In the mid fifties the KLu (Koninklijke Luchtmacht) acquired 180 Republic F-84F Thunderstreaks, registered P-101 to P-277 and P-298 to P-300. The majority of the Streaks depicted in this album are selected out of the range P-157 to P-300, being the last of the type in operational service, flying with both 314 and 315 squadrons from Eindhoven AB. The Streak entered service in 1955 and the last ones were phased out in 1970. Last departures to other air forces (see below) took place in 1971.
This gallery features pictures of aircraft that have been disposed of or preserved in one way or another; the airframes depicted here (gate-guards, monuments, eye-catchers, etc.) are photographed in the years 2011 onward. Airframes pictured in earlier years are in a separate gallery. Note that some of the aircraft portrayed here are no longer present at the given location.
W&R portrayed in the USA are dealt with in a separate gallery (also in this album “Preserved Aircraft”).
The 1976 TWM (Tactical Weapons Meet) was the 12th edition of central Europe’s tactical attack competion. It was was held at Twente AB (NL) from 28 April till 15 May , visited by Frank on the 7th and by Hans on the 10th of May. TWM was a contest between teams of 2ATAF (Allied Tactical Air Force) and 4ATAF. The team from 2ATAF consisted of NF-5As of 316 squadron KLu of Gilze-Rijen AB, Mirages of 1 sqn BAFBierset, Starfighters of 1/31 JaBo Luftwaffe from Nörvenich and Phantoms of 31 sqn RAFG. 4ATAF consisted of 1/32 JaBo Luftwaffe, 1 CAG Canada, 22TFS/36TFW USAF and 23TFS/52TFW USAF from Spangdahlem (flying F-4D’s ). The French AF had sent a guest team, 3/13 Escadre from Colmar, equipped with Mirage 5Fs.The chase planes were NF-5Bs of Twente.
|No 306 Sqn KLu received its first RF 84F Thunderflash at RAF Laarbruch (G) on 4 April 1956. The squadron was stationed at Laarbruch from 8 Nov 1954 till 15 Jan 1958 when they moved to Deelen.|
In their early days they wore a silver livery with the 306 squadron-code (TP-) on the nose; in later years they were camouflaged and subsequently their P- registration was added.
After their operational service about 30 Streaks were temporarily used as eye-catchers (“decoys”) at air-bases of the KLu: about 4 aircraft were present at each airfield. They were removed and scrapped in 1980.
In this gallery you will find a selection of the pictures we took in the course of years when specific phased out aircraft were still around. Most aircraft have since then been removed for scrap .
Eindhoven was the city where the authors both grew up and became “real” aircraft-spotters at the nearby air base. They made many pictures there throughout the years often under difficult circumstances ! This gallery contains a selection of these “blood, sweat and tears”-pics taken at Eindhoven (NL). The Eindhoven based Thunderstreaks are not in this gallery, but all in one seperate album. Note that in the 60/70ties Eindhoven AB also had a Base-Flight with Lockheed T-33’s,Harvards etc. You will find some pictures of these aircraft in this gallery.
A few images taken in more recent years are incorporated as well. Eindhoven now houses the transport fleet of the RNethAF (pics are in gallery named “KLu aircraft”).
For the first time Hans visited Leeuwarden AB (NL) as an aircraft-spotter in August 1967. In later years he came back several times. Needless to say it never was easy to picture aircraft in their landing-pattern and at other locations outside the fences !
Also in the case of announced squadron-rotations it was not certain beforehand if there would be any flying-activities on the day he chose to be present .