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Caboolture Gliding Club

Soar like an eagle on silent wings in a friendly, cooperative club atmosphere from our base at Caboolture Airfield on Queensland's beautiful Sunshine Coast. New members and visitors are always welcome.

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The Re-Birth of Ka7 VH-GAB

Once upon a time there was a Ka7 that was very much in need of some serious tender loving care. The pics below show the general condition of VH-GAB before Bert Pesson, Ernie Clark, Bernard "Speedy" Gonsalves and others got stuck into some very serious work on her.

  

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An impossible case, some would say!

Just wait until you see my new shiny yellow nose!

   

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Guess someone forgot to use the pee tube!

The wings, in particular, required some serious work. Much of the work involved the cutting out of substandard old repairs and re-doing them.

   

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The maestro (Bert) at work. Both wings had to be partially re-built, including sections of the leading edge, "D" box, ribs, air brake boxes and trailing edge. The leading edge was swept back slightly half way out due to a previous bad repair.

The log book reported the glider as having a "substantial turn". She flies straight now. The red on the wing is the "Stitts" dope on the new fabric.

   

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Ernie Clark hard at it!

Speedy at work on the fuselage innards.

           

Many months had passed before the wings could be put back on to check the incidence at the root and wash-out at the tips.

    

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Just how long does it take to check if things are properly lined up?.

What is Bert doing here?

   

How high

The elation as Speedy (front seat) and Bert (back seat) find that   everything did come together OK.

And then the finishing touches ... what a nose-job that was!

Yes ... the nice new canopy does fit.

Translation please?

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And finally the Test Flight Day! Transformation of GAB is complete (note Bert's modern day chariot ready in the background)

Bert about to see if she would actually fly.

     

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And fly she certainly did!

A happy ending to a great deal of very hard work!

     
To quote Speedy (on behalf or the restoration team) ...
"Boy, if you only knew how much had to be done! It all adds to the satisfaction of seeing it finished though. Very rewarding. To fly around in a glider with so much history and a chapter where you played a major role is special. She lay dormant for 15 years before we brought her back to the sky. I feel like she is smiling at us now."