Props by Night, at the Aviodrome

Photos © R.Leeuw

Saturday 21Oct06 people gathered at the doors of the Aviodrome, upon sunset...
The Aviodrome at Lelystad,Holland was once again going to prove it wasn't some dead museum: tonight the props would come alive!

Catalina PH-PBY Consolidated PBY-5A Catalina ("Canso", c/n 300) is seen before the vintage Schiphol terminal.
At this time some rain started to fall, but God Pluvius would hold his tears when the actual revving started to happen, thank goodness...

More than 300 examples of the Catalina were built by Canadian Vickers and subsequently named 'Canso'.

Sunsetting on the Dutch Connie For many of us this evening the feeling of excitement was not simply because of so many radials singing their tune, but because the Dutch Connie would prove she had all fours running again!

Bright lights on the ramp A look at the ramp and we see Fokker F.27-100 PH-FHF (c/n 10105) and Douglas C-47A G-DAKK (c/n 9798) awaiting their turn.

More (incl. a 2017 update) on G-DAKK on South Coast A/W

In the background (in the darkness) sits the Connie and the humongous Boeing 747.

PH-PBY The Dutch Cat, PH-PBY, would join the festivities too. More about this Flying Boat can be read here.

Here is their website:

G-DAKK G-DAKK arrived very recently at the Aviodrome. It shows one prop short but this will be remedied soon I expect. Anyway, this did not keep her from here first air show (albeit on the ground..) in many years.

More (incl. a 2017 update) on G-DAKK on South Coast A/W

Antonov An-2Antonov An-2
The ouverture: a Fokker S.11 started this "musical" event (cockpit: Lex Bosman) but unfortunately I wasn't in a position to take any photos.
Then the Antonov An-2 (D-FONL "DM-SKL, c/n 17802) joined in, at the controls: Jan van Genne

PH-PBY no.2 almost there And here we see PH-PBY at work, no.2 was started first and no.1 is getting there...


Flights can be booked through the website of the Aviodrome

A nice overall view of the Dutch Catalina going at it !
Bert Huizenga was the man at the controls.

Read more about its recent history and restoration

G-DAKK G-DAKK is being prepared for the engine run; Mark Oostergo has the pleasure of being in the driver's seat, while Lex Bosman was to join him for the engine run.

No.1 running The tall guy with the headset is the Director of the Aviodrome, Arno van der Holst: maestro... please proceed !

Ready and waiting F.27 This Fokker classic, PH-FHF, is waiting to shock us all...

More on unique plane can be read here.

Fokker F.27 Friendship The Apron Supervisor has a close watch on it all...

Full lights blazing! Landing lights coming on full blast, ouch that hurts, night vision gone for a few minutes!

Dennis Rademaker and Jan Schenk were at the controls here.

Both no wrunning smoothly The Rolls Royce Dart engines now turning full blast, their shrieking noise doing a "shock-and-awe" on the audience...
No mother-in-law would even be able to come close in such penetration of the brain!

More of its history can be read on my page about VH-NLS.

Flights can be booked through the website of the Aviodrome

No.3 starting up And now ladies and gentlemen, the moment we have all been waiting for.... no.3 is starting to turn...

Yes, no.3 running well ! And yes, no.3 is running smooth as silk!
The Dutch Connie is back in business, a long wait and many hours of work by the volunteers, have been rewarded.

No.4 joins... And no.4 joins in; what a pleasure to see Lockheed L.749 Constellation N749NL "PH-FLE" (c/n 2604, actually a VC-121B, a military variant) running its engines again.

Now all 4 running.. Arno van der Holst is on the headset again; with handsignals he made the audience aware what to expect. Raymond Oostergo and William Groot were onboard, plus Tim Coons (yes, of MATS Connie fame!) who had helped out these past 2 weeks.

The Connie was almost jumping its chocks and rearing to go!
Arno reported Tim yelling out "let's go fly this plane!"

Colourful spectacle Bright lights, what a spectacle...

A few other Constellation pages of mine, to consider for a visit:
Connie's Comeback !
N749NL in restoration
Historical background on N749NL by Michael Prophet
Big Budworm Sprayers, by Stephen Piercey
Historical and technical data of the Lockheed Constellation

a great show! LARGE IMAGE

The Dutch Connie will now retire into the museum again, after this excellent performance. During this winter some routine maintenance (including an annual inspection) will take place.
Technically, N749NL should be able to fly again in March or April next year, but the matter of the EU insurance policy still has to be solved: by legislature and/or by a rich sugar daddy !!!

A big hand of applause for the people of the Aviodrome for making this happen !
Raymond thanks for filling in the blanks (as usual), Sander for curing my empty stomach, Erling Brom for his usual fascinating commentary, Arno: good luck finding that sugar daddy, Willem: thanks for getting out of my way and sitting on that cold tarmac... Thanks all !!!


Index page for Aviodrome links on this website


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