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Boeing 747-244B
c/n 20239


Click here for a list of preserved Boeing 747 aircraft (includes some abandoned ones)

In March of 2002 the South African Airways Museum Society asked South African Airways if they would donate, a soon to be retired from service, Boeing 747 aircraft to the South African Airways Museum Society. To the Society’s delight SAA agreed and Boeing 747-244B “Lebombo” was made available.

The acquisition by the SAA Museum Society of the “Jumbo” is possibly the single most proactive event in preserving civil aviation history in South Africa. The concept is to display the aircraft and set up facilities whereby the aircraft can be utilized to its fullest extent for aviation awareness programs as well as for fund raising for the society. Lebombo will not fly again, but will be on display for aviation enthusiasts. The aircraft will be available for small corporate related functions such as board meetings and conferences, product launches, award ceremonies, even weddings. Much needed funds for the society’s preservation efforts will be generated from the utilization of the 747.

B747 ZS-SAN Jan Smus Chris Waddington-01
B747-244, ZS-SAN, Lebombo flypast.
Note the 5th engine
Jan Smuts Airport, 6 November 1971, at the end of her delivery flight.
Photograph: Chris Waddington

B747 ZS-SAN Jan Smus Chris Waddington-02
B747-244, ZS-SAN, Lebombo touching down.
Jan Smuts Airport, 6 November 1971, at the end of her delivery flight.
Photograph: Chris Waddington
B747 ZS-SAN Jan Smus Chris Waddington-03
B747-244, ZS-SAN, Lebombo taxiing in.
Jan Smuts Airport, 6 November 1971, at the end of her delivery flight.
Note the SAA Boeing 727s.

Photograph: Chris Waddington

On 24 June 1995 ZS-SAN Lebombo swooped across a crowded Ellis Park Stadium at the Rugby World Cup final between South Africa and New Zealand, bearing Good Luck Bokke beneath her wings.

South Africa beat New Zealand 15-12. Photograph Jan Hamman (Beeld Newspaper)

The SAA Boeing 747 Rugby 1995 World Cup flypast over Ellis Park crew was:

Captain: Laurie Kay
Senior First Officer: Billy Fourie
Senior Flight Engineer Officer: Don Coppard
Safety Officer: Senior Training Captain Selwyn Thomas.

The video entitled flight for a nation contains some scenes of the Ellis Park Rugby World Cup fly-past by ZS-SAN.

ZS-SAN Lebombo air show display at Rand Airport 4 May 2003
Photographs from Julian Whitelaw


Lebombo gave a spirited display at the Rand Airport Air Show on 4 May 2003

Sunset Flight for SAA Museum Society fund raiser 13 September 2003.

After being given the go-ahead by SAA to use ZS-SAN for a sunset flight to raise funds for the museum it took just 5 weeks for Richard Hunt, then Vice Chairman, and his team to put together what can only be described as a unique occasion. The sunset flight exceeded all expectations and judging by the feedback was a memorable occasion for the passengers who were lucky enough to secure tickets.

Right from the start the project moved forward in leaps and bounds and the team were overwhelmed by the support and generosity off all parties that were connected in one way or another with the sunset flight. Enthusiasm and offers of assistance abounded.

Air BP were the first major sponsor with their offer of fuel for the flight. They immediately bought six tickets, which they donated, to the Reach for a Dream Foundation.

On the catering side Sodexho literally went to town and laid on the most magnificent spread of culinary delights.

Equity Aviation Services were only to eager to assist and ensured that all ran smoothly on the ground handling side.

SAA Technical pulled out all the stops to prepare the aircraft. When we arrived early on Saturday the 13th, ZS-SAN was parked behind hangar 7 and positively gleamed in the early morning light. She was spotless, inside and out, how proud we were of this 32 year-old majestic lady of the skies.

ACSA also made a major contribution to our project by allowing us early access to C13 walkway as well as allocating a special “check-in” area in the Domestic Terminal.

South African Airways provided access to the ticket printing facilities, ensuring that all went smoothly with check-in on the day.

