November 25 – December 8 – The Fence!
December saw a lot of activity, with a fair share of it taken up with the construction of our new fence around the pits. The committee made the decision to erect a fence around the pit area that now effectively prevents any sheep accessing the pits. This will be particularly beneficial during the winter months when the ground is soft and the sheep have a tendency to gather around the clubhouse for protection from the wind. Their hooves also churn up the pits. This will no longer be the case.
Work commenced on the late afternoon of November 25, with Mike H, George C and Ron Davidson (farm manager). The task on this occasion was to dig the post holes ready for the working bee the next day. Ron very generously donated his time and arrived with the tractor and auger to drill the holes. This was going to be easy or so we thought. Despite all the rain, the ground was dry and hard all the way to the depth of almost a metre! It was so hard in fact that the auger would not penetrate! With Mike hanging onto the auger to try and keep it vertical, this was hard going. Next the 3 point linkage lost a pin and we had to stop. No way was anyone going to lift the 3 point linkage with the auger attached back into place. “not a problem” said Ron, “Let’s go and get the loader”. On returning with the loader, the linkage was lifted into place and refitted with a tent peg as the pin!
This however was not going to fix the problem with the auger not penetrating. “Can you drive the loader Mike?” asked Ron. “Been a while but I can” replied Mike. So Mike was in the loader and using it to keep the auger vertical and apply some pressure to get the auger to penetrate. Yours truly was assigned the task of cleaning the auger flutes after the hole was drilled.
November 26 was the date organised for the working bee and because we had plenty of tools and equipment, all who volunteered had a job to do.Thanks must go to the following for their contribution to the working bee, Committee members, Mike H, Terry P, Geoff H, Kevin H, Mick G, George C, and non-committee Richard C, Fred W, Ross B and Kerry C who not only laboured but cooked lunch as well.
December 2 saw Mike, Geoff and myself return to finish off the ringlock on the western and southern ends. The strip and pits still had to be mowed and Geoff kindly offered to do this on his own. It was also observed that the south western gate was not wide enough to accommodate the largest models in the club and it was decided to replace the 3m gate with a 4.2m gate. This was done during the week before the Christmas party. These things happen but overall we shouldn’t lose sight of the great work done by all concerned. If anyone turns up with a bigger model, they’ll be redirected to Launceston Airport!
A very special thanks to Ron – without his help in supplying the ringlock, some tools and also his time and labour in drilling all the post holes, this task would have cost much more and taken a lot longer.
A panorama of the new fence –
December 10 – Christmas Lunch & Fun Fly
We all know that the second half of 2016 has not been great for flying. If it wasn’t raining cats and dogs or the field was not underwater, then it was too windy. However, all that was forgotten on Saturday when we had a great turnout of members, boosted by the presence of our like-minded friends from RFAM (Mike Rutledge, Tony & Elaine Grey, Will Deal, Gavin Hallam and Peter Allen). What a great turnout we had with 30 members and their partners/guests joining in for the day.
Despite the wind being a bit unpredictable at times, although thankfully mostly from the north, quite a few took the opportunity to take their models to the skies.
There were plenty of comments about the site and all were positive! The inability to fly due to the wet conditions has ensured that the grass had a chance to fill the seed drilling ruts and as a result the strip is looking in tip-top order! The pits also looked a picture especially with the new fence completed.
Whilst many took the opportunity to have a fly, most seemed quite happy to catch up with others, have a chat and watch a few models flying. The focus was certainly on Kevin Hay’s Stearman & Gavin Hallam’s jet. Both were inspiring in their contrasts. Kevin’s Stearman providing the beauty of the build and character of the biplanes of a past era and Gavin’s jet, that proved that this is not a model but a miniature aircraft that sounded no different to the real thing. Many thanks to Gavin for making the journey from Nubeena to put on a display with his jet.
If you weren’t there to witness the sight and sound of Gavin’s jet, below is a link to a short video. Kevin’s Stearman was another that I took a short video of and this can also be found below. (Apologies that the quality is not great due to it being shot on my phone and YouTube’s compression)
As usual the meal for the day was an absolute feast a big thank you to Kerry for her work with the support of Kaye Hope, Tanya Pearson, Gloria Willis, Alice Robertson and Elaine Grey (RFAM), who not only helped on the day but also contributed to the feast.
Thank you also to Richard Cooper for the donation of a 21yo bottle of whisky that was auctioned. I was surprised that there were only two whisky drinkers, myself and Danny Nelson. Danny and myself placed bids but unfortunately for Danny, he left before the close of bidding and I held the last bid (lucky for me).
Some snapshots from the day…
Merry Christmas & A Safe and Happy New Year to All!
George & Kerry