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Sea Kings leave Nowra for final time

written by australianaviation.com.au | April 1, 2014
The three Sea Kings depart Albatross. (Defence)
The three Sea Kings depart Albatross. (Defence)

Three former RAN Sea King helicopter airframes have left storage at HMAS Albatross near Nowra for the last time.

The machines, covered in spraylat environmental wrapping were carried through Nowra on the back of flat-bed trucks on their way to port Kembla for loading onto a ship for transport to the UK. There they will be dismantled and their components used to support other Sea Kings that remain in service.

“When I began my 35-year Navy career, I cut my teeth on Sea Kings when I first qualified as a young maintainer back in 1976; and I have been involved at various levels in their logistics support and maintenance over subsequent years,” Daryl Varcoe, Logistics Manager with Navy Aviation Systems Program Office told Navy Daily. “Like many at Albatross of my age, farewelling them is a time of mixed emotions. To many, they are an old and loyal friend who have served them well and looked after them throughout their Navy careers.”

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Added Commander Mathew Bradley, Acting Commanding Officer of HMAS Albatross; “From a historical perspective, the 817 Squadron Sea Kings should be correctly remembered as the ‘go to’ aircraft within the Fleet Air Arm inventory for many tasks. Right up to the final year of service in 2011, Sea Kings were providing critical lifesaving support during the Queensland Flood emergency. This level of service reflected many years of domestic operations in times of flood and fire, but it was also conducted against a backdrop of overseas humanitarian and combat operations.”

The Sea Kings were retired in 2011 after 34 years of service in the RAN and have been replaced in the transport and replenishment role by the MRH 90s of 808SQN. One of the Sea Kings, dubbed Shark 07 is on static display at the Navy’s Fleet Air Arm Museum at Albatross.

14 Comments

  • John Harrison

    says:

    I hope one has finished up in an Australian Museum somewhere. Would be a shame to have one kept somewhere.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      Like the article says, one is at the FAA Museum at Nowra.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Dane

    says:

    It’s always sad seeing aircraft disposed of in such an unglamorous way.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      I think it’s quite noble – although most of the airframes may be scrapped, many of the dynamic components, avionics and other items will live on in other machines for years to come.
      Sad would be if they were just left outside to rust or just chopped up.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Raymond

    says:

    Left outside to rust… appears to be the fate of a number of ex-RAN S-2 Trackers left out in the elements at West Sale Aerodrome, Victoria. Not a real pretty sight…

  • Craig Edgar

    says:

    I’m proud to say the aircraft in the Museum is 07, the first out of the box and built back in the 70’s and it was my dad that put it together. We were on the trip to the U.K. to get the Sea Kings.

    Great aircraft and very sad to see them go.

  • George B

    says:

    Another expensive asset wasted earlier than necessary just like our F-111s. The Sea Kings of 816 Squadron should have been kept until the MRH 90s of 808 Squadron were fully operational. More of our hard-earned tax dollars being flushed down the toilet. Fully functional helos sold for scrap value. Other countries would have put them in storage in the desert as reserves.

  • Raymond

    says:

    George B – I think part of the reason why old assets are often retired before their replacement is fully operational is due to practical reasons… otherwise it would consume an unrealistic amount of resources concurrently.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      Our small armed services just don’t have sufficient capacity to operate two similar capabilities concurrently – there’s almost always a dip when transitioning between platforms.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Raymond

    says:

    What’s stopping Australia from starting an aircraft ‘boneyard’ though? We have plenty of desert too!

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      To what end? We don’t have the capacity to restore stored aircraft to service in a hurry like the US does, plus the aircraft we retire usually have sufficient hours left or parts in good condition to be worth something to other operators, e.g. the Sea King’s dynamic components, avionics, interior fittings etc.
      Cheers
      Andrew

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sea Kings leave Nowra for final time

written by australianaviation.com.au | April 1, 2014
The three Sea Kings depart Albatross. (Defence)
The three Sea Kings depart Albatross. (Defence)

Three former RAN Sea King helicopter airframes have left storage at HMAS Albatross near Nowra for the last time.

The machines, covered in spraylat environmental wrapping were carried through Nowra on the back of flat-bed trucks on their way to port Kembla for loading onto a ship for transport to the UK. There they will be dismantled and their components used to support other Sea Kings that remain in service.

“When I began my 35-year Navy career, I cut my teeth on Sea Kings when I first qualified as a young maintainer back in 1976; and I have been involved at various levels in their logistics support and maintenance over subsequent years,” Daryl Varcoe, Logistics Manager with Navy Aviation Systems Program Office told Navy Daily. “Like many at Albatross of my age, farewelling them is a time of mixed emotions. To many, they are an old and loyal friend who have served them well and looked after them throughout their Navy careers.”

Advertisement
Advertisement

Added Commander Mathew Bradley, Acting Commanding Officer of HMAS Albatross; “From a historical perspective, the 817 Squadron Sea Kings should be correctly remembered as the ‘go to’ aircraft within the Fleet Air Arm inventory for many tasks. Right up to the final year of service in 2011, Sea Kings were providing critical lifesaving support during the Queensland Flood emergency. This level of service reflected many years of domestic operations in times of flood and fire, but it was also conducted against a backdrop of overseas humanitarian and combat operations.”

