In spite of our typical spring weather, 13 Cowichan Valley youth chose to spend their Saturday to get some hands on experience with the various aspects of recreational aviation at a workshop session put on by the Duncan Flying Club recently.
The youth are part of the 744 air cadet squadron. This is the third training event the DFC has put on for the air cadets, but similar events have been done for other youth organizations as well.
At this event the cadets got to see under the cowling of a few airplanes, both in airworthy condition, and others being restored, to see the engines and accessories that make them fly through the air. They also got to try their hand at drilling, and riveting aluminum sheet metal together both on scrap metal coupons, and part of a project to put an extra fuel tank in a wing. There was also a workshop on fabric covering, as there are still a lot of aircraft flying that are built this way, although the types of fabric have improved significantly since when the Wright brothers used linen to cover the first plane over 100 years ago.
DFC wants to show the next generation that flying can be just as affordable as many other recreational activities, when one is willing to learn how to build and maintain aircraft to the standards that have made flying a safer means of transportation than driving a car.
Steven Kostamo AScT is a Duncan Flying Club member and chairman of the 744 Squadron sponsoring committee.