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The D'havilland Heron Story

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The D'havilland Heron Story

Old 24th Mar 2020, 02:50
  #81 (permalink)  
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I posted this on Quora a while back. It's one of those 50 year old memories that proves the brain buffers either side of the central issue. I cringe to think what would have happened if I'd got airborne.

https://www.quora.com/How-reliable-w...r/Rob-Benham-2
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Old 24th Mar 2020, 04:02
  #82 (permalink)  
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Very quick - newly washed Heron. Just me. Heavy rain. Stare at Horizon (instrument) because there was water in it. The tide came up and due to the soap, bubbles started to form. Then the sculpted buckets in the huge brass giro hooked into the water. For moment, a miniature washing machine.

Memories keep coming back, but this is a Dove. Left CAFU Stansted one beautiful night. I'd been bombing around the circuit failing engines and some of the starboard engine's life-blood and been used. ( carried 5 gallons of spare oil to Turin one night)

Fat dumb and relieved the day was over, the right prop went fully fine. I'd practised and practised over-speed drills when I was a DC3 skipper, and now all I had in my windshield was stars. My thumb was still pressing the huge button when I realised what had happened. I'd seen 5000 rpm go by before the thing feathered but the engine survived thanks in part to being over 60 degrees nose up. It really sounded as though it had exploded.

Next day the engineers questioned me about the bent button bracket. It was well bent. 'It took two of us to bend it straight again'. Funny what adrenalin will do.

A Peter's Aviation Heron and a party of Norfolk farmers, somewhere in France, now drunk as skunks and determined to be home in time for dinner. Fat pilot from a country NE a bit. He sniggered at me, and then the aircraft. He mocked the propulsive power units with circular finger movements.
We were bottled in, and the farmers took it upon themselves to start pushing. They'd be savvy enough to remove the chocks and the brakes had long lost their pressure. They'd managed to stop the fat pilot sniggering, since it was heading towards his Lear. It was my falsetto scream that made the farmers heave it to a standstill.

.

Last edited by Loose rivets; 24th Mar 2020 at 04:43.
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Old 25th Mar 2020, 15:45
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Re. the Devon ...


2 and a half years 'right seat resident' Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Burma and Singapore.
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Old 29th Mar 2020, 16:53
  #84 (permalink)  
 
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I flew the Heron for about six months out of KNVY/KBUR/KLGB/KLAS. The name of the company was FleetAir and they had two Herons used to shuttle people back and forth between the Hacienda Hotel in Las Vegas. I seem to recall that N3999A was one of the aircraft but I can't find any record of it when I google the N number. It was pretty rare to see any Herons operating in N America in those days.
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Old 29th Mar 2020, 17:07
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Spooky: N3999A was reregistered as N571PR (cn 14119) eg: https://abpic.co.uk/pictures/view/1580610
It was re-engined with Continentals.

Laurence
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Old 29th Mar 2020, 18:24
  #86 (permalink)  
 
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Thanks so much for your update. I suspected that it had undergone this conversion but wasn't sure. Now I know
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Old 30th Mar 2020, 00:56
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As a youngster was privileged to fly as pax in this privately owned Heron, VH-ASH, serial 14111 . Went to the US, registered as N210FA then N988SA, re-engined with Lycoming IO-540 Fischer Bros Aviation Inc. Galion OH damaged 12/18/78 Cleveland Hopkins International Airport collided with vehicle crossing runway on landing, canx 07/28/80 sold for parts to Susquehana Airlines.


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Old 30th Mar 2020, 04:09
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Looking through this thread, I noticed I had made a mistake in a very old post about my trips in a Queen's Flight Heron and a Devon. In my post, I called the Devon a Dove!

