VH-TLB. Lockheed 188A Electra. c/n 1069.

 

This was the second of two Electras ordered new by TAA - October 10, 1958

First flown - June 1959

Accepted by TAA at the Lockheed Burbank plant - July 14, 1959

Entered onto the Australian Aircraft Register as VH-TLB - July 14, 1959

Registered to Australian National Airlines Commission, Melbourne

Departed Burbank on the delivery flight to Australia - July 17, 1959

Arrived at Melbourne (Essendon) on completion of the delivery flight - July 19, 1959

Delivery route: San Francisco - Honolulu - Canton Island - Nadi - Melbourne

Flight crew: Captains J. A. P. Boyd, J. H. R. Marshall, J. R. Groves; Navigators A. Harding (BUR/NAN),

C. Randall (NAN/MEL); Engineer T. Scrive

The aircraft was named 'John Gilbert'

Operated its first revenue service Melbourne (Essendon) - Sydney (Kingsford Smith) - July 26, 1959

Set speed record on Melbourne - Perth sector of 4 hrs 38 mins (Captain W. O. James) - March 03, 1960

Aircraft was involved in an attempted hijacking on the Sydney - Brisbane sector (Captain J. Benton) - July 19, 1960

The hijacker (Alex Hilderbrandt) demanded to be flown to Darwin or Singapore or he would explode a bomb onboard

The aircraft carried 43 passengers including TAA Captain D. Lawrence who overpowered the hijacker

Two shots were fired inside the cabin with no injuries sustained and aircraft landed safely in Brisbane

Departed Melbourne (Essendon) on the ferry flight to the United States as TN1403 - March 20, 1961

Ferry route: Melbourne - Nadi - Canton Island - Honolulu - Burbank

Flight crew: Captains R. Widmer, G. J. White; F/O B. J. Wales; F/E N. W. Hosking; Navigator Captain W. Cast

Aircraft was to have wing and engine mount modification undertaken by Lockheed

Entered the Lockheed (LEAP) Program as LEAP #110 TAA-2 - March 23, 1961

LEAP modification completed - April 19, 1961

Departed Burbank on ferry flight to Melbourne (Essendon) - April 20, 1961

Flight crew: Captains C. H. Gray, J. H. R. Marshall; F/O J. H. Lavin; F/E F. W. McDonald;

Navigator Captain M. B. Darby

Set speed record on Melbourne - Brisbane sector of 119 minutes (Captain A. Mahoney) - June 19, 1961

The aircraft was grounded by a Department of Civil Aviation order - July 24, 1964

This was the result of corrosion specks being found in the wing and being misidentified as wing cracks

The grounding order was lifted on the Australian Electra fleet - July 27, 1964

Returned to the United States for further wing modifications, departing Melbourne (Essendon) - April 18, 1966

Flight crew: Captains R. Meates, K. Humphries; F/O C. Alexander; F/E G. MacArthur, R. Taafe;

Navigators Captain G. Bracken (MEL/HNL/MEL), F/O K. Radke (HNL/NYC/HNL)

Ferry route: Melbourne - Nadi - Canton Island - Honolulu - San Francisco - Kansas City - New York

Modifications were completed and the aircraft had returned to Melbourne (Essendon) - May 30, 1966

Operated TAA's final Electra service to Cocos Islands before being replaced by Boeing 727s - February 22, 1971

Operated its final revenue service Melbourne (Essendon) - Sydney (Kingsford Smith) as TN1948 - April 30, 1971

Ferried Sydney (Kingsford Smith) - Brisbane (Captain B. Taber) for storage as TN1922 - April 30, 1971

The aircraft had flown 33,826 hours with 26,843 cycles

Test flown at Brisbane (Captain S. Arnold, R. Hickey; F/E R. Verity) - September 13, 1971

Ferried Brisbane - Melbourne (Essendon) direct in 2 hrs 55 mins with the same crew - September 15, 1971

Sold to Concare Aircraft Leasing, Tulsa, Oklahoma - January 21, 1972

Test flown at Melbourne (Captain S. Arnold, A. Hofman; F/E R. Verity) for 90 minutes - February 20, 1972

Test flown at Melbourne (Captain S. Arnold, A. Hofman; F/E R. Verity) for 155 minutes - February 21, 1972

Departed Melbourne on the ferry flight to the United States as 'N188LB' - March 01, 1972

Ferry route: Melbourne - Brisbane - Nadi - Pago Pago - Hilo - Oakland - Tulsa - Miami

Flight crew: Captain A. Hofman (command); Concare crew members assisting

Cancelled from the Australian Aircraft Register - April 05, 1972

Leased / purchased by Transair Corporation, Nevada - 1972

Leased to Royal Air Lao

Entered onto the Laotian Aircraft Register as XW-PKB - May 1972

The aircraft was named ‘Tiao Khoun Boulom’

Arrived Vietiane, Laos on completion of the ferry flight from the United States - June 12, 1972

It was repossessed due to the non-payment of fees to Transair Corp - July 31, 1974

Flown to Hong Kong for overhaul as seizure was imminent by the new Lao Government - August 08, 1974

Ferried Hong Kong - Singapore (Seletar) after overhaul by HAECO - October 27, 1974

Leased to Mandala Airlines in a full passenger configuration - 1974

Entered onto the Indonesian Aircraft Register as PK-RLX - ?

