FIMN / Skyway/Conair/FPL #605 #5 / Bu# 53139

Warbird Registry Info.

Early History

United States Navy. TBM-3S Construction # 3201.
Royal Canadian Navy. Avenger AS 3. Flew as #361. BOC: Sept. 27, 1950. SOC: Jan. 30, 1958. Military Service in Canada: VU32 Squadron, Shearwater, NS.

Skyway Air Services, Langley, BC
#605 CF-IMN 1958-1969

Aerial Spray Program – NB
1958 – Converted to tanker, Victoria, BC, 1958. Part of a fleet of 6 Wheeler and 6 Skyway TBMs. 1959 – No operations. 1960, 1963-1965 – No records, but very likely flew in NB for these years. 1961 – Tallied by Larry Milberry while en route to NB. 1962 – Flew in NB, according to The Star Weekly article (“Can Science Save the Spruce?” – 18 August 1962). 1966, 1967 Pilot Cooper. 1968 – Did not fly in NB.

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Skyway TBM #605 FIMN airborne.

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Skyway TBM #605 spraying.

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Skyway TBM #605 spraying in NB, from The Star Weekly article (“Can Science Save the Spruce?”, 18 August 1962).

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Skyway TBM #605 taking off at Dunphy, 1967.

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Scale model diagram of Skyway #605 FIMN. [Scalefirebombers]

Conair Aviation Ltd., Abbotsford, BC
#605 CF-IMN 1969-1977

Aerial Spray Program – NB, Quebec (1972 only)
1969 – Pilot Grunniger. 1970 – Pilot Langman. 1971 – Pilot Boulton. 1972 – Flew in Quebec in 1972, pilot Boulton. 1973, 1974 – Did not fly for FPL in NB. 1975 – Pilot Holmes.  1976 – Pilot Smith. 1977 – Pilot Stad. FIMN #605 was one of 8 TBMs sold to Forest Protection Limited in August 1977.

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Conair TBM #605 taking of at Dunphy airstrip, 1970.

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Conair #605 FIMN, location and date unknown. [The National Archive of Transport Travel and Trade]

Forest Protection Limited, Fredericton, NB
#605 #5 CF-IMN / C-FIMN 1977-1978

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

Aerial Spray Program / Fire Suppression – NB
1978 – Pilot Westinghouse. Repainted and renumbered to fleet standard after 4 July, 1978. Part of a team of 8 used for fire bombing. 1979, 1980 – Pilot Jewers. Fire bombing – 1979. Stand-by for fire bombing – 1980.

Aerial Spray Program – NB
1981 – Pilot Casselman. 1982 – Pilot Hiebert. 1983 – Pilot Kelly. 1984 – Pilot Hutchings.

Inactive/Sold – NB
1985-1994 – Inactive, in storage at FPL. 1994 – Sold to Jeff Thomas/Vintage Wings, Seattle, WA, July 1994. Delivered by truck, dismantled.

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Washing #5 FIMN at Boston Brook, June 1981.

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FPL TBM #5 among TBMs stored for winter, Fredericton, NB, 1984. TBM #16 FKCM is visible at right.

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TBM #5 at FPL, Fredericton, NB, 1984.

Post-spray History

Jeff Thomas/Vintage Wings, Seattle, WA, July 1994.
Ozark Management Inc., Rolla, MO, February 28, 1995-1998. Registered as N6VC.
Wes Stricker, Rolla, MO, July 11, 1998-2008. Restored to military configuration. Flown as USN/85715/15.
Displayed at Tennessee Museum of Aviation, Gatlinburg-Pigeon Forge Airport, TN, 2006. Painted with the ID of Stricker’s other TBM, N65VC (FPL’s C-GLEF).
Pissed Away N6VC LLC (the actual name of a Washington Limited Liability Company), Bellevue, WA, November 2010-2011. Looks like there’s a story in here somewhere.

One response to “FIMN / Skyway/Conair/FPL #605 #5 / Bu# 53139

  1. Submitting photos of N6VC taken at Hemet Ryan AAB Dec 2012 with Bob Forbes.

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