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Australian Gliding Museum Parwan, Victoria

The Australian Gliding Museum – Preserving Australia’s Gliding History

The Australian Gliding Museum first met as a committee on 26 February 1999. This brought together a number of kindred spirits interested in preserving older and historic gliders. The Museum membership now exceeds 140.

The Museum has since collected gliders from around Australia, many of which were facing neglect or destruction. The Museum’s collection includes over 50 historic gliders and other gliding archival material, including books, manuals, photographs, films, glider launching winches, aircraft plans, trophies and other memorabilia.
Restoration programs are in place (some completed) for many of the gliders collected. These programs are supplemented by research into, recording and display of, the history of gliding in Australia based substantially on the extensive archival material held by and available to the Museum.
Volunteers meet regularly at the Museum’s facilities at Bacchus Marsh airfield (which includes the Bruce Brockhoff Hangar (named after its patron) and Dave Darbyshire restoration workshop (named after one of its founders)). Visitors are welcome on open days or by appointment.
The Museum enjoys the support of the gliding clubs at Bacchus Marsh and the gliding movement in general through the Gliding Federation of Australia.

Contact Information

location
C/- D. Goldsmith P.O. Box 577 Gisborne Victoria 3437
phone
+61 Bernard Duckworth (Archivist) 03 93914611 and 0434 816 937

Contact

Opening Hours

By appointment – contact President David Goldsmith 0428 450 475 or Archivist Bernard Duckworth 0434 816 937

Entry Fee

None – donations accepted

Location

20 Jensz Road Parwan Victoria

This collection results from the special interests of a group which first met as a committee on February 26th 1999. The group, later constituted as The Australian Gliding Museum, shares an interest in researching and preserving older and historic gliders that are scattered all over Australia, with the aim to collect them in a safe place before they become destroyed or deteriorate beyond sensible refurbishment. By 2012, the collection included 14 heritage gliders: Coogee, ES 50 “Club Two Seater”, Flying Plank, Hutter H17, Lessing Glider, LO 150, Northrop Primary, Olympia, Rhon Ranger, Schreder HP-14T, Schweizer TG3a, Skylark 4, T31b “Tandem Tutor”, and a Slingsby T35 Austral, together with other gliding paraphernalia. During the period 2006-2010, the museum constructed three replicas of the biplane glider built by George Augustine Taylor and first flown 5 December 1909. One of these gliders was presented to the National Museum of Australia, for display in its entrance foyer.

Significance

The collection documents early developments in recreational gliding in Australia.

Max Speedy 30 April 2016 12:31 PM

Good morning, Gentlemen and Ladies, I am the president of South Gippsland Gliding Club. My question is that we have two Schleicher K7s whose canopies, front and rear, are in poor shape and in need of replacement. I notice you have in your collection a K7, (ex-VH-GNX). While I don't want its canopies, do you have or know the whereabouts of any canopy moulds so we can keep our K7s in the air? A very important question for us and your assistance would be greatly appreciated. Sincerely, Max Speedy 03 5668 1387

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Glider / Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Single seat high wing wooden sailplane with plywood and fabric covering, in a partly restored condition.

Historical information

The exhibit is the prototype Kingfisher Mark 1 (serial number 23) built by Edmund Schneider Ltd and first flown on 8 July 1956. It was first registered as VH-GDH on 3 May 1957. The ES57 Kingfisher is a small to medium size single seat glider that was designed to have similar control responses to the successful two seat trainer, the ES 52 Kookaburra, thus providing for a smooth transition for solo rated pilots to advance to a single seat machine. Edmund Schneider Ltd built nine Kingfishers and supplied kits for two more for construction by others. Harold Bradley (South Australia) built a modified Kingfisher with shoulder mounted wings. Kingfisher serial number 23 was originally owned by the Waikerie Gliding Club (South Australia) (1956 – 1959). From 1959, it had a nomadic existence in the hands of a string of owners in New South Wales, Queensland, Northern Territory and finally Queensland, again. In the early 1990s the glider was deregistered and flown as an ultralight sailplane. After a change in ownership, the glider was moved to Hervey Bay, Qld and re-registered as VH-GKN. After very limited use, the glider was sold again and placed in storage at Hervey Bay. In January 2004, the owner, who by then had moved overseas, entrusted the glider to Ian Patching and Geoff Hearn who moved it to Melbourne. Ian Patching returned the glider to flying condition in February 2004. Since then, it has been stripped and recovered with new aircraft fabric and requires finishing work. The logged hours flown for the Kingfisher total approximately 190 hours from 549 flights. The glider was donated to the Australian Gliding Museum on 3 June 2014.

Significance

The Exhibit is one of the Edmund Schneider Ltd gliders that was designed and built in Australia in the late 1950s. It is one of the four Kingfishers that are known to survive – the Bradley Kingfisher and two of the standard Kingfishers are known to have been destroyed – the fates of five are unknown.

Inscriptions & Markings

Serial number 23

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Wooden 2 seat glider sailplane with fabric covering. Distinctive features include the pod and boom fuselage with side by side seating for pilot and a second person. The canopy of perspex supported by aluminum framing opens with port and starboard segments separately folding upwards and forward. The instrument panel includes altimeter, airspeed indicator, slip indicator and variometers. In addition to the usual controls, there is a trim operated by a small wheel mounted centrally, at head height, on the bulkhead at the rear of the cockpit. Incorporated in the skid under the fuselage pod are two wheels (one approximately midships and the other at the rear end). It has a three piece cantilever wing of approximately nearly 17 metres. The ailerons run almost full length of the outer wing segments. A Gottingen 426 section has been used changing to M6 at the tips. Outer wing segments are joined to the centre section to give about 300 mm of dihedral at the tips. The glider is equipped with airbrakes. The colour scheme consists of orange fuselage with black nose and skid. The tailplane / elevator and rudder are painted white. The wing is predominantly white with an orange leading edge.

