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Posts posted by HerkPFE

  1. We did the same thing in the Navy...maintenance normally ordered them through the supply system and the flight crews normally stole them off what ever Air Force C-130 or C-141 was sitting next to them on the transit line...

    Happy New Years to all,


  2. Don,

    That is an interesting question. In the past, history has dictated that a PFE wore two thick gold or silver strips and Second Officers (Pilots) wore three thick gold or silver strips.

    While the International Brotherhood of Flight Engineers Union represented PFE\'s at PanAm, TWA and many other majors had them wear two strips, ALPA representing the Pilots and Second Officers wanted them to wear three strips. During the 60\'s and early 70\'s you still saw PFE\'s at the majors wearing two strips. In fact when TWA did away with the PFE, they allowed qualified PFE\'s to upgrade to First Officers but ALPA made them to have small red piping around their gold strips. They were called Candy Strippers and really looked down upon by ALPA as they by bypassed the union seniority.

    Now to get back to your question. When I was at Evergreen on B727 and DC-8 in the mid-80\'s, we had a choice of wearing two or three silver strips. Then when I was a PFE at ATA on the B727 and L1011, we wore two gold strips and we were true PFE\'s as any FE hired in late 90\'s and early 2000 was required to sign an agreement that they waved the right to upgrade to First Officer. During that time we also switched unions from Teamsters to ALPA. At that point the union said we could wear two or three strips and the union fought to have the agreements thrown out so that the PFE\'s could upgrade...funny how the union stepped up to support the upgrading of PFE\'s after we blocked the 60 year old Captains from bumping back to the FE seat...we just had to learn to play nice together.

    I wear two or three..just depends on what I pull out. I free lance as a PFE on Herks now so there are times I wear flight suits, some times jeans/sweatshirt and some times a uniform. The picture was taken earlier this year when I was moving an \"E\" model internationally. The Loads I was around wore two skinnier strips.

    Sorry for being so long winded...just bored sitting in a hotel room and I guess I am pretty proud of the PFE history...with over 16,000 hours and having my turbo-prop, turbo-jet, and recip FE certificates.

    Merry Christmas,


  3. Dan,

    T-130 (N130HP) was the fire fighting Herk that had the wings fold during a retardant run.

    The entire report is located at:


    To paraphrase a little:

    \"Metallurgical examination of the center wing box lower skin revealed a 12-inch long fatigue crack on the lower surface of the right wing, with two separate fatigue crack initiation sites at stringer attachment rivet holes. The cracks from both initiation sites eventually linked up to create a single crack. The portion of the wing skin containing the fatigue crack was covered by a manufacturer-installed doubler, which would have hidden the crack from view and, therefore, prevented detection of the crack from a visual inspection of the exterior of the airplane. The Safety Board determined that the probable cause(s) of this accident was the inflight failure of the right wing due to fatigue cracking in the center wing lower skin and underlying structural members. The Board determined that a factor contributing to the accident was inadequate maintenance procedures to detect fatigue cracking.\"

    There are not many Herks that I would not climb in and fly.

    Merry Christmas all,


    Still stuck in Roswell...till Sunday.

  4. Man, that was always my dream...upon retirement was to get the cockpit of a C-130 and make the following modifications:

    1) Get a \"T\" model FE Seat(reclining), weld on rockers

    2) place a beer-miester under the Nav Table and have the tap come up through the table.

    3) wire the cockpit with a good stereo, surround sound system.

    4) get two people from the state mental hospital to sit in the pilots seats.

    5) go to the SPCA and get the ugliest, meanest, fat dog...name him \"Load\" and let him run around hiking his leg up on the two fore mentioned people in the front two seats

    I could sit out there for hours, kicked back, relaxed, sitting there listening to two people in front babbling, and bitchin about the Load, watching Load either sleeping, eating or bothering the hell out of someone...listening to good music blaring in my headset.

    Man, that is pretty close to what i am doing now...just in the retirement stage I could reach over and fill my mug with beer.


  5. Dan,

    As one who had about 500 hours of flight time in, and was personal friends with the crew of T-130, Lockheed has some deep issues with their wings and center wing boxes. Does anyone remember the different levels and the associated limitations placed on the wings of the \"A\" models?

    It is not uncommon to find cracked rainbow fittings on aircraft going through their first PDM.

    If you want to read an interesting report, read the NTSB report on T-130 where the majority of the blame sits on Lockheed\'s shoulders for design flaws in their wing box.

    Now back to your statement, I would jump in most C-130\'s and take them on a good trash haul.

