25 February 2017
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Established 2005
Vickers Viscount Network
A Virtual Museum dedicated to the Vickers-Armstrongs VC2 Viscount

Vickers Viscount Network

February 2011 Newsletter



Dear Member


Welcome to the first Vickers Viscount Network Newsletter for 2011 - The webmasters and newsletter production team trust that the Christmas and New Year Seasons have been pleasant for Viscount enthusiasts. No Viscounts have flown in recent times, which really would have made it Christmas for us. If you are in the market for a Viscount then you had better look at this site sent to us by Simon Elwood www.bsl-mlh-planes.net.


Putting a spin on it

Ferrymead Viscount c/n 283 ZK-BRF


In recent weeks several e-mails circulated discussing Viscount propeller sizes. Paul Harrison measured the Duxford V.701 Viscount c/n 5 G-ALWF and reported, "Diameter is approx. 9' 6" and blade length 4' 6" approx. A bit difficult to measure with the spinner still on."

Denys Coulter-Jones at the Ferrymead Aeronautical Society measured the propellers on their V.807 Viscount c/n 283 ZK-BRF and advised, "The removable front of the spinner is 22in deep and where it locks over the back-plate it is 18.5in in diameter (external). The blades measure 51.5in from their cuffs where they exit the spinner down to their tips. They are 7in wide at the cuff and 11in at the tip. So the prop is 121.5in in diameter give or take a smidgen for quick measuring!"


Stopping the spin!

BA - British Airways Viscount c/n 170 G-AOHV


While on the subject of propellers we should mention an e-mail and photo from Jamie Guille of Maidenhead, England. He says, "I wondered if you would be interested in this photo taken on-board G-AOHV in 1978 en-route from Heathrow, London, England to Guernsey, Channel Islands? I used a very fast film to "stop" the props as I'd always been curious to know the pitch angle in flight!"

Thanks Jamie. A drop of brandy in that glass may be needed if he stopped all four!


Royal send off

HRH Prince Philip's message to BWA - British World Airways


We all know the British Royal family (male members at least) are keen on aviation. Mike Sessions received this letter from HRH Prince Philip when he was the Finance Director at BWA - British World Airlines, on the 18 February 1996, the date of special retirement celebration at Heathrow, London, England that marked the withdrawal of the Viscount from passenger use in the United Kingdom.

His Royal Highness Prince Phillip certainly appreciated the Viscount.


Which Viscount was that?

Air Canada Viscount c/n 224 CF-THG


Steve Scullion flew with Air Canada on 16 August 1966 from Chicago O`Hare International Airport, Illinois, USA to Pearson International Airport, Toronto, Canada and is trying to determine the registration markings of the aircraft involved. The only clue he has is the record of autographs given to him by the two pilots.

So far the team at the Vickers Viscount Network has been able to identify the pilots as Captain W J (Jim) Videto and First Officer J N Williamson. Does anyone know whether these men are still alive or where their families may be contacted? If either of their log-books are accessible then we should be able to solve the mystery. If you can help please reply to Steve at Steve.Scullion@uk.fujitsu.com


Yuri Gagarin's Viscount flight

Yuri Gagarin on Viscount c/n 263 G-AOYN


Most of our readers will remember the beginning of the space age when Yuri Gagarin blasted off into space. Gurbir Singh, who is preparing a history on Gagarin`s space flight reminds us that Gagarin flew to London, England on 11th July 1961. Next day, he flew on-board Viscount c/n 263 G-AOYN to Manchester returning to London later in the day, returning to Moscow on 15th July 1961.


Website updates

Remember to look at the grey panel on the right hand side of every page on our website for details of new information, photos and pages recently added. The website now has over 3,800 photos loaded with the photograph total soaring as more people are contributing photos either from their own collection or those of other people.

