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Air Cadet Gliding pix in the 80s (pre glass)

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Air Cadet Gliding pix in the 80s (pre glass)

Old 15th Jul 2007, 12:54
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Air Cadet Gliding pix in the 80s (pre glass)

Recent 'rapid take off' thread prompted this. Didn't know whether to post here or AH&N so mods please feel free to move.

Taken when I was with 617 VGS, Manston, early 1986, I think.


Queuing to launch



Checks complete.



Attach cable.....




All out!!




"Yeehah!!!"




From the winch




Eeeaasing back on the throttle.....



Now reel in fast to inflate the 'chute!




Up slack!



Creaks a bit, doesn't she!!




Nearly there.....




Isn't she lovely!
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 13:19
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Yeah takes me back to my days at 613 (Halton) Possibly a bit earlier than '86? I only say because when I did camp there in '88, they had glass ships.
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 13:30
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None of the fancy colour-schemes when I did my GS at Syerston.

All-over grey, pretty much like the weather for most of the week.
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 13:35
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Aaaah, that takes me back! Did 4000 launches in Mk 111s. Lots of hard work, but lots of fun. Those were the days!
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 13:40
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Did my first ever solo in a barge at Manston - happy days !!!

Are you sure about the date though ? I thought that by 1986 all the VGSs had converted to glass.....

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Old 15th Jul 2007, 13:55
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617 re-equipped with Grob 103s in June, 1986. I took this pictorial record of pre-glass operations because I knew it would soon disappear.......
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 13:57
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Did my gliding BGT in the autumn of 1985 at 661 VGS Kirknewton. T'was the first course conducted on the glass ships there, and they were one of the first VGS to convert.

Had mixed feelings about it: on the one hand the Grobs were new and flash, particularly to a 17 year-old, but part of me wanted to have soloed in the Mk3. Having a full canopy was a bonus in the end; open-cockpit winch-launches during Scottish winters were for the truly masochistic.
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 15:17
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Thanks for the pictures. They brought back happy memories of my solos at Swanton Morely in Feb 73. Do they still fly gliders there? I was amazed how the T21 stood up to the hammering they got from us cadets, especially some of my landings.
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 15:23
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Could you see where you were going through those welder's goggles? Just kidding.

Had a 20+ stone instructor when I did the gliding course. Doubled my normal height on the launch on my first solo. Nearly went around the circuit twice so I could start from my normal 700ft launch height!
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 16:48
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Funnily enough, the increased performance (ha!) sans instructor caught me by surprise too. That and having nobody to talk to.
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 16:57
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I soloed at Tangers in one. Oh lord over forty years ago. Never flew another until I found one with a donk in it. So lovely to see the pics though. Thank youn very much indeed. I have no pics at all from those days.
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 18:18
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Same here - I've no pictures of my glider flights, more's the pity.

I did my ATC A&B certificates with 617 GS at Hendon and Bovingdon. Its thanks to them I got the flying bug and have been close to bankruptcy ever since
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 18:57
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As a staff cadet at 618, I remember spreading the love by pi§§ing on the winch engine manifold during a launch - made for a happy time in the cab for whoever was driving ( pitman + james W ) at the time ! Then we would indulge ourselves in bloodsports by grabbing another certain staff cadet's wig (bagpuss ?) and putting that on the manifold too !!
Happy, happy days.....
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 19:06
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Many of 618's legends were passed on to 617 by Bunty, Edmunds (Mr. Man) and others. Don't remember that one though..............
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 19:36
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What was with the pooftah goggles
They were pukka Uvex ski goggles, I'll have you know! Must admit, I wish we'd been issued with proper goggles though. To go with the old wood 'n' fabric open cockpit thing, what?
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 22:03
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So interesting to read these posts from those who first experienced the joy of gliding with the ATC. I enjoyed enormously the satisfaction of sending young men (no females then) off on their first solo at gliding schools. At the time I was flying desks various and the flying was welcome. The motivation most of these young men had and the time they devoted to gliding convinced me that the RAF should look closer at gliding schools for aircrew recruits.

More money and flying for the ATC has always been justified in my opinion.
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 22:16
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What about Kirton in Lindsey in the mid sixties as an Air Cadet gliding centre. Great fun. Not only did I solo illegally at 15 (nobody asked me my age) but also fell in love (lust) with a WRAF.
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 22:17
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Fantastic pics - reminds me of my youth too !
I flew almost all of the Air Cadet stuff then as a cadet and later, instructor:
Grasshopper
Swallow
Sedbergh
Cadet Mk111
Venture
Vigilant
Valiant
Viking
and even the Vanguard - remember her (what a babe - made the Viking seem a real dog by comparison)
Missed the Prefect sadly.........
I think we've seen the best of Air Cadet gliding though IMHO.

Arc
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 22:19
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Thumbs up Debden Sedburgh & Cadets

ME TOO, HAPPY DAYS AT Debden with the Sedburghs & Tutors - top fun !!!
(ex 276 SQN - 1969 - 1972)
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Old 15th Jul 2007, 22:44
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I went to Halton in I think it was 86. Great fun on Ventures.
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