Historical information

This unique aircraft was conceived in 1943 as a two seat trainer. A very large part of the design work can be attributed to Jock Barratt and Harold Bradley. The general layout adopted is similar to the Kite I and Kite II single seat sailplanes of Martin Warner and Allan Campbell. Having regard to this heritage, the glider was originally named Kite III but renamed Pelican 2, perhaps because it was the second two seat training glider built by the Waikerie Gliding Club – the first being the Pelican, a reconfigured Pratt Utility glider. Pelican 2 was first flown in 1952 and regularly since then, at least until about 1992. The Pelican 2’s performance was found to be very good for sailplanes of its era and was often used for more advanced flying in addition to training new pilots. Very few changes have been made to the Pelican 2 over the years. The undercarriage was modified after its initial testing to improve the placement of the wheels. The trailing edge of the rudder (originally straight) was rounded adding to the surface area. The twin shoulder tow line bridles were replaced with a belly hook when aviation design rules declared shoulder bridles dangerous and a nose hook has since been added to allow for aero-towing.

Significance

A unique home grown sailplane design associated with Australian gliding pioneers

Inscriptions & Markings

Registration VH-GFY On each side of rudder – “Pelican II” in black lettering on a rectangle of silver On each side of fuselage pod the letters ‘FY’ On each side of the fuselage, below the edge of the cockpit opening – “WAIKERIE” in black paint.

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Two seat high wing glider sailplane finished in white with red detailing.

Historical information

The Schleicher K7 is a high wing tandem two-seat sailplane designed in the late 1950s by Rudolf Kaiser for the Alexander Schleicher company in Germany. The fuselage is built using steel tube framing covered with fabric. The swept-forward cantilever wing is of wood and fabric construction with a single spar and a plywood covered leading edge “D” box for strength. The wing is equipped with Schempp-Hirth airbrakes. The K7 first flew in 1959. It is a versatile design that can be used for both basic and more advanced training of pilots. Over 500 were built. VH-GNX was manufactured in Germany and imported into Australia by Edmund Schneider Limited. It was test flown by them at Parafield Aerodrome, Adelaide, South Australia in March 1964. The original owner of VH-GNX was the Adelaide Soaring Club and it was maintained by Edmund Schneider Limited until May 1971. It appears that about this time it was transferred to the Gold Coast Soaring Club. In July 1974, after it had flown for an aggregate 3075 hours from 13919 flights, it was purchased by the Bundaberg Soaring Club. About 10 years later, it was acquired by the Bendigo Gliding Club. At that stage it had recorded over 4600 hours flying time from 21546 launches. When it was retired from service by the Bendigo Gliding Club in June 2006 due to age related defects the hours flown had reached 7259 from 31820 flights. It appears that the airframe has had a relatively trouble free life with only minor damage from storage / ground handling incidents, a heavy landing (January 1987) and a bird strike (January 2002). It was donated to the Museum in April 2007.

Significance

This exhibit is an example of the Schleicher K7 two seat sailplane type.

Inscriptions & Markings

Serial Number 7134, registered as VH-GNX. The registration appears on each side of the Fin / Rudder in red lettering

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Aircraft of wood structure skinned with plywood and fabric – off-white colour scheme – crazed flaking paint on fuselage – nose of fuselage has been modified by addition of streamlining – damage includes impact holes to plywood, especially on starboard side – wings have been stripped of fabric covering and some ribs are missing – tailplane and rudder are in reasonable condition although, like wings, have been stripped of fabric. Overall, while the main elements of this aircraft are present, there are a number of missing fittings and will require extensive works to restore to a static display standard.

Historical information

This Dunstable Kestrel glider (which originally was finished in silver paint) was built in 1939 by Ric New and members of the Lake Pinjar Soaring Club. It first flew on 26 December 1939 at Lake Pinjar. The first extensive flight was on 7 January 1940 when Ric New managed to stay aloft for 30 minutes and reach a height of 3000 metres. Unfortunately the Kestrel was badly damaged the same day when another club member Jim Brabazon stalled and spun in. The Kestrel was repaired by June 1940 and flown extensively at Lake Pinjar in 1940 and 1941 until Government authorities intervened and ploughed up Lake Pinjar as a wartime measure to prevent it being used as a landing field by the enemy [Allan Ash, Gliding in Australia, pp 92 – 94]. The Lake Pinjar Soaring club was reformed as the Perth Gliding Club after the end of the war and was joined by Ric New with his Kestrel [Allan Ash, Gliding in Australia, p 103]. The glider was held in storage at the Gliding Club of Western Australia prior to transfer to the Australia Gliding Museum. The Deed of Gift indicates that it was formerly owned by Wally Williams, also from Western Australia.

Significance

The aircraft is in poor condition and has some non-original elements. It is one of three that currently exist. Nevertheless it is considered to be an important exhibit for relating the history of gliding in Western Australia.

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

The Phoebus is a modern looking single seat glass fibre sailplane with a ‘T’ tailplane. It is finished in white with light red detailing including thin red stripe on wings and some red striping on fuselage sides from nose to underneath wings.

Historical information

The Phoebus is a fibreglass composite sailplane that was designed by H. Nagele, R. Linder and R. Eppler in the early 1960s for competition flying. It is a derivative from the Akaflieg Stuttart Phonix which was the first sailplane to be built of fibreglass. The first Phoebus, a Standard Class design with a 15 metre wingspan, flew in 1964. The Phoebus C is the open class version of the type that was introduced in 1967. It has a 17 metre wing span, retractable wheel and tail brake parachute. Several hundred Phoebus sailplanes (all versions) were made by the manufacturer Bolkow at Ottobrun in Germany before production ended in 1970. The Museum’s Phoebus C, serial number 866, was built in 1969. It was donated to the Museum by Ian Cohn in 2008.

Significance

Early fibreglass design that was manufactured in numbers.

Inscriptions & Markings

Serial number 866 on plate affixed inside cockpit – registration VH-GSW which has been painted on the sides of the fuselage rear of the wings. A Freistaat Bayern crest has been applied to each side of the vertical stabilizer.

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

This is a two seat high wing aircraft of mainly wood and fabric construction. The cockpit area of the fuselage is fabric over tubular steel framing.

Historical information

The Schneider ES50 Club was built in 1953 and is the only one of its type. It was designed by Schneider to comply with specifications laid down by the Gliding Federation of Australia for a basic two seat training glider*. It was first flown on 10 May 1953 and delivered to the Renmark Gliding Club. The log book shows that it later passed to other gliding clubs, namely Millicent Gliding Club, Corangamite Soaring Club, Sydney Technical College Gliding Club. Overall, as at September 1967, the glider had logged over 5000 flights and a total airtime of 388 hours. The Museum volunteers have partly refurbished the ES50 to static display standard. [*Plans were also prepared for a single seat version which never eventuated]

Significance

This glider is one of Edmund Schneider Pty Ltd earliest Australian designs. However, it was a later Schneider design, the ES 52 Kookaburra, which was accepted by many Australian gliding clubs for filling their need for a basic two seat training glider in the 1950s and 1960s.

