MAAA Wingspan

35 AUGUST WING SPAN MAAALogo. in Victoria, for a fun fly. This is where I was first introduced to proportional radio control. If memory servesme, it was a young Michael O’Reilly with a 4 channel model and I was smitten. I had to get into this. The next few years are a little clouded, but I do remember starting an Electrical Fitter apprenticeship at what was in those days, Panelboard. Aeromodelling took a back seat as I discoveredmotor cars and girls. I got married and all thoughts of model aircraft vanished. One day, a gentleman by the name of Neville Dix joined the workforce and he turned out to be a keen builder of model aircraft. My interest was rekindled. Neville and I entered the Nationals held at Loxton in the 70’s. He entered scale and I entered¼midget (My first pylon event) and a Gliding event. It was a low budget affair (we slept in the car). It became apparent to the keen aeromodellers that the existing club wasn’t a good fit, so we started a new club. I sent out invitations and the first meeting was held at my residence. Rightly or wrongly we named it the “Stick Wigglers Society”. I was the first Chairman and I still have one of the T shirts we made. It doesn’t fit anymore as thematerial seems to have shrunk over the years. I’mnot sure but over time I think this clubmorphed into the current club in Mt Gambier. We flew on a private property at Yahl (frommemory) owned by a neighbour (his name escapesme). We also flew slope at “The Bluff” halfway between Mt Gambier and Millicent and “Mt Muirhead” just out of Mt Burr frequented by early hang glider pilots. It was in this time I learned to fly and achieved solo, passenger and basic aerobatic ratings for sailplanes at Millicent. I was the first pilot to go solo aerotow in the club (we normally used a winch). My father was the first club president. I arranged for the club to host our aeromodellers to give the sailplane pilots a try at model flying and in return have a passenger flight in a glider. The glider pilots soon realised it wasn’t as easy as it looked and I lost my favorite Webra Speed 61 and Doug Saxby Tiger Tail combo in a spectacular loss of control. Whenmy private life went feral, I returned to Adelaide and aeromodelling once again went on the back burner. I remarried and accepted a four-year management position in Singapore. On the second Christmas, I received an ARF Chipmunk, Enya 53 and Futaba FF7 frommy wife. I remember saying to her at the time, “Do you have any idea what you’ve just started?” If you ask her today……..I have a two car garage which has never seen amotor vehicle in the 30 years we have lived there. I joined “Radio Modelers Singapore” and became well- known at Singapore Hobbies. I’d crashmy helicopter and go for spares. Jonnie wouldn’t even askme, he just collected the parts he knew I’d need. It was like a repair kit for Bob. On returning to Adelaide in the early 90’s I joined HMAC, did a stint on the committee and as President. Presided over the new clubrooms and renegotiating a larger field with the landlord. I also started a newsletter which is still being produced today, all be it in a different form. Around themid 90’s, I promoted a simplemonthly competition on Sunday afternoons whichmorphed into Point Ten Pylon, which is still running today. I believe the success of Point Ten lies in the simplicity of the rules whichmakes it all but impossible to “bend” them.