The Sea Kings were retired in 2011 after 34 years of service in the RAN and have been replaced in the transport and replenishment role by the MRH 90s of 808SQN. One of the Sea Kings, dubbed Shark 07 is on static display at the Navy’s Fleet Air Arm Museum at Albatross.

14 Comments

  • John Harrison

    says:

    I hope one has finished up in an Australian Museum somewhere. Would be a shame to have one kept somewhere.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      Like the article says, one is at the FAA Museum at Nowra.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Dane

    says:

    It’s always sad seeing aircraft disposed of in such an unglamorous way.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      I think it’s quite noble – although most of the airframes may be scrapped, many of the dynamic components, avionics and other items will live on in other machines for years to come.
      Sad would be if they were just left outside to rust or just chopped up.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Raymond

    says:

    Left outside to rust… appears to be the fate of a number of ex-RAN S-2 Trackers left out in the elements at West Sale Aerodrome, Victoria. Not a real pretty sight…

  • Craig Edgar

    says:

    I’m proud to say the aircraft in the Museum is 07, the first out of the box and built back in the 70’s and it was my dad that put it together. We were on the trip to the U.K. to get the Sea Kings.

    Great aircraft and very sad to see them go.

  • George B

    says:

    Another expensive asset wasted earlier than necessary just like our F-111s. The Sea Kings of 816 Squadron should have been kept until the MRH 90s of 808 Squadron were fully operational. More of our hard-earned tax dollars being flushed down the toilet. Fully functional helos sold for scrap value. Other countries would have put them in storage in the desert as reserves.

  • Raymond

    says:

    George B – I think part of the reason why old assets are often retired before their replacement is fully operational is due to practical reasons… otherwise it would consume an unrealistic amount of resources concurrently.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      Our small armed services just don’t have sufficient capacity to operate two similar capabilities concurrently – there’s almost always a dip when transitioning between platforms.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Raymond

    says:

    What’s stopping Australia from starting an aircraft ‘boneyard’ though? We have plenty of desert too!

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      To what end? We don’t have the capacity to restore stored aircraft to service in a hurry like the US does, plus the aircraft we retire usually have sufficient hours left or parts in good condition to be worth something to other operators, e.g. the Sea King’s dynamic components, avionics, interior fittings etc.
      Cheers
      Andrew

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sea Kings leave Nowra for final time

written by australianaviation.com.au | April 1, 2014
The three Sea Kings depart Albatross. (Defence)
The three Sea Kings depart Albatross. (Defence)

Three former RAN Sea King helicopter airframes have left storage at HMAS Albatross near Nowra for the last time.

The machines, covered in spraylat environmental wrapping were carried through Nowra on the back of flat-bed trucks on their way to port Kembla for loading onto a ship for transport to the UK. There they will be dismantled and their components used to support other Sea Kings that remain in service.

“When I began my 35-year Navy career, I cut my teeth on Sea Kings when I first qualified as a young maintainer back in 1976; and I have been involved at various levels in their logistics support and maintenance over subsequent years,” Daryl Varcoe, Logistics Manager with Navy Aviation Systems Program Office told Navy Daily. “Like many at Albatross of my age, farewelling them is a time of mixed emotions. To many, they are an old and loyal friend who have served them well and looked after them throughout their Navy careers.”

Advertisement
Advertisement

Added Commander Mathew Bradley, Acting Commanding Officer of HMAS Albatross; “From a historical perspective, the 817 Squadron Sea Kings should be correctly remembered as the ‘go to’ aircraft within the Fleet Air Arm inventory for many tasks. Right up to the final year of service in 2011, Sea Kings were providing critical lifesaving support during the Queensland Flood emergency. This level of service reflected many years of domestic operations in times of flood and fire, but it was also conducted against a backdrop of overseas humanitarian and combat operations.”

The Sea Kings were retired in 2011 after 34 years of service in the RAN and have been replaced in the transport and replenishment role by the MRH 90s of 808SQN. One of the Sea Kings, dubbed Shark 07 is on static display at the Navy’s Fleet Air Arm Museum at Albatross.

14 Comments

  • John Harrison

    says:

    I hope one has finished up in an Australian Museum somewhere. Would be a shame to have one kept somewhere.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      Like the article says, one is at the FAA Museum at Nowra.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Dane

    says:

    It’s always sad seeing aircraft disposed of in such an unglamorous way.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      I think it’s quite noble – although most of the airframes may be scrapped, many of the dynamic components, avionics and other items will live on in other machines for years to come.
      Sad would be if they were just left outside to rust or just chopped up.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Raymond

    says:

    Left outside to rust… appears to be the fate of a number of ex-RAN S-2 Trackers left out in the elements at West Sale Aerodrome, Victoria. Not a real pretty sight…

  • Craig Edgar

    says:

    I’m proud to say the aircraft in the Museum is 07, the first out of the box and built back in the 70’s and it was my dad that put it together. We were on the trip to the U.K. to get the Sea Kings.

