DHC-3 Otter Archive Master Index

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c/n 230

N80941 at Shannon - EINN, Ireland.
Photo:John Cunniffe © 09 April 1972 - Karl E. Hayes Collection
CF-CBA in a snow flurry, at Pickle Lake, Ontario.
Photo: Rich Hulina © April 1998 - Karl E. Hayes Collection
CF-CBA takes on a load of firefighters at Kenora.
Photo: Robert S. Grant © August 1979 - Karl E. Hayes Collection
CF-CBA at Kenora town dock, Ontario.
Photo: Tim Williams © August 2005 - Karl E. Hayes Collection
CF-CBA at Geraldton - CYGQ, Ontario.
Photo: Rich Hulina © 03 November 2016

c/n 230

57-6111 • N80941 • CF-CBA • C-FCBA

CF-CBA

x

• 57-6111 United States Army Delivered 10-Jan-1958. Designated U-1A.

Initially to Addison, TX., for installation of radio equipment for the European theatre by the Collins Radio Corporation.

May 1964. Assigned to Europe. Most details unknown.

Mar-1970. Assigned to the Army's Special Forces Detachment at Bad Tolz, Germany until Dec-1970.

Dec-1970. Into storage at Coleman Barracks, Mannheim, Germany.

Oct-1971. Deleted from Army inventory and put up for disposal.

Total time: 3,123 hours.

 • N80941 Ferrer Aviation Inc., Miami, FL.

Note. Overhauled and civilianised by Perimeter Aviation at Winnipeg, MB.

• CF-CBA Parsons Airways Ltd., Kenora, ON.  Circa 1973.

• C-FCBA Re regd to Parsons Airways Ltd., Kenora, ON. Canx 06-Jul-1982.

• C-FCBA Kenora Air Service Ltd., Kenora, ON. Regd 22-Jun-1982.

• CF-CBA Re regd to Kenora Air Service Ltd., Kenora, ON, 06-Jul-1999.

Current

Otter 230 was delivered to the United States Army on 10 January 1958 with serial 57-6111 (tail number 76111). It was one of sixteen Army Otters flown from Downsview to Addison, Texas for work on them by the Collins Radio Corporation, to equip them for use overseas. 76111 was assigned to Europe and by January 1962 it was in storage at Coleman Barracks, Mannheim, Germany as a maintenance float. In May 1964 it was issued to a unit which has not been identified (Unit Identification Code (UIC) 3587) as an Operational Support Aircraft. It was noted visiting Bremerhaven on 18 June 1964 and visiting Coleman Barracks on 1 July 1965. In August 1966 it returned to Coleman Barracks to be based there as an Operational Support Aircraft.

In August 1967 it returned to the unidentified unit (UIC 3587) until January 1968 when it yet again returned to Coleman Barracks as an Operational Support Aircraft. It was noted visiting the USAF base at Wethersfield, England on 5 July 1968 and making several visits to Mildenhall during 1969. In March 1970 it was assigned to the Army’s Special Forces Detachment at Bad Tolz, Germany until it again returned to Coleman Barracks in December 1970, when it was put into storage. It remained in outside storage there until deleted from the Army inventory in October 1971 and put up for disposal as military surplus.

76111 was one of eight Army Otters all in storage at Coleman Barracks put up for sale by Sealed Bid Tender with a closing date of 29 December 1971. The successful bidder for all eight Otters was Ferrer Aviation Inc of Miami. The total price for all eight Otters was $303,640 of which $41,600 was the price paid for 76111, which had 3,123 hours on the airframe at the time of sale. 76111 was allocated marks N80941 for Ferrer Aviation, stencilled on the side of the aircraft in yellow paint.

