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The FReeper Foxhole Studies Aerial Demonstration Teams - Part Two - Thunderbirds - Dec. 5th, 2003 ^

Posted on 12/05/2003 12:00:48 AM PST by SAMWolf


Keep our Troops forever in Your care

Give them victory over the enemy...

Grant them a safe and swift return...

Bless those who mourn the lost.

FReepers from the Foxhole join in prayer
for all those serving their country at this time.

...................................................................................... ...........................................

U.S. Military History, Current Events and Veterans Issues

Where Duty, Honor and Country
are acknowledged, affirmed and commemorated.

Our Mission:

The FReeper Foxhole is dedicated to Veterans of our Nation's military forces and to others who are affected in their relationships with Veterans.

In the FReeper Foxhole, Veterans or their family members should feel free to address their specific circumstances or whatever issues concern them in an atmosphere of peace, understanding, brotherhood and support.

The FReeper Foxhole hopes to share with it's readers an open forum where we can learn about and discuss military history, military news and other topics of concern or interest to our readers be they Veteran's, Current Duty or anyone interested in what we have to offer.

If the Foxhole makes someone appreciate, even a little, what others have sacrificed for us, then it has accomplished one of it's missions.

We hope the Foxhole in some small way helps us to remember and honor those who came before us.

To read previous Foxhole threads or
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click on the books below.

In 1947, while the jet age was still in its infancy, military aviation was hurtled into the future with the creation of the U.S. Air Force as a separate service. Just six years later, on May 25, 1953, the Air Force’s official air demonstration team, designated the 3600th Air Demonstration Unit, was activated at Luke Air Force Base, Arizona.

The name “Thunderbirds” was soon adopted by the unit; influenced in part by the strong Indian culture and folklore of the southwestern United States where Luke is located. Indian legend speaks of the Thunderbird with great fear and respect. To some it was a giant eagle … others envisioned a hawk. When it took to the skies, the earth trembled from the thunder of its great wings.

From its eyes shot bolts of lightning. Nothing in nature could challenge the bird of thunder, the story said, and no man could stand against its might. The story of the Thunderbird was repeated, voice-by-voice, across the generations, until at last, it assumed the immortality of legend.

A more appropriate name couldn't have been selected, as it is with the same commanding presence the Thunderbirds took to the skies. Seven officers and 22 enlisted were selected for the first demonstration team, most were handpicked from the cadre at Luke.

Maj. Dick Catledge, a training squadron commander at Luke, was chosen as the team’s leader. Twins Bill and Buck Patillo were selected and would fly left and right wing, respectively. The Patillo's, both captains, were ideal choices as both had been with the “SkyBlazers”, a USAF/Europe demonstration team, for the past 3 years.

For the difficult position of slot, the position sandwiched between both wingmen and behind the leader, Capt. Bob Kanaga was selected, an instructor at Luke. The spare pilot would be Capt. Bob McCormick. Like the Patillo brothers, he also had demonstration team experience, having flown right wing with the “Sabre Dancers,” a predecessor to the Thunderbirds.

1st Lt. Aubrey Brown would serve as maintenance officer for the team. He, with his senior enlisted man, MSgt. Earl Young, selected 21 enlisted men to help maintain the team’s aircraft. Capt. Bill Brock was the final officer selected for the team serving as the information services officer and team narrator.

From these humble beginnings and this group of men, the Air Force Thunderbird legend was born.

The first aircraft selected for the new demonstration team was the straight wing F-84G Thunderjet built by Republic Aviation.


Their straight wing configuration was considered well suited for aerobatic maneuvers, and although the aircraft could not exceed the speed of sound, like some military aircraft, it easily met the needs of a demonstration aircraft.

The original demonstration sequence consisted of a series of formation aerobatics lasting 15 minutes. The spare pilot took-off a few minutes in advance of the Diamond to run a weather check, advise of any encroaching traffic, reiterate the location of obstructions and then landed to be used as a spare aircraft.

As the season progressed, the opportunity was utilized to perform ‘solo’ maneuvers with the spare aircraft while the Diamond burned off fuel and repositioned out of sight of the crowd.


Mindful of their mission to show the Air Force’s best aircraft, the Air Force selected the swept wing F-84F Thunderstreak as their second aircraft in 1955. The Thunderstreak was modified for the team by adding smoke tanks for the first time, and red, white and blue drag chutes.

