Junkers JU-52 D-AQUI - Marc Schultz Aviation Photography


D-AQUI, the oldest airworthy Ju 52 in existence, was produced in 1936, with Ser. No. 5489 and given Reg. D-AQUI Fritz Simon. She was sold to DNL Det Norske Luftfartselskap A/S in 1936 and registered as LN-DAH, Falken, only to be confiscated by the German Army in 1940. At this time it was once again given the old D-AQUI registration, but renamed Kurt Wintgens. After the war, the Allies returned it to its former owners, DNL. It was re-registered as LN-KAF Askeladden and served on the Norwegian coast Tromsø - Kirkenes for SAS from February 1948 until 1956. After sitting, parked, for a year at Oslo Airport, Fornebu, it was sold to TAO (Transportes Aéreos Orientales) in Ecuador, with new registration HB-ABS Amazonas issued in July 1957. It was shipped to Ecuador in wooden crates. When it arrived the wings and tail still wore the distinctive blue lettered SAS livery. It was reassembled at the Ecuadorean Air Force Military Base in Salinas, Guayas in the summer of 1957 under the direction of former Lufthansa pilot Christoph Drexel. TAO flew the plane in scheduled airline service from Quito at 10,000 feet elevation to settlements in the foothills of the Andes in the Amazonian region (500 to 1000 feet altitude) of Ecuador with captain Gonzalo Ruales usually flying the left seat. The plane routinely cleared mountain passes at 13,000 feet of altitude, landing on unimproved landing strips often claimed from the shores of tributaries of the Amazon. It was taken out of service in 1963 as gathering momentum of oil exploration in the Amazonian region began to demand aircraft of increased lift capacity. The aircraft remained parked at Quito Airport for six years. It was bought by a former United States Air Force pilot, Lester Weaver for $52,500. It was given registry N130LV, but American authorities certified it as "experimental". In 1975, American writer Martin Caidin bought it for $52,500.[5] It was christened Iron Annie, register N52JU. It saw extensive use at air shows,[6] and was based at Gainesville, Florida. Caidin set a number of records with Iron Annie, among them the shortest takeoff ever made with a Ju-52/3m and the world's record for the most wing-walkers on one airplane at the same time. Lufthansa acquired it in December 1984: It was flown to Hamburg via Greenland, Iceland and England, the only west to east Atlantic flight of an Ju 52. After a year it took to the air again, with the official registration painted under the tail as D-CDLH. The old registration D-AQUI is painted on the wings. The aircraft's name is now Tempelhof. Damage discovered during routine inspections at the end of 2015 led to Lufthansa temporarily grounding Tempelhof until further notice.

Source: Wikepedia