Ferrer Aviation contracted ferry company Air Convoy to fly the eight Otters to Canada and all followed the same route, two at a time. N80941 accompanied sister ship N80943 (229), the former 76110, routing from Saarbrucken via Ashford in Kent to Shannon, Ireland where they arrived on 7 April 1972. Ferry tanks having been installed at Shannon by SRS Aviation, the two Otters continued on to Reykjavik, Iceland on 20 May 1972 and then via Greenland and Goose Bay to Winnipeg where they were overhauled and civilianised by Perimeter Aviation. N80941 then continued on to Toronto-Buttonville Airport, where it was paint stripped and repainted into the colours of Parsons Airways Ltd., who had bought the Otter. The colour scheme was white overall with a blue cowling and orange cheatline. The Otter was registered to Parsons Airways Ltd., on 30 June 1972 as CF-CBA and moved to its new base at Kenora, Ontario from where it flew from the waterfront on floats.

Parsons Airways also operated a Beaver and a Grumman Goose, which together with the Otter served the bush country of northern Ontario. During summer 1975 the Otter went on lease to Moose Nose Lake Airways of Ilford, Manitoba, then returning to serve with Parsons Airways. This continued until June 1982 when Parsons Airways was taken over by Kenora Air Service Ltd., who thus acquired the Otter. It retained the same colour scheme and continued to operate from Kenora as before. Kenora Air Service had been formed by a well known local aviator, Frank Kubisewsky, known as Kuby, who also ran a substantial aviation repair and maintenance business at Kenora. This was located a short distance from the town and known as Kuby’s Yard and it was here the Otter would spend the winter months. During the summer it flew on floats from the dock at Kenora. Otter CBA was destined to fly for Kenora Air Service for many years, becoming a very well known Ontario Otter.

During 2007 the Otter was advertised for sale on the company’s website, quoting total airframe time of 13,138 hours. It did not sell and continued flying for Kenora Air Service. It flew sometimes during the winter months as well, as evidenced by a CADORS report for 5 March 2008. The ski-equipped Otter, on a flight out of Red Lake, Ontario made a precautionary landing on the frozen ice of Pikangikum Lake, fifty miles to the north of Red Lake, due to engine problems. A company aircraft  was dispatched to the scene with maintenance personnel, who replaced two cylinders and the Otter could then take off and return to service. Other aircraft in the Kenora Air Service fleet at that stage were four Cessna 185s, two Beavers and a float-equipped Beech 18.

On 18 May 2010 the Otter was on a VFR flight from Red lake to Sabourin Lake. The pilot tried to return to Red Lake when he discovered an engine cylinder problem, which he reported by radio to Kenora FSS. The pilot was unable to relay any further information due to workload. The FSS, unable to re-establish radio contact with the Otter, initiated an emergency response. A Canadian Armed Forces C-130 Hercules and Griffon helicopter of 424 Squadron prepared to launch from Trenton. Kenora Air Service dispatched company Beaver CF-JEI to look for the Otter, which was found on an un-named lake between Knox Lake and Pipestone Bay, twenty miles west of the Red Lake Airport. The rescue aircraft were stood down. The passengers and crew of the Otter were unharmed and were brought back to Red Lake by the Beaver. The Otter was repaired and returned to service.

The Otter was again advertised for sale in January 2012, on EDO 7170 floats and with total time of 14,477 hours. Brokers Lauriault Aviation had been instructed and advised that the Otter “must sell”. It had an asking price of CAD$710,000. It did not sell however but continued in service with Kenora Air Service. As well as the company’s own business, the Otter also flew the guests of Walsten Outposts fishing lodges in Northwest Ontario. Yet another sales advert appeared in January 2015, same asking price as before but with total time now at 15,000 hours. The Otter continued in service for summer 2016 but was then sold to a private individual from Alaska, one of four Otters he purchased from Ontario and Quebec around this time. By November 2016 these four Otters, including CBA, were in storage with Recon Air at its Geraldton, Ontario base. CBA was still in store at Geraldton during summer 2017, awaiting a decision as to its future.

Full history up to 2005 courtesy of Karl E Hayes © from DHC-3 Otter - A History (CD-ROM 2005), now with added and updated information which Karl has supplied for the benefit of the website.