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Found 84 results

  1. Latest kit off the production line after the Corsair is my Monogram 1/48 A-37 Dragonfly built as an NA-37B used by the Test Pilots School at Edwards AFB. Having seen some pictures of these in posts by @Old Viper Tester I was really taken by the colour scheme, especially the pied USAF lettering on the starboard wing. I used decals from an old Superscale sheet for most of the markings but the pied USAF required masking and painting. The only additions to the kit are seats by Quickboost and the test probe which is a slightly modified example By Master which is designed for the F-16XL. Here are the pictures; Hope that you like her, thanks for looking and as usual all comments and criticisms are gratefully received. Craig.
  2. Some NASA F-104s from the '80s. All were stationed at the Dryden Flight Research Center located on Edwards AFB. F-104N N811NA, December 1981 F-104N N812NA, October 1982 - Edwards Open House JF-104A N818NA (USAF s/n 552961), July 1985 - Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum F-104G N820NA (Converted F-104A, USAF s/n 56-0790) March 1981 - DFRC flyable storage, no flight test nose boom or cannon port cover October 1988 - USAF Flight Test Center Museum TF-104G N825NA (ex-Luftwaffe, USAF s/n 66-13628) March 1981 September 1983 May 1990 F-104G N826NA (ex-Luftwaffe) March 1981 - Replacement nose cone and cannon port cover from the previous (1970s) NASA paint scheme September 1981 - Edwards Open house May 1984 September 1984. Test airfoil mounted on the aircraft centerline. October 1988 - Edwards AFB Open House Thanks for looking, Sven
  3. F-16A, USAF s/n 80-0550, was allocated off the production line to the F-16 Combined Test Force, 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center at Edwards AFB as a stability and control, loads and flutter test airframe. I say flutter as one of the flight test disciplines, though in the '80s, the adage was that "the F-16 did not experience flutter" but, instead, limit cycle oscillations (LCO). So when you saw that wing tip vibrating away, it was the digital flight controls unable to keep up with the aerodynamic forces that were bending that wing - still looked like flutter to me. October 1982 - fitted with engineering mock-ups of the LANTIRN navigation and targeting pods testing aircraft flying qualities with the pods fitted and the airframe structural response. A lucky shot as we barrel rolled over him to set up for a test point. Gives a good view of the arrangement of load distribution straps and attachment fittings for the spin recovery parachute quadrapod. January 1983 - Continued LANTIRN pod effects testing. October 1983 - After being fitted with an F-16C vertical tail. February 1990 - Deeper pylons to accommodate AIM-7 Sparrows for testing compatibility with the F-16C configuration. January 1991 - Fitted with the spin recover parachute quadrapod Not '550 (she is in the background), but an image of the full spin recovery parachute apparatus. The red and blue canister contains the parachute and the deployment mortar. The parachute attachment harness comes out of a slot beneath the red canister section and attached to the quadrapod. The attachment fittings and straps on the fuselage distribute the forces from the deployed parachute so that the aft fuselage doesn't get ripped away when the chute yanks the tail up while the aircraft is falling through the air out of control. Thanks for looking, Sven
  4. F-16B 78-0081 came to Edwards in 1989 from Luke AFB. Early model F-16s were being brought in to replace F-4s and A-7s in the test support role - radar targets and safety/photo chase for test aircraft. Test support was the mission of the 6512th Test Squadron of the 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center. In October 1992, at the behest of the USAF Chief of staff, 4-digit organization identifiers were abolished and the 6512TS became the 445TS (later FLTS) and the 6510TW became the 412TW. August 1989 - Shortly after arrival from Luke AFB. August 1990 June 1991 October 1991 September 1992 - The AF Materiel Command shield replaced the AF System Command shield on the tail as Systems Command and AF Logistics Command were merged to form Materiel Command in July 1992. The name inside the nose gear door is "TAZ DEVIL" Thanks for looking, Sven
  5. F-4E s/n 66-0291 is an ex-Thunderbird aircraft. She served as a test support aircraft at Edwards AFB from 1978 through 1991. Operated by the 6512th Test Squadron, throughout the early 1980s is was part of the Air Launched Cruise Missile (ALCM) chase flight, hence the white upper wings with the camouflage schemes. The N prefix indicating a permanent flight test modification was installed in/on the airframe. Doing her thing (1980?)... October 1982 January 1985 May 1985 October 1989 - received the "Bozo" white and red scheme in 1987. Thanks for looking, Sven
