Tag Archives: SAAF

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SAAF Museum Flying Day 2019-07-06

The first Saturday of July 2019 saw the annual SAAF Museum flying training day take place at Airforce Base Swartkop in Pretoria. Known as the second oldest operational air force base in the world saw a number of museum assets take to the skies above Pretoria.

AFB Swartkop Tower

The day started with a pilots briefing, where Lieutenant Colonel Melvin Bruintjies Officer commanding the SAAF Museum Lieutenant Colonel ,Trish Schoeman Officer Commanding AFB Swartkop and Major Iwan Robbertse (Oryx Helicopter Commander) briefed the pilots on movements and safety for the days flying programme.

Major Iwan Robbertse, Safety officer for the day

A walk through the hangers and some of the aircraft shelters on the bases premises bring back memories of the past aircraft that roamed the skies in South Africa and been able to see the flying exhibits such as the Museums Harvard’s and Harvard Clubs possessions, one of two Cessna C185s,Bosbok,Patchen Explorer, Alouette II, Alouette III and Aerospatiale Puma, which was also the SAAF Golden Eagles Parachute Display Team jump ship for the mornings processing’s.

T6 Harvard
Cessna C185
Alouette III
Aerospatiale Puma
Skydiver
Golden Eagles Parachuting team
Golden Eagles Parachuting team
Golden Eagles Parachuting team
Golden Eagles Parachuting team
Golden Eagles Parachuting team
Golden Eagles Parachuting team

Skydiving photos credit Wimpie Gerber

The Windsock Café fed hungry pilots and visitors with the friendly and helpful Johnathan Taylor behind the counter, The Spitfire Restoration Team also were present with the shadow of ‘Spotty’ the Cheetah hangered in one of the exhibit shelters. The Friends of the Museum also doing their part of giving back to the SAAF Museum.

Mirage F1AZ
Alouette III
Aerospatiale Puma

With the now confirmed date for the SAAF Museum Airshow on the 7th September, the anticipation for a great airshow is around the corner, keep your eyes on our website and Facebook page for the upcoming airshow for more information. Until then keep them up where they’re belong!

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Breaking News-SAAF Museum Airshow set for 7th September 2019

The South African Airforce Museum Airshow is set to take place at Airforce Base Swartkop in Pretoria on Saturday 7th September 2019.The Officer commanding of AFB Swartkop confirmed with Aviation Central the official date has been set for the 7th September and NOT the 31 August 2019.

Join the Facebook event page, click here 

We look forward to working with the SAAF and the Museum as we get ready for another successful airshow that will once again take place over Pretoria skies.

Keep an eye out on our social media pages for more information on the upcoming Airshow.

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Home of Pilatus- Silver Falcons visit Switzerland

“The idea was hatched late last year about getting the team to do an international trip . Switzerland being the home of the Pilatus was a no brainer. For us to be able get to view how and where all the current airframes were designed and built. On May the 3rd, Emirates hauled us through Dubai to Zurich, arriving in the cold that afternoon. Then a train ride from Zurich to Lucerne where we stayed for 3 days. For two days lots of walking around or busing around the sites and sounds of Lucerne.”

“It must be said the bus n train network in Switzerland was brutally efficient and effective. On Sunday May the 6th was a special treat with the visit up Mount Pilatus to be greeted by typical winter weather in Europe with tons and tons of snow. Something one would never see in Langebaanweg. The rest of the day was spent visiting the old town of Lucerne.”

Mt Pilatus at 7000ft
Cold smiles all around
Falcon snow man

“The 6th was the team received special treatment form Pilatus aircraft corporation. The company arranged everything from transport from our mini budget hotel to Stans were the factory is located. Jerome Pörtner played host and guide for and arranged what needed to be needed during our visit. Once at the factory were given two cards, which one was a security clearance and the other a Wi Fi (Switzerland neh ) card.”

“The day began with a presentation about the company and their ethos of how they operate in a niche market, Swiss chocolates were on offer . From there on a factory tour covering everything from how parts are made from scratch to the company latest flagship the pC24 floor. Everything from the paint shop to the tiniest of details.”

