Wednesday 29th November 2006 by C. Freeman
Members of the College's model glider club had the benefit of expert advice as two enthusiasts shared hints and tips with them.
Chris Harle and Richard Russell of the Corby Model Aircraft Club brought along a few of their models so Brooke Weston students could see the massive scope of aero modelling. They gave advice on designing and building, from explaining how to form wing profiles to flying the finished models. The students were also given a run-down of the range of models from indoor remote control ones to mini helicopters and planes powered by rocket motors capable of an actual (not scale) speed of 260mph!
'it's inevitable to crash planes but you'll repair them.'
The classroom was adorned with many model planes which the pair had brought along including a massive Catalina which was inherited as a half finished project and lovingly completed. They also brought along a 'buddy box', a dual controller enabling novices to learn to fly the planes with the benefit of an experienced modeller being able to take over in case of an emergency. However Chris warned the group; 'it's inevitable to crash planes but you'll repair them.'
Richard Russell demonstrates the remote control unit.
Some model planes are so large that they have to be inspected by the CAA (Civil Aviation Authority) and licensed before they take to the skies. Those over 44lbs need a licence to fly while those under 20lbs are exempt from registration. However, despite the relatively small size of the aircraft the Brooke Weston students will be working on they still need to give their all to their projects. Richard said: 'You need to build your aircraft to be as reliable as a jumbo jet. They're not toys and you have to pay attention to detail.'
Chris and Richard are acting as consultants to the group of modellers who are working under the tuition of Design Technology tutors, Mr Bateup and Dr Bell. Last academic year Brooke Weston entered two teams into the British Model Flying Association's Flight Challenge with a brief to build and fly three model aircraft. The Year 8 teams were placed fifth and seventh in the senior division, out of a total of 23 teams who made it to the finals.
The modellers hope to build on that success and the club meets every week in preparation for the competition in June 2007. A range of students from Year 7 to Years 10 attend but the club will welcome students from all years. For details of the next meeting contact Mr Bateup or Dr Bell.