VH-UVO  de Havilland D.H.60M Moth                  (c/n  1496)


                                              This Moth had an 'out-of-sequence' registration, the 'VO' being requested from DCA for the
                                              Vacuum Oil Company.     It was first registered to that concern in May 1930 (the rest of the
                                              VH-UVs would not be issued until 1936).      The above shot comes from the John Hopton
                                              collection and shows the aircraft on a stage at the Regent Theatre in Melbourne where it was
                                              displayed for some kind of Vacuum Oil Company event       The aircraft was named 'Plume'
                                              being the description of the company's logo      .  In 1931 it was fitted with balloon type tires
                                              known as 'doughnuts' to experiment the cushioning effect of such gear in operating from rough
                                              country strips.      The photograph below, from the archives of the Civil Aviation Historical
                                              Society files shows it at Mascot with Major de Havilland, D.S.O., Managing Director of de
                                              Havilland Australia Pty Ltd, and Mr. F.W. Haig, Chief Aviation Officer for the Vacuum Oil
                                              Co. along with their technical support bloke, having just fitted said tires.   When sold to the
                                              Australian Aero Club (Tasmanian Section) at Launceston in May 1936, I suspect the balloon
                                              tires had by then been replaced with standard gear. . VH-UVO was written off in a crash on
                                              18 May 1939. The newspaper clipping shown at the foot of the page, and extracted from
                                              the Launceston Examiner for 20 May 1939 by Graeme Parsons, shows the wreckage.