Airshow features most legendary fighter planes

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by 63dot, Nov 8, 2010.

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Best vintage fighter plane, or favorite fighter plane at airshow

  1. Mitsubishi Zero (1939)

    1 vote(s)
    3.7%
  2. P-38 Lightning (1939)

    2 vote(s)
    7.4%
  3. ME-Bf 109 (1935)

    2 vote(s)
    7.4%
  4. P-51 Mustang (1940)

    8 vote(s)
    29.6%
  5. F-86 Sabre (1947)

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  6. MIG-15 (1947)

    1 vote(s)
    3.7%
  7. MIG-29 (1977)

    3 vote(s)
    11.1%
  8. F-14 Tomcat (1970)

    7 vote(s)
    25.9%
  9. F-15 Eagle (1972)

    2 vote(s)
    7.4%
  10. F-16A Falcon (1974)

    1 vote(s)
    3.7%
  1. 63dot, Nov 8, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2010

    63dot macrumors 603

    63dot

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    #1
    Every year, two or three vintage air shows/car shows come to central California and the more famous airplanes of the last 70 years show up, some still in flying condition.

    While I like to see them, especially if they can still fly, I was wondering what other aviation buffs consider the best, or their favorite fighter plane/jet ever made in its era?

    For pure horsepower and armament I always liked the P-47 Thunderbolt, and for spookiness factor the P-61 Black Widow. But nothing did so much for so many countries and for so long, not to mention the air race circuit, as the nearly perfect P-51 Mustang. If we are talking about military aircraft in general, the C-47 cargo plane (aka DC-3) has probably logged more hours than anything.

    There are so many planes I could mention but I kept this poll down to 10. The Zero needs no introduction and it showed the allies that Japan can actually make a viable fighter aircraft. The P-38 was one of the first to show its versatility as a light bomber as well as a fighter. The ME-109 terrorized allied bombers in the early part of the war before long range fighter escorts. The P-51 was unmatched in most stats and it was valuable as a long range escort being able to protect bombing runs all the way. The F-86 was the USAFs first long term jet fighter, and the MIG-15 was the communist version which allied intelligence didn't think was a possibility. The MIG-29 may just be the sexiest fighter of its time even though it heavily borrowed from US designs. The Tomcat has those movable swept back wings which add to its performance and ability to store on a carrier. The F-15, like the P-38 a couple of generations before it, showed its great versatility both as a bomber and as a fighter. The F-16, older than most of the pilots who fly it, ships to numerous air forces around the world at a reasonable cost and reliability that no fighter of its time can match. It's reliability and cost will make this the only 50 year old design to be widely used by poorer countries in the next decade.

    EDIT/UPDATE:

    If I could add 10 more planes to the poll if it were possible, it would be the:

    Grumman Wildcat (1937) and

    Grumann Hellcat (1942) and

    Vought F4U Corsair (1940) from the US Navy.

    From the US Army Air Force, I want to add the durable P-47 (1941).

    From Great Britain in WWII, I would add the Spitfire (1936) and

    Hurricane (1935).

    From Germany, I would add the FW-190 (1939) and

    ME-262 jet (1942).

    From the early jet era after the war, I would add the Phantom II (1958) and

    Skyhawk (1954)
     
  2. iShater macrumors 604

    iShater

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    #2
    I'd be curious to see what people say. It is interesting that many planes have legendary reputations, but probably not real technical reasons why they were so famous.

    Some of my favs, Spitfire, MiG-17.

    Once you get to the more modern jets, there are quite a few, but I always had soft spot for the F-16 Fighting Flacon. Probably cause it was one of the first flight sims that I really got into. :p
     
  3. Evangelion macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2005
    #3
    Brewster Buffalo. Objectively speaking the plane was crap and it is quite dull. But Finnish Air Force turned that plane in to a serious killing machine against the Red Airforce during ww2. I find it interesting how a plane that was disliked elsewhere and didn't perform that well was so well liked by Finnish pilots and they reached enviable kill-ratios against the Russians. The plane is legendary in Finland :).

