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  1. Hey folks, not finished anything for a l-o-n-g time hence not been around. Bought this in 1991 in a wee model shop my mate owned in Southport and it's been on the shelf ever since. Dragged it to the bench before Christmas to keep me out of trouble over the holidays - which it pretty-much has. Other than the ALQ pod and the mid-1980's Microscale decals, what you see here is exactly what came in the box. Definitely not my best work, but wonderful nostalgia trip (even painted it with Humbrol enamels). All comments, criticism and questions welcomed - Happy New year everyone. Ian.
  2. RF-4Cs of the 62nd Tac Reconnaissance Squadron, 363rd Tac Reconnaissance Wing out of Shaw AFB participating in Red Flag 80-5, Nellis AFB, August 1980. 66-0410 66-0465 66-0474 67-0463 68-0575 Thanks for looking, Sven Old Viper Tester
  3. RF-4Cs of the 192nd Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, 152nd Tactical Reconnaissance Group, Nevada Air National Guard out of Reno IAP, on the transient ramp at Edwards AFB. 65-0875, November 1981 And the same jet in April 1984 Thanks for looking, Sven Old Viper Tester
  4. September 1991: The 110th Tac Fighter Squadron, 131st Tac Fighter Wing, Missouri Air National Guard, bids farewell to the Phantom after twelve years operating F-4Cs and F-4Es. A few friends came in to help commemorate the event at Lambert Field, St. Louis, Missouri. Arrival of the 131TFW flagship and static display, 68-0338 RF-4C 65-0854, 106th Tac Reconnaissance Squadron, 117th Tac Reconnaissance Wing, Alabama Air National Guard RF-4C 65-0874, 190th Tac Reconnaissance Squadron, 124th Tac Reconnaissance Group, Idaho Air National Guard out of Gowen Field, Boise Idaho F-4E 68-0411, 163rd Tac Fighter Squadron, 122nd Tac Fighter Wing, Indiana Air National Guard out of Baer Field, Fort Wayne Indiana F-4Es 67-0384 and 67-0348, 113th Tac Fighter Squadron, 181st Tac Fighter Group, Indiana Air National Guard out of Hulman Field, Terre Haute, Indiana The new birds Thanks for looking, Sven
  5. Well, it was supposed to be a SLCM chase mission in 1992... that's a Submarine Launched Cruise Missile. We were going to chase a Tomahawk missile from an underwater launch position off the coast of California and chase it to impact on the Utah Test and Training Range. We were providing two NRF-4C chase aircraft and a "business effort" tanker to chase the Navy missile. The business effort tankers were temporarily at Edwards AFB for a week at a time to supplement the test center tanker. On our way to the coast... When we got to the designated launch position, we orbited waiting for a countdown from the Pacific Missile Test Range controller. Waiting... waiting... then we were notified that there was a delay and asked if we could hang around. We called the tanker in and began refueling... The tanker was from the 185th Aerial Refueling Squadron of the Oklahoma Air National Guard. On the boom and "in the green"... '384 got a pressure disconnect trying to get as much fuel as he could... Normally, the boom operator in the tanker would initiate the disconnect and stop the flow of fuel at the same time that the boom disconnected. That would result in just a little bit of fuel going into the air. With a pressure disconnect, the system detects an increase in fuel system pressure, indicating the receiving aircraft is full or that there is some kind of problem. The boom disconnects automatically, but there is still some excess fuel at the receiver, resulting in a spray of fuel as shown here. (How do I model that?) In any event, the delay evolved into an aborted launch, so we headed home... (Guess I should have flipped the image so that it looked like we were heading east.) For USAF cruise missiles, we would normally have used the NF-4Es (ex-Thunderbirds). Those jets had missile flight termination equipment in case something went wrong with the missile flight profile. For the Navy missiles we only provided safety chase, presumable to watch for aerial traffic (which should have been cleared) and mark the position if it crashed en route to the range, so any pair of F-4s would do to provide observers and be able to take turns air refueling to cover the length of the flight profile. Thanks for looking, Sven
  6. RF-4C, 64-1004 (AKA "Balls four"), assigned to the 6512th Test Squadron (Test Ops), 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center, Edwards AFB. Test support involved being used by the USAF Test Pilot School for practicing test techniques, being a photo/safety chase or being a radar target for flight test missions. She came from RAF Alconbury where she suffered a barrier engagement in 1967, and required depot repairs (sheared the nose gear, one main mount through the wing and the wing broken off). Not surprising that when the USAF requested a jet for AF Systems Command at Edwards, she was the one they gave up. Some of the test crews swear she was bent. December 1983, a few months after arriving from Alconbury. The blue and white canopy trim is a holdover from the 10th Tactical Reconnaissance Wing. March 1985 May 1985: The Blue and white canopy trim painted over with black(?!?). Apparently having a flight controls investigation evidenced by the leading edge flaps down and the hydraulics 'Mule' in front of the right wing. January 1989, the white and red "Bozo" scheme was applied around 1987, about the same time that her official designation was changed to NRF-4C. The "N" indicating permanent flight test modifications have been made. July 1990 September 1990 She was retired in early 1992 and sent to the Edwards AFB Flight Test Museum. Thanks for looking, Sven
