Mystery DH**** aircraft


On a flight from KISM to K22, I heard an aircraft call either Atlanta center or TRI approach and SAY " this is the oldest flying jet aircraft in the world
Its a DH****. I missed the rest of the transmission.
Is there anyway to trace with only the DH type only?
I am sure curious what it was! This was at about 20:00 yesterday afternoon


It is almost certain to be DeHavilland, a British aircraft company with roots going back to at least WWI. In 1952, its Comet became the first operational jet airliner, but I doubt any Comets are still flying or are allowed to fly, having a structural flaw that started showing up in fatal crashes in 1954.

DH started building fighter jets in WWII with the Vampire (a test model) and the Goblin. I am sure they built, flew and marketed other kinds of jets in the late 1940’s. Maybe that pilot was flying an antique jet DH warbird?

DH also built the Comet 4, a re-work of the original Comet, but it lost out in the market to the Boeing 707 and Douglas DC-8.


I also remember that he said it was now licensed experimental. thanks for the reply


Vampire F3 N6878D (formerly RCAF 17072), once owned by John Travolta. Built 1947. Registered to ‘Lake Air Inc’ at Fort Lauderdale. Apparently that is the oldest airworthy AND flying jet.

You found a good one there! 8)

Now we know how to look for it . :wink:


I was guessing along the same lines as mitcheroo, so I checked the logs to see what De Havillands have been in the air recently… a bunch of DH8/DHC8 (as expected, since a number of express carriers in the US fly the Dash8), but also a handful of DHC7, hundreds of DHC6, and one DHC5. Unfortunately none of those appear to be old enough to be the aircraft in question.


Nice avatar, mduell. Kimi got screwed this year.


Indeed, and those Bridgestones just wouldn’t hold up for your man. Should be interesting to see next season with 5-7 teams running Bridgestone rubber.


Can you say…“Darn near-a-jet”…