Your favourite Wifs

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Re: Your favourite Wifs

Postby GTX » Sun Dec 29, 2013 6:00 am

They keep coming...

FGR.2's over the Nam.

In June 1966, with the development of the new RR Spey engined F-4 Phantom FGR.Mk 2 under way for the RAF, the USAF made the decision to also purchase at least a squadron’s worth directly ‘off the drawing board’ . This decision was largely based on the supposedly greater performance that would be available with the new engine. On paper, using Speys looked like a great idea, as they were more powerful than the J79s fitted normally, and more fuel-efficient. In reality, these predicted benefits did not translate to real life, and in fact the F-4M (as they were designated in USAF service) were actually poorer performers than the standard J79 powered version. Never-the-less, a purchase is a purchase and the USAF now found themselves with a squadron of F-4Ms.

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F-4M Phantom, 10th fighter Commando Squadron, Bien Hoa Air Base, 1967.

These were assigned to 10th Fighter Commando Squadron and sent to Vietnam for a full up combat evaluation. Though successful, the F-4M’s lower performance wasn’t generally liked by the USAF pilots and the aircraft were subsequently turned over to the air force of South Vietnam, which previously had only slow A-1 Skyraider and A-37 Dragonfly attack aircraft. With the step up in performance that this entailed, the South Vietnamese crew couldn’t have been happier.

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F-4M Phantom, 1st Fighter Squadron, South Vietnamese Air Force (VNAF), Bien Hoa Air Base, 1973. Seen here in an experimental camouflage scheme seen on several of the 1st's Phantoms.

Sadly, the South Vietnamese F-4Ms only operated for a few years before the country was eventually overrun by the North Vietnamese forces. Ironically, several of the aircraft were captured and used operationally by the NVAF, in particular against Khmer Rouge. In fact, even as late as 1995, it was reported that a few F-4Ms were still in use – they being eventually replaced by Su-27s.

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North Vietnamese F-4M Phantom, seen here after being brought back to flying condition following the cannibalisation of several unserviceable VNAF Phantoms, 1976

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NVAF F-4M Phantom, 1994, in standard air superiority scheme.

One further interesting twist to this story was the use of the F-4M by both the Polish and Soviet militaries. Several of the F-4Ms left-over post Vietnam War were apparently exported to Poland and Russia for advanced study of US aviation technology. It is reported that both of these countries operated at least one in flying condition – though there is speculation that this may have in fact been the same aircraft.

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Polish F/A-4M Phantomski, used for ground attack mission testing, 1976.

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Soviet F-4M Phantomski, used in the "Topgunski" role by a Top Secret test unit, 1977.
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Re: Your favourite Wifs

Postby GTX » Sun Dec 29, 2013 6:02 am

And one for those weird people of the North...

Canadian Phantoms!

In July 1970, the Canadian aircraft carrier HMCS Bonaventure was decommissioned. Initially there were no plans to replace it, however after a great deal of strong lobbying from those both inside and outside of the military, it was eventually decided to look for a replacement. However, since the Government was unwilling to spend a great deal of money on a replacement, the search focused primarily on second hand ships.

Fortuitously, in 1971 the British Government had decided to decommission HMS Eagle. When the Canadian Government started searching for a new carrier, the British Government was only too happy to sell it (at a very affordable price – there being a great deal of relief at being able to find a buyer) along with a compliment of 24 Phantom FG Mk.1s. The Canadian’s however requested some modifications to the aircraft which actually brought them more into line with the RAF’s FGR Mk.2s (this mainly being done to aid in the logistics effort – it being thought that since the RAF was still operating Mk.2s, it would be wise to have commonality where possible).

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1. CF-116B Phantom, VF-871, HMCS Hampton Grey, 1972 in its initial delivery scheme.

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2. CF-116B Phantom, VF-870, HMCS Hampton Grey, 1972 in its initial delivery scheme, differing slightly from VF-871's machines.

At the same time as this was taking place, the Canadian Air Command (AIRCOM) was suffering from a number of serviceability problems with its CF-5 Freedom Fighters. After many months of trying to overcome the problems, it was decided to simply give up and replace them all with something else. Given that the Maritime Command (MARCOM) had just announced that it was getting Phantoms, it was decided to increase the order and purchase an additional 54 standard FGR Mk.2s. This was greatly welcomed, since many airmen had originally wanted the Phantom instead of the Freedom Fighter. In order to avoid the embarrassment of having to go back on one of its decisions, the Government declared that these too would be designated CF-116s (the CF-5’s official designation having been the CF-116) – even today this still rankles many aviation historians.

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3. Canadian Air Command CF-116C Phantom, No, 419 "Moose" Squadron, in its initial, and short lived, delivery scheme, 1972.

In 1972, the new carrier, HMCS Hampton Grey (it having been named after the Canadian naval aviator who won the VC during the closing days of WWII) arrived at CFB Halifax carrying 36 CF-116s (24 naval CF-116Bs for MARCOM, and the first 12 CF-116C for AIRCOM).

