Capt Flippie Vermeulen, Air Hostess Estelle Raath And FO Dion Raath (Mother & Son) At Club Makokola

Springbok Classic Air Newsletter


Africa Air Tours, Discover Africa

Springbok Classic Air acquires another DC-3

Following the sale of our DC-3 - ZS-NTE, Springbok Classic Air has acquired a new DC-3, with the registration of ZS-CAI.

Here is a brief background of the aircraft as well as a few photos of her arrival at Rand Airport

By Willie Bodenstein

Douglas DC-3/C-47 construction number 13541 left the Douglas factory on 9 June 1944 for service in the USAAF. On the 22 June she was transferred to the RAF and the next day to the SAAF where she served until 1958 when she was allocated to the Department of Transport (DoT) and was registered as ZS-CAI on the civilian register. She served with the DoT and the CAA in the navigation calibration and other roles until January 2002 when she was sold to the Democratic Republic of Congo-based Business Aviation.

She returned to SA and spent a while parked at Wonderboom Airport. On 25 May 2007 she was bought by Skyclass Aviation and named Marilyn and was based at ORT International from where she faithfully plied her trade as a freighter between OR Tambo International and Sir Seretse Khama International Airport, Gaborone in Botswana.

During 2011 she was sold to Darrell Lush's Lush Aviation where she continued her role as freighter and also appeared in two movies, the last time in the TV series "Strike Back". She still carried the Liberian lettering applied during the filming when during December 2013 she experienced an engine fire in the number 2 engine whilst taxing to the apron at Port Elizabeth Airport. Fortunately the loadmaster was able to extinguish the fire.

The engine was repaired but red tape caused her to spend time at Port Elizabeth until Flippie Vermeulen of Springbok Classic Air who has sold DC-3 ZS-NTE bought her. Ben Vermeulen, Timothy Maritinyu, Lorrie Du Preez and Thinus Potgieter were despatched to PE to get her airworthy and she was flown first to Orania By Flippie, Brian Stableford and Carl Heupsch where Andre Langenhoven and his team attended to some snags.

She left Orania at 12h00 on Wednesday 2 September and arrived at her new home at Rand Airport two hours later where she joined the Beech 18 - and where she will be refurbished to fly in Classic Air's popular aerial safaris.
ZS-CAI is fitted with a partial Remmert-Werner speed kit incorporating gear doors and a modified tail cone.


entry.pngAfrica, the mysterious continent, beckons you with all its wildness and splendor. Come with us and feel the rythm of its land. Share in the beauty of its soul.

Celebrate with us on our voyages of discovery and unlock the africa of your wildest dreams.

Africa's vastness and diverse attractions can only be fully explored by our specialized tours. More than three times larger than Europe or the USA, Africa offers a breathtaking range of attractions, which are best discovered by air, and away from conventional routes.

Classic prop-liners are ideal for exploring Africa's scenic wonders at low altitude. Comfortably cruising above a coastline, river or mountain pass, your journey becomes as enjoyable as your destination.

Migrating herds of elephant, rolling bushveld, towering mountain ranges,
sand dunes, rivers, islands and geological features are all spectacularly revealed at low altitude.

Based at historic Rand Airport near Johannesburg, South Africa, we cater for discerning adventurers who want a no-compromise African experience. We provide for all your needs - from propliner and ground transportation, to accommodation and excursions.

Our destinations and activities can be customised to meet the needs of any group - whether fact-finding or study, special interest, exploration or vacation.

Read about our Beech-18 classic aircraft available for tours and scenic flights here.