• Derby Aero Club & Flying School,
  • Derby Airfield,
  • Egginton,
  • DE65 6GU
  • Tel: +44 (0) 1283 733803

Latest News

Coronavirus Shut Down March 2020 - 18/04/2020

The Comet Racer Project is in shutdown as per Government instructions.  Contact can still be made through the links on this website and the Facebook Group is still very active indeed, please click on the link below to visit.  When things return to the new normal, the project will recommence and continue.  Best Wishes to all supporters and friends.

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Turn Over Wing Jig G-ACSP “Black Magic” - 21/03/2020

Using plans and previous experience of Ken Fern’s G-RCSR DH 88 Comet, the turn over jig for the wing of “Black Magic” is being installed.

Bottom Wing Surface “Black Magic” nears completion. - 21/03/2020

Two layers of diagonal planking have now been completed on the bottom surface of the wing of G-ACSP “Black Magic”.  The two layers are a mirror image of each other to give a final even surface.  Each plank was thinned to the correct thickness as per DH plans, then glued and nailed to the spars and stringers.  The next phase is to complete the surface and install the undercarriage then the wing will be turned over for the top surface to be started and the retract mechanism installed.   

Comet Racer Project 1300 plus Facebook Members March 2020 - 21/03/2020

The Comet Racer Project on Facebook now has over 1300 members at March 2020 and you can apply for Group Membership using the normal Facebook procedure.  The FB pages give more frequent updates on progress on G-ACSP “Black Magic” and G-RCSR the Green Comet replica build plus “All things DH88 Comet”.

G-ACSP “Black Magic” Planking Bottom Surface - 28/05/2019

Volunteers at The Amy Johnson Workshop at Derby Aero Club have started on the bottom surface planking for DH88 Comet “Black Magic”  G-ACSP.  It will be a double diagonal pattern.

“Black Magic” G-ACSP nears wing planking stage! - 25/02/2019

The seemingly endless yet engaging jobs of finishing the central blocking, stringers, noggins and ribs is nearly done for “Black Magic” G-ACSP so that very soon the first layer of planking on the under surface can commence. All materials have been sourced and sliced for this, with the first planks planned for fitting


First Fitting of Top Planking and Undercarriage Retraction System G-RCSR - 25/02/2019

Much progress to report for G-RCSR, the tribute replica DH88 Comet for G-ACSR built in flying condition to de Havilland plans. After the last reported wing turn over, some of the top planking has been done leaving space for the undercarriage retract system to be fitted and trialled. The main mechanism requires many parts, all bespoke made to plan. The wing has been raised to a higher height by tractor lift onto a new table jig so that the full undercarriage can swing down and up again. As well the cockpit Perspex has arrived for trial fitting and the engines build is making steady progress.

November 2017 Wing Turn Over Day G-RCSR - 29/07/2018

Some Images of the G-RCSR wing ready in the jigs for turning over.

The process is very simple.

A new jig is built on top of the base one.

Note : The bottom surface is inverted and has the two undercarriage and engine frames fitted.  The bottom surface double planking is complete.




A view of the whole wing with the two jigs.

The wing is entirely supported in the middle.

It is able to do this due to the double diagonal planking.




The Happy Team on completion after the work is done.

The wing is both light enough and strong with the complete planking to be man handled.

The only caution was to mind the wing tips which are only in single thin plywood.



The wing is literally turned over.

It first goes over to 90 degrees laying flat on both of the jigs.

The wing is then pushed upright onto the new jig.

The wing now stands in flying position with the planked bottom surface downwards and the undercarriage hanging down.



The wing is now pushed up horizontally







Finally the whole wing assembly is pushed back into the working position.







What the wing looks like from the top ready for varnishing internally.

The next job is all the internal fittings.

Then all the top diagonal and central planking.




A wingtip from the top.

Job done. The whole wing, all 44 feet, in the new position.

The old bottom jig, now on top, will be removed.





New Aquisition – The “Galleria Comet” July 2018 - 29/07/2018

In July 2018, the Comet Racer Project has acquired the 7/8th Scale DH88 Model that formerly was hung until 2006 in the Galleria Shopping Centre in Hatfield.  Acknowledgements are due to the Galleria, the DH Museum, Sywell Aviation Museum and Derby Aero Club for ensuring its survival over the last 12 years.  Many thanks to Ben Brown and his team at the Sywell Aviation Museum for their help in making the move possible from their storage space to Derby Aero Club.  Please Note :  This is NOT a flying machine, it did not fly and never did.  It is robustly and very well made but has been roughly handled when it was taken down so needs much work.   The intention is restore it to the original condition and colour as a display piece and as an inspirational project for volunteers.  To keep from any confusion that this is one of the original five DH88 Comets (It is NOT!) it will always be referred to as the “Galleria Comet” and any information about it, would be most welcome.



Comet Racer Project Facebook Group 900+ members - 29/07/2018

As at July 2018, our Facebook Comet Racer Project Group has 900 plus members providing an active and alert community on “All Things DH88 Comet” which gives a broad theme to explore, such  as the 1934 MacRobertson Air Race, with locations and events in that race, all the aircraft types of that time relevant to the Race, the continuing news on the build progress of G-ACSP “Black Magic and sister replica G-RCSR, both to flying condition and much more.  This Group has learnt of many new facts about these iconic machines with original photographs being found and has run a successful campaign to correct many of the promoted errors on the Internet and will continue to do so.  Please feel free to ask for membership and join from the usual points on the Internet.  You would be made welcome!

Comet Racer Project Group | Aircraft Restoration | Derby Aero Club & Flying School, Derby Airfield, Egginton DE65 6GU | Telephone: +44 (0) 1283 733803

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