The Pilatus Assembly line

“What blew the teams mind away was the special design of the hangers/factory which is made of special wood not the usual mortar n brick or canvas as we are used to back home in RSA. To say one can eat of the floor would not be off the mark. What was not lost to us was how space in general when it comes to aviation is a tricky thing to solve! In all the hangers, airframe after airframe, we squizzed into every corner available (guess the work must continue non the less ) regardless wether it’s the pc24 or pc12 hanger.”

The Team in the Pilatus factory

“Then another treat was the special ‘ground instruction ‘ of the PC21 given to the team by Neil ( ot&e pilot ex RAF) & senior sales man and Pascal and Jerome Pörtner. (One can only dream hey). Then it was lunch at the newly refurbished factory canteen which can be best described as a 3-4 start hotel dining hall. It boast views of all the surroundings mountains around the factory.”

Pilatus PC24s on the apron
The cold kicking in
What a view

“The a very interesting part of the factory is where Central Flying School (CFS) sends their Prat & Whitney engines for overhauling. Where they pull them apart and put them together again. Everyone swelled with pride from the feedback from the engines from the SAAF are always in good condition compared to other users which showcases how the SAAF looks after its equipment.”

Central Flying School Pilatus PC7MKIIs

“Sadly the day flew by and on Wednesday May the 7th, the team repositioned to Zurich to get ready to fly back home. The evening of the 7th was spent visiting the beautiful city of Zurich with a special dinner held In town in one of the most beautiful part of the city and an age old restaurant which used to be an armory during the times (Zeughauskeller) “

One of the restaurants we visited in Zurich

“Special thanks goes out to the Coves aviation community led by JP Fourie of NAC and Luigi Rossi of Internek engineering and Obviously the SAAF for giving team 82 this opportunity.”

Left to Right
Major Sivu Tangana,Major Musa Dlamini,Major Bheki Shabungu,Major Tiaan Stander,Major Omphile Matloane,Captain Xander Albasani and Major Corne van Deventer.

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I Can Dream – Newcastle Air Show 2019

The Newcastle Air Show in KwaZulu-Natal, which is the only airshow in KZN, was held on Saturday the 1st June 2019, for the ninth year running. With the theme “I can Dream”, the show encouraged participation from the community with free entrance and focused on the youth, which saw a lot of school children attending the show. It is fantastic to see the local community being considered and the drive to encourage the youth into the aviation world.

With lots of food stands available, there was also lots of activities and stands to keep the public busy, including a virtual reality stand, military and air force stands, motor bike stunts and even an  South African Air Force Agusta A109 static display.

The show opened to a parachute drop with a huge South African flag, whilst the Newcastle High School Choir performed the national anthem for the twelve and half thousand strong crowd. It was a very special moment as the choir timed it to perfection with the flag landing as they completed the anthem.

This was followed by an impressive display by the Silver Falcons. Team 82 of the Silver Falcons performed their display, lead by Major Omphile Matloane in Falcon 1, with team members Falcon 2 Major Tiaan Stander, Falcon 3 Major Sivu Tangana, Falcon 4 Bheki Shabangu and GLO Captain Xander Albasini.

(Photo by Brian Emmenis)

The Puma Flying Lions followed with their display showing off the Harvard T6 aircraft capabilities in the fabulously clear skies over Newcastle. Leading the team was Scully Levin with team members Arnie Meneghelli and Sean Thackwray.

Gary Whitecross performed a graceful aerobatic display with his glider.

Nigel Hopkins took to the clear skies with an impressive aerobatic display, showing the crowd the capabilities of the Extra 330.

The tradition of racing a plane against a car was taken to a new level this year when Nigel Hopkins raced the Extra 300 against a dragster.

A parachute drop from the SAAF 44 Sqaudron CASA C212 AVIOCAR by the Golden Eagles parachute team kept the crowd entertained.

A SAAF 2 Squadron JAS39D Gripen flown by Major Lee-Roy “Shinobi” Goosen and navigator LT Col Marc “Bluebird” Wilson wowed the crowd with a very fast paced display. The speed and noise from the fighter jet always gets peoples attention and creates a lot of excitement. This was third appearance of the Gripen at the Newcastle air shows and for the second year in a row.

