Pima Air and Space Museum

F4 Phantom in USAF Thunderbirds markings

McDonnell Douglas F4E Phantom II in USAF Thunderbirds markings

Airplane geek alert!!  Tucson is home to the Pima Air Museum.  This is one of the largest private aviation museums with over 300 planes on over 80 acres and in several enclosed hangars.  Brenda was having a hard time containing her excitement at being dragged to yet another aviation museum. 🙂

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They have an extensive collection of military aircraft organized by the branch of the service and the theaters of operation.  Docents are stationed throughout, almost always older gentlemen with obviously personal connections to the artifacts on display.

A docent will drive you around the outdoor exhibits in a tram with a narration of the alphabet soup of names and a tidbit of history along the way.

Boeing B17G Flying Fortress

Boeing B17G Flying Fortress

Boeing B - 29 Superfortress

Boeing B29 Superfortress

Boeing B52

Boeing B52G Stratofortress

pima  002 (1)There are lots of rare and unique planes in the collection.  Including the oldest B52 still in existence and only the third ever built.  This B52A is also interesting in that it was the launch platform for the X-15 spaceplane flights.  Each flight is marked on the side of the fuselage. Way cool.

Boeing B52A Stratofortress

Boeing B52A Stratofortress – with X-15 launch cradle under right wing

Convair B36J Peacemaker.  The last of the piston engine bombers.

Convair B36J Peacemaker. The last of the piston engine bombers.

Lockheed SR71A Blackbird

Lockheed SR71A Blackbird

Convair B58A Hustler

Convair B58A Hustler

Fighters galore – with examples of both “good guy” and “bad guy” contemporaries.
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Grumman F14A Tomcat

Grumman F14A Tomcat


Mikoyan-Gurevich MIG-21 Fishbed

McDonnell Douglas F/A18A Hornet

McDonnell Douglas F/A18A Hornet

North American F86H Sabre

North American F86H Sabre

Grumman TAF-9J Cougar

Grumman TAF-9J Cougar

Mikoyan-Gurevich MIG-15 Fagot

Northrop T38 Talon – a favorite of NASA astronauts

Choppers as well.Pima  032

Some oddball stuff …

This museum is adjacent to 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group (AMARG), also known as the “Boneyard.”.  Thousands of planes are stored at this facility taking advantage of the dry desert climate.  Bus tours are given daily but were sold out the day we were there.  Next time …

There are some commercial airliners in both civilian and military versions …

Boeing VC137B in "Jackie Kennedy" paint scheme

Boeing VC137B in “Jackie Kennedy” paint scheme

Boeing VC118A Liftmaster.  This one served as Air Force One for Presidents Kennedy and Johnson

Boeing VC118A Liftmaster. This one served as Air Force One for Presidents Kennedy and Johnson and was the last propeller plane used for that purpose

Lockheed C121A Constellation.  This "Connie" was assigned to President Dwight Eisenhower

Lockheed C121A Constellation. This “Connie” was Air Force 1 for President Dwight Eisenhower

Lockheed L-049 Constellation in TWA colors

Lockheed L-049 Constellation in TWA colors

North American P51 Mustang

North American P51D Mustang

These are only a few examples of the amazing collection.  A great place to spend the day for anyone with a love of airplanes.  Wear comfy shoes!

~ Hector

9 thoughts on “Pima Air and Space Museum

  1. If you could see through this screen you would see one very green Bulldog… I would spend more than one day there… more like a week… I love planes old and new, and this place seems to have an abundance of both… I love this post… more please…

    • 🙂 Hector never gets tired of these aviation or space museums. If you haven’t seen it yet, check out the post, “The Other Birds of Geiger Key”, when we saw the Blue Angels in Florida, that was really a fun day.

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