Build Updates








We are now approaching the end of the school year.  Students have been sitting exams and completing assessments and the final surge of the build before summer break is in progress.  Some schools have finished for the year and some are close to finishing.  The updates below are the latest as of 27th November 2020.

The Build team wishes to thank all the hard working students, teachers and mentors and we look forward to seeing our plane come together in 2021.

Stay safe everyone.




LYNDALE SECONDARY COLLEGE – Update received from Brian Ham (Project Manager)

Because of the Covid 19 restrictions, we have not been able to conduct any workshop sessions with the students.

The students have still been meeting online for 1.5 hours every Tuesday and Thursday and Ray Taylor and myself have been joining in to help with guidance and information.

This month the motivation has been assisted by some guest speakers attending the online classes.

  1. Kathy Mexted talked about her life in aviation and her role as editor of Airsport. She also spoke about journalism and is now mentoring one of the students in writing articles.
  2. Young pilot, Jack Ferguson from NSW spoke to us about his love of aviation and achieving his license at a very early age.
  3. John Smith joined us with a power point presentation of the construction process of his Lancair Legacy and how he involved the students from a local school in Perth.

Restrictions have been eased and the students classes have resumed.

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BURNSIDE STATE HIGH SCHOOL – Update received from mentor John Butler

This is the final report on the Sport Aircraft Association Australia Youth Build and Fly Program at Burnside State High School for 2020.

It seems like no sooner had we returned from school holidays at the end of term three, we were winding down the program for the end of the year. Further complicating the program were the various assessments and exams that the students had to complete for the academic year. It was certainly a very busy time for mentors and students.

The program advanced rapidly in the space of a few short weeks, however, as little pieces started to become aircraft components with recognisable aircraft shapes. The students could start to see some progress for their efforts – at last!

There were some anxious moments with countersinking and solid rivet squeezing for all of the elements of the build, as all components had some of these tasks to be completed prior to assembly of the components. The mentors put in some extra effort prior to the classes to ensure that their skills were up to the task and that the students could get working on their component as soon as they assembled in the workshop. This extra effort paid dividends with students ramping up their involvement, interest and motivation and maximising their workshop time.

There was a “buzz” in the workshop at the start of each session, with students poring over plans and instructions with the inevitable “what’s next” question. It was interesting to observe the natural leaders emerge from this process, as students just wanted to dive in and get on with it. It certainly galvanised the mentors and the build sessions became full of energetic, motivated students pushing to get things done before the holidays arrived.

The final day was a bit of an anti-climax, with some students distracted by exams and assessments – and the prospect of eight weeks of holidays. But structures continued to get built and progress was made.

The build components are now in hibernation in their storage for the holidays and will emerge again in 2021 for further attention and completion. The same students that started the build will complete it, so the crew will be back in action, as will the mentors.

It has been a very satisfying and enjoyable year for the mentors, notwithstanding the effects of pandemic lock downs and the disruptions to the program and the school curriculum.

We are all looking forward to 2021!!

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MUELLER COLLEGE – Update received from Melissa Chambers (Teacher)

Mueller College will be posting updates on the build on the Mueller Aviation facebook page


Mueller Connect


The Mueller Mustang team finished deburing the top wing skins (W-1203B,W-1201B and W-1202B) and then prepared them for priming after which they were then primed. After that, the tie down hole on the outboard top wing skin W-1203B was enlarged. The students then clecoed the top wing skins to wing skeleton and also clecoed the wing walk doubler on to W-1201 and W-1201B wing skins. Finally, the team riveted all top wing skins and wing walk doubler after removing the clecos in order. The other Mueller Mustang team finished preparing Flaperon A-1201A,B and C leading edge skins, primed the skins and clecoed them to the flaperon skeleton, then riveted all leading edge flaperon skins. Flaperon competed, happy days 🎉😊! This is the last week of students at school however most of the Mustangs are coming in during the holidays to complete the wing – next Wednesday will be the wing tip. A couple of weeks more will see everything completed.

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ASHDALE SECONDARY SCHOOL – Update from Lainey Bradley National Co-ordinator SAAA Build Project

The Ashdale Aviators are continuing to make progress on the fuselage.  We are very close to getting the Centre Bulk head and baggage floor together and the fuselage will start taking shape.  The students have just finished exams and we are finishing the term with some extended build sessions.  We are hoping to do some building in the holidays once everyone has had a well earned rest.

Ashdale have been awarded the WA Governor STEM award for 2020 – Congratulations to you all.

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Welcome Narromine High School!  Narromine will be involved in the integration of the plane once all components are built.  In the meantime they have a RV7 empennage project to keep them involved.

Here is the first update from Project Manager – John MacCallum

At the end of September I met with 6 pupils from year 10 at Narromine High School and presented to them an outline of the Youth Build Project.  I took along some photos and some components from the Rv7 to show them and they all seemed interested to become involved.

As School has returned for the last term of the year, I will see what times the school can make available. I did express a preference for a couple of double periods a week if that is possible and I will have to see what the school can organise.

I have received the missing Empennage Skins and Spars from Vans plus some practice Wing section kits and a Toolbox kit.   The SAAA Narromine Workshop has a few tools and I have a few tools I can lend.  We will have enough Clecos from my supply, but we will need another two air drills and 4 pairs of Cleco Pliers.


Temora were going to build the Murphy Rebel.  After inspection, we were not able to pursue the build.  Our National Council made the decision to start our second build a little earlier than anticipated and the school are going to be building an RV12 empennage.  Teacher Brett Inch and Regional Project Managers Malcolm Bennett and Mike Holloway are thrilled and are working together to prepare for the arrival of the empennage due around February 2021 all being well.

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