DE HAVILLAND DH.94 MOTH MINOR VH CZB 11

 

The de Havilland DH94 Moth 'Minor' first flew in England in1937, intended for use as an affordable and simple ‘club’ aeroplane.  However, the looming Second World War caused de Havilland’s priorities to change, which resulted in only a relatively small number of these aircraft being built in England.  Further limited production of Moth Minors was carried out in Australia for the Royal Australian Air Force.  The RAAF used these aircraft in training, liaison and personal transport roles until the end of the war.  Many Moth Minors were back in use as private aircraft post-war, but most fell into disrepair which has resulted in only a very few of these aircraft flying today.

Moth Minor RAAF serial number A21-42 was an English machine imported for civilian use, however things were so desperate for Australia in the early years of World War Two that it was ‘impressed’ into RAAF service, serving at various bases in Queensland and New South Wales.  At the end of the war it saw some use once again as a civilian machine, resuming its initial civilian registration of VH-ACR, however it was not long before it too fell into disuse.  For many years, it hung from the roof inside Gilltrap’s Auto Museum on the Gold Coast, then exhibited in various other museums until acquired by Mark Carr (who remembers seeing it as a child when visiting Gilltrap’s on a family holiday!).  An exhaustive six-year restoration followed, and she finally took to the air again, now registered as VH-CZB, in 2008 after being grounded for some sixty years!  The aircraft now enjoys a new lease on life as one of the oldest airworthy ex-RAAF aircraft in Australia.  Moth Minors are extremely rare, and this one is the only one in the world available to the public to ride in.

Technical specifications

Structure: fuselage and main wing structure wood, covered with plywood and fabric.  Wing trailing edges and tail surfaces consist of wooden spars and ribs, covered with fabric.  The wings can be folded back under the tail for storage.

Engine: de Havilland ‘Gipsy Minor’, ‘inverted in-line’ four cylinders, air cooled, 90 horse power

Wing span: 11.15 m       Length: 7.44 m

Maximum take-off weight: 703 kg

Cruise speed: 90 knots (166 kph)     Landing speed: 50 knots (92 kph)