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I remember that story, too, Mark. Details aren't important; the fact the airliner guys mistook Marble Mountain and DaNang is hilarious.

 

I watched an IG guy mistake two US bases in Germany and land at the wrong field. Talk about a ration of grief.

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13 hours ago, mtaylor said:

Thought it a bit strange that someone would go off their base with no extra ammo.

I don't know about extra ammo. We left all of the 7.62 stuff with the guns and chopper, along with the M-16 that I had strapped to the bulkhead in my position in the right gunner bay. The only firearms we had were sidearms. I carried two extra mags on my belt and I think every one else did as well.  At any rate the MPs didn't make a big deal about it. I suspect they dealt with it relatively often. after those two stops we were left alone fro the rest of the day and outside of the BX incident didn't have any more issues. We just thought it odd that they would say anything at all. After all, as far as we knew we were still in Nam and the whole darn place was considered a combat zone.

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13 hours ago, mtaylor said:

Amazing how things get twisted from mouth to ear to mouth ad innfinitum ad nauseam.

In my case it gets twisted just in the short distance between memory/brain and fingers/mouth. It seems like I have no need for outside help to mess up a story in one detail or another. The things I seem to be having the most trouble with lately is not so much what happened but where and when! :(

 

Two of the "can no longer remember with true accuracy where" incidents are when I was in a commercial airliner landing on a very short runway. I remember looking down from the window and thinking that the runway looked really small. we circled the runway one complete time and then came down in what seemed to be a really steep decent and then I swear I watched the reverse deflector clamshells on the inboard engines deploy and reverse thrust being applied BEFORE our wheels were on the ground! they did the same to the outboard engines as soon as we felt the wheels touch and really leaned on the throttles! It was possibly one of the most exciting landing I have ever watched. FOR the life of me I cannot remember when or what field it was.

 

The other incident involved Air Force One, or whatever they call it when the President is not on board. It could have been Tan Son Nhut, Pleiku, or Da Nang, I just can't remember which. At any rate there had been incidents of VC taking pot shots at approaching and departing aircraft from the approaches to the airfield and it was advised for all aircraft to gain as much altitude as possible when leaving the runway. One of the Air Force whatever they called it, (White and blue with "United States Of America" plastered along the side) was there and we watched it take off. First off they opened the hanger and rolled the aircraft out at what looked to be 30 or 40 miles an hour heading straight for the end of the runway. They rotated around at the end of the runway and without even stopping to rev up the engines started their takeoff! That alone was amazing to watch, but it seemed they rotated and were airborne before they had used even half the runway. The nose came up, the gear came up. and they looked like a fighter climbing out and were gone through the clouds in no time. Obviously no problems with power with that plane!

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That's what they call a rolling takeoff Lou. The multiengine/cargo planes did it a lot. We ex-fighter guys called it a strolling takeoff.

 

We fighter types normally pulled onto the runway, lined up in formation, closed the canopies, ran the engines up holding brakes to check the instruments, nodded to the flight lead that we were ready and watched him go into afterburner. 10 seconds later #2 rolled and so on.  Afterburners (or reheat for the Brits) were orange red with Mach diamonds for the Phantom. The flame shape had multiple diamond shapes coming out of the afterburner nozzles, what you're looking at at the read ends of the engines. If we rolled more than 4,000' on the runway we were heavily loaded, it was hot or we were flying from a very high altitude airport. Nam was the first two. Flying in Colorado or Utah was the last.

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I had never seen an aircraft take off that way. They always seemed to do it your #2 way. Stopping, breaking, revving, and release to GO! I suppose that would be similar to a Huey doing a quick takeoff. I think it was claimed that a Huey could lift off from a dead start in 60 or 90 seconds. I don't know, we never did it when I was on board, I understand it is hard on the transmission. 

