EBJ1248650 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1932 posts, RR: 2 Posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 6372 times:
The F-105D on display at the Commemorative Air Force Museum at Midland, Texas has a tail code "GB" painted in black on the vertical stabilizer. I've searched everywhere I can think to search and can find no reference to such a tail code being used by a tactical fighter squadron during the Viet Nam war. What I did find is that the 347th TFW had the 35th, 36th, and 80th TFS's assigned during the first half of 1968 (flying F-105Ds and Fs), with tail codes 'GG' 'GL' and 'GR' respectively.
Now, at one point the F-105D in question was on display at Gila Bend, Arizona, before being moved to Midland. I don't have photos of the airplane while it was displayed there but my gut feeling is that it carried the GB tail code symbolically. I suspect that when it was transferred to the museum at Midland, the folks there thought the GB tail code was legitimate and let it remain. Serial number of the F-105D in question is 59-1739. It's an early production D.
474218 From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 6340 posts, RR: 9
Reply 1, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 6270 times:
"GA" was the 35th Tactical Fighter Wing out of George AFB, pre "WW".
It may be a made up tail code so as not to provide attention to one particular wing/squadron. I know we did that type of thing at Lockheed with our models, rather than use an actual aircraft serial number we used employee numbers.
EBJ1248650 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1932 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 6232 times:
Quoting 474218 (Reply 1): "GA" was the 35th Tactical Fighter Wing out of George AFB, pre "WW".
I served at George AFB in the 561st and later the 562nd TFS's when the F-105G Wild Weasels were there so I'm familiar with the GA tail code. One J. J. Smith demanded the WW code be put on our F-105s when the newly arrived F-4Gs came to the base with the WW already painted on. J. J. said the '105s were the first to wear them and had the right to wear 'em again. The WW appeared on the '105s shortley thereafter.
As I commented in the first thread, the GB appears to stand for Gila Bend, where the airplane was on static display, but for some reason I seem to recall seeing a photo or two of operational F-105s with the GB code. Might just be my memory not working as well as it ought.
Ghostbase From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2004, 354 posts, RR: 3
Reply 3, posted (5 years 11 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 6157 times:
It does seem to be more than a coincidence that the CAF Museum 'Thud' is marked with a "GB" tail code having come from Gila Bend. That said, I have seen many photos taken of aircraft stored or used at Gila Bend and I don't recall any of them with a "GB" tail code added.
When I visited the Air Force Museum at Warner-Robins in GA for the first time in 1988 they had a two-seater 'Thud' in store behind the museum with an "RG" tail code. This was definitely a non-standard application with the lettering in a noticeably different font. At a guess I would say that "RG" stood for 'Robins Georgia' .
F4wso From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 974 posts, RR: 12
Reply 5, posted (5 years 11 months 2 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 6113 times:
I checked Patrick Martin's book, "Tail Code" for the GB marking. He listsGB as belonging to the 479 TFW / 431 TFS flying the F-4 in the late 60s to early 70s. Later, 479 TFW / 4546 TTS carried the code, also while in the F-4. The last entry was the 35 TFW / TFRS, once again while flying the F-4. There were no entries of the F-105 carrying the code. This was in a period where the Wing was designated by the first letter of the code and the squadron the second. Later, all aircraft were assigned to the wing so the squadron unique codes were done away with.
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