    Great aircraft and very sad to see them go.

  • George B

    says:

    Another expensive asset wasted earlier than necessary just like our F-111s. The Sea Kings of 816 Squadron should have been kept until the MRH 90s of 808 Squadron were fully operational. More of our hard-earned tax dollars being flushed down the toilet. Fully functional helos sold for scrap value. Other countries would have put them in storage in the desert as reserves.

  • Raymond

    says:

    George B – I think part of the reason why old assets are often retired before their replacement is fully operational is due to practical reasons… otherwise it would consume an unrealistic amount of resources concurrently.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      Our small armed services just don’t have sufficient capacity to operate two similar capabilities concurrently – there’s almost always a dip when transitioning between platforms.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Raymond

    says:

    What’s stopping Australia from starting an aircraft ‘boneyard’ though? We have plenty of desert too!

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      To what end? We don’t have the capacity to restore stored aircraft to service in a hurry like the US does, plus the aircraft we retire usually have sufficient hours left or parts in good condition to be worth something to other operators, e.g. the Sea King’s dynamic components, avionics, interior fittings etc.
      Cheers
      Andrew

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sea Kings leave Nowra for final time

written by australianaviation.com.au | April 1, 2014
The three Sea Kings depart Albatross. (Defence)
The three Sea Kings depart Albatross. (Defence)

Three former RAN Sea King helicopter airframes have left storage at HMAS Albatross near Nowra for the last time.

The machines, covered in spraylat environmental wrapping were carried through Nowra on the back of flat-bed trucks on their way to port Kembla for loading onto a ship for transport to the UK. There they will be dismantled and their components used to support other Sea Kings that remain in service.

“When I began my 35-year Navy career, I cut my teeth on Sea Kings when I first qualified as a young maintainer back in 1976; and I have been involved at various levels in their logistics support and maintenance over subsequent years,” Daryl Varcoe, Logistics Manager with Navy Aviation Systems Program Office told Navy Daily. “Like many at Albatross of my age, farewelling them is a time of mixed emotions. To many, they are an old and loyal friend who have served them well and looked after them throughout their Navy careers.”

Advertisement
Advertisement

Added Commander Mathew Bradley, Acting Commanding Officer of HMAS Albatross; “From a historical perspective, the 817 Squadron Sea Kings should be correctly remembered as the ‘go to’ aircraft within the Fleet Air Arm inventory for many tasks. Right up to the final year of service in 2011, Sea Kings were providing critical lifesaving support during the Queensland Flood emergency. This level of service reflected many years of domestic operations in times of flood and fire, but it was also conducted against a backdrop of overseas humanitarian and combat operations.”

The Sea Kings were retired in 2011 after 34 years of service in the RAN and have been replaced in the transport and replenishment role by the MRH 90s of 808SQN. One of the Sea Kings, dubbed Shark 07 is on static display at the Navy’s Fleet Air Arm Museum at Albatross.

14 Comments

  • John Harrison

    says:

    I hope one has finished up in an Australian Museum somewhere. Would be a shame to have one kept somewhere.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      Like the article says, one is at the FAA Museum at Nowra.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Dane

    says:

    It’s always sad seeing aircraft disposed of in such an unglamorous way.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      I think it’s quite noble – although most of the airframes may be scrapped, many of the dynamic components, avionics and other items will live on in other machines for years to come.
      Sad would be if they were just left outside to rust or just chopped up.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Raymond

    says:

    Left outside to rust… appears to be the fate of a number of ex-RAN S-2 Trackers left out in the elements at West Sale Aerodrome, Victoria. Not a real pretty sight…

  • Craig Edgar

    says:

    I’m proud to say the aircraft in the Museum is 07, the first out of the box and built back in the 70’s and it was my dad that put it together. We were on the trip to the U.K. to get the Sea Kings.

    Great aircraft and very sad to see them go.

  • George B

    says:

    Another expensive asset wasted earlier than necessary just like our F-111s. The Sea Kings of 816 Squadron should have been kept until the MRH 90s of 808 Squadron were fully operational. More of our hard-earned tax dollars being flushed down the toilet. Fully functional helos sold for scrap value. Other countries would have put them in storage in the desert as reserves.

  • Raymond

    says:

    George B – I think part of the reason why old assets are often retired before their replacement is fully operational is due to practical reasons… otherwise it would consume an unrealistic amount of resources concurrently.

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      Our small armed services just don’t have sufficient capacity to operate two similar capabilities concurrently – there’s almost always a dip when transitioning between platforms.
      Cheers
      Andrew

  • Raymond

    says:

    What’s stopping Australia from starting an aircraft ‘boneyard’ though? We have plenty of desert too!

    • australianaviation.com.au

      says:

      To what end? We don’t have the capacity to restore stored aircraft to service in a hurry like the US does, plus the aircraft we retire usually have sufficient hours left or parts in good condition to be worth something to other operators, e.g. the Sea King’s dynamic components, avionics, interior fittings etc.
      Cheers
      Andrew

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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