khenleydia
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Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sat Jan 09, 2010 7:03 pm

I keep seeing all these images of the old F-4s, F-111, etc. mothballed and I begin wondering, how long some of them will be mothballed for and for what reasons?

I know it is good to have spares, but many of the planes are very out of date. I know that with the bombers they have to cut them up into 5 pieces and leave them for 90 days, but what about the smaller planes?

I would love to hear what those with real knowledge have to say.

Thanks,

KhenleyDIA
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kc135topboom
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sat Jan 09, 2010 7:16 pm

Most of the B-52Gs had to be cut up for START varification. The F-111s, and FB-111A/F-111Gs or a select few of them are being retained for spares for the RAAF F/RF-111Cs and currently stored F-111Gs.

The same for the F-4s, many allies still fly the F-4 like Greece, Turkey, Israel, and Egypt.

BTW, the USAF F/FB/EF-111 fleet was mothballed as a budget cut under Clinton in the early to mid 1990s.
 
zanl188
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sat Jan 09, 2010 7:24 pm

This pix is a pretty good example of aircraft being reclaimed for parts vs scrapped outright, especially the A-10s. Not sure what's going on with the Convairs though...

Interesting pix...


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JBirdAV8r
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sat Jan 09, 2010 8:21 pm



Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 1):
The same for the F-4s, many allies still fly the F-4 like Greece, Turkey, Israel, and Egypt.

Right, and I think they're still converting a good amount of them to QF-4 target drones, aren't they?
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flybaurlax
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sat Jan 09, 2010 9:42 pm



Quoting JBirdAV8r (Reply 3):
Right, and I think they're still converting a good amount of them to QF-4 target drones, aren't they?

Indeed
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Spacepope
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sat Jan 09, 2010 9:43 pm



Quoting JBirdAV8r (Reply 3):
Right, and I think they're still converting a good amount of them to QF-4 target drones, aren't they?

Not so many anymore. They've burned through all the F-4 G and E airframes, and are working through the last of the RF-4Cs. You'll see QF-16A/Bs in the near future, espescially after they blast through a bunch during JSF weapons qualifications.
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Spacepope
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sat Jan 09, 2010 9:46 pm



Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 2):
This pix is a pretty good example of aircraft being reclaimed for parts vs scrapped outright, especially the A-10s.

Those A-10s may fly again. There is a wing factory at DMAFB where the oldest A-10s witht he "Thin Skin" wings that were subject to cracking are having brand new wings fabricated and installed, all while being uppdated to A-10C standard.
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zanl188
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 12:14 am



Quoting Spacepope (Reply 6):
Those A-10s may fly again.

I dunno.. those A-10s are in the green scheme. Probably haven't flown in 15 years or better. I agree though that the wings may fly again - I'd guess that's why we see no A-10 wings in the pix...
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spudh
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 12:44 am

Is that a canberra top middle above the 707's?
 
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:03 am



Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 1):
BTW, the USAF F/FB/EF-111 fleet was mothballed as a budget cut under Clinton in the early to mid 1990s.

The SAC FB-111 fleet was retired under BRAC 1988 - the Reagan Administration initiative - completed in 1990.

Some of the others F-111 cuts came from BRAC 88, the rest from BRAC 91. While Clinton was president when the cuts were completed, the decisions to make the cuts and eliminate the aircraft came before he was elected.
 
zanl188
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:10 am

Quoting Spudh (Reply 8):
Is that a canberra top middle above the 707's?

It's a B-57 modified to the WB-57 variant. Distant relative of the Canberra, built by Martin if I'm not mistaken.


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[Edited 2010-01-09 17:12:54]
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cpd
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:21 am



Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 1):
The F-111s, and FB-111A/F-111Gs or a select few of them are being retained for spares for the RAAF F/RF-111Cs and currently stored F-111Gs.

We actually took a reasonable number for F-111G aircraft and got them flying again as training aircraft (operational conversion) for the F-111C (RF-111C).

All G model planes have been retired now - and one has gone to a museum thankfully. There are still some C models flying about, and they are a welcome sight to see.  Smile It won't be long before they too are retired.

