Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Thunderbird Tweaker

Nellis AFB is the home of the USAF Thunderbirds demonstration team. While I've always felt the Navy Blue Angels were more exciting and a tighter team, there is no denying the Thunderbirds are excellent at what they do, too.

As with any high performance machine, the real heroes are the tweakers, fixers and maintainers - the unsung members of the ground crew.

Modern military aircraft are complex, and while maintenance shots are not as sexy as flybys and aerobatics, there is a certain beauty in that quiet science. This shot, taken during the 2010 ISAP visit to Nellis, captures the essence of that quality for me: a sleek and shiny F-16 tucked into a hanger, looking out into the bright light while being opened up for routine work, as if anticipating its next performance before a packed ramp of excited enthusiasts.

Even a machine could feel the energy of a crowd like that and look forward to the next showtime.


  1. That's a cool shot! I like all the layers of the aircraft.

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