Temora Aviation Museum – Restoration Update

Part of the preservation cycle involves an engine run, and although we haven't started the engine for over a year, it started better than expected, with a little encouragement from our Chief Engineer Andrew Bishop
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As many will know, the Temora Aviation Museum (TAM), in Temora, Australia had to close for a while due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Thankfully, they are now open again, albeit with some restrictions. Despite these trying times, museum personnel have been able to devote their energies into several in-house restoration projects currently underway. We reported on these developments in June, but are happy to provide July’s update, which TAM has just published. We thought readers would enjoy reading the latest news:

English Electric Canberra TT.18 WJ680:

The Canberra restoration is progressing well. Next up is the final inspection of the recently-installed electrical installation for the starter system, along with a vibration analysis of engine with respect to the air frame. Both tasks require specialists from Victoria, so this may take a little time to arrange. However, once these jobs are finished, we will be looking at pilot availability for test flights!

Canberra WJ680 during an outing a few years ago with the Temora Aviation Museum. (image by Jeff Gilbert via wikimedia)

deHavilland DH-115 Vampire T.35 A79-617:

The engines are ready and awaiting reinstallation into the airframe, so another project that is going well!

DH-115 Vampire T.Mk.35 A79-617 at Temora a few years ago. (image via Wikimedia)

 CAC-built North American Sabre CA-27 A94-983:

This fighter joined the RAAF in November, 1957, but had a checkered career in Australia, which included a wheels up landing while serving with 3 Squadron in February, 1959. The RAAF retired the type in 1971 and gifted A94-983, along with nine other examples, to the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) that December. She became FMI983 with the No.11 Squadron RMAF, but only remained operational until 1976, when Malaysia retired the type too. Interestingly, RAAF No.75 Squadron came to the aircraft’s rescue, as they were stationed in Malaysia at RMAF Butterworth during that period and acquired the Sabre following its retirement. They quickly returned the aircraft back to flying condition, and returned her to Australia in 1978. The RAAF operated her in their Caribou and Historic Aircraft Section for a while until its disbandment in the late 1990s. TAM took over responsibility for maintaining and operating the aircraft in 2006.

The Temora-based Sabre Mk.32 A94-983 during a previous engine run-up. (image via Wikimedia)

We know fans want to see the Sabre in the air again – as do we – however this take place until we resolve the effects of ejection seat issues. However, we continue to maintain the aircraft, and this recently included an engine run as part of the preservation cycle. The engine performed beautifully, despite not having run up since last year! If you missed the video, be sure to click HERE!

While TAM’s Warbirds Downunder air show event has had to be pushed until next year, since it involved aircraft and people visiting from further afield, there are still a couple of warbird flying displays involving the museum’s own aircraft taking place at Temora this year. These include the two Aircraft Showcase events; one scheduled for August 29th, and the other for the weekend of October 17/18. Each of these events is expected to include all of the museum’s serviceable aircraft: the Supermarine Spitfires, CA-13 Boomerang, Cessna O-2A, Gloster Meteor, Lockheed Hudson, Wirraway, Tiger Moth and Ryan STM-S2. Also, each event will be strictly limited to 450 visitors, and tickets are ONLY available via pre-event purchase, as no walk-up tickets will be available. Please make sure to check for availability well ahead of time by contacting the museum.

The Temora Aviation Museum’s CA-13 Boomerang A46-122 is expected to fly at the museum’s Aircraft Showcase events in August and October. (photo by Chris Finney via wikimedia)

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