With the move from the F-84F to the F-100 Super Sabre in 1956, the Thunderbirds became the world’s first supersonic aerial demonstration team. That same year, the Thunderbirds moved to Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, simplifying logistics and maintenance for the aircraft.


Although never a routine part of the Thunderbird show in 1956, the solo would fly supersonic at the request of the air show sponsor. Eventually, the Federal Aviation Authority, a precursor to the Federal Aviation Administration, banned all supersonic flight at air shows and consequently, today’s sequence is entirely subsonic.

Almost a footnote in the history of Thunderbird aviation, the Republic-built F-105B Thunderchief performed only six shows between April 26 and May 9, 1964. Extensive modifications to the F-105 were necessary, and rather than cancel the rest of the show season to accomplish this, the Thunderbirds quickly transitioned back to the Super Sabre. While the switch back to the F-100D was supposed to be temporary, the F-105 never returned to the Thunderbird hangar. The F-100 ended up staying with the team for nearly 13 years.


The Thunderbirds started the 1969 training season still in the F-100Ds, but in the spring of 1969 the team received the first of the new McDonnell Douglas F-4E Phantom IIs and began the team’s conversion.

The F-4’s conversion was the most extensive in the team’s history. Among other modifications, paints that had worked on the F-100 made the F-4 look patchy because of multicolored alloys used in the F-4 to resist heat and friction at Mach II speeds.

As a result, a polyurethane paint base was developed and used to cover the problem. The white paint base remains a part of today’s Thunderbird aircraft.

Compared with its predecessors, the F-4 was immense. It was big. It was heavy. It was powerful. With the earth-shaking roar of eight J-79 engines from the four diamond aircraft, no demonstration aircraft accomplished the mission of representing American airpower more impressively than the Phantom.

1974 brought with it a fuel crisis and as a result a new aircraft for the team, the sleek, swift and highly maneuverable Northrop T-38A Talon, the Air Force’s first supersonic trainer. Economically, the T-38 was unmatched. Five T-38s used the same amount of fuel needed for one F-4 Phantom, and fewer people and less equipment were required to maintain the aircraft.

Although the Talon did not fulfill the Thunderbird tradition of flying front-line jet fighters, it did meet the criteria of demonstrating the capabilities of a prominent Air Force aircraft.

The T-38A was used throughout the Air Force during this time period in a variety of roles because of its design, economy of operation, ease of maintenance, high performance and exceptional safety record. In fact, Air Force fighter pilots still use this aircraft during undergraduate pilot training today.

In honor of the nation’s 200th birthday in 1976, the Thunderbirds were designated as the official United States Bicentennial Organization. For the Bicentennial year only, the aircraft numbers were moved to the fuselage and the Bicentennial symbol replaced the numbers on the tail.

In 1983, the team returned to the tradition of flying a premier fighter aircraft; transitioning to the General Dynamics, later Lockheed Martin’s, F-16A Fighting Falcon. To ready the F-16 involved removing the radar and internally mounted 20mm cannon and installing a smoke-generating system.

Remaining true to its character to showcase the latest advancement in America’s fighter technology, in 1992 the team transitioned to Lockheed Martin’s advanced F-16C, the team’s ninth aircraft. With the team’s last demonstration in the F-16A, the Thunderbirds were the last active duty unit to use the A model.

The C model looks similar to its predecessor, but has upgraded avionics and radar systems, making it superior to the A model. A true multi-role fighter, the F-16C has an unequaled record in actual air-to-air combat. Additionally, it is the only fighter to win both of the Air Force’s premier competitions - Gunsmoke, air-to-ground and William Tell, air superiority.

The F-16 has remained the choice of the Thunderbirds for the last 20 years, the longest performance era of any one aircraft. It is a stellar performer for the Thunderbirds, the U.S. Air Force and the 24 other nations whose boundaries it patrols and defends.

FReeper Foxhole Armed Services Links

KEYWORDS: freeperfoxhole; michaeldobbs; samsdayoff; thunderbirds; usairforce; veterans
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To: bentfeather; radu
I have scars frommerely owning cats..
I haven't gotten any from having teh demonic little monsters deciding to enact repayment for the bath.
(Well, slightly demonic, but only when being covered in water..)
21 posted on 12/05/2003 6:33:59 AM PST by Darksheare (Ignore the wombats, they're a diversion! My 3 million psychotic chinchilla army is the real threat!)
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To: SAMWolf; snippy_about_it; bentfeather
Click to Visit Thunderbirds of the Past Page

T H U N D E R B I R D   B U M P ! ! ! !

