Enjoy Nearly Six Hours Of EAA AirVenture Oshkosh Action With This Mega-Compilation Video!

That’s right, our annual EAA AirVenture Oshkosh mega-compilation video is up, and this year it is nearly six hours long! This video combines all of our ground footage from the show into one long masterpiece, sure to please any aviation fan. The videos are in roughly sequential order, so you start out with the chaos of mass aircraft arrivals on the Sunday before the show. As the week progresses you’ll see more arrivals, portions of the airshow, and then mass departures as everyone reluctantly bids Wittman Regional Airport farewell and heads home.

Airshow performances include the US Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon demonstration team, the USAF Heritage Flight, the US Navy F/A-18F Super Hornet demonstration, the arrival of the Canadian Forces Snowbirds, a Martin Mars water drop, the final Oshkosh appearance of USAF F-4 Phantom IIs, flybys from a USAF U-2 Dragon Lady, F-15 Eagle, and A-10 Warthogs, massive warbird formations and exciting flybys, the Tora! Tora! Tora! Pearl Harbor reenactment, the arrival and departure of a massive C-5M Super Galaxy, the Oshkosh seaplane base on Lake Winnebago, a maximum performance departure of the Cathay-Pacific 747-8 freighter “Hong Kong Trader”, and much more!

Find a comfortable chair and settle in to watch the video above! You can also view each video individually, as well as special on-board videos from the show, using our EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2016 video playlist. Enjoy!

Phantom Finale: The Last Remaining USAF F-4 Pilot On The End Of A Legend

USAF F-4 Phantom II Afterburner Takeoff

It goes without saying that the McDonnell-Douglas F-4 Phantom II has had an incredible impact on American aviation, one that carries it into modern aviation legend. One of the most iconic aircraft ever built, nearly everyone involved with aviation and the military has a story relating to the F-4. Unfortunately this American classic is rapidly approaching its final days*, at least in the US.

In April of 1996, the last operational US Air Force/Air National Guard F-4 flight was conducted, marking the end of the Phantom II’s active career. It continued to serve its country as a remotely-piloted target drone, but now even that mission is coming to an end. We met up with likely the last ever USAF F-4 pilot, Lieutenant Colonel Ron “Elvis” King of the 82nd Aerial Target Squadron, Detachment 1, while he was displaying one of the 21 remaining Phantoms at the Spirit of St. Louis Air Show & STEM Expo on May 14-15 2016. Lt. Col. King was kind enough to talk with AirshowStuff about the status of the target drone program, flying the F-4, and his job overseeing the final days of the famed Phantom.

The 82nd ATS uses the QF-4 drones for full-scale aerial targets that test surface and air-to-air missiles, radar technologies, and other counter-air systems. With 21 QF-4s left in the fleet, their numbers will be dwindled down to none by the end of this year. Once the program phases out the QF-4s for the incoming Boeing-modified QF-16 Fighting Falcons, any remaining Phantoms will be de-militarized and trucked out to the bombing range in New Mexico to be used as ground targets. When asked about whether any of the aircraft will be available to museums, Lt. Col. King wasn’t able to specify, but he did mention that the QF-4Es are not a very desirable aircraft to museum collections due to the modifications.

Lt. Col. King is hoping to get the QF-4s out and around to air shows this year while they’re still around, but with only eight available aircraft and four pilots, the 82nd ATS is stretched thin for availability to attend public shows. He is looking at taking the QF-4 to EAA AirVenture, the Reno Air Races, Nellis AFB’s Aviation Nation, and the Sioux Falls Air Show later this year. Testing requirements and availability will be the ultimate determining factors in their attendance.

*The Collings Foundation does own and operate one airworthy F-4 Phantom in the US. Additionally, several foreign countries use them in active service.

For more information, watch the interview above and keep your eyes posted here and on our Facebook page!

EAA AirVenture Announcements – deHavilland Mosquito And More!

posted in: Airshows, Warbirds | 0

deHavilland DH-98 Mosquito

EAA announced more exciting details about this years AirVenture today, and if you don’t have plans to attend already you may want to make them! The biggest news is that the Military Aviation Museum’s deHavilland DH-98 Mosquito will be making its first appearance in Oshkosh. The trip is relying on a IndieGoGo crowdfunding campaign to help cover the costs of the trip. The campaign is seeking to raise $10,000 in the next 29 days and is offering some very neat perks for people who donate, including the opportunity to sit in the cockpit during an engine run up! The aircraft is one of only two flying in the world, but a non-flying example is housed in the EAA Museum in Oshkosh.

USAF F-4 Phantom II

The other news is the Warbirds in Review schedule, which doesn’t seem all that major at first glance but opens up some details once you look a little closer. Tuesday will feature the Mosquito as well as the P-51B and P-51D Mustangs “Berlin Express” and “Sierra Sue”, both recent restorations that will compete for awards at the event. Wednesday lists Bob Hoover’s P-51 Mustang “Ole Yeller” along with a USAF F-16 Fighting Falcon and F-22 Raptor. The F-16 says that its attendance is pending DOD approval, but the F-22 will be present for flying demonstrations so it should be good to go. Friday’s listing includes the F-100 Super Sabre, one of the previous exciting announcements made by EAA. The final notable entry is on Saturday, when the P-38 Lightning “Scat III” (formerly “Ruff Stuff”) and an F-4 Phantom II “Scat XXVII”, both named to honor ace pilot Robin Olds, will share the stage.

EAA also recently announced that the Airbus A350 will be attending the show and demonstrating its capabilities during the week. Airbus previously brought their A380 for some mind blowing performances in 2009, and Boeing brought their 787 Dreamliner in 2011.

This is truly shaping up to be one of the best AirVentures in recent memory and it is a little more than a month away!