Inscriptions & Markings

Given serial number 3 by manufacturer and registered as VH-GHP

Winch - for auto tow launching cable laying and retrieval

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Single drum and motorized drive mechanism mounted on a mobile steel frame.

Historical information

The auto tow launching mechanism was designed by Ray Jamieson of Cobram in the north of Victoria. The prototype was built the for the Corowa Gliding Club where it was used for some years. After Ray’s brother, Bert Jamieson, had witnessed the machine in use at Corowa, at Bert’s request, Ray built second one (the Museum’s exhibit) for use at Bacchus Marsh airfield. Bert lived in Melbourne at the time and was a member of the Victorian Motorless Flight Group (VMFG) which used Bacchus Marsh airfield. This occurred in the 1970s. The method of operation was to have the auto tow mechanism mounted in the back of a utility motor vehicle. The launching cable was attached to the glider. With the Volkswagen engine of the mechanism running, the tow vehicle would then drive along the runway to commence the launch. The mechanism would automatically apply brake pressure to the cable drum as the vehicle proceeded freely letting out the cable and then smoothly towing the glider into the air. When the launching cable reached a certain angle, the pilot would release the cable from the glider at which point the winching mechanism would automatically retrieve the cable in preparation for the next launch. This allowed quicker restarts and the flexibility of easily changing runways to suit the wind conditions. It made gliding a simple and cost-effective operation. Ray Jamieson and his son often used the prototype which they named “George” at Corowa in this way. With the exception of several demonstration launches, the Museum’s example of this type of device was not used by the VMFG at Bacchus Marsh due to rulings by the Department of Civil Aviation encouraging the use of aero tow launching at their site.

Significance

As far as is known this is the only device of its type in the world and is indicative of the ingenuity found amongst the Australian gliding fraternity.

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Small, light weight, sailplane of wooden construction with fabric covering on wings (strutted), elevator and rudder. Instruments have been removed and control column is not in place.

Historical information

The EP-1 "Spruce Goose" sailplane was designed and built by Ted Pascoe in 1955 as a smaller than average single seat sailplane that could be operated by two or three people. At times it was launched by auto-towing by Ted Pascoe and his wife without the aid of a third person at the wing tip. The glider exhibited good soaring capability and was used for some cross country flights. For instance, in 1956 Ted Pascoe succeeded in a 36 mile goal flight during which he attained a maximum height of 4500 feet. It was flown at the Mt Gambier Gliding Club from 1956 until about 1961. The Log Book shows that it was flown at Everard in 1961 and at Everard, Waikerie, Gawler and Keith in 1962. There is a gap in flying record for this aircraft from 1962 until 1967. From 1967 to 1972 it was flown regularly at various places in South Australia including Whitwarta, Stonefield, Renmark, and Gawler. For many years it was owned and flown by Mervyn Gill of the Balaklava Gliding Club.

Significance

The EP-1 glider is an example of a successful Australian home built design from the 1950s. It was one of a small number of notable locally designed gliders of less than the usual 15 metre wing span from the 1950s and 1960s.

Inscriptions & Markings

Serial Number GFA/HB/24

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

All metal twin seat glider / sailplane, painted white with red tips and markings.

Historical information

The Slingsby T53 glider was designed by J. Sellars in the 1960s as an easily maintained two seat trainer suitable for RAF Air Training Corp use and for sale in the USA and Australian markets where wooden gliders were becoming less popular. The Slingsby T53 prototype first flew in 1967. The T53B version has a conventional fixed tailplane with elevator instead of the all-moving tailplane of the original type. The “B” version also has ailerons of narrower chord and lacks wing flaps. Further changes were made to the fin (extended above the tailplane) for the final “C” version. Production of the T53 at Slingsby was disrupted by a fire at the factory in 1968. As a consequence the contract to supply 40 of the type to the RAF was cancelled and only a relatively small number (possibly 27) were made by Slingsby before the project was discontinued. The rights were later sold to Yorkshire Sailplanes. It designated the glider as the YS53 Sovereign – only a few were produced (possibly 3). The Australian Gliding Museum’s example is a type “B” model. It bears serial number 1686 and was manufactured in 1967. It was registered in Australia as VH-GUB in name of Boonah Gliding Club, Boonah, which is about 90 kilometres south west of Brisbane in Queensland. Locally it was called “the Bomber”!

Significance

This exhibit is a representative example of the Slingsby T53 sailplane type. It is a rarity in Australia.

Inscriptions & Markings

“Slingsby T53B” on each side of fuselage below cockpit opening; Registration VH-GUB on each side of fuselage at rear.

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Tandem two seat high wing strut braced glider-sailplane finished in silver grey colour scheme.

Historical information

The ES49 glider / sailplane was designed by Edmund Schneider in Germany before he migrated to Australia in the early 1950s. In Germany the ES49 was put into limited production by the Schleicher factory from 1951 to 1953 (8 produced). In Australia the ES49 is commonly referred to as the “Wallaby”; two were built by the Adelaide Soaring Club with assistance from Edmund Schneider Ltd and one independently from plans by Eric Hader and members of the Cooma Gliding Club. The Museum’s ES49 – serial number GFA-HB-36 - was built at Gawler from 1955 to 1958 and registered as VH-GLL on 15 January 1959. It was the second of the ES49s built by the Adelaide Soaring Club. Originally it had a rather distinctive appearance due to the use of a sleek P51 Mustang canopy to enclose the forward seating position of the cockpit. The glider, together with its sister VH-GDK, was used at the Gliding Federation of Australia National Gliding Schools at Gawler. In 1964 the glider was transferred to the Newcastle Gliding Club, Newcastle, in New South Wales and then in 1966 it went to the Albury and District Gliding Club, Albury, New South Wales. The Snowy Mountains Gliding Club, Khancoban, New South Wales acquired the glider in 1968 where it remained until 1974. In 1974 the glider transferred into private hands at Wodonga, Victoria, for two years and then to interests at Albury until 1985. At that stage the glider was acquired by a private owner at Bathurst, New South Wales, who undertook a restoration that included, amongst other work, the fitting of a more conventional cockpit canopy. The glider was at Warkworth, New South Wales in 1992 and became to be owned by Eric Oates who preserved it until he donated it to the Australian Gliding Museum. According to the logbook for VH-GLL held by the Museum, the glider was last flown in November 1990 and at that time had logged 2758 hours and 57 minutes from 15775 launches. The fuselage is currently under restoration at the Museum’s Dave Darbyshire workshop.