The iconic Pitts Specials of the Goodyear Eagles team performed their aerobatic routine, which is always a great display to watch. The four ship team was lead by Glen Warden with team members Johan van Solms, Dennis Spence and Jason Beamish.

A Magni Gyrocopter flown by Andre van Zyl was next up and he put the gyrocopter through an impressive display showing just how maneuverable the gyrocopter is.

Andrew Blackwood Murray flew his Extra 300 in an aerobatic routine that certainly impressed everyone.

An Embraer E190 from Airlink surprised the crowd with an appearance, giving the crowd a good close up look at the jet.

Team Xtreme put on a high energy aerobatic display which really had the crowd going. They performed their routine which included the signature knife-edge fly past and a double knife-edge (two aircraft together) and if that was not enough, they did a double knife-edge side by side!

Lunch time saw the runway being used for some drag races.

After lunch saw the L29 flown by Glen Warden put through it’s paces. Always a good display of this fine jet.

The Raptor RV’s took to the skies and performed a great display for the crowd.

Ivan van der Schaar flew his Randolph sponsored Boeing Stearman, adding a touch of the olden day pilots with an impressive scarf!

The Goodyear Eagles with the Pitts Specials gave the crowd another beautiful display of aerobatic showmanship.

The Raptor RV’s then paired up with Team Xtreme to show us just how good they are, with an impressive 8 aircraft flying their display in very close formation. Truly a sight to behold.

The aircraft then split up with Nigel Hopkins and Jason Beamish giving the crowd some more precision flying demonstrations which included a few more signature double knife edge passes down the runway.

The iconic World War 2 fighter P51 Mustang, Mustang Sally flown by Menno Parsons showed the crowd the might and speed of this beautiful aircraft. The whistling of the air over the gun barrels always makes an impression to remember.

The Glider flown by Gary Whitecross took to the skies to give us a graceful display of flight. Barrie Eeles gave us a solo display in his Extra 330.Good to see Barrie back at Airshows once again!

The South African Airforce display team, the Silver Falcons gave us a late afternoon display. Always a great crowd pleaser and their stunningly professional display did not disappoint.

Closing the show was a parachute drop at sunset which was stunningly beautiful against the setting sun.

A huge congratulations to the organisers on achieving an attendance of over 12 000 people! The entire airshow committee lead by Johan Pieters worked hard to give us a great show and they gave us a winner! A big thank you to Christo Van Der Vyver and all the airshow committee members for their hard work. The Air Show director Rikus Erasmus, Safety Director and SAAF safety officer Col Francois “Hose” Hanekom,Grant Timms as Ramp Controller, ATC for keeping everything running smoothly and safely. All the pilots and ground crews, all the emergency and police services keep the public and crews safe.

Thanks to Mark Mansfield for managing the media and to Capital Sounds, Brian Emmenis and his team that gave excellent Airshow commentary and the sound that was heard nice and clear throughout and to the South African Air force providing aircraft and promoting and restoring National pride to our country. To all the stakeholders who sponsored the show, this last paragraph is for all the unsung hero’s mentioned above who make these country Airshows possible. We look forward to the 10 year anniversary of the Newcastle Airshow next year.

 

 

2019 Presidential Inauguration

The 2019 presidential Inauguration took place at Loftus Verseveld stadium in the city of Tswane. South Africa’s newly appointed president his excellency President Cyril Ramaposa was sworn in on Saturday 25th May 2019.

Pretoria residents might of noticed a lot of South African Air force activity days before the ceremony, operating from Airforce base Swartkop and Waterkloof.

Aircraft types that were seen during the days flypast on the 25th consisted of both museum and current air force assets.

