A restored Air North DC-3 has taken to the sky for the first time in ten years after a dedicated team of enthusiasts spent more than a year making the aircraft airworthy. The aircraft, named Yukon Sourdough, was damaged during an intense windstorm while being Parked outside nearly ten years ago. Members of the team behind the restoration said they didn’t know if Yukon Sourdough had been found by them or if it had found them. As well as returning the aircraft to the sky, the team behind the restoration. has also been brought together by the project.
The team aren’t afraid to have a laugh while working on their project, even when going through woof patches. Photo: Air North DC-3 Yukon Sourdough / Facebook.
Yukon Sourdough’s history
Yukon Sourdough was originally built in 1942, an impressive 80 years ago; the aircraft was previously registered as CF-OVW. The DC-3’s livery is that of Canadian Air North. Air North is a Canadian airline based in Whitehorse, Yukon. Today, the airline operates a nine-aircraft fleet made up of Boeing 737s and ATR 42s. However, the airline acquired multiple DC-3s in the 1980s.
Ken Casady, a pilot involved in restoring the plane, said that when he stumbled across an advert posted by Malcolm Van Kirk, his older brother, and another person selling the aircraft. However, upon speaking with them, Casady said he could tell they didn ‘t really want to sell the plane. The outcome was the partnership that has once again got the aircraft into the sky.
After flying for the first time in a decade, the plane will fly again this weekend at an air show in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. Casady said that longer term, the objective is clear for the team, stating: “Our mission is to steward this plane . ”
The plane is now flying again. Photo: Air North DC-3 Yukon Sourdough / Facebook.
What does the future hold for Yukon Sourdough?
Casady said in his post that he’s looking for people to cover the costs of the flight and maintenance of the plane, which includes suspension, insurance, maintenance, hangers for the aircraft, fuel, and oil costs. He added that it easily cost around $ 1,500 an hour to fly the plane – a steep price tag for a volunteer-run team.
Casady said: “We want it to be an active control gear… not hanging from the ceiling somewhere in a museum.” He hopes many people will donate a small amount to keep the plane aloft, just as many people support the United States Memorial Air Force, which also owns many vintage planes.
The first flight took to the skies in early July, and the plane has lifted off multiple times since then. However, the journey to this point hasn’t been an easy ride. As well as dedicating many hours to the project, the team has also had to cope with the loss of one of its founding members in the process.
In early July, Captain Stephen K. Van Kirk passed away. Team members aid he would be sorely missed but pledged to continue with the Yukon Sourdough project will continue in his memory. The founder not only enjoyed supporting his own aviation endeavors but had a special interest in the Wings for Val Foundation, which provides scholarships for women pursuing aviation careers, and the Hagerstown Air Museum.
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