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Beechcraft RU-8D 'SEMINOLE'

Description
Notes: U-8D modified with radar reconnaissance system (2 CREW) .
  Manufacturer:Beechcraft
  Base model:U-8
  Designation:RU-8
  Version:D
  Nickname:SEMINOLE
  Designation System:U.S. Air Force
  Designation Period:1952-Present
  Basic role:Utility
  Modified Mission:Reconnaissance
  See Also:

Specifications

Propulsion

Performance

Examples of this type may be found at
MuseumCityState
United States Army Aviation MuseumOzarkAlabama

RU-8D on display

United States Army Aviation Museum
    


 

Recent comments by our visitors
 Ernie Stokely
 Dallas, TX
I was a field rep for the APQ-86 in Germany from 1961-1963. We maintained a 5th echelon field maintenance shop at Coleman Barracks in Mannheim. There were 3 tech reps who were assigned to the six UR-8D aircraft in Europe at that time, one assigned to each division. Jim Smith and I were the TI reps. Bill McClure was the rep from Ryan Aeronautics that provided the Clifton navigation computer and the Doppler ground track radar. At least one mission was flown along the Czech border at night to detect Soviet tank movement. The RU-8D was equipped with not only the cabin radar equipment, it had a 12 foot long antenna slung below the belly of the aircraft. That antenna was equipped with a gyro-contolled yaw motor that would slew the antenna to maintain a constant orientation as the aircraft yawed. This made for some interesting banging around during rough weather.
01/08/2014 @ 07:59 [ref: 68287]
 Ernie Stokely
 Dallas, TX
I was a field rep for the APQ-86 in Germany from 1961-1963. We maintained a 5th echelon field maintenance shop at Coleman Barracks in Mannheim. There were 3 tech reps who were assigned to the six UR-8D aircraft in Europe at that time, one assigned to each division. Jim Smith and I were the TI reps. Bill McClure was the rep from Ryan Aeronautics that provided the Clifton navigation computer and the Doppler ground track radar. At least one mission was flown along the Czech border at night to detect Soviet tank movement. The RU-8D was equipped with not only the cabin radar equipment, it had a 12 foot long antenna slung below the belly of the aircraft. That antenna was equipped with a gyro-contolled yaw motor that would slew the antenna to maintain a constant orientation as the aircraft yawed. This made for some interesting banging around during rough weather.
01/08/2014 @ 07:58 [ref: 68286]
 Darrell Wells
 , FL
I was a member of the Snoopy Crew of which there is a picture of one of our two RU 8 D's. These planes had no markings because we was not there! My tour at Udorn Thailand was 1970-1971. My mos was 68G20 or airframe repairman. We could ride along on test flights and I actually flew about 20 ft above the Mekong river following its course between Thailand and Laos. Scroll down to the pictures and click on the unpainted or silver one. I worked on this plane at this site. I still have my Snoopy Crew going away mug from when I left Thailand. Would love to hear from other Crew members!!
12/31/2013 @ 03:41 [ref: 68271]
 Ed and Cynthia
 , VA
RU-8D RECOGNITION IN NATIONAL VIGILANCE PARK, FORT MEADE, MD

National Vigilance Park stands to honor those "silent warriors" who risked their lives performing airborne signals intelligence mission during the Cold War. The RU-8D addition to Vigilance Park, dedicated on 12 May 1998, represents Army soldiers who were lost while performing aerial reconnaissance.

The RU-8D at National Vigilance Park is completely restored. The symbol on its tail, the Lonely Ringer, represents the 224th Aviation Battalion. (The wings on the crest represent Army Aviation and what it stands for. The lightning bolts portray the strategic striking capability of the battalion. "Lonely Ringer," the original battalion tactical callsign, signifies the uniqueness of the battalion's classified mission in military history.)

The RU-8D mission equipment is removed from the aircraft and is on permanent display inside the National Cryptologic Museum. Both of these exhibits are a fitting tribute to our vigilant servicemen and women who were lost and to those who continue to serve in this vital mission for our country.
05/27/2013 @ 16:40 [ref: 67842]
 Rebecca Peterson
 Kansas City, MO
Looking for anyone who remembers Phil Padberg - worked on these Beech planes late '68 to spring '69. Installed Heat Sensing radar in the planes. Please contact me if you remember anything. Thanks for keeping the memories alive.
12/03/2012 @ 15:20 [ref: 67372]
 Larry E. Lewter
 Maumelle, AR
I was a RU-8 pilot with the 138th September 1969-Aug 1970 in Danang and helped move the unit Phu Bai. I was assigned to the 138th after arriving in country because I had a Top Secret clearance but not rated in the RU-8. I was made supply officer, which I knew nothing about and it was a learning curve. I was finally rated in the RU-8 and flew about 700 hours. I arrived shortly after the company had moved housing from downtown to Danang Main just inside from Dog Patch. When I arrived I was told that nothing much happened around Danang. A few days later Charlie blew up the place with about 40 rockets. Before moving to Phu Bai we had a detachment there. I was making a midnight run from Danang to Phu Bai and was trapped on the taxi way while Charlie, again, blew up the place. Helpless feeling setting in the middle of an airfield and no place to take cover.