Significance

The ES49 – VH-GLL – is an example of the state of wood and fabric dual place sailplane design in the late 1940s. The glider served the Adelaide Soaring Club and subsequent owners well as a training and general purpose sailplane over many years. It is a rare example of the type (one of 4 existing in the world).

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Single seat wooden sailplane, partly restored.

Historical information

Prior to World War II an international competition was held for design of a standard sailplane for use in Olympic competition in 1940 in Finland. The design chosen was the “Meise” from DFS in Germany and its designer Hans Jacob. The 1940 Olympics were cancelled due to the outbreak of war and post war international gliding competition has been organized as World Championships, not as an Olympic event. After the war the Meise was manufactured by firms in Europe and a few were built by amateurs from plans. In 1945, a United Kingdom firm, Chilton Aircraft Limited, revised the plans for the DFS Meise Olympia keeping its aerodynamic shape and prepared new technical drawings for the production of the Chilton Olympia. It engaged Elliotts of Newbury (a firm with aircraft production experience during the war) to built a set of wings for its prototype. The wings were made by Elliotts but it apparently refused to let Chiltons have the jigs required to build more wings. The matter was resolved by Chiltons transferring its production rights and equipment to Elliotts. Elliotts produced several batches of Olympias (the “EON Olympia”) – probably about 150 in total from 1947 including Marks 1, 2 and 3 versions (featuring some structural changes and design improvements). The Australian Gliding Museum’s Olympia is a Mark 2 (actually 2B according to the logbook) which can be distinguished by the built in main wheel and blown Perspex canopy. It was designated as serial number EON/O/34 by Elliotts. It was damaged badly at Bristol, UK, in 1949. The wreckage was acquired by a Melbourne based syndicate including Dave Darbyshire, and imported into Australia. Additional damage occurred in shipping due to the need to shorten the wings to fit them into a crate. The syndicate rebuilt the glider and re-launched it in 1956 (registration number VH-GHR). It was flown by the syndicate and several gliding clubs in Victoria and South Australia until about 1972.

Significance

A potentially airworthy example of a now rare sailplane of historical importance

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Sailplane of wood, plywood and fabric construction with some fibreglass elements.

Historical information

The T49 “Capstan” is a two seat trainer, developed by Slingsby in 1960-1961 from an earlier design, the T42 “Eagle”. A major difference was that the T49 cockpit was arranged with side by side seating instead of the tandem seats of the earlier design. The prototype T49 flew in 1961. The production version (T49-B) was slightly different to the prototype in that it was given a taller fin. Thirty two were built by Slingsby. The Australian Gliding Museum example of this type (Serial Number FMD86), designated T49-B, is one of a pair built in 1964 from kits by Fred M. Dunn (Sailplane Services Ltd (NZ)) at Christchurch, New Zealand. It was registered as ZK-GDU in July 1964 and was flown at Wigram Gliding Club and Canterbury Gliding Club. It had logged over 4000 hours as at December 1987. The glider was brought to Australia in 1988 and registered as VH-CQH by Allen Rundle of Maclean, near Grafton, New South Wales. The glider’s last New Zealand maintenance release expired in January 1988. It has not flown in Australia.

Significance

The exhibit is one of a relatively small number (probably about a dozen) of this Slingsby type that remain. It is the only T49B in Australia, as the other built by Fred Dunn in 1964 (and brought to Australia by Allen Rundle) was found to be beyond repair and has been broken up.

Inscriptions & Markings

Marked with NZ registration “DU”

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Home built single seat sailplane of wooden construction finished in a light desert sand colour with aboriginal art theme markings.

Historical information

This glider type was designed by Jim Maupin in United States in the 1970s. The prototype first flew in 1978. It is a design intended as suitable for amateur construction using wood (principally Douglas Fir and Birch plywood). It is understood that hundreds of sets of plans have been sold. It is not known how many Woodstocks have been built but there are at least 3 flyable examples in existence in Australia. Over time the design has been altered increasing the wingspan from 11.9 metres to 12.6 metres and then to 13.1 metres for Types 1, 2 and 3 respectively. Some builders of Woodstock gliders have also made their own changes to the Jim Maupin design. The construction of the Museum’s Woodstock (a “Woodstock 1”) was commenced by Ken Davies who, due to age related health difficulties, was unable to finish the project. The project was taken over by James Garay and was completed in 2001. It is registered with the Gliding Federation of Australia as GFA/HB123 and allocated letters VH-IKL. It is practically a new aircraft with very few flying hours logged. VH-IKL differs from the original Woodstock 1 design in one respect in that the rear fuselage has been modified to enable the tailplane to be removed for de-rigging. The Museum holds technical drawings prepared by Ken Davies in relation to this feature of the glider. James Garay kindly donated VH-IKL to the Australian Gliding Museum in March 2013.

Significance

An example of a successful glider-sailplane design for amateur construction from the 1970s.

Inscriptions & Markings

Marked with registration – VH-IKL

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Nacelled solo training glider of traditional wood and fabric construction. Construction incomplete.

