Duxford 2004

This is always a great weekend at one of the most famous aircraft museums in the world. As usual, on Saturday, there are full-size aircraft movements and so the LMA provides a static display. This year we were treated to watching:


A clipped wing Spitfire…………


the first flight of a Dragon Rapide after a substantial restoration taking many years and….


the typical sort of everyday Duxford aircraft!

Well that’s quite enough to keep LMA members happy. We also had a great day browsing the museum hangers and talking to many people interested in the models.

So what shall we do Saturday evening? Well, we were in particular luck this year as the Shuttleworth Collection, which is only about 30 minutes away, was having one of its famous evening displays. It had not been a great day and was blustery. This meant that there was little chance of some of the very rare early aircraft taking to the sky. Still, several of us couldn’t resist a flying show so off we went.

It turned out quite cold and we suffered a bit in our ‘summer clothes’. It was indeed still a very entertaining evening and a few of the aircraft that flew were:


the Bristol fighter,…………….


a great display from three moths which managed the whole routine in the blustery wing whilst remaining tied together and……………………


the first flight, at the museum, of a Ryan which by coincidence was previously owned by an LMA Committee Officer, Tony Hooper.


Of course, its not all slow flying at the show, here is a Yak 52 amongst others that entertained us.

So that was the end of the full-size entertainment. We went off to our beds a happy lot. Next day we had a flying show to put-on!

The weather in the morning was a bit better although showers were forecast. The wind had dropped a little so we were hopeful for a good day’s flying. A lot of LMA members turn-up just for the Sunday flying. Personally, I think this is a great shame and they miss some fun on Saturday. Anyway, it was busy, as always. The photographs below show some of the range of models on display.


At its first public outing was Gordon Nichol’s world beating B52. This model is powered by eight Wren turbines and is some sight (and sound when flying).

This has been a massive project for Gordon and demonstrates his complete dedication to the hobby.

It is hoped that an article describing the model will become available on this site via the featured aircraft page.

Unfortunately, Gordon was only able to have one flight. He had some difficulty getting all the engines to run properly and when he eventually succeeded and took off it started to rain. Still, he completed a successful flight and from under our umbrellas we all watched.



In fact, over lunch it really poured down. Everyone had to run for cover and protect their models. Luckily, it was the only major outburst of the day and after about an hour at 2pm we all returned and flying commenced again.


Aerobatic flying is always a popular activity. Here is Gregg Hayfield’s 50% Starduster


Another fantastic and unique model was brought over from the Netherlands. This one features a home built engine with a true variable pitch, constant speed, propeller. This has been attempted by other modellers, but here we had a fantastic example of engineering masterwork.


Representing the ‘old timer’ department was Roy Salter with his 50% Eastborne monoplane.


Tony Nijhuis demonstrated that electric flight on a large scale is a realistic proposition. Here is his eight motored spruce Goose.


Ted Allison brought along his Texan. This photograph was taken on Saturday, hence the informative framed set of details by the model.


Helicopters are never flown much at LMA events. This is one I really like, expertly flown by Simon Steggall.

Now for another modelling masterpiece……


This herc. is a project built and flown by some LMA members from Swindon. This a huge model that looks totally realistic in flight. It also drops the odd parachutist and cargo. How many people does it take to fly such a monster……..


a team of four is the answer! Three transmitters are used to control the model and provide some duplication of key features.

The great models just kept on being displayed this year…………


This one is John Greenfield’s latest model, an Me262. For me this was possibly the best flown model of the day and boy was it had to select one. The sound of the two engines is fabulous and in John’s hand it was capable of slow and fast manoeuvres carried out very realistically. I was standing next to John on one of his flights when a rare event happened and he had an engine stop. I suspect not many people actually noticed as John quickly reacted with rudder and with proper control brought the model in for a smooth landing.


Models of WWII aircraft are always popular at this venue. Here you can see Colin Hammond’s Mitchell and Vic Coombs Typhoon.


Simon Steggall brought along his Valiant. Not flying yet, and with the paint scheme partly applied, it nevertheless looks like another interesting model is about to join the LMA ranks.


Talking of jet models here is the popular Vulcan of Dave Johnson. It wasn’t as close as it looks!


Flying a bit slower was Roger Bale’s Vimy.


The Ghost squadron were here in force as well. They worked extremely hard for the LMA all weekend. They controlled the entrance gate and acted as the tradestand. The raincover come awning was pretty good too. Well done to all the lads!


Each year the Duxford Trophy is awarded to a model for which there is a full-size in the museum. This year the prize was deserveably awarded to Richard Rawl and his Spitfire with its recently painted inversion strips. A fabulous model.

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