Remove Before Flight


F-4 Phantom, Pacific Coast Air Museum’s collection. Wings Over Wing Country Air Show, Santa Rosa, CA, USA September 25, 2015

F-4 Phantom, Pacific Coast Air Museum’s collection.
Wings Over Wing Country Air Show, Santa Rosa, CA, USA
September 25, 2015

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25 Comments on “Remove Before Flight

    • Thank you. The view point of this image brought back memories of being an aviation electrician for a F-4 squadron. Fortunately, the aviation mechanics had to deal with the tail hook and engines. I just had to deal with the switches.

    • The red flag holds the pin that keeps the tail hook from falling if someone activates it from the cockpit while the plane is on the ground. It is critical to have the pin removed before launch off a carrier as it would be impossible to remove it in flight. A landing on a carrier deck can be difficult as it is but without a tail hook to catch one of the four arresting wires on aft of the flight deck the carrier has to resort to nets to catch the landing aircraft. That I’ve never seen happen.

  1. A great photo and really interesting. I saw one of these at Hendon Royal Air Force museum in London recently. Other than that, I had an airfix model when I was a kid. Always liked the way this aircraft looked.

      • Must be a terrifying experience for the crew and the guys who have to react to save them. Luckily no one trusts me behind the controls of an F-4 😉

      • Yes, it is. I watched a RA-5C Vigilante break a tail hook upon landing on the USS Independence, Its five crew members were killed when the plane didn’t have enough power to relaunch and went off the angle deck, flipped on its back and sunk. I always felt it was too big of a plane to be on a carrier. It was a dangerous place on the flight deck. Here is more on this aircraft. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_American_A-5_Vigilante

      • What a haunting thing to see happen Tim. Thanks for the link – the Vigilante was one impressive machine, built like a bullet!

  2. Fantastic Angle. I still got 1 in a box – 1/35th scale model I got as a kid and still hope to construct it.

    • Kevin, thank you. It was an interesting aircraft. Lots of power. I used to sit at the end of the runway early in the evening and watch the F-4 take off and then go straight up with their afterburners full on. All you could see were the flames rotating from the rotating jets.

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