    As for seriously excellent aircraft... Focke-wulf FW-190 is my favorite of ww2-era planes, followed by The Mustang
     
  4. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #4
    1918: Fokker D.VII: agile, very good climb rate, strong structure making longer dives possible, hard to stall, forgiving and easy to fly

    in the WW1 peace treaty the Fokker D.VII was the only plane mentioned (requesting that they get turned over)
     
  5. dmr727 macrumors G3

    dmr727

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    #5
    Gramps flew the P-38, so I've always been partial to it:

    [​IMG]

    Modern military jets don't interest me all that much, although I've always liked the A-10.
     
  6. eawmp1 macrumors 601

    eawmp1

    Joined:
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    #6
    The Chance Vought F4U Corsair. The visual impact of its unique wing and its superiority to the Japanese Zero are notable characteristics.
     
  7. gilkisson macrumors 65816

    gilkisson

    #7
    The A-10.
    The P-51.
    The C-130 (versatility, longevity, ugliness)

    However, I no longer attend air shows.
     
  8. 63dot, Nov 8, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2010

    63dot thread starter macrumors 603

    63dot

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    #8
    I would like to use this to fly to work. Very, very sick. :) As you can probably tell, I put the Mustang down on the poll.

    While I picked the F-14 and the P-38 on the poll partly because I loved the way they looked and were cool model airplanes, I should have switched them out with the Navy's WWII workhorse, the F6F Hellcat which was the Pacific's most successful fighter aircraft, and I should have also included the airplane which some say inspired the P-51, which would be England's Spitfire.
     

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  9. mcrain macrumors 68000

    mcrain

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    #9
    I know these aren't fighters, but these are my favorite airshow planes.

    JU-87
    [​IMG]

    A-1 Skyraider

    [​IMG]

    and the A-10.

    (It doesn't get around anymore, but the SR-71 was incredible). Worth going to a museum to see.
     
  10. Gonzo3333 macrumors 6502a

    Gonzo3333

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2009
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #10
    My absolute favorite military aircraft at an air show is the B-1B. That thing is so loud that your insides rattle. My second favorite is the F-15, almost as loud but equally as cool as the Bone. Another favorite is the sneak pass, when the plane is just about supersonic and it comes out of nowhere. Fighter pilots must have the most fun.
     
  11. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    #11
    I always have liked the P-38 and would love to learn how and be able to fly one of them.
     
  12. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    #12
    I always thought the Chance-Vought F4U Corsair was badass. The f14 and spitfire are obvious badass picks.

    **** it, I love planes. I want to fly so bad.
     
  13. hulugu macrumors 68000

    hulugu

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    #13
    Good call, that odd little wing tilt on the F4U is really cool looking. Bah Bah Black Sheep.

    Flew in a prop-driven fighter trainer a few years ago, great fun.
     
  14. dmr727 macrumors G3

    dmr727

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    Southern California
    #14
    How did this thread end up in PRSI? :confused:

    It's my dream as well. There are only a few currently flying. If you want to fly one, you either have to have the millions required to restore one yourself, or get in tight enough with an owner to let you fly his, which for a P-38 will be next to impossible. I'm prepared to let this particular dream go.

    Although one day when I get more time, the plan is to spend a bunch of time volunteering in Chino - that airport has two P-38s. Even if the closest I get to flying one is sitting in the cockpit, light maintenance, or hell even cleaning it - it's something.
     
  15. Sydde macrumors 68020

    Sydde

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    #15
    I think the Supermarine Spitfire is one sweet plane. Stable, nice lines, just the right amount of power. Better check my lottery tickets...
     
  16. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

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    #16

    I would be just happy to fly in a replica of a P-38. It always has been my favorite WWII plane.
     
  17. Queso macrumors G4

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    #17
    I'm amazed the Hawker Hurricane isn't on the list, since that plane basically prevented the invasion of the British Isles by the German forces. They held off the Luftwaffe long enough for the superior Spitfires to be manufactured in large enough numbers, all the while providing air support to the Royal Navy in the North Sea and English Channel. Without that the "Western Front" would have disappeared, Hitler would have turned his resources eastwards, and the entire outcome of World War 2 could have been overturned.

