Geoff Jones reports from the UK.
The North American OV-10 Bronco G-ONAA registered to Invicta Aviation Ltd and owned by Tony de Bruyn arrived at Manston, Kent on 29th May 2013 from its base at Schwenningen-am-Neckar in the Black Forest region of southern Germany via Wevelgem (Belgium). The complete restoration has been completed by Invicta Aircraft Engineering Ltd., which is co-located in the TG Aviation hangar.
As the Bronco Demo Team website’s reports Bronco “99+18”, civil registered as G-ONAA (dedicated to the aircraft manufacturer, GO North American Aviation), successfully completed its maiden flight on Saturday May 26, 2012 at Schwenningen-am-Neckar Airfield in Germany. The Bronco had been on static display at the International Aviation Museum – Manfred Pflumm since 1991. A large part of the restoration work was done at the museum location in Schwenningen before the aircraft was flown over to Manston, UK for further restoration work.
Many of the aircraft’s outer skin panels have been replaced – on Tuesday 10th December the Bronco departed Manston for Holland (Midden Zeeland) for a complete new paint job.
The OV-10 Bronco, a rugged, maneuverable, twin-turboprop, multimission aircraft, served with the U.S. Air Force and Marine Corps (OV-10A). The U.S. Navy also used the OV-10. The Navy squadron VAL-4 “Black Ponies” flew them with much success in the Vietnam War. Internationally, the OV-10 served with the military services of West Germany (OV-10B), Thailand (OV-10C), Venezuela (OV-10E) and Indonesia (OV-10F). Designed and built by North American at Columbus, Ohio, the Bronco complemented the performance requirements between jets and helicopters. Faster and more tactically versatile than helicopters, yet slower and more maneuverable than jets, the Bronco utilized tactics not possible with either.
Bronco “99+18” is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2014, ready for the upcoming airshow season.