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North American Sabreliner (N607CF) - Thanx to all who commented and a very sincere special Thank You to Jim Gevay, Biscayne 738, and Paul Wisgerhof for their detailed information about this aircraft model and about this specific frame.  Also, a grateful Thank You to Harry Ellett for his service and for his memorable recollection.  To all viewers:  Read Mr. Gevays, Mr. Wisgerhofs, Mr. Elletts, and Biscaynes informative comments below this photo.
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North American Sabreliner (N607CF)


Thanx to all who commented and a very sincere special Thank You to Jim Gevay, Biscayne 738, and Paul Wisgerhof for their detailed information about this aircraft model and about this specific frame. Also, a grateful Thank You to Harry Ellett for his service and for his memorable recollection. To all viewers: Read Mr. Gevay's, Mr. Wisgerhof's, Mr. Ellett's, and Biscayne's informative comments below this photo.


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Gary SchenauerPhoto Uploader
Sleek and fast! It was a blast watching it maneuver. Bet the big brass enjoys being on it.
Greg Byington
Nice shot!
*F*I*V*E* Stars, Gary!!! :-)

The North American Sabreliner and the Lockheed JetStar are my two all time "fav" business jets... and both saw service with the U.S. military!

Bill Lear's first LearJet offerings weren't too shabby either!
Gary, nice shot of a Sabreliner 60, or the military version is T-39.
The manufacturers designation is NA-265-60 and the serial number is 306-118 for this particular plane.

This one is powered by Pratt and Whitney JT12A-8's with 3300lbs of thrust for each engine, straight turbojets, no fanjets here, and EPR gauges for determining power.
Also, the leading edge slats are aerodynamically controlled when the plane slows for approach, there is no leading edge heat on the wings for anti-ice.
Overbuilt like the proverbial brick Kremlin, and fun to fly.
Paul Wisgerhof
The T-39 was designed in 1956 and entered service with the USAF in 1959 as a pilot/crew trainer. There are versions for the military through the T-39N and they are still in service. The civilian version was produced until 1981. Interesting note: this is the only U.S. military jet which came out of the factory with an FAA type and airworthiness certificate. That means the military versions can be operated by civilian owners.
Harry Ellett
In 1971, while stationed in Vietnam, I flew in a Saberliner, called a T-39, from Tan Son Nhut AB Vietnam to Udorn Thailand AB. En-route, we received a call that an F-105 had been shot down and the aircraft went down in the jungle of east Thailand. We were ask to join in the search for the downed F-105 pilot. So, as long as fuel permitted, we buzzed around a little above the tops of the trees in the jungle looking for him. Unfortunately we did not spot the downed pilot and I never heard if anyone had found him. Have always hoped someone found him and rescued him. It was a bit of a thrill buzzing around just over the top of the jungle.
very interesting story. and thank you for your service.
Gary SchenauerPhoto Uploader
Thanx to all who commented and a very sincere special Thank You to Jim Gevay, Biscayne 738, and Paul Wisgerhof for their detailed information about this aircraft model and about this specific frame. Also, a grateful Thank You to Harry Ellett for his service and for his memorable recollection. To all viewers: Read Mr. Gevay's, Mr. Wisgerhof's, Mr. Ellett's, and Biscayne's informative comments in the COMMENTS SECTION (below this picture).
Harry ... You and I were in the Far East at the same time; however, I was never stationed in Nam. I was at Misawa AB (Japan) and Clark AB (PI) in the 70-71 time frame. My deepest Thanks to you for your devotion to our country at a time when many of its citizens had no respect or appreciation for those who were insuring the freedoms they claimed were their "rights." Thankfully, the members of today's younger generation are, for the most part, far more supportive.
Biscayne .... I am a BSK "fan." Have met (briefly) a couple of crews when they came here to transport Marines. Always friendly. (Thumbs Up)
Jim G .... "fun to fly." Does that mean you piloted one of these? That is super! This one zipped around thru the sky (almost) like a fighter. It was tremendous. Pilots must have really loved being in the front office of one of these.
Yes Gary, It was the first jet I flew and Type Rating. I went from flying Aztecs and a Cessna 401 right into the Sabre.
It was fun at times years ago, but I wouldn't go back from where I am now.
I did see Bob Hoover fly his aerobatic routine in the Sabre 40 one time, always so smooth in everything he flew.
Gary SchenauerPhoto Uploader
I'm envious, Jim. I have never been a pilot and I've never had any type of aviation-related training or job involvement. Truth be told, I know zilch about aviation except that I love a/c so much I'd spitshine the tires of anyone's aircraft just to be allowed to walk around it and take a close-up look at it.
I understand your comment about not "going back" from now, and I agree ... with one exception. I wish I could go back to a time when I could have been a pilot.
(Wave to you)
Off on a week-long spotting trip thru CA, OR, WA, and ID with a group of great friends. It's nowhere as great as being a pilot, but we are getting access everywhere so we will be close enough to military, commercial, and GA birds to do everything except fly them. (Thumbs Up)
Gary... your sentiments and thoughts are certainly shared by some of us!!! :-)