    Best Wishes,


  6. OPARS was great for both the P-3\'s and C-130\'s. It was another program that was never crossed-serviced so that everyone could use it.

    You have to wonder how much extra money each service could have to maintain their hardware if they would sit down in the design phase and shared programs.



  7. VR-54 Herks had: \"Laissez Les Bons Temps Rouler!\" across their ramp.

    Of course being stationed in New Orleans it is Cajun French for \"Let the good times roll!\".

    It was surprising to see the world wide recognition of the saying and the tying of it to New Orleans.


    P.S. maybe someone on this board has a picture of it.

  8. Dave,

    I agree with Dan...light comes on, add two quarts unless light comes on and you fly for several hours until rpm flux starts.

    After reading the 101 ways to service a C-130 prop (and I have tried each of them) I would like to offer up these thoughts, you have:

    1) Military vs Civilian maintenance

    2) At home vs on the road maintenance

    3) Depot/PDM vs Repair Station maintenance

    4) War zone maintenance vs state-side maintenance

    5) Squadron maintenance vs Transite maintenance

    In closing, when something as complex as the Ham-Stan prop on the C-130/P-3, that has been around for 50 years, maintainers world-wide have learned many ways to skin a cat. Even though you can never be faulted for following the maintenance manual, you may not get an aircraft fixed by the manual.

    Sorry, off the soap box, and wishing everyone a Happy Holiday!


  9. Happy Thanksgiving to each and everyone associated with this board.

    The best part of my day was having my cell phone ring at 6am this morning and to hear my son\'s voice wishing me a Happy Thanksgiving from Iraq. For a boy who turns 21 in a couple weeks, he sure did sound grown up.

    Being retired Navy, and having two sons on active duty with the Army, the holidays always bring thoughts of well wishes and thanks to our men and women serving their respective countries.

    Best Regards,


  10. Fritz,

    I always carry a notched screwdriver in my helmet bag(and assorted other jumpers :)) it has always gotten me close on prop servicing while on the road.

    Of course after a prop change or major maintenance follow the TO.

    Best Regards,


  11. Bob is correct, as one of the people who stood up VR-54 (the first KC-130T Squadron), the VR Wing was staffed with C-9 people who wanted to us to fly/operate C-130 like a C-9. Point A to B, haul trash and passengers. They even wanted us to wear the funny blue C-9 flight suits and pass out snack packs. We were regulated to operating the Herk to about 30% of it\'s capabilities.

    Of course the rest of the Navy and Marines wanted us to do more and we did sneak off and played with the Seal Teams and such.

    They did put the IFR pods on one aircraft and a crew did get qualified...then the Wing wanted the pods off and the Marines wanted their pods back.

    It was a sad beginning for the Navy KC-130T program because the first two squadrons were made up of hand picked previously qualified C-130 people/aircrewmen and Combat Air Crew qualified P-3 people/aircrew who were use to going the extra mile and operating at a high tempo. We were not the coffee, tea or snack C-9 people. So we were always in some state of trouble :)

    Things may have changed since I retired in 1994, maybe someone could comment here on it.


  12. Here is a question for you old time AF guys, did the AF ever do the Navy type VQ mission prior to the Navy getting C-130\'s for the mission?

    The Navy VQ missions had a long wire antenna to use VLF freq\'s to relay message traffic to subs underwater. The trailing object from the wing tip area looks like the cone on the end of a long wire antenna.

    Just a thought.


  13. Bob,

    I can not make out the tail number, but could it be a Type II? I know that some of the Type II\'s that I flew/maintained fire fighting had antenna hole patches all over the airframe, some in the area of the upper antennas in the picture.

    Best Wishes,


  14. So, you\'re a Flight Engineer...

    A Flight Engineer is a person who passes as an exacting expert on the basis of being able to turn out with prolific fortitude, infinite strings of incomprehensible formulae, which are based on debatable figures, taken from inconclusive experiments carried out with instruments of questionable accuracy by persons of doubtful reliability and obscure mentality, for the express purpose of annoying and confounding a hopelessly comical group of maniacs, referred to altogether too frequently as pilots


    So true, so true


    FE P-3/C-130/KC-97/B727/DC-8/L-188/L1011

  15. Does anyone have a mini-TOLD card electronically that they can send me? I lost mine when the laptop failed to feather one night. My hard copies are getting fairly used and I would like to make some new ones.



  16. Your so right, I did not start feeling old till I visited aircraft that I had flown and they were static displays. I engineered the last P-3A (152152) to NAS P\'Cola for the Navy Museum.

    Still engineering C-130A\'s until recently.

    Anyone else engineer on KC-97\'s?

    Best regards,


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