the military, while the twin-engine Beech Model 18 crew trainer was mass-produced.

This beautiful, 200-mph Beech D17S Staggerwing was photographed at Oshawa in June 1965. Begun in 1932, Staggerwing production eventually totalled 785, the final 20 being G17Ss built in 1946, when the sticker price was $29,000. That same year Beech was offering its shiny new Bonanza at a quarter the price. Even so it must have been a sad moment for Beech’s old timers when the gavel came down on Staggerwing production. These classics still regularly appear all around North America during fly-in season. (Larry Milberry)

This beautiful, 200-mph Beech D17S Staggerwing was photographed at Oshawa in June 1965. Begun in 1932, Staggerwing production eventually totalled 785, the final 20 being G17Ss built in 1946, when the sticker price was $29,000. That same year Beech was offering its shiny new Bonanza at a quarter the price. Even so it must have been a sad moment for Beech’s old timers when the gavel came down on Staggerwing production. These classics still regularly appear all around North America during fly-in season. (Larry Milberry)

The brainwave of Beech designer Frank Harmon, the 180-mph Bonanza at first was pooh-poohed by Walter Beech, so Harmon and some associates (according to legend) designed the Bonanza on their own time. Then, they made a new and successful run at Mr. Beech. The prototype flew on December 22, 1945, by which time Beech had deposits in the bank for the first 500 aircraft. In the February 1947 issue of Flying Magazine, chief editor Max Karant (already with six flying hours on the still-experimental Bonanza) thoroughly reviewed the new plane, commenting, in part:

As this is written, three Bonanzas are being flown 16 hours a day, seven days a week in an exhaustive accelerated service test. Eighteen pilots fly the planes in shifts, their sole job being to do everything the average private owner would do, and get 1,000 hours on each plane. Any design change indicated by a failure is made immediately … the test airplane is quickly repaired and sent back into the air. The result, Beech officials hope, will be a bug-free airplane. No airplanes have yet been delivered … although the company already has over $2,000,000 invested in the design. Engineers call this basic design “good for 10 years”. Contrary to rumors, the price still is $7,345 … I must admit frankly that the Bonanza is one of the best personal planes I’ve ever flown.

In his 1982 book, Beechcraft: Fifty Years of Excellence, William H. McDaniel added: “A wholly new Beechcraft also made its way from the drawing boards … into the skies over Wichita soon after the war ended. It was the Model 35, a four-place, all-metal monoplane powered with a 165 hp Continental engine, and using a fully-retractable, tricycle type landing gear. Among its features were the two-element ‘V-tail’ and the Beechcraft controllable pitch propeller. In addition, it was perhaps the only airplane in its class to be offered with all instruments and equipment necessary for cross-country and night flying operation including two-way radio”. Bonanzas Nos.1 and 2 were non-flying airframes. The first to fly was No.3 and No.4 made it onto the cover of Aviation Week. While most of the new postwar personal planes were affordably priced at $3000 – $5000, Beechcraft gambled on the market’s higher end at about $7500 ($97,500 today) which panned out. The Bonanza instantly appealed to the professional classes. Flying physicians, for example, couldn’t resist a Bonanza – its looks and performance suited them and price was no impediment.

CF-FKM Shell_LR

The initial six Canadian Bonanzas arrived via Beech’s distributor, Page Aviation of Canada. These were CF-FKI through CF-FKM, including Shell Aviation’s CF-FKM D-218, and the Royal Canadian Flying Club Association’s CF-FKK D-140. Gross weight for this early version was 2550 pounds. “FKM” was delivered in July 1947. Having served Shell reliably, it was sold in 1956 to Arcade Electric Co. of Toronto. Various others enjoyed this classic plane over the years, especially Clifford Watson of Elora, Ontario, who operated it from 1976 to 2014. In 2016 “FKM” was residing in Revelstoke, BC. Note the two side windows. Later Bonanzas had three. Many earlier machines eventually had the third window retrofitted (see C-GZAY below). Both these photos were snapped by the (late) great Toronto aviation fan, Al Martin. In 1963 Al was a founding member of the Canadian Aviation Historical Society and twisted my arm that year to join. Putting down my $2.00, I received CAHS membership No.11, for which I owe Al Martin a great deal.

The initial six Canadian Bonanzas arrived via Beech’s distributor, Page Aviation of Canada. These were CF-FKI through CF-FKM, including Shell Aviation’s CF-FKM D-218, and the Royal Canadian Flying Club Association’s CF-FKK D-140. Gross weight for this early version was 2550 pounds. “FKM” was delivered in July 1947. Having served Shell reliably, it was sold in 1956 to Arcade Electric Co. of Toronto. Various others enjoyed this classic plane over the years, especially Clifford Watson of Elora, Ontario, who operated it from 1976 to 2014. In 2016 “FKM” was residing in Revelstoke, BC. Note the two side windows. Later Bonanzas had three. Many earlier machines eventually had the third window retrofitted (see C-GZAY below). Both these photos were snapped by the (late) great Toronto aviation fan, Al Martin. In 1963 Al was a founding member of the Canadian Aviation Historical Society and twisted my arm that year to join. Putting down my $2.00, I received CAHS membership No.11, for which I owe Al Martin a great deal!

Don McVicar of Worldwide Airways in Dorval and Lome Airways at Toronto Island Airport were two early Bonanza operators. McVicar bought CF-FZC in 1947 as a company utility plane, e.g., to speed his pilots back and forth as they ferried war surplus planes around the continent. Don also loved the pizazz of the Bonanza, how it always turned heads when he arrived anywhere in “FZC”. Other early Canadian Bonanzas were CF-FAC (Aero Club of Vancouver), CF-FAS (Crown Coal Co. of Edmonton), CF-FKJ (Roy Staniland of Edmonton), CF-FKK (Royal Canadian Flying Clubs of Ottawa), CF-FKM (Shell Aviation Co. of Toronto), CF-FLW (Intercontinental Packers of Saskatoon), CF-FYE (Gayport Shipping Ltd. of Toronto) and CF-FYF (Chilliwack Finance Corp. of Chilliwack.

