Manufacturer: Boeing
Designation: KC-135
Version: A
Nickname: Stratotanker
Type: Tanker
Specifications
Length: 136' 3" 41.53 M
Height: 38' 4" 11.68 M
Wingspan: 130' 10" 39.88 M
Empty Weight: 109000 lbs 49433.0 Kg
Gross Weight: 297000 lbs 134693 Kg
Propulsion
No. of Engines: 4
Powerplant: Pratt & Whitney J57-P-59W
Thrust (each): 13750 6235
Performance
Range: 4000 miles 6441.00 Km
Cruise Speed: 552.00 mph 888.00 Km/H 480.00 Kt
Max Speed: 600.00 Mph 966.00 Km/H 522.16 Kt
Ceiling: 40000.0 Ft 12191.0 M

 

Based on Boeing 707 airframe, the KC-135 was the first totally jet powered
in-flight refueling aircraft. C-135's served as Air Force One and have been
modified into electronic warfare aircraft, weather reconaissance, airborne
command post and special purpose aircraft. Fuel is carried in six wing and four
fuselage tanks. All but 1,000 gallons can be pumped via the extendable boom at
the rear of the aircraft into waiting receivers. Aircraft being refueled line up
following rows of lights on the underside of the KC-135. The boom operator lies
in a prone position and will fly the boom into the receiving aircraft's fuel
receptacle. Eighty troops or 25 tons of cargo can also be carried in the main
fuselage. Seventeen KC- 135's were equipped as " Looking Glass" aircraft for the
Strategic Air Command. These aircraft contained a miniaturized version of SAC
headquarters at Offutt AFB and could direct bombers and missiles if ground
stations were rendered inoperable. These aircraft could also act as tankers.
Until 1985,at least one Looking Glass was airborne at all times.

Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard KC-135's were retrofitted with Pratt
and Whitney TF-33 turbofan engines in the early 1980's and were designated "E"
models. The active duty KC-135's were retrofitted with CFM International CFM-56
turbofans beginning in the mid 80's and were designated "R" models.

The museum's KC-135A, serial number 55-3130, christened "Old Grandad", was
the thirteenth KC-135 manufactured and was delivered to the Air Force in August
1957.  During her 35 year career she refueled thousands of combat aircraft in
Vietnam and Desert Storm. Retired as the oldest KC-135 in the fleet when it
arrived from Carswell AFB, TX, in December, 1992, her last flight was from
Carswell AFB to March AFB. It had a total of 14,107.5 flight hours. This
aircraft is on loan from the USAF.

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According to the Air Force Historical Research Agency (AFHRA/RSA), Maxwell
AFB, AL, the museum's KC-135A has the following history:

KC-135A, S/N 55-3130

KC-135A, s/n 55-3130, Manufactured by Boeing, Seattle, Washington and
delivered to USAF on 1 August 1957

August 1957  - To 93rd Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Castle AFB,
CA

March 1958  -  To 93rd Air Refueling Squadron, Heavy (Strategic Air Command),
Castle AFB, CA

September 1959  -  To 924th Air Refueling Squadron, Heavy (Strategic Air
Command), Castle AFB, CA

July 1962  -  To 93rd Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Castle AFB,
CA

November 1965  -  To 93rd Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command Overseas),
Kadena Air Base, Okinawa

January 1966  -  To 93rd Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Castle
AFB, CA

September 1968 -   To 380th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command),
Plattsburgh AFB, NY

February 1969 -   To 380th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command Overseas),
Kadena Air Base, Okinawa

April 1969  -  To 380th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command), Plattsburgh
AFB, NY

April 1969  -  To 380th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command Overseas),
Torrejon Air Base, Spain

May 1969  -  To 380th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command), Plattsburgh
AFB, NY

May 1970  -  To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell AFB,
TX

April 1972  -  To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command Overseas),
U-Tapao Air Field, Thailand

June 1972  -  To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell AFB,
TX

August 1972  -  To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command Overseas),
Torrejon Air Base, Spain

September 1972  -  To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell
AFB, TX

January 1973  -  To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command Overseas),
Kadena Air Base, Okinawa

April 1973  -  To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell AFB,
TX

August 1978  -  To 43rd Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command Overseas),
Andersen AFB, Guam

September 1978  -  To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell
AFB, TX

September 1978  -  To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command Overseas),
RAF Mildenhall, UK

November 1978  -  To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell
AFB, TX

April 1979  -  To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command Overseas), RAF
Mildenhall, UK

May 1979 - To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command Overseas), Zaragoza
Air Base, Spain

May 1979 - To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command Overseas), RAF
Mildenhall, UK

June 1979 - To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell AFB, TX

May 1980 - To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command Overseas), RAF
Mildenhall, UK

June 1980 - To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell AFB, TX

March 1981 - To 11th Strategic Group (Strategic Air Command), RAF Fairford,
UK

May 1981 - To 7th Bomb Wing, Hcavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell AFB, TX

May 1982 - To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command), RAF Mildenhall,
UK

May 1982 - To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command), Zaragoza Air
Base, Spain

May 1982 - To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command), RAF Mildenhall,
UK

May 1982 - To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command), Zaragoza Air
Base, Spain

November 1982 - To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command), RAF
Mildenhall, UK

January 1983 - To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell AFB,
TX

April 1984 - To 11th Strategic Group (Strategic Air Command), RAF Fairford,
UK

May 1984 - To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell AFB, TX

December 1984 - To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command), RAF
Mildenhall, UK

January 1985 - To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command), Zaragoza Air
Base, Spain

January 1985 - To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell AFB,
TX

June 1985 - To 11th Strategic Group (Strategic Air Command), RAF Fairford, UK

July 1985 - To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell AFB, TX

January 1989 - To 6th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command), Eielson AFB, AK

February 1989 - To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell
AFB, TX

January 1990 - To 306th Strategic Wing (Strategic Air Command), RAF
Mildenhall, UK

March 1990 - To 7th Bomb Wing, Heavy (Strategic Air Command), Carswell AFB,
TX

1992 - Dropped from Air Force inventory: loss to other organization