Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Pic(k) of the week 19: Sabre jet feeling at home in the Mojave desert

The North American F-86 Sabre is a 1950's vintage jet fighter, that became especially famous during the Korean war. Developed in the late 1940's, it was the first US built swept wing fighter, that was able to successfully fight the Mig-15. With close to 10.000 being built, it became the most produced Western jet fighter in history. 

While by far the largest part were produced in the US, a smaller portion were built in Australia and Canada. The latter being built under license by Canadair came in six different versions; Mk 1 till Mk 6.

While visiting the Mojave 2015 Experimental fly-in end of last month, I photographed a beautiful airworthy Canadair Sabre Mk 6 on the flight-line. Built in 1952, the aircraft initially went to the South-African Air Force as #378. In 1983 the aircraft came back to North America where it was operated by Flight Systems in Mojave and was used as an aerial full scale target aircraft for both military and civil clients.

In the early nineties the aircraft was fully restored to the North American F-86F standard and is now operated by Al Hansen, who still keeps the jet at the Mojave Air and Space port. 

Just a stone throw away from the famous Edwards Air Force base, where some of the Space Shuttle missions came back to Earth, Mojave was the place where Dick Rutan and Deana Yeager flew the first un-refuelled non-stop flight around the world in the Voyager aircraft. It is also home of Scale Composites, which together with Virgin Galactic is working on commercialising Space Flight. Both Edwards and its smaller brother Mojave are living and breathing Aviation history!

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Image details:
Fujifilm X-T1 with the Fujinon XF 10-24mm f4 lens
ISO 250, f10, 1/400s, 17mm (25mm full frame equivalent)
RAW development in Lightroom CC
Silver Efex Pro 2 for Black and White conversion

More images shot at the 2015 Mojave Experimental fly-in can be found here.

The image above made it into my updated Aviation portfolio, which can be found here

Remember: It is possible to fly without motors, but not without knowledge and skills" - Wilbur Wright


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