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Sixty years on, the B-52 is still going strong
CNET ^ | April 15, 2012 | by Jonathan E. Skillings

Posted on 04/15/2012 6:32:45 PM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer

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1 posted on 04/15/2012 6:32:56 PM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer
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To: Oldeconomybuyer

Good ol’ American know how!


2 posted on 04/15/2012 6:37:07 PM PDT by rfreedom4u (Just because someone thinks it's a good idea doesn't make it legal.)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer

Always loved watching them take off from Carswell AFB in Ft Worth. Two B-52s, followed by a KC-135. Their saggy wings would gradually lift as they reached take off speed. Hard to see much after that, though. Buffers were pretty smoky.


3 posted on 04/15/2012 6:38:22 PM PDT by edpc (Wilby 2012)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer

I’m sure she was a fine bird in her time, but I’m also pretty sure she should have been retired L-O-N-G ago.


4 posted on 04/15/2012 6:40:37 PM PDT by The Duke
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To: Oldeconomybuyer



5 posted on 04/15/2012 6:41:22 PM PDT by left that other site
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Photobucket
6 posted on 04/15/2012 6:42:28 PM PDT by EGPWS (Trust in God, question everyone else)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer

>>Along with the ICBM, it was one of the defining pieces of military technology during the Cold War: the B-52 bomber.

Hey, what about the SSBN, which is the only leg of the strategic deterrent triad still viable?!?

41 for Freedom!


7 posted on 04/15/2012 6:45:02 PM PDT by Bryanw92 (Sic semper tyrannis)
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To: The Duke
Why? To be replaced by what? The B52 is essentially only the second generation of metal clad bombers after the B17/B24/25 WWII era generation. Yeah, we had the B36 and B47, impressive craft in their own right, but they never made the impact the B52 did.

Like the battleship, the B52 represents the apex of evolution of a system. It would take a saltatory leap to render it obsolete. The B1 and B2 are out there, but when we needed a craft to loiter around the Afghan plain, only one airplane filled the bill.

8 posted on 04/15/2012 6:49:35 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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To: edpc
I'm a mile from the threshold of the former Carswell AFB. It's now a Naval Air Station/Joint Reserve Base.

Born and grew up here, and now I'm back. Saw/heard Hustlers crack a bedroom window going supersonic.

Saw the MITO take-offs. One BUFF after another, water injection on, roaring. I was probably 6, standing in my back yard, fingers in my ears, spring in the air, and feeling my chest cavity viberate from the sound.

And they were smokey, back in the day.

I did wind up in the AF eventually. TAC, not SAC, first time around.

/johnny

9 posted on 04/15/2012 6:50:27 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: The Duke
Why get rid of a winner that's cost effective?

/johnny

10 posted on 04/15/2012 6:51:51 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: EGPWS
Think about this: That awesome craft was designed by guys with slide rules intead of computers.

God is in his heaven and all is right with the world.

11 posted on 04/15/2012 6:52:33 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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To: EGPWS
Think about this: That awesome craft was designed by guys with slide rules instead of computers.

God is in his heaven and all is right with the world.

12 posted on 04/15/2012 6:52:53 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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To: JRandomFreeper

bump johnny #9.


13 posted on 04/15/2012 6:55:16 PM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer (The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money.)
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To: hinckley buzzard

There’s something else about the Buff, as evidenced from EGPWS’ pic above:

The B-52 isn’t subtle. There’s no stealth. There’s no “environmental impact assessment.” From the moment the throttles go forward, the outward message of a B-52 rolling off the runway is:

“We are coming to kill you. We don’t care who knows. We’re not going to be crafty, stealthy, quiet or nuanced. When the bomb bay doors open, you will see a seemingly limitless succession of bombs drop out of this beast upon your head. Enjoy your last moments.”

Look back at what happened when Nixon finally bombed North Vietnam with B-52’s instead of attack or fighter aircraft. The Commies came back to the table right damn quick...

If we practiced a foreign policy of “speak softly and carry a big stick,” the B-52 is the biggest, ugliest piece of wood one could carry around.


14 posted on 04/15/2012 6:56:06 PM PDT by NVDave
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To: Oldeconomybuyer

15 posted on 04/15/2012 6:56:35 PM PDT by the invisib1e hand (I think in about 5 - no, 4 - years I'll have had enough.)
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To: hinckley buzzard
That awesome craft was designed by guys with slide rules instead of computers.

That's not possible, according to the bean-counters.

I once worked out an engineering solution on a quadrille pad with a pencil at a meeting, and it included some greek characters! Oh, my! Basic algebra. No integration or anything.

I presented the solution and got told by the bean counters that I would have to explain some of it, and they wouldn't sign off until they understood it.

