Experimental Aircraft Association of South Africa aims to assist its members with building, flying, and restoring non-type certified aircraft.
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Unread post by mikev » Wed May 09, 2012 7:46 pm

Circle the Aircraft and rally the horsepower!

The Makwassie Mid Winter MOJO is on!!

Pilots and pilotesses willing to brave the cold and desolate plains southwest of Klerksdorp are welcome to fly to the Swartpan International Airport for an EAA Young Eagles aviation event of unimaginable proportions on 16 JUNE 2012.

Due to incessant and continuous lobbying, threats and various other incentives and bribes, the senior management of the airport had graciously waived all overflight and landing fees.

The same management had eventually after several hours of water torture treatment agreed to allow any aircraft to land as if the normally very congested airspace is uncontrolled, but insisted that all visitors complete the attached registration form.

When the hangars at SPIA (SwartPan Int Airport for the ignorami amongst us) were forced open it was found to contain some brand new jackets from a local sponsor, and it was duly decided to dish it out to all aircrew participating as Young Eagles pilots.

Furthermore it was discovered that some top quality Cape wine was hidden in a cupboard way at the back. This would find it’s way to the EAA-member pilot of every visiting aircraft, regardless of participating as Young Eagles pilots or not. This would require the completion of the aircraft details on the registration form.

The watermark on the registration form is the logo of the event, and will magically transform itself to a personalized pewter label on the wine bottle bearing the name of the Pilot and his trusty aircraft. This process takes a few weeks, so only the early registered pilots will share this incredible magic!!


Farm LAT/LONG: 27˚21’3” S and 25˚56’18” E (Karl, I checked this time!)

The farm is situated seven (7) Km west of Makwassie town, and is bordered by the R502 to the north, and the Jhb-Cape railway line on the south.

The two runways are mown grass, 1,4 (36/18) and 0,8 (27/09) Km in length respectively and 40m wide, crossing at right angles. I have had a King Air and a
Ravin 500 in here before with lots to spare.

The windsock is at the intersection of the runways, but we shall have a ground radio manned for the day.

Approaching from the south will have you crossing the railway line, but on the correct approach angle for the 1,4Km runway threshold, you should clear the structures by approx 50+ ft.


As this is the second event of this nature here, we are pleased that the farm kids had behaved remarkably tame towards the big city folks with the strange aircraft last year, and most had promised to behave even better this year but the necessary precautions are being made. This includes several kweperlatte to be wielded by stern parents at the hangars, and so on....

08:00 Arrival kids, parents and local supporters. Coffee, tea, jungle juice and rusks will be served. It will be free, so all pilots should be forewarned that farm kids take no prisoners where karringmelkbeskuit is concerned. Make sure you arrive early and don’t be shy to elbow aside any other contender at the feeding trough.

08:15 Lecture by Hannes Vorster, member ch 1504, on realizing aviation dreams.

08:45 Model and RC aircraft lecture and demo whilst waiting for visiting aircraft to arrive.

10:00 Welcome ceremony which will mainly consist of hogging any donated scoff like biltong or droewors during pilot safety and procedures briefing.

10:15 Ceremonial handing over will take place of the PIETENPOL airframe to the headmaster of the local Wolmaransstad High School. This airframe will form a training and skills development platform of an EAA YE initiative at this school.

10:20-onwards Young Eagles flights

13:30 Lunch. On the menu will be very basically hamburgers/hotdogs and colddrinks/juice.

Remainder of YE flights and other enthusiasts can fly for the rest of the afternoon, in serious anticipation of the evening’s free beer party with a baked piglet and some very tasty local cooking alongside. Certainly not to be missed.

Limited camping facilities will be available, so please indicate ASAP whether you will be staying over.

YE Aircraft will each receive an allocation of free fuel based on certain criteria, very much reminiscent of the PTAR handicap committee rules, i.e. you are not allowed to know what these criteria are, and I shall not tell you!!

Flying to cease prior to first beer taste, and thereafter it’s party time till the wee morning hours.

There will be a compulsory sunrise religious service open to anyone and coffee and rusks will be served until visiting aircraft had departed.

As stated last year, these proceedings are not set in stone, and any suggestions are most welcome.

Do however feel free to invite any pilot friends with their aircraft along for the day, the more, the merrier. The only pre-condition is that should their aircraft resemble anything remotely like a broom or flying carpet, your membership of the fraternity will be up for immediate review.
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Unread post by mikev » Mon Jun 25, 2012 10:09 am

What a day! What a day!
No, that is not a typo, I am just still overwhelmed!

We started off last year on an impulsive whim (what shall we do on Youth day?) and my big mouth as usual dropped me straight in the thick stuff, with the suggestion of a Young Eagles day.
Fortunately my wife Joni and some very good friends, Herman, Christelle, Ben and Cornelia saw to it that I did not lose the last bit of mind I had left, and it went rather well.
It was on a modest scale, with one rented aircraft complementing my Savannah, and one exceptionally well maintained Cessna 170, ZU-VAL, which was immediately re-typed to the Makwassie Boeing, as it came bearing real Boeing and jet pilots.


This year we were very fortunate that a great many pilots came over to support the day! This was in no small measure directly attributable to a certain Makwassie Boeing pilot’s tireless (personally speaking, very humbling) efforts in support of our initiatives here.

We are very much indebted to Karl, for all the support, to Chris, all the way from Limpopo province, the Klerksdorp chapter 1504, Hennie and Theuns from the Kroonstad chapter, gentlemen from Viljoenskroon, Bothaville and Hartebeesfontein.