To say that tickets sold like hot cakes is an understatement. We were swamped with bookings and sadly had to turn down numerous requests for tickets.

Numerous meetings were conducted to ensure that all was on track for the flight. The final meeting occurred on the Thursday at the Holiday Inn next to the airport. Karl Jensen, accompanied by his wife Val, assisted us with valuable input as to the routing and timing of the flight. Karl also offered to be “on board commentator” for the flight and what a sterling commentary he delivered.

One of the many highlights of the day was meeting a passenger who had flown out for the sunset flight all the way from the USA. Andrew Oliva was fetched form his hotel early on Saturday and straight away got stuck in with assisting the team with preparations for the flight. Andrew certainly got his monies worth as he not only had the pleasure of the flight later that day but also got to be involved in the “behind the scenes” activities, Andrew will remember the day for years to come I’m sure.

There was much to be accomplished on the morning of the 13th before the aircraft could be towed to the apron. The team rendezvoused at the Connie to begin with the tasks at hand. “Thank you” labels were affixed to the complimentary bottles of wine. Snack boxes folded and taken to the kitchen. Passenger list checked and checked again. Souvenir brochure folded to later be placed on the seats of Lebombo. Headrest covers placed on the seats. Shop stock and wine stored on the jumbo to be taken later to the airport terminal. Sick bags placed in seat pockets.

All this time we were being tailed by Michael Black, aviation journalist, who was feverishly making notes and taking photographs. Michael was recording the activities for an article to be published in “African Pilot” magazine. Michael had a hard time gathering his information as he was regularly interrupted with “fold these brochures”, “stick these labels on these bottles”, “get a photo of this”, “make a note of that”. Thanks for your help Michael, I know you had fun!

Hot on the heels of Michael was video cameraman, Marais Wessels, capturing for posterity the day’s events. Thanks Marais for your contribution in capturing on video some of the highlights in our museum’s history.

The Sodexho manager had us set up a “production line” for filling the snack boxes and packing them into galley trolleys. Three hundred boxes packed and stowed on the jumbo in 90 minutes – what a team.

By 15h00 the APU was running and ZS-SAN made the leisurely tow to the apron. The sunset flight team had just enough time during the tow, to discuss the next phase and change into our “uniform for the flight”.

We arrived at the terminal bang on time and were greeted by the cabin crew, all volunteers for the flight. In quick time they gave the aircraft a once over to ensure everything was ready. Ground technicians and crew were performing the usual checks and final preparations below while we unpacked the wine and museum shop stock.

In the Domestic terminal our “passengers and VIP guests” were beginning to arrive, some of them early, excited and eager “to fly”. Karl and Val were there to welcome passengers and there was many a passenger who was keen to strike up a conversation with Karl.

Passengers soon began to board through the jumbo’s door number two. Affixed to the galley walls, directly in front of the entrance to the aircraft were two magnificent photographs of ZS-SAN. They were taken by George Hall, a long time museum member and passionate aviation photographer. The two photos, donated to the museum by George, depict ZS-SAN’s stunning display at Rand Airport in May of this year. Unfortunately George was unable to be part of the sunset flight, business commitments taking him elsewhere.

Among the VIP’s were three former SAA CEOs – Frans Swarts, Mike Myburgh and Gert van der Veer. Also on board as a VIP guest was Marie-Hélène Maguire, for many years involved with the SAA Voyager Programme and long time supporter of our Museum. Although invited as guests, the former CEOs and Marie-Hélène insisted on “paying their way” - we are most appreciative of this.

Also on board was Johan Pienaar, son of the late SAA Captain and CEO Salomon “Pi” Pienaar. Pi was part of the crew that delivered Lebombo in November 1971, and Johan, as a young lad, accompanied his dad on the delivery flight.

17h25 saw doors closed and pushback. Soon after “Alpha November” was accelerating rapidly down 03 left. Boy can the old girl still go! It seemed like seconds and she was airborne. The moment the seatbelt light went out it was party time. When the "sunset flight team" went downstairs to begin "mingling with the passengers", they were met with one huge gathering of eating, drinking, chatting, sightseeing “flying enthusiasts”. The atmosphere was electric. You could just tell the aircraft was full of people who “loved to fly”.