Aircraft types flown
SAAF Museum

Puma
Alouettes IIIs
Vampire
Cessna C185
Bosbok
Kudu

Current SAAF Types
Hawk
Gripen
C130BZ
Casa 212
Cessna Caravan C208
Pilatus PC12
Beechcraft KingAirs
PC7MKIIs
Silver Falcons
Boeing BBJ
Dassualt Falcon 50
Dassualt Falcon 900
Rooivalk
Oryx
Lynx
A109
Bk117

South African Airways
2 x Airbus A340

Photos below from various Friends of Aviation Central.
ORTIA Planes spotter, Peter Cronje, Johan Stephens, Dries Beetge and Andre Nel.
Big thank you for your continues support and Willingness to share your photos and love for Aviation with us.

Click on photo to enlarge

SAAF Museum Flying Day 2019-05-04

Pretoria residents once again got woken up to the sounds of some of the South African Airforce Museum aircraft as they took to the skies above Air Force Base Swartkop ,Valhala Pretoria this past Saturday.

AFB Swartkop

These flying days take place every first Saturday of the month to get pilots current on aircraft and test fly some aircraft, and the same time giving the public an opportunity to visit the SAAF Museum.

Museum Puma and Oryx Helicopter

The flying day as always starts with a parachute jump with members of the Golden Eagles Parachute display team and other military parachute members. They did two jumps during the course of the day. Their jump ships were both a C4M Kudu and Aerospatiale Puma.

Hravard
Bosbok
Cessna 185

The rest of the fixed wing aircraft took the skies, with the Museum Harvard’s, followed by the one of two airworthy Bosboks and Cessna 185s.The Puma flown by General John Church, displayed the helicopters hoisting capabilities.

Puma

Warm referments were made available at the Windsock Café as well as from the Friends of the Museum Boerewors stand. The Spitfire restoration fund committee were guarded by the former 2 Squadron Cheetah C ‘Spotty’ in one of the exhibit Hangers.

We look forward to the next flying day, with a date to be confirmed soon as well as the Airshows new date. Till then keep them up where they belong.

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Freedom Day Celebration Flypasts

The sound of thunder of jets rocked Port Elizabeth residents as Gripens, Hawks, The Silver Falcons, two BK117s and Lynx took part in Freedom Flypasts over event in Makhanda, formerly Grahamstown, in the Eastern Cape.

The 27th April marked 25 years of democracy, following decades of apartheid rule and segregation in which the majority of the country’s citizens were marginalised.

JAS39D Gripen

Local residents in Grahamstown got to witness the flypasts and brought joy to the youth as some of these aircraft are not usually seen in the area.

The Silver Falcons showed why they can restore national pride as known as the cockpit ambassadors to the South African Airforce. Falcon 5 Sivu Tangana grew up in the area and it was surely a proud moment to display in front of a home crowd.

Silver Falcons Team 82
Silver Falcons

It was also a photo opportunity for some of the local aviation enthusiasts to capture the Test Flight and Development Centre JAS39D Gripen ‘3901’.This was the first gripen delivered to the SAAF.


Test Flight and Development Centre JAS39D Gripen ‘3901
85 Comabt Flying School Hawk MK120 ‘262’
Hawk MK120
Pilatus PC7MKII

We would like to thank Patrick Davidson for allowing us to use a certain platform to gain access to get this incredible photos.

2 Squadron JAS39C Gripen ‘3918’

Another big presence of South African Airforce Aircraft will be seen over Pretoria end of May 2019 and no its not an airshow.Keep an eye on our social media pages.

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SANDF Capability Demonstration and Arena Displays- Rand Easter Show 2019

The 125th Rand Easter Show has once again entertained Gauteng residents with raw power of the South African National Defence  with the South African Navy, Army, Airforce and Military Health Service all present at the Expo Centre Nasrec South of Johannesburg.

SAAF Silver Falcons fly overhead the arena

The Capability demonstration was once again a major draw card to the Rand Show as it always is and run for the first four days of the opening of the show. Unfortunately with the absence of South African Airforce helicopters as the choppers were still on operational duties in Mozambique and Malawi.

15 Squadron Agusta A109LUH on static display

We were blessed with great weather for the first 3 days of the event including the validation day before the opening of the event as their was predicted rain showers and overcast weather for the duration of the morning shows. The final day was unfortunately rained out.