22 posted on 12/05/2003 6:45:58 AM PST by HiJinx (Go with Courage, go with Honor, go in God's Grace. Come home when the job's done. We'll be here.)
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To: SAMWolf
On This Day In History

Birthdates which occurred on December 05:
1839 George Armstrong Custer, of Little Big Horn fame
1894 Phillip K. Wrigley (corporate executive: Wrigley Gum)
1901 Walter (Walt) Elias Disney (cartoonist, producer: Mickey Mouse, Disneyland, Walt Disney World, feature films, animation)
1901 Werner Heisenberg, discoverer of uncertainty principle (Nobel 1932) (or not)
1902 Strom Thurmond, (D/R-Sen-SC)
1903 Cecil Frank Powell, English physicist discovered pion (Nobel 1950)
1905 Otto Preminger, movie director producer (Laura Exodus)
1922 Don Robertson (composer, musician)
1924 Maggie (Margaret) Hayes (actress)
1926 Jim Pashal (auto racer)
1932 Jim Hurtubise (auto racer)
1932 'Little' Richard (Pennimann) (singer: Good Golly Miss Molly, Tutti Frutti; preacher)
1934 Joan Didion (author: Run River)
1934 Larry Kert (actor, singer, dancer)
1936 Singer Chad Mitchell
1938 J.D. (John Delphus) McDuffie (auto racer)
1945 Pam Higgins (golfer)
1947 Jim Messina (musician: duo: Loggins and Messina: Your Mama Don't Dance)
1947 Jim Plunkett (football: Raiders quarterback: Super Bowl: XV, XVIII)
1947 Jugderdemidyin Gurragcha, 1st Mongolian space traveler (Soyuz 39)
1949 Fred O'Donnell (hockey)
1949 Lanny Wadkins (golf: PGA champion [1977])
1950 Steve Furness (football: Pittsburgh Steelers defensive tackle: Super Bowl: IX, X, XIII, XIV)

Deaths which occurred on December 05:
1212 Dirk II van Are Bishop of Utrecht (1197-1212), dies
1244 Johanna van Constantinople countess of Flanders (1205-44), dies
1355 Jan III duke of Brabant/Limburg, dies
1560 Francis II King of France (1559-60), dies at 16
1594 Gerardus Mercator geographer dies
1784 Philis Wheatley poet, dies in Boston
1791 Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart composer, dies in Vienna Austria, at 35
1859 Louis Poinsot French instrument maker, dies at 82
1891 Jklsbfxvpsmgrg Pedro II of Alcantara emperor of Brazil (1831-89), die
1922 Samuel Muller Fzn historian, dies
1925 Wilhelmina E Drucker [Lensing], feminist, dies
1951 "Shoeless" Joe Jackson of baseball's black sox scandal, dies
1964 Remy Angenot Flemish actor, dies
1966 Sylveer Maes Belgian bicylist, dies
1974 Hazel Hotchkiss Wightman tennis player (US Open 1909-11) dies at 87
1983 Robert Aldrich dir/producer dies at 65
1986 Carmol Taylor country songwriter, dies at 53 of cancer
1989 John M Pritchard British conductor, dies
1991 Convicted mass murderer Richard Speck died, one day short of his 50th birthday and 25 years after killing eight student nurses in Chicago.

[REMAINS RETURNED 1994 ID'D 06/25/96]

POW / MIA Data & Bios supplied by
the P.O.W. NETWORK. Skidmore, MO. USA.

