HAPPY BUFF-Day

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by poadeleted1, Mar 22, 2006.

  1. poadeleted1

    poadeleted1 Deleted by request

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    BUFF Turns 50
    March 17, 2006

    [​IMG] Barksdale AFB, LA. (MILITARY.COM)

    The B-52 Stratofortress reached a milestone March 12 with the 50th anniversary of the first B-52 wing being declared combat-ready. The 93rd Bombardment Wing was declared combat-ready March 12, 1956, after being activated June 29, 1955. Although it had been declared combat-ready for 10 years, the first time a B-52 was involved in combat wasn’t until June 18, 1965, when aircrews were involved in Vietnam, said Buck Rigg, 8th Air Force museum director.

    The decision to declare the 93rd BW, and all other bombardment units that followed, combat-ready was historically significant in two ways, Mr. Rigg said. “The first was that America now had at its disposal the professionals who could meet any expectation the world might create, flying the ultimate in long-range bombardment aircraft, the B-52,” Mr. Rigg said. “By having the B-52 crews combat certified, we could rest assured that the crews were well-trained and most importantly, disciplined to carry out any assigned task, anywhere around the world.”

    Mr. Rigg said the second historical significance the combat-ready decision had was in the two missions the B-52s had in the 1950s—high-altitude, long-range bombardment and reconnaissance. “These (new) missions and capabilities would become one of our greatest strengths,” Mr. Rigg said. “And this would eventually lead to the end of the Cold War.”

    The adaptability of the B-52 has made the difference since the combat-ready decision was made, said Lt. Col. Parker Northrup, 11th Bomb Squadron commander. “No other strike platform has demonstrated the versatility necessary to meet national security requirements across the spectrum of conflict: from current-day Afghanistan, the Cold War and Desert Storm; from small-scale contingencies to superpower politics of the Cold War,” the colonel said.
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    If you’ve ever stood close to the flightline and watched one of these lumbering giants take off, two thoughts come to mind: (1) “Damn! That thing sure makes a lot of noise!”, and (2) “No freaking way that durned thing is going to get off the ground!”. Your first thought is revised as the eight Pratt & Whitney jet engines ramp up to takeoff speed and the screaming noise becomes almost unbearable. Your second thought is further reinforced as you watch this thing roll down the runway and you see the damn wings start flapping up and down like a bird.

    I’ve watched quite a few of these old birds takeoff and land and it never ceases to amaze me. The thing weighs over 90 tons (stripped down to t-shirt and shorts) but with a full bomb load will weigh as much as 290 tons. The plane’s wingspan (185 feet, tip to tip) is longer than the body (159 feet). The thing that always grabs my attention though is the tail. That tail stands up so high over the plane that it reminds me of a shark fin ... which is quite appropriate. With in-air refueling, these bad boys can get anywhere on the globe in hours. Once they get there, there’s no place to hide.

    So say happy 50th buff-day to the airplane that helped coin the phrase, “Peace Is Our Profession.” After all, nothing quite says “peace” like the thought of having one of these Stratofortresses appear over your head. It’s enough to make anyone sit down and STFU ...

    (ten points extra credit if you know where the nickname BUFF comes from)
     

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  2. Skip Miller

    Skip Miller En-Route

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    Yes, Happy BUFF day indeed. Some BUFFs were based at Westover AFB outside of Springfield, MA and they did touch and go's at Bradley Field. The "go" brought them over my high school at fairly low altitude, all 8 jets screaming. Yes, they are noisy!

    Big Ugly Flying ...umm... Fellow. :rolleyes:

    -Skip
     
  3. ausrere

    ausrere Pattern Altitude

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    I know what it means..but we can't say that on this forum! :D

    I grew up under the approach into Carswell AFB where these big monsters flew in and out of daily. They would rattle the windows on the house that's for sure! But I do miss the sound of them when I venture back home. :(
     
  4. etsisk

    etsisk En-Route

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    big ugly flying f***?
     
  5. bharris

    bharris Pre-Flight

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    I grew up in Spokane Washington, near Fairchild AFB. I remember ih high school the teachers had to stop talking when the B36s and the B52s came over on approach to Fairchild.
     
  6. Dave Siciliano

    Dave Siciliano Final Approach

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    From a person in the know (not me!).

    Dave


    B-52 - "BUFF" = "Big Ugly Fat ... er, Feller"
    B-737 - "FLUF" = "Fat Little Ugly Feller"

    and for the Trifeaca

    A-7 - "SLUF" = "Short Little Ugly Feller"

    The official name for the B-52 was the Stratofortress (it said so, right there in the little plastic Boing logo in the center of the yokes) which crews quickly defaced so it only read "rat fort"
     
  7. Ghery

    Ghery Final Approach

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    And now you're over here on the we(s)t side of the state.

