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Getting Aircraft To The Usaf Museum

Fri Apr 16, 2010 2:23 pm

As many of you may know the National Museum of the USAF is located on at Wright Field, just down the road from Wright-Patterson AFB (KFFO).

It appears like the runways have long been decommissioned at Wright Field, yet they have to get the planes to the museum somehow. Does anyone know if they temporarily use and open 9/27 at the museum or do they fly into FFO and move planes via the roads?

I've long wished I could be on I-675 seeing a plane on final for 27's a great view of the runway if you know to look for it!
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RE: Getting Aircraft To The Usaf Museum

Fri Apr 16, 2010 2:45 pm

This might be a bad memory but when the SR-71 went to the Museum I saw a photo of it crossing a very busy street or freeway on short final at a very low altitude. But I also remember a photo of the aircraft being towed down what looked like a street to 'get to the museum'.

Could it have landed on 23R and the road photo from 235, and then be towed via surface streets to the museum?
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RE: Getting Aircraft To The Usaf Museum

Fri Apr 16, 2010 9:06 pm

They have used both. When the C-141B Hanoi Taxi flew some tour flights for former Vietnam POWs, it took-off and landed on Rwy 09/27 at Wright Field, when VC-137C #26000, it also landed on Rwy 09. Sometimes it is not available, then Rwy 02/23 at FFO is used and the truck aircraft to the museum, so that would be anything from B-47, or KC-135 and bigger would need the decommissioned runway, as anything smaller can travel by roads after arrival and prep work for the display. My guess is they only clean and clear Rwy 09/27 for heavy or large jets going to the museum, and smaller ones at FFO.

It takes a lot of work to get a decommissioned runway ready even for one operation. It would need a throughout inspection, temporary VASI/PAPI, and any holes in the pavement patched with coldpatch. The decommissioned runway would only be used in VFR daytime weather as it has no nav-aids approach or runway lighting. Since it would be out of site from the FFO Tower, my guess is there would be fire/rescue standing by for the one time landing at Rwy 09/27.
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RE: Getting Aircraft To The Usaf Museum

Sat Apr 17, 2010 3:46 am

Back around 1986, when they delivered the last B-1A to the museum (since transfered to a different museum) they flew it into the museum runway.

I was flying -135s out of Grissom AFB at the time, and we were scheduled for a typical training mission - hit a B-52, give him a few thousand pounds of offload, fly a nav leg, then back to the home drome for some pattern work. Got a call the night before moving our show time up an hour, and telling me we were going to refuel a B-1 with something like a 50K offload. At the time, the B-1B was just coming on line, and boom operators needed to be checked out before refueling them - we didn't even have an instructor qualified at the time.

Turned out it was the B-1A going into the museum - in order to land at the museum field, they had to be light weight, but if they couldn't get in (due to weather, etc) they were going to return to Edwards AFB, and wouldn't have enough gas to make it back. We rendezvoused with them in a local MOA, passed a little gas to make sure he could take fuel from us, then orbited until he landed. We then went and hit that B-52, flew the nav leg, then ended the day with three weather diverts, the last one taking us to Minot AFB for the night.  Wow!

We had an IP on board, so I got to go back and shoot some pictures during the A/R - I need to find those slides and scan them one of these days.
KC-135 - Passing gas and taking names!
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RE: Getting Aircraft To The Usaf Museum

Sat Apr 17, 2010 12:51 pm

Quoting moose135 (Reply 3):
Back around 1986, when they delivered the last B-1A to the museum (since transfered to a different museum) they flew it into the museum runway.

Unfortunately when it went to Offutt, it went in pieces by truck.

During my time at Wright-Patt, working in the air terminal, we handled many aircraft delivered in pieces to the museum, including a Bf-109 and B-17 turrets. Not to mention some "unusual" aircraft going to the Foreign Technology Division which ended up years later in very public static parks.
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