The Vintage and Classic Glider Club of New Zealand Inc Nov 8, 2020 17:53:08 GMT 12 Dave Homewood, Peter Lewis, and 2 more like this
Post by planewriting on Nov 8, 2020 17:53:08 GMT 12
Forum visitors have recently asked about The Vintage and Classic Glider Club of New Zealand Inc; referred to, in short, as Vintage Kiwi.
Founder Ian Dunkley came to NZ from England on a voyage of discovery and soon discovered that there was no Vintage Gliding movement operating! Ian was obviously on a crusade and decided to stay on and rectify this colonial indiscretion. So late in 2003, in an attempt to fix this issue, he posted out an invitation to all registered glider owners for a rally to be held at Taupo in January 2004, with the intention of forming such a group in NZ. It was well attended and a meeting was held one evening after flying. He certainly pressed a number of buttons and all of the attendees gave him enthusiastic support to form such a group.
An approach was made to Gliding NZ to the possibility of a group being formed and would they be comfortable with such a movement operating in NZ as a member club. The Gliding NZ executive was very supportive in their response and so The Vintage and Classic Glider Club of NZ was born, to become better known simply as ‘Vintage Kiwi’. A lot of work was then done over the next 15 months to set up the operating structures and successfully applying to be an Incorporated Society, in 2006 paving the for Vintage Kiwi to being admitted as a member to Gliding NZ.
The objectives of Vintage Kiwi in simple terms is to try and ‘Stop the Rot‘ In other words, to promote the preservation and restoration of Vintage and Classic gliders to either flying status or selected aircraft as a permanent museum display where possible. It is a Flying Historical Organisation as such.
There are many other goals, however these being the main functions of this organisation.
Our archival section is a very important and active part, and Vintage Kiwi collates historic items, photos and memorabilia etc. so the NZ gliding story will never be lost. We now share a purpose built Archives room with the Classic Flyers Museum archive team at Tauranga. This V.K section is managed by Peter Layne, one of New Zealand’s leading Aviation Historians. An increasing number of film photographs and printed format have already been archived and safely stored for future reference. Hopefully, this could in time become the main history depositary for our sport here in NZ which is something that the NZ gliding community has never had before.
Vintage Kiwi as well as having its own membership, also acts as an ‘Umbrella ‘Organisation for Gliding NZ members who want to contribute by becoming a
member and operate their gliders under the’ Vintage Kiwi’ banner and in doing so are playing their part in preserving our gliding heritage.
We hold a number of well-established rallies during the summer. A ‘rally’ is really just an excuse to get together and go flying at a variety of different venues and to have a really great time. Good old fashioned ideals really. These have been held at Taupo, Norfolk Rd (Inglewood), Raglan, Drury, Matamata, Taumarunui, Springfield (Christchurch), Nelson Lakes, Greytown and Waipukurau. A number of our members are cross country pilots and retired competition pilots who when on a rally like to explore these new and exciting regions. Other members just like to fly; enjoying their sailplanes with what the day’s conditions may offer and also have an amazing day. Anyone at any level can attend a rally, and everyone is more than welcome to do so.
Our next Rally will be held at Te Kuiti Airfield February 6-13 2021.
There are now several gliders, which are flying under the Vintage banner. These include an Elliot’s of Newbury Eon Baby – NZ’s oldest registered flying glider ZK GAF  and Vintage Kiwi’s first syndicated glider, a Schleicher Ka8 GLE [another KA8 will be taking to the air once restoration is complete] as well as the only surviving Schneider Kookaburra flying in NZ [ Rebuilt by Vintage Kiwi]. There are also a number of Schleicher Ka6 variants, Slingsby T31, Slingsby Skylark 3F GCF [gifted by Dick Georgeson to VK], a Skylark 2b GBX to name only some. Under the ‘Classic’ section there are Open and Standard Libelles, ASW15s, SH Cirrus, Nimbus, Grob Standard Astir, NZ’s only surviving Open Cirrus, SZD 48–1 Jantar and so on. For NZ purposes we combine the two categories of Vintage and Classic Class so as to make a viable organisation. The Classic Class was initiated to capture any ‘one glass’ generation as it were. The criteria being that the original design of that glider had to be 25 years old. It’s hard to believe that it now captures the ASH25 [now a 30+ year design] and now the Duo Discus design. The Classic Class also captures the ‘one offs’ and the limited production design sailplanes as well, such as the HP18 and the BG 12 /16, the self-launching Russia and the Self Launching TEST twin seater.
Vintage Kiwi has also been active with preserving selected no longer flyable gliders which are refurbished to display standard. The following are now on permanent display at Classic Flyers based at Tauranga airport.
Hall Cherokee 2 GBT –The first post war ‘home built glider’ that CAA approved.
An elementary Ulf-3 Foot launcher.
Slingsby Swallow GCD [The English stalwart design of the 1960s. This one actually landed in Lake Wakatipu and for a long time was affectionately known as ‘Charlie Duck’.]
Schleicher Ka6cr GFD actual holder of 19 NZ women’s records in the 1960 and 70s.
DSK BJ-1 Duster GSR American designed performance home built. The only surviving, and most successful, Duster in NZ.
SZD Foka 4 GHS Once known as the Polish ‘Pin up’ model of the 1960s – World championship and design winner 1965
Slingsby T.31 Tandem Tutor GAU. This glider has literally come home as it is the Tauranga Gliding Club’s original glider that the club built themselves in 1956..
All of these gliders do have a unique NZ story to tell and deserved better than just quietly rotting away in a trailer somewhere, forever lost.
Other gliders currently being returned to full flying status with in the Vintage Kiwi membership.
Slingsby T31 GAD - Jury Hill
Schleicher Ka6e GFK Springfield [Target 2019/20]
Ka6cr/ pe GBU Whenuapai
Slingsby Skylark 4 GCY – Inglewood
Schleicher Ka6e GET- [Now completed and currently flying again]
Schleicher Ka8 North Shore Auckland
Potential Future projects.
Eon Olympia GAA .
S.H Standard Austria S GCX still to be decided
As time has rolled on we have seen Vintage Kiwi evolving from an organization that only produces a magazine to an organization that also supports its members with a number of initiative services. As an example. If you do not own a glider, but would like to, Vintage Kiwi can help to put together a syndicate, or point a member in the right direction if they would prefer to purchase one out right. Our ‘older’ single seater fleet is certainly great value for money and is a very inexpensive way to go flying and to keep these sailplanes alive. You certainly get an awful lot of glide angle for your dollar and all are very capable of reliving their diamond distance performances.
Vintage Kiwi can also put together a technical team for any member to either survey a potential purchase or if the glider has not flown for some years [placed in storage] can, by using the team, help to get the glider back up to flying status at minimum costs and fuss. Vintage Kiwi will also endeavor to place on reserve for its members, the original glider registration of a deregistered glider that we are all hopeful of successfully returning to the air. This is so the original heritage of the glider is never lost to a more modern and meaningless set of letters.
Future Vintage Kiwi initiatives are, reviewing the NZ glider insurance model and how that may be re-designed to better suit the Vintage Kiwi membership fleet.[that project hopefully starts 2021] Vintage Kiwi would also like to support members that have the skills and desire to gain a Gliding NZ engineering qualification so as to support both the Vintage Kiwi membership and their gliders, as well the general Gliding NZ fleet. It is hoped that we may be able to work closely with Gliding NZ on that project as V.K sees NZ desperately short of qualified engineers to ensure our sports, engineering future.
The future of Vintage Kiwi we see as a very positive one. However the continuing saving of our aircraft and history is really now in all of our hands
The Vintage Kiwi Team