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Ghost Rider raised from the dead. Flew back to Barksdale AFB


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Air Force Resurrects B-52 Bomber From Boneyard for First Time

 

Excerpt:

 

"The U.S. Air Force for the first time refurbished and returned to duty a B-52 bomber that was held in long-term storage at a facility in Arizona.

 

The B-52 Stratofortress, called "Ghost Rider," is a strategic long-range bomber that had been held at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Arizona since its decommission in 2008.

 

The dry desert climate helps preserve thousands of aircraft stored at the base's Boneyard, part of the 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group. While some of the aircraft are used for spare parts, the Ghost Rider was the first B-52 to be returned to duty from the Boneyard.

 

The dry climate had, however, caused dry-rot on much of the plane's fuel lines and tires. After refurbishment and a taxi down the runway to test steering on the landing gear, Ghost Rider had a successful run of all eight engines in late January before it was flown on Feb. 13 to Barksdale Air Force Base in Shreveport, La., to replace another B-52 that had been damaged in a cockpit fire."

 

The whole article with pics is here: http://www.military.com/daily-news/2015/02/23/air-force-resurrects-b52-bomber-from-boneyard-for-first-time.html?ESRC=airforce-a.nl

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Whoa! Get him back to create the EB-52 Megafortress and the EB-1C Vampire II at least! I love Dale Brown's books. I believe we were stationed together at Barksdale but did not know each other.

 

Real World Similarities
Because most of these aircraft are based on real world technology some similarities can be found.
* The EB-52 shares the same designation as the proposed EB-52J jamming aircraft based on the B-52 Stratofortress. Also the USAF has considered replacing the eight engines of the B-52 Stratofortress with four high power engines.
* The EB-2 shares many similarities to the real world B-2 Spirit and uses the same electromagnetic field that is speculated to be used by the real world B-2 Spirit.
* The EB-1C is very similar to the proposed variant of the B-1 Lancer which uses AAMs and other missiles with F-22 engines for increased speed.
* The RAQ-15 UCAV is similar in mission and design to the proposed X-45 UCAV by Boeing.
* The AL-52 Dragon is very similar to the YAL-1A by Boeing which is based on the 747. It is noted by the genius Kelsey Duffield in Wings of Fire that the AL-52 lost in competition to the YAL-1A.
*The XR-A9 was the result of the famous real world Aurora plane project as noted in Strike Force

 

Source: http://wikibin.org/articles/fictional-aircraft-in-dale-brown-novels.html

 

I was disappointed when I heard he was convicted and pled guilty to tax fraud: http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/life/books/news/2004-04-22-brown-guilty_x.htm

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Dave,

I never got inside the later ones. The galley was a laugh considering the length of the flights. Ours just had big coffee dispensers filled before takeoff. That was back when we had alert pads and I was sacumcised. ;)

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It was a term of left handed endearment and camaraderie like BUFF, which could be used both fondly, and as a curse.

 

It applies to members of the USAF who were lucky enough (unfortunate enough,) to gave been selected (all the good assignments taken) to have been assigned to SAC, Strategic Air Command. It was true that once in, you never got out unless you were an 8 ball. And those we sent to the TACky commands not entrusted to deliver bombs that could cause large scale damage. We proudly (were forced to) serve underground, in harsh climates, bunking in bunkers near the alert pads.

 

We were proudly (forced screaming and kicking) initiated into the Command whose motto was "Peace is our Profession" (Bombing was just a hobby)

 

Gen. LeMay who organized SAC, and I coached for a Chief's Match (.38 Special) set the tone, and it was good.

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It was a term of left handed endearment and camaraderie like BUFF, which could be used both fondly, and as a curse.

 

It applies to members of the USAF who were lucky enough (unfortunate enough,) to gave been selected (all the good assignments taken) to have been assigned to SAC, Strategic Air Command. It was true that once in, you never got out unless you were an 8 ball. And those we sent to the TACky commands not entrusted to deliver bombs that could cause large scale damage. We proudly (were forced to) serve underground, in harsh climates, bunking in bunkers near the alert pads.

 

We were proudly (forced screaming and kicking) initiated into the Command whose motto was "Peace is our Profession" (Bombing was just a hobby)

 

Gen. LeMay who organized SAC, and I coached for a Chief's Match (.38 Special) set the tone, and it was good.

RV, this was a good laugh. Thanks for posting!

