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Author Topic: Is it just me getting old  (Read 6475 times)

w3526602

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Re: Is it just me getting old
« Reply #30 on: September 14, 2019, 09:16:10 AM »

Hi,

Sorry ... At RAF Weeton (Blackpool) we had a corporal know as "Sweat" (short for Sweatman). A smashing bloke, always had a smile. Apparently he knocked out a well known boxer (while he was doing his Nation Service) in the ring

Sweat reckoned that if he hit you, he could hit you twice more ... while you were falling. I never asked him to show me. I think Sweat was A4G4, due to his flat-feet. ;-). I think A4G1 means you can fly anywhere as a passenger, and serve anywhere with your feet on the ground. I presume the A4 means you can't fly anywhere. Happy to be corrected.

602
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Porkscratching

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Re: Is it just me getting old
« Reply #31 on: September 14, 2019, 07:09:42 PM »

Were the RAF so bothered about flat feet then? I can see the point for infantry soldiers, but RAF trades men can't see it mattered too much ???..
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w3526602

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Re: Is it just me getting old
« Reply #32 on: September 15, 2019, 05:42:33 AM »

Were the RAF so bothered about flat feet then?

Hi Porkscratching,

I theory?

1958 -1967 - We did a week of GRT (Ground Defence Training) every year, with one day spent on the range, poop off a few rounds with WW1 Lee Enfield .303 rifles, Bren guns, and Stens. I never wore my issue PT shorts after the two months Basic Training.

I suspect the RAF regime was softer than the Army (and Navy?) versions. We'd double out of the gym, leaving man shaped puddles of sweat on the floor, and do two road runs ... 5 miles after 4 weeks, and 10 miles after 8 weeks (generally singing).

Aged 19, time for National Service (for some reason they asked me "when I'd like to come?") I had a 32" chest, and weighed 9 stone ... but think nothing of cycling from South Croydon to Brighton and back ... but didn't everybody? Our gang used to follow the "Old Crocks" (veteran cars)  down to Brighton every November (in shorts) ... sitting on a "crutch creaser" of a saddle, for that long in that cold, did worrying things to one's anatomy. Arrive home, have a meal, don something warmer, and back out on the bike to meet my mates. I would stand still while my contemporaries punched me hard, in the gut.  A consultant recently told me that I was an athlete .. I didn't see it that way, at the time.

And then I met Barbara. Within a year I was approaching 10 stone (140lbs).

I turned 80 last March. 45" chest (belly might be bigger), weighing in at about 100kg. I'll let you do the conversions. ??? I can't remember when I last had a cold or flu' ... my body has now found more exotic ailments. The latest was the Quack diagnosing me with TI (?) aka "Mini Strokes". The consultant told me the Quack was wrong ... seemed impressed with my "70" pulse rate.

The Diabetic nurse said I was 60 thingies ... not diabetic yet, but close to the 65 danger level. I followed her advice, and cut down on my intake of Mars bars ... I haven't thrown a wobbly for several weeks. They used to hit me every day. Scary!

I mentioned to Barbara that I had asked the nurse about denture cleaning tablets being the culprit? Barbara "done a Google", and promptly told me to stop using them. Hmm! Both items are still on her shopping list. Should I be worried? Does she still love me?

My advice? Don't grow old! It's not nice.

I'll stop rabbiting on now.

602
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Porkscratching

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Re: Is it just me getting old
« Reply #33 on: September 15, 2019, 09:12:33 AM »

I try not to grow old 602, but hey I've still got the mental age of about 15... :-X
Curiously I still weigh about 10 stone, but i suppose I'm one of those old blokes who are just destined to look like Steptoe..
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geoff

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Re: Is it just me getting old
« Reply #34 on: September 15, 2019, 09:40:45 AM »

..... Sweat ......

I used to work with an electrician called " sweat " and he really lived up to his name. He was the slowest moving bloke I've ever met and even with production managers screaming for him to get to an expensive machine / system breakdown he never altered his pace.
If anyone ever perfected the " electricians walk " it was him.

  RIP my friend  :first
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w3526602

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Re: Is it just me getting old
« Reply #35 on: September 15, 2019, 09:55:37 AM »

Hi,

I think I've already mentioned the Bloodhound electricians at RAAF Butterworth ... always had one hand in their pocket - something to do with planning the route their amps would take to earth, avoiding their heart.

One Sparky was even able to baffle an officer ... something to do with needing to sit down and read a newspaper while in the RADAR tower.

602
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Big Rich

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Re: Is it just me getting old
« Reply #36 on: September 17, 2019, 09:21:25 PM »

My series 3 had an irish registration on it when i got it SIW**** which came of a moped originally, now on its original plate DSC***W, registered in dunfermline.
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w3526602

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Re: Is it just me getting old
« Reply #37 on: September 19, 2019, 08:28:08 AM »

Hi,

I don't know about flat feet, but colour blindness could prevent you being a driver ... an airfield at night is not the place to have problems identifying a red light. And I suspect that WAAFs (strictly WRAF nowadays) were not allowed to do Duty Driver at night.

