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  • Nice one XB!

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    • SA341G N62373 (cn 1181) as seen in North America c. 1976

      On the previous page we saw 1181 when she was with Ed Darvill Copters of Alberta in Canada while flying as C-FEDG. Not quite sure what happened to this craft once she went to Canada, but she seems to have started life in the US as N62373, as this rare photo reveals.

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      • Nice find, Sav

        ​Re: s/n 1181, she indeed started her career as N62373 with Helijet Airways, but had an accident on March 1976 at Las Vegas, NV and was sold to Canada the same year.

        As C-FEDG she first flew with Turbowest Helicopter, then Darvill Copters, Transwest Helicopters, W.M. Aviation, Helijet Airways and finally Ocean Helicopters who sold her (dismantled her into parts) to France in 1993.

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        • Thanks for the background info! Sad that she ended-up as parts though. Does that mean Helijet were also operating in the US?




          Royal Navy SA341C Gazelle ZB648 (cn 2011) from 705 Squadron in formation with an RAF Westland Wessex HC2 XR497, at Farnborough on 9th September 1984 (Photo: Nick Weight)

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          • Air Grischa SA341G HB-XFW (WA1124) as seen at Hinterrheintal in Switzerland in August 1979 (Photo: Flugarchiv Graubünden)

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            • Unidentified Gazelle as seen at Crested Butte, in Colorado (elevation 9000' ASL) in January 2015

              Can you help identify this Gaz. Apparently sold from New Zealand (or by a New Zealand company) in 2013 to the US. The engine cowling looks like a 342? She was built in 1977. That's all the info I have at present.

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              • It is N65AR, formerly F-OCXQ, s/n 1602... and it came into USA from New Caledonia.

                Nice image, btw.

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                • md600driver
                  md600driver commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Yes, its a lovely helicopter. FYI, it was fitted with a zero-timed engine fresh from Turbomeca.
                  It joined its stablemate in the US (another 342, ex-German Police cab) and is probably the most expensive 342 in the world!

              • Grazie Zis! Great that you are able to fill-in-the-blanks. Never knew there was a Gaz in New Caledonia! Thanks also to Steve for the additional info. With new Aztazous at around €800k (from what we've been told), its easy to understand how the cost can escalate.




                Can we assume that this is Nigel? Any clues as to which part of the UK this is?



                At the end of the previous page, Steve mentioned that ex-Royal Navy Gaz, WA/1007 XW857, (now G-ZELE) is about to be shipped Down Under .. to Australia. I 'think' the Aussies have been some years without a Gaz, so its good news to hear that this is about to change.

                More Swiss Gaz ..



                Air Grischa's SA341G HB-XFW (cn WA1124) as seen over Switzerland in the 1970's

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                • G-EZEL

                  On the previous page Zis posted a copy of an ex-Italian Gazelle (WA/1073) when she was F-BXPG.

                  Here she is as G-EZEL in 2009:



                  SA341G Westland Gazelle G-EZEL (cn WA1073) as seen at Bembridge Airport on the Isle of Wight on 21st February 2009 (Photo: Peter Fitzmaurice)

                  Registered to Westland Helicopters in 1973, then bought by Twyford Moors Helicopters who sold her to the House of Fraser.

                  Exported to France in 1975 where she became F-BXPG. Then sold to Italy where she flew as I-ATOM. There is a note in my record (which is incomplete) that she 'may' have gone back to France where she may have been registered as F-GIVQ. Either way, in 2000 she made her way back to the UK, and was registered as G-EZEL.

                  Seen in this photo in front of the Britten-Norman factory.

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                  • More N65AR ..





                    Awaiting the details on these photos, including the registration of the second Gazelle, and which is doubtless N65AR's stablemate, as mentioned by Steve. Photos courtesy of Scott Seibold.

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                    • xbdt
                      xbdt commented
                      Editing a comment
                      The light blue Gaz is 1602 (N65AR), and the dark blue is 1708 (N342J).

                  • Originally posted by xbdt View Post
                    The light blue Gaz is 1602 (N65AR), and the dark blue is 1708 (N342J).
                    Lol, excellent - thank you XB! What a brilliant registration!

