Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Northwest Orient Cargo

N616US - a 747-251F (F for 'freighter') on a test flight in 1975 over Mount Rainier, Washington. 
Not all 747s carried paying passengers - many carried cargo, and continue to do so. This is a 747-251F, a freighter varient of the famous jumbo jet, which was delivered to Northwest Orient Cargo in 1975.

Delta Airlines bought Northwest in 2008, shut down the cargo operation, stored the long-serving N616US for a couple of years then sold the 35 year-old airframe to Kalitta Air in 2010. As of July 2012 it is in storage. I doubt it was ever as shiny again as it was in 1975, in this wonderful study which shows N616US the traditional pre-delivery pose, high over Mount Rainier in Washington.

This image was scanned from an 8x10in print, and I haven't done much to it. I cloned out some weird staining in the upper right, corrected a yellowish color cast and did some dust and scratches reduction but that was pretty much it. 

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Convair F-102 Delta Daggers, 318th Fighter Interceptor Squadron, late 1950s.
A quick new years' update (I have A LOT of 747 pictures on the way) this is a pair of Convair F-102 Delta Daggers of 318 Fighter Interceptor Squadron, flying over Mount Rainier, with Mount Baker in the background (not 100% sure about this - the mountain in the foreground could be a pre-eruption Mt St Helens?) some time between 1957-60. 

I found this print in a junk shop along with several Boeing pictures of 747s, 727s... etc. A quick Google search (starting from the obvious basis that whichever squadron this is was probably based in Washington or Oregon) was enough to pinpoint the unit and date it pretty accurately to within a couple of years in the late 1950s.

The 318th was based at McCord AFB in Washington from 1955, and flew the F-102 for only three years, from 1957. The F-102 was the first supersonic interceptor to serve in the USAF and it was replaced in the squadron by the much improved (and even better-looking) F-106 in 1960. The 318th Fighter Interceptor Squadron was eventually disbanded in 1989, finishing up on F15s. Shame, they had cool tail art. 

I didn't need to do much to this print when I scanned it, apart from basic dust reduction and some contrast tweaks. The print was in pretty good shape given it's more than 50 years old. 

A pair of polished metal Delta Daggers skimming the top of a volcano... it doesn't get much better than that. Happy New Year!