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Barnstormers Logo ISSUE 430 - May 2016
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National Air Force Museum, CFB Trenton - Part II
By Kevin Moore, Contributing Editor & Photographer
Watford, Ontario, Canada
This week we return to look at the outdoor Airpark of the National Air Force Museum of Canada at CFB Trenton in eastern Ontario.
Last week we spent time inside the National Air Force Museum of Canada at CFB Trenton, Ontario looking at assorted aircraft and artifacts. This week, we return to the NAFM and spend time walking around outside in the Airpark.
The Canadian designed & built CF-100 Avro Canuck, affectionately known as the "Clunk" for the sound the nose gear made as it retracted into the fuselage after take off.
Walking out into the Airpark, the first aircraft you're likely to notice is the Canadian designed and built Avro CF-100 Canuck. The Canuck was an all-weather interceptor designed by Avro Canada and first flew in Jan of 1950. It was essential that the aircraft was capable of flying in all types of weather, from high heat and humidity to extreme cold, all while patrolling the vast land areas of Canada. Though the prototype flew with Rolls-Royce Avon engines, production aircraft were fitted with the more powerful and advanced Avro Orenda turbojet engines. The RCAF ordered 124 Mk 3s in 1950 with the first aircraft entering service in 1953, armed with eight .50 calibre machine guns. The later Mk 4A housed a larger radar than the earlier models and had wingtip pods which contained up to 29 Mk 4 "Mighty Mouse" folding fin aerial rockets. The initial order for 124 Mk 3's was changed to provide the RCAF 54 of those as Mk 4s instead and an increase to 510 aircraft. The Mk 4B also had the more powerful Avro Orenda 11 engines. Despite the straight wing, RCAF Squadron Leader Jan Zurakowski, the famed Avro Arrow test pilot, took a CF-100 Mk 4 prototype to Mach 1.0 in a dive from 30,000' becoming the first straight winged jet aircraft to have officially achieved controlled supersonic flight.
The Canadair CT-114 Tutor began life with the air force as an advanced training aircraft though is probably most well known for its place as the performance aircraft with the iconic aerobatic team, The Snowbirds.
Not far from the CF-100 is another Canadian designed and built aircraft, the Canadair CT-114 Tutor. The Tutor was designed to be a side-by-side, elementary jet training aircraft. It first flew in January of 1960 and the RCAF placed an order for 190 of the type in September of the following year. It served the RCAF, and then the Canadian Armed Forces, for more than 30 years as a jet training aircraft though still flies with the famous Canadian military aerobatic display team, the Snowbirds. In 1976 more than 100 Tutors were modified with new avionics and the option of flying with two belly mounted external fuel tanks. Canadair also developed a light attack version which carried hard points on the underside of the wings allowing the aircraft, called the Tebuan, to carry more than 4,000lbs of weaponry and drop tanks. They were ordered by a single country, Malaysia, flying with the Royal Malaysian Air Force. The Tutor is expected to continue flying with the Snowbirds, despite it's 50+ year age, until as late as 2020.
The Canadian version of the Tracker was built under license by de Havilland of Canada. The museum's Tracker is in need of some TLC and is on the list for future restoration.
Moving along we come to the Grumman (de Havilland Canada) CP-121 Tracker, built under license for the Royal Canadian Navy, flying from the Canadian aircraft carrier HMCS Bonaventure as an anti-submarine patrol aircraft. Eventually, the Tracker was also used as a land-based aircraft for maritime surveillance and coastal patrol work when the CF integrated. It was loaded with various equipment required for completing its duties including Magnetic Anomaly Detector (MAD) boom, surface-search radar, depth charges, torpedoes, spotlight, sonobuoy dispensers, internal bombay for bombs as well as wing pylons for either bombs or rockets. It was a long serving aircraft with the Canadian military, retiring after 33 years of service.
The Twin Huey, left, wearing the colours of the United Nations, is another aircraft in need of some restoration but is part of a long list of aircraft that will, eventually, get the loving it needs. The Canadair CT-133 "Silver Star," right, served as an advanced jet trainer and solo aerobatic display aircraft such as the Red Knight.
