Post by Erik Ingram - HJG on Jan 13, 2021 2:40:10 GMT
Hope everybody's new year has gotten off to a pleasant and civilized start! Jumping headfirst into a new collection of liveries for 2021, here's the first of what I'm sure will be many to come.
The Republic of Singapore Air Force has retired its four KC-135Rs and begun to replace them with A330 MRTTs. All four aircraft have been purchased by Meta Aerospace, a US civilian company that will likely provide contract air refueling services (as Omega Air does with DC-10s). The first, N573MA, has been spotted flying while performing conformity checks and training, and appears as shown with its Singaporean markings painted out and the name "Timothy Dalton". Currently it's unknown if any of them will receive an official paint job at any point. This aircraft started life with the US Air Force as 63-8016 before being sold and delivered to Singapore in 2000.
Post by Erik Ingram - HJG on Jan 13, 2021 20:52:07 GMT
Next up is a 717 produced for VuelaMex, a proposed carrier that was planned to start operations in April 2002. Unfortunately they failed to gain certification from Mexican aviation authorities and ran out of money shortly after, so none of the four 717s painted for them entered service. All were repainted and delivered to AirTran, and this one became N989AT shortly thereafter. Later, some of the airline's investors and executives formed FlyMex, a charter carrier that uses similar branding to the proposed VuelaMex, and is considered their legal successor.
Post by Erik Ingram - HJG on Jan 22, 2021 22:09:33 GMT
Here we have a quartet of Delta Mad Dogs promoting the airline's status as the official carrier of the 1996 Summer Games held in Atlanta. Throughout 1995 and 1996 the majority of the fleet sported a few different variations of stickers, alongside two more comprehensively-painted aircraft (a 767 and an MD-11). Initially, the decals were placed on the engine nacelles, but it was found that they got dirty very quickly in the course of regular operations. N902DA, the first MD-90 to be delivered, arrived from the factory with these decals in February 1995:
By mid-1995, the decals had been moved to the lower forward fuselage, which can be considered the "standard" appearance, as seen on MD-88 N917DL:
The engine decals on a few planes did last into 1996, and for a short time, N994DL was photographed with both treatments simultaneously:
Finally, N911DA represents an MD-90 with the standard fuselage stickers:
Delta did paint a few planes (a 757, a 777, and several regional jets) to commemorate their role as official airline when the Winter Olympics were held in Salt Lake City in 2002, but no fleet-wide project like this was done.
Post by Erik Ingram - HJG on Jan 23, 2021 23:00:47 GMT
A very plain 707, this was purchased secondhand by the USAF for use as a transport/support aircraft for the commander of US Special Operations Command between 1992 and 2002. Given the serial 67-19471 and designated an EC-137D or EC-137E depending on who you ask, it wore this paint scheme in order to blend in wherever it went. Shown as it looked around 1998, it was crewed by the 19th Operations Group at Robins AFB, Georgia.
Post by Erik Ingram - HJG on Jan 27, 2021 21:39:04 GMT
In the mid-1980s, the USAF purchased a pair of secondhand former commercial 707s to augment the VC-137 fleet. As they weren't used for presidential transport, they were simply designated C-137Cs, and given the tail numbers 85-6973 and '74. 6974 was generally used for special-purpose missions kind of like the EC-137 above, so for a time it had generic markings with no identification. In 1989, however, it had this modified executive paint job clearly inspired by its presidential counterparts.
Post by Erik Ingram - HJG on Jan 29, 2021 0:06:49 GMT
Thank you! Yes, the 707 definitely wears VIP colors well no matter the operator.
A few new Boeing freight dogs for your enjoyment:
DHL 727-100C N725PL, 1986. These were the original DHL colors, later replaced by the better-known more comprehensive livery.
CF AirFreight 727-100F N188CL, 1986. This was Consolidated Freightways' foray into air cargo (up to that point they were the largest interstate trucking company in the US). This livery was retained when they took over Emery in 1989.
Aloha Air Cargo 737-300SF N303KH, 2016. Formed from the profitable cargo business of the original Aloha Airlines after it went bankrupt in 2008, Aloha Air Cargo continues to operate with several 737-300s and a 767.
Post by Erik Ingram - HJG on Feb 2, 2021 19:29:53 GMT
Although they tend to be more prevalent in the Navy, the Air Force also has specially-marked aircraft to denote those flown by unit commanders. The 55th Wing at Offutt is no exception, and here's RC-135V 64-14845 seen in 2019 when serving as the "CO jet" for then-Wing Commander Col. Michael Manion. It's differentiated by some details mostly on the tail, including drop-shadowed lettering and the enhanced tail flash based on the 55th Wing's insignia. 63-9792 has also worn these markings, and another aircraft may do so in the future.
Post by aerofoto - HJG Admin on Feb 5, 2021 3:23:06 GMT
FINALLY .... I've been able to attend to these .... official portraits of Erik's B707-320B ADV, B717-200, B727-100, B727-200F, B727-200 ADV, DC-10-40, MD-88, and MD-90-30 textures some of which were painted during December, but, couldn't be accommodated within our Christmas release ....
Post by Erik Ingram - HJG on Feb 10, 2021 2:44:37 GMT
Next one off the line is another CF AirFreight bird; originally delivered to Qantas as VH-EAA, N526SJ made its way through an array of cargo airlines before getting the green and red stripes in 1987. In 1990 it was sold to the USAF for conversion to an E-8 JSTARS as 90-0175, and in that capacity it was used to test a proposed re-engine program with JT8D-219s. It was retired in 2015 and sits on Celebrity Row at Davis-Monthan AFB. This is how it looked when new to CF AirFreight in 1987, complete with stage II hushkits.
Post by Erik Ingram - HJG on Feb 17, 2021 18:49:45 GMT
Here's one of the mess of hybrids that existed following the Texas International-Continental merger in 1982; later versions combined the TI livery with CO's color scheme, but this earliest one simply added CO titles to the basic TI scheme. N3506T was part of a late order for DC-9s by TI in 1979, and flew with Continental until 2000.