  6. Two F-16B of the 152nd Tac Fighter Squadron, 162nd Tac Fighter Wing, Arizona Air National Guard out of Tucson MAP visiting the F-16 Combined Test Force at Edwards AFB to participate in F-16 departure from controlled flight and recovery training, June 1991. 78-0109 78-0114 Thanks for looking, Sven
  7. An A-6E of VA-196, Bureau Number 161670, visiting Edwards AFB for USAF Test Pilot School qual missions, March 1984. During the Test Pilot School systems phase, various units would bring in their aircraft to allow the TPS students to fly qualitative (i.e. no test instrumentation) evaluation missions of various aircraft systems. In this instance, for evaluation by TPS Class 83B. Thanks for looking, Sven
  8. An A-4E of the Naval Fighter Weapons School out of NAS Miramar, Bureau Number 151095, on the Edwards AFB transient ramp, April 1985. Thanks for looking, Sven
  9. Warthog 78-0679 of the 356th Tac Fighter Squadron, 354th Tac Fighter Wing out of Myrtle Beach AFB at Edwards AFB, September 1983. Thanks for looking, Sven
  10. F-16B 80-0635 of the 6516th Test Squadron, F-16 Combined Test Force, 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center, Edwards AFB, August 1990. At this time, '635 was the dedicated test platform for a laser pod, "Coronet Prince". Coronet Prince carried a laser capable of disabling optical trackers as part of the suppression of enemy air defenses (SEAD) mission. The pod's sensor head would swivel and rotate with a low-power laser, searching for reflections, an indication of a lens or reflecting surface aimed at the aircraft. If the ground position of the reflection remained constant as the jet flew along, it was an indication that the lens/reflector was tracking the jet - or it was a spherical reflector. Having determined that it was being tracked, the pod operator would select high-power and the laser would fire pulses at the target location. During test flights, Coronet Prince successfully "burned" a tracking vidicon tube. We watched the video image as each pulse burned out portions of the receptor array until the entire screen went blank. The program was cancelled when funding ran out - it took longer than expected to get the aircraft integration and pod to operate as intended. Not surprisingly, the Coronet Prince laser was not eye-safe, thus the test program safety program and risk mitigations were considerable. We had to clear the target range of any potential reflectors and all personnel in the target area wore doubled-up laser goggles even though they were inside a trailer with the deployable sensor array. Note the pylon was restricted to use on '635 only as '635 was the only aircraft with the necessary modifications to interface with the Coronet Prince pod. Thanks for looking Sven Lesson learned: Never joke to the Safety Review Board about blinding endangered Desert Tortoises!!
  11. F-4E s/n 66-0329 was an ex-Thunderbird aircraft. She served as a test support aircraft at Edwards AFB from 1978 through 1991. Operated by the 6512th Test Squadron, throughout the early 1980s is was part of the Air Launched Cruise Missile (ALCM) chase flight, hence the white upper wings with the camouflage schemes. The N prefix indicating a permanent flight test modification was installed in/on the airframe. July 1984 - Over the Boron mine On the downwind for Runway 22 March 1985 May 1985 January 1989 October 1991 - Text on the cannon fairing reads "THE LOVE MACHINE" Thanks for looking, Sven
  12. DC-130A, 57-0461, of the 4950th Test Wing, Aeronautical Systems Division out of Wright-Patterson AFB. On the Edwards AFB transient ramp, September 1984. This aircraft reportedly bounced back and forth between the USAF and the US Navy. Thanks for looking, Sven
  13. F-16D 83-1176 of the F-16 Combined Test Force, 6516th Test Squadron, 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center, Edwards AFB. August 1989. Name on the canopy is MAJ C THUESON. February 1990 December 1992 with AGM-65 Maverick missile training round. "My" jet... I think I only crewed her once or twice. John "Starman" Armor was the squadron Deputy for Operations and I was the Deputy for Engineering. The orange gear in the ammo drum bay is part of the MARS magnetic tape recording system for the aircraft instrumentation - all replaced with digital solid-state recorders 15-20 years ago. Thanks for looking and Happy New Year, Sven
  14. F-16XL-2, 75-0747, operated by the F-16XL Combined Test Force, 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center at Edwards AFB. Images are from a mission flown on 7 April 1983, possibly the only mission with this configuration. Streamlined fairings are installed on the wingtips in place of the 16S210 AIM-9 launch rails. Over Rogers Dry Lake on straight-in final approach to Runway 22. Thanks for looking, Sven
