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From Scrap to Flight-The Preservation of a D-Day DC-3 in Canada

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Many people in the aviation world, if they’re a pilot or a spotter, are more than likely familiar with Buffalo Airlines, and the show that brought them to the fore-front of Aviation, Ice Pilots: NWT. Sadly the show was cancelled after six seasons and sixty-five episodes but with the marketing genius of the youngest of the McBryan boys Mikey the brand is still fresh in the minds of many. World-wide you will find fans of the small, family run airline based in Yellowknife, North West Territories.

Back in December Mikey posted a video on his Youtube channel announcing the start of a project that would later come to be known as “Plane Savers”. The basis of the daily vlog project being the restoration of a DC-3 that flew over the beaches of Normandy on June 6th 1944. The plane, as Mikey explained was was a huge undertaking as it hadn’t flown since the early 90s and was very much in an abandoned state at Montreal’s St. Hubert airport. But with a hope and a prayer, a goal and many industry friends Mikey has taken this pile of scrap and turned it into a nearly flyable DC-3. The ultimate goal for this project was for the plane to fly again on June 6th 2019, the 75th anniversary of when allied forces stormed the beaches in Normandy and laid the building blocks for an allied victory on the European front.

As of writing the crew in Montreal have gotten to the point where it’s a scramble to finish a few details on the plane but the engines are functioning and a video of the run-ups can be found here.

The Travel Radar North America team is excited to see this magnificent plane fly again hopefully on June 6th and wish the Plane Savers team the best of luck! Preserving aviation history as Mikey and his team are doing is incredibly important.

All photo credits belong to Mikey McBryan.

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