VH-EAN. Douglas C-47A-1-DK. c/n 12187.

Was also registered as: VH-EBF, VH-EBU and VH-SBD.

 

Construction completed at the Douglas Oklahoma City plant - December 31, 1943

It was built as a Douglas C-47A-1-DK

Allocated the U. S. serial number 42-92392

Transferred to the Royal Air Force as a Dakota III becoming FZ631 - January 1944

Allocated to No 24 Squadron during the war and was based in England

Allocated to the Military Advisor & Assistance Group for use by General Maitland Wilson - April 10, 1944

Returned to No 24 Squadron - March 23, 1945

Allocated to A.C.S.E.A. Communications Unit, Ratmalana, Singapore - September 12, 1946

Sold to Qantas Empire Airways - April 18, 1949

Entered onto the Australian Aircraft Register as VH-EAN - July 11, 1949

Registered to Qantas Empire Airways Ltd, Brisbane

The aircraft was withdrawn from service with the intention of scrapping it - 1951

Cancelled from the Australian Aircraft Register - January 21, 1951

Rebuilt by Qantas for return to airline service

Entered onto the Australian Aircraft Register as VH-EAN - March 06, 1952

Reregistered as VH-EBF - May 10, 1956

Damaged whilst landing at Sydney (Kingsford Smith) Airport during a pilot training flight - June 28, 1956

The trainee pilot inadvertently applied the toe brakes on touchdown and throughout the landing run

This caused the aircraft to tip over onto its nose

Extensive damage was caused to the nose section and the propeller blades

Crew: Training Captain N. J. Schlink; Trainee Pilot W. Robbie

Repaired and returned to service

Reregistered as VH-EBU - January 20, 1958

Sold to Trans Australia Airlines - September 01, 1960

Operated its first revenue service with T.A.A. as a freighter - September 01, 1960

Reregistered as VH-SBD - December 08, 1960

Registered to Australian National Airlines Commission, Melbourne

Transferred to New Guinea to operate the T.A.A. Sunbird Services

The aircraft was named 'Madang'

Withdrawn from T.A.A. service in New Guinea - October 31, 1973

Sold to Air Niugini - November 01, 1973

Cancelled from the Australian Aircraft Register - June 01, 1974

Entered onto the New Guinea Aircraft Register as P2-SBD - June 01, 1974

Reregistered as P2-ANO - December 11, 1975

Withdrawn from Air Niugini service and placed in open storage at Port Moresby - July 31, 1977

Sold to Insured Aircraft Title Service Inc - March 1980

Entered onto the United States Aircraft Register as N5590C

Sold to John Ford III - June 1981

Sold to Bush Pilots Airways Ltd - October 1981

Ferried Port Moresby - Cairns where the aircraft was used as a source of parts by Air Queensland

Aircraft subsequently mounted on a pole outside the terminal at Cairns Airport in Air Queensland livery - 1984

Displayed carrying registration marks 'VH-BPA'

On instructions from the Cairns Port Authority (owners of airport) it was removed from the pole - September 05, 2008

Concerns had been express over the structural integrity of the airframe

An inspection found that the airframe was badly corroded and was subsequently broken up - January 16, 2009

The nose section was acquired by Warbird Adventures, Mareeba, Queensland

Some parts were donated to the Qantas Founders Museum at Longreach, Queensland

Remaining airframe scrapped on site

 

VH-EAN. Qantas - in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, date unknown.

(E. Coates Collection Copyright Image 0251-054.)

VH-EAN. Qantas - in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, date unknown.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 0251-435.)

VH-EAN. Qantas - in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, June 28, 1956.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 0251-477.)

VH-EBU. Qantas - in the standard livery somewhere over New Guinea, date unknown.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 0251-436.)

VH-SBD. TAA Sunbird Services - 'Madang' in the standard livery at Lae Airport, July 1966.

(G. Bennett Collection Copyright Image 0250-990.)

VH-SBD. TAA Sunbird Services - 'Madang' in the standard livery at Lae Airport, date unknown.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 0251-681.)

VH-SBD. TAA Airlines of New Guinea - 'Madang' in the final livery at Lae Airport, August 1973.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 0250-991.)

N5590C. Air Queensland - in the basic Air Niugini livery at Cairns Airport, date unknown.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 0250-638.)

VH-BPA. Air Queensland - in the standard livery at Cairns Airport, December 1984.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 0251-069.)

VH-BPA. Bush Pilots Airways - in the original livery at Cairns Airport, October 1987.

(G. Bennett Copyright Image 0251-067.)

VH-BPA. Bush Pilots Airways - in the original livery at Cairns Airport, October 1987.

(G. Bennett Copyright Image 0251-068.)