FlagshipAZ
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Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jun 26, 2005 5:37 am

Hi folks...
What is your home country's oldest aircraft type still in active service?
Speaking for my country (USA), I believe for the USAF, it's the KC-135s, and for the USN, it must be the C-130s. All replies welcomed. Regards.
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AirRyan
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jun 26, 2005 5:55 am

Depends upon what model and serial number are still flying where, I bet some of the B-52's in the USAF have to be fairly old. With the Marines, it's a tossup between some of their early model C-130's and CH-46E helicopters, but at least the Marines have the C-130J coming online which is more than you can say for the medium lift community!


Singapore has A-4's still flying, although they have a tender going on now between the F-15E/K and the Rafale.

India and China use variants of the MiG-21.

Is there any F-104's still flying in Europe still?
 
FlagshipAZ
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jun 26, 2005 6:12 am

The B-52H is the only variant still in service. The last B-52 ever, an H model, was delivered in 1962...I think. But I believe there are some KC-135s that are older than this. And regarding the F-104 Starfighter, isn't it the Greek and/or the Italian Air Forces that still used them?
Regards.
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DeltaGuy
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jun 26, 2005 6:56 am

I believe the Italians are still using the Starfighters.

Until recently, the Navy had a small squadron, VC-8, flying 8 TA-4J Skyhawks, unfortunately they disbanded a year or so back...shame to see the last Scooter leave the flightline.

DeltaGuy
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HaveBlue
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jun 26, 2005 7:18 am

The B-52 was in service before the KC-135 was. In fact part of the reason the KC-135 came into existence was because the B-52's had such a tough time refueling from KC-97's.
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MissedApproach
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jun 26, 2005 10:46 am

All of them!!!  laughing 
If you'd posted this about a month ago we still had T-33s (1948) flying. Now all I can say is that we still have our Hercs (1960) & Sea Kings (1963) flying...well, some of the time. We're also still flying a handful of DHC-5 Buffalos (1967) in the search & rescue role, & of course 431 Air Demonstration Squadron (the Snowbirds) is still flying the Canadair Tutor (1962).
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KC135R
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jun 26, 2005 4:26 pm

Quoting HaveBlue (Reply 4):
The B-52 was in service before the KC-135 was. In fact part of the reason the KC-135 came into existence was because the B-52's had such a tough time refueling from KC-97's.

This is all true - but the B-52's flying today are H models and were delivered beginning in 1960. The KC-135 was originally delivered beginning in 55 - but most of the 55 and 56 planes are gone by now. The oldest in active duty was built in 1957, and there are still quite a few of them flying. FYI, the newest KC-135's, and there are only a handful of them, were built in 1964. So that makes the KC-135 the oldest USAF plane, and I think the oldest in the US as a whole. I am not sure about the Navy though, anyone know how old the P-3's are? That would be my guess as their oldest.
 
bjornstrom
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jun 26, 2005 5:37 pm

Sweden still use the SK-60 as a trainer (Saab 105). They were delivered 39 years ago - 1966.

http://www.canit.se/~griffon/aviation/text/60saab105.html
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columba
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jun 26, 2005 10:20 pm

Might be these two :

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Bart Hoekstra
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Estelle Calleja



But the C-160 Transall is not much younger as the Breguet Atlantic. Our Bell UH 1Ds and F-4F Phantom IIs are also not the youngest aircrafts around but are are awesome birds........
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saintsman
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 3:37 am

How about this beauty?

 
SATL382G
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 4:22 am

Quoting DeltaGuy (Reply 3):
I believe the Italians are still using the Starfighters

Italy recently retired the the "Last Starfighter" and replaced it with leased F-16s pending Eurofighter delivery.

As far as the USAF is concerned... I think we are leaving out some types...

Here's a recent shot of a FY58 T-37.....


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Suresh A. Atapattu



There are also early 60's vintage T-38s still active. If we're counting aircraft in inventory but not active I'll bet we can still find some B model C-130s from the mid 50s in storage. The earliest E model C-130s all dated from the early '60s.

So my money is on either the T-37 or KC135 for oldest active USAF aircraft.

edit: On second look the FY58 T-37 pictured above looks a little "tired" and it's not sitting on the best piece of concrete. Museum bird maybe?

[Edited 2005-06-26 21:38:17]
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HaveBlue
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 4:30 am

You are correct KC135R, I was going by the oldest 'type' still in service, not particuliarily oldest airframes still in service  Smile
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SATL382G
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 4:42 am

Quoting HaveBlue (Reply 11):
I was going by the oldest 'type' still in service

Going strictly by type then in USAF it is, of course, the B-52.
"There’s nothing quite as exhilarating as being shot at and missed" --Winston Churchill
 
AirRyan
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 5:34 am

I believe the Mexican Air Force still uses T-33's and I would imagine that they are from the early 1950's?

 
L-188
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 5:40 am

Shoot the T-Bird was a great airplane. The USAF didn't get rid of theirs until the mid-1980's.

I would also point out that the U-2 should be included in this discussion.

