Back to the CF105 AVRO Arrow Table of Contents
I was never employed in the Arrow program, ( I was only 6 1/2 years old on "Black Friday"), and I personally do not know any of the personnel who helped design, worked on, or were part of any aspect the Arrow, so please do not email me with questions as to "do I know what happened to so and so", or "do I know what happened to this and that"
I have always been a enthusiastic fan of the world's finest aircraft scrapped on "Black Friday" by the Canadian government in 1959. The AVRO Arrow was ahead of its time and if it was updated with today's electronics' and weapon's packages would still be a front runner in the world for a multi-role aircraft.
The tragedy is that all six completed aircraft were cut up and destroyed along with those in various stages of production. No one has actually owned up yet as to who ordered the complete destruction on whose authority. Saved and in the National Aviation Museum in Ottawa, are are an engine, nose and main gear and part of RL206's cockpit and some test models. The only Velvet Glove in existence and some other Arrow artifacts are in the RCAF Memorial Museum at CFB Trenton. Salvage operations tried to retrieve models, fired on NIKE rockets, from the bottom of Lake Ontario during 2005. Many of the design team of the AVRO Arrow moved on to work on NASA's space program and other aircraft design teams.
There have always been rumors that one of the Arrows survived the destruction and if this is true then it has to be one of the world's best kept secrets. The dramatization in the CBC's The Arrow, opens our minds as to why the Arrow may have been killed, but even though the Arrow Project was scrapped, and many engineers went on to other programs in the States and Canada, Canadian aviation still flourished as shown through the aircraft that Canadian companies produce.
One of the first models I built as a youngster was the AVRO Arrow. Every time I see the photo of the young boy looking up at the Arrow, it reminds me of my boyhood dream of flying. The dream came true, I earned my Private Pilot's License through the Royal Canadian Air Cadet Flying Scholarship program in 1970. Many of my teachers during my school years were probably quite aggravated with me as I would read aviation and aircraft reference books in class instead of the subject I was supposed to be doing.
My appreciation of the Arrow has grown over the years and I have several books and models on the Arrow and hope to eventually own a copy of most, if not all the books published on the Arrow.
There are several good web pages out there on the Arrow included in the links but this page is project of mine that hopefully is as factual as possible but also highlighting the work of others presenting the history of the Arrow. The number of students doing essays etc is increasing, and I have links to these student projects.
Peter Zuring's Arrow Alliance started an ambitious project of funding to build a full size flying Arrow but at the end of 2004 the web site posted a notice that their updated site would be available in Feb 2005, however it has never appeared and in June 2005 the domain name expired! There is a company now using the domain name but it has nothing to do with the Arrow! There were several books published by the Avro Alliance including a yearly series called Countdown - one per year until the flight. Now I have an unfinished set as their project seems to have died out as far as I can tell.
The Toronto Aerospace Museum built a replica over eight years and rolled it out in 2006 on the anniversary of the original Arrow rollout and although I was not able to attend the "official" private rollout on the first public viewing due to work and other commitments, I was able to see the aircraft on Thanksgiving Monday. Very impressive and fantastic construction. See the photos page for links to the photos I took that day.
Cliff "Chip" Chapman, VA3KGB
Canada was a first class player on the world stage in 1959...having developed a reputation for combat in ww2...having a top notch army, airforce, and the third largest navy in the world, having developed the finest military jet on earth ,and having a stronger dollar than the U.S.
CIL ammo....truely fine.
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