I have wished for the same myself!!!

A good friend of mine is a professional corporate pilot... currently flying a Cessna C510 type jet. As a matter of fact, he was on a flight earlier today. I tracked his progress on FA's site!!!

I'm totally amazed by it all... and find myself often thinking - "And they pay you too for doing this?"!!!

(Seems like the "perfect" job to me... but I know such isn't really the case... it's "work" with its own unique world of stress and demands.)

I've discovered via our shared friendship just how "small a world it is" indeed... as he knows some of the same good pilots that I've met and known in past years!

Off on a tangent here - one of my long time friends was once a full time ANG avionics tech (going back to the early 1950's here) with the then 153rd Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, based at Key Field (KMEI), in Meridian, Mississippi. The unit flew the RF-51D Mustang at the time.

No less than the legendary and great Bob Hoover showed up one day out of the blue, flying in a F-51 (née P-51) Mustang. This when Hoover was working for North American Aviation as a test and demonstration pilot. Bob put on an unforgettable and remarkable impromptu "show" flight for them before he departed the next day!!!

Certainly before "my time"... but I have wished I had been there to see it!!!
Isaac Vogelzang
Very cool looking aircraft, and it is complemented well by the great snap. 5 stars for sure. Also, where was this picture taken?
Great shot !!!
Leon Kay
Great photo of a great plane.
Jim Whitaker
I maintained Sabre 60"s and a 65 in corporate dress for about 10-12 years through the 1980's and 90's. At that point they were in their last days of service. The pure jet noise, fuel consumption and corrosion prone alloys all put nails in her coffin. As cliff731 commented, it's up there with the Jet Star for me as well. What a cool era of aviation. This may be my favorite Sabre shot - Thanks!
Lawrence Slade
Had some interesting fights in the mid 70s . The air force would tranport our teams from the Army Burn Center at Brooke in San Antonio, usually a doctor and one or two corpsmen out to pick up burn patients. We’d then switch to a C9/or 141 which had originated from Scott.
I remember an interesting for real no gyros into Edwards one night!
Jim Whitaker - that's a very informative and telling commentary you've provided! Thanks for sharing this with us!!! Looks like you've enjoyed a "working" relationship with the Sabreliner too... :-)
Navy had a bunch of these (T-39's). No wing de-ice caused a fatal crash near Chicago (NAS Glenview) in '90 or '91.
Michael Voigt
I flew CT-39's (C added to the designator for administrative reasons - allows military aircraft to land at civilian fields without special coordination) out of Albuquerque in 1985. First aircraft assignment after pilot training. Great airplane to fly but old instrumentation, no radar, no anti-ice and no autopilot. Went all over the country in them and spent a couple months flying out of Kadena Air Base. One of the airplanes I flew is on a pedestal in ABQ. Good memories...
David Seider
I have a recollection of the Sabreliner also.
Way back when... Christmas/New Years 1979-80. I was a lowly Navy E-3 (Airman), on my first deployment with VA-82 Marauders (hence my screen name) on board USS Nimitz (CVN-68). This was my first ever Christmas away from my family. Fortunately, I had an ace up my sleeve - one of my cousins.
Nimitz had dropped anchor in the Bay of Naples (Italy) for a two-week, in-port, stand-down. My cousin was also in the Navy, and was stationed at NAS Sigonella, Sicily. With prior arrangements having been made, I took several days of leave to spend the holidays with my cousin and his wife. I schlepped over to Naples - Capodichino Airport to see about catching a hop down to NAS Sig. I was told that one was leaving in 15 minutes. Do I have all of the required paperwork? YEP! I scurried out to the ramp and up the door stairs into a Navy CT-39. Besides myself, the only other people on the flight were a Lieutenant Commander (PIC), a Lieutenant (right seat), and a PO2 crew chief. I HAD THE CABIN OF A VIP BARGE TO MYSELF! The flight crew was very chill (and I "sir-ed" them to death, I'm sure) - I got to spend some time with my head and shoulders in the cockpit (heady stuff for an E-3!). No idea what squadron the bird was from - or its BuNo. All I know is that it was a sweet ride!
My time in Sicily was nice.
My hop back up to Naples was considerably less luxurious... sitting bas-ackwards, wearing a cranial helmet, and strapped to my seat in the cabin of a C-1 COD.
Nimitz weighed anchor on 04 January 1980. I didn't set foot on dry land until 26 May, 144 days later.
My last Air Force assignment was the T-39 at Andrews AFB, MD. Good, solid flying jet. I have a N-265 rating to go with B-727 and DC-10. Would be fun to get one out of the boneyard for personal use. Thanks for posting photo.
George Anderson
I flew AF T39 #'s 643, 662 and 663 in 1968-70 @ BAD AFB and enjoyed flying it. The AF didn't
buy anti-skid which caused me to park one up the wings in a snowbank at KI Sawyer AFB, MI on
a snowy night in Jan. 1969. The tower told the breaking wss very good as reported by a KC-135 that had just landed. The 135 has wire embedded in its tires and anti-skid brakes.
I escaped blame because the braking factor for the T-39 was too low for us even land but I had no way of knowing.
If my memory serves me correctly, the earlier Air Force versions used the wings of the F-86. And many of them didn't have an autopilot. The ones that did were often found at major command headquarters. In the 1970s, T-39 flight training for Air Force pilots was done at Scott Air Force Base (at least it was for me). Flight Safety International provided the ground school and simulator training before one flew at Scott AFB.
I've rarely seen a photo of any military aircraft uploaded to FA's site that garnered and elicited so many first person former pilot accounts!!!