From there we move to the CH-135 Twin Huey helicopter which was flown by 427 Tactical Helicopter Squadron at CFB Petawawa. The Twin Huey was used primarily by the Canadian Army in places such as Egypt, Honduras and Haiti. The Bell Twin Huey first flew in 1969 and entered service with the Canadian Forces in 1971. Not far from the Huey is the Canadair built CT-133 "Silver Star," painted in the colours of the Red Knight, solo aerobatic display T-33. 656 Silver Stars were built under license by Canadair and were powered by the Rolls-Royce Nene 10 turbojet engine verses the Lockheed version which was powered by the Allison J33. They were used as an advanced jet trainer from 1952 until 1976, though the last CT-133 served with the Canadian Air Force as an ejection seat testbed retiring in 2005 after 46 years of service. Other CT-133's had been used as target tugs, for enemy simulation and communication aircraft as well as aerobatic demonstration aircraft. So rugged was the CT-133 that the aircraft exceeded its expected life by a factor of 2.5. Several still fly today in Canada and the United States as privately owned civilian aircraft.
The museum's iconic DC-3 Douglas Dakota, left, saw action in World War II in India and later in Burma. The Iroquois helicopter, right, served the RCAF/CF as a Search & Rescue workhorse.
The oldest aircraft in the Airpark is the Douglas Dakota, an aircraft that actually served during World War II in India with both 435 & 436 Squadrons. It also served in Burma transporting supplies and troops to the British Army. It served with the Canadian military until its retirement in 1989 and currently wears its Burma colour scheme, "Canucks Unlimited." Off the Dakota's left wing is the Bell Iroquois CH-118 Helicopter which served with 439 Tiger Squadron in Bagotville, Quebec. The Iroquois was mostly utilised in a Search & Rescue & aeromedical role as well as casualty/evacuation support, and was fitted with a rescue hoist and medivac equipment. Iroquois helicopters flew from CFB Chatham, NB, Moose Jaw, SK, Cold Lake, AB and Bagotville, QC. They were retired in 1995 and were replaced by the Griffon helicopter.
The fabulous Hawker Hunter, left, never flew with the RCAF but was donated to the museum by the Swiss government. The big CF-101 Voodoo, right, dwarfs most other fighter jets in the Airpark.
Behind the Iroquois helicopter is the British built Hawker Hunter F-6 wearing the markings of the Swiss Air Force. The museum's Hunter flew as part of the Swiss aerobatic display team, "Patrouille Suisse," from 1959 to 1994 before being retired and then donated to the museum by the Government of Switzerland. A little further along is a CF-101 Voodoo, one of more than 50 that were acquired from the USAF in 1961. They were capable of carrying nuclear weapons, AIR-2A Genie rockets as well as conventional weapons. Canadian Forces Voodoo bases were set up to allow aircraft to be kept at a state of immediate readiness with a QRA, Quick Reaction Alert, facility placed at the end of the main runway which allowed alert aircraft be launched as quickly as possible at a five minute readiness. This meant that aircraft were to be in the air, en route, to intercept any unknown aircraft flying toward or into Canadian/NORAD airspace. In fact, 416 Squadron once launched two alert aircraft in less than 1 minute after receiving the alert to launch. The museum aircraft is painted in 409 "Nighthawk" Squadron livery, Comox, B.C.
Arguably, the best maritime patrol aircraft of its time, the CP-107 Argus was an aircraft design based on the Bristol Britannia.
One of the largest aircraft in the park is the Canadair CP-107 Argus Mk II which flew with the RCAF as a marine reconnaissance aircraft and was considered the best anti-submarine patrol bomber in the world at the time. It served with the Canadian military throughout the Cold War with the RCAF Maritime Air Command and later, after integration, the Canadian Forces Maritime Air Group/Air Command. The Argus was developed from the British Bristol Britannia and 33 of them were built for the RCAF by Canadair and served from 1957 to retirement in 1981. It was replaced by the CP-140 Aurora built by Lockheed.
The C-130, left, has served with the Canadian Air Force for more than 55 years. A variant of the Boeing 707, the 720, right, began life as an airliner and ended it as an experimental testbed with Pratt & Whitney Canada.
