Air International 2006-08
M.Jerram - Lockheed JetStar - A Classic Bizjet /Commercial/
Lockheed’s JetStar looks like no other business jet and gained fame for its appearance in the James Bond film Gold finger. Three variants saw service: the Jetstar 6, JetStar 8 and JetStar II. Pictured is a Garrett TFE-731-1-powered JetStar II.
Genesis of the JetStar came about due to two USAF requirements, though orders from the US military never reached the hoped - for number and only totalled 16. Some of these aircraft were used for navigational aid checking, while others - like the aircraft pictured - were employed on VIP duties, which included carrying US Presidents. VC-140B, 61-2492 flew in the latter role and now resides at the USAF Museum at Wright-Patterson AFB (at Dayton).
The first JetStar, N329J - note that it only has two engines. Pictured at Vancouver prior to its move to Seattle for display in the Museum of Flight.
Another famous JetStar is 7T-VHP, used by the Government of Palestine for transporting Yasser Arafat. This JetStar II used to wear the livery of Air Algerie, which flew it on behalf of the Government of Palestine. It has been stored at Geneva Airport for the last 18 months.
In the mid-1980s American Aviation Enterprises offered to re-engine JetStars with a pair of General Electric CF34-1A turbofans. One aircraft was converted by the company, N380AA, and the new variant was given the name FanStar. The aircraft is pictured at the 1986 National Business Aviation Association show in 1986 at Long Beach Airport, California, though no orders were received.
JetStars were used by a number of celebrities, among them Elvis Presley, who owned this JetStar 6, N777EP, now on display at Graceland, his former home in Memphis.
Lockheed followed the JetStar 6 with the JetStar 8, which featured the more powerful '-8' variant of the Pratt & Whitney JT12A engine. Sixty-six of this version were produced. Few JetStar 8s are still in service, so this active Mexican Air Force example is a rarity.
JetStar 6s were the first variant of this classic business jet and used four Pratt & Whitney JT12A-6s (the '6' in the engine designation was adopted to identify the model). This aircraft bears the famous registration, N1, and was flown by the Federal Aviation Agency (later renamed Federal Aviation Administration).
Lockheed JetStar II