Wait­ing in the wings

Pilot - - OLD TIMERS - Pho­tos: Peter R March

Two new Old War­den res­i­dents – a replica Al­ba­tros D.VA and SE5A – were on show at Race Day: both should be seen fly­ing next year.

The Al­ba­tros D.VA, regis­tered G-WAHT, is one of The Vin­tage Avi­a­tor Ltd’s mod­ern WWI air­craft re­pro­duc­tions built in New Zea­land in 2017. Owner Oliver Wulff has it on loan to the WWI Avi­a­tion Her­itage Trust at Stow Maries, its fu­ture home­base. Strik­ingly marked to rep­re­sent Ger­man WWI ace Otto Kis­senberth’s Al­ba­tros, com­plete with lozenged wings, black fuse­lage and prom­i­nent edel­weiss dec­o­ra­tion, it should be ready for flight-test­ing be­fore the end of 2018. SE5A ‘C1096’/G-ERFC is of sig­nif­i­cantly greater prove­nance, be­ing a 1980s replica con­structed in York­shire by John Tet­ley that wears No 56 Squadron ace ‘Hank’ Bur­den’s per­sonal mark­ings. Dur­ing the early-2000s, Tet­ley had the SE5A on ten-year loan to the Me­mo­rial Flight at La Ferté Alais, which in­stalled an orig­i­nal WWI Wolse­ley Viper en­gine to com­ple­ment its gen­uine SE5A in­stru­men­ta­tion, fuel tank and Lewis Gun. Fur­ther mod­i­fi­ca­tions were per­formed af­ter present owner Roy Palmer ac­quired it in 2014. The re­sult, with its newly-in­stalled 1918 Wright-his­pano Suiza Model E en­gine (fit­ted by Retrotec), replica His­pano Suiza pro­pel­ler, and the var­i­ous struc­tural re­vi­sions made by Aero An­tiques, is a most au­then­tic replica. The SE5A will re­main at Old War­den for 2019’s Shut­tle­worth fly­ing events.

ABOVE: New ar­rival from New Zea­land, the Al­ba­tros D.VA on show at Old War­den be­fore it moves to Stow Maries BELOW: Truly rep­re­sen­ta­tive SE5A replica 'C1096' along­side Shut­tle­worth's gen­uine ex­am­ple

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