Avro Lancaster “Just Jane” Continues Progress Toward Flight

Lancaster's #2 fuel tank removed for cleanup and certification. (photo credit: Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre)
Lancaster’s #2 fuel tank removed for cleanup and certification.
(photo credit: Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre)

Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre in East Kirby, UK has recently had the number 2 fuel tank out for overhaul and to allow inspection of the inner wing condition on their Avro Lancaster, registration number NX611.

Inner wing tank bay structure revealed by tank removal (photo credit: Linclonshire Aviation Heritage Centre)
Inner wing tank bay structure revealed by tank removal
(photo credit: Linclonshire Aviation Heritage Centre)

Thankfully, the fuel tank was found to be in good condition not needing much beyond cosmetics and pressure testing for it to get certified. The inner wing structure revealed by the tanks removal was found to be in surprisingly good condition with just some flaking paint and minor surface corrosion on the ribs and inner panel surfaces, necessitating not much more than some scraping and a fresh coat of paint. The relative lack of corrosion is a welcome surprise, given that the aircraft operated in a marine environment, serving with the air arm of the the French Navy from 1952 to 1964 and was stored outdoors for a decade as a gate guardian at RAF Scampton.

The restoration project has been ongoing since 1983 and the Lancaster presently offers taxi rides to museum visitors, the only Lancaster experience of its kind in Europe, and steadily the restoration project moves toward the day when the plane will be certified to once again take to the air.

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