After takeoff it appeared that the weather had quickly changed to gloomy and overcast. We were not going to see Sun City or Hartbeespoort Dam. The initial plan was to fly at 8000 but after obtaining clearance the flight crew took Lebombo up to 20,000. The acceleration was again fantastic as she climbed up to the new flight level. Up high the passengers were treated to spectacular cloud formations, many with a silver lining. Those with cameras were snapping away, others eager to get a view nature’s wonders. The Pratt & Whitney engines were bathed in orange light as the sun started to set.

Karl Jensen kept us entertained with snippets of fascination information, the aircraft’s history, technical details etc, as well as humorous anecdotes. The cabin crew was marvellous, they certainly know how to make one feel comfortable.

Air BP and John Austin-Williams made a presentation of a SAA Boeing model to each of the Reach for a Dream passengers. I must say it was an emotional moment for me, and it was a wonderful feeling to be able to “give” albeit small.

Our congratulations go to the couple that got engaged on the flight. There can’t be many men who have proposed to their girlfriends at 20,000 feet.
All too soon darkness prevailed and we were heading for home. This too was equally spectacular as Johannesburg was experiencing its first summer thunderstorm. Lightning darted all around the sky and light rain began to fall. This undoubtedly added to the already magnificent flight experienced so far. For some it may have been a little bit bumpy, however I think most passengers were too caught up in the thrill of being on board and were savouring every moment.

Touchdown was a greaser and the flight crew were rewarded with an eruption of cheering and clapping.

The South African Airways Museum Society thanks each and every one who contributed to making this a successful and memorable event.
If we got the opportunity we would definitely do it again.


Major sponsors of the sunset flight

South African Airways today is a major player in the global village. One of the major thrusts of the airline's vision for the future is continued global expansion in conjunction with strategic airline partners. Today's customers want high levels of customer service, not just on board but also regarding check-in and frequency of flights available to most major destinations. From the moment you, the passenger, enters the airport to the moment you leave your destination point, SAA's Global Passenger Services is there to ensure that your travel experience is as pleasurable and stress-free as possible.

Equity Aviation Services (Pty) Ltd is the largest provider of ground-handling support services to the airline industry in Southern Africa. Handling in excess of 18000 aircraft movements, at six South African Airports, and servicing more than 40 scheduled and non-scheduled airlines. With a current ground- handling market share in excess of 75%, our ability to provide services at Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban International Airports as well as Port Elizabeth, East London and George Airports is unrivalled. All handling is carried out under the guidelines of the IATA Ground Handling Council, IGHC, specifically in accordance with AHM 810, the Standard Ground Handling Agreement, of the IATA Airport Handling Manual.

SAA Technical functions as a separate entity from South African Airways but is still 100 percent owned by SAA. This significant milestone enables SAA Technical to be a truly commercial and world class Maintenance Repair Operation (MRO) provider. South African Airways takes enormous pride in having one of the best-equipped technical facilities in the world to maintain its sophisticated fleet of aircraft. A record number of top global airlines have entrusted highly complex maintenance tasks to SAA, including some of the most technically discriminate airlines in the world. While the airline would never compromise on safety, SAA Technical also offers its services at highly competitive rates. Today, SAA Technical performs third-party work for 47 major airlines.

ACSA owns and operates South Africa's nine principal airports, including the three major international airports in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban. The others are domestic airports at Bloemfontein, Port Elizabeth, East London, George, Kimberley and Upington. ACSA also operates Pilanesberg International Airport in the North-West Province on a concession basis. Our mission is to manage and develop world- class airports for the benefit of all stakeholders. We are doing just that!

