WONZ 241 – Long Haul: Flying Boats to 747s


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By Dave Homewood. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Guests: Captain Neville Hay and Peter Allen

Host: Dave Homewood

Recorded: 13th of July 2021

Released: 6th of August 2021

Duration: 2 hours 32 minutes 35 seconds

In this episode Dave Homewood interviews former TEAL and Air New Zealand aircrew members Captain Neville Hay and Peter Allen, inside the Boeing 747-200 simulator that is housed at MOTAT, the Museum of Transport and Technology.

Nev Hay started with TEAL as an apprentice in 1957, and following his engineering training he was offered the position as a Flight Engineer. Peter followed the same route two years later. Both worked on RNZAF Short Sunderlands and TEAL Solents at Mechanics Bay as apprentices, and when they became Flight Engineers they flew on the Lockheed Electra, the Douglas DC-8, the Douglas DC-10, and the Boeing 747-200 fleets, and Nev continued onto the Boeing 747-400.

Whilst Pete had continued through his career as a Flight Engineer on the Electra, the DC-8, the DC-10 and the 747-200 and then moved into a management role, Nev chose to retrain to become a pilot, and he flew the DC-8, DC-10, and both 747 variants.

Both men ended up later in their careers as the top men in their trades, Peter as Air New Zealand’s Chief Flight Engineer, and actually was the last Flight Engineer the airline had. Nev was Chief Pilot on the Boeing 747-400.

Both men tell some amazing and fascinating tales and memories of flying, such as the approach into Hong Kong’s famous Kai Tak airport, Peter witnessing the re-entry of the Apollo 8 crew, flying an Air New Zealand 747 into Wellington Airport, and Nev flying HM Queen Elizabeth in 1995 on her first ever commercial flight. Nev also talks about building and flying his tiny twin-engined Cricri homebuild that he used to own.

They also tell loads of great technical information about the various airliners they had operated over the years. They also talk about what went into selecting, delivering and bringing into service new aircraft fleets, particularly the Boeing 747-200 which Peter was involved with, and the Boeing 747-400, which Nev was involved with.

Quick Links:

Air New Zealand

Air New Zealand History

Museum of Transport and Technology

Huge thanks to Steve Subritzky and the staff at MOTAT’s Aviation Division for their assistance

NB: The music at the end of this episode is Wild Flower by Joakim Karud

Above: Flight Engineer Peter Allen and Flight Engineer and Captain Neville Hay (Photo: Dave Homewood)
Captain Neville Hay in the captain’s seat (Photo: Dave Homewood)
Peter Allen in the 747-200’s Flight Engineer’s panel.
MOTAT’s Boeing 747-200 Flight Simulator, in which this episode was recorded.

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