xmas time in Winterthur

always during christmas time the Sulzer tower building is showing a christmas tree like this one or a champagne glass (at New Years Eve).
I like this tradition and since the weather was fine on 26. December I took my camera an shot this picture.

Swordfish Nightfigther 1:72

inspired by the visit of the IWM at Duxford I was looking for a model kit of a Fairey Swordfish that I saw in the hall „Air and Space“. Revell is selling such a kit and it even allows for building it as a night fighter providing the radar dome as an alternative to the torpedo.
Of course I added a few extra parts to get „my“ model of this famous biplane, like the wires and the instrument of the radar operator. And all this in scale 1:72. Maybe I will build another one in 1:48 sometimes.

De Havilland museum, London

This one was hard to find. It was not because it wasn’t that big as Hendon or Duxford but my navi didn’t know all about the postal codes in UK. But we managed that too and when we arrived at 4.30 pm at the De Havilland museum a friendly mister explained to us why this museum is located exactly here at this place. The first prototype of the De Havilland Mosquito was built in one of this hangars!
The De Havilland Heritage Air Center has three Mosquitos in their hangar among other aircrafts (photo album). Very funny to see a Swiss Vampire here, I remember to see them flying over Nussbaumen when I was a child.

RAF Museum, Hendon

The next museum on our tour was the Royal Air Force museum at Hendon (London). Here too, an impressive list of famous and well know airplanes can be seen on display along with a lot of useful information regarding aviation. Hendon shines in this part with its „Timeline“.
Something I did realize here in the Battle of Britain expositions is the fact that Great Britain was under attack during the summer of 1940 and that the people suffered by the German bombing.
Interesting to see German airplanes that one can not see in a German museum. There are photo albums of the „Milestones“, „Bombers“ and „Battle of Britain“ halls.

IWM Duxford, England

Having seen many of the Air Museums in Germany and Switzerland my brothers and me decided to travel to England and see what’s on display there. Since traveling to England take quite a while we planned to visit more than one museum.
Flying to Stansted seems a good starting point for the IWM at Duxford in the north, not far from Cambridge, and the various museums located in London.
Duxford is huge! All the aircrafts are displayed in over six hangars (seeing here the Air and Space hangar). While our visit there was a Catalina and an F-86 Sabre doing test flights for the upcoming air show a week later (see the videos). There’s no surprise that we could see airplanes that one never would see in Switzerland.
When the museum did close its doors at 6 pm we weren’t through all the halls. Maybe we had to come again to see all the things. There are photo albums of the Air and Space, the Flying Aircrafts plus Battle of Britain and the American Air Museum.


vacation 2011 Flims (SOW)

From 30. July to 6. August Marianne and Nadine participate at the Swiss Orienteering Week in Flims wehreas Alain an me were visiting a few points of interest in the surroundings like the Viamala canyon or the convent (school) in Disentis (see Photos).
On day 3 the competition starts at the foot of the Vorab glacier about 2560 meters above sea level. On this particular map experimental symbols are used for the snow fields (lightblue) and for the desert like ground in front of the glacier (light brown). You can see a bigger picture of the map on the Flickr set to get a better impression.

vacation 2011 Südtirol

Marianne and me spend one week in Rabland (belongs to Partschins) in the Vinschgau a valley in the western part of Südtirol (Italy). Fact is, it is not far from Switzerland and we knew from our friends that in Rabland the Hotel Rössl provides an excellent service.
Sure every day we enjoy very much the wellness part of the hotel but after some sports Winking .
The whole region offers many bike tours well marked so we had no problem finding our way. Well, as long as we followed such a route which wasn’t always the case.
The altitude graphs of most of the tours look similar like the one shown below (green): straight up the hill and then down again. I have recorded most of our tours with my Garmin Edge and uploaded the tracks to the Internet. You may find more of them on the activity board. Sure there are a few photos on a Flickr set too.

Alains Confirmation

This Sunday is Alain’s day, the day of his confirmation. This is not only a significant religious event but it is also an interesting period when a young is becoming an adult (sooner or later).
In a few weeks Alain will finishing his secondary school and then beginning his apprenticeship. He will get a commercial education at the municipal administration of Rickenbach.

Whitsun in Seefeld

Whitsun means staying in Seefeld. At least for the last couple of years thurgorienta held their training weekends there. This year was no exception. Although the weather wasn’t that good we could do most of our trainings without standing in the rain.
On monday we started for a team orienteering near the Mösernsee. As always I had my GPS on (Garmin FR 210) and could watch my recorded route afterwards.

new AEBS

AirPort Extreme Base Station that’s what AEBS stands for, nothing new for Apple freaks.
My brother switched to a new Internet access plan with his provider and also get a new WiFi router so he didn’t need his AEBS anymore.
Time to retire my old AEBS and replace it with the newer one. This base station has a few nice new features and is faster than the older UFO style base station.

bike-O Frauenfeld

Occasionally I do bike-orienteering too, this is particularly true since me knee doesn’t allow for more than two trainings a week. In Frauenfeld a sprint-bike-orienteering event was held that weekend.
And as an exception to the Swiss rules in bike-o it was partly allowed to leave the tracks and roads and drive cross country. Bike-O is fun and a sprint even more, everything is twice as fast as in foot orienteering at least. I still can improve my skills as the results are showing.

broken arrow, NOM 2011

broken arrow5 to be exactly ..
Arrow5 is the name of the compass model I am using for my orienteering runs.
This years NOM (swiss championship in night orienteering) turned out really bad. Not only because I broke my compass. This happened at the 10th control. Trouble began earlier somewhere in middle of the competition when I missed two controls and did a wrong route choice. Within four controls I lost almost 10 minutes to my usual time which actually isn’t fast.

But hey, I finished this competition. My battery worked well, I had a bright light until the end of the run. And I didn’t hurt which is not a matter of course nowadays. Photos from Sam.
Next year there will be another try. Winking

Citytour Madrid

On Sunday we travelled by car to Madrid which is about 350 kilometers further inland.

The weather was sunny and we could watch the different landscapes. Madrid was like an „old friend“, since we had Nadine with us who speaks Spanish and knew all the good places to be Happy
There we also met the guest-family during her Au-pair stay two years ago. Monday was the final shopping trip for Nadine while Marianne and me visited the town center (Sol).

Here I saw these policemen on their horses (more photos from the Citytour).

Citytour Valencia

As an xmas gift I was invited to a city trip to Valencia and Madrid. From Friday 14. January until Sunday we visited Valencia. This beautiful city is situated on the Mediterranean coast. There is an interesting mix of the old and the new. Especially notable is the „The city of Arts and Sciences“ (Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias) in the old riverbed Turia.

We have also visited the new harbor that was built for the 32. America’s cup in 2007 (see the photos on Flickr).

Heinkel He-219 Uhu (1:72)

a long-term project is nearing its end Winking this model was sitting on my bench for almost eight years now awaiting its painting. During the xmas vacation I tackled this tricky job.

I did this model already at the age of 14 but it ended in a mess. When Tamiya showed the Heinkel He-219 in the scale 1:48 my decision was clear: building the „Uhu“ again but in 1:72 and as close as possible to the Tamiya kit. I bought the best possible kit around, the DML Dragon ‚Golden Wing Series’ He219A-7 along with all the various aftermarket sets that make sense. In 2003 I finished the cockpit part with additional details.

For me the most critical part was the painting of the mottles at the top of the model. During the last years I could improve my airbrush equipment and skills a little bit. And so the model gets its painting last week. Now it needs only a little weathering and some kind of diorama around it but this shouldn’t take another eight years. Stay tuned ..