  15. F-16XL-1, 75-0749, operated by the F-16XL Combined Test Force, 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center at Edwards AFB. Images are from two separate missions flown on 12 October 1982. Even with the CBU-58s carried in tandem, the drag penalty was terrible. Sorry about the watermarks, but some of my images have been appropriated on other sites. Thanks for looking, Sven
  16. A variety of T-33s on the Edwards AFB transient ramp. T-33A 52-9667, 123rd Fighter Interceptor Squadron, 142nd Fighter Interceptor Group, Oregon Air National Guard out of Portland IAP, September 1981. T-33A 53-5811, 194th Fighter Interceptor Squadron, 144th Fighter Interceptor Wing, California Air National Guard out of Fresno Yosemite Airport, August 1981. T-33A 53-5950, 123rd Fighter Interceptor Squadron, 142nd Fighter Interceptor Group, Oregon Air National Guard out of Portland IAP, August 1982. T-33A 57-0767, 84th Fighter Interceptor Training Squadron, 26th Air Division out of Castle AFB, August 1984. T-33A 58-0529, 95th Fighter Interceptor Training Squadron, 325th Fighter Weapons Wing, Air Defense Weapons Center out of Eglin AFB, March 1985 T-33A 58-0591, 95th Fighter Interceptor Training Squadron, 325th Fighter Weapons Wing, Air Defense Weapons Center out of Eglin AFB, March 1985 T-33A 58-0610, 5th Fighter Interceptor Squadron, 25th Air Division out of Minot AFB, January 1984. T-33A 58-0613, 48th Fighter Interceptor Squadron, 23rd Air Division out of Langley AFB, March 1985. T-33A 58-0618, 26th Air Division out of Luke AFB, January 1982. CT-133A Silver Star, 133542, unit unknown, Royal Canadian Air Force, March 1981. CT-133A Silver Star, 133467, 414 Electronic Warfare Squadron out of CFB North Bay, September 1981. Thanks for looking, Sven
  17. Wing commander's jet, F-4E 69-0305, of the 414th Fighter Weapons Squadron (the F-4 Fighter Weapons School), 57th Fighter Weapons Wing, Tac Fighter Weapons Center, Nellis AFB. Seen visiting Edwards AFB, August 1984. Unusual presentation of the 57th tail code, "WA" Thanks fo looking, Sven
  18. The first YA-7D, 67-14582. Operated by the 6512th Test Squadron and the USAF Test Pilot School, 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center, Edwards AFB. Was always fitted with the YAPS (yaw and pitch sensor) nose boom. One of the few YA-7Ds to have the refueling probe removed and the refueling boom receptacle installed atop the fuselage to evaluate this configuration and receiver qualification with the KC-135. March 1981 October 1983, Edwards AFB Open House. October 1989. Changed to white and red scheme some time between 1985 and 1988. September 1992. AF Systems Command and AF Logistics Command were merged in June 1992 to form AF Materiel Command, hence the change in tail badge. She was retired to AMARG in September 1992. Thanks for looking, Sven
  19. Images of F-16B, s/n 80-0635, when it was operating with the LANTIRN Combined Test Force at Edwards AFB. LANTIRN is an acronym for Low Altitude Navigation and Targeting Infrared for Night. The LANTIRN system consisted of two pods beneath the F-16 engine intake. On the left was the AN/AAQ-113 navigation pod (NVP) containing a terrain following radar and forward-looking infra-red sensor. On the right was the AN/AAQ-14 targeting pod (TGP) containing an infra-red sensor and a laser designation system. The LANTIRN CTF tested the LANTIRN system target designation, weapons delivery, and terrain following performance. Another important evaluation was what is referred to as the "pilot-vehicle interface" (PVI), the utility and human factors of the displays and controls as integrated into the F-16. The LANTIRN CTF operated beside the F-16 CTF and was part of the 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center. The LANTIRN test force was absorbed into the F-16 CTF in 1988. March 1984 The LANTIRN logo LANTIRN CTF shield There was a large version of the shield painted on a wall in the General Dynamics maintenance office with the tank illustration replaced with red outlined mountains on either side and a red F-16 bouncing between the mountain sides down the valley. "Havoc in the Dark" indeed. January 1989 Three tank "kills" added to the intake Interesting "kill" markings... Another LANTIRN CTF bird, 81-0688 The cannon ammo drum has been replaced with a flight test instrumentation tape recorder (there's no cannon in there either). Microscale did LANTIRN CTF markings for F-16B 81-0816 on sheet 72-256. Thanks for looking, Sven
