VH-EAA Ross Smith


Type: L-749-79-31 Constellation
L-749A-79 Constellation (converted)
MSN: 2562
Subsequent Identities: G-ANUP


47 Built as L-749-79-31.
10MAR47 Registered to Qantas Empire Airways as VH-EAA. CofR No 1195.
04OCT47 Delivered to Qantas as VH-EAA "Ross Smith". Export CofA No E-14754 issued same day. (Ross Smith and his brother Keith were the Australian pilots of the Vickers Vimy G-EAOU which, in 1920, had been the first aeroplane to fly from England to Australia. A section of the Australian route had earlier been surveyed by Hudson Fysh and P.J. McGinness, both of whom later founded Qantas).
10OCT47 Departed Burbank on delivery to Australia.
14OCT47 Arrived Sydney at 1315 with Speedpak fitted. Flight Time 33 hours. (Capt. E.C. Sims)
21OCT47 Visited Canberra. Picture
22OCT47 Departed Sydney on the first proving flight to London. (Capt. R.J. Bert Ritchie).
11NOV47 "A new record for the 448 mile Melbourne-Sydney run was established by the Qantas Constellation Ross Smith on 11th November when it made the flight in 85 minutes, averaging 324 m.p.h. Earlier in the day, the Ross Smith had flown from Sydney against headwinds in 97 minutes. The Ross Smith, VH-EAA, was open for inspection by the public at the TAA terminal at Essendon." (Source: This Air Age, the TAA house magazine, December 1947)
30OCT49 Flaps extensively damaged by coming into contact with a rostrum at Darwin.
Operated flight EM502-263 from Djakarta to Darwin. Flight Progress Report
26APR51 Flew to New Zealand.
25AUG51 Fuselage painted with white top and red cheatline. Aircraft emerged from paintshop on 29AUG51.
22OCT51 Carried troops to Japan.
27JAN52 Withdrawn from service for conversion to L-749A-79 with higher all up weight.
28MAR52 Returned to service.
01JAN53 Operating Sydney-Darwin, the aircraft diverted to Daly Waters because of weather in Darwin. The aircraft was refuelled from 44 gallon drums under the supervision of Flight Engineer Bruce Costello. Photos of the operation show at least 24 drums on the tarmac. The following photos from the Russell Smith Aviation Collection in the National Library of Australia refer.


MAR54 Departed Sydney on a Royal flight to Brisbane and Townsville and back to Sydney.
05FEB55 Departed Sydney on its last Qantas service (to the UK).
09FEB55 Sold to BOAC. Total Time: 18,798. UK CofA issued as G-ANUP.
15FEB55 Cancelled from Australian register.
16FEB55 Departed Sydney on delivery to BOAC.
19FEB55 Arrived London on delivery to BOAC as G-ANUP "Branksome". Used in a 60 seat tourist class configuration.
17MAY55 Entered service with BOAC.
14SEP57 Last service with BOAC.
JAN58 Cocooned at Heathrow by this date.
JUL59 De-cocooned.
SEP59 Leased to Skyways in a 65 seat tourist class configuration for use mainly on the London, Malta, Tunis route.
JUL61 Installation of large rear cargo door completed by Lockheed Aircraft Service.
APR62 Returned to BOAC.
01MAY63 Cancelled from UK Register.
06MAY63 Positioned Heathrow to Luton on delivery to Aero-Transport as OE-IFO.
10MAY63 Flown to Vienna, Austria.
JUN64 Delivered to Interocean Airways, Luxembourg by mid June after Aero-Transport ceased operations. Used as a freighter or 86 seater.
JUL64 Re-registered LX-IOK to Interocean Airways.
AUG64 Cancelled from Austrian Register.
13SEP64 Operated an inclusive tour flight for Caledonian Airways from Manchester.
02OCT64 During a freight charter flight from Dublin, the aircraft veered off the runway on landing at Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, burying its nose in soft mud and causing considerable damage. One crew member subsequently died from injuries sustained. The crew had attempted a go around at maximum power with engines still in high blower, resulting in multiple engine failures.

Issue Date Remarks
11 10NOV23
Added an image of the aircraft landing at Canberra on 21OCT47 thanks to Phil Vabre of the CAHS.
10 27DEC22
9 27NOV22
Added a slideshow.
8 18NOV21
Added an image from the State Library of NSW.
7 15APR21
Added a Flight Progress Report from 08DEC50. Thanks to Roger McDonald.
6 22NOV18
Added a reference to a record flight on 11NOV47. Thanks to Roger McDonald.
5 25FEB16
Revised presentation of type.
4 26DEC15
Added 8 images from the Qantas Heritage Collection.
3 07AUG11
Added a reference to a diversion to Daly Waters on 01JAN53 thanks to Bill Fishwick.
2 14SEP00 -

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