According to the USAF Museum it entered Service in 1956.

http://www.wpafb.af.mil/museum/ac/pg000172.htm
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FlagshipAZ
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 6:17 am

Gentlemen, it doesn't matter whether the aircraft is the oldest "type" or "airframe". The topic is all in good-natured fun, not to be taken seriously.  Wink Saintsman, how about a little background on that Canberra, please? And BTW, knowing the US Navy has a "Don't Thread on Me" status symbol for their oldest ship still in service...does the USAF, USMC & USCG have something similiar for their aircraft? Thanks for all replies, so far. Regards.
"Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." --Ben Franklin
 
SATL382G
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 6:19 am

Quoting L-188 (Reply 14):
I would also point out that the U-2 should be included in this discussion.

According to the USAF Museum it entered Service in 1956.

Good point!! For whom, though, did it enter into service in 1956? USAF didn't get copies of the aircraft until it came out of the black world IIRC.
"There’s nothing quite as exhilarating as being shot at and missed" --Winston Churchill
 
Spacepope
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 1:51 pm

USAF just recently retired its NC-130A, and NASA just retired its B-52B. Too bad. One of the oldest in US service now might be the Navy's DC-130A.
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saintsman
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 4:00 pm

FlagshipAZ,

Just for you, this link will give a bit of info for you.

http://www.bywat.co.uk/39.html

The company I work for has recently come to the end of a long contract (approx 15 years) carrying out major maintenance on the PR9s. We were also responsible for the sensor upgrades that have made them so successful in Afghanistan and Iraq. We also did the last servicing on the only T4 left. We had to do a repair that entailed the whole front fuselage being removed from the rest of the aircraft.

There have been some unfortunate incidents with the RAF over the last couple of years that have caused damage and aircraft loss, which is a shame. The remaining aircraft are in very good condition (we did love them) but spares are obviously a nightmare. They will not last much longer though and will be taken out of service in the next few years, despite the RAF having no immediate replacement. Aircraft muted for the replacement are Nimrods or the Sentinal (Global Express). The RAF are getting the latter as their ASTOR aircraft but may need to purchase more for a dedicated photo-recce role.
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 5:05 pm

IAF
The MIG 21s I suppose.
regds
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AFHokie
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 7:35 pm

the USAF is still flying some T-37's that were built in 1956. The test pilot school at Edwards has a T-6 Texan, the WWII trainer, not the T-6 Texan II that the students fly to get experience in a wide variety of aircraft.
 
MYT332
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Mon Jun 27, 2005 9:12 pm

Hey Saintsman. A noisy little aircraft has been flying over my house all day, I live about 10 miles away from Warton.

Look who it was! I just about managed to grab a shot of her.



Beautiful aircraft.
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mechatnew
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Tue Jun 28, 2005 2:50 am

The US Navy has a couple of U-6A's[DHC-2 Beavers] in service for test pilot training that date back to the mid 1950's.
 
MissedApproach
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Wed Jun 29, 2005 10:06 am

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 13):
I believe the Mexican Air Force still uses T-33's and I would imagine that they are from the early 1950's?

The T-bird first flew in March 1948, & was a very popular plane with a lengthy production run. I believe the license-built Canadair version numbered 5000 by the time they stopped. Even considering that, there couldn't be any T-33 newer than late '50's.  old 
Feel free to correct me!
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JGPH1A
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Wed Jun 29, 2005 8:50 pm

According to the SAAF website, 35 Sqn based at Ysterplaat still use C-47 Dakota's (although admittedly they are TurboDaks). I'm not sure if there are any piston C-47's still with the SAAF, but if there are, they entered service in 1943.
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dl021
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Thu Jun 30, 2005 12:55 am

There are a couple of piston Dakotas left in SAAF service. All the Israeli ones are retired, and there are still some in Central and South America. I think there might even be a Greek one left.

Quoting Myt332 (Reply 21):
Look who it was! I just about managed to grab a shot of her.

Lucky dog! Good photo, terrific reaction. That is a beautiful bird. Huge wings.
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GDB
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Thu Jun 30, 2005 4:03 am

Myt332 played a photo blinder there, in 1999, leaving early in the morning for work (I live VERY close to LHR), I heard a noise above and a Canberra flew overhead, not very high either, gone too soon to confirm if it was a PR.9, though I suspect so, must have overflown LHR across the runways seconds later.
The ex RAF types at work were gutted they missed it.

29 June 2005 marks 50 years of USAF B-52 operations, impressive, though of course not the ones flying now, the RAF reached a similar mile-stone with the Canberra in 2001.
 
daveflys0509
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Thu Jun 30, 2005 5:01 am

At Vance AFB when I was there last summer, the oldest T-37B was built in 1956, the second oldest was built in 1957... and still taking beatings from student pilots
 
luisde8cd
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Thu Jun 30, 2005 12:06 pm

Venezuelan Air Force:
KC-707 and C-130
 
L-188
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Thu Jun 30, 2005 12:22 pm

You know, know that I think about it, I am pretty sure that the US Army kept a couple P-51's in service until the early 1980's as chase airplanes.

