HARS NAVY HERITAGE FLIGHT Update: January 2019

UPDATE ON THE HARS NAVY HERITAGE FLIGHT – January 2019

All images on this page courtesy of P.J. Cannell

Readers of this website and of our monthly newsletter “FlyBy” will be aware that, after many years in limbo, the future of the Navy Historic Flight was given some certainty at the end of 2018 when HARS won the Tender to acquire its assets.

Since then, much has happened in terms of securing some elements of the Flight and developing a plan for its future.  Our understanding of the current situation (as of 20 January 2019) is as follows:

  • HARS is indeed the successful tenderer for the ex-RAN FAA Historic Flight airframes and spares. Henceforth these assets will be known as the HARS Navy Heritage Flight.
  • Shortly after securing the tender, ADF disposals advised the assets would be disposed of in two Tranches as follows:
    • Tranch 1- the non-radiation affected airframes and spares – mainly the two Trackers and selected Iroquois spares, and
    • Tranch 2 – the potentially radiation-affected assets, which required clearance/exemption before they could be released.
  • In December 2018 HARS signed contracts and paid the administration fee for Tranch 1 airframes and selected spares. The two Trackers and pallets of Tracker spares together with the available Tranch 1 Huey spares were subsequently cleared from B hangar and, with the assistance of Air Affairs (a major HARS sponsor), were located on the western side of the airfield.
  • HARS has recently been advised that Tranch 2 assets have now been declared as exempt from the requirement to be registered and cleared by ARPANSA (The Australian Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority).
  • The HARS President (Mr. Bob de la Hunty) is now commencing the admin and fee payments for Tranch 2. The target date for finalisation and removal of all assets from Albatross’s operational base is 18 February 2019.
  • In the meantime, the paperwork required to transfer legal ownership of the CASA registered airframes has commenced.
  • HARS has also accepted a quote from QBE Aviation insurance to cover both public liability and airframe damage/ loss for the HARS Navy Heritage Flight, in its entirety.

The HARS Committee has, we understand, approved keeping the Navy Heritage Flight intact in the longer term, with a clear intent to locate relevant airframes to a future site adjacent to the FAA Museum complex (subject to approval).  Having said that, the short time available before the remainder of the HARS Navy Heritage Flight must be moved out of the ADF Operational area may require some temporary accommodation arrangements.

 

As far as we can tell, the planned disposition of assets in the first half of 2019, once transportation etc. can be secured, will be along the following lines:

Hawker Sea Fury FB II – WG630 (note: erroneously described as VW232 in Tender documentation)
Initially for Prominent Static Display at HARS Albion Park (as there is already a display Sea Fury in the FAAM). Longer Term Rebuild.

Bell Iroquois UH-1B – N9-3104
Hangared at HARS Sponsor Air Affairs Complex
The aircraft will be surveyed for a more complete restoration and flight status.

Bell Iroquois UH-1B – N9-3101
Hangared at HARS Sponsor Air Affairs Complex.

This aircraft will be used to support N9-3104 

Spares – Bell Iroquois UH-1B 88 Pallet Lot
Used for lots 02 and 03 to bring these two aircraft to their maximum potential.

Spares will be stored at HARS Major sponsor Air Affairs.

De Havilland Sea Venom – WZ895 (Incl 2 x 20′ Container)
For Static Display at HARS Albion Park complex initially.

The aircraft will be surveyed for a more complete restoration.

Douglas Dakota C-47B – N2-90
For Static Display at HARS NHF site adjacent to FAA Museum, subject to successful application to RAN and EIG for confirmation of HARS lease on the (already identified) block of land. May be located in the short term at Air Affairs, Nowra. 

Grumman Tracker S-2G – N12-152333
Flight Line at HARS Sponsor Air Affairs.

The aircraft will be surveyed for a more complete restoration back to flying status. 

Grumman Tracker S-2G – N12-153600
Stored at HARS Sponsor Air Affairs, and also to use for parts and training support for the other Tracker.

Spares Grumman Tracker 37 Pallet Lot
Used for lots 07 and 08 to bring these two aircraft to their maximum potential. Spares will be stored at HARS Major sponsor Air Affairs.

Westland Wessex 31B – N7-203 Note regarding Wessex: inherent engine unreliability coupled with high restoration costs and excessive maintenance intensity are likely to preclude a further consideration by HARS of future Wessex operations.
For Prominent Static Display – Hangared at HARS Complex Albion Park.
This aircraft will complement the significant military collection at HARS.

Westland Wessex 31B – N7-222
For Prominent Static Display – At HARS Complex Parkes NSW.

This Aircraft will complement the significant military collection at HARS – Parkes.

Spares Westland Wessex 34 Pallet Lot
Depending on requirements HARS will store these parts in one or two locations – At Albion Park Rail or Parkes.

Spares Westland Wessex 20′ Container – uncatalogued
Depending on requirements and content HARS will store these parts in one or two locations – At Albion Park Rail or Parkes.