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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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To: Mad Dawgg

A close friend of mine was a ‘52 pilot during Nam. When I came home from there, we ran into each other at a party. The first thing he asked after he learned where I’d been was what was it like to be on the ground when he and his fellow pilots were dropping all that metal? Enemy or not, I always pitied those poor suckers who caught the brunt of those massive loads. Yes, they surely could be felt and heard. Thankfully, my friend has long since made his peace with what his ordnance wrought.


51 posted on 04/15/2012 8:45:26 PM PDT by miele man
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To: JRandomFreeper

Not too shabby for a cook. (:^)


52 posted on 04/15/2012 8:47:11 PM PDT by miele man
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To: NVDave

Hear, hear! 100 percent agreement with you on this.


53 posted on 04/15/2012 8:48:53 PM PDT by miele man
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To: Mad Dawgg
Last year during the air show, we took an unexpected quick pressure rise within a few minutes.

Mach number is complex, and the F-18s that were doing their fast fly over flower formation (or whatever they call it) had just broken at about angels 10 and met back up midfield going everywhichaway.

One broke off low. Over my house. And dear Lord, the vapor trail hit the ground. Broke the sound barrier (not his fault, he was trying to run right at the edge and the pressure changed). Dust drifted down from the ceiling, a glass of water on the table jumped.

But that keeps us free. I dislike those that bitch about the noise.

And I pray for the men that fly and fight.

/johnny

54 posted on 04/15/2012 8:56:17 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: Salgak
Thank you for your service. I do pray for the men that fly and fight.

Personally, I don't like walking around military aircraft. They are dangerous, just sitting there. ;)

/johnny

55 posted on 04/15/2012 8:58:12 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: miele man
"Enemy or not, I always pitied those poor suckers who caught the brunt of those massive loads. Yes, they surely could be felt and heard."

He told me a story of his platoon going into a forward area that had been "Prepared" for the arrival of some bigwig (General or some politician) He said for 100's of yards in all directions all there was was churned up dirt. No vegetation at all just dirt. Which was astonishing cuz it was in the middle of Jungle/Forest He and his buddies first figured maybe SeaBees or some Armored Unit had flown in dozers and such using choppers. His Sgt. informed him it had been "Skyplowed" by BUFFs.

56 posted on 04/15/2012 9:00:39 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: ken5050
"...I believe it's called 'crabbing..."

Back in the 70's I was the first FAA controller allowed to take a KC135/B-52 fam trip.

Day one was briefings, day two a 15 hour B-52 flight, day three a six hour flight to refuel Buffs.

The highlights were low level oil burner routes in the mountains near La Junta, CO and the landing back at Kincheloe with a 40 degree crosswind.

I got to do some pretty cool things while in FAA, and that is certainly near the top of the list.

(Couple of others were photographing flight ops from port catwalk on Forrestal, and front row seat for a B-747 crash.)

57 posted on 04/15/2012 9:08:35 PM PDT by diogenes ghost
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To: GreyFriar

Thanks for the ping. See post 17 for a good explanation of why the H model has lasted so long.


58 posted on 04/15/2012 9:13:34 PM PDT by zot
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To: Mad Dawgg

Got that tee shirt only it was after some Arc Light runs. The smell of cordite and other “things” are unmistakable. Yes, lots of churned up dirt and trees. Urban and non-urban renewal at its quickest. Truly amazing to see.


59 posted on 04/15/2012 9:14:28 PM PDT by miele man
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To: diogenes ghost
And how did you feel as the KC-135 applied power, was a good way down the runway, and the ramp-rats in the blue van were going faster than you?

There is a good and sane reason I do not fly in military aircraft. They scare me. I can support them or the men that fly them. But don't ask me to do a walk around or sit in one.

/johnny

60 posted on 04/15/2012 9:18:00 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: edpc
Buffers were pretty smoky.

The article doesn't mention when they were upgraded from burning coal.

61 posted on 04/15/2012 9:19:45 PM PDT by Moonman62 (The US has become a government with a country, rather than a country with a government.)
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To: Still Thinking
"He was rolled like 90 degrees when he did."

That was a "hot shot" pilot that was breaking rules on purpose practicing for an airshow. His wings stalled at around 45 degrees, then continued rotating nose down to impact.

The airplane is great, but not at aerobatics. The Vulcan, because of it's configuration, was much better at low speed airwork.

62 posted on 04/15/2012 9:21:07 PM PDT by diogenes ghost
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To: diogenes ghost
That was a "hot shot" pilot that was breaking rules on purpose practicing for an airshow. His wings stalled at around 45 degrees, then continued rotating nose down to impact.