This scene at Regina during the 1953 Trans Canada Air Tour couldn’t illustrate better the predominance of the Bonanza as a private plane. At least nine V-tails can be counted. (Canadian Aviation)

This scene at Regina during the 1953 Trans Canada Air Tour couldn’t illustrate better the predominance of the Bonanza as a private plane. At least nine V-tails can be counted. (Canadian Aviation)

From the outset the Bonanza in Canada was ordered by sport aviators wanting the flashiest in a single-engine, light plane, and by companies needing speedy, comfortable travel on short business hops. This profile never really changed, although small charter operators sometimes had a Bonanza for air taxi business. By 2016 some 18,000 Bonanzas have been manufactured in a great variety of models and sub-models. Roughly 12,000 remain in service, including about 140 listed in 2016 by Transport Canada. Listed are such 1947 “oldies” as serial number D-64 C-GZAY in Castlegar, s/n D-95 C-GLMZ in Edmonton, s/n D-218 C-FFKM (the old Shell Bonanza) in Revelstoke, s/n D-294 CF-UVV in Waterloo and s/n D-320 CF-IDJ in Medicine Hat.

Bonanza owners are a loyal bunch – once a pilot gets to know one, it’s bound to be a long-term relationship. In 2015 Ian Coull in BC wanted a Bonanza for more reasons than one. He previously had owned one, so had come to appreciate its comfort, speed, range and economy – it was in a class of its own giving 20 miles to the US gallon. When Ian found Bonanza D-64, a 1947 Beech 35, on ebay, he looked into it, liked the general deal, so bought D-64 for US$25,000. The plane looked great with a modern paint job and even had the third window mod. It also had a recommended wing spar mod, and the airframe was low time at about 4000 hours. Once in Canada, D-64 became C-GKAY. Ian added some further upgrades – two yokes, electric fuel pump, and long range tank (giving a 5 ½-hour range). Just starting a new life, in 2016 D-64 is Canada’s oldest Bonanza.

C-GZAY is Canada’s oldest Bonanza. It’s seen at home base in Castlegar, BC, looking mighty fine for its 69 years! (Ian Coull)

C-GZAY is Canada’s oldest Bonanza. It’s seen at home base in Castlegar, BC, looking mighty fine for its 69 years! (Ian Coull)

The current edition of the Bonanza is the G36, of which only a few dozen are produced annually. In 2016 the CCAR lists five, the newest (registered in 2014) being Edmonton-based C-FGWD, a 2006 model. Flying Magazine flew a new G36 in December 2013, reporting: “When the subject of legendary light airplanes comes up, one of the names certain to be mentioned early in the conversation is the Beechcraft Bonanza. The latest model, the G36, bears a passing resemblance to the revolutionary original, which Beech Aircraft began selling way back in 1947. But today’s Bonanza is a very sophisticated platform, one that has enjoyed a wealth of improvements, from spinner to tail, over its 65-year production span. No other airplane has been able to achieve such a lengthy production record. Beech launched the G36 in 2005 to usher in the era of flat panel avionics, including the Garmin G1000 (the “G” in G36 is for Garmin)” From 1947 to the present, Flying clearly has been impressed by this (by now) 70-year-old beauty!

Some Specs for the 1947 Prototype Beech 35 Bonanza:

  • Length 25’2”
  • Height 6’6.5”
  • Wing span 32’10”
  • Seating 4
  • Max takeoff weight 2650 lb
  • Useful load 1075 lb
  • Fuel 40 US gal (60 gal with aux. tank)
  • Max cruise speed 150 ktas
  • Max range (with aux fuel) 775 mi.
  • Ceiling 18,100’
  • Engine Continental 165 hp
  • New price about CDN$7000

Some specs for the 2016 G36 Bonanza:

  • Length 27’6”
  • Height 8’7”
  • Wing span 33’6”
  • Seating 6
  • Max takeoff weight 3650 lb
  • Useful load 1033 lb
  • Fuel 74 US gal
  • Max cruise speed 176 ktas
  • Max range 920 mi.
  • Ceiling 18,500’
  • Engine Continental IO-550-B 300 hp
  • New price about CDN$950,000
CF-KVL was B35 Bonanza D-2650 built in 1950. Until 1958 it had been N5258C, then came to Winnipeg for Wallace C. Hanaway, who sold it to Teal Air, a Northern Manitoba tourist operator. In August 1959 “KVL” migrated to Hamilton for John Knapp, then R.F. Mitten of nearby Galt took over in 1963. The following year it was sold to Air Taxi Service of Cincinnati, becoming N8724R. On June 2, 1967 it was damaged at Lunken Airport, Ohio, when the pilot inadvertently landed wheels-up. In 2016 N8724R was flying from Frankfort in northern Michigan. I spotted “KVL” at Hamilton’s Mount Hope Airport on April 30, 1961.

CF-KVL was B35 Bonanza D-2650 built in 1950. Until 1958 it had been N5258C, then came to Winnipeg for Wallace C. Hanaway, who sold it to Teal Air, a Northern Manitoba tourist operator. In August 1959 “KVL” migrated to Hamilton for John Knapp, then R.F. Mitten of nearby Galt took over in 1963. The following year it was sold to Air Taxi Service of Cincinnati, becoming N8724R. On June 2, 1967 it was damaged at Lunken Airport, Ohio, when the pilot inadvertently landed wheels-up. In 2016 N8724R was flying from Frankfort in northern Michigan. I spotted “KVL” at Hamilton’s Mount Hope Airport on April 30, 1961.

Bonanza CF-LUT was 1950-built K35 D-5726. Bob Finlayson photographed it at Hamilton’s Mount Hope Airport on May 6, 1967. Having begun as N620T, it came to Canada for Beech dealer Field Aviation in August 1959. It soon was sold to John W. Combs Ltd. of Toronto. Actress Joan Fairfax had it in 1961-62, then it was based in Regina until sold in 1967 to Toronto aircraft dealer, Bob Quigley. He sold “LUT” to D.V. Brown of Manitoulin Island. On March 4, 1979 Brown and his wife died when “LUT” flew into a West Virginia mountain while flying from Toronto to Florida. Canada’s worst Bonanza accident occurred on February 13, 1949, when legendary Canadian aviator, Wally Siple of Montreal, his wife and five children all died when their (4-seat) Bonanza CF-FYC crashed in foul weather en route Montreal - Ottawa.

