Saturday, November 06, 2010

BZ to the Navy Air and CAPT Richard Dann, USN

Next year is the 100th Anniversary of Navy Air. What a great story to tell - and I had been hoping that we would do it right ... this is a great start.

A standing applause from this blog.
The S-3 parked recently in a hangar at Jacksonville Naval Air Station looked like it just returned from the 1942 Battle of Midway.

Very odd, given that the Viking is a two-engine jet that served as a sub hunter, tanker and much more during its 33-year career beginning in 1975.

But the plane's newly applied retro paint job was actually meant to evoke the epic sea battle that turned the World War II Pacific campaign in America's favor.

"We were going for a Midway effect," said Don Lockwood, a Navy employee helping return three S-3Bs, including the newly painted one, to operational status.

While the aircraft will serve a West Coast test squadron, its paint scheme will serve another purpose: to celebrate the 100th anniversary of U.S. naval aviation in 2011.

"My goal is to teach that heritage in unique ways," said Capt. Richard Dann, the Navy officer in charge of the centennial



.... and there is more to come.
The S-3 will be one of about 20 fixed and rotary wing aircraft to wear various historic paint schemes and make the rounds at air shows and other celebrations throughout the year, Dann said by phone from his office in San Diego.

Some of the paint jobs may get some quizzical looks from military aircraft enthusiasts. Dann said there will be helicopters painted in 1914, 1950s and Vietnam-era camouflage patterns. Jet planes, from T-45 trainers to F/A-18 fighters, will sport the colorful schemes that adorned Navy planes shortly before World War II.

Several of the planes - including a P-3 Orion, an EA-6B Prowler and F/A-18 Hornet - will be painted by the artisans of the Fleet Readiness Center Southeast paint shop at the Jacksonville base.

To minimize the impact on operational squadrons, many of the chosen aircraft are from training and reserve squadrons and are being painted during their regular repainting schedules, Dann said.
The only thing that would make this better would be if there was a way to do an entire squadron of F-18s ... but .... oh well. This will do just fine for a bang-for-the-buck.

I look forward to the rest. If you catch photos of them as they are painted, send them this way. Might just have to make it a regular feature .......

50 comments:

cv60 said...

I like it!

Surfcaster said...

Does look pretty cool. But how about a real dull paint job with zero historic relevance on some new or remanufactured S-3s doing something novel like hunting subs from carrier decks?

CV60

Saratoga could use some new paint, she ain't really pretty at the moment.

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

That plane is so cool, you could store meat in it!

sid said...

Ok...Now I feel ...OLD :'(

 I've been around for over half of NavAir's existence...

BTW, that squadron (VAH-1) was embarked aboard the Independence for her first cruise, when she, the Sara, and Intrepid posed for this 50th anniversary shot in the Med.

At that time, there were still plenty of folks on active duty who had lived through the days of the vintage paint jobs being applied today.

Oh, and for those who think this is a time of great and profound "Change"...

In just 20 years, the view on the decks went from wood and fabric  to supersonic...

doc75 said...

Here's the T-45 in the retro paint scheme.  She's a beauty:

http://www.arcforums.com/forums/air/index.php?showtopic=211333&pid=2036973&mode=threaded&start=#entry2036973

Outlaw 13 said...

There are alreay two T-45s painted in centennial schemes as well as a TH-57.  The newsletter for the Centennial can be found here:

http://www.public.navy.mil/airfor/centennial/Pages/Multimedia.aspx

The newsletter has a feature that includes pictures of the newly painted aircraft or of the designs in progress. 

A friend told me that at the Wings over Houston air show there were two aircraft painted in centennial schemes.  Enjoy!

sid said...

Wayyy too much Hornet Love these last 20 years.....

ShawnP said...

Sara wasn't looking good even on active duty near the end. She was the ugliest, rustiest ship I ever saw when she pulled in after Desert Storm. Yes I was on a fellow Desert Storm ship in FF-1082 but we took time to paint her up and make pretty before pulling in.

sid said...

Shawn, she was always rode hard and put up wet....

And that first generation 1200 psi plant was a source of continual vexation throughout her career.

Plus, she nearly sank...twice!

ewok40k said...

I bet Navy aviators would love to have a couple of S-3s at Midway... would be even greater victory, if they could nail the sub that finshed off Yorktown.
That aside, naval traditions are something that requires caretaking, like British lawns. 100 or 200 years of cutting and watering and you get the results!

xbradtc said...

My God, It's full of WIN!!!

LT Rusty said...

That is just too pretty.

I love this.

BJ Armstrong said...

HSC-84 has a great looking HH-60H painted like a Vietnam era HAL Huey.

Southern Air Pirate said...

VAQ-129 just got approval to do up one of thier EF-18G's in the 1943 tri-color scheme. I don't know when that is supposed to show up. I was talking to one of my old divos, who is now the AMO over there. He was tell me about the plan and all the hoops they had to jump through to get it all.

Cdr,

If you check facecrack there the 100 years of Naval Aviation page has a picture of the CANTRA T-45 outfit from Merdian in a pre-war Yellow Wing Scheme. I would bet you a case of Yuengling black and tan that they would be posting more pictures as more aircraft come out like that.

cdrsalamander said...

Retro Wednesday is back.  There is the next entry.

cdrsalamander said...

BJ - find me the pics .....

cdrsalamander said...

Let me know when that comes out as I'll make a Retro Wed post on it.

Lobotomized said...

VFA-122 has the "aquaflauge" paint scheme on an F18F.  Looks just as bad on an airplane.

