Paul’s Thing

blogprofile The weblog of Paul Woodford, a veteran USAF F-15 pilot living in Tucson, Arizona
October 2015
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Air-Minded: Air Tanker Photoblog

Last week, during a break between tram tours at the Pima Air & Space Museum, I spent an hour exploring a seldom-visited back lot where we keep retired air tankers and water bombers. These are civil and military aircraft converted to carry and drop water or retardant on forest fires. Most of the aircraft on […]


Air-Minded: PASM Photoblog IV

Last night I drove to the Pima Air & Space Museum to give a sunset bus tour to a group of football fans here for today’s Arizona/UCLA game. The tour never happened, because my bus didn’t make it to the museum. Six of us signed up for what was supposed to be six bus loads […]


Air-Minded: Contrails, Summer/Fall 2015

The summer/fall 2015 issue of Contrails, Pima Air & Space Museum’s volunteer newsletter, contains an article I wrote on the Lockheed P-80 Shooting Star.


Air-Minded: Escaping the Fall of Saigon

One of the volunteers I work with at the Pima Air & Space Museum is a young University of Arizona aeronautical engineering student. His family is originally Vietnamese and I have the impression his father or maybe grandfather immigrated to the USA after the communist takeover. I’m sure there’s a fascinating story behind that, and […]


Air-Minded: Where’s a Black Box When You Need It? (Updated 7/23/15)

In an Air Force pilot’s career there are few tasks harder and more frustrating than trying to figure out how and why a fellow pilot crashed, especially when he or she is so inconsiderate as to die in the crash and either disappear completely or leave very few clues behind that would help others figure out what happened. […]


Air-Minded: the Non-Starter Option? (Updated 7/23/15)

Fuck stealth. There isn’t an air force in the world that won’t turn tail and run from a wall of Eagles coming its way. […]


Burning and Turning

The controversial and over-budget F-35 fighter is under almost constant attack. Some of the shortcomings identified by critics are no doubt real, but the story of a previously-unidentified F-35 glitch that emerged last week was, at least to this former air-to-air pilot, a bit of a shock: a report out of Edwards AFB stating that […]


Thursday Bag o’ Nukes

It’s been extremely hot in southern Arizona. Every day we hear about electric power outages in different sections of Tucson. Are these intentional rolling blackouts? Sure looks like it. So far no power interruptions in our hood, but since our air conditioner crapped out last week and we had to spend a night and a […]