I know, but it amazed me that it was even possible (including the stuff he did that was recoverable before the fatal maneuver).

63 posted on 04/15/2012 9:23:56 PM PDT by Still Thinking (Freedom is NOT a loophole!)
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To: hinckley buzzard
"...Think about this: That awesome craft was designed by guys with slide rules instead of computers..."

Damn! Now I feel old - Log-Log-Duplex-Decitrig! It's prolly around here someplace .......................................... FRegards

64 posted on 04/15/2012 9:25:02 PM PDT by gonzo ( Buy more ammo, dammit! You should already have the firearms ... FRegards)
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To: miele man
Who do you think does airflow calculations for the vent system so that the front door of the restaurant opens? And all the smoke gets removed. ;)

/johnny

65 posted on 04/15/2012 9:26:54 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: The Duke

Respectfully disagree.

You create/buy cutting edge tech to own the air and supress surface to air and other anti-air assets.

Then you send the busses in at .98 mach to pulverize the ground. Add targetted long range munitions, and you don’t even need to fully own the air.

BFUBs suit the bill wonderfully. Still do, will until they literally start falling apart. And the replacement probably won’t do the job as well...


66 posted on 04/15/2012 9:30:51 PM PDT by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: The Duke
"I do, however, miss my OTH radar on the East and West coasts...."

Back in the mid 60's I was a radar tech working on the AN/SPS-2 system on USS Northampton CC-1 out of Norfolk. The 'Deuce' was electronically identical to a DEW Line radar, with a 20'x40' diamond parabolic antenna, stabilized for pitch and roll and perched VERY high on the ship.

If we were far enough at sea and tilted the antenna down, we could paint the entire East coast. Very cool.

But the damned thing used a LOT of power, and every time the snipes dropped the load on generators, we blew a klystron...took about three days to repair. It was eventually declared 'unfit for sea duty' and removed.

67 posted on 04/15/2012 9:33:44 PM PDT by diogenes ghost
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To: JRandomFreeper

Too funny!!! And I’m sure the smoke is from cooking and not the patrons’ weeds!!


68 posted on 04/15/2012 9:35:05 PM PDT by miele man
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To: gonzo
Sigh... I know where mine is. It's on my 'love-me' desk/wall with my medals and awards and newspaper articles and stuff.

A visitor last year picked it up and said: "This looks complicated, what is it for?"

I never answered. I just went to get another beer.

/johnny

69 posted on 04/15/2012 9:36:29 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: miele man
Texas no longer allows smoking in restaurants. And I guar-on-damn-tee that we make plenty of smoke back in the kitchen.

That's actually a calculation I've made several times. Including once in a military dining facility where there was a 'stuck' front door.

Took forever to get a real engineer to look at the numbers and the plain proof of a few millibars of vacuum compared to outside air pressure.

Simple changes in the make-up air vents, and all was good.

Cooks can do a lot.

/johnny

70 posted on 04/15/2012 9:41:53 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: diogenes ghost
I was a zoomie, not a squid.

Why were they called snipes? And what actually were they? Powerplant?

Always time for schooling for the ignorant.

/johnny

71 posted on 04/15/2012 9:43:46 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: diogenes ghost

The OTH was cool because it bounced off the ionosphere and “looked down” at the target, which is/was about the only way (other than pure dumb luck) to detect an incoming cruise missile (hence my previous “earthshaking” comment).


72 posted on 04/15/2012 9:46:27 PM PDT by The Duke
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To: edpc
Buffers were pretty smoky.

The last model, the H's aren't so smokey. Their engines are different than the other models (TF-33, verses J-57) but are still an old design, really just a modified version of the older J-57 with a fan stage or two. The newer engines, or a very similar commercial model, are so old that they've long since left most commercial service, and many reserve KC-135s, which originally also had J-57s, have been re-engined with the commercial variant, taken off old airliners. That wing flapping causes lots of fatigue problems in the fuselage. A BUFF on the ground looks all wrinkled, like the old gal she is.

73 posted on 04/15/2012 9:48:18 PM PDT by El Gato ("The second amendment is the reset button of the US constitution"-Doug McKay)
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To: El Gato
They sound the same. I may be half deaf, but I can pick out a B-52 vs a KC-135 vs a C-5 when stumbling stupid asleep.

They still sound like a B-52 after all these years.

/johnny

74 posted on 04/15/2012 9:51:52 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: JRandomFreeper
"....and the ramp-rats in the blue van were going faster than you?"