Historical information

The Salamandra is a Polish glider designed by Waclaw Czerwinski at the Military Glider Workshops in Krakow in 1936. This glider, designated “W.W.S.1”, was produced in substantial numbers prior to the second world war and used in Poland and some other eastern European countries for training pilots. Only one example survived the war, hidden away in the village of Goleszow in Silesia. In addition, no technical drawings could be found, so when the glider was discovered, the Gliding Institute being keen to re-establish gliding in Poland, used the glider to draw up new plans for construction. Five were built for the Institute in 1947 before production was resumed of the “Salamandra 48” at the SZD Jezow Workshops. Improvement were made by adding airbrakes and structural changes for the “Salamandra 49” and a windscreen and larger tailplane were changes adopted for the “Salamandra 53”. An export version designated “53A” was sold to and built under licence in China. Production of the Salamandra ceased in the early 1960s. Total production may have been in excess of 500. The glider was well regarded as a light weight trainer capable of soaring performance. The Museum’s replica was built by Ray Ash and may be may be classified as a “Salamandra 53”. However, he has added something of his own to the design by replacing the cable runs in the wings with control rods. The glider is substantially complete. The wings and tail / rudder surfaces have been covered with poly-fibre fabric. The fuselage woodwork is sealed with varnish. In addition to the finishing work (including painting) and rigging of the main components, the linkages for Ray’s control rod modification may need further engineering to make them operational.

Significance

The Ray Ash Salamandra is the first of the type to appear in Australia. The Salamandra did not play any role in the development of gliding in Australia in the early years. However, it is an important exhibit in that it shows in tangible form a nacelle fuselage training glider in configuration and construction detail. As such it revisits the pioneering era of the 1930s and 1940s in Australia when wood, wire and fabric were the rule and the nacelle primary glider was generally the first step up for pilots who had mastered the basics in an open primary.

Inscriptions & Markings

None

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Tandem two seat high wing strutted glider consisting of wood with plywood and fabric wings, tailplane / elevators, fin / rudder, and tubular steel framed, fabric covered fuselage. Prior to restoration work, the glider was finished in a white, green and yellow paint scheme.

Historical information

The Alexander Schleicher K4 was designed in the mid 1950s by Rudolf Kaiser as a club training glider and several hundred were built. The Australian Gliding Museum’s K4, VH-IKK, serial number 55, was built in 1957 and purchased by the RAF Air Training Corp. U.K. After some years it was sold to a New Zealand Gliding Club and in 1990 with over 4800 hours, number of launches unknown, it was purchased by the Brisbane Valley Soaring Club and in 1994 was transferred to the Far North Queensland Soaring Centre who operated it from the Mareeba airfield. On 9 January 2000 it was donated to Vintage Gliders Australia by Kevin Sedgman at a presentation ceremony with Alan Patching receiving the glider during the Rally at Lake Keepit. It has been flown regularly at vintage glider rallies and on several occasions at Museum open days. However, it has subsequently been grounded on account of potential structural defects. VH-IKK is one of two K4s in Australia, the other being VH-XJP which is believed to be in storage in Queensland in a damaged condition.

Significance

When restored, this exhibit will be representative example of the AS-K4 glider-sailplane type.

Inscriptions & Markings

“Vintage Gliders Australia” name in white lettering on fuselage sides and registration VH-IKK in black lettering on rudder

Glider - Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

This is a wood and fabric covered aircraft that is being rebuilt from the components of several aircraft as a non-flying exhibit.

Historical information

The ES52 Kookaburra is a two seat high wing glider – sailplane of wooden construction designed by Harry Schneider and built Edmund Schneider Pty Ltd. It was first flown on 26 June 1954 and became the glider of choice for training new pilots of many gliding clubs around Australia in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. Several found there way to New Zealand. Further two kits were sent to Brazil and at least one of these was finished and flow successfully. The ES52 performed well with a glide ratio of about 22:1 and had soaring and cross-country capabilities. A notable feature of the ES52 design was the staggered side-by-side seating arrangement of the cockpit. This made for good in flight communication between instructor and trainee. Overall, thirty six were built by Edmund Schneider Pty Ltd. A longer wing version (the ES52B) was also introduced that had a better glide ratio (around 25:1). Five examples of this version were built. In Germany a modified ES52 was built incorporating a metal tube fuselage frame and with the addition of a engine driven propeller mounted on top of the wing which enabled the glider to be self launching. This museum collection item consists of the fuselage, tailplane, elevators, fin, rudder from the Mark I, ES 52 Kookaburra, formerly registered as VH-GFF and last owned by the Barcaldine and District Airsports Club of Queensland. The glider was in a damaged condition when it was acquired by the Museum. A decision was made by the Museum to repair the glider for display rather than endeavouring to restore it to an airworthy condition. The reconstruction of the wings is being undertaken by using parts of damaged ES 52 Kookaburra wings (as it happened from later ES 52 Marks). The Log Book for VH-GFF reveals operational life with a succession of gliding clubs around Australia.

Significance

This exhibit will be of interest to gliding enthusiasts wishing to inspect the popular two seat club trainer of a by-gone era.

Inscriptions & Markings

Fuselage marked with Edmund Schneider Pty Ltd Serial Number 9 and comes from the glider previously registered as VH-GFF.

Glider –Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Glassfibre single seat sailplane, finished white with blue stripes on fin and rudder.

Historical information

The FS-24 Phonix is the first sailplane design to be built using a moulded fiberglass sandwich technique. It was designed by Hermann Nagele and Richard Eppler leading a group setup for the purpose at Stuttgart Technical University in the early 1950s. Initial construction was undertaken at workshops of Wolf Hirth and the first prototype was completed at the Bolkow Aircraft Company where Nagele and another member of the group, Rudi Lindner, had gained employment. It flew on 27 November 1957. Two further prototypes were built incorporating a T-tail and other refinements. Eight in all were built before production was stopped in 1961. A number of gliding records were broken in Phonix sailplanes in Germany in 1962-1963. It was found to have a best glide ratio of 40:1. The Museum’s example, No. 403 was originally a prototype built on 25 May 1960 [Registration D-8354]. It was converted at Bolkow to a Phonix T in 1963 and sold to a private owner in Switzerland [Registration HB-746] and later then to gliding club Segelfluggruppe Solothurn in 1965. The glider returned to Germany in 1971 (Meersburg) and re-registered as D-0738. It moved to a new owner in Allershausen in 1976, and again to Lindhoft in 1982. In 1983 the glider was sold to owners at Hasselt, Belgium and given registration OO-ZQD. In 1989 a further change of ownership occurred and the glider went to Leusden in the Netherlands where it was registered as PH-949. In 2006 the Phonix No.403 was imported into Australia by John Ashford of the Geelong Gliding Club. On 30 January 2007, it was registered as VH-GRP. However, as at January 2016 it has not been flown in Australia. In the course of its flying history the glider was damaged several times and repaired. At one stage a larger rudder was fitted and later on this modification was reversed. With the original conversion to a Phonix T and subsequent repairs and changes to equipment the weight of the airframe increased from 182 kg to approximately 220 kg. Nevertheless, the wing loading is a modest 20kg/square metre. As at January 2016, minor repairs and airworthiness certification are required to return the glider to flying condition.

