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PPRuNe Forums Thread Wiki: PNG Ples Bilong Tok Tok
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PNG Ples Bilong Tok Tok

Old 12th Mar 2014, 07:17
  #3981 (permalink)  
 
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Tinpis,

I was on the search for the Smiths for the whole period. As you say the trail of the survivor was tracked but he was found dead with his nav bag indicating he was not thinking too straight.

There were a few interesting things happened on the search. One was The Director of Operations of DCA refusing to let other qualified helicopter drivers use the Alluette/Lama which had been given as an unqualified loan for the search because it was "his" aircraft. We lost a very useful powerful machine for much of the time.

Another was the shortage of turbine qualified civil pilots available to fly the Macair Porters. This was the reason I and other Army pilots were able to earn a few dollars on our leave time moonlighting.

During that search we had two Army Porters available and one Macair Porter. There were at least two of these aircraft in the air at all times. Graham Syphers flew the Macair Porter as much as he could but as Macair Chief Pilot he was also heavily involved in the administrative side of the operation.

One of the Army Porters was in the air at all times with our limited pilot availability jumping from one to the other during refuels. I flew the second one
and on arrival back in Lae for fuel, walked across the airfield and jumped in the Macair Porter (still in Army flying suit) alternating throughout the day. I think Ian Sinnott may have been on the musical chairs as well. Anyhow as related the search was eventually abandoned. Operations continued from first to last light - no crew times considered. Of course it was all hands to the pumps and there was a big flock of every available aircraft, not just Macair machines, looking.

I think it was called off on a Thursday night. On Saturday morning I was flying the Macair Porter on my day off doing coffee shuttles and while waiting to load on the side of the strip - can't recall if it was Mindik or Pindiu - was approached by ? (a European but not the Kiap) saying some remote villagers had just come in on foot reporting sighting the crashed aircraft. As soon as I got in the air I talked to Lae and within a very short time a rescue team was gathered and on-site.

They found the aircraft and tracked the poor fellow to find him propped up against a tree having succumbed to his injuries.

Last edited by aaavn; 12th Mar 2014 at 09:07.
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Old 12th Mar 2014, 11:08
  #3982 (permalink)  
 
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Just thinking about the 206 drivers in PNG and the real skills these guys had to have to survive.

I was spoiled with a nearly 600hp turbine dragging my bum around in one of the best STOL aircraft ever built where an extra ton in the back only reduced the performance from fantastic to very good. Bad weather - just stick on the oxygen mask and zip up to above 20,000. The endurance was the only thing that got us nervous.

I had a few drives of loaded 206's and flew as passenger a number of times and the continuous pre-planning of routes, approaches and constantly treading a fine line between the ridge line or cloud gap rising or falling in the windscreen as you struggled to get over really got me edgy. It is a credit to their pilots' skill that many more 206's and 185's are not perched in an unknown treetop somewhere on a PNG mountainside.

I think as they graduated to Barons, 402's and Twin Otters and were able to actually get away from the enroute threats a bit more (the bigger aircraft came with their own but different problems) they continued to draw on their puckered sphincter 206 experiences to provide a safer operation. Of course many went on to airlines and I bet there are still the odd occasions when the 206 training helps to provide a 747 captain with that little extra margin.

My hat is certainly off to you guys.
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Old 12th Mar 2014, 21:21
  #3983 (permalink)  
 
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I bet there are still the odd occasions when the 206 training helps to provide a 747 captain with that little extra margin.
My first commercial flying job (1962) was flying Cessna 180/185s for STOL. I retired as a B-747 Check Pilot with SQ.

The most important thing I learned from flying in New Guinea was always to "keep the back door open", always to have an alternate plan in mind for when things went wrong. Didn't matter the aircraft type. Worked well for me...
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Old 13th Mar 2014, 04:13
  #3984 (permalink)  
 
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Pinky the pilot. Who was your colleague based in Vanimo? I was there as mission pilot from 1986-1987. I remember the Douglas trislander well.
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Old 13th Mar 2014, 05:55
  #3985 (permalink)  
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Bozzo; Scott L. He and I started with Dz on the same day and both of us were still with the Company when it went bagarap! (Around October 1990 IIRC)
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Old 14th Mar 2014, 12:17
  #3986 (permalink)  
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For sure the PNG time gave you a chance to test your skills wrestling with the shiny levers but later I always felt inadequate asserting the old captain thing when a number nine boot up the arse grass would have done it
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Old 19th Mar 2014, 06:24
  #3987 (permalink)  
 
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.

Last edited by Standby Scum; 19th Mar 2014 at 06:59.
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Old 23rd Mar 2014, 12:14
  #3988 (permalink)  
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aaavn

Will trot out memory and see how we stack
The survivor was the PIC? the younger Smith
It appeared he lit fires to docs aip etc and removed the pax from the AC?Heard that the RADIO was still connected?
During his wandering no doubt badly concussed he apparently had veered away from dogs barking at him approaching villages (trackers)
Dont think the new camera ever appeared
I think that was the last Macair 206
Which one of you Army guys did a post flight after I handed over a Porter in Wau, and discovered a large orange belly where the engine oil had exited the starter seal?
That was nearly one flight to many
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Old 6th Apr 2014, 05:24
  #3989 (permalink)  
 
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I think you have the Smith story about right from my memory.