On this day...
1301 Pope Boniface VIII's degree Ausculta fili (only nominee)
1349 500 Jews are massacred at Nüremberg in Black death riots
1456 Earthquake strikes Naples; about 35,000 die
1492 Columbus discovers Hispaniola (El Espanola/Haiti)
1496 Jews are expelled from Portugal by order of King Manuel I
1590 Niccolò Sfondrati chosen Pope Gregory XIV
1602 Giulio Caccini's "Euridice" premieres in Florence
1757 Battle at Leuthen: Prussian army beats Austrians
1766 London auctioneers Christie's hold their 1st sale
1776 Phi Beta Kappa, 1st American scholastic fraternity (William & Mary College), is founded
1792 George Washington re-elected US President, John Adams Vice-President
1804 Thomas Jefferson re-elected US President,George Clinton Vice-President
1813 Lübeck surrenders to allied armies
1830 Hector Berlioz' "Symphonique fantastique" premieres in Paris
1831 Former President John Quincy Adams takes his seat as member of House of Representatives
1832 Andrew Jackson re-elected President of US, Martin Van Buren Vice-President
1837 Hector Berlioz' "Requiem" premieres
1837 Uprising under William Lyon Mackenzie in Canada
1846 C F Schoenbein obtains patent for cellulose nitrate explosive
1848 President Polk triggers Gold Rush of '49, confirms California gold discovery
1854 Aaron Allen of Boston patents folding theater chair
1859 Dion Boucicault's "Octaroon" premieres in New York NY
1861 Gatling gun patented
1862 Battle of Coffeeville MS
1868 1st American bicycle college opens (New York)
1876 Daniel Stillson (Massachusetts) patents 1st practical pipe wrench
1876 Fire at Brooklyn Theater kills 295, trampled or burned to death
1879 1st automatic telephone switching system patented
1881 47th Congress (1881-83) convenes
1887 Stanley's expedition reaches plateau at Lake Albert Congo
1890 Berlioz' opera "Les Troyens" premieres in Karlsruhe
1892 Anti-semite Hermann Ahlwardt elected to Germany's Reichstag
1893 1st electric car (built in Toronto) could go 15 miles between charges
1904 The Japanese destroy a Russian fleet at Port Arthur in Korea.
1906 British government-Balfour resigns
1908 1st football uniform numerals used (University of Pittsburgh)
1914 6th CFL Grey Cup: Toronto Argonauts defeats University of Toronto, 14-2
1918 Oil refinery on Curaçao opens
1920 Pro football playoff game Akron & Buffalo 0-0 tie, title undecided
1924 Hamilton Tiger Red Green scores 5 goals to beat Toronto Maple Leafs 10-5
1925 13th CFL Grey Cup: Ottawa Senators defeats Winnipeg Tammany Tigers, 24-1
1925 German government of Luther falls
1926 Sergei Eisenstein's "Battleship Potemkin" debuts
1928 England defeats Australia by record 675 runs at Brisbane
1928 MW Miklas elected President of Austria
1929 1st US nudist organization (American League for Physical Culture, New York NY)
1931 CFL Grey Cup: Montréal AAA beats Regina, 22-0 at Montréal
1932 German physicist Albert Einstein granted a visa
1933 21st Amendment ratified, only amendment adopted to repeal an earlier amendment [18th Amendment (Prohibition)] (5:32 PM EST)
1935 1st commercial hydroponics operation established (Montebello CA)
1935 National Council of Negro Women forms by Mary McLeod Bethune (New York NY)
1936 Armenian SSR, Azerbaijan SSR, Georgian SSR, Kazakhstan SSR & Kirghiz SSR becomes constituent republics of the Soviet Union
1936 24th CFL Grey Cup: Sarnia Imperials defeats Ottawa Rough Riders, 26-20
1941 Football Writers Association of America organized
1941 Sister Elizabeth Kenny new treatment for infantile paralysis approved
1941 Patrick Hamilton's "Angel Street" premieres in New York NY
1941 Russian anti offensive in Moscow drives out nazi army
1941 US aircraft carrier Lexington/5 heavy cruisers leave Pearl Harbor
1942 CFL Grey Cup: Toronto beats Winnipeg RCAF, 8-5 at Toronto
1942 Seyss-Inquart orders students in Nazi-Germany to go work
1942 West Indies chocolate/coffee drop above Netherlands
1943 NFL Philadelphia Eagle-Pittsburgh Steeler merger dissolves
1944 German troops rob all the silver coin in Utrecht
1945 "Lost Squadron" crashes east of Florida (Bermuda Triangle)
1945 Special Council of Annulment affirms death sentence of Max Blokzijl
1946 President Truman creates Committee on Civil Rights by Executive Order #9808
1947 Joe Louis beats Jersey Joe Walcott in 15 for heavyweight boxing title
1948 New York Giant Charley Conerly sets NFL record of 36 pass completions
1949 Ezzard Charles defeats Jersey Joe Walcott for heavyweight boxing title
1950 Sikkim becomes a protectorate of India
1950 Ezzard Charles KOs Nick Barone in 11 for heavyweight boxing title
1951 "Dragnet" premieres
1952 London smog of 1952 - worst smog in London ever, 4,000+ die
1954 KTEW (now KJRH) TV channel 2 in Tulsa OK (NBC) begins broadcasting
1955 AFL & CIO merge, with George Meany as president
1955 Historic bus boycott begins in Montgomery AL by Rosa Parks