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It was a term of left handed endearment and camaraderie like BUFF, which could be used both fondly, and as a curse.

...

We were proudly (forced screaming and kicking) initiated into the Command whose motto was "Peace is our Profession" (Bombing was just a hobby)

...

Gen. LeMay who organized SAC, and I coached for a Chief's Match (.38 Special) set the tone, and it was good.

 

Phew, thanks Derek. The last two syllables of the word, 'sacumcised' had me worried.

Jim

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We TAC guys had the rough assignments. :P I was in ADC for awhile also... I do have to admit that while BUFFS are slow and low (now), at least those guys could get up and stretch or use the can..instead of a piddle pack.

 

I was coming home on leave travelling at oh-dark thirty (we never used zero dark thirty) I was just a little past Holbrook AZ on I40 West when I heard a tremendous roar go right past me heading North. It was a BUFF flying the low level route over the radar scoring site a bit South of Holbrook. I could just barely make out the shape pretty impressive to skeeter winger.

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It's all good Jim!

 

Dave,

You'll remember these. I retired in 1998 from an American Toy Company (ATC) base. Of course by then they changed the name to American Educational Toy Company. But the previous 7 years I was in an overseas location and assigned to TAC (Tactical Air Command)

 

SAC and TAC (Tactical Air Command) pilots and crews were always very competitive.

 

Fighters Vs Bombers

 

An F-117 was flying escort with a B-52 and generally making a nuisance of himself by flying rolls around the lumbering old bomber. The message for the B-52 crew was, "Anything you can do, I can do better."

 

Not to be outdone, the bomber pilot announced that he would rise to the challenge. The B-52 continued its flight, straight and level, however.

Perplexed, the fighter pilot asked, "So? What did you do?"

 

"We just shut down two engines."

 

 

"Hearts and Minds"


During the Viet Nam War, President Johnson proclaimed that his administration's goal was to "Win the Hearts and Minds" of the Vietnamese people, especially those sympathetic to communist North Viet Nam. SAC B-52's were then showering the country with bombs, and this resulted in the slogan being expanded to, "When you have them by the balls, their hearts and minds will follow." The airman eventually realized that SAC was applying the same philosophy to them by not permitting them to transfer from the command. That resulted in this unique patch.

"We Win"


"I am sure this patch was designed by some TAC Weenie Pilot. It aptly depicts the demise of SAC - The TAC sword piercing the SAC mailed fist. This reminds me of a joke going around in June of 1992. Do you know who killed SAC? The butler did it! (General Butler was the last CINCSAC)."

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My first base was Castle AFB. I used to love the generation exercises where every B52 and KC135 thas was able to ran up all rmgines at the sane time. It was awesome to feel the ground shake.

Ron, your story reminds me...

 

In October 1975, My wife and I bought a house immediately adjacent to the north side glide path for Barksdale AFB in Bossier City, LA. Prior to that, we had lived 10 miles East of town... The very first night in our new house, around 3:00 AM... Barksdale had an 'Alert'. B52 after B52 took off on full thrust... with tankers interspersed This went on for 20-30-40 minutes... the ground shook... the windows rattled... and I thought WW3 had started. Scared the daylights out of us! it was not until the next day talking to neighbors that we learned what it was... and while not frequent, was somewhat routine. We lived there for 3 years and actually got to where we liked it.

Jim

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I love it. Yes when caught outside under one on approach I cover my ears like when on the base in my active duty days. But I still smile and think of it as the sound of freedom. To my ears, Freedom really rings!

 

War story. I was at Spangdahlem AB Germany from 1990-1997, we had an annual airshow like most, and as usual those of us in the approach or flight patterns were treated to a lot of incoming allied aircraft coming in. It was fun trying to ID the allied planes and jets. But one year I was out in the yard around 1994 or 5 the day before our airshow and I heard a really loud jet coming in and thought someone had resurrected one of the Brit Vulcan Delta wings. I looked up in anticipation and chills ran up and down my spine. It was a Mig, overflying Herforst leased housing on approach. I had to remind my self as I was rooted to that spot that it was a friendly! Don't ask me the number but we had two at the show, an old one that was seemingly antique, and a newer one that I think was a Mig 29 that looked a lot like an F-15 at first glance. The only way I ever thought I'd look up and see one that low overhead was if it was strafing. Peace can have its unsettling moments too. I crawled all over them at the show.

