June, 2016 News
Heritage has asked for an economic study comparing the costs of a new build against the cost of refurbishing and moving H1. Hopefully this report will be the last and Heritage can make a decision.
Doug Tipping from Melbourne Water, a great friend to the restoration, has retired. We wish him a pleasant retirement. Rob White is now our MW contact and he is keen to see a resolution to the problem.
We also have a new contact at Places Victoria but haven’t met him yet. We are trying to set up a meeting.
Thanks to all those who have sent in their membership renewals. Our bank balance looks good.
Thanks also to the many people who have included a donation. We appreciate your ongoing support and generosity.
If your membership has still to be renewed we would appreciate a prompt response. This is our main income stream and we are dependent on it. So far about 50% of members have replied.
The work books, A, B and C, are well on the way to completion. There are a couple of outstanding items in Book A but they will be finalised shortly.
Rosemary Hanscombe from Museums Victoria visited the hangar to listen to our concerns and offer advice. She suggested that we use the existing web site, "Victorian Collections" as the repository for our collection information. We already have 70 items listed on this site and get many requests for information through this source. Peter Perryman will take over the task of listing further items on this site. This includes writing a description, photographing the item and noting its position in the hangar.
We also have to write a Statement of Significance. This will entail listing the 5 most important items in our collection, discussing their importance then writing a statement outlining the significance of the most important item. This will be the model for further listings.
As well as getting comments on the value of the items listed here we get many requests for help. Currently we are dealing with a man in South Australia looking for information on 200 Flight, a man putting together a display at Wentworth Aviation Museum, 2 men in UK looking for help in identifying items from wrecked B-24s and a man in Sweden who has located a wrecked B-24 and now wants to establish a museum. Dave Miller, our historian, does a great job in helping
these people. Making these world-wide connections is of great value to our restoration.
Ten members attended the Inverleigh RSL for the unveiling of the under-carriage leg we donated to them last year. It has been cleaned and mounted outside the building alongside displays representing the army and navy and it looks great.
The RSL members made us most welcome and served a light lunch after the event. They also gave a generous donation to the restoration.
We thank them for their hospitality and generosity.
Nat Eichler, second from left, had a great day at Inverleigh.
First the speeches: then the fresh scones….amongst lots of other goodies!
The Editor of the Bannockburn newspaper attended and Dave Miller has written a report on 176 for him.
The saddle is now installed and aligned with the front and rear fuselage. Current task is to fix the ends to brackets that are bolted to the fuselage frames and riveted to the saddle stringers. Because of access Cherrymac rivets will be used. The last stage of the work will be to fit a strap to cover the gap between the saddle and rear fuselage.
Rebuilding the rear turret is progressing. The panels covering the guns are now fitted. Some adjustment was necessary to ensure the panels were clear of the guns when elevated.
The arming and release mechanism for the front bomb rack is being rebuilt prior to installation. Currently we only have enough parts to complete the starboard side.
The cabling for the bomb bay doors’ mechanism has been obtained. The cables based on the Ford drawings can be made over the next month and installed.
The trim tab control unit is now being assembled with all internal components installed. When complete the unit will be fitted to the cockpit pedestal.
Currently the original piping under the cockpit floor has been removed for cleaning and inspection. If corroded or pitted a new section will be made up.
Work is also being done on the centre wing panels and the engine nacelles.
Blast from the Past!
The start of it all……the wheel cover taken to the Wagga meeting 1988
Steady progress is being made. The wing tip has been made in fibre glass. Timber veneer was tried but timber flexible enough to fit around the curves was too fragile to be used.
Wing tip…..looking good!
The member who is supporting the build of the Oxford replica visited the hangar and was pleased with the work being done. We thank him for his generous support.
The Oxford "boys".
First Aid Officers
Our 2 first aid officers, Phil and Ken, have recently updated their qualifications. It is important, given our average age, that we have trained people on site and these two take their responsibilities seriously. We have a defribulator in the hangar and people are trained in its use.
Have had lots of clubs in. We get great support from Probus and car clubs.
In the past 2 months we’ve also had 2 motorcycle groups: The Yarra Ranges Ulysses Club and the Military Brotherhood.
The Ulysses Group are regular visitors keeping an eye on our progress.
Lots of lovely bikes.
The Military Brotherhood are first time visitors. Tony was their guide and they spent most of the morning looking around. They enjoyed their visit and we hope to see them back again.
The Renault Club visited on the same day so the hangar was very busy.
Lots of leather and more lovely bikes.
These are once again a regular monthly feature. The last one drew a large crowd so some visitors had to go out into the paddock to watch.
Dates for scheduled runs will be advertised on Face Book and on the web page. If you want to come to one please contact the hangar and put your name on the list….97311263.
We can also schedule engine runs for group visits. Ring the Secretary to negotiate (97340094).
Cold and miserable but didn’t stop people gathering to be at the engine run.
Met a local resident in the shopping centre recently. She commented on the engine runs saying how much the local people enjoyed hearing the engine start up. Good to know we are not regarded as noisy pests.
The one we had at Sayers Rd was past saving so has been sold as scrap. With that gone we are finally out of Sayers Rd.
The fork lift at the hangar is not much better so we’re looking at getting another one; second hand. Two members are doing the research now to see what we can get. A safe fork lift is an essential bit of equipment.
This is being installed. Thanks to the member who donated money specifically for this purpose. We now have external cameras monitoring "at risk" areas. They record as well as monitor so we have proof of any robberies.
The interior of the hangar is also monitored so we’re well covered.
At last a win! After closely watching the behaviour of the pigeons we have managed to block up access points in the walls and roof. As well long ribbons and netting has been hung across the top of the doorways. This has been enough to deter the pests from flying in. One lone bird managed to get in but has now been persuaded to leave. Fingers crossed this will be a permanent fix. Now we don’t have to cover everything up before we leave at the end of the day.
Heritage Festival (National Trust)
Dave did a great job preparing for this and the visitors who did attend were very impressed with the topic and the presentation. Unfortunately less than 20 attended. Dave has completed a survey for National Trust on the response to the Festival and they have given some valuable feedback particularly in regard to publicising the event. We will look at the 2017 theme when it’s released before deciding whether or not to participate.
We have taken part in this festival for the past 5 years and have had great response and high visitor numbers so we hope we can continue with this.
This will be held at the hangar on Sunday 14th August. The Geelong re-enactment group is putting on the show as a fund raiser for us and we are very grateful for this.
The show will run from 10 am to 3 pm and feature cannon and mortar fire, people in historical uniforms, a WW2 bivouac and more. The B-24 group will also put on displays and engine runs. Cost will be $15 per head for adults.
More details closer to the date.
Military Historical Society Geelong Display Day
On Sunday, 14th August between 9.30 am and 3.30 pm the Military
Historical Society Geelong are holding an event to raise money for the
B-24 Liberator Memorial Australia at the restoration hangar, corner Farm
Rd and Princes Highway, Werribee (Melways ref: Map 205 F 10).
Entry $15 per adult, under 16 free.
The Society will be presenting military re-enactments, uniforms, bivouac
conditions, vehicles. They will also be firing their cannon.
The Liberator group will put on guided tours of the restoration, run the
Pratt & Whitney 1830 radial engine run by the Liberator group, and demonstrate instrumentation from the