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Being one of five kids, I had three older brothers (and one younger sister) and there was always one of us building some kind a aircraft, be it a scale plastic model or a free flight rubber band powered kit or a gas powered U-Control plane. The end of summer vacation was typically highlighted by the riding our bikes the the waterfront of Toronto and watching the Canadian National Exhibition Air-Show with memories of seeing my first Starfighter or B-52 or being able to (almost) see inside the cockpit of a banking Corsair flying by within the breakwater. One summer, after taking the ferry to the Toronto Island Airport, we were asked to help push a visiting US Marine Harrier out of the hanger as it was preparing its flight checks during the Airshow and was ale to talk to the American pilot before he suited up for the demo flight. Always being fascinated by aircraft and the concept of flight, I found myself building either 1/48 scale WWII planes and 1/72 jets. By the time I graduated High School though, the model building took a back seat.
My studies resulted in a BTech Degree in Electrical Power – Engineering Technology and was lucky enough to begin a career at the Ontario Hydro Research Department working with some talented Engineers and Technologists focusing on Power System Stability. Testing and tuning generator excitation and governor systems, tests were conducted on Hydraulic, Thermal and Nuclear units of all sizes all over North America – the largest being the 1,000 MW units a the Darlington Power Facility. After a decade working on generators, I was able to jump over to the transmission side of the company – working as a Protection and Control Technologist in the Operation Division. My final decade of work was with the Tech Services Group writing procedures and assisting Field Staff with commissioning and routine testing or fault investigation.
After working 35 years, my kids are all grown up and finished school and I am getting ready for retirement. Always having a itch to make ‘something’ and being a bit of a history nut and always loving the technical aspect of things, somehow I found my way back to scale modelling. Focusing on a kit makes hours seem like minutes. Reading tech specs on the Fw190D-9 or an F-4 Phantom or F-22 can make my jaw drop sometimes and I find me asking myself “How the heck were they able to do that?”
The new kits all appear to literally be miniature engineering marvels and the older kits bring back many memories of the fun I had in my younger years. Finding a community of scale modelers like iModeler is such a confidence booster and provides such great support for any hobby enthusiast.
I looking forward to completing a lot of kits in my old stash and some of the kits from recent purchases – somehow I have ended up in owning over 400 aircraft kits yet to be built – so I do have some work ahead of me and my newly acquired bifocals are ready.
Somehow, I got to remember to ask my wife to play a game of cribbage after dinner and BEFORE going down to the hobby room in the basement.