So sad that it wouldn't be possible to keep one or two flying under the protection of one of the well known Australian aircraft restoration museums. There are a couple that well accomplish this task.
 
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747classic
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 12:51 pm

I found this,very recent, pictures of Davis-Monthan AFB on A-net :


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[Edited 2010-01-10 04:55:07]

[Edited 2010-01-10 04:56:30]
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zanl188
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 2:49 pm



Quoting 747classic (Reply 12):
I found this,very recent, pictures of Davis-Monthan AFB on A-net

Strange that those C-123s appear to be in better shape than the C-5s...
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JohnM
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 3:08 pm



Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 13):
Strange that those C-123s appear to be in better shape than the C-5s...

I would think the C-123s aren't being messed with since there are very few out in the world that would require parts. How many are in flying condition in the world, a few at best? So they would be left alone. The C-5s on the other hand are being picked over pretty hard to keep the rest of the fleet going. I saw another pic of DM somewhere that one of the C-5s was almost picked apart, and not much left of the old girl.
 
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kc135topboom
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 3:18 pm



Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 2):
This pix is a pretty good example of aircraft being reclaimed for parts vs scrapped outright, especially the A-10s. Not sure what's going on with the Convairs though...

Those are either T-29s or C-131s, both types are on museum hold and FMS hold.

Quoting JBirdAV8r (Reply 3):
Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 1):
The same for the F-4s, many allies still fly the F-4 like Greece, Turkey, Israel, and Egypt.

Right, and I think they're still converting a good amount of them to QF-4 target drones, aren't they?



Quoting FlybaurLAX (Reply 4):
Indeed

Yes, but I think most of the F-4s are on hold for spares now. There are RF-4Cs, F-4D/EGs and German F-4Fs at DM.

Quoting Spudh (Reply 8):
Is that a canberra top middle above the 707's?



Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 10):
It's a B-57 modified to the WB-57 variant. Distant relative of the Canberra, built by Martin if I'm not mistaken.

Actually that is one of the former USAF RB-57Fs, as both NASA WB-57Fs are still with NASA and still flyable. My guess is the USAF RB-57Fs are spares for the two NASA WB-57Fs.

Quoting RFields5421 (Reply 9):
The SAC FB-111 fleet was retired under BRAC 1988 - the Reagan Administration initiative - completed in 1990.

Correct, but about half of them became TAC, and some later became RAAF F-111Gs. All of the former SAC FB-111As went to AMARC with between 6000 and 7000 hours on them. The best ones became F-111Gs and had the SRAM missile equipment and wiring removed.
 
mechatnew
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 3:34 pm

The FB-111As later called F-111Gs, and F-111As were retired by 1991. The F-111Ds by the end of 1992. The were plans to keep some F-111Es, and most F-111Fs which had been updated for a long while. The were retired very suddenly in 1995/1996, while Clinton was President, the EF-111As went on 1997.
 
zanl188
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 3:38 pm



Quoting JohnM (Reply 14):
I would think the C-123s aren't being messed with since there are very few out in the world that would require parts.

Thus making them excellent candidates for the scrapper. I wonder why DRMO hasn't put them out for bid?
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 3:47 pm



Quoting 747classic (Reply 12):
I found this,very recent, pictures of Davis-Monthan AFB on A-net :

So sad to see very expensive B1s rotting in the sun.

Given the fact that the whole fleet will be retired before the B52s and B2s it would seem Carter was right and Reagan was wrong!
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 3:57 pm



Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 17):
Thus making them excellent candidates for the scrapper. I wonder why DRMO hasn't put them out for bid?

They are the old Agent Orange birds, basically a superfund site in airplane form. They are pretty much left alone.
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zanl188
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 6:30 pm



Quoting Spacepope (Reply 19):
They are the old Agent Orange birds,

Ah yes the Ranch Hand airplanes, that would explain it.
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JohnM
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Sun Jan 10, 2010 7:26 pm



Quoting Spacepope (Reply 19):
They are the old Agent Orange birds, basically a Superfund site in airplane form. They are pretty much left alone.

With that info, I think I'll leave them off my classic war bird wish list! Maybe I can find some better iron out there to bid on.
 
khenleydia
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Mon Jan 11, 2010 7:11 pm

Wow! Thanks everyone for explaining and filling me/everyone else in about these old planes!