Bonanza CF-LUT was 1950-built K35 D-5726. Bob Finlayson photographed it at Hamilton’s Mount Hope Airport on May 6, 1967. Having begun as N620T, it came to Canada for Beech dealer Field Aviation in August 1959. It soon was sold to John W. Combs Ltd. of Toronto. Actress Joan Fairfax had it in 1961-62, then it was based in Regina until sold in 1967 to Toronto aircraft dealer, Bob Quigley. He sold “LUT” to D.V. Brown of Manitoulin Island. On March 4, 1979 Brown and his wife died when “LUT” flew into a West Virginia mountain while flying from Toronto to Florida. Canada’s worst Bonanza accident occurred on February 13, 1949, when legendary Canadian aviator, Wally Siple of Montreal, his wife and five children all died when their (4-seat) Bonanza CF-FYC crashed in foul weather en route Montreal – Ottawa.

When the V-tail left production in 1982, the straight tail Model 33 Bonanza (at first called the Debonair) still was a great plane. It did, however, lose an aesthetic something in the redesign. Here F33 CF-CWW, one of only 20 built, sits at Toronto YYZ on May 15, 1971. (Larry Milberry)

When the V-tail left production in 1982, the straight tail Model 33 Bonanza (at first called the Debonair) still was a great plane. It did, however, lose an aesthetic something in the redesign. Here F33 CF-CWW, one of only 20 built, sits at Toronto YYZ on May 15, 1971. (Larry Milberry)

12 CF-OIP_LR

The Bonanza gave rise to some natural spin-offs, starting with the Model 50 Twin Bonanza. Seen at Toronto Island on July 16, 1963 is F50 Twin Bonanza CF-OIP s/n FH96, recently bought from the Milwaukee Braves, and soon in use with Sarnia-based upstart charter company, Great Lakes Air Services. From 1950-63 almost 900 Twin Bonanzas were built in several versions. Initially, they were top-line executive planes and small feeder liners. Eventually, they filtered down the line to end in such unglamorous roles as hauling fish in northern Canada. Then, Super V N4530V in its spiffy white and blue paint job at Toronto Island Airport on May 14, 1961. The Super V was an oddball 2-engine Bonanza conversion that began with Bay Aviation in Oakland in the mid-1950s, then migrated to Fleet Aircraft at Fort Erie (see Air Transport in Canada, Vol.2 for this story). However, the Super V did not find a market. Only 14 were turned out, at least eight of which ended in crashes. Three or four survive including N4530V based in 2016 in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. (Larry Milberry)

The Bonanza gave rise to some natural spin-offs, starting with the Model 50 Twin Bonanza. Seen at Toronto Island on July 16, 1963 is F50 Twin Bonanza CF-OIP s/n FH96, recently bought from the Milwaukee Braves, and soon in use with Sarnia-based upstart charter company, Great Lakes Air Services. From 1950-63 almost 900 Twin Bonanzas were built in several versions. Initially, they were top-line executive planes and small feeder liners. Eventually, they filtered down the line to end in such unglamorous roles as hauling fish in northern Canada. Then, Super V N4530V in its spiffy white and blue paint job at Toronto Island Airport on May 14, 1961. The Super V was an oddball 2-engine Bonanza conversion that began with Bay Aviation in Oakland in the mid-1950s, then migrated to Fleet Aircraft at Fort Erie (see Air Transport in Canada, Vol.2 for this story). However, the Super V did not find a market. Only 14 were turned out, at least eight of which ended in crashes. Three or four survive including N4530V based in 2016 in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. (Larry Milberry)

Blog Bonanza 13B
Blog Bonanza 13C

Another staple is Edward Phillips’ 1992 Beechcraft: Pursuit of Excellence. Copies of these books usually can be found on the web, including at abebooks.com, where I often shop.

There are countless things to read about the Beech Bonanza saga. A wonderful history is Beechcraft: Fifty Years of Excellence, a copy of which I received in 1984 from Oliver Ann Beech. Another staple is Edward Phillips’ 1992 Beechcraft: Pursuit of Excellence. Copies of these books usually can be found on the web, including at abebooks.com, where I often shop. My all-in-one info source for any earlier plane with a US Air Transport Certificate (the Bonanza has ATC 777) is the great Joseph P. Juptner’s U.S. Civil Aircraft Series, published in 1962 and subsequently revised. A serious aviation library is incomplete without Juptner’s 9 volumes. I suggest investing in a set almost at any price. And no … Juptner’s life’s work is not “on the web” as the internet yahoos always say everything must be. Instead, it’s in paper, ink and glue, something call a book, which intelligent people avidly collect and love (nincompoops need not bother even to look, right).

My all-in-one info source for any earlier plane with a US Air Transport Certificate (the Bonanza has ATC 777) is the great Joseph P. Juptner’s U.S. Civil Aircraft Series, published in 1962 and subsequently revised. A serious aviation library is incomplete without Juptner’s 9 volumes. I suggest investing in a set almost at any price. And no … Juptner’s life’s work is not “on the web” as the internet yahoos always say everything must be. Instead, it’s in paper, ink and glue, something call a book, which intelligent people avidly collect and love (nincompoops need not bother even to look, right).

A Crowded Field — Other Early Postwar Light Planes

Too many types flooded the early post-war small plane market. Canada’s entry into these risky waters was the Fleet Model 80 Canuck 2-seater. First flown in 1946, orders at first poured from flying clubs and sport aviators eager to get away from the wartime Tiger Moths and Finches (a Canuck then cost about $5000 taxes in, while an airworthy ex-RCAF Tiger Moth could be picked up for a few hundred dollars). When reality struck, Fleet abandonned the Canuck in face of competition from such cheaper US types as the Cessna 140, Aeronca Champion and Globe Swift. Carl Millard of Toronto bought the last 28 Canucks from Fleet for $1500 each, then quickly re-sold them at $2500. Today the Canuck is sought after by collectors (in 2016 CF-ENM was for sale at $60,000 -- about $5000 in 1946 dollars). Here sits Central Airways Canuck CF-EBE at Toronto Island Airport c1960. First flown at Fleet on November 6, 1946, it was sold in September 1949 to Roger Watson of Stayner, Ontario, who leased it to Bob and Tom Wong of Central Airways at Toronto Island (the Wongs bought it in 1953). Hundreds of students would learn to fly in “EBE”. Finally, in 1971 Central Airways sold “EBE” to Dr. J.D. Robinson, who flew it from Collingwood. Others took their turn until 1974, when Ernest Weller of Port Loring sold “EBE” to Canada’s national aviation museum in Ottawa, where today it enjoys a deserved place of honour.

