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tkurkowski Aug 24, 2009 3:24 PM

SR-71 Blackbird
OK, this is WAY off topic, but for those of us who love aircraft, here's an interesting link:


boBBrennan Aug 24, 2009 6:27 PM

.....thanks Ted,

I had not seen this one.

Greg Chappell Aug 24, 2009 7:17 PM

Wow, now THAT'S cool. My daughter's going into the Air Force after graduating college in May and going to flight school. I'm sending this to her!

fldspringer Aug 24, 2009 9:56 PM

That guy has a bunch invested in that project. Pucker factor has to be huge taking that in for landing.

Its been a few years ago, but I remember the blackbird doing a low pass at Oshkosh. The climbout was incredible (full afterburner). After that there was a refueling over Lake Michigan and they tried to break the sound barrier (with very special permission) at altitude so it would JUST BARELY reach the ground. Didn't hear a thing.

It turns out they missed. My friend lived an hour west of Oshkosh and he had no difficulty at all hearing the sonic boom.

They said the standard rate turn at those speeds was the width of the lake. Thanks to the Air Force for going through great trouble and expense for the demonstration. I think the blackbirds were mothballed shortly after that event.


zig-123 Aug 25, 2009 7:56 AM

Hi Ted,

Thx for the heads up. Way cool!

tkurkowski Aug 25, 2009 1:57 PM


Originally Posted by fldspringer (Post 994802)
That guy has a bunch invested in that project.

I guess. I had no idea you could buy an operable miniature jet turbine engine for an RC plane, but it turns out you can. At about $3K apiece depending on thrust. Throw in the work for retractable landing gear and you're gonna be in for a lot without even considering the aircraft body and RC equipment. I agree, I'm not sure I would invest that much in something so easily destroyed by a mistake in landing.

I wish I had seen the SR-71 fly before it was retired, like you did. BTW, the titanium body was made for the incredible heat of Mach 3.2. Even cruising up at 80,000 feet the body would glow orange. To stay tight under those conditions, on the ground it was pretty loose and fuel leaked out pretty badly. That's why they would take off only partially fueled, heat up, and then take on a full load from an airborne tanker.

There's one retired one in the Smithsonian and one in Tucson. An amazing product of the Lockheed Skunkworks.


Biro Aug 27, 2009 10:04 PM

I have a friend who actually helped build the SR-71s. His father worked for Lockheed and got him a job on the Skunkworks assembly line one summer while in college in the early 1960s (1961 or 1962, if I'm not mistaken). A few years ago, we went to the USS Intrepid museum in New York, which was only a few blocks away from CBS, where we worked. He didn't realize they had an SR-71 on the flight deck. It turns out that was the EXACT airframe he helped build. The Blackbird still impresses all these years later.

mtclimber Aug 27, 2009 10:22 PM

However, Folks-

The owner of that very expensive jet turbine model airplane has NEVER BEEN A PILOT! Just closely watch his landing technique. He need a whole hellava a lot of serious practice.

Just the evaluation of a retired Boeing 747 Captain!

Yes, women were indeed, 747 Captains, at least on TWA. i was one of them.

Sarah Joyce

tkurkowski Aug 28, 2009 7:47 PM


Originally Posted by mtclimber (Post 995805)
Yes, women were indeed, 747 Captains, at least on TWA. i was one of them.

Sarah Joyce

Jeez, Sarah, any of us older folks who have been flying for years, have seen female pilots on the major large (cross-country) airplanes for years. So we do believe you that you were a pilot of those type of planes.



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