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"I am writing regarding the P-51A... (Serial #). She was sitting on jacks at Cal Aero Tech when I attended A/C maintenance training there in June of 1951. I often felt sadness for that aircraft, as I was sure it was destined for the bone yard. You cannot imagine the thrill it gave me to run across your museum and see her so beautiful and know she was safe. It made me misty-eyed. I honor you for maintaining a beautiful legacy."

James H., Clarkson, WA
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Canadair CT-133

The most widely used jet trainer in the world is the Lockheed T-33 Shooting Star. Essentially a two-seat version of the USAF F-80, America's first operation jet fighter, the T-33 continues in use today.

After introduction of the P-80 Shooting Star, Lockheed undertook a private venture to develop the T-33 trainer. By xtending the fuselage and canopy by three feet, an extra pilot could be accommodated. The result was a world class jet trainer of which 5,781 would be built over its first decade of production. A generation of flying cadets became pilots in the front seat of the T-33.

The U. S. Navy also needed a Jet trainer but the low speed handling of the T-33 was judged unsuitable for carrier landings. Lockheed again went to work, creating the T2V-1 Sea Star which included leading and trailing edge flaps to solve the low speed requirements. By 1958 the Navy had received the first of 700 T2V-1s.

The operational life of America's T-33 finally came to its end in 1987 when the last T-33 was retired from the Air National Guard. However, it lives on in several Latin American countries which still operate the aircraft more than a half century since it was initially deployed.

Planes of FameAir Museum's T-33 is used as the pace airplane for the Unlimited Air Races every year at Reno, Nevada.


Status: Flyable Length: 37 ft. 8 in.
Manufacturer: Lockheed Height: 11 ft. 7 in.
Year: 1949 Maximum Speed: 525 mph
Model: T-33A Shooting Star Cruise Speed: 455 mph
Serial Number: 580-8495 Power Plant: 1-Allison J33-A-35 turbojet with
5,400 lbs. of thrust
Crew: 2 Range: 1,000 miles
Max T/O Weight: 15,100 lb. Service Ceiling: 45,000 ft.
Span: 37 ft. 6 in. Armament: none