Too many types flooded the early post-war small plane market. Canada’s entry into these risky waters was the Fleet Model 80 Canuck 2-seater. First flown in 1946, orders at first poured from flying clubs and sport aviators eager to get away from the wartime Tiger Moths and Finches (a Canuck then cost about $5000 taxes in, while an airworthy ex-RCAF Tiger Moth could be picked up for a few hundred dollars). When reality struck, Fleet abandonned the Canuck in face of competition from such cheaper US types as the Cessna 140, Aeronca Champion and Globe Swift. Carl Millard of Toronto bought the last 28 Canucks from Fleet for $1500 each, then quickly re-sold them at $2500. Today the Canuck is sought after by collectors (in 2016 CF-ENM was for sale at $60,000 — about $5000 in 1946 dollars). Here sits Central Airways Canuck CF-EBE at Toronto Island Airport c1960. First flown at Fleet on November 6, 1946, it was sold in September 1949 to Roger Watson of Stayner, Ontario, who leased it to Bob and Tom Wong of Central Airways at Toronto Island (the Wongs bought it in 1953). Hundreds of students would learn to fly in “EBE”. Finally, in 1971 Central Airways sold “EBE” to Dr. J.D. Robinson, who flew it from Collingwood. Others took their turn until 1974, when Ernest Weller of Port Loring sold “EBE” to Canada’s national aviation museum in Ottawa, where today it enjoys a deserved place of honour.

Ercoupe CF-LUV_LR

Two especially beloved, all-metal, 2-seat light planes mass-produced in the 1940s are the ERCO Ercoupe and Globe Swift. The Ercoupe first flew in 1937. It went on sale in 1940, but the advent of war delayed production until 1946, when the Model 415 appeared with a $2665 sticker price ($35,500 in 2016 dollars). When the postwar light plane boon faltered, ERCO ceased production, having turned out an astounding 4311 Ercoupes. Happily, others took an interest and, over the decades, more were built under such banners as Forney, Alon, even Mooney. Some 5700 Ercoupes eventually flew. The natty Globe GC-1 Swift also was a pre-war US design, which had to wait for 1945 to get going. After rushing out more than 1200 Swifts, however, Globe ran out of money and was sold to Temco. Temco added just 260 more, before ceasing production in 1951. Shown is ERCO 415C Ercoupe CF-LUV s/n 1016 and Toronto Flying Club GC-1A CF-DLD. “LUV” was photographed at the Kitchener-Waterloo breakfast fly-in on July 9, 1961. It then was owned by Heinz Asmussen of Sarnia. “DLD” had been sold by Globe in Texas to McDonald Aviation in Edmonton, which immediately re-sold it to Carl Millard in Toronto, where it first reached Canada in April 1946. In June, Carl sold it to the flying club. Beginning in May 1950 came a long list of Quebec owners, until in 1957 “DLD” returned to Toronto. In 1967 it went to a buyer in Michigan then, on January 15, 1977, was lost in a fatal accident near El Paso, Texas. (Larry Milberry, Al Martin)

Two especially beloved, all-metal, 2-seat light planes mass-produced in the 1940s are the ERCO Ercoupe and Globe Swift. The Ercoupe first flew in 1937. It went on sale in 1940, but the advent of war delayed production until 1946, when the Model 415 appeared with a $2665 sticker price ($35,500 in 2016 dollars). When the postwar light plane boon faltered, ERCO ceased production, having turned out an astounding 4311 Ercoupes. Happily, others took an interest and, over the decades, more were built under such banners as Forney, Alon, even Mooney. Some 5700 Ercoupes eventually flew. The natty Globe GC-1 Swift also was a pre-war US design, which had to wait for 1945 to get going. After rushing out more than 1200 Swifts, however, Globe ran out of money and was sold to Temco. Temco added just 260 more, before ceasing production in 1951. Shown is ERCO 415C Ercoupe CF-LUV s/n 1016 and Toronto Flying Club GC-1A CF-DLD. “LUV” was photographed at the Kitchener-Waterloo breakfast fly-in on July 9, 1961. It then was owned by Heinz Asmussen of Sarnia. “DLD” had been sold by Globe in Texas to McDonald Aviation in Edmonton, which immediately re-sold it to Carl Millard in Toronto, where it first reached Canada in April 1946. In June, Carl sold it to the flying club. Beginning in May 1950 came a long list of Quebec owners, until in 1957 “DLD” returned to Toronto. In 1967 it went to a buyer in Michigan then, on January 15, 1977, was lost in a fatal accident near El Paso, Texas. (Larry Milberry, Al Martin)

Cessna got off to a strong postwar start with its 2-seat Ce.120/140 personal planes and trainers, and glitzy Ce.170 and 190/195 4/5-seaters. The 1948 Ce.170 had an all-metal fuselage with fabric-covered, metal-framed wing and tail. Fabric was traditional and practical enough, but buyers now were eyeing all-metal construction, where Beech was excelling. Cessna closed the gap in 1949 with the all-metal Ce.170A, then the Ce.170B with improved wing/flaps. But these aircraft all were tail draggers, while the Bonanza had begun futuristically (as far as personal light planes then went) with a steerable nose wheel. Ultimately, in 1956 Cessna brought out its nose wheel “172”. Cessna turned out more than 5000 Ce.170s plus some 1200 of its higher-end, Ce.190/195s, introduced in 1947 at $12,750. Shown is Cessna 170B CF-HVY departing the Oshawa Breakfast Fly-In on June 16, 1963. Richard Pagani of Guelph owned “HVY” at this time. Ce.195B CF-FRO is seen at Vancouver on September 25, 1956. Following an accident of October 23, 1972, when it was owned by Gary Bell of White Rock, BC, “FRO” was sold to Robert Payne of Kent, Washington. The last heard of “FRO” was a 1996 notice in the Ce.195 club newsletter that a few of its bits and pieces were for sale. Parked behind and to the right of “FRO” in this fine view is a 1951 Nash Ambassador. (Larry Milberry, Al Martin)