  20. YA-7D s/n 67-14584 operated by the USAF Test Pilot School, 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center, Edwards AFB. October 1984 May 1985 The trapezoid markings on top of the wing are for optical tracking during TPS spin training/evaluation missions, making it easier to determine the aircraft attitude with ground-based optical trackers and cameras. TPS would spin the A-7 both upright and inverted. November 1991 September 1992 Like her sisters, she was retired to AMARG in September 1992 Thanks for looking, Sven
  21. YA-7D, s/n 69-6191, was a support jet with the 6512th Test Squadron, 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center at Edwards AFB. It was primarily used as a trainer for the USAF Test Pilot School (TPS) and as a support aircraft for other aircraft test flights, usually F-15s or F-16s. March 1981. Most of the YA-7Ds retained the US Navy probe and drogue refueling probe and were never fitted with the flying boom receptacle. July 1984. The "ED" tail codes were added to most 6510th Test Wing Aircraft in 1983 May 1985 with SUU-20 practice bomb suspension units. When the A-7s were used as target/threat aircraft for F-15 or F-16 radar testing, ALQ-131 or ALQ-188 ECM pods would be carried on the mid-wing stations. The trapezoid markings on top of the wing are for optical tracking during TPS spin training/evaluation missions, making it easier to determine the aircraft attitude with ground-based optical trackers and cameras. TPS would spin the A-7 both upright and inverted. January 1989. I had left Edwards for a posting in London in 1985. When I returned to Edwards in 1988, all of the F-4s and A-7s were in white with red visibility markings. Just as well that all the flight test A-10s left Edwards in the Summer of 1985. White and red Warthogs would be just plain wrong. Thanks for looking, Sven
  22. F-20 Tigershark #1, USAF serial number 82-0062, civil registration N4416T. At Edwards AFB for testing done by Northrop Test Operations division. September 1982, with flight test nose boom. They don't show up well, but there are pitch and yaw vanes mounted on the forward tip of the left wing missile rail. The measurements from these vanes were being calibrated against the measurements from the nose boom so they could replace the nose boom with a production radome and still collect sensitive yaw and pitch data during stability and control testing. The two rough fairings near the top and middle of the vertical tail are strain gauges and the associated wiring covered with "speed putty" - not usually painted over so neatly, if painted at all. October 1982, Edwards AFB Open House. Flight test nose boom removed in favor of the "shark nose" radome. January 1983 Enlargement of the above image July 1983, back in the "Coca Cola" scheme with her Paris Salon registration number 339. The mid-tail strain gauges have been removed. September 1983. USAF serial number replaced with the civil registration. Orange indicates flight test unique equipment or modifications. October 1983, on Edwards Runway 22. May 1984, in the middle of the "test fleet" Original canopy configuration For comparison, the production canopy configuration on ship on #2, N3986B. 82-0062 was lost in a fatal G-induced Loss of Consciousness (G-LOC) crash during a demonstration tour in South Korea, 10 October 1984. Thanks for looking, Sven
  23. T-38A operated by the 6512th Test Squadron, 6510th Test Wing, Air Force Flight Test Center, Edwards AFB. T-38s were used mostly as safety/photo chase for F-15 and F-16 test missions. Sometimes used as radar targets for airborne radar test missions. December 1983 January 1985 May 1985 February 1989 I really do wish someone would do a real T-38A/C in 1/72 scale. Hasegawa and other have marketed F-5Bs as T-38s. The Sword T-38 is close, but still has some F-5 details. Thanks for looking, Sven
  24. May 1982: The Ladd Company was at Edwards AFB to shoot some local exteriors and the interiors of the Test Pilot School, control tower and some hangars. An F-104G also came in from the 69th Tac Fighter Training Squadron out of Luke AFB. They wanted the '104 to play the role of the NF-104 "aerospace trainer", re-enacting Chuck Yeager's mishap where he had to bail out after missing the re-entry attitude after the high-altitude zoom climb. The Luftwaffe and the USAF agreed to supply an F-104 from the German training unit at Luke. I think the squadron sent their flagship, hoping to get some screen time for the squadron. The tech advisor noted they couldn't do anything to simulate the rocket motor at the base of the NF-104 vertical tail, but the large "69" on the F-104G tail had to go. Here we see a technician removing the "69" from the tail of 63-13269 on the Edwards AFB transient ramp. Thanks for looking, Sven
  25. I had originally posted some images of A-7D 69-6217 of the 6512th Test Squadron at Edwards AFB back in July 2018. I've since found a few more slides... August 1984 In the lead with 69-6194 July 1989 Thanks for looking, Sven
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