08 August 2012

A Broken Friendship

What: Fokker F27-100 Friendship ZK-BXH
Where: Air New Zealand #4 Hangar, Christchurch, NZ
When: August 2012 

The fine fellows at Air New Zealand Engineering Services have donated their old Fokker F27 training airframe to the Transport Museum in Wanaka and have set about dismantling the aircraft for the trip south from Christchurch by road.

This aircraft has a proud history with Air New Zealand and ended its service to the company as a technical training airframe for their School of Engineering.

Click HERE to see the history of this aircraft and pictures of it in its former life as a workhorse of the air.

An elite team of Aircraft Maintenance Engineers was recruited from the Air New Zealand Technical Operations heavy maintenance team to run the dismantling operation with assistance from a great team of willing and skilled volunteers.

First, the empennage (vertical and horizontal stabilizers) was removed. Secondly, the propellers were removed from the Rolls Royce Dart engines and then the wings. These items were stacked on a low-loader trailer as shown in the pictures below.

Empennage, propellers and wing removal 

Right wing removal

Removed assemblies loaded onto the truck

The remaining aircraft was then jacked and the landing gear retracted and securely locked inside the landing gear bays in the the nacelles. This required the use of compressed air as the F27 uses pneumatics for everything with there being no hydraulics on the aircraft.

Retracting the landing gear

Remaining fuselage assembly after jacking and landing gear retraction

The second load consisted of the entire fuselage, centre wing, nacelles and engines as a single assembly. This load required a special road transport permit due to its oversize nature.

Loading onto the trailer

The journey from Christchurch to Wanaka was undertaken during the night hours and took around 14 hours. 

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