A special mention must be made of the efforts of Ed Jones and George Stringer who have been submitting photographs by the 'truckload' in recent times. Please let us know who has contributed what you are offering so to best keep our records accurate. Obviously we would like to know, where possible, the date the photograph was taken and the location. Just as important please, for copyright purposes, name the photographer or, if unknown, put via yourself or the collection from which it was sourced. While on this subject, please note that photos on the website are not for sale.

Also look at the 'JOIN THE VICKERS VISCOUNT NETWORK FOR FREE' page on the grey panel which explains in some detail benefits to be gained from joining our membership. We have two tiers of membership 'General' and 'Core'. 'General' members are those who receive our newsletters and may be inspired to contribute information or photographs. 'Core' members are those who in addition to the above have a more 'hands on' involvement with the website. These are the researchers, (photo collection research, archive searching, website maintenance, newsletter) and so on.

The Vickers Viscount Network is rapidly gaining ground to become one of the most respected aviation websites anywhere. We have members in over 20 countries and with a growing momentum, is going to increase. If you would like to help when time permits send an e-mail to membership@vickersviscount.net and you will be contacted. Remember, membership to the Network is free to all comers.


Passenger cabin layouts

Jose De Virgiliis is making a 1-24 scale model Viscount. Here is his request, "I would appreciate if you could send me details of passenger cabin layouts of V.700 and V.800 series Viscounts to help me build a 1-24 scale model. Thanks a lot. Jose De Virgiliis"

If anyone can assist, please contact Jose at josevir@uolsinectis.com.ar.


Where was Viscount c/n 3 G-AMAV?

BEA - British European Airways Viscount c/n 3 G-AMAV


Many of you will be aware that Viscount c/n 3 G-AMAV was the Viscount which participated in the London, England to Christchurch, New Zealand Air Race in 1953. Ed Jones has found this picture but wants to know where it was taken. Any suggestions?

BEA - British European Airways Viscount c/n 3 G-AMAV


Ron Brazier has kindly supplied the Network with some pictures of G-AMAV on arrival in Christchurch at the conclusion of the Air Race. G-AMAV spent over a week in New Zealand landing also at Paraparaumu north of Wellington and also at Whenuapai where it was on display at an air show. At that time Whenuapai was being used both by the Royal New Zealand Air Force and also by all airlines serving Auckland; a situation that remained until November 1965 when Auckland International Airport opened at Mangere allowing Whenuapai to become a fully dedicated Air Force base once more.


Buried Viscount

TCA - Trans-Canada Airlines model Viscount


It would not be considered unlikely to find an aircraft model in a cupboard, wardrobe, attic etc. but few would expect to find one when digging a fence post in their backyard in Dorval, Quebec, Canada but yes; that was the experience of Marc Bessette. He didn't give it too much thought but put it away somewhere. Years later he stumbled upon our Viscount website and decided to compare the model to Viscounts and sure enough he was the proud owner of one damaged Viscount model.

He contacted the Network and supplied photos for us to admire. These have caused a bit of excitement and 'core' member Jan-Luc Ganivet confirms it to be a TCA - Trans-Canada Airlines promotional model. Can anyone tell us more about these models such as when they were produced, possibly how many and in what circumstances? Can someone supply a photo of a complete one? Can Marc's example be repaired? Let us hear your views on this project.


Brian Staines collection

Continental Airlines Viscount c/n 355 N241V


Nicolas Cox of Bien Hoa, Dong Nai, Vietnam enquires as to who owns the rights to Brian Stainer's photos. He has about 300 assorted Viscount pictures that he purchased from him many years ago and would like to maybe use some of them on the Internet, however, he would obviously like to ask permission first before doing so. If anyone can answer his question, or make any practical suggestions, please contact him at tropicalgardener@hotmail.com.

It would be wonderful to see more of this extensive collection on our website.