The aircraft was named 'Pangeran Diponegoro'

Lease terminated due to complications with Indonesian Civil Aviation Authority - February 15, 1975

Ferried to Singapore where no further flights for Transair Corporation were undertaken

Seized by Concare along with Electra 'XW-PKA' for the non-payment of leasing fees

Sold to American Jet Industries and ferried Singapore - United States - 1975

This aircraft was observed stored at Van Nuys, California - October 14, 1975

Entered onto the United States Aircraft Register as N188LB - March 10, 1976

Registered to American Jet Industries Inc

Converted to an L-188AF freighter by American Jet Industries - April 1976

Cancelled from the United States Aircraft Register - May 17, 1976

Sold to TACA, El Salvador - June 1976

Entered onto the El Salvador Aircraft Register as YS-07C - ?

The aircraft was damaged beyond repair at San Salvador International Airport - February 02, 1980

The No. 4 fuel tank exploded in flames during engine start resulting in the wing failing outboard of number 4 engine

Several possibilities for explosion and fire were explored but nothing was proved

No injuries sustained by the flight or ground crew

As this aircraft was not repairable it was scrapped on site

 

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the 'dayglow' livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, June 1960.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-204.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the 'dayglow' livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, circa 1960.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-205.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the 'dayglow' livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, circa 1960.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-911.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the 'dayglow' livery at Brisbane Airport, circa 1960.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-206.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the 'dayglow' livery at Brisbane Airport, June 1961.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-510.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the standard livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, June 1964.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-972.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the standard livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, December 1965.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-436.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, December 1967.

(R. N. Smith Copyright Image 1808-481.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the standard livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, April 1968.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-973.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the standard livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, December 1968.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-207.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the standard livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, December 1968.

(R. N. Smith Copyright Image 1808-208.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the standard livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, September 27, 1969.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-543.)

VH-TLB. TAA The Nation's Jetline - 'John Gilbert' in the standard livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, September 27, 1969.

(G. Bennett Copyright Image 1808-739.)

VH-TLB. TAA - 'John Gilbert' in the revised livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, June 1970.

(R. N. Smith Copyright Image 1808-214.)

VH-TLB. TAA - 'John Gilbert' in the revised livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, June 1970.

(R. N. Smith Copyright Image 1808-542.)

VH-TLB. TAA - 'John Gilbert' in the revised livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, November 1970.

(G. Bennett Copyright Image 1808-740.)

VH-TLB. TAA - 'John Gilbert' in the revised livery at Brisbane Airport, August 1971.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-362.)

VH-TLB. TAA - 'John Gilbert' in the revised livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, October 1971.

(R. N. Smith Copyright Image 1808-215.)

VH-TLB. TAA - 'John Gilbert' in the revised livery at Melbourne Essendon Airport, October 1971.

(R. N. Smith Copyright Image 1808-216.)

N188LB. Concare Aircraft Leasing - in the all-white livery at Melbourne Tullamarine Airport, February 1972.

(G. Bennett Copyright Image 1808-353.)

XW-PKB. Royal Air Lao - 'Tiao Khoun Boulom' in the standard livery at Hong Kong Kai Tak Airport, November 1972.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-219.)

XW-PKB. Royal Air Lao - 'Tiao Khoun Boulom' in the standard livery at Hong Kong Kai Tak Airport, January 1973.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-220.)

XW-PKB. Royal Air Lao - 'Tiao Khoun Boulom' in the standard livery at Vientiane Airport, July 15, 1974.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-438.)

YS-07C. TACA Air Cargo - in the standard livery at Miami Airport, June 1977.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-221.)

YS-07C. TACA Air Cargo - in the standard livery at Miami Airport, January 1978.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-881.)

YS-07C. TACA Air Cargo - in the standard livery at San Salvador Airport, February 1980.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-562.)

YS-07C. TACA Air Cargo - in the standard livery at San Salvador Airport, February 1980.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-563.)

YS-07C. TACA Air Cargo - in the standard livery at San Salvador Airport, February 1980.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-564.)