I am wondering why the RAF renamed the Dove but did not rename the Heron. Does anyone know why?
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Old 30th Mar 2020, 06:01
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I remember flying in a Heron from St Thomas to St Croix in the Virgin Islands. It had flat engines out there so had been re-engined. It was a smooth ride compared to some of the types I flew on down there. One odd thing I seem to remember is the emergency hatches were in the ceiling. Is my memory right?
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Old 30th Mar 2020, 10:25
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Two overhead escape exits from what I remember of G-ANUO & G-AOTI.
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Old 30th Mar 2020, 11:06
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Was the idea of overhead escape hatches carried over from the Rapide I wonder?
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Old 30th Mar 2020, 12:49
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As far as I recall, India Four Two, the RAF never operated the Heron? The RAF always wanted it's own name for every type, even straight purchases of an existing civil model. Where the RN operated a common type with the other service, they would prefix it ""Sea" as in Sea Devon. On operational aircraft, " Sea" meant fitted with hooks and heavy duty undercarriage for shipboard flying, but in the case of the Devon/Sea Devon it was "ours not theirs"!
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Old 30th Mar 2020, 15:51
  #93 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Jay Doubleyou View Post
As far as I recall, India Four Two, the RAF never operated the Heron?
The Queen's Flight and (briefly) 60 Squadron operated the Heron C3/C4.
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Old 30th Mar 2020, 16:01
  #94 (permalink)  
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Vaguely recall a rather nice Heron in a green scheme which I think the Navy operated.

Equally vague recollections of a Heron - not Prinair - somewhere in southern Florida in '84 - might have been Fort Lauderdale or Opa Locka. Can't recall if it had Gipsys or Lycomings. Therre were a number of Beagle 206s lned up at Fort Lauderdale, that I DO recall!
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Old 30th Mar 2020, 19:01
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Vaguely recall a rather nice Heron in a green scheme which I think the Navy operated.
That would have been the Admiral's Barge. Also used to get retiring/resigning fixed wing pilots their licences.
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Old 30th Mar 2020, 19:08
  #96 (permalink)  
 
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The Queen's Flight and (briefly) 60 Squadron operated the Heron C3/C4.
... and also 27 MU. I had a ride in theirs.

Ibid:
The D'havilland Heron Story

It was very nicely equipped in the cabin, as you would expect, including carpeting over the main spar carry-through, to protect the Royal shins.
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Old 30th Mar 2020, 19:56
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Originally Posted by Fareastdriver View Post
That would have been the Admiral's Barge. Also used to get retiring/resigning fixed wing pilots their licences.
Flag Officer, Naval Air Command's Sea Heron:



On the subject of Admiral's barges, there are lots of photos on the 'Net of models of Sea Devon XK895 in an overall green scheme - but I've never seen any evidence that the actual aircraft was ever painted thus. Can anyone confirm either way ?
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Old 30th Mar 2020, 23:58
  #98 (permalink)  
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I once flew the Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Dr Eklund, around all the UK sites. He was accompanied by a fairly senior RAF officer.

Even back then I was interested in physics, but despite them entrusting this illustrious personage to me, a mere civilian, I was not allowed into the power stations. It took two days to make the tour.
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Old 31st Mar 2020, 02:44
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Listing of Heron production, registrations, hands they passed through, serials etc etc three pages in total

https://rzjets.net/aircraft/?page=1&typeid=330

The ultimate Heron (Saunders ST-27 with a pair of PT6's providing the grunt




The final iteration, Saunders ST-28, one off prototype







Last edited by megan; 31st Mar 2020 at 03:06. Reason: photo
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Old 31st Mar 2020, 04:29
  #100 (permalink)  
 
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When I leant to fly at the L.A.C. in 1966 the NPC Heron was "Double U". Not sure of the full reg. (G-ASUU?). Flown by Alan Firmin and Bob (?) Nelson. I got a couple of back seat rides after maintenance. G-ANUO came along after that. I lived in Kirby Muxloe and the Heron would often fly out over on weekdays to where I wonder? Possibly joining 'Airways' heading up to Dounreay? Oh so long ago! Tim.
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