Sacramento aircraft

We had an opportunity to photograph some of the aircraft at McClellan Air Force base today. Click on the photos to see larger versions.

CAL FIRE S2Ts at McClellan AFB March 17, 2014. Photo by Bill Gabbert.
CAL FIRE OV-10s at McClellan AFB March 17, 2014. Photo by Bill Gabbert.
P3s at McClellan AFB March 17, 2014. Photo by Bill Gabbert.
P3 at McClellan AFB March 17, 2014. Anyone know why this aircraft has "MAFFS" painted on it? Photo by Bill Gabbert.
P3 at McClellan AFB March 17, 2014. Anyone know why this aircraft has “MAFFS Protection from Above” painted on it? Photo by Bill Gabbert.
P3s at McClellan AFB March 17, 2014. Photo by Bill Gabbert.

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18 thoughts on “Sacramento aircraft”

  1. Might be the logo for MAFFS Corp?
    In January it was reported that when United Aeronautial purchased the Aero Union P-3s they also got the rights to MAFFS2 & RADS2 tank systems then joined with Blue Aerospace forming MAFFS Corp.

  2. Why would it be important to spend time and money on a company’s logo if all where looking at is a parts plane?

    1. Because the company that owns them is actively trying to shop them around for work. It doesn’t do any good to have the aircraft you own with a big billboard for a defunct company across the side of them. They don’t look to be in that bad of shape either, on the exterior at least.

  3. I have a gut feeling one or more of these P3s will fly and use their tanks again- most likely in a “third world country” (or a country teetering on that status) and not necessarily “flying fire”.

    Other missions that come to mind include dropping insecticides, herbicides (defoliants) or “painting” icebergs.

    What’s to keep a sovereign country from issuing air worthyness exemptions/waivers, or turning a blind eye?

    My understanding is the maintenance and repair log books are so screwed up on these planes I’m not sure many parts can be pulled and used on other aricraft- at least in the US. (Please correct me if I’m wrong.)

      1. The P3 is not able to fly as an airtanker in Canada. No provincial agency will contract it. Look for its possible revival in the US or perhaps a country with which Buffalo has an existing relationship (Turkey?).

  4. David,
    Please stand corrected. The maintenance records are in very good condition.
    The parts utilized during the time when AUC was still active were required to have all of the appropriate certificates and traceability back to the manufacturer and/or the repair/overhaul facility.

  5. It has occurred more than once where a Federal resource agency could not or did not want to make a decision on using proven air tankers. If an aircraft has a current airworthy certificate and the operator (agency) a Part 137 certificate (aerial application) what would be stopping a state fire/resource agency from contracting aviation services?

    1. Nothing. Case in point Oregon Department of Forestry and the contracting of the DC-7’s. The program is working very well. We have air tankers when we need them and do not have to worry about availability for initial attack of state fires, except when multiple fires at one time like in July of 2013.

  6. So there is nothing wrong for the State of California to get the P-3’s and use them for fire fighting?

  7. As crews mop-up a twenty acre fire near Durango, Co. I wonder what happened to the Colorado air program? Several P 3’s sitting on the ramp in California not making a dime, could there be a connection (P3 & Co.)? Or as Cheeck and Chong titled their movie, Colorado will probably just go Up in Smoke.

    1. Still waiting for the division of fire prevention and control to make their assessment/ report to the legislature. Report is due April 1st. Based on the report, the legislature is supposed to make a decision on whether or not to fund the air program.

  8. I HATE TAXES! I just received my State of California fire prevention tax bill for the year. Today wild land fire fighting is crazy expensive. I’m not quite sure what this tax is about but for $10 per month if it helps maintain a solid State air program I look at this tax as an insurance policy? It was identified in the early 1970’s in California that the Fed air tanker fleet was starting to go away, smoothly and quietly. The State could no longer count on Federal air tankers, just like today. For those free-riding states that count of Federal fire fighting it is probably time to wake-up. If a fire should start on my timber holdings or the surrounding area in all likely hood within ten minutes I will hear the sound of two S-2 air tankers arriving. $10/month. I STILL HATE TAXES!

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