VH-EAB Southern Horizon
|FEB55||Built as L-1049E-55-81 but converted to L-1049E/01-82-119 on the production line.|
|24FEB55||CofR No 2802 issued to Qantas Empire Airways as VH-EAB.|
|04MAR55||Delivered to Qantas as VH-EAB "Southern Horizon". Export CofA No E-27667 issued. Was to be VH-EAP "Southern Breeze". More details.|
|05MAR55||Departed Burbank on delivery to Sydney via Honolulu, Canton Island and Nadi (flight time 32:36)|
|02APR55||Entered service (to Vancouver).|
|20AUG55||Flew to Paya Lebar (Singapore) for the opening of the new airport. Capt Ralph Bruce.|
|03NOV56||Departed Athens carrying the Olympic flame to the Melbourne Games. The flame arrived in Darwin on 05NOV56.|
|15JUL57||Withdrawn from service for "C" overhaul and fitment of weather radar.|
|11AUG57||Returned to service.|
|23JAN58||Withdrawn from service for conversion to L-1049G/02-82 and fitment of tip tanks.|
|06FEB58||Returned to service.|
|03APR58||Operated the first L-1049 service from Brisbane to London.|
|26MAY60||Stripped for conversion to freighter.|
|03JUN60||Departed Sydney for Ontario, California for conversion to L-1049H/01-82 freighter by Lockheed Air Service.|
|16AUG60||Departed Ontario for Portland.|
|19AUG60||Departed Portland for Sydney.|
|13SEP60||Entered service as a freighter to London via the Kangaroo Route.|
|19JUN61||Departed Sydney for London and subsequently withdrawn from service.|
|26AUG61||Departed Sydney for Hong Kong with a replacement engine for VH-EAO.|
|62||Used as a static classroom at Sydney with engines removed.|
|24MAR63||Departed Sydney on its last Qantas service, a horse charter to Christchurch, Nadi, Honolulu and San Francisco. On completion of the charter the aircraft positioned to Burbank.|
|25MAR63||Arrived Burbank. Flight time 34:54.|
|27MAR63||Struck off Australian Register. Total Time 18,104:35. Sold to Boeing and then to Airmotive Inc as N9715C.|
|31JUL64||Re-registered N93164 to California Airmotive Corp.|
|05AUG64||Sold to West Coast Airmotive Corp.|
|APR66||Noted at Lima, Peru leased to Galaxy Trading Corp and named "San Patricio".|
|07SEP66||Re-registered N4192A to California Airmotive.|
|27FEB68||Sold to Lee J. Matherne.|
|17MAR68||Flew to Lisbon, Portugal as ZP-TBV (bogus registration) and titles of Transcontinental Airlines SA (an unofficial company) and carrying the Panamanian flag. It is reported to have been used in support of the Biafran Government during March 1968. If indeed it did operate on the Biafra Airlift it was clearly short-lived as the aircraft was back in Miami by June 1968.|
|13JUN68||Noted stored at Miami in Transcontinental titles but minus registration.|
|23AUG68||Re-registered N442LM and painted with Wings Inc titles.|
|69||Leased to Bolivian Airways TABSA as N442LM.|
|SEP69||For sale by Atlantic Airways at Opa Locka, Florida.|
|15DEC69||Sold to Lance W. Dreyer.|
|15OCT70||Transferred to Transnational Cargo Inc (a Dreyer company).|
|30JUL71||Transferred to Unum Inc (a Dreyer company). The aircraft was stored at Port of Spain, Trinidad until at least Feb 73.|
|26OCT73||Sold to Transglobal Leasing Inc (Andy Voyna) and ferried to Fort Lauderdale.|
|11OCT74||Sold to PM Leasing Inc (Capt Duncan Baker) and subsequently named "Janet" in honour of Duncan Baker's wife. Operated freight charter flights from Miami to South America.|
|75||PM Leasing transferred from Miami to London. As of early 75 the aeroplane was reported as having a total time of 18,000 hours.|
|14MAR75||Departed Miami for Brussels arriving the following day.|
|16MAR75||Arrived at Jersey.|
|28MAR75||Leased to Lanzair (Channel Islands) Ltd.|
|APR75||Departed for the Sudan with a cargo of tobacco but diverted to Athens with a failed engine. The cargo was offloaded at Athens and N11SR was ferried to Nimes, France for an engine change. Nimes was the base of fellow Constellation operator Compagnie Air Fret.|
|10MAY75||Returned to Jersey.|
|18MAY75||N11SR departed from Gatwick for the Biggin Hill Air Fair where it performed several flypasts. As a result of a serious oil leak from number three engine, the aircraft returned to Gatwick on three engines without having landed at Biggin Hill.|
|23MAY75||A permit was issued for a three engine ferry to Nimes for rectification of the number three engine.|
|18JUN75||The aircraft returned to Athens to collect the abandoned cargo of tobacco. Having determined that the cargo had been illegally imported, the Greek authorities confiscated it and N11SR returned to Nimes empty.|
|02JUL75||Arrived Shannon from Nimes.|
|04JUL75||The aircraft taxied at Shannon with a load of calves for Venice but was denied a take-off clearance because of perceived irregularities with its documentation. A fire tender was despatched to block the runway but it was too late and N11SR departed for Venice. It was reported that after becoming airborne the aircraft requested the departures frequency only to be informed that: "The only frequency you'll get is the police frequency"! Ironically, it later emerged that the paperwork had been in order after all. On returning to Shannon to collect another load of calves, Lanzair became embroiled in a legal dispute which featured prominently in the local news media.|