Two other large aircraft at the south end of the Airpark are the Lockheed CC-130E Hercules and the Boeing 720, a variant of the Boeing 707. The CC-130 Hercules first flew with the Canadian military in 1960 with the newer, updated J model now serving with the RCAF. The museum's aircraft flew as a tactical transport and air-to-air refueler as well as having operated as a search & rescue aircraft. They operated with a crew of 2 pilots, a flight engineer, an air combat systems officer (navigator) and a load master with the addition of 2 SAR crew members when required. The museum's aircraft has been on display with the museum since 2011. The Boeing 720 was operated by Pratt & Whitney Canada as a Flying Experimental Test Bed (FETB) and was equipped to test a number of different engines. It was purchased in December 1985 by P&W Canada after having flown with Middle East Airlines. It was then Canadian registered as C-FETB and was then modified before being flown across the Atlantic in the fall of 1986. It was further modified between October 1986 and October 1988 and spent the next 12 years flying and testing before being retired in 2012. The aircraft is on loan indefinitely from the Canadian Aviation & Space Museum.
The Canadair Sabre, left, was one of the most loved fighter jets the RCAF flew. Despite their age, the CF-18 Hornet, right, still serves as Canada's frontline fighter.
One of the most iconic fighter aircraft of the jet age is the F-86 Sabre which is displayed near the CF-188 (CF-18) Hornet. The RCAF flew the Canadair CL-13/F-86 Sabre, built under license by Canadair from North American Aviation, as a frontline fighter serving in Canada and Europe. From 1950 to 1958, Canadair produced more than 1800 aircraft from the Mk I to the Mk 7, though the Mk 7 was mostly experimental. Canadian built Sabre's flew with the RCAF, RAF, Pakistan Air Force, USAF and 9 other countries around the world. The CF-188, or CF-18, Hornet is currently Canada's frontline fighter aircraft and has been since 1982 when they first entered service with the Canadian Armed Forces in Cold Lake, Alberta. Of the 138 aircraft ordered, 98 were single seat variants and 40 dual seat variants. Through the years CF-18's still flying with the RCAF have undergone several upgrades, allowing them to continue in frontline service until a replacement for the aircraft has been made. The CF-18 has a top speed of Mach 1.8 with a non-ordnance range of more than 2000 nautical miles, a service ceiling of 50,000' and a rate of climb of 50,000 ft/min.
The two aircraft that saved Britain in 1940 during the Battle of Britain, the iconic Supermarine Spitfire, left, and the venerable Hawker Hurricane, right.
Two examples of World War II era fighter aircraft are the Supermarine Spitfire and Hawker Hurricane. Though these two iconic aircraft examples are actually full scale fibreglass replica models, they take a special place in the Airpark representing RCAF World War II pilots. There were fourteen Canadian fighter squadrons equipped with the Spitfire during World War II with many Canadians flying in the RAF as well. The Hurricane, though not as popular as the Spitfire, actually shot down more aircraft during the Battle of Britain than any other Allied aircraft. More than 14,000 Hurricanes were produced with more than 1400 built in Canada. Many airworthy examples of both aircraft still fly today, around the world, though most are located in the UK. The museum's full scale models were donated by George Weston Limited in 2001.
The Labrador flew with the RCAF/CF for more than 40 years.
The largest helicopter in the Airpark is the Boeing Vertol CH-113 Labrador which flew with the RCAF/CF from 1963 until retirement in 2004. There were six Labs ordered for Search & Rescue roles and 12 for the Canadian Army called the CH-113A Voyageur, used as medium lift transport until the CH-147 Chinook entered service, replacing the Voyageurs which were then refurbished and converted to Labs. The museum's example initially served with 450 Squadron at Uplands, Ottawa as a Voyageur until being modified for SAR operations, redesignated a Labrador, and then served with 424 Squadron at CFB Trenton until its retirement in 2004.
The MiG-21 "Fishbed" first flew in 1956 and still serves today with several countries around the world.
An unusual aircraft to see in the Airpark is the MiG-21 "Fishbed," a Russian designed aircraft that was primarily used by Eastern Bloc countries during the Cold War. The MiG-21 first flew in 1956 and more than 10,600 of the type were built in 3 different factories in Moscow, Gorky and Tbilisi in Russia. Primary users of the Fishbed were the Soviet Air Force, Indian Air Force and the Libyan Air Force. The MiG-21 has a top speed of Mach 2.0 with a service ceiling of more than 58,000' and a rate of climb of 44,280 ft/min, quite incredible for a 1950's era jet fighter.
Both the CF-104 Starfighter, left, and the CF-5 Freedom Fighter, right, were built by Canadair under license for the RCAF/CAF.
