The end of 61-9794

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posted on May, 26 2014 @ 01:26 AM
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Saw this photo posted on the FB Kadena Alumni page. Such an ungraceful end to a very graceful lady, you'll no doubt recognize the wreckage as an SR-71. This accident occurred just a short time after I rotated off Okinawa but the loss of one of these aircraft just resonated throughout SAC at the time.

Approx 15 minutes after takeoff from Kadena, the aircraft suffer a catastrophic engine failure and went down in the sea north of the Philippines Islands. Fortunately, the crew ejected safely with the pilot reporting the aircraft impacted while inverted. The RSO, when interviewed, said they would have been able to reach a divert base in the PI on one engine, but when the number 2 engine exploded, it took the hydraulics and flight controls with it and the aircraft was doomed.

Anyone who has seen an SR-71 up close will recognize the red outline of the walkway border and realize you're looking at the top of the aircraft. The impact was forceful enough to drive the right main landing gear through the wing. The left main is gone along with the left engine.



A sad end to be sure...

Vince




posted on May, 26 2014 @ 02:46 AM
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Such a catastrophic end to such a beautiful machine. I remember my grandpa taking me to air shows as a kid (he worked at Mcdonald Douglas/Boeing) and seeing one of these up close. What a sexy machine. The thing is a true testament to human (alien?) Ingenuity.



posted on May, 26 2014 @ 03:31 AM
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a reply to: vinceg

damn that sucks. Not too many left of these huh?

I remember day dreaming about this plane. It was light years ahead of its time.

They should ground any left and preserve them intact as is. We will eventually not have any left for posterity.



posted on May, 26 2014 @ 03:46 AM
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a reply to: tadaman

They've been retired for years now. They're all on display in non flyable condition.



posted on May, 26 2014 @ 03:53 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

ah, I figured this was recent, like it was on its way to an airshow or something.

NM.

edit on 5 26 2014 by tadaman because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 26 2014 @ 04:06 AM
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What a picture! Sad to see this beautiful jet in this condition. Thankfully the crew ejected safely. Can you imagine being in one of these when the engine fails, then the 2nd engine blows up?



posted on May, 26 2014 @ 04:10 AM
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originally posted by: vinceg
Saw this photo posted on the FB Kadena Alumni page. Such an ungraceful end to a very graceful lady, you'll no doubt recognize the wreckage as an SR-71. This accident occurred just a short time after I rotated off Okinawa but the loss of one of these aircraft just resonated throughout SAC at the time.


You have the wrong number in the title, it was 61-7974

www.habu.org...



posted on May, 26 2014 @ 11:57 AM
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a reply to: hellobruce

You are correct and thanks for pointing that out. I didn't see any way to change the thread title so I couldn't correct the serial number.

Vince



posted on May, 28 2014 @ 09:21 PM
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originally posted by: vincegAnyone who has seen an SR-71 up close will recognize the red outline of the walkway border and realize you're looking at the top of the aircraft. The impact was forceful enough to drive the right main landing gear through the wing. The left main is gone along with the left engine.


A sad end to be sure...

Vince




No I'm sorry I believe you are mistaken.
That is in fact the underside of the A/C. The RH gear leg has not been punched up through the fuse by the impact at all. If you look carefully you will realise it is the L/H gear complete with gear door. The R/H gear has the oleo but is missing its axel/truck. If you google some close-up pics of an SR71 you will see what I am talking about. The gear wells are quite neat as well with no evidence of torn skin or structure. Plus you can see the gear bay hydraulic lines for actuation. If the gear had been driven up it would be a massively gagged hole, the hydraulics probably gone, the gear would be heavily damaged and the tires burst. Most of the belly chine is missing its titanium skin but I agree you can see the red line and there appears to be "No Step" legends stencilled on which confuses the issue. This was probably done to stop maintenance personnel from planting there feet on the underside when removing or installing panels which is not an uncommon method for an aircraft with a low belly (me included), but not probably a welcome habit on this aircraft. I have been looking for images to highlight my point but haven't found any clearly showing "No Step" in the underside except for possibly one of an SR-71B in a museum but I cant zoom in let alone save the pic easily. There are however plenty of close up pics showing red stencilling on the aircraft belly, usually denoting warnings to maintenance personnel about removing and installing fasteners in sequence and/or the correct fastener size and dash length.

Good find nonetheless.


LEE



posted on May, 31 2014 @ 11:21 PM
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originally posted by: thebozeian

No I'm sorry I believe you are mistaken.
That is in fact the underside of the A/C. The RH gear leg has not been punched up through the fuse by the impact at all. If you look carefully you will realise it is the L/H gear complete with gear door. The R/H gear has the oleo but is missing its axel/truck. If you google some close-up pics of an SR71 you will see what I am talking about. The gear wells are quite neat as well with no evidence of torn skin or structure. Plus you can see the gear bay hydraulic lines for actuation. If the gear had been driven up it would be a massively gagged hole, the hydraulics probably gone, the gear would be heavily damaged and the tires burst. Most of the belly chine is missing its titanium skin but I agree you can see the red line and there appears to be "No Step" legends stencilled on which confuses the issue. This was probably done to stop maintenance personnel from planting there feet on the underside when removing or installing panels which is not an uncommon method for an aircraft with a low belly (me included), but not probably a welcome habit on this aircraft. I have been looking for images to highlight my point but haven't found any clearly showing "No Step" in the underside except for possibly one of an SR-71B in a museum but I cant zoom in let alone save the pic easily. There are however plenty of close up pics showing red stencilling on the aircraft belly, usually denoting warnings to maintenance personnel about removing and installing fasteners in sequence and/or the correct fastener size and dash length.

Good find nonetheless.


LEE


It is quite possible I am mistaken (hell, I can't even get the tail number right) as I only know of the information provided by the person who took this photograph. The following image of the aircraft in flight though does not show any similar markings underneath. I'm not from the SR-71 community myself, but I wouldn't have considered this aircraft type as one with a low belly. Perhaps we need someone who does have a background on this jet to provide some additional info on the wreckage in the photo.

Vince





posted on Jun, 1 2014 @ 07:14 AM
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Lots of pictures here of 974 recovery operation. Pictures of both top and bottom of airframe.974 LUZON CRASH Pictures



posted on Jun, 1 2014 @ 11:16 AM
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a reply to: vinceg

Based on the photos in ajsr71's link I'm pretty sure you were correct in stating the picture you had in your original post was that of the top of the aircraft and not the belly. I've done a quick analysis of one of the photos of the wreck and it definitely shows the belly of the aircraft and is relatively undamaged when compared to the other photo that you provided showing the gear sticking out from it.



edit on 1-6-2014 by Sammamishman because: (no reason given)





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