Air BP proud supplier of fuels and lubricants to SAA is the specialised aviation fuels and lubricants division of BP, one of the world's major energy companies. We are present in over ninety countries around the world supplying Civil Airline, General Aviation and military customers. Founded in 1926, Air BP supplies aviation fuels and a wide range of lubricants to all sectors of the aviation industry. As one of the world's largest aviation fuel suppliers, Air BP currently supplies over 24 million tonnes of aviation fuels at over 1,500 locations in some 90 countries across the globe, while our range of BP turbine oils continues to lubricate more than half of the world's civilian jet aircraft.

Sodexho's core business is to provide food and management services to all public and private sectors such as Business and Industry, Healthcare, Education, all Ministries within the Public Sector and Remote Sites. We are expanding our offering for integrated support services and facilities management. This follows an accelerating trend amongst clients to outsource not only food but also the complete range of their site maintenance and general services.

Sunset Flight 13 September 2003
Photographs from Johan Pienaar

Captain Gordon Hayward and First Officer Phil Parsons with Johan Pienaar who was on the delivery flight of Lebombo as a child in 1971

Pratt & Whitney JT9-7-R4G2 engines

Passengers were treated to some fabulous
cloud formations
Many old friends were reunited on the sunset flight

Flight for SAA Technical 24 January 2004 and official hand over to The SAA Museum Society
Invitation to the Farewell Ceremony for Lebombo
The invitation sent out for the Handover Ceremony for Lebombo

The following article is reproduced by kind permission of Athol Franz, African Pilot Magazine.

On Saturday 24 January 2004, several members of the press, together with many of the SAA Technical staff that have worked on SAA’s first Boeing 747, ZS-SAN “Lebombo”, were treated to a spectacular flight to “nowhere”. The one and a half hour flight south towards the Drakensberg and back to Johannesburg International Airport was conducted at 25 000 feet, just above the towering clouds, offering the passengers spectacular views of the lush green countryside. Captain Dennis Spence and Captain Stewart Lithgow entertained the passengers with information on the illustrious career of one of the greatest aircraft of all time. Other members of the cockpit crew were Flight Engineer, Nick Maree and Chief Flight Engineer, Dennis McDermott. All crewmembers on this flight, including cabin crew, volunteered their time to make the occasion all the more special.

Lebombo arrived at the then Jan Smuts airport on 6 November 1971 and now thirty-two years old in 2004 this Jumbo has clocked 107 000 flying hours and has spent twelve and a half years airborne. Lebombo was delivered brand new to SAA in November 1971 from Boeing in Seattle at a cost of R17 million and has flown 481.5 million nautical miles or 886 million-Km using 160.5 million litres of Jet A1. Lebombo has used 3384 tyres at a cost of R10 000 each – R30.4 million - nearly double the purchase price of the aircraft. She has carried six million passengers and the world’s fleet of 1375 B747s manufactured to date have carried more than 3.5 billion passengers. Capt. Dennis Spence was but a teenager. His original first officer’s duty was a flight to London on Lebombo in 1988 and he later received his first command on the same aircraft in 1998 also to London. Weighing in at 231 metric tonnes, the Boeing 747 was extremely light, rotated at 142 knots and climbed out of JHI like a “homesick angel.” Speaking from the “sharp end”, Dennis was happy to report that every single component on the aircraft was in perfect working condition and that the acceleration was “better than an M3 on steroids.” On the descent for landing we circled the Vaal Dam, which I have often done in my Cessna 172, but never before in a B-747.

The fly-by at Johannesburg International Airport must have been most impressive to the many visitors on the ground at SAA Technical, as on-board the aircraft the resulting steep turn overhead the SAA complex was awesome! Capt. Stewart Lithgow landed the 747 with style in what must go down as one of the smoothest landings I have ever experienced in such a large aircraft. As the Boeing taxied off to SAA Technical, two fire tenders sprayed water in an enormous arc over the nose of the aircraft. Once parked and shut down, the passengers disembarked to a spectacular display of South African Airways history in the form of historic photographs depicting SAA’s aircraft from a bygone era, old aircraft models in SAA livery, even period hostess uniforms on mannequins as well as a magnificent spread of food and refreshments. The hangar was beautifully decorated with the ex Trek Airways Lockheed L1649A Starliner (Constellation), ZS-DVJ in one corner and the Douglas DC-4 ZS-AUB “Outeniqua”, of SA Historic Flight in the other corner. Master of ceremonies, Karl Jensen, who completed 163 flights on this aircraft, dealt quickly with the formalities and the CEO of SAA Technical, Rinesh Ramkissoon, symbolically handed the keys of Lebombo to Richard Hunt, Vice Chairman of the SAA Museum Society. Not many of the audience noticed a moment of nostalgia as Rinesh kissed the nose-gear goodbye. Was there a tear? Well-done South African Airways Technical for organising a fantastic function!


