FlyMKG From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Posted (7 years 6 months 2 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 2749 times:
I often see fighters in high visibility paint jobs but I never know what the little initials stand for in the captions. I was wondering if anybody could explain to me what the CAG and CO stand for in these photos? Its especially confusing because it is the same plane in both pics but with different labels. Also, is the jet with red tails in a retro scheme? Any other photos with other high vis schemes explained would be great. Thanks.
SlamClick From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (7 years 6 months 2 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 2717 times:
Not Navy here, but I believe I can offer something.
The letters you ask about refer (if I'm not mistaken) to the position held by the pilot of that plane.
CO - Commanding Officer (of the squadron most likely)
CAG - Commander, Air Group which a Navy type will have to explain.
The tail markings are, I believe, specific to a particular squadron, one of the smaller units in Navy or Air Force organization. Oh, and in certain Army branches too, like armored cavalry.
As to how large a unit a squadron would be, and how many aircraft they might have assigned I'll leave to others.
MigFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (7 years 6 months 2 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 2663 times:
The CAG is the commander of the carrier's air wing, and oversees the operations of all the squadrons within the battle group. More than likely the CAG is an ex-fighter jock with at least the grade of commander (LTC) or sometimes captain (COL). If that is the case his grade may be captain, but he is not the captain of the boat.
Full color, "hi-viz" schemes went out of naval service in the mid-eighties. When the USN retired their last F-4s from carrier duty in 1984, they were starting to "go grey". Now, everything is low-viz on the deck, exception being the E-2 and C-2 aircraft. The most standout feature is the modex and numbers that allow the carrier's control to see what aircraft is where on the deck from above and below. Sometimes the CAG bird and the CO's mount will have full color markings applied for display and RHiP purposes.
I wish the hi-viz schemes of the cold war era would come back...
N911ME From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (7 years 6 months 1 week 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 2432 times:
The red tail markings on the VF-101 F-14D were placed on for commemorative reasons as it was the last year of the Tomcat in service - I believe that's the Grim Reapers demo bird. VF-32 (Fighting Swordsmen) also did a retro bird, as did the Pukin' Dogs of VF-143.
Some of the Tomcats went to the high-vis, "old-school" schemes in the past few years because of the aircraft's retirement. God, am I gonna miss them!