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Ron sorry thought I responded earlier. Yep same thing at ours. And several times the ground shook and all we could see was a craft in a dead vertical ascent in full military POWER and burners. I know we had the now declassified SR-71 visit a few times there. By the time the sound gets to any possible observers they were out of sight. And we get sonic booms here regularly from a distance as they get out from over cities and towns. Not loud really but definitely a boom. I deplaned from a passenger outfitted KC-135 returning from a corona conference where I was on the manifest because of a problem with my first flight back home from a TDY. We landed in a restricted area of the flight line and a Col I had chatted with on the flight told me that what I was about to see was secret and that I could tell no one and I did not. At least not until they were declassifies. Two people were just getting down with what looked like spacesuits on carrying suitcase size units connected to the suits. Now that was a bonafide WTF moment in a great way. Few had seen those off the flight line.

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Derek, Ron, hope you can stand another story...

 

Based in Okinawa back in 1969... Torii Station... and at a distance, saw a strange airplane take off almost vertically. Asked around... it was (shh!) an SR-71. Man, that was something to see! A few months later bought a 'really Good' Minolta FT/QL 35 mm camera... And decided, "I am gonna get a picture of that airplane". Asking around, found out it was hangered at Kadena AFB. Asked a little more, and found out the hanger was across the street from a four-story apartment building that I just happened to "have a friend" who lived there... And yes we could get to the roof. Great view to get a shot of preparing an SR-71 for flight. And that is just what I did. Got some great shots.

 

Then.. took the rolls in to the PX to get processed... got the pictures back... which were nicely printed, minus any pictures of any SR-71.

 

I thought... Uh-oh - Caught! Had a high clearance which we were constantly reminded... 'Hard to get, easy to lose'... and all I could think was somebody at the PX deleted the pictures, and reported me to 'somebody'. Bye, bye easy-to-lose clearance. Never heard a thing, tho.

 

Anyway, thanks for the memory trip time, guys.

Jim

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The SR was an incredible bird. Had one come into Osan one day with a broke motor. It was on a weekend and I had the weekend shift. They nosed it into the U2 Black cats hanger and the tail section that still stuck out was covered with tarps. A support KC135 arrived from Kadena that night and worked that night and into Sunday to get the motor changed out. They fueled it up with enough JP8 to get them up to a tanker.

 

When it left there must have a thousand people watching. She lifted off, gained some airspeed raised the gear and remained at about 500' for maybe 15 seconds, lit the burners and bye-bye.

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Dave we have one on static display here at Barksdale now. Those babies were and are scarce. Here is the local Aircraft museum open to the public. Just click on each aircraft at the bottom of the screen for a full size picture. http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g40424-d268853-r139075402-Barksdale_Global_Power_Museum-Shreveport_Louisiana.html#photos those are all photos here sat our museum.

 

The museum is open to the public. http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g40424-d268853-r139075402-Barksdale_Global_Power_Museum-Shreveport_Louisiana.html If anyone is stopping by give me a shout and I'll meet you out there.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Damn, I must be getting old. I remember when the SR was a YF-12A. Also was at Clark in '65 I think it was, when a B-52 had to make an emergency landing. The runway wasn't made for something that big, neither log enough, or wide enough, and the outrigger gear was in the grass. When it was finally repaired, they backed it up til the tail was out over perimeter road. Needless to say all traffic was stopped til it took off. I was in POL then and we put just enough JP-4 in it to get it airborne. A KC was circling the base to fill it up once in the air. I watched that behemoth use every foot of runway to get off. It was quite a sight to see

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Thinking back, and I mean WAAAAAY back. I believe the most awesome take off I ever witnessed was about 1962 or 63. It was a B-58 Hustler taking off at night. Man, with those after burners blazing away, and the incredible sound, plus the pilot pulled it to almost verticle, it was a sight to remember. Also, Fat Albert of the Blue Angels will put on quite a show with a JATO takeoff.

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The most thunderous aircraft I ever saw take off, fly low and slow over our heads, and land was a Brit Vulcan B2 Bomber. It was just using its own engines no JATO! No way you can hear the thunder and howl on a video. And for the uninitiated, this is a large Bomber not a fighter. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_ARSE8jEHQ It falls between an F-15 and the B-52 in size. We have one on static display here at the Barksdale Museum.

 

I believe it was the largest full delta wing jet ever built. Yet it has done barrel rolls and flown inverted. Not bad for a Nuclear bomber.

 

 

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