Significance

This exhibit is highly significant as it is one of only eight of this pioneering sailplane design. It is the only one in Australia.

Inscriptions & Markings

Australian registration GRP on rudder; Serial Number 403 and Vintage glider club of Netherlands plaque in cockpit

Glider - Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Tandem two seat sailplane of a wood and tubular steel construction covered with plywood and fabric. It has a fully enclosed cockpit under perspex (which is missing from this airframe). The wings which join the fuselage at shoulder height are swept forward such that the aircraft can be flown solo from the front seat and be properly balanced. The aircraft is in a damaged condition.

Historical information

The Scheibe Bergfalke II is a high performance (for its day) and relatively inexpensive two seat sailplane designed by Egon Scheibe. It appeared in 1953 as a derivative of the Scheibe Mu13 Bergfalke and incorporated design changes to resolve and simplify structural issues that affected the Mu13. The Bergfalke II-55 followed in 1955. About 300 of the Bergfalke II and II-55 types were built in Germany and Sweden. This aircraft of the Bergfalke II-55 type was built by Scheibe in 1961 (work number 339). After a long life at Fliegergruppe Leimen e.V. logging 6754 flights and 1588 hours in the air, the glider was imported into Australia from Germany in June 2004. The glider was registered as VH-GKZ in January 2005 by Thomas Dattler of Millumbindy and flown only a small number of occasions (probably at Byron Soaring Centre). The Mangalore Gliding Club appears to have taken an interest in the glider in 2006 and completed routine Form 2 inspections in 2006 and 2009. The amount of usage during this period is unclear as the logbook records held are incomplete. In January 2012 the glider was purchased by the Southern Riverina Gliding Club and flown at Tocumwal until it was damaged in 2013 due to being blown over while at rest on the airfield. The 10 year survey was due in March 2013 and a decision was made by the club to donate the glider to the Australian Gliding Museum instead of completing the necessary repairs for returning it to an airworthy condition. It is estimated that the glider was flown about 300 times and perhaps logged about 140 hours in the air in Australia.

Significance

If restored this exhibit will be representative of the Scheibe Bergfalke II-55 sailplane type (a rarity in Australia).

Inscriptions & Markings

Registration "GKZ" on sides of fuselage

Glider - Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

All metal single seat glider sailplane with a distinctive V-tail, finished in a white and blue colour scheme

Historical information

The Schreder HP 14V is an all metal single seat sailplane designed by Richard Schreder in America. The design is an evolution of Schreder’s metal sailplane designs that date from the late 1950s. Schreder won the United States National Soaring Championship in 1966 in the prototype HP 14. He marketed the glider in kit form in the 1960s and 1970s and allowed Slingsby in the UK to further develop the design for production. Schreder HP14 V, registered as VH-GGB, was built in South Australia by Harry Bache of the Waikerie Gliding Club in the 1970s. Martin Simons, an authority on vintage sailplanes (including Slingsby types), refers to this airframe as “built entirely from scratch”. After Bache, this Schreder HP14V passed on to E.G. Moore and N.L. Lovell at Ararat in Western Victoria, then Graeme Rickert of the Canberra Gliding Club and finally, to Greg O’Sullivan of the Geelong Gliding Club. The glider was first flown on 20 December 1975. It appears to have been flown regularly over its life to 2015 and the cumulative use being 1386 hours flown from 702 launches. The log book does not disclose details of flights except as aggregates of flights and times. Details of notable flights by Bache and Moore et al are not available. However, reports from Rickert and O’Sullivan indicate that a good number of cross-country flights of 300km or longer were achieved in this aircraft.

Significance

A well-engineered metal sailplane from the 1970s with good soaring performance which was designed for amateur construction.

Inscriptions & Markings

Registration letters 'GGB' on sides of fuselage

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Wooden airframe covered with plywood and fabric. In course of restoration.

Historical information

This Dunstable Kestrel glider, which came to be known as the "Red Kestrel" on account of its colour scheme, was built from plans by Percy Pratt between 1936 and 1938. It was first flown in 1938. Thereafter, it was flown regularly by Pratt at Geelong, Victoria. At the national rally organized by the Australian Gliding Association in December 1939 – January 1940 at the Belmont Common, Geelong, Victoria, Pratt, in his Kestrel, recorded an exceptional 13 kilometre cross country flight of one hour 43 minutes reaching a height of approximately 5500 metres [Allan Ash, Gliding in Australia, p 86].

Significance

This Dunstable Kestrel glider represents a good example of a 1930s era sailplane. It is one of three of the type that currently exist in Australia. The aircraft is also important for Australian gliding history because it was built, owned and flown by gliding pioneer Percy Pratt.

Glider - Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Single seat sailplane of mainly wood construction (some plastic elements) finished in white with green detailing.

Historical information

The SZD-30 Pirat was designed by Jerzy Smielkiewicz and first flew in 1966. Over 700 have been produced. The example registered as VH-GYN which was donated to the Australian Gliding Museum by Alan McMaster is one of two that have come to Australia. It carries serial number B-333 and was imported as a new aircraft which was test flown on 29 August 1970. During its logged flying life (last entry 15 April 1990) it was operated in the Northern Territory and Queensland and passed through a number of owners before Alan McMaster at Rockhampton; initially the Alice Springs Gliding Club and then individuals at Charleville and Yeronga in South Brisbane. The aircraft flew 1909 hours from 2073 launches. The log discloses numerous silver distance and duration achievements.

Significance

The Museum's Pirat sailplane is an example of this popular Polish sailplane type and is indicative of the state of sailplane design in the 1960s.

Inscriptions & Markings

Sailplane serial number B-333 and registration “YN”

Glider - Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Single seat sailplane made with a steel tube framed fuselage and wooden wings. A glass plastic moulding has been used to form the top of the fuselage forward of the cockpit. The structure is fabric covered.

