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KC-135 Stratotanker Walk Around

KC-135 Stratotanker Walk Around Book Review

By Rachel E. Veres

Date of Review February 2013 Title KC-135 Stratotanker Walk Around
Author Kenneth P. Katz Publisher Squadron/Signal Publications
Published 2012 ISBN 9780897476836
Format 80 pages, softbound MSRP (USD) $18.95


Squadron/Signal offers another handy handbook for aircraft enthusiasts.

In KC-135 Stratotanker Walk Around, author Kenneth P. Katz primarily covers current KC-135R models.

After recapping aircraft development and aerial refueling history, Katz briefly corrects a common fallacy – that the KC-135 is simply a military version of Boeing's 707.  While each shares a common ancestor (Boeing's Model 367-80), all sport different fuselages.

Nearly 250 photographs highlight aircraft details – including fuel tanks, landing gear, engines and boom equipment.  Interior shots showcase various KC-135 instrumentation panels and cargo compartment features – including seating and ditch/crash exits.

Katz calls KC-135 jump-seats, despite appearances, "quite comfortable".  As a proud ANG servicewoman enduring long Stratotanker deployment flights, my body emphatically disagrees!

Don Greer's action artwork, 12 color profiles and Melinda Turnage's line drawings provide generous inspiration and information for KC-135 modelers and enthusiasts alike.

Of personal note, p.54 includes Stratotanker nose art from my home station – Pittsburgh's 171st Air Refueling Wing.  "Spirit of Pittsburgh" – depicting local radio personality Rege Cordic's "Omicron the Alien" – pays homage to the 112th Air Refueling Group, a tanker unit consolidated with the 171st in 1993.  But even further back, "Omicron" bedecked F-84Fs in the 1950s!


My sincere thanks to Squadron/Signal Publications for this review sample!