Starfighter Scandal: Did Germany's Lockheed F-104


16 points | by rawgabbit 18 days ago


  • constantcrying 14 days ago
    They were quite early supersonic fighter jets, designed for very high speeds and high altitudes and made long before many of the most important lessons had been learned. That they were deadly, even to highly trained pilots, seems a logical consequence.

    What I would be interested in is a comparison to it's Rival, the MiG-21, which outlasted the F-104. Did the Russians struggle just as much?

    Also, these things are absolutely awesome to see in real life. If you ever get the chance, you should take it.

    • flohofwoe 14 days ago
      > Did the Russians struggle just as much?

      It will be hard to get reliable numbers from behind the Iron Curtain during the Cold War, this seems to be an attempt to list the known incidents in the East German airforce (not just Mig-21 - but by far most crashes after 1966 are Mig-21):

      The Indian air force apparently lost over half of their Mig-21 built between 1966 and 1984 to crashes, but maybe because of poor maintenance (

  • dark-star 14 days ago
    I think there might be something missing in the title of this post. Like a verb maybe? "Did Germany's Lockheed F-104"... Did it what? exist?
    • JohnKemeny 14 days ago
      ... deserve its bad name?
      • dark-star 14 days ago
        yeah I saw that after clicking the link, but why not put the whole title in the HN news post then? "The first 5 words should be enough for everybody"? ;-)
        • swores 14 days ago
          Yeah, especially with 31 characters still available before hitting HN's 80 char limit!
  • nolist_policy 14 days ago
    As if it's not bad enough, the Starfighter's radar system also caused cancer and other damages to maintenance personnel due to X-ray radiation.[1]


  • exar0815 14 days ago
    How do you get a Starfighter? Just buy some Land and wait a bit.
  • palad1n 14 days ago
    The famous "widowmaker"... I remember these from childhood, looking through a book about fighter jets. Always thought they had a wicked shape, instantly caught my youthful eye.
    • number6 14 days ago
      Also called Erdnagel (ground nail)
      • mariuolo 14 days ago
        I believe it was nicknamed The Flying Coffin here in Italy.