F-104's tricks


Argentinean ugly bird
19 February 2006
Reaction score
For who don't know it here they are some squares of the book of
"tricks" for the F-104 published by Lockheed in the 60s written by the
test pilot "Snake" Reeves and illustrated by a pilot of Fiat, Pete Trevisan.
As they can see the illustrations they are a heterodox point in spite
of the serious of the message that they seek to transmit.
On purpose, I am very interested in the analysis of of the accidents
suffered by the F-104, in particular the Germans F-104G. I will thank
if somebody can make a contribution in this respect or to point out me
some on-line source.


  • Attack.jpg
    37.9 KB · Views: 300
  • formation.jpg
    46.9 KB · Views: 241
  • formation_2.jpg
    33.5 KB · Views: 230
  • flameout.jpg
    94 KB · Views: 200
The last 3


  • intercep_profile.jpg
    41.4 KB · Views: 197
  • maneuvering.jpg
    33.6 KB · Views: 205
  • spin.jpg
    46.4 KB · Views: 185
I remember something like these in flight tactics manuals for Finnish pilots at WWII era...and in B-36 manuals as well. Nice stuff.
About accidents especially of the german F-104G :This was a theme in everal other fora, too,
main reasons always mentioned : Too quick a transition from the predecessors like the the F-84.
The transformation of a light fighter into a fighter bomber with up to 1800kg weapons load did
nothing to make the aircraft more forgivable.
And a reason, that is very good pronounced on http://yarchive.net/mil/german_f104_losses.html,
I think, especially as I once knew a guy, who flew the F-104G. If just 20% of his tales were true,
the statement on that site isn't exaggerated at all !
my Uncle work as a Instructor for Luftwaffe in Germany

he gave Lesson to Greenhorn Pilot
i mean NO No flight experience at all

after 14 Day Lesson and Simulator they was put in F-104G and Go :eek:

The Very very Low Fly by Starfighter are true

to Belgium Yes (after My Uncle)
only some Pilot make Mistake tat Belgium its NOT 100% Flat
The border to Germany is hilly, they came and BANG into Hill...
why flight German Luftwaffe in Belgium ?
is NATO Idea members use others Airspace for practise Flight

But Wat you want ?
the F-104 is a Fast High altitude fighter
want make Germany out of it ?
Supersonic Very Low fly multi-role fighter bomber mutant

the Ejection seat were for High altitude Fighter
that Kill a lot of German Pilots be for they Install Zero zero Ejection seat

another Kill reason was Bad maintenance of the airplanes because of Budget Problems

in Germay in Italy the Nicknamed the F-104 like this
Witwenmacher ("Widowmaker"), fliegender Sarg ("flying coffin"), Erdnagel ("ground nail")
In Italy: bara di volo ("flying coffin")

German bad joke:
how to get cheap a Starfighter ?
go to a field and wait, one fall down
The other old joke about them was something like; "If you want a Starfighter, buy an acre and wait."
i found Youtube Video

So low can you Fly with a F-104 ;D

low flight F-104 note no Tanks or Rocket on Wingtips !
film from Pakistan Air force

is Musik Video from German group "Welle Erdball"
but a lot F-104, X-15 and Wat went wrong in Windchannel Test in Video
the Song is about death of Starfighter Pilot in his F-104


German F-104 ZEL
poor devil of Pilot
Interesting artwork - thanks for posting.

Thanks too for the Yarchive link - interesting reading....

The Norwegians had a very good safety record with the F-104 vs. most other European users. Any particular reasons why? I think the Norwegian Starfighters were used only as interceptors and the mission profile was consequently less demanding (or more forgiving of errors!).

Enjoy the Day! Mark

Similar threads

Top Bottom