Date of Birth: March 25th, 1959.
Flight hours: +3000 hours.
When he was fifteen, he started his studies to become a butcher. His hobby at that time was the breeding of birds.
He saw his first Tipsy Nipper during a meeting at Balen-Keiheuvel back in 1974. It was love at first sight.
At the age of seventeen, Raymond started to fly model aeroplanes. That is when he first got in contact with real aviation. Some years later he moved to Antwerp, where he joined the Aviation Society of Antwerp vzw and became a member of the local spotters community.
Nine years later he entered a private pilot course and bought his first aircraft, the Auster Arrow J2 OO-ABV. Raymond was by then known as "The Flying Butcher".
The first Tipsy Nipper came into his life when he bought OO-VAG in 1986, although he could not fly it because of his length!
In 1988 he founded the Belgian Nipper Aircraft Club.
In 1989 he bought Tipsy Trainer G-AISB which he had registered in Belgium as OO-EOT, as a tribute to Ernest Oscar Tips.
During the following years, he restored several Tipsy Nippers and modified them in such a way that at last, during 1992, he could fit himself into a Nipper cockpit. This made him the 'biggest' Nipper pilot, he is after all 1.98m.
In 1993, he flew his Tipsy Trainer to Czech Republic. During this trip Raymond flew this magnificent aircraft for over 1000 nm.
In 2000, Raymond started as professional engineer at an aviation company based at Grimbergen airfield. He later became a licensed aircraft engineer. During his spare time Raymond restored the Piper PA 18-95 Super Cub OO-VIK to a very high standard. He won several prices with this aircraft including the ‘Best Contemporary Aircraft’ Award at the annual PFA-rally at Cranfield in 2002.
2003 was the year that has changed his professional life. Raymond founded his own company: R.A.R. Raymond’s Aircraft Restoration Bvba. Several projects passed through his hands including Piper PA 18-95 Super Cub - OO-HBG, Tipsy T.66 Nipper - OO-LEO, Fokker DVIII - N111EV, Oberlechner Job HB-KEV,…
At present, he has flown over 1600 hours on 25 different types. His favourite planes are, of course all Tipsy, types, but also the DH.82A Tiger Moth, Waco UPF-7, Piper Cub, Stampe SV.4, N.A. T.6 Harvard and the Aeronca Chief.
During the summer of 2009 Raymond also flew the Fokker DR.1, owned by the Early Birds Foundation and normally on display in the Stampe and Vertongen Museum at Antwerp Airport.