For Phantom Phreaks

From the Usual USAF Source

Final Phantom Inducted for Drone Conversion: The final F-4 Phantom destined for conversion to a QF-4 aerial target drone recently entered the 309th Aircraft Maintenance and Regeneration Group’s refurbishment line at Davis-Monthan AFB, Ariz., according to the Desert Lightning News, the base newspaper. AMARG workers last month towed the RF-4C reconnaissance airframe from the base’s aircraft boneyard into a hangar in preparation for modification to its drone configuration, stated the newspaper’s June 1 edition. This final Phantom, serial number 68-0609, will become the 318th QF-4 drone supplied to the Air Force when it is delivered next January. Once this conversion is completed, the 576th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Squadron refit team will begin work on the Air Force’s QF-16 Falcon full-scale aerial target program, stated the newspaper. Davis-Monthan has 210 F-16s stocked for conversion, according to AMARG officials. From that pool, the Air Force will draw the airframes for its 126 planned QF-16 drones. The prototype QF-16 flew its maiden sortie last month.

An end to an era, sorta.


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6 responses to “For Phantom Phreaks

  1. Bill Brandt

    Now they are going to use F16s as drones? Man I am getting old 😉 Kinda sad seeing the planes you knew in the military being deliberately shot up – almost as bad as seeing your old ships in mothballs – to be sunk or sold for scrap.

  2. cg23sailor

    I was thinking the same thing. If they are using F-16s as drones. I really must be getting old. What’s next? Using the F/A-18A a C models?

    Then again, I did just pass another signpost into old age. Caught myself the other day thinking of 20 somethings as “kids”
    Wanted to slap myself up back o’ the head.

    • Apropos o’ nuthin’… I KNEW it was time to retire when the 2LTs looked like my kids. The sad part is today’s majors and CDRs/LtCols look like my kids… two of ’em ARE my kids, actually. 😉

  3. Jose

    Wonder what the Wright brothers would be saying.

  4. Ed

    Truly a sad day to see the F4 project coming to an end. As a former Phantom fixer in the Air Force and at AMARG. All good things must come to an end. I give credit to all that served and made a career as a knuckle buster that made the project what it is today. Phantoms 4 ever and one Hell of a run. Thanks.

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