FIMK / Skyway/Conair/FPL #602 #2 / Bu 85597

Warbird Registry Info.

Early History

United States Navy. TBM-3S. Construction number 2416.
Royal Canadian Navy. Avenger AS 3. Flew as #381. BOC: June 23, 1952. SOC: Jan. 17, 1958. Military Service in Canada: Squadron VS 881 and ?, Shearwater, NS.

Skyway Air Services, Langley, BC
#602 CF-IMK 1958-1969

Aerial Spray Program – NB, Newfoundland
1958 – Converted to tanker, Victoria, BC, 1958. Firebombing as part of a fleet of 6 Wheeler and 6 Skyway TBMs. 1959 – No operations. 1961 – Tallied by Larry Milberry while en route to NB. 1960-1965 – No records, but very likely flew in NB for these years. 1966, 1967 – Pilot Lebans. 1968 – Flew in NB and Newfoundland.

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Skyway TBM #602 refueling at an airstrip in Quebec.

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Skyway TBM #602 from above.

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A Wheeler TBM and Skyway #602 at Blissville, 1958.

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Boom and nozzles on Skyway #602, sometime in the 1960s.

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Skyway TBMs FKCH #606 and FIMK #602 at Dunphy in 1967. The other is one of the 4 Wheeler Avengers.

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Skyway #602 in the pits at Gander, Newfoundland, 1968.

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Skyway TBM #602 about to take off.

Conair Aviation Ltd., Abbotsford, BC
#602 CF-IMK 1969-1977

Aerial Spray Program – NB
1969 – Pilot Langeman. 1970 – Pilot Bolton. 1971 – Pilot Raun. 1972 – Pilot Robb. 1973 Pilot Gossett. 1974 – Did not fly in NB. 1975 – Pilot Beecroft. 1976 – Pilot Atkins. 1977 – Pilot Tomecek. FIMK was one of 8 TBMs sold to Forest Protection Limited in August 1977.

Accident. In the early 1970s, the pilot lost control on takeoff and skidded off the runway at Juniper airstrip; the aircraft was not damaged.

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Conair TBM #602 at the end of the runway at Juniper airstrip, early 1970s.

FIMK #602_KamloopsBC_Aug72_LMilberry

Conair TBM Tanker 602 Kamloops Aug 1972 taken by Larry Milberry, the Dan Dinneen collection. Posted to TBMs – Mil & Civ by Dan Dineen, 21 Nov 2014.

 

Forest Protection Limited, Fredericton, NB
#602 / #2 CF-IMK / C-FIMK 1978-1994

1977 – FPL FIMK purchased from Conair Aviation Limited in 1 August 1977 for $27,000.

Aerial Spray Program / Fire Suppression – NB
1978 – Pilot Hopping. Repainted and renumbered to fleet standard after 4 July, 1978. Fire bombing after the spray season. 1979 – Pilot Gomany. Fire bombing after the spray season.

Aerial Spray Program – NB
1980, 1981 – Pilot Harrington. 1982 – Pilot Garon. 1983 – Pilot McIlwaine. 1984 – Pilot Koerfgen.

Inactive/Sold – NB
1985-1993 – Inactive, in storage at FPL. 1994 – Sold to Jeff Thomas/Vintage Wings, Seattle, WA.

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FPL #602 airborne, May 1978, before repainting and renumbering.

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FPL #2 practicing a water drop at Juniper airstrip, July 1978.

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FPL #2 parked at FPL, July 1984.

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TBM #2 and other TBMs stored at FPL, 1993.

Transporting FIMK to the USA

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Loading FIMK onto a flatbed truck for transport to the US. [Ken Marshall, Scalefirebombers]

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The body and tail of FPL #2 FIMK on flatbed truck ready for delivery to US buyer, 1994. [Don Henry files]

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The wings were loaded on a second flatbed truck. [Don Henry files]

Post-spray History

Jeff Thomas/Vintage Wings, Seattle, WA, 1994.
Byron D. Neely, Austin, TX, July 22, 1994-2002. Registered as N704QZ.
American Airpower Heritage Flying Museum, Midland, TX, Jan. 2003-2007.

2 responses to “FIMK / Skyway/Conair/FPL #602 #2 / Bu 85597

  1. Hello

    My name is Dave O’Malley and I am manager of the website at Vintage Wings of Canada. We operate 18 vintage aircrfat in flying condition. We also run a website that puts out a remarkable number of stories about warbirds and aviation history. To see what we are about, visit http://www.vintagewings.ca

    I am presently putting together a story written by one of our volunteers about a Grumman Avenger (former CFIMK) being restored in Florida. I would love to be able to illustrate its history with your company and would love to be able to use the photos from your site of C-FIMK. Would you consider letting us use these images? Being a not for profit public charity, we are on a zero budget and can only pay you in gratitude and a proper photo credit as well as links to your site.

    Please let me know if this is possible and I will take the photos from the site. This will be a very positive story of its illustrious career.

    Dave O’Malley

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