3 weeks later....it was the same answer down to 4 decimal places.

/johnny

16 posted on 04/15/2012 7:03:28 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
That feat of longevity reflects both regular maintenance and timely upgrades

There are other factors as well ... the "H" BUFF, or "Cadillac" was the penultimate penetration version of the type. It was optimized for low-level operations from the start, with a stronger wing and fuselage structure than it's older sisters.

Additionally, it entered service after the bomber-leg of the triad had switched from airborne alert (many planes in the air, loaded with nukes, at all times) to ground-based alert - so most of the "H" fleet spent the first 2/3rds of their careers mostly on the ground being pampered, rather than racking up flight hours. Besides missing airborne alert (which saw the wings flown off the earlier marks up to the "G", as well as the B-47 fleet) the "H" also didn't see service in Vietnam or Desert Storm (aside: whenever Libs used to gloat that the B-1B didn't see service in Desert Storm, the quick/easy response was that it was sitting nuke alert just like all the "H" model BUFFs -- it was the "G" that went to war).

So when the "H"s switched to the conventional mission with the retirement of the "G"s in the 1990s, there was this near-perfect convergence of chronologically "old" but very low-flight-time, exceptionally strong airframes that were generally flying missions (combat or training) at a much higher altitude (since the low-level penetration mission is long-gone) then they were designed for - which further served to limit airframe fatigue.

The same thing is true of both the B-1B and the B-2A fleet btw. Those aircraft were optimized for low-level performance as well and their current operational usage means that we'll get a heck of a lot more flight hours out of them than originally projected.
17 posted on 04/15/2012 7:03:46 PM PDT by tanknetter
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To: edpc

Likewise and more. The Buffs used to fly almost directly overhead on their landing pattern for Carswell. I lived just west (1/4 mile or so)of the primary runway and just north of the West Freeway. I could almost count rivets as they flew overhead. Always a treat to see them as well as comforting to know they were always on the job.


18 posted on 04/15/2012 7:07:40 PM PDT by miele man
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To: rfreedom4u

Slide Rules Rule!


19 posted on 04/15/2012 7:08:57 PM PDT by Paladin2
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To: JRandomFreeper

Most amazing thing I ever saw there was a British Vulcan bomber in the ‘83 airshow. It performed maneuvers I never believed possible in an aircraft of its class.


20 posted on 04/15/2012 7:10:36 PM PDT by edpc (Wilby 2012)
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To: tanknetter
It was optimized for low-level operations from the start, with a stronger wing and fuselage structure than it's older sisters.

Whoof! Take your breath away. There is a high hill north of NAS/JRB (KNFW) and one airshow, a BUFF rolled through about 100 ft above the hill (and my head) at about .6 mach. Airspace was closed so the speed limit was moot.

I opened my mouth and screamed to try to equalize pressures. I also went home and changed pants. Some frequencies cause involuntary defecation.

Having a B-52 that you never heard show up over your left shoulder moving at 300+ ground speed at 100 ft. doesn't help.

I cleared the hill, and the only bomb dropped was in my shorts.

/johnny

21 posted on 04/15/2012 7:11:15 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: EGPWS

I lived and worked around Elsworth AFB in South Dakota. We used to watch the Buffs pilots practicing landing and takeoffs. The noise of the motors on the takeoffs were tremendous. We were twenty miles away and the roar was so very loud even at that distance. Then the big plane would circle around to land and pass right over our heads


22 posted on 04/15/2012 7:15:01 PM PDT by South Dakota (shut up and drill)
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To: miele man
Sometimes, since the runway is rated for them, a BUFF will come back home and shoot touch and goes for a half day.

I hear them, and I know them. And Icget a warm fuzzy.

I always go out and watch them and listen to them on the VHF. They still fly around here sometimes. Makes me feel like a kid.

/johnny

23 posted on 04/15/2012 7:16:12 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: tanknetter
Tanks for the 'splaination.

Makes plenty of sense. They shoulda bought more wings.

24 posted on 04/15/2012 7:17:30 PM PDT by Paladin2
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To: the invisib1e hand

Fifteen miles down the Atlanta highway.....


25 posted on 04/15/2012 7:20:57 PM PDT by DBrow
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To: The Duke
I’m sure she was a fine bird in her time, but I’m also pretty sure she should have been retired L-O-N-G ago.

