As the date for the 30th Annual Top Gun Scale Invitational draws nearer, the entries we receive for the Road to Top Gun keep coming in. Our must recent is from Gwyn and Christina Avenell of Auckland, New Zealand, who have just finished the test flying and are now in the process of shipping their amazing aircraft to the US. Gwyn will be competing in the Top Gun Masters Class with his 1/4-scale Hawker Fury.
Gwyn has been building this project on and off for the past 12 years. The model is based on the only original Hawker Fury based at Duxford in the UK. It has a 90-inch wingspan and weighs about 29lbs wet. The Fury is powered by a Laser 300 V-Twin engine in keeping with its British theme. Gwyn is using a JR XG14E radio and equipment. The model has a scale wing section and the fuselage construction follows the same structure as the full sized. The model is covered with Silk and Tissue and features frayed-edged tapes on all the ribs. Gwyn comments: “After some years of trying to achieve a polished aluminum finish with paint and/or foil, I was persuaded to try making the cowling from aluminum. Luckily, I have a very talent metal smith living nearby who was prepared to tolerate me using his workshop, his knowledge and fixing my mistakes”.
“The results speak for themselves and it is the part of the model that Gwyn is most proud of. As we live at the bottom of the world, we need to disassemble the model and pack it into airline acceptable box sizes to be able to bring it with us to Top Gun from Auckland, New Zealand via Houston. Luckily our national carrier (Air New Zealand), has an excellent protocol with our National model association to allow this to happen”.
“I have been to Top Gun four times now, the first time was in 2011 when I topped the Masters static score with my Douglas SBD Dauntless Dive Bomber. Top Gun has always been a favorite model competition for us as we have made many new friends and have been welcomed unreservedly into the event. This year’s event is very special being the 30th anniversary and Frank Tiano deserves all the plaudits for bringing this event to the modeling public for this period of time. It’s a great week in Lakeland, FL and we hope to see you all there soon”.