Melbourne Gliding Club

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  • 09 Oct 2017 14:26 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    As you would have seen from the GFA and media reports, there have been two gliding accidents in recent weeks resulting in the tragic deaths of three GFA members. The GFA has indicated that the causes of the accidents remain under investigation. 

    It is a timely reminder as we head into the soaring season from a windy winter with limited flying that currency is an issue that we all need to be aware of and take responsibility for. 

    If you have not flown a glider in the past 90 days you must fly with a club instructor for a check flight. On the check flight you must demonstrate proficiency to the satisfaction of the instructor. You may need more than one check flight. 

    I also encourage any member who has flown within 90 days but does not feel absolutely confident to consider flying a check flight with an instructor or a mutual flight with a member with currency. 

    Remember to please utilise our booking system to reserve a place with an instructor. If it's full, please email Ben (bloxton[at]gmail.com) who is looking after the system for us and we will see if we can arrange additional instructors.

    Please also consider the effects of switching between our various aircraft types (for example, the performance differences when flying in the DG-1000 and then moving into the Junior).

    Together, let's work to ensure that the coming season is a safe one at the Melbourne Gliding Club.

  • 26 Sep 2017 10:22 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    President's report

    Thank you to those at the AGM who confirmed me as the new MGC President for 2017-18. It is a really great honour for me, particularly given I become the third Patching to be President of the club, following my granddad Alan, and father Ian.  I'd like to thank our outgoing President, Ben Loxton, for his leadership in the role over the past five years. Ben took over as President when my Dad became ill in late 2012 and has done a mountain of work in that time – including a lot behind the scenes in working with the other clubs and BMAM. I wish you well in your next adventures, Ben, and please don't be a stranger at Bacchus.

    At the AGM I spoke of how we have three roles as the Club Committee. First, we are the custodian of the club’s history and the collective efforts of those before us. Second, we must make sure we meet the needs of our current members. Third, we have an important role in planning for the future.

    You won’t see a large change in direction of the club as we will continue the disciplined approach of the committees over the past five years or so and to continue to build our culture.

    Central to this is my belief that we are first and foremost a club of people who want to enjoy the sport of gliding. And if you are a member of the club, then we need you to help support us in both small and big ways. I’m often asked by people to be specific about the help that we need and we have been working more on this over the past year or so. Expect to see more about this soon including setting the expectations of all as club members.

    The AGM elected the new Committee for the year. Returning with me are Tony Carling (Treasurer), Michael Aldridge (Secretary), Paul Spooner, Steve Coulton and Ian Northey. Retiring from the Committee were Ben Loxton, Mark Hunt, and Bob Hickman. This means there are three vacancies. If you have an interest in assisting us with our goals for the next 12 months, please give me a call.

    There are a couple of new volunteers for some important positions in the Club. Firstly, thank you to Richard Traill for becoming the Club's new Airworthiness Officer. This is a really important position within the GFA system of club management. In partnership with Richard, I'd really like to drive a greater awareness of the club's airworthiness needs over the next 12 months. It's not a one person job! Keep an eye out for how you can be involved in small or bigger ways. One reason why we continue to offer such competitive rates is that much of the airworthiness effort is done in-house. But this has been shouldered by too few people in the last couple of years. On that note, thank you again to Tom Van Blaricum for your service as Airworthiness Officer (and to Ben for acting in the role over the past few months).

    Secondly, after probably close to a decade as our Expeditions/Camps Officer, Max Callingham has passed the baton onto Mark Hunt. Mark's first camp will be the November Cup Weekend at Raywood where we will join onto the VSA coaching event. Thanks to Max and to Mark.  Details on the Raywood Cup Weekend camp will be forthcoming very soon.

    Don’t forget our ‘start of the season’ (we hope!) pizza night on Saturday 14 October. No need to register – just be there after a good day’s flying and we’ll order some pizza and enjoy some of the remaining annual awards night wine courtesy of Mark Hunt.

    Please contact me any time.

    Safe thermals,

    Tighe 

  • 26 Sep 2017 10:21 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Private passenger flight vs AEF flights

    This is a reminder to all members that there are two options when conducting a passenger flight, which may also be known in the club as a family and friend flight.
    The basic rules:

    1. An AEF passenger (e.g. Adrenalin, Red Balloon) must complete both the GFA form and the MGC day member form

    2. A private passenger only needs to complete the MGC day member form

    The first option is to have the passenger complete the GFA form (at a cost of $40 - in addition to the flight - as we have to buy these books from the GFA) and fly with an instructor AEI-rated or above. This allows the passenger to be introduced to basic aspects of flying, but the passenger is not permitted to touch the controls when the aircraft is below 800ft AGL. The Club’s day member form must also be completed.

    The second option DOES NOT allow the passenger to touch the aircraft controls while the aircraft is flying. For this option, the passenger MUST complete the club's day member form ONLY (not the GFA form). The pilot in command must have at least their private passenger rating. As a private passenger flight, the PIC must pay at least half of the flight cost. In reality, this means that if you don't have at least a private passenger rating and want a friend or family member flown, they'll be flying with an AEI-rated or above pilot. As the PIC needs to pay at least half the cost (and unless you have a really, really generous friend!), your friend/family member would be flying as an AEF and needing to sign and pay for the GFA form.

    The best place to complete the MGC day member form is directly on our website (but there are hard copies in the bus - restocked last weekend). There is no such thing as a Family and Friend form anymore – the day member form has been adapted to cover liability and club issues.

    Please refer to section 11.1 and 10.5 of the GFA operations manual for more detail. 