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kc135topboom
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Tue Jan 12, 2010 2:14 pm

That still doesn't fully covers who may want the T-29s and C-131s kept around. They were not Ranch Hand aircraft.
 
Venus6971
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Tue Jan 12, 2010 3:11 pm

Alot of 62 and 63 model KC-135A's still intact, are they on hold for FMS ?
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Spacepope
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Tue Jan 12, 2010 4:45 pm



Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 23):
That still doesn't fully covers who may want the T-29s and C-131s kept around. They were not Ranch Hand aircraft.

Erm, didn't you say they were museum holds on reply #15?
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Tue Jan 12, 2010 10:00 pm



Quoting Venus6971 (Reply 24):
Alot of 62 and 63 model KC-135A's still intact, are they on hold for FMS ?

I very much doubt it. They would require a lot of re-work and re-engining.
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spudh
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Tue Jan 12, 2010 10:17 pm

Wow!! That photo puts some perspective on the sheer size of a C5!!!

It looks big enough that you could land one of those little trainer aircraft inside it!
Or just pop one of the B52 fuselages in it just for fun!
 
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747classic
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Wed Jan 13, 2010 4:12 pm

These KC-135E's are still well preserved, but this C-5A looks already very worn down.
A lot of spare parts are already used from here (female ?), she will never fly again.


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kc135topboom
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Wed Jan 13, 2010 6:05 pm



Quoting Spacepope (Reply 25):
Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 23):
That still doesn't fully covers who may want the T-29s and C-131s kept around. They were not Ranch Hand aircraft.

Erm, didn't you say they were museum holds on reply #15?

Yes, I did say that, and some of them are on hold for museums, but there seems to be 4 of them, and atlest 3 of those seem to be completely intact, including the props and no shoring under them, indicating they are on hold as complete aircraft. It is difficult to say if the are USAF T-29s or C-131s or USN C-131s.

Quoting Lumberton (Reply 26):
Quoting Venus6971 (Reply 24):
Alot of 62 and 63 model KC-135A's still intact, are they on hold for FMS ?

I very much doubt it. They would require a lot of re-work and re-engining.

Those 92-63 "A" models are being held complete for some good reason, and if they ever do return to flying (for anyone) they would require some re-work, updating, and re-engining. Those KC-135As have been stored since at least 1994.

Quoting 747classic (Reply 28):
These KC-135E's are still well preserved,

Those are the KC-135Es the US Congress told the USAF not to retire, but could store them for possible future return to flying. It would be those KC-135Es that would be candidates for a reengining program should that be chosen to do, or the KC-X program falls on its face again.
 
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Loran
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Thu Jan 14, 2010 3:57 am

Aren't recently stored aircraft (e.g. F-14s) kept in a different mothballing state to enable return to service if required?

I thought that they are put into a 'reserve' status in storage for several years, and only after leaving the 'reserve' state they get stripped for parts or scrapped.

Probably depends if the model is still active with an operator (like the A-10, C-5, B-1, S-3, etc.) or if it has been retired completely (like the F-14, etc.).
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Thu Jan 14, 2010 4:30 am



Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 15):
Actually that is one of the former USAF RB-57Fs, as both NASA WB-57Fs are still with NASA and still flyable. My guess is the USAF RB-57Fs are spares for the two NASA WB-57Fs.

Yes both are based in Houston for JSC at Ellington Airport (formerly Ellington Field and before that Ellington AFB)
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kingairta
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Fri Jan 15, 2010 5:18 pm

All the F-14s have been destroyed. There are no usable parts. The only ones left are at museums. Reason being spare parts were finding their way over to Iran.
 
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kc135topboom
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RE: Mothballed Military Aircraft...

Fri Jan 15, 2010 5:27 pm



Quoting Loran (Reply 30):
I thought that they are put into a 'reserve' status in storage for several years, and only after leaving the 'reserve' state they get stripped for parts or scrapped.

There are also other provisions to keep an airplane type in storage, such as if they may be needed to be returned to service after they retire from active duty. IIRC the B-58 was one such case, most were kept in storage for about 15 years after they were all withdrawn from service, before they were scrapped.

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