My thanks to those who have contributed their stories and personal experiences while flying a Sabreliner!
I was lucky to fly a corporate 421 with colonel Milt Hartenbower USAF. He flew Averell Harriman in
T-39s out of Andrews AFB. Milt had thousands of stories that he would share as we flew around the country. He was a great man and an awesome pilot.
karen anderson
What a privilege it was to get to fly the beautiful Sabreliner for so many years... the highlight of my flying career!
Gary SchenauerPhoto Uploader
Just back from being away and only now had a chance to look back here. Truly interesting comments have been added. Too many names to list individually so I'll just say a sincere "Thank You" to all. Reading personal experience comments from those who flew and/or maintained these is always, always extremely interesting ... and informative. And of course, I appreciate the comments and complis about the photo. Once again, TYVM to each of you. PS to Isaac >> Reno Stead (KRTS). There are times when I deliberately do not list the airport location; however, this time is simple carelessness. I was in a hurry to post and I did not take time to "fill in all the blanks." So once again, I send you my Thanx for letting me know. (Grin and a Thumbs Up)
Gary Nickell
Love this shot! Thanks for posting. I currently am the chief pilot of a 65 and have flown this one for 23 years for a private individual who has owned the plane 35 years. It has been a blast to fly and truly a dream job. We always did our annuals at Sabreliner Corporation in Perryville, MO up until they went bankrupt. The private equity firm that bought the company renamed it Sabreliner Aviation, until about a year or so ago when they went belly up. I contracted my pilot services for the principal entity of Sabreliner Aviation and there was a desire and rumor that they wanted to begin manufacturing of the 85, a full standup cabin, longer range, and more powerful semi-composite plane. But it was not meant to be. AVMATS at the Spirit of St. Louis Airport have purchased the proprietary properties and are carrying on the legacy, however replacement parts are becoming increasingly more difficult (and expensive) to come by. I have seen the skeletons of a couple of 65s that I've flown over the years as they canabalize to keep the rest of us going! 76 of the 65 models were manufactured but it's difficult to say how many are still flying. Anyhow, enough rambling, thanks again for posting.


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