A special thank you has to go to the Brits group, for bringing an exotic, beautiful amphibian aircraft, ZU-SEA. It is highly appreciated, and we are devastated at the damage that was incurred on the wheel rim, fortunately without serious consequences. It certainly put a damper on the day’s high spirits.

We started off with the first aircraft arriving on Thursday already. It proves the point that Limpopo people do make sure they are never late for a good party!

I received two telephone calls on Thursday that just about changed my entire day! This was from the Brits crowd, with similar views to my own on Young Eagles, and a very pleasant German chap stating that he would be flying in along with a Mr Earle as co-pilot in a Taylorcraft BD 12 Special aircraft.

Early Saturday morning, before the first sparrow yawned, the first children already arrived! Not surprisingly they declared themselves ready, willing and able to go flying, and what is the point of lying in bed since three in the morning waiting for a day like this, and they could just as well wait here, and then they are in front of the queue, and......!!

The weather was exactly according to the order put in weeks before! The day was dawning full of promise, and everything started falling into place.

Wolmaransstad BUILD-IT had provided a lot of very colourful flags and had graciously sponsored the fuel for the day. It is not possible to concisely convey our gratitude to them here. Guys you made it happen, thank you very much!!

Alex Lombard, from BITFLOW, having been invited to present the Model RC aircraft and computer flight Simulators, also offered in addition to this to do ALL the printing on Sponsored Jackets (SENWES and ENGEN) and the Build-it caps! Unexpected, very welcome and very much appreciated!

Nobody got lost on the way in, and breakfast was wolfed down whilst the last of the pilots arrived, some with very welcome and stunning runway inspections!

Speech time of course, after opening with prayer and scripture, was highlighted by a short, very welcome word by Aeroclub Chairman Jeff Earle. Mr Earle, I hereby accept full responsibility for deploying ambushing tactics to get you to say a word here!! We are forever in your debt!!

The jackets were already handed out during registration, personalized wine bottles were all pointed out to the respective owners, so all were set!

The parents and children all tramped outside to the RC models whilst a short ceremony followed in the small hangar where an unfinished Pietenpol airframe and some completed parts were handed to the local high school headmaster, Mr Robbertse. This will form part of a YE initiative to build NTCA aircraft in disused workshops at the school.

None too soon we were loading children and flying! Here the first snag came up, with the faster aircraft already arriving with slower ones still to take off.
Fortunately, cool heads prevailed, re-briefing was done, and Len du Preez held everything together by acting as ATC for the remainder of the day. The benefit of this was that the parents actually got a good look at the aircraft overflying the airfield prior to landing, which was very much appreciated. Len got his chance late in the day after the Young Eagles had all flown, with stunning aerobatics in his Zlin along with Cliff Lotter’s RV-7.

A total of 18 aircraft participated and flew in, which allowed 96 Young Eagles to go flying.

Fortunately Human Wentzel with the Bonanza and others allowed some older eagles to also share the excitement of flight.

Catering took care of itself, it would appear, as everything just seem to happen automatically! (Certainly I am organizing myself a huge Klap here, as the boss is reading over my shoulder)

The evening was spent relaxing with cold beer and hot lamb chops, around the fire, feet up, wondering what happened at the Springbok-England rugby match. I don’t suppose offering apologies for not organizing a sat-tv to watch the game would make it up now, more than a week late. I shall forever bear this burden!

Everyone retired to some handy caravans parked close by. As can be expected, the gremlins showed up after twelve! I got up at 01:30 to check the house, and after retiring, snuggling down, batteries and master switch switching off, Joni says: “Did you replace the caravan roof?”

A short story. My father-in-law has only two settings when driving, briefly idling at traffic stops, and full revs, flat speed in between. These settings are unfortunately incompatible with the ventilation covering on the roof of caravans, which duly went flying. Not being aerodynamic, it of course cracked badly upon landing, necessitating serious gluing to repair. All other issues then took precedence over this piece of plastic, and I never replaced it. The visitors allocated here referred to the caravan as having a ‘sterretjies-kombuis’.

Back to the present, I am now contemplating: Here I am, snug as a young polar bear in an igloo, stomach full of lamb chops and beer, surrounded by everyone and everything I hold dear in life, and I now have to go outside??

After much soul searching I got up, dressed up and went out to get the roof covering. To my utmost surprise, I found something I had always suspected about fling-wing chaps. The only helicopter pilot attending, without a helicopter, was sitting at the fire. Here I am highly tempted to say he was sitting around the fire, for not only completely alone, he had an Ipod-Ipad-Idontknowwhat on his head, keeping the beat, surrounded by many empties, having the time of his life!!

He did help replacing the roof covering, and this being Makwassie, we put a seriously big stone on to prevent the wind from removing it again.

The next morning a short sermon was well attended, and too soon everyone had left!

Reality returned, postponed work had to be completed, but a very satisfactory glow remained. The pleasant feeling of having participated in something truly worthwhile, with very pleasant people doing something really magic, is very much worth it!

Thanks to all!! See you next year!


Mike Visagie
Chapter 1504 Young Eagles coordinator
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Unread post by Chris » Mon Jun 25, 2012 3:58 pm

Damn - I only read this now. Looks like it was a great event. Next year...
Chris Booysen
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Unread post by mikev » Wed Jun 27, 2012 2:44 pm

Damn - I only read this now. Looks like it was a great event. Next year...
The welcome mat had not disappeared, it is only rolled up for temporary cleaning.

Next year will be even better!!
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Unread post by Raza159 » Sat Oct 11, 2014 9:39 pm

I would like to join EAA.
Do I get hold of people locally, or can someone publish the application papers here?

Thank you.

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