Dependable Engines

TCA - Trans-Canada Airlines Viscount c/n 56 CF-TGS


Terry Baker sent this in from the TCA - Trans-Canada Airlines 'Netletter' issued in November 1961:

Under the title 'Engines achieve phenomenal life' is the story of the Rolls-Royce Dart engine that powers the TCA Viscount aircraft are now operating at 3,500 hours between overhauls, thus becoming the most reliable engine ever employed in commercial airline operations. The 3,500 hour life between overhauls represents approximately 15 months of flying without having to take the engine off its mountings.

TCA has some 235 Model 506 Dart engines for its 49 strong fleet of Viscounts. Dart engines have logged 17,000,000 hours in service, the majority of this total on the 430 Viscounts now in service around the world, but TCA is the first operator to achieve 3,500 hours engine life.


Surprised that the Viscount has a fan-base and website

BEA - British European Airways Viscount c/n 64 G-ANHD


Peter Norton expressed surprise that one aircraft should have its own fan-base and a website to boot. He goes on to say, "For myself, my interest is due to the Viscount and Dart being the first on my Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer's Licence way back in the 60s.

I spent many happy hours working on this airplane type, first when it was in for Major Maintenance and after that, carrying out the pre-flight/post-maintenance systems checks - ground running the engines (that high pitched whine was really penetrating), pressurisation testing, genny balances, taxi tests, air test preparation, etc, etc.

The Dart engine found its way into the Argosy, another type on which I spent many hours tweaking fuel and RPM to wring out as much power as the engines could deliver - as a freighter it was a bit underpowered. When the Viscount gave way to the Vanguard, the BAC 1-11, the Trident and then the Lockheed Tri Star I did, of course, find myself working on all those too. And then the 747 and Concorde.

But the Viscount was my first licence type so retains a special place for me.


Mystery Viscount

Vickers-Armstrongs (Aircraft) Ltd Viscount c/n 88 G-APKJ


Ed Jones has thrown a mystery into the ring for us.

Says Ed, "Something to get us thinking over the next few days. I recently received the attached photo with a batch of old photos. Can anyone recognise either the location (Weybridge?) or the airline livery? Unfortunately the aircraft is devoid of any marks."

ANA - All Nippon Airways Viscount c/n 88 G-APKJ
ANA - All Nippon Airways
Viscount c/n 88 G-APKJ

In response, Brian Burrage says, "Super sleuth Peter Upton has identified Ed's mystery photo as being either Viscount c/n 88 G-APKJ or c/n 89 G-APKK. Both these V.744 aircraft were leased to ANA - All Nippon Airways in 1960. The photo was obviously taken before the sign-writing phase. I will put it on the website as G-APKJ with a comment that it could be G-APKK. Thanks Peter."

Is there someone out there who can positively identify the Viscount and where the photograph was taken? Maybe someone has a copy of the photograph or can remember. A bit of team work might solve this one.


Subject line

Please when sending e-mails include a subject line. Many, if not most, recipients discard emails from sources they do not recognize when there is no subject line included. They consider there is a chance of a virus or unwelcome message lurking. Thanks readers for your co-operation with this simple request.


Where on Earth are you?

Many interesting e-mails come in from around the world. Often these are just signed off with only a name but it may not be readily apparent as to where the sender is based. We would like to know; not to be nosey but to get an idea where the membership is spread and what areas are active. Sign your e-mail off in the normal way and then just add your location i.e. Christchurch, New Zealand. We would love to make contact with more of our American and Australian based readers.


Editorial and Production Team

Peter Layne - Chief Editor, Wellington, New Zealand.
Ed Jones - Editor, Manchester, England.
Dave Robinson - Production, Nottinghamshire, England.




Photo of BEA - British European Airways Viscount G-AOJC

The Vickers Viscount Network is always interested to hear from anyone who has information or photographs to help complete the story of the Viscount. If you can help please contact us at
Information@VickersViscount.net.


Click here for more details about the Vickers Viscount Network

This website has been designed, built and is maintained by Geoff Blampied, Norwich, Norfolk, England.