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4. AIRCOM CF-116C Phantom, No, 419 "Moose" Squadron, in tactical colours, 1973.

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5. AIRCOM CF-116C Phantom, No, 434 "Bluenose" Squadron, in Aggressor colours, 1973.

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6. AIRCOM CF-116C Phantom, No, 433 "Porcupine" Squadron, in wrap around tactical colours, 1974.

In MARCOM service, the CF-116Bs would serve with both VF-870 and VF-871 squadrons as well as the reformed “Grey Ghosts” aerobatic team (the Phantom being seen as an appropriate ghostly replacement for the Banshee).

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7. MARCOM CF-116B Phantom, "Grey Ghosts" aerobatic team, 1974.

In AIRCOM service, the CF-116Cs first entered service with No. 419 ("Moose") Squadron primarily in an aggressor and training role (though they were still capable of being used in offensive operations if so required). They also replaced the CF-5s of both No.s 433 ("Porcupine") and 434 ("Bluenose") Squadrons. These squadrons were assigned the mission of reinforcing Norway should trouble ever break out in Europe. The first such European deployment with the aid of air-to-air refuelling took place June 9, 1973.

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8. AIRCOM CF-116C Phantom, No, 419 "Moose" Squadron, Aggressor, 1984.

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9. AIRCOM CF-116C Phantom, No, 433 "Porcupine" Squadron, Norway deployment, 1982.

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10. AIRCOM CF-116C Phantom, No, 419 "Moose" Squadron, Aggressor, 1985.

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11. AIRCOM CF-116C Phantom, No 433 "Porcupine" Squadron, 1986, Norway deployment, in new European 1 colours.

Both the CF-116Bs and Cs were to be replaced by the CF-188 Hornet during the late 1980s, however the Phantom's days in Canadian colours were not over yet. As the CF-116Cs still had time left on their airframes they were kept in the aggressor role with No. 419 squadron until the mid 1990s. During this time, they were also used to train new pilots in tactics and low level navigation before moving on to the CF-188 Hornet.

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12. AIRCOM CF-116C Phantom, No 434 "Bluenose" Squadron, 1989, In the types final air superiority colour scheme.

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13. CF-116B Phantom, VF-870, HMCS Hampton Grey, 1987, wearing a competition trials camouflage scheme. VF-870 and VF-871 were both trialing a "shallow water" tactical scheme. With each Squadron using different colours in the trials.

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14. VF-871 in the trials scheme for that Squadron.This particular Phantom was involved in an incident in which it was tasked with sinking a container ship that was carrying highly flammable substances and was drifting dangerously close to populated coastal areas. 202 was vectored in to sink the ship and did so with two AGM-119B Penguin anti-ship missiles. No lives were lost. Note "kill" marking on splitter plate!

In 1991, the CF-116s were finally blooded. As part of Operation FRICTION (Canada's contribution to the 1991 liberation of Kuwait) the HMCS Hampton Grey escorted by the the destroyers HMCS Terra Nova and HMCS Athabaskan and the supply ship HMCS Protecteur joined the coalition fleet in the Persian Gulf. In addition No. 434 squadron was deployed to Saudi Arabia. When the air war began, both the CF-116Bs and Cs were integrated into the coalition force and provided air cover and attacked ground targets. This was the first time since the Korean War that Canadian forces had participated in offensive combat operations. Overall during the operation the CF-116Bs and Cs flew a total of 2400 hrs.

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15. No. 434 Squadron, Saudi Arabia, 1991, Operation Friction. This particular CF-116C Phantom shot down an Iraqi Mirage F.1EQ with a Skyflash air to air missile. Also visible on the splitter plate are five dumb bomb and twelve Laser Guide Bomb markings.

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16. Another Operation Friction CF-116C Phantom from No. 434 "Bluenose" Squadron, this time with Sharkmouth and five dumb bomb and five LGB markings.

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17. VF-870 CF-116B Phantom, HMCS Hampton Grey, Operation Friction, Persian Gulf, 1991. Phantom 106 shot down an Iraqi Su-24 Fencer and an Su-22 Fitter, both with AIM-9L Sidewinder. Both jets were spotted flying very low in the Persian Gulf, apparently trying to make it to Iran. All of Hampton Grey's Air Wing carried Sharkmouths during Operation Friction.

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18. VF-871, CF-116 Phantom, HMCS Hampton Grey, Operation Friction, Persian Gulf, 1991. Phantom 210 shot down an Iraqi MiG-25 Foxbat on the opening day of what would famously be known as Desert Storm. 210 also sported a Sharkmouth for the Operation and had also sunk three Iraqi Patrol boats with AGM-119B Penguin anti-ship missiles near the Shatt al Arab water way.

Eventually, in 1995, the Department of National Defence initiated a 25 percent cut in the strength of Fighter Group, forcing a substantial portion of the active CF-188 fleet to be put into storage. To prevent further cuts in the CF-188 fleet, the Canadian Armed Forces agreed to eliminate all its CF-116s from the active inventory.
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Re: Your favourite Wifs

Postby GTX » Sun Dec 29, 2013 6:12 am

Final one...for now:

Royal New Zealand Air Force F-4K Phantom.