Was not me who discovered the oil on the Porter (only time in over 3,000 hours on both Army and Macair Porters that I had a problem was a blocked fuel filter light on a Macair machine.)

I did fly a lot out of Wau. In fact after I left 183 Squadron to go back to my next posting at Oakey I took my family up there from Lae for a month over Xmas. The pay we were getting from Macair - in the hand - was $24 per hour which was a HUGE amount for 1973.

I did just on 100 hours, mainly to Menyamya and back and earned enough for a full deposit on a very nice $24,000 home in Toowoomba. I could never figure out why the Macair guys would not do their turbine theory which would only take about 4 nights of study.

As permanent employees they would not have been paid nearly as much as we were but it would have given them a step up in pay but more importantly a huge step up in aircraft.

There was a bit of a stink when a Macair pilot complained to the pilot's union about Army guys taking the bread out of their mouths. It resulted in a visit by the senior pilot union rep (TAA pilot I think) and a senior Army officer from Moresby. The Army guys were marched in to the inquisition (we were allowed to do outside work so long as it did not interfere with our Army job or take jobs from civilians) and after the red-ragger pilot mouthed off he admitted he had been too slack to do his turbine theory along with every other Macair junior pilot at the time.

The smart pilots with the theory were flying twins and did not want to go back to coffee shuttles. The pilot union man had a few very harsh words to say to the guys who were complaining, about wasting his time and to get themselves into gear if they wanted to progress. Looks like they were pretty slow and right to the end of my time Macair would ring the squadron trying to get pilots to fill the empty seat in the Porters.
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Old 6th Apr 2014, 10:17
  #3990 (permalink)  

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The pilot union man had a few very harsh words to say to the guys who were complaining, about wasting his time and to get themselves into gear if they wanted to progress.
Sounds like Sharpie?
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Old 6th Apr 2014, 11:22
  #3991 (permalink)  
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There were about 5 BGT exams in all ya just had to remeber em when they came around.
Baron was fun but I reckon the Plartus was funner
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Old 16th Apr 2014, 08:43
  #3992 (permalink)  
 
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Those Magnificent Men In Their Flying Mackine



Continued next post

Last edited by P2 WDL; 16th Apr 2014 at 09:27.
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Old 16th Apr 2014, 08:49
  #3993 (permalink)  
 
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Those Magnificent Man In Their Flying Machine


Last edited by P2 WDL; 16th Apr 2014 at 10:07.
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Old 20th Apr 2014, 11:32
  #3994 (permalink)  
 
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Thumbs up Archive film footage of Air Niugini

A 15 minute archive film of the early days of Air Niugini (1974 - 1981) can be viewed on YouTube at;
http://youtube/bmiEluEp6FM
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Old 20th Apr 2014, 21:02
  #3995 (permalink)  

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Ray Thurecht, Vince Sanders co pilot on the above Tiger Moth ferry, is now Sir Raymon Thurecht, recently turned 80 and still active in business in PNG.

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Old 22nd Apr 2014, 04:22
  #3996 (permalink)  
 
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Well, it was a Tri,,,,,

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Old 22nd Apr 2014, 19:12
  #3997 (permalink)  
 
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The Smith who 'walked'

Tinpis and Groggy. The Smith who walked was found by Griffo (AAAVN from 183) flying that day in a Crowley B47. Managed to land about 50 metres away in the tundra. He was curled up under a scraggy palm and your comments about the unusual things he did and tried to do are correct. I kept some notes throughout the search, and have pretty clear recollections (for an old fart) of most of it.. Cheers

Last edited by Olive61; 22nd Apr 2014 at 20:04.
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Old 23rd Apr 2014, 10:42
  #3998 (permalink)  
 
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WDL

Nice story on the Tiger Moth flight
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Old 26th Jul 2014, 09:04
  #3999 (permalink)  
 
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I found this Forum after MH370 disappeared, then discovered this PNG Thread.

I was in PNG from Dec '74 (just before Tracey bombed Darwin) until about March '79. ATC, initially in Goroka Tower, then Madang, Lae and Nadzab when it re-opened.

I recognise many names and a couple of Nom-de-Nets, especially Two Dogs, g'day Paul (many mis-spent evenings with you around a pool table in Goroka).

Both our kids were born in PNG, one in Goroka and the other in Lae.

Anyway, reading this great thread has spurred me into scanning some slides. Here are some of a GAF Nomad prang at Nadzab in 1978 . I'm sure it was the infamous tail plane stall.

I'll will go through all my slides and get some up that are appropriate in the fullness of time.













Regards to all

Stephen

Last edited by Charlie75; 27th Jul 2014 at 00:13.
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Old 26th Jul 2014, 10:38
  #4000 (permalink)  
Man Bilong Balus long PNG
 
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G'day Charlie75 and welcome!

Who operated the Gomad in those piccies? Wasn't Douglas (Aerial Tours at that time I think) perchance?
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