  7. A pair of RF-4C Recce Rhinos of the 91st Tac Reconnaissance Squadron, 67th Tac Reconnaissance Wing out of Bergstrom AFB. Caught on the Edwards AFB transient ramp, February 1983. 68-0595 with LORAN "towel rack" antenna 72-0147 Thanks for looking, Sven
  8. Recce Rhinos of the 91st Tac Reconnaissance Squadron, 67th Tac Reconnaissance Wing out of Bergstrom AFB. At Nellis AFB for the Red Flag 84-3 large-force exercise, April 1984. 63-7753 67-0435 67-0440 68-0587 68-0591 72-0147 72-0149 Thanks for looking, Sven
  9. Recce Rhinos of the 12th Tac Reconnaissance Squadron, 67th Tac Reconnaissance Wing out of Bergstrom AFB. At Nellis AFB for the Red Flag 90-1 large-force exercise, October 1989. 68-0548 68-0553 68-0564 69-0376 Thanks for looking, Sven
  10. Recce Rhinos of the 153rd Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, 186th Tactical Reconnaissance Group, Mississippi Air National Guard out of Key Field. At Nellis AFB for a Red Flag large-force exercise, June 1991. 65-0935 66-0422 66-0425 66-0449 Thanks for looking, Sven
  11. RF-4Cs of the 16th Tac Recce Squadron, 363rd Tac Fighter Wing out of Shaw AFB, at Nellis AFB for Red Flag 83-2, January 1983. 66-0470 66-0473 66-0476, still wearing the old "JO" tail code 66-0465 EDIT: Had some additional input on these jets. The 363rd was in transition for a couple of years before this event, slowly transitioning from a recce wing to a fighter wing: - The wing was redesignated as a Tac Fighter Wing in 1981 - The 62TRS was transferred to the 67TRW at Bergstrom AFB in 1982. The 33TRS was inactivated in 1982 and her RF-4Cs were either consolidated in the 16TRS or sent to the 67TRW at Bergstrom AFB. - The 16TRS gave up their red and black/white checks tail band for the red tail band previously used by the 62nd in late 1982. F-16 squadrons began being assigned to the 363rd, the RF-4Cs were retired in 1989, and the 363rd assumed the identity of the 20th Fighter Wing 1993. Thanks for looking, Sven
  12. RF-4C Recce Rhinos of the 196th Tac Recon Squadron, California Air National Guard, at March AFB. The 196th Tac Fighter Squadron began receiving RF-4Cs in April 1990, but the official unit designation was not changed to a reconnaissance squadron until 1 July 1990. All images are from May 1990 except as noted. 63-7750 63-7757 63-7762 64-1053 66-0393 66-0423, PhanCon 1992, George AFB, March 1992. 66-0444 66-0461 67-0434 67-0454 67-0469 Thanks for looking, Sven
  13. RF-4Cs of the 173rd Tac Reconnaissance Squadron, 155th Tac Recce Group, Nebraska Air National Guard out of Lincoln ANGB. Red Flag 84-5, Nellis AFB, August 1984. 64-1066 65-0840 65-0853 65-0939 Thanks fo looking, Sven
  14. The 16th Tac Recce Squadron, 363rd Tac Recce Wing RF-4Cs out of Shaw AFB at Nellis AFB for Red Flag Exercise 84-4, June 1984. 66-0410 66-0453 66-0476 67-0465 Thanks fo looking, Sven
  15. RF-4Cs 63-7744 and 65-0850, the last two Phantoms to fly out of Edwards AFB, 24 June 1992. The two were operated by the 6512th Test Squadron, 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center. Heading for storage at AMARG, Davis-Monthan AFB with three bags full - one of the few times these jets carried stores. For at least 15 years, the RF-4Cs at Edwards were used as curriculum aircraft for the USAF Test Pilot School, primarily as stability and control/flying qualities demonstrators and data collection aircraft. Since the curriculum included test points at Mach 1.4, the jets almost always flew without stores or pylons. Thanks for looking, Sven
  16. Photo Phantoms of the 196th Tac Reconnaissance Squadron, California Air National Guard, at March AFB, May 1990. 63-7750 63-7757 63-7762 64-1053 66-0393 66-0444 67-0434 67-0454 67-0469 Thanks for looking, Sven
  17. As with just about every fighter plane in the USAF in the 1950's and 1960's, the F-4 also had a dedicated reconnaissance version, the RF-4C. You could say this was the first true modern tactical recce platform. Traditional cameras, IR cameras and Side Looking Radar, the RF-4C had it all. And combined with a big, strong airframe, a two men crew, and two powerful and reliable J-79 engines, it was a world beating design. First flown in 1964, with more than 500 built, the last operational RF-4C's were only retired in South Korean service a few years ago, and the export RF-4E is still flying today in both Japan and Iran. In the early days, though, there were some issues to be solved with these brand new jets. As explained in the book Tactical Reconnaissance in the Cold War by Doug Gordon(highly recommended): I will be building a 1/72 Hasegawa RF-4C as a very early, about 1965, Alconbury based jet, in the US Navy colours of light gull grey and white. The decals come with the kit, although they are the traditional Hasegawa style, with the creamy white, so some decals will have to be sourced elsewhere. In the end it will look something like the ones below, although mine will be FJ-023. So far I just glued the cockpit bits together and put it on the lower front fuselage part. I also glued the right front and rear parts together, which makes things easier to align later on. I don't plan to use any aftermarket, apart from some decals. But you never know, I might get some seats or exhaust. Thanks for looking.