1956 Thornton Wilder's "Matchmaker" premieres in New York NY
1957 NYC becomes 1st city to legislate against racial or religious discrimination in housing market (Fair Housing Practices Law)
1957 William Inge's "Dark at the Top of the Stairs" premieres in New York NY
1958 Phils drop plans for New York sportcast as Yankees threat to do same in Philadelphia
1960 Ghana drops diplomatic relations with Belgium
1966 "I Do! I Do!" opens at 46th St Theater NYC for 561 performances
1967 Beatles clothing store "Apple" on 94 Baker Street, London, opens
1967 Benjamin Spock & Allen Ginsberg arrested protesting Vietnam war
1968 Rolling Stones release "Beggar's Banquet" LP
1969 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
1970 Stanley Cup, Conn Smythe Trophy & Bill Masterson trophy stolen from NHL hall of fame
1970 Los Angeles Rams Willie Ellison sets NFL record of 247 yards rushing
1971 KCBJ (now KMIZ) TV channel 17 in Columbia MO (ABC) 1st broadcast
1972 38th Heisman Trophy Award: Johnny Rodgers, Nebraska (FL)
1973 Cubs' Ron Santo became 1st baseball player to veto his trade
1973 Paul McCartney releases "Band on the Run" album
1973 Dodgers trade Willie Davis to Expos for relief pitcher Mike Marshall
1974 1st Washington Capitals penalty shot, Tom Williams unsuccessful vs Buff Sabres
1974 1st World Football League Bowl, Birmingham Americans beat Florida
1974 Airport terminal roof collapses killing 17 (Teheran Iran)
1974 Seattle Seahawks formed
1974 "Monty Python's Flying Circus" final episode airs on BBC
1974 NFL's Seattle Seahawks forms
1974 Tom Williams is unsuccessful on Washington Capitals 1st NHL penalty shot
1975 NASA launches space vehicle S-196, it failed
1975 "Me & Bessie" closes at Ambassador Theater NYC after 453 performances
1976 Buffalo Bill's OJ Simpson rushes 203 yards
1977 Egypt breaks diplomatic relations with Syria, Libya, Algeria, Iraq & South Yemen
1978 Phillies Pete Rose becomes highest paid baseball player
1978 Pioneer Venus 1 begins orbiting Venus
1978 European Union establishes EMS, European Monetary System
1978 Free agent Pete Rose signs 4-year, $32 million contract with Phillies
1978 Sam Shepard's "Buried Child" premieres in New York NY
1979 Ireland premier Jack Lynch resigns
1980 Bank of Canada's Canadian Currency Museum opens
1981 47th Heisman Trophy Award: Marcus Allen, Southern California (RB)
1981 France performs nuclear test
1982 Seattle University Baptist Church declares sanctuary for Central American refugees
1982 Cleveland Browns' Brian Sipe sets club record with 33 pass completions
1982 Ingrid Berghmans (Netherlands) retains judo's world championship
1982 Mel Gray ends NFL streak of 121 consecutive game receptions
1982 USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakhstan/Semipalitinsk USSR
1983 12 killed by a car bomb shattering 9-story building in west Beirut
1983 Los Angeles Dodger pitcher Steve Howe is suspended for 1 year for cocaine use
1984 A's trade Rickey Henderson to Yankees for Jay Howell & Jose Rijo
1984 French colonies killed 10 Kanaken in New Caledonia
1984 Yankees trade catcher Rick Cerone to Braves for pitcher Brian Fisher
1985 Dow Jones Industrial Average rises above the 1,500 level for 1st time
1985 Great Britain performs nuclear test
1987 53rd Heisman Trophy Award: Tim Brown, Notre Dame (WR)
1987 Schönbrunn skates world record 3 km ladies (4 16.76)
1988 Shuttle Atlantis launches world's 1st nuclear-war-fighting satellite
1988 North Carolina federal grand jury indict PTL founder Jim Bakker on fraud & conspiracy
1989 France TGV train reaches world record speed of 482.4 kph
1990 Former Noriega aide Luis del Cid pleads guilty
1990 Salman Rushdie, author (ordered to death by Iran for blasphemy), appears in public for 1st time in 2 years
1990 Toronto Blue Jays trade Fred McGriff & Tony Fernandez to San Diego Padres for Roberto Alomar & Joe Carter
1990 The State Department said Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein had accepted the idea of direct high-level U.S.-Iraqi talks to resolve the Gulf crisis.
1991 British media magnate Robert Maxwell disappeared while on his yacht off the Canary Islands.
1991 Charles Keating Jr (Lincoln Savings & Loan fraud), found guilty
1991 New York Daily News files for protection under chapter 11
1993 82nd Davis Cup: Germany beats Australia in Dusseldorf (4-1)
1993 Astronauts begin repair of Hubble telescope in space
1993 Melissa Mcnamara/Mike Sopringer win LPGA J C Penney Golf Classic
1993 Newhart actor William Sanderson (47) weds Sharon Wix (39)
1993 Rafael Caldera elected President of Venezuela
1996 Players union approves new collective bargaining agreement
1996 Portland's Jermaine O'Neal, 18, becomes youngest NBA player
1997 1st Game at Washington Capitals' MCI Center vs Florida Panthers
1997 STS 87 (Columbia 24) lands

