De Havilland DH 104 Dove, built in 1957

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 © Technisches Museum Wien, Photo: Peter Sedlaczek

The De Havilland DH 104 Dove was Britain’s first successful civil design aircraft after the Second World War.

During World War II the Brabazon Committee looked into the future requirements of British civil aviation. The Dove was one of two successful projects, along with the Vickers Viscount.

Designed as a light transport and passenger aircraft its production totalled 544 until it ceased in 1968. 200 aircraft were used for military purposes. The prototype flew its maiden flight on 25 December 1945. The slightly modified series models were equipped with a dome over the cockpit for added headroom. In its standard configuration the twin-engine low-wing all-metal aircraft provided main cabin seating for eight to eleven passengers.

The Austrian Federal Office for Civil Aviation acquired this particular version for radio survey work. The Dove was decommissioned in 1976 as it was no longer able to keep apace of the requirements for commercial aircraft. The DH 104 was handed over to the Technisches Museum Wien (Vienna Technical Museum) at the end of 1977 and cut open for exhibition purposes.

Lots of technical questions arose when the exhibit was introduced in the permanent collection in 2005. Besides the precise fit of the individual aluminium panels the reduced stability of the truncated fuselage also posed a problem. To minimise the risk of rupturing, a wooden box structure was built like a corset around the body of the aircraft to absorb the pressure of the hoist slings. The disassembled aircraft was transported from the depot to the Technisches Museum on a semitrailer. There a 100 m high loading crane was used to lift the exhibit components intended for the Airworld special exhibition from the Energy Forum to the 1st floor and then assembled. For the transfer to its current location the exhibit was dismantled once again and hoisted up to the gallery at a height of 15 m. Once again the airfoils, engine, empennage and fuselage were reassembled on site.

 

Specifications

Registration: OE-BVM
Factory No.: 04488
Flight crew: 2 pilots
Powerplants: 2 x De Havilland Gipsy Queen 70” six-cylinder inline air-cooled engines, 380 hp each, adjustable three-bladed metal propellers
Wing span: 17.40 m
Length: 11.96 m
Empty weight: 2,522 kg
Takeoff weight: 3,992 kg
Cruising speed: 325 km/h
Service ceiling: 6,100 m



Inv.Nr. 21228

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