I'm betting that YOU should have been retired long ago.
26 posted on 04/15/2012 7:32:54 PM PDT by mkjessup (Finley Peter Dunne- "Politics ain't beanbag")
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To: zot

BUFF ping


27 posted on 04/15/2012 7:33:10 PM PDT by GreyFriar (Spearhead - 3rd Armored Division 75-78 & 83-87)
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To: JRandomFreeper

One of the most amazing things about the BUFF ( and I wish I had the expertise to explain it correctly is, I believe it’s called “crabbing”.. its alibilty to land with the wheels parallel to the runway centerline, whereas the plane is as much as 45 degress offset....everytime I see a clip of this, it blows my mind..


28 posted on 04/15/2012 7:40:50 PM PDT by ken5050 (The ONLY reason to support Mitt: The Mormon Tabernacle Choir will appear at the WH each Christmas)
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To: tanknetter
whenever Libs used to gloat that the B-1B didn't see service in Desert Storm, the quick/easy response was that it was sitting nuke alert

The accurate response is some of the B-1Bs were on nuke alert. However, the majority of the fleet was grounded on 20 December 1990 due to disc problems in the F101 and malfunctions of the DAS. Incorporation of and qualification for dropping conventional ordnance had not yet occurred either.

29 posted on 04/15/2012 7:44:48 PM PDT by A.A. Cunningham (Barry Soetoro is a Kenyan communist)
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To: ken5050
I'm not going to look it up, but it's not 45 degrees. It's more like 20-something.

The B-52 has non-standard landing gear with 2 sets of bogies fore and aft, and outrigger retractable wheels in the wing tips.

The main bogies can indeed be steered so that the aircraft can crab into a cross-wind, and yet land with the bogies rolling straight and true.

Which is important, because the sidewall pressure on a crosswind landing is harsh.

That was classified for a LONG time.

/johnny

30 posted on 04/15/2012 7:46:58 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: JRandomFreeper

Many thanks for the info..I’ll try to find some vids and post the links..


31 posted on 04/15/2012 7:50:42 PM PDT by ken5050 (The ONLY reason to support Mitt: The Mormon Tabernacle Choir will appear at the WH each Christmas)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer

BUFFs forever!


32 posted on 04/15/2012 7:52:28 PM PDT by Slings and Arrows (You can't have Ingsoc without an Emmanuel Goldstein.)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
It is an amazing airplane.

Can you imagine the day when it is still flying and there isn't anyone who was alive on the day they first took flight?

33 posted on 04/15/2012 7:54:19 PM PDT by FreeAtlanta (Liberty and Justice for ALL)
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To: JRandomFreeper

Same story for me, except with B-36s.


34 posted on 04/15/2012 7:56:31 PM PDT by DuncanWaring (The Lord uses the good ones; the bad ones use the Lord.)
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To: South Dakota

I grew up in SE Montana in late 70s / early 80s and once while hiking in the hills outside of town I looked down at a B52 flying radar evasion missions.


35 posted on 04/15/2012 7:57:10 PM PDT by WMarshal (Bitter Clinger)
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To: JRandomFreeper
yup... and for years absolutely NO pictures were allowed to be published from head on or behind during take off or landings because if it
36 posted on 04/15/2012 7:57:29 PM PDT by Chode (American Hedonist - *DTOM* -ww- NO Pity for the LAZY)
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To: ken5050

castering main mounts

37 posted on 04/15/2012 7:59:32 PM PDT by A.A. Cunningham (Barry Soetoro is a Kenyan communist)
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To: Travis McGee; Squantos

Ping.


38 posted on 04/15/2012 8:00:27 PM PDT by DuncanWaring (The Lord uses the good ones; the bad ones use the Lord.)
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To: edpc; JRandomFreeper
Most amazing thing I ever saw there was a British Vulcan bomber in the ‘83 airshow. It performed maneuvers I never believed possible in an aircraft of its class.

A BUFF can do stuff you'd never believe for the type as well. I saw a movie of a guy doing some amazing aerobatics in one at very low airspeed just barely off the ground, till he rolled it too far over and went in. He was rolled like 90 degrees when he did.

39 posted on 04/15/2012 8:03:34 PM PDT by Still Thinking (Freedom is NOT a loophole!)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
"Sixty years on, the B-52 is still going strong"

I've a friend who was in Nam. He told stories about how he would wake up sometimes because he could feel the ground shake from carpet bombing by what he called Beefers. He said it was strange because sometimes you would feel it before you hear it and sometimes you wouldn't hear it at all but definitely feel it.

40 posted on 04/15/2012 8:09:55 PM PDT by Mad Dawgg (If you're going to deny my 1st Amendment rights then I must proceed to the 2nd one...)
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To: DuncanWaring
We had one of those in the lake. The memorial is on base, with a honking big prop as part of the memorial. Not far from the last unit I served at. Stoll distance to read and pray for men that fly and fight.

I was very, very young when they were flying and was more interested in mammary glands (as a food source) than aircraft.

