Air Force of Zimbabwe
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Aircraft Types

Agusta-Bell AB.205A 'Cheetah' * Retired *
11 AB205A obtained covertly and delivered in crates in August 1978. The first was assembled and flew in October 1978. These helicopter were fitted with armour plating and machine guns. Used by 8 Sqn for the troop transport role. The survivors were put up for sale in 1990. Apparently, 13 new AB205s had been ordered by a customer in Kuwait, on behalf of the Rhodesian Air Force. The new helicopters were delivered via Lebanon, where the local Christian Militia took the opportunity to swap them for 11(12?) worn-out ex-Israeli Air Force machines, before shipping them on to southern Africa. Rhodesian Air Force engineers had a great deal of work to do before the helicopters could enter service.
Serial c/no. Prev. Identity Delivered Fate/Notes
R8600 4035   Oct 1978  
R6801 4036   Oct 1978 w/o 14 April 1982
R6082 4037   Oct 1978 w/o ?
R6038 4039   Oct 1978  
R6084 4040   Oct 1978 w/o 6 Jan 1980
R6805 4042   Oct 1978  
R8606 4047   Oct 1978  
R6807 4049   Oct 1978 w/o 10 Feb 1979
R6088 4050   Oct 1978  
R6098 4051   Oct 1978 w/o 3 Sept 1979
R6180 4052   Oct 1978  

References:

  1. Rhodesian Air Force, A Brief History 1947-1980 (W A Brent, 1987)
  2. Britain's Rebel Air Force (Roy Nesbit & Dudley Cowderoy, 1998)
  3. African Military Aviation (W A Brent, 1994)
  4. Take Off No.89 (Aerospace Publishing Ltd, 1990)
  5. Air (WLAG) September 1989


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First Created: 22 January 2003 - Last Revised: 22 February 2003
Copyright © 2003 John Hayles.     e-mail: john@aeroflight.co.uk