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I was stationed at Edwards AFB back then and I got called in on Sunday afternoon to fix a component so the B-2 could make its first flight. Monday when they reported it arriving, we all went out to the flightline to watch and my boss and I just kind of smiled at each other. We weren't allowed to tell anyone what we did. One of the highlights of my career.

3 comments

  • domestique34

    domestique34 3 months, 3 weeks ago

    I worked aero repair and reclamation on the B-1b., among other things, including crash recovery. We did a lot of Black Flag and Red Flag (war games) in Las Vegas and Alaska. Every time the B-2 came and parked next to us (only at night, and always left engines running), I'd walk around it. It smelled like electronics. And the airframe would be older than the B-1 I'm working on, which stinks of JP8 and hydraulic fluid, because it leaks like a pig. Fantastic aircraft.

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    • ahnyerkeester

      ahnyerkeester 3 months, 3 weeks ago

      That's pretty cool! When the B-2 was first displayed at the Edwards Air Show, it was backed into a corner of a hanger and had two SPs guarding it. You were NOT allowed to see the back of it.

      The B-1 is an interesting airframe. Still flying but according to "Skunk Works" by Ben Rich, the Carter administration cancelled it because the F-117 was being developed and so it wasn't needed. They couldn't say that publicly so Reagan beat them up on it and brought back the B-1. It was the aircraft we never needed but still use?

      The B-52, meanwhile, just keeps rolling along. They recently brought an H model out of mothballs to replace one that got retired. It will probably be flying with the B-1 and B-2 are both mothballed.

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      • domestique34

        domestique34 3 months, 2 weeks ago

        You're right!
        The B-1 was resurrected during the Nuke crisis. It was Nuke-capable at first. Once the reduction of arms took place, the UN didn't like the idea of the US with a supersonic nuke carrier? Can't imagine why? So the B-1 was denuclearized and has been modified to fit the ever changing warfare environment.

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