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About BillS

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  1. http://thanlont.blogspot.com/2017/05/the-short-tragic-operation-of-f-4.html Tommy Thomasons piece on BA losses. This explains a/c variations as the teams “scrounged” replacements.
  2. The Texas Guard jet also does the Blk 30. (Could be wrong) any of the kinetic gold c kits can build any usaf block. All the bits are there. What’s missing are the back bone reinforcements present in various forms except blk 50. You can buy these from Flying Leatherneck. They’re inexpensive and easy to apply. My only beef with Kinetic is that the pylon holes are molded open. If you want to leave the stubbies or 370s off, you’ll have to plug them.
  3. The two teams transitioned to the F4 about the same time. The original jets came off the line configured. Actually, the mods were pretty extensive and included a gaseous oxygen system vs. LOX because of availability at civilian airports plus the various flight control, smoke etc. Most will recognize the MacD T-bird paint scheme had rather short nose scallops, absence of wing tip stripes and different style tail numbers which were quickly rectified. The Blue’s original jets were almost all written off within a year or so. This corresponds with various scheme modifications in following show seas
  4. Ben, so glad to see this topic get attention. My problem is the raft of stuff I have to that may or may not be useful depending on how much one wishes to get in to the “weeds” as it were. Over my years in the AF, I had the occasion to work with the T-Birds and was recommended to join as the maintenance officer. I worked directly for Bob Haney (F-100, F-4 transition) and Tim Roels (71-73 slot). Both are now deceased. Mike Jacobsen, Tom Swalm’s crew chief was/is the Thunderbird Historical Society contact and I’m sure I can track him down. He and I spent hours talking about the F-4 days. After Ma
  5. I think the easiest route is to just use some thin clear acetate and make your own. There are plenty of images out there. You will have to fashion a little projector optic on top of the glare shield but again, easy to fashion from scrap. The F-4B should be particularly easy. Best!
  6. You're on the home stretch!
  7. Very nice jet there. I concur with Rich. Refer to photos from that era. I’m a USAF’r and can attest to the fact that as time wore on, stenciling became minimalist. I saw plenty of USN/USMC F -4s in the late 70s and early 80s. You’d be super safe with servicing markings (O2, hyd. Etc) and safety warning markings. My opinion is the honeycomb markings remained on both USAF and USN til the end. Best wishes on finishing that thing!
  8. Hypersonic stuff is outstanding but the vey best seats are from Sparkit. The former are from cast resin, the later 3D. You’ll want Mk5 up to about 1967-8. Opt for early H-7s after that. Late H-7 showed up around late 70s early 80s.
  9. Just a great discussion and wow, some great seat collections. It is worthy of noting the differing philosophies between service branches and nations. The Brits and USN were initially big in to face curtains for actuation while USAF went for leg guard triggers, man seat separators (butt snappers) then between the leg D rings. On the MB seats, the harness European style harness was rated to 20 Gs while the US integrated design was rated to 40 Gs. Surprised there’s not a Northrop seat in the mix here.
  10. Gene K is bang on. Unsee it. He flew them, I was a maintenance officer on them and I still trying to figure out what’s so awful about the ZM C/D/J! I think the 40 something Monogram with a little tarting up still builds in to a nice replica.
  11. Dave Roof will know for sure.
  12. Habu nailed it. I pulled the attached from NATOPS. Though not real detailed, it gives a good explanation of gear actuation. The one actuator in your images does the work. Springs and air loads assist with alternate extension.
  13. I’m with Dave. I talked to the Tam. Reps at last year’s nats. They said the reason no new variants of the F-4 have come out is because they have 3 engineers that do all their scale airplane development. The F-35 was the “priority”. Considering the success of the A and B, I’m betting they're going to round out the series with a C. It’s different, it’s big, it’s got a tailhook and it’s got markings. If they’re going to do one, I’m thinking a November 2024 announcement is plausible.
  14. Without question the main assembly comprising the bucket and structure were dark gull gray. The seat cushion as depicted above was light olive. The parachute was sage green or sort of light bluish green as were the chute risers and lap belt. These did fade out. The face curtain, harness release and lower ejection handles were yellow as was the “head knocker”. this was a narrow handle in the middle of the headrest that when puled down, safed the seat.
  15. I’ve built 2 Hasegawa AV-8Bs and one Kinetic FRS2. They are both quite good so it boils down to version. Overall I kinda lean toward Has.
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