Cessna got off to a strong postwar start with its 2-seat Ce.120/140 personal planes and trainers, and glitzy Ce.170 and 190/195 4/5-seaters. The 1948 Ce.170 had an all-metal fuselage with fabric-covered, metal-framed wing and tail. Fabric was traditional and practical enough, but buyers now were eyeing all-metal construction, where Beech was excelling. Cessna closed the gap in 1949 with the all-metal Ce.170A, then the Ce.170B with improved wing/flaps. But these aircraft all were tail draggers, while the Bonanza had begun futuristically (as far as personal light planes then went) with a steerable nose wheel. Ultimately, in 1956 Cessna brought out its nose wheel “172”. Cessna turned out more than 5000 Ce.170s plus some 1200 of its higher-end, Ce.190/195s, introduced in 1947 at $12,750. Shown is Cessna 170B CF-HVY departing the Oshawa Breakfast Fly-In on June 16, 1963. Richard Pagani of Guelph owned “HVY” at this time. Ce.195B CF-FRO is seen at Vancouver on September 25, 1956. Following an accident of October 23, 1972, when it was owned by Gary Bell of White Rock, BC, “FRO” was sold to Robert Payne of Kent, Washington. The last heard of “FRO” was a 1996 notice in the Ce.195 club newsletter that a few of its bits and pieces were for sale. Parked behind and to the right of “FRO” in this fine view is a 1951 Nash Ambassador. (Larry Milberry, Al Martin)

Blog Bonanza 15 CE.170B CF-HVY_LR

Piper’s main entry right after the war was the PA-20 Pacer 4-seat tail dragger, first flown in 1949. After building more than 1100 Pacers, in 1951 Piper transformed it into the tricycle gear PA-22 Tri-Pacer, of which more than 8000 were built by the time production ended in 1960 (plus 2000+ 2-seater PA-22 Colts). Here is CF-HHF, which in 2016 was one of 69 Pacers still listed by Transport Canada. You can see by the great looks of this natty little beauty why the Pacer always has been in demand by sport aviators. This scene is at Welland, Ontario on March 26, 1961, the day I hitchhiked to Welland from Toronto to meet the great WWI ace, Tommy Williams, and photograph his Fleet 21. But “HHF” also caught my eye, sitting handsomely in its tan paint job with red trim. When last heard of “HHF” was domiciled in Carleton Place, Ontario. Then, CF-PKO, a standard Tri-Pacer, is seen at Hamilton in 1967. (Larry Milberry, Bob Finlayson)

Piper’s main entry right after the war was the PA-20 Pacer 4-seat tail dragger, first flown in 1949. After building more than 1100 Pacers, in 1951 Piper transformed it into the tricycle gear PA-22 Tri-Pacer, of which more than 8000 were built by the time production ended in 1960 (plus 2000+ 2-seater PA-22 Colts). Here is CF-HHF, which in 2016 was one of 69 Pacers still listed by Transport Canada. You can see by the great looks of this natty little beauty why the Pacer always has been in demand by sport aviators. This scene is at Welland, Ontario on March 26, 1961, the day I hitchhiked to Welland from Toronto to meet the great WWI ace, Tommy Williams, and photograph his Fleet 21. But “HHF” also caught my eye, sitting handsomely in its tan paint job with red trim. When last heard of “HHF” was domiciled in Carleton Place, Ontario. Then, CF-PKO, a standard Tri-Pacer, is seen at Hamilton in 1967. (Larry Milberry, Bob Finlayson)

Blog Bonanza 16 Piper Pacer CF-HHF

In 1947 Aeronca introduced its own 4-seater, the attractive Model 15AC Sedan. Framed in metal and wood and covered in fabric, the Sedan proved a durable type with good performance and cabin spaciousness to the point that small bush operators were quick to buy. Production ended in 1951 at 561 Sedans. Not only are the survivors now collectable (they sell in the US$60,000 range), but newly-built Sedans can be ordered in Alaska from Burl’s Aircraft (base price US$235,000). Shown is Sedan CF-FNS s/n 328 at St. Catharines on May 18, 1963. “FNS” went new in 1949 to W.N. Dalzeg of Morson, a remote Lake-of-the-Woods hamlet accessible only by boat or plane. Next, it called Whitedog Falls (NW of Minaki) its home after Henry Zuzek bought it in 1958. Ten years later it moved to Terrace Bay on Lake Superior, then to Timmins, finally Matheson. In 1997 retired Air Canada pilot Ron Dennis bought “FNS” from Cec Tomlinson, a mining man in Matheson. In 2016 Ron was getting his wing rebuilt at Parry Sound to keep “FNS” fit for many more good years of flying. (Larry Milberry)

In 1947 Aeronca introduced its own 4-seater, the attractive Model 15AC Sedan. Framed in metal and wood and covered in fabric, the Sedan proved a durable type with good performance and cabin spaciousness to the point that small bush operators were quick to buy. Production ended in 1951 at 561 Sedans. Not only are the survivors now collectable (they sell in the US$60,000 range), but newly-built Sedans can be ordered in Alaska from Burl’s Aircraft (base price US$235,000). Shown is Sedan CF-FNS s/n 328 at St. Catharines on May 18, 1963. “FNS” went new in 1949 to W.N. Dalzeg of Morson, a remote Lake-of-the-Woods hamlet accessible only by boat or plane. Next, it called Whitedog Falls (NW of Minaki) its home after Henry Zuzek bought it in 1958. Ten years later it moved to Terrace Bay on Lake Superior, then to Timmins, finally Matheson. In 1997 retired Air Canada pilot Ron Dennis bought “FNS” from Cec Tomlinson, a mining man in Matheson. In 2016 Ron was getting his wing rebuilt at Parry Sound to keep “FNS” fit for many more good years of flying. (Larry Milberry)

Of all the new light planes of the mid-to-late 1940s one of the most representative is the Republic RC-3 Seabee. Invariably referred to as “an ugly duckling”, it’s endured admirably and is greatly sought after by sport aviators. Being all-metal, rugged and amphibious, the Seabee originally found eager fans among sportsmen, cottagers, and bush and coast air taxi services. Designed in 1940 by Percival Spencer, who first had flown in his own hang glider in 1911, the Seabee first flew in December 1945. It immediately entered production at Republic, which recently had been churning out P-47 Thunderbolt fighters. Production suddenly ceased in October 1947 at 1060 aircraft, many of which were sold in Canada. Republic then concentrated on mass-producing F-84 Thunder Jets for the USAF. Subsequently, many Seabee survivors have been restored, especially with modern engines, e.g., Eric B. Robinson of Lindsay, Ontario has turned out several “new” Seabees powered by the 425-hp Corvette V-8 engine (the Seabee originally came with a 165-hp Franklin), plus other upgrades. Shown at Toronto Island c1950 is Orillia Air Service Seabee CF-GAF. For all the latest Seabee news visit www.seabee.info. (Al Martin)

