The DeHavilland Beaver was first flown in 1947. Only 1,657 were built in Toronto, Canada. Today the Beaver is still prized by pilots for its reliability and versatility. The Beaver can be operated on wheels, skis or float landing gear.
The Legendary DHC-2 DeHavilland Beaver is portrayed during its maiden flight on floats on September 16, 1947 near Toronto Island, by wartime Mosquito pilot Russ Bannock. At the time, C.H. "Punch" Dickins was Director of Sales of DeHavilland Canada and R.D. "Dick" Hiscocks was Chief Aerodynamicist.
Conceived and designed to satisfy rugged Canadian operating conditions, the aircraft was an outstanding success, due to the dedication of the entire multi-talented DeHavilland Canada team. It has since proven to be one of the milestones of Canadian aviation achievements. The original aircraft is displayed in Canada's National Aviation Museum.
After moderate success with its first Canadian designed aircraft, DeHavilland Canada's Managing Director, Phil Garratt (The Chipmunk trainer) made the decision to "gamble" on a modern "utility" aircraft that could operate from short, rough airstrips, as well as on floats or skis. "Punch" Dickins and many experienced air service operators were asked to make design suggestions, and they did so with ideas ranging from an all metal airframe, battery removal hatch, doors on both sides for docking and several other ease of operation items. Phil Garratt made the vital decision to equip the new machine with the powerful P + W WASP Junior Radial. The design department did an outstanding job in bringing it all together with such success that the Beaver was recognized in 1987 as one of the 10 most outstanding engineering feats in Canada in this century. The first Beaver carried engineer Fred Buller's initials CF-FHB.
Initially, several provincial governments purchased the aircraft, then mining companies and charter operators soon followed suit. After a flight demonstration by Russ Bannock to the USAF in Alaska and later to the U.S. Army, however, a dramatic order of 978 aircraft followed, which represented over 50% of eventual total production and the largest ever international order for a Canadian civil aircraft. Designated the L-20, many of these machines are still in service, having been repurchased after army use by private companies.
Operators in over 60 countries have made the "Beaver" name synonymous with the Canadian reputation for hard working, rugged dependability. Over 400 Beavers still exist and work in Canada (several having been converted to turbine engines). Their capabilities are still hard to equal, thus ensuring their continued use well into the next century.
Story Courtesy of "Baxter Aviation"
All the best!
Critiques | Translate
robertosalguero (246) 2006-08-26 3:47
Awesome piece of Canadian technology Dan. Very good picture with nice colours.
I truly enjoy pictures of canadian innovations/inventions/achievements. Thanks for the interesting note. Very nice job :-)
peter1892 (1681) 2006-08-26 4:57
Excellent shot - the colours are really good, especially the bright reds of the aircraft themselves. The POV works too, a view of both machines, and I like the reflections on the wings & engine cowlings (the ripple effect from the light shining on the water).
Great notes too. I've been lucky enough to fly on one of these planes, in Australia. The pilot told s that there hadn't been a better seaplane built before or since.
RandomCameraGuy (3069) 2006-08-26 11:40
Nice shot Dan. Nice colours and clean composition. The second plane gives some repetition to the photo. While a good shot, I think it's a little tight. I'd like to see more negative space (perhaps sky?).
How long you back home in BC for this time bro?
Cormac (26545) 2006-08-26 11:50
Great shot of this piece of Canadiana. The airplanes even have a red and white colour scheme, like a Canadian flag. The lines of these planes are so classic, I hope they never disappear!
KevRyan (22952) 2006-08-26 16:13
Nice shot off the Downtown pontoon Dan ....had my first flight in one of these from Sechelt to the Island - never been so tightly packed in a plane but felt in good hands.....
Great contrast and colour and a good 'crisp' composition.
InasiaJones (31442) 2006-08-27 10:31
Sharp and cool shot of this legendary aircraft. Very esthetic composition with a great alignement of both planes. Everything says «Canada» about this shot, with water, mountains and colours.
I hope I’m not wrong about this, but I think I’ve read somewhere that Harisson Ford have one of these jewels, as he is a pilot himself and own a couple of helicopters and planes.
mbasil (2129) 2006-08-27 17:25
Wonderful capture of Canadian culture -- the beaver! (Well, not THAT beaver, but a nice beaver nonetheless). You were lucky to get 2 lined up, but did a great job of making use of that. Well done!
PJE (20758) 2006-08-27 22:01
Well Dan my first impression on this photo is that I like the effect of having two planes together in line. Very nice effect and the red highlights on these two planes really makes the photo stand out. Good work Dan!
john_c (24662) 2006-08-28 11:54
A fascinating piece of history you have both portrayed and related in your excellent note. It is not easy to photograph these machines in an artistic manner - I have thrown away many photos - but your frontal view from this angle captures the spirit and proportions of the craft very well. As Peter notes, the reflections and ripple effect in the water really enhances, and the twin specimen gives an added dimension. Very fine work, Dan. I will keep trying now...
- Copyright: Dan Walsh (danielswalsh) (13593)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2006-07-26
- Categories: Transportation
- Camera: Canon EOS 5D, Canon EF 24-70 f/2.8 L USM
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Travelogue: Summer in Canada, (2006)
- Theme(s): Aircrafts, Seaplane, Canadian Heritage, Seaplanes (Canada), VINTAGE AIRCRAFT [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2006-08-26 3:43