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SR-71A The Final Flight


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SR-71A - NASA 844 - The Final Flight 

On October 9th 1999, NASA performed the final flight for the entire SR-71 fleet in the SR-71A aircraft designation NASA 844. 

NASA crews flew four Lockheed SR-71 airplanes during the 1990s. Two were used for research and two to support Air Force reactivation of the SR-71 for reconnaissance missions.  The aircraft was 107.4 feet (32.73 meters) long, had a wingspan of 55.6 feet (16.94 meters), and stood 18.5 feet (5.63 meters) high (from the ground to the top of the rudders when parked).  Aerodynamic control surfaces consisted of all-moving vertical tail fins above each engine nacelle and elevons on the outer wings and trailing edges between the engine exhaust nozzles.

The airframes were built almost entirely of titanium and other exotic alloys to withstand heat generated by sustained high-speed flight. Capable of cruising at Mach 3 continuously for more than one hour at a time, the Blackbirds provided a unique research platform for thermal experiments because heat-soak temperatures exceeded 600 °F.

SR-71A (61-7980/NASA 844) was built on the 16th May 1967 and first flew on 25th September 1967.  NASA 844 arrived at Dryden on Feb. 15, 1990. It was placed into storage until 1992 and served as a research platform until its final flight on October 9, 1999.

This was the final flight for the entire fleet of SR-71s, the fastest, and in my opinion, the greatest plane to ever grace the sky.

My Lego SR-71 is built to a minifig scale of 1 stud/ft representing the NASA 844 aircraft to compliment the other excellent LEGO NASA models.  It is shown with the engine starter and pilot in the custom pressurised suit, and if you splash a bit of water under it, it will look like the real one leaking fuel on the tarmac.

Construction has been done using a simpler slope configuration on the fuselage.  You can achieve a more accurate shape with curved slopes and hinges but it is not as sturdy or kit friendly.  Wing shape has been achieved using standard wedge plates.  A lot of SNOT techniques are used in the J58 Engines to maintain shape and provide support for the wing.

The SR-71 is still a popular plane today across all generations as it has appeared in a number of movies and computer games as it is so easily recognisable.  Thank you for your support.

Approx number of pieces: 1000 

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