VH-ECB. Lockheed 188C Electra. c/n 2004.

 

This aircraft was the second of four Electras ordered new by Qantas - April 01, 1958

This order was officially announced - May 23, 1958

First flown - October 03, 1959

Powered by Allison 501-D13 turboprop engines

Entered onto the Australian Aircraft Register as VH-ECB - October 30, 1959

Registered to Qantas Airways Ltd, Sydney

Departed Burbank on the delivery flight to Australia - November 04, 1959

Arrived Sydney (Kingsford Smith) on completion of the delivery flight - November 07, 1959

Delivery route: Burbank - San Francisco - Honolulu - Canton Island - Sydney

Flight crew: Captains J. A. Bird, C. G. Fox (Qantas); Captain J. Davis (Lockheed)

This was the first Electra to be delivered to the airline's base at Sydney (Kingsford Smith) Airport

The aircraft was named 'Pacific Explorer'

Flew inaugural Sydney - Hong Kong Electra service via Port Moresby - Biak - Manila - December 19, 1959

Departed Sydney for the United States for wing and engine mount modification - December 1960

Ferry route: Sydney - Nadi - Canton Island - Honolulu - Burbank

Entered the Lockheed (LEAP) Program as LEAP #46 QEA-2 - December 12, 1960

The LEAP modification were completed - January 19, 1961

Ferried Burbank - Sydney (Kingsford Smith) on return to Qantas - January 1961

Operated the inaugural Sydney (Kingsford Smith) - Christchurch service (Captain A. L. Gay) - October 04, 1961

Operated the inaugural Melbourne (Essendon) - Auckland service - October 08, 1961

Operated the inaugural Melbourne (Essendon) - Wellington service (Captain P. L. Oakley) - October 04, 1963

Withdrawn from service at Sydney (Kingsford Smith) and offered for sale - June 1967

Sold to California Airmotive / Air California and painted in the original Air California livery at Sydney

Departed Sydney on the ferry flight to the United States (Captain A. L. Gay) - August 14, 1967

Ferry route: Sydney - Nadi - Honolulu - San Francisco - Santa Ana

Cancelled from the Australian Aircraft Register - August 17, 1967

The aircraft had flown 16,455:57 hours

Entered onto the United States Aircraft Register as N385AC - August 18, 1967

Registered to GATX Booth

Leased to Air California as the registered operator

Sold to Aircraft Holdings - March 19, 1969

Sold to F B Ayer & Associates - November 07, 1969

Sold to Universal Trading Corporation, Panama - December 17, 1969

Withdrawn from use and stored at Fort Worth, Texas - 1970

Ferried Forth Worth - Tucson (Arizona) for storage - 1971

Sold to F B Ayer & Associates - January 12, 1972

Leased to Intermountain Aviation as the registered operator - January 1972

Recertified in Experimental category to test Sperry radiometric systems for Lockheed - April 23, 1973

Sold to WHARFCA Inc - November 12, 1973

Leased to Ecuatoriana as the registered operator - November 1973

Returned to WHARFCA on termination of the lease - July 1974

Sold to F B Ayer & Associates - July 14, 1974

Sold to Transportes Aereos Nacionales Ecuatorianos (TAME) - August 06, 1974

Entered onto the Ecuadorian Aircraft Register as HC-AZJ - August 1974

Allocated the Ecuadorian Air Force Registration 'FAE2004'

The aircraft was named 'Pichincha'

Damaged beyond repair following a belly landing at Taura, Ecuador - September 04, 1989

Scrapped

 

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery somewhere over California, October 1959.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-868.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery somewhere over California, October 1959.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-851.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery somewhere over California, October 1959.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-912.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery somewhere over California, October 1959.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-914.)

Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - the interior cabin layout and color palette.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-852.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 07, 1959.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-848.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 07, 1959.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-849.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 07, 1959.

Captain Jack Bird talks with the Japanese and Chinese stewardesses who will crew the the Electra services on the Far East Route.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-853.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 07, 1959.

From left to right: Yoshiko Watanabe; Joyce Lee; Helen Ho; Captain Jack Bird; Betty Chow; Kitty Loo.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-866.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 07, 1959.

From left to right: Captain Jack Bird; Betty Chow and Kitty Loo.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-867.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 07, 1959.

Left to Right: Eiko Kuwashima; Yoshiko Watanabe; Helen Ho; Captain Jack Bird; Joyce Lee; Kitty Loo and Betty Chow.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-854.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 07, 1959.

Left to Right: Yoshiko Watanabe; Helen Ho; Betty Chow; Joyce Lee; Kitty Loo and Eiko Kuwashima.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-865.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 1959.

Connoisseur meals and 'blue-ribbon' cabin service complemented the luxurious accommodation provided for the 18 de luxe class passengers travelling on the Qantas Far East Route Electra flights to Manila, Hong Kong and Tokyo.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-855.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 1959.

Connoisseur meals and 'blue-ribbon' cabin service complemented the luxurious accommodation provided for the 18 de luxe class passengers travelling on the Qantas Far East Route Electra flights to Manila, Hong Kong and Tokyo.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-856.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 1959.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-857.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 1959.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-858.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 1959.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-859.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, November 1959.

High quality meals and cabin service was provided to the the 38 Tourist class passengers travelling on the Qantas Far East Route Electra flights to Manila, Hong Kong and Tokyo.

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1808-863.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, December 1965.

(R. N. Smith Copyright Image 1808-342.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney RAAF Base Richmond, May 1967.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-369.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney RAAF Base Richmond, May 1967.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-023.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney RAAF Base Richmond, May 1967.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-370.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney RAAF Base Richmond, May 1967.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-024.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney RAAF Base Richmond, May 1967.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-042.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney RAAF Base Richmond, May 1967.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-020.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, May 1967.

(R. N. Smith Copyright Image 1808-952.)

VH-ECB. Qantas Australia's Overseas Airline - 'Pacific Explorer' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, May 1967.

(R. N. Smith Copyright Image 1808-549.)

VH-ECB. Air California - in the original livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, August 1967.

(G. Bennett Collection Copyright Image 1808-025.)

VH-ECB. Air California - in the original livery at an unknown airport, August 1967.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-027.)

N385AC. Air California - in the revised livery at an unknown airport, October 1968.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-028.)

N385AC. Air California - in the revised livery at an unknown airport, November 1968.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-029.)

N385AC. Ecuatoriana - in the basic Intermountain livery at an unknown airport, April 1974.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-030.)

N385AC. Ecuatoriana - in the basic Intermountain livery at an unknown airport, April 1974.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-299.)

HC-AZJ. TAME - 'Pichincha' in the original livery at Sucre Quito Airport, date unknown.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-031.)

HC-AZJ. TAME - 'Pichincha' in the original livery at Miami Airport, September 1974.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-470.)

HC-AZJ. TAME - 'Pichincha' in the original livery at an unknown airport, June 1976.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-430.)

HC-AZJ. TAME - 'Pichincha' in the revised livery at Miami Airport, June 1987.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-959.)

HC-AZJ. TAME - 'Pichincha' in the revised livery at Sucre Quito Airport, May 1988.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1808-032.)