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-   -   Oldest Australian Airline Pilot? (https://www.pprune.org/pacific-general-aviation-questions/325013-oldest-australian-airline-pilot.html)

tail wheel 30th Apr 2008 07:50

Oldest Australian Airline Pilot?
Out of idle curiosity...... How old is Australia's oldest currently operating airline pilot?

The oldest I am aware of is 72 years of age, 32,000 hours and a current Grade 1 Instructor.

Anyone top that?

Also heard of a current Grade 1 Instructor still flying and instructing in his early 80's. (A legend - many will remember him from Newcastle.)

No names please!

Tail Wheel

tail wheel 30th Apr 2008 08:22

There is no upper age limit on an ATPL in Australia, only current medical.

The USA upper limit was age 60 - think it is now 62 or 63 years of age?

Col Pay (RIP) was older but not a current airline pilot.

I'm curious about the oldest current airline pilot, not names or airlines.

F111 30th Apr 2008 08:37

What about Jack C, he was the Chief Pilot of the Dc3 Company operating from BK a few years back, I believe he was over 65.

skyways 30th Apr 2008 08:55

84 when I flew with him last year... :)

Unhinged 30th Apr 2008 09:14

A very reliable source told me recently (within the last 6 months) that there were two over-70 captains currently flying for Qantas domestic. It was said that their careers had been similar all the way through and neither wanted to be the first to retire.

And I don't know if he's still flying, but KA certainly was still doing ATO duties last time I heard of him. Flew bombers in WW2 I was told.

tail wheel 30th Apr 2008 10:30

I know of another charter pilot, Grade 1 Instructor and LAME who has 35,000 hours (not including a few "extra" hours he "forgot" to log during his long ag flying career.)

I seem to recall the claimed highest time pilot ever had over 45,000 hours when he retired in the USA.

It would be interesting to know the highest time current pilot in Australia?

Tail Wheel

TwoTango 30th Apr 2008 10:32

I know of a husband-wife team who I am led to believe are in their 80s. I've been told she's the oldest CFI in the country, and he is a couple of years older than her I think... Couldn't tell you the exact age I'm sorry...


Old Fella 30th Apr 2008 11:04

Old pilots
I don't think there is anything pathetic about being able to maintain a medical category and the skill to continue to instruct. Respect amos2, respect!!!

Guptar 30th Apr 2008 13:12

I;m pretty sure the world record for hrs logged is 65,000 done by a guy in the US who flew the same J3 Cub on powerline inspection duties for 55 years continuously. His last flight was 2 days before he suddenly died in his sleep in his mid 80's, about 3 years ago. he was mentioned in an issue of FLYING.

Animalclub 30th Apr 2008 13:19

Didn't a Qantas pilot successfully sue Qantas about the retiring age? This pilot could only be used on domestic services due to the laws of other countries... so I presume now that there are quite a few over 65... good on 'em.

Nuthinondaclock 30th Apr 2008 14:29


If the Newcastle bloke you refer to is the one I'm thinking of he's an absolute legend. Total gentleman and a brilliant instructor/examiner. Used to wear motorcycle boots. Ex Esso bizjet CP and was the Beech demo pilot for a number of years. A more unassuming and humble man you'll never meet. Glad to hear he's still well. Lived near Lockinvar?


tail wheel 30th Apr 2008 21:17

That's him. Not sure where he lives in NSW, haven't spoken to him for around a decade.

cjam 30th Apr 2008 22:37

Am I right in thinking that the old Ag pilots generally have the most hours? More than the old airline pilots?
How many hours do the posters on this thread have? I'd guess I've got about a fifth as much as old fella.....just cause of his handle. 4400 total.

tail wheel 30th Apr 2008 22:46

cjam. It is probably fair to assume many ag pilots that started their career in the 1950s or 1960s may have flown far more hours than their log books records. :E

The years of the super phosphate bounties were boom years for the agricultural aviation industry.

I know of ag pilots who completed a full "season" in the eastern states, then move to the west for another full "season" - all in the same flying year!

bushy 1st May 2008 00:20

I know a of a flying instructor who has been 80 for the last two or three years.

Jabawocky 1st May 2008 00:20

Does that include those who have stopped line flying and are instructing in the sim?

I know a very senior QF 744 guy who is well over 65......larger than Life and goodnes knows why he let them talk him into staying......its not like he needs the $$. Top bloke though!:ok:


Capt Wally 1st May 2008 00:58

.......the oldest Australian Airline Pilot?.....well some mornings feels like ME:E My wallet is not as fat but am still a pilot !:ok:

I think the older ones are staying there 'cause of posts in that other thread, ..........."any jobs in the Pacific for a low time pilot":bored: That's a crack up!
Just as a side note to this anybody know of the oldest pilot in OZ still flying full stop?


tail wheel 1st May 2008 07:02

The pilot and ATO Nuthinondaclock is referring to, R E is in his mid 80s, still current.

I heard that an instructor who used to be on the Gold Coast some years ago, F K, is still flying and must around be the same age?

Stationair8 1st May 2008 07:44

Most ag pilots from the 1970's had two logbooks one for DCA/CASA and one for themselves. Back in the good old days a good pilot and a beaver could spread a fair bit of superphosate.

Chadzat 1st May 2008 09:27

All very interesting posts! I can't fathom flying that many hours- 65,000!! That would be a fewyears continuously in the cockpit from rough mental arithmatic!

Just to confuse the thread even further- how about the other end of the scale? Over the years what has been the youngest age to a command of an airliner? Ie Domestic or International, Jet or old big piston propliners?

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