2 Squadron JAS39D Gripen flown by Major Lee-Roy ‘Shinobi” Goosen and Major Kevin ‘Saffron’ Chetty

2 Squadron didn’t disappoint  with the presence of two Gripens opening the event. Major Mohua “Dobaman” Vundla with navigator Kevin “Saffron” Chetty and in the second Gripen was Major Lee-Roy “Shinobi” Goosen kept a tight formation flypast as the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans
Nosiviwe Noluthando Mapisa-Nqakula arrived on the podium to address the public on the official opening of the Rand Easter Show 2019.

2 Squadron Gripens flown by ‘Dobaman’ and “Saffron” in the first gripen and “Shinobi” in the second gripen

“I am delighted and honored to be amongst the men and women in the uniform-our country’s armed forces – during the official opening of the 2019 Rand Easter Show. Our soldiers have been patriotically exhibiting and showcasing their capabilities at this crowd – pulling event without fail since 2011 and endeared themselves to visitors from all walks of life, educating our people about the miltarys role in society and towards the defence of our constitutional dispensation.”


Minister of Defence and Military Veterans
Nosiviwe Noluthando Mapisa-Nqakula

” The platform that the Rand Easter Show affords the South African National Defence Force is key to exposing the citizens of Gauteng and the country at large to the capabilities, state of the art technologies and the career opportunities the abound within our national defence force.”


Minister of Defence and Military Veterans
Nosiviwe Noluthando Mapisa-Nqakula

” It is through the participation of the SANDF in events such as this one that the aspirations of young men and women–from Eldorado Park, Soweto, Tembisa, Diepsloot, Brynston, Alexandra and Dainfern- in fact throughout the country, ignites them to serve the country. “

” The Rand Easter Show has over the years been a gathering place for visitors who have proven to be owerawed by the dedication, hard work and precision with which our soldiers carry out their duties as showcased through the various capabilities demonstrated in these arena lawns.”

The capability demonstration se the theme this year as a deployment of reaction forces to support a convoy ambushed in a foreign territory. Two Ratel 90 ammoured vehicles gave support fire power as well as a lone 2 Squadron Gripen with simulated airstrikes. Simulated mortar strikes echoed in the arena as the crowds were awered of the pyrotechnics set off by the army engineers. All while this was happening a bridge laying was complete during the mock attack.

Simulated IED Mine
Ratel 90
2 Squadron JAS39D Gripen
Simulated Mortor Strikes.
Bridge Build

A 44 Squadron Casa 212 flown by Major Ashley Naxhe and  Major Nick Green and Loadmaster  Flight Sergeant Ramajela who
dropped skydivers from 44 parachute battlion with a designated landing zone in the arena. The Casa 212 then gave a beautiful fly past over the arena as they excited the special rules west area of Johannesburg.

44 Squadron CASA 212 Paradrop
44 Squadron Casa 212

The cockpit ambassadors of the South African Airforce, Silver Falcons of team 82 led by Major Omphile Matloane, Tiaan Stander, Corne Deventer, Bheki Shabangu and the soloist Major Sivu Tangana flew their 5 ship Pilatus PC7MKIIs.

Silver Falcons in the ‘Vixen’ Formation
Silver Falcons in the ‘Cobra’ formation
Silver Falcons in the ‘Starfighter’ formation

Other arena events on the program included presion drills from the SA Army and Navy. The now popular Navy gun run, a Military Police anti hijacking display, SANDF Marshal Arts demonstration. The SANDF K9 unit and field patrol. And finally the new act on the SANDF the Land Drover of the Army Technical Corpse which is demobilised and mobilized under 10 minutes. Also a favorite at this year’s event.

Thank you kindly to the Rand Easter Show organizers. We look forward to next year’s 126th event.

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SANDF to wow crowds at this years Rand Easter Show

Agusta A109LUH during an medical extraction

The South African National Defence force will once again take part and exhibit at this years Rand Easter Show at the Expo Centre Nasrec, south of Johannesburg.

The Show which was first organised in 1894 and attracted 3000 visitors quickly became part of South African heritage attracting industries and dignitaries from around the globe and has always been a firm favourite with the public, with a record 848,332 visitors attending in 1989.

