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A McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom Scrapbook

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The McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II is a well known fighter-bomber-photorecon-Wild Weasel twin-jet of the 1960s through the turn of this century. The type was used extensively throughout the so-called “Free World” and was an important weapons system for NATO, PACAF, the IDF and other users. The U.S. Navy, Marines and the Royal Navy used versions aboard aircraft carriers, although most Phantoms were land-based.

After their usefulness was diminished by newer designs and airframe fatigue, the rather elderly design led to many being either scrapped or used as Full Scale Aerial Targets (drones).

Here is an assortment of models used as operational fighter-bomber-wild weasel-photorecon versions, in the colors of just some of the international users who operated Phantoms for half a century. Later next week, a big group of USAF and Navy drone QF-4s will follow in these pages. Our photographic team ahs culled many negatives and SD cards for you!

Photos by: Shawn Byers, Scott Zeno, Scott Jankowski and Ken Kula.

Here’s a larger scrapbook of F-4 and RF-4 images, enjoy! Photos are from the collections of Shawn Byers, Scott Zeno, Bob Finch, Scott Jankowski and Ken Kula.

Our QF-4 Phantom Scrapbook

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The McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II is a well known fighter-bomber-photorecon-Wild Weasel twin-jet of the 1960s through the turn of this century. The type was used extensively throughout the so-called “Free World” and was an important weapons system for NATO, PACAF, the IDF and other users. The U.S. Navy, Marines and the Royal Navy used versions aboard aircraft carriers, although most Phantoms were land-based.

After their usefulness was diminished by newer designs and airframe fatigue, the rather elderly design led to many being either scrapped or used as Full Scale Aerial Targets (drones).

Here is an assortment of models used as Full Scale Aerial Target versions, in the colors of the  USAF and Navy. Last weekend we ran a scrapbook of non-drone F-4 Phantom IIs here in ClassicWarbirds.net. Our photographic team has culled many negatives and SD cards for you!

Photos by: Shawn Byers, Scott Zeno, Scott Jankowski and Ken Kula.

North American B-25 Bomber – On-The-Ground Scrapbook

 

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This is part 2 of a two part look at the B-25 Mitchell bomber, operating as warbirds and located in museums. The first part ran on these pages earlier this week. 

The B-25 Mitchell is well remembered as the U.S. Army Air Corps bomber type launched from the U.S.S. Hornet against multiple Japanese targets in 1942. The Doolittle Raid’s 16 B-25B medium bombers all either crashed of force landed in China or Russia, but made a huge morale boost for the U.S.

Later in the War, the B-25 was used in every theatre of the conflict… Pacific, Atlantic, Europe, Africa, and China-Burma. It performed many duties… bombing, strafing, photographic reconnaissance, anti-submarine patrol bomber and VIP transport.

After the War, B-25s labored on as navigation trainers, squadron multi-engined transports, trainers and staff currency “hacks”. Many were assigned to newly formed Air National Guard units.  The first flight of a B-25 occurred on August 19, 1940, and the final USAF VB-25J (VIP transport) was retired in May, 1960.

It was a large aircraft, with a length of 53 feet and a wingspan of over 67 feet. Powered by a pair of Wright Cyclone radial engines, it could top 300 miles per hour and had a range of some 3,000 miles (depending upon weapon load). Normally, a crew of five was carried. Over 9,800 of all versions of the airframe were produced.

This TB-25N is painted up as a B-25B used during the Doolittle Raid. In reality, it is the last active USAF B-25 airframe that was retired in 1960, now at the USAF Armament Museum at Eglin AFB, Florida.

Here are some photos from part of our team… contributors are: Scott Jankowski, Mike Colaner, Shawn Byers, Scott Zeno, Corey Beitler, and Ken Kula.

North American B-25 Bomber – Airborne Scrapbook

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This is part 1 of a two part look at the B-25 Mitchell bomber, operating as warbirds and located in museums. The second part will run on these pages later this week, don’t miss it!

The North American B-25 Mitchell medium bomber was an important weapon during the Second World War, and later as a trainer and liaison aircraft until 1960 with the U.S. Air Force. Exported to countries in Europe, Asia, and South America, it was a well used aircraft by Russia and the British Commonwealth countries like Great Britain and Australia.

A great number of variants were produced, with the B-25H (1,000 produced) and the B-25J (4,318 manufactured) being the most delivered models.

Some B-25Hs had a 75mm cannon mounted in their noses, and some Navy/Marine PBJs could fire wing-mounted rockets, to go along with standard bombs and machine guns. Radar was often fitted to Navy and Marine PBJs for antisubmarine tasks too.

Here are some photos from part of our team… contributors are: Scott Jankowski, Mike Colaner, Shawn Byers, Scott Zeno, Corey Beitler, and Ken Kula.