Note: Some Holidays are only applicable on a given "day of the week"

Beirut Lebanon : Arbor Day
Haiti : Discovery Day (1492)
Netherlands : St Nicholas' Eve
International : send Valin $20.00 day
Thailand : King's Birthday
USSR : Constitution Day (1936)
US : Let's Get Organized Day
Read A New Book Month

Religious Observances
Anglican : Commemoration of Clement of Alexandria, priest
Roman Catholic : Commemoration of St Sabbas, abbot

Religious History
1484 Innocent VIII issued his famous "Witch Bull," ordering an inquisition to systematically discover, torture and execute witches throughout Europe. It led to the ease with which witchcraft was charged and punished, even in the American colonies two centuries later.
1848 Death of Joseph Mohr, 56, Austrian Roman Catholic vicar and author in 1818 of the enduring Christmas hymn, "Stille Nacht" ("Silent Night").
1943 German theologian and Nazi martyr Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote in a letter: 'It is only when one loves life and the earth so much that without them everything seems to be over that one may believe in the resurrection and a new world.'
1951 American missionary martyr Jim Elliot wrote in his journal: 'How sadly and how slowly I am learning that loud preaching and long preaching are not substitutes for inspired preaching.'
1988 Televangelist Jim Bakker was charged by a federal grand jury with mail fraud and conspiracy to defraud the public through the sale of thousands of lifetime memberships to PTL theme park, Heritage U.S.A. (Bakker was convicted the following year and sentenced to prison.)

Source: William D. Blake. ALMANAC OF THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH. Minneapolis: Bethany House, 1987.

Thought for the day :
"It's always darkest before the dawn. So if you're going to steal your neighbor's newspaper, that's the time to do it."

Question of the day...
If people from Poland are called "Poles," why aren't people from Holland called Holes?"

Murphys Law of thr day...(Law of Duality)
Of two possible events, only the undesired one will occur.

Amazing fact #3...
The Swiss flag is square.
23 posted on 12/05/2003 6:47:43 AM PST by Valin (We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.)
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To: SAMWolf; snippy_about_it
HAPPY FRIDAY - T.G.I.F!!!!!!!!

I had the opportunity to see the Thunderbirds up close and personal.

Several years ago, they had a stopover in Minneapolis because of an Air Show in Mankato (about 90 miles SW). My sis-in-law was in the Air Reserves (934th Airlift) and they allowed members to bring family members to the base.

We all stood in the hangar, and watched them taxi up in front of the hangar, and do their "dismount and ground drill routines". Then we were allowed to meet/greet them and get all their autographs.

It was a lot of fun, and my kids were "shock & awed".
(so was I...LOL)

24 posted on 12/05/2003 6:49:14 AM PST by Johnny Gage (Everybody lies, but it doesn't matter, since nobody listens)
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To: SAMWolf

I've always been keen on the T-38.

I've thought "if I was a billionaire", that this would be a jet I'd try to own. It looks like a fun little jet.

25 posted on 12/05/2003 7:05:29 AM PST by Johnny Gage (Everybody lies, but it doesn't matter, since nobody listens)
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To: HiJinx
Good morning Jinx!

Love those planes! My eldest brother saw them years ago, he was thrilled to the bones.

He took tons of pictures.
26 posted on 12/05/2003 7:09:31 AM PST by Soaring Feather
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To: SAMWolf
Thunderbird Bump!!

Mornin' Sam!

