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Springtime Engine Tests at The Museum
30th April 2017
This Sunday we are planning a series of engine test runs throughout the day in preparation for a busy summer at the Museum. These engine tests are part of our regular maintenance regime and while they are not a full Thunder Day event, our visitors like to know when they are taking place, so here is an approximate schedule of this Sunday’s activities.
Buccaneer Engine Test Runs
After two years sitting idle, our Buccaneer XN974 sprang into life in February at the first time of asking. Over the preceding six months our team had brought her to the point where was time to start up those engines once again. This weekend, our Buccaneer will be starting once again for a second set of engine and systems tests. This is a great opportunity to see her fresh Royal Navy colour scheme as the finishing touches are applied to the beautiful livery that she flew in when newly delivery to the Royal Navy.
We plan two sets of Buccaneer engine runs to complete some systems tests, so watch out for her folding wings and rotating bomb bay in action.
Piston Engine Aircraft Runs
Our De Havilland Dove has sometimes proved a little temperamental in recent times, but a great deal of work on her ignition systems means that we are quietly optimistic of her ability to start much more reliably. We will be testing this on several occasions on Sunday, so check to see if we are correct!
The ever popular DC3 Dakota will also be running at some point throughout the day as we check her after more winter overhaul work, so watch for those exhaust flames. Also running will be the SE5a World War One fighter and our tiny Eastchurch Kitten. Our engineers have been busy fitting a braking system to her over the winter to enable her to move safely under her own power.
Victor and Nimrod Test Engine Runs
After the winter weather, it’s always great to see our Cold War jets come back to life. These engine tests are an important part of their conservation process and a vital preparation for the Summer Thunder Day events planned for the coming year.
Both our Nimrod team and Victor crews will be here to run the engines on these mighty Cold War Jets as we prepare for a busy summer at the Museum.
Approximate Schedule of Events
Our plans for Sunday depend upon the maintenance schedule of the aircraft, so we have no fixed timetable. However, throughout the day, we anticipate running all of our major jet aircraft and piston engined aircraft. If all goes according to plan, most will be running twice throughout the day, so a great chance too watch our volunteer engineering team testing systems. Bear in mind that as ever, we rely on the co-operation of these old aircraft and this is part of our work-up process for full Thunder Day engine runs in the summer.
Sunday Lunch in Our NAAFI Restaurant
Our in house catering team will be preparing Sunday Lunch of Roast Beef and Yorkshire Pudding, our gravy aroma will be competing with the exhaust fumes of our aircraft. Full size and child size portions are served, so be sure to beat our engineers to the front of the queue.
If you’ve been waiting for a reason to visit us this year or if you are itching to try out that new camera and get the whole family out of the house for a day out this Bank Holiday weekend, then this Sunday will be a great day to visit. Our normal Museum entry fees apply, so use this page to find us and plan your visit.