At 3 p.m. on the afternoon of June 16 a newly restored de Havilland 98 MK.35, better known as the Mosquito, fired up its Rolls-Royce Merlin engines and flew for the first time in 48 years after a long-term restoration. The flight took place at Victoria International Airport in Sidney, British Columbia, flown by Steve Hinton, EAA 181203/Warbirds 12506.
Restoration of the bomber was completed by Victoria Air Maintenance Ltd., and owner and Director of Maintenance Mike Ingram said the plane “flew perfectly” on Monday. He added the plane was being prepped for delivery to Vancouver and its registered owner, Robert Jens, of Richmond, British Columbia.
Built after World War II, the aircraft SN VR.796 came off the de Havilland Aircraft Company Ltd. assembly line in 1947 and never saw active service. This completion and first flight makes for two airworthy “Wooden Wonders” in the world, joining Gerald “Jerry” Yagen’s example at the Military Aviation Museum, Virginia.
The last of 7,781 Mossies built rolled off the production line in 1950. More than 30 different variants were constructed in Canada, Australia, and England. The sleek, wooden twin-engine bomber could carry impressive loads nearly 2,000 miles at incredible speeds (maximum exceeded 400 mph), making it one of the most effective airplanes for the Allies in World War II.