Lockheed F-104 G "Starfighter"
The “Starfighter“ was designed to perform as a day fighter exclusively and was optimized on speed. The performance was truly impressive. In 1958 it set a new altitude record with 30.000 m and with 2540 km/h a new world speed record for jet fighters. In the course of the years the F-104 was modified in many ways. The F-104 G was created for the Federal Air Force, a multipurpose version which was no longer just fighter but reconnaissance plane and fighter-bomber as well. This may well have contributed to the tragedy of this plane. While the US Air Force was using the “Starfighter“ as a fighter-plane exclusively and had to suffer a minimum of casualties only, 269 planes of the 917 craft procured by the Federal Air Force were lost in accidents. The one-seater F-104 G shown above was flying with the JaBoG 33 at Büchel. She is sporting the colors of the naval squadron 2 (MFG 2) “Vikings“. Although this squad existed from August 14, 1983 through September 27, 1986 only it excited over 6 million spectators in more than 60 shows worldwide. The flight squadron disbanded together with the retirement of the “Starfighter“.
The picture below shows a two-seater trainer. Every unit had five such trainer planes. This specimen originated from the Test and Trial Department at Manching.
First Flight: 1954 (one-seater); Wing- Span: 6.68 m; Engine: General Electric J79-GE-MA with afterburner; Max. Thrust: 7080 kp; Max. Speed: 2240 km/h; Take-off Weight: 13,170 kg