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ThunderPigC130

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 #1 
Hello

  With the assistance of mr fuller i recently found the crash site of an F4E from nellis that crashed in 1968.  A good part of the vertical tail survived with the checkerboard pattern so i started looking online for a pic of another phantom from the era from nellis with the same paint scheme.

  Found this pic of an F4E, downloaded it and to my surprise it is carrying a DART !!  I have never seen or heard of phantoms being used to pull DARTs.  By the time the phantom came around air force doctrine was much more into missile shots than aerial gunnery so this pic really surprised me.

  I am looking for a good pic of an F4E from nellis with the "ND" tail code.  Does anybody have one they would be willing to share?

Thanks - 

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tom

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 #2 
Did it crash in Nevada ?
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ThunderPigC130

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 #3 
YEP
phixer

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 #4 
Sorry no photo but thought that I would add that they were still shooting at darts into at least the mid eighties.  I worked for a company that had a contract to tow darts for USAFE in Sardinia, the F-4's from Ramstein and the F-15's from Bitburg and Soesterburg would come TDY for ACM training and firing the gun was part of it.
DaveTrojan

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 #5 
That’s not a Dart! That is a simulated silent alien extra terrestrial chase vehicle used to deceive ground observers into thinking our military aircraft are being followed. They were mostly used over Area 51 and the Nevada Test ranges. They were highly successful!
ChrisBaird

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 #6 
It might be "WD".   414th Fighter Weapons School.   
I don't think they used that tail code for very long, it was primarily "WA".

I think "ND" was 4527 CCTS (F-111's only).

I found a photo in my collection of an F-4E with a dart.   But it's German, unknown date or location (maybe Sardinia!).

Chris B.
http://www.arizonawrecks.com

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ThunderPigC130

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 #7 
Hello Chirs

I guess it was "WD" and i managed to find a good pic.

I was thinking "ND" because i have seen "ND" and "NC" before but it was on an F111 as you mentioned.


73  67-0318.jpg

Fairlane66

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 #8 
I was a qualified F-16A dart-tow pilot at Torrejon AB, Spain in the early 80s.  Lots of F-4s towed darts at Luke AFB, AZ in the late 70s and early 80s.  The White Tank Mountains west of Luke were littered with darts and other unexpended ordnance since that was the authorized jettison area.  I believe the White Tanks are now a state park.  If so, I've often wondered how much of a cleanup was required to make the area safe....or is it really safe?
ThunderPigC130

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 #9 
  WOW I had no idea darts were used for that long.  I guess i just thought of them as a vestige of the days when the gun/s were the primary method of getting a kill.

  Thanks to all who contributed -

Steve
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