Below you will find the latest updates to both this website and the progress of the restoration of the aircraft. If you wish to keep more up-to-date with the restoration, then please follow us on Facebook.
With yet another year drawing to a close, we reflect back on what has been an indifferent year to say the least. While putting '456 winter coat back on.
The high's off the year came in the form a small reunion of former LTF ground crew, one of which had travelled over from France. At the same time we welcomed a former pilot whose name is adjourned on the starboard side, Sqn Ldr Clive Rowley. We also made some headway in the cockpit restoration, with the screen frame being painted and several instruments being placed back in position.
But despite discovering a few water issues in the cockpit and a problem coming to the surface regarding the canopy, we've managed to move the project forward. Plans for next year are already on the drawing board, and we're looking forward to meeting even more of you.
With the aircraft now uncovered, several checks have been made to see how she has held-up over the winter. The results are very good with only a couple of leaks found. These will be addressed over the coming months.
In the meantime, work has started again on the cockpit phase of the restoration. The inner screen frame has been treated and re-painted, along with several items removed for individual work. The frame is the only thing in the cockpit that we intend to paint. Everything else where possible will be left in its 'used' condition so as not to lose either the feeling or smell. We will soon be turning our attention to the cockpit as a whole and giving everything a good clean and grease.
While things may appear quiet with '456, it couldn’t be further from the truth. We have made a number of visits to '456 over the winter to check on her condition following very high winds on a number of occasions. We are pleased to say that thankfully the she has suffered no damage and is top in good condition.
Our work plan for the year has been finalised and weather permitting it should be a very interesting year. We have also started on restoring the cockpit fairings that we removed last year. These should be ready to install back in '456 when we remove her winter cover in April. This will also coincide with the inside of the screen being repaired and painted. So, we are starting to gear up for what will hopefully be another very productive year.
With Christmas here again and the year drawing to an end, we would like to say a big 'thank you' to everyone that has helped and supported us during the year. We look forward to seeing you all again in 2018.
May you all have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
Now the weather has finally turned, '456 has now been covered up for the winter. But not before a number of items were removed for us to work on during the winter months. As you can see from the image all the fairings have been removed along with a number of instruments. All of which will be receiving some TLC over the coming weeks.
But we will not be resting there. We have already started drawing up plans for next year's jobs. These mainly include internal work on the airframe, but if we have another year like this year weather wise, then we may have time to look at the electrics and hydraulics. Overall, we think we are about 8-10 months in front of our planned schedule, but we also know this can change very quickly. So, while our luck holds we'll keep pushing the project forward.