    I remember B-52s and AVRO Vulcans buzzing Pullman on occasion when SAC was having their competitions and the Brits would come over for the fun. We were only about 70 miles south of Fairchild.
     
  8. poadeleted1

    poadeleted1 Deleted by request

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    Me too. For a while at least. It was quite a sight to see them going off on alert, lifting off 3 at a time. We lived there 67-70. Went to Monnig JH and AHHS.

    I think Ft. Worth is one of the best places to live!

    When I was small, my dad made a foray into B47 flying, and we wound up at Moses Lake, WA. Don't remember much about it, but I seem to recall that he like it there.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2006
  9. terzap

    terzap Line Up and Wait

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    I had the privilege of spending a little time at Barksdale AFB about 13 years ago. I learned what "LOUD" is really like when they would run those babies up!

    terry
     
  10. poadeleted3

    poadeleted3 Pattern Altitude

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    Happy Birthday, BUFF!!!

    There was a time I could tell you exactly how many steps it took to walk the red line painted around a nuke loaded B-52 on alert. As a young airman, I had the pleasure about 3 nights a week, broken up two more walking the red line crossing the taxiway into the parking area. Needless to say, young airmen looked forward to our night on a patrol!! And this young airman got his butt trained to do other things, which got me off the gap and CIS duties LOL. Ahhhh... the excitement of defending this nation, of keeping our friends, family, and nation strong, proud and free LOL. Almost as exciting as the night somebody flipped a frisby on top of a BUFF's wing, setting off the alarms, which automatically set off the crew klaxon, waking them up in the middle of the night and making them come flying out... they weren't as amused as we were. I've no idea who did that. :D Been my story for the 20 years since, and I'm sticking to it LOL.

    I can't believe those things are still flying, and defending this nation, after all this time. I will always remember the sights and sounds one morning, the conlusion of a worldwide AF exercise, when for 45 minutes straight bombers and tankers were taking off one after another, starting their takeoff rolls before the one before had even gotten off the ground. Awe inspiring. Noisy and smoky, too!!
     
  11. Frank Browne

    Frank Browne Final Approach

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    Great story Joe! Was your...um..."friend" ever identified as the culprit??

    BTW, on the Military Channel the other day was an episode of Modern Marvels about the B-52. They said it is expected to remain in service until at least 2045!
     
  12. ausrere

    ausrere Pattern Altitude

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    I always loved the sounds from that place. Between the B-52's and the F-16's from General Dynamics, there was always something to hear and watch.

    Both of my parents worked for General Dynamics (now Lockheed). My mother retired from there, and my father moved over to Bell Helicopter where he eventually retired. I bought my first house across the street from Bell. I went from B-52 daily airshows to helicopter shows. When the agent was showing me the house on a Sunday (with my mother along with me) she mentioned that I might want to consider how close Bell was to the house and all the noise that went along with it before I seriously considered moving there. My mother quickly informed her that the constant fly overs was not a negative factor for me! She knew me well. :D
     
  13. poadeleted3

    poadeleted3 Pattern Altitude

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    Much to my surprise, they never asked very hard. The aircraft commander just growled at all of us in general and went back to the alert crew quarters and bed. Flight Seargant didn't even bother asking. I reckon they were just glad the "suspect" was finding a way to stay awake LOL.
     
  14. gkainz

    gkainz Final Approach

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    I worked a job in the mid-70's just off the end of the runways at Ellsworth AFB, literally just a few hundred feet off the end of the runway, when the BUFFS were flying their tails off. What a rush to have them take off over your head with the engine roar rattling thru to your bones... Awesome!!!
     
  15. ScottM

    ScottM Taxi to Parking

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    Was that the one where they were interviewing a B-52 AC and his father who had been the AC on that same tail numbered aircraft in the 1960s??

    Just think we may have three generations of pilots gettign to fly the same aricraft. That speaks well for the designers!!
     
  16. Frank Browne

    Frank Browne Final Approach

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    I only saw a portion of the show the other day, but I do believe it was the same one you're thinking about. Before the airplane is retired for good, it may end up with 4-5 generations flying it! Kinda like Jimmy Buffett's song..."Son of a Son of a Sailor", only with B-52's!
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2006
  17. gmwalk

    gmwalk Pre-Flight

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    B-52, what a great plane! I was stationed at Ellsworth AFB from 1976-1980 (I was in the missile wing.) But, we had a B-52 wing there. I always enjoyed watching those planes flying around.

    One time, SAC had a global alert (it was a test) I remember watching the B-52 going off on after another with this continuous roar that seemed to just go on and on.

    BTW, the "Peace is our profession" was SAC's motto. We always ammended it with "War is just hobby"

    George