I started modeling at the age of six (1949) with hand launched glider, rubber, tow line glider. In 1954 I began my power modeling adventure and knew this was a lifetime commitment. Now at the age of 73 words can’t describe my adventure. Modeling has transformed my life. Planning, focus, discipline, accomplishment and the list goes on. Modeling has made me a better person. The Lord has certainly blessed me over the years:
Back in High School I bought my first control line plane, just happen to be a
Ring Master and a Cox engine. As I was building it at my mother record store (drove off customers with that
dope smell) I just could not figure out how the engine was to be mounted, I pushed on. The plane was
complete, except that engine problem. My dad's friend gave me an engine that would work, a McCoy Redhead
.35 with a Nylon prop. So, I drop off a zero, no big deal, right? Box said .19 to .35, the Cox was a .019.
The hobby store took back the Cox thankfully. I mounted the Redhead and I was ready to fly, except I had no
idea how to start the engine. I was in luck my dad's friend, Ron, helped me fly it.
The maiden flight, only took a few flicks on the prop and it was started. Think I did 10 laps before Ron took the handle. He did loops and wingovers with no problem. I don't remember a second flight that day, but there must have been because I was ready to show my buddies. Got things setup and I was ready to fly. I was able to get the redhead going. I ran to the handle, grabbed it, yelled to my buddy let it go. Oh boy, never thought that lines may get caught in the tall weeds. They did, the plane left the ground turned to the left and was headed straight for me. I dropped the handle and ran. It was a short flight. It was repairable by today’s standards. I took the Ring Master by its nose and beat it to death on the ground.
Several years later I bought another Ring Master. My building skills didn't get any better, but my flying did. I flew this one several times before the outboard wing came off in flight. I was able to glue it back on. Don't remember the demise of this plane, but I still have that Redhead. Over the years I built several 1/2A planes with Cox .049s. Choices were very limited at the local hobby stores, until we lived in Hawaii. The store there had everything one needed to build a plane.
We moved to Tennessee in 1996 were my son and I took up RC planes. We both had 40 size trainer planes that lasted until I cartwheeled my first solo landing. Wasn't until my son moved back to Tennessee and I rejoined the Barnstormers in 2013. He bought me a Twister, which I cussed at ever step of the build. I finally finished it and showed up at the field to fly it. They didn't say it then, but all the control liners were saying to themselves, "that is one ugly plane"! Byron convinced me to come to he's house to build a plane the correct way, and the rest is history.
Editor’s Note: Don bring many skills to the hobby
I was introduced late in life to this amazing hobby of radio controlled model
aircraft. At the age of 53, in the summer of 2002, I met a gentleman by the name of Victor Lorant at a
dinner engagement who invited me out to the Millington Barnstormers RC Flying club airfield. Having been
attached to several air squadrons in my Navy career, I had an interest in fixed winged aircraft, and took
Victor up on his invitation. Victor took me on my first flight using what is known as the buddy system. From
that moment on I was hooked. After a few weeks of instructed flying I completed my first solo flight, and
have never looked back.
My hangar includes an array of civilian, World War I, and World War II aircraft. My first love is with Nitro and Gasoline powered aircraft. I am an instructor with the Millington Barnstormers and can be found at the airfield nearly every Saturday and Sunday morning, weather permitting. I have held the Secretary position in past years with the Millington Barnstormers, and have been elected to fill that position one again for 2017.
So why don’t you come out and join me next weekend? If you haven’t flown before, let me take you up with my trainer. I know you’ll love it just as much as I did on my first flight. If you are an experienced pilot, let’s fly together and talk of our experiences with this wonderful sport.
Editor’s note: Danny is a detailed person. He will keep us on track.
I have been involved with modeling since I was 9 years old. I built the CL models form Sterling,
Midwest, and Top flite just to name a few. I got out of modeling when I went into the Army in
1966. I got married in 1967 and raised a family. I moved to the Memphis area in July 2001
from California because of work. I got back into modeling that very month and joined the
Barnstormers at the time. I love the RC Planes that are available in the AFR or Kit forms. Have
built a few from plans
Editor’s Note: Jim is a backbone to the Millington Barnstormers. No job to large or small. We are blessed to have him.
I happened upon the Millington Barnstormers at Goat days 3 years ago. They had a
booth setup and also had an RC airplane for a raffle prize. My son and I bought raffle tickets and learned
that they would be having a “Community Day” the following weekend at the flying field. They told us we could
try our hand at flying an RC plane with the help of an instructor. Needless to say we went and had a blast.
The bug bit me and I quickly bought my first airplane. With the help of instructors and now friends Danny
Tally and Jim Stanton I quickly got checked off .
My interests are pretty broad. I have recently challenged myself with RC Helicopters and have tried my hand at some FPV flying. I enjoy all aspects of the sport but mostly enjoy the comradery and friendships I have made .
Editor’s note: John is a no nonsense guy. He knows and abides by the rules. He keeps things safe.
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