Flight for SAA Technical and the official handover to the SAA Museum Society
24 January 2004


Lebombo performing a flypast over the SAA Technical Area
Photo Julian Whitelaw
Lebombo receives a farewell shower as she taxis in
Photo Julian Whitelaw

Crew of the SAA Technical flight.
Photo Julian Whitelaw
Standing majestically ready for unveiling of the Museum decal.
Photo Julian Whitelaw

SAAMS decal revealed.
Photo Jorg-Dieter Zmich
SAA Museum Society Vice Chairman Richard Hunt receiving the keys to Lebombo from the CEO of SAA Technical, Rinesh Ramkissoon.
Photo Julian Whitelaw

Landing at Rand Airport Friday 5 March 2004

At four minutes past eight, South African time, on an overcast and dull Friday morning 5 March 2004, the retired South African Airways Boeing 747-244,
ZS-SAN, "Lebombo" touched down at Rand Airport, Germiston, just outside Johannesburg. It was a case of third time lucky for the landing had been postponed twice due to poor weather conditions on 14 and 28 February.

A substantial crowd had been waiting at Rand since about six a.m. and erupted in cheer and clapping as the grand old lady was placed firmly down on runway 11. As planned she stopped near the intersection of runway 11/29 and 35/17. After the exchange of congratulations over the radio the crew announced the shutdown of the four big Pratt & Whitney engines, the APU (auxiliary power unit) however was kept running so that steering and brakes could be operated.

The responsibility of towing the aircraft was handed over to a very experienced and highly capable SAA Technical crew who’s task it was to move the aircraft to its parking area. A tug was connected and the jumbo began to head for the designated parking area in front of the terminal building. However the tug wheels lost grip on the grass and after several unsuccessful attempts to try and assist the tug with a fire tender a decision was taken to taxi Lebombo across the grass under her own power. The four engines were started and in a few minutes the old girl was on the taxi area in front of the terminal. The tug was reconnected and the aircraft manoeuvred to her parking spot.

Lebombo is sure to attract attention for she can be seen from as far away as Alberton and most of the roads that lead to Rand Airport. An interesting point is that when standing in front of the entrance to the Rand Airport Terminal building one can see her tail towering above the buildings. A good bit of marketing for SAA no doubt!
Lebombo’s crew consisted of:
Captain: Dennis Spence
Captain: Stuart Lithgow
Senior First Officer: Phil Parsons
Senior Flight Engineer Officer: Dennis McDermott


Chief Flight Engineer Officer: Peter KielyAlso on board was Gerry Du Toit from the South African Civil Aviation Authority.
It was an emotional time for it was the last flight of Senior Flight Engineer Officer Dennis McDermott and Chief Flight Engineer Officer Peter Kiely. It was fitting indeed that their last flight was on an aircraft destined to be preserved and not sent to a breakers yard.

Below is the story of the landing of "Lebombo" as written by the Captain (Captain Dennis Spence) who flew her on this last flight. The aircraft empty weight was 164 000kg and we had 20 000kg fuel on board. The aircraft was TOTALLY airworthy and every component was serviceable, it even has toilet paper in all the toilets!!!!! We had a snag before start with the PMS (Performance Management Computer) so one was ordered from stores and it was fitted before we departed.

Take-off weight was 183 000 kg and the V1/VR speed was 125 kts. Max thrust was 1.6 EPR but we de-rated to 1.55. We applied nearly max thrust on the brakes and it had acceleration that made the M3 drivers look like they were standing still. We rotated just after intersection Lima, some 3000 ft from the beginning of 03 Left, and climbed away with a body angle of nearly 30°.