The crew on the Buff was VERY experienced, but the 135 had a young guy. It was a hot mid-day departure scheduled, we got to ops & he ran the numbers, said "holy shit", and called the command post and said we were too heavy to get off the ground and needed to offload some fuel. Command post said we could make it, so he had us hurry out and start engines to burn fuel before takeoff. Ran thru checklists several times, admitted he was looking for something wrong...eventually decided the wing trim tab actuators were working slow, so shut 'em down & get maintenance out (hoping the delay would allow the afternoon to cool down providing more thrust).

Well, the wing panels are off, guys swarming it, & I'm standing on the ramp in a jump suit with no rank on it, picking my nose and watching aF-117 takeoff, when a bird Col comes up, stares me in the eye and says "What's your rank mister?". I calmly looked him in the eye and said GS-14....what's yours?

He was taken aback for a moment, then said "Oh--you're the FAA guy". I admitted I were, he invited me in the command post to cool down, have a drink and wait for repairs.

When we finally took off I was really glad the pilot was a chicken, cuz I got a REAL good look at the over-run area....counting rosary beads.

75 posted on 04/15/2012 9:56:46 PM PDT by diogenes ghost
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To: JRandomFreeper

Snipes are the Navy engineering ratings....Boilermakers, Electricians, etc.


76 posted on 04/15/2012 10:00:15 PM PDT by diogenes ghost
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To: diogenes ghost
Thank you. More mysteries of the squids solved for me. Took forver to figure out the ranks.

And never call a Captain a Colonel... Ouch.

/johnny

77 posted on 04/15/2012 10:02:40 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: diogenes ghost
And don't get me started on rank vs. rating.... that was also a long time where the train don't come.

I finally figured it out after having it 'splained.

If I had grown up with it? I'd be fine.

But after the rivalry of the '80s, to get thrust back into a Joint Everything after 9/11. Learning quickly was the only good option.

I actually studied on the other services.

/johnny

78 posted on 04/15/2012 10:07:55 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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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.

Wrong Wrong Wrong. That beautiful beast is a bomb truck for convential arms. It can drop GPS guided bombs from great altitude. The GPS guided bombs will hit the intended target and the bad guy dies that day.

The B52 can also carry nuclear armed cruise missiles. The B52 can launch these missile hundreds of miles from the target. Those B52s will survive their mission, the target will not survive. The target will be a smoking cinder from a 250 kiloton fission fusion fission that the B52 delivered from a stand off distance.

High tech is great, but what is even better is low tech delivering the bang for a much lower price.m

79 posted on 04/15/2012 11:12:44 PM PDT by cpdiii (Deckhand, Roughneck, Mud Man, Geologist, Pilot, Pharmacist. THE CONSTITUTION IS WORTH DYING FOR!)
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To: edpc

First Vulcan I saw was at Lincoln AFB.. or more properly it was doing an air show there, but I saw it over my house. I was 10 or younger, didn’t know what it was and didn’t recognize the British roundel. Of course it’s a very unconventional looking thing, especially for circa 1960.

Scared me for a while until I figured out the roundel.

I think I was there, Carswell, for that ‘83 airshow. I was a reservist then, attached for “inactive duty” training to a reserve Intell training detachment. Was actually assigned as IMA at Foreign Technology Division at Wright Patterson. We used the SAC bomb wing’s Intell/Ops shop, along with some facilities of the reserve F-16 Wing. We also did miscellaneous work for both, mostly for the Bomb Wing.

Did you know there is a town in the old Soviet Union, now Uzbekistan, called Nukus. :) But AFAIK, we didn’t plan to.


80 posted on 04/15/2012 11:16:28 PM PDT by El Gato ("The second amendment is the reset button of the US constitution"-Doug McKay)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer

Never, ever felt anxiety.

Just immense pride and the B-52 was a VERY big symbol of that.

Fly on, BUFF.


81 posted on 04/15/2012 11:25:09 PM PDT by 98ZJ USMC
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To: FreeAtlanta
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?

There are already cases of pilots flying the same aircraft, by tail number than their grandfather had flown. :) But not really the same airplane. New avionics a couple of times, not counting all the different EW fits. They've removed the tail gun. (Only took 20-30 years or so, but they just about had it approved, when some sergeant shot down a MiG over North Vietnam. :) But it made me sick to see a BUFF in a maintenance hanger at Tinker about 10 years ago, with no tail gun, just a rather ugly fairing. They haven't scrapped the guns, nor done anything to preclude remounting them, AFAIK.

82 posted on 04/15/2012 11:27:32 PM PDT by El Gato ("The second amendment is the reset button of the US constitution"-Doug McKay)
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To: hinckley buzzard
To be replaced by what?

This:


83 posted on 04/15/2012 11:29:27 PM PDT by Talisker (He who commands, must obey.)
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To: Paladin2
Slide Rules Rule!

I went through Engineering college using them.

