We asked the John Box, the President of the Kingaroy Aero Modellers Society to give us a bit of a run down of his story in aero modelling, and it went a little like this…
I started in primary school around 1962 with basic chuck glider kits. Spent hours throwing them in the back yard seeing the joy of being able to do loops and observing the ground effect.
I progressed to the rubber powered Artmil kits. Walked to the nearby cricket oval and used the turf pitch for ROG and on one occasion was amazed when it caught what I later learned was a thermal.
Progressed to constructing fully built-up rubber power kits covered in tissue and painted with dope.
In early Secondary School around 1967, I was given one of my uncles old 1.5cc Taipan diesel motors which I mounted on a board on the bench in the shed and spent many hours flicking, cutting fingers on the old sharp yellow plastic propeller until eventually it started. I spent considerable time experimenting with how to start the beast adjusting the needle valve and compression screw with the commercially produced fuel – either caster-oil, and kerosene brew.
One of the extra-curricular activities at Maryborough Boys High was control line aeromodelling on Kings Oval which I became involved in as well.
This interest continued outside school, and I became a member of the Maryborough Control Line Club which was affiliated with MAAQ/MAAA. My initial membership was just #2032 and my maiden control line flight was with my Dad on the newly developed Hockey field with a second-hand profile type aircraft powered by the trusty 1.5cc diesel Taipan on 50’ lines which ended in a crash landing due to becoming dizzy and losing control.
During this time, I visited the Maryborough Aeromodellers Club on several occasions where they operated from the Boonaroo Plains with free flight and single channel aircraft
The interest continued in association with the local control line club with a variety of planes being constructed with the ultimate being a Hi-Lo stunter scratch built from plans and powered with an OS35 glow plug motor. The fuel tank was built by soldering brass shim and copper pipe.
Work and marriage intervened, and we moved to Murgon after selling up all the control line planes and equipment.
While in Murgon I visited the local aeromodelling club in South Burnett Model Aeromodelling Club SBMAC who operated from Angel Field – a designated full-size aircraft landing site. They were using the latest digital proportional radio equipment and flying a variety of aircraft.
Hooked again in about 1976 with young children and a tight budget, I constructed an RCM Trainer from plans and powered it with a borrowed Johnson 35 C/L motor and a borrowed 2 channel Futaba dry cell radio. Rudder – Elevator and fly until you run out of fuel!!
Joined SBMAC affiliated with a new MAAA/Q # 12201. Constructed various planes from plans from The American Magazine RCM 2 Rumplestadt’s – the second with balsa covered foam wings OS 25 R/C purchased from Hong Kong $19 delivered to Murgon.
Gus Glider – under cambered wings, New Era 3 OS 25 FSR, 2 X 25power Ugly Sticks Ridge Rat 2 channel aileron/elevator. OS 40 powered RCM patten ship, Condor Slope Glider, 25 power RCM Old Timer, Pilot Aquila kit thermal soarer, RCM Guppy – with flaps.
Ran a Hobby shop in partnership with fellow aeromodeller Rob Mollenhauer in association with wholesaler Ron deChastle of Model Airsports and Hobbies.
Work intervened again 1979 – sold up all aeromodelling aircraft and equipment and moved to Hervey Bay
Moved to Kingaroy in 1984 – visited KAMS at Alan Swendson’s property Swendsons Rd Kingaroy, the site at Westeroy and Bill McLennans property at Booie on several occasions.
I Bought an electric 450 helicopter kit with Spektrum DX6i through our local Stihl Shop and proceeded to teach myself to fly – without success. While visiting relatives in Canberra I visited Monaro Hobbies and purchased a foam electric motor-glider
After a 33-year Break from the hobby, in 2012 I joined the Kingaroy Aero Modellers Society and was elected as President/Secretary in 2013.
Since that time, I have constructed or purchased the following:
- Second-hand Stearman PT17 biplane from an aeromodeller in Hervey Bay
- HK Sonic Extra
- 25 electric Extreme Flight Laser,
- Stick built Rumplestadt # 3 ‘Miss Congeniality’
- HK Pitts Special
- Sebart Shark
- Hobby King Night Walrus.
Current projects I am working on is:
- Pilot Nutmeg Sailplane
- HK Tiger Moth and;
- refurbishing a second-hand electric scale Spitfire with retracts
When reregistering the KAMS members for 2021/22, I mentioned the MAAQ Treasurer/Registrar Randall Mowlam that I had a previous MAAA # 2032 in the late 60’s and produced a photo of me with my Hi-Low stunter with my MAAA # 2032 on the Wing. Randall responded that he was very pleased to announce we have been successful in reloading you into 2022 as your original number 2032 with your gold wings from 12201 (Well done Randall!!).