Singapore Air Force Museum

History of the Singapore Air Force

In January 1968, the British announced the imminent withdrawal of all their troops east of Suez by the end of 1971. Prior to then, Singapore had depended completely on Britain’s Royal Air Force (RAF) for its air defence, while the newly established Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) had concentrated its efforts mainly on building up the Singapore Army.

The predecessor to the RSAF, the SADC, was formed in September 1968. The SADC’s immediate task was to set up the Flying Training School to train pilots. Qualified flying instructors were obtained through Airwork Services Limited, a UK-based company specialising in defence services. Basic training for pilots was carried out using two Cessna light aircraft hired from the Singapore Flying Club. The SADC also enlisted the help of the Royal Air Force which introduced the first flying training syllabus and provided two ex-RAF pilots as instructors, as well as facilities and services at Seletar Airport. Finally, the first batch of six pilot trainees were sent to the United Kingdom in August 1968 to undergo training in various technical disciplines. The training was based on the Hawker Hunter, the SADC’s first air defence fighter. The following month, another pioneer group of technicians, this time from the rotary wing, were sent to France to begin their technical training on the Aérospatiale Alouette III helicopter. In 1969, a number of local RAF technicians were released to join the fledging SADC. These local technicians (local other ranks) had experience working on fixed-wing RAF aircraft such as the Hawker Hunter, Gloster Javelin, English Electric Canberra, English Electric Lightning and Avro Shackleton;[2] as well as rotary-wing RAF aircraft such as the Bristol Belvedere, Westland Wessex and Westland Whirlwind.[2]

Eight Cessna 172K aircraft – the SADC’s first – arrived in May 1969 to be used for basic pilot training.[3] By December, the first batch of students completed the course. Of these, six were sent to the UK to receive further training. On their return to Singapore in 1970, they were ready to operate the then newly acquired Hawker Hunter fighter aircraft.

The pace of training pilots and ground crew picked up gradually. On 1 August 1969, Minister for the Interior and Defence, Lim Kim San, inaugurated the Flying Training School (FTS) at Tengah Air Base (then known as RAF Tengah). The inauguration of FTS brought SADC closer to its goal of fulfilling the heavy responsibility of defending Singapore’s airspace.

The subsequent arrival of the BAC Strikemasters in 1969, used for advanced phase flying training, meant that pilot trainees were now able to earn their initial wings locally rather than overseas. The first batch of locally trained fighter pilots were trained at the FTS and graduated in November 1970. Amongst this batch was 2LT Goh Yong Siang, who later rose to the appointment of Chief of Air Force on 1 July 1995. Gradually, the SADC had its own pilots, flying instructors, air traffic controllers, and ground crew.

When Britain brought forward its plan to withdraw its forces by September 1971, the SADC was suddenly entrusted with a huge responsibility and resources. Britain’s former air bases – Tengah, Seletar, Sembawang and Changi – were handed over to the SADC, as well as its air defence radar station and Bloodhound II surface-to-air missiles.

In 1973, the SADC procured Shorts Skyvan search-and-locate aircraft and Douglas A-4 Skyhawk fighter-bombers. With a reliable mix of fighters, fighter-bombers, helicopters and transport aircraft, the SADC was ready to assume the functions of a full-fledged air force. On 1 April 1975, the SADC was renamed the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF).[1]

One of its first commanders was LTC Ee Tean Chye.[4][5]

Source: wikipedia

 

The Russian Central Air Force Museum at Monino

The Central Air Force Museum, housed at Monino Airfield, 40 km east of Moscow, Russia, is one of the world’s largest aviation museums, and the largest for Russian aircraft. 173 aircraft and 127 aircraft engines are on display, and the museum also features collections of weapons, instruments, uniforms (including captured U2 pilot Gary Powers‘ uniform), other Cold War-era US spy equipment, artwork, and other air-related items. A library containing books, films, and photos is also accessible to visitors. Tours are given by ex-pilots.

The museum opened its doors in 1958. Prior to 1999, the museum was closed to the public, because of the display of classified prototypes from the era of the former Soviet Union.

The museum is located next to the Military Academy named after Yu. A. Gagarin.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Central_Air_Force_Museum

This is the museum that was always featured in the Discovery Channel’s Wings of the Red Star, television program of the 1990′s

 

Gotcha! – Teterboro, NJ (KTEB)

VOR DME-A TEB

VOR DME-A TEB

When on the VOR DME-A, Circle 19 into Teterboro (KTEB) watch out for the minimums. While the circling minimums on the approach plate indicate 1000′, you might be surprised to find out that you will be instructed to remain at 1500′ by the tower.  This is usually to provide separation from helicopter traffic,  and can get you in trouble if you are not prepared for it.

 

The above is intended to be advisory in nature and does not supersede any information contained in the FAR’s or AIM.  Every situation is different and may not apply to every flight.

Gotcha! – Santa Monica, CA (KSMO)

Kimmo 2 KSMO

Kimmo 2 KSMO

While on the Kimmo 2 arrival into Santa Monica (KSMO), be prepared to be dumped in between DARTS and BEVEY on the VOR or GPS-A.  SoCal approach will keep you high (I think 6000′) and vector an intercept between the two fixes and clear you for the approach.  Best to  configure early or at least prepared for it.

 

 

VOR or GPS-A KSMO

VOR or GPS-A KSMO

The above is intended to be advisory in nature and does not supersede any information contained in the FAR’s or AIM.  Every situation is different and may not apply to every flight.

Gotcha! – Los Angeles, CA (KLAX)

Los Angeles (KLAX) has a surprising gotcha when flying from an arrival and transitioning to an approach.  You should be very aware and know that they will issue an approach clearance while still on the arrival.  A terminating point on the arrival can also be the IAF on the approach.  Trouble is, the assigned runway may not be issued to you until that point and you really need to scramble to punch into the FMS the correct approach.  This can be a very high workload situation to those who are not expecting it and a few may even question its legality, but it is a perfectly acceptable clearance, though.

The above is intended to be advisory in nature and does not supersede any information contained in the FAR’s or AIM.  Every situation is different and may not apply to every flight.

Gotcha! – Hold for release

Did you know that if you receive a “hold for release” IFR clearance at an uncontrolled airfield then decide to depart VFR to pick up your clearance in the air it is a violation? A “hold for release” clearance is just what it says it is, a clearance, and as such you are not authorized to depart without first canceling either your IFR flight plan or clearance.  After, though, you can depart VFR and then pick up your IFR clearance in the air if it is still active.

AIM part 5-2-6. Departure Restrictions, Clearance Void Times, Hold for Release, and Release Times

The above is intended to be advisory in nature and does not supersede any information contained in the FAR’s or AIM.  Every situation is different and may not apply to every flight.

Tornado Totals Defenseless Citation X

A tornado in the Midwest struck just one hangar at the airfield where the Citation X was parked, along with an unauthorized camper.  The camper found itself being used as a plus-sized baseball bat and doing its best to beat the heck out of the hapless Cessna.  For some reason, the insurance company decided  that the $20M jet was worth more in parts than to rebuild it.

 

 

 

 

Jimmy Franklin and the Jet Waco

Back on the early 2000’s these pictures were taken at the Sussex Airshow in Wantage Township, NJ.  Franklin’s show was spectacular to see anywhere, but I think he took particular joy flying at such a small venue.  He also liked to take full advantage of the  sloping terrain to create breath-taking sight-lines in which he appeared to be flying so low he was going to impact the ground.  He was an unbelievable showman and innovator. His tragic loss in 2005, along with friend and fellow performer Bobby Younkin, was heartbreaking.

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