Lobotomized said...

The aforementioned aquaflauge rhino as stolen from Facebook.

Lobotomized said...

Here are the T-45's

C-dore 14 said...

sid, Seems like it was only yesterday that I was in junior high and visited my cousin (an S-2 pilot) in San Diego for the 50th Anniversary of Naval Aviation!

turtleairships said...

Hey hey!   Gotta get my order in......Roundel from USS Shenandoah; or from Curtis F9C-2 Sparrowhawks carried on flying aircraft carriers USS Makon and USS Akron

(what was on USS Los Angeles....except laurels...)

turtleairships said...

Awww.....ok, T-45's got em....

Southern Air Pirate said...

Will do.

Southern Air Pirate said...

Sid,

Don't feel so bad. When my dad showed up for my graduation from AT "A" School. We walked through the Naval Aviation Muesum down there in P'Cola. We ran across an A-6 with a BuNo he remembers fixing when he was a AQ2 in VA-165 and then on the outdoor display there was an EA-3B that was converted from an A-3B he remembers working on when he was an A2c in VAH-123. That was all in 1998. Let alone when I came home from my latest cruise, the carrier that he spent a 4 cruises on and a better part of his enlisted career on was mothballed only a pier over in Bremerton, that was the Connie.

cv60 said...

Yeah, the USN rode USS SARATOGA hard.  They had been trying to turn her into a museum, but I understand that fell through.    I miss that ship and crew......

Byron said...

Shawn, I worked on the Elmer Mac in the way back when. I seem to recall something about "The Love Boat" back then ;)

Byron said...

It will always be my favorite ship to work on. Great crew, always had their stuff in one sock, always had a great attitude

Outlaw 13 said...

Some pics can be found here... 8-)

http://www.fencecheck.com/forums/index.php?topic=21468.0

Mike M. said...

Damn, that's sharp-looking.

Mike M. said...

The same roundels, IIRC.

cdrsalamander said...

Ghey.

cdrsalamander said...

...the F-18, not the T-45.  That rules....and is the next RetroWed

Redeye80 said...

They are not called FAGs for nothing.

Wharf Rat said...

Sid - don't tease me, don't leave me hangin'.

Exactly how did Sara sink twice?

Wharf Rat said...

Sid:

Don't tease me.  How did Sara nearly sink twice?  Is this one of those 'now this is no sh.......... sea stories? 8-)

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

I know that Sara had a very bad fire in her #2 Machinery Space in January, 1961.  Was that one worse than was reported to the press?

I have heard that the time she was attacked by giant ship eating beavers off the coast of New Jersey is just an urban legend.  

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

I know that they are all gone, but wouldn't a Tomcat in mid-war tri-color scheme have looked cool?   Or a P-3 painted like a PB4Y Privateer?

sid said...

Don't tease me.  How did Sara nearly sink twice?  Is this one of those 'now this is no sh.......... sea stories?

The first time was at anchor off Piraeus in 1969 and she had major follding in her main machinery spaces. She was stuck there for some bit. To the extent that the air group was flown off at anchor....giving the folks on the beach at Glyfada an airshow.

The next time was in 78 at Mayport ( I was on a boat nested outbard at the delta piers), when she began to suffer major flooding, with just the duty section aboard had some trouble setting Zebra before it started to be a major problem.

Its notable that she was the only "big deck" to make just one Westpac cruise during Vietnam....

Byron said...

Sounds like sea suction for fire main, cooling water, or for the evaps. Scary stuff since the area below the lower level deck plates is about as cluttered as can be. Working down there without removing anything out of the way is beyond difficult. Fat chiefs need not apply.

cv60 said...

Byron-It really says something when crewmembers and yardworkers both fondly recall a ship that has been out of commission for almost 20 years. 

Byron said...

CV60, one of the ugliest jobs I ever had was decom'ing the Sara. We gutted that ship. Pulled all the AC plants apart to use on other ships. Pulled all the equipment out of CIC. Took every firefighting fitting off the ship (it's one of the reasons why Jacksonville shied away from making her a museum ship downtown, I pointed out to the committee that she'd be a floating fire trap with zero ability to fight fires of any sort larger than an extinguisher). I layed out the day they did the ceremony since I didn't even want to see it. Sara was truly a blessed ship.

Now, the JFK her last six years....that's another ugly as hell story

sid said...

She was the first ship I was able to actually walk aboard.

I remember dad helping me traverse the brow...and eating in the wardroom, where the steward (it was still a rate back then) accidentally dumped a ladle of spaghetti on my lap. Poor guy was mortified, but dad laughed about it. I was cool with it too, as I distinctly remember getting read the riot act about manners and had remembered to put the napkin in my lap...A l'il bit of demonstrated wisdom learned early....

Wharf Rat said...

There's a bunch of them in the boneyard.

That's where some enterprising individual could get one, paint it, and stick it in a museum.

sid said...

As we are enjoying the visuals of NavAir, highly recommend enjoying some related reading material here, if you haven't already....

xbradtc said...

IIRC, Kennedy only made one Westpac also.

sid said...

Scratch my last statement above as its wrong...

The Indy only made one as well...and the JFK didn't make any.

sid said...

List here...

sid said...

Lastly, the Forrestal's single combat Westpac was cut short by the fire...

So 3 out of the 4 Forrestals made only one combat deployment each in Vietnam (Ranger being the 4th which made 8)

Andy Rowan said...

Here is the official website for the Centennial of Naval Aviation.  http://www.public.navy.mil/airfor/centennial/Pages/welcome.aspx