OT ... walking Wilkie (an excuse to gorge myself on blackberries) the other day, I got chatting to a young bloke, also picking blackberries. It turned out he's an Engineering Officer in the RAF ... a Squadron Leader, no less.

Do you regard yourself as my equal, SIR? Then why don't you treat me like one? Whatever, he seemed a nice enough bloke ... apart from asking if I was an SAC? Ha! I got the three bladed propeller on my sleeve in 1959, swapped it for an inverted stripe in 1963.

An 'erk was walking down the camp road, when a woman drew his attention to the thingy on her newly commissioned husband's shoulder, wanted to know why the 'erk hadn't saluted her hero. The 'erk examined the badge of rank .... "Well, it is only a little one!"

602
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Romahomepete

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Re: Is it just me getting old
« Reply #38 on: September 19, 2019, 09:50:00 AM »

My mum was a WAAF driver during the war, most of the time she was stationed at Little Staunton near At Neots..

She drove everything including the picket truck.

She used to drive the buses and trucks that delivered and collected the aircrews to and from their aircraft.

Although it was forbidden she also drove the tractors towing the loaded bomb dollies to the aircraft and also the petrol bowsers.

She trained as a driver at Blackpool which I presume was RAF Weston?

She finished her service with an all groups licence and was the best driver I have ever been with.  She made driving my land rover look easy from the very first time she drove it, she never caught second gear but did say that it would be a better gearbox if there was no synchromesh on 3rd and 4th.

Peter
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Porkscratching

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Re: Is it just me getting old
« Reply #39 on: September 19, 2019, 11:08:54 AM »

My gran was an ambulance driver in WW1 with the army and WW2 in the London blitz, she tried to teach my grandpa to drive, he was hopeless and couldn't get the hang of it at all.. I always mention this when my mates mock " women drivers.."  ;)
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w3526602

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Re: Is it just me getting old
« Reply #40 on: September 19, 2019, 03:46:02 PM »



Hi Peter,

That would have been RAF WEETON, the RAF training camp for drivers and mechanics, and air-frame fitters.

When I arrived there, the course was over subscribed, so the gave us a "ballot" test (tick one of five boxes). I was one of the top five, so got shoved into a class that were halfway through their 13 week course. I must have done something right, cos I was kept on as permanent staff (now an AC1), two weeks later i was given my LAC propellor (two blades), and a couple of months after that, a quick trade test earned me a three bladed prop, showing I was an SAC. For some reason, they moved me out of the servicing hanger, into the  driving school ... where I borrowed a Standard Vanguard ...; which was the Co's favourite. (Chiefie covered for me). My job was to check every truck that was put U/S, fix it I could, with sending it to the servicing hanger as a last resort.

Wednesday was Sports Afternoon, but went on the Miscellaneous Driving Course, mixing it with the trams in Blackpool in a Bedford S 3-tonner. Nobody ever queried why I was road testing the same trucks that I was having driving lessons in. ??? Whatever, five afternoons and I took my test in A Bedford SL 3-tonner, in Blackpool, in the middle of the holiday season. The Ministry qualified examiner gave me a pass, despite me touching a kerb in the three point turn. So I passed my driving test twice inside 18 months.

I volunteered for a posting in the sun, spent 12 months at RAF Sharjah (think Dubai when it was built from palm leaves).

Next step up the ladder was Junior Technician ... usually awarded after a six months course at Weeton. I didn't fancy going back to "trainee" status, so asked for a direct board ... three intensive days of exams, one day of which was playing silly so-and-so's with files. I got Dad to "borrow" me new files and hack-saw blades from the Ford Axle Plant Tool Room. Whatever, I passed.

I took my Corporal Tech exam at RAAF Butterworth (Malaya) six months before demob. I assume my "pass" was sent to Admin, before anybody realised I had "taken aback" a 10,000cc" Leyland Hippo" engine. The examiner handed me the injector pump, told me to fit it.  To set the engine at the right point, you turn a big hand wheel under the flywheel, then slowly rotate the engine until a plunger drops into a hole in the flywheel. After that, it's easy, using a 19/20 tooth vernier coupling between the engine and the  injector pump. Ahem! I couldn't turn the big hand wheel, so assumed it had become used to being where it was. The judicious application of a Stiltson wrench moved it slightly, but obviously not enough. Pause for thought ... Ah, I remember now ... you are supposed to pull the hand-wheel out before turning it. Ooops! Whatever, the engine started first touch, but judging by the smoke rings coming out of the exhaust, the timing was very retarded. I'm guessing I'd bent the timing pin. Still, never mind, they gave me my second stripe.  :cheers

602
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