When Kissinger was in the peace talks in Nov. 1972 the ADRF units were shut down. I understand it was an error and Westmoreland wanted them back up and flying. I was home in Texas on leave waiting to go to Europe when branch called and changed my orders. I was to standby until further word came and I was sent to the 146th RR in Can Tho in Dec. 1972. I stayed to the end and helped shut down the unit in Feb. 1973. Memorable events were seeing a shot up Peace Keeping Huey set down with one dead, and one badly wounded pilot if memory is right. I lived across from the Officers Club and the building near it became the compound for the NVA peace keeping folks. Strange to live openly next to "the enemy". I would love to hear from anyone in the 138th or 146th from those time periods.

My flight class was fixed wing 69-9, I would love to connect with anyone in the class. Especially Jim Dent, James Conn, Bob Crow, Mac, Chavez, Pappy or anyone else.

04/20/2010 @ 16:16 [ref: 26047]
 Larry E. Lewter
 Maumelle, AR
I was a RU-8 pilot with the 138th September 1969-Aug 1970 in Danang and helped move the unit Phu Bai. I was assigned to the 138th after arriving in country because I had a Top Secret clearance but not rated in the RU-8. I was made supply officer, which I knew nothing about and it was a learning curve. I was finally rated in the RU-8 and flew about 700 hours. I arrived shortly after the company had moved housing from downtown to Danang Main just inside from Dog Patch. When I arrived I was told that nothing much happened around Danang. A few days later Charlie blew up the place with about 40 rockets. Before moving to Phu Bai we had a detachment there. I was making a midnight run from Danang to Phu Bai and was trapped on the taxi way while Charlie, again, blew up the place. Helpless feeling setting in the middle of an airfield and no place to take cover.

When Kissinger was in the peace talks in Nov. 1972 the ADRF units were shut down. I understand it was an error and Westmoreland wanted them back up and flying. I was home in Texas on leave waiting to go to Europe when branch called and changed my orders. I was to standby until further word came and I was sent to the 146th RR in Can Tho in Dec. 1972. I stayed to the end and helped shut down the unit in Feb. 1973. Memorable events were seeing a shot up Peace Keeping Huey set down with one dead, and one badly wounded pilot if memory is right. I lived across from the Officers Club and the building near it became the compound for the NVA peace keeping folks. Strange to live openly next to "the enemy". I would love to hear from anyone in the 138th or 146th from those time periods.

My flight class was fixed wing 69-9, I would love to connect with anyone in the class. Especially Jim Dent, James Conn, Bob Crow, Mac, Chavez, Pappy or anyone else.

