The hope is that the boys are able to make contacts in the aviation industry and the various experiences and outings that are held serve to fuel their enthusiasm for flying. We have about thirty members of the club and we meet once a week to plan events and talk about flying.
In 2012, we have had a radio controlled aircraft demonstrations, the author of ‘Bush Pilots Do it in Fours’, Roy Watson, spoke to the club about his experiences flying food aid around Africa and one particularly memorable flight to the Antarctic. We also managed to get 43rd Air School to present to the club and the boys were exposed to their Boeing 727 Simulator, which was a real hit. Hopefully, as a result, there will be a number of aspiring commercial pilots generated from this endeavour.
The club has also been lucky enough to have issues of the Global Aviator Magazine donated to its members every month, and the editor, Mike de Villiers has been very generous in this regard.
The highlights were excursions to Baragwanath Airfield for an experience flying in light aircraft. A number of pilots from around Gauteng brought their aeroplanes for these days and they were astounded by how interested and enthusiastic these young men are about flying. The format for the day was a wash in exchange for a flight and the boys bought shimmies and buckets in order to entice pilots to allow them to wash the aircraft in order to get a flip.
In the Second Term of 2012, the club paired with Pretoria Boys High School’s Aeronautical Society for an overnight camping experience at Baragwanath. Members from both clubs spent the two days flying their own radio controlled aircraft as well as attending a number of workshops about aircraft design, aerobatic flight and the possibilities of a career in aviation. They also attend some ‘ground school’ where the principles of flight, the mechanics of aircraft airframes, instruments and engines as well as the implications of weather for the private pilot. The boys went for a ride in the Tiger Moth or Cessna 140, and in the training aircraft, were afforded the opportunity of taking the controls and flying themselves! In the evening we had an inter-school Aviation Quiz which was well-received, and St Stithians narrowly lost to our counterparts from up north.
In 2013, we have only had one flying excursion thus far, which was thanks to Heystek and Michelle Pretorius. This took place from Wonderboom Airport where ten of the members flew in the Antonov AN2 (with Bosbok and Alouyette in formation) to Kittyhawk for breakfast. Pictures of this event are posted as a thread under this topic.
The club’s intention is to exposure to boys to what ‘real’ flying is all about on a grassroots level as well as from a commercial perspective and I am sure with the enthusiasm of its members, the club will go from strength to strength. Any support and assistance in promoting flying amongst the boys would be greatly appreciated.
Master in Charge
- Power on stall
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While this is a great club, and the encouragement of aviation in youngsters is wonderful - rather than trying to encourage them to become CPL's, for whom the work prospects are few, rather encourage the notion of working hard to get a good tertiary education, thus enabling them to earn enough to participate in aviation as a hobby (and perhaps more later?).
And the great thing about aviation is that much of what is learnt in the classroom is reinforced very practically in the classroom, such as meteorology and geography, human performance and life science, law (and communication) and English. And of course physical science and mathematics has an obvious parallel.
So working hard is part of it all, but when it is done in the context of something that the boys are passionate about, the work becomes fun and very meaningful...
- Wanna Fly
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