Of all the new light planes of the mid-to-late 1940s one of the most representative is the Republic RC-3 Seabee. Invariably referred to as “an ugly duckling”, it’s endured admirably and is greatly sought after by sport aviators. Being all-metal, rugged and amphibious, the Seabee originally found eager fans among sportsmen, cottagers, and bush and coast air taxi services. Designed in 1940 by Percival Spencer, who first had flown in his own hang glider in 1911, the Seabee first flew in December 1945. It immediately entered production at Republic, which recently had been churning out P-47 Thunderbolt fighters. Production suddenly ceased in October 1947 at 1060 aircraft, many of which were sold in Canada. Republic then concentrated on mass-producing F-84 Thunder Jets for the USAF. Subsequently, many Seabee survivors have been restored, especially with modern engines, e.g., Eric B. Robinson of Lindsay, Ontario has turned out several “new” Seabees powered by the 425-hp Corvette V-8 engine (the Seabee originally came with a 165-hp Franklin), plus other upgrades. Shown at Toronto Island c1950 is Orillia Air Service Seabee CF-GAF. For all the latest Seabee news visit http://www.seabee.info. (Al Martin)

The historic Bellanca company also was in the postwar running with a new design – the Model 14-13, first flown in 1946. Dubbed the Cruisair, this attractive plane had a fabric-covered, metal-tube fuselage with wooden wings. About 600 were built until 1956, when it was replaced by the Model 14-19 Cruisemaster. Shown at Hamilton’s Mount Hope Airport on April 30, 1961 is Donald Hawkin’s Cruisemaster CF-LGV. Although speedy at about 200 mph (max), its wood and fabric features limited the appeal of this otherwise alluring 4-seater. By this time Cruisemaster production was under the Downer Aircraft banner, but Downer (of Alexandria, Minnesota) soon ceased making Bellancas. However, in 2016 Alexandria Aircraft (same town) was manufacturing and rebuilding Bellanca wings (see partsales@bellanca-aircraft.com). (Larry Milberry)

The historic Bellanca company also was in the postwar running with a new design – the Model 14-13, first flown in 1946. Dubbed the Cruisair, this attractive plane had a fabric-covered, metal-tube fuselage with wooden wings. About 600 were built until 1956, when it was replaced by the Model 14-19 Cruisemaster. Shown at Hamilton’s Mount Hope Airport on April 30, 1961 is Donald Hawkin’s Cruisemaster CF-LGV. Although speedy at about 200 mph (max), its wood and fabric features limited the appeal of this otherwise alluring 4-seater. By this time Cruisemaster production was under the Downer Aircraft banner, but Downer (of Alexandria, Minnesota) soon ceased making Bellancas. However, in 2016 Alexandria Aircraft (same town) was manufacturing and rebuilding Bellanca wings (see partsales@bellanca-aircraft.com). (Larry Milberry)

In November 1945 the historic Stinson Aircraft Co. of Wayne, Michigan introduced its Model 108 Voyageur, priced initially at $5489. In his quintessential study, US Civil Aircraft, Joseph Juptner notes: “Dealers were having no trouble selling this airplane and by the end of 1946 some 1436 were built and sold”. By 1948 Stinson had turned out more than 5000 in three main models. Then the company also was clobbered by the 1948 slump. Piper swooshed in to buy Stinson, but had no enthusiasm for the 108, so production ended. Happily, hundreds of these lovely postwar “family planes” survive all over the US and Canada. Here, Stinson 108-3 CF-HJE, owned by Arcade Electric Co., bobs at its buoy at Toronto Island Airport c1955. Beyond are Toronto’s only two skyscrapers of the day – the 32-storey Bank of Commerce on the right, and the Royal York Hotel. Today, these can barely be picked out among the crush of skyscrapers. In 2016 Transport Canada still listed 279 Stinson 108s, CF-HJE included. (Al Martin)

In November 1945 the historic Stinson Aircraft Co. of Wayne, Michigan introduced its Model 108 Voyageur, priced initially at $5489. In his quintessential study, US Civil Aircraft, Joseph Juptner notes: “Dealers were having no trouble selling this airplane and by the end of 1946 some 1436 were built and sold”. By 1948 Stinson had turned out more than 5000 in three main models. Then the company also was clobbered by the 1948 slump. Piper swooshed in to buy Stinson, but had no enthusiasm for the 108, so production ended. Happily, hundreds of these lovely postwar “family planes” survive all over the US and Canada. Here, Stinson 108-3 CF-HJE, owned by Arcade Electric Co., bobs at its buoy at Toronto Island Airport c1955. Beyond are Toronto’s only two skyscrapers of the day – the 32-storey Bank of Commerce on the right, and the Royal York Hotel. Today, these can barely be picked out among the crush of skyscrapers. In 2016 Transport Canada still listed 279 Stinson 108s, CF-HJE included. (Al Martin)

. Also keen on the personal plane market was Ryan, which built the high-end 4-seat Navion. Designed by North American, the Navion looked reminiscently like the beloved wartime P-51 Mustang. But North American decided not to challenge the postwar civil market after all, selling the Navion to Ryan in 1948. About 1200 were produced before Tusco took over and kept the Navion alive for several more years, modernizing it along the way mainly in the form of the very handsome Rangemaster, which endured into 1976. In the 2000s there still was interest in this fabulous design from Sierra Hotel Aero Inc. Inc. in Minnesota. SHA’s website notes: “As holder of the type certificate for the Navion, Sierra Hotel Aero, is dedicated to improving the safety, support, performance and preservation of all Navions worldwide.” See info@navion.com. As with most of the great light planes of the 1940s, there also is a Navion owners club. See navionx.org and look for the many other Navion-related sites. Shown is 1947 Navion CF-HJI of the St. Catharines Flying Club. Originally N8957H, the club acquired it in December 1953, then flew it until an accident three years later. Rebuilt by Trans Aircraft of Hamilton, “HJI” then had a succession of owners across Canada and in 2016 still is listed (along with 35 others) in Transport Canada’s Canadian Civil Aircraft Register. Special thanks to astronomer Andrew Yee for processing these old negatives and slides. (Al Martin)