The last two aircraft in the Airpark are the CF-104 Starfighter and the CF-5 Freedom Fighter, both built in Canada by Canadair. The CF-104 was modified version of the Starfighter built under license from Lockheed. The RCAF and, later, Canadian Armed Forces, primarily utilised the CF-104 as a ground attack aircraft although it was designed to be a used as an interceptor. Though it was similar to the Lockheed F-104, the Canadair version was optimised for use as a nuclear strike/reconnaissance aircraft. It first flew in 1961 and Starfighters served with the CF until retired in 1995. They had a top speed of Mach 2.2 and a service ceiling of 50,000'. The CF-5 was built under license from Northrop by Canadair. The Canadian Forces ordered 89 single seat and 46 dual seat type with Canadair building 75 single seat and 30 dual seat versions for the Royal Netherlands Air Force. Only two squadrons in Canada flew the CF-5, 433 and 434 Squadrons with surplus aircraft placed in storage at both CFB North Bay and CFB Trenton, later CFD Mountain View. Training versions were utilised at CFB Cold Lake, Alberta. The CF-5 had a top speed of Mach 1.3 with a service ceiling of 41,000' and a rate of climb of 10,500 ft/min.
Two of several memorials displayed around the Airpark. One of the largest, left, honours No 6 RCAF Group, RAF Bomber Command from 1942 - 1945 and another honouring all Canadian military Flight Engineers, right.
Also found inside the Airpark are numerous memorials honouring pilots and crews as well as squadrons of the RCAF and CF. They are placed throughout the Airpark between and around the various aircraft. There are at least a dozen different memorials so take some time to stop and read them and remember all those who served.
The "Deuce-and-a-half," left, was used by militaries around the world. A vintage portable control tower, right.
Among the aircraft in the Airpark are a few assorted vehicles and displays including a Deuce Army truck and a portable control tower, among other portable buildings. Though there were many other vehicles and other pieces of equipment that were utilised by the RCAF and CF, most other items are in a temporary storage area.
Two aircraft you'll see at the Quinte International Air Show, held on the same base where the National Air Force Museum is located, are the CF-18 Hornet, left, and the CC-150 Polaris, right.
Whether you're Canadian or are just interested in aviation history, the National Air Force Museum of Canada is a great place to spend an afternoon wondering around and taking in the history of the RCAF and those who served. If you're coming to the Quinte International Air Show the weekend of June 25 & 26, 2016 make some time to visit the NAFM. It's well worth the visit and is a great way to either start off or end your weekend.
A front view of both the Canadair CL-13 (F-86) Sabre, left, and the Canadiar CL-90 (CF-104) Starfighter, right.
The C-130 Hercules has been the transport workhorse for many militaries around the world for years, not just the RCAF.
Another look at the DC-3 Dakota, "Canucks Unlimited," left, and the British Hawker Hunter of the Swiss Air Force, right.
A beautiful memorial to those who flew the RCAF/CAF's CF-104 Starfighter.
Two different views, the Herc from the front, left, and the 720 from behind, right.
The MiG-21, left, could fly at speeds in excess of Mach 2.0. The Twin Huey, right, flew in Haiti, Honduras and Egypt, among other locations, with the Canadian military in United Nations markings.
Two more lovely dedications inside the Airpark. "We serve that men may fly" is a memorial dedicated to all the women who served in the RCAF from 1941 - 1945, left, and the memorial dedicated to all past and present members of 437 Transport Squadron, known as "The Huskies," right.
The old Tracker has certainly seen better days but she, along with other aircraft in the Airpark, will eventually undergo restoration, bringing them back to their former RCAF glory days.
The Starfighter, left, wasn't much more than a rocket with little wings and a tail but it was loved by most who flew her. The Freedom Fighter, right, didn't fly with the Canadian military in great numbers, but was also a popular jet fighter with pilots.
If you've served with the RCAF, CAF, CF or were a spouse of someone who has, or your a current member of the RCAF, you can apply to have an Ad Astra Stone placed in the Airpark. The Ad Astra Stone program is a way to memorialise someone who dedicated part of their life to serving Canada, and her people, while in uniform of the Air Force. Check out the museum website for more information on the Ad Astra Program and help the museum raise funds. It's a very worthy venture!

Visit the National Air Force Museum of Canada website:

By Kevin Moore, Contributing Editor & Photographer
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