We were given vectors for Rand from the west, but because of some cloud we only became visual too late to commence the approach, so we were re-vectored and approached from the south. We joined right-hand downwind for 11 and got the gear and flap 30, landing flap out early. As there is no approach aids on 11, we plotted an ideal path using the DME at RAV. The threshold height of 11 is 5500 ft MSL at 0,7 DME RAV, so by the simple rule of 300 ft per nautical mile, we had our path plotted.

3.7 DME: 6400 ft
2.7 DME: 6100 ft
1.7 DME: 5800 ft

We did not want to touch early, because of the "lip" on the approach to 11, so we had a chalk line at 50m (150 ft) drawn across the runway to ensure that this would not happen, because of the visual illusion of such a narrow runway ( 15m wide compared to 60m wide at JNB). The distance from the nose of the aircraft to the rear of the gear is 114 ft, so we would not want to touch down before the nose was at this line. Also, the demonstrated landing distance from the flight performance manuals, and computed by the performance engineers at SAA is 3000 ft. This is using ONLY brakes and NO thrust reverse, but we must remember that this is for a new aircraft with new brakes, not one with 107 000 flying hours on it !!!! To ensure that we minimized the possibility of an over-run of 11, we then put another chalk line at 3600 ft from the end of R/W 29, so if we were not on the ground by this mark, we would go-around and have another attempt. In the Simulator we tried various scenario's using JNB 03L, NO aids, except for the 300 ft/NM plot, a 5 kt crosswind and a 5 kt tail wind, NO reverse thrust, and every time we managed to stop before intersection Lima.

Well it worked at Rand, and we did NOT scratch the paint!!!

I managed to keep it on the centre line and touch down at the point we wanted - Bug speed at the weight of 178 000kg was 118 kts, but on short final with the wind at 070/08 I elected to fly it at 115 kts. When Dennis Mc Dermot, our Flight Engineer called 20 ft on the radio altimeter, I closed the thrust levers and planted it firmly onto the runway, aircraft carrier style. Well most of our energy dissipated rapidly, and by using medium auto-brakes, until I lowered the nose wheel, we managed to stop just before the intersection of 11/35. Stew just "cracked" the reversers, in case we need them, but because the engines will be removed and used again, we did not want to ingest any debris, as ALL the engines were overhanging the runway. The brake temperatures did not move higher than the mid green range.
Dennis Spence

Landing at Rand Airport Friday 5 March 2004


Crowds look on. Photo Athol Franz

Photo Julian Whitelaw

Touchdown at Rand Airport on Friday 5 March 2004 at 08H04.
Photo Julian Whitelaw


Photo Athol Franz

Centre line - Photo Athol Franz

The delivery flight crew - Photo Athol Franz
The delivery flight crew. Photo Athol Franz
Left to Right:
Captain: Dennis Spence
South African Civil Aviation Authority: Gerry Du Toit
Chief Flight Engineer Officer: Peter Kiely
Senior First Officer: Phillip Parsons
Captain: Stewart Lithgow
Senior Flight Engineer Officer: Dennis McDermott

ZS-SAN Lebombo was parked in front of the Rand Airport terminal building from 5 March 2004 until she was towed to the Museum Complex at TAC on 19 August 2006.


Lebombo, the Lodestar and the Dove outside the Rand Airport Terminal Building.
Photo by Michal Petrykowski

The aircraft were a great attraction to visitors to the Harvard Cafe at Rand Airport.
Photo by Michal Petrykowski

