The T35 Austral was developed by Slingsby Aviation from the Slingsby T31 with the wing span increased and a larger rudder to improve performance. This was done in response to an order from an Australian gliding club.
The Museum’s glider was built from a Slingsby kit imported from the UK in 1952 and assembled by the Waikerie Gliding Club. The glider came on the Australian register as VH-GFX in May 1956. It was later transferred to the Renmark Gliding Club. In 1968 it was acquired by the RAAF Gliding Club at Laverton, Victoria.
The existing log book records for the Museum’s T35 Austral are incomplete. Nevertheless the information at hand shows that it was launched over 17000 times and spent about 2400 hours in the air.
It would appear that the glider has not been used for many years, the last flight recorded by the RAAF Gliding Club for this aircraft being in September 1971.
As far as is known VH-GFX is the only example of the type to be built.
The Slingsby T35 is a modified Tandem Tutor two seat glider that had extensive service at a number of Australian gliding clubs over a period of approximately 15 years from the mid 1950s.
The Slingsby T35 is an open cockpit, tandem, two-seater glider with high, pylon mounted two piece wing supported by double, wire braced, steel tube struts.