Netherlands-based Robert Soek has almost finished restoring the life-saving cockpit module from a crashed USAF General Dynamics F-111F. As he explains, it’s been quite a journey…

The charred remains of ’447, with the type’s swing-wing mechanism clearly visible. The airframe had flown for 2,016 hours when it was lost 

On the evening of June 23, 1982, a solitary F-111F Aardvark from the 48th Tactical Fighter Wing screamed across the highlands of northern Scotland for a practice attack on the bombing range at Tain – the terrain following radar (TFR) maintaining an altitude of 1,000ft along the way. It was a routine training flight for the swing-wing jet (serial 72-1447) and its crew from the 492nd Tactical Fighter Squadron, having taken off from the home base of RAF Lakenheath, Suffolk, at 1657hrs using the callsign ‘Cuppy 32’. 

Become a Premium Member to Read More

This is a premium article and requires an active Key.Aero subscription to view. You can also access it if you’re subscribed to one of our Key Publishing magazines.

I’m an existing member, sign me in!

I don’t have a subscription…

Why not join our community of aviation enthusiasts? Pick one of our introductory offers and access a wealth of world-class aviation content.