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                    • Back to 1972 .. and two scans from some 'antique' Aerospatiale advertisements:





                      The Gazelle; a luxury then, and a 'classic' luxury now.

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                      • Those are some lovely shots Zis!

                        I must say that images of civilian Gazelles from the 1970's are among my favourites. They capture something of Aérospatiale's enthusiasm for the Gazelle at that time; a time when I suspect they were hoping the craft might capture some the JetRanger market. (However, given the overhaul cost of the Astazou, that was never likely to happen). But still, there must have been a point in the early-to-mid seventies when the 'possibility' of reasonable civilian Gazelle sales existed, and that seems to be reflected in their marketing, and which is evident in some of the material we see.

                        Speaking of which, a photo collector we both know, told me that when production of the Gazelle ceased, Aérospatiale discarded (or threw out) all their marketing photos and memorabilia relating to the Gazelle, and which if so, seems a shame!

                        ​Re: F-ZWRH, can you confirm that this is Serial No. 01 among the four prototypes?

                        I have four Serial No. 1's on my list:

                        001 F-WOFH The first of two SA340's
                        01 F-ZWRH The first of four SA341 prototypes
                        1001 F-WTNA The first production SA341
                        001 I-PJCG Giorgio Pirovano's 'homebuilt' Gazelle


                        Can you confirm if this is correct please?

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                        • Sud Aviation / Aérospatiale had two batches of pre-production Gazelles, two prototypes marked by double zero (001 & 002) and four test machines marked with one zero (01, 02. 03 & 04). Serially produced (production) Gazelles begin with s/n 1001. As far as Mr Pirovano's aircraft is concerned, he simply numbered his Gazelle #001

                          Re Aérospatiale's (now Airbus Helicopters) care of their heritage, I want to believe there was (are) French aviation enthusiast(s) who managed to save at least part of their remarkable archive.

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                          • Grazie, thanks for the clarification.

                            From what I understand there are apparently some former Aérospatiale employees who managed to save some of these photos (or were able to obtain them from customers etc.). Something to be investigated for the future perhaps.

                            Oh, and there was 'another' 001, Slovenia's only Gazelle, the one you posted a while back which is now in a museum!





                            SA341H Soko Gazelle Partizan TO-001 (cn 028)

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                            • Yeah right, that Slovenian "001" reminds me of this one .. "007"

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                              • Ha ha, well according to your previous remarks, 007 should have been the first Gaz off the Soko production line!

                                Btw, I can't recall having seen a Gazelle in a James Bond movie. I remember seeing an Alouette II in 'You Only Live Twice', plus an Alouette III (with floats) and a Dauphin in 'Octopussy', but that is about it as far as 'classic' Aérospatiales are concerned.


                                - BREAKING NEWS -

                                FIRST BENEGAZ GAZELLE MEET / DATES ANNOUNCED


                                Xavier has announced the dates for the first ever Benegaz Gazelle meet - the weekend of 11-12th July 2015.

                                This is sure to be a wonderful get-together for Gazelle owners and enthusiasts, and will be the largest ever gathering of civilian Gazelles to take place in Belgium.

                                Please check the 2015 Gazelle Meeting thread for up-dates.

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                                • Brit Gaz ..


                                  SA341G G-UZEL (cn 1413) date and location unknown (Photo: Shuan Connor)

                                  Although the date and location are unknown, this was almost certainly taken in the 90's or 2000's. The sea in the background would also be a give away to anyone who knows the area.

                                  This Aérospatiale built example seems to have been exported to Yugoslavia, then sold to European Helicopters at Denham Aerodrome in 1989, when she became G-BRNH. She has also been on the Hungarian register, as HA-LFT and was probably a Crabtree Gaz.

                                  She is now flying on the US register as N341GL, according to my incomplete records.

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                                  • md600driver
                                    md600driver commented
                                    Editing a comment
                                    I can confirm that she is now in the US, having being sold by a dealer in Northern Ireland.

                                • An excellent photo (which has not been rotated) of a Serbian AF HO-45 taken at Batajnica, Belgrade air show in 2011.

                                  The photo was taken by Dimitrije Ostojic, a well known Serbian aerial photographer.


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                                  • Stupendo Zis!

                                    Speaking of Serbian Gazelles ..