27 posted on 12/05/2003 7:31:24 AM PST by SCDogPapa (In Dixie Land I'll take my stand to live and die in Dixie)
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To: SAMWolf; msdrby; Darksheare
I've a few gallons of JP-4 into some of these:


28 posted on 12/05/2003 7:42:36 AM PST by Prof Engineer (Labrador Retriever~from The Latin, meaning~ Affection Sponge)
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To: *all

Air Power
North American B-45 "Tornado"

At the end of 1944, the US Army issued a design competition for a jet-powered bomber. This urgent requirement given to aircraft manufacturers was precipitated by the discovery of secret documents and actual German jet aircraft captured during World War II. The first two American jet bombers produced were the North American B-45 Tornado and the Convair XB-46. The B-45 filled a critical gap in the US defense posture. The Air Force took initial delivery of the B-45C in May 1949. While a few of the aircraft were deployed overseas in late 1950, B-45 units reached initial operational capability (IOC) in 1951. As an Air Force bomber, it saw limited service with the Tactical Air Command during the 1950s.

With a first-flight date of March 17, 1947, the North American B-45 Tornado was the first jet-powered bomber to be put into production in the United States and the first to enter operational service with the USAF. The more capable B-45C model differed from earlier models of the B-45 in several respects; the most obvious difference in the appearance of the C model was the 1200-gallon fuel tank mounted at each wingtip.

The configuration of the B-45 is reminiscent of' a World War II bomber equipped with jet engines instead of propellers driven by reciprocating power plants. The unswept wing had an average airfoil thickness ratio of about 14 percent and was equipped with trailing-edge single-slotted flaps for lift augmentation in landing and takeoff. Lateral control was accomplished with the use of conventional ailerons.

All control surfaces were hydraulically boosted, and an electrically actuated tab on the elevator was used to maintain longitudinal trim. The aerodynamic power of the trim-tab-elevator combination was so great that, in the event of an inadvertent maximum tab deflection, the pilot's strength was insufficient to overcome the resulting large elevator hinge moments if the hydraulic boost system failed or was turned off. Total in-flight destruction of at least one B-45, the aircraft operated by NACA, was probably caused by this combination of circumstances that resulted in a normal load factor far greater than the design value. The technology of power-assisted controls was in its infancy at the time of development of the B-45, and much was yet to be learned about the effective and safe application of such control techniques.

In performing the landing maneuver, pilots found that speed and flight-path angle during the approach as well as touchdown point on the runway were difficult to control with precision because of the absence of speed brakes or some other means of increasing the drag of the aircraft. As a result of the low drag, only a small amount of engine thrust was required in the approach configuration. In this low thrust range, changes in thrust with throttle movement required a relatively long period of time and rendered control of flight path and speed difficult. At higher thrust levels, changes in thrust with time were more rapid. Hence, higher aircraft drag and consequently higher required thrust would have been desirable in the approach and landing configurations. Somewhat similar problems with speed control were experienced with the Messerschmitt Me 262, the first jet fighter to enter operational service. Again, experience taught important lessons applicable to the design of later jet-powered bomber aircraft.

Manned by a crew of four, the B-45 had two pilots seated in tandem under a transparent canopy, a bombardier located in the nose, and a tail gunner. Only the pilots were equipped with ejection seats. In an emergency, the bombardier, located in the nose of the aircraft, was expected to evacuate through a hatch located in the side of the fuselage. To minimize the hazards associated with the high-velocity airstream, a fuselage flap was deployed ahead of the hatch to deflect the airstream away from the exiting bombardier. An escape hatch with deflector flaps was also provided for the tail gunner. Environmental control for the crew included pressurization, heating, and cooling.

With a gross weight of 110 050 pounds, the B-45 was in the same weight class as the wartime Boeing B-29 but had a maximum speed advantage over the B-29 of more than 200 miles per hour. A 10 000-pound weapon load could be delivered by the B-45 at a mission radius of 1008 miles. Ferry range of the aircraft was 2426 miles. The maximum lift-drag ratio of the B-45 was 16.3, about the same as that of the B-29, and its zero-lift drag coefficient was a much lower 0.0160 as compared with 0.0241 for the earlier aircraft.

The Tornado first entered service with the Strategic Air Command in November 1948, and final retirement of the type from operational service took place in 1958. The Air Force accepted a total of 142 B-45s in various configurations, 51 aircraft fewer than originally ordered. The B-45 program included 3 experimental XB-45s aircraft (one of which was completed as a preproduction example), 96 production B-45As (some of which were designated as B-45A-5s reflecting in-production improvements), 10 B-45Cs , and 33 RB-45Cs. The aircraft were produced by North American Aviation, Incorporated, of Inglewood, California, with most of the aircraft being built in a former Douglas facility at Long Beach, California.