I do remember they were loud, also.

/johnny

41 posted on 04/15/2012 8:17:03 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: mkjessup; JRandomFreeper; hinckley buzzard
I'm betting that YOU should have been retired long ago.

Actually, my day is certainly coming. And my credentials as a 'Cold Warrior' are quite respectable. However, there is no denying that some of these older technologies are antique.

You guys remind me of the way I used to feel about the retirement of the Dew Line up in northern Canada. But, one day I realized that satellite coverage had simply rendered the Dew Line obsolete.

Maybe there still is a role for the old girl, but it's just as likely that the reason she's being kept alive is the same reason that other worthy defense systems are being scuttled ... P-O-L-I-T-I-C-S.

I do, however, miss my OTH radar on the east and west coasts of the US, which may someday prove to be a mistake with earthshaking consequences. :(

42 posted on 04/15/2012 8:23:07 PM PDT by The Duke
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To: Still Thinking

I saw that video. There is that instant when you start to yell “more thrust, more thrust” and then you see it’s hopeless, he missed his chance, gravity wins. Very sad.


43 posted on 04/15/2012 8:30:40 PM PDT by antiRepublicrat
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To: antiRepublicrat

Yup, on both counts.


44 posted on 04/15/2012 8:32:07 PM PDT by Still Thinking (Freedom is NOT a loophole!)
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To: The Duke
What has rendered the BUFF obsolete?

It can run at .98 Mach number. With a big load of bombs, and monster amount of fuel.

We've changed tactics so we own the air now, not like in Viet Nam (Damn McNamara and Johnson) before they go in.

It works. Ain't broke, nothing cheaper is better in all the roles.... Keep it, in my book.

And my days of studying war are long gone. I was a frigging cook in my last enlistment because of my hearing.

So that's what a cook thinks about the B-52.

/johnny

45 posted on 04/15/2012 8:32:22 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: the invisib1e hand

That redhead has got some big....hair.


46 posted on 04/15/2012 8:34:58 PM PDT by Krankor
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
From a buddy of mine, drawn in the late 80's, when we were both flying B-52s. . .
Fries001
47 posted on 04/15/2012 8:36:07 PM PDT by Salgak (The Energizer Border: I **DARE** you to cross it. . . .)
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To: EGPWS

I knew somebody would post a good pic of 8 engines a-burning!


48 posted on 04/15/2012 8:37:02 PM PDT by citizen (Sherlock Holmes as Romney might now exclaim "The game's afoot!" Romney now needs his Dr. Watson V-ot)
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To: JRandomFreeper
Damn McNamara and Johnson

Bears repeating. BTW, did you realize that unless "Barack Obama" means "statist Marxist putz" in Kenyan, Johnson was the most accurately named President?

49 posted on 04/15/2012 8:39:44 PM PDT by Still Thinking (Freedom is NOT a loophole!)
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To: JRandomFreeper
"One BUFF after another, water injection on, roaring. I was probably 6, standing in my back yard, fingers in my ears, spring in the air, and feeling my chest cavity viberate from the sound."

I visited a childhood friend after he enlisted in the Air Force. As A kid he was always fascinated by my bedroom ceiling because it was festooned with model airplanes. I got real sick when I was young with scarlet fever and then soon after chicken pocks and then some nasty coughing sickness. My mom to keep me entertained and quiet would sit at a table near my bed and build all these wonderful model airplanes. One of favs was the gigantic B52. I like it so much I would get mom to take it down just so I could hold it (took both hands)

My air force fried remembered my love of the BUFF and when I visited took me to where I could observe a B52 starting up and then taking off. I asked why we were so far away And can't we get closer. (IIRC about 60 yards or so) He informed me weren't allowed to get closer and besides YOU DON"T WANT TO BE CLOSER. In a few minutes I understood why.

I've seen and heard some awe inspiring Loud events Rock Concerts, a Live Fire Exercise at a tank training area. Even got to see a live fire exercise of a destroyer and a ship defense system called the R2D2. And then there is the memorable Goal Line stand in Cleveland Stadium when the Browns held the Bengals on four consecutive downs. (I could have fired a 12 gauge right next to my wife's ear and she would never have heard it because of the crowd noise. It was feral in nature, the combined voices of 80,000 people in a rage.) BUT nothing comes close to that sound I FELT from the B52 when it got to full on startup of all those engines and then taxied out and hit the thrust!

Its one of those things you can't explain. You just have to experience it and when you tell another who has also went through it they nod knowingly.

50 posted on 04/15/2012 8:43:23 PM PDT by Mad Dawgg (If you're going to deny my 1st Amendment rights then I must proceed to the 2nd one...)
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