2 Squadron JAS39C Gripen during the 2018 Rand Easter Show mock attacks.

The 125th Celebration promises to be one of the best shows ever with the introduction of fantastic, on trend, content. This will include Africa’s biggest celebration of the global sensation game, Fortnite, new reality cooking and talent shows, a beautifully presented Flower and Décor pavilion, a world class international Fitness Expo, Military displays, Drum Majorette Gold Cup and so much more.

SAAF Helicopter formation in 2018

The South African Airforce cockpit ambassadors will once again grace the skies over Johannesburg led by Major Omphile Matloane. Low flying aircraft will also be busy over the north of Johannesburg as they fly from AFB Swartkop and AFB Waterkloof for the first couple of days of the Rand Easter Show. Note the SANDF Capability display will take place for the first 4 days of the opening of the show.

Silver Falcons Aerobatic Team

More details on what aircraft and other SANDF assets will be posted once confirmed.

Oryx Helicopter landing in the arena where the capability demonstration will once again take place.
Events program

The Coves Flying Carnival

The Coves Fly-Inn estate which is situated on the western shore of Hartbeespoort Dam west of Pretoria. The Coves is home to many airshow pilots on the South African Airshow circuit. We see now why they have chosen the Coves to be their home!

Arrivals in the morning

What turned out to be a miserable weekend as the weather gods predicted rainy and cold conditions, turned out to be a fantastic day with lots of sunshine a scattered clouds throughout the day.

Hot Air Balloon giving some of the residents a free ride.

Some of the Visiting Aircraft

Arrival at the Coves on Saturday the 6th April 2019,gate guards at the entrance of the estate were very friendly and directed us to a parking spot alongside the airfields runway.

Nice to have seen two Piaggio Albatrosses who both flew into the Coves
a clean healthy aviation inhibited Coves estate

JP Fourie from National Airways Corporation (NAC) was the event boss for this years Coves Fly-inn or better known as the Coves Flying Carnival. The event was for pilots flying in for the day, residents and invited guests were treated to a great day of aviation. With vintage and modern aircraft taking to the skies above the Coves.

a Canon camera moment

With the event being so big this year, Capital Sounds were present to give us some of their knowledge from all the aircraft that flew in for the day, Thanks to Brian Emmenis and Leon Du Plesiss for their commentary throughout the day.

Capital Sounds Leon Du Plessis and Brian Emmenis
Capital Sounds Elvis Manene
Century Avionics

What Fly-inn in South Africa gets the South African Airforce Silver Falcons and 2 Squadron Gripen display pilot to be present at a event. Yes the Coves, Major Omphile Matloane brought some of his crew and as well as Major Geoffrey ‘Spartan’ Cooper to the event to watch some of the displays and interact with the crowds.

SAAF Silver Falcons

Capital Sounds Brian Emmenis and 2 Squadron Gripen Display Pilot Major Geoffrey ‘Spartan’ Cooper

Flying displays consisted of RC Flying displays ,The Puma Flying Lions led by Captain Scully Levin, flew out from Rand Airport for their Harvard display. The Goodyear Eagles flew a three ship Pitts Display led by Glen Warden who earlier in the day brought the SAAF Museum De Havilland Vampire T55 for a couple of low level flypasts. Jason Beamish flew his brand new extra 330 and later joined up with Nigel Hopkins in his Extra 330 for a dual sunset display. Other flypasts for the day included a mass RV Formation as well as the Coves flypasts with many resident aircraft flying past the crowd line during the day.

Puma Flying Lions
Johan von Solms in the Goodyear Pitts S2B
SAAF Museum De Havilland Vampire T55
Jason Beamish in his Extra 330
Team Extremes Jason Beamish and Nigel Hopkins
Mass Rv Formation
Jason Beamish and Silver Falcons Falcon 5 Major Sivu Tangana get airborne in a RV7 ZU-POP
Flying Fronteirs Tokkie Botes in his Bell Jetranger
Beechcraft Baron
Beechcraft Baron
Bell 230 Flypast

Well done to JP Fourie and all other members involved in making the day a huge success. We look forward to a even bigger and better fly-in next year.


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