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What I see here (they use the Medford airport for "short runway" practice) is them rolling out and the first two stop, and go.  The next two follow pretty quick.  They're staggered as they roll onto the runway.  Last summer we had a flight of 12 and the whole flight was airborne in just a few minutes.  Impressive.   These were F-15's (reserve) and I think they had stopped for fuel and lunch.   After the take off, they made some passes over the field and on the last one, at mid-field... launched straight up.  

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5 minutes ago, John Allen said:

This was before the lottery system.

Wow, I had to look that one up. My failing memory remembers the lotto as being around ever since my high school days, if not before. But according to the infallible internet the first lotto was in 1969. That still seems wrong to me for some reason. 

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40 minutes ago, lmagna said:

My failing memory

Lou,

 

Could be my memory, its sharp as a tack from the 50s to 60s there's a disconnect from the 70s to late 90s memories during that time come in flashbacks ( I'll try to remember a specific and go blank. Can be in a dead sleep a day later than whammy it comes back) present day to day hour to hour is a crap-shoot.:D

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8 hours ago, lmagna said:

That's OK John it adds a degree of deniable plausibility to anything we say. Of course you do remember what they say about if you can remember the 60s?

 

The 60's?   I've heard of them.

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Well Just because Mark is such a wizz getting his helicopter done, as usual I have not been so prodigious in my progress. Even though there has been a considerable amount of work since I last updated my log it is not all that visible. With only a couple of things left to go I finished the pilot chairs, determined their proper location and glued them into position. I will add the shoulder harnesses after the pilots are fully painted, and add the collective and cyclic controls at the very last so that they won't be broken.

 

I have been spending most of my time on the jump seats. Getting them assembled in a way that they could be strong enough not to fall apart later. The rear bench and gunners seats were especially problematical and I eventually had to come up with my own way to make them fit and, (Hopefully) look right. I am not a 100% happy with it but I can only alter them so many times and still have them work at all.

 

So at this point it is mostly getting the seat belts installed, making a few more repairs to the deck, and a lot of painting. Mostly on the pilots who have to be in position before installing the overhead, but the over all interior also needs a lot of paint and will be easier to do it now rather than wait until later.

 

So here are the pictures. They don't really show the back and forth and constant redoes but you just need to be aware what you are looking at is just the latest rendition and far from finished.

image.thumb.png.2e71e7abdaf6089b62ff3ff9922ce309.png

image.thumb.png.04092cd59d36e32027608dfc5fdc4f24.png

image.thumb.png.68aae7209e145d402f6e810d9a0302e3.png

image.thumb.png.fed70cd927f0356cad1d90ae5e81c9a9.png

Thanks for looking in

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Thanks Ken

 

They are still going to need a lot of work but so far so good. In fact they are almost the only thing that has gone more or less according to plan. I think it will be the people who will make or break this model.

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15 minutes ago, Canute said:

Will we see a gunner Lou hanging out the side?

Of course!

He will be the guy in the right door with his boot planted in some Grunt's butt getting him off the chopper as we are late to chow!😈 (Which actually we almost always were:()

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"Those were the days my friend"

 

I have nothing to compare, I wasn't old enough and my father missed it by marrying my mother...... But then if he hadn't asked her on the ramp to Japan I would never have been here.....

 

Thank you all for your service....

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2 hours ago, BETAQDAVE said:

Maybe you can have someone with a head wound all bandaged up strapped down to the bench!

Sorry to say it Dave but those guys that were too  bad off to get on by themselves most often got thrown onto the deck. It was too hard to get them to the seats in most cases and no time to check if everyone was strapped in, (Not that there were seat belts on the deck anyway). Believe it or not, when we knew we were going to carry a large number of troops with equipment like LURPs, we didn't even have seats except for the pilots and gunners! You could say that sometimes our safety standards were lacking by airline measures. No doors, no belts, no seats, no service! Flying in a Huey could sometimes be a true barnstorming event even for those experienced in it. 

 

 

Thanks Egilman and Moab

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