On 16th December 2004, a solemn ceremony was marked at Hakimpet to commemorate the phasing out of the Iskra. The last official Instructor-Trainee flights were flown on this day and the aircraft were formally withdrawn from their training regimes.
Two days later, on December 18th, Three Iskras carried out a flypast during the Combined Graduation Parade. Out of these, a solitary Iskra W-1741 peeled off and landed at Air Force Academy, This Iskra was formally taken on charge by the AFA and it was planned to display the aircraft on the Academy’s premises. Subsequently we had been informed by visitor Jashandeep who mentioned that the aircraft was placed at the Air Cadets Mess.
|PZL TS-11 Iskra [W-1741] on display on the tarmac minutes after its final landing|
|PZL TS-11 Iskra [W-1772] seen installed at its final resting place at the Cadets Mess.|
In December 2005, I had taken photographs of the Iskra. But it was not until I was designing this page did I notice that the Iskra that was finally installed as a warbird was NOT W-1741 but W-1772! When and how the switch was made, is really not known.
The aircraft can now be seen within the surroundings of the Cadets Mess. Whereas the MiG-21 is the centerpiece at the Mess, the Iskra can be seen towards the leftside of the entrance road a little bit distance from the Mess building. A circular platform had been constructed and the aircraft placed on it.
|PZL TS-11 Iskra [W-1772] seen from the approach pathway at the Cadets Mess.|
|An information board has been placed with the data of the Iskra.|
Care had been taken to put some kind of support directly under the Oleos in the undercarriage. this enables the tyres to be off the ground – thus preserving their shapes. However it appears that the starboard side undercarriage door has been knocked off during installation, and it still lies underneath the aircraft.
|Note the ‘loose’ undercarriage bay door lying under the aircraft. Also Note the painted canopy Perspex. The aircraft wheels also have chocks and direct support to the Oleo struts.|
A significant departure in the display is the overpainting of the canopy Perspex with green paint. Previous aircraft had custom shaped tarpaulins made to cover the canopies. It appears that the paint has been applied on the outside, but we cant say for sure.
|A Close look at the rear portion of W1772 shows the rudder at hard port position|