GROUP BUILDS > The Engines - More or Less G.B.

The Maglider - an example of money saving

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O'Bannion and Murphy were seriously depressed, their beloved CM-170 Magister jets were being pensioned off and replaced with something with PROPELLORS, for goodness sake! They were convinced that the Pilatus PC-9s would never come anywhere near the capabilities of the sleek, almost sexy, Magisters, and yet they'd been ordered to scrap out their darling jets!

Both of the fellas had been Crew Chiefs on the Silver Swallows team for many years, the high point of which was the team winning the Lockheed Martin Canestra Trophy for the best display by an overseas team, although Murphy always contended that the Irish Sea wasn't wide enough to be counted as 'overseas'. Now that the lovely Magisters were to be scrapped both of the fellas felt distraught, and having succeeded in persuading the Brig. General to keep one of the Magisters for the museum at Baldonnel, they were looking for ways to ensure the remaining aircraft survived somehow, ANYhow!

Just then their pal O'Leary came by with a deep scowl on his face, to be greeted by a chorus of 'What's your problem then? At least you've got aircraft that can still fly, even if they don't have engines!' by the two Chiefs. O'Leary was the ground crewman of the Air Corps Cadets, and had a small fleet of gliders under his command, most of which were pretty ancient admittedly, mostly being K-13s and K-8s built from wood and canvas rather than the aluminium jets that the other two looked after.

'They're talking about scrapping the K Birds and buying PLASTIC stuff, for goodness sake! These Polish PW-6U things they're talking about buying cost a fortune, and if they break it'll take me for ever to fix them!' moaned O'Leary.

All three of them commiserated with each other over the imminent demise of their favourite aircraft and suddenly O'Bannion looked up and over at the last of the five Magisters parked in the hangar. He mused 'I wonder............ I've always thought a Maggie would make a good sailplane if the engines failed, looking at the length of those wings......'

The other two looked up as well and you could almost hear the brain waves moving into high gear.

By the end of the day the Brig. General had OK'd that they could do anything with the Magisters, so long as it didn't cost too many Euros, and so they set to work. Removing the twin Marbore engines from each airframe was a matter of moments for Murphy and O'Bannion, and their team of ground crewmen made equally short work of stripping out the complex avionics and weapon systems while O'Leary's team were manufacturing some wing tip extensions as they all agreed that proper gliders required LONG wings.  ;)

Within a week all the remaining Magisters had been converted into gliders, complete with fairings over the jet intakes and exhausts, and with the whole airframe cleaned up and smoothed off, all at zero cost to the Air Corps. Not to mention which the Corps now had a new fleet of training gliders at equally zero cost!

So that's the story of how the Magliders came to be.  ;D


As it's obvious that my Boeing B-56 Stratocastle will never be done in time for this GB (even with the extension!) I was wondering if there was the slightest hope of getting anything done in time, when my eye fell upon an Airfix Fouga Magister kit. All of a sudden a suitable Whiff appeared in my mind's eye, just like the PR19 did all those years ago.....

So here's the 'before build' pic of the kit. It's not one of Airfix's newer super hi-tech kits, but it's pretty good and fits together well.

Naturally, as a glider, it would need longer wings  ;) so I sawed off the tip tanks and added extensions that were long enough to look right, but not too long so that they looked silly. I also fitted the main gear doors in place as I had other plans for the landing gear. The cockpit took no time at all to throw together, and then the tip tanks were sawn down to act as fairings for the jet intakes and exhausts. Needless to say there's a LOT of PSR involved in that area but it's not going too badly.

Here's the whole assembledge thrown together without glue, just to give an idea what it will look like.

I've got to add the fairings to the starboard side and glue it all together of course, finish up the PSR and add the landing gear, but I won't be able to paint it till I get home on Monday. But that gives me a fighting chance of finishing it before the end of the GB.

That's looking nice!  :thumbsup:

Old Wombat:
Surprise! Surprise! Longer wings! ;D ;D :thumbsup:

Mmmm, but Kit, how do they tow the Magigliders into the air if they don't have any powered aircraft to do it?


--- Quote from: rickshaw on September 26, 2019, 02:07:43 am ---Mmmm, but Kit, how do they tow the Magigliders into the air if they don't have any powered aircraft to do it?

--- End quote ---

Using Irish ingenuity, a greaty big catapult, made from lots and lots of elastic bands (enchanted, of course, by the "little people").


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