Also are there any QF-100 drones around still? Those would date from the early 1950's.
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GDB
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Fri Jul 01, 2005 8:20 am

I forgot one, though not with the armed forces, but not for airshows either, but Martin Baker use, or used until recently at least, a Meteor for airborne testing of ejector seats.
Even up to the version to be fitted to the Typhoon.
 
MissedApproach
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Fri Jul 01, 2005 8:43 am

Maybe not the oldest, but it would seem to be the most travelled, at least in the Herc world. From the Contact CFB Trenton newspaper:
http://www.thecontactnewspaper.cfbtrenton.com/

It’s well worn, but I always have confidence it will get safely to where it is going.” So said Colonel Andre Deschamps,Commander, 8 Wing/CFB Trenton, of
Hercules 315 in his opening remarks during a ceremony to commemorate the milestone of 45,000 flying hours of the revered aircraft. If we have our say, explained Col Deschamps, “it will be around for quite a while.” Hercules 315 was purchased in May 1965 by the RCAF as part of a 20-aircraft purchase from Lockheed Aircraft in Marietta,Georgia. Hercules 315 officially reached the significant flying milestone on May 27, 2005, while deployed to 4 Wing Cold Lake in support of EXERCISE Maple Flag.
(edited for brevity)

According to another paper, this is a world record for Hercs.
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OzLAME
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Fri Jul 01, 2005 9:45 pm

The Royal Australian Air Force retired it's last C-47s in the late '90s, so the oldest aircraft in the inventory now are the DHC-4 Caribous, followed by the F-111s and the Boeing 707s (not necessarily in that order). The Navy have some Sea King helicopters that are getting on a bit now and there are also some UH-1Hs in Army service.
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Lurch
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sat Jul 02, 2005 5:48 am

Hi GDB that Canberra was taking part in the Photo mapping of the UK not to uo date the ordnance maps.

But for the photo mapping CD that shows the entire UK rite down to individual streets!

You can see some of the photos on Multi Map!

The Martin Baker Meteor!

http://www.martin-baker.com/images/meteor_test.jpg

[Edited 2005-07-01 22:50:20]
 
KennyK
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Wed Jul 06, 2005 7:51 am

There must still be quite a few DC-3s/C-47s kicking up dust in some Air Forces in the world still and they will probably still be doing so in a few decades time  old 
 
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jetjack74
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sat Jul 09, 2005 3:54 am

Quoting Myt332 (Reply 21):
Look who it was! I just about managed to grab a shot of her

My dad used to work at the British Aerospace at Salmsbury, Lancs. They were potentially going to sell them to Argentina, well until the Falklands conflict put deathblow on that one. Is RAF Wyton in Cambs still in operation? I remember that they used have a large wing of Canberras.
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DIJKKIJK
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sat Jul 09, 2005 11:53 pm

Quoting HAWK21M (Reply 19):
IAF
The MIG 21s I suppose.

IAF still uses the Canberra, doesn't it? That is much older than the Mig21.
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MissedApproach
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jul 10, 2005 12:12 am

Here's a possibility. On the RAF website, they list the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight as part of the RAF organization. Would this make their Lanc, Spitfires & Hurricanes the oldest active aircraft in the RAF?

 scratchchin 

http://www.raf.mod.uk/squadrons/hbbmf.html
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L-188
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jul 10, 2005 3:26 am

Quoting MissedApproach (Reply 37):
Here's a possibility. On the RAF website, they list the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight as part of the RAF organization. Would this make their Lanc, Spitfires & Hurricanes the oldest active aircraft in the RAF?

Well if they are on the miltiary register then they should be considered that...

A good comparison would be the USS. Constitution, which was built about 1798 (Memory). That vessel while just a musuem display is still commisioned and is the older ship in the US Navy.
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GDB
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jul 10, 2005 5:24 am

Yes you can still count the Battle Of Britain Flight as 'active'.

Like the USS Constitution (also originally the name for the Shuttle USS Enterprise before the Trekkies did their campaign), HMS Victory, Nelson's flagship at Trafalgar, is still commissioned in the RN.

RAF Wyton closed some years ago, Canberra PR.9's moving to RAF Marham, where alongside Tornado GR.1A, later GR.4A's, they established a recon 'centre of excellence'.
 
L-188
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jul 10, 2005 7:02 am

Quoting GDB (Reply 39):
HMS Victory, Nelson's flagship at Trafalgar, is still commissioned in the RN.

Yeah but correct me if I am wrong, but isn't that ship embedded in a concrete pad? As opposed to Constituion that is still floating.

Sort of akin to the USAF claiming that their collection at Wright Patterson is still active because they are still Air Force inventory aircraft.
OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
 
GDB
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RE: Your Country's Oldest Active Military Aircraft

Sun Jul 10, 2005 9:09 am

Though in dry dock since 1922, HMS Victory is still considered as commissioned, USS Constitution is the oldest still afloat, HMS Victory the oldest still in commission, complete with crew;
http://www.hms-victory.com/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Victory

Back to flying, the Battle Of Britain Memorial flight;
http://www.raf.mod.uk/bbmf/bbmfhome.html

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