02/28/2007. This aircraft was built as a Firefly AS.Mk.6 for the RAN, s/n WD840,
in 1950 and shipped to Australia on board the HMAS Sydney, arriving
there on December 7. It was damaged in a landing accident at the HMAS
Sydney on September 2, 1952. Later it was converted to a TT.Mk6
target tug, and finally struck off charge in 1965. It changed hands a
few times and then was acquired by Bob Diemert of Carman, Manitoba,
Canada, only sans engine.
The aircraft was to be powered by a surplus Rolls-Royce Merlin 500
fitted with a chin radiator from an Avro 685 York and hence the
remark by Chris
Pinn: "Anybody who knows the Fairey Firefly also knows that
they either have one radiator under the nose or in the leading edge
of each wing. They never had both - except for this aircraft!
Actually if you look carefully you can see that the wing radiators
have been faired over. The normally blanked over area between the
front and rear cockpits has been modified and extra windows fitted."
added: "If you didn't notice the leading edge radiators you'd
almost think it was a Mk.I or III." The different engine and the
conversion to a seven-seater acquired some modifications as explained
by Bill Ewing:
"The original leading edge radiators were faired over and he
hammered out a hand-made cowling to cover the new radiator location
under the chin. The entire length of the fuselage was gutted and a
single bench seat installed. Even this was different. Bob built it so
that you straddled the seat and then slid a seat-back into place in
tubes riveted to the bench sides." The aircraft in this form
flew for the first time on September 17, 1972 registered as CF-CBH.
In 1975 this aircraft was sold to Jerry Bag of South Easton,
Massachusetts, USA, registered as N810J. The Mid Atlantic Air Museum
at Middletown, Pennsylvania, acquired the aircraft in 1982, being
re-registered as N1840. Thereafter it was registered to Don Knapp of
Fort Lauderdale, Florida by 1989 and to Lone Star Flight Museum, at
Galveston, Texas, by 1992. There parts of it have been used to
restore Firefly AS.Mk.6 WB518.
It was sold again, this time to Airplane Services of Jay, Florida;
while transported to Florida it was involved in a road crash.
Finally, on March 10, 2006 the aircraft was registered to Arm
Aviation of Park City, Utah.