Flying the F-104

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Member for

20 years 11 months

Posts: 646

Train "attack". I remember now. A Danish pilot visiting Volkel at the time told me. So it was probably "beer talk" - (so I was right about the "p*ssed" part! :D )

Accident rates (per 10.000 flying hours) F-104:

Denmark 0,85 (used only as fighters)

Germany 1,65

Canada 1,96


Denmark F-100 2,17 :(

Phantom II. One Danish F-104 (R-819) was lost when it flew through the vortices/wake turbulence from a manoeuvering German RF-4. The aircraft broke up, but the pilot ejected safely. I'll try to scan the gun camera pictures from his wingman. (Don't expect too much - b&w and grainy)

Best regards
atc pal

Member for

13 years

Posts: 1

german f104 vs east german mig 21

After german reunification did the two airforces ever compare the f104 against the east german mig 21?

Member for

24 years 3 months

Posts: 11,742

Zipper may be fast but its not a lightning !! Read tales of impromptu races between the '104 and the lightning during squadron exchanges. Star had the initial acceleration but lightning soon took over, especially in the vertical. A T5 even beat an F15 to 20k!! awesome!!

Dedicated RF104 also had a camera bay just behind the cockpit

Acceleration and initial climb-rate are the same "coin". For the F-104G that value was 254 m/sec. Maybe someone can add the values for a Lightning T5 or F-15?

Member for

24 years 3 months

Posts: 11,742

Unless reffering to the fact that RAFG Lightning F.2/F.2A's spent most of their time 'shooting down' mudmoving F104's...;)

It was along the low-level pathes near Gütersloh and limited to subsonic speeds. They used the opportunity to hone their skills in intercepting low level intruders, when the Starfighter-pilots honed theirs when they tried to spoil that. The F-104Gs were with ETs and ~420 kt and when the "race" started close to 600 kt the noise limit set a final stop.
The Lightning had a similar endurance and AAM limitations as a MiG-21 and its pilot were time-limited in adverse weather conditions. ;)