Historical information

The Ka 8 was designed by Rudolf Kaiser in 1957 and built by Alexander Schleicher. It has been described as the single seat version of the Ka 7 Rhonadler. The Ka 8 proved popular with clubs in its role as a sailplane for early solo flying. Over 1100 were produced. The Museum’s example is a Ka 8B which is the second variant of the design, distinguishable by a larger blown Plexiglas canopy and improved ailerons. The particular glider was built by the RAAF Williamtown Gliding Club from kit supplied by Edmund Schneider Ltd of South Australia as agent for Alexander Schleicher. It was test flown on 8 July 1967. For a period from August 1994 it was owned by a syndicate at the Bendigo Gliding Club. The last entry in the log book is dated January 1995 at which time the glider had accumulated 1148 hours from 2303 flights. From 1967 to 1994, the glider was flown at numerous places including Williamtown, Bellata, Warkworth, Dubbo, Waikerie, Quirindi, Tamworth, Redding, Narromine, Leeton and Keepit. During 1994 and 1995 it was flown a small number of times at Bendigo. A notable flight recorded in the logbook is dated 31 October 1971 when W. Kenny reached 11,000 feet in height during a flight of 5 hours 10 minutes. The last owner prior to the transfer of the glider to the Australian Gliding Museum in 2015 was John Ashford of the Geelong Gliding Club. The glider carries Serial Number 8478-SH and appears to have been registered firstly as VH-GPA and secondly as VH-GMA. The last registration (VH-GMA) was cancelled in 2011.

Significance

This Kaiser Ka8B sailplane, when fully restored, will be an airworthy example of a popular 1960s German club sailplane type. It is a rarity in Australia as only 4 of the type have been registered and flown here.

Inscriptions & Markings

The glider serial number 8478-SH and the registration VH-GMA.

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Wood and fabric single seat glider sailplane with strutted wings and strutted tailplane – features metal framed perspex canopy, central fuselage skid and wheel, small tail skid, instruments include airspeed, turn and bank indicator; variometer and altimeter. Metal parts include struts and fairing covering wing joint. All surfaces are pink doped – awaiting painting.

Historical information

The “Coogee” is an intermediate single seat sailplane designed and built by Tom Proctor in 1940. Only one was built. It was first flown at Stuart Hill near Bendigo Victoria in January 1941 and was maintained in flying condition until 1967. The aircraft was flown extensively by the Victorian Motorless Flight Group (now the Melbourne Gliding Club) and Geelong Gliding Club and several subsequent owners.

Significance

This exhibit is a "one off" Australian designed and built glider similar in some respects to the Hutter H17. Its usage is relevant to the history of gliding in Victoria in the post war years. Also the aircraft provides an insight into gliding technology in Australia in the 1940s.

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

The Slingsby T31b Tandem Tutor is an open cockpit, tandem, two-seater glider with high, pylon mounted two piece wing supported by double, wire braced, steel tube struts. The glider is fitted with a main wheel, rubber-block sprung, wooden nose skid and steel leaf sprung, brass shod tailskid. The basic controls of aileron, rudder and elevator are not supplemented with pitch trim. Wing lift spoilers and both aerotow and winch releases are fitted. The instrument panels in both cockpits are fitted with an airspeed indicator, cosim variometer and altimeter. This red and silver painted wood and fabric covered aircraft is in excellent condition having been restored to full airworthy status by the Australian Gliding Museum.

Historical information

The Slingsby T31 is a two seat training glider that came available in 1951. It is, in effect, a two seat version of the single seat Kirby Tutor. The T31 was marketed by Slingsby Sailplanes both as complete aircraft and kits of parts for assembly. The Australian Gliding Museum’s example (currently registered as VH-GDB) is one of five of this type to grace Australian skies. Three including GDB were assembled in Australia from kits supplied by Slingsby’s in England, the other two were delivered as completed airframes. To date only four remain of which two are airworthy. This aircraft began flying in at Caversham in Western Australia (the then home of the Gliding Club of Western Australia) in July 1956. It was badly damaged in a crash in June 1958. The wreckage was sent to Schneiders in Adelaide for repair. However, the Club decided against having the repairs done, opting instead to buy a new ES52 Kookaburra. After a couple of years, the wreck was purchased by a member of the Waikerie Gliding Club whereupon the glider was rebuilt with some modifications, including a more rounded and better streamlined fuselage nose. It returned to the air in October 1961 at Clare in South Australia. The ownership of VH-GDB passed through a number of clubs, including at Dubbo in New South Wales, Wimmera in Victoria and Pioneer Valley at Mackay in Queensland. Eventually, it came into the hands of Bill Riley of Tocumwal in New South Wales who held it in storage for many years. Riley donated the aircraft to the Museum. It has been restored to airworthiness and is flown at vintage glider rallies and on Museum open days.

Significance

This exhibit is an excellent example of a Slingsby T31 Tandem Tutor, a type of glider that was used by a number of clubs in the 1950s and 1960s for dual training of pilots to the solo capability.

Inscriptions & Markings

SLINGSBY – T31b (nose – both sides) DB Australian Gliding Museum (rudder – both sides) It has been given Serial Number GFA/HB/12 and is registered as VH-GDB

Glider - Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Single seat glider /sailplane of wooden construction with plywood and fabric covering.

Historical information

This Grunau Baby 2B glider, often referred to as the “Blue Grunau”, was built by Australian Sailplanes in 1946 and acquired by a syndicate consisting of Norm Hyde, Rob Dowling, Leo Dowling, Dick Duckworth and Ted Desmond of the Gliding Club of Victoria. Piloted by syndicate members and other GCV members the glider performed well in soaring and cross country flights at the various sites used by the GCV in 1947, 1948 and 1949. The glider went to Sydney for a while and then returned to be operated by another syndicate at the GCV. Pat Burke and Bob McAliece bought the glider in the 1950s and then sold it to Keith, Jack and Bruce Hearn of Melbourne. In 1957 the Blue Grunau moved to Western Australia and was added to the Glider Register as VH-GLC. Thereafter the glider had a series of owners. The glider has come to the Australian Gliding Museum via the RAAFA (WA) Division. The flying record of the Blue Grunau has been logged for the period of 28 December 1957 to 17 September 1975: Time in air – 559 hours 37 minutes from 1513 flights.

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

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.

Historical information

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.

Significance

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.