Also keen on the personal plane market was Ryan, which built the high-end 4-seat Navion. Designed by North American, the Navion looked reminiscently like the beloved wartime P-51 Mustang. But North American decided not to challenge the postwar civil market after all, selling the Navion to Ryan in 1948. About 1200 were produced before Tusco took over and kept the Navion alive for several more years, modernizing it along the way mainly in the form of the very handsome Rangemaster, which endured into 1976. In the 2000s there still was interest in this fabulous design from Sierra Hotel Aero Inc. Inc. in Minnesota. SHA’s website notes: “As holder of the type certificate for the Navion, Sierra Hotel Aero, is dedicated to improving the safety, support, performance and preservation of all Navions worldwide.” See info@navion.com. As with most of the great light planes of the 1940s, there also is a Navion owners club. See navionx.org and look for the many other Navion-related sites. Shown is 1947 Navion CF-HJI of the St. Catharines Flying Club. Originally N8957H, the club acquired it in December 1953, then flew it until an accident three years later. Rebuilt by Trans Aircraft of Hamilton, “HJI” then had a succession of owners across Canada and in 2016 still is listed (along with 35 others) in Transport Canada’s Canadian Civil Aircraft Register. Special thanks to astronomer Andrew Yee for processing these old negatives and slides. (Al Martin)

SPECIAL NOTICE FROM THE PUBLISHER
** Dear readers** … As of March 17, 2016 CANAV is out of stock of its world-famous  title, De Havilland in Canada. Having begun in 1983 as The De Havilland Canada Story by Fred Hotson, the book morphed in 1999 into De Havilland in Canada. Should you need a new copy, contact Viking Aircraft in Victoria, BC, or search some of the internet’s many used book sites — abebooks.com, bookfinder.com, ebay, etc. All the best … Larry

Boeing 727 News from CANAV

Blog Wardair #1

Two years ago we blogged about the magnificent Boeing 727. Wardair’s former chief engineer, Dan McNiven, was one of the many enjoying this item. Dan reminded me that Wardair had Canada’s first 727 – the world-famous CF-FUN. “FUN” was the first of many 727s to be flown by such other Canadian operators as Air Canada, Air Transat, Cargojet, FirstAir, Kelowna Flightcraft, PWA, Quebecair and Royalair. Cargojet of Hamilton still operates a fleet of 12 of these gorgeous, reliable, profit-making “Three Holers”.

Christened “Cy Becker”, in honour of one of Max Ward’s pioneer bush flying heroes, “FUN” was delivered to Edmonton on March 25, 1966. Naturally, the great Leslie Corness was on hand with his large-format camera to cover the action. Les walked around “FUN” (you could do that back in those “good old days”) shooting various angles. Just lately two of his by-now historic photos popped up in my archives and here they are for you to enjoy. If you need more such material, find yourself of copy of The Max Ward Story and get the solid info about “FUN” from Max Ward himself. There always are copies of such out-of-print books to be found at abebooks.com. Max’s book is essential for anyone seriously interested in Canada’s airline industry.

Blog Wardair #2

“FUN” signalled the end in the Wardair fleet of the classic Douglas propliners. Soon, Wardair was known for its ever-growing jetliner fleet – B.727, B.747, DC-10 and A310. Although Wardair eventually faded from the airline scene, one often hears laments for this great company. No one who ever flew on Wardair ever forgets the company’s impeccably turned-out airplanes and the world-class cabin service – chinaware and silverware included. “FUN” served Wardair faithfully until sold in Brazil in 1973. Later, it flew under Colombian registration, but has not been heard of since the mid-1990s (when it likely was sold for beer cans).

Meanwhile, on the West Coast, Bob Bogash and his team at the Museum of Flight continue in their quest to fly (within the next few weeks) the first ever 727 – United Airlines N7001U. Just recently, they taxied it and all systems were “Go”. Here is Bob’s update as of mid-February 2016:

Last week I said:

“This is not the End, but it is the Beginning of the End.”

I think we are now close to the End of the End – at least as far as mechanical work on the airplane is concerned.  With 30 work days behind us, the airplane is operational with a few wrap-up jobs yet to accomplish..  There is considerable work left to do, however,  on the FAA paperwork side.

ALIVE!

Yesterday, the airplane moved under its own power for the first time in over 25 years. It is indeed alive!  I wound up taxiing it about 4-5 miles around the airfield, as we accomplished our high power engine trim runs and take-off power checks. Compass checks. For some reason, visions of Shirley Temple singing “On the Good Ship Lollipop” kept running through my head.

Check out the videos Videos here and here. Checked the brakes first!

Only five days after first engine start. We ran the engines numerous times this week and put quite a few hours on the engines and fuel systems, as well as validating the electrical, pneumatic, and hydraulic systems.

We bounced back quickly from a potentially big setback when our newly installed elevator feel computer split its case. We have a really great, innovative and resilient team of “can-do” personalities.

We set out to awaken this airplane from 25 years of storage and we have done it  – successfully!  And it took us just a month to do it (although an incredible amount of work went into that month). We’re still shooting for about March 1. Hopefully, the weather around here will start to do something other than what’s it’s been doing, and doing….

The SOAR team will be down to one man on Monday. David Wittrig, SOAR Leader, is leaving for Newark Sunday to look at a damaged 777. ATS has agreed to allow us to keep the airplane where it is on their ramp until we fly it. They have also agreed to support us during the remaining jobs, as well as three full starts – one for high speed runway taxi runs with the Pilot, one the day before our flight (as a final check),  and the final one at Future of Flight when we start up for making the actual flight.

Additional companies have signed up to support; we’re getting new cockpit seat covers from Douglass Interior Products and Cannon Aircraft Interiors; and Alaska Airlines has agreed to supply cockpit emergency equipment.

I had a long meeting with Laurie on Friday and we’re deep into the nitty gritty of  Flight Day, right down to fire truck water arches for departure and arrival.  Wow-ee!

My Status Report continues to be the primary vehicle for what’s happening.

Check my Master Sked for the details.

Last week, I wrote:  “Our Lady has definitely “woken up.”  Worth repeating.  She’s also famous! Tuesday was her 53rd Birthday.

Finally, here are two other early United 727s that I photographed in 1966. I saw N7052U taxying on a blustery March 20 at Buffalo, then N7066U smoking in to land at Chicago O’Hare on August 26. N7052U later served US Air and Key Airlines. It was scrapped at Greenwood, Missou ri in 1995. In 1988 N7066U went to FedEx as N187FE. Its FedEx days finished, it ended as a training aid at a US Federal Law Enforcement Training Center. **Click on any photo to see it full frame.

