dc8jet
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KC-135 Wingtip Refueling Pods

Fri Apr 14, 2006 1:44 pm

I was wondering how many USAF KC-135s have been fitted with the wingtip refueling pods. I have slides of about 250 KC-135Rs and only one has the pods.
 
jwenting
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RE: KC-135 Wingtip Refueling Pods

Fri Apr 14, 2006 4:15 pm

AFAIK the pods aren't permanently attached but can be fitted as required.
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kc135topboom
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RE: KC-135 Wingtip Refueling Pods

Fri Apr 14, 2006 7:53 pm

Quoting Jwenting (Reply 1):
AFAIK the pods aren't permanently attached but can be fitted as required.

That is correct.

I believe the USAF bought some 40-60 kits, for the KC-135s and 40 kits for the KC-10s. The -135 kits can be installed on most KC-135Rs. Fuel for these, I believe is pumped through the main fuel feed mainifold for the 4 main wing tanks, and not from the reserve tanks, just above the pods.

I assume, but don't know, the -10 kits get their fuel from a similar manifold.
 
RC135U
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RE: KC-135 Wingtip Refueling Pods

Fri Apr 14, 2006 9:20 pm

Were there some fatigue issues with the pods, perhaps relating to the KC-10s?
 
romeokc10fe
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RE: KC-135 Wingtip Refueling Pods

Sat Apr 15, 2006 5:05 am

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 2):
I assume, but don't know, the -10 kits get their fuel from a similar manifold

You are correct.

Quoting RC135U (Reply 3):
Were there some fatigue issues with the pods, perhaps relating to the KC-10s?

None that I know, it's actually a rare sight, most of the time we don't fly with them unless the Navy or Marines requests them and not all KC-10s are modified to carry them.
 
RC135U
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RE: KC-135 Wingtip Refueling Pods

Sat Apr 15, 2006 12:43 pm

Quoting RomeoKC10FE (Reply 4):
None that I know, it's actually a rare sight, most of the time we don't fly with them unless the Navy or Marines requests them and not all KC-10s are modified to carry them.

I'm often in the area near McGuire AFB here in NJ and see the pods on the KC-10s from time to time. It sure seems to me that I'm seeing less of the -10s flying around and more and more of the C-17s.
 
KC135R
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RE: KC-135 Wingtip Refueling Pods

Tue Apr 25, 2006 4:44 am

Quoting Dc8jet (Thread starter):
I was wondering how many USAF KC-135s have been fitted with the wingtip refueling pods.

40 pods total, to fit on 20 modified airplanes (to date). No current plans for more, but rumors that AMC might want to modify more jets down the road. The number modified is not nearly what was discussed prior to the modification when (supposedly) half the fleet (or more) would be modified.

Quoting Jwenting (Reply 1):
AFAIK the pods aren't permanently attached but can be fitted as required.

Correct, the pod and the pylon it attaches to are removable. The 20 modified airplanes can fly with pod/pylon or without, just have to redo the aircraft weight and balance.

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 2):
Fuel for these, I believe is pumped through the main fuel feed mainifold for the 4 main wing tanks, and not from the reserve tanks, just above the pods.

The SPR manifold that feeds the 4 main wing tanks and 2 reserve tanks has been modified to handle the additional flow from the A/R pumps and does, in fact, feed the pods. There were other fuel modifications to the plane, but that is the main one.
 
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kc135topboom
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RE: KC-135 Wingtip Refueling Pods

Tue Apr 25, 2006 2:16 pm

Quoting KC135R (Reply 6):
The SPR manifold that feeds the 4 main wing tanks and 2 reserve tanks has been modified to handle the additional flow from the A/R pumps and does, in fact, feed the pods

So the fuel actually comes from the forward and aft body tanks, and not the mains, or centerwing tank? That does make more sense, since, if someone empties a main wing tank, it cannot be refilled, inflight.
 
KC135R
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RE: KC-135 Wingtip Refueling Pods

Wed Apr 26, 2006 12:41 am

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 7):
So the fuel actually comes from the forward and aft body tanks, and not the mains, or centerwing tank?

Yes, the A/R pumps supply fuel from the body tanks to the (newly enlarged) SPR manifold to be used for MPRS refuels. Of course, just like before, nearly all the fuel from any tank can be gravity drained into the body tanks and used for a refuel.

The A/R manifold is now connected to the SPR manifold at all times, however an electrically controlled "wing isolation valve" has been added on each side of the airplane which can shut off fuel flow to the SPR manifold on either side independently.

Also, the manually operated #1 and #2 valves and the handle that operated them (the manual refuel handle) are all gone on MPRS jets.

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