1968 Pickup Crews

Aussie aircrew deployed to Mather AFB, California, Cannon AFB, New Mexico and Nellis AFB, Nevada during 1968 to undergo F-111 conversion training courses whilst our 24 jets were being assembled at General Dynamics in Fort Worth, Texas. Four Conversion Courses were conducted between 11 Feb 68 and 11 Dec 68. Unfortunately, in late 68, a catastrophic wing failure required the redesign of the controversial swing wing carry-through box and Australia refused to accept the aircraft until the design was proven and tested. 

This delayed the RAAF F-111 program by five years. Some of the original aircrew never flew the F-111 again, some went on to fly F-4Es and some lucky ones came back to ferry the jets home in 1973 …

One of our very first F-111 pilots, Wally Walters, shares his early experiences on the F-111 ...

F-111C Production Line Assy of A8-131 - Oct 72 - 02 - Version 2

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                     2nd F-111 Pickup Course (Nov 68) Cannon AFB
                                   Photo Courtesy of Dave Rogers

(Email from Roggez:  I found a pic of the second course which I was on, bottom-left; there were four UASF guys on ours at Cannon, where the pic was taken.)


                                  3rd F-111 Pickup Course (Dec 68)
                                      Photo Courtesy of Dave Rogers

(Boggy, the second is of the third course in 68 taken during their training at Mather AFB. The guy on the right was SQNLDR John Mc Neil, the exchange officer at Mather. The pic was taken during their tour of the California Senate. Every course did this courtesy of JMcN. He actually died a few weeks ago at a young 92! Isolatingly,  Roggez)


                           *  Click table below for pdf file  *

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