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Location: Montgomery Area, Alabama, United States

Former BUFF driver; self-styled military historian; paid (a lot) to write about beating plowshares into swords; NOT Foamy the Squirrel, contrary to all appearances. Wesleyan Jihadi Name: Sibling Railgun of Reasoned Discourse

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Finally, A MAN's UAV!

Thanks to all those who sent me items to post. Our conversations will be back up shortly. I must first rebuild some of my portions.

But now for something completely different: I don't do much mil blogging around here, but as a former BUFF driver, I found this irresistible:


Yup: a fully-flyable radio-controlled B-52G.

Here is a movie of its maiden voyage. I must, with jaundiced professional eye and a weary cynicism born of many years in SAC, make a few comments:

-- I like the horde of modelers surrounding the plane before and after the flight. Nice touch. They only needed little tiny blue breadtrucks to complete the effect.

-- The takeoff looked like several MITOs I've been in.

-- The craft flies way too nose-up. Get it going faster, close to the ground--I need to see that nose-down flying freight train effect.

-- Nice landing! Probably the first BUFF pilot ever not to get a nosegear on his first try at landing the plane!

-- I like the markings--this particular tail number, 57-6483, was at 2 Bomb Wing, Barksdale AFB, LA for many years in later versions; the livery depicted would have been worn when G-models first arrived at Barksdale in 1965, which would have meant this was a 62nd Bomb Squadron bird when it arrived--my first squadron.

-- Sadly, this BUFF found its own version of Bud Holland, who got the thing into knife-edge flight and crashed it. Stoopid sumbiatch. Word up: BUFFs don't fly very well on their sides.

-- Okay ... now for the really frightening thing: I've flown the actual tail number this model was based on. In fact, I flew it in combat during DESERT STORM, if memory serves (must check logbook). It was a Barksdale bird again when it was retired in Sep '91. Man, I feel old.

Update: I did not fly 6483 during DESERT STORM. The aircraft was used by the schoolhouse at Castle from the time I went through as a copilot (where I flew it once) until July 1990, when my crew and I brought it back to Barksdale. I used the off-station training mission as an excuse to see my fiance--the Veep; we were planning our wedding in October. This aircraft wan't used in DS, but I flew it several times after in '91, before it was retired. I had it confused with "Old Crow Express"--57-6490, which I did fly in DS. 6483 is either still at AMARC or was scrapped prior to 1997.


* Yes, folks--photos! Bwhahaha! I can now photoblog--and so can you: just email me a copy of the pix you would like posted. Nothing too large, please. Oh ... and no more photos of Hans and Izmud together, naked except for galoshes and cassocks .... please! I still wake up screaming ....

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