|01AUG75||Cattle flights from Shannon resumed with a trip to Venice. The aircraft subsequently positioned to Larnaca, Cyprus to uplift a promised cargo to Shannon. The aircraft landed at Larnaca trailing smoke from a broken oil seal.|
|12AUG75||The aircraft returned to Shannon empty, the promised cargo having failed to materialise.|
|23AUG75||Lanzair's final cattle charter from Shannon was cancelled because of engine problems. During July and August the aircraft had operated eight cattle charters.|
|SEP75||Duncan Baker travelled to the U.S. where he bought four new engines and a pair of Super Constellation tip tanks from California Airmotive. These tip tanks had come from the scrapped Super Constellation N9723C which, coincidentally, was once VH-EAP with Qantas.|
|OCT75||The tip tanks were fitted and two engines changed by Shannon Repair Services. The tip tanks were required for a proposed series of trips to South America. The aircraft was in the hangar for the entire month. It is reported that Lanzair invested $100,000.00 in the aeroplane during 1975.|
|15NOV75||Departed Shannon for Coventry but made an emergency landing back at Shannon when a propeller ran away after take-off.|
|16NOV75||Departed Shannon for Coventry.|
|23NOV75||The aircraft arrived at Southend from Coventry and departed to Jersey a few hours later after uplifting some drums of oil.|
|NOV75||The aircraft departed for Nigeria but diverted to Casablanca with a failed engine. The aircraft was temporarily abandoned at Casablanca pending rectification of the failed engine and resolution of diplomatic problems arising out of the unannounced arrival.|
|28MAR76||Returned to Shannon after being released. The aircraft landed trailing smoke.|
|29MAY76||The aircraft was loaded with two spare engines, various spares, tools and fork lift trucks and departed for Jersey.|
|08JUN76||Departed Jersey for Athens to take up a contract to transport pre-fabricated fibreglass buildings to Kuwait and Damascus twice a month.|
|18JUN76||The aircraft departed from Athens destined for Kuwait with a cargo of pre-fabricated fibreglass buildings. It was reported that the nosewheel tyres broke up on take-off. Nine and a half hours later, N11SR landed at Kuwait in the middle of a sandstorm. As a result of alleged irregularities with the aircraft's clearance, a heavy fine was imposed on Lanzair. Unable to pay the fine and unable to otherwise secure the release of N11SR, the aeroplane was abandoned at Kuwait.|
|JUL81||At the instigation of the author, and with the support of Qantas, N11SR was inspected by a Kuwait Airways licenced engineer with a view to preserving the last remaining Qantas Super Constellation in Australia. The engineering report indicated that the aircraft was "well beyond any possibility of being flown again" and that the aircraft "would require surface transportation".|
|APR82||Cancelled from US Register.|
|02MAY82||N11SR was inspected in Kuwait by Stephen Piercey who reported that the aircraft, although externally damaged, was complete and the interior was largely untouched since its arrival. Life rafts, flight plans and a flight bag still remained on board. As several doors and exits had been left open, the interior was thickly coated with desert sand. The aircraft was to be sold at auction on this date but the sale was postponed to the following day. Steve Piercey was told that there had been a bid of 12,000 Dinars received and that there was talk of using the aircraft as a restaurant!|
|APR83||Advice received from Stephen Piercey that N11SR had been moved from Kuwait Airport leaving behind pieces such as fins. It was presumed that the aeroplane had been broken up.|
|JUN83||Advice received from a contact in Kuwait that N11SR was "bought at a cheap rate by the Ministry of Defence for training purposes".|
|91||It has been reported in "Flypast" magazine (October 1996, p.68-69) that N11SR survived until the airfield was bombed during the 1991 Gulf War. Apparently it had been used for firefighting drills at the military base, although it is not known if the aeroplane was actually burned. The report states: "It remains in a derelict condition and is too far gone even to attempt a restoration".|
|10JAN06||The wreckage of the aircraft was photographed at Ahmed Al Jaber Airbase. (See thumbnails above)|
The wreckage of N11SR was gifted to the Historical Aircraft Restoration Society (HARS) by the Kuwait Ministry of Defence. HARS intend to ship the wreckage back to Australia at the earliest opportunity. Some components will be restored for display in the HARS Museum. Any salvageable parts will be used to support the operation of C-121C VH-EAG.