04/20/2010 @ 15:38 [ref: 26046]
 Dwight Adams
 Henrico, NC
Hello to the ARDF community. I came up on the Avn Museum website to upload pix of the JU-21A in flight. I previously spoke with CMH winner Novosel at Mother Rucker who encouraged me to share my pix. It was a pleasant surprise to find this Enthusiast Corner and some names I recognize.// I was one of the Mission IPs for a U8 platoon at Phubai in 71-72, Left in Mar 72 right after Westmoreland hung us out to dry with our squad of infantry for security, come back 101st! Well, it worked out OK. Either the Paris peace talks or the USAF seeding the clouds over the mountains kept that 50,000 indians within 10 miles that Westmoreland was talking about from roasting our goose !
I arrived in Mar 71 with orders to Can Tho. At siagon I was diverted to the 138th to replace Harold Algaard who went down on the U-21. What a break. Beautiful blonde wife and a 6 mo old baby. And we say "PhuBai's Alright ! Well it was an experience. I remember an eng. sucked a valve right after I got there, then if I remember correctly, it was Roger Brown(if not you Roger, I appologize) who stretched and pushed the newly made cover into the main bus panel. Thought for sure we took a 51 Cal., Later a wire got pinched unter the bombsight and a short started a small fire. I once had to straightwire one eng. with a failed solonoid in a remote, unlit area of DaNang AB using a coathangar we rummaged up. Then replaced all the plugs in one eng while at the far end of the Pleiku airfield.//After the USAF left, if we made a missed approach because the runway lights went out plus the approach lights went out and no one to fix 'em. , we went to DaNang which had emer fuel aircraft stacked to the max, then on to Thialand. Well myself and Steve Crouch put a stop to that. We repaired the lighting and calibrated the approach lights by pointing them at an approaching aircraft on a GCA.// One of my most memoriable flights was from Long Thanh to Chu Lai and on to Phubai. On a wet, bumpy, monsoon night with no radar contact because of the WX and screening angle We dead reakoned a course taking us across the Pleiku , 10K ft mountains to Chu Lai with no altimeter corrections, no wind update and a set of ADFs with a 40 degree spread. 40 mi. out of Long Thanh it was dead reaconing until Chu Lai locked on. Let me tell you that last hour tested all the rules we learned in flight school. Next stop was Hanan Island China...Now you know we did not want to call for a DF steer ! Knowing the reputation of those old lead sleds well I admit I did get a touch of flight religion. // Comments about the U-8, yea, heavy, slow, temperamental, untrustworthy- but they made Aviators and Mechanics of us.//
After 7 years with Special Forces, I flew the Guardrail RU-21H out of Ramstein. That was a promotion. God Speed Guys.
02/25/2010 @ 15:32 [ref: 25785]
 Dwight Adams
 Henrico, NC
Hello to the ARDF community. I came up on the Avn Museum website to upload pix of the JU-21A in flight. I previously spoke with CMH winner Novosel at Mother Rucker who encouraged me to share my pix. It was a pleasant surprise to find this Enthusiast Corner and some names I recognize.// I was one of the Mission IPs for a U8 platoon at Phubai in 71-72, Left in Mar 72 right after Westmoreland hung us out to dry with our squad of infantry for security, come back 101st! Well, it worked out OK. Either the Paris peace talks or the USAF seeding the clouds over the mountains kept that 50,000 indians within 10 miles that Westmoreland was talking about from roasting our goose !
I arrived in Mar 71 with orders to Can Tho. At siagon I was diverted to the 138th to replace Harold Algaard who went down on the U-21. What a break. Beautiful blonde wife and a 6 mo old baby. And we say "PhuBai's Alright ! Well it was an experience. I remember an eng. sucked a valve right after I got there, then if I remember correctly, it was Roger Brown(if not you Roger, I appologize) who stretched and pushed the newly made cover into the main bus panel. Thought for sure we took a 51 Cal., Later a wire got pinched unter the bombsight and a short started a small fire. I once had to straightwire one eng. with a failed solonoid in a remote, unlit area of DaNang AB using a coathangar we rummaged up. Then replaced all the plugs in one eng while at the far end of the Pleiku airfield.//After the USAF left, if we made a missed approach because the runway lights went out plus the approach lights went out and no one to fix 'em. , we went to DaNang which had emer fuel aircraft stacked to the max, then on to Thialand. Well myself and Steve Crouch put a stop to that. We repaired the lighting and calibrated the approach lights by pointing them at an approaching aircraft on a GCA.// One of my most memoriable flights was from Long Thanh to Chu Lai and on to Phubai. On a wet, bumpy, monsoon night with no radar contact because of the WX and screening angle We dead reakoned a course taking us across the Pleiku , 10K ft mountains to Chu Lai with no altimeter corrections, no wind update and a set of ADFs with a 40 degree spread. 40 mi. out of Long Thanh it was dead reaconing until Chu Lai locked on. Let me tell you that last hour tested all the rules we learned in flight school. Next stop was Hanan Island China...Now you know we did not want to call for a DF steer ! Knowing the reputation of those old lead sleds well I admit I did get a touch of flight religion. // Comments about the U-8, yea, heavy, slow, temperamental, untrustworthy- but they made Aviators and Mechanics of us.//
After 7 years with Special Forces, I flew the Guardrail RU-21H out of Ramstein. That was a promotion. God Speed Guys.
02/25/2010 @ 15:31 [ref: 25784]
 Michael Orcutt
 , MA
I was an O5H at Phu Bai, Camp Eagle, then with the 146th Av Co from Dec.'69 until the end of June '70. After 3 months state-side, it was off to the 7th RRFS and back into the air. I have fond memories of the RU8D. Sweating on the ground and the cool AC over the Plain 'O Jars. On one slow mission, I sat left seat for a few minutes. It handled well and pleased me greatly. It was a great platform and I get all nostalgic when I see pictures of them.
06/28/2009 @ 06:53 [ref: 24270]

 

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