Have “FUN” … Larry

Blog United #1

 

 

 

 

Blog United #2

Two Fine Books Telling the Story of the Earliest Days of Aviation

Birdmen_coverBirdman: The Wright Brothers, Glenn Curtiss and the Battle to Control the Skies

by Lawrence Goldstone

This fantastic best seller is one that will satisfy any serious fan of aviation history. Beginning with such pioneers of flight as Otto Lilienthal in Germany and Octave Chanute in the US, Goldman quickly comes to the Wright brothers of Dayton, Ohio and Glenn Curtiss of Hammondsport, New York. Showing how Lilienthal and Chanute influenced these three innovators, he then details how each persevered in flying America’s first powered airplanes.

This book is downright exciting – a “page-turner”, as they say. The author delves deeply into each participant’s human side, warts and all. Often these heroic figures are at loggerheads – the Wrights clash with each other, let alone with Curtiss, whom they accuse of stealing their patents. They strive to virtually patent the airplane. Their battles rage for years in the courts.

Leading the way in powered airplane flight, the Wrights engender a whole new world of entertainment – exhibition flying. From 1909-14 they and Curtiss bring their performing troupes to city after city all the way west to Los Angeles and Seattle. This is a magnificent era, but it comes at a huge cost. The touring flyers introduce millions to the airplane and make piles of money. But by 1912 more than 100 have lost their lives, mainly at public appearances. Airplanes fall apart in flight, turbulence hurls pilots from their seats, planes crash into crowded bleachers, the first bird strike kills a famous pilot, etc. All along the crowds are loving it all. The great Lincoln Beachey, who performed some of the earliest airshows in Canada, grows disgusted at how the hordes come out mainly to see him die. And so they finally do in 1915, when his plane disintegrates during a show at the great San Francisco exposition.

Another major theme is the years-long lawsuits pursued almost insanely by the Wrights against all other aeronautical enterprizers. Obsessed by their patents and paranoid about these being infringed upon, the Wrights spent a fortune in the courts. While aeronautics was progressing at Hammondsport, in the UK and across Europe, the Wrights dithered and lost their chance. Their Wright Flyers, in the meantime, became known as death traps. Dozens of airmen and passengers died in Wright Flyer crashes, while Curtiss machines gained the opposite reputation. In the end, Goldman concludes that the Wrights held up America in its quest to advance in aviation. Curtiss on one hand and Europe on the other set the pace in advancing aviation’s cause. Ironically, in the end the two warring sides made peace through a 1929 corporate alignment creating the Curtiss-Wright Co., which survives to this day.

Don’t miss this exceptional book that brings to life the great years of powered flight!

Birdman: The Wright Brothers, Glenn Curtiss and the Battle to Control the Skies

230 pages, hardcover, photos, notes, index $34.00, CANAV price $21.00 + $12.00 Canada Post + $2.10 tax. Total for Canada $35.10 Mail your cheque or pay by PayPal to larry@canavbooks.com. USA and overseas please enquire for a price: larry@canavbooks.com

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Blog Pioneer Decades Jan. 2016Aviation in Canada: The Pioneer Decades

By Larry Milberry

Complementing Birdmen is this detailed history of the early years of flight in Canada. Beginning with Canada’s first flight – a balloon ascent in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1840, The Pioneer Decades explains how aviation went decade by decade in America’s next-door neighbour. Ballooning alone was a huge public fascination that produced one Canadian “first” after another, whether the Saint John ascent, the “first” aerial crossing between Canada and the US, the first powered airship appearances or the first parachute jump.

The Pioneer Decades then introduces heavier–than-air flight with teenager Larry Lesh’s daring glider experiments in Montreal in 1907. While Birdmen does tell a bit about Alexander Graham Bell and the Aerial Experiment Association, The Pioneer Decades covers the AEA program in detail, ending with the dramatic first powered airplane flight by the “Silver Dart” at Baddeck in 1909. There also is much of Glenn Curtiss and Hammondsport, where the “Silver Dart” was built and first flew.

The Pioneer Decades continues with the great years in Canada of the exhibition flyers, nearly all of whom are also covered in Birdmen. For example, Toronto’s first airplane flight is made by Charles Willard – a Curtiss-trained pilot flying his Curtiss-made “Golden Flyer”. The great Montreal and Toronto air meets of 1910 and 1911 are also here, with tales of the famed Curtiss and Wright pilots, many of whom would give their lives in the cause from 1907 onward – Lincoln Beachey, Cromwell Dixon, Eugene Ely, Ralph Johnstone, Phil Parmalee, etc.

The Pioneer Decades tells how McCurdy and Baldwin of the AEA tried selling their designs to the Canadian military, how Canada’s first WWI airmen trained at Curtiss and Wright schools, then how they excelled “Over the Front” in the first great aerial conflict. Many would fly the great Curtiss JN-4 and Curtiss’ renowned long-range, anti-submarine flying boats, about which, a few years earlier, the Wright camp had been scoffing. You’re bound to enjoy this beautifully-produced CANAV title.

Aviation in Canada: The Pioneer Decades

176 pages, large format, hardcover, photos, bibliography, index. $50.00 but with this offer $35.00 + $12.00 for Canada Post + $2.35 tax. Total for Canada $49.35 Mail your cheque or pay by PayPal to larry@canavbooks.com. USA and overseas please enquire for a price (email me at larry@canavbooks.com).

BOTH these leading titles: $56.00 + $15.00 for Canada Post + $3.55 tax. Total for Canada $74.55. Mail your cheque or pay by PayPal to larry@canavbooks.com. USA and overseas please enquire for a price: larry@canavbooks.com

CANAV Books, 51 Balsam Ave., Toronto, Ontario, Canada M4E 3B6

Email: larry@canavbooks.com

Tel: (416) 698-7559

Incredible adventures of the Norseman con’t…

Blog Norseman CF-HCBNew Norseman material emerges pretty well daily. Recently, Aric Aldrich sent me this classic Norseman scene captured (location unknown) in May 1956 by Leo Kohn, an early post-WWII airplane photography hobbyist. CF-HCB began in July 1944 as US Army UC-64A 44-70303. A year later it became NC33177. After its brief US civil career, it migrated to Canada in 1953. This is the very Norseman in which Carl Crossley force-landed in the Arctic just a few days after Leo photographed it. HCB was lost through the ice, but Carl was rescued. This is one of the many incredible adventures related in Aviation in Canada: The Noorduyn Norseman, which you can order online  here (Vol. 1) and here (Vol. 2).

Hey, girls and boys, are we aviating yet?