Recently acquired, still sporting traces of its past ownership with the Steel Authority of India Limited [SAIL] is the Beech Queen Air VT-DOQ. Not exactly a warbird in technical sense, this civilian instructional airframe forms a pair along with a Beech Twin Bonanza at the Hindustan Institute of Engineering Technology in Chennai.
|Beech Queen Air 65 VT-DOQ of the Hindustan Institute of Engineering Technology used for instructional purposes. Pic Courtesy : B Harry|
Originally taken on board by SAIL on 8th April 1974, VT-DOQ spent nearly three decades on the SAIL’s airfleet before being de-registered on 17th August 2004. Not much is known of its history, but the aircraft looks as if it has seen some years flying the outback in India.
We dont have an idea as to when SAIL disposed of its aircraft, or when HIET has procured these for training. The entire aircraft seems to be in good condition, along with engines, undercarraige and props looking complete. The Airworthiness of this aircraft is not known, but it is assumed that SAIL had disposed off the Queen Air due to the age of the airframe.
The aircraft was hauled to HIET in pieces sometime this year and assembled at the site.
|Forward view of the Queen Air , showing the twin engine nacelles with the Lycomings and the tricycle undercarraige. Pic Courtesy : B Harry|