Glider

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Single seat tailless glider with wing tip rudders. The glider is of wood / fabric construction and has been restored for static display by recovering with new fabric and painting.

Historical information

The aircraft was built in 1957 by Cliff Brown. It is an EPB 1, a 26 foot tailless sailplane designed in United States by Al Backstrom, Phil Easley and Jack Powell in 1954 as a simple, cheap, compact craft.

Significance

A small number of single seat gliders of this type were built in Australia in the 1950s. As far as is presently known, the only surviving substantially complete EPB 1s are Cliff Brown’s glider and another held by the RAAF Association at Bull Creek in Western Australia. Unfortunately, no trace exists of the Flying Plank built by Glidair Sailplanes in Sydney and test flown by Fred Hoinville at Moorabbin in 1957. In addition, a larger two seat derivative (known as the Twin Plank) designed and built by Glidair Sailplanes (completed 1958) is held at the Power House Museum, Castlehill, in Sydney.

Inscriptions & Markings

None

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

All metal single seat glider sailplane

Historical information

The Schreder HP 14T is a variant of an all metal single seat sailplane designed by Richard Schreder of USA in the 1960s. The HP14T featured a ‘T’ tail in place of ‘V’ tail of the HP14V. The design was marketed to home builders in kit form. The Museum’s Schreder HP14T (VH-GIB) first flew on 31 August 1974. It has recorded 280 hours in the air from 239 launches to 28 January 1989, the date of its last flight. It is understood that VH-GIB was partly constructed in North America and completed in South Australia by C.G.M. Coxon. Ownership passed to the Georgeson Syndicate of Rockhamption, Queensland and later to Warren Mayfield of Victoria. Warren Mayfield donated the glider to the Museum in April 2002.

Inscriptions & Markings

Registration lettering on rudder and fuselage sides

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Single seat wooden sailplane with fabric covering. Fully enclosed cockpit. The aircraft is white with Linden Green on the wing tips, tailplane and underside of the fuselage and also on the central wing cover.

Historical information

This aircraft was designed by Edmund Schneider as a single seat medium performance sailplane. Originally designated as the Grunau 3b but later named the Grunau 4. However, it was a new design with fully enclosed cockpit. The main point of difference to earlier Schneider Grunau designs was the tapered wings with the Gottingen 549 aerofoil. This design feature gave the Grunau 4 a better speed range compared to the Grunau Baby 2b or the Grunau 3. The prototype flew on 6 December 1953 and it went to the Waikerie Gliding Club. A second was delivered to the Dubbo Gliding Club in October of the next year and a third (the Australian Gliding Museum’s exhibit) built for the Adelaide Soaring Club in 1959 (registered as VH-GLX on 21 October 1959). Another was built by Josef Brabec from a Schneider supplied kit from 1954 to 1956. The log book indicates that the glider recorded 2362 flying hours over approximately 40 years of active service. There are many long flights recorded. The registration was cancelled on 30 July 2014 as a result of a decision by the Museum to withdraw the glider from service.

Significance

The exhibit represents the final development of the "Grunau" single seat type by Edmund Schneider Ltd in Australia. Viewed together with the Grunau Baby gliders in the ATO Collection (Two Grunau Baby 2, and a Grunau Baby 3A), the changes to this glider type over a 30 year period can be recognized.

Inscriptions & Markings

Identification Plate in cockpit showing that glider is serial number 37 built by Edmund Schneider Ltd in 1959

Glider – Sailplane

Australian Gliding Museum, Parwan

Tubular metal framed fuselage (without covering and fittings), wooden rudder (no covering) and in damaged condition, wooden fuselage component (formers for fuselage top), Parts of control mechanism, Wooden stringers, Wooden wings without fabric covering and in damaged condition, Ailerons, Tailplane /Elevator without fabric covering, Perspex bubble canopies.

Historical information

The Schweizer SGS 2-12 or TG-3A as officially certificated is a glider that was designed in 1941-1942 and produced in United States of America from 1942 for training of military glider pilots. It is understood that over 100 TG-As were supplied to the USA military and at the end of the war many were sold off as surplus. Fred Hoinville imported the Museum’s TG-3A into Australia in August 1950. It is understood that it had been built in 1948 and given construction number G15. On arrival in Australia it was assembled at Bankstown aerodrome and delivered by aero-tow behind a DH Tiger Moth to Camden where Hoinville’s club, the Hinkler Soaring Club, was based. Hoinville’s TG-3A performed well at the Hinkler club in 1950-1951. Several altitude records (including a solo flight to 8000 feet by Grace Roberts – a national women’s record) were set and many soaring flight made over Camden. However, it was badly damaged in a crash landing on 15 April 1951. The glider was repaired after the crash at Camden. It is likely that modifications were made to the cockpit canopy at this time. There were three configuration tried at various times: the original dual cockpit canopy as was standard for TG3As; an unusual dual bubble canopy set up; and a single canopy over the forward seating position (in effect converting the glider to a single seater). When the glider was flown by Hoinville at the 1958 Australian Gliding Championships at Benalla, Victoria in January 1959 (refer The Age Newspaper, January 10, 1959 p.21) it had a single canopy so that it could be used in solo competition. Records show that the glider was entered on the Australian register as VH-GDI on 6 May 1957. And the Logbook commencing in 1959 shows that ownership passed to the Port Augusta Gliding Club in South Australia on 16 August 1959. Inspections were carried out at that club and airworthiness certificates renewed in 1965. The logbook record indicates that VH-GDI had 1191 flights with an aggregate time in the air of 197 hours at the Wilmington Road Airstrip used by the Port Augusta Club. The glider was transferred to the Cooma Gliding Club, New South Wales. Flying at Cooma began in November 1966 and continued until August 1969: the glider was in the air a further 108 hours from 1067 flights. The last recorded technical inspection of the glider was conducted on 28 September 1968. The glider then passed on to Bill Riley on 20 March 1980 who stored the glider until March 2004 when it was collected by the Australian Gliding Museum. It is not clear whether the current poor state of the airframe is due to an accident when last flown in 1969 or the conditions under which it has been stored over many years or a combination of factors.

Significance

Although in poor condition, this exhibit is the sole example of a TG3A ex-US military aircraft in Australia. Further the connection with the story of well-known power and glider pilot Fred Hoinville adds to its historical significance.