The B-45 served well as a reconnaissance aircraft during the Korean war. The reconnaissance models were designated RB-45Cs and assigned to the Strategic Air Command. The Tornado performed classified, deep penetration photographic intelligence missions over many cold war communist countries. The reconnaissance version of the B-45 became the forerunner of the U-2 and SR-71 surveillance aircraft.

In 1952, using in-flight refueling, two RB-45Cs made the first nonstop trans-Pacific flight by multi-engine jet bombers. In flying the 3,640 miles from Alaska to Japan in 9 hours and 50 minutes, one of the pilots won the Mackay Trophy for the most meritorious flight of that year.

Manufacturer: North American Aviation
Primary Role: Bomber
Engines: Four General Electric J47s of 6,000 lbs. thrust ea.
Crew: Four (pilot, Co-pilot, Bombadier, Tailgunner)
Number Built: 143
Cost: $1,081,000

Span: 89 ft.
Length: 75 ft. 4 in.
Height: 25 ft. 2 in.
Weight: 110,000 lbs. max.

Performance :
Maximum speed: 570 mph.
Cruising speed: 500 mph.
Range: 1000 miles
Service Ceiling: 37,550 ft.

Two .50-cal. machine guns in the tail;
22,000 lbs. of bombs

All information and photos Copyright of their respective websites
29 posted on 12/05/2003 7:49:47 AM PST by Johnny Gage (Everybody lies, but it doesn't matter, since nobody listens)
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To: E.G.C.
Good Morning E.G.C. Raining and no sun for us today.
30 posted on 12/05/2003 7:54:30 AM PST by SAMWolf (Study Art and Logic - and learn to draw your own conclusions)
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To: Samwise
Morning Samwise. These guys are impressive to watch aren't they?
31 posted on 12/05/2003 7:55:50 AM PST by SAMWolf (Study Art and Logic - and learn to draw your own conclusions)
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To: Darksheare
Morning Darkseare. Tomorrow we cover the Navy!
32 posted on 12/05/2003 7:56:40 AM PST by SAMWolf (Study Art and Logic - and learn to draw your own conclusions)
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To: The Mayor
Good morning Mayor.
33 posted on 12/05/2003 7:57:23 AM PST by SAMWolf (Study Art and Logic - and learn to draw your own conclusions)
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To: The Mayor
At this point I'll jump on what ever work I can get.

I know the feeling. Don't worry about posting, work and family come first.

34 posted on 12/05/2003 7:58:34 AM PST by SAMWolf (Study Art and Logic - and learn to draw your own conclusions)
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To: GailA
Mornig GailA. I like all the Patriotic Christmas stuff you've been posting.
35 posted on 12/05/2003 7:59:25 AM PST by SAMWolf (Study Art and Logic - and learn to draw your own conclusions)
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To: E.G.C.
Good morning EGC. Raining in Oregon this morning. I have no idea what it is doing in Ohio but I don't care. LOL. I love vacations!
36 posted on 12/05/2003 8:01:33 AM PST by snippy_about_it (Fall in --> The FReeper Foxhole. America's History. America's Soul.)
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To: Darksheare
Good morning Darksheare
Good morning Samwise

You all have lost me this morning or I haven't had enough coffee!
37 posted on 12/05/2003 8:04:19 AM PST by snippy_about_it (Fall in --> The FReeper Foxhole. America's History. America's Soul.)
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To: aomagrat
Morning aomagrat.

She was one of the first ships in the harbor to open fire as enemy dive bombers and torpedo planes roared out of the high overcast.... Freshly returned to the combat zone after another overhaul, she was seriously damaged by a Japanese aerial torpedo off Okinawa on 12 August 1945, the last major Navy ship to be hit during the Second World War.

One of the first to fight and still there at the end.

38 posted on 12/05/2003 8:04:27 AM PST by SAMWolf (Study Art and Logic - and learn to draw your own conclusions)
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To: The Mayor
Good morning Mayor.
39 posted on 12/05/2003 8:04:39 AM PST by snippy_about_it (Fall in --> The FReeper Foxhole. America's History. America's Soul.)
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To: The Mayor
Glad to see you've picked up a little work, thanks for letting us know.
40 posted on 12/05/2003 8:05:30 AM PST by snippy_about_it (Fall in --> The FReeper Foxhole. America's History. America's Soul.)
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