The Albatros DV.a was a German World War 1 fighter aircraft equipped with a Mercedes D.111 six-cylinder, liquid-cooled engine. ZK-TGY is a reproduction aircraft, manufactured in 2015 and operated by a historic warbird company in New Zealand. The engine is understood to be an original unit that has been overhauled.
The aircraft was on loan to an organisation in the UK and was returning from an event in France. The pilot reported that, approximately 4 miles short of the destination airfield, the engine began to run rough before stopping. He attempted a forced landing but clipped a hedge on final approach, resulting in the aircraft coming to rest inverted; he was uninjured.
The pilot reported that sufficient fuel remained in the tanks after the accident and water temperature and fuel pressure indications were normal throughout the flight. A landing incident three flights previously resulted in damage that required a replacement propeller and the aircraft was returned to flight after consulting the manufacturer.
The cause of the engine failure was not immediately apparent and the operator advised that the aircraft would be recovered to New Zealand for further examination.
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Published 12 January 2017