Revived Arrow aimed at skies over Geelong

Unbroken Arrow: Geoff Sinnbeck with his model Avro Arrow. Picture: John Conway 93605

IT COULD outpace today’s fastest fighter planes but was hacked to pieces, its models and blueprints destroyed, a victim of Cold War fever and high costs.
But the Avro Arrow could soon be tearing across the skies at Batesford’s Dog Rocks.
Or, rather, a working model of the 1950s supersonic Canadian fighter.
Geelong West pilot and aviation aficionado Geoff Sinnbeck had wanted to build his 1.7-metre Avro Arrow for 20 years.
He’s fascinated by a fighter plane that could hit twice the speed of sound, possibly much more, and mount a 2G turn at 50,000 feet under full weapons load without any loss of speed or altitude.
“To my knowledge there’s still nothing that can do that,” Mr Sinnbeck said.
“And that’s 50 years ago, so it’s a great story. I wanted to see what it would fly like, it’s a great design.”
Mr Sinnbeck suspected the Arrow might have given even Australia’s forthcoming Joint Strike Fighter a run for its money.
But controversy marked the sleek, white interceptor from the start.
Russian’s launch of Sputnik 1 eclipsed the Arrow’s debut the same day before it was scrapped two years later amid spiralling costs and a belief manned aircraft were becoming obsolete.
Sinnbeck said more than 30 technical aspects of the Arrow were incorporated into latter-day aircraft.
“And it’s a beautiful looking thing up there in the sky – it looks and even sounds just like a jet,” he said of his lithium battery-powered model.