|The recovery by HARS did not eventuate. HARS subsequently gave their blessing to a recovery expedition organised by volunteers from the Qantas Founders Museum.|
A team from the Qantas Founders Museum departed Brisbane for Kuwait with the intention of recovering display artefacts from the former VH-EAB. The team comprised David Evans, Don Hill, Mike Greig and Greg Boyce. Some of the larger items recovered included the right wing tip tank, an entry door, a section of fuselage, engine cowlings and one of the fins. Many other smaller components were also recovered.
|19NOV18||Items recovered from the wreck of VH-EAB were trucked from Ahmed Al Jaber Air Base to Ali Al Salem Air Base where they were loaded on to an RAAF Lockheed C-130J Hercules for transportation to Al Minhad Air Base in Dubai. It is most appropriate that these items should have made their first flight in 42 years aboard a latter day Lockheed aeroplane. The fin could not be accommodated on the Hercules so it will be transported at a later date.|
|22NOV18||Items recovered from the wreck of VH-EAB were trucked from Al Minhad Air Base to Dubai.|
|24NOV18||Qantas A380 VH-OQD Fergus McMaster which was in Dubai for repainting, departed for Sydney as Qantas 6012 with the artefacts from VH-EAB in the forward hold. The operating crew of VH-OQD included David Evans, Don Hill and Mike Greig.|
|25NOV18||The historical significance of the cargo being carried by Qantas 6012 was recognised by Sydney ATC with a new callsign "Southern Horizon". VH-OQD was cleared to land at Sydney as "Southern Horizon Super".|
|Recovered artefacts will be transported to Longreach for display at the Qantas Founders Museum with the exception of the wing tip tank, fuselage section and entry door which will be displayed temporarily at the Qantas headquarters in Sydney.|
Added a reference at 23NOV75 thanks to Keith Burton.
Added an image of N11SR at Shannon in 1975 thanks to Peter Gates.
Added details of the expedition to Kuwait to recover components from the former VH-EAB. Thanks to David Evans and the QFM.
Some components from the aircraft will be recovered by the Qantas Founders Museum for display at Longreach.
Revised presentation of type.
Added an image of the aircraft wearing BOAC titles. Thanks to Peter Gates.
Added four images of the wreckage in Kuwait. Thanks to Ken Jackson.
Added confirmation that the wreckage has been acquired by HARS for display in Australia.
Added a sequence of photos of the wreckage taken by Mark Pinneo.
Added a photo which confirms that the aeroplane has been destroyed. Thanks to Henk de Waard for providing closure.
Clarified planned allocation of VH-EAP "Southern Breeze" to this aeroplane.
a much-respected aviation journalist and photographer, was
the founder of Propliner magazine. Super Connie
N11SR was one of his favourite subjects. Apart from the obvious
charisma of this aeroplane and its operators, it was a particular
favourite of Steve's, as it was the first Super Connie that
he ever flew on. The amount of detail which appears in this
history is only possible because of Steve's dedication to
his subject. This Connie is also a particular favourite of
the author, having campaigned for a number of years to secure
the preservation in Australia of this, the last Qantas Connie.
Indeed, for a time, Steve and the author were the only registered
bidders for the May 1982 auction! Steve's dedication was such
that he actually travelled to Kuwait to attend the auction.
The attached photographs of N11SR in Kuwait were posted to
the author by Steve, literally within hours of his return
from Kuwait. Sadly, Steve was killed on 20th May 1984 when
an air-to-air photo sortie tragically ended in a midair collision.