Lebombo interesting information

Rolled out
24 August 1971
First flight
30 September 1971
Delivered to SAA
22 October 1971
Delivery flight
Delivery flight
4 November 1971 Seattle-Stansted 9 hrs 20 min
4 November 1971 Stansted-London 20 min
5 November 1971 London-Lisbon 3 hrs 10 mi
5/6 November 1971 Lisbon-Johannesburg 11 hrs 5 min
Captains: Bob Truter, John Trotter, Salomon “Pi” Pienaar, Ed Costenbader (Boeing)
Flight Engineers: Christiaan Vorster, Donald Smith, Robert (Bob) Bruning, Vernon du Toit
Navigation Officer: Jacobus Frederick van Aswegen
The aircraft carried a fifth engine on the left wing during the delivery flight.
First SAA service
10 December 1971. Johannesburg-Luanda-London.
Captains: John Trotter and Salomon “Pi” Pienaar.
Special flight.
Saturday 24 June 1995 “Lebombo” performed a flypast over the Ellis Park Stadium for the Rugby World Cup final. South Africa beat New Zealand 15-12
Last SAA service
24 November 2003. SA3061 Lagos-Johannesburg.
Last Flight
Lebombo landed at Rand Airport on Friday 5 March 2004 at 08H04.
Captain: Dennis Spence
Captain: Stewart Lithgow
Senior First Officer: Phillip Parsons
Senior Flight Engineer Officer: Dennis McDermott
Chief Flight Engineer Officer: Peter Kiely
Also on board was Gerry Du Toit from the South African Civil Aviation Authority.
Years in service
31 years, 11 months, 14 Days
Hours flown
107 689 hours and 56 minutes. (12½ years airborne)
20304 landings
Distance flown
Approximately 49.2 million nautical miles or 91.6 million Km
Fuel consumed
Approximately 962.2 million kilograms Jet A1 (850km/hr with fuel burn 8000kgs/hr).
Tyres used
3384 tyres at R10 000 each – R30.4m – nearly double the purchase price of the aircraft.
Passengers carried
Six million

Boeing 747-244 ZS-SAN Lebombo in her delivery colour scheme 1971




Boeing 747-200 Technical Information
(Lebombo had P&W JT9D-7R4G2 engines)
Pratt & Whitney JT9D-7R4G2 54,000 lb.(24,635 kg)
Rolls-Royce RB211-524D4 53,000 lb. (23,850 kg)
GE CF6-50E2 52,500 lb. (23,625 kg)
Maximum fuel capacity
52,410 U.S. gal (199,158 L) 160 tonnes
Maximum take-off weight
833,000 lb. (374,850 kg)
Maximum range
7,900 statute miles (12,700 km)
Typical city pairs:
New York-Tokyo
Typical cruise speed at 35,000 feet
Mach 0.84
555 mph (895 km/h)
195 ft 8 in (59.6 m)
Overall length
231 ft 10.2 in (70.6 m)
Tail height
63 ft 5 in (19.3 m)
Interior cabin width
20 ft (6.1 m)
Main wheel track width
39 ft (12.5 m)
Crew cockpit
3 Captain, First Officer and Flight Engineer.
Long haul, 2 First Officers, 2 Flight Engineers.
Crew Cabin
14 (long haul)
Passenger configuration
12 FC (First Class)
47 JC (Business Class)
232 YC (Economy Class)
Total 291
6,190 ft3 = 30 LD-1 containers
5,497 ft3 = 5 pallets, 14 LD-1 containers + bulk (one pallet = 96 in x 125 in/244 cm x 318 cm)
6,190 cu ft (175.3 cu m), or 5,497 cu ft (155.6 cu m)
225 passenger
78 combination
3 freighter
3 convertible
4 military
393 Total

Although commonly called the Black Box the Flight Data Recorder is actually housed in an orange box. Photo: Sandra Austin

List of preserved Boeing 747 aircraft.



Click here for a list of preserved Boeing 747 aircraft (includes some abandoned ones)



Two aircraft both named Lebombo
Photographs Athol Franz African Pilot Magazine


Boeing 747-244 "Lebombo"




Interior pictures of Lebombo
Photographs Julian Whitelaw


Interior pictures of Lebombo
Sean and Steve Blaauw

Click on image for larger version






Exterior pictures of Lebombo
Photographs Julian Whitelaw

Cockpit pictures of Lebombo
Photographs Julian Whitelaw


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