  • 17 Aug 2017 14:19 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    MGC will be celebrating its 73rd birthday on Friday the 1st of September 2047.  While the people that formed the club had been flying for many years prior to this, it was the date of the first meeting of the group that decided to form the club as we know it today.  Like all pilots, they spent so long flying it took another 3 years before the club was officially formed in the eye of the government, and the first Annual General Meeting held in 1946.

    The club would not have one of the best fleets in Australia without the selfless work of its volunteers, many of whom work behind the scenes to keep the club running, from the committee to the duty pilots, and instructor's, everyone needs to do their bit for the club to continue to be a success.

  • 16 Aug 2017 19:01 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    A web cam was accidentally damaged during the clean up of the Nth hangar, a replacement has been ordered via Aliexpress (cheapest) and is expected to be in place mid Sept.

  • 05 Aug 2017 09:19 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Access our weekend booking system, log in (top right of this page),  follow the link to 'Glider Bookings' under 'Information'. 

  • 11 Jul 2017 22:50 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Melbourne Gliding Club's 2017 Annual General Meeting will be held on Saturday 16 September 2017, commencing at 1600 hours in the Bacchus Marsh Gliding Clubhouse. The AGM will be followed by dinner at a local Bacchus Marsh venue.

    Details and registration are available on our website.

    Formal notices of agenda, proxies, nominations etc. will be released as soon as possible.

  • 11 Jul 2017 22:48 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Tuesday 8 August – MGC Committee meeting @ Pascoe Vale (all members welcome, notify the Secretary, Michael Aldridge)

    Saturday 12 August – VSA Presidents’ meeting and AGM @ Bacchus Marsh

    Tuesday 12 September – MGC Committee meeting @ Pascoe Vale (all members welcome, notify the Secretary, Michael Aldridge)

    Saturday 16 September – MGC Annual General meeting, followed by dinner @ Bacchus Marsh (register on the website)

    Saturday 14 October – Start of the soaring season pizza night @ Bacchus Marsh - no need to register, just be there at the end of the day's flying and we'll order pizza to have at the Clubhouse

    Saturday 4 November – Tuesday 7 November – Cup Weekend Camp @ Bendigo GC, Raywood (registration available soon)

    Monday 12 – Sunday 18 March 2018 – VSA Instructor Course

  • 28 May 2017 16:41 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Head to the Club's Facebook page for a bunch of photos from today's F&F Day. We managed to fit in 10 flights before the rain moved in. Thanks to all who assisted, particularly Mark Hunt and Bob Hickman who assisted me in organising. Great to see some veteran members back out there and being able to share our passion for gliding with a bunch of friends and family. We'll have a similar event later in the year, and don't forget that you can bring anyone out for a flight any weekend - just let the duty crew know and put it in the Club's new booking system.

  • 22 May 2017 12:56 | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Paul Spooner's story

    I attended the Grampians Soaring Club Wave Camp at Noelhurst farm over Queens Birthday long weekend. The intention was that if conditions were right to try for Gold Height which requires an Altitude gain of 3000 metres (circa 10,000ft). As the weekend came into weather forecast range it wasn’t looking good for mountain wave, a large high pressure producing light south easterly winds was forecast which is exactly opposite to the wind direction and strength required to produce wave conditions on the east side of the Grampians range. While the forecast was not good for wave conditions it was certainly looking okay for ridge soaring and thermal soaring in what is very picturesque country.

    Grampians Wave Camp


    Grampians Soaring Club provided advice on preparation for attendees and I have reproduced the advice here for others who may be considering attendance at this event next year:

    • have a true airspeed chart on your panel (corrected for altitude);
    • have lots of warm clothing;
    • two radios, one for glider frequency and one for area frequency;
    • a clear view panel;
    • a GPS;
    • use a maximum descent rate of about 500 ft/sec to prevent gelcoat cracking and perhaps stresses in the underlying structures;
    • have your glider lubricated with low temperature grease and oil;
    • an outside air temperature gauge would be useful; and
    • a blood oxygen indicator (fingertip clip oxymeter) almost essential to ensure that you are getting enough oxygen.

    I arrived at Noelhurst farm near Pomonal, which has a 1000m airstrip running in a North West/South East direction. The main runway is marked out down the centre of the strip with old tyres, but it is possible to land to the left and the right of the marked out strip, giving plenty of options, if multiple gliders were to return at the same time.

    The ground was remarkably firm compared to Bacchus at the moment. No mud, no wheel tracks, the locals said they have had a fairly dry autumn/winter so far.

    In total there were 10 gliders present, about five were associated with the Grampians Soaring Club, four from Geelong Gliding Club and myself in the Ventus. The faithful Call Air tug from the Grampians soaring club did the tugging.

    It was fairly chilly overnight and in the morning the gliders were covered in ice. Over the 3 days of the weekend the Saturday and the Sunday had light winds, little to no ridge lift but some weak thermals would slow the descent rate. Monday was by far the best day with Cu’s popping around midday and some longer flights were possible.


    I did a total of five flights over the weekend with the longest being on the Monday where I did an hour and half, cut short by the need to de‐rig and head for home. Some of the Grampians soaring club flew their gliders back to Ararat to save de‐rigging.

    Overall it was a great weekend, the weather was good for local soaring in fantastic scenery, the operation was well run and a fair amount of behind the scenes organisation had gone into making the camp a success, with drums of fuel for the tug, toilet facilities a caravan and no doubt clearing the sheep out the paddock.

    Thank you to John Anselmi and Jim Nugent and rest of the Grampians soaring club for arranging the weekend.


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