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N22387 Piper PA-23-250 Aztec F c/n 27-7754065 - KLM Aerocarto - Groningen Airport Eelde in Holland - 22 May 1983 vliegveld Eelde (GRQ)

The Piper PA-23-250 Aztec F is a six-seat all-metal low-wing twin-engine business aircraft. The Piper PA-23 was initially designed by Stinson in the late 1940s, as the Twin Stinson, an all-metal four-seat light twin. In 1948, Piper Aircraft Corporation purchased the Stinson Division of Consolidated Vultee and Piper developed the Twin Stinson further as the PA-23 Apache. The first prototype PA-23 flew first on 2 March 1952. Production deliveries commanced in 1953. The aircraft was continious in production and improved with the PA-23-235 Apache four/five seater as the end model as Apache. In 1958, an upgraded version with 250 hp Lycoming O-540 engines and a swept vertical tail was produced as the PA-23-250 and named Aztec. Production deliveries of the five-seat Piper PA-23-250 Aztec A began in 1959. The PA-23-250 cabin monoplane was introduced in its six-seat Aztec B form in 1962. The Aztec B differs from its predecessor in having an elongate nose housing, a second luggage compartment, a modified instrument panel, and improved maintenance accessibility. The Piper PA-23-250 Aztec B was powered by two 250 hp Lycoming O-540-A1D5 six-cylinder air-cooled engines. The later models of the Aztec were equipped with IO-540-C4B5 fuel-injected engines. Production of the PA-23 ended in 1982, with a total of 6976 Piper PA-23s in various models built.

KLM Aerocarto was founded in 1921 by the KLM as "Fototechnisch Bedrijf". KLM Aerocarto started as an oblique photography company using KLM aircraft. In the early 1930s, they received their first vertical camera. The first aircraft to be designated especial for KLM Aerocarto was the Fokker F.VIIa PH-ADR (ex H-NADP; H-NADR) which was re-registered PH-OTO on 14 December 1931. KLM Aerocarto operated over the years a wide range of aeroplanes, including Pipers and Cessna's, two Pilatus PC-6 Porter, two Douglas DC-3C and a De Havilland DH.89A Dragon Rapide.

The 1977-built Piper Aztec s/n 27-7754065 was registered N62832 in the USA before the aircraft was exported to the Netherlands. On 1 March 1977, the Piper Azte4c F was registered PH-OTI in the Netherlands with KLM Aerocarto BV. On 10 January 1983 registration PH-OTI was cancelled as exported to the USA. On 2 February 1983, the Piper was registered N22387. The N22387 stayed for some time in service with KLM Aerocarto, before it was phased out. In 2014, the aircraft was still registered in the USA as N22387.

page last updated: 02-03-2014
Copyright © Jack Wolbrink, Emmen, the Netherlands

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