    I vote Hurricane even if it's not on the poll :)
     
  18. skunk, Nov 9, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2010

    skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #18
    I drive a P38 every day. Eat your heart out. :)

    P38.jpg

    My favourite fighter (though it was really a fighter/bomber) was the De Havilland Mosquito, built entirely of plywood for maximum speed.

    mozzy.jpg
     
  19. 63dot thread starter macrumors 603

    63dot

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    #19
    Loving about 30 or more planes and thier histories, the Hurricane was high on my list. It could have saved WWII, as could have the early P-39s, P-40s, and F4F Wildcats while pretty much holding Japan off until the Zero killing Hellcats (built largely from a captured Zero in Alaska) and P-51s came in an gained air superiority. Also in this thread is the multi-role Mosquito which was an essential fighter which got in low and close enough to almost kill Adolph Hitler.

    Also mentioned was the Brewster Buffalo and it's exploits, and I would like to add aircraft that could have made a difference in that war like the Glouster Meteor, the F8F Bearcat, the ME-262, and very fast ME-163 but all came in when the war was largely determined.
     
  20. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Joined:
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    #20

    No no no you got your history a little wrong on why the Mosquito was built out of plywood.

    It was because metal was so limited so the inventor was looking for alternative ways of building planes.
    It turned out that it was really fast, cheap to build, and was hard to see on radar since wood did not reflect much. It used its speed for defense since it was determined that guns just slowed it down.
    It was expectingly a great plane
     
  21. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #21
    Not really:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/De_Havilland_Mosquito

    It was not that aluminium was in short supply, rather that the wooden construction meant that no skilled metalworkers were taken from the other aircraft projects to build it.

     
  22. 63dot, Nov 11, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2010

    63dot thread starter macrumors 603

    63dot

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    #22
    This is the P-38 I would prefer. But I guess from my avatar and avatars of the past, this makes a lot of sense. And it could drive too, especially if I were to be able to use the three engine, 120 watt all-tube modules delivering clean/vintage distortion/modern distortion, pumping four Celestion speakers rated at 200 watts each!
     

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  23. Desertrat macrumors newbie

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    Terlingua, Texas
    #23
    The drawback to the P-38 was that there was no cockpit heat. Air temps are a tad nippy above ten- to fifteen-thousand feet--and worse up with the bombers being escorted.

    The Zero's maneuverability was due to the light weight--no armor and little redundancy in its systems. Same for the Mig-15. Ergo, fewer hits to ruin the plane or kill the pilot.

    When the 1st Marine Division rotated out of South Korea, its air-wing guys did a last farewell with their F4Us. Those guys really LOVED low-level. I think the eagle atop our battalion flagpole ducked. An air-controller airman over on the USAF side of K-13 airbase looked DOWN on an incoming F4U and jumped from the tower. The F4U kept going. The airman did not enjoy the sudden stop.

    P-51s need far less runway length than an F-86.

    Not exactly a fighter plane, but my step-father was a co-pilot on a B-24 out of Henderson Field on Guadalcanal. I still remember a comment of his: "We used those things for everything from pursuit planes to dive-bombers." After returning from a raid on Rabaul, they counted 87 bullet and flak holes in the plane...

    Pan-Am, under the aegis of the US Government, began building airports in Central and South America in the late 1930s. Japanese invasion was considered a possibility. My uncle was a construction engineer on several projects, and took this picture of a P-39 landing at Managua.
     

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  24. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #24
    depending to what other plane during during which period:
    during Korea it was the mig 15 who was less maneuverable than the F-86 (below 10km) .. their big strength was it's way better acceleration and climbing rate

    after all their main point was intercepting bombers that's why they had heavy guns less usable for dogfighting
     
  25. CaoCao macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 27, 2010
    #25
    I like the SR-71 and AC-130, neither of which are fighters, but both awesome planes
     

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