So after all this time rv sailing today we looked at a few aeroplanes – the Pima Air & Space Museum is only a short journey southeast of Tucson so off we went. Our visit included a tour of the Davis-Mountain Air Force Base Boneyard (AMARC) – the Charles Trent of aeroplanes: http://www.amarcexperience.com/Pima.asp This is where they “store” all the no longer used military aircraft, there are literally billions of dollars worth kept here. They drain out the fluids then spray them with a latex type material to protect them from dust and sun, it’s like a white cling film job not bad at something like $20000 per covering, no wonder they’re trying out a sort of car cover for ‘planes at the bargain price of $6000. Many of these aircraft can be made airworthy again should they be needed (so I’m told). As it becomes clear that flying is not going to be on the cards then “strip ‘em down and ship ‘em out” becomes the motto. So should you require a spare bomb door gear for your B52 then give them a call.
The actual tour of the “boneyard” is on board a coach, apparently they used to let you tour round in your car by yourself (even though it’s a working Air Force Base) however since 9/11 many things have changed. The advantage was that we had a very knowledgeable guide telling us about all the ‘planes. The disadvantage being that all the pictures were taken through the window! I make no apology for filling this blog entry with a few of them – not bad when you consider I actually took 287. Watch out Jon, when we get back there will be a test on ‘plane recognition! The coach tour took just over an hour, bringing us back to the museum for a few more pictures… As I said, it’s a working base so the air is constantly filled with jets of all kinds sometimes looking quite incongruous flying into or out of this living museum – a bit like finding a roadworthy Ferrari at Trents!
Look out for the huge strange looking “Super Guppy” – Betsy is standing at the front by the landing gear – this is used by NASA to transport rockets and things. At the other end of the scale we see Betsy standing by one of the smallest exhibits a Cessna “Tweet” used for training.
Enjoy the pictures…