My love affair with aeromodelling started in my teens. As a Coffs Harbour boy, I had the opportunity to enjoy open spaces and plenty of areas to fly my amateur attempts and start the journey of flight.
My parents fuelled my passion. They both flew Tiger Moths and I have many fond memories of being given the controls and flying home to Coffs from boarding school in Armidale.
My father had a natural feel for the plane and on one flight he flew the Tiger Moth home along the Bellingen Valley below the ridge top, looking up at the timber getters clearing some of the forest. Those were the days! My mother was a flying instructor, which was quite an achievement for the times. It really isn’t surprising I am a modeller. She teamed up with another female pilot to race against Dad in the 1978 Great Tiger Moth Air Race, suffice to say, the ladies won.
I entered the police force in 1978 and my aero modelling was probably the only thing that kept me sane through some truly difficult times. I started flying at Macquarie University and then SRCS at their flying site at Kellyville with a very young Peter Goldsmith as my flying instructor and met some wonderful modellers/characters like Allan Martin, Lloyd Dipple, Ron Artiss and many others. My interest in scale was sealed.
Float flying provided the optimal mix of scale and water. Thereafter I was hooked. I started with Cubs on floats and then developed the Anderson Kingfishers. It brought together all things magic; flight, water, floats and the visual pleasure that this picture gives. I have built too many to count and they have been sent all over the world.
Twenty nine years of police service saw me out but my aero modelling has now become my main focus next to my son Thomas who, at 3, was already playing with the simulator and has been provided no end of planes and flight related toys so we are seeing the next generation of aero modeller in the making.
My wife, Aranka is the strongest support any man could have. At our wedding all aero modellers were asked by Aranka to bring their aircraft to fly in the marquee. The theme was flight so it was appropriate. She insisted that I buy the ¼ scale Wilga which has lead us to scale aero towing.
Our family has attended float flying events in Switzerland and Canada. From Sushwop Lake in Canada the pride of our fleet, a 120” Beaver on floats was packed up and brought home with the help of good aeromodelling friends as general luggage! We have it bad.
As part of our home we have what I am told is the man shed that many would envy. The need for more ceiling space is an every increasing problem and helping others with big projects seems to be on the increase. My current projects include ¼ scale Fiesler Storch and more Kingfisher kits for Canada.