This is a platform for User Generated Content. G/O Media assumes no liability for content posted by Kinja users to this platform.

Good Morning

Illustration for article titled Good Morning
Photo: US Air Force maybe?

For Tuesday morning we have the well known Gilbert XF-120.

If you’ve never heard of it, don’t worry, because it’s really a Martin XB-51, a very early Cold War jet bomber. The plane was featured in the 1956 film Toward the Unknown about USAF test pilots starring William Holden and Virginia Leith.

Advertisement
Illustration for article titled Good Morning
Photo: US Air Force maybe?
Advertisement
Link Bond: Pilot and wife beater
Link Bond: Pilot and wife beater
Illustration: Internet

According to Wiki, this film sounds like a fantastic who’s who of Cold War aviation. That tug in the top photo is pretty cool, too.

Toward the Unknown was a showcase of the contemporary United States Air Force fleet of combat aircraft: Convair C-131 Samaritan, Convair F-102 Delta Dagger, Douglas B-66 Destroyer, Lockheed F-94 Starfire, McDonnell F-101 Voodoo, North American F-86 Sabre, North American F-100 Super Sabre, Republic F-84F Thunderstreak, and Sikorsky H-19D Chickasaw, shown on the ground and in the air. Unusual stock footage includes a rocket sled being tested, the use of the Boeing YKB-29T Superfortress aerial tanker with a F-100, F-101, and B-66 being fueled, and a Republic EF-84G Thunderjet in a Zero length launch. Also appearing in background shots were the Beech C-45 Expeditor, Boeing B-47 Stratojet, Convair B-36 Peacemaker, Douglas C-47 Skytrain, Lockheed T-33 Shooting Star, North American B-25 Mitchell, North American B-45 Tornado, and the Republic F-84 Thunderjet. The final aerial sequence is derived from an air show held at the base and depicts the 1955 version of the Thunderbirds air demonstration team, flying Republic F-84F Thunderstreak fighters in a scene described as “special ariobatics”[sic] in the credits.

The Bell X-2, its Boeing EB-50D mother ship, Douglas D-558-2 Skyrocket, and Douglas X-3 Stiletto are also featured as the experimental aircraft being tested at Edwards AFB. Footage of the mocked-up Convair XF-92 was used to depict the later F-102 fighter in the opening crash scene while the surviving Martin XB-51 bomber prototype stands in as the fictional “Gilbert XF-120" fighter.

Advertisement

The full film is available in Amazon Prime and maybe YouTube, for a few bucks.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter