After some surgery to restore the missing dihedral, I took the Mk IX to Chilliwack in August and instead of launching it myself, took up the offer of a launch from a spectator. These models need a pretty good throw and unfortunately all I got was a lob. The motor torque cartwheeled it into the deck and did the model no good at all. Fortunately I had illegally packed some UHU Por in my hold baggage and after an hour or two in Ivan's workshop, she was almost as good as new, and flew straight off from a proper throw. The sight of the Comox Spitfire flying over Canadian grassland, with the mountains in the background, was wonderful.
Three days and about 20 flights later, another kind fella offered to launch and once again, torque defeated airspeed and more repairs were needed. This time, all was not terribly well and after two more flights she piled into the deck and destroyed herself (see the picture).
I rescued all the hardware and the canopy and over the last few weeks have built a Mk XIV, the first of the production Griffon Spitfires. In reality, it was built using the Mk VIII as a basis, but with the longer nose and the bigger fin and rudder, so was an easy conversion from the Mk IX drawings and I used pretty well the same structure. Sadly, the production of white Depron seems to have ceased, so I used the new grey stuff. It's softer and more flexible but weaker and only comes in 3 and 6mm thicknesses. I do miss the 2mm white stuff, it was perfect for wing and fuselage sheeting.
The Mk XIV had its maiden on a lovely sunny day in November, at the Hurst View field and after sorting the trim and throws, flew well and looked the biz in the air. Many thanks to Alan Butterworth for the flying pictures.
Markings are again by Callie, paint by Dulux.