04 January 2010

ARC Silly Week

ARC outhouseAs a bit of a diversion, here are some local contributions to what is known as Silly Week at Aircraft Resource Center, a website devoted to scale modelling.

The concept is pretty simple:  contributors send in something off the wall. 

It could be an unusual subject, like say a one-holer outhouse with working front door and a roll of toilet paper.

ARC outhouse 2Most contributors take an existing subject and invent a story to go with the new version.

Like say Dave Bailey from Newfoundland and Labrador who offered up a couple of new subjects.

The one below takes a real-world aircraft – the Convair Tradewind from the 1950s  - and invents a whole story about it being re-engined for the Canadian Forces and eventually winding up fighting forest fires in Newfoundland and Labrador.ARC 282

After the expected fiddling to fit the new engines, successful ground tests and taxi trials indicated that the idea was eminently workable, and on May 19 1960 the aircraft left the water and performed a 45 minute flight. Over the next few weeks the trials proved the concept beyond question, and procurement of the two on option was finalised. Service with the Royal Canadian Navy commenced in 1961 and they went on to perform sterling service in the search and rescue, resupply, and evacuation roles.

As they neared the end of their military careers Canadair once again investigated further uses, and firebombing was an obvious choice. The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador bought one example as a high-speed responder to attack outbreaks ahead of the arrival of the purpose built but slower CL-215 fleet. Its bulbous nose contours meant that it was immediately saddled with the nickname Moose, but other than that there was no joking about the prestige attached to flying it into action.

Dave took a kit of the Convair, added the multi-bladed engines and did the paint job and markings himself to create The Moose.

It might be called silly week but there’s nothing silly about the talent involved.