But I like my computer, thank you very much. I've even simulated a BUFF on one. A somewhat crude 2 dimensional model. Sufficient for demonstrating you fly with an automatic terrain following system.

84 posted on 04/15/2012 11:30:40 PM PDT by El Gato ("The second amendment is the reset button of the US constitution"-Doug McKay)
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To: JRandomFreeper
They sound the same.

They should have the same components, but I can hear the fan, which the H models have and none of the others did. Of course the most distinctive fan sound is that of the C-5. But they are re-engining those,at least the B and C models, so they may sound different soon. Or not. The ones from the Reserve unit at Lackland still sound the same to me. I can tell when one is in the pattern at Ft. Hood, from inside my house.

85 posted on 04/15/2012 11:49:50 PM PDT by El Gato ("The second amendment is the reset button of the US constitution"-Doug McKay)
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To: edpc
Back in the day I used to go to the airshows at Burpelson.
86 posted on 04/16/2012 12:41:01 AM PDT by starlifter (Pullum sapit)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
I had just started out as a junior engineer back in the early 80's. I was doing a project at Ellsworth. During the briefing and safety meeting I was lectured firmly about OpSec. Do not cross the painted line. If you must then two will assist you. If you cross without the two then another one will shoot you.

It was a great honor to be there even though I kept wanting to say yes sir with emphasis.
87 posted on 04/16/2012 12:58:53 AM PDT by PA Engineer (Time to beat the swords of government tyranny into the plowshares of freedom.)
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To: WMarshal
"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."

Yes, I remember those flights. (We lived on a ranger station in SE Montana.) You could feel the vibrations as it approached, and then it would appear over the crest of the hill flying so low you could almost touch it, disappearing almost immediately over the next mountain. Very impressive flying.

88 posted on 04/16/2012 1:47:34 AM PDT by Liberty Wins (Newt --named after Isaac Newton?)
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To: NVDave
"The B-52 isn’t subtle"

OH Yeah!

Great post! Every word rings true.

89 posted on 04/16/2012 4:06:32 AM PDT by Jimmy Valentine (DemocRATS - when they speak, they lie; when they are silent, they are stealing the American Dream)
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To: South Dakota
I lived and worked at Carswell AFB in Ft.Worth TX( 301st TWF). The biggest thrill I ever got was when they(BUFFS) had an ORE and all of them (8 and armed) fired up and took off.I was on the flight line at the end of the runway waiting on our F-4S to be armed for escort. They took off first,I could not comphrend the noise,the size and thrust of these beasts.I still get cold chills to this day thinking about that 35 mins in my life, not to mention their retutn.
90 posted on 04/16/2012 4:33:18 AM PDT by VF-51vnv
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To: A.A. Cunningham

Great pic! many thanks..


91 posted on 04/16/2012 4:55:52 AM 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: diogenes ghost
Sounds like that made a big impression on you..neat memory to have.

An elderly gentleman in his 80's) in my new parish is retired USAF..he was a navigator on 52s..I'm just getting to know him..will have to get him reminiscing....

92 posted on 04/16/2012 5:02:01 AM 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: Krankor
Tanks?

could dig some shock-and-awe.

93 posted on 04/16/2012 6:21:06 AM PDT by the invisib1e hand (I think in about 5 - no, 4 - years I'll have had enough.)
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To: zot

Thank you for mentioning post 17. I had not noticed it when I saw the article. I’ll tuck the info away for future reference.


94 posted on 04/16/2012 7:03:49 AM PDT by GreyFriar (Spearhead - 3rd Armored Division 75-78 & 83-87)
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To: VF-51vnv

Thanks for mentioning the OREs. I’d forgotten about seeing them, and fortunately, I saw several of them take place. They were truly mesmerizing every time I watched them. I took pictures of a number of them but, alas, that camera was stolen with the film inside.


95 posted on 04/16/2012 8:35:55 AM PDT by miele man
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To: Mad Dawgg
Lots ‘o LOUD moments at the old Cleveland Stadium, & sitting 4th row in front of the house PA at Public Hall when Kieth Emerson fired up his Moog 3c made your whole body resonate to that sub-sub base synth, but it must have really something to see the BUFF live - WAY COOL!

Quick sidebar. While coming home from a Browns game a few years ago on the Shoreway the same time as the Airshow was in progress I looked out the window and directly in front of me was a F-117 making an approach to Burke Airport at what seemed to be a hundred feet off the deck. It was almost totally noiseless, until it went past.

96 posted on 04/16/2012 2:06:55 PM PDT by ADemocratNoMore (Jeepers, Freepers, where'd 'ya get those sleepers?. Pj people, exposing old media's lies.)
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