                                    Serbian SA342 GAMA being armed with Maljutka and Strela practice rockets at Ladjevci AFB on 26th February 2015

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                                    • md600driver
                                      md600driver commented
                                      Editing a comment
                                      I would love to find a stores boom like that, and some practice rockets - for my mil Gazelle!

                                  • LFQ ..


                                    Irish Air Corps SA342L 241 (cn 1854) as seen over Casement, Baldonnel on 18th January 1988 (Photo: Tom Moloney)

                                    Steve's HA-LFQ seen here during her time with the Irish Air Corps. "But it looks like a 'Brit Gaz'" I hear you say! Indeed, 1854 is seen here wearing British Army colours and carrying the fictitious registration XX168 while performing for a movie role.

                                    Actually, XX168 did exist, although not as an Army Gazelle, but as an RAF BAe Hawk jet trainer.

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                                    • I didn't know that. Very interesting, thanks! Pity the photo isn't bigger to see the false reg.

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                                      • I have posted a larger size photo on Aviafora's Flickr account here, and have enlarged the tail section below:



                                        However (and as you can see) your request has thrown up an interesting discovery, and one (it seems) the photographer is unaware of .. namely that the fictitious registration was in fact RX168 and not XX168!

                                        And this is curious because there actually was an aircraft delivered to the Irish Air Corps with that registration .. and this aircraft ended-up at Baldonnel .. furthermore it was produced by Westland .. specifically it was a Westland Seafire Mk III.

                                        The question now is .. can we discover which film she appeared in?


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                                        • Serbian Gazelle Involved in Flood Observation Ops


                                          YU-HFF (presumably a 342)

                                          Perhaps Zis can fill in some of the details from this report: http://www.blic.rs/Vesti/Beograd/540...z-vazduha-FOTO

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                                          • Originally posted by Savoia View Post
                                            Perhaps Zis can fill in some of the details from this report
                                            It is basically describing a demobbed Soko HO-45 (SA.342L) which has been performing surveillance flights over river waters near the capital in order to prevent floods which hit that part of country in May last year.

                                            Thanks for a bigger photo of RX168.

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                                            • Grazie Zis!

                                              If this aircraft is ex-military, do you happen to know which organisation it is flying with now?



                                              SA341D Westland Gazelle G-VOIP (cn WA1792) as seen at Bourne Park Airfield on 14th May 2014 (Photo: Andrew Morley)

                                              Ex-RAF Gazelle ZA802.

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                                              • md600driver
                                                md600driver commented
                                                Editing a comment
                                                VOIP is owned by Quintin Milne, who is an internet telephone company owner. She is normally based in Spain, and is maintained by Falcon Aviation.

                                            • Ex ZA802, indeed. Last ownership info I have about G-VOIP is from 2006 - Mill of Monquich, Stonehaven, Scotland.

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                                              • Grazie Zis. I actually was enquiring about YU-HFF (but I realise I did not make this very clear, my apologies).

                                                Yugo/Irish Gaz ..


                                                SA341G YU-MAN (cn 1277) as seen at Redhill Aerodrome on 13th April 2007 (Photo: Martin Stephen)

                                                This craft seems to have traveled a bit, first delivered to Venezuela, then moved to America, then South Africa and eventually the UK, where she was registered as G-WMAN. Apparently now flying as HA-LFJ. She also seems to have been a resident of Northern Ireland for some time.

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                                                • md600driver
                                                  md600driver commented
                                                  Editing a comment
                                                  Still on HU register, and owned by James Wightman in Northern Ireland.

                                                • Savoia
                                                  Savoia commented
                                                  Editing a comment
                                                  Grazie Steve. I suppose therefore that the shamrock on her tail remains!

                                              • Originally posted by md600driver View Post
                                                VOIP is owned by Quintin Milne, who is an internet telephone company owner.
                                                ​Lol, hence the registration!

                                                Originally posted by md600driver View Post
                                                I would love to find a stores boom like that, and some practice rockets - for my mil Gazelle!​
                                                Not sure about the practice rockets (although you could always ask the MoD if you could use Salisbury Plains Training Area ) but the stores boom should be possible, as should some 'dummy' rockets for display purposes.

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                                                • The next set of modifications to Steve's mil Gaz!

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