  18. A couple of Rhinos from the 15th Test Squadron, Ogden Air Logistics Center (OO-ALC), Hill AFB. OO-ALC was the support depot for all USAF F-4s. The various Air Logistics Centers maintained at least one flying example of the airframes for which they were responsible in order to flight test sustainment modifications and investigations throughout the service life of the type. These images were taken on the Nellis AFB transient ramp in October 1980. A couple of years later, all of the OO-ALC aircraft would get stylized "HAFB" tail markings (see below), the presentation on the tails varied slightly, so modelers should check photos before committing to a particular HAFB marking. RF-4C 65-0905 F-4D 66-7455 Ogden only had the one RF-4C. They had two F-4Ds, the other being 66-8711, and one F-4E, 68-0304. They also had two F-4Cs, shown below on display at Hill AFB as part of their Aerospace Museum collection. 64-0664, February 1993 63-7424 August 1990 14-in lug store suspension units in the forward Sparrow wells on '424. '424 restored and in the museum, February 1993. Thanks for looking, Sven
  19. A small contingent of 179TRS, Minnesota Air National Guard, RF-4Cs at Nellis AFB in January 1981. 64-1061, CO's jet 64-1074 64-1077 Thanks for looking, Sven
  20. 12th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron out of Bergstrom AFB at Nellis for Green Flag 81-3, April 1981. This was a tragic deployment for the 12th. 71-0250 crashed on the Nellis training ranges on 16 April with the loss of both crewmen. The next day, 68-0611 also crashed on the range killing both crew. The squadron stood down and departed for Bergstrom in the following days. 68-0609 68-0611 69-0378 72-0147 71-0250 Thanks for looking, Sven
  21. RF-4C 66-0464, 3246th Test Wing, Eglin AFB FL. During the Advanced Tactical Aerial Reconnaissance System test program, September 1992. Thanks for looking, Sven
  22. Hi all, Having reached the stage where the first of my East Anglian Phantoms needs painting, I thought I'd have a closer look at the decal sheet which is providing the markings. Given that I have a fair few F-4Cs, Ds and RF-4Cs, I'll probably use the entire sheet. I was looking at the placement guide for 69-0381 (incorrectly depicted as 65-0381) and noticed that there are no stencil type stars'n'bars bars for it. Looking further, it seems like there are a number of missing decals, as the numbers on the sheet only go up to 85, when the placement guide shows decals numbered up to 93 (at least). Am I missing an addendum sheet, or are all the sheets like this? I thought I'd ask before hassling Hannants! Cheers, Mark.
  23. The "High Rollers", the 192nd Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, Nevada Air National Guard. Based at Reno Airport. Images from 1981 to 1991. USAF s/n 65-0875, transient ramp at Edwards AFB, November 1981 64-1017, TDY to the USAF Test Pilot School as a Systems Qualitative Evaluation platform for TPS Class 81B, June 1982 64-1029, TDY to the USAF Test Pilot School for TPS Class 83B, March 1984 65-0875 again on the Eddie Transient Ramp, also TDY to Test Pilot School, April 1984 64-1005, at Carswell AFB for PhanCon, March 1991 Thanks for looking, Old Viper Tester
  24. Just a few images from a proficiency mission in September 1984. Her designation would be changed to NRF-4C to indicate permanent test modifications in 1986. Thanks for looking, Sven
  25. Hi all, Another foray in to the files. These few are from a visit to Bergstrom AFB, Texas, close to Austin, Texas. It was (now closed) a base that hosted regular air force Phantoms of the 67th Tactical Reconnaissance Wing as well as Air Force Reserve Hercs. More of the latter later. This post centres around the Recce Phantoms. As with many of these posts the images were taken early in the morning, offering a range of colours and warm tones. I'll be back soon with a few of the Hercs. martin
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