During the late 1960s, the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) was searching for a replacement for its English Electric Canberras. The 1965 Defence Review had recommended the replacement of the RNZAF’s Canberra force by 1970, and indicated that the new aircraft should be for a close air support role. Given the lessons of the war in Vietnam at that time, defence planners preferred the F-4 Phantom. However, economic factors appeared to be swaying the Government towards a purchase of modified A-4F Skyhawks. At the last moment though (quite literally - the same day as the A-4 order was to be signed), the former motherland (UK) stepped in with a compromise deal. In order to spread the development costs for its own RR Spey engined F-4 development, they made an offer of a special ‘Commonwealth only’ deal for a batch of brand new Spey engined Phantom FGR.Mk 2s. These were essentially identical to those then entering service with the RAF. In RNZAF service though, they would be referred to as the F-4K (the K being for ‘Kiwi’).

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F-4K Phantom, 75 Squadron, Ohakea, 1971.

The entire purchase of 14 aircraft (10 F-4Ks and 4 TF-4Ks (this being a dedicated, though combat capable trainer variant)) were shipped to New Zealand aboard an aircraft carrier in 1970. The aircraft were operated by 75 Sqn, but conversion and initial strike training were passed to 14 Sqn. The conversion role reverted to 75 Sqn in 1975, with 14 Sqn moving to purely Strikemaster operations. The conversion role was further changed in 1984, passing to 2 Sqn when it was reformed at Ohakea on December 11, 1984. The creation of a new Phantom squadron becoming possible with the purchase of ten ex-RAF FGR.Mk 2s (8 F-4s and 2 TF-4s) aircraft in 1984.

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F-4K Kahu, 75 Squadron, Nowra NAS, N.S.W., Australia, 1986.

Under project KAHU, all aircraft updated to the F-4K Kahu standard, essentially by adopting the avionics from the F-16 Fighting Falcon, giving them the ability to use laser guided bombs, as well as AGM-65 Maverick and AIM-9L Sidewinder missiles. Kahu is Maori for falcon.

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F-4K Kahu, 75 Squadron, Ohakea, 1998. This scheme proved very unpopular with Malaysian and Thai pilots during overseas exercises, the Asian pilots complaining that it was too difficult to locate! They asked the RNZAF to make the scheme more hi-vis, the RNZAF refused.

The survivors were retired in 2001 amidst much controversy. The aircraft are currently being stored at RNZAF Base Woodburne, just outside of Blenheim in the South Island.

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F-4K Kingfisher, 75 Squadron, Ohakea, 2001. This was a test scheme for the F-4K that was to be implemented for specialised aircraft used in the anti-shipping role in conjunction with the Harpoon and Penguin anti ship missiles.
Last edited by GTX on Sun Dec 29, 2013 6:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Your favourite Wifs

Postby TOR » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:06 am

GTX wrote:Image
F-4K Phantom, 75 Squadron, Ohakea, 1971.


Great stuff.....now I just need a F-4D and Mirage III in this, (and a dedicated "Kiwi Red") scheme.
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Re: Your favourite Wifs

Postby hrtpaul » Sun Dec 29, 2013 7:42 pm

I've just installed 4 rain water tanks ;)
Brother: Do you really need that many Phantoms?
Me: Don't make me kick you outta the shed for asking dumb questions
Brother: But are you gonna build all these models?
Me: Yeah of course I am. Now get outta my shed

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Re: Your favourite Wifs

Postby A30_737_AEW&C » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:32 pm

hrtpaul wrote:I've just installed 4 rain water tanks ;)

But how shall you fill them, Grasshopper ? Sending water tankers now ;)

Greg,

Seriously good work by Richard. And a great effort at making the schemes credible. Most interesting and 'entertaining'.
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Taking the system more seriously than the system takes itself

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Re: Your favourite Wifs

Postby _BlackHawk_ » Sun Dec 29, 2013 10:35 pm

A30_737_AEW&C wrote:
hrtpaul wrote:I've just installed 4 rain water tanks ;)

But how shall you fill them, Grasshopper ? Sending water tankers now ;)


That's easy, just stick the hose in them at night so the neighbours can't see....not that I've errrrr, ever done such a thing of course.
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"No one ever made a difference by being like everyone else."
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Re: Your favourite Wifs

Postby GTX » Mon Dec 30, 2013 4:07 pm

Of course, whilst on the Phantom theme, here are a couple from my Greater Australia story...

The F-4F is a navalised version of the F-4E.

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Re: Your favourite Wifs

Postby GTX » Sun Jan 05, 2014 9:51 am

Something different for the next time you are doing a Mirage III model:

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BTW, the option of US Mirage IIIs was a real one...they would have been produced under licence by Boeing.
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Re: Your favourite Wifs

Postby JustPlanesHobbies » Sun Jan 05, 2014 11:22 am

Check out this site for something different, very cool!
http://www.motorsportretro.com/2013/06/ ... ery-planes
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